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  • #61
    Originally posted by Dibble201Bty View Post
    I refer you both to my last. You can also refer yourselves to what happened historically instead of in your heads.

    Would the P40 outclass the 109F & G in the med? Would the P40 have wrested air superiority over Malta? The Spitfire VC and Mk IX's were needed in the theatre to counter the German initial superiority. The P40 was a good fighter-bomber in the Med. It wasn't a good fighter in the Med

    Perhaps the US should have stuck with P38's and P47's to protect the bombers and do PR work. Improved the P51 with the Allison or even the P&W. How about re-equipping the Lancaster and Mosquito to Allison's too? Why oh why didn't the allies realise that they were equipping all their top war-planes with an inferior engine. The luftwaffe fanbois must be scratching their heads.

    The Commonwealth and other allied air-forces seem to have 'coped' with the RR Merlin/Griffon, Shame the USAAF (Merlin) did too.

    Another off-topic reply about usage of aircraft has no bearing on what was the best engine. The OP did not ask which engine was preferred for specific tasking.

    Germany'’s BMW 801 had a well documented history of defects and losses due to faulty engines. And yet the Focke-Wulf 190 laid waste to RAF Spitfires in one lopsided victory after another. That did not change until USAAF bombing raids tipped the scales.

    So if we follow your criteria for rating quality of engines, the drubbing inflicted on Fighter Command by the FW-190 suggests the BMW 801 was better than the Merlin.

    Aside from trouble with the engines, other vital points made by the author of Darwin Spitfires: After admitted losses were checked and overclaiming of shoot-downs were discounted, the USAAF P-40 and RAAF Spitfires based in Australia both achieved an approximate 1:1 exchange ratio against Japanese aircraft of all types. That 1:1 figure is essentially the same as what was achieved by RAF Spitfires during the Battle of Britain, and better than the performance returned by Fighter Command in 1941-1942.

    Cooper also said that due to superior training, tactics and battle drills, the Japanese Zero bested the Spitfire by about 2:1 in air combats. Another reason for Japanese success is that the 20mm Oerlikon cannon was reliable, while the 20mm Hispano in the Spitfires was prone to widespread jamming from dust and freezing temperatures at high altitude. It was not made clear if the Zero's Sakae engine was more reliable than the Merlin, but Japanese planes had much longer transit times to fight over Australia.

    Comment


    • #62

      Originally posted by At ease View Post
      There have been many times @ACG and elsewhere that the Junkers Jumo 004 has been referred to as "junk".

      By implication, the equivalent Allied jet aircraft engines must be comparatively "benign".

      From the pen of SqdLdr. William "Bill" Waterton, chief test pilot for Gloster, maker of the Meteor:

      The Quick and the Dead - The Perils of Post-War Test Flying

      Chapter 8 Experiments, Trials, and the later Meteors

      [.....]
      Then came the Mark III, with 2,000-pound thrust Derwent I engines(only 20 lbs more thrust than a 1945 built Junkers Jumo 004 engine {IOW as near as equal}- At ease italics), which equipped several post-war R.A.F. squadrons. They were very manœuvrable(sic), but at speed in rough air they “snaked” badly—the nose swinging from side to side. The controls were terribly heavy, and at cold temperatures over 20,000 feet the engines tended to “surge”. To the pilot this felt like a rapid series of explosions which violently shook the aeroplane and, if allowed to persist, would wreck the engines through overheating and vibration. The cause was a breakdown of airflow inside the compressors at high engine r.p.m. and low air speed, and the simplest cure was to reduce engine speed. This resulted in reduced power and ability to climb, and as the ’plane went higher into colder air, the surge recommenced and the cycle was repeated. Often a Mark Ill’s ceiling was reduced to 26,000 feet by this phenomenon.
      [.....]


      https://www.amazon.com/Quick-Dead-Pe.../dp/1908117273

      Up until now, airframe snaking aside, I had believed that the Meteor(and centrifugal jet engines) had been a paragon of virtue.

      Well, that's been the "party line", anyway.

