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Outsize transports.

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posted on Sep, 12 2006 @ 06:28 PM
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I wanted to start a thread about possibley the least glamorous aircraft to ever take to the skies. The various outsize transporters also known as "Guppies". I have no doubt that most will find this a boring subject, indeed as I type this I think it is a boring subject but i got the inspration to start a thread, and so I did:

The first aircraft of this type was back int he hazy crazy days of the early sixties when the abundance of used Stratocrusiers allowed for one to be extended with parts taken from another. The eventual result was an aircraft lacking any aesthetic skills but highly useful for transporting large equipment for NASA, with a fusalage width of 6 metres.

external image

This aircraft was followed by equally hideous Super Guppy which had a massive 7.6m fusalage. weirdly enough this aircraft was used heavily by airbus, leading to the industry joke that "every airbus is delivered on the wings of a boeing".

This may in part have lead Airbus to look to create their own outsize transport. Evetually they built the jet powered A300-600ST. Proving that just because you are ugly doesnt mean you cant go fast. This aircraft was desperately needed for a company such as airbus with multiple production facilities spread across the
continent. The A300-600ST or Beluga as it is more widely known first fle in 1995 and since has been ferrying parts around Europe. With a cargo bay 7.4m wide and 37.7m long there is very little which cannot be transported by one which needs to be.



Now as boeing is desperately searching for an aircraft to fulfil their need for transporting sections of the 787 a new aircraft in this tradition has been built. The 747-400LCF (large cargo freighter) has been built to save beoing the cost of shipping parts by sea.



This aircraft is covered in greater in this thread here:


Boeing LCF thread


Jensy

Mod Edit: Image Size – Please Review This Link.


[edit on 12/9/2006 by Mirthful Me]




posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 02:13 AM
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Although the Guppies were the first of the massive conversions I believe their inspiration came from two earlier programmes to convert passenger aircraft to carry bulkier loads.

Firstly there was the ATL Carvair of 1961, this was developed by Freddie Laker and was based on the Douglas DC-6 with its entire nose section relaced by a much enlarged version which raised the cockpit above the old fuselage level and featured a hinged nose which allowed cars to be driven straight onto the plane. A small fleet of these conversions actually operated successfully for many years.

The second type I recall is the Conroy Airlifter, this was of the same form as the Guppy but considerably smaller and was based on the Canadair CL-44, which was itself based on the Bristol Britannia. With the Guppy it appears that AeroSpacelines took the Conroy idea and decided to see how far they could push it.


Dew

posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 08:13 AM
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The most obvious ones that spring to my mind are the VM-T Atlant and the Antonov 225 Mriya. I've had the pleasure of seeing the An-225 flying at Farnborough, and inside & out on the ground at Gostomel, and 2 Atlants!
I know there have been a few conceptual versions of the Atlant (e.g. SSTO launch platform), but I don't think any were actually completed.



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