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HR.144 competition for an Ultra Light Helicopter (OR. 319)

Bailey

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hesham

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My dear Bailey,

the contenders for HR.144 Spec. were: Fairey,Shorts SB.8 (not SB.6),
Percival P.91,Bristol-190,Saro P.507,Auster B.9 and Hafner.

And here is the Saro- P.507,Percival P.91.
 

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Michel Van

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there also this proposal of Westland in 1977
http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,605.0.html
 

JFC Fuller

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Or of course the Ultra-Light itself. ;)

http://www.aviastar.org/helicopters_eng/fairey_ultralight.php
 

Stargazer2006

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If anyone's interested, I've got a few more pics of the B9 (drawings, mockup, prototype) to share.
 

Arjen

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Yes, certainly.
Please.
If you would be so kind?
 

Stargazer2006

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Arjen said:
Yes, certainly.
Please.
If you would be so kind?
Come on, Arjen, I'm not asking for anyone to beg! It's just that I've noticed a definite trend on this forum towards "modern" types and that only a handful of us are more interested by the vintage, the odd and the rare. And so before I start scanning stuff, which takes ages on my not-so-good material, I'd rather be sure I don't do it in vain and that someone out there will actually fancy some pics of a weird old helicopter project from a long-defunct and relatively minor company...
 

CJGibson

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Me! I can use them for the Post-1950 Specs series in Aeromilitaria. I think you'll find quite a few folk on here find the modern stuff somewhat tedious. If you grew up in the 60s and 70s when the US had numerous fighter programmes on the go, the current F-35 shenanigans just leaves you yawning.

Chris
 

Stargazer2006

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CJGibson said:
If you grew up in the 60s and 70s when the US had numerous fighter programmes on the go, the current F-35 shenanigans just leaves you yawning.
Couldn't agree more!! ;D

Here goes...
 

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shedofdread

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Thank you for taking the trouble to scan and post that. One can learn much from delving in to the more weird / bizarre corners of the history of aviation...
 

Arjen

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Skyblazer said:
Arjen said:
Yes, certainly.
Please.
If you would be so kind?
Come on, Arjen, I'm not asking for anyone to beg!
That was just an honest expression of genuine interest in all things Auster.
Love the scans, by the way.
 

cluttonfred

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Neat little aircraft, though I am not sure I like the one front-facing, one rear-facing seating arrangement.
 

Abraham Gubler

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cluttonfred said:
Neat little aircraft, though I am not sure I like the one front-facing, one rear-facing seating arrangement.

Maybe its simply because they lack the width for side by side both facing the same way?


Thanks Blazer, Sky for posting the pictures.
 

Jemiba

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Abraham Gubler said:
Maybe its simply because they lack the width for side by side both facing the same way?
Honestly, I cannot see a reduction in width due to this arrangement, but an increase in
cabin length, because there was a need for legroom rearwards now.
I would rather think, that it was chosen to give a "360° field of view".
 

Abraham Gubler

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Jemiba said:
Honestly, I cannot see a reduction in width due to this arrangement, but an increase in
cabin length, because there was a need for legroom rearwards now.
I would rather think, that it was chosen to give a "360° field of view".

Because there is more shoulder clearance when seats are side by side but staggered. The shoulders are wider than the waist (well they are meant to be) and also need clearance to allow the torso to flex as the aircrew move around in their seats. On the other hand the bottom is firmly placed in the seat and stays there so less width is needed for this part of the seat and occupant.


Helicopters can yaw very quickly so there is little demand for rearwards vision.
 

Hood

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I always thought it was for all-round vision too.
The Fairey Ultralight had a similar arrangement too I think.

This is a nice find though.
 

cluttonfred

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It's true that staggered seating requires less width than side-by-side because shoulders can overlap, but you can get almost the same benefit from forward-facing staggered seating as used in the Belgian Tipsy B light aircraft.



I suspect that all-around vision was the primary motivation for the back-and-front seating of this and other very light helicopter designs, but a rear-facing seat tends to be very disorienting for the occupant, especially if maneuvering violently as a light helicopter under fire would, and it makes it much harder for the pilot and observer to coordinate since they can't both look forward at the same time. It's true that there is always a little bit of that in side-by-side seating regardless, but I doubt that the back-to-front seating would have lasted long in service.
 

Stargazer2006

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Just a reminder, in case you haven't noticed (apparently very few people visit the Designations section): I posted a neat 9-page recap of all Auster types.
 

