Anyone who believes that Ader flew, or even “hopped” in “AEOLE” or “AVION” in the late 19th century should read Charles Gibb-Smiffi’s exhaustive book on the subject. Gibb-Smith uncovers the truth, even to the Army report that proves that Ader did not “leave the ground before officers delegated by the Minis, of War”. Ader spent a lot of effort writing himself into the “history” (or perhaps myth is a better word, of flight!
The engine and steam generator were very good, and amazingly light, but Gibb-Smith, in conclusion states that had either airframe left the ground, lacking any of the elements of control surfaces, it would immediately have crashed.
Leicester G. B. WOOLLEY