THE DREAM MACHINES OF JERRY BLUMENTHAL
| Jerry Blumenthal's
the result of many years design refinements by this former General Dynamics
wind tunnel model builder. He felt the straked front fuselage section
would be the key to its success. Note that he used wing-tip mounted
spoilers for additional roll and yaw control. The aft portion of
the tail cone also split open to provide speed and glide path control.
Unfortunately, he passed away before he could complete any radio model
testing of the design, since he did plan on building a full scale version
for his private use.
If you like the general
design, we know Jerry would love for you to take it on as a model or better
yet a homebuilt glider. He was not protective of his designs and
wanted them to be available to anyone who liked them and would use them
for other basic designs. However, this design does not have any detailed
drawings (he didn't get that far) so you are on your own if you decide
to take it on as a project.
Jerry's backgound includes:
Model design engineer for Comet Model HobbyCraft, Chicago, IL (designed
free flight scale and semi-scale balsa models and plastic injection molded
scale model kits, including all ink planwork and illustrations); Model
design engineer for Monogram Models, Chicago, IL (design of molded plastic
kits), and; Engineering Ilustrator & model builder in pre-design group
model shop of Convair/General Dynamics (designed wind tunnel models &
supervised display shop making all manner scientific and pre-design models,
as well as, radiographic reflectivity models).
Presented below is a collection
of Jerry's other design concepts. As you can see he was very prolific
when it came to using pen and ink to express his his dreams of what a flying
wing sport plane should look like. Some of these he put into very
basic balsa models for hand glide tests and most had flew relatively well.
You can also see his RC model mixer for use in very thin wings which uses
standard bell cranks available from any hobby shop (this was going to be
necessary for his scale Rattler model had he completed it).
||This is Jerry's Raspberry. Note the profound front strakes of
the blended fuselage and wing. There was some criticism of the high
engine placement causing problems. The short wingspan also may have
made for a high landing speed.
|Manta was one of Jerry's earliest designs. He built several small
hand launched balsa models that flew relatively well, but he didn't take
the design any further. It had a supine positioned pilot and winglets.
This is the BullsEye, which was another blended wing
sailplane. You can see in the lower drawing that the centersection
would be fabric covered to keep it lighter. Jerry never talked much
about doing his designs in composites, but probably they would have been
easier to construct using these materials.
This was sort of a lifting body replacement for something like the
OV-10 Forward Observation plane.
Here are two variants of the same basic planform.
The one on the left seemed to be preferred by Jerry, but the change in
the centersection control surfaces and tip winglets seemed like a logical
extension to him. We don't recall that he ever built any balsa test models
of this design.
As you can see from these two designs and some others
later, Jerry liked joined or staggered wing designs. The left aircraft
represents a small jet fighter, while the right was a multi-place, twin
engined personal transport.
Jerry really liked flying wings, but he also had
many other ideas that included the use of canards. He never made
any demonstration models of these concepts and we don't know how dedicated
he was to following through on them.
Here is another example of the staggerwing approach
(left) with a high mounted, small Rotax type engine. The right picture
is one of his initial designs with a prone pilot position. Neither
of these made it to a model stage that we know of.
Here (left) is a two-place, tandem, twin-engine wing
with what looks like downward flowing wing tips a la Horner. May not have
been practical. Right side shows another prone pilot delta type wing