avatar_Weaver

Piasecki Helicopters What-Ifs

Started by Weaver, April 11, 2016, 08:01:05 PM

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Weaver

Okay I'm starting this because I've just got an H-21 kit (Hobby Craft) but since all Piaseckis are pretty obscure these days, I'll open it up to anything bearing the name.

So what whiffs could you do with the H-21/Workhorse/Shawnee/Flying Banana?

Well to start with, the Wikipedia page has some interesting snippets:

QuoteThe H-21 was originally developed by Piasecki as an Arctic rescue helicopter. The H-21 had winterization features permitting operation at temperatures as low as −65 °F (−54 °C), and could be routinely maintained in severe cold weather environments.

That immediately makes me think of a British Antarctic Survey version of course, possibly a British-built variant (see below).

QuoteOn 24 August 1954, with the assistance of inflight refueling provided by a U.S. Army U-1A Otter, a H-21C known as Amblin' Annie became the first helicopter to cross the United States nonstop.

Now that's REALLY got me thinking about BAS options!  ;D

QuoteOne experimental version was tested stateside with a Boeing B-29 Superfortress .50 cal. remote turret mounted beneath the nose.

I've often wondered about WWII style gun turrets under helicopters.

QuoteXH-21D Shawnee (Model 71).
   Two H-21Cs re-engined with two General Electric T58 turboshaft engines in place of the Wright R-1820. Not placed into production.

Loads of potential there. Since the UK developed a habit of putting turboshafts into US piston-engined designs, you might imagine a UK turbo version, with either two RR Gnomes or one Napier Gazelle.



Okay, so what else?

Well suppose another UK manufacturer did a Westland/Sikorsky-style deal with Piasecki, so there were distinctive UK versions of the H-21. Maybe it'd be Bristol, and in this world the 'Belvedere' would be a licence-built H-21 with a Napier Gazelle? A Royal navy anti-submarine version with underslung torpedoes would be interesting and good-looking.

Alternatively, turboshaft it for any other user. Oddly, the Hobby Craft kit has separate engine doors but no internal detail, so plenty of scope for scratchbuilding/modification.

The Hobbycraft kit has Congo (DRC) markings in it, so you could do a gunship version similar to the ones the French used in Algeria.

You could sell it to other military users. Real users were US, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Sweden and the Congo (not mentioned on the Wiki page). Apparently it suffered badly in hot'n'high conditions, so Australia would probably be out. How about Norway, Denmark or Finland? Italy or Spain might be other good European fits, either army or navy. On the dirty-little-wars front, Central America would seem a natural destination for CIA-funded examples: Guatemala? Honduras?

There were several civilian versions of it, so get the S&M civilian helo decal sheets and use anything 'period' on the H-21 instead. BEA?

Backdate it to WWII. The standard H-21 ran off an 1150-1425 bhp 9-cyl air-cooled radial engine, the Wright Cyclone R-1820-103. The first R1820s (lower-powered than that) were introduced in 1931, so it's plenty credible to imagine more 1930s/1940s development money for helos getting something like the H-21 into service before 1945.

"Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."
 - Morpheus in Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

"I dunno, I'm making this up as I go."
 - Indiana Jones '

kerick

The Arctic versions sound good to me. Turbo conversion is interesting.
I have one somewhere.
" Somewhere, between half true, and completely crazy, is a rainbow of nice colours "
Tophe the Wise

Weaver

Piasecki types for which kits exist (there may be others: this is just a quick trawl of Hannants):

1/72nd:
A-Model HUP-1
A-Model HUP-2/3
A-Model H-25A 'Army Mule'
Italeri: various boxings of their H-21/Shawnee/Workhorse
Hobby Craft: H-21 Workhorse
Mach-2 HUP-2

1/48th:
Special Hobby H-21 German and French markings
Italeri: future release

1/144th:
Anigrand YH-16
Miniwings H-21 Shawnee
Miniwings HUP-2

1/35th:
Glencoe ZV-9P Airgeep
"Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."
 - Morpheus in Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

"I dunno, I'm making this up as I go."
 - Indiana Jones '

scooter

Quote from: Weaver on April 11, 2016, 08:01:05 PMBackdate it to WWII. The standard H-21 ran off an 1150-1425 bhp 9-cyl air-cooled radial engine, the Wright Cyclone R-1820-103. The first R1820s (lower-powered than that) were introduced in 1931, so it's plenty credible to imagine more 1930s/1940s development money for helos getting something like the H-21 into service before 1945.

Hmm... AirCav assaults during Operations Torch/Husky/Baytown-Shingle-Avalanche-Shingle (Italian invasion)/Overlord flying off of CVEs
The F-106- 26 December 1956 to 8 August 1988
Gone But Not Forgotten

QuoteOh are you from Wales ?? Do you know a fella named Jonah ?? He used to live in whales for a while.
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zenrat

Manned B17 ball turret underneath rather than remote aimed B29 item.
Fred

- Can't be bothered to do the proper research and get it right.

Another ill conceived, lazily thought out, crudely executed and badly painted piece of half arsed what-if modelling muppetry from zenrat industries.

zenrat industries:  We're everywhere...for your convenience..

