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1:4 Sir George Cayley's 'Governable Parachute'

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  • 1:4 Sir George Cayley's 'Governable Parachute'

    Sir George Cayley discovered a few things in his day! Look him up. He even re-invented technology by inventing the tension spoke wheel. All wheels up to that time had compression spokes. Think wagon wheels of the 'Prairie Schooner' type. While on the subject of 'schooners' Sir Cayley built what he called 'governable parachutes'. The first were models then a version was built in 1849 that carried a 10 year old boy. A larger version in 1853 lofted his coachman to unreported dizzying heights... probably not more than a few feet above ground as it was towed downhill by a horse! The coachman promptly submitted his resignation stating he wasn't paid to fly! This will be the version modeled. Now... all we need is a suitable tow horse!

    This was going to be a 'secret project' but ... times... they are a-changin'! I'm a glutton for crappy flying models so this one probably won't be any different. The 'real one' flew! Here is the basic pattern to which everything is added. The pilot's butt!

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    I am not paid to build these...


  • #2
    Building the basic 'boat' hull structure.

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    • #3
      Interesting project ! I'm looking forward to seeing it fly !

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      • #4
        Hoot- I'm looking forward to seeing it fly, too! The two masts pierce the decking and anchor at the base of the hull. The masts, et al, will have a multitude of rigging for support. Anchor blocks for cables have been strategically located. The curved bow section was sheeted. A lite ply off-cut was used to make the curved cuts in the sheeting.

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        The flying boat.

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        • #5
          A release was fabricated. It's the same-ol'-same-o! Heat music wire cherry red, beat one end flat with a hammer then drill a hole to assemble into an articulated release pin. The release servo is captured in place and only one screw is needed to remove it...accessible through the cockpit opening.

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          The soaring schooner.

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          • #6
            Now for the 'guts' of the matter. A tiller was operated by the aerial boatman and allowed not only port and starboard control but up and down... like riding over the swells in the ocean of air! The tiller assembly will be encapsulated with the pilot's arm and torso so it will appear as if he is 'alive'! I'm giving up Frankenstein's Secrets. You can see the horn that drives the assembly axially in the second to last photo. The tiller has to be partially 'dis-assemble-uhl-uhl' so it can be placed inside the pilot. More to come...

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            • #7
              Mike,
              This looks pretty cool. Hope I get a chance to see it.
              Steve K

              Kremer Aerotowing Team

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              • #8
                I love it! You don't need a horse. Just roll it down your roof and see if it'll make it across the street!

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