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Cessna Postwar Projects

Sentinel Chicken

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Link to original story: http://www.wingsoverkansas.com/features/article.asp?id=461

The Cessnas that got away

By DARYL MURPHY ©2005

At least part of Cessna's success is the fact that their aircraft are engineered for production. Reigning for years as the No. 1 manufacturer of General Aviation aircraft, their designs have always been pragmatic and market-driven, and most importantly, accessible to the masses.

In the boom years since World War II, Cessna has designed, manufactured and marketed scores of airframe designations. But there was also an equal number of ideas that seemed awfully good at the time, but which for one reason or another you may not have ever seen at your local airport.

Model X-210-Cessna's first 210 had no direct relationship to the later model of the same name, but was proposed in the late Forties as a possible replacement for the popular Model 195. The X-210 employed a 195 airframe and its cantilever wings, but in place of the 300 hp Jacobs radial was a horizontally opposed Continental O-470 of 240 horsepower. The reasoning was that the flat cowl presented much fewer square feet of frontal area. Wing tips and vertical and horizontal stabilizer had square tips instead of the rounded ones used on production 195s, the wings featured high-lift flaps, and the main gear was an innovative tapered tubular steel design.

The X-210 first flew in January 1950, but the gain from the lower cowl profile was no trade for sixty less horsepower, and the prototype proved to be disproportionately slower than the 195. The lukewarm feeling was further heightened when the Korean War began, demanding more and more production materials and space from Cessna for its L-19 Bird Dog, so the project was dropped.

However, several of the design features would show up on later Cessna models.

Model 308-This design could be characterized as a four-place Model 305-the airplane which had become the U.S. Army's "Bird Dog" in 1950. The 308 was in answer to a military proposal which called for a new, larger aircraft category that was eventually filled by the de Havilland Beaver. Built on the general lines of the 170, the Model 308 had a much larger 47-ft wing span and 4,200 lb gross weight. Powered by a whopping 375 hp Lycoming GSO-580, it could operate smartly off unimproved strips and carry a 1,000-lb payload for 800 statute miles. Only one example was built, and it first flew in July 1951.

Model 309/319--Cessna participated in Boundary Layer Control (BLC) research from 1951 to 1955 with the U.S. Navy and Wichita University using a stock 170A modified to house a small gas turbine in the fuselage which blew air over the wing (1951). The 309A, first flown in February 1952, used an engine-driven electric generator to operate large fans in the wings to generate the air; the 309B of 1953 and 309C in 1954 used dry chemicals that generated airflow across the wings and flaps.

Another follow-on, the 319-A of 1953, had larger, more powerful flaps. With 225 hp Continental engine and BLC, the airplane had a stall speed of 32 mph. It could take off in 190 ft, land in 160 ft and make it in over a 50-ft obstacle in just 450 ft. As a research vehicle, the 309/319 was a success, but its commercial application was questionable--or as a Cessna test pilot wrote on a report after his first flight, "All in all, a rather nasty little monster!"

Model 620-Despite Beech's lack of success in finding a market for a four-engine transport nine years earlier, Cessna announced its Model 620 in 1956. It was an eight to ten-place pressurized aircraft powered by four 320 hp Continental GSO-526-As. Priced in the $300,000-$400,000 range, it would cost more than new twin-engine Martin and Convair airliners.

Planned for introduction as a 1958 model, design began in September 1953. Even though work on the Model 310 twin was underway, very little structure could be found to share with the larger airframe; virtually every piece on the four-engine airplane was new. It took nearly three years of prototype construction before the first flight was made.

Its stand-up cabin was six feet high and air conditioned, and the 620 had an on-board APU. Fuel capacity was over 400 gallons (part of which was carried in the distinctive tip tanks which would be a Cessna trademark for decades), gross weight was 13,650 lbs, it had a 55-ft wing span, maximum speed of 282 mph and 27,500 ft service ceiling--22,500 ft on three engines.

It apparently wasn't until after flight testing began that the company started its market research, and it was then that they discovered much the same which Beech had found earlier--that most potential customers had a ready supply of larger, pressurized airliners available for far less than the proposed model. With a total of fifty hours on the only prototype, it was sold to a Wichita scrap metal dealer. Some of the 620's design lessons, however, would be used in later twin-engine models.

