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Author Topic: The slightly less well known  (Read 17671 times)

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Offline Angry Turnip

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #25 on: February 03, 2019, 05:40:33 PM »
Vickers Vildebeest

The Vickers Vildebeest,and the similar Vickers Vincent were two very large two/three-seat single-engined biplanes.The prototype was,an all-metal fuselage aircraft with single-bay unstaggered fabric-covered wings and tail.First flown in April 1928 as the Vickers Type 132,powered by a Bristol Jupiter VIII radial engine,later changed to the Bristol Pegasus II-M3 air-cooled radial,of 635hp.An initial production order was placed in 1931 for nine aircraft,with the first production machines flying in September 1932.

The RAF ordered 150 to serve as light bombers/torpedo bombers,and in army cooperation roles.In 1931 Vickers designed as a private venture a general purpose version of the Vildebeest to replace the RAF's Westland Wapitis and Fairey IIIFs,supporting the Army in the Middle East.
Named the Vickers Vincent:differences from the Vildebeest were minimal,principally removal of torpedo equipment,provision for an auxiliary fuel tank,and other minor changes.The Vincent was unveiled to the general public for the first time at the 1935 RAF flying display at Hendon,but deliveries had already been made to No.8 Sqn at Aden in late 1934.Between 1934 and 1936,197 Vincents were built for or converted from Vildebeests for the RAF.

The Vildebeest was purchased in moderately large numbers by the RAF from 1931,mainly based in Scotland and Singapore.By 1937,it equipped six squadrons in Iraq,Aden,Kenya,Sudan,and Egypt.At the outbreak of the Second World War,101 Vildebeests were still in service with the RAF.The two British-based squadrons flew coastal patrol and convoy escort missions until 1940,when their Vildebeests were replaced by the Bristol Beaufort.The two Singapore-based squadrons were still waiting for their Beauforts when Japan invaded Malaya in December 1941,and the obsolete biplanes had to be deployed against the Japanese attackers.

The Vildebeest also served in Spain,with the Spanish Republican forces,and 12 Vildebeests were purchased by the Royal New Zealand Air Force in 1935 for coastal defence duties,with a further 27 acquired from RAF stocks in 194041.A Vildebeest/Vincent composite airframe is being restored by the Royal New Zealand Air Force Museum at Wigram.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2019, 11:33:15 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #26 on: February 06, 2019, 11:13:38 AM »
Vickers Warwick

The Vickers Warwick was a multi-purpose twin-engined military aircraft developed and operated during WWII used mainly by the RAF,but also used by some Polish Sqds and the RAAF,as well as a small number of civil versions used by BOAC.
It was intended to serve as a larger counterpart to the Wellington bomber;the two aircraft shared similar construction and design.Unlike the smaller Wellington, development of the Warwick was protracted by a lack of suitable high-powered engines with which to power the type.First flight was on 13 August 1939,delays to its intended powerplant,the Napier Sabre,led to alternatives being explored in the form of the Bristol Centaurus and Pratt & Whitney R-2800 Double Wasp radial.

Due to the powerplant delays,it was no longer viable as a heavy bomber,and was placed into operational use by the RAF in various other capacities,such as under RAF Transport Command,in addition to its adoption by RAF Coastal Command as an air-sea rescue and maritime reconnaissance platform.During mid-1943,a single Warwick Mk I was converted to become the Warwick Mk II prototype;the main difference was the fitting of Centaurus IV engines.
A total of 219 Warwick Mk I aircraft were constructed,the last 95 of these with 2,000 horsepower R-2800-47 engines.Early testing showed the Warwick to be under-powered and with severe handling problems,especially when flown on a single engine.The version of Double Wasp fitted to early models proved extremely unreliable with many in-flight failures; later versions fitted with the Centaurus engine had better performance but the handling problems were never solved.

From 1943,Warwicks were loaded with the 1,700 lb (770 kg) Mk IA airborne lifeboat,and used for air-sea rescue.It was laden with supplies and powered by two 4 hp motors,it was aimed with a bombsight near to ditched aircrew,and dropped by parachute into the sea from an altitude of about 700 ft.
Warwicks were credited with rescuing crews from Halifaxes,Lancasters,Wellingtons and B-17`s,and during Operation Market Garden,and from Hamilcar gliders,all of which ditched in the English Channel or North Sea.
In total 846 aircraft in different versions were completed.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2019, 11:29:41 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #27 on: February 07, 2019, 11:20:50 AM »
Vickers Vanguard/Merchantman

The Vickers Vanguard was a British short/medium-range turboprop airliner introduced in 1959,a follow-up to its highly successful Viscount design,but with considerably more internal space.It was largely ignored by the market,only 44 were built,ordered by Trans-Canada Air Lines (TCA) and British European Airways (BEA).In the early 1970s most were converted to freighters,those from BEA becoming the Merchantman.These freighters remained in service for many years,with the last one not retiring until 1996.

The main difference between the Viscount and Vanguard was the fuselage.The revised larger upper portion gave a roomier interior,with increased cargo capacity below the floor.
Rolls-Royce delivered its new Tyne design with a nominal 4,000 hp,allowing a higher service ceiling and cruising speed.The Vanguard was one of the fastest turboprops ever flown,production aircraft had 4 Rolls-Royce Tyne RTy.11 Mk 512 turboprops producing 5,545 hp each,so the Vanguard was certainly overpowered.

