Curtiss H-16 Large America Flying Boat
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Thread: Curtiss H-16 Large America Flying Boat

  1. #1

    Curtiss H-16 Large America Flying Boat

    Hello Folks,

    There is a flying boat that has attracted my attention for some time now,
    of which there is no CFS1 model available.

    It is the 1917 Curtiss H-16 Large America Flying boat, the last, largest
    and most powerful of the "H" Series by Glenn Curtiss, and heavily armed.
    It also appears to have also been the most produced version.

    I found this aircraft´s design very attractive, ( dig the sponsons!), and
    although it looked complicated, with bleeds threatening everywhere I gave
    it a go to see what would happen.

    Surprisingly, with appropriate glue sequencing, bleeds are few and only
    occur where too many elements come together, i.e. the engines, for example,
    so the model seems viable. Surprisingly the fins and wires on the top wing
    are fine too.

    The flight model has two Liberty 12A engines, developing 400 Hp at 1800 RPM,
    with two 4-bladed, 20-degree pitch (perhaps 18.5? I wonder...) wooden propellers,
    11.25 ft in diameter, giving the plane a top speed of 95 mph, and the .air file seems
    to be behaving itself.

    The model upto now is at a modest 106.5% parts count, but despite intense
    scrimping and saving, components have maxed out, and there only 6 structures
    are left. Something will have to be done, as wing-floats, crew-heads, MG´s
    and the disappearing hull for water landings are as yet missing, so we shall see!

    Here are a few screenshots for eye candy! No textures yet, though...
    Update: I just now corrected the keel at the nose, renewed the screenshots,
    and put in the gunner´s wells.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Large America 5.jpg   Large America1.jpg   Large America2.jpg   Large America3.jpg   Large America4.jpg   Large America 6.jpg  

    Last edited by aleatorylamp; February 10th, 2021 at 14:58.

  2. #2

    Sitting on the water

    Hi all,

    Now the crew´s heads are in, (no textures yet), and the submerged part
    of the hull disappears below 45 Kt. Now for the weapons!

    Parts count is at 126%, and I still have 2 components and 3 structures left,
    so it is all going very well. With a bit of luck I´ll have the textures on at the

    Question: Would anyone like to suggest a livery?

    The Curtiss H.16 had 4 to 7 guns, but the aft-fuselage side-guns aren´t turning
    out too well - too much bleed interference from sponsons, fuselage and wings,
    so I´ll leave the side doors closed. ...Although it would be nice to open the
    doors and make the MG´s appear with the Spoiler Key... I´ll try some more.

    Then, I´ll have to see about the gun behind the pilot.. so for the moment
    there will be twin Lewis nose and dorsal guns only.

    Here´s another couple of additional screenshots!

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails sitting on the water.jpg   sitting on the water 2.jpg  
    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  3. #3
    Great stuff mate! Luvvit!


  4. #4
    Hello Folks,

    Glad you like it, Graham!

    I´ve just put on the floats and am working on the guns.
    Let´s see... and then the textures.

    Maybe tomorrow I can post a couple of more screenshots.

    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  5. #5

    ...and now with guns

    Hi Folks,
    Now, the guns are on, and parts count is at a packed 148.4 %.
    I´m running late with the textures, but perhaps I can do some today!
    Meanwhile, here are 2 new screenshots!
    P.S. No thumbnails today? ...strange.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails with guns 2.jpg   with guns 1.jpg  

  6. #6

    Texturing progress

    Hello All,
    After what seemed a never-ending battle against bleeds for over a week,
    the keel no longer lets the superstructure bleed through, and the texturing began a few days ago.

    The model is coming along very well, and soon CFS1 will not be the only simulator (and an FS98
    model is planned too) to be without a Large America Flying Boat!