Model 160-Cessna was selling most of the single-engine aircraft produced in the world in 1962. With models ranging from the $7,495 two-place 150B trainer to the $23,975 Model 210B, the company had eight models filling the niches. What it needed now, the reasoning went, was a design that would offer more airplane for less money, and the answer could possibly lie in changing labor-intensive production procedures. The four-place Model 160 was to be priced at $8,450, between the 150 and the 172. Its unfashionably square-cut conventionality was more a concession to the economies of manufacturing than to aesthetics of its market.

Fuselage and wing skins relied on heavy beading for strength and low weight, and the strut-braced constant-chord wings and free-caster nose gear provided simplicity of manufacture. The prototype was powered by a 125 hp Franklin engine, and it took the airplane to 134 mph. The 145 hp O-300 Continental engine then in use in the 172 was specified for the production Model 160, and would provide a top speed of 143 mph. In a proposed military version--the 160M--a Continental IO-360 of 210 hp would push it to a theoretical 174 mph top speed.

Flight tests in 1962-63 showed the model had promise, but not enough to make the necessary production and tooling adjustments, so the project was eventually abandoned and the company went back to doing things the way they had always been done. The sole prototype hung around until 1974, when it was reportedly scrapped.

However, the salvage yard kept putting off the job, and a mechanic from Northeast Kansas bought the remains of the prototype a few years ago and has offered it for sale.

Model 327-After modest successes with the Center Line Thrust (CLT) concept that Cessna pioneered in civil aircraft with the 1964 introduction of the six-place, fixed-gear 336 and subsequent retractable-gear 337 Skymasters, the Model 327, the "Baby Skymaster," was proposed in 1965.

The four-seat twin had cantilever wings and was powered by two 160 hp IO-320 engines. It first flew in December 1967, and 39 hours of flight testing was completed before the project was canceled from lack of interest in 1968. The prototype continued to fly, however, working in a joint Langley Research Center/Cessna Aircraft Company project on noise reduction and being used as a test bed for wind tunnel evaluation of ducted and free propellers.

Model 187-The 187 was developed as a natural numeric follow-on to the 177, and was intended to expand the new Cardinal design motif-cantilever wing, flying tail, wide doors and spacious cabin-to all of Cessna's singles. The project started life in 1965 as the Model 343, with 240 hp GO-336 engine, T-tail and balanced stabilator, but was redesignated the Model 187 in 1968 with the old standby O-470 engine which had been in use since 1956 in the Model 182. First flown in April 1968, the 187 looked good, sleek and speedy, but there were no significant performance or handling improvements over the model it intended to replace. By the time some of its shortcomings were being discovered, the seminal Cardinal design was foundering in market acceptance, so the Model 187 project was canceled.

Model 1014/1034 XMC-One truly innovative Cessna design was the XMC, a public relations acronym for Experimental Magic Carpet. Probably never intended for production, the single development airplane was built in the early Seventies to test (and publicize) advanced aerodynamics and materials concepts.

A100 hp O-200 Continental engine was mounted behind the two-place cabin with pusher prop. That rearward weight bias necessitated that the pilot and passenger be placed ahead of the slightly swept cantilever wing. It was first flown in January 1971 as the Model 1014, and was reconfigured with a shrouded propeller, spatted nose gear and increased vertical stabilizer area in 1972, when the designation was changed to the Model 1034.

Other experiments with CG effects, control surface location/response, cabin noise levels and relationship of wing to engine and propeller were tested over the next two years before the program ended.

These are some of the designs which never saw the showroom floor; there were dozens of others that developed into production models, including the Cessna CH-1 helicopter, but that's another whole strange story.
 

Sentinel Chicken

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Here's a pic of the X-210 and you can see how it resembles the more modern Cessna models:



Model X-210-Cessna's first 210 had no direct relationship to the later model of the same name, but was proposed in the late Forties as a possible replacement for the popular Model 195. The X-210 employed a 195 airframe and its cantilever wings, but in place of the 300 hp Jacobs radial was a horizontally opposed Continental O-470 of 240 horsepower. The reasoning was that the flat cowl presented much fewer square feet of frontal area. Wing tips and vertical and horizontal stabilizer had square tips instead of the rounded ones used on production 195s, the wings featured high-lift flaps, and the main gear was an innovative tapered tubular steel design.

