Aircraft Designer Question

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by Marshall_Stack, Nov 23, 2009.

  1. Marshall_Stack

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    Were any of the WW2 aircraft designers pilots? I know that Kelly Johnson rode piggyback in the P-38 (not as a pilot) and that made me wonder if any of the engineers were pilots. It seems like it would help to also be a pilot.

    IIRC, I think Kurt Tank was a pilot.
     
  2. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Kelly Johnson was a pilot AFAIK but only flew GA airplanes. Many design engineers are pilots but few of them flew higher performing aircraft.
     
  3. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    Kurt Tank
    in the other direction, he also insisted that his test pilots were qualified engineers
     
  4. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    These days most test pilots are.

    Frank Whittle....
     
  5. drgondog

    drgondog Well-Known Member

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    Dutch Kindleberger was an instructor pilot in army ar force during WWI... but could hardly be described in same vein as test pilot level skills and time.

    Bart Kelly (Bell Helicopter) who was head of engineering at Bell Helicopter for 40 years was early helicopter pilot and major Designer/patent holder.

    Glenn Martin comes to mind.
     
  6. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Burt Rutan....

    I saw him fly "The Boomerang" with a laptop! :eeeeek:
     
  7. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    #7 Colin1, Nov 23, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2009
    Alexander Seversky served as a pilot with the Russian Navy and Roy Grumman served as a pilot with the USN; he went on to do a stint as a test pilot with Curtiss.
     
  8. Waynos

    Waynos Active Member

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    Interesting question, and one to which I do not have an answer. However it shows how much aviation had changed from WW1 when they were ALL pilots :)
     
  9. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    What was the name of that Polish lad who designed PZL fighters?
    I say 'lad' because I don't think he was very old when he died.
     
  10. Tzaw1

    Tzaw1 Member

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    #10 Tzaw1, Nov 24, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2009
    Zygmunt Puławski, 1901-1931

    Stanisław Wigura (1903-1932) from RWD works was pilot too. Died in accident with Franciszek Żwirko.

    Jerzy Drzewiecki (1902-1990) from RWD was the test pilot.

    Jerzy Dąbrowski (1899-1967) from PZL was trained fighter pilot.
     
  11. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    Yep
    glad you told me - I wouldn't have guessed it :)

    He was a pilot prior to becoming a designer, wasn't he? Or am I mixing him up with someone else?
     
  12. N4521U

    N4521U Well-Known Member

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    Tongue in cheeck, I would have thought most wirlybird designers would be too bloody smart to fly them too!! I was an SH34-J ai rcrewman in the early sixties. Sikorsky left it up to the Navy to prove them. Lost 4 pilots and 2 crewmen in 5 months training in SH3-A's! bill
     
  13. Tzaw1

    Tzaw1 Member

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    Zygmunt Pu?awski - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Maybe with Jerzy Rudlicki, designer, inventor of V-tail, who was a pilot during IWW (in russian army) and polish-soviet war.
     
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