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  1. #11  
    Senior Member namvet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Starbuck View Post
    That 'instability' issue showed up in a lot of WWII aircraft, it seems. I know the B-26 Marauder had that reputation and a lot of them crashed while the engineers worked it out. The joke was they would take off 5 minutes apart and hope they didn't run into each other......
    popular nicknames by aircrews as "Widowmaker" "Flying Coffin" and "Baltimore Whore". meaning it had no visable means of support
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  2. #12  
    Senior Member TVDOC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by namvet View Post
    popular nicknames by aircrews as "Widowmaker" "Flying Coffin" and "Baltimore Whore". meaning it had no visable means of support
    Similiar statements were made by aircrews about the B-24 "Liberator", which although carried a heavier bomb load, was faster, and had superior range than the B-17, was a real bitch to fly, and so unstable that it couldn't be flown in a tight formation......not to mention that it had an annoying tendancy to catch on fire in flight, and in the Pacific theater was impossible to ditch without loss of life, as the fuselage tended to come apart at the point of initial contact with the water.......

    Even with all those frailties, it was the heavy bomber that was the most produced during WW II, and had a distinguished record, due primarily to the skill of the crews.

    In the medium and heavy groups, the most popular aircraft (among the crews) was the B-25, B-17, and B-29 (not necessarily in that order), all were relatively stable, and good overall performers, with few "bad habits".

    doc
    Last edited by TVDOC; 10-31-2012 at 12:06 PM.
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  3. #13  
    Senior Member TVDOC's Avatar
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    Not to wander too far off topic.......my father flew these in the Pacific during WW II..........



    The Corsair also had a rather sketchy reputation among its pilots........

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  4. #14  
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    And then came the F6F Hellcat. We could call it a game ender for Japanese Zero's. Finally, we had a plane that could routinely outfly Zeros.


    I got to reading about all this stuff and came across this comment about the Zero:
    ....These flights covered performance tests such as we do on planes undergoing Navy tests. The very first flight exposed weaknesses of the Zero which our pilots could exploit with proper tactics... immediately apparent was the fact that the ailerons froze up at speeds above 200 knots so that rolling maneuvers at those speeds were slow and required much force on the control stick. It rolled to the left much easier than to the right. Also, its engine cut out under negative acceleration due to its float-type carburetor. We now had the answer for our pilots who were being outmaneuvered and unable to escape a pursuing Zero: Go into a vertical power dive, using negative acceleration if possible to open the range while the Zero's engine was stopped by the acceleration. At about 200 knots, roll hard right before the Zero pilot could get his sights lined up........
    They are talking about a flyable Zero that was captured and then flown by Americans to find weaknesses.
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  5. #15  
    Senior Member namvet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TVDOC View Post
    Not to wander too far off topic.......my father flew these in the Pacific during WW II..........



    The Corsair also had a rather sketchy reputation among its pilots........

    doc

    yes it did. designed for the Navy a lot of carrier landing problem. cockpit sat back to far. numerous technical problems had to be solved before the Corsair would enter service. Carrier suitability was a major development issue, prompting changes to the main landing gear, tail wheel and tailhook. Early F4U-1s had difficulty recovering from developed spins, since the inverted gull wing's shape interfered with elevator authority. It was also found that the Corsair's starboard wing could stall and drop rapidly and without warning during slow carrier landings. In addition, if the throttle were suddenly advanced (for example, during an aborted landing) the port wing could stall and drop so quickly that the fighter could flip over with the rapid increase in power. These potentially lethal characteristics were later solved through the addition of a small, 6 in (150 mm)-long stall strip to the leading edge of the outer starboard wing, just inboard of the gun ports. This allowed the starboard wing to stall at the same time as the port.

    it was really made famous by the Marines since they had landing fields

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  6. #16  
    Senior Member namvet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Starbuck View Post
    And then came the F6F Hellcat. We could call it a game ender for Japanese Zero's. Finally, we had a plane that could routinely outfly Zeros.


