Caudron C.640 Typhon
|LONG-RANGE HIGH-SPEED MAIL-CARRIER||Virtual Aircraft Museum / France / Caudron|
Owing a great deal in concept to the British de Havilland D.H.88 Comet, of England to Australia Air Race fame,.the Caudron C.640 Typhon was inspired by the French pioneer of long-range postal routes, the great Jean Mermoz. The C.640 was thus a high-speed long-range mail-carrier designed by Georges Otfinovsky in collaboration with Marcel Riffard.
The first C.640 made its debut in June 1935 with Raymond Delmotte at the controls. A twin-engined low-wing cantilever monoplane of wooden construction, it had narrow-chord ailerons inset from the wing-tips and split trailing-edge flaps, trim tabs fitted to all control surfaces and a variable-incidence tailplane adjustable in flight. Each main unit of the. landing gear retracted rearwards to lie fully within engine nacelles that were carefully faired into the underside of the wing. The enclosed crew cabin accommodated two in tandem with dual controls and full wireless equipment. Seven C.640s were constructed, the fourth and seventh examples having an enlarged fin and rudder.
The Typhon established speed records over a 5000km distance and participated in the celebrated Istres-Damascus-Paris air race in August 1937. Unfortunately it was not particularly successful in operation as its wings were too flexible, resulting in buffeting problems of some severity.