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Amazing. The companies combined should hold a good share of the market place for doing research and overhauling of engines. Sounds like AVIO is in a good place to make the engines for the Tornado. There are alot of people working in this business and a good size income to support it.

I wonder why I didn't recall the airplane at the museum? I was there, most likely saw it, but was probably focused on the cars. The museum can be a mind over load when you walk around and see all the great cars of the past.
 

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The airplane in the museum has a real interesting history! The "Angel of the Children" was powered with a 120 hp AR aircraft engine. To bring attention to the world about the plight of 15,000 crippled and orphaned war children, the pilots Leonardo Bonzi and Manuer Lualdi flew the plane across the Atlantic Ocean. At the time it was the smallest plane to make this trip in 1948. Gazette of the Sport to promote a subscription to support the humanitarian initiative, the result was extraordinary: in a short time they collected nearly 7 million Liras, donated to Bonzi and Lualdi upon their return from their travel of hope.
 

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Airborne Alfas

The year prior to the South American flight I-ASSI piloted by Bonzi and Lualdi set the distance record for class 1 aeroplanes by flying 2.591 miles straight line distance from Campoformido north of Trieste to Massawa Eritrea.
The year after the South American flight this remarkable aircraft embarked on a trans ARTIC flight . One item of interest was that when the plane arrived in Senegal prior to its transAtlantic trip , the French authorities tried to stop the flight as they considered it unsafe. the pilots were cocooned in a virtual fuel tank and to save every ounce of weight they abandoned their radio and parachutes.
I AM ADDING A PHOTO OF BONZI AND LUALDI UPON ARRIVAL AT ONE OF THEIR STOPS IN SOUTH AMERICA. I WONDER WHY THEY HAVE BIG GRINS ON THEIR FACES. ?
Charley
 

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Airborne Alfas

On a previous post I referred to German aircraft fitted with Alfa motors, one of the aircraft spoken of was the Dornier Wal which due to the manufacture of such aircraft being forbidden to Germany at that time was in fact made in Italy at the Cmasa works in the Marina de Pisa and later at Piaggio.The Wal was fitted with every kind of motor imaginable depending on the country that was paying for them. Wal's were used in Italy in both civil and military guise.both types of Wal were fitted with AR Jupiter engines ,2 for the Wal and 4for the SuperWal .
I also attach two photos of the Fiat cr42B biplane ,a one off fitted with an Alfa Romeo ra.1000 (db.601) and to this day the fastest piston engined biplane at 323 kmh. a group in the US is setting out to beat this but with a turboprop.
I.. wal 2-ar jupiter , this aircraft seems to be equipped for multiple wing walkers or a acrobat troupe with its huge aerial array.
2. another Italian civil Wal 2-jupiters outside the Piaggio works.
3. Super Wal 4 AR-jupiters.
4&5 photo's of the sole Fiat CR.42B 1-AR ra 1000(db601)
Charley
 

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I look at the Super Wal and I cringe when I think how hard that must have been to get all four of those in synch. :) I can't imagine someone trying to beat an old record piston powered airplane with a turbo prop. That is not playing fair. That CR42B plane is like flying a Pitts S2A with a big engine from a Comanche 400.
 

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Airborne Alfas

Just a few more light aircraft which finishes the list of sport/lightplanes fitted with AR engines,
1. AGUSTA P.110 4SEAT CABIN MONOPLANE A3SEAT VARIENT P.111 WAS ALSO BUILT AND FLOWN. ..1-AR110ter.
2. AMBROSINI SAI 2S 1-AR115
3. AMBROSINI SAI 1001 GRIFO AR110ter
4. AMBROSINI SAI 1002 1-AR110
5. AMBROSINI SAI.3 1-AR110