      <SNIP>
      More Meteor problems that I was not aware of before:

      From pp 23/75 of:

      "How Meteors hit the ground"

      by Geoffrey Edwin Higges

      (book synopsis from my favourite free ebook website:

      795 write-offs of the Gloster Meteor jet fighter occurred in the peace time after WWII, between 1945 and 1957. This book uses the author's 6 years experience flying the Gloster Meteor jet fighter to analyse the reasons for the many accidents that occurred with this aircraft. For example, on average during the year 1952, 3 Meteors were written off every week, and a Meteor pilot killed every 4 days.
      In 1945, Number 616 Squadron of the British Royal Air Force was equipped with the Gloster Meteor fighter which was the first and only jet aircraft to be used by the Allies in World War II. In 1951 the author became a fighter pilot with 616 Squadron flying the latest version of the Meteor, and during his 6 years flying this aircraft, the author also qualified and gained experience as a Flight Test Engineer. So he is well qualified to comment on the qualities of this historic aircraft, and discuss the various characteristics which contributed to so many accidents during its lifetime.



      5. How to Become a Jet Pilot

      203 Advanced Flying School, RAF Driffield and Carnaby, Yorkshire

      As the runway at RAF Driffield in Yorkshire was not long enough for the Meteor, all our flying was
      carried out at the nearby airfield of Carnaby. I will never forget my initial reaction of surprise at the
      dilapidated look of the single seater F4s lined up at Carnaby - most of them seemed to have half the
      rivets in their wings popped or missing. Our enthusiasm was further slightly dampened during our
      technical ground training when we learnt of some of the aircraft’s eccentricities such as stability
      problems of significant longitudinal shift of centre of gravity caused by use of ammunition and/or fuel.
      Also we learnt that in those days of unsophisticated fuel control the reaction to throttle movements
      was not only very slow, requiring great anticipation by the pilot, but opening or closing the throttle
      too quickly would actually put out the engines completely - which I was to experience first-hand very
      soon!
      https://www.amazon.co.uk/Meteors-Gro.../dp/1492315435

      The above passage represents the authors beginning of his jet conversion course to Meteors in mid 1951.

      And yet, some ACGers are "dissing" the engine surge/throttle movement problems of the Jumo 004 in 1944/45.

      The Meteor was susceptible to these problems 6 years later.

      It's nice to be able to add some "balance", backed up by credible and pertinent source references, to the mix.




      download.jpg
      Last edited by At ease; 13 Oct 18, 06:10.
      "It's like shooting rats in a barrel."
      "You'll be in a barrel if you don't watch out for the fighters!"

      "Talking about airplanes is a very pleasant mental disease."
      — Sergei(son of Igor) Sikorsky, 'AOPA Pilot' magazine February 2003.

      Comment


      • #63
        Thanks for posting here agan At Ease. if you had not then I would have probably missed yet another diatribe (emphasis on 'dia') by EKB as quoted below.

        Originally posted by EKB View Post
        Another off-topic reply about usage of aircraft has no bearing on what was the best engine. The OP did not ask which engine was preferred for specific tasking.

        Germany'’s BMW 801 had a well documented history of defects and losses due to faulty engines. And yet the Focke-Wulf 190 laid waste to RAF Spitfires in one lopsided victory after another. That did not change until USAAF bombing raids tipped the scales.
        Absolute crap! God knows where you get your information from. Perhaps you get it from the back of 1960's cereal boxes.

        As soon as the 60 series Merlin was fitted to the Spitfire, things changed with the MkIX and would see the MkIX show its superiority from its introduction into service in 1942 (long before the USAAF had any impact) and would go on to widen the gap when the RR.Griffon was introduced which made that gap insurmountable, Even the FW190D series had no peerage over the late MkIX or MkXIV.

        The MkV Spitfire with its Merin 45 did struggle against the Fw190A for some months, but with the advent of the MkIX there was no struggle. The MkV clipped winged (LF. Merlin 45m to 55m powerplant) Spitfire was every bit as equal to the Fw190A at lower altitudes.

        So if we follow your criteria for rating quality of engines, the drubbing inflicted on Fighter Command by the FW-190 suggests the BMW 801 was better than the Merlin.
        Bollocks! see above.

