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Thread: Sískin

  1. #31
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    Maxim, a most worthy bump, let's call it the first positive signs of pregnancy for a flying Siskin...

    S43 (and S40 I have seen referenced for late 20's Bristol Bulldog sections) I hypothesise, are BESA standards, British Engineering Standards Association (1918 - 1931). BESA became British Standards Association after 1931 and I hyperventilate over a hyper-hypothesis that they dumped some archaic standards in 1931, as I have yet to find evidence in literature for these Standards and their characteristics. There is a real missing link for material Standards between 1918 and 1930.

    I will hazard that S43 and S40 are 3% nickel alloy steels in sheet form, superseded by nickel -chromium sheet alloys from about 1928 onwards.

    I will further hazard that GE100 is a proprietory appellation for an Armstrong Whitworth material, or even heap hazard upon hazard by further hazarding that it is a material specified by a certain Major Green who was leading research into strip steel structures from 1918 onwards.

    What is interesting in the rib boom profile shown is :

    1. Use of 8 thou thick material, basically a human hair thin structural component. This is consistent with Bristol Bulldog at 9 thou for a similar rib boom section, but less material once the profile is straightened out.
    2. On a strength to weight ratio, this implies that the Bulldog's S40 and Siskin's S43 may accord with the use of DTD100 rib booms on Bulldog, Wapiti. DTD 100 is nickel chrome alloy steel, 45T ultimate strength, a balance of high strength with the ductility to enable the elaborate roll forming of the section.
    3. While the drawing looks quite detailed, once the roll forming is set up, the material runs copiously, and the system of manufacture is not as fussy as first impressions tend to leave.

    Surely the RCAF would have had maintenance support in the form of plans and material specifications to support the type? Where are interwar military records kept? What is the Canadian national archive?

  2. #32
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    P&P, all RCAF records of this type are with our national archive, Libraries and Archives Canada. So far we have turned up little but correspondence relating to Sískin use. That does not mean it's not available, just not indexed in a way that makes sense to me. The Canada Aviation and Space Museum has nothing in the library but we are checking hidden rooms etc just in case. I will lean on engineering acquaintances re BESA.

    Regards
    John

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by sopwith.7f1 View Post
    .....Saw some of the RAFM's wings at Stafford last Friday. Bob T..
    Now have confirmation that the wings held by the RAFMuseum are 2 x starboard upper mainplanes from Siskin III and 1 x starboard upper mainplane from Siskin IIIA. One of the three (presumably one of the Siskin III uppers) is displayed upside down at the Midland AM, Coventry. Also displayed nearby is what appears to be a wingtip of much smaller chord - could be from a lower plane or a tailplane?

    Roger Smith.
    A Blenheim, Beaufighter and Beaufort - together in one Museum. Who'd have thought that possible in 1967?

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxim08 View Post
    ....I trust that this drawing segment will be of interest. It shows a cross-section of the wing rib perimeter structure. This will give many a sense of how complex this aircraft was to build. No simple channel, but a complex rolling exercise only .4" wide and 0.387" high.

    Regards John
    and, presumably, there would be curvature along the rib as well ??

    Roger Smith.
    A Blenheim, Beaufighter and Beaufort - together in one Museum. Who'd have thought that possible in 1967?

  5. #35
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    Roger, the chord on the lower wing is one half of the upper at 3'6" vs 7'. If you have the opportunity to take a photo of this wing segment it would be appreciated. You are correct regarding curvature in both the upper and lower booms of the rib.

    Regards
    John

  6. #36
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    This may be old news to you but this article is rather handy where Armstrong Whitworth aircraft are concerned.

    https://www.flightglobal.com/pdfarch...arch=whitworth metal

    Anne
    pb::

  7. #37
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    Anne, an excellent article as many in Flight are. Thank you. I am most intrigued by the use of modular rolling units with common structure an interchangeable rolls. For several years I have been rolling metric streamline tubing for early Fokker aircraft in much the same way.

    Regards
    John

  8. #38
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    Another Siskin thread from some years ago.

    http://forum.keypublishing.com/showt...W-Siskin-again

    Trying to track down some of the forum members who posted years ago who may have access to A-W Siskin information.

