An Outsider's View Of Camm
extract is from "Combat Aircraft Designer; the Ed
Heinemann Story", by E Heinemann and R Rausa, published by Jane's in
1980. Ed Heinemann was, of course, the respected Douglas El Segundo
designer of many famous and successful attack aircraft including the
Dauntless, Havoc, Invader, Skyraider, Skynight, Skyray, Skywarrior and
Skyhawk as well as the Skystreak and Skyrocket research types.
In Chapter 20 Heineman says...It was 1952 when
I had a chat with Sir
Sidney (sic) Camm of Hawker Ltd. (sic). A giant in the aviation
business, it was his Hurricane which played a vital role in the Battle
of Britain. He later developed the Hunters and was instrumental in
developing the prototype of the vertical-short-take-off- and-landing
aircraft which became the US Marine Corps' first operational V/STOL
plane, the Harrier.
Sir Sidney was a cantankerous gent but I loved
He was a brilliant man, a real contributor to aviation progress. Try as
I did I couldn't get him to visit us in America, but Ithoroughly
enjoyed my conversations with him in England.
I had described to
him the computers we were using at the time. A group of them, I
explained, placed side by side, stretched a distance of 160 feet. "What
are yours like?" I asked. "Oh well," he said softly, "we use the
Curta." Whereupon he sent his assistant, John T Frassard, (sic) to get
one to show me.
"Wow!" is all I could say when John laid the
Curta on the table. It was about two inches wide and five and a half
inches long. No wonder the British were doing so well keeping their
costs and number of Engineers down. And Sir Sidney Camm knew how to put
men and Curtas to the fullest use.