It entered service with BEA and TCA in late 1960,and soon took over many of BEA's busier European and UK trunk routes.Initial seating was 18 first-class at the rear and 108 tourist,but this was changed to 139 all-tourist,in which configuration,the Vanguard had very low operating costs per seat/mile.The remaining BEA fleet passed to British Airways on 1 April 1974 and the last BA passenger flight with the type was on 16 June 1974.TCA used their`s with two flights from Toronto and Montreal via intermediate stops to Vancouver.The fleet was also used on services from Toronto and Montreal to New York and Nassau.

BEA operated nine Vanguards modified to the V953C "Merchantman" all-cargo layout from 1969,a large forward cargo door was incorporated.The Merchantmen continued in service with BA until late 1979 when the remaining five were sold.Air Bridge Carriers purchased several,and operated them until 1992,when it changed its name to Hunting Cargo Airlines.Hunting Cargo operated its last V953C flight on 30 September 1996 and donated the aircraft,registered G-APEP,to Brooklands Museum on 17 October 1996.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2019, 11:23:06 AM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #28 on: February 08, 2019, 09:28:43 PM »
Westland Walrus

The Westland Walrus was a British spotter/reconnaissance biplane,developed from the Airco DH.9A.The initial attempt was carried out by Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft,adding provision for an observer and removing the stagger from the wings.Westland further modified the aircraft to produce the Walrus,with a 450 hp Napier Lion II engine replacing the Liberty of the DH.9A.

The Walrus was a single-engined,two-bay biplane,fitted with an extra cockpit for the observer/radio operator behind the gunner's cockpit.The observer also had a prone position for observing in a ventral pannier.The undercarriage was jettisonable and the aircraft was fitted with floatation bags for safe ditching,together with arresting gear to aid landing on aircraft carriers.

The prototype`s first flight was in early 1921,it proved to have poor flying characteristics,described by Westland's test pilot Stuart Keep as "a vicious beast.".However,a further 35 were ordered for the RAF and RN.Despite the extensive navalisation,for carrier borne deployment,the Walrus never operated from carriers.
Production aircraft began to be delivered to No. 3 Sqn RAF,at RAF Leuchars in Fife in 1921.No.3 Sqn was split up to form independent Fleet Spotter Flights in 1923.
It continued in service in the Fleet spotting role until it was replaced by the Avro Bison and Blackburn Blackburn in late 1925.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2019, 09:34:04 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #29 on: February 16, 2019, 01:26:50 AM »
Westland Whirlwind (fighter)

The Westland Whirlwind was a twin-engine heavy fighter,the first single-seat,twin-engine,cannon-armed fighter of the RAF.It first flew 11th Oct 1938,and was one of the fastest combat aircraft in the world,and with four Hispano-Suiza HS.404 20mm autocannon in its nose,the most heavily armed.Problems with its Rolls-Royce Peregrine engines badly delayed the project,and only 116 Whirlwinds were built.During WW II,just three RAF squadrons were equipped with the type,despite its success as a fighter and ground attack aircraft,it was withdrawn from service in 1943.

The airframe was built mainly of stressed-skin duraluminium,with the exception of the rear-fuselage,which used a magnesium alloy stressed skin.The pilot sat high under one of the world's first full bubble canopies,and with the low and forward location of the wing,visibility was good (except for directly over the nose).
Hopes were so high for the design that it remained "top secret" for much of its development.The Whirlwind was quite small,only slightly larger than the Hurricane but smaller in terms of frontal area.The landing gear was fully retractable and the entire aircraft was very "clean" with few openings or protuberances.Radiators were in the leading edge on the inner wings rather than below the engines.

The Whirlwind was most often used in ground-attack missions over France,attacking German airfields,marshalling yards,and railway traffic.It was also successful in hunting and destroying German E-boats which operated in the English Channel.At lower altitudes,it could hold its own against the Bf 109.
After retirement in December 1943,all but one of the surviving Whirlwinds were sent to 18 Maintenance Unit at Dumfries,where they were scrapped.P7048 was retained by Westland and was granted a civil certificate of airworthiness on 10 October 1946,with the registration G-AGOI.It was used as a company hack for a short time before being withdrawn in 1947 and scrapped.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2019, 01:49:30 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #30 on: February 16, 2019, 01:48:52 PM »
Westland Wyvern

The Wyvern began as a Westland project for a naval strike fighter,with the engine located behind the pilot,driving a propeller in the nose via a shaft that passed under the cockpit floor.The prototype W.34;the Wyvern TF.1,first flew at Boscombe Down on 16 December 1946 with Westland's test pilot Harald Penrose at the controls.
From prototype number three onwards,the aircraft were navalised and carried their intended armament of four Hispano 20 mm cannon in the wings,and have the ability to carry a torpedo under the fuselage or a selection of bombs and rockets under the wings.

Powerplant was 1 Armstrong Siddeley Python turboprop engine of 3,560 hp driving 4-bladed Rotol contra-rotating,13 ft props.The first Python-powered TF.2 flew on 22 March 1949 and this aircraft introduced the ejection seat to the type.The Python engine responded poorly to minor throttle adjustments,so control was by running the engine at a constant speed and varying the pitch of the propellers.The aircraft was declared ready for service in 1952.

