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Curtiss XP-46

Curtiss XP-46

Curtiss XP-46

XP-46 var en av en serie forsøk på å forbedre ytelsen til P-40 Warhawk, hvorav ingen kom i produksjon. Arbeidet begynte med XP-46 i september 1939. Den brukte en kraftigere Allison V-1710-39-motor, som var i stand til å gi 1.150 hk ved start. Designet ble ryddet opp for å redusere motstanden, og det ble spådd en toppfart på over 400 mph.

XP-46A, uten våpen, fløy først 15. februar 1941. Ytelsen var ikke på langt nær så god som forventet-toppfarten var bare 355 mph ved 12.000 fot. Dette var bare en veldig liten forbedring i forhold til P-40D den gang i produksjonen, absolutt ikke en stor nok forbedring til å rettferdiggjøre forstyrrende produksjon, og derfor ble arbeidet med XP-46 forlatt.


Curtiss XP-62

Curtiss Aeroplanes suksess med å levere en amerikansk hærjager var i den klassiske P-40 "Warhawk" -linjen. Imidlertid var dette en førkrigsdesign gjennom og gjennom, og mange forsøk fra selskapet på å sikre seg flere hærkontrakter i jagerfeltet mislyktes til slutt. Det var også forsøk på å forbedre selve det originale P-40-produktet, og disse falt også til intet da konkurrenter som Lockheed, Republikken og Nordamerika svingte inn for å finne de potensielt lukrative hæravtalene på bordet.

XP-62 ble utviklet av Curtiss for å bygge en veldig rask jagerplattform rundt den da største radialstempelmotoren som er tilgjengelig-Wright R-3350 "Cyclone 18". Arbeidet begynte allerede før USA skulle forplikte seg til andre verdenskrig som kom i desember 1941. I løpet av januar samme år henvendte Curtiss seg til amerikanske hærmyndigheter med sine planer og overbeviste dem om jagerflyets potensial, og klarte å sikre finansiering for prøve før slutten av måneden.

Syklonmotoren var allerede i gang, startet i 1936, men den hadde vist seg helt temperamentsfull til at forsinkelser var vanlige. Utover den rene størrelsen, ble motoren vurdert til over 2000 hestekrefter og fant sin beste bruk som drivverk for den berømte Boeing B-29 "Superfortress" tunge bombeflyet som fortsatt kommer (denne bombeflyet brukte fire slike motorer). Kanskje mer interessant var bruken av det for å drive et mer kompakt jagerfly - noe som ga det enestående hastighets- og ytelsesfaktorer som var enestående på den tiden. I løpet av denne perioden var Wright-produktet et av de mektigste i sitt slag-Wright R-3350-17-modellen ble valgt for å drive XP-62-designet og gi opptil 2300 hestekrefter. En turbo-kompressor skulle også inngå i motorens installasjon. På grunn av kreftene som spilles, ville en seks-bladet kontra-roterende propell med stor diameter (over 13 fot) være montert foran på flyet.

Utover den massive radialen, skulle flyet ha moderne metallskinnkonstruksjon, en cockpit under trykk for høyflyging og en imponerende bevæpningstype på 12 x 0,50 kaliber Browning tunge maskingevær. Alternativt kan maskingeværene erstattes av et batteri på fire til åtte 20 mm kanoner for et enda kraftigere front "slag".

Sluttproduktet ble et solid monoplanfly med et dypt flykropp med en turbo-kompressorinntakskanal montert under nesen. Kanaler ble brukt til å lede luft til enheten midt mellom skip. En hevet flykroppsrygg bak cockpiten begrenset utsikten bak, men la til internt volum for drivstoff, luftfart og andre viktige komponenter. Cockpiten var dekket over i et drivhus-stil baldakin og satt like akter for motorinstallasjonen. Halenheten besto av en avrundet vertikal halefinne som kom fra ryggraden, så vel som midtmonterte horisontale fly. Understellet var av det typiske halestrekkarrangementet og helt uttrekkbart. I stedet for det tiltenkte maskingeværarrangementet, hadde bevæpningen nå spesielt sentrert om bevæpning med alle kanoner - så mange som åtte.

Curtiss utviklet flyet under produktnavnet "Model 91" og sendte sitt strømlinjeformede forslag i april 1940. Dette ble godkjent måneden etter og dekket prototypen XP-62 og en XP-62A av produksjonskvalitet-den første som ble lest opp av slutten av 1942. Da Curtiss -ingeniører begynte å jobbe, men det ble snart oppdaget at den plagsomme motoren ikke ville være klar i tide.

Til tross for dette var en oppskrift tilgjengelig for gjennomgang i løpet av desember 1941. På dette tidspunktet hadde produktets vekt ballongert og det ble beordret at hun ble lettere (dette førte til en 4 x 20 mm kanonbevæpning som den avtalte standarden). Hæren ga Curtiss en offisiell produksjonskontrakt i mai 1942 for å produsere den ferdige P-62A. Imidlertid ble denne kontrakten opphevet så snart juli da Boeing B-29-prosjektet krevde den valgte Wright-motoren. Hærmyndighetene var også bekymret for å forstyrre Curtiss-forpliktelsen til å produsere sine "Thunderbolt" -krigere P-40 og Republic P-47.

XP-62-prototypen fortsatte i redusert tilstand, da den ikke lenger fikk den følelsen av hastverk den en gang hadde. Første flytur ble endelig registrert 21. juli 1943, men denne modellen ble fortsatt fratatt viktige komponenter og ikke representativ for noe i nærheten av et produksjonsfly. I løpet av noen få måneder ble XP-62-programmet kansellert for fullt (dette skjedde 21. september 1943) ettersom bedre alternativer var tilgjengelige for hæren på vei inn i de siste årene av krigen. Curtiss forsøkte å overbevise hæren om fordelene med å konvertere det nye flyet til en plattform med lavt terrengangrep, men det var allerede mye konkurranse på dette feltet fra eksisterende effektive typer så vel som modeller under utvikling.

Til slutt markerte XP-62 et av de siste Curtiss-produktene som dukket opp i løpet av krigsårene. P-40-designet var det eneste virkelig klassiske jagerbidraget og ble aldri bedre før konfliktens slutt. Bare en eneste prototype av XP-62 ble realisert, og flyetiden var bare kort. Hvis den ble fullført, ville XP-62 ha vist en maksimal hastighet på opptil 450 miles i timen (den opprinnelige spesifikasjonen var nærmere 470 mph), en rekkevidde på 1500 miles og et servicetak på 35.700 fot (derav cockpit-trykksystemet) - som også viste seg å være problematisk). Dimensjonene inkluderte en lengde på 39,5 fot, et vingespenn på 54 fot og en høyde på 16,25 fot.


Curtiss C-46: Going Commando

Curtiss C-46 Commando ble mester i lufttransport i tungvekt under andre verdenskrig.

© John M. Dibbs/The Plane Picture Company

Curtiss C-46 fylte en nisje under andre verdenskrig for en tungtransportør i stor høyde som var i stand til å operere fra grove flystropper i fjerntliggende lokaler

De kalte det Curtiss Calamity, Ol ’Dumbo, the Flying Whale og, nylig, Miss Piggy. C-46 Commando var det største tomotorsflyet i verden da det først fløy-lengre, høyere og med et bredere vingespenn enn en B-17 eller B-24. Å fly en C-46 var å kjempe med 20 til 26 tonn aluminium og stål, avhengig av modell og mods. Det var piloter som sa at hvis du kunne fly en C-46, kunne du fly hva som helst. Andre hevdet at hvis du kunne drosje den, kunne du fly den. Atter andre kalte det en elendig groundlooping sonofabitch og ønsket ingenting å gjøre med det.

Curtiss designet opprinnelig C-46 til å være et luksusfly med trykk som har nok rekkevidde til å fly den gylne ruten mellom New York og Chicago direkte og over det meste av været. Det ville være en 24- til 36-seters "sub-stratosfære transport", forutslo selskapets markedsførere optimistisk, med mulighet for å bli konfigurert med kryssende soveplasser. Men det ville aldri bli satt under trykk, aldri vært luksuriøst, aldri vært et ekte fly. I beste fall ble hundrevis av krigsoverskuddskommandoer operert på slutten av 1940-tallet og begynnelsen av 50-tallet av ikke-planlagte last- og passasjerskip. Etter å ha kostet regjeringen 313 500 dollar hver, ble C-46s solgt som overskudd for så lite som $ 5000.

