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Twin-engine Curtiss P-40

ChuckAnderson

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Hi Everyone!

Presented here is an illustration of a proposed two-engine version of the Curtiss P-40.

This illustration was done by J. Miranda, which appears in UNKNOWN! (Volume 4), by J. Miranda and P. Mercado.

Chuck
 

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raravia

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Hi Chuck!

This is great but.....it was a really project? or just a fantasy of J. Miranda?

Raravia
 

ChuckAnderson

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raravia said:
Hi Chuck!

This is great but.....it was a really project? or just a fantasy of J. Miranda?

Raravia

Hi Raravia!


Here's what J. Miranda and P. Mercado said (including their grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc.) in their work:

"In 1942 the engineers of the Curtiss-Wright Corporation developed a twin-engined heavy bighter based on the P.40 model.

The project followed the same philosophy of design used in the Grumman XF5F-1 and XP-50, the I.M.A.M. Ro.57 and the Westland Whirlwind interceptors.
A mock-up was built using the airframe of the P.40C S/N 41-13456, the cockpit of a P.40 D and two Packard V-1650-1/Merlin XX engines and nose cowling from two P.40 F.

There is no additional information available.

Based on the only existing picture we have especulatively drawn the five view scale drawing. Apparently the airplane had a great longitudinal instability and bad landing performance. Perhaps these were the reasons why it was never manufactured.

Biblography
* Curtiss Aircraft, Putnam
*Squadron Signal "Curtiss P.40 in Action" by Ernest R. McDonnell
*Correspondence with Chuck Davis, Ted Nomura and Christophe Meunier
*http://www.kithobbyist.com/IPMSAuckland/Newsletter/2003/May/May03.htm

Technical data​
Wingspan 11.3 m
Length 9.65 m
Height 3.76 m
Wing surface 21.2 m2"

That's pretty much all they had to say on the subject of the Twin-engine Curtiss P.40.

However, as interested as we are in Alternate History, What If, etc., I guess we can still wonder about how this aircraft may have done HAD they worked out all of the bugs.
Perhaps Claire Chennault's Flying Tigers could have put them to good use!

Chuck
 

ChuckAnderson

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ChuckAnderson said:
raravia said:
Hi Chuck!

This is great but.....it was a really project? or just a fantasy of J. Miranda?

Raravia

Hi Raravia!


Here's what J. Miranda and P. Mercado said (including their grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc.) in their work:

"In 1942 the engineers of the Curtiss-Wright Corporation developed a twin-engined heavy bighter based on the P.40 model.

The project followed the same philosophy of design used in the Grumman XF5F-1 and XP-50, the I.M.A.M. Ro.57 and the Westland Whirlwind interceptors.
A mock-up was built using the airframe of the P.40C S/N 41-13456, the cockpit of a P.40 D and two Packard V-1650-1/Merlin XX engines and nose cowling from two P.40 F.

There is no additional information available.

Based on the only existing picture we have especulatively drawn the five view scale drawing. Apparently the airplane had a great longitudinal instability and bad landing performance. Perhaps these were the reasons why it was never manufactured.

Biblography
* Curtiss Aircraft, Putnam
*Squadron Signal "Curtiss P.40 in Action" by Ernest R. McDonnell
*Correspondence with Chuck Davis, Ted Nomura and Christophe Meunier
*http://www.kithobbyist.com/IPMSAuckland/Newsletter/2003/May/May03.htm

Technical data​
Wingspan 11.3 m
Length 9.65 m
Height 3.76 m
Wing surface 21.2 m2"

That's pretty much all they had to say on the subject of the Twin-engine Curtiss P.40.

However, as interested as we are in Alternate History, What If, etc., I guess we can still wonder about how this aircraft may have done HAD they worked out all of the bugs.
Perhaps Claire Chennault's Flying Tigers could have put them to good use!

Chuck

Ooops!

That should have been Fighter NOT bighter!!! That was my own typo, not theirs!!!

Chuck
 

Jemiba

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I'm not an aviation engineer, but to me it looks just as a project from the What-If-Forum
and, indeed, not the best one .
Span is even less, than the single engined version and the most doubtful point to me
is the landing gear, which is still the same, although moving it to the nacelles would
have been the logical solution.
Maybe someone just made a drawing of twin engined P-40, as quickly as possible, without
bothering about details ? ;D
It would be very interesting to see photos of that mock-up !
 

Tophe

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Justo mentioned my name in the correspondance line, and we discussed about it, yes. There's a photograph of this mock-up on the Web, I may try to find it again, I am not sure it is still there...
(note the lateral view would have been bad, another serious drawback)
 

Tophe

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Yes, it is no more on the Web but a thumbnail is still available if you ask Google picture:
Twin-engined P-40 t-6
 

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elmayerle

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The Putnam book on Curtiss aircraft includes a picture of this mockup.
 

