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The B-52 Competition of 1946…and Dark Horses from Douglas, 1947-1950

jzichek

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Greetings All,

The third issue of The American Aerospace Archive is now available:




In this issue, we examine proposals submitted to the Army Air Force heavy bombardment competition of 1946, which ultimately yielded the legendary Boeing B-52. Though Boeing won the initial competition, it struggled to keep the contract as changing Air Force requirements and rival companies put intense pressure on the program. One of its most aggressive competitors was Douglas Aircraft, which submitted scores of strategic bomber studies from 1947-50 in an effort to reopen the contract to competition. The magazine covers the following studies:

- Boeing Model 462 (the winner - 3 variants)
- Convair Long Range Heavy Bombardment Airplane (forward swept wing bomber depicted on cover)
- Martin Model 216 (”flying aircraft carrier” - 2 variants)
- Martin Model 232 (description only)
- Douglas Very Long Range Bomber C (VLRB-C - 2 variants)
- Douglas Model 1112 (heavy bomber derivative of XB-42 - 3 variants)
- Douglas Model 1155 (interim jet bomber derived from DC-6 - 2 variants)
- Douglas Model 1211 (giant swept wing turboprop bomber - 40 variants)
- Bonus drawings of Douglas X-3 Stiletto photo reconnaissance aircraft mounted under a B-36 and Douglas impressions of the Boeing B-52 (2 variants)

Notable Model 1211 configurations include the Model 1211-J “mother ship,” which was designed to carry photo reconnaissance versions of the Douglas X-3 Stiletto and the XF4D-1 Skyray; the Model 1211-J missile carrier, which featured a large air-to-surface missile mounted on top of the fuselage (possible an early version of the NAA Navaho); and the Model 1211T-55, a truly giant aircraft with a span of 262′ and a length of 207′ 2″. This 60 page magazine features 77 illustrations, photos and artist’s impressions, the majority published here for the first time. It is printed in full color on high quality 80 lb semi-gloss paper with saddle-stitched covers.

For a full preview of the magazine, please visit <a href="http://magcloud.com/browse/Issue/8224">MagCloud</a>. The magazine, which is almost twice as thick as the last two, is priced at a reasonable $14.95. US, UK and Canadian customers should order the magazine directly through MagCloud. Customers outside of these countries may order the magazine through my website, <a href="http://aeroarchivepress.com/">aeroarchivepress.com</a>.

Best Regards,

Jared Zichek​
 

Orionblamblam

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jzichek said:
the Model 1211-J missile carrier, which featured a large air-to-surface missile mounted on top of the fuselage (possible an early version of the NAA Navaho)

I thnk so. Looks like an early NAA model 704.
 

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Skybolt

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Jared, I know you covered that in the US Navy book already, but the Fairchild M-121 too was proposed for a late stage of the B-52 competition. In 1949-50 the Boeing proposal was actually frozen for almost a year while the Air Force pondered both the Fairchild and Douglas proposals (and some concepts from RAND).
 

jzichek

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Thank you very much for the orders so far! I was restricted to a maximum page count of 60, so I did not go over the Fairchild M-121, which is covered in my book from Schiffer. I also did not show the evolution of the Boeing Model 474, as I had nothing new to add. Furthermore, I had to leave out some Douglas flying wing studies and another Convair heavy bomber proposal I found just last week; will cover these in a future issue.

Some of the Douglas studies shown in this issue may have been done on behalf of RAND, as the think tank was spun out of Douglas and often used its engineering staff. (I only have drawings and lack documentation for the Douglas studies, so the issue is still murky).

Scott, thanks for the confirmation on the missile. Will be buying your latest APR issues as soon as I pay the credit card bill for my computer purchase!
 

jzichek

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I just put the first 7 pages of the magazine up on <a href="http://www.scribd.com/doc/13035242/The-B52-Competition-of-1946and-Dark-Horses-from-Douglas-19471950">Scribd</a>, a document sharing site. Unlike the MagCloud preview, this is high resolution, allowing you to get a good look at some of the illustrations. Check it out!
 

nugo

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Hi All!

