Since the end of World War II, three aircraft designs competed against each other for the title of "world's smallest plane".

Wee Bee - Designed, built, and flown by Ken Coward, William Chana, and Karl Montijo in San Diego, California, during the late 1940s. Just over 14 ft (4.25 m) long and with a wingspan of only 18 ft (5.5 m)




Stits Junior - Designed by Ray Stits and Martin Youngs, the Junior was rebuilt from the components of a surplus World War II Taylorcraft L-2. The Junior was around 11 ft (3.4 m) in length and had a wingspan that varied between 8.8 and 9.3 ft (2.7 to 2.8 m)




Sky Baby - Stits and co-builder Robert Starr built a new even smaller plane that differed from earlier entries by adopting a biplane design. This change allowed the wingspan to be reduced even further to just over 7 ft (2.1 m). With a maximum length under 10 ft (3 m), its 65-hp piston engine gave the Sky Baby a maximum speed of 185 mph (300 km/h).




Bumble Bee - The Sky Baby remained unchallenged as the world's smallest plane until the 1980s when its former pilot, Robert Starr of Phoenix, Arizona, built the Bumble Bee. The Bumble Bee biplane was heavier than the Sky Baby but its dimensions were smaller with a length under 9.5 ft (2.9 m) and a wingspan of just 6.5 ft (2 m).




Baby Bird - Ray Stits' son Donald set out to recapture the title by building an even smaller monoplane. At 11 ft (3.4 m) in length, the Baby Bird was longer than the Bumble Bee but had a smaller wingspan of 6.25 ft (1.9 m) and weighed less at only 250 lb (115 kg)




Bumble Bee II - Robert Starr believed he could go even smaller and completed a new Bumble Bee II in 1988. Though still heavier than the Baby Bird, the overall dimensions of the Bumble Bee shrank even further to 8.8 ft (2.7 m) in length and a mere 5.5 ft (1.7 m) wingspan. Its 85-hp piston engine made possible a maximum speed of 190 mph (305 km/h).
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