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November 29, 2013 - Wow, has it really been this long since I posted? I guess it has been. A lot has changed in the last nine years. I have some severe damage in my lower back. This is the result of, the best I can tell, falling about 40 feet from a pole in Oklahoma when I worked for GTE. This was when I was eighteen years old. A couple of months ago, I turned 54 so I have had problems for years now. I finally had to quit working in February 2008 after working eight more years than the doctors thought I could. In December of 2008 I moved to Florida to get married. I had two major back surgeries, one in 1995 and another in 1998 and neither one gave me relief from chronic back pain. I had the biggest back surgery in 2011 after an orthopedic surgeon told me he could give me 30% to 50% relief. In reality, I have had considerably more back pain since the surgery than before. I cannot do most of the thngs I could do before.
That being said, and I know this is no excuse, I have done nothing on my aircraft designs. I would love it if I had two or three friends who wanted to build a prototype of the JayBird, then build it under my supervision. That way, we could get all of the drawings for the parts and come up with an assembly manual.
30 , 2004 - If you have been following
this website for awhile, you will know that progress
has been slow. Many of you may not be familiar with
the book I am writing on preliminary aircraft design.
The title is, "Preliminary
Design: Modern Aircraft Design for the Non-Engineer".
I have just added Chapter 11 which will contain information
and drawings on at least ten and up to twenty different
aircraft, starting with the Wright Flyer. Most people
that will be reading this book will not be trying
to rewrite aircraft history and there is absolutely
no harm in studying and even copying the way aircraft
designers in the past have created exceptionally airworthy
aircraft. Once the Wright brothers achieved the unachievable,
powered, manned flight, aircraft design began to grow
at exponential rates. In less than seventy years from
that first flight at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, Neil
Armstrong set foot on the moon! We think nothing of
seeing a large jet aircraft at the airport that can
seat scores of people and fly all the way across the
country without refueling. We think nothing of the
incredible fighter aircraft that the world posesses
yet most of this technology was beginning to be developed
by the middle of the 1940's. Even stealth technology
is four decades old, beginning with the SR-71 Blackbird.
If our government allows the world to see it's stealthy
jets, what else are aircraft engineers developing
that they won't let us see? Nuclear powered aircraft,
tested in the late 1960's may become the thing of
the future. After all, when all of the oil is gone,
and it will be (it is not an unlimited resource),
if we continue on only with the current stable of
military equipment which all depends on fossil fuels,
whoever has the last drop of oil will rule the world.
So when you hear people say that the war in Iraq and
the war on terror is only about oil, you'd better
believe oil is a huge consideration and very rightfully
airplanes are designed by a large team of aircraft
engineers. It is not so in my case. I have put "feelers"
out on this website to see if any other knowlegeable
individuals would be interested in giving a helping
hand in their area of expertise but I have not heard
from even one person. I hope to have Non-Engineer"
completed soon although I am hesitant to try and give
a date for completion. I will do my best to work on
the book and the software when I have sufficient time
and I will let you know of my progress on this website.
If you are serious about designing your own airplane
or if you just want to see what goes into the design
of a modern day light aircraft, I am sure you will
delighted with "Preliminary
Design: Modern Aircraft Design for the Non-Engineer".
12 , 2004 - Well,
it seems that change is the big thing in aircraft
design. The first airplane I began designing back
in 1996, The Vortex Magnum is surfacing again. A friend
of mine at work is a welder and he wants to build
the airplane. So, I'm back to the drawing board. I
have to finish drawing the fuselage and wing drawings
then have the finite element analysis to make sure
everything is optimized.
is a two-dimensional computer aided drafting program.
Using AutoSketch is much like drawing the airplane on
a drafting table. This gives you a two-dimensional
sheet that can be printed out at almost any scale.
AutoCad does have some three-dimensional capabilities
but is not quite what I need. SolidWorks steps up
to the plate here. It is the Cadillac of three-dimensional
parametric solid modeling. The only problem with both
of these programs is the cost, they are outrageously
Once the aircraft is "built" in SolidWorks,
the stress analysis needs to be run. What this does
is checks all of the parts to make sure they are strong
enough and it also makes sure that the parts and assemblies
are not over-designed which adds un-needed weight.
I do not have Solidworks or the software to run the finite element
analysis studies and it would take quite some time
for me to learn how to use it. Without a lot of money
to invest in an endeavor such as this, it takes time
to learn how to do everything yourself. As you can
tell from this web site, I am not trying to make a
fortune off of my aircraft designs. I simply want
to make flying affordable to those who have always
dreamt of flying but could never afford to. For this
to work well, I need the help of skilled people. If
I had some volunteers in the following areas, the
prototype Vortex Magnum would be built, flown and
put into kit production in a very short time:
-Experienced engineers with experience with FEA
and programs such as CosmosWorks and FloWorks
-Aircraft builders experienced in the use of composites,
steel tubing, and wood aircraft structures
know there must be some of you out there and by using
the Internet, our world can be made much smaller, allowing
us to work closely without being close geographically.
