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BREAK-JOINTS AT JUNCTION OF FRONT &. REAR PORTIONS OF FUSELAGE

FLIGHT, July 6,1939.
(Left) Details ot the construction of a fuselage main frame : The side panels are attached by slightly channeled plates riveted to the geodesies and bolted to the fuselage frame. The lugs for spar attachment are bolted through to stress-distributing forgings on the inside. The main spar passes through the fuselage but is not attached to it. The front and rear spars are joined to the fuselage frames by cardan joints, as shown in this sketch. great changes in contour occur (such as at cockpit openings) the large panel is interrupted. The method is seen again in the sides, which consist of three panels: a medium-size one in front, a small one where the central wing spar passes through the fuselage, and a very long panel from there to the rear gun position. In production this scheme has considerable advantages. The two main spar frames, of which more anon, are set up in the jigs, the tubular longerons are located accurately in the jigs, and the panels of sides, top and bottom are dropped on to the longerons, and the whole bolted up. The fuselage primary structure is then complete, and is taken from the jigs and supported on jacks and/or trestles while the equipment is installed and the covering put on. This particular form of production would have been rendered somewhat difficult if the nodal points of the geodesies had met on the longerons, as rather complicated joints would have been necessary. To overcome the difficulty the panels of top and bottom deckings are staggered in relation to those of the sides, so that the ends of the respective geodesies can be (and, indeed, are) very simple forked joints. Theoretically, there may be some slight objection to this staggering, as offsets are introduced, but the loads are probably very small indeed, owing to the very geodetic principle by which the bars in tension relieve the loads in those which are in compression, so that the stresses in the The two pictures show two stages

the details ditter in the two machines. This applies to both the fuselage and the wing. The magnitude of the order has been such that it has become possible to make much greater use of forgings and stampings, particularly for securing the ends of the geodesies and for the joints at the points where two bars cross one another. In the Wellesley, it may be remembered, the main scheme was to split the fuselage transversely into a number of fairly short units, each unit being completely stabilised (structurally speaking) in itself and joined to the next by a form of pipe-union joint. In the Wellington, on the contrary, the tubular longerons run almost through from nose to stern (excepting the extremes, which are separate units, " b u t t o n e d o n " ) , joints in them being made by plain sleeves instead of the somewhat elaborate pipe unions of the Wellesley. The geodetic panels of the fuselage are of very large size. Jt is almost literally true to say that the complete top decking, for example, is a single panel except that where

After removal from the jig the fuselage is placed on trestles to have the equipment installed. in this process.

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