USAAF big Bomber proposal.
Engine-12 (6 Turboprops & 6 Ramjets)
Range-10000 mile.

He will be aboard two fighter escorts, located in the compartments of the fuselage and dropped as needed.

Source: Aviation News, 1946, 23/IX, N ?, page: ?


Edit: I edited the scan of the image - unnecessary blank space removed
 

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nugo

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Fairchild M-121...
Douglas D-1112,-1155,-1211...
RAND Model ?
Boeing B-462...B-464..
Boeing proposals...
Martin M-216,-232, -236 (M-232 -Twin-engined carrier based bomber!!!)

...and forgotten 1950 year proposal at Republic.
 

Skybolt

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Nugo, at 99 per cent the Republic proposal didn't exist. It was a musnderstanding for the Faichild M-121. Since the late 60s Fairchild was Republic (and vice-versa) so confusion was easy.
 

Skybolt

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Some of the Douglas studies shown in this issue may have been done on behalf of RAND, as the think tank was spun out of Douglas and often used its engineering staff. (I only have drawings and lack documentation for the Douglas studies, so the issue is still murky).
Maybe, maybe not. The RAND studies are accounted as "various forms of cruise missiles". Probably something like the Snark. Or it was RAND that proposed the fusion of the early Navaho with a turboprop carrier. There is a (pricey) academic study on the early years of RAND (1946-1950). It's on my wish list..
But, great work, Jared. Keep on going ! (already ordered...)
 

nugo

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My Friend Skybolt!

...and Republic Model AP-42 was involved in a what competition?
 

jzichek

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Not sure about the Republic design - I really have to go out to the Cradle of Aviation museum on Long Island and check out their Republic materials at some point. My magazine certainly doesn't cover every proposal/study associated with the B-52, just sheds some light on ones that haven't got a lot of coverage in the past. There will definitely be a follow-up issue down the line, as more material has emerged just recently that adds to the story.
 

Skybolt

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Let's not forget that in the vry same years (late '40s) another, often overlooked, competition was in full swell: the one for a medium-bomber to follow the B-47, MX-948. Other that the winner design XB-55 and some variations thereof little is known of the competitors. It is known that Lockheed proposed one of the variations of TDN L-173, but a great number of other companies participated. CW proposed one, and Martin too (a modified XB-48 with turboprops). Republic AP-42 could have been one of those. There should be something in Record Group 341 in NARA.... A good subject for research... ;). Some info here http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,571.msg6675.html#msg6675
 

nugo

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Hi All!

Yes my friend Skybolt, I too think so, and possibly on the basis of AP-42 can be enlarged version
( as is done in the firm of Boeing: B-47...B-52 ).
 

jzichek

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I agree, MX-948 is definitely worth researching - I have several medium bomber studies from this period that are probably connected to it, will try to cover them in a later issue. I had to be careful to separate out the "mediums" in preparing this issue, as several are quite similar in configuration to their larger cousins and some were pretty large in their own right, despite having a more limited range requirement.
 

hesham

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Hi,

also the Boeing Model-461 was involved in this competition,and for the
Model-462 and Model-464;
http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,5757.0/highlight,boeing+464.html
and from Modernmechanix site,the Douglas X-3 derivative.
 

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Skybolt

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Yes, and probably a score of other Boeing project numbers. Bomber design at Boeing during the war is a big research topic, starting I think from the B-36 competition on.
 

jzichek

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Hesham,

Good find on the Modern Mechanix! That is some wild looking artwork there - vintage aviation illustration is a subject worthy of study in its own right. I have not seen this design before.

Off the top of my head, the Boeing Model 461 might actually be a land-based patrol aircraft for the Navy that shares some resemblance to the B-29 - the material I may have on it is not easily accessible (we have rather cramped living conditions at the moment, going to be moving soon), so will have to check later.

Off topic - I've had some folks contact me and say they are having trouble ordering through MagCloud. If any of you have experienced problems, please let me know, and I will forward your comments on to the IT folks there.

