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Author Topic: Earharts Radio Transmitter  (Read 24642 times)

Tim Gard

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #15 on: July 27, 2014, 09:23:13 PM »


I find the narrow argument I am making, of a rough but survivable landing on Nutiran with a relatively intact airplane, to be reasonable, and supported by the observable facts, tires notwithstanding.  I just don't see the conditions as ideal or as anything one would attempt unless one's only other option was ditching at sea.

Joe Cerniglia
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Given that the video I saw said one thing and other sources say otherwise, I opted for proof by antithesis because often when I post the reactionaries get up all over me.

In this case I let the reactionaries do the work for me. The notebook refers to the Electra occupants suffering from personal injury and an heavy arrival remains a possible cause.

 

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« Last Edit: July 27, 2014, 10:13:00 PM by Tim Gard »
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Joe Cerniglia

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #16 on: July 28, 2014, 05:38:42 AM »


I find the narrow argument I am making, of a rough but survivable landing on Nutiran with a relatively intact airplane, to be reasonable, and supported by the observable facts, tires notwithstanding.  I just don't see the conditions as ideal or as anything one would attempt unless one's only other option was ditching at sea.

Joe Cerniglia
TIGHAR #3078C

Given that the video I saw said one thing and other sources say otherwise, I opted for proof by antithesis because often when I post the reactionaries get up all over me.

In this case I let the reactionaries do the work for me. The notebook refers to the Electra occupants suffering from personal injury and an heavy arrival remains a possible cause.

I am persuaded we the reactionaries are not intending to be mean spirited but rather enjoy the give-and-take of a free-spirited debate.  To borrow an aphorism, they are as reactionary as the multiplication table.

Advancing as true a proposition one interiorly doubts is true in hopes others will disprove it (proof by antithesis) is a defensive and sometimes effective strategy. 

Asking it as a question might have engendered less confusion. 

I know from experience this is easily said and difficult in practice.

I played the reactionary with faith in your demonstrated talent for looking at things from multiple angles.  I hope you have not taken undue offense at the reaction.  None was intended.

Best wishes,

Joe Cerniglia
TIGHAR #3078C
« Last Edit: July 28, 2014, 05:44:17 AM by Joe Cerniglia »
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JNev

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #17 on: July 28, 2014, 05:49:30 AM »

REACTIONARIES!?!  REACTIONARIES!!!

Not mean spirited?  Speak for yourself, Joe!!!

LOL!!!  ;D

Quote
In this case I let the reactionaries do the work for me. The notebook refers to the Electra occupants suffering from personal injury and an heavy arrival remains a possible cause.

That's an excellent application of synergy and synthesis, Tim!

Seriously, I don't know if we will ever know for certain whether those messages were the real deal or not, but if we can find the plane there maybe the evidence will bear these things out.  That would be a neat outcome in that more of the story might be known.

As to effects of landing on the reef, I've not been there, only seen pictures; if we've had a 747 captain on the ground there I'd have to bow to his judgment.  That said, those big tires on the Electra would have been very forgiving - but in all things there are limits.  Even short of damaging impacts, the plane could still have easily been bounced around enough there, IMO, to have knocked the occupants about quite a bit.  A head impact would not be hard to get out of that landing. 

In fact, there might have even been two unrelated events - the 'hard landing' might have merely been rocky, a bit lurching as the plane negotiated the uneven surface - enough to whack someone's noggin; a gear collapse / separation may have occurred after that fact by dropping the gear in a groove or something, then having the airplane weathercock from tidal forces, etc.

Lots of possibilities.  One hopes one day we'll see the first-hand evidence of what actually went.
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Tim Gard

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #18 on: July 28, 2014, 06:42:03 AM »

The Luke Field accident demonstrated that AE didn't need a rough surface to cause the gear to separate.









 
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Tim Gard

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #19 on: July 28, 2014, 06:50:14 AM »


In fact, there might have even been two unrelated events - the 'hard landing' might have merely been rocky, a bit lurching as the plane negotiated the uneven surface - enough to whack someone's noggin; a gear collapse / separation may have occurred after that fact by dropping the gear in a groove or something, then having the airplane weathercock from tidal forces, etc.

I like your reasoning. If only I could reassure myself that the port gear broke off, landing the port wingtip on the deck. That way the port wingtip would be something for the waves/water to be "2 feet over".

Now how to make that occur without yawing the nose to the sea?

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« Last Edit: July 28, 2014, 06:54:04 AM by Tim Gard »
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Tim Gard

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #20 on: July 28, 2014, 06:51:55 AM »


I played the reactionary with faith in your demonstrated talent for looking at things from multiple angles.  I hope you have not taken undue offense at the reaction.  None was intended.

Best wishes,

Joe Cerniglia
TIGHAR #3078C

Certainly no offence taken Joe. I appreciate you sharing your conversation with the veteran flyer.
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Tim Mellon

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #21 on: July 28, 2014, 06:52:58 AM »

The Luke Field accident demonstrated that AE didn't need a rough surface to cause the gear to separate.


I might not draw the same conclusion: there is a big difference between taking off fully loaded (maybe even overloaded), on the one hand, and landing essentially empty on the reef, on the other hand. Her Luke accident was caused by poor control movements. And in Niku, no-one even knows if she or Noonan was performing the landing operation.

