Westland P.12 Lysander Delanne

By George Benson

The peanut scale Lysander Delanne model has a 9-inch body length, allowing a 17.5-inch wing span.

The P.12 Lysander Delanne was developed in 1941 after the Westland company had visited France in 1940 to inspect a Delanne 20 T light aircraft with similar tandem wing layout. Westland took a production Lysander, shortened the rear of the fuselage, designed a tandem wing/ lifting tail to allow a gun turret to be added. Twin fins avoided damage from the guns in the turret, though the prototype's turret was not operational.

Westland Lysander Mk III

The design objective was to develop an aircraft suitable for strafing beaches if the Germans invaded England. Test flights were satisfactory, and in fact the prototype was looped safely on the first flight. The plane had a very wide CG range. But the need for such a design had passed by the time testing was completed, and the design was abandoned.

My peanut flew quite satisfactorily, though it was rather heavy with nose weight, spats, struts, dummy turret, so flight times were limited. I have thought of a larger version, which has appeal for outdoor, but a lot of lead in the nose is needed despite a lifting tail. This is where an electric version would by appropriate with the weight in the nose, minimizing the need for ballast necessary to compensate for a tail-heavy rubber-powered model. I am hoarding a 48-inch Easy Built kit in case I do decide to build a large outdoor model.

1 comment:

flyin_brian said...

Awesome rendition of an unusual design, George.
The bare bones pic really shows how much work went into it...double tapered wing, huge spats, and I'm wondering how the heck you made that gun turret.