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View Full Version : Whatever happed to Baby Stirling...



SECUDUS
05-02-2004, 06:44 AM
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SECUDUS
05-02-2004, 06:44 AM
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SECUDUS
05-02-2004, 06:46 AM
S.31, or 'Baby' Stirling

Back in 1936 the Air Staff brought out specification B.12/36 which called for a four-engined bomber, which was essentially to operate at night. This was Britain's first such a/c. Short's won the aircraft's tender and thought it prudent to build a half-scale flying model to test several novel and untried features. By the end of 1937 she was built.
Now a half scale model of a Stirling results in a model with an 42ft wingspan and fixed to these were four seven-cylinder Pobjoy Niagara IIIs. The cockpit was 'cosy' and for two and the view was good. It had an all up weight of 5,370lb including pilot and passenger, and a wing loading of 16.3 lb./sq.ft.
This baby Stirling was now designated the S.31 and made her first flight in 1938. She soon proved the feasibility of Short's design and production of the full-scale bomber could go ahead.
The S.31 was kept flying to try out modefications to the original design and was eventually moved to Boscombe Down, by January 1944 it had been re-engined with 114 hp Niagara IVs and was into semi-retirement. It bore no other reg. than simply M4...
The lessons learned from the 'baby' were applied to the Stirling, Britain's first four-engined bomber, after that she fades from view...
There was one feature that the S.31 had over her full grown sibling though... She was aerobatic. Captain Eric Brown decided to try and take the baby Stirling for loop in 1944‚... ‚"decided to take it round a gental loop and it behaved beautifully, although it needed quite a steep dive to get the momentum to get up and over, and those little Pobjoys were working very hard‚...‚"Ě (Wing of the Weird & Wonderful. Vol.2)

Regards

Sec.

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SECUDUS
05-02-2004, 06:53 AM
Here's what happened to her:

http://www.jaapteeuwen.com/ww2aircraft/html%20pages/SHORT%20S31.htm

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SECUDUS
05-02-2004, 06:56 AM
http://www.xs4all.nl/~fbonne/warbirds/ww2htmls/shorstirling.html

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