The Wyvern S.4 entered service with 813 Naval Air Squadron in May 1953,it had not yet obtained clearance for carrier operations,this was issued in April 1954.They were in service with the Fleet Air Arm from 1954 to 1958.Wyverns equipped 813 Squadron,827 Squadron,830 Squadron and 831 Squadron of the Fleet Air Arm.
The Wyvern soon showed a worrying habit for flameout on catapult launch;due to the high G forces resulting in fuel starvation.A number of aircraft were lost off HMS Albion's bows and Lt. B. D. Macfarlane made history on 13 October 1954 when he successfully ejected from under water after his aircraft had ditched on launch and had been cut in two by the carrier.
All Wyverns were withdrawn from service by 1958: while in service and testing there were 68 accidents,39 were lost and there were 13 fatalities;including two RAF pilots and one United States Navy pilot.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2019, 01:51:36 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #31 on: February 17, 2019, 07:58:18 PM »
Westland 30

The Westland 30 was a medium helicopter based on the Westland Lynx.Westland had studied a larger version of the Lynx for civil use,originally named "WG-30 Super Lynx" before being changed to "Westland 30".It shared transmission,rotor blade and other components with the Lynx,but had a new airframe.The fuselage is a conventionally built structure of aluminium while composites are used for the tail boom.The prototype WG30 made its first flight on 10 April 1979,and made an appearance at the Paris Air Show the same year.

As a civilian carrier,fitted with airstair or sliding doors it could carry up to 22 passengers with a baggage compartment at the rear of the fuselage.As a military aircraft it could carry 14 troops with equipment, 17 without or six stretchers and medical attendants.

The first of three Westland 30-100s was delivered to British Airways Helicopters on 6 January 1982,to support gas rigs in the southern sector of the North Sea.Omniflight Helicopter Services operated the type on behalf of Pan American World Airways,linking JFK Airport with Pan Am's heliport in central Manhattan.Services ended on 1 February 1988,and the helicopters were returned to Westland;most ending up at The Helicopter Museum in Weston-super-Mare.
Chief operator of the type was Pawan Hans of India.The UK government agreed with India to supply 21 Westland 30s for oil exploration duties using a British grant of 65 million pounds.It was soon found that they were ill-suited to Indian conditions,and after two fatal accidents,the fleet was grounded in 1991.The aircraft are believed to remain in storage in the UK and India.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2019, 10:33:15 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #32 on: February 18, 2019, 10:02:10 PM »
I think that`s most of the major UK types dealt with.I will move on to USA types,should be a few to keep me busy.

« Last Edit: February 18, 2019, 10:09:50 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #33 on: February 18, 2019, 10:19:53 PM »
American Eagle A-101

The American A-1 and A-101 were US-built light 2/3-seat biplanes of the 1920s.The American Eagle A-1 was designed in late 1925 as a training aircraft to replace the WW I biplanes of various types then in use by the Porterfield Flying School.
The prototype A-1 first flew on 9 April 1926.Modifications made to the design in 1927,including ailerons on the lower wings,led to the A-101 designation.
The 90 h.p.Curtiss OX-5 engine was initially fitted,but the upgraded 100 h.p.Curtiss OX-6 was fitted to later production A-101s.
A total of approximately 300 A-1/A-101 aircraft had been completed by 1929.

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #34 on: February 19, 2019, 09:06:25 PM »
Bell P-59 Airacomet

The Bell P-59 Airacomet was a twin jet-engined fighter aircraft, the first produced in the United States.Major General Henry H.Arnold became aware of the UK's jet program when he attended a demonstration of the Gloster E.28/39 in April 1941.He requested,and was given the plans for the aircraft's powerplant,the Power Jets W.1.
An example of the engine,the Whittle W.1X turbojet,was flown to the U.S in October 1941 along with drawings for the more powerful W.2B/23 and a small team of Power Jets engineers.On 4 September,the U.S. company General Electric was given a contract to produce an American version of the engine,which subsequently became the General Electric I-A.

The aircraft first flew during high-speed taxiing tests on 1 Oct 1942 with Bell test pilot Robert Stanley at the controls,although the first official flight was made by Col Laurence Craigie the next day.Tests on the three XP-59As revealed several problems including poor engine response and reliability,poor lateral stability,and general performance that was below expectations.

The 13 service test YP-59As had a more powerful engine than their predecessor,the General Electric J31,but the improvement in performance was negligible.One of these aircraft,the third YP-59A was supplied to the RAF (receiving serial RG362/G),in exchange for the first production Gloster Meteor I, EE210/G.British pilots found that the aircraft compared very unfavorably with the jets that they were already flying.
Bell eventually completed 50 production Airacomets,20 P-59As and 30 P-59BsEach was armed with one 37 mm M4 cannon and 44 rounds of ammunition and three .50 cal (12.7 mm) machine guns with 200 rounds per gun.By 1950, all examples of the Airacomet were no longer airworthy.Disposal of the aircraft included use as static displays,instructional aids in military training,and as static targets.
« Last Edit: February 21, 2019, 09:54:57 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #35 on: February 20, 2019, 09:57:46 PM »
Brewster SB2A Buccaneer

The Brewster SB2A Buccaneer was a single-engined mid-wing monoplane scout/bomber built for the RAF and USN between 1942 and 1944.It was also supplied to the USAAF and USMC.
It`s design was heavily based on the earlier Brewster SBA scout-bomber,sharing the single-engined,mid-winged monoplane layout,but was larger and had a more powerful engine.Power was a single Wright R-2600 engine which drove a three-bladed prop.It was armed with two forward-firing 0.50 inch calibre machine guns in the fuselage and two 0.30 machine guns in each wing.It was also intended to have an enclosed gun turret.The aircraft could carry up to 1,000 pounds (450 kg) of bombs in an internal bomb bay.

