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Topic: Huge Russian Bomber From The 1930's
Username: Geezer
Posted 2012-12-02 22:37:04 and read 6272 times.

A friend sent me an email, telling about this huge plane that had been built in Russia in the 1930's; the "photos" of it (which were actually "renderings", and NOT actual photos), said the "thing" was as big as the Empire State Building, laying on it's side. In several of the "photos" the plane had huge canons sticking out of the wings, and beside the wheels. It had twelve engines, and was said to have been designed and built by one Konstantin Kalinin, a Russian pilot in WW1.Because the "pictures' were so real looking, I decided to see what I could find out about it on the internet.

To my surprise, there actually was a Konstantin Kalinin who was a pilot in the Russian Army during WW1, and he really did build a "huge" plane, but it wasn't quite as big as the Empire State Building, and it only had 7 engines, and not 12. It's length was 91 feet, wing span was 174 feet, and the wing had an area of 4,887 sq. feet, ( which is much bigger than the wings of a B-52 ) The thing had 7 V-12 engines of 750 HP each, had an empty wt. of 53,793 lbs. and a loaded wt. of 83,776, and a crew of 15 "airmen", (most of which were kept quite busy, inside the huge wings, keeping those big V-12 engines running; ( I hope they had ear plugs !) Still a pretty big plane in the 1930's.

The K-7 actually made 7 test flights in all, the first 6 encountering "severe problems", and on the 7th flight, in 1935, at an altitude of 200 feet, one of the tail booms broke in two, and the K-7 made a nose dive into the ground, killing all 15 crew. (Fortunately, Kalinin wasn't on board at the.time, but two years later in 1937, Joseph Stalin decide to have a "purge"; Many people, (including Konstantin Kalinin) were arrested , charged as "enemies of the state" and were executed. Apparently Russian aviation was a hazardous place to be in the 1930's.

As it was originally built to be a bomber, the only place I can think to post this is on Military Aviation.

Charley

Rendering of K-7 with canons and 12 engines
Actual Photograph Of K-7 And Crew
Actual Photograph Of K-7 And Crew
Three View Diagram Of Kalinin K-7

Topic: RE: Huge Russian Bomber From The 1930's
Username: rfields5421
Posted 2012-12-03 04:18:39 and read 6138 times.

There was a lot about aircraft design, weight, structural strength, stresses of flight that folks did not understand back then.

I saw a detailed analysis of the aircraft a few years ago and it was obviously never going to fly successfully.Too many things wrong that were going to cause structural failure.

The Do.19 and Ju89 weren't quite as big, and more traditional designs. Some others were the six engined Ju 390 and the Me 264,

Topic: RE: Huge Russian Bomber From The 1930's
Username: Dreadnought
Posted 2012-12-03 06:15:25 and read 6064 times.

But you have to love the idea of placing complete battleship turrets (from the looks of them 16in triples from the Iowa class) on an aircraft 

Topic: RE: Huge Russian Bomber From The 1930's
Username: Geezer
Posted 2012-12-03 09:01:00 and read 5970 times.

Quoting rfields5421 (Reply 1):
The Do.19 and Ju89 weren't quite as big, and more traditional designs. Some others were the six engined Ju 390 and the Me 264,

There is no doubt, the Germans came up with some very "far out" designs back in that era, but it seems that they had a much better grip on the reality of "what will work, and what won't work" than others did; for example, the Horton's obsession with the idea of a "flying wing" apparently influenced Jack Northrop, and he became completely obsessed as well with the idea of a flying wing, then after much effort and seemingly little real world practicality, someone else takes a look at this concept years later, and we end up with the B-2 bomber !

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 2):
But you have to love the idea of placing complete battleship turrets (from the looks of them 16in triples from the Iowa class) on an aircraft 

Apparently, who ever came up with those fanciful "renderings" of this thing spent quite a bit of time on their "art work"; on one of the many web sites I looked at, they had several pictures of the K-7 actually "taking on" a "flying saucer", presumably from another "galaxy" !

