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GOT: The Blackburn B-20

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6 replies to this topic

#1 Romantic Technofreak

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Posted 07 November 2011 - 06:00 PM

Well, friends, this time I don't have much to write. There is an article on the very short career of the Blackburn B-20, and it is exhaustive.

http://freespace.vir...ackburn_b20.htm

One could expect the B-20 was given up due to a complicated retraction mechanism of the float, but no word about that. The project was dead before flight testing of the single prototype even started. For a very fast flying boat, there was just no need to be seen. In the sector of medium seaplanes, Britain purchased Catalinas, which did the job very well. Another argument probably was the need for RR Vulture engines, which proved unreliable, as anybody here knows.

What I can do further is to give you some pictures I processed using XnView. They are from seawings.co.uk, which contains some further ones, and more you can find on the net. But I took only the best ones and optimized them in terms of my own screen, regarding bringhtness and sizes. This meay not be optimal for your one, but I hope you enjoy anyway.

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#2 Romantic Technofreak

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Posted 07 November 2011 - 06:01 PM

First time here? Scroll up, please!

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Regards, RT

#3 Wuzak

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Posted 07 November 2011 - 09:12 PM

Nice pictures RT.

They show how neatly the Vulture could be installed. Does without the awkward ait intakes of the Manchester, and has a neat radiator installation. Though I'd guess it would be a problem if the nacelle had to house landing gear too.

I could see a Vulture powered twin engine bomber looking pretty slick if it used leading edge radiators, like the Whirlwind and Mosquito.

Alas, Vultures were dropped to concentrate resources on the Merlin/Griffon.

#4 Ricky

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Posted 08 November 2011 - 08:29 AM

I've always liked this plane, purely because it is an unusual and innovative solution to a problem.

I do kinda wonder what would happen if the main float failed to deploy though...

#5 Wuzak

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Posted 08 November 2011 - 12:42 PM

The follow up was the proposed B40.

http://freespace.vir...ackburn_b40.htm

I wonder how that would have looked/performed if it was a landplane.

#6 GregP

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Posted 09 November 2011 - 05:12 AM

Hi RT,

Thank you so much for the great GOT topic! I have always liked this experiment and decided the only reason it never went anywhere was that the British decided to buy PBY's.

Of course, the Vulture may have contributed, but engines are changeable, and the design had promise, particularly in the shock-absorbing arena. The shock could have been tuned to allow taleoff in much rougher sea than normal.

Anyway, flying boats went the way of th dodo bird, and I an sorry they did. The utility is still there. The Soviet Berievs, Japanese Shin-Meiwa's, and the Chinese Harbin SH-4's prove that and are still flying in military circles once in awhile. Of course the Harbins are Chinese versions of a Beriev, but they are flying today and doing it quite well.

Too bad nobody else seems to see the utility. Many Islands are still using Gurmmans for freight! What will they do when the Albatrosses, Mallards, and Widgeons are gone?

I suppose thety COULD buy Dornier SeaStars, but then the SeaStar would have to go into production.

Anyway, thanks, RT!

Joe Yancey says "Hi!"

#7 Romantic Technofreak

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Posted 10 November 2011 - 03:27 PM

Thank you for your warm words, friends, and especially for yours, Greg! Although I did not have to do much this time...:P

Respecting the still-operating Grummans, I think it is similar to the land-based old birds. The airframes possibly can virtually fly forever, but one day run out of engines... I also hope the idea of the seaplane will be renewed.

Personally, I am in a situation when a bless turned into a curse. I collected more than 5.000 new pictures (mostly ads and graphics from 1899-1969, with center of gravity in the 40s and 50s, 98% need optical improvement (for ~4.300 already done), nearly all must be renamed (sometimes I even have to research, like to distinguish a 1960 Dodge Dart from a contemporary Polara and so on) and in the end they must be sorted. I can't hope to finish that work before spring.

So I don't write much, but I am here on a daily base. I hope I can push another GOT topic in between before the year ends.

Greg, please return a "hi!" to Mr. Joe Yancey and wife!

Best regards, RT





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