Airplane pr0n




This. Firing up to 6 missiles with 100 mile range is a big advantage over slowly flying out there to shoot something with your guns.
Also the Tomcat probably has an couple Aegis for backup as well.


So they could cram as many of these puppies on an aircraft carrier as possible.


That’s a plane that you had to fight to take off. That huge engine wanted to torque you so hard that you’d rotate sideways first.


Pretty much all of these big rotaries, my dude.

Which is why the P-38 is so wonderful when you don’t have rudder pedals/rockers :)


Radial, not rotary*, engines made no difference in torque effect. The Bf-109, which had an in-line, liquid-cooled engine, was a torque monster. By all accounts, it had a nasty tendency to veer on take-off and ground loop on landing. You had to be a good pilot to handle that beast. The P-38 had no torque effects, not because its engines were liquid cooled, but because it had two props that were counter-rotating, thus canceling any torque effect.

*“Rotary” engines were used in WWI. The engine was cooled by having the entire engine spin around its axis along with the propeller. Not only did those engines produce massive torque for their size, but they excelled at spitting castor oil in the pilot’s face, making for some rather messy cockpits.


Yes yes inline engines throw you around to, and I’m aware that the P-38 had counter-rotating screws.

In the same way that I’m aware of that “rotary” engines, used in WWI, may have also been used in WWII. You know, the Double-Wasp so many of these fighters were built around ;)


OK, but the Double Wasp was a radial (the cylinders radiated out from the propeller shaft) engine, not a rotary. The entire engine didn’t spin on its axis like those WWI jobs.


How odd that I typed “radial” to verify the Double-Wasp but kept typing “rotary” here.

I’d blame the weed, but I don’t smoke weed


Ah, OK. From what I read, the torque produced by some of those early rotaries was something to behold. It made the Sopwith Camel tremendously maneuverable, but also tremendously dangerous to fly.


Maybe the housefan enthusiasts here can remind us which way you always turned the Camel due to torque.


See for yourself. A Clerget 9B rotary, such as powered the Camel, in action:


That always looks so damned dangerous. Were there a lot of injuries starting planes?


Absolutely not. Early aircraft technology was perfectly safe* and so simple a child could use it!**

*Totally unsafe
** sacrificed children to dark gods


But because its so obviously and ridicilously dangerous, fairly few accidents happened. See people aren’t as stupid as they seem, That big spinny thing looks like it can take your head off and not even be slightly damaged. You treat it with the respect that’s due.
And if an accident happened on a field just 30 clicks south of the trenches or on a carrier steaming for Truk, aint nobody gonna sue. So they acknowledged the danger and dealt with it.
Today that would be unacceptable. The effect of the planes’ camo paintjob would be nullified by bright red signage and lettering. At least. Or the plane written off as unsafe. Let the jerries win, but we will not expose our boys to that kind of madness!

They’re all fucking pansies and babies these days. </grumbly old man>


What’s blackly amusing is that even as aircraft technology got “better”, the ratio of died in flight training:died in combat remained around the same.

PFA: Fighter aircraft tend to kill everyone around them, including the pilot. Weird, how flying an (generally) overpowered, deliberately-destabilized chunk of metal at ridiculous velocities is a more-or-less hazardous affair.


It’s also hella fun if the stories, books and sims are to be believed :D


Not a fighter, but to me the ultimate example of what you’re talking about: The Gee Bee Model R racer. Just look at that thing! An enormous engine with tiny wings and tail attached. So unstable that even as great a pilot and risk taker as Jimmy Doolittle was done with it once he set the speed record.



How did that thing not just roll to the right shredding its wings on the way off of the runway into the grass? :)


Another perfectly safe* and problem-free example of the thoroughbred breed:

*1 out of 5 West German pilots agree!


Oh yeah, and throw in the totally mature, self-effacing, and cautious breed that are fighter pilots.