The X-210 first flew in January 1950, but the gain from the lower cowl profile was no trade for sixty less horsepower, and the prototype proved to be disproportionately slower than the 195. The lukewarm feeling was further heightened when the Korean War began, demanding more and more production materials and space from Cessna for its L-19 Bird Dog, so the project was dropped.

However, several of the design features would show up on later Cessna models.
 

Sentinel Chicken

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Here's the Cessna 308:



Model 308-This design could be characterized as a four-place Model 305-the airplane which had become the U.S. Army's "Bird Dog" in 1950. The 308 was in answer to a military proposal which called for a new, larger aircraft category that was eventually filled by the de Havilland Beaver. Built on the general lines of the 170, the Model 308 had a much larger 47-ft wing span and 4,200 lb gross weight. Powered by a whopping 375 hp Lycoming GSO-580, it could operate smartly off unimproved strips and carry a 1,000-lb payload for 800 statute miles. Only one example was built, and it first flew in July 1951.
 

Sentinel Chicken

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The Cessna 620:





Model 620-Despite Beech's lack of success in finding a market for a four-engine transport nine years earlier, Cessna announced its Model 620 in 1956. It was an eight to ten-place pressurized aircraft powered by four 320 hp Continental GSO-526-As. Priced in the $300,000-$400,000 range, it would cost more than new twin-engine Martin and Convair airliners.

Planned for introduction as a 1958 model, design began in September 1953. Even though work on the Model 310 twin was underway, very little structure could be found to share with the larger airframe; virtually every piece on the four-engine airplane was new. It took nearly three years of prototype construction before the first flight was made.

Its stand-up cabin was six feet high and air conditioned, and the 620 had an on-board APU. Fuel capacity was over 400 gallons (part of which was carried in the distinctive tip tanks which would be a Cessna trademark for decades), gross weight was 13,650 lbs, it had a 55-ft wing span, maximum speed of 282 mph and 27,500 ft service ceiling--22,500 ft on three engines.

It apparently wasn't until after flight testing began that the company started its market research, and it was then that they discovered much the same which Beech had found earlier--that most potential customers had a ready supply of larger, pressurized airliners available for far less than the proposed model. With a total of fifty hours on the only prototype, it was sold to a Wichita scrap metal dealer. Some of the 620's design lessons, however, would be used in later twin-engine models.
 

elmayerle

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I once worked with some folk who worked on the 620, general consensus was that it was a touch too early. A little later and they'd have caught the first wave of practical small turboprops and could've had a strong competitor to the King Air/Super King Air.

I've seen the 327 airframe when it was being converted to a test article for NASA Langley, it resembles a cross between a scaled-down 337 and a Cardianl RG. It was an attractive aricraft as far as I saw. I think it's main short-fall was that the price they could sell reasonably well at was somewhat less than what it cost to build t hem.

Evan
 

Sentinel Chicken

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Model 327-After modest successes with the Center Line Thrust (CLT) concept that Cessna pioneered in civil aircraft with the 1964 introduction of the six-place, fixed-gear 336 and subsequent retractable-gear 337 Skymasters, the Model 327, the "Baby Skymaster," was proposed in 1965.

The four-seat twin had cantilever wings and was powered by two 160 hp IO-320 engines. It first flew in December 1967, and 39 hours of flight testing was completed before the project was canceled from lack of interest in 1968. The prototype continued to fly, however, working in a joint Langley Research Center/Cessna Aircraft Company project on noise reduction and being used as a test bed for wind tunnel evaluation of ducted and free propellers.
Found out more on the Baby Skymaster- it was designed to compete with the Piper Twin Comanche, but only one was built, making its first flight 4 Dec 1967 and registered as N3769C. Performance and cost issues limited the planes appeal, but its sleek lines in comparison to the Model 337 Skymaster were attractive, sometimes evoking the lines of the later Cessna 177 Cardinal line. The single example ended up with NASA as a full scale wind tunnel testbed.
 

