Zero, P-40B, Me 109 E-3, Spite Mk I, Hurricane

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Erik Shilling

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Aug 12, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/12/96
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Newsgroups: rec.aviation.military
Subject: Re: Zero, P-40, Me. 109 E-3, Spite Mk I, Hurricane
Date: 12 Aug 1996 08:45:20 GMT

roger.wa...@bbsrc.ac.uk (Roger Wallsgrove) wrote:

>If the P-40B was so brilliant, how come the Zeros and Oscars shot them
>out of the sky in the Pacific and SE Asia war zones in 1941/2?

Answer:
I will answer this question with an analogy. If I give you a high
powered rifle and tell you
it is a club, and you foolishly use it as a club, and I give another
person a 45 cal. pistol, and
he knows how to use it. Who do you think will be the victor.

The same applies to fighters.

If you don't use your equipment properly, you are going to lose the
fight. The Americans
unfortunately had been taught the antiquated dogfighting technic that
had been used in WW
I, and wasn't successful against the Zero.

The answer to your question. In the early stages of the war the allied
pilots were not using
their equipment correctly. (For your information, the Allies never
built an airplane that
could turn inside the Zero below 200 mph. So how do you think we
eventually outfought
them at every engagement. CHANGE OF TACTICS

In 1943, when the P-38 was first used in the Pacific, the Zero pilots
were shooting them
down in large numbers. (See Subro Sakai's book Zero.)

Isn't this amazing when you consider that the P-38's top speed was 100
mph faster than the
Zero, and pilots were still trying to dogfight the Zero.

Chennault had written a manual on fighter tactics, which discouraged
dogfighting as
outdated. The military brass disagreed with Chennault, and as a result
Chennault was given
an early retirement from the Army Air Corps. Unfortunately the
American military took
Chennault for a Fool. The same as the court martial board had taken
Billy Mitchell as a
fool, when he claimed that bombers could sink any battle ship afloat.
Even though he proved
it by sinking a German WW I battleship he was court martialed.

>Why did the RAF ship all of theirs out to less critical war zones or
to the
>USSR?
Answer:
The Brits are an amazing people and this is not intended as a put down.
I don't pretend to
be able to answer what was in the mind of the British Air Arm at the
time. However, this
question is best answered by another question, and a comment.

My guess is that whom ever high ranking RAF that made such a decision,
were not very
good judges of aircraft. My guess was that President Roosvelt
pressured the Brits into
releasing 100 P-40s which were to be used by the American Volunteer
Group. Also why do
you think the Brits accept the Brewster Buffalo over the P-40?

> Forget the numbers you've dragged up from (presumably) official
>or manufacturers test data (if such data were "real", the P-39 would
have
>been the fastest fighter of its day!), in a REAL shooting war the
P-40B
>was outclassed.

Why should I forget the numbers?
I ask you the same question. Where in hell did you drag up the numbers
which apparently
you must have based your opinion upon?

Were you ever in combat. I ask this only because it makes a great deal
of difference as to
how you look at performance figures.

>In a REAL shooting War.

I assure that my data is very much REAL, and we were damn well in a
REAL WAR. How
in the hell do you think the Flying Tigers were able to destroy 297
Japanese aircraft,
CONFIRMED NOT CLAIMED, and how did we loose 4 pilot that were killed in
aerial
combat, 3 became POWs, 1 MIA and 9 lost attacking ground targets, and 2
were killed
because of Japanese bombing?????????????

My P-40 numbers were dragged up from my Diary, Which at one time I was
a military test
pilot before going to China. Also I have several hundred hours in
flying the P-40B and P-
40E, some of which was in combat.

Tex hill, a high ranking ace with the Flying Tigers and also Johnny
Alison, who was an ace
with the 14th AF flew a captured Zero. Tex upon landing said they
would never swap a P-
40 for a Zero. Concerning the Zero, my figures are also based upon an
interview I had with
Saburo Sakai, Japanese leading living ace.


>Both the Zero and the Oscar were brilliant and innovative
>designs, which gave the Japanese absolute air superiority for the
>first year or so of the Pacific war.

Innovative:
This is down right laughable, I have flown a CW-21, an aircraft built
by Curtiss Wright in 1938 that's empty weight was 3150 lbs which was 10
mph faster than the Zero, could out climb the Zero by more than 2500
f/p/m, and 100 mph faster in a dive faster and had a higher role rate
as well. Why didn't the military buy it. Just dumb I guess.

They had faults and failings, and zero (sorry about the pun!)
development potential (unlike the Bf109 and Spitfire), but IN THEIR DAY
they were great.
Zero the best fighter of WW2? One of, but not THE.

Roger, NOT EVEN CLOSE. Again I ask the question. What in the hell do
you base your opionion upon???????????? How about reviewing my
provable figures and respond to them.

Erik Shilling
--
Erik Shilling Author; Destiny: A Flying Tiger's
Flight Leader Rendezvous With Fate.
3rd Squadron AVG
Flying Tigers

Paul Tomblin

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Aug 13, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/13/96
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In a previous article, eri...@ix.netcom.com(Erik Shilling) said:
>>Why did the RAF ship all of theirs out to less critical war zones or
>to the
>>USSR?

>My guess is that whom ever high ranking RAF that made such a decision,


>were not very
>good judges of aircraft. My guess was that President Roosvelt
>pressured the Brits into
>releasing 100 P-40s which were to be used by the American Volunteer
>Group. Also why do
>you think the Brits accept the Brewster Buffalo over the P-40?

My guess is that the British at that point in the war were still thinking
"turning dogfight", because that's what worked against the Bf-109. They had
the Spitfire and Hurricane, both of which could hold their own in that sort of
dogfight against the Bf-109. They probably never really got out of the "turn
and burn" mindset until the Fw-190 and the Ta-152 started eating their lunch.

