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What if Mosquitoes were made out of metal?


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I guess it was lucky that the British aircraft industry had not moved wholly to metal for larger designs as the US had prior to WW2. Lucky, too, that DH really knew their craft.

Also, a testament to the practice of developing multiple aircraft types in order to have contingency designs - the Mossie really was the right ‘plane in the right place at the right time (just a pity about its wartime durability in the wet tropics)!
 

 

For those interested in the various tree species used to make Mossies...


https://www.heraldnet.com/life/wood-from-around-the-globe-made-the-de-havilland-mosquito/

 

https://thecasemateblog.wordpress.com/2017/11/29/the-tree-that-shaped-early-aviation/amp/


 

And for those with an aviation safety bent, this piece on looking after wooden airframes:

 

https://www.flightsafetyaustralia.com/2017/03/knock-on-wood/

Edited by Blimpyboy
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4 hours ago, Blimpyboy said:

I guess it was lucky that the British aircraft industry had not moved wholly to metal for larger designs as the US had prior to WW2. Lucky, too, that DH really knew their craft.

Also, a testament to the practice of developing multiple aircraft types in order to have contingency designs - the Mossie really was the right ‘plane in the right place at the right time (just a pity about its wartime durability in the wet tropics)!
 

 

Hard to tell ! There's no denying that the Mosquito was a fantastic aircraft that gave a good contribution to WW2 but there's no reason why we should consider impossible the design of a metallic aircraft of similar performance by the British industry. Of course as long as such aircraft would have followed the same philosophy of the mosquito

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I recently saw a video explaining how the USAAC already had a plane that could o most of what the mosquito could do.  The P-38 could carry about 2k of bombs?  had that droop snoot thing etc etc.

 

Skip to 23:00

 

I like the P-38, like the Mossie very much.

 

 

Edited by NoSG0
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On 9/1/2020 at 11:28 PM, NoSG0 said:

I recently saw a video explaining how the USAAC already had a plane that could o most of what the mosquito could do.  The P-38 could carry about 2k of bombs?  had that droop snoot thing etc etc.

 

I like Greg's stuff. 

He does have a bit of bias though. Understandably. 
(mind you, I totally agree on the horrible ergonomics of the Lanc he points out)

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9 hours ago, alt-92 said:

horrible ergonomics


Aaah, yes, pre-1980s British ergonomics! If ever a case was needed for train, train and train again, that was one of the principals!

 

Mind you, some Soviet stuff was even more ‘interesting’ at times.

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Hallo

Interesting guess.

 

We Never Slept Storry of 605 Squadron 130 pages

 

If you read it, you get a glimpse of Mosquito ops.

In metal, I suppose it would have flown after the war! Time for getting production started. Many of the wood production techniques derives from shipyards. Great Britain has a long tradition on shipbuilding. The hull of the old sailing ships is very different to a sailing yacht in the 1920s. This is the technique which was enhanced for the glider. Overall in Europe. A masterpiece in wood technique is the design of the MTB Vosper. The opposite in the air is the Mosquito.

Happy modelling

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  • 4 weeks later...

The figures below are from the 1945 Bomber Command War Room Manual, the Mosquito figures *should* exclude the 100 group operations (sorties, losses and bombs dropped on those operations).  However as is well known bomb tonnages have a degree of uncertainty, for example the 1944 War Room manual says in 1944 Mosquitoes dropped 0.4 tons more by day and 1.2 by night.  Abort figures need to take into account the number of Oboe Mosquito sorties and also their greater use as pathfinders.

 

1944 Mosquito, 5,120 4,000 pound bombs dropped
bomb raid day 2,348 despatched (2,056 Oboe), 1,641 attacking 971.7 tons of bombs dropped, 4 aircraft missing
bomb raid night 13,944 despatched (4,752 Oboe), 12,361 attacking 14,095.8 tons of bombs dropped, 64 aircraft missing

 

1945 Mosquito, 3,257 4,000 pound bombs dropped
bomb raid day 568 despatched, 268 attacking 174.3 tons of bombs dropped, 2 aircraft missing
bomb raid night 8,828 despatched, 8,240 attacking 9,530.1 tons of bombs dropped, 27 aircraft missing

 

1944 Lancaster
bomb raid day 26,551 despatched, 23,242 attacking 125,065.9 tons of bombs dropped, 179 aircraft missing
bomb raid night 56,259 despatched, 51,851 attacking 235,939.7 tons of bombs dropped, 1,604 aircraft missing

 

1945 Lancaster
bomb raid day 13,325 despatched, 11,568 attacking 56,084.3 tons of bombs dropped, 69 aircraft missing
bomb raid night 20,051 despatched, 19,071 attacking 79,637.3 tons of bombs dropped, 311 aircraft missing

 

The problem of comparing 2 Group Mosquito operations to Mitchell and Boston is the Mosquitoes mainly flew by night, the other types by day, so in 1944 Mosquito day/night 1,723/8,877, Mitchell and Boston 14,148/1,243

 

