In the the late 1940’s and during almost all the 1950’s they were indeed the very best, by far. Things have changed quite a bit since then.
The people of Convair deserved some praise here: they listed their “Convair-Liner’s” main competitor, the Martin 4-0-4, among the best. A real class act, my friends
Due to a loss of power this “Garrapata” of the Malaga Air Base ended this way, “bebiendo agua” -literally too-, in the rocky Salobreña beach (1969).
A gorgeous incident if I may say so.
The radial-engined Lavochkin’s were, with the liquid-cooled Yakovlev’s, the fighters that allowed the Soviet AF to face in battle the Luftwaffe finest on a more or less equal footing. Somehow crude and certainly not refined maybe, but sturdy, fast and built in quantity. In good hands the Lavochkin’s gave a good account of themselves…. the top Soviet ace of the war, Ivan Kozhedub (62 victories), ended the war at the controls of one of them.
NPO Lavochkin company is obviously proud of their more famous product. One of the only three survivors is presented this way near their place at Khimki, Moscow. They should take instead a better care of it: a replica would do just as well, it is my humble opinion.
The ugly ducking was a touring amphibian conceived in the early 1930’s. Hard to find something more clumsy. Don’t know why its designer, l’ingénieur Pierre de Viscaya, didn’t choose a boat-shaped fuselage instead of floats: its high mounted wing and 100 hp Renault 4 Pci pusher engine should have allowed easily that configuration. The P.V.200 appeared in the Paris Air Salon of 1932, but not surprisingly, It never turned into a swan. Only this prototype was produced.
Charming in its own very particular way. Don’t you thing so?
Poor little thing. The iconic Blériot XI looks so fragile here, it was certainly past its prime at that time and not well-suited for this metier anyway.
Sublime 1915 artwork of William L. Wyllie. (Defence Academy of the United Kingdom).
The smart Ar 231 was an ultra light-weight floatplane conceived in the early WW2 years to be carried and operated from submarines. Its main unusual feature was an offset wing design to enable its two wing panels to fold aft flat in its watertight stowage tube without interfering with each other, the inner section was designed on a slant so the right wing was in fact lower than the left. Tested thoroughly during 1940, the design couldn’t get over its inherent fragility, lack of power and awful air/seaworthiness qualities. Only a bunch of prototypes were built.
At any rate, a superbly elegant failure with some clever engineering behind it.