Da designet av Curtiss CW-20-flyet begynte i 1936, var krig en fjern trussel mot det ikke-intervensjonistiske USA, og Douglas DC-3 hadde allerede demonstrert muligheten for alvorlige kommersielle flyreiser. Doug hadde gjort foreldet Boeing 247 og Curtiss ’gawky 12-seters, uttrekkbart gir Condor II-biplan. Curtiss så på å se på fremtidig konkurranse fra Boeings firemotorede 307 Stratoliner og Douglas DC-4.

På 1920- og 30-tallet var Curtiss et enmotors jagerfly, med en lang rekke biplanjakt for hæren og marinen, og deretter P-36 og P-40 Hawk-jagerfly for Army Air Corps og eksport. CW-20 Condor III var den desidert største og mest komplekse designen selskapet noensinne har gjennomført.

Ansvarlig var en produktiv ingeniør, George A. Page Jr., som til slutt ledet 60 Curtiss -design. Page var en pioner flyger, etter å ha soloert i 1913, og han jobbet til og med kort som flyselskap. Kommandoen var høydepunktet i karrieren. Page fikk hans CW-20-design grundig testet i Guggenheim Aeronautical Laboratories vindtunnel på 10 fot i Caltech. Tunneltesting oppmuntret ham til å konstruere uvanlige naceller for det som ble C-46, med deksellapper bare på den nedre halvdelen av belgene. Dette unngikk å mate eventuell turbulent avkjølende luftstrøm over vingens øvre løfteflater.

Vindtunnelen bekreftet også en av CW-20/C-46s mest særegne trekk-dens strømlinjeformede, uforsterkede cockpitglass, som ga Commando sin perfekte sigarform. Et lite antall C-46 ble bygget med konvensjonelle frontruter, de ble kjent som kommandoer med brudd i nesen.

Den andre særegne Commando-funksjonen som Page bekreftet på Caltech var flyets doble boble, figur-åtte tverrsnitt. CW-20 var ment å være under trykk, for å konkurrere med Boeing 307, verdens første fly som er under trykk. Curtiss ønsket også at CW-20 skulle ha et stort, separat bagasjerom under hovedhytta, en innovasjon for den tiden. Å omfatte både en romslig hytte og et ekstra lastområde innenfor et enkelt sirkulært tverrsnitt - ideelt for trykk - ville ha skapt et flykropp med et stort frontområde og dermed økt formmotstand. Så skisserte Page en delvis sirkel som var fast knyttet til et bredt gulv for å inneholde passasjerkabinen, og et separat mindre eggformet område festet til gulvet nedenfra for bagasjeområdet uten trykk.

Resultatet var spesielt mindre drag, men det var en meningsløs øvelse. Curtiss hadde ikke tid til å utvikle et trykksystem midt i krigstidens krav, og etter krigen forlot mangel på flyinteresse for en sivil versjon av flyet selskapet uten grunn til å gjøre jobben. Ingen CW-20 eller C-46 ble noen gang satt under trykk.

CW-20-prototypen hadde en lang aluminiumsramme for å skjule brettet mellom kabin og bagasjerom, men det ekstra metallet veide 275 pund, økte produksjonskompleksiteten og gjorde ingenting aerodynamisk. Den ble raskt åttisekset og etterlot C-46s signaturkroppsform. Page fikk et designpatent på CW-20s konfigurasjon, omtrent som Coca-Cola som patenterte formen på flasken med veps i livet. Det er uklart hvordan Boeing omgått patentet for å lage dobbeltboblen Model 377 Stratocruiser bare fem år senere, selv om Boeing og Douglas designet dobbeltboblen 707 og DC-8 etter at Curtiss-patentet hadde utløpt.


C-46 var undermakt til Curtiss erstattet sine 1.700 hk Wright Twin Cyclones med 2.000 hk Pratt og amp Whitney Double Wasps. (Riksarkivet)

I mars 1940 tok Boeing testpilot Eddie Allen den store Curtiss for sin første flytur. Allen var den desidert mest erfarne testpiloten for flere motorer i landet, og hadde foretatt dusinvis av første flyvninger med alt fra Douglas DC-2 til Boeing 314 flybåt. I clubby -verdenen til West Coast -flyframstillere hadde han tid til å frilansere av og til.

På den tiden dukket krigsskyer opp, og Curtiss parkerte CW-20 på baksiden av hovedbuffelen i Buffalo, NY, mens den økte produksjonen av P-40-er for britene. Legenden sier at mens han turnerte med flyproduksjonsanlegg i september 1940, besøkte generalmajor Henry "Hap" Arnold Curtiss, så CW-20 og angivelig erklærte: "Jeg vil ha det flyet." Siden da hadde Air Corps allerede kjøpt prototypen og testet den-under betegnelsen C-55-mer sannsynlig at det var da Arnold ble klar over sitt last- og troppetransporterende potensial.

Dessverre var C-55 en rå, uferdig prototype. Den eneste vesentlige endringen Curtiss hadde gjort etter den første flygingstesten, var å erstatte den originale tvillingshalen med kommandoens store vertikale finne og roret Eddie Allen hadde klaget på stabilitet ved lav hastighet og håndtering av en motor. Air Corps sendte C-55 tilbake til Buffalo med en lang liste med nødvendige reparasjoner og modifikasjoner, men Hap Arnolds krav om designet resulterte i en ordre på 200 av det som skulle bli C-46.

De første 25 C-46-ene som ble levert var ganske enkelt CW-20-er med bar interiør. Den 26. inkluderte en vesentlig endring: Borte var Curtiss ’1.700 hk Wright R-2600 Twin Cyclone-motorer, erstattet av den fineste, mest pålitelige store radialen som noen gang er bygget-Pratt & amp Whitneys 2000-hk R-2800 Double Wasp. Med sin to-trinns kompressor, ga R-2800 denne første sanne Commando-høyden som passer for det som var ment å være et trykkfly.

Høydeytelse var nøkkelen til C-46s viktigste bidrag til andre verdenskrig: Det var det eneste tungtløftede lasteflyet i høyde som var tilgjengelig for å krysse Himalaya på den berømte "Hump" -ruten mellom Kina og Burma-India Theatre, luftløft forsyninger til Chiang Kai-Sheks hær etter at japanerne stengte Burmaveien. C-47-er jobbet med å krysse det Hump-piloter kalte Rockpile, og til slutt ville firemotors C-54 bli den foretrukne luftløfteren når japanske retreater åpnet en Hump-rute med lavere høyde. Imidlertid gjorde C-46s hovedtyngden av Hump-topping-arbeidet i løpet av de beste årene av tilførselsruten.

Men C-46 var ingen sin favoritt. 31 av de 230 kommandoene som ble brukt på Hump-rutene-mer enn 13 prosent av flåten-eksploderte under flukt. Det ble lenge trodd at 55-gallons trommer med avgas-last var årsaken, og uansett hvor kjølig det lastet østgående flyet til Kina, ville C-46-mannskaper ikke røre cockpitvarmeren før de returnerte tomme til India, feide hytta ren for gassdamp. Det ble til slutt oppdaget at drivstoff fra bittesmå lekkasjer i vingetankene og drivstoffledninger samlet i C-46s uventede vingrøtter, der en villfarlig gnist til slutt ville sette det av. Etter krigen ble alle C-46s modifisert med riktige ventilasjonsåpninger, gnistfrie drivstoffforsterkende pumper og skjermede ledninger i vingområdet.


En C-46 takler sin mest kjente utfordring, & quotHump & quot -ruten gjennom Himalaya mellom India og Kina. (Riksarkivet)

Kommandoer fikk også et rykte for å ha damplåsing av drivstoffledninger i høyden da et mannskap prøvde å bytte tank. Den eneste løsningen var å gå ned og prøve en omstart, som neppe var et alternativ over Himalaya. Etterkrigstidens sivile C-46-er hadde alle nedsenkbare elektriske drivstoffpumper installert i tankene sine for å presse drivstoffet med makt gjennom en dampboble.

