Beaufighter: Merlin vs. Hercules

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by tomo pauk, Oct 16, 2012.

  1. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    What were the principal differences in capabilities between Merlin and Hercules engined planes? I know that a direct comparison is sometimes tough to make, but maybe a comparison between, say, night fighter versions could give some useful insights.
     
  2. herman1rg

    herman1rg Well-Known Member

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    Not being a techy type I have no idea but I look forward to the answers
     
  3. Kryten

    Kryten Member

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    Performance wise there was apparently not a lot in it, pilots reckoned the view over the wings was better with the merlin but the low speed handling suffered, this was due to the center of gravity change, the inline V12 hanging out a lot farther foreward than the Radial, it was the cause of a number of landing/takeoff accidents, and I seem to recall the merlin version was not happy on one engine, cant remember why , will try and find some details if I get chance!
     
  4. johnbr

    johnbr Well-Known Member

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    How about the 2000hp Hercules.
     
  5. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    2000 hp Hercules engines were post war production only. iirc The best wartime Hercules were in the 1700 hp class and didnt have particulary stellar superchargers. Good enough for the Beau which probably got a nosebleed if it went above 10,000 ft.
     
  6. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    Yes the Merlin engined Mk II suffered from stability problems, not the best feature for a night fighter. So I'm definitely for Hercules powered versions.

    Juha
     
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