Making an "obsolete" fighter into an unlimited racer !

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Riggerrob

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Dear Speedboat100,
We understand that Brewster Buffalo was a “hero” to Finns because of the hundreds of Russian airplanes they destroyed. This was primarily due to the high quality of Finnish pilots and the miserable quality of Russian pilots.
However, if you read Justo Miranda’s book “Enemy at Gates, panic fighters of the Second World War” you will realize that Brewsters had miserable records with most other air forces.
If you want to start with a Finnish airplane, at least start with a fast Finnish airplane like the VL PM-5 they were developing at the end of WW2. It was hoped to exceed 680 mph.

If you want to win races at Reno, start with the best of the late WW2 fighters: Mustang, Bearcat or Sea Fury. If you have to ask how much warbirds cost, you cannot afford them!
Hah!
Hah!
As others have suggested, set aside a few million dollars and aim for the Sport Class. Start with a race-proven car engine, then hire the best aerodynamicist available. Use milder carbon fibre to build a Schumann wing and install tricycle undercarriage.

And for gods sake, please invent some original ideas ... like the Pond Racer tried to.
My first guess looks like a shrunken Twin Mustang with only one cockpit (left side) and the nose wheel under the left engine.
If I could figure out balance and airflow around the wing roots, I might go for a pusher with twin tail booms. Note that I would only build a pusher if it had a short propeller shaft, barely longer than the
 

Speedboat100

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Nov 8, 2018
Messages
953
Location
Europe
Dear Speedboat100,
We understand that Brewster Buffalo was a “hero” to Finns because of the hundreds of Russian airplanes they destroyed. This was primarily due to the high quality of Finnish pilots and the miserable quality of Russian pilots.
However, if you read Justo Miranda’s book “Enemy at Gates, panic fighters of the Second World War” you will realize that Brewsters had miserable records with most other air forces.
If you want to start with a Finnish airplane, at least start with a fast Finnish airplane like the VL PM-5 they were developing at the end of WW2. It was hoped to exceed 680 mph.

If you want to win races at Reno, start with the best of the late WW2 fighters: Mustang, Bearcat or Sea Fury. If you have to ask how much warbirds cost, you cannot afford them!
Hah!
Hah!
As others have suggested, set aside a few million dollars and aim for the Sport Class. Start with a race-proven car engine, then hire the best aerodynamicist available. Use milder carbon fibre to build a Schumann wing and install tricycle undercarriage.

And for gods sake, please invent some original ideas ... like the Pond Racer tried to.
My first guess looks like a shrunken Twin Mustang with only one cockpit (left side) and the nose wheel under the left engine.
If I could figure out balance and airflow around the wing roots, I might go for a pusher with twin tail booms. Note that I would only build a pusher if it had a short propeller shaft, barely longer than the
But wouldn't it be a show stopper if "Brewster" won the races as well in Reno ?
 

Speedboat100

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Nov 8, 2018
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953
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Europe
For finns...as being a small nation with limited resources the vital part of existence in WW II was to utilise all weapons and means to fight the overhelming enemy.

We even switched a new war booty engines to Morane Saulniers.

It became the Goblin Morane " Mörkö-Morane " !

Making a R-2800 powered " Brewster " with aerodynamical enhancements would be in square terms with this policy...and bring this historical aspect to it.

morane_Mörkö.jpg

And below the original...with weaker engine.

Morane-Saulnier..1.jpg

From WIKI:

Mörkö-Morane[edit]

France sent 30 Morane-Saulnier to Finland, between 4 and 29 February 1940.[23] By 1943 the Finns had received an additional 46 M.S.406s and 11 M.S.410s purchased from the Germans. By this point, the fighters were hopelessly outdated,[22] but the Finns were so desperate for serviceable aircraft that they decided to start a modification program to bring all of their examples to a new standard.

The aircraft designer Aarne Lakomaa turned the obsolete "M-S" into a first rate fighter, the Mörkö-Morane (Mörkö is the Finnish for "Bogeyman" or "Bugbear"). It is sometimes referred to as the "LaGG-Morane". Powered by captured Klimov M-105P engines (a licensed version of the HS 12Y) of 820.3 kW (1,100 hp) with a fully adjustable propeller, the airframe required some local strengthening and also gained a new and more aerodynamic engine cowling. These changes boosted the speed to 525 km/h (326 mph; 283 kn).[22] Other changes included a new oil cooler taken from the Bf 109, the use of four belt-fed guns like the M.S.410, and the excellent 20 mm (0.787 in) MG 151/20 cannon in the engine mounting. However, supplies of the MG 151 were limited, and several received captured 12.7 mm (0.500 in) Berezin UBS guns instead.