Antonio

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The Putnam book on Curtiss aircraft includes a picture of this mockup.

...then it is a real project?

can you confirm the Packard V-1650-1/Merlin XX engines?
 

Jemiba

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Well, I must admit, the photo really seems to bring it up into the category "projects".
And although it's just a thumbnail, the shadow left of the right nacelle could indicate,
that it even retained the standard undercarriage. But my doubts about this design
remain. wing area would have been reduced by about 25%. The spar would have needed
beefing up for attaching the engines, adding to the weight increase from the second
engine, but the reinforced structure for the undercarriage remains the same ...
The outcome really wouldn't have been a lightweight fighter, or it would have been quite
different from this mock-up .
 

elmayerle

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In this engineer's opinion, there would've been a lot of redesign required between this mockup and an acceptable flying aircraft. As it stands, the wing looks very much on the small side for the weight of the aircraft.
 

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the picture also appears in "in action" about the P40 . I seem to remember one of the engine pods has a sharkmouth but it seems odd to put engine pods right here without modifying the wings althought the twin-109 "Me 110" is similar in design but with seemingly much smaller designs.
In my zoo of unidentified designs I have a Hurricane (or maybe IK-3) twin (this is coming from a wartime german mag). So the idea was certainly "in the air" in the early fourties ....

JCC
 

frank

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The wings may not appear to be modified on the putside, but the structural modifications are on the inside of the wing. Examples in the light airplane world would be the Beechcraft Travel Air, Baron & Duchess, Piper Seneca & Seminole, Twin Navion & a few other designs which are essentially twin engine versions of single engined designs, the wing may look the same, but for obvious reasons, there are major structural changes & differences inside the wing.




JC Carbonel said:
the picture also appears in "in action" about the P40 . I seem to remember one of the engine pods has a sharkmouth but it seems odd to put engine pods right here without modifying the wings althought the twin-109 "Me 110" is similar in design but with seemingly much smaller designs.
In my zoo of unidentified designs I have a Hurricane (or maybe IK-3) twin (this is coming from a wartime german mag). So the idea was certainly "in the air" in the early fourties ....

JCC
 

Tophe

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JC Carbonel said:
In my zoo of unidentified designs I have a Hurricane (or maybe IK-3) twin (this is coming from a wartime german mag). So the idea was certainly "in the air" in the early fourties ....
JCC
Could you show us this one, dear? (If there is a Copyright issue, could you send it to me by mail?) I know the (what-if) Hurri-Twin story and "photographs" published in the nice fantasy magazine Padded-Cell (I could send you by mail this scan as well) but a source of the 1940s would be completely different...
 

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OK I'll dig out the scans . I think I had sent them to le Fana after their BV141 article ? maybe I am getting confused ... old age you know...

JCC
 

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If this is an asymmetric twin with a glazed rear fuselage on one side and a fin on the other fuselage, it had been published, yes, and I have it. But this was rather far drom a Twin-Hurricane... ;D
 

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from Forschung & Wissen special Luftwaffe issue circa 1942

the text means something like "English designs and patents from 1938 and 1942"

These I have never been able to identify. the "twin Hurri" is the top one...

JCC
 

airman

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well, probably there was many others interesting twin-engine planes on Usaaf.
 

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I think I'm in love!!! I'm always looking for model projects, and I think I've just found one!
Kremen
 

Tophe

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Justo said that a mock-up only has been built, so not flown in the 1940s.
The plastic model made in Australia in 2009 by the what-if modeller Glenn
("P-402 the Twin-P-40" at http://www.whatifmodelers.com/index.php/topic,21379.315.html
- registration is required to see the pictures, and free)
has not flown, being built as a desk model without actual engine.
Do you know a flyable little model of it with two actual engines that would have been built recently?
 

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Taranov

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Better quality
 

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Jemiba

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Thanks for this photo ! having again a loo at it, I cannot help the feeling, that Tophe was quite right
in #5 about the lateral view. Not sure, if I'm plain wrong, if Justo underestimated it in his drawing, or if
tried to show a "series version, but to my opinion, on the mock-up the engine nacelles were as high, as
the fuselage spine, giving the pilot actually NO view to the sides. In the What-if model, this point seems
to have been somewhatmodified by changing the profile of the nacelles.
 

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cluttonfred

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In all honesty, what would have been the point of this conversion? I can see the rationale for the high-mounted nacelles in order to preserve the original landing gear but the weight of the extra engine would have meant a substantial reduction in fuel and/or weapons load. Maybe the idea was a point-defense interceptor with a massive climb rate but short range?
 

Stargazer2006

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There were dummy P-40s of the normal type (as explained below, excerpt from Putnam) but for some reason I seemed to remeber that this mock-up was also mean as a decoy and not a real project. Or I am getting confused? Can't find the info now.
Dummy P-40s
Numerous non-flyable reproductions of 'P-40' aeroplanes have been built for various purposes. Serious consideralion was given in 1941 to the production of wooden dummy P-40s to Uge as airfield decoys to draw enemy fire away from rea] P-40s hidden nearby or to cause confusion as to the actual number on hand. In China, wood-and-straw dummies were actually constructed and deployed on airfields used by the AVG.
 