Also, I believe the P-38s sent to Britian didn't have superchargers, so the
performance sucked.

>This is down right laughable, I have flown a CW-21, an aircraft built
>by Curtiss Wright in 1938 that's empty weight was 3150 lbs which was 10
>mph faster than the Zero, could out climb the Zero by more than 2500
>f/p/m, and 100 mph faster in a dive faster and had a higher role rate
>as well. Why didn't the military buy it. Just dumb I guess.

I thought the CW-21 was unarmed and unarmoured. How fast would it have been
lugging around self-sealing fuel tanks, cockpit armour, and .50 cal machine
guns? (I know the Zero didn't have any of those things either, but the "dumb"
US military at least got that right in insisting on them.)

>--
>Erik Shilling Author; Destiny: A Flying Tiger's
>Flight Leader Rendezvous With Fate.

Is this book still available anywhere, Erik? I'd love to buy a copy or two.

--
Paul Tomblin (ptom...@xcski.com)
<a href="http://www.servtech.com/public/ptomblin/">My home page</a>
"Cherokee 38290, Rochester Departure. Radar services terminated, frequency
change approved, have a nice day."

William Johnson

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Aug 13, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/13/96
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I must say, there are no exchanges on the entire net that I enjoy more than
the ones that Erik Shilling gets involved in! This is perhaps slightly off
topic, but I wonder:

In article <4unvj9$4...@sjx-ixn1.ix.netcom.com>,


Erik Shilling <eri...@ix.netcom.com> wrote:
>Tex hill, a high ranking ace with the Flying Tigers and also Johnny
>Alison, who was an ace
>with the 14th AF flew a captured Zero. Tex upon landing said they
>would never swap a P-
>40 for a Zero. Concerning the Zero, my figures are also based upon an
>interview I had with
>Saburo Sakai, Japanese leading living ace.

How on earth did Tex Hill *fit* in a Zero? He's a fairly big man, taller
than I am (unless his cowboy boots had *very* big heels when I met him), and
the Zero strikes me as having followed the usual pattern for fighter planes
other than American-built ones: jam as small a pilot as possible into the
cockpit with as little wasted space as possible, then remove him and reduce
the available space by another 30%.

Second, and closer to the current topic, if it was indeed a tight fit for
him, might that have prejudiced his views of flying the thing? For example,
would a big man in a small cockpit have found it hard to make quick moves with
the stick, rudders, etc., so that he wasn't getting the full potential out of
the aircraft?

No axe to grind here, I'm genuinely curious about how the guy did it.

--
Bill Johnson | To get the attention of a large animal, be it an
Los Alamos Nat'l Lab | elephant or a bureaucracy, it helps to know what
Los Alamos, NM USA | part of it feels pain. Be very sure, though, that
(mwjo...@lanl.gov) | you want its *full* attention. ("Kelvin Throop")

Bill Johnson

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Aug 13, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/13/96
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Aargh ... sorry for the repost, my system appended a bogus address the first
time for some fool reason...

I must say, there are no exchanges on the entire net that I enjoy more than
the ones that Erik Shilling gets involved in! This is perhaps slightly off
topic, but I wonder:

In article <4unvj9$4...@sjx-ixn1.ix.netcom.com>,
Erik Shilling <eri...@ix.netcom.com> wrote:

>Tex hill, a high ranking ace with the Flying Tigers and also Johnny
>Alison, who was an ace
>with the 14th AF flew a captured Zero. Tex upon landing said they
>would never swap a P-
>40 for a Zero. Concerning the Zero, my figures are also based upon an
>interview I had with
>Saburo Sakai, Japanese leading living ace.

How on earth did Tex Hill *fit* in a Zero? He's a fairly big man, taller

Dave Scott

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Aug 14, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/14/96
to

Just to throw in my forty cents worth, I would like to point out that
the P40(K) was used quite successfully against the Japenese by the RNZAF
in '43/'44. To quote from an article @ the NZFPM (New Zealand Fighter
Pilots Musuem:

The Kittyhawk played a significant role in the Pacific, becoming one
of the RNZAF's most important offensive aircraft in the central and
northen Solomons campaigns of 1943-1944. A total of five different RNZAF
P-40 Squadrons were responsible for the destruction of 99
Japanese aircraft. After its frontline replacement by the Vought
Corsair, the P-40 served as an advanced trainer in New Zealand.

It is my understanding that by the time the Corsair entered service, the
prime duties of the RNZAF fighter squadrons was CAS. I'm not 100% sure,
but I think all the a/a victories in the Pacific were claimed by the
P40.

Having seen a 'Oscar' in the flesh so to speak (NZPFM have a genuine
Oscar restored, it taxies and even flew 2 metres above the ground @
Easter '96), and a P40(k)of the same vintage ( Oscar was @ Rabual late
'42 / '43) from a technical point of view the P40 wins hands down. I
would have to agree with Mr Shilling that tactics would play a large
part in explaining the early sucesses of the Japenese.

IMHO the P40 is a vastly underated A/C.

Cheers

Dave Scott

<NZFPM:http://nzfpm.dcc.govt.nz/nzfpm/nzfpm.htm>

Your Name Here

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Aug 14, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/14/96
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Don't know how big Tex Hill is/was, but I'm 6ft tall, heavily built and
overweight - but I could sit easily and comfortably in the Aussie War
Memorial's A6M2 Zero earlier this year! The ergonomics of the cockpit
were very impressive, and it certainly had more space, better laid out,
than a Spitfire or a Bf109. The latter two really do require small
pilots, especially the 109!
I appreciate that just sitting in a cockpit is rather different from
flying the plane, but even so I would rate the Zero as a more
accommodating fighter, with respect to pilot size, then many Western
types. A year or so back I sat in the front office of a Tigercat -
now that IS claustrophobic, and much too cramped for a guy my size to fly!

