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Re: Flying Car

"show me it working!"

"Well we can't show it working until we get funding to get the people together to get the materials aligned to get the parts fitted to make it work. "

"PLEASE give me some money to make it happen. "

"WHAT, you aren't going to give me money based on my pretty pictures?"

I don't mind pretty pictures. They are pretty. I just hear my Mechanical Design Prof laughing at me for not making my latch fingers integral to the design instead of creating fingers as separate elements. His laughter was because the separate element fingers would break too easily.

Re: Flying Car

Quite so. Hence the value of the "Idle Rich" to society. While we'll never know how many brilliant inventions withered on the vine for lack of a rich benefactor, we do know that, for instance, the Duke of Bridgewater got canal-building going in UK and hence facilitated the Industrial Revolution. When impoverished would-be inventors needed money to develop their ideas they first needed to persuade an individual to back them.
In 1712, Johann Bessler, also known as Orffyreus (from Wikipaedia) got a fair bit of cash out of German nobility for his perpetual motion machines. Since it was their own money, they could be reckoned to look fairly closely at mechanisms. True, the old saw about fools and their money did a fair job of redistribution of wealth, which is perhaps as it should be. What is obvious, though, is that modern conglomerates and banks, using other people's money, do a lousy job of picking winners (Jim Dyson, for instance).

Re: Flying Car

The presumable point of having a flying car is so that you can take off and bypass traffic jams (which works in principle as long as very few cars can fly). But once you see a jam ahead of you, it's too late, as you have no "runway" left with which to take off. As if enough roads are straight enough (or wide enough to accommodate the wings) anyway. This thing is not so much a concept for a flying car, as a rather unworkable concept for a drivable aeroplane. For which demand will be limited by the availability of hire cars at all commercial airports.

The transition problem is manageable if you can get the thing up to a ground speed sufficiently above stall speed to keep it airborne gliding for a few seconds while the rear wheels are folded out. That would be quite some feat of engineering considering commercial aircraft don't have much leeway between maximum takeoff speed and stall speed - but this is much smaller and lighter, so it's probably mostly a question of fitting tyres that don't break up at ~300 km/h, and an engine capable of driving the thing at that speed with rolling resistance. Now that would really **** off the greenies!

It's hypothetically possible but would require very close control of lift without using spoilers and such that would increase drag such to further increase the required take off speed. Landing is easy aerodynamically as anything can glide in to land, but it would be a major challenge for the pilot to glide something that heavy and successfully tread the fine line between putting it down miles ahead of the threshold and stalling. Since most of these fantasy objects would be in the hands of rank amateurs attempting to land on narrow and windy roads with other traffic around, the death rate would be horrendous.

A true flying car (as opposed to driveable aeroplane) would need full VTOL capability.