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This is a very interesting topic. I have seen that pic before. Additionally someone had made a plastic model of that same aircraft ... pictures of which can be found on the net. Now, from an aerodynamic prospective, I don't believe that this incarnation of a twin P-40 would have the proper flight qualities of a fighter. It seems to be to bulky.

I have always had a thing for the P-40's so I did a little digging and uncovered the attached drawing. I do not know where it came from .. but irf there was ever a chance that a production run of a P-40 twin would be undertaken. this seems to be the most plausible to me.
 

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hesham

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maccountrypilot said:
This is a very interesting topic. I have seen that pic before. Additionally someone had made a plastic model of that same aircraft ... pictures of which can be found on the net. Now, from an aerodynamic prospective, I don't believe that this incarnation of a twin P-40 would have the proper flight qualities of a fighter. It seems to be to bulky.

I have always had a thing for the P-40's so I did a little digging and uncovered the attached drawing. I do not know where it came from .. but irf there was ever a chance that a production run of a P-40 twin would be undertaken. this seems to be the most plausible to me.


Hi Mac,


we can ask my dear GTX,who had it,but may be it's just whatif drawing,and
not real;


http://www.whatifmodelers.com/index.php?topic=22312.0
 

Jemiba

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Stargazer2006 said:
...but for some reason I seemed to remeber that this mock-up was also mean as a decoy and not a real project.

That thing as a decoy may have been quite useless, bringing back memories of a German testpilot on the Do 335,
who parked his aircraft ithe open on an airfield. There it remained unscathed during a low level attack, because
with its strange shape, it seemed to have been regarded as a decoy by the allied pilots !
To me, the most plausible explanation is, that it was a make-shift mockup made by Curtiss to show, that principally
a conversion to a twin engine layout was possible.
 

maccountrypilot

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Jemiba said:
Stargazer2006 said:
...but for some reason I seemed to remeber that this mock-up was also mean as a decoy and not a real project.

That thing as a decoy may have been quite useless, bringing back memories of a German testpilot on the Do 335,
who parked his aircraft ithe open on an airfield. There it remained unscathed during a low level attack, because
with its strange shape, it seemed to have been regarded as a decoy by the allied pilots !
To me, the most plausible explanation is, that it was a make-shift mockup made by Curtiss to show, that principally
a conversion to a twin engine layout was possible.

To be honest ... you could be right about the drawing. I can't be sure where I got it from. All in all .. .I am not sure if the P-40 twin was ever seriously considered. All I know is that in its present form, I find it highly suspect that it would fly correctly.

On another note, I was so taken by the prospect of a P-40 twin that I decided to actually build a Radio control model. Mine is going to be a cross from the drawing I posted and the Twin Mustang that actually was built.
 

Stargazer2006

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Looks like someone's photoshopped work... Well done but the very long horizontal empennage looks extra strange to me.
Also, it would seem the twin P-40 mockup was based on the P-40C, not the P-40E...
 

Jemiba

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Stargazer2006 said:
...but the very long horizontal empennage looks extra strange to me.

Good point, it nearly makes a tandem wing out of this design.
Somewhat strange to me is the relatively early date of this mock-up. AFAIK, Curtiss was well aware
of the P-40s shortcomings and made a lot of efforts to save the basic design. This could be just
another attempt, but I would expect it somewhat later, when P-47 and P-51 had already proven its
worth and so rang the knells for the P-40.
 

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I simply love this whatif twin P-40 ... I would have liked having drawn it !
@+++
Tonton
 

Stargazer2006

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Found the original item, it was in the Putnam book (I hadn't looked well the first time round):
 

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GTX

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maccountrypilot said:
This is a very interesting topic. I have seen that pic before. Additionally someone had made a plastic model of that same aircraft ... pictures of which can be found on the net. Now, from an aerodynamic prospective, I don't believe that this incarnation of a twin P-40 would have the proper flight qualities of a fighter. It seems to be to bulky.

I have always had a thing for the P-40's so I did a little digging and uncovered the attached drawing. I do not know where it came from .. but irf there was ever a chance that a production run of a P-40 twin would be undertaken. this seems to be the most plausible to me.


That one was one I drew up some years ago - it is purely fictional but was inspired by the photo.


You can find it and more over on Beyond the Sprues.
 

maccountrypilot

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Well that P40 twin that you drew was inspiring (to say the least). I took what you did and basically cut the center fuselage then re attached both halves. This has formed the basis of the P40 twin that I am currently building as a radio controlled model.
 

maccountrypilot

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here is another model that someone developed as a P-40 Twin .... now this sin't mine but I think that this might actually fly
 

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