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dahut

Me262 Kit question

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dahut    2

I was recently intrigued to note the Me-262 was "slats down" when on the ground. With further research, it is obvious - it used automatic slats, which retracted only when the plane reached sufficient airspeed.

Coming late to this realization, Im surprised to learn that even the mighty Tamiya ME-262 does not include these prominent dropped slats. Ditto for the newer Hobby Boss kit and the cranky Dragon Schwalbe left them off, as well.

It looks like buying resin correction parts, scratch building or simply overlooking this feature are my options. Does that about sum it up?

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Work In Progress    1,052

Well, actually the force that deploys and retracts them is not gravity but the movement of the leading edge stagnation point as the angle of attack increases. The primary opening and closing forces are aerodynamic.

As you land the aeroplane the slats are open and will stay open if you leave them alone. However, the aeroplane is not invariably seen on the ground with the slats open. If you gently push them closed they will stay closed, and it would be good practice to close them before walking away if you are going to leave the aeroplane for any length of time. You really don't want anything getting into the gap or into the mechanism.

Feeling the freedom of movement of free-floating slats as they open and close is part of good pre- and post-flight inspection on types thus equipped, checking them for any slop or grittiness as you do with all the other non-powered moving aerodynamic surfaces. So if you have a man in a black overall walking around your 262 model it would be entirely reasonable to have the slats open on one side and closed on the other.

I don't consider it an error moulding a 262 kit without separate slats. You could argue that it is an unfortunate omission given that most people model parked aeroplanes rather than aeroplanes in flight. Really it is no more and no less of an error than tooling up a P-51 kit without separate flaps. In both cases the aeroplane is usually seen with the surface deployed whilst parked, but retracted whilst in flight.

Edited by Work In Progress

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Stonar    198

I'd go further. Look at pictures of parked Messerschmitt aircraft of various types with this system of leading edge slats and in the majority,though not all, cases they are not deployed. This suggests that it must have been common practice for ground crew to push the slats back in once the aircraft was parked.

Cheers

Steve

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Stonar    198
Its an omission rather than an error, and hardly BIG - and if you build the plane in flight mode, its perfectly accurate.

Most flight modes,yes. But I'd argue that it's perfectly alright on the ground too which,is after all,how most of us pose our models. That means it's not an error at all,let alone a BIG one. It's just like saying that having any other non-poseable control surfaces is an error. It isn't,though it too may be considered an omission.

Cheers

Steve

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derek burton    25

I dont think the flaps on a 262 would stay in if simply pushed in, there is footage of a ground crewman testing the flaps by pushing them in and watching them slide back out and i think at one point he takes a pair of pliers to them and gives them a tweak to make them slide easier.

Dek,

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jacksdad    29

I've seen that footage as well, Dek.

So, I suppose, that means to have a proper 262 kit you need to do something with the slats.

Steve

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derek burton    25

unless you do a badly maintained one, and say the ground crew failed to grease them?

Dek.

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Work In Progress    1,052
I dont think the flaps on a 262 would stay in if simply pushed in, there is footage of a ground crewman testing the flaps by pushing them in and watching them slide back out and i think at one point he takes a pair of pliers to them and gives them a tweak to make them slide easier.

Dek,

And yet there are pictures of them on the ground with the slats in.

They may well be lockable, of course, but I don't have a set of pilot notes to hand.

Edited by Work In Progress

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Nick Milham    1
I was recently intrigued to note the Me-262 was "slats down" when on the ground. With further research, it is obvious - it used automatic slats, which retracted only when the plane reached sufficient airspeed.

Coming late to this realization, Im surprised to learn that even the mighty Tamiya ME-262 does not include these prominent dropped slats. Ditto for the newer Hobby Boss kit and the cranky Dragon Schwalbe left them off, as well.

It looks like buying resin correction parts, scratch building or simply overlooking this feature are my options. Does that about sum it up?

To add to the confusion, here is a passage from Macky Steinhoff's memoir "The Final Hours" in which he describes how he prepares for a hurried take-off in his 262: "I pulled the slotted flap out of the leading edge, letting it spring back with a loud clack." Sounds to me like the slats were retracted on the ground.

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Work In Progress    1,052

Just did a bit of checking up and the slats are, as I suspected, lockable.

"North American F-86 SabreJet Day Fighters", Warbird Tech Vol. 3, by Chris Hughes & Walter Dranem makes it clear, as the North American engineers actually used the slat locks from a complete 262 wing when they were putting together the slats on the XP-86.

