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The Polikarpov I-190 was the last of Nikolai Polikarpov's biplane fighter designs to take to the air, but only the first prototype was completed and the project was abandoned early in 1941.
Work on the I-190 began in January 1938, at a time when the Soviet authorities still believed in a two-branch fighter policy, with high speed monoplanes to break up enemy formations and more manoeuvrable biplanes to take advantage of the resulting dogfight. The I-190 was to be powered by the new M-88 14-cylinder double-row radial engine, being designed by Sergey K. Tumanskiy, and problems with that engine would play a part in the failure of the project.
The I-190 was generally similar to the I-153, but with a number of detail changes to improve its aerodynamics. This included the installation of a retractable tail wheel and a larger vertical tail. The aircraft was to be armed with either four 7.62mm machine guns or two 20mm cannon and carry up to 442lb of bombs.
A mock-up was completed in the autumn of 1938, but more than a year passed before the first prototype was ready for its maiden flight, which took place on 30 December 1939 with A. I. Zhukov at the controls. At this point the aircraft was powered by a direct drive M-88 engine which ran very unevenly and caused an emergency landing at the end of the seventh flight. The aircraft was damaged in an accident in April 1940, and when test resumed it had been given an M-88R geared engine. This new engine suffered from overheating, and was replaced by the M-88A.
Work began on two further prototypes. The second, which came closes to completion, was powered by an M-88 engine with a single TK-1 turbocharger. The third had a pressurized cabin and two TK-1 turbochargers, but very little progress was made on this aircraft.
The first prototype suffered a second, more serious accident on 13 February 1941 and was written off. With this the entire project was abandoned. The top speed of the I-190 is recorded at 279mph with the original M-88 engine and 303mph with one of the later engines. The original top speed was somewhat of a disappointment, and was no quicker than the standard I-153. The later top speed was better, but still not good enough to compete against more modern monoplanes, but the problems with the engine probably caused the cancellation of the project.
Despite an international trend away from the biplane configuration for fighters by the mid 'thirties, the Soviet Air Force vigorously demanded continuation of such warplanes, and, in 1937, one of Polikarpov's principal team leaders, Aleksei Ya Shcherbakov, was assigned the task of developing a more potent fighter biplane. Assisted by Mikhail Gurevich, Shcherbakov created the I-153 (I-15ter), prototype trials commencing in summer 1938. The basic structure of the I-152 was extensively restressed, the Clark YH wing profile was retained, but configuration reverted to the "gulled'' upper wing - resulting in the sobriquet of Chaika being resurrected - and, as a concession to modernity, manually-retractable main undercarriage members were introduced. Initially, the 775hp M-25V engine was retained, armament remaining four 7.62mm guns, but comparatively early in the production run the 1,000hp Shvetsov M-62 engine was standardised, boosting max speed from 415km/h at 3000m to 444km/h at 4600m. Some aircraft were fitted with a quartet of 12.7mm guns (I-153BS) and one, experimentally, with twin synchronised 20mm cannon (I-153P). Production deliveries began during the early spring of 1939, and continued until late 1940, 3,437 examples being produced. Ninety-three were supplied to the Chinese Central Government early in 1940, and the I-153 remained in first-line service until well into 1943.
Like the Fairey Albacore, this represented the over-development of an obsolete concept. Yes, it can be said to have been one of the best biplane fighters ever produced. However, by the time it entered service it was already outclassed by existing monoplanes.
On the deck protecting tanks it may well have been a headache for even the 109s.Tight turning and at slow speed it could play to its strengths .At altitude it would be a different story
this is really beautiful aircraft , i was looking for history about this kind of aircraft , short tail Biplane , its really difficult found more about them .
- Predecessor Game Key / Bi-Plane Challenge! (CLOSED)
- This plane has been featured
- Created On Windows
- Wingspan 36.6ft (11.1m)
- Length 27.3ft (8.3m)
- Height 14.3ft (4.4m)
- Empty Weight 4,845lbs (2,198kg)
- Loaded Weight 5,510lbs (2,499kg)
- Horse Power/Weight Ratio 0.453
- Wing Loading 7.2lbs/ft 2 (35.3kg/m 2 )
- Wing Area 762.0ft 2 (70.8m 2 )
- Drag Points 6891
Airplanes in the skies + FAF history
The new fighter was to be powered by an 820 kW (1,100 hp) M-88 engine, a development of the license-built Gnome-Rhône Mistral Major (known as M-85 in USSR), and represented the next step in evolution from the 1937 I-165-11 prototype. The proposed armament consisted of four 7.62 mm (.3 in) ShKAS machine guns and 200 kg (440 lb) of bombs. Dmitriy Tomashevich was assigned as the lead designer.
