“MISS ENGLAND’S” RETURN
IN view of the present controversy about the importance of the Schneider Trophy, it is significant to reflect that unless the skill of British engineers had been called into play in the winning of this Trophy in past years, we should not at the moment be the holders of either the land or water speed records. In addition to the land speed record of 231 m.p.h. held by a Schneider Trophy type Napier engine in the “Golden Arrow,” and which Campbell is now attempting to put even further from the reach of our rivals with a supercharged Napier of later type, the tragic triumph of the late Sir Henry Segrave in gaining the water record for Britain, depended on the experience gained in the Schneider Race of 1929.
Miss England II, now, thanks to that great sportsman Lord Wakefield, has been completely reconditioned. So successful was the design, however, that she is practically unaltered. The two Schneider Trophy Rolls-Royce engines, of the type which last gained for us the Blue Riband of the air, have been completely overhauled, and sundry minor modifications have increased the already colossal power. 2,000 h.p. each at 2,800 r.p.m. is delivered by these marvellous engines to a gearbox at the forward end of the craft, and from this is taken to the propeller by a shaft running at the hitherto unheard speed in marine practice, of 11,200 r.p.m. This remarkable departure from previous practice has been based on careful experiment and calculations, and the result has been shown to justify completely the designer’s views. The propeller itself, machined from HIGHLYSUCCESS FUL PRELIMINARY TESTS ON LOUGH NEAGH KAYE DON REPORTS SPEED IN NEIGHBOURHOOD
OF 100 M.P.H.
the solid billet by Messrs. Rolls-Royce, is unusual in shape, having a very wide root to the blades which taper off to the ends. The overall dimensions of the propeller are about the same as may 13,e seen on many normal speed units of 10-12 h.p. and in looking at it, it seems impossible to believe that this perfectly finished yet small piece of steel is the sole medium of transmitting some 4,000 h.p.
The chief alteration to the hull has been the fitting of a new step sheathed in Firths Staybrite Steel, to avoid any repetition of the disaster of Lake Windermere. The position and shape of the step have, however, remained unaltered, and the way the boat has behaved in the hands of Kaye Don, in her trials on Lough Neagh, show that no alteration in this department appears necessary.
He did not have by any means favourable conditions for his practising, but Miss England II. was remarkably steady, and showed a wonderful handiness at speed. There was never any intention of trying for the actual record before leaving for South America, and no actual times were taken. In view of this, sundry daily press posters that Segrave’s record had been beaten, seemed somewhat uncalled for, but apparently the stunt press cannot help this sort of thing ! Actually the reading of the instruments make it probable that 100 m.p.h. was comfortably exceeded, and Mr. Fred Cooper, the designer, has expressed satisfaction with the results. Thus we have reason to believe that when Kaye Don puts his foot right down in the actual attempt, nothing the world has yet produced will be able to hold Miss England.
Rumblings, March 1940
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