Roger Wallsgrove

Joe Bednorz

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Aug 16, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/16/96
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ptom...@compass.xcski.com (Paul Tomblin) wrote:

>Also, I believe the P-38s sent to Britian didn't have superchargers, so the
>performance sucked.

Worse yet, the P-38s sent to Britain didn't have counter-rotating
engines, either.

If I understand correctly, this would have made them roll quickly
one way, and slowly the other.


Joe Bednorz
--------------------------------------------------------
"I take back every bad thing I ever said about the A-10.
I love them. They're saving our asses."
- Lt. General Horner
- Air Force Commander, Desert Storm


Michael Williamson

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Aug 17, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/17/96
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Joe Bednorz wrote:
>
> >Also, I believe the P-38s sent to Britian didn't have superchargers, so the
> >performance sucked.
>
> Worse yet, the P-38s sent to Britain didn't have counter-rotating
> engines, either.
>
> If I understand correctly, this would have made them roll quickly
> one way, and slowly the other.


The Lightning Is ordered by Britain used V-1710C-15 engines, rated
at 1040 hp, without superchargers. At the time, the YP-38s used
V-1710F-2 engines, rated at about 1250 hp, and using the General
Electric superchargers. Britain's reason for specifying the lower
power engines without superchargers was to ensure commonality with
the Bell P-40 (Tomahawk I) fighters it had ordered. This resulted in
both engines turning in the same direction, which caused many
handling problems not associated with the P-38. In addition, the
aircraft's performance dropped off horrendously at altitudes of 20k and
above.

Before the Battle of Britain, most fighter aircraft were optimized for
low level performance. The assumption had always been that combat would
take place at 15k or less. For this reason, they did not feel that
superchargers would be necessary, and further, General Electric was
so far behind in supercharger production that delivery for the order
would have been questionable, at best.

By the time the order came due and Lockheed began rolling Lightning Is
off the assembly line, the British requirements had changed considerably
due to lessons learned during the Battle of Britain. The low altitude
engines of the Lightning I were now totally unsatisfactory, and the
British were disappointed at the handling characteristics using two
engines without counter-rotating propellors. The refused to accept the
aircraft, although Lockheed claimed (probably correctly) that they met
the requirements in the contract, which specified a low altitude fighter.
This paralleled the performance of the Mustang I (i.e. P-51). The
contract was just short of a federal court (Lockheed was going to sue
Great Britain for default) when the U.S. entered the war, and took
delivery of all Lightning Is and IIs which had been ordered by the
British. The Lightning II was essentially a P-38F, but by that time
so much bad blood had been built up between Lockheed and the RAF that
they wouldn't accept that aircraft either, even though it did meet all
of their revised (increased) performance requirements. Unfortunately,
the British never thought of trying their RR Merlin in the aircraft,
although Lockheed did propose it about a year prior to its installation
in the Mustang, which created the Mustang III/ P-51B. A P-38 equipped
with the Merlin would have avoided most of the problems encountered in
the region, since we know that the Merlin didn't mind the British gas,
which caused so many of the problems in the Allison engine/turbo-
supercharger setup.

Mike Williamson

Maury Markowitz

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Aug 19, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/19/96
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In article <321607...@azstarnet.com>, Michael Williamson
<spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:

> the Bell P-40 (Tomahawk I) fighters it had ordered. This resulted in
> both engines turning in the same direction, which caused many
> handling problems not associated with the P-38.

Having both engines rotate the same way is not as much of a problem as
most here seem to suggest. Having two engines alone reduces torque a
great deal. Instead of attempting to roll the plane about it's axis, they
are attempting to roll the *boom*, and that does not lead to much of a
torque problem over all. Most civvy twins use engines that rotate the
same direction and torque issues are not a concern. Having both engines
rotate the same way does introduce a critical engine, one with
counterotating props gives you two critical engines.

> Before the Battle of Britain, most fighter aircraft were optimized for
> low level performance.

This was a US assumption only, and led to the stripping of the
superchargers from the P-39 and the examples you note here. The Spit and
Me were both superb high altitude performers.

Maury

Michael Williamson

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Aug 19, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/19/96
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The Mustang I, built to *British* specifications, had an Allison engine
without supercharging, and a critical altitude of only 15000 ft. This was
also the case in the Lightning I, which was a HIGH altitude aircraft in U.S.
service, but ordered as a low altitude fighter by the British. (For those
reading this, critical altitude is the highest altitude at which the engine
can develop its rated power, and generally is the altitude at which best
performance can be developed. Supercharging increases the air density as
it is fed to the engine, artifically "lowering" the engine's altitude.)

The fact that the British refused to accept delivery of the Lightning I
contract, stating that aircraft had to be produced in the Lightning II
configuration (a modified P-38E, having counter-rotating engines and
superchargers) seems to indicate that their idea of fighter requirements
changed during the Battle of Britain. I say this because the numbers
indicate that the Lightning I did in fact meet the specifications of the
original contract, which listed the critical altitude as 16000 ft.

The Spitfire and 109 were not high altitude fighters at this time, both
having critical altitudes below 20,000 ft. The normal operational altitude
of the Spitfire mk. V. was 10,000 to 20,000 ft. While they could and did
fly higher, the bulk of their fighting was done at a relatively low altitude.
(Compared to later in the war, that is. 20,000 ft was considered to be
pretty high back then, and it still is to any aircraft which does not
have a pressure cabin.) The Battle of Britain, between the signing of the
contract and the delivery of the prototype, was the first time that
"high altitude" combat took place to a significant degree, and was but a
taste of what was to come.