"…Finally an entire Me-262 wing was flown in from Wright Field. North American engineers disassembled the slats and modified the slat track mechanism to fit the XP-86 wing. The engineers also used the slat lock and control switch from the Me-262. Although not perfect, it was at least a start and the slat worked.”

So, as with a Tiger Moth, you can lock the slats closed on the ground (or in the air, if you like, which brings with it certain advantages such as not having one side pop out before the other and causing the nose to wag when you are pulling G on to a target).

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dahut    2

Alright, well... it's not a BIG error in that case. From the few things I knew, it appeared that way.

Locks for the slats seemed the most likely thing. I was a little surprised the first time I did see it, to think the slats would remain deployed on the ground.

Glad that's sorted. Thanks all.

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It is, in fact, gravity that makes them open. When aerodynamic pressure is insufficient to hold them closed, it's mean old Mr. Gravity that pulls them down (if not, then what?).

There are lots of pics with and without the slats open on the ground, but to me it's a characteristic of the airplane that both Tamiya and HB missed the boat on....

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Helloguys just a simple little observation here from past books and articles that Ive read:The German ground crews were in the habit of doing their work VERY meticilously I have a book containing a photograph of inspections being done on a 109 in very near freezing conditions in russia during WW2 and numerous others as well so in light of this even when the plane is modelled parked and with no one around it would have the flight surfaces all secured and retracted.It would however also be totally correct to model it open/deployed when parked if you want to model a just landed bird.

I guess it all just depends on how you like your cake,all patato pataaato I suppose.

Regards:

Shaun

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Prop Duster    4
It is, in fact, gravity that makes them open. When aerodynamic pressure is insufficient to hold them closed, it's mean old Mr. Gravity that pulls them down (if not, then what?).

The landing gear rise up after parking, due to the extra pressures generated in landing. As the wing is being thus elevated, the flaps (being influenced by the aerodynamic force of the air flowing over the wing) deploy. Thus the deployed flaps are, indeed, locked back in place by the crew chief before they are damaged by wind gusts.

:crap:getsmileyCAG8F3MF.gif

CHEERS

271R.gif

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Stonar    198
It is, in fact, gravity that makes them open. When aerodynamic pressure is insufficient to hold them closed, it's mean old Mr. Gravity that pulls them down (if not, then what?).

It isn't just gravity. It's differential in air pressures around the wing,we'd need an aerodynamicist to explain properly! The slats would never deploy in flight,even at the lowest speeds otherwise. Drive at 90 mph and put your hand out the window,how would gravity deploy a slat against that pressure?

If you push the slats in on a Bf109,on the ground,they stay in. If they wouldn't on the Me262 maybe that's part of the reason that they were lockable.

Cheers

Steve

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dahut    2
It is, in fact, gravity that makes them open. When aerodynamic pressure is insufficient to hold them closed, it's mean old Mr. Gravity that pulls them down (if not, then what?).

There are lots of pics with and without the slats open on the ground, but to me it's a characteristic of the airplane that both Tamiya and HB missed the boat on....

From what I can tell, Jennings, the Me-262 slats were counterbalanced and spring loaded. They would handily fall into the open position on the ground, barring any reason not to. But they could also be rather easily pushed back into retracted position by attendant ground crew and locked there.

Im guessing as part of pre-flight routine, they were opened and allowed to function normally, i.e., automatically. This explains the videos Ive seen of the fully restored model and the deployed slats during pre-flight run-up.

Its also why I asked here, among the cognoscenti.

On a personal note, I remain mystified how a kit maker would overlook this feature, even with all the fine explanations. It is almost too prominent to miss, IMHO.

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From what I can tell, Jennings, the Me-262 slats were counterbalanced and spring loaded. They would handily fall into the open position on the ground, barring any reason not to. But they could also be rather easily pushed back into retracted position by attendant ground crew and locked there.

I'm guessing as part of pre-flight routine, they were opened and allowed to function normally, i.e., automatically. This explains the videos Ive seen of the fully restored model and the deployed slats during pre-flight run-up.

Its also why I asked here, among the cognoscenti.

On a personal note, I remain mystified how a kit maker would overlook this feature, even with all the fine explanations. It is almost too prominent to miss, IMHO.