CHARLEY
 

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Airborne Alfas

In one of the above posts we looked at one Italian record breaking aircraft .This however is by no means the only Italian record breaking aircraft, in fact during the 1930’s many international records of all types were won by aircraft that were“made in Italy”. One of the most notable was the Savoia Marchetti SM.79 originally designed as a fast transport , it was hoped that it would be an entrant in the MacRobertson England to Australia air race, unfortunately it was not ready in time to participate in this event, which was eventually won by the DH.88 Comet .
The first prototype Sm.79 , I-MAGO having originally flown with Piaggio motors was re-engined with 3- AR125RC35 engines of 650HP. ( photo 1). Having been refitted with the Alfa Romeo motors the SM.79 proceeded to set various speed records over 1000km and 2000km with various loads. (photo 3)each record was notched up on the tail of I-MAGO.
As the aircraft had missed out on the England – Australia race ,it was now decided that a squadron of SM79 corsa would participate in the Istres-Damascus-Paris race in August 1937. There were to be 6 aircraft of the Sorci –Verdi (green rats) squadron . The aircraft were decked out in the national racing colour of red with green flash trimmed in slim white stripe and with the 3 green rats on the fuselage sides(photo 2).For the race Bruno Mussolini was drafted into the squadron(photo4).
The main opposition in the race was expected to come from the DeHavilland DH.88 Comet and the specially built Breguet 470 12T Fulgar . Prior to the arrival in Damascus the Sqn Sorci Verdi was already ahead in the field . Upon arrival in Damascus one of the aircraft I-LICA hit a hole in the semi prepared strip and destroyed his undercarriage and could not continue . one other of the craft encountered engineproblems but continued anyway . Despite all problems the winner was i-cupa piloted by T. Con Cupini and Cap .Paradises . The squadron took the first 3 places on arrival back in Paris 9(photo 5).with the DH.88 in fourth place another SM.79 in fifth place and the final aircraft in eight place. Bruno Mussolini’s aircraft came in third.
The year following the Paris race 3 of the SM.79Cs were modified to SM.79T (transatlantic)(photo 6). Fuel capacity was increased for trans oceanic flight ,the plan being to fly the aircraft from Rome to Dakar and then across the Atlantic to Rio De Janeiro. The three aircraft that took part were I-BISE(photo 10), I-BRUN AND I-MONI, I-BRUN ( photo 9)was piloted by Bruno Mussolini and Mancinelli. Two of the aircraft flew directly to Rio the third I-Moni( photo 8) had a failure of the central engine and had to fly on the 2 outer engines it landed at Natal and followed the others to Rio 24 hours later , this plane actually stayed on in Brasil and served until late 1944/45.
It was after the success of the SM.79 in these raids that it was militarized receiving its characteristic hump ( photo 7)and went on to serve with honour in its various incarnations ,especially as a torpedo bomber.
The Sorci Verdi squadron served in Sicily and retained its Sm.79’s until the end of WW11, when they were replaced with CANT Z.1007bis.

Charley
 

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Charley,

Any idea where all of these aircraft might have gone? Seems like so many airplanes that were AR powered, do any of them survive today, besides the one in the museums? Is there a list of Italian planes for sale anywhere? From what I am reading about the planes you have posted, the AR engines seemed to be very reliable given the feats that they were doing.

Anyone know how Italian markings were on the aircraft? Obviously the I was for Italy, but what about the registration letters that followed?
 

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Airborne Alfas

Hi Chris,
I do not know how many AR powered aircraft ,other than those in museums are currently in flying condition the last 5 small aircraft I showed above had at least one of each on the register in the seventies although some had been re engined . I believe that one Caproni Ca.100 idro float plane ( Colombo S.63) has been restored to flying condition , if I can trace I will post a photo of it.
The Alfa engines were remarkable for their reliability .The Alfa engineers seemed to improve every engine that they built. The AR RA 1000 was said to be 150hp more powerful than the German DB.601 , as Collivanfan stated in a post above the British engineers were peeved that the AR built Bristol ORPHEUS proved to be more powerful than the British built version. In the more recent past AR Avio, who at the time were overhauling the P&W Canada PT6T-6 for the Italian Air force helicopter fleet , found that the overhauled engines suffered from a high rejection rate of 40o/o. The engineers at AR Avio R&D investigated the causes and developed methods of rectifying the problem ,the result being that the rejection rate plunmmeted. So since day one the engineering prowess and attention to detail and tolerances of AR engineers meant that they were second to none in the Aviation business.
Your question regarding the Italian markings on the SM.79Corsa aircraft for the Istres-Damascus-Paris race . is that they were based on the names of the pilots of the aircraft as set out below….
race No 1-5… I-BIMU pilots A.BISEO & B.MUSSOLINI.
race No 1-6 I-TOMO pilots TONDI AND MOSCATELLI
race No 1-7 I-LICA pilots LIPPI & CASTELLANI
race No. 1-11. I-CUPA pilots T.CON.CUPINI & CAP.PARADISES
race No 1-12 I-ROTR pilots ROVIS & TRIBOLI
race No 1-13. .I-FILU pilots FIORI & LUCCHINI

The three aircraft that took part in the Rome –Rio raid had their markings changed as below…
I-BIMU became I-BISE pilots BISEO & PARADISES.
I-FILU became I-BRUN pilots Bruno Mussolini & Mancinelli
I-CUPA became I-MONI pilots Moscatelli & Castellani.
N.B The Rio aircraft Carried the Paris -Damascus race no on the tail of the aircraft,

I hope that answers your question.

