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LAX
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What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Tue Oct 08, 2002 11:39 pm

Commercial or otherwise.

What were the biggest aircraft flops in history?

And what would YOU consider to be the worst design for an airplane ever?

Here's some ideas ..... http://www.uh.edu/engines/epi1395.htm

This one's pretty bad......

 
gr8slvrflt
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Tue Oct 08, 2002 11:50 pm

Avro Tudor: Outdated from the beginning; tendency to crash.

Saro Princess: Also outdated from the start.

VFW 614: Decades ahead of its time.

Concorde: Put politics ahead of practicality.

Martin 202: Fatal weakness of the wings.

Boeing Stratocruiser: Nightmarishly complicated; dropped engines.

Comet: Sadly ahead of its time.
I work for Southwest, but the views expressed are my own and do not necessarily represent those of Southwest.
 
trickijedi
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Wed Oct 09, 2002 1:28 am

What about the Tupolev Tu-144? That plane didn't last very long did it?
Its better to be on the ground wishing you were in the air than be in the air wishing you were on the ground. Fly safe!
 
LHMark
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Wed Oct 09, 2002 2:03 am

The Christmas Bullet. Check it out and laugh your ass off. Also, Camproni's reputation was basically wrecked when he tried to staple wings and engines on a houseboat. I forget the designation.

"Sympathy is something that shouldn't be bestowed on the Yankees. Apparently it angers them." - Bob Feller
 
Ikarus
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Wed Oct 09, 2002 5:33 am

Spruce Goose, anyone?

Dassault Mercure (too little range)?

Or perhaps that grandest of British design follies, the Nimrod...

Regards

Ikarus
 
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solnabo
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Wed Oct 09, 2002 6:28 am

There was a freanch a/c called deux-point......really UGLY m-f!!!!!
Tack för ordet
Michael/SE
Airbus SAS - Love them both
 
piper737
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Wed Oct 09, 2002 6:31 am

BAE-146 :descends like a brick.........and climbs like a brick
 
mirrodie
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Wed Oct 09, 2002 6:35 am

BAe146- Hmmm, wonder what that had to do with the topic  Insane

Considering its used worldwide, one might argue that it's design filled its niche.


Perhaps this topic is best suited in tech/ops?
Forum moderator 2001-2010; He's a pedantic, pontificating, pretentious bastard, a belligerent old fart, a worthless st
 
bhill
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Wed Oct 09, 2002 6:39 am

Anyone know why the B-26 was called the "Widowmaker"???
Carpe Pices
 
justplanesmart
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Wed Oct 09, 2002 7:05 am

The Martin B-26 "Marauder" had poor low-speed handling, which became more pronounced as weights increased. As a result, there were many early training losses, resulting in the "Widowmaker" sobriquet and a board of investigation that recommended changes to both the aircraft and the training. The aircraft went on to have a very low loss rate in its career, but the nickname stuck.
"So many planes; so little time..."
 
AWspicious
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Wed Oct 09, 2002 9:57 am

This comes to mind:

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Photo © Nikolai Ionkine

Nevermind political correctness - Envision using your turn signals!
 
POSITIVE RATE
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Wed Oct 09, 2002 4:21 pm

Spruce Goose- only ever flew once and cost millions to design and build
Convair 880/990- although technically a great aircraft very fast and all but simply too small
Fokker F70/F100- again great planes but too much competition in that market and this aircraft type did not sell anywhere near as well as the F-28 did
DeHavilland comet 1- too far ahead for it's time
DeHavilland Comet 4- by the time DeHavilland fixed the comet 1's problems and brought out the Comet 4 Boeing had brought out the 707 which was far more popular
Douglas MD-11- The aircraft couldn't fly the range that McD promised it could with a full payload
 
GDB
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Wed Oct 09, 2002 8:07 pm

Are we talking technical or commercial failure? Only fair to highlight technical flaws, as commercial ones are often due to changing external circumtances beyond the designer's control.

The BAe 146 did what is designed to do, as does Concorde, (unlike the TU-144).
what's wrong with the Nimrod? The most effective maritime patrol aircraft in the world.
(Unless you mean the AEW version-that was the result of trying to squeeze the systems into too small an aircraft).

Comet 1 had an unforeseen flaw, the price of pushing the technology envelope.
DH Trident (especially the 3B version), was not the UK aircraft industries finest hour.




