For those with an interest in the Goodyear inflatoplane.

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fly_boy_bc

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 20, 2008
Messages
236
Location
Agssiz BC
Hello all!
I have started a Yahoo group dedicated to the Goodyear Inflatoplane.

http://ca.groups.yahoo.com/group/inflatoplane

There is a lot of information available on the web about this unique aircraft but much of it is very hard to find. I was VERY surprised when after a concerted effort to find vintage documentation I actually FOUND some! My unexpected finds include:

AIRMAT MATERIALS INVESTIGATION
OF ONE-PLACE INFLATOPLANE
GA-468
CONTRACT Nonr= 2368 (CO)
GER 10270 30 June 1961
Code 25500
19990610106


Stress analysis of Inflatoplane model GA_468 <-----Lookie here!
OER-9861
S(or 8?)97-3
Contract No. Nonr=2368(C0)
Jan. 16 1961
19990624002

RESEARCH MEMORANDUM
WIND-TUNNEL INVESTIGATION OF THE AERODYNAMIC <-----And here!
AND STRUCTURAL DEFLECTION CHARACTERISTICS
OF THE GOODYEAR INFLATOPLANE
By Bennie W. Cocke, Jr.
Langley Aeronautical Laboratory
Langley Field, Va.
NATIONAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE
FOR AERONAUTICS
WASHINGTON
September I0, 1958

And the 16mm. Films of the wind tunnel testing at LANGLEY.

I have searched the web many times before but I went much "Deeper" this time,(14 hours overnight) it was WELL worth it! These materials are amazing! This was a real aircraft development program and the results were fantastic. The death of the test pilot had nothing to do with the aircraft structure rather it was a control system failure. As for the comment in Wikipedia attributed to some Army official to the effect that the Inflatoplane could be taken down by a "well aimed bow and arrow" it's just not true. Tests were conducted with leaks and at lowered pressures and it flew and responded down to 3 Lbs/in. (from 7)

There are two important documents missing from this series however:
1.......GER 10118 "Utility Handbook Flight Operation, Maintenance and
Inspection, Inflatoplane Model GA 468", 6 March 1961.

2.......GER 9066, "Demonstration Progress and Instrumentation Report on the GA 468 Inflatoplane", 1 November 1958.

Yet another missing document:
GAC letter X52-764 to ONR, dated 11 November 1960.
And another:

MIL-C-21189 (AER), Amendment 1, dated 15 July 1959.
I do not know what these two docs are but they are referenced in AIRMAT MATERIALS INVESTIGATION OF ONE-PLACE INFLATOPLANE GA-468
(May be unimportant)

Please feel free to join the group and access the documents all I ask is that you keep your eyes and ears open for material that can be added to the collection.


________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Got wings?
 

fly_boy_bc

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 20, 2008
Messages
236
Location
Agssiz BC
inflatoplane : Inflatoplane is now the premier source of inflatoplane information, documentation and pictures on the web!

PLEASE if anyone can contribute

GER 10118 "Utility Handbook Flight Operation, Maintenance and
Inspection, Inflatoplane Model GA 468", 6 March 1961.

to the Inflatoplane database the collection will be complete! I have seen this document sold on ebay (Once) so it IS available out there!
 

Synergy

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Joined
Jun 10, 2010
Messages
332
Location
Kalispell, MT USA
Jim Smith has one of the dozen near us here in NW Montana. It's the only aircraft in his unbelievable collection that he hasn't flown personally. If I can find my pics I'll post them.

The Inflatoplane concept was that a downed pilot could be air-dropped the package, open it up, start the motor to inflate the structure, then climb in and fly away. Since it actually worked, this was a pretty interesting effort which probably would have had a few very rare uses. It's easy to dismiss when 99% of the time it wouldn't be the right solution, but I love the spirit Goodyear had back in the day.
 

Aircar

Banned
Joined
Feb 20, 2010
Messages
3,567
Location
Melbourne Australia
I don't know if you are interested only in the Goodyear inflatoplane or inflated aircraft per se --if the latter there are several SAE papers on a Japanese inflatable ring wing roadable aircraft ( I could scratch them up) and a number of patents on roadability using the inflating/deflating wing concept --there were also a couple of inflatable man powered aircraft (Perkins et al) and the Swiss 'manta ray' flying wing and probably others again.
 

hlid

New Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2021
Messages
1
sorry to wake up an old tread, but there is no more yahoo group.
does it exist an archive, or back up somewhere?
i am really interested by all documentation about the inflatoplane, if someone has all files i can make a public google doc with them.
 

Riggerrob

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Joined
Sep 9, 2014
Messages
1,879
Location
Canada
Dear aircar,
The Swiss 'manta ray' was built by Prospective Concepts. Plenty of photos and explanations on their website. They also built a more conventional inflated ultralight.
Other inflatable airplanes have been built in America (1930s), Great Britain (1950s) and Russia (1930s),
 

geraldmorrissey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2008
Messages
49
My college roomate's father was a test pilot on that Goodyear program (Dick Ulm). My friend Larry Ulm had lots of great stories and pictures of the plane. He is on Facebook.
Gerry
 

rtfm

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Joined
Jan 3, 2008
Messages
3,443
Location
Brisbane, Australia
Hello all!
I have started a Yahoo group dedicated to the Goodyear Inflatoplane.
Yahoo
Hi,
Why use Yahoo? I followed your link and got pages and pages of bogus news stories - nothing about your plane. Yahoo is a terrible choice for a platform. Even Facebook is better. Best of all, why not create a dedicated thread right here on HBA?

Duncan
 

Tiger Tim

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Apr 26, 2013
Messages
3,653
Location
Thunder Bay
Why use Yahoo?
You may have to fire up your time machine to get an answer, that post was made in 2008 when Yahoo groups were a big deal. I think at the time one of the big advantages was community file hosting in a way that little if any forum software could compete with. Yahoo shut down and deleted all of their groups a year or two ago now.
 

Riggerrob

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Joined
Sep 9, 2014
Messages
1,879
Location
Canada
Over on www.secretprojects.co.uk, we have a thread entitled "Goodyear's Inflatoplanes" in the after 1945 forum. We discuss Goodyear's efforts along with Taylor McDaniel, Pavel Grokovsky, Prospect Designs, the British Inflatoplane ML Utility Mark I, etc.

Personally, I would like something similar to the the British Inflatoplane with its underslung gondola and great view downwards.
 

rtfm

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2008
Messages
3,443
Location
Brisbane, Australia
You may have to fire up your time machine to get an answer, that post was made in 2008 when Yahoo groups were a big deal. I think at the time one of the big advantages was community file hosting in a way that little if any forum software could compete with. Yahoo shut down and deleted all of their groups a year or two ago now.
Ha ha... My bad...
 

Bille Floyd

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Joined
Sep 26, 2019
Messages
446
I tried to get a kite-board manufacturer of kites, to look into how the,
"Goodyear's Inflatoplanes"
wing was built, (a bit like some inflatable SUP boards) are currently made ,
so the kites could achieve a much wider wind-speed range ; but they purposely
limit the wind speed range , with their ugly round tubes ,(LEI) so they can sell
more wind specific kites . :(
I could do a more airfoiled shape for the kite myself ; but the return for money
doesn't outweigh the risk for lawsuit. There are some kite-boarders
out there , that don't have much of an Exit-Plan ; for when things go South !

Bille
 
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