Pitts Special S2B Aerobatic Flight

General Information & History

The designer of the original Pitts Special aerobatic biplane, Curtiss Pitts, could hardly have appreciated that his design would continue in production for over five decades, and that it would come to be considered by the general public as the definitive aerobatic and display flying aircraft.

The original prototype of the S1 Special first flew in September 1944.  The aircraft was of steel tube construction with fabric covering over wooden spars, while the two wings were braced with wire.  Power in early aircraft was supplied by 65 to 95kW (90 to 125hp) four cylinder Continentals or Lycomings.  Later models were higher powered and of conventional metal construction.

Factory production of the basic single seat S1 Special included the S1S with a 135kW (180kW) Lycoming IO360, driving a fixed pitch prop, and the current S1T.  The S1T was introduced to production in 1981, and introduced a 150kW (200hp) Lycoming (now Textron Lycoming) AEIO360 driving a constant speed prop and with symmetrical wings.  Homebuilt versions of the S1 include the S1D and S1E (for which plans or kits have been offered), while the S1S and S1T are also available in kit form.

The two seat S2 Special is of the same configuration as the single seat S1 but is larger overall, and generally regarded as a more capable aerobatic aircraft due to its larger size and heavier weight, more power and aerodynamic changes.  For this reason the S2 is also built in single seat 195kW (260hp) AEIO540 powered S2S form, while two seat models are the 150kW (200hp) IO360 powered S2A, and current production 195kW (260hp) powered and fully aerobatic with two occupants S2B.  The S2C has aerodynamic changes.

The Pitts Special is marketed and built by Aviat in Wyoming.