Orenco D
Role Fighter
National origin United States
Manufacturer Orenco/Curtiss Aircraft
First flight 1919[1]
Number built 54 (4 prototypes, 50 production)

The Orenco D was an American biplane fighter aircraft, designed by Orenco and built by Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company. It was the first fighter type of completely indigenous design (as opposed to foreign types or American-built versions of foreign types) to enter US military service.


The D prototype was offered to the US Army Air Service at the end of 1918. It was a two-bay biplane of all-wood construction, covered with fabric. It was powered by a 300 hp (224 kW) Hispano-Suiza engine. The pilot of the first flight test, Clarence B. Coombs, gave it a positive evaluation: "This aircraft performs better than the Sopwith Camel and Snipe, the Thomas-Morse, the Nieuport and Morane Parasol, the Spad and S.V.A."[1] The military ordered 50 production aircraft, but put the production order up for bidding. Curtiss Aircraft entered the lowest bid and built the fighter, modifying it slightly with a wider wingspan and redesigned ailerons.[2] The first Curtiss Orenco D flew on 26 August 1921.[1]


Orenco D
Prototype, four built[1]
Curtiss Orenco D
Production aircraft, 50 built[2]
Orenco D-2
Prototype based on Curtiss Orenco D. three built, under military designation PW-3.[1]
An Orenco D-2 prototype with revised tail surfaces


 United States


Data from: Flight: The Aircraft Engineer & Airships, "Some 'Orenco' (U.S.A) Aeroplanes", 1 April 1920, pp. 363–366.

Curtiss Orenco D

Data quoted here may differ in some respects from that quoted by Angelucci.[2]

General characteristics

Span: 30 ft (9.1 m)
Area: 142 sq ft (13.2 m2)
Span: 28 ft (8.5 m)
Area: 119 sq ft (11.1 m2)


At sea level: 147 mph (237 km/h)
At 10,000 ft (3,000 m): 139 mph (224 km/h)
To 5,000 ft (1,500 m): 4 min 20 s
To 10,000 ft (3,000 m): 8 min 54 s
To 15,000 ft (4,600 m): 16 min 45 s


Orenco D2

General characteristics

Span: 28 ft (8.5 m)
Area: 170 sq ft (16 m2)
Span: 25 ft (7.6 m)
Area: 64 sq ft (5.9 m2)


At sea level: 165 mph (266 km/h)
At 10,000 ft (3,000 m): 158 mph (254 km/h)
To 5,000 ft (1,500 m): 4 min
To 10,000 ft (3,000 m): 8 min 30 s
To 15,000 ft (4,600 m): 13 min 50 s


  1. ^ a b c d e Angelucci, 1987. pp. 378-380.
  2. ^ a b c d Angelucci, 1987. p. 119.