The Vulcan XH558 & General Aviation Thread

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StewDurham
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Re: The Vulcan XH558 & General Aviation Thread

Post by StewDurham »

As a few of you fine gentleman who showed us the big tin thing already know, Sue and me like surprising each other with events and experiences. This weekend was my turn I took Sue to carfest north.
At 2:00 on Saturday afternoon we sat like statues in shock with a motionless forkful of hog roast when Kevin Whyman lost his life. In such a happy place, with so many lovely people and very few idiots of any numerical type, it was very unreal to watch the gnat turn into an unrecoverable inverted left turn. The shock and silence of such a quick mood change that affected so many people in the same instance was something I hope never to experience again.
I won't speculate, there are so many potential causes, but the display was all very low (and hence spectacular) due to a low threatening cloud, so any problem would have given "Jester" no space to recover - the long left turn he was in did not look tight enough to have high G, the flip to a tight inverted left turn was so low I doubt it was deliberate, unless he really was putting the plane down into the empty woodland and not the site or villages, but I doubt that, there were empty fields nearby to attempt a dead stick landing instead. He did look like he was wagging the wings as he passed the site (at no stage was he heading towards the crow) immediately before he went in, I took this to be a farewell at the end of the show, but maybe it was a sign of something more serious.
Got to say to the organisers of carfest, their response was been professional without question. The handling of Sat afternoon and Sunday. the epitaph from the event flight director, army band and a site wide observed silence was the recognition event that 100,000 people needed to be part of. Well done Chris and team. I know it was a Radio 2 crowd and my kind of people, but this weekend was a sad event that we are better people for being part of, even though we would rather Kevin was still flying his wonderful Gnat. Yes, the press are idiots. Chris Evans, his team, and our fellow festival goers were a lot more real.
Stay safe BBP team, hope to see you sometime soon.
Stew and Sue.
Last edited by StewDurham on Tue Aug 04, 2015 11:39 am, edited 3 times in total.
Good luck to the BBP team, makes me proud to be British (and a North-easterner to boot!). Damn fine work, chaps!
quicksilver-wsr
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Re: The Vulcan XH558 & General Aviation Thread

Post by quicksilver-wsr »

Great pix, Mike - especially the first one.

Nigel
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Re: The Vulcan XH558 & General Aviation Thread

Post by quicksilver-wsr »

Les Munro, the last surviving "Dambusters Raid" pilot, has died aged 96.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-33769486

Nigel
Dangermouse
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Re: The Vulcan XH558 & General Aviation Thread

Post by Dangermouse »

I have a dim recollection of seeing a Catalina make a heavy/crash landing in Plymouth harbour in the '80s while we're talking air displays gone horribly wrong, there may be a slide or two of it upstairs but I've yet to come across them while sorting and scanning about twenty years of pre-digital-camera family holidays.

I would have been about three years old, so hoping someone else can fill in the gaps as all I can remember is a cloud of spray and peering over the stone/concrete wall next to the road we were watching from! I understand that there were two Catalinas and the rumour at the time was that the aircraft which crashed had "tagged onto" some sort of official tour, but I know no more than that.
Matt in Mid Wales
quicksilver-wsr
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Re: The Vulcan XH558 & General Aviation Thread

Post by quicksilver-wsr »

There was of course another (widely-reported) Catalina accident on the south coast some years later, in which two people unfortunately died ...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/140698.stm

Nigel
Dangermouse
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Re: The Vulcan XH558 & General Aviation Thread

Post by Dangermouse »

The '86 one looks the most likely, that's certainly the right time as we moved back up to Wales in 1987.

On an unrelated note the old Millbay grain silo is in the background of the first shot, that was demolished a few years ago to the annoyance of the ferry crews. Apparently it made an excellent windbreak when you were trying to get into the berth in unhelpful weather!
Matt in Mid Wales
quicksilver-wsr
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Re: The Vulcan XH558 & General Aviation Thread

Post by quicksilver-wsr »

Yup - I guessed that, as you were pretty specific about it being Plymouth. I only posted about the other incident because Catalina accidents on British waters in modern times aren't exactly commonplace, so I was drawing a parallel.

Liked your tale about the grain silo, though. Yeah - the road to Hell is paved with Good Intentions.

Nigel
sbt
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Re: The Vulcan XH558 & General Aviation Thread

Post by sbt »

The Southampton Water crash is relevant to the preservation of K7.

The crash occurred because the left nosegear door gave way during the landing run. This allowed water under pressure to reach bulkheads not designed to withstand it, they gave way and the aircraft began to flood rapidly. At the same time the loss of the door cause a loss of control that led to a 'water loop'.

The left nosegear door gave way because the Torque Tube that activated it and held it in place had corroded internally, without any external signs being visible. The ends of the tube were plugged by bungs but water had accumulated behind these and corroded the tube.

I don't know if the bungs were orginal practice. I have found a US FAA source that says they don't appear on the illustrations in the manufacturers parts list. Either way some modern Catalina operators did not use bungs, present in the wartime design, allowing the tubes to 'breathe' and be inspected internally. This is now the standard way the aircraft is operated. This is ok now that these aircraft are parked on land when idle but may not have been when they could be kept afloat for long periods, as many were originally. Also note that it took over 50 years for the corrosion to do its work - many times the original expected life of the aircraft. If original, the sealing of the tubes was obviously not THAT bad a design decision.

Remind anyone of the objections to the disassembly of K7 and the all the water that was originally trapped within her tubes?

----

PS:

More Catlinas were lost due to landings on water than any other cause, including combat.

Landing a Catalina that has not had the forward turret area faired over is banned in both the UK and US. This is because a leading cause of water landing accidents was the nose coming down to far and the bow wave rising up and filling the aircraft though the forward turret.
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Renegadenemo
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Re: The Vulcan XH558 & General Aviation Thread

Post by Renegadenemo »

Remind anyone of the objections to the disassembly of K7 and the all the water that was originally trapped within her tubes?
Oh yes - and the worst of that was that the tubes had filled slowly over the years past the rivets compressing the trapped air to about 5 bar absolute so that when the boat was raised back to ambient pressure the pressurised gas started equally slowly pushing the water the other way thus keeping everything nice and moist and that's without the oxygen partial pressure adding to the corrosion problems. The museological morons just couldn't get their heads around any of it so they opted to run away and tried to have us do likewise. We had to pull-rank in the end.

Speaking of compressed gas - we spent most of Wednesday last week with the guys who look after the flying Vulcan then, as a result of our meeting about how best to start our little Orph' without risking life and limb, we spent best part of Monday borrowing a handful of key components from the Sunderland Vulcan with kind permission and the indulgence of everyone involved with both aircraft. So soon you can expect to hear the crack and explosive hiss of our second generation start system as it spools up an Orph' from offboard the boat.
I'm only a plumber from Cannock...

"As to reward, my profession is its own reward;" Sherlock Holmes.

'Sometimes you gotta be an S.O.B if you wanna make a dream reality' Mark Knopfler
ace_chris
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Re: The Vulcan XH558 & General Aviation Thread

Post by ace_chris »

Could this become a reality, makes Concorde seem rather slow by comparison...

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-33786999
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