Brown B-3

The Brown B-3 was a 1930s American single-seat touring monoplane and air racer built by the Lawrence Brown Aircraft Company. Only one example was eventually built.

Brown B-3
Brown B-3, c. 1942
National origin United States
Manufacturer Lawrence Brown Aircraft Company
Designer Lawrence W. Brown
First flight 1936
Number built 1
Developed from Brown B-2

Design and development

The B-3 was based on earlier B-2 Miss Los Angeles single-seat racing monoplane.[1] For the day, some advanced features were included such as Handley Page leading edge slots and single-slotted ailerons and flaps on the wing trailing edge.[1] The B-3 was powered by a 290-horsepower (219 kW) Menasco C6S-4 Super Buccaneer inline piston engine. A proposed two seat-variant, the Brown B-3 Super Sport had two seats in tandem under an enclosed cockpit. No orders were received, and the project died.

Operational history

Intended as a long-distance racer as well as a touring aircraft, only one Brown B-3 (NX266Y) was built and sold to Dr. Ross Sutherland from Los Angeles. On October 10, 1943, the aircraft was destroyed in a hangar fire at Van Nuys Airport, then known as the Metropolitan Airport.

The Brown B-3 is featured in Flight for Freedom (1943) as the racing aircraft flown by the lead character. [2] The B-3 can also be seen sitting on the ramp during the scene of Humphrey Bogart's famous goodbye in the film Casablanca (1942).[1]


Data from [1]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 1
  • Capacity: 1
  • Length: 25 ft 11 in (7.89 m)
  • Wingspan: 31 ft 11 in (9.72 m)
  • Height: 8 ft 0 in (2.44 m)
  • Wing area: 150.0 sq ft (13.94 m2)
  • Empty weight: 1,850 lb (839 kg)
  • Max takeoff weight: 2,650 lb (1,202 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Menasco C6S-4 Super Buccaneer inline piston engine, 290 hp (220 kW)
  • Propellers: 2-bladed Hamilton Standard


  • Maximum speed: 205 mph (330 km/h, 178 kn)
  • Cruise speed: 190 mph (310 km/h, 170 kn)
  • Range: 600 mi (966 km, 522 nmi)
  • Service ceiling: 18,000 ft (5,486 m)
  • Rate of climb: 1,200 ft/min (6.1 m/s) [3]



  1. Orbis 1985, p. 994.
  2. Santoir, Christian. "Review: 'Flight for Freedom'." Aeromovies. Retrieved: September 26, 2017.
  3. "Flying Equipment: Brown Model B-3." Aviation, Volume 35, Issue 7, July 1936, pp. 33, 35.


  • The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Aircraft (Part Work 1982–1985). London: Orbis Publishing, 1985.
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