Author Topic: Wallis Wembley  (Read 1636 times)

Offline Acree

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Wallis Wembley
« on: February 04, 2018, 08:55:05 AM »
I had this in mind for the Unmanned GB, but didn't even get started until December, so I guess it qualifies for the Clear Your Workbench GB.  This is the Wallis Wembley: named after it's designer, Barnes Wallis, it was rarely ever called that in service.  Here is a teaser photo my son volunteered to take better photos soon.  When I post those, I'll post more of the backstory.  Here is a teaser shot of the Wembley...
Wembley by cacree, on Flickr

Chuck

Offline ysi_maniac

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2018, 02:35:24 PM »
Superb IDEA!!! :smiley: :icon_alabanza:

Offline Acree

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2018, 02:46:01 PM »
Well, technically, it was Claymore's idea - he suggested it as a use for my canopy-less Blenheim Mk.I. 

Offline finsrin

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2018, 02:56:39 PM »
Now thatz a combo.   Keep thinking bridge buster.  Must be many other uses.
Every part looks just right.  One sweet build. :smiley:

Offline buzzbomb

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2018, 04:41:24 PM »
Nice, really nice

Offline Robomog

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2018, 06:48:59 PM »
Damn !  Another unique  build idea go's out the window, impressive build, like it.

Mog
>^-.-^<

Offline Tophe

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2018, 07:22:15 PM »
wow! :-\ :-* :smiley:

Offline AXOR

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2018, 12:18:28 AM »
Indeed,looks great! :smiley: :-*
Alex

Offline GTX_Admin

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2018, 02:36:04 AM »
 :smiley:
All hail the God of Frustration!!!

Offline Acree

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #9 on: February 06, 2018, 09:20:25 AM »
Better pictures, and the fuller back-story:
By mid-1941 German U-boat pens had sprung up in Hamburg, Heligoland, and occupied France.  These pens made almost impossible targets, but there was one man in Britain who was a specialist in "impossible targets."  His name was Barnes Wallis and he was given the task of designing a weapon capable of destroying the U-boat pens.  Wallis knew that a shaped-charge weapon was the best answer, but the leading technology in shaped-charge weapons was all German.  Fortunately, Wallis was provided with top secret information gained at great expense from Germany regarding shaped-charge research, and using this, Wallis designed a warhead he believed would be capable of penetrating and shattering the thick reinforced concrete bunkers that had shown themselves impervious to conventional bombs.  Wallis problem now became one of delivering his massive warhead accurately.  Wallis crafted a scheme whereby war-weary bombers could be fitted with the shaped-charge warhead in place of the cockpit - the unmanned bomber would have a director aircraft mounted on its back that could separate from the bomber after setting it on a course to impact the target.  Obsolescent fighters were considered ideal in order to leave first-line fighters free for escort and other duties.  It was considered reasonable that a second-line fighter could be able to protect itself on the return journey.  Ultimately, the first prototypes used Blenheim Mk I bombers withdrawn from OTUs, coupled with Hurricane fighters.  This combination proved most effective and ultimately all the conversion used some variation of this combo.  The combination was considered by the Air Ministry to be a new type and was given the name Wallis Wembley in honor of its creator, but in service, they were generally referred to as Piggy-back Blenheims.  The combination shown here used a Blenheim NF.I withdrawn from 42 OTU and a Hurricane IIC. The lower component was expended against the U-Boat pen at Hamburg, and the upper component Hurricane returned safely, but was not used again. 
The Kits: The Airfix Blenheim NF I kit was used (the cockpit having been donated to my Bristol Bergen project).  The upper component was the HobbyBoss Easy Assembly Hurricane IIC.  The warhead was an aftermarket kit from Aires.  The warhead fit almost perfectly, except the warhead was too wide to fit between the propellers, which meant I had to extend it forward.  This added a fair amount of work.  Nevertheless, I am happy with the results.  Hope you like it too.  Here are some more (better) pics taken by my son: 
Wembly11 by cacree, on Flickr
Wembly10 by cacree, on Flickr
Wembly9 by cacree, on Flickr
Wembly8 by cacree, on Flickr
Wembly7 by cacree, on Flickr
Wembly6 by cacree, on Flickr
Wembly4 by cacree, on Flickr
Wembly3 by cacree, on Flickr
Wembly2 by cacree, on Flickr
Wembly by cacree, on Flickr

Offline finsrin

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2018, 10:59:36 AM »
WOW -- can't get more RW correct.  Beauty of a build. :-*
Not a pretty scene if something goes wrong and crash on takeoff !

Offline elmayerle

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2018, 11:10:09 AM »
Ah, and a project kept secret so that the USAAF did not have the benefit of knowing of it before going with Project Aphrodite which got some good pilots killed.

Offline Acree

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #12 on: February 06, 2018, 01:38:02 PM »
Well, the American penchant for hi-tech solutions prevented them from adapting the British method.  Not my fault.

Offline elmayerle

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #13 on: February 06, 2018, 02:12:28 PM »
Well, the American penchant for hi-tech solutions prevented them from adapting the British method.  Not my fault.
Agreed!!  Though having a pilot on board an explosive-filled aircraft, until it was established in cruise and he could bail out, is not what I'd call high-tech.  I'm thinking a similar approach to what you have here, but with a P-51B and a B-17, both designated "war weary", would work.  Or if they decided they didn't want to use even a "war weary" front-line aircraft, use a P-43A or P-64A.

Offline Acree

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Re: Wallis Wembley
« Reply #14 on: February 06, 2018, 03:54:55 PM »
The launch method was not hi-tech, but the terminal guidance was.  I'm sure the ultimate goal was a fully remote-controlled flight, including launch. 

LOVE the idea of a P-43 atop an early B-17.  P-64 seems unlikely due to small numbers, but P-43 seems more reasonable.  Of course, there is the expense/difficulty of shipping the Lancers to England.  Using tired aircraft already there might be more practical.  On the other hand, this is WHIF-world, and what WE think would look cool can take precedence over practicality!