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Fastest piston fighter

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posted on May, 17 2005 @ 09:10 PM
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Do you any of you WWII aircraft junkies play the game Aces High? I'm not advocating the game or anything but if you're into WWII aircraft, it's a pretty cool game.




posted on May, 21 2005 @ 02:49 AM
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I am just wondering about a high altitude variant of the Ta-152. I think it might be the Ta-152H. Never went into production but then I am dubious that the P-47J did either. The CA-17, 18 etc certainly didn't.



posted on May, 21 2005 @ 02:55 AM
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Originally posted by twitchy
Do you any of you WWII aircraft junkies play the game Aces High? I'm not advocating the game or anything but if you're into WWII aircraft, it's a pretty cool game.


Never Heard of it...
If you like that then try Il-2 Sturmovik and any more recent titles from 1-maddox games. These imho are the definitive titles for Flight sims.



posted on May, 21 2005 @ 02:31 PM
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Originally posted by Xar Ke Zeth
But was that F8F in 1989 modified for high speed, or was it actually designed to be a fighter?


The Bearcat that set the world speed record is a heavily modified airframe used in air races. The plane is named the Rare Bear and is still flying today. You can read all about it here:

www.rarebear.com...

The record holder was extensively modified from a stock Bearcat with a new more powerul engine and other airframe changes to increase speed. According to the site, the max speed of the original F8F at 5000 ft altitude was only 370 mph compared to the Rare Bear that can reach 540 mph.



posted on Jan, 20 2006 @ 08:52 PM
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The P-51H was the fastest PRODUCTION piston engine fighter at 487mph at 25,000. The XP-51G was the fastest experimental (from factory versus Reno Racer) at 495 at 20,000.

330 P-51H's were delivered by VJ Day. This Mustang was far superior to the D as it was much lighter - hence much better climb and turn performance plus even better acceleration into it's already incredible dive performance

The XP-47J clocked 507 at 30,000 feet.

The Do-335 did 474 at 20,000. Not sure but think the Spit XIX with Griffon did 466mph.

Sources for 51 data includeMustang Designer by Ray Wagner (about Edgar Schmued) and Mustang by Robert Gruenhagen



posted on Jan, 21 2006 @ 01:02 AM
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How about the Martin Baker MB.5? Could out-pace many jets of the day. Fast and agile, the only problem was it was piston engined and nobody wanted a piston fighter anymore
. Looks like what the P-51 should have looked like (but then, so does the CA-15). P-51 is over-rated, anyway. Nods to the Spit for it's speed dive and Republic for the Superman.
to the V-1 chasers, as well.



posted on Jan, 21 2006 @ 05:00 AM
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Yes, I think we established that the P-51H at 487mph and the DH Hornet at 485mph were the fastest piston fighters to see service, however the speed of the Spiteful at 494mph should not be discounted as being an 'experimental' fighter like the XP-51G. The Spiteful WAS a production fighter with armour, guns ammunition and everything, in fact over 100 were produced, the reason it went no further than that was purely down to the end of the war and the advent of jets, Likewise the MB 5.

Neither was the XP-51G the fastest experimental one either, see earlier in the thread for the XP-47J and CA-15, both of which exceeded 500mph.

Just for the record the highest recorded speed attained by a piston engined aircraft is mach 0.92 (over 600mph) recorded by a Spitfire XIX in a vertical dive during 1946, this occurred at RAE competitve trials between the Spitfire, FW 190, P-51(model not recorded) and P-47D and related to transonic drag research. The Spitfires higher speed in these trials was purely down to its extremely thin wing which, at 9% thickness chord ratio, was thinner than any other wing flying at the time and was said to be well below the NACA recommended minimum which most fighters on all sides were designed to. (source - Supermarine Aircraft since 1914 by C F Andrews and E B Morgan). The level speed record is held by a modified Bearcat as recorded earlier in the thread.



posted on Jan, 22 2006 @ 07:08 AM
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Just out of interest I'd like to add two more projects to this thread. Although they remained as paper designs I include them here as an interesting look at what the next generation of piston fightrers might have given us had the jet not been followed up in the war years.