        Aside from trouble with the engines, other vital points made by the author of Darwin Spitfires: After admitted losses were checked and overclaiming of shoot-downs were discounted, the USAAF P-40 and RAAF Spitfires based in Australia both achieved an approximate 1:1 exchange ratio against Japanese aircraft of all types. That 1:1 figure is essentially the same as what was achieved by RAF Spitfires during the Battle of Britain, and better than the performance returned by Fighter Command in 1941-1942.

        Cooper also said that due to superior training, tactics and battle drills, the Japanese Zero bested the Spitfire by about 2:1 in air combats. Another reason for Japanese success is that the 20mm Oerlikon cannon was reliable, while the 20mm Hispano in the Spitfires was prone to widespread jamming from dust and freezing temperatures at high altitude. It was not made clear if the Zero's Sakae engine was more reliable than the Merlin, but Japanese planes had much longer transit times to fight over Australia.
        Which had to do with tactics and the fact that the initial MKV's had seen better days. A few months later the Spitfires would turn the tables. At sea in the pacific, and over Burma would start to show their superiority.

        Reading people who use sound-bites are not the way to research. The Japanese rarely flew their fighters high enough for their cannons to freeze and by 1942, the Hispano 20mm was an excellent weapon with freezing problems occurring manly at very high altitudes when first used to intercept PR JU86's. In normal combat situations against enemy fighters, there were no problems unless an additional outer wing station 20mm gun was employed. Thus medium/low level types of fighers such as the Tempest and LF Spitfires did have 4x20mm cannons whereas the medium to high fighters had different armament such as 2x20mm + 2x.50.

        The real culprits of the Hispano 20mm cannon and its tendency to jamb were the US.

        "The 20mm problems is different in that the gun worked well. All the US had to do was to copy the specifications and all would be OK, but on two occasions they got it wrong and it looks to the world, through pig-headedness and arrogance."

        http://www.quarryhs.co.uk/CannonMGs.htm

        http://www.quarryhs.co.uk/US404.htm



        Last edited by Dibble201Bty; 14 Oct 18, 04:12.
        ‘Tis said his form is tiny, yet
        All human ills he can subdue,
        Or with a bauble or medal
        Can win mans heart for you;
        And many a blessing know to stew
        To make a megloamaniac bright;
        Give honour to the dainty Corse,
        The Pixie is a little shite.

        Comment


        • #64
          Originally posted by EKB View Post


          Germany'’s BMW 801 had a well documented history of defects and losses due to faulty engines. And yet the Focke-Wulf 190 laid waste to RAF Spitfires in one lopsided victory after another. That did not change until USAAF bombing raids tipped the scales.
          A basic error.

          To paraphrase Sir Humphry Appleby of "Yes Minister" fame, the statement in bold could be considered to be "Courageous".

          So if we follow your criteria for rating quality of engines, the drubbing inflicted on Fighter Command by the FW-190 suggests the BMW 801 was better than the Merlin.
          At low level, you would not be considered "Courageous", as that was where the FW190 excelled.

          But if you maintained this level(sic) of thought for high altitude levels(circa 20,000'), you most certainly again would be considered "Courageous", where the FW190 began to fade whilst the Spitfire Mk IX improved relatively speaking.

          I am sure "Dibs" understands my reference to Sir Humphry's use of the term "Courageous".

          Anyone else who is in the dark about this see:



          IOW, "Courageous" is not exactly a complimentary term.
          Last edited by At ease; 14 Oct 18, 08:30.
          "It's like shooting rats in a barrel."
          "You'll be in a barrel if you don't watch out for the fighters!"

          "Talking about airplanes is a very pleasant mental disease."
          — Sergei(son of Igor) Sikorsky, 'AOPA Pilot' magazine February 2003.

          Comment


          • #65
            Originally posted by Dibble201Bty View Post
            Thanks for posting here agan At Ease. if you had not then I would have probably missed yet another diatribe (emphasis on 'dia') by EKB as quoted below.


            As soon as the 60 series Merlin was fitted to the Spitfire, things changed with the MkIX and would see the MkIX show its superiority from its introduction into service in 1942 (long before the USAAF had any impact) and would go on to widen the gap when the RR.Griffon was introduced which made that gap insurmountable, Even the FW190D series had no peerage over the late MkIX or MkXIV.
            From pp39 of
            Fighter Aircraft Performance of WW2

            By Erik Pilawskii

            Click on the image to read the text.


