Post by Dave Homewood on Dec 17, 2012 15:43:39 GMT 12
Great to see these new photos Jim! Thank you.
Does anyone know much about the use of the Baffins in the Royal Navy? Did they go to sea with the fleets in the Meditteranean, or Atlantic, etc? Or were they mainly fot home defence of the UK?These were for the Navy the forerunner of the Swordfish, I guess, so it'll be great to have that missing link back for both Royal Navy history as well as RNZAF history,
Hi Richard. The structure of the Baffin is quite different to the Hind. Whereas the Hind has all metal tubing for the airframe, the Baffin has composite wood/metal construction. At the last joint shown in the latest photos the wooden longerons attach and continue for the rest of the airframe. This aircraft occupies a special place in the hierarchy as it is the link between the old wooden frame aeroplanes and the newer all metal ones. The wings also have spruce spars but the cross tubes are metal, again showing the transition. I will scan some diagrams and post them showing the airframe soon.
Ah, thanks, I hadn't twigged about that. I was wondering why only the forward structure seemed to have survived, but it makes sense now if that is all the metal there is. It suddenly appears quite complete.
I had picked up that the spars appeared to be wooden, and it looks like there are some quite good rib patterns to work from.
I look forward to seeing the diagrams when you have the time to post them.
Wonderful to have all the little fittings like the insteps, as well as the massive items like the oil and fuel tanks.
Post by ngatimozart on Dec 17, 2012 20:46:48 GMT 12
Hi Dave, glad to see you up and about again. I found this on the History of War website. I had a look on wikipedia and it cites: Jackson, A. J. (1968). Blackburn Aircraft since 1909. London: Putnam. ISBN 0-370-00053-6. Mason, Francis K. (1994). The British Bomber since 1914. London: Putnam Aeronautical Books. ISBN 0-85177-861-5.
The ChCh library have both books in their store and I could request them and check the references if you would like me too.
It appears that only about 30 Baffins were built and the other 62 were converted Ripons. Those in UK service didn't last long and never saw service in WWII.
Post by ngatimozart on Dec 18, 2012 0:00:20 GMT 12
To bloody hot to sleep so have been thinking and have come up with a couple of things I'd like to present here for critique and comments please.
I am not familiar with aircraft technical manuals so some of my questions may appear a bit dumb.
The comment has been made, either here or on another thread, about tech drawings not being made available by manufacturers, or their subsequent corporate successors, in case of law suits because accidents. From what I understand, Blackburn became part of British Aerospace which is now BAE.
So my first question is, has anyone from this restoration approached BAE to see if the drawings still exist and if so, could copies be made available? So if the Subritzkeys and Shamus agree, I would be quite prepared to track down the appropriate person to approach at BAE and email them.
Second question is, does the RNZAF or the Air Force Museum hold any copies of NZAPs and maintenance manuals pertaining to the Baffin? I would presume that these manuals would have a wealthof detail that whilst not as good as the manufacturers drawings would be a primary source of information. If so, would we be able to copy the appropriate manuals. I am unsure of the Intellectual Property issues here, but generally it is usually accepted that copyright runs out after 50 years. If the AFM at Wigram holds them, and it is agreeable a copy be made, then I would be in a position to digitise the manuals as *.pdf files, because I live in ChCh and am on the sick list at the moment, so have some time on my hands.
Hi ngatimozart. I have been in touch with Michelle Sim at AFM Wigram and she has been most helpful indeed, as she always is. Unfortunately they have no Baffin Manual but she is arranging the copying of two blueprints of parts of the Baffin for me. I am working on a history of the Baffin with the RNZAF for publication in the Aviation Historical Society of NZ, Journal and need this information as well. We have located the whereabouts of The Manual, thanks to Forum member 'aircraftclocks' and are arranging to get a copy. Anything that you can achieve from BAE would be most welcome. This aircraft is not intended to be flown so they should not have a problem with that. We certainly appreciate any help that we can get with the technical side, so many thanks for your offer.
This is the diagram of the Baffin airframe. I have marked where the metal frame ends and the wooden longerons begin. The second diagram shows the rear joints that show how the uprights and the cross members join the longerons.
