Scale Miles M.20

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Sockmonkey

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Hmm, all wood construction so you could probably homebuild it. Scale it down to 75% or so and it could still handle the weight of a second person.
 

cluttonfred

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I guess it depends what sort of ride you're looking for, Bill. Assuming a single-seater, what max pilot weight do you have in mind? Luggage, speed, range? I have always like Miles aircraft and an M.20 replica would be great fun, but a replica fighter ought to have exciting performance and look the part.

How about a Taylor Titch as the starting point with a 100 hp Suzuki-based inline engine with PSRU and chin radiator? The downside is that adapting any existing design would require substantial redesign of the tail due to the M.20's (unusual then but more common now) fin and rudder forward of the horizontal stabilizer and elevator.

m20.jpg yellow titch.jpg
 

Yellowhammer

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I guess it depends what sort of ride you're looking for, Bill. Assuming a single-seater, what max pilot weight do you have in mind? Luggage, speed, range? I have always like Miles aircraft and an M.20 replica would be great fun, but a replica fighter ought to have exciting performance and look the part.

How about a Taylor Titch as the starting point with a 100 hp Suzuki-based inline engine with PSRU and chin radiator? The downside is that adapting any existing design would require substantial redesign of the tail due to the M.20's (unusual then but more common now) fin and rudder forward of the horizontal stabilizer and elevator.

View attachment 110708 View attachment 110709

Looks like a Typhoon!
 

Sockmonkey

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Civilian versions of fighters tend to have a good bit of mass allotment to play with as they aren't hauling around hundreds of kilos worth of guns and bombs.
 

cluttonfred

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For anyone that doesn’t know the story, the M.20 is a great example of what can be accomplished by a small, motivated team in a short time. While a similar design had existed in mock up in 1939, as the Battle of Britain got underway in 1940 there was real concern that the RAF might run out of planes and Miles was given the green light to build a prototype emergency fighter. Just over *nine weeks* later it took to the air. Using as many parts as possible from the production Master trainer and a standard “power egg” firewall-forward Merlin installation used in bombers, it had fixed gear and no hydraulics and an early bubble canopy for performance better than a Hurricane and not as good as a Spitfire but with twice the fuel and ammunition of either. Oh, and it was made primarily of wood and fabric. In the end in was never put into production as the existing types did not run out, but it’s a true lesson in getting the job done right.

C66E69E9-6589-485E-82FB-C158A9D81BD7.jpeg

Looks like a Typhoon!
 
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Tiger Tim

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If you like the layout of the M.20 but want it a little smaller, lower power, AND want the option to scare a friend, the Miles M.18 may be right for you.
 

cluttonfred

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Despite never having been put into production with just a few prototypes completed, the M.18 went through an interesting evolution from a more traditional empennage to the later version and experiments with canopies and tricycle gear and even as a test-bed for high-lift flaps. I have sketched out a number of concepts over the years for a small homebuilt, probably VW-powered, inspired by both the Miles M.18 with the personalization of the Evans Volksplane through modular options in the plans: open cockpit or canopy, exposed cylinders or pressure cowl, and taildragger or tricycle gear. All would be set up to solo from the rear seat (raised at least 6" higher than the front seat for visibility) and I would eliminate the tiny amount of taper from the outer panels for simplicity, perhaps keeping the center section and tailplane to little more than 7' span to fit in a 20' shipping container or similar trailer with the wing outer panels removed.

m18 profile.jpg m18 3-view.jpg
m18 original fin.jpg m18 with canopy.jpg m18 trigear.jpg

If you like the layout of the M.20 but want it a little smaller, lower power, AND want the option to scare a friend, the Miles M.18 may be right for you.
 

cluttonfred

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The basic structure of a design inspired by the Miles M.18 need not be complicated, in fact, it could be as simple as a Volksplane underneath but with a cantilever wing. Start with a straightforward, flat-topped box fuselage tapered on the sides and bottom to end in small bulkhead (perhaps with a large access panel) not a vertical post. Move the horizontal stab to the top of the longerons and add a small, removable tailcone of fiberglass, aluminum, acrylic, or fabric-covered wood. The rest is just a light wooden framework covered in fabric with some aluminum, fiberglass, or plywood bits to fill out the turtledeck, cockpits, etc. and perhaps some sort of roll-over hoop or pylon. An enclosed side-by-side version could be just as simple and include the roll-over protection in the canopy frame.

HBA concept sketches (20).jpg
 

Tiger Tim

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Put down the pitchfork and hear me out, but I’d be tempted to just crib the wing and stabilizer/elevators off a Zenith 600-series and come up with a tandem seat slabby aluminum fuselage to suit. Use one of the automotive inline conversions and away you go...
 

Riggerrob

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Put down the pitchfork and hear me out, but I’d be tempted to just crib the wing and stabilizer/elevators off a Zenith 600-series and come up with a tandem seat slabby aluminum fuselage to suit. Use one of the automotive inline conversions and away you go...
You could use a Zenith "slabby sided" fuselage with half-round fairings on top and bottom. With a clever paint scheme, it would still look oval. The other advantage to cosmetic fairings is that it retains Volksplane's original concept of making the fuselage cross-section shallow enough to remove via narrow apartment doors, stairwells, etc.
 

Riggerrob

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Does anyone know how the second prototype (serial number U-0228) differed from the first prototype?
Yes, we know that it added and arrestor hook for landing-on aircraft carriers.
Does anyone know precisely what test pilot Eric "Winkle" Brown disliked about Miles M.20 ... compared with Seafire, Sea Hurricane and Grumman Martlet (Windcat)?
How could a navalised Miles M.20 be improved to fit Fleet Air Arm requirements?
 

cluttonfred

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Riggerrob that sounds more like a thread for another group, say Miles M.20 over at Secret Projects. :) My understanding was that the gear was tweaked for lower drag, the conopy modified, the spinner more pointed, but overall the second prototype was not substantially different from the first. I don't know that an arrester hook was ever fitted since the initial idea for the second prototype was launching from catapults on merchant ships.

Reading that Aeroplane Monthly article posted at the link above, it seems clear that there were many small issues with the prototype but nothing that sounds like it would have been hard to sort out in a production version. Had it entered emergency production in 1940 those would have been sorted out quickly and the design could have supplanted or supplemented the Hurricane in secondary theaters and in the fighter-bomber role. It's interesting to imagine various "what if" versions like a tankbusting 40mm cannon M.20 or one with four or six 20mm cannon.

In the end, though, the M.20 was no great leap forward and by the time the second prototype was fully evaluated there were better designs like the Typhoon becoming available. The M.20 was simply overtaken by events and abandoned.
 
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cluttonfred

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No pitchfork, I have nothing against aluminum but I enjoy working with wood. The M.18 fuselage already had flat sides and bottom, only the top fuselage was rounded.

Put down the pitchfork and hear me out, but I’d be tempted to just crib the wing and stabilizer/elevators off a Zenith 600-series and come up with a tandem seat slabby aluminum fuselage to suit. Use one of the automotive inline conversions and away you go...
 

Victor Bravo

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Back to the OP, the M.20 would make a fantastic project for one of the new Yamaha sled engines everyone is so excited about. The 300HP engine that Steve Henry is flying, mounted on a 3/4 scale M.20, would give someone a very decent "warbird fighter" experience and be pretty affordable. It would really kinda gotta ought to be made out of wood. CNC technology and a CNC cut building jig for the fuselage would make it fairly straightforward.
 
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