Torque is not the only problem associated with propellors, nor is it the
most significant. P-factor is a significant problem, causing yaw when
changing power, airspeed, and angle of attack. These problems are noticeable
but easily correctable in fairly stable flight, such as most civil twins are
likely to encounter. In a maneuvering aircraft such as a fighter, they are
significant. While all single engine aircraft encounter P-factor, the P-38
was immune to this due to its counter-rotating propellors. The setup
resulted in it being the most stable gun platform during the war. The
British aircraft were not as stable due to this factor. In addition, the
propellor rotating "in" toward the center gondola resulted in turbulent air
flow over the wing center section, causing elevator buffet. This is why
the props on all P-38s except the XP-38 rotated out- to avoid this problem.
If the airflow had not been a problem, both engines would have rotated
inward (prop moves inward at the top) because this gives less P-factor problems
when operating on a single engine. The reason most aircraft use props that
all rotate the same way (including most twin engine fighters) is simplicity.
Having counter-rotating propellors required engine gearboxes and propellors
which were different. This increases expense and complicates logistics.

As you stated, having both props rotate the same way is not *usually* a
problem. In this case it was, since the aircraft was designed to have
them rotate counter to each other. Elevator buffet is not generally
considered good, though it was not mentioned in the contract (probably
because the buffetting in the XP-38 was not widely known). Most likely,
it was the lack of superchargers which doomed the Lightning I.

Cancellation of the Lightning II was probably due to animosity between
the British and Lockheed, since there was no performance shortcoming for
the later aircraft, even given the revised specifications. They may not
have known that the Lightning II would not suffer from the buffetting
problem however, since they never bothered to test fly any Lightning in
the U.S. configuration before killing the whole contract.

Mike Williamson


Christopher Morton

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Aug 19, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/19/96
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On Tue, 13 Aug 1996 20:02:30 GMT, ptom...@compass.xcski.com (Paul
Tomblin) wrote:

>In a previous article, eri...@ix.netcom.com(Erik Shilling) said:

>>>Why did the RAF ship all of theirs out to less critical war zones or
>>to the
>>>USSR?
>

>>My guess is that whom ever high ranking RAF that made such a decision,
>>were not very
>>good judges of aircraft. My guess was that President Roosvelt
>>pressured the Brits into
>>releasing 100 P-40s which were to be used by the American Volunteer
>>Group. Also why do
>>you think the Brits accept the Brewster Buffalo over the P-40?
>

>My guess is that the British at that point in the war were still thinking
>"turning dogfight", because that's what worked against the Bf-109. They had
>the Spitfire and Hurricane, both of which could hold their own in that sort of
>dogfight against the Bf-109. They probably never really got out of the "turn
>and burn" mindset until the Fw-190 and the Ta-152 started eating their lunch.
>

>Also, I believe the P-38s sent to Britian didn't have superchargers, so the
>performance sucked.
>

>>This is down right laughable, I have flown a CW-21, an aircraft built
>>by Curtiss Wright in 1938 that's empty weight was 3150 lbs which was 10
>>mph faster than the Zero, could out climb the Zero by more than 2500
>>f/p/m, and 100 mph faster in a dive faster and had a higher role rate
>>as well. Why didn't the military buy it. Just dumb I guess.
>

>I thought the CW-21 was unarmed and unarmoured. How fast would it have been
>lugging around self-sealing fuel tanks, cockpit armour, and .50 cal machine
>guns? (I know the Zero didn't have any of those things either, but the "dumb"
>US military at least got that right in insisting on them.)

Actually some of them were sent to the Chinese... and flew into a
mountain. I think the Dutch got a few too.


Jim KKKennemur: Proof that you can take the boy out of the Klan,
but you can't take the Klan out of the boy.

Christopher Morton

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Aug 19, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/19/96
to

On 12 Aug 1996 19:10:33 GMT, eri...@ix.netcom.com(Erik Shilling)
wrote:

>Newsgroups: rec.aviation.military
>Subject: Re: Zero, P-40, Me. 109 E-3, Spite Mk I, Hurricane
>Date: 12 Aug 1996 08:45:20 GMT
>
>roger.wa...@bbsrc.ac.uk (Roger Wallsgrove) wrote:
>
>>If the P-40B was so brilliant, how come the Zeros and Oscars shot them
>>out of the sky in the Pacific and SE Asia war zones in 1941/2?
>
>Answer:
>I will answer this question with an analogy. If I give you a high
>powered rifle and tell you
>it is a club, and you foolishly use it as a club, and I give another
>person a 45 cal. pistol, and
>he knows how to use it. Who do you think will be the victor.
>
>The same applies to fighters.

Unfortunately, way too many people are incapable of this depth of
thought, whether it involves M1903s or P40s.

>
>If you don't use your equipment properly, you are going to lose the
>fight. The Americans
>unfortunately had been taught the antiquated dogfighting technic that
>had been used in WW
>I, and wasn't successful against the Zero.
>
>The answer to your question. In the early stages of the war the allied
>pilots were not using
>their equipment correctly. (For your information, the Allies never
>built an airplane that
>could turn inside the Zero below 200 mph. So how do you think we

I'll bet an F3F could. I KNOW an F4B could! : )

In an article on the F3F in "Air International" (or one of its
cousins) it was noted that F3F pilots regretted that they never got to
mix it up with Zeros, claiming that they were more maneuverable.

Harry Visser

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Aug 19, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/19/96
to

Michael Williamson (spe...@azstarnet.com) wrote:
: Joe Bednorz wrote:
: >
: > >Also, I believe the P-38s sent to Britian didn't have superchargers, so the
: > >performance sucked.
: >
: > Worse yet, the P-38s sent to Britain didn't have counter-rotating

: > engines, either.
: >
: > If I understand correctly, this would have made them roll quickly
: > one way, and slowly the other.


