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  1. #1

    Default The WW2 Spitfire Fighter Plane

    I have been reading a book on the Spitfire and I was rather surprised to learn about the size of their motor.

    They flew with a Rolls Royce Merlin engine which were twelve cylinder vee type engines with two sets of cylinders arranged at an angle of 60 degrees. The cylinders were "the right way up", being mounted above the crank with a swept volume of 27 litres. That's a big motor, considering that many of today's cars have 1.6 to two litres and the four litre Jaguar motor is considered large.

    They also flew with Rolls Royce Griffin engines which were 23% bigger in capacity. They certainly had large motors which was one of the reasons why it was such a good aircraft.

    The original Spitfire cost 5,000 pounds, the equivalent of 200,000 pounds today so they were not cheap and there were over 7,000 built.

    Thought that you might find that interesting.
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  2. #2
    Zippity Fan Club Member prefect's Avatar
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    Default Re: The WW2 Spitfire Fighter Plane

    The expensive bit was the elliptical wing build.
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  3. #3
    In a 1920s time warp Terry Porritt's Avatar
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    Default Re: The WW2 Spitfire Fighter Plane

    I can't see the connection between the size of a Merlin and a car engine, after all cars aren't designed to fly at 360mph and 30,000 feet

    Edit: there used to be collections at school for the Spitfire Fund, and drives to collect aluminium pots and pans.
    Last edited by Terry Porritt; 10-09-2017 at 06:38 PM.
    Remembering Rich Conaty, 1954 - 2016....."and don't you never forget, rhythm saved the world, Aloha"

  4. #4

    Default Re: The WW2 Spitfire Fighter Plane

    I just thought that the difference in size between the two engines was quite incredible.

    And you are right. Cars are not designed to fly. The PR.XIX had a top speed of 460 mph and a ceiling of 43,000 feet.

    The first toothpaste tubes were made of tin and lead, and remained basically the same until a metal shortage during World War II. The War Production Board restricted consumer use of many types of metal, including tin, lead and aluminum, creating a potential crisis in the toothpaste tube industry. Just thought you'd like to know.
    It is better to wear out than to rust out.
    - Richard Chamberlain, Tour of the Hebrides

    Us husbands are a sorry lot.

    Visit the Radio Reading Service: www.radioreading.org.nz

  5. #5
    Senior Member 1101's Avatar
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    Default Re: The WW2 Spitfire Fighter Plane

    The engine that won WW2 . Beautiful rebuild in this vid.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYcKdK7hmEo

    Also used in Mustangs & tanks . Later used in raceboats etc, after all the planes were cut up for scrap at the end of the war

    And there are a few custom built cars that use it.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: The WW2 Spitfire Fighter Plane

    Quote Originally Posted by 1101 View Post
    The engine that won WW2 . Beautiful rebuild in this vid.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYcKdK7hmEo

    Also used in Mustangs & tanks . Later used in raceboats etc, after all the planes were cut up for scrap at the end of the war

    And there are a few custom built cars that use it.
    Wouldn't quite say that 1101, But as Churchill said "it was their finest hour" in the defense of Britain.

    Have an exercise book around the place here, when we used to draw the Spitty during the WW11 era.

    lurking.

  7. #7
    Awaiting Enlightenment R2x1's Avatar
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    Default Re: The WW2 Spitfire Fighter Plane

    Anybody know what was the ratio of British pilots to German pilots damaged by spitfires?
    They scored a lot of own goals.
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  8. #8
    Modulator Greg's Avatar
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    Default Re: The WW2 Spitfire Fighter Plane

    In the jo'burg war museum they have a cutaways of the Merlin engine, showing all the internal, and is powered by an electric motor see the parts moving. Quite a sight.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member 1101's Avatar
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    Default Re: The WW2 Spitfire Fighter Plane

    Quote Originally Posted by R2x1 View Post
    Anybody know what was the ratio of British pilots to German pilots damaged by spitfires?
    They scored a lot of own goals.
    The Germans had more 'own goals' in the 109 , with its wobbly narrow undercarriage
    Plenty of 109's damaged on landing , they were landing on open grass fields (more or less)

  10. #10
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    Default Re: The WW2 Spitfire Fighter Plane

    The success of the RAF in the 1940 Battle of Britain was due more to the Hawker Hurricane than the Supermarine Spitfire.

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