Military Wiki
Industry Aircraft manufacturer
Fate Acquired
Successor(s) Kaiser-Fleetwings
Founded 1929
Defunct 1943
Headquarters Bristol, Pennsylvania
Fate Defunct
Founded 1943
Defunct 1940s (?)
Headquarters Bristol, Pennsylvania
Key people Henry J. Kaiser
Parent Kaiser Industries

Fleetwings, later Kaiser-Fleetwings, was an American aircraft company of the 1930s and 1940s.


Fleetwings started in 1926 (under a different name) as a business based on a patented mechanical timing device, which proved particularly suited to controlling automated welding equipment. After developing the additional capacity to offer welding services, it pursued research and technology specifically related to the welding of stainless steel. In 1929, the company reorganized as Fleetwings, Inc., in Garden City, NY, to develop stainless-steel aircraft structures. The company progressed to manufacturing components for other aircraft manufacturers, including ribs and control surfaces for the Ireland "Privateer" amphibian, and ribs, flaps and tail surfaces for Grover Loening Aircraft Company, and moved to a larger location in a hangar on lower Roosevelt Field, Long Island. In 1934, it purchased the former Keystone Aircraft facility on the Delaware River in Bristol, PA, and moved its operations there. The corporate structure of Fleetwings, Inc., was dominated by the de Ganahl family. In the mid-1930s, its Board of Directors included Carl de Ganahl, Charles F. de Ganahl, Chloe de Ganahl, Joseph de Ganahl and Frank de Ganahl. During the company's history, Carl, Cecil and Frank de Ganahl each served as President at various times.

The company became Kaiser-Fleetwings in when it was purchased in March, 1943, by Henry J. Kaiser's Kaiser Industries. Kaiser-Fleetwings' entered its XBTK-1 in a United States Navy attack aircraft competition, with five aircraft being flown. The contract went to the Douglas AD-1 Skyraider and the Martin AM Mauler.

The Kaiser-Fleetwings Co. still existed as late as 1960, when it manufactured the launch canister for the Echo 1 balloon satellite at its Bristol factory.[1] The plant was closed in 1962 and demolished, to make way for housing development.[2]



See also

  • Henry J. Kaiser


  1. Missiles and Rockets, Aug 22, 1960, p 15.
  2. Harold Mitchener, The History of Bristol,
  • Gunston, Bill (2005). World Encyclopedia of Aircraft Manufacturers, 2nd Edition. Phoenix Mill, Gloucestershire, England, UK: Sutton Publishing Limited. pp. 167. ISBN 0-7509-3981-8. 

External links

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