Nelson H-44

Nelson H-44
Type Two-stroke aircraft engine
National origin United States
Manufacturer Nelson Engine Company
Designed by Ted Nelson
Major applications Bowlus/Nelson Dragonfly
Produced circa 1947

The Nelson H-44 is an American single ignition, four cylinder, horizontally-opposed, direct drive, two stroke aircraft engine that was developed by the Nelson Engine Company for use in motorgliders.[1]


Design and development

The H-44 was designed in the period following the Second World War and a specially designed motor glider was created by Hawley Bowlus to utilize the engine, the Bowlus/Nelson Dragonfly.[1]

The engine was not certified. Under the CAR 5 regulations then in place in the USA for gliders, a certified auxiliary power glider could be flown with a non-certified engine and propeller. The engine is instead described on the Dragonfly type certificate.[1]

The four cylinder engine runs on a 12:1 mixture of 80 octane gasoline and SAE 30 oil. It is equipped with a single Carter WA1 carburetor and a recoil starter.[1]

Operational history

Employed in the Dragonfly the H-44 proved underpowered, which lead to the design of the H-49 version. The engine family was not a success and few were produced.[2][3]


Original design with a 2.25 in (57 mm) bore and 2.75 in (70 mm) stroke, producing 25 hp (19 kW) at 3900 rpm.[1]
Upgraded design with a E-225 cylinders giving a 2.375 in (60 mm) bore and 2.75 in (70 mm) stroke, producing 28 hp (21 kW) at 4000 rpm.[1]


Specifications (H-44)

Data from FAA Type Certificate Data Sheet[1]

General characteristics

  • Type: Four cylinder, two stroke, single ignition aircraft engine
  • Bore: 2.25 in (57 mm)
  • Stroke: 2.75 in (70 mm)
  • Displacement: 44 cubic inches
  • Dry weight: 40 lb (18 kg)
  • Designer: Ted Nelson


  • Fuel system: Carter WA1 carburetor
  • Fuel type: 80 octane gasoline
  • Oil system: premixed oil in fuel, SAE 30 oil mixed at 12:1 fuel to oil
  • Cooling system: air
  • Reduction gear: none


See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Federal Aviation Administration (April 1947). "Aircraft Type Certificate Data Sheet GTC19".$FILE/ATTRYH3Y/GTC19.pdf. Retrieved 10 March 2011. 
  2. ^ a b Activate Media (2006). "Dragonfly Bowlus Nelson". Retrieved 10 March 2011. 
  3. ^ a b Said, Bob: 1983 Sailplane Directory, Soaring Magazine, page 118. Soaring Society of America, November 1983. USPS 499-920

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