View Full Version : Hawker Typhoon/Tempest

7th Mar 2002, 19:38
Just curious if any of these are still flying?. .. .They always were amongst my favorites, but apparently, despite excellent speed, both types were built in limited quantities. What were the drawbacks for these types and where can I go see one?

Tiger_ Moth
7th Mar 2002, 22:21
I think the drawback of the Typhoon was that it had poor performance at high altitudes so it generally was used for ground attack. The Tempest was an improved version and was used against the flying bombs because of it's speed but was developed quite late in the war so the later versions did not see action.. .I don't know about flying ones but there is at least one of them at the RAF museum in Hendon.

Rallye Driver
7th Mar 2002, 22:35
None are flying, though two are under rebuild in the UK. One - for Kermit Weeks - is a Mk V with the Sabre engine, being worked on by Personal Plane Services at Booker. The other is a Centaurus-powered Mk II. Of course there are also a number of Furies and Sea Furies flying around the world.. .. .The only surviving complete Typhoon (a Mk IB MN235) is in the RAF Museum in Hendon, along with an ex-Indian Airforce Tempest Mk II (PR536). A Tempest target tug is currently under restoration at the RAF Museum, with one of the wings being worked on by MAPS at Rochester Airport.. .. .There is a Typhoon cockpit section and Sabre engine at Duxford.. .. .It would certainly be great to see a Sabre powered Tempest in the air. We live in hope that Kermit's one will be allowed to display in the UK before being shipped off Stateside.. .. .With FW190s, Me262s, Yak 9s etc all being manufactured afresh, if someone had the money it would certainly be possible to get a replica Typhoon built. . .. .Maybe one day?! <img border="0" title="" alt="[Big Grin]" src="biggrin.gif" /> <img border="0" title="" alt="[Big Grin]" src="biggrin.gif" />

8th Mar 2002, 13:12
I would love to see a typhoon in the air again, but if someone had the brass to do it from scratch they would have to fit a different engine, I dont think any of the correct engines survived the ravage's of the scrapman's hammer, especially with that big alloy "H" cyl block, just asking to be (S)melted down! <img border="0" title="" alt="[Smile]" src="smile.gif" />

Lou Scannon
9th Mar 2002, 00:14
If one can be made flyable it will be as well if someone passes on the tip regarding take-off technique. A friend of mine who used to fly them with underwing rockets said that you needed to wind on full left rudder trim, hold full left rudder for the full take off, start the run 45 degrees to the left of the strip heading and accept leaving the ground 45 degrees to the right of the heading.. .Perhaps he exagerated?

New Bloke
10th Mar 2002, 02:28
Well at least it was going the correct way 'round <img border="0" title="" alt="[Smile]" src="smile.gif" />

Spiney Norman
10th Mar 2002, 14:52
Hi all.. . If you want the full story on the Typhoon & Tempest I found this book was superb. Not too technical but an excellent and comprehensive account from development through operational experiences..... .The Typhoon & Tempest story by Christopher Thomas &Christopher Shores by Arms and Armour press.. .ISBN 0-85368-878-8. . Hopefully it's still in print.. .Spiney

10th Mar 2002, 18:07
Lou S. .His story seems to tally with Pierre Clostermann's reported experience when converting from Spit to Tempest via Typhoon.. .. .Forget the airfield but they had to remove (what was left?) of a hangar that kept getting in the way of departing Typhoons. Clostermann claimed he nearly took out the next one for good measure. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Eek!]" src="eek.gif" />

16th Apr 2003, 05:27
Decent Tempest site:


Great sounds in the download section - the sound of one of these beauties taking off is just phenomenal! I really would love to see one flying again. I understand that there is a group at Sandtoft restoring one. Does anyone have any info on their progress?

Vick Van Guard
16th Apr 2003, 06:20
No I don't think there is one at Sandtoft, but there is definitley one at Gamston under rebuild to flying condition. Didn't look that far off either last time I saw it.

17th Apr 2003, 04:42
At last, a fan club for proper aeroplanes!!!