            FW190vSpitfireXIV.png



            https://www.amazon.com/Fighter-Aircr.../dp/1326617982


            FighterAircraftPerformanceofWW2.png
            Last edited by At ease; 14 Oct 18, 07:25.
            "It's like shooting rats in a barrel."
            "You'll be in a barrel if you don't watch out for the fighters!"

            "Talking about airplanes is a very pleasant mental disease."
            — Sergei(son of Igor) Sikorsky, 'AOPA Pilot' magazine February 2003.

            Comment


            • #66
              It only took me about 20 minutes or so to find out that the later model Spitfires were equal to and then better, as newer versions were introduced, then the FW-190

              https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q...EC18&FORM=VIRE

              Of course taking advantage of these improvements was up to the individual RAF pilots.
              Theo mir ist die munition ausgegangen ich werde diesen ramman auf wiedersehen uns in walhalla

              Comment


              • #67
                Originally posted by At ease View Post

                From pp39 of
                Fighter Aircraft Performance of WW2

                By Erik Pilawskii

                Click on the image to read the text.


                FW190vSpitfireXIV.png



                https://www.amazon.com/Fighter-Aircr.../dp/1326617982


                FighterAircraftPerformanceofWW2.png
                Thanks At ease I will be purchasing that book to have at my disposal for WW2 fighter plane info/comparisons.

                Theo mir ist die munition ausgegangen ich werde diesen ramman auf wiedersehen uns in walhalla

                Comment


                • #68
                  I have the 2 FW-190 Dora books by Jerry Crandall (luckily purchased a few years ago at around 50 bucks each) but the advantages of the Dora were to late as Germany was losing the war and an the Dora's improvements were insignificant.

                  https://flyingheritage.org/Explore/T...13-(Dora).aspx


                  https://www.amazon.com/Focke-Wulf-Fw...ds=fw+190+dora

                  https://www.amazon.com/Focke-Wulf-Do...ds=fw+190+dora

                  Ridiculous price gouging on the 2 best books out there about the Dora. I'm glad I have them already.
                  Theo mir ist die munition ausgegangen ich werde diesen ramman auf wiedersehen uns in walhalla

                  Comment


                  • #69
                    Originally posted by Kurt Knispel View Post

                    Thanks At ease I will be purchasing that book to have at my disposal for WW2 fighter plane info/comparisons.
                    That could be a very worthwhile purchase.

                    If it is known @ACG that you own this, you might be called upon to settle some arguments.

                    As a result of your post, I might hit up the author for a "spotters fee".
                    Last edited by At ease; 14 Oct 18, 08:37.
                    "It's like shooting rats in a barrel."
                    "You'll be in a barrel if you don't watch out for the fighters!"

                    "Talking about airplanes is a very pleasant mental disease."
                    — Sergei(son of Igor) Sikorsky, 'AOPA Pilot' magazine February 2003.

                    Comment


                    • #70
                      Pilawskii seems to be over egging the Bf109K4. I prefer what is known to what is speculation and authors opinions. But then, in this case, that's my opinion too.
                      ‘Tis said his form is tiny, yet
                      All human ills he can subdue,
                      Or with a bauble or medal
                      Can win mans heart for you;
                      And many a blessing know to stew
                      To make a megloamaniac bright;
                      Give honour to the dainty Corse,
                      The Pixie is a little shite.

                      Comment


                      • #71
                        IMOH....the Merlin V12
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                        • #72
                          Originally posted by Drusus Nero View Post
                          IMOH....the Merlin V12
                          That seems to be the consensus here!

                          https://www.defensemedianetwork.com/...-world-war-ii/
                          The following German engine, which never did come fully into a high production rate, and the long nosed Focke Wulf 190 D (Dora) and Focke Wulf 190 Ta 152/154 with which they were installed was to little to late. If there was a high production rate of this engine and the improved FW's 2 years earlier, at the start of 1943, the Mustangs abilities escorting the daylight bombers over Germany would have been neutralized. This would also have saved most of the experienced German fighter pilots who were shot down and killed starting in the summer/fall of 43.