Serious problems within Brewster also caused major delays.The company was badly run,and its workforce frequently took strike action.After Brewster missed deadlines to deliver aircraft to the US Navy,it was taken over by the Navy in April 1942.Production continued to be slow,and many of the completed SB2As suffered from defects.
Deliveries of Brewster Bermudas to the RAF commenced in July 1942.They judged that the type was unsuitable for combat,and most of the Bermudas delivered to them were converted to target tugs.Five were transferred to the Fleet Air Arm of the Royal Navy for assessment four as dive bombers and one as a target towing tug.

Due to the poor performance of the SB2A,many of the completed aircraft were scrapped by the RAF and US Navy without having been flown operationally.
The US Navy cancelled its remaining order of the type in 1943.A total of 771 SB2As were eventually completed.
Many historians regard the SB2A as one of the worst aircraft of WWII.The National Naval Aviation Museum's website notes that "overweight, underpowered, and lacking maneuverability,the Brewster SB2A Buccaneer was a classic failure".
« Last Edit: February 20, 2019, 09:59:18 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #36 on: February 21, 2019, 04:24:56 PM »
Champion Lancer

The Champion 402 Lancer is a twin-engine tandem seat trainer based on the tricycle gear Champion 7FC Tri-Traveler,but powered by two wing-mounted Continental O-200-A engines.
The Lancer was the least expensive American-built twin engine airplane.Other design goals included simplicity,ease of maintenance,low operating costs,and the ability to operate from rough or unimproved strips.The high wing and high engine position give good propeller clearance.Built with metal tube construction and fiberglass covering and has fixed landing gear and propellers.

It first flew in 1961 and production began in 1963,it was designed specifically for flight schools seeking an inexpensive way to train students for a multi-engine rating.
The front seat was equipped with a control yoke,while the rear-seat pilot had a centre stick.Both seats were equipped with engine controls mounted overhead,with solo flight being performed from the front.Braking was controlled with a lever on the right-hand side of the front-seat instrument panel;differential braking was not possible, and no brake controls were provided for the rear-seat pilot.

Single engine performance was poor as was visibility due to the engine nacelles,particularly for the rear-seat pilot,and for both pilots during banked turns.Engine noise in the cockpit was a problem.The sidewall-mounted elevator trim lever looks very similar to the throttle lever of the single-engine Aeronca Champion which creates a risk that an experienced Champion pilot may confuse the two. In most respects, the Lancer's flight performance is equal or slightly inferior to that of the popular Cessna 150,an airplane that uses a single O-200 engine rather than two.

Some flight schools initially viewed the Lancer's marginal single-engine performance favorably,as students trained in a Lancer found other twin-engine types comparatively easy to fly.However,sales were very limited;production began in 1963 and ended later in the same year with only 25 to 36 aircraft built.As of November 2018,the highest serial number of any 402 Lancer in the FAA aircraft registry is 25.

Photo from Abpic.co.uk
« Last Edit: February 21, 2019, 09:54:29 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #37 on: February 22, 2019, 04:05:02 PM »
Columbia XJL

The Columbia XJL is a large single-engined amphibious aircraft designed by Grumman Aircraft but built by the Columbia Aircraft Corp.It was intended to replace the Grumman J2F Duck but the type did not reach production status.
The final 330 examples of the Duck were built in 1941/42 under sub-contract by the Columbia Aircraft Corp,retaining the J2F-6 designation.
It had a crew of six and capacity for 6 passengers,powerplant was 1 Wright R-1820-56,of 1,350 hp

Grumman completed a major re-design of the aircraft for the USN as a Wright R-1820-56 powered monoplane amphibian.
The new design was turned over to the Columbia Aircraft Corporation for development and construction so that Grumman could focus on the production of fighter aircraft for the USN.

The aircraft resembled the J2F Duck,except for its monoplane layout,and has been referred to as a "single-winged Duck" dispite being an new design.The USN ordered three XJL-1 experimental aircraft from Columbia.
Two,assigned USN BuAer Nos 31399 and 31400,were delivered to the USNs test establishment Maryland for evaluation in 1946.The two aircraft tested were found to have repeated structural failures of various components and testing was abandoned on 21 September 1948.
The aircraft were deleted from the USN inventory in February 1949.No further orders were placed for production of the JL design. 
« Last Edit: February 22, 2019, 04:06:37 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #38 on: February 23, 2019, 08:03:37 PM »
Consolidated PB2Y Coronado

The PB2Y Coronado is a large flying boat patrol bomber used by the US Navy during World War II in bombing, antisubmarine, and transport roles.
The USN began planning for the next generation of patrol bombers,after deliveries of the PBY Catalina had begun in 1935.Orders for two prototypes,the XPB2Y-1 and the Sikorsky XPBS-1,were placed in 1936 and the prototype Coronado first flew in December 1937.

The design was finalized as the PB2Y-2,with a large cantilever wing,twin tail with very marked dihedral,and four Pratt & Whitney R-1830 radial engines.The inner engines were fitted with four-bladed reversible pitch propellers;outer engines had standard three-bladed feathering props,later marks had engines replaced with single-stage R-1830-92`s.

