Northrop Grumman YB-49A Flying Wing 1/100 Scale Mahogany Model
Introducing the ready-built CB49T Desktop Model. This 1/100 scale model was handmade with precision and accuracy to produce the finest model that will be the centerpiece of your collection for years to come. This model is a perfect gift for pilots and aviation enthusiasts alike. Not too big or too small, this model features a wingspan of 21 inches and a length of 6 inches. This model features a very accurate paint scheme with realistic panel lines.
The Northrop YB-49 was a prototype jet-powered flying wing medium bomber aircraft developed by Northrop for the United States Air Force shortly after World War II. It was a development of the piston-engined YB-35, and the two YB-49s actually built were both converted YB-35 test aircraft. The aircraft was never to enter production, however, being passed over in favor of the more conventional Convair B-36 in service.
With the B-35 program seriously behind schedule by 1944, and the end of the piston-engined combat aircraft in sight, the production contract for the type was canceled in May. Nevertheless, the design was still sufficiently interesting to the Air Force that work on the pre-production aircraft was ordered to continue for testing purposes. Among the aircraft to be completed were two that the Air Force required to be fitted with jet propulsion.
The first aircraft flew on 21 October 1947 and immediately proved more promising than its piston-engined counterpart. The YB-49 set both an unofficial endurance record of staying continually above 40,000 ft (12,200 m) for six hours, and a trans-continental speed record, flying from Muroc Air Force Base in California to Andrews Air Force Base near Washington, D.C. in 4 hours 20 minutes. The program nevertheless experienced a number of serious problems including the low reliability of the Allison J35 engines and the auxiliary power unit. The second YB-49 was lost on 5 June 1948 killing its pilot, Major Daniel Forbes for whom Forbes Air Force Base was named, Captain Glen Edwards, copilot (after whom Edwards Air Force Base is named), and three other crew one of whom, Lt. Edward Lee Swindell was a crew member on the B-29 that assisted Chuck Yeager to break the sound barrier. The aircraft suffered structural failure, with both outer wing sections becoming detached from the center section. Speculation at the time was that the aircraft was lost due to loads imposed when a spin recovery resulted in a high speed dive. The Northrop flying wings required an unconventional spin recovery technique which involved the use of no rudder input and aileron input against the spin.
The Air Force ordered the remaining uncompleted YB-35 aircraft completed as B-35Bs, which were essentially identical to the YRB-49A mentioned below.
The YB-49 had several severe design limitations which doomed it. It retained the B-35's very thick airfoil section designed for cruising at 240 mph. This wing gave the aircraft a low Mach limit. Thick as the wing was, its bomb cells were incapable of holding the first generations of American atomic weapons (Mk III, IV and VI). Bombing tests showed that the tendency of flying wings to "hunt" in yaw when in "disturbed" air tended to degrade bombing accuracy unless an autopilot or yaw damper was used.