The first one dates from Sept 1943 and is the Hawker P.1030. It was to be powered by the 3,500hp Rolls Royce Eagle engine and had a design speed of 509mph at 25,000ft and it was considered the logical follow on to the Tempest and Fury.


Just when I was thinking what a remarkable and impressive design that was I discovered this one.

Dating from March 1944, this was Supermarines proposal for a high speed fighter for the Royal Navy. The thinking here was that the rather feeble jet engines of the day would not be suitable for carrier take offs and even though the Meteor and Vampire were in full production, the RN would still need a new piston fighter. This view was not entirely wrong because the RN bought the Hawker Sea Fury which served until 1953.

This aircraftwas the Supermarine 391 (the Royal Navy's first jet fighter, the Attacker, was developed as the Supermarine 392). Like the Hawker design, it too was powered by the 24 cylinder Eagle engine and made use of the Spiteful's laminar flow wing but this time featuring radiators fully enclosed in the wing roots. Both of these designs can be seen to use counter rotating propellers, considered essential to counter the torque of such a powerful engine, and this Supermarine 391 had a design speed of no less than 546mph, slightly highter than the Me 262!



posted on Jan, 22 2006 @ 10:46 AM
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Some of the propellor design aircraft that were considered prior to and just after WW2 are very interesting.

Here's some info on Lockheeds P58 Chain Lightning.

home.att.net...

www.ibiblio.org...

And some info on the P49 which was based on the P38 design, but really wasn't an improvement so it never saw production.

www.wpafb.af.mil...


It's interesting to note that many of these post WW2 aircraft were getting away from the smoothly rounded aerodynamics and trending toward the somewhat squared off aerodynamics as used in modern jets.





There is a book - perhaps several - that pertain strictly to post WW2 propellor aircraft.
I used to have a nice one until Sweetie spilled her tea onto it....



posted on Jan, 23 2006 @ 03:57 PM
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what about the westland wyvern it was fitted with the Eagle 22 piston engine rated at 3500 hp and in 1946 the tf.1 version had a top speed of 456.9 mph before it was converted to carry the worlds first high performance turboprop the rolls royce clyde and then the less advanced Armstrong siddely python good deal of info on this overlooked bit of kit in a book called great carrier aircraft isbn no 1-85605-343-1.

[edit on 23-1-2006 by buckaroo]



posted on Jan, 23 2006 @ 05:08 PM
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Yes, I love the Wyvern, its agreat shame it had so many development problems. I think it was the only turboprop strike fighter ever to see squadron service? However despite it having the same engine as the two types I mentioned it was considerably bigger and heavier which slowed it down a little.

PS . I notice you support the slags, er I mean stags of course
I was down there for the pre season friendly back in August. Up the Millers! and see you next season in League Two



posted on Jan, 23 2006 @ 05:52 PM
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Originally posted by aerospaceweb
The record holder was extensively modified from a stock Bearcat with a new more powerul engine and other airframe changes to increase speed. According to the site, the max speed of the original F8F at 5000 ft altitude was only 370 mph compared to the Rare Bear that can reach 540 mph.


So, can we all get off the Bearcat, then? Especially Reno Racers, as they clearly aren't production fighters.

Gotta love the CA 15, from the same guy who made the Wirraway and the Boomerang. The Boomerang would have fought the Brewster Buffalo to a stalemate, but the Wirraway couldn't have dragged off a snail.

What was the name of the contra-prop Spit prototype? Or was that the Sea Fang?



posted on Jan, 23 2006 @ 05:52 PM
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Originally posted by waynos
Yes, I love the Wyvern, its agreat shame it had so many development problems. I think it was the only turboprop strike fighter ever to see squadron service? However despite it having the same engine as the two types I mentioned it was considerably bigger and heavier which slowed it down a little.

PS . I notice you support the slags, er I mean stags of course
I was down there for the pre season friendly back in August. Up the Millers! and see you next season in League Two


it was at suez, what about about the pucara in the Falklands ? im sure that is a turbo prop aircraft.
all I can say to the rest of ur post is Ritchie Barker goal machine



posted on Jan, 23 2006 @ 06:06 PM
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HowlrunnerIV the are you reffering to the amazing griffon powered supermarine seafire the final mk 47 version had a 2347 hp griffon engine with a 6 blade contraprop it saw service with theroyal navy in Korea it was the most powerful member of the spit fire family ive got a pic of a fr.47 somewhere ill try and dig it out.



posted on Jan, 23 2006 @ 07:54 PM
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Some late model Spitfires and the Seafire FR.47 had contra-props or you might mean this, it was the Sea Fang and was the navalised version of the Spiteful. If you go back to the beginning of the thread the middle picture I posted is actually a Sea Fang, but with a normal propeller.



