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Polish PZL Waran and Legwan engines.


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May 31, 2008
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Does anyone have any information about the PLZ Waran (1,200hp; 9 cylinder?) and Legwan (1,400 to 1,600) hp engines. I believe they were both air cooled radials, but were they single row or double row; what displacement; were they developed from existing engines?


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Jul 25, 2007
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Waran (Goanna) - [Project] 1936-39 9-cyl air-cooled radial
- Waran: Intended to produce ~800-1,200 hp, 25.92 L
-- Design by Jerzy Belkowski and Henryk Jackowski
-- Claims of 5 x Waran prototypes being built in 1939

Legwan (Iguana) - [Project] 1938-39 18-cyl air-cooled radial
- Legwan: Twin-row GR.1620 Mors II derivative, ~2,000 hp
-- Intended as a ~1941 GR.14M 05/07 Mars replacement
-- Design by inż. Jerzy Belkowski

[??] - [Project] 1939 - 4-row 4,000 hp radial engine


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May 29, 2010
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A few comments here, as there is some confusion between Waran and Legwan even in Polish primary sources, and in publications of A. Glass from various periods. Please note that the “primary” sources are mostly memoirs and press notes, as PZL archives were destroyed during the war.

Smaller one, IMHO called Legwan
25,9 L, 14-cyl derivative of 9-cyl G-1620 Mors, so cylinder 128 x140mm. (dia x str). G-1620 had max/cont power 480/430hp, so even after adopting fuel injection from G-1620 cis and adding new supercharger 14-cyl version couldn’t probably reach much more than 1000hp. Glass mentions overall engine dia. to be 1.15m (like Mors) and weight 475kg. Think of Bristol Taurus with poppet valves. This one was to replace GR-14M in 1940s prototypes, possibly 5 prototypes built before the war.
Most likely rating of this one was 1000/800hp (max/cont.). It seems that it was remembered by some PZL employees or noted by some historians as 1800hp, what suggested engine of quite a different size and caused confusion with the middle member of the second family.

Bigger one, IMHO called Waran
Likely a family of engines, with 4-row version producing 4000hp max. If this was 28-cyl (my assumption), then 14-cyl would be 2000/1600hp (max/cont) and 9-cyl 1300/1000hp. Some sources mention Waran as “high power one-row radial”, that’s why I believe 28/14/9 family is more likely than eg. 36/18/9. In the latter case the 9-cyl. 1000hp max does not make much sense, producing no more power than “smaller engine” above but having a higher diameter. But that’s only my educated guessing, as some exotic configurations, say 36/18/(1-row) 11 can’t be ruled out. If 28/14/9 is true, think of something similar to R-1820 for one-row version.


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