'Flying Wing' (Tailless) Aircraft

Nosmo King

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I have his industrial design book “Horizons”, definitely worth seeking out. And a couple of his chrome soda siphons.

Airliner Number 4 here was very much more of a “sky ship” than a plane. As I understand it, the wing-profile engine platform would actually contain mechanical workshops and whole spare engines that could be swapped out mid-flight in case of mechanical failure. And don’t get me started in the sun-deck, tennis courts, shopping malls...

There are also designs for flying cars, very advanced flying wing racing planes with jet power (this is between the wars remember) and a monoplane with contra-rotating dual propellers.
Dont forget the railway for transporting the engines
 

oxo66

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There was also the K-7, which was actually built and flown.

View attachment 44956

Here is some information about the K-7 and its fatal flight aswell as some more information about the Bel Geddes #4. It was to be a thing to behold.

https://flyawaysimulation.com/news/3322/

I've seen that picture before as click-bait. I didn't realise it was based, albeit loosely, on a real aircraft that really flew!
Although the K-7 was a flying wing, this picture from wikipedia shows it had a tail, though the twin booms connecting to the wing are hidden.
1631480413388.png
 

Nosmo King

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I've seen that picture before as click-bait. I didn't realise it was based, albeit loosely, on a real aircraft that really flew!
Although the K-7 was a flying wing, this picture from wikipedia shows it had a tail, though the twin booms connecting to the wing are hidden.
It was one of these tail booms that caused the fatal crash
 

EnolaGaia

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Given the twin booms and the twin vertical rudders, the K-7 doesn't qualify as a "flying wing." It's twin-tailed rather than tailless.

KalininK-7.jpg
 
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RaM

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That is a truly wonderful flying machine but i doubt it will ever replace the aeroplane.

:omr:
 

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The Bel Geddes is a neat idea but its like the Brabazon; designed for a rather different style of air travel than we do.
I've seen a wheel that came off the Brabazon. IIRC, it was in the Montagu Collection at Beaulieu.
 

Nosmo King

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The Bel Geddes is a neat idea but its like the Brabazon; designed for a rather different style of air travel than we do.
That is a truly wonderful flying machine but i doubt it will ever replace the aeroplane.

:omr:
It was designed to replace transatlantic cruise liners, and to be a 'hotel in the sky' with all the luxury of both but with less travel time involved, it was supposed to be able to do 3 crossings a week, as opposed to one per week for a ship.
 

EnolaGaia

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Bel Geddes "Airliner No.4" was a remarkably futuristic design concept for 1929!
That's all it was - a concept.
I have his industrial design book “Horizons”, definitely worth seeking out. ...
Airliner Number 4 here was very much more of a “sky ship” than a plane. ...
There are also designs for flying cars, very advanced flying wing racing planes with jet power (this is between the wars remember) and a monoplane with contra-rotating dual propellers.
Bel Geddes was an architect and industrial designer. He knew nothing of practical engineering of either the marine or aeronautical variety. He was a key figure in the aesthetic movement promoting streamlined designs and design motifs (e.g., Art Deco).

He allegedly consulted with German aeronautical engineer Otto Koller, but Koller never delivered any credible specifications for the Air Liner #4. Bel Geddes produced many concepts of structures that represented encapsulated towns or cities - including entire cities that somehow floated in the air. Air Liner #4 was a levitating city in airplane form.

The point of this concept was promotion of an aesthetic principle rather than proposal of an actual workable design for a craft. The same could be said of his concept for a streamlined "whale" shaped ocean liner - an Art Deco re-imagining of the notoriously unstable and unreliable whaleback ore carriers once used on the Great Lakes.

This review of Horizons in an art magazine sums it up ...
Mr. Geddes offers us no monstrous new engines of war, but he is not unwilling to try his hand at recasting any object in present use to fit the mold of modern design. The ambition is grandiose. A perfume bottle is not too small, nor an ocean liner too large or intricate. The average layman is given to see what modern design must be like, were it consistently applied everywhere by a single hand. ...

The romance has a double appeal - the ingenuities of popular mechanics are related to those of advertising psychology, and either of the two alone would be enough ... In such a work, it would be wrong to expect any exactness, and coping with embarrassing detail, and probing of underlying principles, whether of economics or of design, and acknowledgment of the basic contributions of the real pioneers ... - the pioneers from whom derive those ideas ripe enough today to be conjoined to the perpendicular "I," one step ahead of being conjoined to the manufacturer's trademark tomorrow. It is to the manufacturer and to the mass market that this prospectus is primarily addressed, not to the discriminating individual.
A "Stylist's" Prospectus
Douglas Haskell
Creative Art: A Magazine of Fine and Applied Art, Volume XII, No. 3: February 1933
http://www.oldmagazinearticles.com/Industrial_Designer_Norman_Bel_Geddes-pdf
 

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That's all it was - a concept.

Bel Geddes was an architect and industrial designer. He knew nothing of practical engineering of either the marine or aeronautical variety. He was a key figure in the aesthetic movement promoting streamlined designs and design motifs (e.g., Art Deco).

He allegedly consulted with German aeronautical engineer Otto Koller, but Koller never delivered any credible specifications for the Air Liner #4. Bel Geddes produced many concepts of structures that represented encapsulated towns or cities - including entire cities that somehow floated in the air. Air Liner #4 was a levitating city in airplane form.

The point of this concept was promotion of an aesthetic principle rather than proposal of an actual workable design for a craft. The same could be said of his concept for a streamlined "whale" shaped ocean liner - an Art Deco re-imagining of the notoriously unstable and unreliable whaleback ore carriers once used on the Great Lakes.

This review of Horizons in an art magazine sums it up ...

A "Stylist's" Prospectus
Douglas Haskell
Creative Art: A Magazine of Fine and Applied Art, Volume XII, No. 3: February 1933
http://www.oldmagazinearticles.com/Industrial_Designer_Norman_Bel_Geddes-pdf

A lot of his transport designs were actually intended as models for his General Motors Futurama exhibit at the 1939 New York World’s Fair.
Centrepiece was a sort of fairground ride, which was intended to place you inside the airliner, flying over a forced perspective model of a utopian art-deco city of the future. The diorama was enormous, complete with freeways and highways, buildings, skyscrapers, moving cars, buses, boats and so on.
 

Nosmo King

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