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Vulcan and Lancaster

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Vulcan and Lancaster

Old 7th Apr 2019, 21:35
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Vulcan and Lancaster

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Old 7th Apr 2019, 21:44
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Interestingly, Avro put a suggestion to the Air Ministry towards the end of the War. They suggested that, given the evidence of the Mosquito, flying higher and faster would significantly reduce bomber losses, and the way to do that with the Lancaster was to remove the gun turrets and not have any gunners on board. They calculated that the increase in height and speed gained by the Lanc would outweigh losses caused by not seeing night fighters and casualties would be reduced. This was turned down, because as the aircrew said, the b*st*rds at Group would use the weight saving to carry a heavier bomb load and more fuel thereby increasing casualties. It should be noted that the Vulcan is almost a jet version of the Lanc, flying much higher and faster but not needing the guns. The crew is the same, but with the Co-pilot reinstated vice the FE; the Bomb Aimer using H2S radar (as the pathfinder bomb-aimers often did) renamed the Radar Nav, and the Wireless Operator now controlling ECM as well and therefore called the Air Electronics Officer.
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Old 8th Apr 2019, 08:45
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Wensleydale,


"It should be noted that the Vulcan is almost a jet version of the Lanc.."

Er, I cannot think of two more dissimilar airframes, either from an aerodynamic, materials or tactics point of view.

Next you'll be saying that the Typhoon is almost a jet version of the Sopwith Camel;
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Old 8th Apr 2019, 08:58
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pr00ne,

Perhaps you are unfamiliar with the construction of the Vulcan? The internal structure is very 1940s.
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Old 8th Apr 2019, 11:22
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Archive mole,

But the aerodynamics, the propulsion, the systems and the appearance are WAY different from the Lancaster.
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Old 8th Apr 2019, 11:41
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Proone - the point that I am making is that the Vulcan concept is similar to that of the gunless Lancaster - fast and high to avoid fighters and ground defence. Obviously, the jet engine and advances in electronics have made a difference, but the Lancaster is a fore-runner in many respects and share concepts such as H2S for bomb aiming etc.
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Old 8th Apr 2019, 16:40
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Wensleydale, this has been mentioned on here before, but in a slightly different and may I say, more credible vein. Freeman Dyson ,who was a young operational research scientist, came up with the idea of removing the turrets to give the Lanc an increase of 50mph. This was during the winter of 43-4 during the Battle of Berlin. He said that his boss was a career civil servant, who was not prepared to tell Harris. I believe it was also not proceeded with as it would have affected production and having turrets was good for morale, in that it gave aircrew comfort in being able to fight back.
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Old 8th Apr 2019, 18:31
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Originally Posted by Wensleydale View Post
Proone - the point that I am making is that the Vulcan concept is similar to that of the gunless Lancaster - fast and high to avoid fighters and ground defence. Obviously, the jet engine and advances in electronics have made a difference, but the Lancaster is a fore-runner in many respects and share concepts such as H2S for bomb aiming etc.
There are those of us who completely understand and agree with your point. It had never occurred to me and is well worth making [although not only the Vulcan but all the three Vs.]
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Old 8th Apr 2019, 19:51
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Such aircraft design is a matter of evolution, not revolution.
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Old 9th Apr 2019, 09:52
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What would be the equivelant jump in technological advance now? Eleven years to go from piston engined props and 350 mph top speeds to transonic nuclear delivery delta jet.
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Old 9th Apr 2019, 10:02
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Turin, rather longer than 9 years. Eurofighter started in 1986, first flight 1994, delivery 2003 and even then with only limited, albeit primary, capability.

The next development will be unmanned and that is some way off.
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Old 9th Apr 2019, 11:45
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Originally Posted by TURIN View Post
What would be the equivelant jump in technological advance now? Eleven years to go from piston engined props and 350 mph top speeds to transonic nuclear delivery delta jet.
a good old war has this quality, that it promotes research on new technologies. But maybe it is best if we stick with what we have, given the price paid for this.
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Old 9th Apr 2019, 12:24
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a good old war has this quality, that it promotes research on new technologies for the next war or the one after. But maybe it is best if we stick with what we have, given the price paid for this.

Although 20+ years for a fighter or bomber is not untypical today so they simply wear out. The B52 being the Tigger's Broom of aviation with the Bear likewise.
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Old 9th Apr 2019, 16:51
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Originally Posted by Pontius Navigator View Post
The B52 being the Tigger's Broom of aviation with the Bear likewise.
"Tigger"?!
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Old 9th Apr 2019, 17:02
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PN meant "Trigger's Broom" - which was "well maintained " and had 17 new heads and 14 new handles in 20 years !.
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Old 10th Apr 2019, 12:05
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Seeing the photos of the Lancaster/Tornado/F-35 flypast at RIAT last year, it struck me that the first flights of the three types are pretty much equidistant (1941, 1974, 2006).
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Old 10th Apr 2019, 17:27
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Freeman Dyson tells his own story in A Failure of Intelligence, one of the most fascinating articles I have ever read. He deals with the maths of calculating collision risk v. the benefit of swamping the target and its defences, the philosophy of the lightened Lancaster, and above all the failure to appreciate the Luftwaffe's upward firing cannons or Shragemusik until after the war. I intended to summarise this long article for the Brevet thread but publishing the two books of our late departed and much loved Danny 42C took most of my time last year. Anyway, I'm sure you will enjoy this fact-packed story:
https://www.technologyreview.com/s/4...-intelligence/
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Old 11th Apr 2019, 07:56
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Geriaviator, thank you for the Freeman Dyson link, now stored as a pdf on my PC for reading at leisure. I agree that it would have made a great discussion piece for the brevet thread (or still could for that matter?). As it is we have a couple of posters (one a son of a Czech pilot) telling of the dramatic consequences of the 1938 Munich Agreement on those serving in the Czechoslovak Armed Forces and of the odyssey that led many of them in turn to France and thence England. Reports of the thread's demise are it seems greatly exaggerated.

The OP picture of the utter contrast between a prop driven gate guardian and a gleaming white delta jet overhead belies any possible connection other than sharing the same manufacturer. That a mere eleven years separates their first flights reminds us of the dramatic technical advances made in those dangerous years. That there was a natural segue between the two is more one of tactics than design. Bomber losses were aggravated by flying too slow and two low. The jet turbine rather than junking gun turrets was the answer. 50 mph was never going to be enough, and those b*st*rds at Group would for sure have traded it for more load or range!
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Old 11th Apr 2019, 08:20
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Originally Posted by Chugalug2 View Post
and those b*st*rds at Group would for sure have traded it for more load or range!
Which is precisely what they did with the Tirpitz raid Lancasters.
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Old 11th Apr 2019, 11:34
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Wensleydale,

I now take your point and see your comparison.

I was focussing on the technical aspects of the two aircraft, NOT the tactical use of a stripped down Lancaster compared to the spec that gave rise to the Vulcan etc.

Interesting, although all nullified by the SA-2 in time...
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