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Fuselage length to wing span ratios


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#1 Rick65

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 09:02 AM

A odd question raised by a recent photos seen of several Catalinas being transported on an aircraft carrier and also by discussion on the Cherry v Catalina topic.

The PBY Catalina has a 104ft unflapped wing and is only 63ft 10 7/8inch long giving it a length to wing span  ratio of 1:1.627. This makes the Catalina a very short and wide type and a bit of an oddity given its primary low altitude usage.

 

The question is can anyone suggest another design that has a higher length to wing span ratio?

 

I have looked at some obvious ones and it took me a while to find an even less square type.

One very highly produced type comes very close (and early models even have a higher ratio), a relative failure also just beats the Catalina.

 

Please don't consider types that never made production, specialist high altitude types with extended wings, for example the Westland Welkin comes in at 1:1.68 and flying wings such as the YB-35 are out as well (1:1.322, almost twice the Catalina figure)


Edited by Rick65, 12 February 2018 - 01:31 PM.


#2 Ricky

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 02:14 PM

Presumably gliders are out too ;)

Interesting question

#3 bearoutwest

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 02:30 PM

You mean 1:3.2 for the YB-35? 

Span = 52.2m; Length = 16.2m => 52.2/16.2 = 3.2 (1:3.2)

 

Sorry, long day, slow brain.....you want a short length with bigger wingspan...yes?

 

So, something like the Junkers Ju86R, extended span recce kites.

Span = 32m; Length = 16.46m => 1:1.944

 

Or getting a little more funky:

He111Z

Span = 35.2m; Length = 16.7m  => 1: 2.11


Edited by bearoutwest, 12 February 2018 - 02:42 PM.


#4 Ricky

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 03:27 PM

What about the Me323 Gigant?
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#5 Rick65

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 11:45 PM

I should have excluded gliders, converted gliders and strange oddities as well to take out the Me 323, the He 111Z etc.

Ju 86R is one of the excluded "specialist high altitude types with extended wings".

And yes an extra number crept into the calcs for the YB-35 should be 1:3.2.

 

The intent is to look at more or less conventional planes.

 

The Fw 190A-8 was 1.16 but by the time it had been developed into the high altitude Ta 152H-1 the ratio was 1.33



#6 bearoutwest

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 03:35 AM

If we confine the exercise to regular operational aircraft, then American flying boats and the B-24 Liberator feature high on the list.

 

Liberator B-24A / LB-30 short-nose
Wingspan: 110-ft; Length: 63-ft,9-in (63.75-ft)  => 1:1.73

Liberator II / LB-30 long-nose / B-24D
Wingspan: 110-ft; Length: 66-ft,4-in (66.33-ft)  => 1:1.66

Fw200 Condor
Wingspan: 32.85m; Length: 23.45m  => 1:1.40

Piaggio P.108B
Wingspan: 32m; Length: 22.3m  => 1:1.44

Junkers Ju188E
Wingspan: 22m; Length: 15m  => 1:1.47

Kawanishi H6K4 "Mavis"
Wingspan: 40m; Length: 25.63m  => 1:1.56

Martin Mars FB
Wingspan: 200-ft; Length: 117-ft,3-in (117.25ft)  => 1:1.71

Martin Mariner FB
Wingspan: 118-ft; Length: 79-ft, 10-in (79.833-ft)  => 1:1.48

 

Douglas DC-3
Wingspan: 29m; Length: 19.7m  => 1:1.47

 

Seems fair to include the Me323 though, it was produced in some numbers, and used operationally.

Me323
Wingspan: 55.2m; Length: 28.2m  => 1:1.96
 



#7 Rick65

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 07:13 AM

"One very highly produced type comes very close (and early models even have a higher ratio), a relative failure also just beats the Catalina."

 

I was referring to the Consolidated B-24 series. The B-24A was short with the same wing as the later types (1.725), later models were longer due to longer nose and front turret, the relative & relative failure was the B-32 (1.644). All featured the long skinny Davis wing.

The Lysander also comes in high at 1.639

 

At the other end of the scale the Short Stirling was at only 1.136 because it had a wing that was shorter than it should have been for reasons still much debated (lets not do it again). 

The difference between the Stirling and the B24A are marked. The B-24A wing  is over 3m longer and the fuselage is over 7m shorter yet nominally they had similar roles and the XB-24 flew only about 15 months after the Stirling prototype.

Excluding bi planes are then any WW2 planes closer to square than the Short Stirling?

Even the short winged Do-17 comes in at 1.139.



#8 bearoutwest

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 08:39 AM

I can only think of one candidate: clipped-wing Spitfire LF MkVB.

Wingspan: 9.9m; Length: 9.12m  => 1:1.09

 

Even the Polikarpov I-16, which I would consider very short and stubby has a larger ratio.

Wingspan: 9m; Length:  6.13m  => 1:1.47 (very respectable)



#9 Rick65

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 09:41 AM

Good spot with the LF Spitfire with its 4 foot shorter wing, I would not have thought to look there.

I will offer the XII though, same wing and Griffon longer fuselage for 1.029.

Can we get into the 0.9s?



#10 Rick65

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 09:55 AM

Do 335 is longer (13.87)  than its wingspan (13.8) for a ration of 0.995

Was it an oddity? Do we consider it to have entered production?

 

At the other end of the scale is the geodetic Vickers Wellesley with a 11.96 length and a 22.73m wing span for a ratio of 1.9. The Wellesley was designed and used in the middle east as a general purpose bomber though it was also used prewar to break records for long distance flight. Surprisingly Vickers went straight from a bi plane design to this almost glider span monoplane.


Edited by Rick65, 13 February 2018 - 11:11 AM.

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