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Spitfire Engine seemingly overheating + noob question


Kaned Dragon
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Hi all, on my last few flights in the spit. The engine has I guess overheated. It starts with white smoke, then after a bit black or it jams and I'm suddenly looking for a spot to try and land.

 

So far it's happened once in DCS 1.5, and twice in 2.0, in the Normandy map.

 

Do I need to watch the engines temperature?

It has happened while chasing a 109 to the sky. So is the spit not good at climbs only turns?

 

Are there differences in the handling flight dynamics in 1.5 and 2.0? Because it feels different when I'm flying in Normandy.

 

Cheers

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It is good at climbing as long as you keep the speed above ~180, if you go below that for too long and you will fry.

 

What rpm/boost are you using?

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It is good at climbing as long as you keep the speed above ~180, if you go below that for too long and you will fry.

 

What rpm/boost are you using?

 

If I'm cruising I'll set the rpm to around 27, throttle set around 75%.

As for the boost I thought it was automatic? But it seems to be around 8 to 12 most of the time.

 

I just finished a flight. I was flying slight down, maybe 5 deg pitch down. medium settings on throttle, rpm set as usual 27. I'm guessing speed was around 250 300 mph. It was flying fine, and then suddenly the engine locked, seemingly for no reason. I thought it might be a bird strike. But checked and that option is off. So! :joystick:

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If I'm cruising I'll set the rpm to around 27, throttle set around 75%.

As for the boost I thought it was automatic? But it seems to be around 8 to 12 most of the time.

 

I just finished a flight. I was flying slight down, maybe 5 deg pitch down. medium settings on throttle, rpm set as usual 27. I'm guessing speed was around 250 300 mph. It was flying fine, and then suddenly the engine locked, seemingly for no reason. I thought it might be a bird strike. But checked and that option is off. So! :joystick:

 

If you are cruising you can reduce rpm to 2500/2600.

 

Keep an eye on your water and oil temp. When I go to 3000 rpm I open up the rad doors fully and keep speed up around 250+ and watch the temps.

 

It also depends on how hard you pushed it before going to cruise. Temps will climb quickly if you pushed it hard.

 

Cheers

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Boost pressure is (primarily) what kills the engine in the Spit, not RPM.

8 to 12lb boost is too much for continuous flying.

 

 

Max continuous is 7lb boost and 2650 RPM. This is OK for a continuous climb.

"continuous" basically being anything more than around 10 minutes.

 

 

Use 4lb or less boost for cruising.

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Keep a close eye on your temp gauges, if it gets near 100 deg on oil temp open the radiator flaps and throttle back. I dont go above +8 boost and 2800 rpm unless in combat and then my rad flaps are open.

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Boost pressure is (primarily) what kills the engine in the Spit, not RPM.

8 to 12lb boost is too much for continuous flying.

 

 

Max continuous is 7lb boost and 2650 RPM. This is OK for a continuous climb.

"continuous" basically being anything more than around 10 minutes.

 

 

Use 4lb or less boost for cruising.

 

12 lbs and 2850 is a nominal engine mode. You can fly it without limits. Ofc you ll be chewing through fuel but there will be no engine damage or overheating problems.

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  • 5 months later...

I got the Spitfire last week. The Mustang did not seem to be the right fighter against ME and Doras. With the Spitfire it is really more fun. I already was able to nail 9 of them.

 

My primary issue however in dogfight is that I frequently get to the point where the white smoke starts to show up.

 

How can I avoid this in dogfights?

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My primary issue however in dogfight is that I frequently get to the point where the white smoke starts to show up.

 

How can I avoid this in dogfights?

 

 

 

Start with:

1. Don't run high boost for long (anything above +8 is considered "high")

2. Don't run high RPM for long (high being above 2800)

3. Don't get slow (i.e. below 180 mph)

 

 

The most common cause for the "white smoke" is doing high AoA maneuvers with high RPM and Boost setting. If the aircraft gets slow and you've got the throttle up.. in almost always ends catastrophically. You cant just nose up and hang in the air and full noise in the DCS spit.

 

 

I tend to dogfight at about 2750 rpm and around +8 to +12 boost.

I only use 3000rpm and +18 whe I really really need it.

Also try to keep your speed above 180.

 

 

When doing turn fights, a good tactic is to turn as sharply as you can only until the airspeed indicator drops below 250mph. At this point, start reducing your turn rate (or lower the nose and go into a downward spiral) to maintain 220 to 250 mph.

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Hmm i Fly hole MP sessions with 18lb Boost and 3000 RPM nothing happen (ofc you dont need this), the only thing is when your Speeds dropped below 180Mph your Engine is done, ok every one have his one experience after a while...

