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Anigrand #AA2116 1/72 General Airborne XCG-16 / Cornelius XFG-1



 
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Product Code: AA2116
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Kit #AA2116. 1/72 scale. This is a pair of highly-detailed resin kits, of the General Airborne Transport XCG-16 Assault Glider and the Cornelius XFG-1 Fuel-Transport Glider, both complete with decals.

General Airborne Transport XCG-16 Assault Glider: This was a decidedly-Germanic looking experimental assault glider that did not enter production. It was built in competition with the Waco CG-13A assault glider, which did go into production. However, while the Waco could carry a squad of troops, the heavy-lift CG-16 was designed to carry 42 troops or five tons of cargo – an American equivalent of the RAF’s Hamilcar glider.

The design was based on the lifting-fuselage theories of designer Vincent Burnelli – he advocated using the fuselage design to provide a major part of an aircraft’s lift, creating added aerodynamic efficiency. The glider was designed by the firm Bowlus-Criz, and designated the MC-1 by the designers. Bowlus created a half-scale prototype to prove the design’s aerodynamic qualities, which it did, earning the firm a contract for three prototypes. Airborne and General Aircraft was sub-contracted to build the prototypes for the designers – they were given the military designation XCG-16.

One of the prototypes crashed with three Air Force VIPs aboard – poorly-secured ballast came loose and shifted the center of gravity so far aft that the glider went into an unrecoverable flat spin. Only two of the crew and passengers survived, but nonetheless, the contract was approved for two more test gliders. These demonstrated good flying qualities, but the plane proved that it could not perform as a combat glider, and all further contracts were canceled.

Cornelius XFG-1 Fuel-Transport Glider: This was a military transport glider, designed to carry 677 gallons of aviation fuel to forward bases, was apparently an outgrowth of the challenges US forces faced in getting sufficient fuel to Henderson Field on Guadalcanal. Its unprecedented designation stood for Experimental Fuel Glider Mark 1. It had a distinctive design, including an aft-mounted, forward-swept high-mounted wing and no horizontal tailplane. Two were built, but with the end of World War II, development ended in 1945.

Unlike low-speed troop-carrying gliders, the XFG-1 was designed to be towed behind bombers or transports at 250 miles per hour. There were two planned versions – a piloted model with landing skids and an enclosed cockpit, and an unmanned version intended to be towed behind B-29 Superfortress bombers and used as an extra disposable fuel tank for extra-long range missions. The test models, which flew 32 test flights before the project was canceled, had fixed tricycle landing gear. One of the prototypes crashed, fatally.


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