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Thread: F4U vs. Ki-84 (and La-7) | Forums

  1. #1
    Hey all.

    Flying online a bit more and wondered to myself - 'Ki-84's? WHERE?' then i died.

    I was flying the F4U-1D and the only advantages i've ever been able to calculate over the Ki-84 and (La-7) was dive speed, dive acceleration, zoom climb and the ability to 'put on the brakes' (i.e. speed brakes, better flaps). I realize that these are pretty good advantages and that this is what makes the hawg more fun to fly than my old spitty, but what performance advantages do i have over an La-7? (I've downloaded hardball's viewr and 'Il-2 Compare 4.07).

    now for the calculations. La-7's empty weight is about 5,816 lbs. and its wing area is 188 sq ft. Wingloading is therefore, 31 lbs/sq ft.

    The F4U-1D has a weight of 9,015 lbs. and a wing area of 314 sq ft. Wingloading is therefore 28.7 lbs./sq ft. (im assuming the F4U-1D is slightly lighter due to the abcence of wing fuel tanks). Why then does the La-7 turn SO much tighter? Yes, the power loading is 0.31 hp/lb (la-7) vs. 0.25 hp/lb. (F4U) but the Spitfire XIV also has a power loading like the La-7 and still turns a lot worse than the Spitfire IX. Or are these comparison sheets on Hardball's and the 'Il-2 Compare 4.07' comparing a/c when they are average TO weight/fully laiden?

    Also, any suggestions against the Ki-84 would be great (as it seems as though i have the same advantages agaisnt the Frank as i do against the La-7, though it seems, without WEP, the F4U-1D climbs better and runs faster at most alts.)

    Any answers would be greatly appreciated. thanks!

    (P.S. just a few random F4U questions not too important -
    1) best radiator settings for given altitudes... what are they?
    2) Our F4U-1A is fitted with a P&W R-2800-8, without water injection, right?
    3) The Pratt & Whitney R-2800-8W that powered the F4U-1A/D was a TWO-speed TWO-stage superchared engine correct? I'm not too sure because apparently, i have 3 supercharger settings.
    4) What made the F4U-1D in empty weight heavier than the F4U-1A in empty weight if the -1D actually had fuel cells removed?)
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  2. #2
    Senior Member VW-IceFire's Avatar
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    Tough question...will probably ignite a good debate with this one. The La-7 has the advantage of having leading edge slats which do help the fighter in the turn and the Ki-84 has butterfly or fowler flaps which extend outwards as well as downwards which increases wing area and allows the Ki-84 to turn better than it would otherwise (several other aircraft are quipped with these such as the Ki-43-II and the P-38).

    Also the F4U will have advantages in range, payload capacity, payload diversity, ammo duration (on the .50cal versions), and definitely has the advantage in durability over the other two. All of these do count when you're focused on winning wars rather than just individual dogfights. Also might be worth noting what the Corsairs performance at 25,000 feet is like compared to the other two.

    Also might be worth noting that the F4U-1D is essentially a 1943 design...the F4U-1A is basically the same in performance (plus a little extra weight with its slightly greater range and more fuel tanks) and thats from middle of 1943 onwards. The F4U-4 would be more along the lines of the rarer high performance models that you're comparing against and that one has a significant maximum speed advantage over the other two.

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  3. #3
    The Corsair has no advantages over the George in this game. It can outdive the La-7 and that is about it.

    Just remember, this is a game and no aircraft is modelled correctly. The Corsair seems pretty accurate compaired to many other than the issue with the radiator flaps, rearward view and nose oscillation.

    The George seems to have been modelled with some data that was not typical of wartime figures I've seen....it can fly faster at all altitudes than the Corsair which it didn't do in wartime as far as I know.

    The La-7...well...is the La-7 and between it and the Ki-84 remind me why I call this a game.
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  4. #4
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    Corsair has god forward visibility, better than Ki84 I think, I use that for deflection shots to weaken the enemy. Don't turn too much with a Ki when on his 6, fly more like you'd fly a P47 with an extra turning ability, so more b&z than t&b. Nurse your speed as much as posible, well that's quite a general well known thing valid with all planes,but I think it's more important when dealing with a more agile enemy. A zero is much slower than a Corsair but he needs only a couple of seconds to catch you slow and shoot you down.
    Depends how the enemy is flying his Ki, because it's a plane which has very good both t&b and b&z characterisics. If he combines them well it'll be very tough. Have to think more...
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  5. #5
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    As many have noted on these forums, the F4U-1D is not really a "fair" matchup against a Ki-84, and an F4U vs Ki-84 matchup would not have been that common. Corsairs and Franks did mix it up on occasion, but the Hayate was an IJA fighter; it would have fought mostly in China, the Philippines, and over the Home Islands, where its main opponents would have been USAAF fighters. Against its true contemporaries, planes like the P-38L, P-51D, and P-47D, the Ki-84, while still very good aircraft, has few significant advantages.

    The George seems to have been modelled with some data that was not typical of wartime figures I've seen....it can fly faster at all altitudes than the Corsair which it didn't do in wartime as far as I know.
    I believe Maddox tends to model all aircraft based on optimal flight test performance. While this fine in general (as long as all planes are modeled to the same factory-fresh standard), in some cases of Russian, Japanese, and other late war limited prodcution Axis aircraft this exagerates their relative performance, since poor feild maintainance and production standards meant that in practice those test figures were never achieved.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member tigertalon's Avatar
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    Lads summed it up pretty well. Ki84 is a superior in almost every respect when u dogfight it 1v1. Whatever is thrown at you in aircombat, you have a better chances of survival if you work in team. Stay with your friendlies and cover eachother, this way you are ephasising one of Ki84s bigest weaknesses: its vulnerability. ki84 has to tail the F4U for quite some time to succsessfuly shoot it down, while F4U really needs only one solid firing solution and Ki84 is history.

