He-119 vs Me-110C.

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by davebender, Jan 17, 2014.

  1. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    (data from Wikipedia)

    He-119 V6 prototype. 8 Prototypes total.
    July 1937 first flight.
    5,201kg empty. 7,581kg loaded.
    1 x DB606 engine (i.e. coupled DB601 engines).
    367mph max speed. 317mph cruise @ 60% power.
    …..22 Nov 1937. Prototype V4 set a flight record. 314mph with payload of 1,000kg over distance of 1,000km.
    …..Aircraft appears to have been relatively trouble free. All 8 prototypes completed during 1937 to 1938.
    .....Internal fuel capacity unavailable. However range / payload looks excellent for a small late 1930s aircraft.

    Me-110C.
    12 May 1936 first flight. Late 1938 first flight for Me-110C with DB601 engines.
    2 x DB601 engines.
    4,500kg empty. 6,700kg loaded.
    348mph max speed.
    1,270 liters internal fuel.
    …..Another relatively trouble free aircraft.
    …..Internal fuel capacity restricts range / payload. Me-210 did not repeat this mistake as it carried almost twice as much (2,420 liters).

    1940 German Long Range Recon Aircraft production.
    .....92 x Do-215.
    .....36 x Fw-200.
    .....330 x Ju-88
    .....75 x Me-110.
    533 total for 1940.

    What's wrong with the He-119? During 1940 it appears superior to the historical 533 long range recon aircraft acquired by the Luftwaffe. I suspect it would make a superior night fighter aircraft too.

    Shortage of DB601 engines excuse doesn't work as 1937 or 1938 RLM had the option to increase DB601 engine production just as they did for Jumo 211 engine.
     
  2. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure the He 119 aircraft was relatively trouble free. At least one of the 8 built crashed when attempting a world record flight.

    But factual information on the aircraft seems hard to find. Maybe it was relatively trouble free.

    If so, they should have used the DB 606 in the He 177 bomber since its coupled engines were anything BUT trouble free.
     
  3. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    He-177A1 engine nacelle employed a magnesium oil tank without proper shock mounts. Vibration caused fatigue cracks which allowed oil to leak onto exhaust system. After that fire is only a matter of time. This has nothing to do with DB606 engine per se. Heinkel might have made the same error if He-177B (i.e. four engine variant) had been select for production rather then He-177A.

    It appears Heinkel didn't make the oil tank error with He-119 as I've yet to read an account of engine fires in the 8 prototypes.
     
  4. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    The He 177 isn't the topic here, but its worth saying that Herr Rathai, the boss of Feldwerft Abteilung zbV 1, which was set up to maintain II./KG 40 would disagree. There were many problems with the He 177, he compiled long lists of faults discovered on newly delivered aircraft, not just those already in service. However, his unit demonstrated that the most serious problem was a lack of knowledge of the aircraft's systems.

    Having sorted out II./KG 40 in Bordeaux he moved in February 1944, at the height of 'Steinbock', to Chateaudun to take a look at I./KG 100 (I think). His initial report on their operations is self explanatory.

    "Many aircraft have had to abandon take off because of tyre problems or to change spark plugs, others revealed oil leaks in the engines and breakages of fuel pipes to the cylinders. Aircraft were reported as having caught fire forcing the crews to bail out. I blame the fires on poor maintenance. Only one engine fire was reported at Bordeaux with all aircraft having completed at least ten hours flying."

    My italics. That's from the man whose unit was expressly charged with sorting out the He 177s already in service.

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  5. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    I mentioned the He 177 only because it was a plane with a coupled twin V-12 engine setup that gave a lot of trouble. The opening post said the He 119 was relatively trouble free and I simply wondered why, if the He 119 really WAS relatively trouble free, why the reliable engine system didn't transplant to the He 177 using the same type powerplant layout.

    I hadn't meant to hijack the thread and still don't.

    I've always liked the He 119, but Ernst Heinkel was not popular with the Nazis and the RLM. If he had been more of a politician he might have garnered many more orders including the He 119.

    Personally I have always liked the He 119 even though I can freely admit I would not relish sitting in the cockpit with the driveshaft whirling away right next to me, much like the P-39 and P-63. Still, the driveshafts don't seem ot have counted for much in the way of accidents. Yhe accidents came down mostly to weather, flying skill, fuel management, and enemy action in no particular order.
     
  6. Aozora

    Aozora Well-Known Member

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    #6 Aozora, Jan 17, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2014
    I doubt if the He 119 would ever have been a viable combat aircraft, even in a reconnaissance role. For one thing its evaporative cooling system would have been a liability. Theoretically, according to prof Heinkel, the system would have lost less coolant than a conventional system if damaged, but this was overlooking the fact that a far larger area of the wings needed to be given over to the system, which meant a far larger target area for flak and fighters to damage. In addition, all of the surfaces used for evaporative cooling got very hot - this would have made the aircraft very difficult to service after any routine operational sortie; the only way the aircraft could have been serviced properly would have been after the skin surfaces had cooled down enough to allow ground crews to work. Any damage to the wing or fuselage skins used for cooling purpose would have required specialised techniques and tools to repair - a simple patch would have been a waste of time. It was okay to trial the evaporative system in prototypes and experimental aircraft, but it would have been a nightmare on operational machines.