The ill-fated development of the I-180 started early on. The only version of M-88 available at the time used reduction gear requiring a very large propeller at least 3.2 m (10 ft 6 in) in diameter – massive for an aircraft that in layout and dimensions resembled an I-16 with an elongated nose. Even before leaving the drawing board, the fighter had to be redesigned for M-88R with reduction gear and a constant speed propeller. The projected top speed fell from 572 km/h (355 mph) to 557 km/h (345 mph). The first prototype however was eventually fitted with similar M-87 950 hp engine, because M-88R was not ready.
The prototype was built at Number 156 factory in Moscow.
The constant speed propeller VISh-23Ye was delayed and early test runs were done with a different propeller with manual pitch control (VISh-3Ye). As the result, the engine was prone to overheating and to deal with this the cowling flaps restricting airflow around the engine were removed. Despite these problems, and a fact, that the prototype had not finished all ground tests, the authorities were demanding a test flight as soon as possible, according to a plan. Polikarpov himself objected to flying the prototype before it would be ready around February 1939, but he could not stop it.
The series of events which took place on 15 December 1938, is not entirely clear but tragic. Neither Polikarpov nor Tomashevich approved the first flight, and no one had signed the form releasing the prototype from the factory. The famous Soviet test pilot Valery Chkalov took off and made a low altitude circuit around the airfield. For the second circuit, Chkalov flew farther away, climbing to over 2,000 m (6,560 ft) even though the flight plan specifically forbade exceeding 600 m (1,970 ft).
Nevertheless, work on I-180 continued. The second prototype I-180-2 with a bigger wingspan of 10.09 m (33 ft 1 in) and M-87A engine flew on 27 April 1939, and participated in the May Day parade a few days later. Later, the engine was changed to M-87B and the wing construction was strengthened. The prototype demonstrated a top speed of 540 km/h (335 mph) and was recommended for mass production with the M-88 engine. Then, on 5 September 1939, I-180-2 piloted by Tomas Suzi crashed during high altitude testing, killing the pilot.
Again, the exact circumstances of the crash were unclear. According to eyewitnesses, the aircraft steeply dove (others claimed it fell in a spin) to 3,000 m (9,840 t) where it leveled out, then entered a spin again leveling out once more at 300 m (985 ft). The pilot then abandoned the aircraft but did not use his parachute. No definite explanation was ever given but hypotheses include blinding of the pilot by oil from a leaking oil cooler, a heart attack, or loss of consciousness due to failure of oxygen equipment.
Preparations were carried out in 1940 to produce the first batch of 10 aircraft at Factory No.21 in Gorki, engaged in manufacturing the I-16. However, their production was extremely slow, without much attention of the aviation authorities, with the first 10 aircraft taking more than eight months. One of the reasons for this was that the local OKB led by M.M. Pashinin was designing their own I-16 based fighter, the Pashinin I-21 and factory management had devoted all of their resources to the hometown favorite, with only six brand new engineers assigned to production of the I-180.
While this was being investigated, the third prototype I-180-3, powered by a more powerful M-88R engine and fitted with a stressed skin wing (replacing the I-16 type wing structure of the previous prototypes) was completed, flying on 10 February 1940. It was armed with two 12.7 mm Berezin BS and two 7.62 mm ShKAS machine guns on a common gunbed over the engine.
The second Polikarpov I-180S (production series) crashed at Khodynka Aerodrome on May 26, 1940
Finally in April 1940, three aircraft designated I-180S were completed, these being similar to the I-180-3, but reverting to an open cockpit and the I-16 type wing structure. Their test flights were favorable. The new fighter resembled I-16 in agility but was more stable. Top speed was 575 km/h (357 mph). Major criticisms included the open canopy and poor build quality. It was believed that fixing these defects would raise the top speed to 600 km/h (373 mph). However, the I-180-3 prototype crashed on 6 July 1940, when it entered an inverted spin due to pilot error.
The pilot was able to safely bail out. In preparation for production, Polikarpov produced the definitive I-180-5 with several modifications and M-88A engine without reduction gear. The aircraft could also accept the new M-89 engine with 1,007 kW (1,350 hp) (up to 1,165 kW (1,560 hp) with fuel injection) which would raise its top speed to over 650 km/h (404 mph). There was also a proposal for I-180Sh with improved main landing gear.
Amodel 1/72 Polikarpov I-190 Kit First Look
During the early 1930s, noted aviation designers Pavel Sukhoi, Artem Mikoyan, Andrej Tupolev and Nikolaj Polikarpov were sitting in a Black Sea dacha, relaxing over some Vodka, when the inevitable dares were exchanged. When it was Polikarpov's turn, his friends dared him to make a 55 gallon drum fly. And so began the I-15/I-152/I-190/I-16 fighter series. Okay, so this isn't how this famous fighter series started, but the one characteristic common to the aircraft series is a big radial engine mounted to a short round fuselage!
