Author Topic: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a  (Read 1510 times)

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Offline chrisonord

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English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« on: August 20, 2019, 09:19:00 am »
I  have  ordered  myself  a matchbox  lightning  T55, and instead  it being  an armed export trainer,  as per the customer  specs, I  have  thought  about  it being  an RAF  multi role platform.  I  have  an old airfix  lightning  single seater,  that has no weapons  or instructions,  and  from what I  have  read, isn't a great  kit,  so I  bought  the matchbox  two seater.  Fuel tanks  on the top of the wings, cannons and  a pair of  aams on the fuselage,  or perhap3 something like  the crusaders  four missile  set up. Under the win3 a pair of cluster bombs,  or rocket pods.  The airframe/wings etc,  will be suitably  reinforced  for  such a task. Also, depending  on when the aircraft  is in service,  it could carry a pair of AGM-45 Shrike on the fuselage  pylons,  for SAM suppression.
Chris
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Offline kitnut617

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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2019, 10:42:27 am »
Not sure if it was in the Data File book on the Lightning or somewhere else, but I've seen a set of drawings showing various weapon load-outs where one had two sidewinders to each side pylon. But I also seem to remember reading that most of the types had an un-welcome handling side effect ---
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Offline chrisonord

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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2019, 01:53:44 pm »
Hmm, maybe  in wiff world the aircraft  didn't  suffer  such problems,  sidewinders or maybe even  Falcons (improved  of course) would work
Chris.
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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2019, 11:15:07 am »
I am leaning towards  a pair of agm-12 bullpups  on the wing pylons  as, without  checking the  weights,  they  should be  light enough  to be carried there.
Chris
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Offline Weaver

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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2019, 04:17:41 pm »
IIRC, they wind-tunnel tested twin Sidewinders on Crusader-style side pylons and found that it reduced lateral stability to the point where the aircraft would need a bigger fin (bigger than the F.3/F.6 one). However they did project them for the mid-belly tank weapon pack on some of the advanced versions, so maybe they wouldn't be a problem if they were further back?

There are mockups of some of the mid-belly-tank options. There are diagrams in Chris Gibson's Battle Flight. Colin from Freightdog showed me the brochure for his F.2A belly pack conversion, and the Bullpups were probably going to be replaced by AS.30s:




These are the wing pylons. This aircraft also has the recce pack in the missile-support-pack position, which I've never seen actually flying before:

« Last Edit: August 24, 2019, 04:20:09 pm by Weaver »
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Offline chrisonord

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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2019, 06:01:09 pm »
Marvellous,  I did think of as30's, but  thought them to be too physically big for the aircraft.
Chris.
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Offline Weaver

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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2019, 07:29:23 pm »
AS-30:
Weight: 1146lb
Length: 384-389cm (depending on version)
Body dia: 34cm
Wingspan: 100cm

Bullpup A:
Weight: 569lb
Length: 320cm
Body dia: 30.5cm
Wingspan: 95cm

Since the pylon could also hold a '1000lb' bomb that probably weighed more than 1000lb, I don't see weight being an issue.

There seems to be plenty of room lengthways, so that's probably not an issue.

Wingspan and body diameter? Not a lot in it, but it's hard to tell how significant it would be. Maybe the pylon would have had to be different? It'd probably have to be internally different anyway to interface with the AS-30.

I've got the Freightdog conversion and some resin AS-30s, but it's a bit hard to mock up because what really matters is the undercarriage clearance. Since the conversion kit comes with a pair of bombs (British prototype low-drag bombs similar to US Mk.83) I thought I'd build the kit first, try the AS-30s, then if they didn't fit, I'd either go with the HE bombs or fit a WE.177 tac nuke on one side.
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Offline kitbasher

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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #7 on: August 25, 2019, 12:10:15 am »
IIRC, they wind-tunnel tested twin Sidewinders on Crusader-style side pylons and found that it reduced lateral stability to the point where the aircraft would need a bigger fin (bigger than the F.3/F.6 one). However they did project them for the mid-belly tank weapon pack on some of the advanced versions, so maybe they wouldn't be a problem if they were further back?

