Technical data
Type RK-I
Function Fighter prototype
Year 1941
Crew 1
Engines 1*1200hp VK-106
Length 8.8m
Wingspan 8.2m
Wing area 11.9m2
28.0m2
Loaded weight 3100kg
Wing Load (kg/m2) 260kg/m2
108
Power load (kg/hp) 2.6
Speed at 0m 780km/h (calculated)
Flight Endurance 2h45min
Cannons 2*20mm ShVAK
Guns 2*7.62mm ShKAS

RK-800, RK-I, RK Push-Pull by G.I.Bakshaev

40k and 36k b/w pictures from "History of aircraft construction in the USSR", Vol.2 p.118

Success of telescoping wing of the RK inspired G.I.Bakshaev to proceed with another unique project, RK-800. Unlike the RK technology demonstrator, new aircraft had high aspect ratio tandem wings and conventional tail. For low speed takeoff/landing telescopic 'glove' sections were extended from the fuselage, covering both tandem wings - except ailerons and slats on the trailing edge of the rear wing.

Aircraft was designed around new M-105 engine and intended for breaking 800km/h speed barrier at 2000m (so RK-800 designation). Project was analyzed by TsAGI and VVS experts and approved (1938). Speed expectations were slightly lowered to 780km/h.

In late 1938 Governmental Order was issued to built a single-seater fighter based on the RK-800 concept, but with more powerful M-106 engine. Goal was to achieve 800km/h. Aircraft was designated RK-I (Razdvizhnoe Krylo, Istrebitel) and had to be presented for State Trials in 1940.

G.I.Bakshaev was a civilian designer, and it was not easy to find industrial base for military project. Finally, in 1940 only full-size mockup was built and tested in TsAGI wind tunnel. Conclusion was positive, and construction of aircraft started.

24k b/w drawing by Igor Soultanov, "History of aircraft construction in the USSR", Vol.2 p.119

In cruising configuration RK-I was of all-metal construction with main undercarriage retractable backwards into fuselage. Tailwheel was also retractable. Fuselage was built of duralumin, radiator was located behind the cockpit to provide necessary space for telescoping sections. Wings - wielded of upper and lower halves made of rolled steel. Ailerons, elevators and rudder - aluminum.

Telescoping sections had aluminum leading edge and ribs, covered with fabric. Total weight of those sections was 330kg. In retracted position they were completely hidden inside the fuselage, covered with the end-plate. Retraction was performed by wire mechanism, driven by electric motor.

Aircraft was built, all its mechanic functioned properly. But V.Ya.Klimov was late with M-106 engine, and RK-I was never flown. Even before the German Invasion, G.I.Bakshaev was reassigned to supervise mass production of the U-2 trainer, considered as more important...

Two-engine version with additional pusher propeller at extreme tail remained on paper.


References
  • "History of aircraft construction in the USSR", Vol.2 p.118-120;
  • Links
  • RK-I, Bakshaev
  • Bakshaev RK-I

  • Created January 25, 1996
    Modified October 29, 1998;
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