Man hours to build aircraft

Discussion in 'Technical' started by Micdrow, Nov 3, 2007.

  1. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    I ran across this chart of the actual man hours required for the manufacture of a complete airframe, subcontracted work and the installation of engines, propellers and equipment included. Numbers below are total man hours.


    Does any body have any more aircraft that can be added to the list?
     

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  2. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Great info! BTW the P-38 "B" was Lockheed B-1 plant where most of the P-38 assembly was done. Later in the war there was a final assembly line at plat B-6 located a few miles away. The building where this took place was demolished a few years ago and the tower for Burbank airport stands in its place.
     
  3. evangilder

    evangilder "Shooter"
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    Not much of the old Lockheed left over there anymore, sadly.
     
  4. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    Thanks Joe, to bad, I would think that the buildings of lockheed would have made a great WWII museum.
     
  5. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Agree, at least one of them - sadly I witnessed their closing in 1990. Lockheed was quick to make a buck because the land was so valuable but also very contaminated. Even the city saw their one time tax cow dying and emphasized on other businesses. Today a few buildings are still there. Everytime I pass through there it seem like a dream...
     
  6. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    I'm surprised at the high rate the C46 had. it wasnt that sophisticated an aircraft.

    I surmise the C54 had such a high manpower total was its production rate was low.
     
  7. evangilder

    evangilder "Shooter"
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    Compared to a C-47, the C-46 is bigger and more complicated. The fuselage is the "figure 8" construction that has cargo areas below the floor, as well as above.
     
  8. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Agree Eric - both aircraft were big and might of been complicated to assemble.
     
  9. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    The one that I wasn't expecting was how close the P47 and the P38 were. I know the P47 was a big beast but with its two engines and unusual configeration, I thought the P38 would take much more time
     
  10. ppopsie

    ppopsie Member

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    Chief designer of Mitsubishi A6M Zero Jiro Horikoshi wrote in his book "Zero Fighter" about the man hour needed to complete an A6M estimated at 10,000 during 1943-44 period, comparing this with one for a NA P-51 at 2700 during 1944-45.

    BTW I remember losing radio communication over Burbank airport in a C-152 on one Sunday afternoon in early 1982.
     
  11. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Set the transponder to 7600 and fly to Whiteman!
     
  12. ppopsie

    ppopsie Member

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    Thanks for a warm invitation to Whiteman but I landed at Chino. 7700 for one minute then 7600. Respond to Green signal gun from the tower by flickering the landing light on final R/W26 (then only one).

    I was a student pilot and I think it was happened on my second solo XC.
    Happy landings+thanks.
     
  13. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    :lol: Very Cool! I used to live in the area and have flown into those airports many times. Back in the early 80s it was a bit simpler until the Cerritos 727/ Cherokee mid air happened. Flying in the LA basin these day is a bit of a challenge - I used to pride myself on going into John Wayne and only making 3 frequency changes!
     
  14. Civettone

    Civettone Active Member

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    Yesterday I read the Re.2005 needed more than 20,000 manhours to build. Compared to the 15,000 for the G.55. Apparently this was because the Re.2005 was an aircraft which needed complex machinery which was not available in Italy. It also made me wonder if this wouldn't turn into an advantage if produced by a more developed country like Germany.
    The Re.2005 reminds me a bit of the He 100 because of its extreme tight fuselage. Also given the Guidonia report which was posted some weeks ago, it seems the Re.2005 was at least as good as the G.55. Plus, it could carry a substantial bombload.

    Kris
     
  15. drgondog

    drgondog Well-Known Member

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    #15 drgondog, Dec 5, 2007
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2016
    The labor hours for the P-51 went from 12,000 hours in October in 1941 to 2,077 in August 1945... For P-51 and P-51D respectively

    The cost to USAAF in 1942 was $58,698 in 1942 and $50,985 in 1945 including all GFE. The airframe cost less FGE was ~$22,000. The Packard-Rolls 1650 was ~$12000 plus $6000 royalty
     
  16. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    Wow thats a huge difference compared to a P-47, Thanks drgondog. I thought it would be alot closer.
     
  17. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    Then again if you think about it, it makes sense. I read some where that Germany was pumping out Bf-109's at a rate of one per hour at its peak but have found no offical data for production rate's.
     
  18. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    #18 GregP, Jul 14, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2016
    If that were true, maybe they wouldn't have run out of them ... then again, it could be that fuel, propeller, and pilot shortages made them in short supply.

    Germany didn't have a fuel shortage, but the airfields did. Every transport for war materiel was being attacked frequenty and in numbers, so getting the fuel, props, and ammo to the places where the stuff was needed just wasn't happening. They also had a severe pilot shortage in the late war. Almost as bad as Japan later, though the cadre of "Experts" stayed relatively intact with regard to the Japanese situation.
     
  19. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    Directly related to fuel shortage. After 1941 fuel for German pilot training was cut in order to keep operational units supplied. That strategy works for awhile but eventually you end up with replacement pilots who have hardly any flight hours in high performance aircraft.

    What puzzles me is Japan had the same problem. Why didn't they shift pilot training to the East Indies? Locate training airfields next to oil refineries and you should have unlimited fuel for pilot training.
     
  20. MiTasol

    MiTasol Active Member

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    About 15 years ago I had a Boeing report on the manhours to build any aircraft or component that showed that as the team gained experience the hours dropped.

    From (probably faulty) memory the 17th unit took 1/3 the man-hours of the first. This would have been part of the significant drop in the man-hours of some of the listed aircraft. Better jigs so that parts fitted together without any further drilling of attaching parts would have been perfected in that time as well. Some aircraft had very few jig drilled parts early on and everything possible jig drilled with at least pilot holes later on.

    Mi Tasol
     
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