If any of you would like to get involved, contact me
and let's talk.
25, 2004 - Let
me explain where I am in the "design phase"
of my aircraft and what goals I have set for myself.
I have decided to NOT build the Vortex Magnum first.
The reasoning for this is that it has been many
years since I have welded and I would have to go
through that learning curve all over again. This
would probably cost me at least six months.
I have made some MAJOR changes in the two-place
JayBird RX-2T. Using the same construction techniques
(douglas fir and birch plywood) I have increased
the height and length of the fuselage by 10% and
changed the design of the windshield and side windows
to make them easier to build. This could result
in the airplane carrying not only a pilot and one
passenger but possibly even three passengers and
luggage with the proper powerplant.
My laptop computer is in the shop and it is the
computer that I do most of my design work on. My
desktop computer is much slower and it is harder
for me to make the time to sit in my office to work.
I am usually working on the design other places.
The computer is scheduled to be back tomorrow but
I kind of doubt that it will be. Then, when I do
get the computer back, I'm sure I will have to reload
all of my software. That, in itself, is a two day
Due the changes in the JayBird RX-2T, I have decided
to give the airplane a new name, the BelleStar.
In my Internet series, "Watch an Airplane Being
Born" you will see the changes from the JayBird
to the BelleStar.
I have set a goal to have the BelleStar engineered
and designed in AutoSketch (two dimensional drafting
software) by July 1, 2004. In order to do this,
I realize I must set shorter goals such as the plan
sheets for the horizontal tail and elevator and
for the vertical tail and rudder. It will make the
design process much easier when I break things down
into smaller, obtainable goals. Watch for this information
to be posted soon here on my web site.
Once the two dimensional work is done with two-dimensional
CAD software, I will "build" the airplane
with three-dimensional software. Once this is done,
finite element analysis (FEA) can be performed on
the aircraft. This will show me if the airplane
is too weak in areas or even if it is too heavy
and over designed in other areas. It used to be
that aircraft manufacturers would build a prototype
and then test it to destruction. They would keep
doing this until they had a safe airplane. Well,
unfortunately I don't have government contracts
and the money that comes with them, nor am I financially
able to build prototypes to destroy. That is what
is so exciting about modern computers. The whole
design can be tested on a computer and even flown
in a wind tunnel before the real airplane is built.
Granted, the computer software programs to do these
things are extremely overpriced. This is especially
so for an individual that does not have the money
to sink on such software. For Boeing, it is not
a problem, for me, it is!
After the airplane is tested for it's structural
integrity and wind tunnel tests are run, the parts
will be built and put together to form the airplane.
Then the flight testing program can begin.
have mentioned before that I could sure use some help
in getting all of this done. It is not my desire to
try and make McMullan Aircraft Design a way for me
to make millions of dollars. I simply would like to
help make flying affordable and safe to those that
want to fly. As I build each aircraft I will keep
meticulously designed plans and building notes. This
way, once the prototype has flown and has proven to
be successful and SAFE, I can make those plans and
building instructions available to the public at extremely
YOU HAVE SOME AIRCRAFT DESIGN OR BUILDING EXPERIENCE
AND WOULD LIKE TO GET INVOLVED, PLEASE GET IN TOUCH
WITH ME. I NEED ALL THE HELP I CAN GET TO FORM A TEAM
TO MAKE THESE AIRPLANES A REALITY!
you have questions or comments about any of my designs
or my web site, please contact me. It is important
for me to know that people are interested in what
I am doing.
7, 2004 - I've decided to add this new
section to the McMullan Aircraft Design page. I'll share
my thoughts and my progress with my aircraft's design.
I have progressed at a much slower rate than I ever
thought I would when I began designing the Vortex Magnum.
Those of you that have followed my web site have seen
that I decided to build the JayBird RX2 as my first
airplane. The airplane is smaller and simpler to build.
Well, I have decided to make another big change. I decided
to change the design once again. The new design will
incorporate much of the same design attributes as the
JayBird. I have struggled about how to build the structure.
I had originally decided to build the JayBird out of
wood and then I thought I would go with fiberglass.
Well, after all of that, I think I am going back to
wood, at least for the fuselage and tail sections. I
may build the wing out of wood depending on how hard
I find it to put fuel in the wing. If it gets to be
too much, I'll go ahead and build the wood out of fiberglass
with a carbon fiber wing spar. Take a look at the new
airplane and tell me what you think. It is just a little
bit larger than the JayBird and will use the Ford 3.8
liter V6 or the Chevrolet 4.3 liter V6. I have also
been impressed with some of the four cylinder engines
on the market now that are supercharged. I don't want
to be an "engine tester" so I will probably
just stick with what has been proven to work in aircraft.
information, images, photos, etc. unless otherwise noted are ©
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
for entertainment purposes only! Use at your own risks!