Nov 212016

This video has it all:

  1. Unbuilt aircraft concept
  2. Scale model (wind tunnel model) construction
  3. Cyanotype Blueprints
  4. Complete lack of an audio track

The obvious question that this video raises is… what happened with the model? Most wind tunnel models end up getting scrapped – shredded and melted down to recycle the metal. but every now and then one escapes. The company keeps it for display, or in an archive, or sometimes an employee simply takes it home. Sometimes they end up on EBay.

 Posted by at 11:28 pm
Oct 302016

I’ve been running the Aerospace Projects Review Patreon project for a bit over two years now. Every month, Patrons get rewarded with sets of aerospace history stuff… currently, one large-format diagram or piece of artwork, three documents and, depending on level of patronage, an all-new CAD diagram of an aerospace subject of interest. More than two dozen such packages have been put together so far and distributed. Given that you can get in on this for as little as $1.50 a month (for 125-dpi scans… $4/month for full-rez 300 dpi scans) and you get at least four items, that’s a pretty good bargain compared to the individual aerospace drawings and documents.

Patrons who signed up after the process got underway can now get “back issues” of the previously released rewards packages. A catalog of more than the first years worth has just been posted; each month will see an updated catalog posted for Patrons to order from. So if you are interested, check out the APR Patreon page to see how to sign up; if you are already a patron, check out the catalog here.

 Posted by at 3:41 pm
Jun 252016

A heavily illustrated USAF brochure on turbine engine technology included, among a vast number of little photos of engines and aircraft, a few illustrations that might be of interest.

Several futuristic concepts here, several old ones. Of particular interest is the “Supersonic Multirole Fighter,” which looks like a cross between the old Lockheed Hopeless Diamond concept and the Northrop XST design… tailless with an inlet on top, with features reminiscent of the F-117, but blended rather than faceted.



Of these “Emerging Concept Needs,” several are distinctly old. The middle row of three designs are all 20+ year-old concepts.



 Posted by at 6:08 pm
Jun 102016

This one is new to me… apparently the Germans used standard railway tracks and RATO-bottle-boosted sleds to launch replica Messerschmitt Me 163’s, with variable success. Given the fuel-hoggishness of the rocket plane, anything that would get them up to speed and into the air quickly would seem to be an advantage.

 Posted by at 6:16 pm
May 302016

I’ve recently figured out how to get reliably good-quality vector graphic PDF files from my AutoCAD diagrams.These differ from standard “raster” graphics like GIFs and JPGs in that they are composed of scalable lines rather than pixels; this means that they can be printed off at many scales and they’ll retain clarity.

I think a lot of the diagrams would look quite good printed in large format; I’ve previously mentioned that I’m working on a few diagrams specifically for printing off on large format (24X36) mylar, but I’ve others that I think would also look good scaled for 18X24. I’m making these first seven diagrams available, formatted and scaled for 18X24. They can be viewed on screen, printed on a standard printer or printed by a large format printer all with equal clarity.

If this idea appeals, be sure to tell your friends, family, foes, anyone you think might be interested. Also be sure to comment if there are any diagrams I’ve previously created for APR, USXP or elsewhere that you’d like to see in this format. Some of them would be best as multi-sheet diagrams. Suggestions on how to improve also appreciated.


CAD 007: Northrop Low Altitude Penetrator

A 1/72 diagram of a 1979 design for a B-2 alternate configuration

Download for $3



CAD 006

A 1/96 scale diagram of the 1979 Rockwell D645-4a spanloader bomber.

Download for $3



CAD 005

A 1/144 scale diagram of the Manned Spacecraft Center MSC Orbiter 020, a 1972 Space Shuttle concept with a single 260″ solid rocket booster.

Download for $3



CAD 004

A 1/350 scale diagram of the 1971 Boeing Resource Air Carrier (AKA RC-1, AKA “Brute Lifter”) designed as a flying oil tanker for the arctic.

Download for $3



CAD 003

A 1/72 scale diagram of the Martin-Marietta “Zenith Star” experimental space-based laser for the Strategic Defense Initiative.

Download for $3



CAD 002

A 1/24 diagram of the Lockheed “Harvey,” the initial concept for a low radar cross section strike platform that eventually became the F-117.

Download for $3



CAD 001

A 1/32 diagram of the North American Rockwell D-541-4 “Surprise Fighter” from 1973, an early stealth concept designed to sneak up on Soviet AWACS planes.

Download for $3


Download all seven for $18.90 (10% off)


 Posted by at 1:36 pm
May 142016

A 1952 film describing the turboprop tailsitter. The film apparently had no audio, so a wholly unnecessary bit of “film projector noise” was added.

The film shows some interesting stuff, such as animations of the craft in action, and artists impressions of what must have been early alternate designs including a ducted-fan design and one with an odd delta wing with a cutout for the props.