Charley
 

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Charley,
The more you write, the more intersting this becomes. The markings on the planes sure made it easy for anyone in the race to know who it was flying the plane. Clever marking!
I would have never imagined that a plane would not be considered worth keeping around. I grew up at an airport in southern California that is known and was known for having a large collection of antique aircraft. Even in the 1960's there were a large number of unusual aircraft in hangers that were regularly flown. Today the aircraft would be considered rare. We also had our share of interesting pilots that hung around the airport.
Are there any books that any of the pilots wrote about their exploits?
 

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Airborne Alfas

Hi Chris .
I sure that there are books available however I am sure that they would be in Italian ,,try Amazon .it..
As for flying AR powered aircraft the only one that I am sure of is a Caproni Ca.100idro floatplane which has been brought back to flying condition . the first Photo attached are from http://www.fly-net.org/aeromedia/amedgb.html good for info on all things connected with Italian aviation .The flying examples are from Aeroclubmilano
www.aeroclubmilano.it from a selection of photos of 2005 airshow .
Charley
 

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The AR aero engines were bench tested extensively and this helped in establishing the remarkable reliability and service and rebuild intervals of their engines, besides, of course, the engineering. The Germans were suitably impressed and envious of the quality and I believe a number were taken to Germany for studies - possibly for the Condors?

I have seen an AR advertisement not long ago depicting a jet engine compressor fan and simply the text Alfa Romeo. By the graphics I would say that it was probably from the 70's. Very stylish and obviously AR was then involved in jet engines.
 

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airborne alfas?

I am posting the following photo of a 9 cylinder Alfa Romeo engine on this page as it is clearly an aero engine .However for a fuller description of the engines application go to the speed baot section of AR marine thread.
Charley
 

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Like Alfa cars having a distinct exhaust note, I am wondering if you could tell an Alfa engine in the air? Probably not, as it is hard to tell a Lycoming from a Continental.
 

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I can't read Italian, but what I can see here seems to say Alfa Romeo built a jet engine (or, they had a hand in it somehow)!

(Based on a Dual Overhead Cam 4 no doubt! :D)

= = = = = = = = = = = = =
Campini-Caproni

Tipo - Campini-Caproni
Motori - Alfa Romeo Asso L.121 RC40
Potenza - hp 900

Il prototipo n.1 del Campini - Caproni prevedeva un sistema di propulsione capace di convogliare e comprimere dinamicamente l'aria grazie al moto relativo dell'aereo, successivamente l'aria subiva una seconda compressione ad opera di un compressore assiale a tre stadi accoppiato meccanicamente ad un motore a scoppio aeronautico (un Alfa Romeo Asso L.121 RC40 da 900 Hp), all'uscita del compressore l'aria veniva riscaldata mediante bruciatori esterni e successivamente fatta riespandere attraverso un ugello convergente-divergente a sezione variabile mediante una spina mobile tipo Pelton che generava una spinta pari a 750 kg.

Lousy Bable Fish translation:

The prototype n.1 of the Campini - Caproni previewed a system of able propulsion of convogliare and to compress the air dynamically thanks to the relative motion of the airplane, subsequently the air endured a second jam to work of an axial compressor to three stages mechanically coupled to an aeronautical internal-combustion engine (a Romeo Alpha Ace L.121 RC40 from 900 HP), to the escape of the compressor the air came heated by means of external burners and subsequently made to riespandere through a convergent-divergent nozzle to variable section by means of a mobile thorn Pelton type that generated one pushed equal to 750 kg.
 

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Amazing reading. Without the delays, it could have been possible by the reading of this story, that the Italians very well could have had the first flyable jet. This website never has ceased to amaze me with the facts and figures for all things related to Alfa Romeo from so many members. What an brilliant company Alfa Romeo
 
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