Sentinel Chicken

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Came across another unbuilt Cessna- the Cessna 700 proposed in 1974 as a T-tailed Citation with three engines. Never heard of it before, but I envision something like a cross between a Citation and a Falcon 50!
 

elmayerle

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The Citation 700 lasted about a year before rising fuel costs killed it. I knew someone who had the misfortune to be hired for that program, only to have it cancelled the day he reported for work.
 

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Two additions of not realised Cessna designs from Don and Julia Downie's "Complete Guide to Rutan Homebuilt Aircraft":

Cessna bizjet design with canards.jpg = "Mach 0.95 business jet of the 1990's as foreseen by Malcolm S. Harned. This artist's diagram shows highly swept wings with super critical airfoils and a canard surface on the nose. Looks a lot like Rutan's designs today."

Cessna turboprop pusher design with canards.jpg = "Canard design with pusher props is visualized for 1990 by Malcolm S. Harned of Cessna Aircraft Company."
 

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Jemiba

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Here are some more Cessna projects, shown in Aviation Week 11/1961.
Sorry for the bad quality, the white line drawings on black background
were hard to scan.
 

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Jemiba

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... and three more...
 

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Jemiba

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.. and the last three:
Unfortunately there weren't not much additional information in this
article, IIRC .
 

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Sentinel Chicken

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Very interesting designs, Jemiba! I've found that unbuilt general aviation designs from the major US general aviation aircraft manufacturers don't get a whole lot of attention in general.
 

Tophe

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Thanks Jemiba for these nice unknown pictures (and thanks Lark for directing me to them) ;D
Just a question, is the picture title "Cessna_twinboom_twinengine.JPG" a mistake? Or are there 2 engines driving a single propeller? Where are these engines (is there room enough aft of the cockpit?)?
Anyway, thanks again!
 

Jemiba

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Hello Tophe,
yes and sorry, the title is a mistake, or better, I've forgotten to change it. I've
sanned both drawings as one and cut it afterwards ...
But boxkite gave me the good idea, to invert these drawings, to make them
better recognisable.
 

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boxkite

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Further not realised Beech and Cessna designs from „Der Flieger“ magazine (Beech F-3 is from issue 9/1969, the nameless Cessnas are from issue 10/1969).
 

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boxkite

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(the other Cessnas ...)
 

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Tophe

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Your weird and so nice Cessna pic3, with its propeller on top of the fin, reminds me the Waco Aristocraft, see http://www.aahs-online.org/BackIssues/v50n4/Imagev50n4_11.htm or

(from http://www.eaa231.org/miscellaneous/what.htm )
 

hesham

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Hi,

I have this old picture from Internet to unknown helicopter
from Cessna,does anyone know it ?.
 

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flateric

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My friend! Google is a wonderful thing. Typing two words Cessna and Kinedyne will give you link to great article of Cessna CH-1 by Steve Remington (CollectAir)
http://www.commercemarketplace.com/home/CollectAir/cessna.html or, the new site at http://www.collectair.com/cessna.html

"Cessna "Kinedyne" proposal. Following the unsuccessful 1961 bid for the LOH contract, the helicopter R&D efforts went into a replacement for the aging Army L-19 liason aircraft. A sort-of autogiro, the "Kinedyne", was proposed in 1962. This machine was turbine powered, had counter-rotating props for thrust and used a heavy, high inertia rotor which could be run-up for takeoff and would have adequate energy for near-hover landings. The trademark rotor system of the CH-1 was not evident as a completely different rotor was envisioned. Directional control in-flight was obtained by a rudder-like surface while directional control in the low-speed flight regime was gained by use of a torque control unit clutched to the main rotor. In hindsight, this proposed aircraft does not appear to be a very practical machine with far too many complexities for a two-place observation craft."

BTW, article worth reading to all - this great example of facts, graphics and interesting story mix. As well as all the other site.
 

