I talked to Sam for a while, saw Scott but he was tied up talking Verner motors with a guy. It's great to see the P36 in flight test. I almost pulled the trigger on a deposit, but I want to get a better idea how things will go with a P40, engine wise. Exciting to see the energy at their booth. I think they have a winning business model.Did any forum members catch up with Scott & co at AirVenture? I've seen the P-36 pop up in many friends' Facebook posts.
I did. The bird looks FABULOUS in person. Eliot was there when I stopped in, and said it had no handling squawks, just cooling and sump venting. Cooling was fixed as displayed, and sump venting will get figured out too. Looks like it should go nicely in the market.Did any forum members catch up with Scott & co at AirVenture? I've seen the P-36 pop up in many friends' Facebook posts.
I talked to Sam for a while, saw Scott but he was tied up talking Verner motors with a guy. It's great to see the P36 in flight test. I almost pulled the trigger on a deposit, but I want to get a better idea how things will go with a P40, engine wise. Exciting to see the energy at their booth. I think they have a winning business model.
It doesn't take a lot of time...if you have a ton of money!I have also had a life long desire to fly a P-40 replica. Not sure it will happen but the Scalebird option is definitely on my radar. Life is short....not sure if I will have enough time on this earth to obtain all the planes I dream about! LOL
Are there any Vans with retracts? They aren't going for the same target, so they can have a different approach. Make a prototype, test it against the original, if the test pilot says they're both good, go with what makes your life (and your builder's lives) easier. Or whichever one brings you joy! Lol...Seems like a "if you have the means, go for it" thing to me. But then again, Van's Aircraft technically has the means, but I don't see them machining their spars from one piece of solid metal yet. I must imagine a lot of it comes down to "well we've always just riveted them and for what we're doing it's not worth changing."
Are there any Vans with retracts? They aren't going for the same target, so they can have a different approach. Make a prototype, test it against the original, if the test pilot says they're both good, go with what makes your life (and your builder's lives) easier. Or whichever one brings you joy! Lol...
Scott in regards to retracts the version of the P-36 with wheel spats is actually the best looking of the group? Why not just make it simple and have people build those versions?
As for the Spar I have bearhawk LSA plans and the spar is quite simple. Its similar to the Rv3 I am told. I drew it up in solidowrks long ago but sadly I lost the file with a hard drive crash. Also maybe a Thatcher CX-4 or CX-5 type spar woudl work as well since its a similar sized plane and weight. I bought CX-4 plans as well to study the design as a basis for a metal 1930's looking air racer I was interested in designing. If you want to borrow my set of Bearhawk LSA or CX4 plans to study met me know.
^^^^ I think so ^^^^^that might be something like grain structures, flex, etc that can actually advantage a part built of many smaller pieces vs a super stiff single unit.
Thanks for the very informative post Scott. The P40 is my favorite WW2 fighter so I'm happy your heading in that direction with retracts. However if I were looking for a radial option and a P36 then the spatted version is the direction I'd want to go. Looking forward to how everything plays out.Well, plenty of people want a retracts setup. Or think they do at least. Some like the fixed gear for various reasons, some like the look of the spats even better, as you do; but plenty want a P-40 Flying Tiger. And that calls for gear that can pull a disappearing act. ScaleBirds mission doesn't work without at least having the option.
Indeed, the CX-4 is an interesting reference point as it's a good simple example of what we might be going for in some sense. But for one it's rudimentary, favoring what one could do by hand. For another it's not aerobatic. The CX-4 spars especially for the outboard wing are pretty close to what we did for ours actually. Now the Panther has a slightly better approach in some ways, as they reduce some of the weight out of the design at points, and put more in where they need a stout spar, which they make from layered CNC-cut plates. Also the Sling seems very lightweight but stout, lots of smart ideas there, tho it's optimized for different things than our mission. Both of the latter designs are such that a homebuilder can't readily plans-build them, but that's not a bad thing for me.
To be sure, over the years I've been looking at everything I can get my hands on images or drawings of: Mustang II, CX-4, RV-3 thru RV-14 builds, Titan T-51, the Stewart Mustang, SPA Panther, the Flying Legend Tucano, Sonex and Onex, Hummelbird, Sling, Thorp, Bearhawks and Cessnas, Bonanzas, Pipers, Globe Swift, the Ercoupe, and probably more I'm forgetting. If there's a decent build log of it or other reference pictures, or drawings; I've tried to pull it up as a reference point on the matrix. Then also been looking at the warbirds; been pouring over the drawings and restoration photos of the P-51, Hellcat, P-40, Zero, Spitfire, P-47, etc etc.
My challenge mostly come down to there's a hundred ways to build what we need, based on just some combination of assumptions. What we have now is something a bit like a Mustang II or CX-4 where it's 2" x .25" thick strips sandwiched over a web, with some flanges in that sandwich to mount the skins (vs trying to bend the web itself) It works, but the problem is we currently have to make it very narrow to work with the fuselage we built. Currently we have a 'tunnel' through the fuselage that the spar stubs stick into, and then at the mid-point they're sandwiched by big steel plates to join the two halves. It works, but it's very tight quarters and takes a long time to make all those parts, drill everything exact, and then put it all together such that it fits. Plus the plates on the spar just to act as spacers for the bolts that pin the spar to the fuselage are no joke. So to install the center section you build a left half, a right half, and then stick them into the tunnel hanging in space, and have to crawl around inside this narrow space to install the big steel splice plates on either side of the thin spar with a bunch of bolts; and then go back and pin the spar to the fuselage. It's not fun. And it's not optimal.
So one option is do an overlapping spar. Another is build the center spar into the fuselage and just live with the fuselage and center being one big piece. (The Czech Zero replica does this to good effect)
Looking at it, the method I prefer (and originally wanted to do on the LiteFighter anyway) is to emulate the tried and true method of the original warbirds (P-40, P-51, F6F, etc) and some replicas such as the T-51, and have the fuselage just sit on top of the wing. Build the center section as a big torsion box, mount the seat to the top of the wing, and the fuse is just a cage around it. The spar can end up being a lot lighter because it's not the only part doing the carry-thru job anymore. And all-in-all it'll hopefully make assembly far easier at the end of the day.
Whether I make the spar from one chunk of metal, two, or built it from a dozen bent sheets and stiffeners, my main goal is just reduce manual labor. CNC time is cheap over time. People keep charging for their time, and rightly so.
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