[edit on 23-1-2006 by waynos]



posted on Jan, 23 2006 @ 09:13 PM
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What about the Bf-109? Wasn't the Bf-109 one of the fastest aircraft the lufftewaffe had in its inventory?

Shattered OUT...



posted on Jan, 24 2006 @ 08:04 AM
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Originally posted by ShatteredSkies
What about the Bf-109? Wasn't the Bf-109 one of the fastest aircraft the lufftewaffe had in its inventory?

Shattered OUT...


The bf -109g10 which was one of the latest luftwaffe models had a Daimler-Benz DB 605D engine rated at around 1850 hp and a top speed of 426mph at 24500 feet not a contest for some of theese spitfire and seafang variants. the focke wulf fw 190d also had a top speed of 426 mph from its methanol injected radial junkers engine*

*pardon me the fw190d had the junkers jumo inline liquid cooled engine i was thinking of the earlier bmw radial engine equiped a models

[edit on 24-1-2006 by buckaroo]



posted on Jan, 24 2006 @ 09:33 AM
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First, a 'paraquote'...

Pg. 26 of Monogram's Close Up #24 on the Ta-152 (Hohenjager in this case) states that a test flight out of Cottbus took the 152 up to 43,290ft and did a speed run which was later worked out with the aid of onboard recording instruments and a test pilot in the as 508 to 515mph ground speed.

Now, some much needed 'it depends' qualifiers.

1. Airspeed is usually lower than ground speed because pitot's (particularly of this era) were tuned within a given altitude band and as Mach number, potential icing and density altitude built up or bled down, they showed a HUGE range of needle-on-the-dial-says numbers. Remember too that 565 knots (Mach 1) at 36,000ft is nearly 650mph. This is why I trust the Focke Wulf quotes because while nearly everyone has a crotch grabbing moment when it comes to stating figures for 'their' national-best preferred airplane, the preproduction Tanks had primitive 'variometer' (acceleration gyros) and a wound-paper barograph onboard to meet late war RLM as well as Tank criteria for performance validation.

2. Almost all aircraft had quirks of performance change, some quite large, even between models. The P-51B/C were 450mph machines, while the P-51D/K with the bubble canopy (more aft fuselage airflow breakup) and more weight were slower, 'officially' around 437mph. Real speeds could vary even more because things like plugs and tunes and turbo settings as well as good skin condition (minimal dings and patches, no unplugged A2G mods, excellent maintenance of waxed polish NM, _no paint_) all played a part in friction drag as well as induced (wingloading).

3. Almost all German latewar aircraft used either a high or low octane fuel with a booster factored additive performance margin. Without the MW-50 (methanol water) or GM-1 (nitrous) the Me-109G6 was barely a (396) 400mph class fighter, despite having a /monster/ HP to airframe empty weight margin. With the additive you had aircraft wich would easily top 428mph (G14AS/G-10, 454mph in the K) and climb at almost 3,8000fpm. The problem being that the additives also had severely (eats cylinder) deleterious effects on the overall engine compression and could be used only in short bursts with no real 'on off' ability. That the various hi-low altitude and octane rated DB-601 and 605 engines could accomodate all this abuse and modification was one of the marks which made the engine more than the airframe the hallmark of Augsburg's Eagle.

By the same metric, we had tetraethyllead compounds (in open literature throughout the later 1930s, amazingly enough) which eventually ended up giving us as much as 120-150 octane fuel ratings where the Germans were lucky to bust a hundred. Coupled to a working turbosection (magnesium and titanium hotduct metallurgy that didn't light off at multiple hundred degree temps higher than the Germans could work with) and mechanical superchargers with automatic staging, we were gifted with upwards of 15-20 minutes of usage (and repeat usage after a cooldown, provided you had the gas and the engine wasn't rough with all the lead on the plugs). Allowing us to get more reliable (flat power:altitude curve) and less dangerous (no frozen MW 'slush' clogging the lines or exploding in the cylinder) head pressure performance from our engines.

