Just today came across an article titled “Russian Flying Fortress – A powerful monster comes back to life! Unbelievably cool” which already gained many thousand views and likes and shares.
I just wonder why people call it Russian, when it was designed and produced in Kharkiv? (By the way, Kharkiv was the capital of Ukrainian Socialist Republic at the time starting 1919 till 1934).
Check Wikipedia for Kalinin K-7 plane yourself please.
Another interesting detail is that the designer of the plane, Konstantin Kalinin studied at Kyiv Politechnical Institute approximately at the same time – 1924, – when the future Father of Space Rocket Engineering Sergei Korolev did!
And some 17 years before, in the year 1907 another Great Aviation designer and a great Kyivan studied. Whose name the Institute currently wears.
It is the man who first built the heaviest plane in the world before WW1 and set world records flying it from Kyiv to Saint Petersburg and back approximately 2000 kilometers. This plane was the world’s first four engine airplane.
It is the man who had to flee Ukraine to the USA because of Bolsheviks and who founded Aviation company wearing his name. Some time later he will patent and create a new means of air transportation and will become the Father of Helicopter industry.
Yes, you guessed it at once for sure – it was Igor Sikorski on whose helicopters the Presidents of the USA have been flying for a while.
Back to Flying Fortress K-7.
Who affected the design of such a monster, do you think, when that Sikorsky S-22 four-engine world record setter plane landed in Kyiv just 10 years before young Kalinin entered Kyiv Institute?
How can the Fortress be Russian if it was assembled and flew its first flights in the then-capital of Ukraine?
But the Russians did take part in the fate of the Flying Monster indeed –
“there appeared recently speculations in the Russian aviation press that there was a sabotage from the competing Tupolev design office at the time, which led to the crash of K-7.. killing 14 people on board and 1 on the ground” – Wikipedia says.
Some 5 years later Konstantin Kalinin will be executed in Russia as “enemy of the State”..
Russia did everything to destroy Kalinin airplane and Kalinin himself, so it is not right from this perspective also to call K-7 Flying Fortress “Russian”.