THE two previous articles in this series have dealt respectively with a metal fabric‐covered aeroplane and a metal stressed‐skin machine, so that the Oxford, as an example of modern woodworking practice, forms a subject for direct comparison of the three main materials available. It will be remembered that the Air Council's policy of insisting upon all‐metal aeroplanes for military purposes was subjected to considerable criticism at the time of its inception some ten or twelve years ago. When the R.A.F. expansion was started the regulations were relaxed in regard to training machines and one general service type, which has resulted in the standardization of the Airspeed Oxford, de Havilland Tiger Moth, Miles Magister and Master I and the Avro Anson. All these types are built on well‐tried straightforward principles and they allow for the use of both material and labour upon which there is now comparatively little demand. Those firms which are producing wooden aeroplanes do, in fact, have far fewer delays caused by non‐delivery of parts and scarcity of labour—their rate of production is actually governed to a great extent by the delivery of metal parts and fittings—than do the producers of metal airframes.
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