In actuality, the I-190 did have its roots with the I-15 biplane fighter. The I-153 was an improved verion of the I-15 that retained the upper gull wing and incorporated other improvements/changes in structural strength, armament, and engine. The I-190 was the last hope at gaining more performance out of the biplane fighter by adding retractable landing gear.
Amodel has released the advanced fighter biplane of the Polikarpov OKB that was designated I-190. This kit represents the gull-winged upper wing, rearward retractable landing gear, and your choice of I-153 (early) or I-190 (late) engines and cowlings.
Molded in white styrene, the kit is a typical limited production model that will require a little clean-up and dry-fitting of parts, but nothing that would cause any difficulties for a good modeler. The kit features a nice cockpit that will be a challenge to see when assembled, though you may opt to surgically remove and open the Spitfire-styled shoulder entry door.
You're given a choice of early or late styled cowlings, wheels or skis on the main landing gear, bombs on the underwing bomb racks, and your choice of a winter or a winter paint scheme.
Markings are provided for a generic I-190 with no side numbers or distinctive markings, which was typical of the pre-war aircraft.
If you are tired of yet another Bf 109 on the contest table, this aircraft with bombs and skis will help to get some attention. This kit is recommended!
Polikarpov I-190 - History
ICM 1/48 Polikarpov I-153 Chaika (48095)
Parts are moulded in middle grey and quite soft plastic. There are five sprues of which one contains clear parts, that is the windscreen. Totally there are 100 parts. Sprues and casting ducts are quite thick so there is a lot of work to do after cutting the parts from the sprues. The kit has finely engraved panel lines and moulding quality is good and sharp, near the top manufacturers. Also fabric surfaces are very good. The kit contains a coloured instructions booklet and decals for four Soviet airforce planes. In the box there is also often used RS-82 rocket armament and bombs.
ICM has made a clever solution for the most difficult stage of building bi-plane models, that is assembling wings and struts properly to their right places. The model has an integral lower wings whith lower part of the fuselage. Also upper wings are integral with upper part of the fuselage. So it's very easy to glue the wings and wingstruts properly to their right places without any problems. Unfortunately ICM didn't mark the places of rigging holes to the instruction sheet so you have to find them out from your own sources.
When I compared the kit's main parts against scale drawings and found that they matched almost perfectly. Small casting imperfections can be found from here and there so there is a need of some puttying and sanding. Unfortunately ICM has put many raised panels to wrong places on the fuselage and they had to be removed. Take a look at "work in progres" photos below. Kits exhaust pipes are way too small and round (diameter in 1/48 scale is 0,8 mm). Exhaust outlet should be oval shaped and in 1/48 scale its dimensions are 1,2 x 2,0 mm). Elevators hinge line is wrong and needs correction. For some reason ICM has put lower wings to fuselage joints in the middle of the wing fairings where they are difficult to remome. Below is a list of the faults and shortcomings that I corrected on my model, "work in progres" photos can be found farther down.
- Many faulty raised panels on the fuselage which has to be removed
- Engine frontplate has errors on middle production M-62 engined plane
- Raised rocket rail panels has to be removed under the lower wings
- Exhaust pipes and their openings are too small
- Handgrip holes (2) are missing in the cockpit behind the windscreen
- Ailerons trim flaps (2) are missing
- Elevators hinge line is wrong
- Windshield side glasses are wrongly shaped
- Ring sight is missing from front of the windscreen
- Kits wheel wells are round, they should be oval shaped
- Small windows are missing from bottom of the wheel wells
- Propellers hub is wrong shaped of its backside
- Landing gear struts are too long
- Triangular shaped reinforcements are missing from base of the pitot tube
- Navigation lights are missing from tips of the wings and the rudder
- Venturi tube is missing on the right side of the cockpit (White 24)
I started building by cutting out parts from sprues and cleaning them for painting. At this stage I noticed a few imperfections on fabric covered areas of the lower wing and the fuselage. They were too big just to leave and they had to be corrected. There are many faulty raised panels on fuselage at many different places which I removed. Look at the photos below. From right side of rudder I removed a raised detail (panel?) which is incorrect (no photo of this).
Kits wheel wells are round altough they ought to be oval shaped. This error is easy to fix though (photo below). At the bottom of the wheel wells there were small elongated windows from where the pilot could see if landing gear was fully retracted. These windows are missing from the kit so you have to make them by yourself. Front fuselage tubular structure which can be seen through landing gear openings is missing from the kit and the fuel tank is a little wrong shaped. On the ICM kit the cockpit floor where the landing gear struts are to be attached to is extended until to the front fuselage. On my model I glued styrene bars at the bottom of the cockpit floor to depict the missing tubular structure.