NARSES2

Now I do like the idea of them being manufactured in the UK by Bristol  under licence. As you say it would be interesting to see where they'd have gone with it.
Do not condemn the judgement of another because it differs from your own. You may both be wrong.

Weaver

#6
Quote from: NARSES2 on April 12, 2016, 06:31:31 AM
Now I do like the idea of them being manufactured in the UK by Bristol  under licence. As you say it would be interesting to see where they'd have gone with it.

Could be somebody else as well. Fairey, Saunders Roe and Percival had helicopter divisions, and Cierva was still around. Or, it could be one of the manufacturers that faded fast in real life. How about Boulton-Paul? That would go well with the turret ideas: Defiant turret mounted under the nose with the gunner replaced by a pantograph sight operated from the door or the cockpit and the Brownings converted to fire 7.62x51mm NATO.


Off-topic, but I have an idea for a whole story about Southerland Aircraft, who's history parallels Westland's but with slightly different types, and who end up building Bell helicopters under licence.
"Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."
 - Morpheus in Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

"I dunno, I'm making this up as I go."
 - Indiana Jones '

JayBee

Quote from: scooter on April 12, 2016, 02:33:15 AM
Quote from: Weaver on April 11, 2016, 08:01:05 PMBackdate it to WWII. The standard H-21 ran off an 1150-1425 bhp 9-cyl air-cooled radial engine, the Wright Cyclone R-1820-103. The first R1820s (lower-powered than that) were introduced in 1931, so it's plenty credible to imagine more 1930s/1940s development money for helos getting something like the H-21 into service before 1945.

Hmm... AirCav assaults during Operations Torch/Husky/Baytown-Shingle-Avalanche-Shingle (Italian invasion)/Overlord flying off of CVEs

AirCav What has our brother Steve got to do with this.  :rolleyes:
Alle kunst ist umsunst wenn ein engel auf das zundloch brunzt!!

Sic biscuitus disintegratum!

Cats are not real. 
They are just physical manifestations of collisions between enigma & conundrum particles.

Any aircraft can be improved by giving it a SHARKMOUTH!

Mossie

I could see Agusta picking up some licences too.
I don't think it's nice, you laughin'. You see, my mule don't like people laughin'. He gets the crazy idea you're laughin' at him. Now if you apologize, like I know you're going to, I might convince him that you really didn't mean it.

jcf

#9
Helicopter Division was a rather grandiose term for what Hunting Percival actually had, a small team that produced
one questionable design that was rightfully (IMHO) terminated. Reading John Silvester's Percival & Hunting Aircraft* makes clear
the small size and limited resources of the company. By the late '50s it's absorption into a larger firm was only a matter
of time, so it's not a likely candidate for a licensing agreement with Piasecki, especially as such licensing probably wouldn't
have happened until the late '50s based on the real world timeline for H-21 production for foreign users.

Note that the H-21 continued in production until 1959, three years after Frank Piasecki had been ousted and the company
renamed to Vertol, and also three years after design had started on the V-107/CH-46, so if one has a scenario where the
PV-22/Model 44(civil)/H-21 are licensed to a Brit firm then the possibility exists that the relationship continues with the
Vertol/Boeing Vertol (became Boeing Vertol in 1960) Model 107/CH-46 and Model 114/CH-47, design of the latter started
in 1957.

*Silvester states that the MoS helicopter rationalization program cancelled all exiisting contracts and established Bristol
in the design role and Westland in the manufacture role for "all rotary-wing aircraft carrying a Government
subsidy."
page 184, Percival & Hunting Aircraft, John Silvester, R. J. Silvester 1987. So Bristol handling development
and redesign work with Westland manufacturing the licensed machines next to their Sikorsky licensed machines? It would
be not unlike Agusta building Bell and Sikorsky machines at the same time.
;D

Weaver

#10
There's a set of markings on my S&M British Antarctic Aviation sheet for a Beaver with roundels and Falkland Island Dependencies Survey markings, which is the pre-1962 name for the British Antarctic Survey. That would seem a good fit for the H-21: right period, plus the roundel implies it's a forces machine on loan rather than owned by the BAS themselves, which would be more likely for something as expensive as a helicopter.
"Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."
 - Morpheus in Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

"I dunno, I'm making this up as I go."
 - Indiana Jones '

NARSES2

Quote from: joncarrfarrelly on April 12, 2016, 10:05:32 AM
Note that the H-21 continued in production until 1959, three years after Frank Piasecki had been ousted and the company
renamed to Vertol,

Never been much into helicopters I'm afraid, strange beasts, and I wasn't aware of that, so thanks for improving my knowledge  :thumbsup:
Do not condemn the judgement of another because it differs from your own. You may both be wrong.

famvburg

Revell made a 1/96 YH-16 that isn't too hard to find.

jcf

OK maybe I'm going senile but I'm positive I saw a listing some time back for a kit of the Piasecki 16H Pathfinder compound.
Can't find anything now.  :banghead:


JayBee

Jon you are maybe mixing it up with the Piaseki YH-16A a twin rotor helicopter that Revel issued in 1/96 scale.

Jim
Alle kunst ist umsunst wenn ein engel auf das zundloch brunzt!!

Sic biscuitus disintegratum!

Cats are not real. 
They are just physical manifestations of collisions between enigma & conundrum particles.

Any aircraft can be improved by giving it a SHARKMOUTH!