Aviation of World War II
The Soviet L-760 is a big airliner, so big that it has sleeping cabins in the wings for some of its 64 passengers. The small "look-out" on the top surface is part of the wing compartment.
RUSSIAN AIRLINER L-760
Six engines * Fixed landing gear * Wing cockpits * Low speed
This Soviet passenger airliner, the L-760, has a wing span of 210ft. and a total loaded weight of 103.000 lb. (46 tons). Its five cabins in the fuselage and four sleeping compartments can accommodate 64 passengers; the crew is ten. A maximum speed of 186 m.p.h is claimed for it and it cruises at 130. Cruising range is given as 1,864 miles, and ceiling 23,000ft. The six engines deliver 8,000 h.p.
The L-760 was put on to the run from Moscow to the Caucasus last June and covered the 965-mile route at an average speed of 125 m.p.h. This is not fast according to modern ideas, and one docs not have to look far for the reasons. The fixed undercarriage is one of them and the large wing (and therefore low wing loading) is another. In comparing it with the Douglas B-19, it is evident that the wing is about the same size (both have spans of 210ft.), whereas the weight of the Douglas is about 50 per cent, greater. The powers of the two craft are about the same.
Another reason for low speed is the rather ungainly fuselage shape, which is very reminiscent of the huge Maxim Gorky. The engines are liquid-cooled with the air outlet controlled to regulate flow through the radiator.
The total air route mileage in the U.S.S.R. increased during 1939 by a length of 4.350 miles, and now stands at the total of 88,325 miles. Information on the volume of airline traffic in the U.S.S.R. is difficult to obtain, but even in 1937 it amounted to 203,000 passengers, 9,000 tons of mail and 36,000 tons of freight. Special services also exist for cooperation with agriculture (crop dusting), health protection (anti-malarial applications), and forestry and fisheries.