    Regards
    John

  9. #39
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    Maxim08

    I found this comment on another web site. This maybe another clue for you to chase up.

    Bill Griffin, 28.09.2008
    As an ex apprentice of AWA ;I thought the Siskin was an important machine in the history of aviation. So when some years ado I was struck down with cancer; as a project I did a search for technical info on it. As a result, I saved some company construction drawings and have a copy of the AP. I endeavoured to chase up the remains of a Siskin that was supposed to be in a scrap yard in Canada, close to the Niagra Falls. I know it was there at some time previously; however my health was such that even with the best of intentions, my effort proved worthless. If anyone reads this who may know this scrap yard, will they please on my behalf pick up where I left off. You never know it could still be there.

  10. #40
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    Lots of activity on this forum. I'll have to be more diligent with posting if I want to be able to find the thread.

    2 views of a Jaguar engine.



    Some cylinder detail:



    Regards,
    John

  11. #41
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    It's amazing what they can do these days with computer simulations! Even the grease looks real.

  12. #42
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    [QUOTE=Maxim08;2308175]I have drawings for the compression leg and undimensioned GA, but specifics as to geometry, articulated joints etc would be a great help. /QUOTE]

    Hmmmmmmmmmmmm...

    http://navigator.rafmuseum.org/resul...=1&view=detail

    Anne
    pb::

  13. #43
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    Long time since the last post here but while it may be out of the collective mind, I am slowly moving forward with this project.

    I recently compiled a list of electrical items for the aircraft cribbed from the AP. One item that struck a chord was the wind generator, 5C/307. Earlier today while searching through the garage for a starter for another aircraft, I came across this.



    Sure enough:



    A little bruised but substantially complete and it turns. Of interest is the overhaul date of 1953. Since 'we' had no Siskins then, can anyone suggest another aircraft that would have used this?

    FYI I located an ASI, altimeter and oil pressure gauge in my motley collection of items that are correct for the panel of a Mk III Siskin. A newer 6 gang lighting control switchbox will substitute until the correct one is located and a neighbor has offered to loan a Constinesco hand pump for the gun synchronizing gear. A single pole 'dolly' switch is on the way and I am currently searching for a dual 'dolly' switch for the magnetos.
    The intention is to assemble an instrument panel as a temporary display piece and, since I only have a dimensioned drawing for a Mk III panel, I am currently giving the nod to a DC -dual control- variant, two of which served in Canada.

    Regards,
    John

  14. #44
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    A couple of photos to keep the wheels turning. While this is still mostly a research project, a few bits and pieces continue to pop up. I have assembled a simple display in the hangar with a series of photos and a few items not mentioned before such as the Aldis sight. There is also a hand charging pump for the Constinesco gun synchronizing gear and a smattering of electrical fittings not in the display.



    The documentation for research is accumulating.



    What you can see are:

    AP 1317 'The Siskin IIIa Aeroplane. Jaguar Engine.', 1928
    AP 1107 'A Manual of Rigging for Aircraft', 1931
    Courtesy of the RAF Museum, copies of:
    AP1128 'Siskin III Provisional Schedule of Spare Parts', 1925
    AP1360 'Appendix A for Siskin Dual Control'
    These last two documents are valuable because they list the material specification for each part.
    Additionally I have:
    'Report on the Materials of Construction Used in Aircraft and Aircraft Engines', 1920
    SAE Aeronautical Information Report No. 8, 'United States and British Commonwealth of Nations Aircraft Metals', 1944
    And just to ensure that I can still comprehend English,
    'British Standard Glossary of Aeronautical Terms', 1933, British Standards Institute.

    My current hands on work includes a 1917 Daimler Mercedes D III aero engine, a Fokker D VII replica and bits & pieces for a F2b Bristol 'Fighter' restoration. It may be awhile before I start making parts for a Siskin but in the meantime the search for information and components has been fascinating.

    Regards
    John

  15. #45
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    Vintage Material Specifications -Wood

    Happily working my way through the Sískin parts manuals and drawings in an attempt to define the materials used. Forum members powerandpassion and Bulldogbuilder have been quite helpful with steel specifications but I am now challenged with, oddly enough for the RAF's first all metal aircraft, wood.