 
LZ-TLT
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 6:49 am

Saunders-Roe Princess
years behind time, the constructos have overslept the progress and built a real dinosaur
 
Guest

RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 7:04 am

Anything designed by Airbus....LOL just kidding Smile/happy/getting dizzy

UALrampORD
 
EGGD
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 7:07 am

What about the Bristol Brabazon? that was a rather spectacular flop in the end.
 
CF-CPI
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 7:27 am

The German Democratic Republic (DDR; East Germany) built and prototyped a high-wing jet airliner in the late 50s/early 60s. It appeared to be short or medium haul, was ugly as sin, and not so fine in its handling either, as it crashed during test flights. I wish I could remember the designation, and where I saw those fuzzy photographs of it in all its glory.
 
prebennorholm
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 7:39 am

There is a book with the title "The World's Worst Aircrafts". I bought it some 6-7 years ago and gave it to a friend who built the world's best model airplane to me.

It mentions about 25 planes from the very beginning of flight, among them several of the planes mentioned here, Brabazon, Pricess, Tu-144, Spruce Goose etc.

But it certainly didn't mention the Blohm & Voss Bv-141 - great plane but ugly looking. Neither BAe-146 - the perfect short field low noise airliner. Neither the Douglass X-3 - test flown with what engines were available, but outdated when the engine manufacturers many years later finally came up with something useful like for instance the GE J-79.
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs
 
airchabum
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 7:44 am

The Brewster Buffalo. Underpowered and no maneuverability. The RAF's a/c in the Far East were all wiped out by Japanese Zero's within 3 months.

The Bristol Brabazon. Overweight and underpowered at a time when the first jets could do the same job much more efficiently.
Biggidy biggidy bong
 
airchabum
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 7:51 am

Prebennorholm:

I've got the book and the Bv-141 is in there. It wasn't a bad a/c...it's just that the Luftwaffe didn't like it because it looked so odd.
Biggidy biggidy bong
 
prebennorholm
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 7:57 am

Dear Airchabum, please don't mention the Brewster Buffalo as a bad plane to our friends in Finland. They got a dozen of them in 1939 and used them to down hundreds of Russian war planes during the Winter War.

Sadly the only remains they have of the Buffalo is one tail fin which is proudly on display at the aircraft museum in Malmi near Helsinki.

Those twelve Brewster Buffalos were probably the reason why Russia gave up and didn't include Finland in the Soviet Unien as they did with Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in 1940. They had no Buffalos.

Regards, Preben Norholm
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs
 
prebennorholm
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 8:02 am

Airchabum, sorry for forgetting the Bv-141 in the book.
I gave it away in September 1996 - rusty memory!
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs
 
airchabum
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 8:12 am

Prebennorholm

Ok I forgive you for that...I can't remember what I did this morning! In the book it doesen't mention about the Finns using the Buffalo successfully, but then I suppose they couldn't include it if they had to admit it was actually not that bad. 2 sides to every story as always!

One other one that stands out: the BE.9 Pulpit. A WW1 fighter which had the compartment for the gunner in front of the prop! The gunner would have to hang on for dear life in order not to be sucked in to the whirling blades inches behind him. It never went into production thankfully.

LAX

Great topic by the way.
Biggidy biggidy bong
 
prebennorholm
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 8:32 am

Airchabum, yes, I remember the BE.9 Pulpit from the book.

About the Buffalos in Finland: Sure it wasn't the world's best plane. It had absolutely no business being up against a Spitfire or such. But in 1939 it was a fairly modern fighter plane, and in Finland it was put in the hands of well trained pilots who were trained for air defence.

Their opposition was outdated Russian planes with crews which were trained as cargo pilot carrying bombs. They were sitting ducks for the Buffalo pilots.

Russian fighter escort, if any, was often only the single seat I-15 biplane. They often lost orientation and landed out of fuel on frozen lakes in Finland.
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs
 
IMissPiedmont
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RE: What Were The Worst Airplane Designs Of All-Time?

Thu Oct 10, 2002 11:14 am

The Martin B-26 was called "The Widowmaker" because, in the beginning, men didn't know how to fly it. It took the WASPs (women for those youngsters here) to teach them.

Truth.
The day you stop learning is the day you should die.

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