    Here are some screenshots. Now come Dp files, VC SCASMing process, and a panel.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails H16-1.jpg   H16-2.jpg   H16-3.jpg   H16-4.jpg   H16-5.jpg   H16-6.jpg  

    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  7. #7

    Further to textures

    Hi All,

    It appears that the livery upto now in reality corresponds to the almost identical
    English-built equivalent of the Curtiss H-16, the Felixstowe F2A, which only
    differered in the 350 Hp Rolls Royce Eagle VIII motorization instead of the 400 Hp
    Liberty 12A engines.

    Thus, we will have two liveries. Here are a couple of screenshots of the Curtiss H-16
    in its new textures. The registration number isn´t on yet, but will be the K29 based
    at RNAS Killingholme. The number for the Felixstowe F2A will be 4081.

    I had further bleed problems with the sponsons, keel and body, but after another week
    working on it, I managed some very good improvements, so after doing the panel and
    the SCASming, I´ll be able to upload the two models.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Curtiss1.jpg   Curtiss2.jpg   Curtiss3.jpg  
    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  8. #8


    Hello Folks,

    Well, after countless and continual bleed battles that have gone on for 3 weeks now, it seems that the appearance from outside has slowly improved and is quite worthy by now.

    However, the virtual cockpit view was an absolute disaster, with numerous items not showing up properly, requiring proper display order via SCASM. This proved to be quite a lengthy process, but came out very well:

    - L/R outer struts and wires
    - copilot
    - L/R engines
    - central struts and wires
    - L/R inner struts and wires
    - L/R radiators
    - L/R propaxels and propellers
    - aft cabin wall

    Then, there is more SCASMing yet to come:
    Components had run out and there was none left for a cockpit MG, and also, the two components for the double nose and dorsal MG´displayed poorly, (which can be seen in previous screenshots).
    Thus, all MG´s except the lateral guns were substituted for simple 2D parts, and will be exchanged for improved MG structures with SCASM.

    We´ll see how that goes...
    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  9. #9

    Virtual Cockpit

    Hello all,

    The virtual cockpit seems to be fine, except for the radiators blocking
    the propblurs in the central area, but I haven´t found a way to alter
    that in the SCASM listing, although it doesn´t bother, so it´s not important.

    Here´s a screenshot - the co-pilot is saying "Pass me the rum".

    Now for the SCASM inclusion of the MG structures.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails AmericaVC.jpg  
    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  10. #10

    with SCASM-added guns

    Hi Folks,

    The SCASM-added MG´s are coming out quite well now. I have one build with MG components,
    and another with MG structures, but the latter is probably better.

    Now is a disappearing left nosegun at certain angles, and some other bleeds at the fuel tanks
    behind the engines, but anyway... slowly we´re getting some tangibly better results!

    Not easy, this one!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails SCASM-added guns.jpg  
    Last edited by aleatorylamp; February 28th, 2021 at 12:06.

  11. #11
    Hello Aleatorylamp,

    This is what I have been commenting about for a while: That it is possible and reasonable to add significant pieces from multiple assemblies using SCASM. We have been doing this for a while with Cockpit interior pieces that don't exist in the primary AF99 assembly.

    - Ivan.

  12. #12
    Hi Ivan,
    Sorry for not commenting anything about the Tigercat and the Havocs - the
    issues are not really so important for me, I´m afraid. Thanks anyway...

    Regarding SCASM, I´ve managed to get everything tied up in the correct order
    from the virtual cockpit point of view and am slowly coming to grips with adding
    items with SCASM as well. In this case it is all the MG´s except for the side-fuselage
    ones behind the wing.

    I´d managed to include the MG´s as Collection-tagged, textured components, but
    their display is a bit dodgy, obviously, so I went for structures.

    Then, the bleed the provisional 2D planar front-left MG in the AF99 build wasn´t
    apparent, and as soon as I added the gun structures with SCASM, it disappeared,
    so I have been trying different glue sequences.

    Sometimes the canopy-frame and windows bled through the nose-lid under the front
    gunner, or the mid-section sponsons bled through the nose top, or the nose-section
    sponsons bled through the mid-fuselage, and side-guns bled through the floats and/or

    However, but studying the different glue sequences intensely and trying different
    combinations, I think I´ve just about managed to cope with all the annoying bleeds.

