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  1. #21
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    I believe you're correct Flying10uk. The US tested a larger conventional bomb just a few years back, but it was only a 'test' in Arizona or such. They said it shook towns many miles away.

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    A Collector's View - The SMLE Short Magazine Lee Enfield 1903-1989. It is 300 8.5x11 inch pages with 1,000+ photo’s, most in color, and each book is serial-numbered.  Covering the SMLE from 1903 to the end of production in India in 1989 it looks at how each model differs and manufacturer differences from a collecting point of view along with the major accessories that could be attached to the rifle. For the record this is not a moneymaker, I hope just to break even, eventually, at $80/book plus shipping.  In the USA shipping is $5.00 for media mail.  I will accept PayPal, Zelle, MO and good old checks (and cash if you want to stop by for a tour!).  CLICK BANNER to send me a PM for International pricing and shipping. Manufacturer of various vintage rifle scopes for the 1903 such as our M73G4 (reproduction of the Weaver 330C) and Malcolm 8X Gen II (Unertl reproduction). Several of our scopes are used in the CMP Vintage Sniper competition on top of 1903 rifles. Brian Dick ... BDL Ltd. - Specializing in British and Commonwealth weapons Chuck in Denver ... Buy-Sell-Trade .. Guns, Cars Motorcycles Your source for the finest in High Power Competition Gear. Here at T-bones Shipwrighting we specialise in vintage service rifle: re-barrelling, bedding, repairs, modifications and accurizing. We also provide importation services for firearms, parts and weapons, for both private or commercial businesses.
     

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    Flying10UK post #17 I said = Some Lanc's were fitted with radial air cooled engines and paddle propellor blades and were referred to by their crews as "Paddle Steamers" they were well liked by the crews no coolant to be lost, they climbed and flew very well, the Lanc was the only WWII aircraft that could carry the 22,000lb Grand Slam bomb the largest non-nuclear weapon dropped in WWII.

    Harlan That might be the MOAB = Mother Of All Bombs

    The TSAR Bomb from Russiaicon is the largest Nuclear weapon dropped with a yield of 50 Mega tons from Wikapedia ~The Tsar Bomba was a three-stage bomb with Trutnev-Babaev[6] second and third stage design,[7] with a yield of 50 to 58 megatons of TNT (210 to 240 PJ).[8] This is equivalent to about 1,350–1,570 times the combined power of the bombs that destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki. They wanted to test a 100 MTN bomb but there would have been to much fallout and the plane would not have been able to reach a safe distance presumably destroyed by the shock waves or heat.
    Last edited by CINDERS; 11-11-2015 at 06:53 AM.

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    The "ten ton" Grand Slam bomb, and its predecessor, the "Tallboy" were not just built for "bang" but built for speed.

    Dropped from 20 thousand feet, they were going supersonic well before impact.

    This, and the very robust nature of the forward bomb casing, meant that when attacking heavily protected structures, like U-boat pens, the bomb would punch through many feet of reinforced concrete before exploding INSIDE these underground structures: VERY messy.

    Ditto with big bridges. Bomb lands somewhere NEAR a support pier and penetrates the mud etc. to a great depth. THEN, or after a suitably chosen interval, it goes off, generating a huge underground cavity into which falls the pier and a substantial amount of bridge deck. See the Bielefeld Viaduct demolition for the

    The 12,000 pound Tallboys didn't do much for the seaworthiness of the "Tirpitz", either. See:

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    I think from Barnes Wallis's "Bombs" book that when they dropped the very first test Grandslam they had a camera mounted in the center of the target plus others at a peripheral distance as there was no way they reckoned the center camera was going to be hit. The Grandslam's and the Tallboys rear fins were off set by 5 degrees imparting a spin to gyroscopiclly stabilize them. So the further the bombs fell the faster they spun. And that camera in the dead center of the test bomb well you guessed it the bomb landed right on top of it, a crater from a 22,000lb bomb left a crater rim 100 feet wide they were called the earthquake bombs the 12,00lb Tallboys were used to seriously damage/destroy the Tirpiz the Bismarks sister ship as Churchill called her the scourge of the Atlantic

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    Cast and machined in Sheffield and filled at Glascoed in Wales

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    And the other tricky thing about the Lancaster, was its modular construction.

    It gets better: Each module, be it wing section or fuselage, was designed to be transportable on standard Britishicon railway rolling stock of the era, and to fit within the standard loading gauge when so transported.