I painted inside of the front fuselage matt black and drybrushed my homemade styrene bars "tubular structure" with light bluegray. Actually you can't much see inside the front fuselage when the model is on its wheels. Fuel tank color was black. NeOmega and Vector have made resin correction sets for wheel wells, landing gear and front fuselage interiors.
Warning: Instruction booklet has a front view of the plane for rigging. In this picture wheels are depicted wrong. Upper sides of the wheels have to lean towards the fuselage.
Kits engine cowling and its front plate is wrong for the middle production M-62 engined plane which the "White 24" also was. One ventilation opening at the front plate has to be covered and two openings have to be drilled out. After these modifications kits front plate is right for M-62 engined plane when all cooling vents are in opened position. Look at the photos below. Neomega and Vector have made correction sets for the cowling and front plates (two different types) but they are not right for the "White 24" I built. Kits windscreens side profile is wrong, sidewindows were curved at the top. I scratch builded a new windscreen from 0,2 mm polystyrene film.
There are many diccerencies among the engine cowlings and their front plates depending of the engine (M-62 or M-63) or the time period. There are also differencies between carburator air intake ducts which were located above the nose of the plane. According to the reference photos kits air intake is right for my model. On the plane I modelled there wasnt wheel well doors, presumable to save weight. I didn't use RS-82 rockets because rocket rail mountings to wings undelsurface are not right. Kits rocket rails are to be glued to the bottom of the wings. On a real plane the rails were fixed to the wing bottoms with vertical steel bars and they were clearly out of the bottom of the wing. Also rails back ends were a little lower than the front ends. Its very important to study well your reference photos before starting building your model.
I used on my model Aires resin seat (Aires 4683), Eduard photo etched parts (Eduard 49760), North Star Models Soviet Gunsight PAK-1 and I replaced kits exhaust pipes with Moskits metal ones (Moskit 48024).
Painting and decaling the model
My model depicts I-153, "White 24", of the 71 IAP, KBF which was Squadron Leader Captain K.V. Solovyov's mount in the summer of 1942 on the Lavansaari Island in the Gulf of Finland. There are photos and good color profile drawings made by Tapani Tuomanen at Massimo Tessitoris - Sovietwarplanes Pages - website. I painted my model along Tapani Tuomanen's color profiles because I consider them much better examined than kit's painting instructions are. For the first time I used AKAN's water diluted paints which proved to be good. Colors looked quite dark so I tinted AII Green and AII Light Blue with white paint a little.
On my model I used kit's own and Aeromaster decals. Kit's decals were good quality and settled down well with Microsol. I noticed that ICM fuselage stars were too small for the "White 24" compared to Tapani Tuomanen's profile drawings. Measured from aisle tip to aisle tip they were 17,5 mm compared to Aeromaster stars which were 20 mm. So I used Aeromaster stars on the fuselage on my model.
The kit includes painting guides and decals for four planes:
1. Soviet air force's 70th IAP (Fighter Regiment) plane "Red 26" on Khalhin-Gol in August 1939. Painted with Silver/ AE-9 Light Gray/ Green.
2. Soviet air force's 15th IAP (Fighter Regiment) plane "Red 28" on Lithuania in June 1941. Painted with Silver/ AE-9 Light Gray.
3. Nord Fleet Air Force's 72d SAP (Mixed Regiment) plane "Red 6" on Vaenga in 1941. Painted with AII Green (or AII Light Green?) / AII Light Blue.
4. Baltic Fleet Air Force's 71st IAP (Fighter Regiment) plane "White 24" on Lavansaari island in summer 1942. Painted with AII green / AMT-6 Black / AII Light Blue.
Kit's painting guide has few faults. In the guide plane n:o 1 is painted with silver/green dots and plane n:o 2 is painted all around in silver. Soviet VVS painting instructions for I-153 planes until 1940 ordered all fabric covered surfaces to be painted with silver and all metal surfaces (eg. engine covers, front fuselage metal panels and all other metal panels of the plane) with light gray AE-9. Plane n:o 3 is to be painted with AII Green (or AII Light Green?) and AII Light Blue.
Plane n:o 4 "White 24" is painted with AII Green/ AMT-6 Black on upper surfaces and with AII Light Blue on undersides which is right at the date. Kits painting guide differs much from Tapani Tuomanen's color profile drawings at the Massimo Tessitori's website. I painted my model along Tapani Tuomanen's color profiles because I consider them much better examined than the kit's painting instructions.
I painted the cockpit with Light Gray AE-9 (seat, floor, middle part of instrument panel, cockpit's tubular structure). All other inner metal panels were painted with bluish gray A-14 and all inner fabric covered parts with silver AII Aluminium. Fuel tank which is inside the front fuselage and is visible from the wheel well openings is black.