                          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Junkers_Jumo_213

                          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rolls-Royce_Merlin

                          Comparing the specs of the 2 engines on the bottom of the Wiki pages. They are really close. The addition of :

                          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MW_50 on the Jumo 213 ups the HP to 2000.

                          The fact that the Merlin was in production throughout the entire war, with close to 150,000 of them manufactured, would clearly make the choice a no-brainer.

                          The following Wiki page rates the FW-152 at 472 mph @ 41,000 ft. with an armament of 2 20mm and 1 30mm cannons. This would have been hell on the B-17's if this aircraft was available at the start of 1943.

                          As an aside, during my research I read somewhere that the De Haviland Mosquito could have delivered the same amount of bombs as the B-17 while not being the large cumbersome "deathtrap" of the latter.
                          Last edited by Kurt Knispel; 16 Oct 18, 11:00.
                          Theo mir ist die munition ausgegangen ich werde diesen ramman auf wiedersehen uns in walhalla

                          Comment


                          • #73
                            Originally posted by Kurt Knispel View Post

                            That seems to be the consensus here!
                            No it isn't.
                            "It's like shooting rats in a barrel."
                            "You'll be in a barrel if you don't watch out for the fighters!"

                            "Talking about airplanes is a very pleasant mental disease."
                            — Sergei(son of Igor) Sikorsky, 'AOPA Pilot' magazine February 2003.

                            Comment


                            • #74
                              Originally posted by At ease View Post

                              No it isn't.
                              I just went over the entire thread and its tilted slightly in favor of the RR Merlin. I see you brought up the Jumo turbo jet engines but these entered the war to late I would think unless we are just talking best engine manufactured during the war disregarding the role it played in winning the war.

                              If that is the case I would agree it was the Jumo 004
                              Theo mir ist die munition ausgegangen ich werde diesen ramman auf wiedersehen uns in walhalla

                              Comment


                              • #75
                                Originally posted by Kurt Knispel View Post

                                I just went over the entire thread and its tilted slightly in favor of the RR Merlin. I see you brought up the Jumo turbo jet engines but these entered the war to late I would think unless we are just talking best engine manufactured during the war disregarding the role it played in winning the war.

                                If that is the case I would agree it was the Jumo 004
                                Aircraft performance, based firmly on the engine(s) used to propel an aircraft, is always advancing.

                                This is especially so under pressure of conflict.

                                There has been no more intense world wide conflict than World War 2.

                                The reciprocating piston engines in existence at the beginning of the War were steadily improved due to the need to keep one(or more) jump ahead of the opposition.

                                But at some point, even before the war started, forward thinking engineers such as Whittle and von Ohain understood the limitations to be faced by conventional piston engines as performance levels increased.

                                By mid war, aircraft powerplant engineers were straining to design and produce ever more complex and massive piston engines in an attempt to get just that little bit of extra performance.

                                Exotic metals, convoluted cylinder layouts, highly refined fuels and additives(ADI/GM1/MW50), complex propeller arrangements(5 blades/contra rotating in the case of later variants of Spitfire/Spiteful), very high turbo/supercharger boost, complicated engine management controls(power/pitch/mixture controls all in the one unit pioneered by the FW190) and cooling system compromises were all pathways that needed to be explored to coax just a little bit more performance out of piston engines towards the end of the War.

                                This led to engines of ever increasing complexity and expense that were getting ever more difficult for crew chiefs to keep serviceable.

                                The Napier Sabre and P&W R4360 "Corn Cob" engines are just two latter examples of complicated, very expensive, engines being used or contemplated for use by Allied air forces.

                                There were 56, count 'em, spark plugs in the "Corn Cob".

                                Mid war, the Avro Manchester and He177 were examples of how not to increase conventional piston engine power without suffering debilitating reliability issues.

                                There is a "truism" that was frequently bandied about from my earlier days of involvement with car racing:

                                "There is no substitute for cubic inches except cubic dollars".

                                This was back in the days when turbochargers were becoming established in Formula One racing in the late 1970's/early 1980's.