-Jared
 

AL

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Got my copy this weekend and all I can say is WOW!! I noticed the phrase "will be covered in a later issue" was used several times. Jared, do you know what your next subject will be?
 

robunos

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Recieved my copy yesterday, excellent stuff, i'm especially intrigued by the way the Douglas drawings are 'edited'.
Was/is this a common practice? I would have thought that once completed and signed off, a drawing would not be altered, instead a new one would be created?

It's a shame there's not more information on the Martin projects. I'm assuming that the archives are in poor condition, maybe purged when Lockheed took over?

Last point, somewhat off-topic and slightly geeky, ::), how are the magazines actually produced, that is, what process/equipment is used?

cheers,
Robin.
 

jzichek

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Robunos,

Glad you liked the magazine! I think Douglas reused previous drawings to save time - the turbojet variants of the Model 1211 were essentially identical in configuration to earlier turboprop versions, so they just used white out to blot out the power plants and drew over them. It's the first time I've seen this in my research, so I don't think it was all that common.

Concerning how it's produced:

"Consumers can publish magazines at the price of $0.20 per page (plus shipping) by simply uploading a high-resolution PDF of the magazine to MagCloud's website, while the app takes care of printing, mailing and subscription management. MagCloud's use of HP Indigo digital press technology offers full-colour prints on 80-lb paper, making it possible to custom-print each order while eliminating pre-publishing expenses. And MagCloud produces no waste, as every personalized magazine is printed to order."

You can read more about it at MagCloud.com.

R\Jared
 

robunos

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Glad you liked the magazine! I think Douglas reused previous drawings to save time - the turbojet variants of the Model 1211 were essentially identical in configuration to earlier turboprop versions, so they just used white out to blot out the power plants and drew over them

Doesn't do much for the records, though! ;D
thanks for that, Jared, as a printer by trade, i'm always interested in the mechanics of print production, ;D
I'd assumed it was either an indigo or a Xerox Igen3.

cheers,
Robin.
 

robunos

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i have a theory....
it's stated that the type of turboprop to be used in the Douglas model 1211 is not stated/ not known, however, I now have the belief, after studying the drawings as best I can, that some variants of the model 1211 were to be fiteed with _turbojets_ as well.

Let's examine the evidence. It's clear that in all the turboprop powered variants, the turboprops were mounted forward of the main spar. You can see the exhaust for the outboard engine under the nacelle on the model 1211-E, picture 41 in the monograph. However, look again. There's a flush type inlet on the side of the nacelle, forward of the exhaust. It's also shown on the 1211-H,-J,-K,and -L drawings as well [picture 41,42,43,44,46,48,and 49], in addition to the model photo on the back cover, it's just visible below the leading edge on the port outer nacelle.

Now look at picture 45, 'Model 1211-J production Breakdown'. You can see the engines, but look where they fit, in the _rear_ portion of the nacelle. Also the rear end of the nacelle is removable, along a circumferential joint, as if the rear portion is a fairing for a jetpipe orifice. You can also see this joint on most of the other drawings where the aircraft has the extended nacelles, and compare again the 1211-E drawing, picture 41, these 'fairings' are absent, were they added on the later iterations in an effort to reduce drag and increase range? Now look again at picture 45, you can see the flush inlet again, on the port inner nacelle, just below the wing cutout.

Note also that in the later iterations, picture 52 et seq., some of the aircraft have shortened outer nacelles, indicating that jets were not fitted there, probably as a weight saving measure.

In conlusion, then, it's my belief that the Douglas model 1211 series were to be fitted with turbojets, in addition to the turboprops, probably to boost speed and altude performance in the target zone. The exhausts for these were to be faired over during the cruise, to reduce drag, and increase range.

cheers,
Robin.
 

nugo

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Hi jzichek!

