Based at the Tours-Sorigny airfield in the Centre-Val de Loire region of France, Early Aviators was founded by Antoine Ros to offer restoration and maintenance services for vintage aircraft. Early Aviators has almost 14,000 sq. ft. (1,300 m2) of premises (including about 2,700 sq. ft., or 250 m2 of insulated workshops), and can handle the overhaul, repair, and restoration of any vintage aircraft, including wood and metalwork, covering, painting, tuning, and more.

Early Aviators’ Caudron G.4.

As part of its current projects, the workshop has also developed the reverse engineering and small-scale reproduction of vintage parts. The team is currently concentrating on restoring an extremely rare twin-engine Caudron G.4, built in 1916, as well as an equally rare Caudron G.3 from the same year. Building on this expertise in early aviation aircraft, Early Aviators has been entrusted with the brokerage of the SPAD 7 fighter reproductions produced by Fox-Aviation Historique. The first airframes have now reached the finishing stage before covering, and can now be offered for sale. Launched by Fox-Aviation Historique, the SPAD S.VII fighter reconstruction project consists of reproducing aircraft as faithfully as possible, based on factory plans from the de Marcay factory in Bordeaux. Edmond de Marcay ensured the largest and longest production run of the SPAD S.VII, and developed the most accomplished version.

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Pilots appreciated the reliability of the engine, the maneuverability and robustness of the plane, which could dive at speeds close to 400 km/h. After the armistice of 1918, these aircraft continued to be used by various air forces until the 1920s. The SPAD company, by then owned by Louis Bleriot, built 1,300 aircraft in its factories. A total of around 8,000 were built, and to meet the requirements of the armed forces, SPAD granted licenses to other manufacturers. To power the newly-replicated airframes, new 180hp V8 Ad engines were also reproduced.

Early Aviators’ SPAD S.VII.

In the Early Aviators workshops, three mythical aircraft from the First World War are on display simultaneously. However, the workshop’s activity is much broader: from the Bücker to the Waco! For more information, visit the Early Aviators website or contact Antoine Ros at +33 06 88 93 89 17 or [email protected]