                                I can tell you from first hand experience how expensive and potentially unreliable it was to use turbos way back then before computerised fuel injection engine management systems made this power boosting approach viable, unless excess fuel/rich mixtures were used to prevent engine/component failures.

                                Both larger cubic capacity and/or more complexity were needed to produce ever higher power outputs from piston engines.

                                The RR Griffon, 10 litres larger than the similarly configured RR Merlin, was a satisfactory example of how to increase power(or more accurately, torque).

                                Due to the very real aerodynamic drag rise from ever larger or more complicated propeller arrangements, I refer again to late war Spitfire/Spiteful examples, a piston engine, of whatever extreme level of engineering input and money that was thrown at it, could not push an aircraft past the 500mph barrier with any degree of reliability.

                                To reach this speed, extreme boost pressure and very potent fuels were needed.

                                An engine pushed this hard needed much higher levels of attention by ground crews.

                                They were fine "tootling along" at 400 mph or a bit more, but once extreme demands were placed on them their actual in service life at the extreme outer limits was very limited.

                                The aerodynamic drag and loss of propeller blade efficiency was just too much.

                                Compare this with the Jumo 004 powered aircraft which in the case of the Me262 raised level speeds significantly.

                                (see later comments by Captain Eric "Winkle" Brown)

                                In one go, a bomber/PR aircraft, such as the Arado 234, was introduced with a speed/altitude potential that made it much harder to intercept.

                                Note it's ability to overfly the Normandy beaches untouched from August 1944.

                                Based in France, it had had the range to reach the UK invasion build up areas.

                                This capability, just 2 months earlier, would have shone a light on the preparations for Overlord and possibly have put their subsequent implementation at grave risk.

                                The following post from Axis History Forum gives a brief insight of the ability of the Arado 234 to overfly the UK invasion preparation areas:

                                https://forum.axishistory.com/viewto...b61fc#p1614434

                                By the same measure, the Jumo 004, as first used on the Me262, allowed a big leap in fighter aircraft performance.

                                See the following video and the comments about this by the world's most experienced test pilot, Captain Eric "Winkle" Brown r.i.p.

                                EDIT - There is a "technical problem" with this video currently.

                                I will try to post it again later.

                                The Jumo 004 provided a quantum leap forward in performance.

                                Piston engines, of whatever lineage, would never again be relied upon to power the "cutting edge" of combat aircraft designs.

                                They would have their specific applications, such as in the Tempest derived Hawker Sea Fury(Bristol Centaurus radial) aboard RN aircraft carriers post WW2, but from now on all serious design efforts for forward looking combat aircraft would be jet turbine based.

                                Otherwise, piston engines were relegated to powering transport/training/maritime patrol aircraft until these roles, too, were fulfilled by the ever improving new technology.

                                Unlike any number of "what if" military hardware that was being developed and showed promise for the future, the Jumo 004 was in service, and large numbers had been produced.

                                It had even been produced in actuality in updated versions that were overcoming the admitted fragility of the earliest production versions.

                                Unlike it's piston engined predecessors, it did not need exotic fuels as it would run happily on common as dirt diesel, was much cheaper to manufacture than the highly complicated piston engine, and could be swapped out and replaced quickly.

                                It was also much cheaper to produce on a per unit basis in terms of Reichsmarks than the contemporary high performance piston engines.

                                As per Daniel Uziel

                                Arming the Luftwaffe

                                The German Aviation Industry in World War II

                                https://www.amazon.com/Arming-Luftwa.../dp/0786465212

                                (I have no time ATM to find the exact page/quote, but it is in there)

                                (About 1/3 the cost per unit IIRC compared with a late war FW190/Me 109 powerplant)

                                (EDIT - I have just found the book on my hard drive - I will look for the source reference later)

                                The Jumo 004 had arrived, and from now on, there was no turning back.
                                Last edited by At ease; 17 Oct 18, 01:50.
                                "It's like shooting rats in a barrel."
                                "You'll be in a barrel if you don't watch out for the fighters!"

                                "Talking about airplanes is a very pleasant mental disease."
                                — Sergei(son of Igor) Sikorsky, 'AOPA Pilot' magazine February 2003.

                                Comment

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