The design of the well-known de Havilland Tiger Moth was based
on the D.H. 60 Moth, a plane first developed by Geoffrey de
Havilland in 1925. The Tiger Moth’s wings were swept back to
allow for better access to the cockpit. The D.H. 60 and the
Tiger Moth both used the inverted D.H. Gipsy engine.
A prototype Tiger Moth flew for the first time in October
1931 in England. The plane was designed as a military trainer,
but was also sold to civilians before the Second World War.
During the war, the possibility arose that the supply of D.H.
Gypsy Major 1C engines could be blocked, and so the Menasco
engine was used in the Canadian Moth. This incarnation was
called the "D.H.82C2 Menasco Moth". The new version of the Moth
did not perform as well as the Tiger Moth because the Menasco
engine had 125-horse power, while the Gipsy engine had 140-horse
Following the Second World War, the Tiger Moth was used by
Allied air forces, including those from Australia, Brazil,
Canada, Denmark, Iraq, New Zealand, Persia, Portugal, South
Africa, Southern Rhodesia, and Sweden. The Tiger Moth became one
of the main elementary
trainers of the British Commonwealth Training Program.
Large numbers of Moths were later sold as war surplus to
individual citizens, small aviation companies, and flying clubs.