4. The P-47M and indeed all P-47s were rather better high altitude machines than are given credit, considering the P-51 was basically a cruise-only 'laminar for the first third bird'. They had fantastic roll rates and superb acceleration at speed (both mechanical and turbo paths AND lightning water chugging enriched air to the engine). They even had a better performance in the dive where, even though their absolute limiter number was not quite as high as the Mustang, their elevator and aileron performance plus overall mass made them more steady (less porpoised) in the buildup. It was not P-51's that were a threat to the Me-262's attacking the bomber streams, late war. It was top cover P-47s which, with a little unload, could actually run down at least the R4m equipped birds, _from behind_ (a German will tell you this is because of coaltar fuel and novice pilots 'compressed' by jet speeds, throttling back to make firing passes.).

5. VNE is _very_ important. And one of the reasons I laugh at the stupidity of even a test pilot 'trying to pull the wings off in a dive'. Because he won't bail out and if he hits a 600mph windstream as his plane comes apart, so will he. Literally, that is what Mach tuck does on a straight wing aircraft with fighter section airfoils. It pulls you down deeper and steeper until the Mach buzzz shakes you apart. That same Ta-152 I quoted has a maximum airspeed before before the long, single+half spar wings literally flex the airframe apart of only 498mph. Thus there is no real point to having an ultra high maximum level airspeed if it is unexploitable due to remaining margin under maneuvering or dive loads. For while nobody will bother you at 40,000+ft, when you go to stoop down on the bombers at 25,000, you're //finished// if you don't have a speed brake.

6. No aircraft NOT ABLE TO PERFORM THE MISSION at the moment of maximum speed achievement. Whether it was started out as a speed prototype. Or was rendered into one. Can be considered a 'fighter'.

Rare Bear in particular has an engine with almost double the HP of the wartime variant, a reprofiled back end and a propellor off a plane (Skyraider) twice it's original chord for roughly the same blade length. It's wingspan is clipped and it also is running on something closer to a top fuel dragster's octane than anything we could make (lead and all) octane-equivalent back in WWII.

And I still bet it is a pig (too rich for the available aspiration, monster wingloading) at altitude.

7. Tactically, speed is useful. But only as a function of avoiding combat or presetting the conditions of entry into it. The dictates of physics and formation geometry require that you fly significantly slower and wider that potentially possible if you want to keep wingie tucked in and covering your cone. At which point, coordination between the pilots and good _transient_ (acceleration and roll rate/stop/reversal) performance become much more critical in regaining a midrange 'fighting speed' after bleeding down in deliberately short, sharp, saddling maneuvers (turn to shoot, never to engage).

G-suits were also not universally available to allow sustained high-G performance and in any case, /airframe/ rated turns were usually best sustained in the region 250-270 knots, higher meant increasingly hard controls and chances of accelerative stall.

Indeed, if there is a point to maximum speed in a 'slowest soldier sets the march' sense of wartime aircraft performance and tactical conditions; it is simply that of getting away from basing mode predictors quickly, getting to height reliably (good angle of climb angle, sustained power levels). And getting away from the fight once you have made your 1 Pass Haul Hindquarters attack.

Because these are the merits by which you are not 'swept' by lead fighters where you are most predictable/vulnerable (near the airfield or in the marshal stack). Able to be responsive to the GCI controllers in steering early to bearing, not height on the best raid cutoff angles. And able to separate cleanly from any fight which you cannot win except by surviving to do it again tomorrow.

In some ground attack aircraft (notably the Ar-234) and certainly in reccers it is also important to have speed in the pass through the target area terminal defenses and as a slight turnaway or altitude climb reserve against manned intercept and radar fuzed flak. But even here, you are looking at _very_ specialized profiles compared to the majority of conditions where sighting systems and weapon ballistics (as well as target acquisition and aiming cycle limits on human biology) just _do not_ support the 'fast pass' approach to either static interdiction or particularly mobile target (CAS) work. As well as driftsight compensation for photowork.