I did littel bit search around why this happen, seem the placement of the Spit Radiator was not that optimal, on low Speeds and High AOA the Cooling Duct sits direct in the Turbulent Boundary Layer Zone with missing Pressure on the Coolant Radiator Face...

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This is something that also got me extremely frustrated with the Spitfire at first. I blew the engine in every dogfight I was in.

 

Watch your gauges. As others have said, 8 boost is already plenty, even though your throttle still has a lot of room to move. You only need to pus it a bit further if you really need it.

Also keep an eye on the temperature gauge.

 

The natural thing to do (at least this is what I always found intuitive), is to increase power in the climb and to decrease power in the dive. The problem is, that in the climb you lose airspeed and therefore less cooling airflow to your engine.

So what you want to do is make sure your boost isn't too high in the climb, and increase your power to gather as much energy as you can in a dive / once your airspeed is higher.

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The key to preventing engine overheating is speed. Watch your oil and water temperatures and take care approaching 100'C oil and +125'C water for any length of time.

 

You can, and will often need to use high rpm and boost settings during combat and are fine to do so as long as your airspeed (and fuel) allows. Combat settings for the Spitfire are 2850rpm + 12lbs boost (rated for 60 minutes uninterrupted use), emergency setting is 3000rpm + 18lbs boost (rated for 5 minutes uninterrupted use*). You're fine to use these settings in a climb (page 142/143 DCS Spitfire manual) providing you keep your water and oil temps in the 'green' but be very careful in steep climbs, as your speed will rapidly drop off and you'll overheat quickly. If you don't need to rapidly climb, do as the manual instructs "In all cases where maximum rate of climb is not required, climbing may be performed with a pressure 7lb/in² and 2650RPM. Doing so conserves fuel and increases total flight range".

 

*my understanding for the quoted time limits (page 139 DCS Spitfire manual) are historical and were for best long term engine use. These time limits can be exceeded without killing your engine in a single flight (as Mad says above). What will kill your engine is being too slow.


Edited by Bounder

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I think the biggest problem is not, that I don't understand what you're saying, but while in close combat with the ME109, you rather have the eye on the target and the aiming reticle than on the speed and temp.

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I think the biggest problem is not, that I don't understand what you're saying, but while in close combat with the ME109, you rather have the eye on the target and the aiming reticle than on the speed and temp.

 

 

 

You are right. "knowing" what your airspeed is when you are in combat is not easy (looking down at the insutruments can be fatal). Especially as we tend to do WW1 style dogfights in these aircraft and we hang around in combat for a lot longer than we should, or would, if our lives depended on it.

 

The best way to develop a feel for this is simply to do loads of aerobatics in the spit in your "downtime". Over time you will just start to learn what slows you down, and how much maneuvering you can do before the poor merlin starts to give up the ghost..

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It's just a matter of experience, you'll soon get a feel for your airspeed and temps without having to look at the gauges in the middle of a fight. I know it can be frustrating but you'll soon get the hang of it. Good luck.


Edited by Bounder

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Side note, it’s not white smoke. That’s steam from the thermostat. Once you hit 125C it opens to boil off coolant and prevent the temp going any higher. It’ll run for another couple minutes like that but steam is your final warning that you need to deal with temp.

 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...
Sith said the cooling physics for the WWII aircraft ingame will be getting an overhaul soon, so hopefully that will fix all the anomalies we're experiencing.

 

I really hope so. I was just reminded of the Spit overheat after not flying it for a while.

 

Good advice in the thread and other info, but the ease with which you can cook the Spit's engine is eyebrow raising compared to the other WW2 modules.:huh:

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  • 9 months later...

One thing I don't understand - once I see the white 'smoke' even if I reduce the boost & rpm the radiator temperature continues to rise, regardless of speed, until it tops out at 140°. It remains parked there for a minute or so then the engine conks out.

 

Why?

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One thing I don't understand - once I see the white 'smoke' even if I reduce the boost & rpm the radiator temperature continues to rise, regardless of speed, until it tops out at 140°. It remains parked there for a minute or so then the engine conks out.

 

Why?

 

You have already lost coolant. There is only air behind the cylinder walls now.

The loss of coolant reduces the pressure in the system which allows it to boil at an even lower temperature. The problem continues to get worse.

You cannot replace the coolant in flight.

The temperature sending unit is no longer in liquid and therefore the guage can no longer be trusted. The temperature of the remaining steam is far past 140.

Engine recovery is not an option. Prepare to deal with total unrecoverable power loss.

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Has anyone got a useful at a glance rpm + boost guide for all kinds of situations. I'm still in noob territory. Just about managed to get the taxi and takeoff dance sorted out. I'd like to now fly her properly at the right settings.

 

There is a 'cheat sheet' in the cockpit but it's buried out of sight.

 

https://forums.eagle.ru/showthread.php?t=228115

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