Weatherly ag-aircraft are safe, efficient, reliable, and affordable. Weatherly’s are designed to optimize small-grain agrochemical application. This is their story.
Weatherly Aircraft Company was begun in the early 1960’s by John C. Weatherly when he converted a Fairchild M-62 (PT-23) into the Weatherly WM-62C agricultural aircraft, powered by a radial engine, a Wright W-670 or a Pratt & Whitney R-985.
After 19 conversions John realized the WW-II trainers were a limited commodity and decided to design his own. He subsequently designed the Weatherly 201, an original design that featured a single-seat, mono-wing , aluminum spray plane powered by a Pratt & Whitney 985-R engine, certified by the FAA in 1967. By 1978, more than 100 Weatherly 201’s had been produced.
John Weatherly redesigned his ag-airplane in 1979 and recertified it as the model 620, enlarging the agrochemical hopper to 355 gallons, increased the wing length and geometry to enhance the agrochemical spray pattern, and other airframe enhancements. With the participation of brother Hal Weatherly, the 620 was evolved to the model 620-B in 1992, which featured an ergonomic cockpit and the same 450 horse power R-985 engine.
Among unique contributions to the ag-aviation industry, John Weatherly invented the Weath-aero fan, an ingenious device to compensate for directional wind impact on the deposition of agrochemical – a headwind going down a field becomes a tailwind when coming back the opposite direction and consequently changes the effective deposition rate. John’s “Weath-aero fan” corrects the pump to compensate for the windage.
The 620 was fitted with a turbine engine, first with a Pratt & Whitney PT6A-11AG and then an Allied Signal Garrett TPE331-1-151 (650 HP), the 620-TGB, certified in 1997 and sold in the US and Argentina. Weatherly further distinguished itself in the agricultural market with unique and quirky paint schemes. More than 200 Weatherly 620’s were built and are presently flying in 13 countries.
Weatherly Aircraft Company is presently relocating to the center of its traditional market, the mid-western “grain belt”, to Wichita, Kansas, “the air capital of the world”, where a large pool of experienced, skilled aircraft engineers, metal and composite machinists, as well as a large network of world-class fabricators and parts suppliers.
Weatherly production of the 620-B and 620-BTG will resume before the end of 2019, serving its traditional market with new aircraft, technical services, and parts.