The first figure which indicates sheen level of a color on FS number is dropped off. Ak=Akan, X=XtraColor, LC=LifeColor, HU=Humbrol, R=Revell, WEM=White Ensign Models, Mr Hobby=Mr Hobby Aqueous. (Between brackets alternative paints).
|AII Green||FS - 4095 (new)||Akan 73018 (HU150)||Upper sides camouflage|
|AMT-6 Black||FS - 7038 (faded)||Akan 73043||Upper sides camouflage|
|AII Light Blue||FS - 5550 (faded)||Akan 73042||Lower sides comouflage|
|AE-9 Light Gray||FS - 5630||WEM AC S14 (HU147)||Cockpit interior|
|A-14 Light Bluegrey||FS - 6187||WEM ACS05 (+ valkoista) (Ak A14)||Interior metal parts|
|Silver||FS -||HU 27001||Interior fabric covered areas|
|Light bluegrey||FS -||HU 147||Landing gear struts|
In the box the kit parts looks quite promising but in a strict examination there can be found lot of faults from here and there. It is possible to build a qood Chaika model out of the kit but it require a lot of work. Luckily the kit main parts are accurate in shape and scale when compared to the scale drawings. Parts fitting is reasonable good but also putty is needed. Fabric covering looks good and panel lines are finely engraved. On the fuselage there are many raised panels in wrong places and many small parts are erroneous. Detailing level of the main components is insufficient and in many cases erroneous. Detailing is missing eg. from the fuselage, wings and rudder. Exhaust pipes are too small, wheel wells are wrong shaped, propeller hub needs to be corrected, windscreen is wrong shaped etc. Luckily none of these faults are not too hard to fix and with a little extra work and with aftermarket goodies it's possible to built a good looking model from the kit. And it's important to remember that the main parts of the kit are accurate in shape and scale. It's also good to remember that this is the best I-153 Chaika kit in 1/48 scale for now despite it's shortcomings.
Photos from different stages of the work
Hold mouse cursor over a thumbnail for a while before clicking !
Konstantin Vladimirovich Solovyov
Konstantin Solovyov was born in 1914 in Gorodishchi, a settlement in the Moscow area. He joined the navy in 1934 and graduated from the Yeysk Military Air School for Naval Pilots. During the Winter War, he took part in the operations over Finland with the Air Force of the Baltic Sea Fleet (KBF). When the Great Patriotic War begun, he was flying Polikarpov I-153s in the 71 IAP-KBF operating over the Gulf of Finland, occasionally flying an aircraft marked ‘24’. (71 IAP-KBF operated mainly from Lavansaari in the Gulf of Finland, note by JJ). During the summer of 1941 this unit undertook many ground attack sorties but was subsequently employed for the night defence of Leningrad in 1942. On 22 September 1941, six I-153s from the 71 IAP-KBF, led by Solovyov, fought with four Ju 88s near Peterhof. Three of the German bombers were claimed shot down, one of them by Solovyov. In October 1941, he was promoted to command an eskadrilya. Solovyov was the first pilot of the 71 IAP-KBF who claimed a victory at night when he shot down a He 111.
On 27 March 1942, Finnish forces invaded Gogland. This resulted in some heavy air combats over the island. In the morning on 28 March, luutnantti Osmo Kauppinen’s five Brewsters of 3/LLv 24 fought against ten Chaikas claiming half of them shot down. It seems that the I-153s were from 71 IAP-KBF. Kapitan Solovyov claimed one individual enemy aircraft (claimed as a Bf 109).
Between 00:30-01:15 on 3 June 1942, four I-153s from the 71 IAP-KBF were up against He 111s raiding Kronstadt. At 01:10, kapitan Solovyov and starshii leitenant Aleksandr Baturin claimed one He 111 from a distance of 500-600m at an altitude of 800m. The burning bomber crashed into Lake Kopenskoe. They also claimed a second shared He 111, which they attacked and shot down near Shepelev lighthouse. It seems that these victories were recorded as one single victory each. Major Vladimir Koreshkov and kapitan Ivan Gorbachev claimed a shared He 111 at an altitude of 1000-800 m and from a distance of 100m, which crashed near Inoniemi. They also shot down a second He 111, which fell at Tyvola.
Between 00:40-02:30 on 8 July, three I-153s and three I-16s from 71 IAP-KBF intercepted enemy bombers attacking torpedo boats near the northern forts of Kronstadt. Kapitan Petr Biskup and kapitan Solovyov attacked and claimed a shared destroyed Ju 88. The ground forces confirmed this claim. It is possible that this claim only was credited to Biskup since he is credited with a single victory in this combat. During the same raid, major Alexander Alekseev claimed an Ju 88, which crashed into forest on Björkö island.
