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The Secret Horsepower Race - book by Calum Douglas

edwest

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The author is going to publish a comprehensive book about European aircraft engines used during World War II. I just discovered his site. His background and sources listed indicates this book would answer some questions. Any word about a publication date?

 

steelpillow

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Definitely on my wishlist!
The more I study aero engines, the more I realise that at its heart, the history of the aeroplane is the history of its engines. Power =speed = aerodynamic form.
Wonder if there will be anything about the project to put a Bf 109 engine in a Spitfire, which they then flew in comparative trials, or the reverse project to put a Napier Sabre in a Bf 109, which never left the drawing board.
 

steelpillow

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Yes, very interested. Any idea on how/where to buy?
I am now following it on Facebook.
Appears not to be published yet, he is still reseraching final details.
I wonder if he has an agent or publisher lined up. That can be harder than writing the thing.
 

edwest

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I have sent the author a message. Hopefully he'll reply soon. Based on a review of his site, he seems to know how to get a book to print.
 

edwest

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Ah, so part of the mystery is solved :)
 

2cobras

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WW2 Fighter Aircraft Piston Engines - How British Management Excellence Succeeded

This gentleman is giving the above titled talk on 2nd December at Hamilton Place. Perhaps that would be of interest to those considering his book. Of course you need to be in striking distance of London - but any title that includes "British management" and "excellence" in it is surely intriguing at least!
 

steelpillow

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Knowing so many people who live and work abroad and moan about their management, I have come to the conclusion that gross variability of management skills is nothing special to the UK. But good managers make bad headlines, we never get to hear about them...

...except on occasions such as 1940 when Lord Beaverbrook took the Ministry of Aircraft Production* to legendary heights and gave people like Rolls-Royce the head they needed, while effectively sidelining poor performers like Vickers-Supermarine.

*How times change, to a younger and untutored generation the "Ministry of Aircraft Production" must sound like the next one along from the Ministry of Funny Walks.
 
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newsdeskdan

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The Secret Horsepower Race by Calum Douglas is due out next year from Mortons Books' Tempest imprint and is shaping up to be the most authoritative account of British and German aero engine development during the Second World War ever written. Calum is an engine designer and engineer himself - so he knows and understands what he's writing about better than most. He has travelled to archives all over the UK, Europe and the US and drawn on thousands of different period sources in the course of researching his book to establish a clear picture of exactly what happened and why. And when I say thousands, I mean literally thousands - not just a few dozen or even a few hundred.
In the process, he's uncovered many previously unknown details about both nations' engine designs (there will be details of Japanese, American, Soviet and Italian engine development too - but the focus is on Britain and Germany). I was stunned, for example, when he showed me photos of the DB 628-powered Messerschmitt Me 409, clearly labelled as such, from the Daimler-Benz archive. Some of his other images have, I believe, appeared elsewhere on this forum.
For my part, I am editing The Secret Horsepower Race and it really is a very exciting project to be part of.
 
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edwest

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Off topic, but where did you find your material for the Luftwaffe Secret Projects series? Mostly overlooked or mostly recently declassified?
 
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