A discussion of the WWI interrupter system for guns

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by IanJ, Apr 25, 2018.

  1. Apr 25, 2018 #1

    IanJ

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    Probably everyone here knows that fighter planes in WWI eventually used an interrupter system to fire bullets through the arc of the propeller without shredding the prop in the process. I hadn't known exactly how it was done, though, and found this article (written on a site that usually discusses projects in embedded electronics and mechanisms like you'd find in robots) to be interesting:

    https://hackaday.com/2018/04/25/firing-bullets-through-propellers/
     
  2. Apr 25, 2018 #2

    taff

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    I see there's lots of info on interrupter guns.
    You thinking of installing one on your Charger ;)
    [ame]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j1OxWxYAGlc[/ame]
     
  3. Apr 25, 2018 #3

    TFF1

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    In the Red Barron thread i was going to ask if someone had an interrupter for an AK and a mount for a Pitts.
     
  4. Apr 25, 2018 #4

    TFF1

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    Sopwith planes had a plaque on the cowl to check gun timing if prop was removed. A story that was funny was the Germans captured a French plane with the deflectors and flew a test with it. They put German ammo in the gun and shot the prop off. German ammo was hotter loads.
     
  5. Apr 25, 2018 #5

    Beej

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  6. Apr 26, 2018 #6

    Chris McMillin

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    It's interesting to note that the Russians operated the P-39 Airacobra with the majority of aces (Yes, many Bell aces in air to air combat against Bf and FW in Russia) using just the forward cannon and twin Browning .50's above the cannon firing through the prop. They generally removed the wing mounted .30's much like many German operators removed all wing guns from the Bf-109F using fuselage guns and cannon. It was to reduce weight and increase roll rate and cornering performance in both types, but even in WWII we were still firing through the prop with timing cams.
    Same with the P-40, A6M, F4F, and a few others...
    Chris...
     
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  7. Apr 26, 2018 #7

    wanttaja

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    [​IMG]

    Ron Wanttaja
     
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  8. Apr 26, 2018 #8

    garyg

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    I am not sure why but I get this thought of Wolverine deflecting every bullet with his sword and the new Deadpool where he misses most of the bullets with his sword in the trailer and then looks at all the bullet holes in his clothes where he is essentially shot and deadpans "Your bullets are really fast."

    I never thought about the speed of the bullet having to match the timing of the firing. Shooting thru a spinning prop seems like a really bad idea in general but by rights the prop takes up of very little real space at any given moment in the circle.
     
  9. Apr 26, 2018 #9

    wacoc8

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    The Wright R760-E2 on my Waco has the gun synchronizer pads on the rear case in front of the magneto's. I am using them to drain the air/oil separator for the breather (right) and the vacuum pump (left). Every little bit I can keep IN the engine the less I have to wipe off the outside.

    IMG_0916.jpg
     
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  10. Apr 27, 2018 #10

    Lotahp1

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    Some AT-6 Texans have guns mounted behind the propeller on the upper Cowl between the engine Cowl and windshield. I know the “Whirlaway” with the geared nose cased 1340 also had them. But I believe even some AT-6s were used for gunnery training. (Some had the fold down rear canopy and a browning was mounted on a bipod for the rear seat guy to shoot from. These are THE best camera ships im told)

    Anyway, I was at the San Diego Air and Space museum a week or so ago. I took a few pics and video of the demo of the WW1 interrupter system. I think it’s a allies version not the Fokker version. But I believe both were close as I think the allies copied the idea from Fokker. It really was cool to see the rotary engine turn and a laser shoot from the barrel. I didn’t realize how much monkey motion it took for it to all work. Amazing.

    View attachment IMG_6636.jpg View attachment IMG_6637.jpg View attachment IMG_6638.jpg


    Hmmm. I guess you can’t share a video to the forum from an iPhone created/stored video?
     
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  11. Apr 27, 2018 #11

    wanttaja

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    The picture I posted above is of a Sopwith Pup replica in the museum at Creve Coeur. Not only does it have a rotary engine, it has a working Vickers machine gun.

    I spoke to the pilot about his experiences using it. One of the things I'd never thought is that the gun rate of fire depends on engine speed. In a dive, the engine's turning fast and the rate of fire is low, as you pull up and enter a climb, the gun starts shooting faster.

    Ron Wanttaja
     
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  12. Apr 29, 2018 #12

    mreinh3233

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    I suppose nowadays they would use some type of electronic gizmo to do the same thing at half the weight.
     

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