 Posted by at 12:27 am
Mar 172016

Seems I’ve sorta fallen off the PDF Review Wagon. So here’s a hastily slapped-together review of a great report (the scans, sadly, aren’t so great, but whatreyagonnado…

V/STOL Concepts and Developed Aircraft. Volume 1. A Historical Report (1940-1986)

Report Number: AFWAL TR 86-3071 Volume 1
Author(s): B. Lindenbaum
Corporate Author: Universal Energy Systems
Laboratory: Flight Dynamics Laboratory
Publication Date: 11/1/1986
Pages: 458
Contract: F33615-83-C-3000
Project: 3038
Task: 303800
AD Number: ADA175379
Photo Enhancement: Complete

Abstract Text:

The purpose of this document is to present a comprehensive, in-depth review of the serious efforts made in the development of VTOL and V/STOL concepts and aircraft other than the helicopter. The time period covered is from the beginning of organized government-sponsored activity in the late 1940’s through the present, during which a very large study and development activity has taken place. Conventional helicopters are not included because their development history is a sizeable subject in itself and one which is already well-documented. Included are V/STOL aircraft which do use rotors but are aimed at providing cruise speeds and aerodynamic efficiencies similar to those of conventional airplanes. Although not aircraft in the conventional sense, wingless VTOL vehicles which use direct thrust (rocket or turbojet/turbofan) for lift in all flight modes also are included since such machines do have a close relationship to some of the more commonly accepted forms of VTOL aircraft. This volume contains an introductory review of V/STOL aircraft concepts and the rationale behind them. The concepts are categorized by propulsion system. This volume contains definitive information and technical reviews of the rocket belt, turbojet/turbofan platform type (wingless) vehicles, and turbojet/turbofan vertical attitude takeoff and landing aircraft.


Two scans of this are available online.

Direct link to PDF copy 1.

Direct link to PDF copy 2.

 Posted by at 5:24 pm
Feb 232016

One of an extremely large large number of designs put forward for Weapons System 324A, Tactical Fighter X, which eventually became the F-111. This particular design, circa 1962, is the WADD 46 from the Wright Air Development Center and is pretty typical… a twin engine supersonic design with sizable variable-sweep wings.

Two full-rez pages from the WS324A Characteristics Summary have been posted to the 2016-02 APR Extras Dropbox folder for all $4 and up APR Patreon patrons.


 Posted by at 1:02 am
Feb 182016

Now available… the first of two new US Aerospace Projects titles.

US Fighter Projects #1

US Fighter Projects #01 is now available (see HERE for the entire series). Issue #01 includes:

  • Tremulis “Zero Fighter:” A World War II era two-stage rocket propelled, vertically launched interceptor
  • North American Rockwell D-541-4 “Surprise Fighter:” An early stealth fighter concept with flip-out wings
  • Republic TFX: An unconventionally-configured variable-sweep design, competed to become the F-111
  • Martin Model 302: A large four-engined supersonic interceptor loaded with missiles
  • Convair Nuclear Powered Interceptor Configuration II: A single-seat design with a nuclear reactor
  • NAF Float-Wing Interceptor: A WWII small flying boat to be carried by small ships
  • Martin Pursuit-Type Airplane: An early WWII-era design with a prone pilot
  • Boeing Model 1074-0006: A 1980’s design for a hydrogen-fueled hypersonic monster

usfp01ad2 usfp01ad1

USFP #01 can be downloaded as a PDF file for only $4:



US VTOL Projects #1

US VTOL Projects #01 is now available (see HERE for the entire series). Issue #01 includes:

  • Ryan Model 162: A three-lift-fan ground attack plane with a minimum wing
  • NACA VTOL Bomber: A slim six-engined supersonic concept
  • Bell X-14C: A three-engine low cost close support plane
  • Lockheed GL-224-2: A small rescue craft that can dock in flight with a C-130
  • Bell D270A-900-112: A tilt-rotor that has folding props
  • Boeing Model 837-313: A minor design for a fighter like a Harrier with variable-sweep wings
  • Hughes Hot Cycle Rotor/Wing Composite Research Aircraft: Use the exhaust from a jet engine to spin up a triangular rotor blade…
  • Lockheed CL-1026: A civilian derivative of the AH-56, to carry passengers from city center to city center

usvp01ad2 usvp01ad1

USVP #01 can be downloaded as a PDF file for only $4:




 Posted by at 8:27 pm
Jan 132016

A single painting created (by noted illustrator Attila Hejja) in 1981 led to a whole lot of speculation about an “F-19.”  Even in the era before the internet allowed BS and rampant unfounded speculation to spread easily around the world, this illustration quickly led to a belief that this was a serious design… probably by Lockheed, and probably to be the F-19. It is indeed a spiffy looking aircraft, but it is much more science fiction than aerospace engineering. It appeared in magazines, books, toys and model kits, modified to greater or lesser degrees.

The painting is usually attributed to Loral, which is rather obvious given that it was prominently used by Loral in the ad below. But it appears that it was created for the Dod and is, in fact, in the public domain.


To download the full-rez version from the Aviation Week archive, click here:

And a reasonable-rez version of the painting is available here:

 Posted by at 1:01 am