    All of the wood items have a numeric designation prefaced with a 'V'. Some of these I have been able to uncover via various vintage texts but there are many holes left. Here's what I have to date. If anyone can add to this it will, as always, be appreciated.

    V4 - English Ash
    V5 - Walnut
    V7 - Mahogany (Honduran)

    V3 - 3ply plywood. Plywood has its own intrigue as there is no reference to how thick the various ply woods are, something that I suspect is defined in a specification somewhere. I do have test reports on various woods used in plywood and each test ply is 3/32" thick. That would make 3ply 9/32" or 0.281", an uncommon size.

    I will be building a temporary display instrument panel. The drawing calls for 3 ply stiffened with timber of an unknown spec. My current inclination is for either a domestic (Canada) 1/4" ply with spruce or pine stiffeners or 6mm Baltic birch aircraft plywood.

    Comments on the above are welcomed.

    Regards
    John

  16. #46
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    You might try contacting the team that built the very nice Gloster Gamecock replica now at the Jet Age Museum.

  17. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxim08 View Post
    Happily working my way through the Sískin parts manuals and drawings in an attempt to define the materials used. Forum members powerandpassion and Bulldogbuilder have been quite helpful with steel specifications but I am now challenged with, oddly enough for the RAF's first all metal aircraft, wood.

    All of the wood items have a numeric designation prefaced with a 'V'. Some of these I have been able to uncover via various vintage texts but there are many holes left. Here's what I have to date. If anyone can add to this it will, as always, be appreciated.

    V4 - English Ash
    V5 - Walnut
    V7 - Mahogany (Honduran)

    V3 - 3ply plywood. Plywood has its own intrigue as there is no reference to how thick the various ply woods are, something that I suspect is defined in a specification somewhere. I do have test reports on various woods used in plywood and each test ply is 3/32" thick. That would make 3ply 9/32" or 0.281", an uncommon size.

    I will be building a temporary display instrument panel. The drawing calls for 3 ply stiffened with timber of an unknown spec. My current inclination is for either a domestic (Canada) 1/4" ply with spruce or pine stiffeners or 6mm Baltic birch aircraft plywood.

    Comments on the above are welcomed.

    Regards
    John
    Hi john,

    I will help you where I can.

    Here is a scan of the wood specification page in my copy of Molesworth's "Aeronautical Engineers Pocket-Book", second edition, published 1947.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    More to follow,

    Super project, keep on going
    Last edited by dcollins103; 1st December 2016 at 20:12.

  18. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by dcollins103 View Post
    Here is a scan of the wood specification page in my copy of Molesworth's "Aeronautical Engineers Pocket-Book", second edition, published 1947. Click image for larger version. 

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    I do not know this work but, please, do not tell me that the author's forename is Nigel!

  19. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by avion ancien View Post
    I do not know this work but, please, do not tell me that the author's forename is Nigel!
    I've just looked the name up. Haha! Not the same "author"
    David Collins
    The de Havilland Hornet Project

  20. #50
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    Hi,
    Nigel here, not the one mentioned above ! I expect you are all aware (I wasn't until just now) that there is a Jaguar IV mounted on a Hawker Dankok at Stauning (Denmark). Of course its not going anywhere soon but it might indicate an area that could yield another one?
    Good luck and pre-Xmas cheer chaps !

  21. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by aircraftclocks View Post
    Maxim08

    I found this comment on another web site. This maybe another clue for you to chase up.

    Bill Griffin, 28.09.2008
    As an ex apprentice of AWA ;I thought the Siskin was an important machine in the history of aviation. So when some years ado I was struck down with cancer; as a project I did a search for technical info on it. As a result, I saved some company construction drawings and have a copy of the AP. I endeavoured to chase up the remains of a Siskin that was supposed to be in a scrap yard in Canada, close to the Niagra Falls. I know it was there at some time previously; however my health was such that even with the best of intentions, my effort proved worthless. If anyone reads this who may know this scrap yard, will they please on my behalf pick up where I left off. You never know it could still be there.
    I knew Bill Griffin, he was living up the road from my Parents at the time, probably around 20 years ago. he had obtained a whole stash of GA and detail drawings from the Daughter of H. M. Woodhams, who was Chairman and Managing Director of A.W.A. They had been originally supplied to help produce a scale model for a relative apparently.
    Although very far from complete, it was an interesting collection. Sadly I have had no contact in the intervening years and often wonder what has happened to them.