There are mockups of some of the mid-belly-tank options. There are diagrams in Chris Gibson's Battle Flight. Colin from Freightdog showed me the brochure for his F.2A belly pack conversion, and the Bullpups were probably going to be replaced by AS.30s:




These are the wing pylons. This aircraft also has the recce pack in the missile-support-pack position, which I've never seen actually flying before:



Weaver old chap, your posts in this thread has inspired a Lightning whif involving Sidewinders.  IIRC the RAF had briefly considered the feasibility of adding wing pylon-mounted Winders to F.6s (one per pylon).  If so, and given the double-SNEB carriage option that came with the export F.50-whatevers, do you know if double Winders were ever considered (or are feasible)?  ,
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Offline Rick Lowe

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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #8 on: August 25, 2019, 01:49:13 am »
The F-4 already had a double-'winder carrier attachment, so maybe they could have borrowed some from the RN/USAF?

I wouldn't have thought the weight of two would have been much more than a SNEB pod, so why not?  :thumbsup:

Offline Weaver

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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #9 on: August 25, 2019, 05:01:27 am »
Weaver old chap, your posts in this thread has inspired a Lightning whif involving Sidewinders.  IIRC the RAF had briefly considered the feasibility of adding wing pylon-mounted Winders to F.6s (one per pylon).  If so, and given the double-SNEB carriage option that came with the export F.50-whatevers, do you know if double Winders were ever considered (or are feasible)?  ,

I've never seen any real-life mention of Sidewinders on the wing pylons. The double MATRA pods had to be angled asymetrically relative to the pylon, presumably in order to clear the open u/c doors. The inboard one was near-vertical and the outboard one near-horizontal, so if it is possible to get two 'Winders on there, I suspect they'd have to be angled as well, probably using something like the twin-rail adaptors used on the Sea Harrier post-Falklands but more extreme. Alternatively, since the outboard pylon is quite deep, you could have one AIM-9 on the bottom of the pylon and one on the side of it, like an F-14 wing pylon.


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Offline zenrat

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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #10 on: August 25, 2019, 05:19:44 am »
That Tomcat is filthy.

But still its panel lines are not as heavy as some would have us believe.
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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #11 on: August 25, 2019, 05:32:53 am »
I think that the worst problem for the EE Lightning was that of drag.  The airframe was optimised to carry two large AA missiles on the forward pylons.  To substitute Sidewinders would, as already mentioned, required a larger fin than was fitted to the F3/F6 versions.  To put them elsewhere would bring other problems associated still with drag.  I have often wondered though, about putting them over the wings, like the drop tanks, on the sides of the pylon?
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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #12 on: August 25, 2019, 06:58:51 am »
Didnít the Jaguars have over wing sidewinder rails? Seems the logical choice to me.
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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #13 on: August 25, 2019, 07:06:44 am »

That Tomcat is filthy.

But still its panel lines are not as heavy as some would have us believe.


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Offline kitbasher

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Re: English Electric Lightning T55/ FGR 1a
« Reply #14 on: August 25, 2019, 07:33:48 am »
I've never seen any real-life mention of Sidewinders on the wing pylons. The double MATRA pods had to be angled asymetrically relative to the pylon, presumably in order to clear the open u/c doors. The inboard one was near-vertical and the outboard one near-horizontal, so if it is possible to get two 'Winders on there, I suspect they'd have to be angled as well, probably using something like the twin-rail adaptors used on the Sea Harrier post-Falklands but more extreme. Alternatively, since the outboard pylon is quite deep, you could have one AIM-9 on the bottom of the pylon and one on the side of it, like an F-14 wing pylon.

I guess then maybe dispense with the fuselage rails, and adapt Tornado inner wing pylons - AIM-9 rail instead of a drop tank plus the regular GR1/GR4 Sidewinder rail (e.g. https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/applications/core/interface/imageproxy/imageproxy.php?img=http://i1167.photobucket.com/albums/q635/1alzaro/IMG_0430_zpskqwigwd0.jpg&key=294259056c5c7cb0309dc6acc3be0bdf9f1e9d594793b4cdebd4a171f2af5fa9)
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