In 1936, Bugatti decided to set his sights on winning the Deutsch de la Meurthe Cup (Coupe Deutsch), an aviation race consisting of two 10 lap stages around a 100 km (62 mi) course near Paris. Bugatti disliked Nazi-Germany and was interested in beating their entries during the race. Bugatti turned to Louis de Monge, a Belgian engineer, to help design the aircraft for the race. Their design, known as the Bugatti Model 100, was to be powered by one straight eight-cylinder Bugatti T50B (Type 50B) engine very similar to the engines that powered the Bugatti Grand Prix race cars. Bugatti 110P general arrangement drawing based off the original drawings by Louis de Monge. Note the arrangement of the power and cooling systems. Before construction of the Bugatti 100 began, the 1937 Deutsch de la Meurthe Cup race was cancelled because of lack of participants as Europe descended toward war. The 1938 and 1939 races were also individually cancelled for the same reason. During this time-period, Germany began to demonstrate its aerial superiority by setting a new 3 km world absolute speed record at 379.63 mph (610.95 km/h) in a Messerschmitt Bf 109 (V13) on November 11, 1937. Bugatti and de Monge redesigned the aircraft to include two Bugatti T50B engines in an attempt to capture the 3 km record from Germany. The new design was known as the Bugatti 100P. The Bugatti 100P was one of the most beautiful aircraft ever built. With the exception of engine exhaust ports, the 25 ft 5 in (7.75 m) fuselage was completely smooth. The aircraft employed wood monocouque “sandwich” construction in which layers of balsa wood were glued and carved to achieve the desired aerodynamic shape. Hardwood rails and supports were set into the balsa wood to take concentrated loads at stress points, like engine mounts and the canopy. The airframe was then covered with tulipwood strips, which were then sanded and filled. Finally, the aircraft was covered with linen and doped. The Bugatti 100P stood 7 ft 4 in (2.23 m) tall and weighed 3,086 lb (1,400 kg).

johnbr, Nov 12, 2012
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    Aircraft Cutaways
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