    Now I´m ready for my umpteenth SCASMing session.
    I noticed that with octogonal gun-barrel cross sections, (each gun has 48 points), SCASM not only can´t update the existing model file, but won´t make a new one either, so barrels will
    have to remain square, (each gun has 32 points) but at least they are textured!

    Even hexagonal cross-sectioned barrels only reduce the point-count per gun to 40, and most
    probably won´t be low enough - also the side-guns will need more parts to match...

    What I did do, is give the gun-muzzles a black insignia-tagged panel in the AF99 build, to fit
    on the added MG structures.

    We´ll see. I think it´s going rather well now.
    As soon as I´m done I´ll post some screenshots, or even a WIP model with source files
    just for fun.

    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  13. #13
    Hello Aleatorylamp,

    The Tigercat actually had a lot more problems that I addressed than I described thus far.
    The DP file needed some significant corrections such as ammunition weights and swapping the location of the cannons and .50 cal MG. It also has the A-20's check list.
    The AIR file had a bunch of weird things such as a Wing Tank on one side that was pretty far outboard and threw off the balance, Liquid cooled engines, etc.
    Since this was not my project, I only kept working copies and never backed anything up.

    Regarding Adding Guns to the Curtiss Flying Boat: This is a long shot, but what is the data length of your model from MdlDisAs? Is it right at the edge of 64K? If so, that would explain why you can't any more model features.

    Using MdlDisAs to create a new MDL never worked for me either.
    Even when it looks like it worked, the resulting MDL appears to be corrupted and does not actually load properly.
    It is possible to take the MDL file from another project and swap in your new SCASM code and that might solve some problems and let you have the room to add in more features.

    - Ivan.

  14. #14

    Curtiss H16 VC view progress

    Hello Ivan, hello Folks,

    Regarding the Tigercat, it´s a long time ago I uploaded it, and I didn´t know there were bugs.
    After finishing this baby, I could try and fix the couple of Tigercat issues you mention. Thanks!

    Anyway, here are some screenshots of the VC views now.
    The forward view is fine, with the fore gunner and guns outside the cabin spars and windows.

    The upward-left view shows the cockpit gun.
    Note that I still have to fix gun-drum textures: The stripes are only supposed to show on the sides, not on top and bottom.

    The strange thing in the side views is that the struts and wires show infront of the prop-blades although in the text the propblades are placed to show infront.
    Also, there´s strangely a missing propblade, and when the prop-blur appears, the radiator block out parts of it. These issues had already appeared before adding the 5 MG´s, when file size was still under 65000. Now file size if 69,318 bytes.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails VC--A.jpg   VC--B.jpg   VC--C.jpg   VC--D.jpg   VC--E.jpg   VC--Text.jpg  

    Last edited by aleatorylamp; March 1st, 2021 at 15:05.
    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  15. #15

    Further progress: Five SCASM-added MG´s

    Hello again!

    Here are some outside-view screenshots, showing the 5 gun structures.

    The plane flies fine, and the model doesn´t seem to be corrupted, and elements display correctly
    after a few glue sequences were corrected to eliminate some bleeds.

    After the two nose-guns, there were a couple of Call32 instructions to substitute simple Call instructions, and after adding the cockpit gun, the model file couldn´t be updated any longer and a new one had to be saved. With the 2 dorsal guns, several more Call32 substitutions had to be done, but it all went well.

    Here´s a WIP model, containing source files for anyone wishing to have a look-see inside
    before it´s finished and uploaded.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails H16--A.jpg   H16--B.jpg   H16--C.jpg   H16--D.jpg   H16--E.jpg   H16--F.jpg  

  16. #16
    Hello Aleatorylamp,

    Until I get my Development machine operational, I am unable to get any screenshots to show you exactly what I mean.

