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Author Topic: Spitfire Mk.V with Packard engine?  (Read 6465 times)
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« on: March 09, 2009, 02:59:27 PM »

I remember reading somewhere that some of the lastest production Spitfires Mk. V were powered by Packard engines. Is it true that Packard produced their version of the Merlin 45? I'm looking for any confirmation of this.
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Antoni
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« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2009, 01:26:32 PM »

I have never come across any Packard version of the 40 series Merlin. If they had produced one is would probably be called something like Mk 245 and any Spitfire fitted with it would have been given a new Mk number.

Has someone confused Packard Merlins with those built by the Ford factory, Manchester?
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« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2009, 10:04:32 PM »

Just what I thought...
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Aleksander
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« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2009, 11:33:18 PM »

I've found something about Packard-Merlin engines in Spitfire

http://www.modelingmadness.com/reviews/allies/cleaver/tmc16e.htm

Very interesting !
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« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2009, 06:44:05 PM »

That's right. And just today I stumbled upon the following paragraph at p. 339 of Leo McKinstry's Spitfire - Portrait of a Legend

Quote
One of the highlights of Godfrey Ball's spell in Cairo was when he had a chance to fly a special Mark V belonging to the chief instructor, Wilf Sizer - an experience which , for Ball, demonstrated the full glories of the Spitfire. To make it fly as fast as possible, Sizer's Spitfire, fitted with a Packard Merlin engine, had had all its surplus equipment removed, inlcuding armament, armour plating, camera gun and gunsight. All the joints had been smoothed to eliminate any drag, and the airframe's finish left unpainted, the aluminium having been polished to a high sheen [...]

So at least the statement of Packard engines in Mk. V does not seem to be an accidental mistake on the part of one author.
Ideas welcome.
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Antoni
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« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2009, 09:18:33 PM »

Probably a Merlin 28 taken from a Hurricane.
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Hrandy
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« Reply #6 on: April 01, 2009, 09:07:31 PM »

The Bristish forces support organization in Egypt during the war had amazing capabilities. I could see them very easily modifying a "one off" Spitfire to accomodate the slightly longer two speed Rolls-Royce Merlin 28 or the almost identical Packard Merlin V-1650-1. There is no hint in any historical record I have red of any Packard Merlins being used in production Spitfires before the Spitfire XVI. The much longer and heavier two speed two stage  Packard Merlin 266 would have been much more difficult to shoehorn into a Spitfire Mk. V.
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Spits
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« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2009, 08:06:57 AM »

Being in cairo,wouldn,t the Spit be a tropical Version? Huh
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Editor
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« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2009, 09:54:54 AM »

Being in cairo,wouldn,t the Spit be a tropical Version? Huh
Could be, but that would only affect the air filter assembly and Aboukir with their makeshift ingenuity could fix it Smiley. On the other hand, non-tropicalized Spits were also used in Africa (early Mk IXs).

I must say that I have doubts regarding the accuracy of the report in McKinstry's book. Why would anyone want to upgrade a Mk. V with a Packard Merlin (a major work with converting all the connectors from US to British metrics) unless this was a standard procedure?
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Spits
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« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2009, 11:09:58 AM »

In regards to connectors,you mean the electrical connections or pipe,hose fittings.I think all Merlins were kept "Imperial" and the Pacard factory had to have all the proper tooling made to accomedate the British threads.I know with the radio sets British and US are interchangeable.
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gingerbob
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« Reply #10 on: April 03, 2009, 12:54:43 PM »

I remember reading somewhere that some of the lastest production Spitfires Mk. V were powered by Packard engines. Is it true that Packard produced their version of the Merlin 45? I'm looking for any confirmation of this.

I wouldn't be surprised if this is just a red herring- if you substitute "Mk.IX" for "Mk.V" in either the text or memory of what was there, then it would be true (i.e. the Mk.XVI).  I could believe Abouqir sticking a Hurri engine in a Mk.V, but I don't think there's any likelihood of Packard Merlins in "late Mk.V production."

bob
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Edgar Brooks
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« Reply #11 on: April 19, 2009, 04:49:17 PM »

Packard built versions of some Merlin 20-series, plus the 33, 38, 224, 225, going on to 300-series post-war, but not the 45; the V-1650-1, for the Kittyhawk II, was a version of the XX.  Fitting the longer XX wouldn't have been easy, though (the Spitfire III was longer than the other Marks, until the VII/VIII/IX series.)
Edgar
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