Coronados served in combat in the Pacific with the USN,in both bombing and antisubmarine roles,but many served as transport and hospital aircraft.RAF Coastal Command had hoped to use the Coronado as a maritime patrol bomber,but it`s range was unsuitable,consequently the Coronados supplied to the RAF were outfitted purely as transports, serving with RAF Transport Command.The 10 aircraft were used for transatlantic flights.
They served as a major component in the Naval Air Transport Service (NATS) during World War II in the Pacific theater,again range limited them to transport service in the American naval air fleet.

By the end of World War II,the Coronado was outmoded as both a bomber and a transport,and virtually all of them were quickly scrapped by the summer of 1946.
Only one known example remains,at the National Naval Aviation Museum at Naval Air Station Pensacola,Florida.
« Last Edit: February 23, 2019, 08:04:12 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #39 on: February 24, 2019, 05:00:05 PM »
Consolidated TBY Sea Wolf

The Consolidated TBY Sea Wolf was a USN torpedo bomber of WWII and a competitor and contemporary to the Grumman TBF Avenger.
The original design was not by Consolidated Aircraft,but rather by Vought,the first prototype flew two weeks after Pearl Harbor.It`s performance was deemed superior to the Avenger so the Navy placed an order for 1,000 examples.Powerplant was 1 Pratt & Whitney R-2800-6 Double Wasp radial engine of 2,000 hp.
The aircraft was armed with 4 x.50inch machine guns and a single 0.30inch machine gun,also it could carry 2000lb of bombs,or one torpedo.

The prototype was damaged in a rough arrested landing trial,and when repaired a month later was again damaged in a collision with a training aircraft.
Due to flight test delays Vought had become heavily overcommitted to other contracts,especially for the F4U Corsair fighter,and had no production capacity. 
It was arranged that Consolidated-Vultee would produce the aircraft (as the TBY),but had to wait until the new production facility in Allentown,Pennsylvania,was complete, which took until late 1943.
 
The production TBYs were radar-equipped,with a radome under the right-hand wing.The first aircraft flew on 20 August 1944.By this time though,the Avenger equipped every torpedo squadron in the Navy,and there was no longer a requirement for the Sea Wolf.
Orders were cancelled after production started,and the 180 built were used for training.
« Last Edit: February 24, 2019, 05:03:53 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #40 on: February 25, 2019, 07:00:08 PM »
Convair XC-99

The Convair XC-99 was a prototype heavy cargo aircraft built by Convair for the USAF,developed from the Convair B-36 Peacemaker bomber,and shared the wings and some other structures with it.
It was the largest piston-engined land-based transport aircraft ever built,first flight was on 24 November 1947 in San Diego,after extensive testing it was delivered to the Air Force on 26 May 1949.
The capacity of the XC-99 was 45,000 kg of cargo or 400 fully equipped soldiers on its double cargo decks.A cargo lift was installed for easier loading.The engines face rearward in a pusher configuration like the B-36.

The Convair Model 37 was a large civil passenger design derived from the XC-99 but was never built.It was to be of similar proportions to the XC-99; 182 ft 6 in length,
230 ft wingspan,and a high-capacity,double-deck fuselage.The projected passenger load was to be 204,and the effective range of 4,200 miles.
Fifteen aircraft were ordered by Pan American Airways for transatlantic service.However,fuel and oil consumption of the six 3,500 hp Wasp Major radials meant that the design was not economically viable.The hoped-for turboprop powerplants did not materialize fast enough,and a low number of orders were not sufficient to initiate production.

The US Air Force determined that it had no need for such a large,long-range transport at that time,and no more were ordered.
The sole XC-99 served until 1957,including much use during the Korean War.It made twice weekly trips from Kelly AFB to the aircraft depot at McClellan Air Force Base,California,transporting supplies and parts for the B-36 bomber,returning by way of other bases or depots making pick-ups and deliveries along the way.
During its operational life,the XC-99 logged over 7,400 hours total time,and transported more than 60 million pounds (27,000 metric tons) of cargo.

The aircraft made its last flight on 19 March 1957, landing at Kelly Air Force Base, where it would remain for the next 47 years.It was subsequently transported in the summer of 2012 to Davis-Monthan AFB and is stored in Area 20 of the 309 AMARG complex,the so-called "Boneyard",pending financial resources sufficient to restore the aircraft and return it to NMUSAF for display.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2019, 09:07:47 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #41 on: February 26, 2019, 05:51:15 PM »
Convair R3Y Tradewind

The Convair R3Y Tradewind was an American 1950s turboprop-powered flying boat.The USN had requested Convair in 1945 to design a large flying boat using new technology developed during WW II,especially the laminar flow wing and developing turboprop technology.Their response was the Model 117.The Navy ordered two prototypes on 27 May 1946, designated XP5Y-1, the first aircraft first flew on 18 April 1950 at San Diego.The Navy decided not to proceed with the patrol boat version,instead directing that the design should be developed into a passenger and cargo aircraft.

It was designated the R3Y-1 Tradewind and first flew on 25 February 1954.Major changes were the removal of all armament and of the tailplane dihederal,the addition of a 10 ft port-side access hatch,and redesigned engine nacelles to accept improved T40-A-10 engines.Cabin soundproofing and airconditioning were added for pressurised accommodation for 103 passengers or 24 tons of cargo.As a medevac aircraft,92 stretcher cases could be carried.

