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Me109E Wartungklappe Hatch LW Fly Tag Info Needed

Article about: Hello, I purchased these 2 items recently. One is supposedly a Wartungklappe Hatch from a ME-109E fighter plane. The seller indicated it was the maintenance hatch right next to the cannon po

  1. #21

    Default Re: Me109E Wartungklappe Hatch LW Fly Tag Info Needed

  2. #22

    Default Re: Me109E Wartungklappe Hatch LW Fly Tag Info Needed

    Quote by Kilroy Was Here View Post
    Matt, Yes, you're right, a curved piece of sheet metal is stronger, than non-curved. I used to go to all the air shows in So. Calif. many years ago, but also have not been to an airshow in as many years. But when I do go to another one, I'll be sure to bring a magnet! just in case there is a 109E there. That would be interesting to know if the cannon panels were also steel. Maybe the whole leading edge is sheet steel as part of the armor protection? I imagine it's pretty important to keep this wing edge intact for stable flight?

    Regards, Steve
    It would be most surprising if the whole leading edge were steel. For adequate armor protection, the steel would make the plane too heavy. The spar and control cables are the more citical wing components over the leadign edge. Stressed aluminum construction where the skin is riveted to the ribs etc is remarkably tough. An aluminum leading edge could take a fair bit of damage before the plane became uncontrollable. The weight penalty of armor would be better served protecting the cockpit and fuel systems.

    Some useless trivia regarding steel on leading edges: While most planes have fully aluminum wings, you may have noticed the leading edges of a big jet on your last trip may have looked a little different. They are often made of stainless steel. Not for strength but for de-icing with either hot engine bleed air or electronic heating. Another type of ice protection available for smaller GA planes is strips of thin stainless with very small laser drilled holes that squirt out de-ice solution. This is the modern solution to the old black rubber de-icing boots on the leading edge that would inflate and deflate to shake ice free.



  3. #23

    Default Re: Me109E Wartungklappe Hatch LW Fly Tag Info Needed

    this whole leading edge discussion makes me remember the B1 fiasco.

  4. #24

    Default Re: Me109E Wartungklappe Hatch LW Fly Tag Info Needed

    I'd think it unlikely that the whole leading edge were steel- the cannon is the thing that's in real danger given that its ammunition is explosive; the leading edge is pretty narrow, and not so vulnerable; the odd bullet that might strike it would be pretty unlikely to do major damage- one hit on live ammunition however... I was just looking for a reason to explain why the access panel might be steel, since that's not typical by any means. I have several of them from various aircraft and they're all aluminum- thicker than skin, yes, but still aluminum.
    Ohhhhh- pillage then burn...

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