Hood

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On the seats issue, HR.144T called for the observer's seat to be able to face frontwards and rearwards.

Looking at the HR.144 files in Kew it seems the Auster tender was barely even considered. Like Shorts they had no previous helicopter experience and they weren't impressed enough to take a closer look. Also Auster lacked design staff and had a poor track record and the A.O.P. Mk.9 was already behind schedule.

A slight correction to Hesham's earlier post of HR.144T contenders.
Hafner designed the Bristol entry, the seventh company was Westland.
Percival, Shorts and Auster were quickly eliminated and the final order of preference was: Fairey, Saunders-Roe, Westland and Bristol. The Air Ministry seemed highly taken with Bristol's ramjet-powered design much to the confusion of the Ministry of Supply who rated it the worst in nearly all aspects and the most expensive tender offered too.
 

hesham

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Thank you for the Info my dear Hood,

and we can change the title into HR.144T Helicopter Competitors,here is the Bristol
Model-190 drawing,I have a good drawing to it,but where ?.
 

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Hood

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List of Tender Designs

Auster B.9
Bristol Type 190
Fairey Ultra Light
Percival P.91
Saro P.507
Short S.B.8
Westland ? [probably had a W. series number, there is a photo of a model of the entry in the Westland Putnam book but no details]
 

Motocar

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Remove the comment and picture, thanks for your comments and links...!
 

overscan

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Motocar said:
You may be placed on this topic a proposal by the Voltjet International Corp. and its project Voltjet 585? or should I open a new topic?
Well, it might have won the competition, but the time travel machine needed to send the proposal from 1987 to 1950s Britain would be tricky.
 

Stargazer2006

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Motocar said:
You may be placed on this topic a proposal by the Voltjet International Corp. and its project Voltjet 585? or should I open a new topic?
By all means it's totally inappropriate here.
And a new topic is absolutely unnecessary.
If you had bothered to use the search engine, "Voljet" would have given you two far more appropriate pages for this:

Also I don't see the point of adding your name to images that you claim to have reworked when they are just scans with no added value!!!
 

CJGibson

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On a more technical note, The engine wouldn't be there anyway, that space would be full of bags, newspapers and other kit that the storeman Materials Co-ordinator on the rig forgot to have put on the last boat.

Chris
 

riggerrob

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An act-facing observer's seat makes sense in an early helicopter.

First, consider that its primary role was probably spotting the fall of artillery fire, so it could not fly much faster than a barrage balloon, so you definitely want eyes covering all 360 degrees in cause some pesky fixed wing airplane tries to shoot you down.

Secondly, riding while facing backwards can be fun. Think of all the tail-gunners who fought during the last century.

Thirdly, I have riden backwards in thousands of airplanes .... on my way up for skydives. My all time favourite flight was in a B-25 Mitchell bomber. I sat in the tail turret for take-off and landing. What a rush watching the runway lights whizz by in the wrong direction!

Finally, Auster may have been trying to simplify controls by only installing a single collective lever that could be used by both pilots. A light-weight helicopter (e.g. this Auster) would be the least expensive way to teach student pilots the basics of hovering and landing. Since those maneuvers are only practiced at low airspeeds (less than 35 knots) it does not matter which direction the student pilot is facing.
 

Motocar

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My comment is to note that ideas never die they just need a few years to mature ....!
Remove the image for "Inappropriate"
 

Stargazer2006

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hesham said:
here is the Bristol Model-190 drawing,I have a good drawing to it,but where ?
Here is one, probably the same as yours.
The funny thing is that the source magazine for this image (Helicopter Life, Summer 2012) describes it as the "1954 -1957 Bristol Aircraft Type X – “Little Henry”.
To my knowledge, this was the nickname of the McDonnell XH-20 prototype, but I'd never seen it associated with any other type.
Also the designation "Type X" is not standard for Bristol.
The bibliography suggests that the author of the article used both Fairey Rotodyne by David Gibbings (History Press, 2009) and Helicopters and other Rotorcraft since 1907 by Kenneth Munson (Blandford Press, 1972) as his references, but the image is definitely not included in the latter and I don't have the former to check on it.
 

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Hood

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The picture does not feature in Fairey Rotodyne by David Gibbings. While the Fairey Ultra Light makes an appearance, none of the other HR.144 contenders are mentioned in the text.
 
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