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Old 02-25-2015, 04:22 PM   #1621
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The Russian ground effect planes (they built quite a number of them in various sizes and configurations) were rather successful. Some of them were deployed in regular service for a fair number of years. The one in my photo still exists although it's not operational.

The concept gets revisited from time to time (even by Boeing) as a potial large cargo "vehicle".
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Old 02-25-2015, 04:36 PM   #1622
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There used to be Google earth coordinates you could see the plane, looked rather cool from above.
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Old 02-25-2015, 05:02 PM   #1623
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There are lots of recent photos here, at link below - be sure to click on the 15 differernt pages listed below the photos on the EnglishRussia web site to see the full set of images:







Ekranoplan | English Russia
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Old 02-25-2015, 05:10 PM   #1624
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The GEV or WIG vehicles never quite worked as advertized. In the late 1980's an American tried to sell them as personal transportation, he started a company called Flarecraft and boatbuilder Merrifield-Roberts built the first one. It went really fast right up until the crash.....

A Wing and a Prayer - Forbes
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Old 02-25-2015, 10:33 PM   #1625
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The GEV or WIG vehicles never quite worked as advertized. In the late 1980's an American tried to sell them as personal transportation, he started a company called Flarecraft and boatbuilder Merrifield-Roberts built the first one. It went really fast right up until the crash.....

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Interesting article - Thanks!
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Old 02-25-2015, 11:32 PM   #1626
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Haven't seen one of these before. Noble Gibbons 32' on Craigslist.

Noble Gibbons 320 trawler+liveaboard +repowered +upgrades galore!


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Old 02-26-2015, 01:55 AM   #1627
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The GEV or WIG vehicles never quite worked as advertized. In the late 1980's an American tried to sell them as personal transportation, he started a company called Flarecraft and boatbuilder Merrifield-Roberts built the first one. It went really fast right up until the crash.....

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The part I really don't understand is how they could make a turn without digging in a wingtip.
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Old 02-26-2015, 02:13 AM   #1628
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The part I really don't understand is how they could make a turn without digging in a wingtip.
Note the huge, streamlined and undoubtedly very strong "floats" on the wingtips. I believe they did put the wingtip on the water when they turned. Or their turns were very shallow and gradual. However they did it, the things worked.
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Old 02-26-2015, 02:27 AM   #1629
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Note the huge, streamlined and undoubtedly very strong "floats" on the wingtips. I believe they did put the wingtip on the water when they turned. Or their turns were very shallow and gradual. However they did it, the things worked.
I noticed them, but at the speeds they are purported to cruise at, I can't imagine that touching a wingtip would be a good thing. I suspect that your suggestion of their turns being shallow and gradual is correct. Which would be very limiting in where they could operate I would think.
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Old 02-26-2015, 01:12 PM   #1630
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It's my understanding that they operated primarily in the Black Sea. As for touching the water at higher speeds, I do that every time I land the floatplane. Granted, the speed is not as great as the GEV but it's a matter of scale. I suspect they could put the wingtip float on the water at speed with no problem. In fact the drag might well be what helps pull them around in a turn.

If the sole purpose of the wingtip float was to support the wing when the plane was at rest and tipped to the side it would not need to be anywhere near as large. The wingtip floats do not appear to be retractable, like the wingtip floats on a PBY Catalina. Given their very streamlined shape and the proximity of the wing to the water I suspect they are designed to be able to touch the water at high speeds.

The only film I've seen of these things in action is of them going in a straight line. So I've not seen them in a turn.
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Old 02-26-2015, 01:18 PM   #1631
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Note the huge, streamlined and undoubtedly very strong "floats" on the wingtips. I believe they did put the wingtip on the water when they turned. Or their turns were very shallow and gradual. However they did it, the things worked.

Here are some videos of them flying and turning:



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Old 02-26-2015, 01:24 PM   #1632
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The wingtip float touches the water a few times in the second video at cruise speed with no ill effects.
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Old 02-26-2015, 02:21 PM   #1633
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The wingtip float touches the water a few times in the second video at cruise speed with no ill effects.
Well it would certainly appear that my concerns were unfounded. Now I want an Airfish 8...too bad they never went into production.
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Old 02-26-2015, 02:46 PM   #1634
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Only item gives me concern is that each time I noticed the captain's hands on steering wheel he was constantly (and, in very close-tolerance) adjusting the wheel. Seems that would get tiring after hours; computerized autopilot could be devised... I guess??
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Old 02-26-2015, 06:47 PM   #1635
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Only item gives me concern is that each time I noticed the captain's hands on steering wheel he was constantly (and, in very close-tolerance) adjusting the wheel. Seems that would get tiring after hours; computerized autopilot could be devised... I guess??
I got my seaplane rating in 1980 or thereabouts from Lana Kurtzer, a legend in northwest seaplane flying. He started his air service on Lake Union in 1928 and was still at it when I moved here in 1979. Fairly amazing character.

As part of my training, he had me do an excercise during every lesson, sometimes several times per lesson, that was intended to instill in me the correct visual picture for touching down as well as teaching me to very accurately judge my height off the water while looking straight ahead and using my periferal vision.

He had noticed early on that I often referred to the instruments while flying (the result of being instrument rated, I guess) so he began covering up every instrument on the panel except the tachometer and engine gauges. His mantra for seaplane flying was "You can tall everything you need to know by looking out the windshield." (He was right, by the way.)

