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View Full Version : Red Bull P-38 = White Lightnin'



Ebehne
10-21-2011, 03:26 PM
It came up in a thread a few weeks ago about the location of White Lightnin' these days. I figured I'd post my pictures from Salzburg, Austria from this last summer taken at Red Bull's Hanger 7. Also posted a picture of a beautiful B-25 also in their collection. Enjoy!

Eric

hm66sk
10-21-2011, 03:39 PM
I still miss White Lightnin' but, wow. They sure treat her the way she deserves. Doesn't Red Bull have a DC-6 also?

sandramore
10-21-2011, 03:44 PM
Thanks, Eric.

She's beautiful. If that's what they're doing with their profits, I've got to start buying more Red Bull.

:beerchug:

77AMT
10-21-2011, 03:54 PM
Does anyone know if they fly them or are they static?

Ebehne
10-21-2011, 03:56 PM
I still miss White Lightnin' but, wow. They sure treat her the way she deserves. Doesn't Red Bull have a DC-6 also?

Yes, it was over in "Hanger 8" across from the display hanger. I wanted to check it out, but wasn't sure how to get over there. I believe they just use that hanger for maintenance, not sure you can check it out without knowing someone or getting a tour.

cdtpf60
10-21-2011, 04:05 PM
Does anyone know if they fly them or are they static?
they are flown!!!
http://i22.photobucket.com/albums/b339/ozrbfan/IMG_2405.jpg
http://i22.photobucket.com/albums/b339/ozrbfan/IMG_3082.jpg
taken at flying legends this year
they also have a very nice f4u4

Florian
10-21-2011, 04:13 PM
Yes they fly it! I made this video three days prior to my flight to Reno this year at the Hahnweide Airshow in southern Germany.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nJ8g1Ltbt8g

Florian

wolfee
10-21-2011, 04:21 PM
Holly cripes she is perdy in that polished aluminum dress she wares. She dont sound to bad either...:D

Just need to remove that but ugly Red Bull sign on her nose. sigh.

ChrisMX105
10-21-2011, 04:24 PM
I believe ezellaviation.com still has a ton of photos regarding the rebuild from arrival to departure for Austria. Was amazing to follow:thumbsup:

Ramjets
10-21-2011, 04:48 PM
Florian...thank you so much for posting the link. My heart soared seeing the "Flash" fly again!!! I will make it a #1 priority to visit Salzburg and the Red Bull Hangers before I pass on to the next level. In the meantime, it's very comforting knowing there are those, with the financial means, to keep such treasures as these operational and looking soooooo friggin' pretty, too! 17722

hm66sk
10-21-2011, 05:02 PM
Damn she's pretty! I think Lefty would approve.

Unlimited Fan
10-21-2011, 06:42 PM
Lefty had a belly landing with her apparently ???
She does look pretty hot in the polished finish !!!

TenThirtyTwo
10-21-2011, 06:50 PM
BEAUTIFUL!!

I remember my first air race, meeting Lefty and rooting for White Lightnin! Oh baby!

Lefty's Son had a wheels up landing in her due to the smoke from an engine fire.. I thought she was doomed to a slow death in that hangar. She is beautifully redone, that stupid red bull on the nose should go, and they should at least put the red lightning decals on the engine cowlings as a tribute.

Ah the memories.. thanks for sharing!

cdtpf60
10-21-2011, 07:37 PM
one of the things i like about her is that she is still registered as"n25y"
she was beautifully flown by her current pilot too :thumbsup:

eric 120
10-23-2011, 05:52 PM
What is the story behind the long intakes on top of the engine?
They were not on White Lightnin'.

Gibbs
10-24-2011, 07:23 AM
It's rumored they removed the turbo superchargers because of costs, easier maintenance etc. - but I'm not sure.

I've seen her flying display at Hahnweide Airshow 2011, sound was relatively "hushed" (in comparison to other Allison-powered aircrafts) ... :dunno:

Gibbs

TenThirtyTwo
10-24-2011, 08:00 AM
They made her pretty and then NEUTERED her??

CRJpilot
10-24-2011, 08:23 AM
This link has some beautiful HD footage of N25Y at Flying Legends in Duxford. (2nd video down)

Flying Legends 2011 (http://www.flyingfilm.co.uk/)

The 3rd and 4th videos cover some of the other beautiful aircraft there and also includes footage of the loss of "Big Beautiful Doll" this past July.

Thankfully none were hurt seriously.

Don

51fixer
10-24-2011, 09:29 AM
They made her pretty and then NEUTERED her??
Turbos hadn't been installed since the 1940s racing modifications IIRC.
When raced in the 40s it had P-51A air scoops, or similar, for the carbs and individual exhaust stacks exiting the side cowls I believe.
The nose also had been reshaped to a point with the pitot tube in the middle.
I think it also had early narrow radiators installed as well as the early lower cowls w/o the intercoolers.
I would say the current configuration is just enhanced version of how Lefty flew it which was similar to it's 1940s racing configuration.

440_Magnum
10-24-2011, 11:55 AM
What is the story behind the long intakes on top of the engine?
They were not on White Lightnin'.



White Lightnin' hadn't had turbochargers for decades- not since she raced in the Cleveland era- and instead had small scoops atop the boom fuselages pretty much directly above the carbs. If you look at pictures of her over the years, you can see those scoops and the original intake scoops on the boom sides co-existed at least for a while before the side intakes were removed (these were the ones that were in "pods" and were used together with the turbos). The area near the port top scoop was where the fire heavily damaged the port boom when Ladd Gardner had to put her down in the field. When Ezell Aviation rebuilt her, they did a much improved scoop design and the fabrication pictures are on their website. The old intakes really looked "tacked on" and the new ones look like they belong there.