    According to J Richard Smith Eddie J Creek's book on the He 177 the DB 606/610 series were deliberately designed to run very hot specifically because they were intended to take advantage of the evaporative cooling system. Even so it was decided that evaporative cooling wasn't considered viable in an operational aircraft, so the He 177 had to be redesigned to use a conventional liquid cooling system, meaning that the larger radiators increased drag and weight, reducing the range; bigger fuel tanks had to be added which, in turn, increased the weight etc etc. The He 119 would inevitably have had to ditch the evaporative cooling, which would also have led to reduced range and speed because of greater weight and drag. The adoption of the more powerful DB 610 might have helped offset the reduction in performance, but, by 1942, the likes of the Spitfire IX would have been more than capable of catching an He 119.

    As Greg has mentioned, there was a prop shaft going right through the cockpit; unlike the P-39/P-63 it was at waist level and, even if it was enclosed (AFAIK it wasn't in the prototypes), it effectively cut the cabin into two small, cramped halves, with little room for any additional equipment inevitably required in operational aircraft. As for it being a nightfighter? Where the heck are you going to install radar equipment? Armament (definitely no Schrage Musick)? What about the need for armour? In fact, as a design, how much room for development was there?

    Essentially the He 119 was a dead end, more so than it's smaller cousin the He 100. It was an interesting experiment which would have been all but useless as an operational aircraft and there was no room for adaptation and expansion into roles other than that of a maybe reconnaissance aircraft.
     
  7. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    Yeah Jeff,

    But it was a pretty thing, wasn't it?
     
  8. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    Heinkel He 119 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    I'll hazard a guess the evaporative cooling system would have been entirely discarded on production aircraft.
     
  9. wuzak

    wuzak Well-Known Member

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    What do you define as "long range reconnaissance"?

    I note that you have the Fw 200 listed there - would that be more of a maritime patrol aircraft?

    The Messerschmitt Me 261 could have performed that role quite well, with its extreme long range capability. It too had the DB 606s (V3 had DB 610s), quite high performance (high 300mph top speeds).
     
  10. Shortround6

    Shortround6 Well-Known Member

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    HE 119 could have had "Schrage Musick" rather easily, it is normal armament that would have been the problem. A 3rd crewman was carried on some versions behind the engine/s. Mounting a decent night fighter armament and synchronizing to fire through the propeller or mounting it out in the wings? doable but not ideal. Mounting radar antenna is also a bit of a problem. Out on the wings? mounting them behind the prop might just cause a wee bit of interference.

    Like a lot of other "record breakers" by the time you modify it into a useable service aircraft a fair amount of the "extra" performance will disappear.
     
  11. Aozora

    Aozora Well-Known Member

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    As I've already said -and you have completely ignored- changing to a conventional cooling system would have added to the weight and drag of the airframe, as had happened with the He 177. Any performance advantages the He 119 might have enjoyed as an experimental machine would have been almost entirely nullified, particularly because it would also have to take all of the extra equipment needed by an operationally viable aircraft.

    A 3rd crew member was carried on the V9, in a small cockpit behind the engine. However, it would have been impossible to add a third crew member, plus armour, plus radar and radio equipment plus "Schrage Musick" - if MG/FFMs are used as on the 110G-4, spare ammunition drums would need to be carried - all behind the engine, without upsetting the balance of the aircraft. Schrage Musick could have been added, but only at the expense of something else.

    At the very least the pilot, engine and cooling system would have required some sort of armour if the He 119 had been used as a nightfighter. This isn't taking into account the redesign required to add a conventional cooling system in the first place. Like I said, the He 119 was a dead end.
     
  12. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    Not the German way of doing things. Protection of fuel tanks and aircrew had priority.

    I would expect pilot and navigator/observer sitting side by side on opposite sides of engine drive shaft. This relatively small crew compartment would be surrounded by an armored cocoon similar to Ju-88 and Me-210.
     
  13. Aozora

    Aozora Well-Known Member

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    Take a look at the nose area and tell us where your proposed "armored cocoon" would go and how the armor would be distributed? Assuming a conventional cooling system is devised, where would the radiator be positioned? How and where would the navigator/observer's equipment be squeezed in around his already cramped space? How would the extra weight be distributed without upsetting the cg?

    Once all of the necessary alterations are made what would be the expected performance?

    [​IMG]

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    [​IMG]
     
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