View Full Version : R-3350 & Connie

10th Jun 2003, 00:02
Am sure somebody will help me to find out details about power settings used on the Connies in "good ole days" of the propliners ...

Basically, a friend of mine try to create a virtual constellation for Flight Simulator, and he wants the thing to be accurate.
He would like to know more about the methods used to operate those monsters, the R-3350 , power settings , leaning techniques, ... whatever useful.

Please guys ;)

Iron City
10th Jun 2003, 02:24
Not sure about civilian Connies but the Navy version (WVs /C-121) has the real thing at Pensacola at the National Museum of Naval Aviation. Their technical manuals collection likely has the NATOPS for the aircraft that should have a lot of what you need. They went through who knows how many modifications and versions and the one there was an EC-121Q atthe end of it's service life.

It still will not be a real simulation because of control feel etc but you can get the procedures, speeds, MPs, prop RPMs etc right. Check out www.naval-air.org/education/tech_mans.asp.

10th Jun 2003, 02:37
Many thanks IronCity, but your website link is broken ....
Anyone confirm ?

10th Jun 2003, 10:49
Technical Manuals

For individuals restoring vintage naval aircraft or model aircraft enthusiasts seeking those hard to find details, the library holds almost 2,000 technical manuals relating to many of the aircraft flown by naval aviators since World War I. This collection also includes manuals covering aircraft components and specific engines.
For Further Information Call: Or Write:
(850) 452-8451 National Museum of Naval Aviation
1750 Radford Blvd - Suite C
N.A.S. Pensacola, FL 32508
or fax us at:
(850) 452-3296 or e-mail us at:
[email protected]

Of course true fidelity requires reproducing the noted R-3350 tendencies to throw expensive tantrums. There were many reasons for the flight engineer, often an AME.

10th Jun 2003, 13:31
Operated a 1649 Connie years ago...do you require information about the turbo-compound engines fitted thereon?

Or, the non turbo-compound engines fitted to earlier models?

10th Jun 2003, 18:31
Hello 411A

Well, depending which one you know best.
Any chance to get info for both of them ? :E

I'll ask my friend more precisely and send you PM.

Send what is most convnenient for you.
I can pass you personnal details if you have original or photocopied documentation.

Iron City & Ratherbeflying : URL woring again, thank you for help.

Iron City
10th Jun 2003, 23:59
Oh Ratherbeflying, hope you didn't need an AME as a flight engineer too much....don't they do ejection seats, survival equip, CADs and such? I would think a whole boat load of ADRs.

Believe there were a couple WVs fitted with turboprops, T-47 (?) maybe.

11th Jun 2003, 08:49

This particular model was the last in the Constellation series, and had a completely new (very long) wing.
The aircraft was capable of 21 hour flights with full payload, (provided the oil held out).

Some numbers;
Max takeoff weight 160,000 pounds
Max Landing weight 123,000 pounds
Max ZFW 117,000 pounds
3 engine ferry wt. 118,000 pounds

Engines fitted. CurtisWright 988TC18EA-2, turbo-compound

Takeoff 58.5"MP, 2900 rpm (3400HP)
METO 51" MP, 2650 rpm (2860HP)

(Note: All takeoffs were done in low blower)

High blower: METO power, 48.5"MP, 2600 rpm (2415HP)

(Blowers were shifted at 'round about 12,000 feet)

Fuel capacity: 9844 USGallons (115/145 required for the weights listed)

Oil capacity: Each engine 47 USGallons
Aux (Center) oil tank: 66 USGallons

Speeds (CAS)

Vno 300 mph (forget knots, these were real aeroplanes)
Vne 338 mph

Vlo 213 mph (main gear used as speed brake, 270 mph)
Vfe 185 mph
Va 227 mph

Normal cruise (high blower, 19,000msl), 310 mph TAS @ 400 USGallons/hr (mixture, auto/lean).

A magnificent aircraft. LAX-ORY, 18 hours, non-stop.

A 'proper' aeroplane, straight wings and propellers.

11th Jun 2003, 19:47
Thank you 411A, definitely what my friend is looking for.

One stupid question : What does METO stands for ?
One, less stupid question, what sort of MP & RPM are you looking for in a 75% Cruise ?

Born in 1970, I have never really known the "real airplane" era, but I reckon they were the most beautiful planes ever built.

In 1998, I had a chance to see & visit the MATS connie, in UK during her european show, it gave me goosebumps, just to see her on the parking! not mentionning the visit and the air display.

Many thanks for the stuff about this marvel, Don't hesitate to send me whatever you find on the subject (e-mail, PM or thread ) it will be welcome !

11th Jun 2003, 20:49

Large radial piston engines are normally cruised at 45 to 50% BHP for maximim longevity and fuel economy.

For the 1649A, this was 38" MAP, 2050 rpm, 1600 BHP, as I recall.

In addition, another engine gauge used with these large machines for engine power settings, the torque meter (BMEP gauge). Don't remember the BMEP figures for the 1649.

BMEP (brake mean effective pressure).
METO (maximum except take off)...equivalent to max continous in turbojet/turbofan engines.

The CurtisWright turbo-compound engines did not use ADI for takeoff, unlike the engines on the DC-6 (Pratt&Whitney R2800CB16).

The three power recovery turbines on these engines delivered an extra 340 BHP (approximately) directly to the crankshaft, thru fluid coupling.

Worked good, as long as 115/145 avgas was used. Not so good on the avgas available today.

The takeoff/climb profile used on these large aircraft was...

Max BHP for takeoff and climb to 400agl, METO power selected, flaps retracted, climb power set, cowl flaps/oil shutters to trail (or an intermediate setting), mixtures left in autorich until cruise altitude reached. Climb speed was 160mph.
Once level off and cruise speed were achieved, cruise power was selected, mixtures moved to autolean, cowl flaps/oil shutters adjusted (automatic on the 1649 as I recall), and the engines were monitored by that very essential crew member, the Flight Engineer. Pilots pointed 'em (takeoff and landing as well), F/E's operated 'em.

It might surprise some of the younger folks here, but a few airlines had the flight engineer handle the throttles nearly all the time (from his panel), even for taxi. Just call for taxi power...and there it was. Magic. The Flying Tiger Line used this optional procedure as I recall.

These large aircraft were always cruised at a constant BHP (speed increasing as the weight decreased), unlike jet aircraft, which generally use a constant mach number.

ATC was positively not a speed controlling factor...:ok:

(edited for technical comments)

11th Jun 2003, 21:26
Merci beaucoup 411A :D

I think your help goes beyond my friend's expectations :D

I hope he could set up a realistic flight model for a Constellation with those detailed infos.

Best regards. :ok: