Topic Author
Posts: 132
Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2004 3:28 pm

Aircraft Stretch/Shrink

Thu Dec 02, 2004 3:31 pm

How easy or difficult is it to engineer a follow-up variant of an aircraft?
Examples would be A318 thru A321, B757-200 to B757-300, A330-200 to A330-300, etc...
I'm not asking about differences between A342/3 and A345/6, and other designs that are way more radical...

Answers appreciated,
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RE: Aircraft Stretch/Shrink

Thu Dec 02, 2004 5:26 pm

It's understandably difficult to measure exactly how 'hard' or 'easy' engineering a stretch/shrink design is, but at least in relation to designing a completely new aircraft, stretches and shrinks are relatively easy (not that the word 'easy' even remotely applies). This is due mostly to the fact that the wing design and most of the systems and flight controls are usually pretty much the same. Again, this 'easiness' is only relative!

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RE: Aircraft Stretch/Shrink

Thu Dec 02, 2004 7:55 pm

I'm also wandering about the streching of aircrafts.

The lenght differences beween 737-600 and -900 or 777-200 to -300 for example are extreme and all this with the same wing (?not sure) and the same body cross section dimension.

I think this is just possible with a lot of strengthening.

But are all types of an aircraft realy equal robust?

Are Boeing and Airbus oversize some parts (maybe the wing) when they develop a "short" plane with the look to future and maybe some extensions?


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RE: Aircraft Stretch/Shrink

Fri Dec 03, 2004 6:01 am

Are Boeing and Airbus oversize some parts (maybe the wing) when they develop a "short" plane with the look to future and maybe some extensions?

Yes - if the manufacturer directly plans the possibility stretched version.

But remember: the tail fin has to become LARGER when you shorten the fuselage. That's one of the points where "easy" is relative.

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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2001 3:25 pm

RE: Aircraft Stretch/Shrink

Fri Dec 03, 2004 7:41 pm

The wing on the 767 could be said to have been "oversized" for the initial 767-200 model. When United ordered 30 in 1978, they were looking at an airplane for use on one-stop transcontinental service. However, the wing was designed to work for an intercontinental jet using three engines of the type used on the 757. Clearly, the wing had a lot of growth available, and although the tri-jet (to be called 777) never went ahead, the 767 became the plane for that market as the 767-300ER.
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