Special radial engine oil

As long as Julio didn’t mix in some turbine oil with his waste oil, the old Pratt and Whitney radial might not exactly care what kind of oil is in there. I am pretty sure they might not have always had the top grade oil back when the Pacific War was going on. The Corsair strikes me as a very durable aircraft. But then again, I could be wrong. I have actually been wrong before.

I am, however, very happy to see that Chuck is still working on his project. Chuck just never gives up. Maybe he will actually finish his Corsair after all. Will the next book tell us more?

On some personal news, fire season has started. If I don’t get back to you right away, please be patient as there is no telling where all I will end up. The good news is, being on the road is a great opportunity for gathering more material.

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7 comments on “Special radial engine oil
  1. Fbs says:

    If the fire season has started don’t throw – even the vintage sort – oil on it 🙂

  2. Quill says:

    Actually this might make some sense in a way. Radials are notorious for consuming large amounts of oil, pretty much single-use. Thus using marginal-condition oil in it – one last time – could be a cost saving measure and wouldn’t be terrible for the engine as it’s not yet “bad,” just soon to become so if used more than one more time. But I would think that most entities that fly restored warbirds care enough about their priceless, irreplaceable aircraft they’ve put so much money into, and they have large enough budgets, that they would give them only the best. Might make more sense for the other present-day radial operator – fly-by-night operations still running old radial airplanes of poor condition because they are cheap, though that’s now becoming rare.

  3. jan olieslagers says:

    In my young days when I drove tourist coaches, some of our engines (inline diesels, German made, and as dependable as granite) burned/leaked so much oil that we never changed the oil, topping up was enough to keep them running. We called it “the American oil change”, not very kind, perhaps. Don’t overdo the topping up, though, any oil overdue will be thrown out topwise which is even worse.

  4. JPKalishek says:

    Back when I was working at the FBO, a nicely restored Beech 18 came in, and the owner had custom fabbed pans under the engines that had a dry break connectors, and he ran hoses into gallon jugs (or if it sat long enough, like at its home base, 5 gallon containers) then poured it back into the thing before flying off

  5. reynard61 says:

    From what I’ve read, R-2800s could take quite a bit of external abuse (weather, bullets, etc.), and could withstand low quality maintenance for a limited amount of time (apparently 20,000 hour overhauls weren’t unusual in some of the more remote Pacific bases during the last couple of years of the war); but using low quality lubricants is just asking for trouble.

  6. Fennek says:

    Didn´t the DeHavilland Gipsy engines lose lots of oil too, due to their layout as inverted in line engines? even when the piston rings were in pristine condition, they leaked when standing and smoked badly after starting. This gave them the nick name “Dripsies”.

  7. YawningMan says:

    My uncle told me that old Chevies had a bad reputation for leaking oil. He said that if you hung up a picture of an old Chevy, you’d have to clean up the oil on the floor in the morning.

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