RAF specifies unarmed medium bomber in 1937

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by wuzak, Oct 11, 2013.

  1. wuzak

    wuzak Well-Known Member

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    In 1937 George Volkert, chief designer at Handley-Page, wrote a paper comparing bombers with and without defensive armament. In this paper he set out an unarmed bomber based loosely on the P.13/36 specifications (which led to the Halifax and the Manchester/Lancaster).

    The engines would have been two Rolls-Royce Vultures.

    What might have been had a new specification calling for an unarmed bomber with the offensive bomb/torpedo load of the P.13/36 been issued?
     
  2. MacArther

    MacArther Active Member

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    Dangerous idea. The listing I've seen for a FOUR engined, uprated Lancaster was something like 340+ MPH with no bombs. However, limiting that to two Vultures and no defensive armament, even at night seems to be a dangerous proposition. The Mossie got away with it because it was very fast, maneuverable, and had light-bomber style targets. I don't know that un-escorted and unarmed heavy style bombers could do the same thing.
     
  3. wuzak

    wuzak Well-Known Member

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    The idea was that with no defensive guns and smaller crew the unarmed bomber would be smaller and lighter. It would also be more aerodynamically refined.

    Volkert's estimate for his paper plane was for a top speed of 380mph. on 2 Vultures.
     
  4. MacArther

    MacArther Active Member

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    Even so, if they are taking the role of Heavy Bombing strategic style attacks, I would prefer at least one gun until escort planes show up. It's easier to run and live, true, but if you're damaged by flack or something else and you're running slower then the lack of guns might be a problem if you're intercepted. Also, how small can you reasonably make a plane meant to carry upwards of 8,000 pounds of bombs?
     
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