A total of eleven aircraft were built.The first two prototypes built were in P5Y configuration armed with 8,000 lb of munitions (bombs, mines, depth charges, torpedoes) and five pairs of 20 mm cannon in fore and aft side emplacements and a tail turret.The next five were built as R3Y-1 aircraft,intended for troop transport and inflight refuelling tanker service.The final six were built as the R3Y-2 variant with a lifting nose and high cockpit (similar in concept to the C-5 Galaxy's nose and cockpit) for heavier transport and landing-ship duties.

The R3Y set a transcontinental seaplane record of 403 mph in 1954 by utilizing the speed of high-altitude jetstream winds,this record still stands.
After service trials the aircraft were delivered to US Navy transport squadron VR-2 on 31 March 1956. Problems with the engine/propeller combination led to the ending of Tradewind operations and the unit was disbanded on 16 April 1958.

The six R3Y-2s were converted into four-point in-flight tankers using the probe-and-drogue method.In September 1956 one example was the first aircraft to successfully refuel four others simultaneously in flight in 1956, refuelling four Grumman F9F Cougars.The program was halted after thirteen aircraft were built,the reason being the unreliability of the Allison T-40 turboprops.The crash of one of the two XP5Y-1 aircraft was judged due to catastrophic engine failure;when little progress was being made with the engine problems,All the P5Y and R3Y aircraft were grounded in 1958 and subsequently broken up.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 06:00:45 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #42 on: February 27, 2019, 10:25:46 PM »
Convair 990 Coronado

The Convair 990 Coronado was an American narrow-body four-engined jet airliner,a stretched version of their earlier Convair 880 produced in response to a request from American Airlines.They wanted a larger passenger capacity than the 880,which was the smallest of the first-generation U.S. jet airliners and the 990 began flight testing January 24, 1961.One change from the 880 was the large anti-shock bodies on the upper trailing edge of the wings to increase the critical Mach and reduce transonic drag.The inboard shock bodies,which were larger,were also used for additional fuel tankage.

The 990 was lengthened by 10 ft (3.0 m),which increased the number of passengers from between 88 and 110 in the 880 to between 96 and 121 in the 990,still fewer passengers than the contemporary Boeing 707 (110 to 189) or Douglas DC-8 (105 to 173),although the 990 was 2535 mph faster than either in cruise.The engines were also changed to the uprated General Electric CJ-805-23s,which were unique in that they used a fan stage at the rear of the engines,compared to the fan stage at the front of the engine found on the Pratt & Whitney JT3D that powered the 990's competitors.The engine was a simplified,non afterburning civil version of the J79,like most versions of the J79,the CJ805 and CJ805-23 were smoky, although secondary operator Spantax eventually had their 990 aircraft refitted with smokeless combustion chambers in the 1970s. 

The 990 did not meet the specifications promised,and American Airlines reduced their order as a result.The 990A was developed by adding fairings to the engine nacelles, among other changes.Despite the modifications the aircraft never lived up to its promise of coast-to-coast nonstop capability from JFK to LAX.AA began to dispose of their 990As in 1967.
The Convair 990A is still the fastest non-supersonic commercial transport to have ever been produced.During May 1961, one of the pre-production 990 prototype aircraft set a record of .97 Mach in level flight at an altitude of 22,500 ft.,equivalent to a true airspeed of 675 mph.This was before the various aerodynamic drag-reduction changes were applied to the later 990A,as such,it would have been capable of speeds slightly in excess of 700 mph.

Swissair bought eight 990As beginning in 1962,operating them on long-distance routes to South America, West Africa, the Middle and Far East, as well as on European routes with heavy traffic. Their fleet was withdrawn from service in 1975. Scandinavian Airlines also operated Coronados on their long-haul schedules to Tokyo and other destinations in the Far East.

The failure of airlines to broadly accept the Convair 880 and 990 led Convair's parent company,General Dynamics,to suffer what at the time was one of the largest corporate losses in history.Convair exited the jet airliner business,although they later profitably built fuselages for the McDonnell Douglas DC-10, KC-10 and MD-11.
When the major airlines retired their Convair 990s,they found a second life on charter airlines.Spantax of Spain had a large fleet until the mid-1980s and so did Denver Ports of Call.In 1967,Alaska Airlines purchased Convair 990 PP-VJE from Varig,and operated it as N987AS in scheduled airline service until 1975.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2019, 10:26:26 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #43 on: February 28, 2019, 06:04:35 PM »
Culver Model V

The Culver Model V was a two-seat cabin monoplane designed and built by the Culver Aircraft Company.It was based on the pre-World War II Cadet and using the wartime experience with radio-controlled aircraft the company designed a two-seat cabin monoplane.It had a low-set cantilever wing with the outer panels having a pronounced dihedral,it also featured a tricycle retractable landing gear and an enclosed cabin with side by side seating for two.

It was unique in that it had a system called Simpli-Fly Control where the aircraft was automatically trimmed for takeoff,landing and cruise.It operated by turning a small metal wheel between the two seats and lining up two arrows with the correct mode of flying the aircraft.Interconnecting controls then adjusted the trim according to the arrow settings.Only a limited production run of 350 Model Vs was achieved before the company went bankrupt.

