Miles Master vs North American T-6 Texan

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by gjs238, Feb 27, 2013.

  1. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    Which was better and why?
     
  2. davparlr

    davparlr Well-Known Member

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    T-6/SNJ. The Miles Master is just too ugly.
     
  3. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    Looks okay to me
    MasterIIINo6.jpg

    T6 looks pretty similar
    SNJ-backseat.jpg
     
  4. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Comparison with which Master - radial, or Merlin engine?
     
  5. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    Ah, good question.
    The radial variant is the better looker of the two MM's.
     
  6. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    As a general observation, I would think the Harvard/SNJ/Texan had the advantage, being more 'forgiving' than both of the Master variants, although during WW2, the Master, compared to the Harvard Mk1, was perhaps more familiar for RAF trainees at that stage of their training. But, in later years, the Harvard in its MkIV version remained in service with the RAF and Commonwealth Air Forces, long after the Master had been retired, which I suppose tells us something.
     
  7. Rick65

    Rick65 Member

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    The Master was a significant trainer for the RAF. It never had a Merlin, though it apparently was intended but stocks were not available, Instead it started with a Kestral XVI as a prototype and was apparently good for an astonishing 295mph with this engine, close to Hurricane performance. Then went to lower output Kestral XXX, available from surplus stock, was redesigned to suit Ministry requirements and lost about 70mph, high speed not being a major issue for trainers. The Master II was fitted with Bristol Mercury radial and was close to a 250mph performer. Then the P&W Wasp Junior was fitted in the III losing anther 10mph. By comparison the Harvard IIB was only a just over 200mph machine albeit on 550hp.
    The wooden construction of the Master suited the available resources in the UK at the time but was probably a contributor to the lack of survivors, a huge contrast to the large number of T-6s still flying.
    It would be fascinating to tread contemporary accounts of those who flew both.
     
  8. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Oops! You're quite right - it was the Kestrel, not the Merlin - don't know why I typed that!
    I don't know that much about either version, apart from snippets I picked up years ago, from a fighter pilot who did a tour as an instructor, both on the Harvard and the Master.
    From what I remember, the Master, although an excellent performer, and in general a good advanced trainer, had a few minor vices which could catch out the unwary, I believe mainly related to low-speed handling and stall.
     
  9. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    Just thinking wouldnt a plane that was more demanding to fly be a better advanced trainer, no point learning in a nice hands off plane and when you get to a service fighter you die the first time aloft. Obviously an intial trainer should be nice and gentle and able to get you back on an even keel without too much trouble but your never going to learn stall control for example if it will sort itself out.
     
  10. VinceReeves

    VinceReeves Member

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    I'm not sure they were direct equivalents, though.

    My understanding was that the Texan/Harvard was a general purpose trainer, whereas the Master was more of an advanced trainer for fighter pilots.
     
  11. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    The Harvard was considered to be an Advanced trainer, for just that purpose, by the RAF.
     
  12. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    wiki says the Texan/Harvard was an advanced trainer though British and US descriptions of the same thing usually differ.
     
  13. KiwiBiggles

    KiwiBiggles Member

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    Any idea what the Master's ground handling was like? There used to be a saying in the RNZAF that there were two types of pilot: those who had ground-looped a Harvard, and those that were going to.
     
  14. VinceReeves

    VinceReeves Member

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    In Dunstan Hadley's "Barracuda Pilot" he mentions that all FAA pilots expected to fly single-engine types were trained on the Harvard, but pilots who would go on to fighters would be additionally trained on the Master.

    His course got a brief fling on the Master when they returned from Canada to Britain, because the Barracuda was a new monoplane and considered to be particularly tricky.
     
  15. meatloaf109

    meatloaf109 Well-Known Member

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    The last trainer aircraft that a lot of Americans had was the AT-6/SNJ Texan. After that it was a warplane.
    I'd call that advanced.
     
  16. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    Poor Chaps, or is that Blokes?
    Going from the Miles Master to The Fairey Barracuda - from ugly to uglier.

    Miles_Master.jpg

    Fairey_Barracuda.jpg
    Fairey_Barracuda_Mk_III.jpg
     
  17. Ascent

    Ascent Member

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    On another Forum I frequent there is a thread about learning to fly and serving in the RAF during WWII. One of the contributers learned to fly on the Arnold scheme and after returning to the UK had to do some navigation training to learn to fly in European weather which wasn't like the US where you could see for miles in the clear sunshine. In the US he flew the Harvard and for the nav training he flew the Master with the Kestrel engine. This is a direct quote from him.

    "I quite liked the Master. It was roomy and comfortable, smooth and simple to fly; it would have made an excellent thing to take away for a weekend (fat chance!) However, as a fighter advanced trainer it was nowhere as good as the the Harvard: in a straight fight the Harvard would win every time, other things being equal."

    He ended up flying the Vultee Vengance in India but that's another story.
     
  18. Kryten

    Kryten Member

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    Geoffery Wellum in "First Flight" considered the Havard to be a rookie killer?
     
  19. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    #19 GregP, Mar 1, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2013
    So, the Master is either better or worse. Another decisively decided answer to a simple question!

    Goes to show that we really don't know a lot about WWII types except what we read. I have about 20 hours in a T-6, all from the back seat, and have never even seen a Master, so I am unqualified to compare the two. From the LOOKS alone, they seem to be quite comparable, but I can't really say. Any of our member s ever fly a Miles Master in any version? If so, what was your impression?

    The T-6 was supposed to have a more pronounced stall than the fighters .. and does. When it breaks, it willl almost certainly want to go one direction or the other, depending on the status of being in coordinated flight. At 100 mph, you have to be gentle on the stick or you will soon be in a spin. The ground handling can be slightly tricky, but was suposed to be. It was supposed to prepare you for fighters and, when you got there, you were not supposed to be surprised by the fighter. A great many fighter pilots trained in the US transitioned from the T-6 to the P-39 or P-40 as a fighter lead-in, and they weren't surprised in general. I thnk it was and is decent preparation for a P-51. Anyone with 200 hours in a T-6 can fly a P-51 with some P-51 systems training under their belt ... and, of course, a fat wallet to pay for the P-51 time.
     
  20. Wildcat

    Wildcat Well-Known Member

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    Any chance you can post a link to that site, I would love to read that thread.
     
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