Bill Ortis' Lionheart Creations introduces the exciting, classic Proton Bullette, the single seat trainer of the 1930's and 40's. The Bullette was a mix of the best of Germany's aircraft era, sporting a fuselage that was quite similar to the Bucker Jungman with its bowed down engine cowling, allowing pilots to see over the cowling much better. The wings were made similar to Junkers swept back wing design. The propulsion was the inverted V-8 by Argus
engine company featuring 245 HP. The front cowling sported the famous scoop shape that was made famous by the Messerschmidt Me-108 and the Fieseler Storch.
Lastly, the B-37 model, the first model that went into production, featured flamboyant, full fairing landing gear designs that gave the Bullette a very 'stylish' 1930's appearance.
The Bullette's cockpit was very tight which would allow only so much room for instrumentation. Some instruments were placed along the sides of the interior. The aircraft also featured a very small set of wings that were a mere 4.87 Meter / 16 feet wingspan, making landings faster then your normal aircraft of that era. With that, you had what could be summed up as a Messerschmidt Bf-109 and a Piper Cub mixed into one, or perhaps a Bucker / Junkers collaboration to make a mini air-racer of the 1930's.
Bill's Bullette comes in two versions. The Fixed Gear and the Retractable.
The fixed gear model is the B-37 of the Bullette series. The landing gear were completely enclosed to keep the aerodynamics as clean as possible. This also enabled the engineers to have a robust, tough damper system in the suspension, enabling the sleek and small Bullette to land on rough air strips and fields that were in rough condition.
The retractable is the sleek, slippery version of the Bullette lines, the B-40 advanced trainer with retractable landing gear. Featuring an electric cable drawn retraction system and coil spring extension system, the light weight gear system
worked quite well on the B-40 Series. With the RG variant came a 100 pound weight gain and nearly 10 gallons of fuel reduction, but a gain of 10 knots in cruise speed.
The cockpit of the B-40 is a bit tight. Probably more like a glove. To ingress this little craft, you pop open the top canopy which is actually sort of a cap over the cockpit. As you lift up the canopy cover, you'll see the step strut and a small slide-out step retract out of the fuselage. You climb up those steps into the plane. Your wings are too far forward to step on to get in. You slide into the seat and reach up and pull down the canopy cover and then find yourself sealed into the tight Bullette cabin, your shoulders against the opening, your arms locating to the arm rests which are filled with radios and instruments and switches and levers. Its 'very' tight, so only the basics are fitted into this bird.