In 1956 the Superior Aircraft Company bought the assets of Culver and put the Model V back into production as the Superior Satellite.The main difference was the use of a 95 hp Continental engine which increased the cruise speed to 130 mph.Only a prototype and five production aircraft were built.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2019, 02:38:55 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #44 on: March 01, 2019, 03:39:06 PM »
Curtiss F11C Goshawk

The Curtiss F11C Goshawk was a 1930s USN biplane fighter aircraft that saw limited success but was part of a long line of Curtiss Hawk airplanes.
The USN wanted an improved derivative of the Model 34C,F6C as the F11C.It contained major changes that included the 600 hp Wright R-1510-98 radial engine,single-leg cantilever main landing-gear units,metal covered control surfaces,and two .30 in machine guns supplemented by a hardpoint under the fuselage for a 474 lb bomb,or a fuel tank.

After tweeks and changes,the XF11C-2 came to be regarded as the prototype for the F11C-2,of which 28 examples were ordered as dual-role fighter-bombers in October 1932.
From March 1934,the aircraft were revised with a semi-enclosed cockpit and a number of other modifications before they received the revised designation BFC-2 in recognition of their fighter-bomber or,as the Navy would have it,bomber-fighter role.
The last aircraft in the XF11C-2 contract was converted to the prototype XF11C-3,featuring a more powerful R-1820-80 engine and manual operated retractable landing gear.
 
The only U.S. Navy units to operate the F11C-2 were the Navy's famous "High Hat Squadron",VF-1B aboard the carrier Saratoga,and VB-6 briefly assigned to Enterprise.In March 1934,when the aircraft were redesignated BFC-2,the "High Hat Squadron" was renumbered VB-2B,and then VB-3B,and retained its BFC-2s until February 1938.

The F11C-2 Goshawk was produced in two export versions as the Hawk I and Hawk II fighters.Both versions carried the same armament as the production F11C-2.
Only the Hawk II was exported in quantity with Turkey,the first customer taking delivery of 19 on August 30,1932.
Colombia placed an order at the end of October 1932,receiving an initial batch of four twin float-equipped Hawk IIs,the first of a total of 26 float fighters delivered by the end of July 1934.
They used Hawk II and F11C-2 based in floats in the Colombia-Peru War in 1932-1933.

Nine Hawk IIs were supplied to Bolivia,of which three had interchangeable wheel/float undercarriages;four went to Chile,four to Cuba,two to Germany,one to Norway and 12 to Thailand as Hawk IIIs.
The Chinese Nationalist Air Force received 52 F11Cs as Hawk IIs and fought against the Japanese during the Second Sino-Japanese War.
Thai Hawk IIIs saw action during World War II,including against the RAF.On 8 April 1944,a Thai Hawk III was shot down by a No. 211 Squadron RAF Bristol Beaufighter over Lamphun.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2019, 12:30:59 AM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #45 on: March 03, 2019, 12:31:19 AM »
Curtiss SBC Helldiver

The Curtiss SBC Helldiver was a two-seat scout bomber and dive bomber,it was the last military biplane procured by the United States Navy.On 30 June 1932,BuAer signed a contract with Curtiss to design a two-seat monoplane with a parasol wing and a retractable undercarriage.Powered by a 625 hp Wright R-1510-92 fourteen cylinder,two row,air-cooled radial engine driving a two-blade propeller.
This fighter was designated XF12C-1.Most production versions used the Wright R-1820-34 radial engine of 850 hp.
Two crewmen,pilot and radio operator/gunner,were housed in tandem cockpits enclosed by a sliding canopy and the turtledeck behind the rear cockpit could be folded down to allow the gunner to use his machine gun.

In August 1936,the Navy signed a contract for 83 SBC-3s (Curtiss Model 77A) Delivery of the SBC-3s to the fleet began on 17 July 1937 when the first aircraft were issued to Scouting Squadron Five (VS-5) serving in USS Yorktown (CV-5) however,Yorktown was not commissioned until 30 September 1937 and the ship then began sea trials.
On 10 December 1937,VS-5 went aboard Yorktown and served aboard her until replaced by Douglas SBD-3s Dauntlesses in 1940.They were obsolete even before World War II and were kept well away from combat with Axis fighters.

They were also operated by the USMC,the last SBC reported in Marine squadron service was an SBC-4 at American Samoa in service with VMSB-151 on 1 June 1943.The French Navy had ordered 90,50 were to be shipped to Brest from Halifax,there was only room for 44,due to other types being carried.
The two ships sailed from Halifax on 16 June 1940,two days later,Brest fell to the Germans and both ships were ordered to Fort-de-France,Martinique,in the eastern Caribbean Sea.
They arrived on 27 June,the SBC-4s were unloaded and rolled to a field at the Pointe des Sables region and stored in the open.Under tropical climatic conditions,the aircraft stored were slowly rotting and were no longer airworthy and were eventually scrapped.

Those left at RCAF Station Dartmouth were aquired by the RAF designated as "Cleveland Mk. Is" and shipped to England in the aircraft carrier HMS Furious.They were delivered to RAF Little Rissington,and later used by No.24 Squadron at RAF Hendon.These aircraft were never used operationally and became ground trainers.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2019, 12:35:57 AM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #46 on: March 03, 2019, 01:32:44 PM »
Curtiss SO3C Seamew

The Curtiss SO3C Seamew was developed as a replacement for the SOC Seagull as the USN's standard floatplane scout.Curtiss named the SO3C the Seamew but in 1941 the USN began calling it by the old name Seagull,causing some confusion.The Royal Navy kept the Curtiss name,(Seamew),for the SO3Cs that they ordered.
The main design requirements was that the Seamew had to be able to operate both from ocean vessels with a single center float,and from land bases with the float replaced by a wheeled landing gear.