: The Lightning Is ordered by Britain used V-1710C-15 engines, rated
: at 1040 hp, without superchargers. At the time, the YP-38s used
: V-1710F-2 engines, rated at about 1250 hp, and using the General
: Electric superchargers.

[other interesting info deleted]

For more information about the "F" engine than you are ever likely to
use, see:

http://www.eagle.ca/~harry/ and go down the page to "Allison V1710".

h
--
___________________________________________________________________________
slugmail: | | Web: http://www.isgtec.com/
ISG Technologies Inc. | Harry Visser | faxmail: 905-672-2307
6509 Airport Rd. | | speakmail: 905-672-2100 X246
Mississauga, ONT L4V 1S7 | '48 FL |
Canada | '75 FXE |

Michael John Hide

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Aug 20, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/20/96
to

Michael Williamson <spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:

;Maury Markowitz wrote:
;<spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:

;>> ater aircraft, even given the revised specifications. They may


not
;have known that the Lightning II would not suffer from the buffetting
;problem however, since they never bothered to test fly any Lightning
in
;the U.S. configuration before killing the whole contract.

;Mike Williamson

Again ,showing my ignorance when you refer to torque are you talking
torque due to driving the props or are we talking gyroscopic torque ?
due to engine rotary inertia .
It would seem that any area in the propwash would experience turbulent
flow .Regarding contrarotating props whether they rotated clockwise
[towards the gondola from below ] or anticlockwise [towards the
gondola from above ] , I dont quite understand the difference .
Please show me the errors in my ways.
thanks mjh


Michael Williamson

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Aug 20, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/20/96
to

Michael John Hide wrote:
>
> Michael Williamson <spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:

>
> ;Maury Markowitz wrote:
> ;<spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:
>
> ;>> ater aircraft, even given the revised specifications. They may

> not
> ;have known that the Lightning II would not suffer from the buffetting
> ;problem however, since they never bothered to test fly any Lightning
> in
> ;the U.S. configuration before killing the whole contract.
>
> ;Mike Williamson
>
> Again ,showing my ignorance when you refer to torque are you talking
> torque due to driving the props or are we talking gyroscopic torque ?
> due to engine rotary inertia .
> It would seem that any area in the propwash would experience turbulent
> flow .Regarding contrarotating props whether they rotated clockwise
> [towards the gondola from below ] or anticlockwise [towards the
> gondola from above ] , I dont quite understand the difference .
> Please show me the errors in my ways.
> thanks mjh

Most people consider torque to be due to driving the props, although in
most cases P-factor was much more noticeable. P-factor is where the prop
blade produces more thrust coming down through its cycle than raising up,
due to differing angle of attack. This resulted in a center of thrust that
was not straight through the propellor hub. If you are already familiar
with this effect, then please forgive my longwindedness.

Regarding the propwash, it would indeed seem that it shouldn't matter,
but in practice it did. The wing/center gondola geometry was different
on top than on the bottom, and the result was a noticeable difference in
airflow characteristics. They were serious enough that Lockheed did
swap engines, reversing their rotation. I do not know exactly how, except
to speculate (I am very good at speculation- even better with less
information) that the later configuration channelled the turbulent air
UNDER the wing, where downwash at the trailing edge of the wing forced it
to pass below the horizontal stabilizer, rather than over it (i.e. stabilizer
in the turbulent flow).

Hope this was at least somewhat helpful.


Mike Williamson

Maury Markowitz

unread,
Aug 20, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/20/96
to

In article <32190C...@azstarnet.com>, Michael Williamson
<spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:

> The Mustang I, built to *British* specifications, had an Allison engine
> without supercharging, and a critical altitude of only 15000 ft.

It was also a makeshift solution taken from the Apache design because
they would take anything that flew. The Mustang I was no more a British
specification as saying "If it's got wings, we'll take it" is.

> reading this, critical altitude is the highest altitude at which the engine
> can develop its rated power, and generally is the altitude at which best
> performance can be developed.

Looking over the numbers, the best performance is usually a bit above
the critical altitude as I've noted before.

> The fact that the British refused to accept delivery of the Lightning I
> contract, stating that aircraft had to be produced in the Lightning II
> configuration (a modified P-38E, having counter-rotating engines and
> superchargers) seems to indicate that their idea of fighter requirements
> changed during the Battle of Britain.

This was likely because of the excellent high altitude performance of
the Me-109's. I feel confident in stating that had the early model P-38's
(even with the superchargers) met the Me-109's F's they would have lost.

> The Spitfire and 109 were not high altitude fighters at this time, both
> having critical altitudes below 20,000 ft.

But they were both excellent high altitude performers regardless and
were later clipped to *reduce* altitude performance in order to give
better low altitude performance. In the case of the Spit we have the
Mk.IV with it's radically clipped wings, and the Germans instead switched
to the superlative FW, which had rather short wings for the same reason.

Both the Spit and the Me later developed dedicated high altitude
versions, but they were specialty planes. A critical altitude of 20000ft
was considerably higher than the other generalist fighters of the time.

> of the Spitfire mk. V. was 10,000 to 20,000 ft. While they could and did
> fly higher, the bulk of their fighting was done at a relatively low altitude.

This is because the Me's started to eat their lunch over 20000ft.

> (Compared to later in the war, that is. 20,000 ft was considered to be
> pretty high back then, and it still is to any aircraft which does not
> have a pressure cabin.)

Exactly! But let's not forget that you fight where the strike package
is and that this happened at about 15000ft or lower in the case of BoB.
The result was tuning aircraft to *lower* altitudes like the Mk.IV and
FW. The FW certainly fit the bill for the Germans perfectly, it served
it's purpose fantastically on the eastern front.

