WWII replica plans available in 2021?

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cluttonfred

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If I were going to do a two-stroke powered replica like the Loehle 5151, I would seriously consider a Bell P-39 Airacobra with the engine where the guns were and fake exhaust stacks behind the cockpit. The pilot is sitting just forward of the main spar and with no guns forward there is plenty of space to hide the engine without having to use a remote shaft or other complexity as long as the engine is light. And there is also plenty of room to lower the pilot's seat within the fuselage to fit a full-scale pilot in a reduced-scale plane. The only hiccup is that you'd have the tricycle gear hanging down if flying as an LSA in the USA. Interestingly, retractable gear is perfectly fine for microlights in Europe as long as you meet the weight and speed and horsepower limits. Hmmm...andybody up for a Long 3939 microlight? ;-)

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Hephaestus

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If I were going to do a two-stroke powered replica like the Loehle 5151, I would seriously consider a Bell P-39 Airacobra with the engine where the guns were and fake exhaust stacks behind the cockpit.
Don't forget that 2cyl Yamaha phazer engine exists... 4 stroke and water cooled can be a good thing. Throw the 3 or 4cyl at it and it could be a fun little rocket ship.
 

Bigshu

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Our whole strategy with the ScaleBirds line is so that it is hopefully fairly easy to turn our base LiteFighter into a variety of replicas. If Steve Wolf wasn't hot and heavy into his own Thunderbolt replica build, I think the 47 would be there next on the list for us. But we'll see what happens! There are many options for our follow-up.
Hmmm, maybe a twin Mustang! Wouldn't that be something to see...
 

VenturePilot

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I love the look of replica WWII fighters but there are reasons they have never caught on in big numbers. They are difficult to build and either fly well but perform poorly, or perform well and fly poorly. There aren't that many people willing to put the time and effort into building a single place airplane either especially if it cost more than an RV7,8,9,14. Nostalgia only takes you so far when you are talking about spending over 6 figures for a toy.

The new Ryan replica is beautiful but it will take a special person to spend that kind of coin to go that slow in a mild season only airplane. I looked at the Scale Birds fighter and was impressed. It looked proportionately correct and well built. It would be a fun toy but for me the kit price would have to come in under 25k for me to consider it which is RV7 money.
 

Saville

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I love the look of replica WWII fighters but there are reasons they have never caught on in big numbers. They are difficult to build and either fly well but perform poorly, or perform well and fly poorly.
Is it your opinion that the Thunder Mustang and the Stewart S-51 neither perform well nor fly well?
 

VenturePilot

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Is it your opinion that the Thunder Mustang and the Stewart S-51 neither perform well nor fly well?
The Thunder Mustang is a good performer the S-51 not especially. Hard to find specs on the S-51 but from what I recall it was a 215 knt airplane on 450 hp.
 

Twister51

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The S-51 cruises somewhere around 220 and most owners are using a 540ci V-8, some even use a supercharger. (Prototype first flew with a 454 if I remember correctly, then moved up to a 502.) Several guys who have flown the Stewart and the real thing say the S-51 handles very much like its big brother minus the nasty torque roll on the takeoff roll.

The S-51 kit company currently exists (yes, that is correct) and the owner, Bill Hudgens, has invested bucko-bucks over the last 8 or 9 years to start selling kits again. Cost will "probably" be around $200K for firewall aft. Last I recall talking to him is he will have a booth next year at OSH (2022). He is in the completion stages of building a new storage facility for parts.

Here's his website: www.stewart51.info

And here's an edited version of Jim Stewart's original promotional video from 1994 to whet your appetite:
(3) Stewart S-51D Mustang - Promotional Video - YouTube

Cheers!
 
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PiperCruisin

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Its funny but despite me knowing all the glaring issues with scale and proportion we had to endure in the P-36, no one looking at it seemed to care much. One person passing by to their friend cursed some god about our inability to get the rudder shape correct and either they have the keenest eye for detail from 20 feet away, or their memory of what a P-36 looks like is confused with some other vehicle.
Please don't listen to any naysayers. LOVE what you are doing. Go Scalebirds! It'll be a hit and you guys can't move fast enough.
 

EpoxyCowboy

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Mar 9, 2021
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Had the same idea for the P-39 a few years back. Called Jerry Bates after several long discussions with members of the Replica Fighters Association. Jerry sent me his 1/4 scale plans and said try it. Now that I have a workshop again, I started to play at Model Scale (MS=50% of the Original). My MS scale has not been adjusted for the 100% pilot yet. Tonight I am working on a new Spar configuration. After I get the new spar figured out, I will reshape for the pilot and build the fuse at MS one last time. If there are no more changes, I'll increase to Final Scale and start cutting parts. I have two electric motors in mind...
IMG_1984_tn.jpgpar configuration
 

PiperCruisin

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Most of my designs are open cockpit, but by sitting low one can usually achieve the impression of a bigger machine and I usually wear a small tight-fitting helmet, so the impression is that a Flitzer is a 'full-size' aeroplane. These are not replicas, of course, but the same thing applies. If I resurrect my Sperry Messenger, this will span 18', but I am sure it will pass for the full size. My fighter replica types include drafts of the Polikarpov I-16 and the earlier I-5, both which could fly on the Rotec R2800, but other design work claims priority..
I had talked to Scalebirds about the Sperry Messenger after I saw it a the Smithsonian Udvar-Hazy Center at Dulles. Pretty small plane. Probably almost perfect for full size with a Verner motor. I was never big on bi-planes but thought it was pretty cool. Glad to see someone else with a similar idea.
 

Wolfen1176

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Apr 10, 2021
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I think a full scale p39/63 would be awesome. At full scale it's still about the same size as a cub. The engine, drive shaft, and psru would be interesting to figure out but that is what experimental is all about.
 

ScaleBirdsScott

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There's a Sperry hanging up at the Cradle of Aviation museum on long Island as well, and ever since seeing it there, I thought it was just the neatest little biplane. I'm all in favor of someone making one at some scale especially full; it would be a hoot.
 

Geraldc

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I like the old T6 Texan. Something like the Sam as a base with Radial motor and cosmetic mods might work.
More a trainer than a warbird though
 

Saville

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Wouldn't take too much to make a Hellcat.

Wildcat would take some thinking on the landing gear, and the vertical stab would have to be re-shaped, but it would look pretty close
 

David L. Downey

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Having known all the principles and players in Fighter Escort Wing for more than 30 years and having been around their prototype up through flying, I can attest to the absolute quality and fastidious attention to detail as well as very good quality control with the composite parts (my career at Boeing was composite materials/process development).
Somebody needs to rescue that FEW mustang...
 
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