The one thing that I kept thinking about after I learned that there really had been a "real" K-7, and they discussed the fact that most of the crew were engine mechanics who actually had to work on those huge 750 hp V-12 engines inside the wing to keep them running, I was struck by the thought, it must have set a new record for "world's noisiest working environment"!
And of course, artists are never troubled by such trivialities as "weight", "structural integrity" and so-on; their only consideration is "how it looks".........

Topic: RE: Huge Russian Bomber From The 1930's
Username: rfields5421
Posted 2012-12-03 10:30:13 and read 5912 times.

Quoting Geezer (Reply 3):
it must have set a new record for "world's noisiest working environment"!

Back near 40 years ago, I knew a USAF retiree who had been an airborne engine mechanic on B-36s. They also worked on the engines in flight. He said the hardest job was having to change a cylinder.

And of course since they had to shut down the engine inflight to do so - the pilots were always pushing to get the engine back on-line.

Topic: RE: Huge Russian Bomber From The 1930's
Username: GDB
Posted 2012-12-03 12:11:15 and read 5842 times.

I've seen footage of how Russian airborne troops - the USSR was an early innovator in this field - left their aircraft. It was a huge bomber like machine, rather like the subject of this thread though likely nowhere near as large.
The troops massed on the wings and slid down the surface, off the trailing edge, several at a time.
But I'm not aware of any major use of Soviet airborne troops in WW2.

Topic: RE: Huge Russian Bomber From The 1930's
Username: KC135Hydraulics
Posted 2012-12-03 15:28:29 and read 5735 times.

You must be referring to the TB-3! The paratroopers would ride on the top of the wing and slide down when commanded to do so. Here is a Wikipedia page for the TB-3:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TB-3

Topic: RE: Huge Russian Bomber From The 1930's
Username: Mortyman
Posted 2012-12-03 15:54:52 and read 5721 times.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kalinin_K-7

http://www.ctrl-c.liu.se/misc/ram/k7giant.html

http://www.ctrl-c.liu.se/misc/ram/k-7.html

Video of the K7

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6C_8GGhY6kA

Reportage on Kalinin Konstantin and actual video of the K - 7 flying ... and crashing .... ( In russian ) :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wpVVInDOFXM

[Edited 2012-12-03 16:06:51]

Topic: RE: Huge Russian Bomber From The 1930's
Username: Newark727
Posted 2012-12-03 17:11:14 and read 5669 times.

Quoting Geezer (Reply 3):

And of course, artists are never troubled by such trivialities as "weight", "structural integrity" and so-on; their only consideration is "how it looks".........

As an art student looking to get into the entertainment industry I can tell you that it's a bit more than that, actually. It depends on what the fictional vehicle you're making is going to be used for, and in what context. Lots of fantasy type settings love impossible airship type things but there there is also "two days into the future" type sci-fi where it's basically a different surface treatment on very recognizable and rational shapes. One thing some artists like to say is that realistic elements make the parts that are actually pure fantasy more grounded and acceptable.

Topic: RE: Huge Russian Bomber From The 1930's
Username: DarkSnowyNight
Posted 2012-12-03 19:31:38 and read 5600 times.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 2):

But you have to love the idea of placing complete battleship turrets (from the looks of them 16in triples from the Iowa class) on an aircraft 

There is something awesome about this in a very steampunk manner, yes.

Quoting Newark727 (Reply 8):
but there there is also "two days into the future" type sci-fi where it's basically a different surface treatment on very recognizable and rational shapes. One thing some artists like to say is that realistic elements make the parts that are actually pure fantasy more grounded and acceptable.

I love sci-fi, but yes, stories are so much better when we don't see "cheats" (FTL travel -at least on a casual basis-, teleportation, etc) all over the place. Things are indeed more enjoyable when they are plausible.


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