Maury

Maury Markowitz

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Aug 20, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/20/96
to

In article <4vav4v$s...@camel0.mindspring.com>, mike...@mindspring.com
(Michael John Hide) wrote:

> Again ,showing my ignorance when you refer to torque are you talking
> torque due to driving the props or are we talking gyroscopic torque ?
> due to engine rotary inertia .

Both, the later is typically referred to as "precession" (hope I spelled
it correctly).

Maury

Charles K. Scott

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Aug 20, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/20/96
to

> In article <32190C...@azstarnet.com>, Michael Williamson
> <spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:
>
> > The Mustang I, built to *British* specifications, had an Allison engine
> > without supercharging, and a critical altitude of only 15000 ft.

In article <maury-20089...@194.125.100.1>
ma...@softarc.com (Maury Markowitz) writes:

> It was also a makeshift solution taken from the Apache design because
> they would take anything that flew. The Mustang I was no more a British
> specification as saying "If it's got wings, we'll take it" is.

I could have sworn that the Mustang was designed specifically because
the British came to North American asking them to build P-40's under
license for England but North American told them they could design an
airplane better than the P-40 and in a very short time. And did. They
knew of the fairly recent cooling drag studies and thought that they
could greatly reduce cooling drag by incorporating this latest study in
the design allowing a better performance than the P-40. This did come
to pass but as we all know, it became best known for it's Merlin
engined model.

Sorry Maury if it seems like I'm always dissagreeing with you.

Corky Scott

Michael John Hide

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Aug 20, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/20/96
to

Michael Williamson <spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:

;Michael John Hide wrote:
;>
;> Michael Williamson <spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:
;>

;> ;Maury Markowitz wrote:
;> ;<spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:

;>
;> ;>> ater aircraft, even given the revised specifications. They may


;> not
;> ;have known that the Lightning II would not suffer from the
buffetting
;> ;problem however, since they never bothered to test fly any
Lightning
;> in
;> ;the U.S. configuration before killing the whole contract.
;>
;> ;Mike Williamson

;>
;> Again ,showing my ignorance when you refer to torque are you


talking
;> torque due to driving the props or are we talking gyroscopic torque
?
;> due to engine rotary inertia .

;> It would seem that any area in the propwash would experience


;Mike Williamson

thanks for the info I had fogotten that the props have an angle of
attack relative to tjhe general airflow . In ,addition, And I am
guessing , the gondola and the control surfaces are effected by the
general vortices coming off the props and their direction [clockwise
or anticlockwise ]
mjh


Michael Williamson

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Aug 20, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/20/96
to

Maury Markowitz wrote:

Maury Markowitz wrote:
>
> In article <32190C...@azstarnet.com>, Michael Williamson
> <spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:
>
> > The Mustang I, built to *British* specifications, had an Allison engine
> > without supercharging, and a critical altitude of only 15000 ft.
>
> It was also a makeshift solution taken from the Apache design because
> they would take anything that flew. The Mustang I was no more a British
> specification as saying "If it's got wings, we'll take it" is.
>

The British Mustang I was *NOT* taken from the American Apache. North
American designed the aircraft specifically for the British after Britain
approached them to build Bell P-40s under license. The U.S. Army received
two prototypes for service evaluation from the batch manufactured for Britain.
It was from these prototypes that the P-51A and A-36 Apache were born. In
fact, the British took the Mustang I even *before* it had wings. The U.S. had
no input into the design specs for the aircraft. Britain was entirely
responsible for creating this aircraft through their specifications.

> > fly higher, the bulk of their fighting was done at a relatively low altitude.
>

> This is because the Me's started to eat their lunch over 20000ft.

You proved my point with that statement, which seems to invalidate your previous
statement,

> But they were both excellent high altitude performers regardless and
> were later clipped to *reduce* altitude performance in order to give
> better low altitude performance. In the case of the Spit we have the

The reason the Lightning I was useless to the British was that it was not
ordered with high altitude combat in mind. The P-38 was, and the situation
would have been reversed, since the P-38 performance peaked at a much higher
altitude than either of these aircraft. It was also able to perform at low
altitude, as shown by its performance late in the war operating with the
tactical air forces.

The Spit IV was not ordered because altitudes were decreasing and high altitude
performance was undesireable. Rather, it was a specialty aircraft not used
in the role of the original Spitfire and Lightning designs - interceptors. The
Spit IV also used a different engine, if I remember correctly. It also had
a shorter range than the Lightning I, as well as a truly mediocre load carrying
capacity. Compared to the 38 though, few aircraft measured up very well, though.


> Exactly! But let's not forget that you fight where the strike package
> is and that this happened at about 15000ft or lower in the case of BoB.
> The result was tuning aircraft to *lower* altitudes like the Mk.IV and
> FW. The FW certainly fit the bill for the Germans perfectly, it served
> it's purpose fantastically on the eastern front.

Then the British had no reason not to use the Lightning I, as its performance
(Speed, load carrying capacity, and range) was comparable to (speed) or higher
than either. The fact was that altitudes increased throughout the war, and
that this trend was notable even during the BoB. The Spit V was replaced in
production shortly thereafter, due to its poor high altitude performance.


> the Me-109's. I feel confident in stating that had the early model P-38's
> (even with the superchargers) met the Me-109's F's they would have lost.