In the summer of 1942, he had flown 417 sorties, 115 of them against ground targets. He had also claimed five victories and three shared. He was then promoted to kapitan and given the leadership of an eskadrilia, having claimed four victories at night during 30 interceptions. He was decorated with the Gold Star of the Hero of the Soviet Union and the Order of Lenin on 23 October 1942. On 17 December 1942, he was transferred to the 13 IAP-KBF as deputy commander. Late in 1942, he was promoted to major. He was severely wounded in an air battle on 20 December 1942 but managed to return to base, dying in hospital from his wounds on 27 December. He was buried in Pestovo in the Novgorod region. During the war, he was also decorated with a second Order of Lenin and twice with the Order of the Red Banner.
At the time of his death, Solovyov had claimed 5 and 10 shared victories, all of them while flying Polikarpov I-153s. These victories were claimed during 427 sorties and 65 combats. According to some sources, he was credited with 12 victories but this score probably includes shares.
The Polikarpov I-153 Chaika (Russian Чайка, "Seagull") was a late 1930s Soviet biplane fighter. Developed as an advanced version of the I-15 with a retractable undercarriage, the I-153 fought in the Soviet-Japanese combats in Mongolia and was one of the Soviets' major fighter types in the early years of the Second World War. Three I-153s are still flying.
In 1937, the Polikarpov design bureau carried out studies to improve on the performance of its I-15 and I-15bis biplane fighters without sacrificing manoeuvrability, as Soviet tactical doctrine was based on a mix of high performance monoplane fighters (met by the Polikarpov I-16) and agile biplanes. Early combat experience from the Spanish Civil War had shown that the I-16 had problems dealing with the Fiat CR.32 biplanes used by the Italian forces supporting the Nationalists, which suggested a need to continue the use of biplane fighters, and as a result, Polikarpov's proposals were accepted, and his design bureau was instructed to design a new biplane fighter. Polikarpov assigned the task to the design team led by Aleksei Ya Shcherbakov, who was assisted by Artem Mikoyan and Mikhail Gurevich (who would later set up the MiG design bureau).
The new fighter (designated I-15ter by the design bureau and I-153 by the Soviet Air Forces (VVS) was based closely on the design of the I-15bis, with a stronger structure, but was fitted with a manually retractable undercarriage to reduce drag. It reverted to the "gulled" upper wing of the original I-15 but used the Clark YH aerofoil of the I-15bis. The four 7.62 mm PV-1 machine guns of the I-15bis were replaced by four ShKAS machine guns. While still rifle-calibre weapons, these fired much faster than the PV-1s, (1,800 rounds per minute rather than 750 rounds per minute) giving a much greater weight of fire. The new fighter was to be powered by a Shvetsov M-62 an improved derivative of the Shvetsov M-25 that powered the I-15 and I-15bis with twin superchargers.
The aircraft was of mixed metal and wood construction, with the fuselage structure being based on chromium-molybdenum steel with duralumin skinning on the forward fuselage, and fabric covering on the fuselage aft of the front of the cockpit. The aircraft's wings were made of fabric covered wood, while the tail surfaces were of fabric covered duralumin. The aircraft was fitted with a tailwheel undercarriage, with the mainwheels retracting rearwards, rotating through 90 degrees to lie flat in the wing roots, being actuated by cables operated by a pilot-driven handwheel. The solid rubber tailwheel did not retract, but moved in conjunction with the rudder.
The M-62 was not ready by the time the first prototype was complete, so it was fitted with a 750 hp (560 kW) M-25V engine when it made its maiden flight in August 1938. The first prototype failed factory testing due to numerous defects, but this did not stop production, with the aircraft entering production concurrently with ongoing testing and development. Early production I-153s powered by the M25 engine passed state testing during 1939, despite the loss of one aircraft which disintegrated in a 500 km/h (311 mph) dive. In test flights, the I-153 (M-25) achieved the top speed of 424 km/h (264 mph), service ceiling of 8,700 m (28,500 ft), and required 6 minutes 24 seconds to reach 5,000 m (16,404 ft). This performance was well in excess of that demonstrated by the I-15bis.
During 1939, production switched to a version powered by the originally planned M-62 engine, with an M-62 powered prototype undergoing state testing from 16 June 1939. While speed at sea level was virtually unchanged, the new engine improved performance at altitude. A speed of 443 km/h (275 mph) at 4,600 m (15,100 ft) was recorded, with a service ceiling of 9,800 m (32,100 ft). This performance was disappointing, and caused the aircraft to fail the state acceptance trials, although this did not disrupt production. While it was recognised that the I-153's performance was inadequate, the over-riding requirement was to not disrupt production until more advanced fighters could enter production.
