Martian Space Ship (oz3863)

 

Martian Space Ship (oz3863) by Roy Clough from Air Trails Annual 1954 - plan thumbnail

About this Plan

Martian Space Ship. Unorthodox lifting body / powered blimp design.

Quote: "It looks like some weird antigravity space ship out of a science fiction TV show as it buzzes buoyantly overhead, its torpedo-shaped hull rising mysteriously up through the air without any visible means of support.

If we tinker a bit with the adjustments we can send it zipping along in level flight at terrific scale speeds, or we can make it all but hover with its projectile nose at a 50 degree angle. Under power it is both stall and spin proof, assuming whatever climbing angle the power output and elevator settings call for.

When power stops, what happens? Now there's the payoff - when the engine stops it does not plunge. It drifts slowly and gently back to earth, alighting so easily we have never found it necessary to embellish the design with anything so old-fashioned and crude as a shock-absorbing landing gear.

Okay then, what holds it up? There isn't a bit of helium in it. It doesn't need a lifting gas anyway, because it is purely and simply, from stem to stern, and despite its lack of wings, a heavier-than-air flying machine.

And that, by definition, means it obtains its lift by forward motion through the air, and not by some amazing anti-gravity device. As a matter of fact the way it works is sufficiently amazing anyway: it flies unsupported by wings or rotors, yet is more stable than machines using either, and manages to retain many of the desirable qualities of each.

We have always wanted to build a free flight blimp. A lighter-than-air job, however, wouldn't be practical. So we started on a 'heavier-than.' The basic section was symmetrical, of course, but swelled up a bit from the usual stunt model section. We used the half shell construction method and it went together quickly and easily.

After completing the experiments sketched out above we had something that flew quite well - but it no longer resembled a blimp, and then it was at this point in our work we recognized, a bit belatedly perhaps, that what we had here was not a model blimp flying 'static' but a new type of aircraft that closely resembled the popular notion of a space ship. And it turned out in line with the dynamics of the thing that rearranging the power-plant and tail surfaces for maximum efficiency made it resemble almost perfectly the type of flying dingbat that the people who see flying saucers have reported a number of times.

An ancient Wasp flew it beautifully from level flight through all climbing angles the engine could handle, and when the power stopped the driftdown was steady and gentle. Its ideal glide angle does not, of course, compare with a high aspect ratio sailplane and is not intended to. It can be adjusted to do about 4.5 to 1 at a fairly fast rate. Personally we prefer a sharper angle with very low forward speed. This permits long engine runs to very high altitudes with little chance of loss."

Supplementary file notes

Plan file includes magazine article.

Corrections?

Did we get something wrong with these details about this plan (especially the datafile)? That happens sometimes. You can help us fix it.
Add a correction

Martian Space Ship (oz3863) by Roy Clough from Air Trails Annual 1954 - model pic

Datafile:

Do you have a photo you'd like to submit for this page? Then email admin@outerzone.co.uk

User comments

The build thread by brokenspar at http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1666181 is good, with lots of info, pics and links.
SteveWMD - 07/01/2013
Add a comment

 

 
 

Download File(s):
 

Notes

* Credit field

The Credit field in the Outerzone database is designed to recognise and credit the hard work done in scanning and digitally cleaning these vintage and old timer model aircraft plans to get them into a usable format. Currently, it is also used to credit people simply for uploading the plan to a forum on the internet. Which is not quite the same thing. This will change soon. Probably.

Scaling

This model plan (like all plans on Outerzone) is supposedly scaled correctly and supposedly will print out nicely at the right size. But that doesn't always happen. If you are about to start building a model plane using this free plan, you are strongly advised to check the scaling very, very carefully before cutting any balsa wood.

 

Terms of Use

© Outerzone, 2011-2019.

All content is free to download for personal use.

For non-personal use and/or publication: plans, photos, excerpts, links etc may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Outerzone with appropriate and specific direction to the original content i.e. a direct hyperlink back to the Outerzone source page.

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site's owner is strictly prohibited. If we discover that content is being stolen, we will consider filing a formal DMCA notice.