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Caproni Ca.100 trainer
Role Trainer
Manufacturer Caproni
First flight 1928
Primary user Regia Aeronautica
Number built >681[1]

The Caproni Ca.100 was the standard trainer aircraft of the Regia Aeronautica in the 1930s. Large numbers of this tandem, two-seat, inverted sesquiplane were built, powered by different engines.[1]

Design and development[]

The Ca.100 (Caproncino, little Caproni, was a nickname, rather than one given by the manufacturer) was based on the de Havilland DH.60 Moth, for which Caproni had a production licence. They revised the wings to create an inverted sesquiplane configuration and also redesigned the tailplane. Otherwise, its wings followed those of the Moth in having no sweep or stagger. It was a wooden framed, fabric covered single engine aircraft with a square section fuselage built around four longerons, with tandem open cockpits. It had a fixed, conventional undercarriage. Fuel was carried, Moth style, in a streamlined tank on the centre section of the upper wing.[1] It first flew in late 1928, piloted by Domenico Antonini, at Milan-Taliedo.[2]

Ca.100s were powered by a variety of engines. The most common of these were the 85 kW (115 hp) Isotta Fraschini Asso 80R and the 108 kW (145 hp) Colombo S.63, both 6-cylinder air-cooled inline engines, and the uncowled 63 kW (85 hp) Fiat A.50 and 104 kW (140 hp) A.54 7-cylinder radials.[1][2] Other engines in the 60-100 kW (80-135 hp) range included the Walter NZ-85, Farini T.58, Fiat A.53, Fiat A.60 radials and the inline Colombo S.53, Cirrus Major, de Havilland Gipsy, de Havilland Gipsy Major engines.[2]

Operational history[]

The Regia Aeronautica received 680 Ca.100s. These were mostly used as primary trainers, though some undertook liaison work. There were exports to Peru and Portugal. Some aircraft were built as civilian tourers.[1]

After adoption by the Regia Aeronautica, Ca.100s were built by several other Italian firms, including Macchi, as well as by Caproni. Some 30 Macchi built examples were fitted with floats and designated Ca.100 Idro. The design was also produced by Caproni's Bulgarian subsidiary as the KN-1.[1] Twelve Ca.100s were built under licence by the Peruvian government from 1935.[2]

One example of the Ca.100 Idro seaplane version was used to establish a world seaplane altitude record of 5,018 m (16,462 ft) in 1931.


I-ABOU at Lake Como.

The last flying original landplane Ca.100, I-ABMT is ex-military, MM55194. The Aero Club Como floatplane I-ABOU, ex-MM65156, has been rebuilt after a take-off collision in 2006, flying again in September 2010. At least one replica also flies.[2][3]

Aircraft on display[]

The Italian Air Force Museum at Vigna di Valle acquired landplane I-GTAB in May 2007; it is now marked with the registration FIR-9, appropriate to a Ca.100 serving at the Florence basic Flying School in the mid-1930s.[4]

Caproni Ca.100 Idro floatplane variant in the Museo dell'Aeronautica Gianni Caproni, Trento.

Floatplane ex-I-DISC and MM56237 is in the Museo dell'Aeronautica Gianni Caproni, Trento.[3]

Ex-I-BIZZ and MM56271 is in the Royal Saudi Air Force Museum.[2]



Specifications (Gipsy engine)[]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 2, pilot and instructor
  • Length: 7.30 m (23 ft 11 in)
  • Wingspan: 10.00 m (32 ft 10 in)
  • Height: 2.75 m (9 ft 0 in)
  • Wing area: 24.4 m2 (263 ft2)
  • Empty weight: 400 kg (882 lb)
  • Gross weight: 560 kg (1,499 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × de Havilland Gipsy 4-cylinder air-cooled upright inline, 63 kW (85 hp) each


  • Maximum speed: 165 km/h (102 mph)
  • Range: 700 km (462 miles)
  • Service ceiling: 4,000 m (13,125 ft)
  • Rate of climb: 1.8 m/s (354 ft/min)

See also[]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Taylor, Michael J. H. (1989). Jane's Encyclopedia of Aviation. London: Studio Editions. pp. 232. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 "Caproni Ca.100". March 2011. pp. 31–6. ISSN 0262-4923. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 Ogden, Bob (2009). Aviation Museums and Collections of Mainland Europe. Air Britain (Historians) Ltd. ISBN 978-0-85130-418-2. 
  4. "Error: no |title= specified when using {{Cite web}}". August 2007. 
  • World Aircraft Information Files. London: Bright Star Publishing. pp. File 891 Sheet 09. 

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