While numerous improvements were proposed, many were too radical to be implemented since the aircraft was already in production. Desperate to improve performance, Polikarpov tested two I-153 with the Shvetsov M-63 engine with 820 kW (1,100 hp). However, the results were disappointing and it was becoming painfully obvious that the biplane airframe was incapable of higher speeds.
One of the rarely mentioned characteristics of the I-153 was its poor performance in a spin. While the Polikarpov I-16 had gained notoriety for entering spins, pilots found it easy to recover from a spin. In contrast, while the I-153 was difficult to spin, once it lost control, recovery was difficult to the point where intentional spinning was forbidden for some time. A spin recovery procedure was eventually developed but, while effective, it required flawless timing and execution.
By the end of production in 1941, a total of 3,437 I-153s were built.
The I-153 first saw combat in 1939 during the Soviet-Japanese Battle of Khalkin Gol in Mongolia. The Japanese Army Air Forces' Type 97 Fighter (Nakajima Ki-27) Nate proved a formidable opponent for the I-15bis and I-16, but was more evenly matched with the I-153, which retained agility inherent to biplanes while featuring improved performance. While the overall I-153 performance was satisfactory, some significant problems were revealed. Most troublesome was the absence of a firewall between the fuel tank mounted in front of the cockpit and the pilot. Combined with strong draft coming in through the wheel wells, fuel tank fires invariably resulted in rapid engulfment of the cockpit and severe burns to the pilot. In addition, the M-62 engine suffered from a service life of only 60–80 hours due to failures of the two-speed supercharger.
The Polikarpov I-153 Chaika never flew with any Spanish Air Force units during or after the Spanish Civil War. Two earlier variants of this aircraft, the I-15 and the I-15bis, did fly with the Republican Air Force during the conflict and, later, captured examples of both types were used by the Fuerzas Aéreas till the early 1950s.
While attempts to improve performance proved largely fruitless, Polikarpov had some success in upgrading the armament. The I-153 series underwent trials with two synchronized 12.7 mm (0.5 in) TKB-150 (later designated Berezin BS) machine guns, and about 150 aircraft were built with a single TKB-150 in the fuselage and two ShKAS in the wings (a single TKB-150 was used because of the shortage of this weapon which was shared with I-16 Type 29). Late in production, about 400 aircraft were modified with metal plates under the wings to accommodate RS-82 unguided rockets.
I-153DM (Dopolnityelnyi Motor – supplementary engine
On an experimental basis, the I-153DM was flown with gasoline-burning ramjet engines under the wings. DM-2 engines increased the top speed by 30 km/h (19 mph) while more powerful DM-4 engines added as much as 50 km/h (31 mph). A total of 74 flights were undertaken.
I-153P (Pushechnyy – cannon armed)
Two synchronized 20 mm (0.79 in) ShVAK cannons, added firepower was offset by the increase in weight and tendency of gunpowder to foul the windscreen.
I-153Sh ja USh
Ground attack versions with underwing containers with ShKAS machine guns and 2.5 kg (5.5 lb) bombs
I-153V (Vysotnoi - height)
A single aircraft fitted with the definitive Schyerbakov "minimum leak" pressure cabin.
A high-altitude version with a turbocharged engine and a pressurized cockpit, top speed of 482 km/h (300 mph) at 10,300 m (33,793 ft), 26 built for air defence.
Rear fuselage completed as a wooden monocoque rather than fabric-covered steel and wooden frame to save metal, did not enter production.
50 I-153 were equipped with larger oil tanks and plumbed to accept external fuel tanks under the wings which doubled the combat range. These were primarily used by the Soviet Navy.
An experimental version powered by an 820 kW (1,100 hp) M-88V radial piston engine with two ShVAK cannon and four ShKAS machine guns. First flight 30 December 1939 but crashed 13 February 1941 and variant discontinued.
The second I-190 prototype completed with a pressure cabin and turbo-charged M-90 engine fitted with a ducted spinner.
Strengthened I-190 with enclosed unpressurised cockpit, powered by an M-90 with a ducted spinner and identical armament to the I-190. The prototype was not completed.
Though it is perhaps not the most well-known Soviet aircraft, the Polikarpov I-153 Chaika (seagull) was one of the pillars of the VVS’ arsenal in the late 1930s/early 1940s. Seeing extensive action against the Japanese at the Battle of Khalkhin-Gol in 1939, the Chaika proved to be obsolete by June of 1941 at the time of the German invasion. Nevertheless, until the Soviet aviation industry could be evacuated to locations far from the frontline and more advanced fighters and bombers could be produced, outdated aircraft such as the I-153 Chaika, the I-16, and the I-15 were tasked with both providing close air support for the Red Army and engaging the Luftwaffe, which had at its disposal some of the best aircraft in the world at the time, including the notorious Messerschmitt Bf-109. Though the Chaika biplanes were no match for the sleek German fighter, the I-153, serving in a multitude of roles, was able to contribute to the slowing of the massive German advance, buying enough time for the VVS to both receive more advanced aircraft from the UK and US via the lend-lease program and to receive the latest La-5s, Yak-9s, and Il-2s from Soviet factories.