Utallige publiserte kilder viser forgasser-glasur som en C-46 bugaboo under Hump-operasjoner, men dette er en feil navn. For en pilot betyr "forgasser ising" intern hindring av en forgasser av fuktighetsbelastet luft som plutselig blir avkjølt ved strømning gjennom karboventurien, og gjør den fuktige luften til is. Det Commandos faktisk oppdaget - og det gjorde de ofte over Himalaya - var slagisdannelse eller fysisk hindring av den eksterne forgasseluftskålen av snø, sludd og nedkjølt regn. Kvel av en stempelmotors induksjonsluftkilde, og den er ute av drift. Den eneste kuren er rask valg av "alternativ luft" fra et sekundært luftinntak inne i den varme motorens nacelle, før den store Pratt dør. Å starte en varm, men død R-2800 på 20 000 fot på nytt kan være en utfordring.

C-46s firebladede Curtiss elektriske rekvisitter var også en fare. De elektriske kontaktene tæret i fuktig India, og rekvisittene ville plutselig ha for høy hastighet. "Det var SOP under start for copiloten å ha fingrene på vippebryterne til overstyringssystemet i tilfelle rekvisittene hadde for høy hastighet," skrev tidligere kommandopilot Don Downie i sin utmerkede bok Flying the Hump. C-46s fikk til slutt tre-blad Hamilton-Standard propeller, og en av hovedgrunnene til at det er så få kommandoer som fortsatt flyr er at de enorme rekvisittene i dag er så sjeldne at de i det vesentlige er uerstattelige.

Flyet var også et vedlikeholdssvin, hovedsakelig på grunn av det lekkende hydrauliske systemet. På Hump-turer ville kunnskapsrike mannskapssjefer bære en 55-liters trommel med hydraulisk væske for å sikre at de ville ha nok til å fylle på systemet under Kina-snuoperasjonen. Blant de mange andre kallenavn ble kommandoen dermed kalt Leaky Tiki. Fordi Curtiss antok at et så stort fly ville kreve drevne kontroller, hadde det hydrauliske systemer som kjørte ailerons, heis og ror, samt landingsutstyr og klaffer. Kontrollboost-systemene ble til slutt fjernet, og C-46 viste seg å fly helt fint uten dem. Selv om minst en C-46 Hump-pilot sa at å bli tildelt en C-47-tur "var som å kjøre en sportsbil"-rosende ord som kanskje aldri før eller siden har blitt brukt på Gooney Bird.

En kommando fløy vanligvis pukkelen med et mannskap på tre - to piloter og en radiooperatør. Til tross for mange kilder som hevder at C-46 hadde flyingeniører, er det ingen slik posisjon i cockpiten. Ofte vil et mannskap også inkludere en mannskapssjef som fungerer som en kombinert lastmester og mekaniker.

I den andre enden av mannskapsspekteret ble C-46 av og til soloert over Rockpile av spesielt erfarne piloter. Alle flyets kontroller og systemer var tilgjengelige fra venstre sete, i motsetning til C-47, som ble soloert fra copilotstolen for enkel tilgang til dekselklaffene. C-46 hadde også en gjennomtenkt funksjon som i stor grad hjalp til med lasting: Hyttegulvet like innenfor den store lastedøren var i vater da flyet sto parkert. En gaffeltruck-eller, som noen ganger var tilfellet i India, en elefant med en bensintønne pakket inn i bagasjerommet-ble presentert med et flatt gulv i stedet for oppoverbakke på en C-47. Kommandoen hadde også et spesielt langt bakhjulsben for å dempe hellingen til det oppoverbakke når det parkerte gulvet.

Historikeren Barbara Tuchman gir Madame Chiang Kai-Shek skylden for C-46s feil. "Dragon Lady så uopphørlig plaget Roosevelt etter flere fly at han sendte C-46 før de var klare," skrev Tuchman. En C-46 pilot sitert i Flying the Hump husket "transporterte en mengde Kotex til Madame Chiang og god vin fra California til mannen sin." Dette i en tid da tre amerikanske mannskaper døde for hver tusen tonn last som ble fraktet inn i Kina, på oppdrag som er vesentlig farligere enn bombefly over Europa.

Selv om C-46s hovedsakelig opererte i CBI Theatre under andre verdenskrig, fraktet de også last over Sør-Atlanteren, mellom Brasil og Nord-Afrika og videre til Calcutta for iscenesettelse over pukkelen. Marine Corps fløy også Navy-versjonen av C-46-Curtiss R5C-1-til støtte for den amfibiske øyhoppingkampanjen i Sør-Stillehavet.

Bare noen få C-46s tjenestegjorde i Europa, særlig under Operation Varsity, luftdropskomponenten til de allierte presset over Rhinen til Tyskland i slutten av mars 1945. Under angrepet ble 19 av de 72 involverte kommandoene skutt ned. C-47s gikk langt bedre, siden de hadde blitt utstyrt med selvtettende drivstofftanker. C-46s hadde ikke bare vanlige metalltanker, de led fortsatt av problemer med å samle vingerotdrivstoff. Tysk flak tente dem opp i en ufattelig fart, og siden mange nedfelte kommandoer tok med seg full mengde fallskjermjegere, bestemte den amerikanske kommandanten generalmajor Matthew Ridgway at C-46s aldri igjen skulle bære en 82. luftbåren tropper.


Kommandoenes lager i handel var evnen til å transportere store mengder forsyninger til fjerntliggende uforberedte flyplasser som denne, og nesten i Kina. & Quot (National Archives)

Andre verdenskrig var langt fra den siste av C-46-krigene. En rekke kommandoer ble en del av Chiangs republikk i Kina luftvåpen som kjempet mot Maos røde kinesere, og flere tjenestegjorde med det franske luftvåpenet i Indokina, og til slutt droppet forsyninger under den krigsluttende beleiringen av Dien Bien Phu. Det israelske luftvåpenet fløy kommandoer under den arabisk-israelske krigen i 1948 og bar lisensbygde Messerschmitt Avia S-199-krigere fra Tsjekkoslovakia til Israel via Sør-Amerika og Nord-Afrika. C-46 var aktive i det amerikanske flyvåpenet under Koreakrigen og i Vietnam, hvor en C-46, som fraktet 152 vietnamesere fra Saigon til Bangkok, var det siste fastvingede flyet som forlot Sør-Vietnam før landet ble overkjørt. Kommandoen ble til slutt pensjonert fra USAF i 1968, selv om det er mulig at reserveenheter fortsatte å bruke noen få C-46-er frem til så sent som i 1972.

Central Intelligence Agency var en mangeårig C-46-bruker, både i sine falske frontflyselskaper-Air America og forgjengeren, Chinese Civil Air Transport (CAT)-så vel som i en rekke hemmelige operasjoner. Den mest beryktede av disse var forsøket på invasjonen av Pigs Bay i Cuba i april 1961. De som husker den katastrofale CIA-operasjonen vil huske et broket mannskap med warbirds-T-33s, Sea Furys, B-26 Invaders-men få husker det fem C-46 var også en viktig del av invasjonen mot Castro.

Under WWII Hump-operasjoner hakk en C-46 sin første seier i luftkamp da kaptein Wally Gayda stakk en Browning Automatic Rifle ut av cockpitvinduet og tømte hele magasinet på en angripende Nakajima Ki.43 Oscar. Gayda traff den intetanende piloten, og Oscar gikk ned. Under operasjonen i Bay of Pigs, scoret en C-46 kommandoens andre "drap". Etter å ha sluppet en mengde dømte kubanske eksilfrysjettjegere, var transporten på vei tilbake til CIAs hemmelige Guatemala -base da den ble angrepet av en av Castros Hawker Sea Furies. Noe gikk galt, sannsynligvis en overentusiastisk for lav, for langsom stall/spinn, og Hawker hevet seg inn i Karibia og drepte piloten.

Curtiss 'C-46-utvikling ble avsluttet i 1946, da Eastern Air Lines kansellerte bestillingen på CW-20Es, en foreslått Wright R-3350-drevet personbaserte variant av Commando. Eastern innså at det kom hundrevis av billige C-47-er på overskuddsmarkedet, og Gooneys kunne fly de korte/mellomdistanse ruter mer effektivt enn de drivstoffsultne C-46. Dette ga ikke desto mindre Curtiss god tid til å publisere etterkrigstidens magasinannonser, og utlyste det foreslåtte nye flyet med strålende flyvertinner som sa: "Derfor er jeg for flyselskaper som flyr Commando!" Vi kan bare anta at de unge damene beholdt underklærne sine.

