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Fifty Years On: Viscount Crash At Indee Station

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Fifty Years On: Viscount Crash At Indee Station

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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 07:33
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Originally Posted by john_tullamarine View Post
Your comments might be a tad superficial, methinks.

You might find that the Comet investigation work was disseminated fairly freely to the opposition and the opposition (read Boeing) took full advantage of the data so obtained. As a consequence, the Brits fell by the commercial wayside and the Americans raced ahead.
JT,
Contained in one of the final volumes of the Inspector's Report into the Comet in-flight breakups is reproduced a copy of advice from Boeing, in the early days of the Comet design, telling DeHavilland they were going to have problems, and why. Needless to say, nobody in UK at the time gave it headline treatment, after all, how many read beyond the Executive Summary (as it would now be called).
And, as I am sure you know, the fuselage structure of the Comet IV was quite different to the I and II, in that it was now, engineering-wise, the same as already long since adopted practice by Douglas, Boeing etc, on lower differential pressure hulls. Put another way, in the Comet IV, DeHavilland followed long established US practice.
That Inspector's Report has some very interesting connotation, you should find it --- and that DeHavilland "discovered" fatigue in aircraft structures was for the consumption of the good old British Empire -- the Yanks, French or Russians and their satellite would not agree.
A board-brush comment, yes, but not superficial, the Myths of Empire still have remarkable currency.
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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 09:22
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There were other small problems too many to mention here.
I recall reading in the 1960's the results of a survey published in Flight International (or maybe it was Aeroplane magazine). The question was along the lines of "Which aircraft that you have flown had the worst flight deck layout and where you made the most errors." Overwhelmingly, pilots replied the Viscount. I'll go along with that.
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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 10:26
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Contained in one of the final volumes

At variance to other documents I've read but, at the end of the day, all ancient history of engineering interest now.
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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 12:01
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Leadsled

Contained in one of the final volumes of the Inspector's Report into the Comet in-flight breakups is reproduced a copy of advice from Boeing, in the early days of the Comet design, telling DeHavilland they were going to have problems, and why. Needless to say, nobody in UK at the time gave it headline treatment, after all, how many read beyond the Executive Summary (as it would now be called).
I would like to read that advice but cannot find it in the Inspector's report...
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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 12:12
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Originally Posted by Centaurus View Post
I recall reading in the 1960's the results of a survey published in Flight International (or maybe it was Aeroplane magazine). The question was along the lines of "Which aircraft that you have flown had the worst flight deck layout and where you made the most errors." Overwhelmingly, pilots replied the Viscount. I'll go along with that.
Centaurus,
I always was impressed with the idea that quite important tailplane anti-ice system lights were behind the Captain's head (at least on BEA aeroplanes)
The late Jack Curtis tells the story of a cargo door falling off climbing out of Brisbane one day, falling into the middle of a golf course. By tradition, golfers at that course, instead of the usual call of "four" to warm players ahead of a ball, henceforth called "DOOR".
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PS: The instrument etc placement was the BSA system, not the motor bikes, Bit Stuck Anywhere.
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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 23:59
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"Which aircraft that you have flown had the worst flight deck layout and where you made the most errors." Overwhelmingly, pilots replied the Viscount.
IIRC The artificial horizon had a pointer at the top which moved in the opposite direction to other aircraft.

For anyone interested in reading further on the Viscount.
A Virtual Museum dedicated to the Vickers-Armstrongs Viscount
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Old 4th Jan 2019, 03:13
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John tullamarine/;
At variance to other documents I've read but, at the end of the day, all ancient history of engineering interest now
No it isn’t. The British still believe in promoting Oxbridge educated twits into senior management positions. They don’t listen to the shop floor, let alone users or customers. It cost them their car industry after the aviation industry and their silliness goes on today.
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Old 4th Jan 2019, 04:14
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Originally Posted by oggers View Post
Leadsled
I would like to read that advice but cannot find it in the Inspector's report...
Oggers,
As best I recall, it was about Vol.5 of the report, but it is a long time ago (I was working in UK at the time -- concrete, not aeroplanes, in those days) came out long after early volumes, as much as five years after the early reports, and hardly to a trumpet fanfare.
It was a volume largely of references, evidential sources and the like, I am not even certain, now, that they were labeled 1, 2 etc. What I remember, very clearly, was my colonial skepticism of the alleged superiority of British engineering, based on my personal experience in the concrete construction business ---- long before I knew anything about the long series of debacles in aeronautical matters. Hence my interest in what Boeing had to say, in the early design stages of the Comet 1.
When I wrote to the then "Editor" of Flight, (John Ramsden?) asking why they had not reported it--- no reply.
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Old 4th Jan 2019, 22:10
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I'm not so sure that Boeing didn't have structural problems with the 707 or even the 747.
Its a long while ago now, but I have vivid memories of working mid winter through the nights in H96 on the 707 fin mount replacement on what would have been a 4 or 5 year old fleet? Later ferrying 707s to BOAC for spar repairs.
And on the 747 the repairs to airframe behind the FEs panel (section 41?)
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Old 5th Jan 2019, 00:18
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Certainly had structural problem with the 707. Dan Air 707 had the right stabiliser and elevator come off during an approach. All six killed. Report finding,
It was determined that the structure of the right horizontal stabiliser failed due to metal fatigue in the rear spar structure, and due to the lack of an adequate fail-safe structure or device should such an event occur. The investigation also identified deficiencies in the assessment of aircraft designs and their certification and in the way aircraft were inspected.
The last sentence is rather telling. Inspections found 38 aircraft with similar cracking.
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Old 5th Jan 2019, 09:03
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Originally Posted by megan View Post
Certainly had structural problem with the 707. Dan Air 707 had the right stabiliser and elevator come off during an approach. All six killed. Report finding,The last sentence is rather telling. Inspections found 38 aircraft with similar cracking.
Folks,
Including two ex-QF aircraft I was flying at the time in UK ---- fortunately, in both cases the characteristic cracking had gone in the opposite to the DANAIR B707-320C (ex-PanAm) and relieved in fresh air. The whole accident report shows a tale of woefully inadequate inspection standards, the crack in the tailplane skin would have been visible to the naked eye at the C.of A inspection to put the aircraft on the UK register.
We were particularly interested, as DANAIR was doing our B707 maintenance??
It also left Boeing with some questions about certification methods in advancing from the -300 to 320 series.
There was no shortage of airframe ADs on the B707 ---- generally (but not only) associated with aircraft that had already exceeded their original design life.
You can't really (unless you are a one-eyed pom) equate this with the record of British built aircraft after WWII, with, perhaps, the "partial" exception of the BAC III, but it had its shortcomings, too.
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