Source: Suomen ilmavoimien historia 7: Venäläiset hävittäjät. Keskinen, Stenman
Summary by Jari Juvonen
Finnish air force had total of 21 planes of which 11 were captured during the Winter war and the Contunation war and ten planes were bought from the German war booty depots. The planes were mainly used for reconnaissance and ground supporting duties with machine guns and bombs on the eastern part of the Gulf of Finland. Planes from the 3/LLv 6 took part to an operation in March of 1942 when Finnish forces invaded Suursaari (Gogland) island. The planes attacked with their machine guns and bombs against the soviet troops. Finnish I-153 pilots got six air victories and destroyed four torpedo- and / or patrol boats.
Chinese Nationalist Air Force had 75 I-153 planes on the battle against Japan.
Luftwaffe had in use several captured planes. 10 planes were sold to Finland.
There are four complete survivors of this plane, three of which can fly. In the early 1990s, New Zealand pilot and entrepreneur Tim Wallis' Alpine Fighter Collection organised the restoration of three I-153s and six I-16s to an airworthy condition, this project being completed in 1999 as the third and final I-153 arrived in New Zealand. These aircraft were equipped with AZsh-62IR geared radials instead of the M-62, which were non-geared. The reason is that AZsh-62IR is just a version of M-62, with absolute equality in all instead of a frontal gearbox and weapon synchronizer absence. Also, none of original engines from recovered wrecks could have been brought to life.
Me 109 vs FW 190
Was there a clear advantage in favor of one these 2 german WW2 fighters.
(note as there were several models of each, one would need to compare models that were available in roughly the same timeframe)
I had the impression that FW190 was in general the better plane. But perhaps other factors (such as cost, ease of maintenance etc. ) were in favor of the Me109
Was there a clear advantage in favor of one these 2 german WW2 fighters.
(note as there were several models of each, one would need to compare models that were available in roughly the same timeframe)
I had the impression that FW190 was in general the better plane. But perhaps other factors (such as cost, ease of maintenance etc. ) were in favor of the Me109
Overall, the Fw 190 (and all its variants) were better than the Bf 109 (and all its variants). Mostly due to a few critical factors.
While both planes climbed well and could dive well, because of the cost cutting efforts that went into the Bf 109, the plane had host of difficulties that were never truly solved. It had a difficult and complex start up and shut down procedure that if not followed precisely, the 109 wouldn't work well or you would have an accident, which could kill the pilot, particularly if he's a novice pilot. This procedure was then made difficult by the fact that the Bf 109 had a small and cramped cockpit that wasn't easy to fit into. It's landing gear were arranged to sit under the fuselage, which proved to leave them weak and vulnerable to accidents when taking off or landing. This lead to the Bf 109 having a high accident rate that killed a fair number of German pilots. Even the G and K variants of the 109 were not immune to these issues, and by the time they got to the late G variants and the K variants, having a plane that would have the potential to kill you on take off is NOT a good thing to have when you're also losing plans in combat in the air.
The Fw 190, by contrast, was larger and far more rugged. This gave the pilot more room in the cockpit to pilot the plane and could take far more damage than the Bf 109 could, something that's rather effective when you're having a rather limited supply of skilled pilots. On top of this, the Fw 190 had a wider wheel base, which made it safer to fly than the Bf 109 with regard to landing and take off accidents. It's that lack of accidents on the part of the Fw 190 that really makes it the better aircraft, as while the 190 had some other advantages over the 109 in some key points, they weren't massive and in other respects the two planes were comparable. But the 109 was accident prone while the 190 was not.
In June of 1901, the fire chief, assistant chief, and secretary became full-time paid city employees. Fire Chief made $100 per month, Assistant Chief made $25 per month, and Secretary made $25 per month. The other firefighters were to divide $200 per month among 42 of them. The first paid chief was Ben Joseph from 1901 to 1910.
The Fire Department took over the ambulance service for all of Bannock County in 1978 and has donned many other responsibilities as well. 1991 brought the Region VI Hazardous Materials Response Unit to Pocatello, which responds in an 8 county area of southeast Idaho but can respond anywhere in the state. In 2006 the State funded and trained individuals to respond as an urban search and rescue team in conjunction with the Idaho Falls Fire Department.