Early model P-38's did in fact meet large numbers of Me-109's in both the
Mediterranean and over France and Germany. They acheived a kill ratio of
about 1:1, flying in conditions which placed them in a similar situation to
that the Germans found themselves during the Battle of Britain - restricted to
close escort of the bomber aircraft while the enemy massed their fighters
for concentrated and coordinated attacks on both the fighters and the
bombers they were escorting. There was one difference however; while the
Germans used about 4 fighters per bomber toward the end of their campaign,
less than 200 P-38s were stationed in England, saddling them with *slightly*
worse odds (perhaps by an order of magnitude or so). Ok, there were two
differences. The P-38s flew perhaps half again to twice as far to get
to the point of conflict. If the Me's or Spits tried that, you wouldn't
have had to shoot at them to get a kill, since they'd be unable to make
the round trip, gunfire or not. The fact that the bombing campaign
continued shows that they were more successful against the ME-109
than it was against the Spit. Early model -38s continued to operate
with the Ninth Air Force in low altitude operations attacking aerodromes,
flak towers, trains, etc. until the invasion. At low altitude, P-38s
were marginally faster than the German aircraft, and could ignore the
engine problems and compressibility effects associated with high altitude
operations from England. At these altitudes, they posted scores on a par
with the P-51's which took over the escort mission after arriving en masse.

By the way, it was in North Africa that the Germans named it the Forked
Tail Devil. They didn't do it because they felt it was an inferior aircraft
to their fighters. They named it that because of the problems it dealt them.


Mike.

Maury Markowitz

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Aug 21, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/21/96
to

In article <321A73...@azstarnet.com>, Michael Williamson
<spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:

> The British Mustang I was *NOT* taken from the American Apache. North
> American designed the aircraft specifically for the British after Britain
> approached them to build Bell P-40s under license. The U.S. Army received
> two prototypes for service evaluation from the batch manufactured for Britain.
> It was from these prototypes that the P-51A and A-36 Apache were born.

I stand corrected.

> You proved my point with that statement, which seems to invalidate
> your previous statement,

Uhhh, how? The Brits won because they managed to keep the fight at
below 20k where the Spits had the edge. All future planes for production
were built specifically to operate in this range, starting with the Vb.
If the Mustang also was assumed to operate in this range, more evidence of
the same.

The fact that the Me was better than the Spit above 20k is nothing
surprising, one has to be better than the other.

> The reason the Lightning I was useless to the British was that it was not
> ordered with high altitude combat in mind. The P-38 was, and the situation

Sure, it was ordered because of the experience of the BoB as you noted,
one in which medium altitude fights again became important. Once the
bombers left for the USSR you again had higher altitude fighting going on.

> The Spit IV was not ordered because altitudes were decreasing and high
altitude
> performance was undesireable. Rather, it was a specialty aircraft not used
> in the role of the original Spitfire and Lightning designs - interceptors.

Interceptors for German bombers. In the medium altitude range. Note
that the one-off super-high altitude planes all had lots of extra wing
grafted back on.

> Then the British had no reason not to use the Lightning I, as its
performance
> (Speed, load carrying capacity, and range) was comparable to (speed) or higher
> than either. The fact was that altitudes increased throughout the war, and
> that this trend was notable even during the BoB. The Spit V was replaced in
> production shortly thereafter, due to its poor high altitude performance.

When did the -38 arrive? During the BoB when it should have been OK?
Or after when the fight was up high again?

> differences. The P-38s flew perhaps half again to twice as far to get
> to the point of conflict. If the Me's or Spits tried that, you wouldn't
> have had to shoot at them to get a kill, since they'd be unable to make
> the round trip, gunfire or not. The fact that the bombing campaign

The single largest problem tactically for the Me was the short time over
England. This would not be an issue for the -38 over Europe. At least
not as much.

Maury

Maury Markowitz

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Aug 21, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/21/96
to

In article <4vctdh$d...@dartvax.dartmouth.edu>,

Charles...@dartmouth.edu (Charles K. Scott) wrote:

> I could have sworn that the Mustang was designed specifically because
> the British came to North American asking them to build P-40's under
> license for England but North American told them they could design an
> airplane better than the P-40 and in a very short time.

And you're right. Bu as I remember it the design was already in
existence as a part of the USAAF's long-ongoing search for the perfect
ground attack plane.

Maury

Paul Tomblin

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Aug 21, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/21/96
to

In a previous article, cm...@nwohio.com (Christopher Morton) said:
:On Tue, 13 Aug 1996 20:02:30 GMT, ptom...@compass.xcski.com (Paul

:Tomblin) wrote:
:>In a previous article, eri...@ix.netcom.com(Erik Shilling) said:
:>>This is down right laughable, I have flown a CW-21, an aircraft built

:>>by Curtiss Wright in 1938 that's empty weight was 3150 lbs which was 10
:>
:>I thought the CW-21 was unarmed and unarmoured. How fast would it have been
:
:Actually some of them were sent to the Chinese... and flew into a

:mountain. I think the Dutch got a few too.

Oh, if that's the aircraft I think you're thinking of, I read about a ferry
operation in China where all but one of the aircraft got lost and crashed
en-route. The one that survived was piloted by Erik Shilling.

--
Paul Tomblin (ptom...@xcski.com)
<a href="http://www.servtech.com/public/ptomblin/">My home page</a>
"Cherokee 38290, Rochester Departure. Radar services terminated, frequency

change approved. Squawk VFR, have a nice day."

David Jackson

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Aug 21, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/21/96
to

> >
> >>If the P-40B was so brilliant, how come the Zeros and Oscars shot them
> >>out of the sky in the Pacific and SE Asia war zones in 1941/2?
> >
> >Answer:
> >I will answer this question with an analogy. If I give you a high
> >powered rifle and tell you
> >it is a club, and you foolishly use it as a club, and I give another
> >person a 45 cal. pistol, and
> >he knows how to use it. Who do you think will be the victor.
> >
> >The same applies to fighters.
>
> Unfortunately, way too many people are incapable of this depth of
> thought, whether it involves M1903s or P40s.
>

The P40 was a great plane, it's only downfall was it's lack of two stage
supercharger.

regards.

