J.Wegg General Dynamics Aircraft and Their Predecessors Since 1912 (Putnam)
Model B Flying-boats
A side-by-side two-seat biplane flying-boat with a 60/65hp water-cooled engine was built and flown from Lake Salubria in 1912. A second, more refined 'boat, was built with a 90hp Austro-Daimler engine and was capable of 65mph.
Jane's All The World Aircraft 1913
THOMAS Biplanes. Thomas Bros., Bath, N.Y., O.W., and W.T. Thomas began experimenting and flying in 1908 with a machine on the order of a Curtiss. In the winter of 1909-10, a type of their own was produced and was flown during 1911 by Walter Johnson in exhibitions. In 1912 they continued the same type, with refinements. In 1913 they adopted the overhanging top plane type, but of the same general high order of construction.
Model and date. 1912. 1913. 1913. 1913. 1913.
Tractor Monoplane. Standard Special Flying
biplane. biplane. biplane. boat.
Length...ft.(m.) ... 30 (9.15) ... 25 (7.62) ...
Span.....ft.(m.) 37(11.27) 32 (9.75) 37 (11.27) 33 (10) 33 (10)
27(8.23) ... 27 (8.23) 23 (7) 23 (7)
Area,sq.ft.(m?.) ... ... ... ... ...
total, lbs.(kg.) 900 (408) 750 (340) 900 (408) 850 (385) ...
useful, lb.(kg.) ... ... ... 400 (181) ...
Motor, h.p. 65 70 65 65 100
Kirkham Kirkham Kirkham Kirkham Maximotor
m.p.h.(km) 58 (94) ... 58 (94) 60 (97) ...
Endurance, hrs. 2 ... 2 2? ...
during 1912 1 building ... ... building
Remarks. Control in all: Ailerons, 4 rudders. Elevator operated by rocking post on which wheel is mounted. The 1912 tractor was given up as less efficient than the Standard 1913.
Special: full description Aeronautics, U.S.A., May, 1913.
The move was evolved 1912, but not built till well into 1913.
Flight, February 7, 1914.
THE THOMAS FLYING BOAT.
DURING the past season the Thomas Brothers Aeroplane Co., of Bath, N.Y., turned their attention to the construction of flying boats with marked success. The biplanes produced by this company in the past have held the American Endurance Record for pilot and passenger, and also the American altitude record for pilot alone (12,575 ft.). It should be noted that the machines used for these flights were standard models.
The flying boat, of which we publish illustrations herewith, has been flown extensively with great success, and has, in the hands of Mr. Walter E. Johnson, chief pilot of the Thomas Brothers Aeroplane Co., proved successful as a pleasure craft for use on inland waters. Mr. Alfred W. Lawson, of New York City, has purchased one of these boats for private use between his residence on the Hudson River and his office in the City.
The body of the boat acts as a combined float and fuselage, in which are the pilot's and passenger's seats arranged side by side in a very roomy cockpit. They are well protected against the rush of air, as well as against flying spray when the boat is taxying on the water, by a shield rising from the nose of the boat and extending back to the pilot's seat. The boat consists of a very strong framework of wood, covered in front with a metal skin, and in the rear portion with a specially prepared fabric, the whole being painted with waterproof paint. The rear portion of the boat, which carries the tail planes, may be detached as a separate unit in machines which have to be packed for shipment.
Mounted on strong bearers attached to the struts of the inner cellule, is the engine; a 90 h.p. Austro-Daimler directly drives the propeller, which is placed behind the main planes, the rear portion of which are cut away in order to provide clearance for the propeller. As will be seen from the accompanying photographs, the upper plane has a slightly larger span than the lower plane. Lateral balance is maintained by two large ailerons of the compensated type, while directional control is effected by means of rudder and elevator of the usual type, carried on the rear extremity of the boat. Two small floats on the tips of the lower plane protect that member against contact with the water. Below we give a table of the leading dimensions of the machine :-
Upper plane 43 1/2 ft. span
Lower ,, 33 1/2 ,,
Chord 5 1/2 ,,
Gap 5 1/2 ,,
Length of body 24 ft.
Weight, empty 1,180 lbs.
Useful load 400 ,,
Speed with 2 people and 3 hours' fuel: 60 m.p.h.
Alighting speed 40-45 m.p.h.
Flight, March 7, 1914.
SOME AMERICAN FLYING BOATS.
The Thomas Flying Boat.
The flying boat built by the Thomas brothers follows along conventional lines, no startling innovations being manifest either in design or construction, but, as our American cousins put it, it does the trick every time.
The boat itself, which is 26 ft. long, 2 ft. deep, and with a 3 ft. beam, is built up of internal crossed ribs spaced 8 ins. apart, and covered with cedar planking in cross diagonal narrow strips. The boat is divided by bulkheads into four watertight compartments, so that should one of the compartments spring a leak through a heavy landing, or through some other cause, the remaining compartments would still have sufficient buoyancy to keep the machine afloat.
As will be seen from the accompanying sketch, the upper main plane has a very considerable overhang, the weight of which is taken, when the machine is at rest, by two steel tubes running from the lower socket of the outer plane struts to a point about a foot from the tip of the upper plane. Wing tip floats of cylindrical shape are fitted under the lower wing tip in order to keep these clear of the water. The wings are built up of laminated spruce ribs, spaced roughly a foot apart, and joined to the main spars by metal strips. The front spar is D-shape in section, measuring 1 1/8 in. by 1 3/4 in., whilst the rear spar is of approximately the same cross section size, but rectangular. The distance between the spars is 44 1/2 ins. The interplane struts, which are of spruce and, of course, streamlined, join the spars by quickly detachable sockets of a special design.
The engine - a 90 h.p. Austro-Daimler - is mounted on ash engine bearers between the inner plane struts, the whole structure being stiffened by diagonal steel tubes. On the two front struts and in front of the engine, are mounted the two radiators, whilst immediately under the top plane and outside the inner cellule, is mounted the petrol service tank, from which petrol is fed to the engine by gravity. The main petrol tank from which petrol is forced to the service tank, is situated in the hull of the boat.
The boat, which is of the usual one-step type, possesses a very high free board which slopes slightly outwards, the passengers being further protected by a windshield sloping up from the nose of the boat. Easy entrance to the boat is gained by two side doors, similar to those employed in motor cars, whilst the windshield, which is detachable, further facilitates access to the boat. The lower main plane is bolted to the gunwales of the hull and further braced by diagonal steel tubes. At the rear of the boat are carried the tail planes, consisting of a triangular fixed tail plane to the trailing edges of which is hinged the divided elevator. The rudder is hinged to an extension of the sternpost of the boat, whilst a small fin of roughly triangular shape and projecting a slight distance above the fixed tail plane, completes the tail unit. The controls are of the Curtiss type, consisting of a rotatable hand-wheel mounted on a vertical column. Rotation of the wheel operates the rudder, and a to and fro movement of the column actuates the elevator. The ailerons, which are hinged to the trailing edge of the upper plane only, are operated by a shoulder yoke, similar to that fitted to Curtiss machines.
The dimensions of the Thomas flying boat are :-
Span of upper main Plane, 43 ft. 6 in.
Span of lower main Plane 33 ft. 6 in.
Chord 5 ft. 6 in.
Gap 5 ft. 4 in.
Total area 350 sq. ft.
Weight, empty 1,200 lbs.
Useful load 750 lbs.