Far too many people drool over the Spitfire (a bit too pretty and girly - a bit like a Ferrari), but the Typhoon, now you're talking. Much more like a Porsche 911 Turbo - with rockets!!!!:ok:

17th Apr 2003, 17:02
Slightly off-topic but I wonder at the Duxford Sabre engine every time I see it. How they managed to produce what looks like a very complex engine with the technology they had in 1942-3 is a continuing source of wonder to me.
Whether the Typhoon, which I believe the Army called the "Tiffie", was any good at altitude is a moot point but my father, who was in the RASC and had just delivered some ammo to the frontline in the Ardennes, saw at first hand one of the "Cab Rank" attacks on the German armour. He said it was the most terrifying thing he'd ever seen and almost felt some sympathy for the German tank commanders in what was almost a turkey shoot.
I believe it was the memory of this type of attack which caused the problem with re-naming the Eurofighter the Typhoon. Too many memories for the Germans.

17th Apr 2003, 18:43
During last year's Project Propellor I had the great privilege of flying with a Typhoon DFC. His first operation was as escort on the Amiens Prison Raid and involved low level dogfighting with FW190s, in a snowstorm. After the Falaise battle, his logbook was full of 15 minute sorties, as the German armour which he was rocketing was virtually in the next field to his base.

17th Apr 2003, 19:17
Theres is a museum at Shoreham (D-Day museum??) which has a lot of Typhoon memorabilia, including a cocpit section.

I seem to remember reading that the Sabre engine was deemed to be unreliable until the practice of keeping it warm by running it up every few hours day & night was adopted.

17th Apr 2003, 21:39

This collection is due to be auctioned on May 17th '03
Hope all the stuff goes to good homes.

Mr. G

17th Apr 2003, 21:39
Think I'd pick a sightly different analogy Witchdoctor - the Typhoon, Tempest and Sea Fury are rather like a good Rugby front row - solid and fast - while the Spit is a fast and agile winger!

I watched a scintilating fast and spirited display by Brian Sanders in a Fury a couple of years ago and would love to see a two ship Fury and Tempest display flown to the same limits. I have heard whispered doubts as to whether Kermit's Sabre powered Tempest will fly at all; I sincerely hope that it does and that he airs it here for a few shows before shipping it to Polk City.

19th Apr 2003, 22:32
Nah, too many front rows with cauliflower ears and missing teeth - far too ugly to be compared with a Typhoon. Perhaps a couple of flankers, or a decent full back?

19th Apr 2003, 23:54
You have a point there!!! :}

20th Apr 2003, 20:33
With reference to the Sabre engines, there used to be a seemingly complete one in the museum of science and industry in Birmingham but what happened to it once the council vandals closed the place down I dont' know.


22nd Apr 2003, 22:51
There is (or was) a cutaway Napier Sabre engine at the air museum at Rockliffe park, Ottawa, Ontario. It has an electric motor drive so that you can push a button and watch the sleeve valve motion. Sir Harry Ricardo's book "The High Speed Internal Combustion Engine" has a beautiful fold-out drawing of the Sabre engine. He calls it the highest achievment of the mechanical engineer's art.

After an excellent landing you can use the airplane again.

26th Apr 2003, 07:23
I thought it was the Bristol Centaurus that had the sleeve valves?

There are many Sea Furies racing in the States, sadly most have been re-engined with Wright R-3350's I believe, and re-propped with four blades instead of five (because the Centaurus and R-3350 turn different ways), due to cost and availability. The Centaurus was alleged to have half the fuel consumption of the Wright... don't know if this is true though.

Incidentally, you see Mustangs competing with Sea Furies at Reno, but I have never heard of the Mustangs British counterpart, the Spitfire, racing!! Odd :hmm:


27th Apr 2003, 03:23
BlipOnTheRadar - yes, the Centaurus is a sleeve valve radial, as is the Hercules, but the Napier Sabre also had sleeve valves, albeit in a very complex liquid cooled inline engine. Four banks of six pistons, horizontally arranged in an H shape (if you tilt your head on one side you'll see what I mean.). Unfortunately, because the Sabre is such a complex beast, there are none currently running. Kermit Weeks's Tempest V is being restored to airworthy standard, but whether he'll fly it is debatable.