You said:
"I agree, MX-948 is definitely worth researching - I have several medium bomber studies from this period that are probably connected to it, will try to cover them in a later issue. I had to be careful to separate out the "mediums" in preparing this issue, as several are quite similar in configuration to their larger cousins and some were pretty large in their own right, despite having a more limited range requirement."

Would be very good, if possible, to produce a book or a brochure about the competition of MX-948
(for instance type of book "The B-52 Competition of 1946…and Dark Horses from Douglas, 1947-1950")
 

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Treated myself to this book and volume 4 last week and really pleased with them. Really fast service too (48 hour turnaround!).

The B-36/X-3 drawing was particularly fascinating. Is any more info available on production this photo-recce model of the X-3?
 

jzichek

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Skyraider, I think I may have some more drawings of the photo recce X-3, but I'm in the middle of moving to a new residence and the material is currently boxed up. Nugo, I hope to get to some of the MX-948 studies in a later issue, not sure when yet. Thanks to everyone who has purchased the magazine this past year; for those who haven't, MagCloud is currently having a 25% off sale till January 10; you can browse the relevant issues at http://jaredzichek.magcloud.com/. Thanks again and Happy New Year!
 

Stargazer2006

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Jared, I would LOVE to get all four books at the said prices (a real bargain) but apparently I cannot order from Magcloud since I live in France (it's only for US, UK, and Canadian customers) and therefore I must order from aeroarchivepress.com... and there's no holiday bargain there!!!
 

jzichek

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The B-52 Competition of 1946 - Revised Version, PDF eBook, & Errata Sheet

Greetings All,

The third issue of The American Aerospace Archive has been revised:





The revised version was published on <a href="http://magcloud.com/browse/Issue/8224">MagCloud</a> yesterday, October 27, 2010. It incorporates new information about the Douglas Model 1211 series that became available after the issue was initially published. For those who purchased the first edition, a free errata sheet in PDF format is available for download from <a href="http://www.scribd.com/doc/40288855/Errata-Sheet-for-The-B-52-Competition-of-1946-and-Dark-Horses-from-Douglas-1947-1950-The-American-Aerospace-Archive-3">ScribD</a>. This can be printed off and inserted in your copy to keep it up to date.

Finally, a PDF eBook of the issue (incorporating the latest changes) is also now available; it is priced at a reasonable $5.95 and is available through <a href="http://aeroarchivepress.com/?p=222">AeroArchivePress.com</a>. Unique to this version is a special 20 page legal size section reproducing many of the drawings from the main body of the magazine in an uninterrupted landscape format.

Best Regards,

Jared Zichek​
 

Michel Van

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buy, downloaded it, in few minute from homepage
got even backup Email Link in case download fails!

and again fantastic piece of work Mr Zichek.

by the way
Secrets aerospace projects of the US Navy, Volume 1
will it be available as PDF ?
 

Retrofit

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Also purchased and downloaded without problem.
Tremendous work, congratulations jzichek!

BTW, in page 16 is mentionned:
AAF interest in the forward swept wing went back to research done on a tailless forward swept wing fighter study by AMC and NACA in the early 1940's, which we will cover in a later issue.

Is that issue already available?

Thanks again for this work, and the pdf download option.
 

jzichek

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Thanks everyone! Your support is much appreciated. My book "Secret Aerospace Projects of the U.S. Navy" will probably not be available as an eBook in the near future; Schiffer was the publisher for that and they are still opposed to making digital copies of their books available for download. I hope to cover the FSW fighter from the AMC/NACA in an upcoming issue, will try to do it sooner than later!
 

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jzichek said:
Thanks everyone! Your support is much appreciated. My book "Secret Aerospace Projects of the U.S. Navy" will probably not be available as an eBook in the near future; Schiffer was the publisher for that and they are still opposed to making digital copies of their books available for download. I hope to cover the FSW fighter from the AMC/NACA in an upcoming issue, will try to do it sooner than later!
Did Schiffer pay you? I know some authors who never got paid.
 

robunos

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just downloaded the errata sheet......


and it appears I was right....... ;)

http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,6376.msg55248.html#msg55248


cheers,
Robin.
 
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