WW2 era aircraft - tailwheel configuration

#22
Neither.

The RR engine [f-4K] was not as smoky as the PW engine so less chance of being seen.

The RR was, IIRC, better at low level, but the RR engines were redlined at Mach 1.9 due to being built down to a price and therefore using less expensive alloys.

British Phantoms were sometimes described, most likely by a certain famously caustic senior British aviation writer, as the "most powerful, most expensive, and slowest Phantoms in the world."

The changes required to the airframe were ridiculously expensive and also caused more drag. However, the RR engines had more grunt at lower speeds and could out-accelerate the PW engined ones - useful when getting off the smaller UK carriers. RR engined ones also performed better at low level. Useful in Germany where most of the time they operated below 10,000 feet.

Edited to add that overall the F-4K was poor value for money.
 
#23
Neither.

The RR engine [f-4K] was not as smoky as the PW engine so less chance of being seen.

The RR was, IIRC, better at low level, but the RR engines were redlined at Mach 1.9 due to being built down to a price and therefore using less expensive alloys.

British Phantoms were sometimes described, most likely by a certain famously caustic senior British aviation writer, as the "most powerful, most expensive, and slowest Phantoms in the world."

The changes required to the airframe were ridiculously expensive and also caused more drag. However, the RR engines had more grunt at lower speeds and could out-accelerate the PW engined ones - useful when getting off the smaller UK carriers. RR engined ones also performed better at low level. Useful in Germany where most of the time they operated below 10,000 feet.

Edited to add that overall the F-4K was poor value for money.
However - the Rolls Royce Spey provided extra thrust that was needed due to the limited size (in comparison to US carriers) of HMS Ark Royal (IV). It was also why the landing gear was modified to lift the nose in the air, and increase the wings' angle of attack (and hence lift).

This was the reason I asked about whether the tailwheel configuration increaed short take off capability.

On that subject, high performance WW2 naval fighters such as the Corsair would have been catapulted from a tailwheel down position, so I assume it improved it had the same effect.
 
#24
However - the Rolls Royce Spey provided extra thrust that was needed due to the limited size (in comparison to US carriers) of HMS Ark Royal (IV). It was also why the landing gear was modified to lift the nose in the air, and increase the wings' angle of attack (and hence lift).

This was the reason I asked about whether the tailwheel configuration increaed short take off capability.

On that subject, high performance WW2 naval fighters such as the Corsair would have been catapulted from a tailwheel down position, so I assume it improved it had the same effect.
No they wouldn’t. They weren’t catapulted but took off under their own power.
 
#25
No they wouldn’t. They weren’t catapulted but took off under their own power.
Many World War Two carrier aircraft did, but not all. Fleet Carriers in that period normally had a single hydraulic catapult. In Wings On My Sleeve Eric Brown describes a wartime catapult take off, and the procedures seem similar to modern ones.
 
#26
However - the Rolls Royce Spey provided extra thrust that was needed due to the limited size (in comparison to US carriers) of HMS Ark Royal (IV). It was also why the landing gear was modified to lift the nose in the air, and increase the wings' angle of attack (and hence lift).
The Buccaneers were simply rigged nose high for catapult launches.

Bucc Cat.jpg
 
#28
tailwheel undercarriages are also simple to build, require no steering mechanism, no pumps or actuators or reservoirs. they work and are simple but, as Bill Gunston pointed out, were responsible for thousands of accidents in wartime, especially when you add young pilots and hugely powerful engines and ask them to rely on a tailwheel the side of a wheelbarrow wheel.
 
#30
SAAB anyone?

The SAAB 21 was a Swedish fighter and attack aircraft designed and manufactured by Swedish aviation company SAAB. It used a relatively unorthodox and visually distinctive combination of a twin boom fuselage and a pusher configuration, giving the aircraft a fairly unique appearance.

[SAAB 21 - Wikipedia]
 
#31
Neither.

The RR engine [f-4K] was not as smoky as the PW engine so less chance of being seen.

The RR was, IIRC, better at low level, but the RR engines were redlined at Mach 1.9 due to being built down to a price and therefore using less expensive alloys.

British Phantoms were sometimes described, most likely by a certain famously caustic senior British aviation writer, as the "most powerful, most expensive, and slowest Phantoms in the world."

The changes required to the airframe were ridiculously expensive and also caused more drag. However, the RR engines had more grunt at lower speeds and could out-accelerate the PW engined ones - useful when getting off the smaller UK carriers. RR engined ones also performed better at low level. Useful in Germany where most of the time they operated below 10,000 feet.

Edited to add that overall the F-4K was poor value for money.
Brit -v- US flying style. Check Iraq history for details. We do low level, in fast, out fast, they do high level, hit everything.

Tool for the job.
 
#34
I imagine to give maximum clearance to propeller diameter. Any other ideas?
You sir are correct. Tail draggers seem to be a bit better at operating on rough strips (propellor clearance)

I suspect some of it was also ‘this is what we’ve always done.’
 
#35
A large angle of attack is helpful for getting off the ground. Hence the Bucc was rigged nose-high for carrier take-off. Ditto the UK F-4s had extending nose gear. This wasn't a problem with the larger US carriers which also had more powerful and longer catapults.

Consider also that tail draggers were normally front engined so it was proportionately more difficult to pack everything into a small space e.g. think of a Spitfire with tricycle undercarriage, where does the front wheel go and what about all the operating gubbins?

The problem with tail draggers is that if you aren't careful then the aircraft will do a "ground loop" and end up on it's back with you trapped in the cockpit. This happened to numerous pilots and is the reason that the Avro 504K trainer had a ski sticking out of the front!
1548321517579.png
 
#38
Similar thing happened at the 1989 Swiss International Airshow-In-A-Field near Yverdon. Fortunately it was an all-grass paddock and yer man 'Zanker' displaying a GR5 managed to keep ahead of the cloud of grass with a rolling take-off.
 

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