The Russians in particular discovered with the Il-2 that one slow approach that scored maximum damage from a long, slow, approach did more to instill shock and suppress defenses than any subsequent 'numbered attack' with high speed aircraft or multiple formations.

In fighter ops much the same rule applies except that your tail on closure margin is lower against a cospeed target while your sights (fixed stadia vs. gyro) and training (deflection shooting vs. closure to cone) usually dictates more of the survivability as much as lethality factor in anything but low angle off headon alternatives. In any case, you are better off getting one shot off from close range and then speeding away 'from the side that doesn't shoot back' than trying to use slashing (energy) or maneuver (angles) combat to 'mix it up' with the enemy formation as a whole. You just waste gas and lose people randomly daisy chained or unseen-shootered that way.

CONCLUSION:
I like the Ta-152 as probably my favorite looking late war fighter. But given any one aircraft, by period and theater, I would probably pick the P-40, Hellcat, Lightning, Hog or TBolt as my principle types for Early CBO/PTO, Midwar PTO/MTO, Late PTO and Late ETO. Because they have the mix of hardiness, firepower, horsepower and some element of _useful_ controls as much as airspeed margin over their opponents to be tactically dominating through the ease with which they could be exploited.

At the same time I would readily admit that this is as much a circumstantially factored condition relative to the timeframe as anything in each airframe or model variant. An Me-109F could hand almost any P-40 model driver's head to him, and did, repeatedly, in the 1942 Desert as well as the Russian Front. Only a Hurricane was worse off. A 109F was relatively easy meat for a P-51D or Spitfire IX. But it was a harder kill at medium altitudes than a 109G in many respects.

A Lightning was no match for a well flown 190 at low altitude but could show up in places where it was utterly unexpected by 109F/Gtrop pilots who were operating a clapped-engine machine over the Med that could not outaccelerate the twin as was their Northern European wont, below 15,000ft (where the P-38G/H had full HP).

A Corsair would be completely (manual engine/flight controls) overmatched by similar speed range, vastly more agile and equally well armored Euro opponents from the midwar on. But it was simply a good gun and energy (BnZ) platform for the largely



posted on Jan, 24 2006 @ 05:18 PM
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Originally posted by ch1466
An Me-109F could hand almost any P-40 model driver's head to him, and did, repeatedly, in the 1942 Desert as well as the Russian Front. Only a Hurricane was worse off.


Hmm, not exactly speed related, but...

Never was a fan of the Hawk/Warhawk/Kittyhawk, even less of the Airacobra, but that is probably because one of the first things I learned about air combat was the Zeros ate P39 and P40 squadrons for lunch.

I know the Hurricane wasn't the best plane of the war, but there were squadrons who refused to type-transfer to Spitfires during BoB. Plus the Hurricane was the world's first 8-gun fighter and it could take more punishment than a Spit and was easier to repair (yeah yeah, old-world technology and all that). Hurricane shot down more Luftwaffe machines during BoB than Spitfire and they can't all have been bombers and Stukas. It can't have been a deathtrap the way Boulton Paul Defiant was and it was clearly rugged enough that the RAF hung onto them, even keeping them in production, as Ground Attack birds for the North African campaign, long after Mitchell's "bloody stupid name" replaced them in Fighter Command service.



posted on Jan, 24 2006 @ 06:21 PM
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Interesting thread,

Just a quick comment re propeller driven aircraft speeds. The propeller turns faster than the aircraft –the tips of the propeller faster than the centre … so however fast the aircraft is traveling, the propeller is traveling faster – if the tips reach transonic speeds (the speed of sound, typically around 700mph) they produce a shockwave (related to “transonic boom”) which causes buffeting and thus drag –in effect the propeller CANNOT go faster than the speed of sound. This is why propeller aircraft are lucky to get to 500mph. The Spitfire/Tempest dive speeds quoted by Waynos are true though, but reflect an aircraft virtually out of control and using gravity more than propeller thrust (the propeller is hardly going around since we KNOW it can’t go past the sound barrier). Spitfires were known to break up at transonic dives –in fact much of the early British transonic know-how came from Spitfire pilots having lucky escapes and explaining how the controls locked in dives etc.


The blades on a jet engine similarly can’t go faster than the speed of sound.



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