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The Logistics of Flying
Valamezar
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Post: #31
Re: The Logistics of Flying
One fact reveals that wings on angels or dragons are not used to fly:

Ever had lost a thought on the birds tailfeathers? In the case of a dragon his tail could be used for steering, but lacking surface this is only possible if the end of the tail is kind of a little sail. Angels do not have tailfeathers, so our flight would always be totally out of control. Just in the moment the flattering of wings create uplift there is a downstream of air, relatively spoken. Even if the wings would be used themselves as a kind of rudder during their flapping the chaotic air movement beyond them would make it impossible to flight a straight line or reach any point desired. Aerodynamics are nasty in those things. The muscles for using those wings would make a total different body of a human: the skeleton would have to adapt to the altered stresses, muscular packages and their attachements to the bones of the rips would make an angel more a kind of glider then of flapper. Flapping costs more strength and thus would need more muscles.

Some ideas at the morning <!-- sBig Grin --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_e_biggrin.gif" alt=":D" title="Very Happy" /><!-- sBig Grin -->

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If some people really see angels where others see only empty space, let them paint the angels. (John Ruskin, 1819 - 1900, english critic and writer)
2008-09-03 7:55
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chaitea
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Post: #32
Re: The Logistics of Flying
Valamezar Wrote:One fact reveals that wings on angels or dragons are not used to fly:

I always figured many angels just had the wings for show rather then function.
As for dragons, it's true in the case of Eastern dragon that they do not use their wings for flying. They fly without wings and once they do acquire them (after so many years) they are used to ascend.

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2008-09-03 11:33
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Post: #33
Re: The Logistics of Flying
In a way they are for show. Angels don't need wings to fly. Oddly we can't fly until we have them.

Unfurling an angels wings is his or her way showing status or rank. They are earned like badges of honor. If I come across someone with more wings than myself, I tend to back up a bit out of respect.

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2008-09-03 13:54
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Post: #34
Re: The Logistics of Flying
*nodnod* I agree with you on that, Chaitea. I always figured that angels were given wings by human imagination. After all, if angels are the messengers of the gods, what would be the fastest way for them to move around? At the time the idea was developed, travel was still very slow, even by ship. Naturally, people would look at birds, see how quickly they could move, and attribute that kind of ability to angels.

I would consider wings to be better use in show- such as flaring for anger or warning- or shielding than flight.

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2008-09-03 14:04
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Shiari
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Post: #35
Re: The Logistics of Flying
Valamezar Wrote:One fact reveals that wings on angels or dragons are not used to fly:

Ever had lost a thought on the birds tailfeathers? In the case of a dragon his tail could be used for steering, but lacking surface this is only possible if the end of the tail is kind of a little sail.


Not true in the slightest. Think a moment on bats and pterosaurs. There are other ways to get around the steering issues. In addition to our wing sail extending out to 1/4 of the way down the tail, we also used our feet to help stabilize. Our tail itself was smooth to the tip. The shinoar flew. We were not magical in any way, shape, or form.
2008-09-03 15:23
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Valamezar
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Post: #36
Re: The Logistics of Flying
I do not remember dragons having wings like that of a bat. Usually they are extra-limbs and not the arms. Dragons usually go with three limb-pairs: arms, legs and wings - and a tail. I do not know shinoar - never heard about them. So "not true in the slightest" is a generalisation not appropriate because you describe a case of flying that uses different limbs for flying thus having different aerodynamics that are not the common rule among dragons of western style (which I am refering to). Comparing a dragon with a bat - I am sure there are dragons out there that do not think that a nice comparison ^^.

Anyway - angels have wings not for flying. I know that pretty well <!-- s:-) --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_e_smile.gif" alt=":-)" title="Smile" /><!-- s:-) --> - just wanted to insert a detail most people oversee.

If some people really see angels where others see only empty space, let them paint the angels. (John Ruskin, 1819 - 1900, english critic and writer)
2008-09-03 15:33
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Shiari
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Post: #37
Re: The Logistics of Flying
Most dragons have bat-like wings. That is, elongated fingers supporting a sail of thin, highly elastic skin. Pterosaurs were similarly arranged, and had tons of little microfibers that helped control the shape of the trailing edge of the wing, which would help with orientation. The shinoar were not standard western type, but rather had a theropodian stance. So 6 limbs, foremost pair a set of large, membranous wings, middle pair a set of small arms, and the hind pair long running legs.

My "not true in the slightest" was also the idea that a creature absolutely NEEDED a tail arrangement similar to birds to be able to fly well. And anyways, a little "sail" doohickey on the end of a long, thin, tapering tail is not going to provide much balance, especially for dragons that had flexible, rather than stiff tails.
2008-09-03 15:39
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Valamezar
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Post: #38
Re: The Logistics of Flying
Bats use their arms as wings - dragons not - and this single fact makes it difficult for physical flight. That their wings are like that of a bat was not the point. Bats and Pteros use their whole body as a wing - and that is the difference besides that they both are not that big as a dragon - though I remember that there are also bigger pteros then 75 cm wingspan around (which had poor flying abilities afaik). They need no tail because their aerodynamics are different to one that is not an "only-wing". I was referring to angels and dragons as creatures that would need a tail or tailfeathers to fly properly. That there are creatures around that can do without was never the point.

If some people really see angels where others see only empty space, let them paint the angels. (John Ruskin, 1819 - 1900, english critic and writer)
2008-09-03 18:14
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Shiari
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Post: #39
Re: The Logistics of Flying
Actually, it's entirely the point because by saying "dragons" you are implying ALL dragons. The shinoar were draconic. We flew using our wings... which were once "arms". That would be the same for any creature with a bat-like structure to the wing. Those are limbs with elongated fingers... arms! The shinoar used most of our body as a wing. The leading edge, that which is most important for lift, starting on our necks. The trailing edge extended a decent distance down our tail. The remaining tail narrowed quickly and thus wasn't that heavy, and our feet coupled with raising or lowering the tail in flight affected our aerodynamics.

The largest pterosaurs were mostly soaring creatures, true. This is the same for large birds, and the same for my species. We did certainly flap however, as do condors and even the giant teratorn which had a 20+ foot wingspan. The largest pterosaurs would have been terrific flyers still, if by flying you mean "not a slow, controlled fall" which is what gliding is. Soaring is still flying.
2008-09-04 2:03
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