When "experts" don't know what they are talking about...

The source for references and discussion on all types & marques of this iconic WWII USN PBY flying boat: photos, plans, manual pages & documents.

When "experts" don't know what they are talking about...

Postby Rajay » Tue Feb 21, 2017 5:38 pm

I don't intend to be mean about it, but I always try my best to learn the facts before I open my mouth - or post something. That's one of the reasons why I ask questions of people like David Legg when I know that he knows more about something than I do - like PBY's for example.

Recently I found a "PBY Photo Album" site online hosted by a guy named Hans Wiesman who purports himself to be a DC-3/C-47/Dakota expert (calling himself and his Web site "The Dakota Hunter") but who also seems to think he knows a thing or two about Catalinas and their kind as well. (David, do you know this guy personally?)

The thing is, I found two glaring mistakes with the text captioning some of the photos on his Catalina Photo Album site:

Under this photo,

Image

He wrote:

"The photo above shows a Catalina with Russian Red Star. The Catalinas were delivered from the USA but also, a limited series was built in Russia. They had negotiated a License contract with Consolidated in 1938, but it seems that only 27 were produced as GST ( designation for Soviet-built Catalinas). Their production facilities were overrun by the invading German troops and hence, most Catalinas were ferried from the USA via 3 different routes.

Over the Mid-Atlantic via Puerto Rico, Brazil, West Africa to Egypt and Sebastopol. The North Atlantic route via New Foundland, Iceland to Murmansk and the Alaskan route via Kodiak to Vladivostok and on via Siberia to the German front at the Baltic and Black Sea for ASW and patrols against the Kriegs Marine. In 1944, the Russians also received a large number of the more advanced PBY-6A Nomad, equipped with radar for more efficient Submarine tracing.
"

Now, as far as I can tell, the Russian seaplane in the “photo above” is actually a PBN-1 “Nomad” built actually by the Naval Aircraft Factory (NAF) – and it is not a “Catalina” at all. The Nomad was based on and very similar to the PBY series “Catalina” but the Nomad originated certain detail changes such as the taller vertical fin and rudder later also used on the PBY-6A series. In addition it had a different shaped bow, wingtip floats, and a longer hull secondary step (visible in this photo – along with the taller vertical fin and rudder.) And so too, there is no such thing as a "PBY-6A Nomad" - the name "Nomad" applied only to the models PBN-1 built by NAF.

Further down on the same page, he has this photo and corresponding text:

Image

"Photo above shows a PBN-1 Nomad from Denmark in a post-war role as submarine hunter and long distance patrol with huge radome above the cockpit. The Naval Aircraft Factory made significant modifications to the Consolidated PBY design. The new aircraft, officially known as the PBN-1 Nomad, had several differences. The most obvious upgrades were to the longer and sharper bow. And to the tail, which was enlarged substantially. Other improvements included larger fuel tanks, increasing range by 50%, and stronger wings permitting a 2,000 lb (908 kg) increase in gross takeoff weight. An auxiliary power unit was installed, along with an improved electrical system. Of the 156 PBN-1’s produced, 138 served with the Soviet Navy. The remaining 18 were assigned to training units at the Naval Air Facility in Newport, RI. Later, improvements found in the PBN such as the larger tail were incorporated into the amphibious PBY-6A."

The thing here is that the Danish "Catalina" in the photo has a standard profile bow, albeit with the nose turret removed and faired over. It also has the standard profile wingtip floats and main hull, with the squared-off (90 deg.) main step and standard secondary step just aft of the blisters. It does not have the angled main hull step and extended secondary step that were unique to the PBN-1 Nomad. Most glaringly of all, it has WHEELS! There was no such thing as a PBN-1A amphibian version of the Nomad as far as I know, so that is a dead give-away!

In spite of such mistakes, the guy seems to think he knows enough to publish a book about them! Go figure.
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Re: When "experts" don't know what they are talking about...

Postby dogsbody » Tue Feb 21, 2017 6:01 pm

Unfortunately, the world is full of so-called, self-proclaimed " experts ". I'm no aircraft expert but I've had people, who have discovered my love of WW2 aviation, spout out the most insane " facts " and got full-on pissed when I've corrected them. They know because they once read it in a book, or worse, found it on the Internet!

Oh well!


Chris
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with a uniform to wear,
a fast aeroplane to fly,
and something to shoot at?"
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Re: When "experts" don't know what they are talking about...

Postby Rajay » Tue Feb 21, 2017 6:17 pm

I found this color profile of a PBN-1 Nomad online:

Image

Note the different bow, angled main hull step, extended secondary hull step (original PBY series secondary step stopped approximately at the vertical line between the blister and the Soviet red star) and of course the obviously taller vertical fin and rudder - which apparently has been cropped due to image size limitations here on this forum.

Closer examination will also reveal an aft step on the wingtip float(s) but it is not so obvious in the retracted position. The original wing tip floats had no step at all; they were shaped more along the lines of a canoe with a straight keel from stem to stern.

And of course too - no wheels! It's a pure flying boat.
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Re: When "experts" don't know what they are talking about...

Postby Rajay » Tue Feb 21, 2017 6:19 pm

Here's another one hosted by the same source. It's a little bit smaller image so maybe it won't be cropped so much - but the shape of the tail looks a little bit off to me...

Image
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Re: When "experts" don't know what they are talking about...

Postby DavidLegg » Wed Feb 22, 2017 5:55 pm

Hi 'Rajay' - your corrections are of course correct.

I do know Hans - many years back he was the driving force behind the two Peter Stuyvesant Travel Odysseys which saw two Catalinas (Z-CAT first and Plane Sailing's VR-BPS second) cross the Atlantic to South America and back. He may be a member of this forum - not sure.

Best wishes.
David Legg
Editor: The Catalina News, The Catalina Society
Author: Consolidated PBY Catalina - The Peacetime Record
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Re: When "experts" don't know what they are talking about...

Postby dogsbody » Wed Feb 22, 2017 6:09 pm

Rajay, what image storage system are you using? Photobucket or something else? I use Photobucket and download all images at 800 x 600 size. That lets the posted picture be full frame in the post. At one time ( and perhaps they still do ) some forums had a limit on the size of images that could be posted, with the 800 x 600 being the optimum size.

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with a uniform to wear,
a fast aeroplane to fly,
and something to shoot at?"
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Re: When "experts" don't know what they are talking about...

Postby WhyMe » Wed Feb 22, 2017 8:48 pm

I can see both images perfectly fine with no cropping. But my display resolution is 1920x1200. Just my 2 cents...
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Re: When "experts" don't know what they are talking about...

Postby DavidLegg » Wed Mar 08, 2017 11:29 pm

Hans has amended his entries on the blog.
David Legg
Editor: The Catalina News, The Catalina Society
Author: Consolidated PBY Catalina - The Peacetime Record
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Re: When "experts" don't know what they are talking about...

Postby dogsbody » Thu Mar 09, 2017 6:03 pm

WhyMe wrote:I can see both images perfectly fine with no cropping. But my display resolution is 1920x1200. Just my 2 cents...



You must have a newer monitor than I do. My max. resolution is 1920x1080.


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with a uniform to wear,
a fast aeroplane to fly,
and something to shoot at?"
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