C-46-oppgraderinger ble spesialiteten til flere selskaper som transplanterte kraftigere R-2800-versjoner og foretok forskjellige oppgraderinger av bruttovekten. Maksimal vekt på noen C-46, opprinnelig 40 000 pund fly, steg så høyt som 52 500 pund.

Lastoperatører elsket Curtiss Calamitys enorme kabinvolum og tungløft, og C-46 var i stor grad ansvarlig for oppstarten av blant annet Slick Airways. Earl Slick kjøpte 17 C-46s for $ 14.500 stykk-omtrent $ 175.000 i 2016 dollar-og begynte å bruke dem til å bære lange lengder med oljeboringsrør for Texas wildcatters. Slick var snart det største luftfraktskipet i landet.

Sør- og mellomamerikanske flyselskaper likte også kommandoen, i land der luftfartsselskaper var de eneste virkelige veiene til interiøret, hvor det florer av fjell og hvor mange flyplasser var høye, korte og primitive. Den kombinasjonen ga meg min eneste mulighet til å fly en C-46. På et reiseblad i Costa Rica i 1968 befant jeg meg ombord på en Lacsa (i dag kalt Avianca Costa Rica) C-46. Jeg var en kinkig ny privat pilot og sendte en lapp til cockpiten som kunngjorde så mye. Kapteinen inviterte meg ikke bare foran, men gled ut av setet og inviterte meg til å fly en stund. Jeg husker lite av opplevelsen enn at det halvcirkelformede kontrollhjulet var på størrelse med et toalettsete.

Ulike verden, forskjellige tider.

For ytterligere lesing anbefaler bidragsredaktør Stephan Wilkinson: Flying the Hump, av Jeff Ethell og Don Downie C-46 Commando in Action, av Terry Love Hump ​​Pilot, av Nedda R. Thomas og Over the Hump: The History of U.S. Air Force Airlift Operations, av generalløytnant William H. Tunner.

Denne funksjonen dukket opprinnelig opp i mai 2016 -utgaven av Luftfartshistorie. For å abonnere, klikk her!


FlyetavCurtiss

På oppfordring fra Aeronautical Society of New York om å representere det i Gordon Bennett Cup Race 1909.

Det første Curtiss-bygde flyet som ble utpekt som sådan, var modellen med en sete bestilt av Aeronautical Society of New York 2. mars,.

I 1909 bestemte Glenn Curtiss seg for å prøve premien på $ 10 000 som ble lagt ut av avisen New York World for det første.

Den første vellykkede flyturen til det som opprinnelig ble kalt et hydroaeroplane eller ganske enkelt hydro, men er nå kjent som et sjøfly,.

Model D var typisk for de relativt foreldede landfly -typene som ble bygget på den tiden i USA,.

Den andre Curtiss hydro var et bemerkelsesverdig unntak fra standard pusher design. Den ikke navngitte maskinen som Curtiss brukte til flyturen.

Den første Curtiss flybåten, prøvd i San Diego 10. januar 1912, var mer en hydro enn en ekte båt. A.

Den endelige modellen F fra 1913 ble brukt av den amerikanske hæren så vel som den amerikanske marinen, og solgt til.

Curtiss JN-4 toseter biplan skaffet seg snart kallenavnet 'Jenny' som ble brukt mye i mellomkrigsårene. Det var .

I begynnelsen av 1915 dukket det opp prototypen Curtiss Model R, som i 1935 ble gitt den retrospektive betegnelsen.

S-2 var hovedsakelig modellen S-1 utstyrt med nye vinger og et fjærbeinsarrangement som eliminerte behovet.

Fire eksempler på Model L-2 triplane ble bygget, tre for den amerikanske marinen og ett for den amerikanske hæren.

Den opprinnelige modellen S-1, også kalt Baby Scout, var det minste flyet Curtiss kunne bygge rundt 90 hk OX-motoren. Konstruksjon .

På tidspunktet for konstruksjonen i 1915-16 var Curtiss Model T flybåt det største sjøflyet i verden. .

I løpet av 1917 samarbeidet US Navy Bureau of Construction and Repair med Glenn Curtiss i et forsøk på å produsere en.

I hovedsak et triplanderivat av S-2 Wireless (som betyr mangel på vingestøttende ledninger) ubevæpnet biplan "speider", S-3 eller "Triplane.

En raffinert versjon av S-3 med revidert fjæring som bærer den midterste delen av den øvre vingen og rotfestene.

Curtiss H.16, hvis prototype dukket opp i slutten av 1917, var den største og mest effektive amerikaneren.

Dette var et triplan som ligner på S-3 beregnet som et sjøfly speider for den amerikanske marinen. Dette var .

Tidlig i 1917, før krigsforbudet mot privatflyging i USA, ga den berømte aviatrixen Katherine Stinson Curtiss i oppdrag.

I løpet av 1917 utstedte den amerikanske marinen Curtiss-selskapet en kontrakt for fem enkelt-seters kampflyter-speiderflotte sjøfly drevet av en.

CB (Curtiss Battleplane), uoffisielt kjent som "Liberty Battler", var en eksperimentell to-seters jagerfly utviklet og fløyet tidlig i 1918 som.

Designet av Capt B L Smith fra US Marine Corps som et to-seters patruljeflyterfly for bruk i.

Den tredje HA float fighter prototypen inneholdt betydelig redesign som HA-2. Drevet av en 12-sylindret Liberty 12 vannkjølt motor,.

Designet av Charles B Kirkham, ble Curtiss 18-T toseter jagerfly bestilt av den amerikanske marinen 30. mars 1918 da.

Den amerikanske hærens interesse for 18-T fikk Curtiss til å tilby det samme grunnleggende designet i to-buks biplankonfigurasjon og en ordre.

Den første enseters jagerflyet med urfolks amerikansk design for å oppnå produksjonsstatus, Model D ble unnfanget rundt Hispano-Suiza H på 300 hk.

Designet av US Army Engineering Division som en spesialisert nattsjeger med ett sete, ble to prototyper av PN-1 bygget av Curtiss,.

Med den vanlige rivaliseringen mellom den amerikanske hæren og den amerikanske marinen bestemte den amerikanske hæren at den måtte ha racerfly, Curtiss bygde for dem.

Progenitor for den berømte Hawk-serien med jagerfly, PW-8 ("PW" -prefikset som indikerer "Pursuit Water-cooled") var en tosidig jagerfly.

Den første Curtiss-jagerflyet som ble bygget under det amerikanske marinens betegnelsessystem som kombinerer type, designrekkefølge og produsent, F4C-1 (F2C og.

I mars 1925 beordret den amerikanske marinen ni P-1-er med mulighet for flyteoperasjon som F6C (betegnelsen F5C var ikke.

Mars 1925 ble Curtiss tildelt en kontrakt på 15 produksjonseksempler av XPW-8B som P-1, dette er.

Den første Curtiss-biplanen som hadde navnet Falcon var den Liberty-drevne Curtiss L-113 (modell 37) som dukket opp i 1924..

Den første radialmotoren Hawk skyldtes parring av en P-1A flyramme med en 390 hk Curtiss R-1454 motor som XP-3.

Installasjon av den nye 600hk Curtiss V-1570-1 Conqueror-motoren i en P-2 flyramme for deltakelse i luftrennene i september 1927 kl.

Den første Curtiss-jagerflyet som var designet fra begynnelsen for bruk ombord i motsetning til å være en tilpasning av en landbasert jagerfly.

Under utvikling samtidig med Keystone XB-1 var Curtiss XB-2 ganske lik, men viste seg å være det overlegne flyet. .

For å oppfylle et krav fra US Marine Corps om en toseters jagerfly med bombing og observasjonsevne, tilpasset Curtiss flyrammen til.

En USAAC-kontrakt 14. mai 1927 etterlyste fem fly med flyrammer som i hovedsak ligner på P-1,.

Juni 1928 inngikk USAAC en kontrakt med Curtiss for en prototype av XP-10 enseters jagerfly drevet av en.

Selv om de er utpekt i F8C-serien, skilte XF8C-2 og XF8C-4 seg mye fra F8C-1 og -3, og hadde to roller.

XP-17 omfattet flyrammen til den første P-1 paret med den nye 480hk Wright V-1460-3 Tornado invertert inline luftkjølt motor ,.

I løpet av 1928 syntes Curtiss H-1640 Chieftain, 12-sylindret luftkjølt radial på 600 hk å vise løfte som et kampflykraftverk, og Curtiss.