The first example of the modified fighter, MS-631, made its first flight on 25 January 1943, and the results were startling: the aircraft was 64 km/h (40 mph; 35 kn) faster than the original French version, and the service ceiling was increased from 10,000 m (33,000 ft) to 12,000 m (39,000 ft).[39]

Originally, it was planned to convert all the 41 remaining M.S.406s and M.S.410s with the Soviet engine, but it took time, and the first front-line aircraft of this type did not reach LeLv 28 until July/August 1944.[39] By the end of the Continuation War in 1944, only three examples had been converted (including the original prototype).[40] Lieutenant Lars Hattinen (an ace with six victories) scored three kills with the Mörkö-Morane, one with each Mörkö-Morane in the squadron. More fighters arrived from the factory, though, and the Mörkö-Moranes took part in the Lapland War as reconnaissance and ground attack aircraft. Not all the Mörkö-Morane conversions were completed before March 1945, when the entire re-engining programme was halted.[39] After the end of the war, the total was brought to 41, which served as advanced trainers with TLeLv 14 until September 1948. In 1952 all remaining Finnish Moranes were scrapped.[41]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morane-Saulnier_M.S.406
 
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Speedboat100

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Make a Hollywood film about it instead. It'd be a great story line and a better return on investment
That is an interesting idea....about a finnish boy who surfed to USA and found a little shop to make windmills...and on his spare time purhased an R-2800 from his buddys dad who was a WW II mechanic...and runs a overhaul company for engines. Then gets a set of plans and teams up with an engineer with fluid dynamics background and they construct a super Brewster like Granville Bros did on their GeeBees. Special care is made to the plot when the super charger explodes when NOX is added and the hero almost buys the farm on a test flite....and ends up into a beat field after having went faster than no one ever has with a piston driven aircraft. Then there is a georgeous woman (Charlize Theron) who overhauls the dude..to makes him whole again....and then the race day arrives. Can you picture this ?
 
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Aesquire

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Rochester, NY, USA
The Buffalo was a bleeding edge design in it's day, but it's day was short, designed before the Battle of Britain, and the lesson that armor and self sealing fuel tanks were necessities. Adding roughly the weight of a heavy passenger or more to all the revised American designs. With, unfortunately, no power increase.

As the first U.S. Carrier monoplane fighter, the Buffalo was roughly equivalent to the Mitsubishi A5M. Enclosed cockpit & retractable gear give it a more modern look, but the U.S. Navy held on to biplanes longer than the IJN. As a first effort, it wasn't horrible, but it ran into fighters a generation more advanced in development in the Pacific.

The main class were lack of power, and weak landing gear. Brewster didn't have years of designing landing gear sturdy enough to take Carrier abuse. ( unlike Grumman )

You could change the year to basically the Bearcat type, or a retractable tricycle gear, like the T-28, and keep the external lines close.
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_American_T-28_Trojan

More power also means the old tail surfaces are too small and/or too close coupled. The longer engine makes it more heavy as well. So keeping the beer barrel lines, but lengthening the fuselage to higher fineness ratio would make a more elegant plane. An updated Buffalo that never existed.
 

Wanttaja

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The Buffalo was a bleeding edge design in it's day...
Cutting edge in the US, perhaps, but certainly behind the world standard. First flight of the Buffalo was NEARLY TWO YEARS after that of the Spitfire (21 months). It certainly wasn't an improvement.....

Ron Wanttaja
 

Aesquire

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True, but that's apples to oranges. The Blackburn Skua would be the contemporary plane. Still unfair comparison, since the Skua was a 2 seat plane, looking pretty modern, though.

The sea going versions of the Hurricane and Spitfire went into service over a year later than the Buffalo. There's no doubt the Spitfire was a better fighter in my mind.

The Japanese were 2 years ahead of the U.S. with the A5M, which was superior to most aircraft...ever...in wing loading and turn radius, loops, etc. And the A6M Zero was in service a scanty year after the Buffalo.

