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DA-5 Plans

Hi All,

I've been in contact with a friend who knows the current rights holder of the DA-5.  I am trying to get permission to sell drawings (no licensing as the current owner wants it).  Once I get written permission to sell the drawings I will let you all know here.


D2 Aircraft

Hi Bryan,

If you are successful with these plans, I would be interested.

Does anyone know about the DA-9?

It looks similar with a shorter wing span and different power plant.




If you are an EAA member, the best article on the DA-9 is in the August 1996 issue of Sport Aviation magazine. The DA-9 was on the cover that month and got a seven page spread written by Budd Davisson.

Various articles directly quote Leeon stating that no plans for the DA-9 were ever drawn or intended to be made available.

As a side note, I recall some mention that every airplane after the DA-5 was built by Leeon using rudimentary "shop drawings" showing the bare essentials he needed for manufacture (being the designer, he obviously knew the drawing's intent and what part he was making!). Therefore, it is my understanding that the DA-2A/B and the DA-5 are the only Davis aircraft to have actual plans that could be used by a builder.


In the first post, what is the difference between selling drawings and licensing? Does it mean that we could buy a set of plans from you, but not have license to use the plans to build an airplane?

Hi Eric,

Good question. That is in reference to the fact there were drawings posted for download in the past by someone who did not own the rights to the drawings. It would not be appropriate to build from those drawings as there was no licensing to build an aircraft from those drawings.

Hope this helps,

Bryan Cass

D2 Aircraft, LLC

Took me a while to get back to this, so I understand the plans you now sell for the DA-5 include the license to build. Sounds good.

Somewhere in the articles about the DA-5 (or maybe it was another post), it's mentioned that the landing gear in the plans is different from what's on the airplane that is in most (all?) of the photos. Is there any description of the difference in the landing gear? Is / will there be a plan supplement / update?



Hi Eric,

The main gear on the prototype was very simple but did not provide for any suspension. The plans use tapered steel rod gear similar to the DA-2, which is also very similar to Vans RV gear legs.

There were never any drawings for the original style gear legs used on the prototype.

Bryan Cass

Sounds good. Thanks for the info on the gear.


I've been looking through the DA-5A plans to document the hardware. I'm not seeing a drawing that shows what goes onto the main gear legs at the wheels/brakes/axles. I see the gear leg drawing itself is from much later than the rest of the plans, so the wheel/brake installation may have been missed. Can you provide the wheel/brake installation drawing from the DA-2A?



Here ya go Eric. Hope this helps.

Uploaded files:
  • 2402-MAIN-GEAR.jpg

Thanks! Is there any more definition for the collar located on the axle, just to the right of the center of the 2402 print? If not, I think the key is that there's a .250 bolt through the collar, and adapt from there to the particular brake to be used.

I believe that is actually the back plate for the Rosenberg brakes that Leeon originally specified for the plane. I am going to be working on mine soon because the steel drum liner separated from the wheel on the right side. Since these are no longer made I intend to put disk brakes on the DA-3. I will post pictures when I have it apart if you like.

Found the brake problem when I got a flat tire this morning at Apple Valley airport. When I took the wheel off, the brake drum lining stayed on the brake shoes. I was able to get it back together and fly it back home but the plane is now grounded until I install new brakes.

The flat tire did turn into an interesting day though. After fixing the tire I met a group of good ol' boys that have a pot luck lunch every Sunday at the airport. One of the guys used to own a DA-5 and another that was not there has DA-5 serial number 1. This is the plane Leeon used to set the world closed course distance record back in the 70's. I got to see the plane. Unfortunately it has not flown for 15 years. Very sad, hope to see it fly again someday.


Yes, photos would be good to see, even if I'd go with a different brake. Very interesting what you find at the airport. I was searching DA-5A yesterday and it pulled up an article from Air & Space about the Ebneter E-1 which set the C-1a straight-line distance record in 2010. They mention the DA-5A's C-1a closed-course record (and that it was broken by the VariEze in 1975). They theorize that the DA-5A is one of just a few designs that could still have a shot at breaking the C-1a straight-line distance record. They figure that it's not too likely to be attempted since the current record took 18 hours, 15 minutes to set, implying that human endurance makes this record no longer reasonably safe to attempt.

For the wheels/brakes, I see the axle is defined as 1.25" diameter, which I'm guessing is a standard size for production light aircraft wheels. These can be quite expensive. The Sonex uses Azusa wheels on a 5/8" axle (if I recall). These wheels are about $25 each, and the brakes about $35 each. These are cable-activated brakes. Sonex also offers a single-sided disk brake for the Azusa wheels (it's not a caliper, just a piston pushing on one side of the disk). Might need to go with something like that if a cable is too difficult to route. But for a plane of this weight, the Azusa brakes would be more than adequate. I ran the Sonex up to 1150lbs, so 750-ish for the -5A wouldn't be an issue.

The only real difference I see in the required braking is the energy dissipation due to landing speed. The DA-5 comes in a little hotter than a Sonex.

You'll definitely need to go with a different brake as Rosenhan has been out of business for a long time.

I am going with Matco brakes for the DA-3. Yes, they cost more than Azusa but I don't think I would trust those for the higher landing speeds. The brakes I'm getting are about $300 per wheel and $120 for the master cylinder.


Hi all, what other engines then A-65 were DA-5 built? Does anybody know?