Powerplant was 1 Ranger XV-770-8 inline air-cooled inverted V12 engine,600 hp,which was an unreliable brute.Inflight stability problems were mostly resolved with the introduction of upturned wingtips and a larger rear tail surface that extended over the rear observer's cockpit.Poor flight performance and a poor maintenance record led to the SO3C being withdrawn from US Navy first line units by 1944.The older biplane SOC was taken from stateside training units and restored to first-line service on many US Navy warships until the end of World War II.

A fixed undercarriage version,was ordered by the Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm under the terms of Lend-Lease.Later versions,known as the Seamew Mk.I,were the SO3-2C variant. 250 Seamews were allocated and some 100 actually delivered.Deliveries to the RN started in January 1944,but it was declared obsolete in September the same year and completely removed from service in 1945.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2019, 01:33:15 PM by Angry Turnip »

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #47 on: March 04, 2019, 05:05:52 PM »
Dayton-Wright XPS-1

The Dayton-Wright XPS-1 was an American single-seat fighter interceptor aircraft.It was desgined and built as an United States Army Air Service Pursuit Alert (Special) requirement for an interceptor.
It used many of the advanced features of the earlier Dayton-Wright RB-1 Racer developed for the 1920 Gordon Bennett race.The racer had a pilot cockpit entirely enclosed in the streamlined fuselage.Construction consisted of a wooden semi-monocoque fuselage with the cantilever wing constructed entirely of wood and fitted with leading- and trailing-edge flaps.Powerplant was 1 Lawrance J-1 radial piston engine of 200 hp

The XPS-1 had a parasol monoplane configuration with wooden flying surfaces whose fuselage was a fabric-covered steel-tube structure.The main feature retained from the RB Racer was its retractable undercarriage.The unusual design was a tailskid undercarriage with the main units designed to retract into the lower fuselage sides.
The landing gear was hand-operated using a chain-and-sprocket system,and could be raised or lowered fairly quickly.

Three aircraft were ordered as the XPS-1, one was used for ground tests while the remainder were slated for flight trials.Test flights began in 1923 but the performance was so poor the United States Army Air Service refused to accept the design.The three examples remained the only type produced for the PS category. 

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #48 on: March 05, 2019, 08:00:44 PM »
Douglas A-33

The Douglas A-33 (Model 8A-5) was an updated version of the Northrop A-17 for the export market,with a more powerful engine and increased bomb load.The Northrop A-17,was a two-seat,single-engine,monoplane,attack bomber,in British Commonwealth service,A-17s were called Nomads.

The 8A-5 was powered by a 1,200 hp Wright R-1820-87 engine and was fitted with four wing mounted 0.30 in machine guns,two 0.50 in machine guns in pods below the wing and a rear-firing flexibly mounted 0.30 in gun,plus it could carry up to 2,000 lb of bombs.

The Norwegian government ordered 36 8A-5s which not had been delivered before Norway was invaded by the Germans.Completed between October 1940 and January 1941,the aircraft were delivered to a training center in Canada that had been set up for the Norwegian government-in-exile,at Toronto Island Airport,Ontario.
After the loss of two aircraft and a reassessment of the training needs now met by the use of other aircraft,the remaining 34 Model 8A-5Ps were sold to Peru.Later,31 were repossessed by the Army Air Corps at the start of World War II.These aircraft,designated A-33,were used for training,target tug,and utility duties.

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Re: The slightly less well known
« Reply #49 on: March 06, 2019, 03:32:39 PM »
Douglas A2D Skyshark


The Douglas A2D Skyshark is an American turboprop-powered attack aircraft,developed from the highly successful A-1 Skyraider.While it resembled the Skyraider,the A2D was different in many ways.
The 5,100 hp Allison XT-40-A2 had more than double the horsepower of the Skyraider's R-3350.The XT40 installation on the Skyshark used contra-rotating propellers to harness all the available power.Wing root thickness decreased, from 17% to 12%,while both the height of the tail and its area grew.

Engine-development problems delayed the first flight until 26 May 1950,made at Edwards Air Force Base.The first prototype XA2D-1,BuNo 122988,on 19 December 1950,crashed on its 15th flight.Navy test pilot Cdr. Hugh Wood was killed attempting to land,he was unable to check the rate of descent,resulting in a high-impact crash.
Additional instrumentation and an automatic decoupler was added to the second prototype,but by the time it was ready to fly on 3 April 1952,16 months had passed,and with all-jet designs being developed,the A2D program was essentially dead.

By the summer of 1954,the A4 Skyhawk was ready to fly,and time had run out for the troubled A2D program.Due largely to the failure of the T40 program to produce a reliable engine, the Skyshark never entered operational service.
Twelve Skysharks were built, two prototypes and ten preproduction aircraft.Most were scrapped or destroyed in accidents,and only one has survived.
A2D-1 Skyshark, BuNo. 125485,is at the Gillespie Field Annex of the San Diego Air & Space Museum in El Cajon,California.It was restored for static display by Pacific Fighters.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2019, 03:37:14 PM by Angry Turnip »