Here's a Neal Nurmi shot that clearly shows the intake/exhaust arrangement during Lefty's ownership (also note the intake "pod" still present below the trailing edge of the port wing)

http://p38whitelightnin.com/gallery/general/images/pages.php?directory=.&currentPic=20

440_Magnum
10-24-2011, 11:59 AM
I think it also had early narrow radiators installed as well as the early lower cowls w/o the intercoolers.
I would say the current configuration is just enhanced version of how Lefty flew it which was similar to it's 1940s racing configuration.

Agreed on all counts. I was really afraid that Red Bull was going to restore N25Y to look like a typical P38-J/L with the chin intercoolers and was very glad that they chose to leave her with the sleeker early P-38 cooler inlets below the spinner. She almost resembles the XP-38 in her current polished form.

I think the intake scoops and exhaust without turbos in the way are very much in the spirit of a racing P-38, but functionally much improved over the previous version.

440_Magnum
10-24-2011, 12:05 PM
Lefty had a belly landing with her apparently ???



I forget not everyone knows the history. Lefty had already pretty much retired from flying White Lightnin' at the time of the accident. His son Ladd did a superb job of putting her down without destroying himself or the airframe:

http://p38whitelightnin.com/accident/

Wayne- didn't you create this page for the Gardner family? I'm glad to see its still active!

AAFO_WSagar
10-24-2011, 01:41 PM
Wayne- didn't you create this page for the Gardner family? I'm glad to see its still active!Yes I did and I do keep it active... thanks for asking!

51fixer
10-24-2011, 03:47 PM
Agreed on all counts. I was really afraid that Red Bull was going to restore N25Y to look like a typical P38-J/L with the chin intercoolers and was very glad that they chose to leave her with the sleeker early P-38 cooler inlets below the spinner. She almost resembles the XP-38 in her current polished form.

I think the intake scoops and exhaust without turbos in the way are very much in the spirit of a racing P-38, but functionally much improved over the previous version.
http://www.airrace.com/1949%20NAR%20.htm
Go about 1/3rd down this page to the 1949 Tinnerman Trophy Race on the L/H side their is a pic of #13 Sky Ranger. It shows an exhaust collector exiting the cowling in front of the wing and full size radiators. I seem to remember it a little different but mostly the same so it may have been another or more derelict photo I'm thinking of.
It also raced without the wing tips.

440_Magnum
10-24-2011, 07:01 PM
http://www.airrace.com/1949%20NAR%20.htm
Go about 1/3rd down this page to the 1949 Tinnerman Trophy Race on the L/H side their is a pic of #13 Sky Ranger. It shows an exhaust collector exiting the cowling in front of the wing and full size radiators. I seem to remember it a little different but mostly the same so it may have been another or more derelict photo I'm thinking of.
It also raced without the wing tips.

Interesting collector shape, isn't it? I guess it would need to angle down to blend in with the leading edge airflow, but that looks a little... abrupt! :eek:

The intakes are an interesting twist. All of the tortured intake/exhaust plumbing of the P-38 was really there for the turbos. Take the turbos away, and all the bends and twists amount to that much more restriction, especially on the intake side. Just visually, I'd say the P-51A/A36 type scoop should have a good ram pressure rise. In straight and level flight, the new scoops Ezell built for N25Y should have good pressure rise also and the path from scoop to carb is shorter, but I do wonder if they'd run into the same loss of static pressure at positive AOA that the guys who tried Skyraider-style intakes on Sea furies ran into (232 and was it Riff Raff or Bad Attitude?)

As for the exhaust side, the "Y" pipe and short horizontal run on N25 shouldn't cause too much backpressure, plus its all tucked in out of the airflow so its probably a net win. And, at least to my ear, NO V12 sounds better than those Allisons with that Y-pipe exhaust plumbing. You actually get to hear all 12 cylinders together instead of just the six on the side you're looking at.

51fixer
10-24-2011, 07:40 PM
Interesting collector shape, isn't it? I guess it would need to angle down to blend in with the leading edge airflow, but that looks a little... abrupt! :eek:

The intakes are an interesting twist. All of the tortured intake/exhaust plumbing of the P-38 was really there for the turbos. Take the turbos away, and all the bends and twists amount to that much more restriction, especially on the intake side. Just visually, I'd say the P-51A/A36 type scoop should have a good ram pressure rise. In straight and level flight, the new scoops Ezell built for N25Y should have good pressure rise also and the path from scoop to carb is shorter, but I do wonder if they'd run into the same loss of static pressure at positive AOA that the guys who tried Skyraider-style intakes on Sea furies ran into (232 and was it Riff Raff or Bad Attitude?)

As for the exhaust side, the "Y" pipe and short horizontal run on N25 shouldn't cause too much backpressure, plus its all tucked in out of the airflow so its probably a net win. And, at least to my ear, NO V12 sounds better than those Allisons with that Y-pipe exhaust plumbing. You actually get to hear all 12 cylinders together instead of just the six on the side you're looking at.
I wonder if the collector was made from P-63 or P-38.
I could have swore at some time I saw individual exhaust stacks on it but IIRC the paint was looking ragged in the pic.
The 2 P-38s I worked on had the Big Lower cowls, I made a plate mounted where the intercooler would sit, bolted the outlet from the stock intercooler to it, got a 6" dia diesel truck rubber elbow and connected that to the stock duct that ran to the carb elbow. That had a great pressure rise, almost all stock parts and probably still in use on the 1 still flying.
Turbo was gutted, compressor section top has the mounting points, no wheels, no bottom to the compressor section. It looked pretty good covered with exhaust though.
Bill Dude said it sounded like a Buick. Of course anything with a V-12 he called a "Hot Water Toilet". Those were the days.