History of aicraft piston engines

T hese engines were of the rotating radial type but

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Unformatted text preview: p rospect of an engine to power the full-sized Aerodrome. The search was unsuccessful and it was finally decided that Manly should join in the f urther development of the Balzer engines, which had failed to produce t he power required. T hese engines were of the rotating-radial type, but Manly, after f urther consulting European builders, d ecided t o use the stationary radial p rinciple. His choice was quickly justified. Whereas the full-scale rotary e ngine had developed only 8 hp and the small engine 1 hp, the first nonrotary versions produced 16 and 2 hp, respectively, an increase largely a ttributed to better valve action in the absence of centrifugal force. Further d evelopment resulted in the full-size engine of 1901, shown in figures 13 a nd 14, with specifications in table 1, and in the ^-size one of the same y ear, described in M anly's l etter of 27 April 1926 (fig. 9). Both engines, described in detail in the Langley Memoir, a re now d isplayed in the Smithsonian, removed from their Aerodromes. Power of the large engine was carefully measured on a dynamometer and, most r emarkably, sustained for three consecutive 10-hr tests. The specific weight, 2.58 l b./hp, 3 r emained as a low record until the Liberty engine of 1918. T he figure 0.196-lb/cu i n. displacement has never been closely approached. T he 5-in. bore cylinders, assembled by Manly himself, w ere built u p of steel lie i n. thick, lined with l/16 i n. of cast iron.4 T he water jackets, 15 5" Cy/inder if Si '"• {ffrvkt jEhafnc. Section through Cylinder tjfrum. ENGINE OF AERODROME A. SECTION THROUGH CYLINDER AND DRUM Figure 14.—Section through cylinder and crankcase of Langley Aerodrome A engine, 1903. Langley Memoir, p i. 78) 16 (From of steel 0.020 in. thick, were brazed onto the cylinder, as were the cylinder h eads and valve ports. The difficulty of this operation is mentioned by M anly and can well be imagined. T his engine somewhat anticipated modern large aircraft engines i n its use of the radial arrangement with a master connecting rod, its cam a nd valve-gear arrangement, and its use of crankcase, cylinders, and other p arts machined all over to carefully controlled dimensions. M anly's skill as an engineer and machinist was matched by his courage in making two (unsuccessful) takeoffs from the top of a houseboat, without p revious instruction or experience as a pilot and in an airplane without l anding gear. His survival of two crashes into the icy waters of the Potomac R iver testifies to his quick thinking and skill as a swimmer. In contrast to t he poor preparation for the Manly attempts, the Wright brothers, before m aking their first powered flights, flew several hundred times in gliders of a size and type quite similar to that of their first powered airplane. All e arly Wright machines were equipped with landing skids. N owadays it is hard to appreciate the difficulties of these early aircraftengine builders. Although successful automobiles were in operation both in Europe and in the United States, most of them were equipped with engi...
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This document was uploaded on 01/19/2014.

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