Movie: Flight of the Pheonex

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Northern Flyer
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Movie: Flight of the Pheonex

Post by Northern Flyer »

First of all I have no idea what kind of airplane that was, but that is not my question.

What the heck was the shot gun shell starter all about? Is there such a thing, and how does it work? :?:
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Wild Cat
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Post by Wild Cat »

I dont know, but that was a pretty cool movie :wink:
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KAG
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Post by KAG »

I know that some WW2 era planes required the use of those 12 guage shells to start those round pounders.

entertaining movie, but completely unrealsitic.

Cheers.
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Corporate Pilot
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Re: Movie: Flight of the Pheonex

Post by Corporate Pilot »

Northern Flyer wrote:What the heck was the shot gun shell starter all about? Is there such a thing, and how does it work? :?:
They were common on old US Navy aircraft. I saw one on a Corsair once. 12ga shotgun shells.
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bigred
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flight of the pheonix

Post by bigred »

The airplane in question is a Fairchild C-119 Flying Boxvar aptley named due to the fact that the interior space is the same to boxcars of the era in which it was built and the shotgun shells are for the coffman(sp) starter. This type of starter was used on such aircraft as the vought coairsair and the B-29 as well as many others. If you go to some sites on the web that show old school RCAF yes pre unification you will see 119's in all their glory.
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SkyKing
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Post by SkyKing »

Not your question Northern Flyer, but I'll answer anyway....

It is the Fairchild C-119 Flying Boxcar, and it's one of my favs.
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Wild Cat
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Post by Wild Cat »

funny lookin plane! :wink:
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Ray-Ban
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Post by Ray-Ban »

There is actually an older original version of this movie made in 1965. Has a few well known actors.

Image

I haven't seen the new version. The old one is worth seeing.

Cheers

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Post by desksgo »

Ray, right on. That first version is far superior to the new one. Stick to the classics!
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Post by w squared »

Haven't seen the movie, but using cartridges to start aircraft engines isn't new by any means.

The F105 Thunderchief could be started with an external power cart, or with the use of a cartridge. Apparently it looked like a shotgun shell, except for the fact that it was about the size a three pound coffee can. It worked by burning solid fuel, and directing the stream of combustion gases into the engine in order to spin up the turbine.

Okay, after that post, y'all are entitled to one "Shut up, Claven" each.
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Post by Northern Flyer »

So what does the shot shell actually do? How does it work? Does anyone know a web site where I could find this stuff, I've tried but I suck at finding things on this box.
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Post by prang one »

The Chipmunk with the Gypsy Major Engine has a "Shot Gun" style start system.
Basicaly you have an auto rotating disc which contains a number of "shells" aligned per turn with the top of a cylinder.
Best I recall max 8 in this case. Meaning you could only attempt to ground start the engine 8 times before ground crew would have to reload!!!

The shell is fired from a switch in the cockpit with mags live and jugs primed. Gas expansion is ported directly into said cylinder causing engine to turn over with enough force to start engine and be self sustained. Just like an electric starter motor but a little less moving parts and not acting through the crank case and a more spectacular bang :lol:

The jet aircraft called the Canbbera used an sizable "blank" 80MM shell fired directly into the back section of the compressor to rotate up the engine with ignition and fuel going to the point of self sustained operation.

Infact most engines can be started (or have to be )with Bleed air as a norm via APU or Ground cart. Only difference being its safer for all concerened not using explosives and Volume of air makes for a better start than high pressure bursts :twisted:

Have not seen the new movie BUT saw the original as a kid ( ON TV!!!! 8)
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Post by C-150Pilot »

Wasn't this film based on another old film that came from a true story which is hard to believe they rebuilt the plane and took off with ppl on the wing
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Post by SkyKing »

Northern Flyer, best info I could find on the operation of the system, I have seen one before, not in use however....pretty cool!

http://www.sjvls.org/bens/bf010cs.htm
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Post by yak driver »

For the original movie they actually made a wild looking airplane, and the legendary Paul Mantz lost his life in the making of the movie.
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Post by Skipper »

I've just noticed...

Is every damn movie today just a crappy remake of an old one? What's great is that half the time, they slip it under our noses without us even realizing we're being completely had! If I wanted two different versions I'd get the dang original in widescreen or French!
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Post by Northern Skies »

I found it funny how when the horizontal stab was ripped up, nothing happened. But god forbid, when an engine quits all hell breaks loose!
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Post by Northern Flyer »

Thanks for all the info that is pretty interesting, useing a shoot shell to start an aircraft. :D :D
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Post by flyinhigh »

I'd fly the 119, looks like it would be over 12,500.
Pretty cool movie none the less.
I particularly like the part where they decide to fly through the storm, "your the boss" god I love that.
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Post by SkyKing »

oh yeah, they are not a small plane, designed for transport of course.
empty around 40,000 pounds, and gross at around 75,000 i think.
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Post by xsbank »

Seems to me my father told me that if you did a loop in a Chipmunk without the inverted systems, and you didn't have enough speed over the top, the engine would stop spinning; if you didn't have enough altitude to get the engine to windmill, you had to start firing shells in the starter, a good way to get your daily adrenaline quota.

Anybody ever start a Beav with a crank? Probably no inertial starters left now but you could stick a crank in the side of the cowl and wind it up; you were winding up a heavy flywheel, usually with two guys, but I've done it alone - then you'd run around the left and jump in and pull the lever to engage the starter, before too much starter energy was lost, and hope she was good and ready to go, 'coz if not, out you go and start cranking again. Great way to get the gut muscles exercised, and a great way to warm up on those cold winter mornings!
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Post by xsbank »

Forgot to mention that the airplane in the original flight of the Phoenix did actually fly, and its true that the movie stunt pilot was killed flying it, but wasn't he Frank Tallman? I will have to look that up...The original is excellent, if a bit melodramatic sometimes.
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Post by flyboeing »

is this based on a true story?
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Post by yak driver »

Both Frank Tallman and Paul Mantz worked on the movie, but it was Mantz that was killed.

http://www.centennialofflight.gov/essay ... s/EX26.htm
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Post by Panama Jack »

What the hell kind of apocalyptic "The Day After Tomorrow" whether phenonemon was that in the movie? Hope I never fly in a desert! :smt087
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