Designet for å oppfylle et krav om lett jagerfly om bord - andre konkurrenter er Berliner Joyce XFJ -1 og General Aviation XFA -1 -.

Jakten på hastighet førte til produksjon av to konkurrerende monoplan -prototyper for å møte et angrepssprangbomber fra den amerikanske hæren.

I 1931 ble den tredje produksjonen P-6 (som hadde blitt konvertert til P-6A-standarden) trukket fra tjeneste og returnert til Curtiss.

For ikke å forveksle med Curtiss B-2 eller utviklingen av Condor-passasjerer med 18 passasjerer, var Condor en reklame med 15 passasjerer.

XP-31 eller Curtiss Shrike fra 1932-3 var en helmetall, lavvinget, fjærdesignet jagerflydesign som trakk sterkt på.

Curtiss XP-23 var den siste biplanen i jakten på serien. I de fleste henseender en helt ny design og en.

Den første YA-8 ble brukt til å teste muligheten for å produsere en radial motordrevet versjon av Curtiss A-8. .

The Hawk II was essentially an export version of the XF11C-2 with a Wright R-1820F-3 Cyclone rated at 710hp at 1676m .

The fourth production F11C-2 (Goshawk) was completed with manually-operated retractable main undercarriage members accommodated by a deepened forward fuselage. It was powered .

Based on a US Navy Bureau of Aeronautics design for a two-seat fighter, the XF12C-1 all-metal parasol monoplane, ordered on 30 June .

Perhaps the most unusual single-seat fighter developed by Curtiss was the Model 70, which was designed from the outset to be flown .

On 16 April 1932, the US Navy ordered two prototypes of a new shipboard fighter under the designations XF11C-1 and XF11C-2, the .

The US Army had ordered 46 of the A-8B Shrike, but maintenance problems with the liquid-cooled engines of the .

Last of the Curtiss biplanes to be used operationally by the US Navy, the SOC Seagull has a service history .

Requiring a new two-seat fighter, the US Navy ordered a prototype from Curtiss in 1932 under the designation XF12C-1. .

The P-36 or Curtiss Model 75 Hawk, commonly called the Mohawk, began life as a private venture, soldiered bravely .

Soon after receiving an order from the USAAC for an evaluation quantity of its Model 75 fighter, Curtiss began to consider .

The CW-19L Coupe was designed by George Page as an advanced all-metal two-seat cantilever low-wing monoplane for the private owner. .

Designed by Donovan R Berlin to participate in a USAAC fighter contest scheduled to take place on 27 May 1935, the Model .

The export version of the BF2C-1, the Hawk III, differed from the US Navy fighter-bomber in reverting to the wooden wing .

The 'long-nosed' P-37 was a Curtiss attempt in the late 1930s to couple the P-36 Mohawk design with the .

One of the early production Curtiss P-36 aircraft was given an 864.4kW Allison V-1710-19 (G-13) engine (and designated XP-40) instead .

Completed late in 1938 as a company-owned demonstrator, the Hawk 75-R was essentially similar to the USAAC's P-36A. Its Pratt & .

In 1938, chief engineer Willis Wells of the St Louis Airplane Division of the Curtiss-Wright Corporation began the development of a single-seat .

The Curtiss XP-42, a conversion of a P-36A Mohawk airframe, was employed as a testbed at Wright Field, Ohio, beginning .

In 1937 the US Navy invited proposals for the design of a scout monoplane which would offer improved performance over .

The experimental contract for the Helldiver was awarded by the US Navy on 15 May 1939 and the prototype XSB2C-1 .

The Commando was evolved from the Curtiss-Wright CW-20 which was originally laid out as a 36-passenger pressurised commercial transport in .

The prototype Curtiss Wright CW-22 two-seat low-wing general-purpose or advanced training monoplace was developed at the Curtiss-Wright St Louis factory in .

Prior to the final termination of P-40 development, some effort was expended in combining aerodynamic refinement with increased power to produce .

The P-60 designation applies to a family of widely different Curtiss fighters, each reflecting the urgency of the builder's unsuccessful .

The XP-46 of 1939 was a late attempt by Curtiss to capitalize on lessons from early fighting in Europe and .

In 1940, with Europe already at war, the US Army Air Corps knew that it was essential to begin preparations .

The Curtiss XP-55 Ascender is perhaps best known of the three pusher fighters built for a 1941 competition in response .

On 30 June 1941, Curtiss received a prototype development contract for the XF14C-1 single-seat shipboard fighter designed around the 2,200hp Lycoming XH-2470-4 liquid-cooled .

The Curtiss XP-62 was the final propeller-driven fighter built by its manufacturer and the second largest single-seat fighter of orthodox .

Development of the Curtiss SC Seahawk began in June 1942, when the US Navy requested the company to submit proposals .

In May 1944, Curtiss indicated to the AAF that it wished to abandon further work on the P-60 series fighters because .

In late 1943 Curtiss received a US Navy order for two single-seat torpedo-bomber aircraft prototypes under the designation XBTC-1. A .

US Navy interest in the mixed-power concept for shipboard fighters - aircraft employing a piston engine for cruise and an auxiliary turbojet .

The Curtiss XF-87 Blackhawk fighter was an eye-catching and truly graceful all-black aircraft which attracted plenty of attention in flights .


De Curtiss P-40 Warhawk is an American single-engined, single-seat, all-metal fighter and ground-attack aircraft that first flew in 1938. The P-40 design was a modification of the previous Curtiss P-36 Hawk which reduced development time and enabled a rapid entry into production and operational service. The Warhawk was used by most Allied powers during World War II, and remained in frontline service until the end of the war. It was the third most-produced American fighter of World War II, after the P-51 and P-47 by November 1944, when production of the P-40 ceased, 13,738 had been built, all at Curtiss-Wright Corporation's main production facilities at Buffalo, New York.

De North American Aviation P-51 Mustang is an American long-range, single-seat fighter and fighter-bomber used during World War II and the Korean War, among other conflicts. The Mustang was designed in April 1940 by a design team headed by James Kindelberger of North American Aviation (NAA) in response to a requirement of the British Purchasing Commission. The Purchasing Commission approached North American Aviation to build Curtiss P-40 fighters under license for the Royal Air Force (RAF). Rather than build an old design from another company, North American Aviation proposed the design and production of a more modern fighter. The prototype NA-73X airframe was rolled out on 9 September 1940, 102 days after the contract was signed, and first flew on 26 October.

De Curtiss P-36 Hawk, også kjent som Curtiss Hawk Model 75, is an American-designed and built fighter aircraft of the 1930s and 40s. A contemporary of both the Hawker Hurricane and Messerschmitt Bf 109, it was one of the first of a new generation of combat aircraft—a sleek monoplane design making extensive use of metal in its construction and powered by a powerful radial engine.

De Ryan XF2R Dark Shark was an American experimental aircraft built for the United States Navy that combined turboprop and turbojet propulsion. It was based on Ryan Aeronautical's earlier FR Fireball, but replaced the Fireball's piston engine with a turboprop engine.

De Seversky P-35 is an American fighter aircraft built by the Seversky Aircraft Company in the late 1930s. A contemporary of the Hawker Hurricane and Messerschmitt Bf 109, the P-35 was the first single-seat fighter in United States Army Air Corps to feature all-metal construction, retractable landing gear, and an enclosed cockpit.

De Curtiss-Wright XP-55 Ascender is a 1940s United States prototype fighter aircraft built by Curtiss-Wright. Along with the Vultee XP-54 and Northrop XP-56, it resulted from United States Army Air Corps proposal R-40C issued on 27 November 1939 for aircraft with improved performance, armament, and pilot visibility over existing fighters it specifically allowed for unconventional aircraft designs. An unusual design for its time, it had a canard configuration, a rear-mounted engine, swept wings, and two vertical tails. Because of its pusher design, it was sarcastically referred to as the "Ass-ender". Like the XP-54, the Ascender was designed for the Pratt & Whitney X-1800 engine, but was re-designed after that engine project was canceled. It was also the first Curtiss fighter aircraft to use tricycle landing gear.