I agree with you completely. I've gone through my four volumes of the Classic Publications Me 262 monograph and other references, and the overwhelming number of photographs show slats deployed when the aircraft was on the ground. One thing to remember is that the 262 was a tricycle landing gear, so when breaks were applied the nose would most likely dip down and perhaps making sure the slats were thrown forward. This also accounts for the various nose positions in which one finds the 262 after being parked. One other thing is that I came across a reference to the fact that the slats could hang up and so it may not have been uncommon for ground crew to push them in and out to make sure they moved freely. One could imagine that they were pushed in and pulled out, OK they moved freely and they were left in the out position. But the 262 is not the only aircraft given less than perfect treatment. The Bf 110 from Eduard was also produced with molded in slats. Dragon/Cyber something or other did provide optional open slats, with some cutting. Most Bf 109 kits do provide for optional open slats. But it is interesting I find that because of the sit of the 110 and 109, there is just as much probability of seeing closed slats as open.

There are aftermarket slats, I believe for the 262, but I too find it really just odd if not "negligent" that in 1/48 the 109 can be given optional position slats but not the 262. Given the overall quality of the Tamiya Me 262, the lack of optional position slats is just wrong, IMHO. Perhaps it was the issue of four sets of slats rather than two that made them not do it, but I don't buy it.

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dahut    2
I agree with you completely. I've gone through my four volumes of the Classic Publications Me 262 monograph and other references, and the overwhelming number of photographs show slats deployed when the aircraft was on the ground. One thing to remember is that the 262 was a tricycle landing gear, so when breaks were applied the nose would most likely dip down and perhaps making sure the slats were thrown forward. This also accounts for the various nose positions in which one finds the 262 after being parked. One other thing is that I came across a reference to the fact that the slats could hang up and so it may not have been uncommon for ground crew to push them in and out to make sure they moved freely. One could imagine that they were pushed in and pulled out, OK they moved freely and they were left in the out position. But the 262 is not the only aircraft given less than perfect treatment. The Bf 110 from Eduard was also produced with molded in slats. Dragon/Cyber something or other did provide optional open slats, with some cutting. Most Bf 109 kits do provide for optional open slats. But it is interesting I find that because of the sit of the 110 and 109, there is just as much probability of seeing closed slats as open.

There are aftermarket slats, I believe for the 262, but I too find it really just odd if not "negligent" that in 1/48 the 109 can be given optional position slats but not the 262. Given the overall quality of the Tamiya Me 262, the lack of optional position slats is just wrong, IMHO. Perhaps it was the issue of four sets of slats rather than two that made them not do it, but I don't buy it.

Well sure. Just think of the immense and even immeasurable detail kits are treated to today. Omitting the slats because they might be too complex isn't much of a dodge.

ESCI was doing detail in 1/72, 25 years ago, that is still impressive. But we can't have slats on a new tool 1/48 Me-262?

I'm late coming to this party; the details and nuances of the Me-262 are new to me. I don't own four distinct tomes on the thing, and have really only been aware of it.

Microscopic detail on the matter has never been part of my repertoire. So this slat business was a revelation.

So imagine my surprise to learn how prominent these slats were on the real thing, and that no one has ever gotten them right or offered them as an option in a kit box. I called it a BIG error in the beginning and was chided for using hyperbole. I'm thinking now I wasn't far off.

Edited by dahut

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Pete in Lincs    6,277

I've always wondered why they didn't include them.

Here's a quick & simple maybe whynot,

Imagine trying to design a mould for scale slats.

They would be Very thin & fragile, plus you need a 'gate' to

let the molten plastic in, which would mean they would

be difficult to cut off the tree without damage.

Far simpler & cheaper for the model company to

ignore them.

Plus, then you don't need a cutout in the leading edge

of the upper & lower wing halves.

Pete

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Work In Progress    1,052
So imagine my surprise to learn how prominent these slats were on the real thing, and that no one has ever gotten them right or offered them as an option in a kit box. I called it a BIG error in the beginning and was chided for using hyperbole. I'm thinking now I wasn't far off.

Is every P-51 kit without separate flaps also a BIG error in your view, then?

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lufbramatt    12

Airfix put separate LE slats on their Bf109e at 1/48 scale, and some of the revellogram ProModeller kits had slats (think it was the helldiver?) - so no real technical reasons why it cant be done apart from cost- more parts in the mould means a costlier tool.

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Giorgio N    3,947
Airfix put separate LE slats on their Bf109e at 1/48 scale, and some of the revellogram ProModeller kits had slats (think it was the helldiver?) - so no real technical reasons why it cant be done apart from cost- more parts in the mould means a costlier tool.

Even some 1/72 kits have slats moulded separately, as the fujimi A-4 series, the hasegawa and fujimi tomcats, the hasegawa F-111s, the trumpeter F-100s.... apart from the latter, all the others are kits dating from at least 15 years ago

Higher costs yes, technical difficulties not really

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