This particular excercise consisted of flying down to the south end of Lake Washington, which I believe is 23 miles long, and then flying the entire length of the lake five feet off the water in the touchdown attitude at about 80 mph. The attitude and speed were, or course, controled with the yoke, and altitude was adjusted with power. I would add power just before the two floating bridges across the lake to hop up and clear them by fifty feet or so and then I'd pull the power off to drop back down to my five foot target altitude and then put the power in to level me off and keep me at five feet.

I was a wonderful way to learn the proper sight picture and judgement, but it required constant manipulation of the yoke and the throttle to maintain the correct attitude and altitude. Down at the surface the air does all sorts of squirrely things and it takes constant adjustment to compensate for it.

I'm not sure an autopilot would help because autopilots can only react, they can't anticipate. Kurtzer had taught me to "read" the wind gusts on the surface of the water, so I knew that an actual gust is always a certain distance ahead of its visual presence on the water. So one of the things this excercise drfilled into me was the skill of reducing power immediately prior to the gust actually hitting the plane rather than waiting until I'd reached the telltale ruffling of the surface. Because if I waited to adjust power where the visual presence of the gust began, it woud be too late.

The gust would have already hit me and with power still in, I would be ballooned quite a ways higher than my five foot limit and Kurtzer would either yell at me or whack me depending on his mood at the time.

An autopilot/autothrottle would not know the gust was coming and so would not know to make an adjustment prior to the gust hitting, with the result that the plane would be balooned upwards every time.

A three-axix autopilot without an autothrottle might be of some value, but down close to the surface like that, it would have to have an extremely fast reaction time to "save" the plane before it hit the water.

So your observation, Art, of the pilot constantly adjusting the controls is right on the money. That's what it's like flying right down on the surface like that in ground effect.
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Old 02-26-2015, 08:17 PM   #1636
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I got my seaplane rating in 1980 or thereabouts from Lana Kurtzer, a legend in northwest seaplane flying. He started his air service on Lake Union in 1928 and was still at it when I moved here in 1979. Fairly amazing character.

As part of my training, he had me do an excercise during every lesson, sometimes several times per lesson, that was intended to instill in me the correct visual picture for touching down as well as teaching me to very accurately judge my height off the water while looking straight ahead and using my periferal vision.

He had noticed early on that I often referred to the instruments while flying (the result of being instrument rated, I guess) so he began covering up every instrument on the panel except the tachometer and engine gauges. His mantra for seaplane flying was "You can tall everything you need to know by looking out the windshield." (He was right, by the way.)

This particular excercise consisted of flying down to the south end of Lake Washington, which I believe is 23 miles long, and then flying the entire length of the lake five feet off the water in the touchdown attitude at about 80 mph. The attitude and speed were, or course, controled with the yoke, and altitude was adjusted with power. I would add power just before the two floating bridges across the lake to hop up and clear them by fifty feet or so and then I'd pull the power off to drop back down to my five foot target altitude and then put the power in to level me off and keep me at five feet.

I was a wonderful way to learn the proper sight picture and judgement, but it required constant manipulation of the yoke and the throttle to maintain the correct attitude and altitude. Down at the surface the air does all sorts of squirrely things and it takes constant adjustment to compensate for it.

I'm not sure an autopilot would help because autopilots can only react, they can't anticipate. Kurtzer had taught me to "read" the wind gusts on the surface of the water, so I knew that an actual gust is always a certain distance ahead of its visual presence on the water. So one of the things this excercise drfilled into me was the skill of reducing power immediately prior to the gust actually hitting the plane rather than waiting until I'd reached the telltale ruffling of the surface. Because if I waited to adjust power where the visual presence of the gust began, it woud be too late.

The gust would have already hit me and with power still in, I would be ballooned quite a ways higher than my five foot limit and Kurtzer would either yell at me or whack me depending on his mood at the time.

An autopilot/autothrottle would not know the gust was coming and so would not know to make an adjustment prior to the gust hitting, with the result that the plane would be balooned upwards every time.

A three-axix autopilot without an autothrottle might be of some value, but down close to the surface like that, it would have to have an extremely fast reaction time to "save" the plane before it hit the water.

So your observation, Art, of the pilot constantly adjusting the controls is right on the money. That's what it's like flying right down on the surface like that in ground effect.
Understood. Thanks for clarification. - Art
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Old 02-26-2015, 09:58 PM   #1637
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Haven't seen one of these before. Noble Gibbons 32' on Craigslist.

Noble Gibbons 320 trawler+liveaboard +repowered +upgrades galore!


Nice looking boat Larry. Looks bigger though. The cabin must be smaller than it looks.

Actually the hull looks MUCH better than "nice". Bears a resemblance to my Willard but probably has a bit different stern. I'd probably like it. The bow thruster's black hole does not compliment the hull however. Do you know anything about it Larry or is it just a pic?
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Old 02-27-2015, 02:08 PM   #1638
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New build only €199k in Germany.....
http://www.boat24.com/en/Power+boats...detail/209427/

Another variation on the theme.....http://www.boat24.com/en/Power+boats...detail/183882/



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Old 02-27-2015, 02:17 PM   #1639
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Actually the hull looks MUCH better than "nice". Do you know anything about it Larry or is it just a pic?
Eric....click on the link I attached in the thread above.....it will take you to the Craigslist ad.
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Old 02-27-2015, 02:34 PM   #1640
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The ultimate pontoon boat! Kinda thought pontoons were an American thing.
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