Who made the better Merlin?

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Toobuilder

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I've read quite a few books on the Lightning and one thing that shines through is the huge issue with engine failures. Fundamental problems like kicking rods out of the block, detonation, etc. I have also heard that the Allison is a more reliable engine than the Merlin, but the turbo was just no bueno.

I don't think any of the current flying P-38's or P-47's have the turbo systems functional.
 

Deuelly

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I've read quite a few books on the Lightning and one thing that shines through is the huge issue with engine failures. Fundamental problems like kicking rods out of the block, detonation, etc. I have also heard that the Allison is a more reliable engine than the Merlin, but the turbo was just no bueno.

I don't think any of the current flying P-38's or P-47's have the turbo systems functional.
Most of the issues with the turbos were do to inexperienced pilots in combat situations. They didn't get a lot of training to begin with. Let alone managing a complex turbo systems. Lockheed eventually sent representatives over seas to help in training on the systems.

The P-38 I help to take care of has a working turbo system. Ours was the only one for the longest time. There are two now.

Brandon
 

Aviacs

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The P-38 I help to take care of has a working turbo system. Ours was the only one for the longest time
Did you fly it at Elmira/KELM when we still had airshows/ Warplane museum/ B17 Fuddy Duddy?

There was one with a big photo of "Marge" on the side like Dick Bong's that flew in the airshow. Planes like the F4U or one of the Mustangs or Texans and Harvards would go down the flight line with loads of noise & attitude. Then the Lightning would go up for a show and everything was quiet. It would ghost down the line, barely even a sound from the props; then as it approached & went by, a doppler effect of the turbo whistle fading, like a sigh.

smt
 

Deuelly

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Did you fly it at Elmira/KELM when we still had airshows/ Warplane museum/ B17 Fuddy Duddy?

There was one with a big photo of "Marge" on the side like Dick Bong's that flew in the airshow. Planes like the F4U or one of the Mustangs or Texans and Harvards would go down the flight line with loads of noise & attitude. Then the Lightning would go up for a show and everything was quiet. It would ghost down the line, barely even a sound from the props; then as it approached & went by, a doppler effect of the turbo whistle fading, like a sigh.

smt
I'm sure it was ours with the previous owner. It was painted as Bongs bird for a time back then.
We bought it in '04 and did a major IRAN in "07. Up until three years ago, ours was the only P-38 in the world still running the turbos. It's amazing hearing the turbos spool as it powers up for take-off. Not what you expect from a high power warbird.

Brandon
 
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