Crashes in the News - Thread

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blane.c

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Hard to imagine an engine with superchargers using 80/87. 80/87 would work in cruise and other low power settings but likely would detonate at higher power. If Jet fuel was put in the plane, were the engines run before it was discovered? How did they insure it was completely removed from the fuel system? And the replacement of the oil cooler really bothers me because I know of more than one incident were oil coolers caused the loss of brand new engines. Though we couldn't prove it I was on a flight were the just overhauled engine failed in less than 5 minutes, I always blamed the oil cooler, I don't believe it was properly cleaned out from the previous engine failure. It can be difficult to tell if all the crap has been flushed out of an oil cooler, they should be X-Rayed or something. How would you know if the crap in the oil cooler caused an engine failure, how could you prove it? Maybe if there is trace evidence of a different type of oil in an analysis, might point to it but still wouldn't be conclusive? If you have other oil coolers from same shop that have crap in them might point that way too, but still to prove it was a problem in a particular incident?

Isn't the gear retract and extension on the B-17 notoriously slow?

OOPs! Brand new should read freshly overhauled/rebuilt.
 
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Kyle Boatright

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Right that’s what I remember it was 100. Hard to be 100 and jet too
IIRC he said min required was 87. I believe he must have been referring to the old red 80/87; either that or it had a mogas STC for 87. Or the other possibility was he didn’t know what he was talking about. Surely not.
You guys that know that engine...80/87 is too low, right? I looked for it in the -1 and didn’t find it but was in a hurry
Man I miss that old red 80
B-17's and DC-3's and Beech 18's were pre-war aircraft when 87 octane was the normal fuel. We improved fuel chemistry and added lead during the war up to ~150 octane fuels, but the high lead levels could cause problems, so those fuels went out of favor when we no longer needed to squeeze maximum HP out of a fighter (where they were typically used) for a few minutes. That led to 100/130 and then to 100 LL.

So, 87 octane is fine, as are any of the others (e.g. 100LL). The compression ratios on these engines is on the order of 6:1. What is limited by the lower octane is how much boost you can apply...
 

BBerson

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What did he mean when he told the tower: "I need to land and blow out the number 4 engine"?

I would be checking the fuel truck for jet fuel, water, etc.
I assume the NTSB has a check list for this after a takeoff crash.
 

Rockiedog2

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I rebuilt an 0-360 that had been making metal. Trashed the cooler and bt a NEW one. Any used one we find may be contaminated. The few bucks more is insignificant in the big picture.
That’s one chance I’m not gonna take.
 

Rockiedog2

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To me speculation draws a conclusion and there’s been very little of that...just mostly logical discussion of the possible causes. Mostly good stuff.
Pilots have always been compelled to do that. Look how many pages in this thread
 

Turd Ferguson

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From what I have read, the plane was on it's second flight of the day. No refuel between flights, so a somewhat long period for fuel contamination to show up. Also, they don't run any boost on the engines. Normally aspirated power for longer engine life.
 

Deuelly

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What did he mean when he told the tower: "I need to land and blow out the number 4 engine"?

I would be checking the fuel truck for jet fuel, water, etc.
I assume the NTSB has a check list for this after a takeoff crash.
Just a guess. At the time they probably noticed the engine running rough and had no other indications of imminent failure. They wanted to return and do a run up and check some things before they decided to cancel the flight. If they could clear it out on the ground, (blow it out), they'd continue the flight experience. They would not continue the tour with a rough engine. Shortly after the call things may have gone downhill as there were hesitations in there responses.

Brandon
 

Rockiedog2

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The B-17 will fly perfectly fine on two engines, if you keep the speed up. They didn’t. It was also fully fueled, so a bit heavy for a civilian B-17. And the killer item here...they never raised the landing gear. Cardinal error / mortal sin.
From my understanding they were on approach/landing so the gear should have been down. It’s been said they got slow/low so maybe stalled trying to stretch the glide...has there been info on that? No telling what they were dealing with...at work they didn’t usually give us compound emergencies in the sim but the plane sure can and will.
 

Rockiedog2

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From what I have read, the plane was on it's second flight of the day. No refuel between flights, so a somewhat long period for fuel contamination to show up. Also, they don't run any boost on the engines. Normally aspirated power for longer engine life.
Maybe switched tanks between flights to a contaminated/misfueled one?
Lotta possibilities, huh?
 

Kyle Boatright

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Blow out? First thought was fire, but not likely. Perhaps fouled plugs?
Mags were my first thought.

Elsewhere it was suggested that the mags on the 1820 tend to collect water and there is a procedure to blow them out with compressed air. I have a hard time buying that given the 1820 had several naval applications where a moisture problem would have been a deal killer.
 

Rockiedog2

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Mags were my first thought.