    I believe from the evidence you just supplied that my first guess was probably correct.
    When you are about to edit the SCASM code, you first start MdlDisAs.
    You will notice on one of the first screens that it tells you the current MDL format.
    Your Curtiss Flying Boat is probably Aircraft Animator 64K or something like that.
    MdlDisAs will offer you the option of changing to Aircraft Animator 128K or 133K or something like that.
    DON'T TAKE THAT OPTION! It doesn't work!

    Aircraft Factory 99 knows how to build a .MDL file with the correct format and Aircraft Animator can edit such a file without corrupting it.
    MdlDisAs doesn't know how to build a .MDL file with the correct format!

    Instead, try this process:
    0. I presume you saved your .SCX file for the Curtiss. The screenshot with :COCKPIT and :MAINIVC and :MAINSTR labels indicates that you have done this.
    1. Find another MDL with a format that is larger than 64K. I don't mean its file size on disk. I mean its data size in MdlDisAs. It can be nearly ANYTHING. If you want, you can even pull one of the P-40 MDLs that I built although you will have to go back and reset the Collision Bubble to match your model.
    2. Copy that .MDL file and overwrite your Curtiss MDL.
    3. Open the new .MDL using MdlDisAs.
    4. When asked to save the SCASM code as a new SCX file, Don't! Instead, use Existing SCASM / SCX code. (Your Curtiss Flying Boat SCX file)
    5. Update MDL. At this point, you will have your visual code and a new MDL format with a larger data limit and should be able to add pretty much whatever you want.

    Just about every one of my projects uses a MDL format with a 128K or 133K maximum data length.
    I suspect your Tigercat does as well and might save you the trouble of fixing the Collision Bubble.

    Just don't overwrite your Curtiss SCX file unintentionally. Remember, you are trying to overwrite the .MDL file, not the .SCX file.

    - Ivan.

  17. #17

    Corrections on Previous Models

    Hello Ivan,

    Of course there is no hurry for anything, be it Curtiss H-16, Tigercat or Havoc issues,
    until you get your development machine back into working order.

    The main problem with my CFS1 creations is the lack of a building team, and my "strong
    point" is really only building the model itself. Textures, FD and Dp files are a bit more
    complicated for me, although in some cases, they come out very well, but not always.

    In the case of my FS98 planes, I do the building work, another in the team "The Last Mohicans"
    does some very nice textures, and a third member helps with .air file issues.

    For CFS2, I build hollowed out AF99 models with no crew or weapons, another in the team
    "Westfront" does the Dp files, adding crew and weapons, a third member converts the AF99 models
    to Gmax and adds several enhancements like virtual cockpits and gauges, and also does high-resolution extended bitmap textures. Then, a fourth member does extensive flight testing so that I can get the .air file right, and also undertakes the rather complicated CFS2 uploads.

    For the Tigercat and Havocs, I´d have a suggestion: It would be nice if you could help me out with the different corrections - in fact it would be absolutely great, and I would appreciate it very much.

    Perhaps, once your development machine is in order again, in the Tigercat and the Havoc threads, you could attach the corrected files (e-mails usually block aircraft .zip attachments), with some comments, and I could slip these corrections into the aircraft here, and then proceed with editing the aircraft uploaded in the CFS1 library with the corresponding updates, also adding corresponding acknowlegments to your efforts in the corrections.

    How about that?

    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  18. #18

    SCASM and the Curtiss H-16 .MDL file

    Hello Ivan,

    Thank you very much for your comments on SCASM.

    In my case, once SCASM assembles the model correctly, I always use the
    FSDS short format 133K option (I´ve never tried the Aircraft Animator 133K option,
    or the FSDS long format 1029K one), and then I select update the .mdl file.

    Furthermore, after the first .SCX saving, at the beginning of some SCASMing task,
    I always use the "use existing file" option as I progress through the whole process.

    If I have had to add parts to the model, it is normally by substituting a number
    of simple 2D planar parts with 3D structures or components, in the same positions
    in the SCASM listing. This ensures that correct glue-sequencing will be maintained.

    If for re-assembly there are some Call commands that need to be substituted by
    Call32 commands, it may happen that updating the .mdl file it gets refused, and
    I re-name the old model file and let it make a new one. Upto now, this has worked
    fine for me, without corrupting any models.