    This enabled far-flung sub-contractors to be involved in the manufacture of very large aircraft as never before.

    They could, essentially, be put together in any convenient "big shed" (hangar) with a decent flying field nearby.

    It also meant that if an aircraft suffered damage, a "module" could be swapped out at a suitable repair shop as opposed to a major rebuild or scrapping.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce_in_Oz View Post
    And the other tricky thing about the Lancaster, was its modular construction.

    It gets better: Each module, be it wing section or fuselage, was designed to be transportable on standard Britishicon railway rolling stock of the era, and to fit within the standard loading gauge when so transported.

    This enabled far-flung sub-contractors to be involved in the manufacture of very large aircraft as never before.

    It also meant that if an aircraft suffered damage, a "module" could be swapped out at a suitable repair shop as opposed to a major rebuild or scrapping.
    This was a far cry from the state of the British (and Germanicon) aviation businesses in 1938 where each plane was essentially a one-off custom, hand-fit item. The industry was essentially a soft-tooled industry at that point. Charles A. Lindberg surveyed the various European aviation concerns in '38 and was concerned that the Allied efforts weren't ready to gear up to large-scale production. Of course, Beaverbrook came in and changed all that, bringing in Henry Ford's assembly line and part interchangeability notions.

    The Lancaster was a redesign of the Avro Manchester, which had engines that were typified by the Air Ministry as underdeveloped, unreliable, and under-powered. Then the big sweep came through demanding that all new designs be powered by the Merlin engine. They redesigned the wing center section to hold two Merlins per side and voile'! they had a great plane.

    Because of cultural differences, that interchangeability concept was built in to the American aviation industry. A famous example is a B-17D calledThe Swoose at the National Museum of the USAF. It began life as a normal B-17D called Ole Betsy but was heavily damaged in action in the Pacific. At a repair depot in Australiaicon the tail section of another B-17D was bolted on and the plane flew again. It was renamed after the subject of a popular song of the period about a bird that was half swan, half goose. Eventually it was tasked as the personal transport of General George Brett, flown by one Captain Frank Kurtz. When Brett was transferred it became the transport of Douglas MacAurthur. At the end of the war it was found to have fatigue in its wings and they were replaced by a pair from a salvaged B-17E and many of its systems were replaced with E systems.

    Eventually it was stored and deteriorated. Two things came of it: A) Pilot Frank Kurtz named his daughter Swoozie after the plane and she became a famous actress. and B) the plane was eventually tuned over to the USAF Museum where it rests, mid-restoration. Progress is halted because there is controversy over which of its named iterations it really represents and which of its versions it should be restored to...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Womack View Post
    the big sweep came through demanding that all new designs be powered by the Merlin engine
    Good point Bob and another interesting story. The Merlin was so vital to the war effort, that during the Battle of Britain in 1940 the UK sought alternative manufacturing facilities in Canadaicon and the US.

    Rolls-Royce settled on the Packard Motor Car Company because of their high quality and engineering. Negotiations were finalized in September 1940 and the first Packard-built engine, designated V-1650-1, came off the assembly line in August 1941. Many of the engines went to Canada to be installed in Hurricanes and Lancaster and Mosquito bombers.

    Packard introduced a number of improvements to the engine, including General Motors' bearing technology and a Curtiss-Wright two-stage supercharger. The excellent performance of the engine led to its introduction into the P-40 L&F versions, and, most significantly displacing the Allison engine in the P-51 Mustang. It's a great example of Britishicon, Canadian, and American cooperation during the war.

    Rolls engineers were quite astounded when they found Packard's quality standards and their previously untrained workforce of many women produced an engine that required, unlike the British built engines, virtually no hand fitting.

    An perhaps it's no coincidence that two of the fastest Allied planes of WWII -- the Mustang and the Mosquito -- were powered by Merlins.

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    That is an interesting thing about the Merlin story: the "home-grown" models seemed to "perform" better, at least for a while.

    The reason is that they were HAND fitted; pistons selected for best fit to bores etc. Hideously time consuming, as opposed to the Packard "shake and bake" approach, which required incredibly fine tolerances on STANDARD production components and thus, on the assembly line, the engines just about fell together from standardized parts .

    The RR "bespoke" jobs may have outperformed an "off the hook" Packard, but "ground-time" was somewhat greater and a rebuild was a MAJOR undertaking.

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