Post by aircraftclocks on Jan 5, 2013 11:49:28 GMT 12
Shamus I was reading an old Air Ministry minute on Air Publications yesterday, and I discovered a couple of things that I did not know, read, I wish I knew that years ago! The short of it is I have located a parts manual for you. Its for the Ripon Mk IIB dated from 1928. While not for the baffin, I understand that they are stucturally similiar airframes, with a different engine installed. Send me a PM and I will dicuss in more detail.
Post by Dave Homewood on Jan 5, 2013 12:54:25 GMT 12
Something that I wonder about... Why did the Ripon's/Baffin's designer place a dull-wing kink in the lower wing centre-section? Was this the same as the Corsair, to get the wheels lower to stop propstrike? Or was it about getting a few more inches of wing surface to allow more lift? Or soemth other reason? It seems a little bit odd to me, though I like the look of it.
One of the guys I have talked to who maintained Baffins said that all four wings were identicle and interchangable, to make storage of spare wings on the carrier much less hassle. He pointed out that if you look at the wingtips of the tops wings there are ground-handling handles just as on the bottom, and that fittings for the struts were on both sides. Very clever indeed, did other Navy types incorporate this idea?
Don't think it was the case that the wings were interchangeable Dave, as the upper wings had Hadley-Page slats and the lower did not. Also the lower wings had re-enforcing to take the bomb racks which took a considerable bomb load.
While I can see how you could make top and bottom wings for the same side the same, I'm curious how you make a left wing interchangeable with a right wing - wouldn't swopping sides involve turning it upside down, which would cause interesting issues with the aerofoil shape of the wing?
I assume swapping wings would involve removing the wingtip and attaching one at the (previously) wing root and bolting it on the same way up, not turning it upside down! Assuming the wing is completely symmetrical in plan with no taper or washout/in or anything like that it should be possible - I know for a fact the original Grumman AA-1 had wings which were interchangeable between left and right so I imagine there would be other aircraft out there the same.
Last Edit: Jan 6, 2013 20:16:32 GMT 12 by FlyingKiwi
.Does anyone know much about the use of the Baffins in the Royal Navy? Did they go to sea with the fleets in the Meditteranean, or Atlantic, etc? Or were they mainly fot home defence of the UK?These were for the Navy the forerunner of the Swordfish, I guess, so it'll be great to have that missing link back for both Royal Navy history as well as RNZAF history,
Dave, for some reason I am thinking Baffins were still used to teach torpedo launching at Gosport after they had been replaced in frontline service by the Swordfish etc. I'm sure Beaufort guru Pat Gibbs (author of Not Peace But A Sword and Torpedo Leader) learnt his trade on them as he was certainly flying pre-war. I could be getting the aircraft type wrong of course. Remind me to check if I don't come back to this.
From Wiki (for want of a better/faster way to check): Two prototypes and 33 production Baffins went to a training flight at Gosport for dummy deck-landing and torpedo practice, with the first Squadron re-equipping with the Baffin No 812 Squadron, in January 1934. The type went to sea with 810 Squadron on HMS Courageous, 811 on Furious, 812 on Glorious and Eagle and 820 Squadron on Courageous. In addition, 14 were sent to Malta to serve on carriers in the Mediterranean.
From Wiki (for want of a better/faster way to check): .....
[/b].[/quote] That's the thing. I've spent the last few days doing web searching on the Baffin and the Ripon and basically the most information available on the web is in wiki, and the sources they cite are:
Jackson, A. J: (1968), Blackburn Aircraft since 1909, Putnam, London. Mason, Francis K: (1994), The British Bomber since 1914, Putnam Aeronautical Books, London.
So I've requested the books from the ChCh library and will give them a good read. If someone has something else it would be greatly appreciated. We are trying to track down the original Blackburn technical drawings, a.k.a., blueprints, or copies thereof, and/ or Air Publications, technical manuals that detail dimensions etc. Any help, advice, ideas, pearls of wisdom etc., would be greatly appreciated. I have already approached BAE Systems the successors of Blackburn.
I contacted my Finnish friends and they can help, response below....
I took a quick look for our Ripon drawings, about half of them are State aircraft factorys modification or schematic drawings. But there are also original structure drawings for wings and fuselage etc.. I think these could be very useful.