    I am always amazed how SCASM or the MdlDisAs can correctly manipulate and
    re-write .mdl files! Funnily enough, it is just the opposite to what you report!

    On the Large America, today I have already fixed the orange base colour of the gun
    structures to black, as it sometimes shone through the insignia-tagged gun muzzle.

    Then, as I said yesterday, I´ll also adjust the texture bitmaps to eliminate the stripes
    from the gun-drums.

    Another thing I need to do is put the 4 propeller blades of each prop into a component,
    which I couldn´t do for lack of components upto now. Maybe this will cure the interference
    with the present SCASMed parts (blades struts and wires). It will be difficult to just substitute
    the existing individual blades in the SCASM listing for prop components, and with maxed out
    AF99 components maxed out, I´ll have to think of some strategy to do this.
    I´ll see how it goes. I wonder...

    I also have to add the new cockpit gun to the Dp files.

    Incidentally, I forgot to include the extra Gun-structure AFX called "Parts", which went into the
    SCASM listing. Here it is attached.

    The guns are the items in the listing with 32 points and using textures. Restly stuff is the windows,
    cabin canopy frame, and other stuff like struts and scarfrings.

    Cheers for now ,
    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  19. #19

    Disaster Recovery

    Hello Aleatorylamp,

    I have always been willing to assist to some extent. After the episode with the Eric Johnson P-39, I just don't tend to volunteer solutions any more.
    I generally prefer to teach someone how to do something rather than do it for them, but my Children have told me that I am not very good at teaching.

    As for helping you out on some of your older projects, a lot of it is simple research and data collection and I am VERY slow at doing that. Look at how many projects I have actually released recently.

    As for the Disk Failure on the Development Machine, if I cannot recover any data, I may be down for months or even a year because I only have some source code archives dating back about a year or so. What I have that is still working is basically a bare Windows 98SR2 system with nothing installed and no data.

    At the moment, my days are committed to other tasks mostly related to the new addition to the house, so I can't even begin to round up pieces for a recovery yet.

    - Ivan.

  20. #20
    Hello Ivan,

    No problem.
    After the episode with Eric Johnson´s P-39, I wasn´t really interested in
    asking anything anyway, although eventually I did respond to your
    messages yesterday, but I see...

    At any rate, there´s no big deal with the Tigercat and Havoc corrections,
    so the issue is unimportant.

    Good luck with your hardware.

    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  21. #21

    VC view of prop animation

    Hello Folks,

    It´s going well with the corrected prop animation view from inside the VC, either with individual
    blades or with prop components. Due to maxed out components and structures, I managed to
    put propeller components in AF99 by substituting radiator components for provisional 2D planars.
    These will be substituted for structures via SCASM later.

    To find the correct call for prop animations from the VC, once the props (or blades) and problurs
    are identified in the SCASM listing search was with "engine 2 speed" and "engine 1 speed", and after backtracking 2 or 3 steps, I arrived at at the labels for the beginning of the animation calls.

    In the attached screenshots, radiators are still 2D, but the correct prop animation is shown to be
    working very well.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Good VC propview.jpg   Good VC propview 2.jpg  
    Last edited by aleatorylamp; March 2nd, 2021 at 10:37.
    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  22. #22

    Control surface deflection angle

    Hello Folks,
    I am noticing something rather curious during the SCASMing process:

    Having placed deflection angles for ailerons, elevators and rudder at 22 deg. in Aircraft animator,
    I proceeded to correct the VC chase view with SCASM, and everything was fine.

    Then I started to add the 3D elements (radiators and MG´s) for which there were insufficient
    resources within AF99 alone, and of course, after substituting the 2D elements of the 2
    radiators and the 2 nose-guns, there came the point where SCASM could no longer update
    the existing .mdl file, and it had to create a new one.

    Testing the new .mdl file, everything seemed to display perfectly in order, but the 22 deg.
    control surface deflection angle was replaced by the default 45 deg. one.

