I.Ae.24 Calquin - "The Royal Eagle"

Would you like to see this plane added to the game?
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Where it should be placed?
  • German TT
  • Future Argentine TT
  • Other (explain below)
  • I answered no to the first question.
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Hello guys, today ill be suggesting one of the icons of Argentine aeronautical history, the I.Ae.24 “Calquin” (Calquin meaning “Royal Eagle” in Quechua, a Native language), this aircraft is a twin-engine light bomber/attacker, inspired by the design choices of the DeHavilland Mosquito. However, due to the unavailability of RR Merlin engines for Argentina, the Calquin had to use American engines, which affected its performance. Despite this limitation, the aircraft proved to be a formidable machine for its role.

A brief history:
The story of the Calquin is born with the requirement to replace the Argentine Air Force Northrop 8A-2, this aircraft used to take on the Light bomber/ attacker roles for this the Argentine Air Force contacted FMA, the local military aircraft factory with the requirement. At the time FMA was working with another aircraft for the Air Force, the I.Ae.22 DL, this was an all wood construction trainer that was meant to replace the old NA-16 trainers, with also a project for the Civilian marked under the designation FMA-20. The design process began in august of 1944 while its first prototype first took to the skies for testing in 1946, after this were considered satisfactory, the aircraft was considered for production along with a more advanced variant (the Super Calquin, one that never materialized).


Examples under construction

The idea for the aircraft came along the studies for an attack aircraft, light bomber using national woods, much like how DeHavilland used to do in their Mosquito attackers, in the design process it was envisioned to use RR Merlin engines, but due to the Uk not being able to provide them it was decided to use American engines, this were less powerful than the Merlins, and brought down the speed of the aircraft from 600 Km/h to 440 Km/h max at level flight (although the airframe was strong enough to go over this speeds and keep itself together), its worth noting that the change in engine choices made the Calquin worse on its flight characteristics, thing that lead up to quite a few accidents, earning the plane a bad reputation. The pre-production units were assigned to a “testing Squadron” where the 10 aircraft were used for a variety of tests regarding its flight performance and armament, the result of this tests would dictate that the aircraft was given a “Green light” for production.


Examples during exercises

The aircraft entered production with a planned total of 300 units, but the total produced only reached 100 after its production was ceased, the aircraft produced would be distinguished by 2 main features in the nose regarding its armaments, the early examples used Argentine manufactured 12.7 Machine guns, while the later examples used 20mm cannons. Regarding armament the aircraft packed a good punch, being able to carry both bombs and rockets, and even being able to test an aerial bomb during its last years in service, further in the suggestion we will take a good look at the armament it could use.

The aircraft were deployed in the 4th Aerial Brigade, as both bomber and attacker, the aircraft would be based in 2 Argentine provinces, Cordoba and San Luis taking the place of the old 8A-2s that were being retired or used for other roles. In regards to Combat service the aircraft took part in the 1955 “Libertadora” revolution, where rebel Calquines operated against ground targets and ships, 2 aircraft were lost during the revolution. After these actions it was noted that a number of aircraft were beginning to show heavy wear and in some examples cracks or damage, after this it was decided to reduce the number of aircraft in service and establish a strict policy of maintenance to avoid accidents.


Crew posing with a rebel Calquin bearing the markings of the revolution

By 1958 47 machines were transferred to the 1st attack Squadron of the Air Force and 8 were returned to FMA, after time under limited operations it was retired from service, but it was kept under use for other roles as towing targets and as a platform of missiles. The last example was scrapped in the 1960s, A-72 being the last installment in the Calquin’s history.


A-72, the last of the “Calquines” in existence

Specifications:

Spoiler

Crew: two: pilot, bombardier/navigator
Length: 12 m (39.4 ft)
Wingspan: 16.34 m (53.6 ft)
Height: 3.4 m (11.2 ft)
Wing area: 38 m² (409 ft²)
Empty weight: 5 340 kg (11 769.4 lb)
Loaded weight: 7 200 kg (15 868.8 lb)
Maximum takeoff weight: 8 164 kg (17 993.5 lb)
Powerplant: 2 × Pratt & Whitney R-1830-SC-G Twin Wasp 14-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engines, 780 kW (1,050 hp) each
Propellers: 3-bladed Hamilton Standard Hydromatic 23-E-50

Performance:
Maximum speed: 440 km/h (270 mph)
Cruising speed (Vc): 380 km / h (236 MPH; 205 kt)
Range: 1140 km (616 nmi; 708 mi)

Autonomy: 3 hours

Flight ceiling: 10,000 m (32,808 ft)
Ascent regime: 750 m / min (12.50 meters / sec)
Wing Loading: 189 kg / m² (38.7 lb / ft²)

Power/mass: 4.13 kg/kW (6.8 lb/hp)

Armament:

Spoiler
  • x4 Nose mounted AN/M3 12.7mm machine guns with 1100 rounds (in the later variant this will be replaced with 4 x 20mm Hispano Suiza 804s)

  • A total of 800kg of bombs on the internal bomb bay.

  • Underwing rockets (21cm, 75mm A3F and others)

  • x1 Tabano Aerial bomb under the belly

Regarding the Tabano…


This was a guided projectile tested during the last years of the Calquin’s service, it was to act as a manually guided air-air missile, today info is not very clear whether this weapon was finalized or not, but ill mention it as an option, since it could be quite interesting to have.

Images:

Spoiler






Sources:

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Books
FÁBRICA MILITAR DE AVIONES: CRÓNICAS Y TESTIMONIOS

Sites
Calquin
Historias de Aviones: El IAe-24 Calquin: Un Mosquito criollo?
calquin
https://clever-geek.github.io/articles/4031128/index.html
Blog de las Fuerzas de Defensa de la República Argentina: Armas Argentinas: Bomba voladora A.M.1 Tábano
http://www.clubiame.com.ar/iae24.htm
http://www.tomamateyavivate.com/tecnologia-argentina/bomba-teledirigida-tabano-de-fabricacion-nacional/
Desarrollo de cohetes en la Industria Nacional | Zona Militar

Other
Proyectos Argentinos Bomba AeroMovil AM-1 Tàbano

3 Likes

+1 A cool and unique Argentinian vehicle! I would love to see this in an Argentinian or Latin American tree!

2 Likes

+1 for an Argentine or South American tree only. Germany has enough of its own vehicles to fill up its ranks

3 Likes

Could either go in a South American tree or Germany. Either way, great stuff! I love light attack aircraft. +1

2 Likes

I would like to see it in a future Latin American tree. +1

5 Likes