McMullan Aircraft Design


Preliminary Design;
Modern Aircraft Design for the Non-Engineer

Finally a book and software that makes preliminary aircraft design easy.

The JayBird RX-2 Conceptual Airplane - Follow step by step through the preliminary
design phase of this airplane.

Preliminary Design - Modern Aircraft Design for the Non - Engineer explains the decisions and calculations that must be made to design today's modern, high performance aircraft. Learn how to size the aircraft, the wings and the tail surfaces to fit the needs you have in an airplane. Learn about airfoil selection and how to plot airfoils. Then, use the powerful software to simplify design calculations. Illustrations and large 11x14 inch, foldout technical drawings lead you through the preliminary design and performance calculations of a two-place sport airplane.

Chapter One: Aircraft Types

Man has always dreamed of flying. It all started when the Wright brothers achieved the unachievable in 1903. Less than seventy years later, man was walking on the moon!

In 1986, Burt Rutan and Jeanna Yeager flew non-stop around the world without landing and without refueling, fulfilling another seeming unatainable dream.

What kind of airplane is right for you? There are many different styles, sizes and shapes of airplanes flying today. In Chapter One we discuss many of the kinds of aircraft that have flown and are flying today.

Chapter Two: Building Materials

The Wright brothers built the first flying machine from wood and canvas. Take a look at the different building materials in which aircraft are being built from today.

Chapter Three: Setting Your Design Parameters

Design an airplane that fits you! Learn how to size the cockpit of your airplane, how to determine the overall size of your airplanes fuselage and empenage.

Chapter Four: Beginning the Design: Seating

The FAA determined long ago that the normal pilot and passenger weigh 170 pound each. Aircraft of old were designed for small people. Learn how to design an airplane to fit the REAL sized human and how aircraft width does or does not affect drag on an airplane. You may be surprised in what you learn.

Chapter Five: Airfoil and Wing Placement

What is the best planform for the wing on your airplane. We take a look at constant chord, tapered and eliptical wing planforms and show you the advantages and disadvantages of each.

Chapter Six: Engine Selection and Placement

What kind of engine should you select for your aircraft? How much difference does horsepower make? We take a look at different engine types and engine placement.

We also take a look at automobile engines that have been converted for aircraft use. Can this be done safely and effectively? If the automobile engine is converted correctly, the aircraft owner will have a safe, powerful, inexpensive alternative for the air cooled Continental and Lycoming engines that have been the mainstay of general aviation for the last sixty years.

Chapter Seven: Wing Planform Design

What is the best planform for the wing on your airplane. We take a look at constant chord, tapered and eliptical wing planforms and show you the advantages and disadvantages of each.

Chapter Eight: Tail Design

Learn what "tail arms" are and how the tail arm determines the size of the tail surfaces on an aircraft.

Chapter Nine: Completing the Fuselage

Large Fold-Out Drawings Lead You Through the Design ProcessOnce all of the determinations and calculations have been made in Chapters One through Eight, then it is time to complete the fuselage drawing of your aircraft. Learn how to easily draw the fuselage cross sections using CAD software.

Chapter Ten: Landing Gear Design and Placement

Chapter Eleven: Ten Aircraft

Chapter Twelve: Wing Bending Moments and Wing Spar Calculations

Chapter Thirteen: Performance Calculations

Preliminary Design: Aircraft Design for the Non-Engineer is heavily illustrated and contains step by step design drawings of the conceptual aircraft, the JayBird RX-2. Easy to use software allows you to easily perform the preliminary design and sizing of your own airplane design! No complicated mathematical formulas to have to learn!

Sample Illustration
Sample Illustration
Sample Illustration


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by Jay S. McMullan. DO NOT copy in any form without the written, expressed
permission of Jay S. McMullan and/or his designees. All information contained
on this website or in any publication written by Jay S. McMullan is strictly
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