  22. #52
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    One plus to living in a different time zone from many on the forum is waking up to a variety of interesting posts. Thank you all.

    Firstly, thank you David Collins, great information both by confirming what I surmised and adding the challenge of multiple plywood specifications!

    Secondly, Regarding the comments from Bill Griffin, I have heard of the fuselage near Niagara Falls. In the 1960s there was an aviation museum in Ontario, Canada near, or in, Niagara Falls. Several older and wiser friends have vague memories of an unknown fuselage frame hanging from the rafters. The Museum is long gone as are many of the older scrap yards but still worthy of more poking around the countryside.

    Noggins' information regarding the Jaguar engine in Denmark is of interest. I am compiling a short list of known export aircraft and will see where that leads.

    Every lead is worth pursuing although a 10% return is, in my experience, optimistic, the rewards are easily worth the graft.

    Regards
    John

  23. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxim08 View Post
    Secondly, Regarding the comments from Bill Griffin, I have heard of the fuselage near Niagara Falls. In the 1960s there was an aviation museum in Ontario, Canada near, or in, Niagara Falls. Several older and wiser friends have vague memories of an unknown fuselage frame hanging from the rafters. The Museum is long gone as are many of the older scrap yards but still worthy of more poking around the countryside.
    Guess it was the "Age of Flight Museum" in Niagara Falls - some tiny photos here http://www.airic.ca/html/pftpaof.html

    Martin

  24. #54
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    Wiessoo, thank you for the tip. I sent an email to Eric, son of the photographer, to see if he has any more information or photos from inside.

    I took a few hours to put together a dummy instrument panel for a Siskin III. One reason being that I actually have a 1:1 drawing so it should be reasonably accurate.

    Here's the drawing mounted to card and used as a template.



    Here is the cut panel with a few instruments in place. They include, from left to right, a single pole 'dolly' switch; Mk Vc oil PSI gauge; Mk IVa ASI; Mk V altimeter. Note that the lighting box is a later 4 switch version not the 6 switch unit required.



    Next step will be to use the drawing, mounted on the plywood panel, with instruments mounted. The intention being to give a sense of what should and could be there. Something like this:


    Above is a 1:1 drawing of the panel with the few instruments that I have dropped in place. Here's what this project requires:

    6A/155 - Oil temp gauge, Mk Ia
    6A/82 - Fuel pressure gauge, Mk VI
    6A/117 - RPM Indicator, Mk V
    5C/625 - Dual pole 'dolly' magneto switch
    ?? - 6 switch lighting control box
    6A/128 or 6A/245 - Cross level, Mk V or Mk VII
    6A/149 - Watch, Mk V
    Compass, 5/17
    Dewrance Prismatic fuel flow indicator
    Oxygen flow indicator, Mk I
    Oxygen mask, Mk II

    Of all the above, to me the most interesting is the 'Dewrance Prismatic fuel flow indicator' mostly because I have never heard of one.

    To develop the panel further will require building the plywood box pedestal for the 5/17 compass and attempting to sort out the inset map storage box and map panel holder.

    Regards,
    John
    Last edited by Maxim08; 10th December 2016 at 22:04.

  25. #55
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    This is the only photo that I have been able to find of a Siskin cockpit interior. It is a Siskin III. Of particular note is the area defined as a map box on the drawing (see previous post) that is being used for the CAV hand start magneto and a container (flask!?).
    One of the two handles shown below the panel and centre is the Constinesco hand pump. I will guess that the other is the engine primer. I don't like guessing!

    Click image for larger version. 

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    If anyone has any other photos of the cockpit, please post.

    Regards
    John

  26. #56
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    Click image for larger version. 