De Republic P-43 Lancer was a single-engine, all-metal, low-wing monoplane fighter aircraft built by Republic, first delivered to the United States Army Air Corps in 1940. A proposed development was the P-44 Rocket. While not a particularly outstanding fighter, the P-43A had a very good high-altitude performance coupled with an effective oxygen system. Fast and well-armed with excellent long-range capabilities, until the arrival of the Lockheed P-38 Lightning, the Lancer was the only American fighter capable of catching a Japanese Mitsubishi Ki-46 "Dinah" reconnaissance plane at the speeds and heights at which they flew. In addition, the P-43 flew many long-range, high-altitude photo recon missions until replaced by F-4/F-5 Lightnings in both the USAAF and RAAF.

De Curtiss P-60 was a 1940s American single-engine single-seat, low-wing monoplane fighter aircraft developed by the Curtiss-Wright company as a successor to their P-40. It went through a lengthy series of prototype versions, eventually evolving into a design that bore little resemblance to the P-40. None of these versions reached production.

De Curtiss XP-62 was a prototype single-engine interceptor aircraft, that was built at the request of the United States Army Air Forces, by the Curtiss-Wright Corporation. It first flew in 1943.

De General Motors/Fisher P-75 Eagle was an American fighter aircraft designed by the Fisher Body Division of General Motors. Development started in September 1942 in response to United States Army Air Forces requirement for a fighter possessing an extremely high rate of climb, using the most powerful liquid-cooled engine then available, the Allison V-3420. The program was cancelled after only a small number of prototypes and production aircraft had been completed, as it was no longer required in its original role, could not be quickly deployed, and possessed no significant advantages over aircraft already in production.

De Grumman XP-50 was a land-based development of the shipboard XF5F-1 Skyrocket fighter, entered into a United States Army Air Corps (USAAC) contest for a twin-engine heavy interceptor aircraft. The USAAC placed an order for a prototype on 25 November 1939, designating it XP-50, but it lost the competition to the Lockheed XP-49.

De McDonnell XP-67 "Bat" eller "Moonbat" was a prototype for a twin-engine, long-range, single-seat interceptor aircraft for the United States Army Air Forces. Although the design was conceptually advanced, it was beset by numerous problems and never approached its anticipated level of performance. The project was cancelled after the sole completed prototype was destroyed by an engine fire.

De Republic XP-69 was an American fighter aircraft proposed by Republic Aviation in 1941 in response to a requirement by the United States Army Air Corps for a high-speed fighter. Manufacturers were encouraged to consider unorthodox designs although the design was ordered as a prototype it was canceled because of delays with the engine that was to power it.

De Vultee XP-54 Swoose Goose was a prototype fighter built by the Vultee Aircraft Company for the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF).

De Bell P-76 was the proposed designation for a production model derivative of the XP-39E, a single-engine American fighter aircraft prototype of World War II.

De Curtiss XP-42 was an experimental fighter built by Curtiss Aircraft in the late 1930s to research engine cooling and improving the performance of the Curtiss P-36.


The Curtiss P-40 Warhawk was a WWII fighter aircraft that was developed from the P-36 Hawk, via the P-37. Many variants were built, some in large numbers, under names including the Hawk, Tomahawk and Kittyhawk.

De Curtiss YP-20 was an American biplane fighter project developed by Curtiss for the United States Army Air Service.

Over twenty variants of the North American P-51 Mustang fighter were produced from 1940, when it first flew, to after the Second World War, some of which were employed also in the Korean War and in several other conflicts. Numerous examples of the aircraft survive to this day, often as warbirds or heavily modified air racers.

De Curtiss P-37 was a fighter aircraft made by Curtiss-Wright in 1937. A development of the Curtiss P-36 Hawk, the P-37 never entered production.


Curtiss XP-40Q Fighter

Although not readily apparent at the time, Curtiss-Wright’s Airplane Division (Curtiss) was already in a state of decline at the start of World War II. The company’s final two truly successful aircraft, the P-40 Warhawk fighter and C-46 Commando transport, had already flown. While the Curtiss SB2C Helldiver carrier-based dive bomber would achieve some success toward the end of the war, its development was prolonged and plagued with issues, and the aircraft was never liked by its pilots and crews. Throughout the war years, Curtiss continually strove to develop world-beating aircraft but only managed to build one dead-end prototype after another. A brief glimmer of hope lay in the last model of the P-40, the P-40Q (Curtiss model 87X).

The Curtiss XP-40Q-1 (42-9987) with its standard canopy and sleek nose. Note the scoop for the engine air intake above the cowling.

XP-40Q development was initiated by 1943. The goal was to improve the P-40 to equal or surpass the performance of newer fighter aircraft. It was thought that the improved performance of the P-40Q would justify the aircraft entering production, and its similarities with P-40s then being produced would minimize tooling and production delays. In addition, there would be some part interchangeability with older P-40 aircraft, and current P-40 pilots and crews would be familiar with the new aircraft and its systems.

Three XP-40Q prototypes were built their origins and histories have always been a point of disagreement between sources. All XP-40Qs were built up from other P-40 airframes. They all had only four .50-cal machine guns with 235 rpg. All of the XP-40Q aircraft were powered by two-stage supercharged Allison V-1710 engines and a four-blade propeller.

Another view of the XP-40Q-1. Note the radiators and oil coolers mounted in the wing center section.

The XP-40Q-1 was the first aircraft, and it was built in 1943 from a P-40K-10 (serial 42-9987) that had been damaged in a landing accident on 27 January 1943. The Q-1 was painted olive drab and had the standard P-40 wing and canopy. The nose of the aircraft was lengthened to accommodate the V-1710-101 (F27R) engine. At 3,200 rpm, the -101 engine produced 1,500 hp (1,119 kW) at 6,000 ft (1,829 m) and 1,325 hp (988 kW) for takeoff. The Q-1’s engine air intake was positioned above the cowling. The radiator and oil cooler were moved from the P-40’s iconic chin location to the wing center section, just below the fuselage (similar to the XP-40K). The XP-40Q-1 had a 37 ft 4 in (11.4 m) wingspan and was 35 ft 4 in long (10.8 m)—about 2 ft (.6 m) longer than a standard P-40.

The Q-1’s first flight reportedly occurred on 13 June 1943 from the Curtiss plant in Buffalo, New York. It is not clear if the aircraft suffered another accident, or if Curtiss was unhappy with its configuration and decided to modify it further. Regardless, by November 1943, the Q-1 had been modified and redesignated XP-40Q-2. The aircraft’s rear fuselage was cut down and a bubble canopy installed. Engine coolant radiators were positioned in the wings just outboard of the main gear. The oil cooler and engine air intake were relocated to the classic P-40 chin position, but the scoop was shallower and more elegant. The Q-2 retained the olive drab paint.

The Curtiss XP-40Q-2 (still 42-9987) after modification with a bubble canopy. The oil cooler and engine air intake have been relocated to the scoop under the engine. The coolant radiators have been moved outside of the main gear. The wings are still the standard P-40 wings, but they were later clipped by about one foot.

Still utilizing the -101 engine, the Q-2 was noted for having excellent visibility and handling. The aircraft had balanced controls and was very maneuverable, with a tight turn radius. Capt. Gustav Lundquist had evaluated the Q-2 and judged it to be the best P-40 he had flown he recommended that further flight testing should be conducted. In December 1943, the Air Materiel Command recognized the XP-40Q-2’s performance and recommended that two additional prototypes be constructed.

Reportedly, the Q-2 was delivered to Eglin Field, Florida for testing in January 1944, but it was back at the Curtiss plant in Buffalo, New York in March for a series of flight tests. By this time, the Q-2 had its wingtips clipped about one foot each, and a V-1710-121 (F28R) engine was installed. The -121 produced 1,800 hp (1,342 kW) with water injection at 3,200 rpm up to 20,000 ft (6,096 m) and 1,425 hp (1,062 kW) for takeoff.

The XP-40Q-2A (42-45722) looking very much like the XP-40Q-2 but with clipped wings. This aircraft would change little throughout its existence.