    This is all very well if one could tolerate watching control surfaces flapping wildly at
    exaggerated angles, but this can be remedied!

    Surprisingly enough, Aircraft Animator can identify the new model file written by SCASM,
    and can correct and re-compile it, and the model functions and displays perfectly in the

    So far, so good... However, this has to be the last step in the model finalizing process, as
    from this point on, SCASM rejects the model file, and reports an End Of File Error, and no
    further SCASMing can be undertaken, even thogh the model performs flawlessly in the sim.

    I thought it was rather curious, to say the least.

    Anyway, I´ll be uploading the Curtiss H-16 soon.
    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  23. #23
    Hello Aleatorylamp,

    Have you thought about changing the angle of the control surface movement YOURSELF in SCASM?
    I have done this a few times and it isn't that difficult.

    The place to look if you are curious about where I have done this is at the flap movements in some of my models.
    Aircraft Animator doesn't offer a lot of choices, so sometimes the range and timing has to be adjusted.

    - Ivan.

  24. #24

    Angle of control in SCASM

    Hi Ivan,
    No, but I can try, thanks.
    That way the model file will not be rendered useless for future SCASMing edits.
    Also, perhaps I can increase the copilot´s turning head movement without having to
    increase the rudder deflection angle...

    Update: I´ve just tried to do it MYSELF in SCASM, but wasn´t successful.
    I did a build just involving wings and copilot´s head, with 2 versions: One with a 22-degree rudder-turning angle, and another with a 45-degree angle. Each version had a separately named SCASM .scx file, but unfortunately they are identical, so I have not been trying to identify which part of the text refers to the turning angle.
    Perhaps it is something elsewhere that defines the turning angle.
    Now I´ll try and do it with ailerons and elevators, to see if they are the same as well.
    I´ll also try some flaps. Perhaps it´s only those that are identifiable...

    Results: Strangely enough, no difference is detected in the rudders.
    However, the transformcall commands for flaps, elevator and ailerons, do have different values, although it only differes by 1.
    Flaps: the second value is 1418 for a 45 degree deflection and 1419 for 90 degrees.
    Elevators: the second value is 797 for 22 degrees and 798 for 45 degrees.
    Ailerons: the third value is 499 for 22 degrees and 500 for 45 degrees.
    (there is sometimes a + or - sign depending on whether it´s left or right).
    Now I can try and see if the deflection angles of ailerons and elevators can be reduced...
    The entries I found all seem to be hinge positions, not deflection angles, and seem to have
    nothing to do with the difference of 1 in the values. So I´m getting nowhere fast, I´m afraid.

    Anyway, as long as the plane works correctly in the sim, it doesn´t really matter to me if the .mdl file can´t be edited with SCASM after Aircraft Animator has put back correct deflection angles.

    Last edited by aleatorylamp; March 3rd, 2021 at 11:00.
    "Why make it simple if you can also make it complicated?"

  25. #25


    Hello Folks,

    I have always wondered about the vertical fins on the top wing of Curtiss´ flying boats.
    Obviously, they were there for something, otherwise they wouldn´t have been on.
    My deduction is that they could have been like winglets, so probably that option
    should be activated in the ,air file.

    Another interesting thing is the ability for sustained single-engined flight. There is a
    report of one unit over the North Sea that flew on one engine for a number of hours
    while the engineer successfully conducted repairs, enabling the aircraft to reach its
    home base - RNAS Killingholme, I think it was - and he was condecorated for his feat.

    I tried out the model to see if it was also capable of this, and indeed it is. With 2x400 Hp
    engines and a gross weight of 10650 lb (MTOW 10978 lb) it is probably to be expected...
    It can slowly climb, too.

    Here are two screenshots of the model in single-engined flight, and two closeups as well,
    just for eye candy.

    Glenn Curtiss certainly did a good job with his beautiful designs.
    They are absolutely impressive!

    It´s nice when a model turns out looking good.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Screenshot3.jpg   Screenshot9.jpg   Screenshot10.jpg   Screenshot4.jpg  

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