Still in Finnish service the Buffalo did very well. Pilot skill should get 99% of the credit. :) Finnish Buffalos were lighter than the later U.S. Marine Buffalos that fought at Midway.

Obsolete by late Dec. 1941, is how I'd rate the Buffalo in U.S. service. The Grumman F4F Wildcat/Martlet prototype was the competition that wasn't good enough, for that 1937 buy...but the revised version held the line, and held it's own. With a very good kill ratio even against the fabled Zero.
 

Speedboat100

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The Buffalo was a bleeding edge design in it's day, but it's day was short, designed before the Battle of Britain, and the lesson that armor and self sealing fuel tanks were necessities. Adding roughly the weight of a heavy passenger or more to all the revised American designs. With, unfortunately, no power increase.

As the first U.S. Carrier monoplane fighter, the Buffalo was roughly equivalent to the Mitsubishi A5M. Enclosed cockpit & retractable gear give it a more modern look, but the U.S. Navy held on to biplanes longer than the IJN. As a first effort, it wasn't horrible, but it ran into fighters a generation more advanced in development in the Pacific.

The main class were lack of power, and weak landing gear. Brewster didn't have years of designing landing gear sturdy enough to take Carrier abuse. ( unlike Grumman )

You could change the year to basically the Bearcat type, or a retractable tricycle gear, like the T-28, and keep the external lines close.
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_American_T-28_Trojan

More power also means the old tail surfaces are too small and/or too close coupled. The longer engine makes it more heavy as well. So keeping the beer barrel lines, but lengthening the fuselage to higher fineness ratio would make a more elegant plane. An updated Buffalo that never existed.

Yes this here is about a foot longer than original.

F2A.HMX77.jpg

Wider wing and a bit thinner...more tapering and forward sweep.
 

Speedboat100

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True, but that's apples to oranges. The Blackburn Skua would be the contemporary plane. Still unfair comparison, since the Skua was a 2 seat plane, looking pretty modern, though.

The sea going versions of the Hurricane and Spitfire went into service over a year later than the Buffalo. There's no doubt the Spitfire was a better fighter in my mind.

The Japanese were 2 years ahead of the U.S. with the A5M, which was superior to most aircraft...ever...in wing loading and turn radius, loops, etc. And the A6M Zero was in service a scanty year after the Buffalo.

Still in Finnish service the Buffalo did very well. Pilot skill should get 99% of the credit. :) Finnish Buffalos were lighter than the later U.S. Marine Buffalos that fought at Midway.

Obsolete by late Dec. 1941, is how I'd rate the Buffalo in U.S. service. The Grumman F4F Wildcat/Martlet prototype was the competition that wasn't good enough, for that 1937 buy...but the revised version held the line, and held it's own. With a very good kill ratio even against the fabled Zero.
Possibly too light for the unlimited class.
 

Speedboat100

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Doesn't Brewster's history make the Raptor project look like a model of GAAP accounting though...?

Brewsters were made in 4 storeys building in New York that was used for car manufacturing...and the planes cost almost double what the Hellcats cost later.
 

Swampyankee

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Brewster was a horribly run company. Their quality was so poor, they managed to be one of very few defense contractors to go out of business during a war.
 

Speedboat100

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Last edited:

lr27

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If it's going to be a real racer, the canopy should be much smaller.
 

TerryM76

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Tempe, AZ
Yes this here is about a foot longer than original.

View attachment 93122

Wider wing and a bit thinner...more tapering and forward sweep.
Regardless of building an example as a racer, it would be absolutely great to have a couple of flying replicas of that example to see and enjoy, for most of us here. If you could come up with enough original parts and call it a restoration someone would certainly buy it for their flying collection. The unfortunate thing is that it would consume large amounts of money and time.
 

Speedboat100

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Regardless of building an example as a racer, it would be absolutely great to have a couple of flying replicas of that example to see and enjoy, for most of us here. If you could come up with enough original parts and call it a restoration someone would certainly buy it for their flying collection. The unfortunate thing is that it would consume large amounts of money and time.

There are original plans from the factory in Finland. I assume those were used in constructing the HUMU variant...it has wooden wing, but fuselage is metal.
 
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