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Centralized Power for Aircraft,1939

hesham

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Of course I know that my dear Dan,

but to drive a three propellers,that was new by its time.
 

riggerrob

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Cute concept, but vibration tends to kill drive shafts.
Shaft-driven propellers are really rare.
Bell did manage to build significant numbers of P-39 Airacobras and P-63 Kingcobras during WW2.
Shaft drives really had to wait until turbine engines delivered much smoother power during the 1950s.
 
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iverson

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Actually, Allison was very good at drive shafts, the P-39 and P-63 being examples. They put a lot of time and resources into solving vibration problems, initially for airships. Unfortunately, these excellent drive shafts were a solution in search of a problem that never really arose.

WW1 designers used drive shafts and inboard engines because contemporary engines were not all that reliable over long ranges and over water. The idea was that you could work on an inboard engine in flight and keep it running. Unreliability in the drive train was accepted as a necessary trade off for engine reliability. But it was, indeed, not all that successful.
 
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