P-51D: The Retractable Tail Wheel
The Retractable Tail Wheel
My version3 P-51 Mustang came with the retractable/servo steering tail wheel. There has been some confusion surrounding this little "gizmo" as some proclaimed their's was not retractable, and other's figured out how to make it work. Bernhard/Beltpilot was the first to figure out that removing that little wedge would unlock the mechanism and the retracts would.....retract! He covered the mod quite eloquently starting with post #624 and continued on from there.
It seems that this version of the P-51 retractable tail wheel has become scarce since FMS is no longer supplying them with the later versions, but it is very similar to the retractable/servo steering nose wheel used on the Banana Hobby B-2 and F-117, food for thought for anyone interested.
Okay, enough on that as I didn't use mine. Instead I am using the DSR2-46 Servoless nose retract for my tail wheel retract. I simply turned it around to where the wheel retracts forward into the wheel bay, and I run the steering link up to the rudder servo. These pics will illustrate how I did it along with the bay doors I added later.
Up-Date 5/18/2010: There seems to be some confusion pertaining to the retractable tail wheel in the earlier versions, so I thought I would upload some additional pics of what the tail wheel compartment looked like. Keep in mind, I substituted the original retract with the DSR's.
UP-DATE 8/17/2010: I've posted additional pics of my up-dated tail wheel adapter to the new DSR-46T Titans.
UP-DATE 9/05/2010: I've posted a new vid showing the adapters I built for both the DSR-46 Titans and the FMS E-Tracts to turn them into Steerable/Retracting Tail Wheels.
UP-DATE 9/26/2010: I have completed the FMS E-Tract Tail Wheel conversion, and have installed it in my P-51 Marie.
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