28th Apr 2003, 07:22

At the Halifax restoration project in Trenton they have 4 Hercules engines. I am told that they are going to cut one away for a view of the motion. Unfortunately they will never run again as all the magnesium parts (Magneto bodies and the like) dissolved while the aircraft was under water is Norway. The Hercules has a single sleeve per cylinder. the Napier Sabre had 2.

After an excellent landing you can use the airplane again!

30th Apr 2003, 08:10
According to the appropriate web sites the Napier had 1 sleeve per cyl. (Knight engines had 2 sleeves per.) Early on they were especially unreliable because of problems with the sleeves. It turned out that the Bristol sleeves were an almost exact replacement (requiring only a small amount of machining ) and far more reliable but Bristol would not allow the technology to be used by a competitor for commercial reasons. When they were finally persuaded to do so the 25 hr o/haul requirement for the Napier went up considereably. In service Sabre engines had to kept warm full time, also if they failed to start in 3 cartridges they had to change the plugs, (all 48 !)

I read recently a comment by a historian that flying Typhoons in ground attack was one of the most dangerous operations in the war but I have been unable to find the references ( as to why,)

My father, Eric Vernon-Jarvis, was a Sqdn Ldr with 168 Squadron and was killed flying ground attack in February 1945. All my life I have believed in looking forward rather than back but even now I can not pass a reference to or picture of typhoons without wondering.

Just by coincidence my second father, Mike Graves, flew what I think is the only other H24 engined plane when he was a test pilot for Westlands, that was the piston version of the Wyvern.

30th Apr 2003, 12:03

Based purely on my reading of Pierre Clostermann's book, "The Big Show", I suspect the reason that ground attack was the most dangerous operation is WW2 was the amount of ground fire that met them.

This was also the reason the Americans lost so many aircraft in Vietnam.

It may also have had something to do with the fact that most ground attack operations was post 6 June 1944 and that many of the aircrew were constantly moving bases, on constant operations and constantly tired. The accident rate that Clostermann details just prior to VE day is horrific.

1st May 2003, 22:55

Yeah, 1 sleeve per cylinder. I looked in the book. Obviously the little devil underwent mitosis in the dark recesses of my mind during the 25 years since I last opened the book or saw the engine.

After an excellent landing you can use the airplane again!

2nd May 2003, 00:32
Ground Fire, fatigue, and also the difficulties of recovering from the steep diving attacks. The Typhoon pilot I spoke to told me that it was normal to black out in the pull up, and that it was usual to arrive home minus several rivets from the underside of the aircraft.

I think that Pierre Clostermann's book is the greatest of all the WW2 pilot memoirs and the one most worthy of comparison with WW1's Sagittarius Rising. There is a recent expanded edition "Le Grand Cirque 2000", but it is only available in French.

5th May 2003, 18:13
Yes all of those FNG and from my reading of several Typhoon memoirs. It seems that particularly towards the end of the war the army would always call in an airstrike rather than put in an attack themselves partly because they knew the capability of the Typhoon and partly for simple self preservation purposes. Unlike the army they RAF didn't have a choice and dived into the flak every time. This led to horrendous casualty rates among Typhoon pilots. There was a certain amount of bitterness among Tiffie pilots for this reason.

Of course this was the model the type of close air support we see today and as recently as Iraq where it has reached it's zenith.

In all likelihood that is what happened to ChrisVJ's Father. There was very little glory in flying the Typhoon late in the war. That comes across in all the accounts I read.

13th May 2003, 13:21
The FAA Museum at Yeovil once had a Sabre that was recovered off Bournemouth in the 70s. It had been picked up by a fisherman's net and, while still underwater, the studs holding the ignition harness were sharp enough to cut you (personal experience <g>).

It was marked as coming from a Blackburn Firebrand but probably was from a Typhoon 1b - at one time lots of practise 8 inch rockets (concrete warheads) were to be found off Swanage & in Poole Bay. Anyone know of its fate?

16th May 2003, 05:54
The museum would be at Yeovilton, the FAA base. Yeovil is (was) an aerodrome used only by Westlands and since it is pretty well in the town, and rather small, fixed wing testing was stopped there shortly after the war (Westlands tested at Yoevilton.)

They do fly the helicopters from Yeovil.