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P_7878

The legend of the Vulcan and a bit of Avro history

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(This is 2nd of my two SIM aircraft purchased from JF's most recent SALE.)

One thing I'm personally convinced, and I think, most will generally agree that in spite of the dark sides to WW I and WW II, the impetus these events and their aircraft provided for rapid and significant advances in aviation (including in the (non-military) civil and commercial sector) cannot be denied. Imagine the fact, for a moment: During World War II itself, Boeing and its partners worked together to produce a staggering 98,965 aircraft, including the famed B-17 Flying Fortress. Boeing (among others), to its immense credit, took the lead in co-operating with its rivals (notably Douglas/McDonnell Aircraft) to further the advancement of aviation during and after WW II.

And, another case in point here: The engines (specifically the Rolls-Royce Olympus 202) specifically developed for Vulcan (during the early postwar period - first flight August 30th, 1952, only 7 years after the end of WW II), would be later evolved (as Olympus 593) for powering the Supersonic passenger transport symbol of the Modern Age, the Concorde.

The Avro Vulcan (an iconic symbol of the Cold War era) was the first ever jet-powered tailless delta wing design. German born Alexander Lippisch is generally credited with the original delta-wing. He pioneered the very 1st (and practical) delta-wings in Germany after WW I, and studied more advanced designs during WW II. He was also the inventor of the world's only rocket-powered fighter aircraft (Me-163). BTW, it's worth mentioning he was born in Munich (Germany) in 1894, was encouraged towards aviation by one of the Wright brothers, Orville Wright, and note, died, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa (US), in 1976. If you wish to know more about these events, please search for a little-known segment of our collective Post-WWII history (Operation Paperclip).

Avro's Vulcan team (led by Aeronautical Engineer Roy Chadwick) followed up the original/German delta-wing concept with their own independent and logical design process from the drawing board to reality. What's remarkable here is the fact that the manufacturer (Avro) had absolutely no previous flight experience of the delta wing. So, the company initially tested two small-scale experimental prototype aircraft, one one-third scale model (707) for low-speed handling and another one-half scale model (710) for high-speed handling. Although these models were not successful, their subsequent revisions (707A/707B) would eventually validate the delta-design and establish confidence in the project. Avro would then go on to produce an enduring legacy of this unique concept. It's hard to imagine that Avro could produce two memorable aircrfat (Lancaster and Vulcan) within just 10 years of separation, but technology-wise, what would appear to be a century apart! The common link was lead designer, Roy Chadwick, to whom I'd made a reference in my earlier post on Lancaster. Ironically, eight months into the Vulcan project, Roy Chadwick was killed in a crash of the Avro Tudor 2 prototype.

The eventual production versions (B.1/B.2) were named Vulcan after the Roman god of fire and destruction. The Vulcans went into real military action only once during the well-known (and well-chronicled) combat missions that took place towards the end of the type's service in 1982 (the Falklands War). One of the famed Avro Vulcan Bombers “XH558”, had been recently flying with private funding till 2015, an amazing feat to say the least. After flying more hours than any other Vulcan, The Spirit Of Great Britain flew for the last time, on 28 October 2015. There are currently several examples of Vulcan being maintained in "Taxi-able" condition or being preserved for visitation by enthusiasts.

Now, back to this (what I think is a near study-level) SIM. I clearly need more time to explore its many detailed features (including cold & dark start-up procedure and greater familiarity with operation of its Mk.10 autopilot systems (see a close-up shot of the autopilot panel, a far cry from those of today's Airbus/Boeing, but rather advanced and cutting-edge for its time)). And, per my 1st impression here, the aircraft's front office, to my eyes, appears a highly authentic rendition of what I've seen on the internet of the actual aircraft (this SIM is developed in-house by JF and based on hands-on research of a real Vulcan). I'm flying here also the "XH558" variant, the same one that I referred to above. This flight overflies one of my favorite MSE sceneries (the backbone mountain range of Italy, the Italian Apennines) north to south (from LIMC to LICC). Before arrival at the (destination) LICC airport, please note one overpass shot of the spectacular and constantly active stratovolcano Mount Etna (at 10,912'). Thanks for reading/viewing. Hope you enjoy. [JF(Vulcan)/MSE(Italy)/REX]

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Thank you sir! Educational content as well as a beautiful Cold War Lady. JF seem to have excelled with the Vulcan, certainly with the visuals. I regret not being able to pick it up in the recent sale.

However, as beautiful as the Vulcan is, she is eclipsed by the absolute menacing beauty of another V-bomber - the Handley Page Victor (quickly dons fireproof suit and runs away from the advancing lynch mob!)

I note from your screenshot that the autopilot seems to have many similarities to the autopilot in the Victor. The view out of the front of the office is nearly as bad too!

I believe there is only the aged Alphasim Victor (now freeware) and perhaps one other freeware Victor available, at least for FSX:SE. It's virtual cockpit is not that good, by today's standards, but there is a wonderful 2d panel set available to use. I've put up numerous posts some time ago, mainly in the screenshot forum should you wish to have a look.

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Mark: Yes, the comparison to Handley Page Victor is a worthy one. And, you're also correct that the cockpit of HP Victor bears close resemblance to that of the Vulcan. Particularly, the Autopilot panel is nearly identical (typical of the era)...thanks for the comments!

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