Tim
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Tim Gard

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #22 on: July 28, 2014, 06:59:12 AM »

I might not draw the same conclusion: there is a big difference between taking off fully loaded (maybe even overloaded), on the one hand, and landing essentially empty on the reef, on the other hand. Her Luke accident was caused by poor control movements. And in Niku, no-one even knows if she or Noonan was performing the landing operation.

Downunder we say "same set of clowns, different tent".

If the crew was the same and the plane was the same ...
you get my meaning.
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« Last Edit: July 28, 2014, 07:01:36 AM by Tim Gard »
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JNev

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #23 on: July 28, 2014, 08:59:42 AM »


In fact, there might have even been two unrelated events - the 'hard landing' might have merely been rocky, a bit lurching as the plane negotiated the uneven surface - enough to whack someone's noggin; a gear collapse / separation may have occurred after that fact by dropping the gear in a groove or something, then having the airplane weathercock from tidal forces, etc.

I like your reasoning. If only I could reassure myself that the port gear broke off, landing the port wingtip on the deck. That way the port wingtip would be something for the waves/water to be "2 feet over".

Now how to make that occur without yawing the nose to the sea?

You don't have to convince yourself that it happened, just consider that it may have happened  ;)

"How" it happened might have a lot to do with where the nose wound up pointing.  For one thing, we might *assume* that she landed to the north such that a left leg loss would drag the nose toward the surf.  But suppose she landed in the opposite direction?

Also suppose for a moment that both legs remained intact until nearly at the end of the rollout, and the left leg then dropped into a groove at the last - with very little directional change.

Just thoughts.  So many possibilities.
- Jeff Neville

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JNev

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #24 on: July 28, 2014, 09:07:44 AM »

The Luke Field accident demonstrated that AE didn't need a rough surface to cause the gear to separate.


I might not draw the same conclusion: there is a big difference between taking off fully loaded (maybe even overloaded), on the one hand, and landing essentially empty on the reef, on the other hand. Her Luke accident was caused by poor control movements. And in Niku, no-one even knows if she or Noonan was performing the landing operation.

Very good points, Tim M.

She would have been at a relatively low-energy state on landing (low weight, low speed, low power), and the airplane should have been more easily managed and relatively forgiving on the reef's surface.

Conversely, heavy, high power and struggling a bit for directional control are demonstrably more hazardous in terms of flirting with loss of control than landing light.  Paul Mantz once expressed concern at AE's use of differential throttles on take-off to control yaw rather than raw rudder, which fits your observation I believe.  As pilots, we know what that peril can be, just as Mantz did: differential power is great for taxiing and parking, etc. - not so much during the more aero-dependant take-off scenario.  We don't have to be certain that she actually lost the bird that way at Luke Field - it isn't so hard to ground loop a heavy, high-energy state taildragger anyway.
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Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #25 on: July 28, 2014, 10:04:57 AM »

Downunder we say "same set of clowns, different tent".

In the Society, we say "Typical Affair Run by Ours" (TARBO).  It may be derived from a military command, of course.
LTM,

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Tim Gard

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #26 on: July 28, 2014, 11:12:04 AM »


Also suppose for a moment that both legs remained intact until nearly at the end of the rollout, and the left leg then dropped into a groove at the last - with very little directional change.

Just thoughts.  So many possibilities.

At the end of one's argument, the starboard gear needs to be largely intact to permit the prop tip to clear the ground, to allow the engine to be started and run, to support the generator, to support the extended transmissions etc.

If the starboard gear was seaward on landing that places it closer to the water and dangers like the "nessie" trap.


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Tim Gard

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #27 on: July 28, 2014, 11:19:57 AM »


Conversely, heavy, high power and struggling a bit for directional control are demonstrably more hazardous in terms of flirting with loss of control than landing light.  Paul Mantz once expressed concern at AE's use of differential throttles on take-off to control yaw rather than raw rudder, which fits your observation I believe.  As pilots, we know what that peril can be, just as Mantz did: differential power is great for taxiing and parking, etc. - not so much during the more aero-dependant take-off scenario.  We don't have to be certain that she actually lost the bird that way at Luke Field - it isn't so hard to ground loop a heavy, high-energy state taildragger anyway.

My thoughts too.

With the centre of gravity behind the mains, it doesn't take too much to upset the directional control of a taildragger either during takeoff or landing.

My take is that AE, she had the only control wheel the other having been left on the ground in the Top End, dropped the Electra down with intent and at low speed because she anticipated a one chance arrival.

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Paul March

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #28 on: July 28, 2014, 12:53:38 PM »


Downunder we say "same set of clowns, different tent".


As a former circus clown (seriously), that is absolutely hilarious. Further more, as a non-pilot, thank you to all participating on this topic for the vivid descriptions and explanations.
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Bruce W Badgrow

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Re: Earharts Radio Transmitter
« Reply #29 on: August 11, 2014, 02:37:42 PM »

I have found a link to pages 302 to 307 of Aeronautical Radio by Myron F Eddy, published in 1939, that has info about Earhart's WE-13C transmitter. It is at www.aafradio.org/docs/Western_Electric_WE_13C. Anyone interested in old WWII vintage military radios will like the www.aafradio.org site. They have a lot of photos of the old equipment.

Bruce W Badgrow
« Last Edit: August 11, 2014, 04:17:08 PM by Bruce Thomas »
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