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    This is the cockpit of UK Siskin III J7001, from a RAE series of photos on W/T setups, so detail of amp meter and mechanical radio channel selector at top.
    Interesting details are extinguisher at 3 o'clock, then moving to the right, brake for wind powered fuel pressure pump (label says OFF, Petrol Pump Brake, ON), early oxygen gauge & regulator, port & starboard flare button switches, above that gun handle. Next to the altimeter is the fuel tank selector, label says at 12 o'clock "SERVICE TANK ON", , 2 o'c "OFF", 3 o'c "BOTH TANKS ON", 4 o'c "OFF", 6 o'c "MAIN TANKS ON". The white label is C shaped, there are no other options for it to extend, because of the fuselage side.
    The interior is very 'whitewashed'. A 'jelly mold' magneto switch is just visible and the throttle gate looks very rudimentary, with hand painted prompts on the fuselage tube. Cabling to and from the dimmer switch and cockpit light is wire braided. There are four other photos showing close up details of W/T in fuselage that incidentally capture fabric stitching detail, that I will email, all in good time.
    Last edited by powerandpassion; 11th December 2016 at 04:08.

  27. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxim08 View Post
    V4 - English Ash
    V5 - Walnut
    V7 - Mahogany (Honduran)

    V3 - 3ply plywood. Plywood has its own intrigue as there is no reference to how thick the various ply woods are,
    British Standards, or, as they were known up to 1931, BESA, 'British Engineering Standards Association' Standards, are hard to come by for the 1919-39 interwar period. If you look at silverbiplanes.com, Standards, you will find 2V35 1966, which will give you a good idea of how the earlier and , by WW2, obsolete, V3 ended up.There are also some later Sitka spruce Standards.

    I have, in addition, within the elephantine IN TRAY, yet to be digitized and loaded up :

    3V2 1941 & 4V2 1942 - Casein glue for aircraft
    Australian Emergency (E) 2D.804 1943 - Plywood for aircraft, which would have governed dHA Tiger Moth & Mosquito production and was an amalgam of BS 5V3 and V34.
    Australian Emergency (E) 2D.801 1941- Queensland Maple, being a substitute for Mahogany used in timber propeller production.

    If you find any early Standards, let me know!

  28. #58
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    Great photo p&p. It appears to be a IIIa as noted by the location of altimeter and Holt flare buttons. The panel still appears to be wood as is the III. Of note is the nearly horizontal handle in a quadrant, well marked, above the oxygen regulator. I have no idea what it is for. Not the trim as that is a large wheel mounted on the starboard side and we are looking to port in the photo. The numbered graduations start at 0 and go at least as far as 16. There appears to be a cable adjuster to the right of the handle. Another mystery.

    Most of the placards are Ivorine, the exceptions are manufacturer and engine information in brass which are on the lower right of the panel. Anyone have a photo of an A-W manufacturers plate? Also of note is the Dewrance prismatic fuel flow valve just above the fuel selector and below the Holt flare buttons. It appears to have a domed glass face. First guess would be that it functions in a similar fashion to an oil 'pulsator' for a rotary engine ie as long as you see something in the sight glass, the aircraft will continue to fly.

    Looking forward to more discoveries although being Sunday perhaps that should be Revelations?

    John

  29. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxim08 View Post
    This is the only photo that I have been able to find of a Siskin cockpit interior. It is a Siskin III. Of particular note is the area defined as a map box on the drawing (see previous post) that is being used for the CAV hand start magneto and a container (flask!?).
    One of the two handles shown below the panel and centre is the Constinesco hand pump. I will guess that the other is the engine primer. I don't like guessing!

    Click image for larger version. 

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    If anyone has any other photos of the cockpit, please post.

    Regards
    John

    The modelling book on the Siskin, can't remember the name of the series but it was a blue covered softback, has a couple of photos and a drawing of the IIIA instrument panel and while the shape is broadly the same the instruments and locations are different.

    I scaled up the drawing to make a resonably accurate copy for the first Cockpitfest. Might still have it somewhere

  30. #60
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    Of particular note is the area defined as a map box on the drawing (see previous post) that is being used for the CAV hand start magneto and a container (flask!?).
    Could it be a battery for the cockpit lighting?
    The garage that keeps on giving

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