A flight evaluation from April 1944 again noted the XP-40Q-2 as superior to all other P-40s and a very good aircraft overall. The XP-40Q-2 had a 35 ft 3 in (10.7 m) wingspan and was 35 ft 4 in (10.8 m) long. With full engine power at 3,000 rpm and water injection, the aircraft achieved 420 mph (676 km/h) at 15,000 ft (4,572 m) and had a maximum climb rate of 4,410 fpm (22.4 m/s) at 5,000 ft (1,524 m). At 3,200 rpm and with water injection, maximum speed was 422 mph (679 km/h) at 20,500 ft (6,248 m), and the climb rate increased by as much as 530 fpm (2.7 m/s) depending on altitude. However, the 3,200 rpm engine speed was only shown to offer an advantage between 12,000 and 33,000 ft (3,658 and 10,058 m). With just military power, the Q-2 recorded a speed of 407 mph (655 km/h) at 24,000 ft (7,315 m) and a climb rate of 3,210 fpm (16.3 m/s) at sea level. The aircraft could climb from sea level to 20,000 ft (6,096 m) in 4.8 minutes, 30,000 ft (9,144 m) in 8.9 minutes, and 39,000 ft (11,887 m) in 26.1 minutes. The Q-2’s service ceiling was 39,000 ft (11,887 m), and it had a gross weight of 9,000 lb (4,082 kg). The aircraft’s range was 700 miles (1,127 km).

The Q-2 was damaged when it nosed over after a test flight on 24 March 1944. The aircraft was repaired and then sent to Wright Field, Ohio in mid-1944. The aircraft was damaged again when it ground looped while landing on 31 July 1944. It is not clear if the aircraft was repaired or if the damage was too severe.

This image of the XP-40Q-2A illustrates the clipped wings. Note the size of the bubble canopy and how to could be a bit smaller. The four .50-cal wing guns are easily seen. The XP-40Q was definitely a nice looking aircraft.

The next aircraft was the XP-40Q-2A. It was built from the initial P-40K-1 (serial 42-45722) that had been converted to the (unofficial) XP-40N. During the XP-40N conversion, the aircraft had a bubble canopy installed. This modification predated and served as the template for the bubble canopy that was installed on the Q-2.

The Q-2A was very similar to the final configuration of the Q-2—with a bubble canopy, clipped wings, and -121 engine. However, some modifications to the cockpit and canopy were made, and automatic radiator and oil cooler shutters were added. The Q-2A had a natural metal finish.

The Q-2A’s first flight occurred prior to the end of March 1944. The aircraft was plagued with engine trouble that resulted in a number of forced landings. The Q-2A spent most of its test time down for repairs. As a result, the Army Air Force (AAF) focused on the next aircraft, the Q-3, and loaned the Q-2A to Allison for engine tests. The Q-2A most likely had the same specifications and performance as the -121-powered Q-2.

The XP-40Q-3 was the last aircraft in the series. The Q-3 was built in early 1944 from a P-40N-25 (serial 43-24571) and was the only XP-40Q actually classified as such by the AAF. The aircraft was very similar to the XP-40Q-2A except for some refinements to the canopy and windscreen. The canopy was a bit smaller, and the flat windscreen was longer and more angled than the windscreen used on the preceding aircraft. Overall, the changes improved pilot visibility. The Q-3 had a -121 engine and a natural metal finish.

The last of the Curtiss P-40Qs: the XP-40Q-3 (43-24571). This aircraft later had anti-glare paint applied to the upper cowling, its serial number painted on the the tail, and 󈫼” painted on the chin scoop. Note the radiator air inlets in the wings.

Delivered to AAF in April 1944, the Q-3 suffered an engine failure during an early test flight. The aircraft was moderately damaged in the subsequent forced landing. At this time, other aircraft with superior performance were available, and there was no AAF interest in repairing the Q-3 because there was no need for a P-40Q. It is doubtful that much performance testing was conducted on the Q-3, but the results should have been similar to those of the Q-2.

In March 1946, Allison still had the XP-40Q-2A (the second XP-40Q) when the AAF declared the aircraft as surplus. It is not clear if Allison purchased the aircraft and then later resold it or if it was sold as surplus directly from the AAF. Regardless, Joe Ziegler acquired the aircraft, and it was registered as NX300B. Given race number 82, the Q-2A was entered in the 1947 Thompson Trophy Race (run on 1 September 1947), but it did not qualify. Ziegler started the race anyway and was running in fourth place when the engine caught fire after just completing the 13th lap. Ziegler pulled up and off the course and bailed out of the Q-2A. Zeigler suffered a broken leg, and the Q-2A was destroyed.

This view of the XP-40Q-3 illustrates the revised canopy compared to the XP-40Q-2A. Note the oil cooler exit doors on the cowling just in front of the wing.

The story of the XP-40Q aircraft is a confusing one involving only three airframes but somewhere around eight designations and a number of different configurations. The P-40Q was one of the finest fighters Curtiss ever built, but the aircraft was two years or so too late. Its performance and capabilities were matched or exceeded by other aircraft already in service. Even if the P-40Q airframe had been ready two years earlier, the two-stage Allison engines would not have been ready, as they were still having developmental trouble in 1944. Sadly, the XP-40Q scenario was played out again and again as Curtiss tried to create another successful aircraft but only managed to produce aircraft that were ill-timed and outclassed.

Note: There is no indication that any of the XP-40Q aircraft used any type of a laminar flow wing. There is also no indication that any XP-40Q information was passed from Curtiss to North American Aviation (NAA) during the NA-73X’s (P-51’s) development. Not only are the two aircraft different in almost every way, there is no part of their separate developmental timelines that coincide. NAA did purchase some information from Curtiss at the request of the British government, but that information pertained to the XP-46 and arrived after the NA-73X was already designed.

The XP-40Q-2A seen at Cleveland, Ohio for the Thompson Trophy Race in 1947. Other than some paint, including its registration and race number, the aircraft had changed little since its AAF days. It is truly unfortunate that the aircraft would soon be destroyed as a result of an engine fire.


Curtiss XP-42

The Curtiss XP-42, a conversion of a P-36A Mohawk airframe, was employed as a testbed at Wright Field, Ohio, beginning in March 1939 to determine whether stream-lining could reduce drag in a radial-powered fighter and make it competitive with more advanced fighters employing inline engines. This concept was seen as an alternative to adapting the P-36A airframe to an inline powerplant, as had been done with the prototype P-40 Warhawk. Delivered to the Army in March 1939, the XP-42 was powered by a 783kW Pratt & Whitney R-1830-31 Twin Wasp radial enclosed by a bullet-shaped, sheet-metal cowling extended forward to culminate in a large, pointed spinner. An airscoop below the spinner provided cooling air, while smaller intakes above the engine provided air to the carburettor. It was immediately clear that this sleek, long-nosed configuration offered none of the advantages of the inline engine employed not only by the P-40 but also by such types as the Messerschmitt Bf 109 and North American Mustang. The aerodynamic nose shape provided almost no reduction in drag, and cooling problems proved almost insurmountable. While the XP-42 was marginally faster than the open-cowl P-36A, its performance did not compare favourably with the P-40 or with other, newer fighters of the immediate pre-war period.

A variety of nose configurations was tried on the XP-42, altering its fuselage length with each change, but none vindicated the enclosed radial engine and Curtiss's production facilities, in the event, were taken up with the inline-powered P-40. When hostilities began, the XP-42 had been ruled out as a possible production aircraft but continued to aid in research. In 1942, the XP-42 tested an all-flying stabilizer, similar to the stabilator found on modern jets. The XP-42 had begun flying in natural metal finish and was camouflaged during one of its minor rebuilds. The airframe, which contributed knowledge to designers and engineers, was eventually taken out of service as other wartime priorities beckoned. Curtiss would continue to explore new fighter ideas with XP-46, XP-60 and XF-87, but the company's predominant role in the fighter field was fast becoming history.

Sturm what are you talking about? At that point in US Air Corp history performance requirements were issued to all interested companies and designs were openly competed. A lot of attempts were made to improve the breed of several designs. The p-36 design went to the P-40, P-42, P-46 and P-60, just for one example. There were several variations on the P-60. None of them were improvements over existing designs, so why bother with them. The North American P-51 was not even asked for but offered to the British as a better design than the P-40. First an acceptable design did not really come into its own until the Allison engine was replaced by the Rolls Royce Merlin. So there is little evidence of favoritism. Had there been then Curtiss with its long line of fighters from the 1920's and 30's would have remained the favorite, clearly they did not. Certainly nothing, absolutely nothing in comparison to the NAZI's.
Leo, what do you mean in your question? The US Army Air Corp tried just about anything that came along. Just look at the P-45, -46, -48, -49, -50. And there are several more. No matter how you cut it the best designs were the more conservative designs.