DJ "if there is a man here I have not insulted,
then I apologise"

Johann Brahms

Cynthia Keeney

unread,
Aug 22, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/22/96
to

>> In article [3]<32190C...@azstarnet.com>, Michael Williamson

>> [4]<spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:
>>
>> > The Mustang I, built to *British* specifications, had an Allison engine
>> > without supercharging, and a critical altitude of only 15000 ft.
>
>In article [5]<maury-20089...@194.125.100.1>

>ma...@softarc.com (Maury Markowitz) writes:
>
>> It was also a makeshift solution taken from the Apache design because
>> they would take anything that flew. The Mustang I was no more a British
>> specification as saying "If it's got wings, we'll take it" is.

The Mustang is senior to the Apache. The A-36 diver bomber version was a
means of keeping the factory going when the Army wasn't buying the
fighter.



>I could have sworn that the Mustang was designed specifically because
>the British came to North American asking them to build P-40's under
>license for England but North American told them they could design an

>airplane better than the P-40 and in a very short time. And did. They
>knew of the fairly recent cooling drag studies and thought that they
>could greatly reduce cooling drag by incorporating this latest study in
>the design allowing a better performance than the P-40. This did come
>to pass but as we all know, it became best known for it's Merlin
>engined model.
>
>Sorry Maury if it seems like I'm always dissagreeing with you.
>
>Corky Scott

I'ld say this is more like "builing to order" instead of "specification".
Building to specification is what Ford, GM and so forth did.

Gavin Bailey

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Aug 24, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/24/96
to

Michael Williamson <spe...@azstarnet.com> wrote:

> The Spit IV was not ordered because altitudes were decreasing and high altitude
>performance was undesireable. Rather, it was a specialty aircraft not used
>in the role of the original Spitfire and Lightning designs - interceptors. The
>Spit IV also used a different engine, if I remember correctly. It also had
>a shorter range than the Lightning I, as well as a truly mediocre load carrying
>capacity. Compared to the 38 though, few aircraft measured up very well, though.

The Spitfire IV was, if I remember correctly, the first Griffon
engined Spitfire (a Spit II airframe, I think). High altitude
performance was certainly desireable after the BoB as future Spitfire
development cut the MkIII with the Merlin XX (production of which went
to the Hurricane II) and instead went with the Mk V in the short-term.
The succeeding marks were all sequentially designed for high-altitude
performance, with the MkV using the Merlin 45 series seen as a direct
counter to the 109F. The Mark VI had extended wings and a pressurised
cabin with Merlin optimised for high-altitude, as did the Mark VII and
initally the Mark VIII.

So in Britain at least, until the Fw190 and the Spitfire IX, higher
altitude fighting was seen to be the dominant trend at the expense of
capability at other height bands, which explains the interest in
re-engining the Mustang with the Merlin.

>> Exactly! But let's not forget that you fight where the strike package
>> is and that this happened at about 15000ft or lower in the case of BoB.
>> The result was tuning aircraft to *lower* altitudes like the Mk.IV and
>> FW. The FW certainly fit the bill for the Germans perfectly, it served
>> it's purpose fantastically on the eastern front.

> Then the British had no reason not to use the Lightning I, as its performance
>(Speed, load carrying capacity, and range) was comparable to (speed) or higher
>than either. The fact was that altitudes increased throughout the war, and
>that this trend was notable even during the BoB. The Spit V was replaced in
>production shortly thereafter, due to its poor high altitude performance.

All the Spitfires (even the early Mark I & II) were excellent
performers at high altitude for their time. Throughout the war
Spitfires were probably the best high-altitude piston-engined
interceptors on either side. The Sptifire V's main problem vs the
Fw190 was speed, rate of roll and initial dive in combat in the
sub-20,000 feet high band. The LF versions of the V (with clipped
wings to increase the rate of roll and low-altitude single-stage
superchargers to up the speed) were adequate to face the 190A's, but
HF versions of the V did exist and carried out interceptions at very
high altitude in the Mediterranean. I'm not sure if it's a V HF or a
IX HF which holds the record for the highest interception over Britain
in WW2 at over 40,000 feet (I suspect it was a IX).

I'm not sure why the RAF should use the Lightning when there was no
role in the British air campaign that wasn't being performed by better
individual aircraft.

Gavin Bailey

Maury Markowitz

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Aug 29, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/29/96
to

In article <Pine.OSF.3.91a.96082...@christa.unh.edu>, Dan
Ford <d...@christa.unh.edu> wrote:

> In the Battle of Britain, as told by Hurricane pilot Peter Townsend, the
> Hurris engaged the bombers and the Spits engaged the 109s at high
> altitude. In other words, the Spit's job was to keep the 109s off the
> Hurris. So if 15000 is the He 111 altitude, then the Spits were flying
> well above that. (Townsend spoke of them glinting in the sky above him.)

The Me's were told to stay close to the He's. On one occasion they
didn't and the bombers were slaughtered. The result was the Me's flying
well below the 20k limit as well.

Maury

Dan Ford

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Aug 29, 1996, 3:00:00 AM8/29/96
to

> >> Exactly! But let's not forget that you fight where the strike package
> >> is and that this happened at about 15000ft or lower in the case of BoB.

In the Battle of Britain, as told by Hurricane pilot Peter Townsend, the

Hurris engaged the bombers and the Spits engaged the 109s at high
altitude. In other words, the Spit's job was to keep the 109s off the
Hurris. So if 15000 is the He 111 altitude, then the Spits were flying
well above that. (Townsend spoke of them glinting in the sky above him.)

- Dan

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