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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

J Steve Allington

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  1. Here, try this explanation of the German Luftwaffe 'scoring system' . Maybe it's better at defining the high numbers you see from the Luftwaffe prospective: "Another aspect is simply how kills were tallied. The Germans had a “one pilot, one kill” system. This meant that only one pilot could claim the victory even if more than one pilot contributed to the kill. For various reasons, the more experienced pilot may be given credit for the kill. British and American pilots used a fractional system, wherein credit could be shared among pilots but the total would still equal one (so two pilots shooting down one aircraft would be awarded 0.5 of a kill, four pilots taking down an aircraft would each achieve 0.25 of a kill, etc)" from:
  2. There's more to Hartmann's book than you might find in that particular excerpt, sorry, it was meant to point to the book iself. But in the book, Hartmann writes about how (relatively) easy it was to shoot down the Russian fighters, (turns out, all you had to do was to slip under them, hit the oil cooler, and watch it go down in flames. easy peasy!) and how it became more and more difficult it became to even get the Russians to engage in battle, as they relized just how badly they were outmatched, both by the aircraft the Luftwaffe flew, and the German pilots themselves. And, while true that the Russians certainlly started out with (again, relatively) good pilots, attrition set in, and Hartmann was having troulbe finding willing Russian pilots to even engage with. As far as the quality of both men and aircraft goes, even the ME-109 was born of thrities technolgy, but was still good enough to wear out not only the Russians, (who where actully using even more outdated equipment than the Germans!) but also severely punished both the Brits and the Americans at the start of the war. It was only though constant updating and upgrading in both training and equipment (and sheer numbers) did the Allies manage to turn things around. BUT! Back to my original point, yes, the Germans did pull in big numbers againest the Russians, but it was hardly a fair fight, and did nothing to help out the reputation of airplanes like the Yakovlev Yak-1, the Lavochkin La-5 and the Lavochkin-Gorbunov-Gudkov LaGG-1, which, I would still argue were more of an asset to the Germans, than they were to the Soviets that had to fly them. And as outmatched the Allies were at the start of the war, (and they were outmatched) another plane born of thrites tech, the P-38, flying against (arguablly better) pilots, and under less than favorable conditions, preforming a job for which it was never intended to be used for, STILL managed to produce the top two American aces of World War Two! Albeit, in a differant theater, as I pointed out before.
  3. I stand by my earlier comments, not from personal experience, but from first hand accounts from the pilots themselves. One in particular, Hartmann himself. Here's some material for reference: http://www.migflug.com/jetflights/final-interview-with-erich-hartmann.html
  4. Kudos! And you are most correct. I might however point out two things, that this is about the best fighter during WWII, (which would inculde ALL theaters of operation) and if we're going to use the most concrete evidence avaiable (confirmed kills) you gotta go with the big numbers, and that's the big Lockheed, which flew in all three theaters. Even if most of the big numbers that the Lightining scored were against the lightly armored (but considerably more maneuverable) Mitsubishi Zero.
  5. Impressive! But..... How many Mosquito drivers had 40 CONFIRMED kills, and a staggering 105 kills split up between just THREE pilots? The P-38 did.
  6. So, what you are looking at is four Browning .50 caliber machine guns with a sustained rate of fire of about 850 rpm (per machine gun) @ 2,756 fps and one 20 mm cannon with about 650 rpm @ 2,887 fps packed into a firing pattern of somthing around a three foot dia. and no need for interputer gearing, or 'fire convergence' angles, giving the P-38 a 'buzzsaw' that had a combined rate of fire of OVER 4,000 ROUNDS PER MINUTE. Thus explaining why out of the top four (American) aces of WW2, three of them flew P-38s.
  7. Sorry, I was refering to the statements made about the ME-262, and others from the WWII era. None of those were on the same level of (for instance) the F-4 platform, which set a seriously high standard for all other American turbo-jet aircraft following it. I don't mean to downplay the contributions of the aircraft leading up to it, but the F-4 showed us what an all-weather turbo-jet combat aircraft SHOULD (and in some cases, shouldn't) be like. I believe that the F-4 marked a definitive point (again, for the United States) of before and after combat aircraft from which most comparisons can be made. (Note: I am pointedly skipping any references to any Soviet-era turbo-jet combat aircraft.) (p.s. the neither ME-262 or the Gloster Meteor could possibly be considered "all-weather" combat aircraft, at best they were barley even "fair-weather" aircraft, but were nonetheless awesome aircraft for thier respective eras.)
  8. I'm pretty sure that they are refering to the USAF, but even so the term, "First jet-powered planes" (that could handle all kinds of weather) is pretty subjective. The first turbine jet engined aircraft (that had any really meaningful service) was the McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom which didn't enter service until 1960. Almost anything before that was largely experimental. Arguments can be made for about a dozen or so other aircraft, but none really filled the ticket like the F-4.
  9. None of the above. While the P-51 gets deserved attention, it lacked credible firepower at first, (along with a lackluster power plant) and never really achieved the long range capabilities that was needed over Germany. That's why you don't see any of the top aces flying the Mustang, they just couldn't get to the fight, and if they did, they had to drop their tanks, fire off as many rounds as fast as they could, and run for home before they ran out of gas. The ME-109 was an out-dated design right from the start of the war, and only pulled in the big numbers against the poor Russians. Speaking of which, the YAK was a flying gas bomb. It could be argued that it was more beneficial to the Germans, than it was to the poorly trained Russian pilots who had to fly it. The Spitfire? While it was pretty, and it was arguably dearly loved by almost everyone who flew it, it was also a very delicate, temperamental aircraft, and more like a ballerina attempting to play ice hockey than a true fighter. The Mosquito? One word, wood. Anyone with a peashooter could blow holes in that thing big enough to shove a sheep through. (And often did, that's why it didn't really make any kind of impact at all during the war, until the Brits fitted it with radar, and started flying it under the cover of darkness.) I won't go through all of them, but I'll get straight to the point, Lockheed Lightning P-38. It never did well in Europe, (never did get it sorted out before the P-51 showed up, and despite it's drawbacks, the Mustang did better over Europe than the Lightning did.) But in the Pacific, the top two American aces of the war both flew the "Forked Tail Devil".
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