Jemiba

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Great site indeed, thank you !
The Kinedyne wasn't the only proosal for an autogiro by Cessna.
This one was shown in an Aviation-Week article in 1961 :
 

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hesham

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Thank you my dears,

and that was the site which I saw it here;
http://www.collectair.com/cessna.html
 

hesham

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Hi,

Many Cessna of those projects have a new configurations.

http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19770016152_1977016152.pdf
 

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hesham

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Hi,

http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19830003802_1983003802.pdf
 

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Triton

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Citatation for http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19770016152_1977016152.pdf:

Newman, M.; Huggins, G. L. Conceptual Design of a Single Turbofan Engine Powered Light Aircraft
Cessna Aircraft Corporation Pawnee Division March 31, 1977

Abstract:
The NASA developed General Aviation Synthesis Program (GASP) was evaluated as to its usefulness as a design tool. This evaluation was accomplished by: conducting a conceptual study of a Cessna designed turbofan aircraft using Cessna's sizing routines and the GASP, and comparing the GASP methodology to the design procedures now in use by Cessna. This evaluation concluded that the GASP needs extensive modifications to fulfill its purpose; but once these are made the program could be a useful new tool for general aviation.
 

elmayerle

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Hmm, it's interesting to see the name of someone you know and worked with on a paper here. I know George Huggins and worked with him some 30-odd years ago at Cessna-Pawnee; very nice and very sharp guy.
 

robunos

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Don't forget the Cessna XMC....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cessna_XMC

http://1000aircraftphotos.com/HistoryBriefs/CessnaXMC.htm


cheers,
Robin.
 

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Stargazer2006

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Tophe said:
Your weird and so nice Cessna pic3, with its propeller on top of the fin, reminds me the Waco Aristocraft, see http://www.aahs-online.org/BackIssues/v50n4/Imagev50n4_11.htm or

(from http://www.eaa231.org/miscellaneous/what.htm )

I've got a feeling you linked the wrong picture, and therefore the wrong "Aristocraft", as there is obviously no connection whatsoever between the beautiful "Cessna (pic 3) and this ungainly pre-war twin-fin pusher oddity!
 

Stargazer2006

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The Spangenberg Index has brought into light two forgotten Cessna projects:

  • The Cessna 306, a November 1950 proposal to OS-117 for a carrier-borne early-warning attack aircraft (won by the Grumman Sentinel/Tracker, designated S2F)
  • The Cessna 405, a September 1956 proposal apparently derived from an MIT study, and which may have been a trainer competing against the Temco 51 Pinto (designated TT).
 

hesham

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Also here is some Cessna projects from NASA;

http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,6904.0/highlight,cessna+nasa.html
 

Triton

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Photograph of Cessna XMC research aircraft from 1971 found on eBay.

URL: http://cgi.ebay.com/CESSNA-XMC-RESEARCH-AIRCRAFT-1971-VINTAGE-PHOTO-/260653186275?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0

Seller's description:
Perfect black and white 8 X 10 photograph of the little known Cessna "Experimental Magic Carpet" XMC. Flown as an unshrouded and shrouded prop pusher to test the concept as a replacement for the popular light aircraft models, the Continental powered XMC proved to be loud and expensive. Quite rare and in perfect condition with a few red crop marks in the border. Unattributed and one of the many photographs purchased from a now defunct West Coast aviation magazine.
 

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Stargazer2006

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Scanned and (much) restored from the (pretty worn out) cover of PLANE & PILOT Magazine dated April 1971:

There is also another topic with extra pics of the XMC: http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,10820.0
 

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Stargazer2006

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And here is the four-page article from that selfsame magazine:
 

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F-14D

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What short memories we all have. We almost forgot the Cessna NGP.
 

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The Cessna Kynedyne project of 1958 was designated CH-3 by Cessna.
There was also a Kynedyne 2 project that same year, presumably studied under the same basic designation.

The CH-4 was Cessna's own entry for the U.S. Army's LOH program, a CH-1C with an Allison 250 engine mounted behind the rear passenger seat.
Attached pictures show the three-view arrangement, a photograph of the full-scale mock-up on the tarmac, and a fake promotional in-flight photograph, presumably retouched from the previous one.
 

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Stargazer2006

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There is no indication as to what the CH-2 might have been. Perhaps the project shown above in Jemiba's post? Or maybe the one attached here?
 

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Maveric

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...
 

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