When it comes to aircraft costs the thing to remember is to separate out the costs of the airframe versus that of the fittings, plus whether the type is just coming into, in full, or ending production.  US costings as of 28 February 1943.  GFE = Government Furnished Equipment,  Record Group 18 Entry 10 Box 68.
Model / Airframe / Engines(s) / Propeller(s) / GFE / Ordnance / Communications / Total / % airframe
A-20 /  $44,366  /  $30,795  /  $4,428  /  $18,364  /  $2,345  /  $3,813  /  $104,111  / 42.61
B-25 /  $59,358  /  $29,131  /  $3,071  /  $19,805  /  $4,147  /  $8,337  /  $123,849  / 47.93
B-26 /  $106,677  /  $43,171  /  $14,110  /  $21,647  /  $3,547  /  $7,749  /  $196,901  / 54.18
                
B-17 /  $111,443  /  $34,287  /  $3,400  /  $45,606  /  $4,595  /  $9,040  /  $208,371  / 53.48
B-24 /  $115,338  /  $32,659  /  $4,220  /  $49,781  /  $3,205  /  $8,474  /  $213,677  / 53.98
P-39 /  $24,866  /  $12,545  /  $3,256  /  $2,673  /  $4,712  /  $2,633  /  $50,685  / 49.06
P-40 /  $26,709  /  $7,714  /  $2,635  /  $2,068  /  $2,646  /  $2,904  /  $44,676  / 59.78
B-29 /  $362,347  /  $101,685  /  $10,328  /  $125,341  /  $4,836  /  $34,738  /  $639,275  / 56.68

In November 1944 the B-25 was priced at $155,999, the B-26 at $201,965.   So using the US figures airframe is about half the total cost, an airframe that cost twice as much would raise the overall price by a third.  I think a reasonably valid 1941 price comparison was Hurricane 8,500 pounds, Spitfire 10,123 pounds, prices probably include spares.

 

Heading to the USAAF Statistical digest the costs are given as for 1943 and 1944, flyaway complete, excluding modification centre work,
B-25 / $151,894 / $142,194
B-26 / $212,932 / $192,427
A-20 / $110,342 / $100,800

 

While in Australia, detailed break down of Beaufort costs, per aircraft in Australian pounds.  From MP450/1 109

 

Tooling 1,895, preliminary expenses 532, Improvements and extensions to properties 893 (Railways 554, Holden 186, other contractors 10, stores, flight field and plants 143), Plant, machinery and equipment 1,136, office furniture 168, which gives a total of 4,623 of establishment costs per aircraft.
 
Newport Workshop 1,477 (Labor 622, overhead 693, sub contract 162), Chullora Workshop 2,019 (Labor 734, overhead 1,155, sub contract 130), Islington Workshop 1,342 (Labor 516, overhead 745, sub contract 81), Assembly Workshops Mascot/Fishermans Bend 2,510 (Labor 1,038, overhead 1,472), Holden production cost per aircraft set 2,321, Richards Industries production cost per aircraft set 292, freight 350, central office overhead 3,224, Materials (including sub contractors' costs other than Holden or Richards Industries) Holden 821 (746 plus 75 for ten percent allowance), Richards Industries 44 (40 plus 4 for ten percent allowance), Newport (795 plus 79 for ten percent allowance), Chullora (2,780 plus 278 for ten percent allowance), Islington 1,407 (1,279 plus 128 for ten percent allowance), Assembly (4,446 plus 445 for ten percent allowance).  Appendix A equipment including gun turret 2,627  (Which gives the airframe cost as 27,257), Engines and Propellers (Overseas costs, Wasp engines and Curtiss propellers) 12,546 (Which gives total aircraft cost of 39,803)

 

So 39,803 plus 4,623 gives total costs per completed aircraft as 44,426 pounds.

 

Any wonder the correct answer to what the aircraft cost is, "it depends"?

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On 9/1/2020 at 10:28 PM, NoSG0 said:

I recently saw a video explaining how the USAAC already had a plane that could o most of what the mosquito could do.  The P-38 could carry about 2k of bombs?  had that droop snoot thing etc etc.

 

Skip to 23:00

 

I like the P-38, like the Mossie very much.

 

 

 

Whilst he's right to a point, what he's not telling you is that the P-38 couldn't get near Mosquito performance whilst doing most of that stuff and the reason for that is very simple - all P-38 stores were carried externally which kills your speed. Whether consciously or not, the Mosquito's secret lay in the fact that it was difficult to intercept full-stop - not just difficult to catch after it had dropped its ordinance and the interceptor has had fair warning.

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17 minutes ago, Jamie @ Sovereign Hobbies said:

 

- not just difficult to catch after it had dropped its ordinance and the interceptor has had fair warning.

iirc the Germans credited a pilot with 2x kill for each bomber Mosquito and 4 x for each fighter or PRU Mosquito because they were so hard to catch and shoot down

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Eric, I think Calquin was also made of wood, although a high altitude escort fighter Namcu was all metal. This one, however, resembled de Havilland Hornet and not Mosquito.

Black Knight, a Mosquito victory still counted as one aircraft destroyed. However, I believe the equations you refer to were part of Luftwaffe pilots' internal count of adding points towards a highly appreciated sore throat remedy, better known as Knight's Cross. Cheers

Jure

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