    Against a La7, drag him to 15k and toy with him. Fight one below 15k, and die with honour.

    Originally posted by Grey_Mouser67:
    The George seems to have been modelled with some data that was not typical of wartime figures I've seen....it can fly faster at all altitudes than the Corsair which it didn't do in wartime as far as I know.
    Nah, it's slower at all altitudes, from being almost on a par down low, the higher u go slower it is, at 20k about 60mph or so. Or did you mean frank? Yes, frank is fast as hell, I don't really see much of an aid when my 3rd stage kicks in against these 2 stage equipped Ki84s.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member tigertalon's Avatar
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    I forgot to mention: by my experience the real danger to F4U, even more so than frank or george is jack (the J2M5 version with 3 stage blower). That cute little tubby thing is brutal: climbs with a 25lb spit, dives with a Fw190, turns with a yak3, runs with a P47, has alt performance on a par with the mustang (the J2M5 that is) and packs 4 20mm cannons with large ammosuply (800 rounds overall).
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  8. #8
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    Originally posted by SirPapps:


    now for the calculations. La-7's empty weight is about 5,816 lbs. and its wing area is 188 sq ft. Wingloading is therefore, 31 lbs/sq ft.

    The F4U-1D has a weight of 9,015 lbs. and a wing area of 314 sq ft. Wingloading is therefore 28.7 lbs./sq ft. (im assuming the F4U-1D is slightly lighter due to the abcence of wing fuel tanks). Why then does the La-7 turn SO much tighter?

    Yes, the power loading is 0.31 hp/lb (la-7) vs. 0.25 hp/lb. (F4U) but the Spitfire XIV also has a power loading like the La-7 and still turns a lot worse than the Spitfire IX.

    Or are these comparison sheets on Hardball's and the 'Il-2 Compare 4.07' comparing a/c when they are average TO weight/fully laiden?

    Also, any suggestions against the Ki-84 would be great (as it seems as though i have the same advantages agaisnt the Frank as i do against the La-7, though it seems, without WEP, the F4U-1D climbs better and runs faster at most alts.)
    Well, Hardball's Aircraft Viewer good, but it isn't gospel, so don't trust it blindly.

    Available Russian sources I have for the La-7 give:

    Weight empty: 2650 kg (5,830 lbs)
    Weight fully loaded: 3240 kg (7,130 lbs).
    Wing area: 17.59 sq m (190 sq ft). This is generally given by western sources as 17.5 sq m (188 sq ft), but is actually a touch larger in Russian sources.
    Peak power: 1850 hp @ 1,650 m (5,400 ft)

    Breaking this down we get:

    Power loading @ full weight: 0.571 hp/kg
    Wingloading @ full weight: 184.196 kg/sq m

    For the F4U-1D USN wartime figures I have give:

    Weight empty: 4,073 kg (8,982 lb)
    Weight fully loaded: 5473 kg (12,039 lb)
    Wing area: 29.1 sq m (314.0 sq ft)
    Peak power: 2,200 hp @ 4,300 m (14,100 feet)


    Power loading @ full weight: 0.402 hp/kg
    Wingloading @ full weight: 188.076 kg/sq m

    So, according to my figures the F4U-1D has a minor wing loading disadvantage (by about 3%) and a major powerloading disadvantage (by about 40%). Obviously, if you take the F4U with 50% fuel and the La-7 with 100% fuel, the F4U will be about 700lbs lighter, and things will be a little more favourable, but its still a bigger, heavier fighter, with about the same wingloading as its opponent and inferior powerloading.
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  9. #9
    F-4U vs Ki-84 puts most of the advantages to the Hayate. The only real advantage that the Corsair has is the dive, you can dive away steeply, and the 84 wont be able to follow.

    That being said, the 84 is marginally faster, has signifigantly better accelleration, a 1 second turn advantage and climbs better, it also has a higher ceiling (not like that makes a difference in game though).

    I love the 84, its one of my favorite rides in game, and I do respectably well in it. The Hayate is slightly better than the Corsair, but it really comes down to how well you know your plane and if you start with an alt advantage or not. If you have the height, the Corsair can B&Z a Hayate, and as long as you fly smart, you can stay out of the way of the 20mm's on the 84.

    The best flying in Corsairs I have seen has to be the guys in BSS, they give me fits flying against them. Not only do they know their planes, they have excellent team tactics. You might ask one of them for some Corsair specific pointers.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member LEBillfish's Avatar
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    I'm no paper airplane folder let alone an aeronautical engineer.....Yet I keep seeing this "wingloading" reason given as the end all answer for why X should beat Y.

    As others here have begun to show, it's not so clear cut. Wing design (cross section) thick - thin - narrow - wide - span - etc., balance points, power through the rpm ranges and torque, pivot points, distance from wing to stabilizer, a gazillion things all go into determining an aircrafts ability to do certain things well, others not so much...

    In the end it is a matter of good basic design.....THEN.....Trade offs. Stability for manueverability, how it should be flown (do you roll it or turn it?) on and on all have their place.

    So to try and say "here is the end all/best/ultimate fighter of the war", I believe only sets yourself up to be proven wrong.

    In kind the sim shows this balance well.....Those most often stating imballanced having simply been shot down too often by that they claim uber.......Naturally forgetting the opposing pilot, and their own errors.

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