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Airplane Picture - Salmson S4E

Salmson Information


Founder(s): Emile Salmson
Defunct: 1946
Headquarters: Boulogne-Billancourt. (France)
Products: Cars

Airplane Picture - Salmson S4E

Picture - Salmson S4E

Salmson was a French engineering company, initially in the automobile and aeroplane manufacturing area, turning to pump manufacturing in the 1960s.


It was established by x‰mile Salmson (1858-1917) as Emile Salmson, Ing. as a workshop in Paris (1890), making steam-powered compressors and centrifugal pumps for railway and military purposes. Subsequently joined by engineers Canton and Unné, it was renamed Emile Salmson & Cie, building petrol-powered lifts and motors (1896).

The company became one of the first to make purpose-built aircraft engines, starting before World war I and continuing into World War II.

After World War I the company looked around for other work and started making car bodies and then complete cars.

Car production finished in 1957.

Airplane Picture - Salmson S4C

Picture - Salmson S4C

Focus also moved back to pump production and the facilities moved to Mayenne in 1961. The firm was bought by ITT-LMT in 1962 and then by Thomson in 1976.

Its headquarters today are in Chatou.

Aircraft manufacture

Airplane Picture - Salmson 9Z

Picture - Salmson 9Z

It moved to Billancourt and manufactured the Salmson 9 series of water-cooled radial engines. During World War I Salmson made its first complete aeroplanes, mainly the two seat fighter/reconnaissance plane, the Salmson 2A2. These were used in combat by both the French and the American Expeditionary force. The company also designed a prototype of a single seat scout/fighter, the Salmson 3, but this was not produced in large quantities.

Salmson aircraft were also used for air mail to India in (1911).

Aeroplane manufacturing moved to Villeurbanne near Lyon.

Two world records were set by Maryse Bastié who flew Le Bourget to Moscow (1931).

The aero-engine models made were:-

Salmson 5Ac
Salmson 6Ad
Salmson 7Ac
Salmson 7M
Salmson 7Om
9 A
9 AB
9 ABC 172 kW (230 hp)
9 AC
9 AD
9 ADB 134 kW (180 hp)
9 AZ
9 A2C
9 CM
9 M
9 ND 131 kW (175 hp)
9 P
9 Y
Salmson-(Canton-Unne) Z9 172-190 kW (230-250 hp) water cooled
Salmson 9Za
Salmson 9Zm
Salmson-(Canton-Unne) Z9
Salmson 11 B
Salmson 12 C W-12
Salmson 18 Ab
Salmson 18 Cm
Salmson 18 Z
Salmson C
Salmson E
Salmson K

and the aircraft

Salmson SAL-2
Salmson SAL-2 Berline
Salmson SAL-3
Salmson SAL-4
Salmson SAL-5
Salmson SAL-7
Salmson D-1 Phrygane (1934)
Salmson D-2 Phrygane
Salmson D-3 Phryganet
Salmson D-4 Phrygane Major
Salmson D-6 CriCri (1936)
Salmson D-7 CriCri Major
Salmson D-21 Phrygane
Salmson D-211 Phrygane
Salmson D-57 Phryganet

Car manufacture

Airplane Picture - Salmson S4E

Picture - Salmson S4E

The Billancourt factory became the car manufacturing plant directed by Emile Petit. As the firm had no direct car design expertise they started by building the British GN cyclecar under licence, displaying six cars at the 1919 Paris Salon.

In 1922 the car part of the business became a separate company, named Société des Moteurs Salmson.

The first Salmson car proper used a four-cylinder engine designed by Petit with unusual valve gear: a single pushrod actuated both inlet and exhaust valves pushing to open the exhaust and pulling to open the inlet. This was used in the AL models from 1921. Later the same year the company built its first twin-overhead-cam engine, which was fitted to the 1922 D-type, although most production at first used the pushrod engine.

Airplane Picture - Salmson Grand Prix 1927

Picture - Salmson Grand Prix 1927

Models included

AL (cyclecar, 1920),
D-type (1922)
VAL3 (1922),
AL3 (1923),
GSC San Sebastian,
Gran Sport (GS, 1924-30),
2ACT (1926).

Salmson won 550 automobile races and set ten world records (1921-28) before closing the racing department in 1929. The S-series cars took over from the D-type, starting in 1929 and becomong a long lived series.

S4 (1929-32)
S4C (1932)
S4D (1934)
S4DA (1935-38)
S4-61 (1938-51)
S4E (1938-51).

The firm also made the 2A2 de Aéropostale aeroplane.

After World War II the S4E and S4-61 were re-introduced and in 1950 a new car arrived in the shape of the E72 La Randonnée. Car sales were slow in the postwar market and the company was kept going by its aircraft engine sales, although the factory had to close for a period. A new car, the 2300 S, was shown in 1953 and it even took part in the 1955, 1956 and 1957 Le Mans 24 hour races

After bankruptcy in 1953, all activities ended in 1957 and Renault bought the factory.

List of aircraft engines

Salmson Pictures and Salmson for Sale.

Living Warbirds: The best warbirds DVD series.

Source: WikiPedia

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