Elsewhere it was suggested that the mags on the 1820 tend to collect water and there is a procedure to blow them out with compressed air. I have a hard time buying that given the 1820 had several naval applications where a moisture problem would have been a deal killer.

If they were Eisemann mags I could believe that. Used to dry those out with a hairdryer on preflight
 
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radfordc

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To me speculation draws a conclusion and there’s been very little of that...just mostly logical discussion of the possible causes. Mostly good stuff.
Pilots have always been compelled to do that. Look how many pages in this thread
Do you see any conclusions in the following statements? "The B-17 will fly perfectly fine on two engines, if you keep the speed up. They didn’t. It was also fully fueled, so a bit heavy for a civilian B-17."

I'm with the ones who say let's wait for the actual report before drawing "conclusions".
 

Doggzilla

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I think you are referring to the ALS or approach light system. They are on breakaway stanchions. Not sure how that "did them in"
Thats what they hit first and what directed them into the tanks. Those "breakaway stanchions" are still like hitting a tree. They are not flimsy.
 

Rockiedog2

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Do you see any conclusions in the following statements? "The B-17 will fly perfectly fine on two engines, if you keep the speed up. They didn’t. It was also fully fueled, so a bit heavy for a civilian B-17."

I'm with the ones who say let's wait for the actual report before drawing "conclusions".
Do you see "very little", "mostly", "possible," "mostly"?

Read the post Doofus!
 

Rockiedog2

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"Pilots Manual for Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress," ISBN O-87994-037-9, published by Aviation Publications of Appleton, WI. It's a reprinting of Army publication AN 01-20EF-1, A.P No. 2099C, "Pilot's Flight Operating Instructions for Army Models B-17F and G and British Model Fortress II", dated August 1 1943.

I believe it's an incomplete reprint (e.g., doesn't include everything in the original). It's 109 pages long. The company issued a number of books that are reprints of original flight manuals.

I found what appears to be a PDF copy of this book at:

http://jasonblair.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Pilots-Manual-for-Boeing-B-17-Flying-Fortress.pdf

Ron Wanttaja
yeh that's the same one I got. I had overlooked the ARMY MODELS F and G somehow, sorry. The I, II, III appear to be the Brit models.
Finally found a reference to fuel. Look on p.97, box in upper right corner of the chart, it says FUEL AN-VV-F-781 100 OCTANE. So according to that, it looks like the fed in the vid didn't know what he was talking about on the 87 statement. Imagine that. Or maybe there is a mogas field approval or even STC? Dunno...
 
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Doggzilla

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Remember, it’s all hypothetical until the report comes out.

Trying to pick and choose who is allowed to have a hypothetical discussion is extremely rude as well.
 

Kyle Boatright

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yeh that's the same one I got. I had overlooked the ARMY MODELS F and G somehow, sorry. The I, II, III appear to be the Brit models.
Finally found a reference to fuel. Look on p.97, box in upper right corner of the chart, it says FUEL AN-VV-F-781 100 OCTANE. So according to that, it looks like the fed in the vid didn't know what he was talking about on the 87 statement. Imagine that. Or maybe there is a mogas field approval or even STC? Dunno...
With 6.4:1 compression and the turbos inactivated, the engines are fine with anything 87 octane or above. They were designed that way back in the '30's before even 100 octane was widely available.
 

blane.c

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"I think" you would be hard pressed to find less than 100LL available or in the aircraft. Being miss-fueled with Jet entirely possible. I doubt they took-off very often above or at least not much above meto power and probably most often at reduced power corrected for density altitude. Certainly not the full rated power of the engines. Hard to say how long it would take to "spool" the engines up to full power if necessary.

If they fueled for multiple "hops" so they wouldn't have to re-fuel each time they exchanged passengers (likely), there is no telling from here how they would have planned fuel use from which tanks & when. The outboard wing tanks are such a multitude of small tanks the possibility of jet fuel still being residual in one or more of them is real if they had been subject to the miss-fueling.

The changing of oil cooler is still bothering me.

Round motors are "tuff" in my experience, and often can run for quite some time "injured but not broken" and nothing obvious manifesting itself. And then it does.

Pratt & Whitney chose the words "Dependable Engines" carefully in my opinion.

The "blowing" out of an engine could mean a run-up to try to clean the plugs, that happens occasionally and there is procedure published, it is tedious to have plugs removed and replaced for all involved and often a run-up will clean the deposits and the engine will run smooth. The P&W 2000's that I flew with for a while are in a way 1820's with early 2800 jugs and some other modifications. The magnetos on the 2000's were weather susceptible and sometimes an engine would run ruff after flying through rain.

I agree that there must have been multiple problems. For veteran pilots to not continue on three engines suck up the gear and gain airspeed and altitude and get re-established "into the wind" before trying to land means to me there situation was very dire. The pilot was obviously desperate to get back to the runway, this is "not typical" of merely an engine out scenario.
 
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