Did the twin engined Lazair ultralight have a throttle for each engine?

I know larger aircraft have dual throttles.

What about the smaller aircraft like ultralights?

It would be so much easier just to have a single throttle, much like a motorcycle throttle which splits into 2 on a 2 cylinder, 2 carb bike.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Comparison to single-engined motorcycle is wrong. Single engine has a single crankshaft, both cylinders must work together by definition. A more suitable comparison would be to have one lever to brake both wheels on a motorcycle - this one explains why you need two. $\endgroup$
    – Agent_L
    Aug 20, 2019 at 7:55
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    $\begingroup$ It's not a comparison, quadcopters have 4 engines, and only 1 throttle.... Cars have 4 tires, usually 2 independent brake systems, plus e-brake but just 1 pedal. $\endgroup$
    – Fred
    Aug 20, 2019 at 15:41
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    $\begingroup$ Quadrocopters have 4 throttles - operating them differentially is the only mean of controlling it. Cars don't have independent braking either, the circuits are redundant, but the driver cannot chose to brake front or rear. But both motorcycle driver requires the choice of braking in order to not flip over and plane pilot the choice of throttling malfunctioning engine down and the good one up. $\endgroup$
    – Agent_L
    Aug 25, 2019 at 19:44
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    $\begingroup$ Anyway, the point is that you have compared controlling 2 engines of a plane to controlling 2 cylinders of an engine. That comparison is wrong and you have successfully mislead yourself with it. The question would be better without it. $\endgroup$
    – Agent_L
    Aug 25, 2019 at 20:04

2 Answers 2


I've examined a Lazair, and actually taxied one around on the ground once, and yes there are two throttles.

Two reasons:

In any twin engine airplane you want to minimize or eliminate single-points-of-failure (especially with engines as unreliable as little 2-stroke water pump motors) and this means you want the keep each power plant completely mechanically independent all the way up to the throttle.

You need to be able to adjust power independently to synchronize motor RPM (because the wowowowowow of out of sync motors will drive you bonkers), as well as control each engine independently for starting etc.

So, a single throttle to control both engines is a very bad idea.


This image would suggest it had two throttles, located in the usual position on the pilot's left side:

Photograph of a Lazair ultralight, by Ahunt at English Wikipedia [Public domain]

  • 5
    $\begingroup$ What the heck? I knew the Lazair had 4 bladed props, but they are bolted on top of each other facing the same direction? Why not offset them by 90deg?!?!?! $\endgroup$
    – Fred
    Aug 19, 2019 at 15:56
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @Fred Check this question $\endgroup$
    – TomMcW
    Aug 19, 2019 at 17:31

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