Return to Index  

Radial vs. inline for US Navy

March 12 2012 at 1:38 PM
denizp  (Login denizp)
HyperScale Forums
from IP address 12.144.165.254


Response to Question about engines in WWII-era A/C

Although I don't think there is an official document that describes why the US Navy almost exclusively used radial engines, the overall consensus - from people I talked to that were in the Navy in the 40s and 50s - was the fact that the Navy didn't want to store the extra glycol (not sure if propylene or ethylene) on board the ships for both logistics and probably safety issues - corrosion and explosion. I think there was also a general consensus that the radials were also much easier to maintain than inline engines - probably due to the fact that you could access all the parts of an engine easily even in a confined space like a carrier hangar.
But I think another big factor was the relative lack of investment and experience in inline engines in US vs. Britain or Germany at the time. If you consider that until the appearance of Packard-built Merlins, US did not really have a really good high-performance inline engine, it might be easy to understand why Navy picked radial engines from PW over anything else. If you also recall, Japan had to get the DB601 from Germany and manufacture it under license as they also only invested in radials. This would also explain why Britain was more than willing to use the Spitfire, Hurricane and other exclusively inline-engined aircraft on-board their carriers, as that is what they were good at and had plenty of experience with.
On another note, the Boeing FB-5 Hawk was the last inline engined aircraft used by the US Navy on a carrier http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_Model_15).

 
 Respond to this message   

Posting or replying to messages on Plane Talking requires visitors to register:

  1. First you will need to register with Network 54, the Forum provider. Click here to register with Network 54. (If you already have a Network 54 Login you can go straight to the next step)
  2. Then, while signed in to Network 54, you can sign up for HyperScale's forums. Click here to sign up for HyperScale's forums.

Your user name and password will give you full posting privileges to all of HyperScale Forums.

Please note the following conditions of posting:

All contributions are welcome but please refrain from political or abusive comments, racially or religiously offensive remarks, swearing (including the thin disguising of swear words with asterisks and other characters), insulting language and crude metaphors. Please do not use Plane Talking as a public platform to complain about retailers or manufacturers (about issues such as broken or missing parts) before you have followed all normal channels to resolve any greivance. Plane Talking is not the place to conduct personal feuds or for posting personal attacks. Please do not post in capital letters only, as this is considered to be shouting and therefore impolite. Also, please do not post in 'texting message' word format. Any posts breaching these guidelines will promptly be removed from the server and the offender may be excluded from further posting to the HyperScale Forums. Off-topic posts may also be removed from the server.

In addition, Plane Talking is not a forum for the public criticism of the models that appear as Galleries or Articles. Please make any suggestions for improvements or criticism direct to the author via the email link at the bottom of the Article.

Finally, please note that this Discussion Group is privately operated and that I reserve the right to delete any post or cancel any registration for any reason whatsoever.

free counters