Author Topic: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond  (Read 5389 times)

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A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« on: November 01, 2013, 02:42:16 AM »
Hi folks,

Here's a scenario based upon real events:  In 1936 the Australian Govt sent a technical mission to Europe (I understand they went to the UK, the Netherlands, France, Italy and Germany) and the USA to evaluate modern aircraft types and select a type suitable to Australia's defence needs and within Australia's capabilities to build. The three-man mission (which included Sir Lawrence James Wackett) lasted five months and on its return advised that the North American NA-16 was the most suitable type.

Following on from this the Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation (CAC) commenced production of the first aircraft mass-produced in Australia, the CAC Wirraway development of the NA-16.  The rest as they say is history.

What if though other platforms had been decided upon.  For instance:

UK:  Spitfire, Hurricane...maybe too advanced to commence with?

Netherlands:  Fokker D.XXI and/or G.I? 

France: ?

Italy: CR.42?

Germany:  Maybe something like the Bf-108 to start with?  Fw-200 based transport/maritime patrol?

USA: ?

Thoughts?  i think that realistically, some of the fighters etc I listed would be too great a first leap.  Probably something like a trainer or liaison aircraft would be the first followed by something more powerful.
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Offline elmayerle

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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2013, 06:41:19 AM »
Going for commonality, perhaps Seversky's proposed trainers, to be followed by the P-35?  I could see a parallel evolution of the design in Australia to what happened elsewhere, though it would be interesting if they stayed "small" and more closely approximated the Caproni-Reggiane evolution than the evolution from P-35 to XP-72.

Offline Volkodav

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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2013, 06:52:35 AM »
The RAAF had only recently started operating the Hawker Demon at this time as a fighter and an Army Cooperation type.  It would make sense to have gone with the Hurricane, Hotspur and Henley along with licence production of the RR Merlin.

Offline Logan Hartke

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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2013, 09:17:06 AM »
If you want the hum drum practical options, you're probably looking at fighters like the Gladiator, the Seversky fighters, the Hawk 75, or the Hurricane.  Other types would likely be the

Here are some possible alternatives exported during that period:



UK:  Gloster Gladiator, Hawker Hurricane



Netherlands:  Fokker D.XXI



France:  Morane-Saulnier M.S.406, Potez 63



Italy: Fiat BR.20, Savoia-Marchetti SM.79



Germany:  Heinkel He 112, Focke-Wulf Fw 58, Junkers Ju 86, Messerschmitt Bf 108



Poland: PZL.23 Karaś, PZL P.24, PZL.37 Łoś



USA:  Curtiss P-36/Hawk 75, Douglas 8A, Martin 139, Seversky P-35


All these aircraft were pretty advanced and enjoyed some level of export success.  A lot of other types were less advanced or post-1936.

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Logan

Offline elmayerle

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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2013, 10:27:59 AM »
The thought occurs to me that, if they are already familiar with the Demon, the Hurricane, which uses a lot of similar construction techniques, at least in the Hurricane Mk.1, would be a suitable follow-on.  You might see Australian developments that were only paper projects back at Kingston-on-Thames.

Offline jcf

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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #5 on: November 01, 2013, 01:23:34 PM »
The 'similar construction techniques' remained throughout the entire life of the Hurricane design.  ;D
All Hurricane fuselages used the Hawker tube construction.
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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2013, 07:32:35 AM »
I find the idea of a CAC built P-35/AT-12 fighter/trainer combo quite intriguing, so.......


CAC CA-10 Murungal RAAF by mtpalmer1, on Flickr

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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #7 on: November 09, 2013, 02:18:38 AM »
I do too!  Lovely profile!! :) :)
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Offline elmayerle

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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #8 on: November 09, 2013, 03:05:12 AM »
That's gorgeous.  I can't wait to see what other variations evolve in Australia.  Perhaps a scouting floatplane derived from Seversky's floatplane efforts?  For fighter evolution, I could definitely see the P-35-->XP-41 development with better retracting gear, followed by upgrades to something equivalent to the P-43.  Beyond that, I can't help but wonder if you might see something similar to a Re.2001 with an Allison or Merlin engine as the next step or if they'd go with a more powerful radial.

Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #9 on: November 09, 2013, 03:32:50 AM »
Thanks.

As to where to next, my tuppence worth would be to avoid the Kartveli route (as much as I like that route) and probably go more in the direction of the Reggianes, with a bit of historical Boomerang/CA-15 thrown in.

As to engines, since Australia had a relationship with P&W and Bristol IOTL, I'd try as much as possible to preserve that, which equates to using radials. I think the inline Reggianes were something of an abberation necessitated by Italy's poor selection of powerplants and the DB engines being the only game in town. That portly airframe doesn't really lend itself to an inline (although the Re.2001 bears it well  :-* ).

Also, as I understand it, Australia didn't produce Merlins for it's Mustangs (but did post-war for the Lincolns - please correct me). So for these reasons, I'd avoid an inline and go with something of a XP-41/Re.2000 clone with a turbo-charged R-1830 or a Hercules and then maybe a single-seat bubble-top Re.2003 with a R-2800 (assuming availability of the latter).

Sorry for the quasi-rambling! Any thoughts??

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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #10 on: November 09, 2013, 03:39:03 AM »
I am working on three variations to this scenario.

  • The USA variation based around the P-35 and associated
  • The German variation involving some Focke-Wulf products
  • The Italian Variation involving ...
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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #11 on: November 09, 2013, 03:45:49 AM »
Ack! Random thought alert. Rather than developing the CA-15, CAC develops the lightweight (Merlin) Mustangs, the XP-51F/G as a direct Boomerang successor....

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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #12 on: November 09, 2013, 04:03:20 AM »
Another variation:  The Lockheed flavour...

Start in the late 30s with the Lockheed Model 14 Super Electra - initially as a modern airliner type but also transitioning into the Hudson during the war.  Also go with the hot new P-38 Lightning as a long range, high performance RAAF fighter.   Later on transition the civilian side to also produce the Constellation before moving to the Lockheed L-188 Electra/P-3 "Hudson II".  The military side stays with the P-38 for a while but then jumps early into the jet world with the P-80/T-33, maybe even introduce the F-94 before moving to the F-104...
« Last Edit: November 09, 2013, 05:42:27 AM by GTX_Admin »
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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #13 on: November 09, 2013, 05:30:23 AM »
The Seversky/Republic Link:

Commencing in late '30s with joint production of licence built AT-12 Guardsman (as the CAC Wirraway) with a combat version based upon the 2PA two-seat fighter and fighter-bomber "Convoy Fighter" variant  (maybe even with a couple of the float equipped 2PA-As).  This is followed a little later by the P-35 (as the CAC Boomerang) - the idea being to first develop the production skills etc on the trainer which also is more useful to the RAAF initially to build up the necessary pilot base.  Remembering also that the two seat combat versions would also be seen as potentially more useful.

AT-12 Guardsman:


2PA:


2PA-A:


Later on, plan on going to the XP-41/P-43 developments but perhaps after toying with the idea, decide to skip to the P-47.  Maybe even have the P-47s as the CAC CA-15/CA-18?  These, probably in the developed P-47M/N variants serve the RAAF post war including in Korea.

P-47N:


Coincident with this, maybe have the XF-12 Rainbow built as a post war airliner/military recon/surveillance bird so as to give a non-pure military product line.  Possibly also the RC-3 Seabee as a post war attempt to enter the general aviation sector.

Rainbow:


Seabee:


Enter the jet age with the F-84 including the F-84F as the equivalent to the real world CAC Sabre. 

F-84F:


This is then followed ultimately by the F-105 Thunderchief instead of the Canberra (maybe have the RAAF simply lease some Canberras or equivalent in the meantime).

F-105:
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Offline Volkodav

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Re: A different slant on CAC and thus the RAAF in WWII and beyond
« Reply #14 on: November 09, 2013, 05:56:10 AM »
Still like the Hawker idea, Hurricane /Henley followed by Typhoons and maybe a two place attack bomber Typhoon, Tempest, Fury, Hawk, P.1081, Hunter.