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Packard Aero Record
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Joined:
2008/8/23 21:43
From Minnesota
Posts: 1252
Thought this would be of interest. A number of people and corporations were working on diesel airplane engines. Leave it to Packard to set the first record--which stood for decades.

In the USA, the Packard Motor Car Co started work in 1928 on a diesel design, under the control of Capt.L.M.Woolson, who retained the services of Dr Dornier (Germany) as a consultant on the fuel-injection system. Packard adopted the radial design for their engine, with nine air-cooled cylinders 4 13/16" X 6" (Bore X Stroke) with a displacement of 980 cu ins or nearly 16 litres. This engine was able to develop 225 hp at 1900 rpm, and was used in a record-breaking flight from Detroit to Miami in the fall of 1929, the aircraft being put on show later the following year. The engine used a bowl-in-head type of combustion chamber, and a compression ratio of 16:1, quite high for the engines of the time. A Bellanca aircraft powered by the Packard radial diesel, set a new unrefuelled world record flight duration of 84 hrs 33mins in May 1931 at Jacksonville Fl, beating the old record by 9 hrs 10 mins. The fuel carried totalled 481 gallons, but it is not recorded how much was left at the end of the flight.

Attach file:



jpg  Packard Diesel.jpg (75.20 KB)
917_4dc07b9f8c780.jpg 674X858 px

Posted on: 2011/5/3 15:03
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Guy

Not an Expert

Lking for a '55 or '56 Packard or Clipper Hardtop: "Decent Driver"
FOUND a '54 Clipper Deluxe 3-speed OD with PS, PB, 327 "Thunderbolt" 81K on the clock. Very decent driver.
Still wouldn't mind a 2-door '55 or '56, but it might be a few years.

We had a 2-tone blue '55 Clipper Custom with Torsion Level in in my family beginning in 1955 when it was new (two years before I was born). The car was the regular family driver until 1969. You might say I grew up in a Packard!
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Re: Packard Aero Record
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2008/2/16 15:39
From Santa Fe
Posts: 5199
Okay, I'll chime in on this one. The attractiveness of Diesel engines for aircraft is their elimination of a spark ignition system. This greatly simplifies the design. A problem with Diesel fuel is that it solidifies at cold temperatures that occur at cruising altitudes. To overcome this, a fuel heating system needs to incorporated adding a complicating factor to using this type of engine. Next?

(o{I}o)

Posted on: 2011/5/6 7:18
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The past is a different country: They do things differently there. (L.P. Hartley)
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Re: Packard Aero Record
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2007/3/14 16:01
From New Jersey
Posts: 15412
JW, you've pretty much nailed it on the head, not a lot more to say. This engine program really isn't obscure, it's been well documented and written about many times over the years in hobby publications and PMCC published some elegant promotional pieces about it, I do have one somewhere and if it's not already in our library I'll try to locate it and send to Kev for scanning.

Posted on: 2011/5/6 8:03
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Re: Packard Aero Record
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2006/5/30 19:28
From USA
Posts: 6917
I can't imagine the electrical ignition of a gas radial engine (even true dual ignition) would weigh anymore than the FI system for the diesel not to mention any weight of a blower if its a 2 stroke diesel. Then there is the enormous extra weight required for internal diesel parts such as crank and rods to take the 16:1 to 20:1 conpression.

Did such an engine ever really fly???? Has there EVER been a Diesel (piston type) aircraft engine in service whatsoever???

Edit: the ONLY advantage i can come up with to run diesel in an aircraft would be weight savings of fuel but only for extremely long flights.

Posted on: 2011/5/6 13:50
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VAPOR LOCK demystified: See paragraph SEVEN of PMCC documentaion as listed in post #11 of the following thread:f
http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=7245&forum=4&post_id=77931#forumpost77931

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48 2262 complete chassis/drive train. (no body). starts and runs as good as a sewing machine
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Re: Packard Aero Record
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Joined:
2007/3/14 16:01
From New Jersey
Posts: 15412
I'm really surprised about your not knowing about this - don't you have any Packard history books? Sure, it flew extensively and set quite a few endurance records. It was known as the DR-980 and among it's records was an endurance record not broken until 1980 - 84 hours and 33 minutes in flight on 481 gallons of fuel as noted in 55Packaryguy's post above. Robert Neal's "Master Motor Builders" has an entire chapter devoted to it.

The reason the elimination of the ignition system was important wasn't weight, it was that it eliminated interference with radio transmission.

Posted on: 2011/5/6 13:57
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Re: Packard Aero Record
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2006/5/30 19:28
From USA
Posts: 6917
From the picture it appears to have only ONE valve per cylinder. An Exh. valve. So that would make it a 2 stroke diesel which means it had a blower too.

I'm wondering if it fired 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9. OR 1-3-5-7-9-2-4-6-8 like a gas radial.

Posted on: 2011/5/6 14:14
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VAPOR LOCK demystified: See paragraph SEVEN of PMCC documentaion as listed in post #11 of the following thread:f
http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=7245&forum=4&post_id=77931#forumpost77931

--------------------------------------------
56 Executive sedan (Nice driver).
56 Executive sedan (Parts/R&D car).
48 2262 complete chassis/drive train. (no body). starts and runs as good as a sewing machine
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Re: Packard Aero Record
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2007/3/14 16:01
From New Jersey
Posts: 15412
It was a 4-stroke diesel. Air induction was thru the same valve as the exhaust. They had clever engineers, even back then!

Posted on: 2011/5/6 14:18
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Re: Packard Aero Record
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2008/3/31 14:39
From Portland Oregon
Posts: 844
Thank you for posting this 55PackardGuy!

Some of us were not aware of Packard's history of aviation diesel technology.


Posted on: 2011/5/6 14:31
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Re: Packard Aero Record
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2007/5/20 1:34
From Bowral, Southern Highlands of NSW, Australia
Posts: 10099
Quote:
PackardV8 wrote:.....Has there EVER been a Diesel (piston type) aircraft engine in service whatsoever???......
Keith,

The German aircraft industry probably lead the way with production aircraft powered by Diesel engines, here are a couple:

Blom & Voss BV138

Dornier Do18

And specifically an engine - Junkers Jumo 205

Posted on: 2011/5/6 15:35
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What's this? >>>>>> FAQ - Add your Packard to the Owners Registry
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Re: Packard Aero Record
Just can't stay away
Joined:
2006/8/31 21:25
From Bremerton, WA
Posts: 79
I grew up in Philadelphia, and the Franklin Institute which is a major science museum had a PACKARD Radial diesel on display. Its been years since I have been in Philly let alone in the institute, but ill bet it's still in the possession of the museum.

PACKARD STUFF SEEMED TO TURN UP IN THE STRANGEST PLACES. I GRADUATED FROM ST JOSEPH'S COLLEGE IN PHILLY AND IN THE 60'S THEY HAD A PACKARD PT ENGINE SITTING IN AN OUTDOOR HALLWAY. WHY IT WAS THERE AND WHAT HAPPENED TO IT, WHO KNOWS


JOHN

Posted on: 2011/5/6 18:29
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