Operators

  • Republic of China Air Force operated 50 Hawk II. [3]
  • Cuban Air Force received three P-6S fighters with the 450   hp (336   kW) Wasp radial engine.
  • Japan bought one P-6S, possibly updated with a Conqueror engine.
  • Royal Netherlands East Indies Army Air Force received eight examples of a P-6D with the Conqueror engine in 1930, another six were license-built by Aviolanda in 1931 and sent to Dutch East Indies as well. Three P-6 were lost before war: two in midair collision on 27 February 1936 and one probably after crash-landing 5 February 1935.
  • United States Army Air Corps
  • Bolivian Air Force used the P-6S during the Chaco War. On 22 December 1932 a P-6 Hawk from Fortín Vitriones attacked Paraguayan gunboat ARP Tacuary which was anchored at Bahía Negra near ( 20䓍󉎸″S 58䓊󉎉″W  /  20.23°S 58.16694°W  / -20.23 -58.16694 )

BOOK ON CURTISS FARM RECALLS ITS HISTORY

Every Christmas, the late Otto Schnering, owner of Cary-based Curtiss Candy Company Farms, threw a large company party in the bullpen of the farm, although, judging by the sentiments of former employees, it was more of a family affair.

Schnering "was very well-liked," Dean Dunn, a former employee said. "It was a big family."

Now, 28 years after the farm was sold to G.D. Searle, and subsequently moved to Elburn, several former employees have joined together to publish a 172-page book that tells the history of the farm. The book includes 165 photographs.

Readers got their first look at the finished product Dec. 20, when the book rolled off the presses.

"There area lot of people living around the valley today . . . that worked for the farm (which ran along Cary-Algonquin Road). That's the reason we're writing this," Dunn said. "At one time, it was estimated about half the town of Cary worked at the farm or was employed with it in some way."

Nancy Johnson Helmar of Cary, one of the co-authors of the book, grew up on the farm, where her father was employed caring for the chickens, turkeys and ducks.

Helmar remembered the farm as a fun place where she and her friends got together for baseball games and roller skating. She told how each year, horseback-riding competitions were held for the kids.

Helmar said that the farm was self-sufficient. It included a private well and dump, and Schnering gave free eggs, milk and chickens to the employees. He also dug and stocked several trout ponds on the property.

Helmar remembered growing up on the farm and wrote that portion of the book. But, internationally the farm was renowned for its top-quality cattle, Belgian horses, Shropshire sheep and Yorkshire hogs. It also was a leading enterprise in the field of artificial insemination of cattle.

According to Dunn, Schnering founded the farm in 1942 to produce milk for his candy products. At one time, Schnering's operation included 10,000 acres of farmland in four counties north and west of Chicago.

Schnering died in 1953, and the farm continued to operate until 1968.

"I called the kids that lived on the farm," Helmar said, "and found out what they were doing (when the book came out). I haven't seen them since I was a kid, but you never lose those friendships. They're friends for life."


Historie

In 1907, Glenn Curtiss was recruited by the scientist Dr. Alexander Graham Bell, to be among the founding members of Bell's Aerial Experimental Association (AEA), with the purpose of helping establish an aeronautical research and development organization. [1] According to Bell, it was a "co-operative scientific association, not for gain but for the love of the art and doing what we can to help one another." [2]

In 1909, the AEA was disbanded [3] and Curtiss formed the Herring-Curtiss Company with Augustus Moore Herring on March 20, 1909, [4] which was renamed the Curtiss Aeroplane Company in 1910. [5] [6]

Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company

De Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company was created on January 13, 1916 from the Curtiss Aeroplane Company of Hammondsport, New York and Curtiss Motor Company of Bath, New York. Burgess Company of Marblehead, Massachusetts, became a subsidiary in February 1916. [7]

With the onset of World War I, military orders rose sharply, and Curtiss needed to expand quickly. In 1916, the company moved its headquarters and most manufacturing activities to Buffalo, New York, where there was far greater access to transportation, manpower, manufacturing expertise, and much needed capital. The company housed an aircraft engine factory in the former Taylor Signal Company-General Railway Signal Company. [8] An ancillary operation was begun in Toronto, Ontario that was involved in both production and training, setting up the first flying school in Canada in 1915. [9]

In 1917, the two major aircraft patent holders, the Wright Company and the Curtiss Company, had effectively blocked the building of new airplanes, which were desperately needed as the United States was entering World War I. The U.S. government, as a result of a recommendation of a committee formed by Franklin D. Roosevelt, then Assistant Secretary of the Navy, pressured the industry to form a cross-licensing organization (in other terms a Patent pool), the Manufacturer's Aircraft Association. [10] [11] [12]

Curtiss was instrumental in the development of U.S. Naval Aviation by providing training for pilots and providing aircraft. The first major order was for 144 various subtypes of the Model F trainer flying boat. [4] In 1914, Curtiss had lured B. Douglas Thomas from Sopwith to design the Model J trainer, which led to the JN-4 two-seat biplane trainer (known affectionately as the "Jenny"). [13] [14]

The Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company worked with the United States' British and Canadian allies, resulting in JN-4 (Can) trainers (nicknamed the "Canuck") being built in Canada. [15] In order to complete large military orders, JN-4 production was distributed to five other manufacturers. After the war, large numbers of JN-4s were sold as surplus, making influential as the first plane for many interwar pilots, including Amelia Earhart. [16] A stamp was printed to commemorate the Curtiss JN-4, however a printing error resulted in some having the aircraft image inverted, which has become very valuable, and one of the best known rare stamps, even being featured in a number of movies.

The Curtiss HS-2L flying boat was used extensively in the war for anti-submarine patrols and was operated from bases in Nova Scotia, Canada, France and Portugal. The John Cyril Porte of the Royal Navy and Curtiss worked together to improve the design of the Curtiss flying boats resulting in the Curtiss F5L and the similar Felixstowe F.3. Curtiss also worked with the US Navy to develop the NC-4, which became the first aircraft to fly across the Atlantic Ocean in 1919, making several stops enroute. By the end of World War I, the Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company would claim to be the largest aircraft manufacturer in the world, employing 18,000 in Buffalo and 3,000 in Hammondsport, New York. Curtiss produced 10,000 aircraft during that war, and more than 100 in a single week.

Peace brought cancellation of wartime contracts. In September 1920, the Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company underwent a financial reorganization and Glenn Curtiss cashed out his stock in the company for $32 million and retired to Florida. [17] He continued as a director of the company but served only as an advisor on design. Clement M. Keys gained control of the company and it later became the nucleus of a large group of aviation companies. [18]

Curtiss seaplanes won the Schneider Cup in two consecutive races, those of 1923 and 1925. The 1923 race was won by U.S. Navy Lieutenant David Rittenhouse flying a Curtiss C.R.3 to 177.266 miles per hour (285.282 km/h).

Piloted by U.S. Army Lt. Cyrus K. Bettis, a Curtiss R3C won the Pulitzer Trophy Race on October 12, 1925, at a speed of 248.9 miles per hour (400.6 km/h). [19] Thirteen days later, Jimmy Doolittle won the Schneider Trophy in the same aircraft fitted with floats with a top speed of 232.573 miles per hour (374.290 km/h).

The Curtiss Robin light transport was first flown in 1928, becoming one of the company's biggest sellers during the Great Depression, and the 769 built helped keep the company solvent when orders for military aircraft were hard to find.

Curtiss-Wright Corporation

On July 5, 1929, Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company together with 11 other Wright and Curtiss affiliated companies merged to became the Curtiss-Wright Corporation. One of the last projects started by Curtiss Aeroplane was the ambitious Curtiss-Bleecker SX-5-1 Helicopter, a design that had propellers located midpoint on each of the four large rotors that drove the main rotors. The design, while costly and well engineered, was a failure. [20]

Curtiss Aviation School

Curtiss also operated an flying school at Long Branch Aerodrome in Toronto Township, Ontario from 1915 to 1917 before being taken over by the Royal Flying Corps Canada. [21]

Atlantic Coast Aeronautical Station

Glenn H. Curtiss sponsored the Atlantic Coast Aeronautical Station on a 20-acre tract east of Newport News, VA Boat Harbor in the Fall of 1915 with Captain Thomas Scott Baldwin as head. Many civilian students, including Canadians, later became famed WW1 flyers. Victor Carlstrom, Vernon Castle, Eddie Stinson and General Billy Mitchell trained here. The school was disbanded in 1922.


Se videoen: C-47 departs Richards Field (Desember 2021).