    I got to reading about all this stuff and came across this comment about the Zero:

    They are talking about a flyable Zero that was captured and then flown by Americans to find weaknesses.
    light weight and no armour. USN pilots said one quick burst and the zero came apart
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  7. #17  
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    Quote Originally Posted by namvet View Post
    light weight and no armour. USN pilots said one quick burst and the zero came apart
    I was just going over the thread. Lots of good information and comments here. Most of us seem to have an understanding of mechanics and so forth. Can you imagine having to use a float type carburetor? I know it was 1930-something and that was pretty much all that was available, but still, flying a fighter aircraft upside down and negative G's and all that stuff....it was just a hairy time to be a pilot.
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  8. #18  
    Senior Member TVDOC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by namvet View Post
    yes it did. designed for the Navy a lot of carrier landing problem. cockpit sat back to far. numerous technical problems had to be solved before the Corsair would enter service. Carrier suitability was a major development issue, prompting changes to the main landing gear, tail wheel and tailhook. Early F4U-1s had difficulty recovering from developed spins, since the inverted gull wing's shape interfered with elevator authority. It was also found that the Corsair's starboard wing could stall and drop rapidly and without warning during slow carrier landings. In addition, if the throttle were suddenly advanced (for example, during an aborted landing) the port wing could stall and drop so quickly that the fighter could flip over with the rapid increase in power. These potentially lethal characteristics were later solved through the addition of a small, 6 in (150 mm)-long stall strip to the leading edge of the outer starboard wing, just inboard of the gun ports. This allowed the starboard wing to stall at the same time as the port.

    it was really made famous by the Marines since they had landing fields

    All true......my dad's (Navy) squadron was land-based with a Marine detachment, he never flew off of carriers.......basically they flew close air support as the Marines island-hopped toward Japan toward the end of the war.

    He always told me that the biggest problem was seeing forward out of the damned cockpit, as you mentioned, unless you were in a dive or level flight, you couldn't see anything in front of you........as illustrated in the first (sorta) landing in the video above, it's obvious that the pilot had no idea of where he was in relation to the deck......

    doc
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  9. #19  
    Senior Member namvet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Starbuck View Post
    I was just going over the thread. Lots of good information and comments here. Most of us seem to have an understanding of mechanics and so forth. Can you imagine having to use a float type carburetor? I know it was 1930-something and that was pretty much all that was available, but still, flying a fighter aircraft upside down and negative G's and all that stuff....it was just a hairy time to be a pilot.
    the Germans came up with an aircraft fuel injection system and had a major advantage with climbing and ceiling over the brits who still used carbs. but british agents smuggled a systerm out of germany and the playing field was leveled.
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  10. #20  
    Senior Member TVDOC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Starbuck View Post
    I was just going over the thread. Lots of good information and comments here. Most of us seem to have an understanding of mechanics and so forth. Can you imagine having to use a float type carburetor? I know it was 1930-something and that was pretty much all that was available, but still, flying a fighter aircraft upside down and negative G's and all that stuff....it was just a hairy time to be a pilot.
    The carburetor problem (vis-a-vis inverted flight) was overcome by installing a small spring on the floats to keep them from being effected by gravity, however, that didn't solve the problem of all of the avgas running out of the bowl, so this issue was addressed by capping the carb bowl internally with a rubber pressure membrane (pressurized by an auxilliary chamber in the fuel pump) , and viola!! full-power inverted flight.

    If I remember correctly, Stromberg was the inventor, they called it the "dry-bowl" carb........the "float" was not a float at all, simply a lever attached at the center to a pivot, with one end attached to the needle valve, and the other end attached to the center of the membrane.......as fuel demand increased, the membrane deflected downward, causing the lever to open the needle valve accordingly...therefore, regardless of the position of the carb, induced by the attitude of the aircraft, the fuel always remained in place..

    doc
    Last edited by TVDOC; 10-31-2012 at 07:00 PM.
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