Currently on eBay is a nice wind tunnel model set of parts for the Douglas D852. The design is not immediately known to me, but I suspect it’s an early 60’s concept, perhaps a very early TFX (eventually the F-111) or some other variable-sweep fighter. Anyone know?
While looking at something else on eBay, a listing for something rather more interesting came up:
An item currently on eBay:
A display model of…something. A seeker head for some sort of missile, seemingly. Missile defense, perhaps? Or perhaps it’s part of a payload to be fixed to an aircraft, some sort of sensor?
If you’re a history completist, or some sort of weirdo, eBay has just the thing for ya:
Currently available on ebay is a 1955-vintage Jeep complete with a Davy Crockett 120mm recoiless gun. It’s a little unclear whether the weapon system is entirely authentic or if some (or all) of it was built from scratch for the restoration. The M388 warhead is clearly a reproduction.
Here’s something interesting on eBay:
The AQM-37 used a hypergolic liquid rocket motor, which I would imagine isn’t included here. With some effort I imagine it could be replaced with a hybrid rocket motor and turned into the most badass RC airplane around.
Currently there is a large, expensive auction on eBay for several hundred pieces of Marquardt concept art. The per-piece price of about ten bucks is pretty good, but the sum total is just a whole lot. Anyway, the auction listing provides a look at a *few* of the pieces, including one that depicts a “space sled.” This was a maneuver vehicle for a single astronaut, with much greater performance than the various maneuvering backpacks that had been designed over the decades. Instead of strapping it on, the pilot sits on it somewhat as if it was a motorcycle. The propellants are almost certainly cold gas (nitrogen) thrusters, which means specific impulse was really low. But it also made them very, very simple devices.
While Marquardt did some serious design work on space sleds, including building one that is currently on display at the USAF Museum in Dayton, it’s unclear how serious this one is. The space suit, after all, is pretty weak. There appear to be only two thrusters, both providing “forward” thrust; steering looks like it might have been by actually tilting the whole assembly. This would have provided only minimal thrust vectoring, and would have provided little to no pitch or roll control, and no braking thrust. My guess is that this was either the art department coming up with a concept on their own without much engineering input, or it was a very preliminary and perhaps unfinished piece.
Now on ebay:
Can be yours for a paltry $75,000. Free shipping!
Recently sold on EBay was a sizable (something like 4′ long) wind tunnel model of the Curtiss Wright Model 90 AAFSS submission. This was a derivative of their X-19… more or less a quad-tilt-rotor. The Model 90 would have been fairly highly armed, designed to fulfill the same role that the winning AAFSS design – the Lockheed AH-56 Cheyenne – was designed for:
transporting troops and tearing up ground targets. The US has not had an operational vehicle like this; the Soviet “Hind” helicopter is the closest, though substantially slower, analog. EDIT: Senior moment. Not a troop transport, just a blowin’-up-stuff-on-the-ground-real-good vehicle.
The Model 90 wind tunnel model was formerly on display at an aviation museum in Teterboro, New Jersey. No idea where it ended up, but hopefully it found a good home. I made a half-assed effort to crowdfund this one, but I think the lack of a good way to split the spoils among the funders doomed the concept. How *do* you reward funders for a purchase like this? Best idea was to have the thing 3D scanned, and distribute the scan among the funders, but unlike a scan of a drawing or a document, that’s not going to be readily useful for most people.
What I’d hoped to do was to disassemble the model, male fiberglass molds of the components, reassemble and restore it to like-new-ish condition then send it on to an appropriate and willing museum, possibly Ft. Rucker (since they’re all about Army aviation and have themselves an AH-56). Then make a few fiberglass copies from the molds, converting the “wind tunnel models” into detailed display models. Alas.
Currently on ebay is a single slide, a photo someone took in the 1960’s. It shows a family standing in front of a full-scale mockup of the SV-5, what became the X-24A. This is hardly an unknown mockup; it has been shown elsewhere many times. But I thought this particular view might be of interest to some. It is shown on the back of a truck for transport, attached to a transition section that would, on the real vehicle, then attach to a launch vehicle such as a Titan II or III.