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-   -   Poll: Van's Twin (https://vansairforce.net/community/showthread.php?t=202652)

JDeanda 01-20-2022 01:02 PM

Ernie Gann’s Derringer
 
Ernie Gann (yeah, that Ernie Gann… Fate is the Hunter, others…) came to the home drome (Santa Paula Airport in SoCal) many years ago to visit friends on the field. He arrived in his Derringer. It was a bee-you-tifully crafted airplane. The chem milled skins allowed good thickness for riveting while shedding the excess weight of the extra thickness where it was not needed. He was a nice guy, fun to talk to and he gave me an enameled pin of the Douglas A-4 in Blue Angels colors. Of course I still have it! In another life, I worked for a commuter airline that flew Handley-Page Jetstreams. They had chem milled skins and guesstimated it saved about 40 lbs. per airplane. The process is expensive. They formed the parts, did the chem milling majick, drilled and countersunk, then anodized each part. Then primed and assembled with chromate putty on the faying surfaces… and finally applied an epoxy paint to most on the inside surfaces. They were making dang sure it didn’t corrode like it’s predecessor, the Herald.

jrs14855 01-20-2022 02:33 PM

Gann
 
Ernie Gann's wife flew at least one cross country race in the Derringer.

smokyray 02-22-2022 05:09 PM

Thorp Genius, The Derringer re-defined..
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by JDeanda (Post 1583503)
Ernie Gann (yeah, that Ernie Gann… Fate is the Hunter, others…) came to the home drome (Santa Paula Airport in SoCal) many years ago to visit friends on the field. He arrived in his Derringer. It was a bee-you-tifully crafted airplane.

I've always been a big fan of John Thorp. As mentioned previously, his genius was evident in many modern aircraft to this day. For me it was every walkaround on the T-38 and the F16. The full flying horizontal stabilizer "slab"(which improved Mach tuck resistance) was supposedly refined into modern aircraft design while he worked as an Engineer Apprentice at Lockheed. Whether he contributed to or was crucially part of that specific design is undocumented. However, it is engineered into nearly every modern Jet and John utilized it on the Piper Cherokee (T-16) Derringer (T-17) Tiger (T-18) and many other of his 30+ designs.

BTW the Thorp T-18 had RV "total performance" long before Van was tinkering in the barn with the RV-1. The Tiger is a superb Sport Aircraft that I personally (for pure flying qualities) prefer over my RV6.

Interestingly a good friend who constructed his Four at the same time as I built mine "annealed" ALL his rivets in a dental oven. One of several "reasons why" is that he'd heard a famous engineer (John Thorp) categorically recommended it as it had better strength (work hardening) and less fatigue.

Genius is timeless...
V/R
Smokey


Wing Derringer (Thorp T-17)


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