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Deedsundone
03-05-2008, 10:50 AM
Despite some nine month´s cross-Channel sparring,technically the Focke-Wulf remained very much an unknown quantity to the RAF.they were desperate to get their hands on a captured example,but those wich had been bested in combat had either crasched in German held territory or where at the bottom of the Channel.
Some bizarre ideas were put forward to procure an airworthy specimen.One serving RAF pilot even suggested that a captured Bf 109 be returned to its original Luftwaffe markings,with spurious battle damage added for effect,and piloted by a German-speaking pilot suitably attired in Jagdwaffe flying gear,to one of JG 26`s bases under cover of a massive RAF fighter sweep.having landed his "crippled" machine,the pilot would demand a replacement-if no Bf 109s were aviable an Fw 190 would have to suffice-in order to return to the fray.Once back in the air with his prize,the "Luftwaffe" pilot would immediately head at top speed and zero altitude back across the Channel to the nearest RAF airfield.

A less fanciful sheme were to commandos to bring a pilot undetected within observation range of one of JG 26´s fields near the coast,where he would go into hiding,study the bases´s routine and select the opportune moment to steal a Focke-Wulf being readied for flight.It was given seroius consideration even being allocated the code name Airthief.An extraordinary coincidence saw Airthief overtaken by events on the very day it had been formally submitted in writing to Combined Opertaions.

Oberleutnant Arnim Faber become disorientated during aircombat,convinced he headed home to France over the English Channel but in fact the stretch of water beneath his wings was the Bristol Channel and the landfall looming ahead was South Wales.His fuel situation now precarious,Faber made for the nearest airfield he could see,but could not resist performing a victory roll and cockily extending his undercarrige while inverted,before touching down,at RAF Pembrey.His intact Fw 190A-3 was one of the major intelligence prizes of the entire war. Little wonder that his tounge-in-cheek offer to take it back up and demonstrate to the RAF what it could really do-if they would just refuel it for him,please-was turned down flat!

Taken from the "Aircraft of the aces-Fw 190 aces on the attack"

Deedsundone
03-05-2008, 10:50 AM
Despite some nine month´s cross-Channel sparring,technically the Focke-Wulf remained very much an unknown quantity to the RAF.they were desperate to get their hands on a captured example,but those wich had been bested in combat had either crasched in German held territory or where at the bottom of the Channel.
Some bizarre ideas were put forward to procure an airworthy specimen.One serving RAF pilot even suggested that a captured Bf 109 be returned to its original Luftwaffe markings,with spurious battle damage added for effect,and piloted by a German-speaking pilot suitably attired in Jagdwaffe flying gear,to one of JG 26`s bases under cover of a massive RAF fighter sweep.having landed his "crippled" machine,the pilot would demand a replacement-if no Bf 109s were aviable an Fw 190 would have to suffice-in order to return to the fray.Once back in the air with his prize,the "Luftwaffe" pilot would immediately head at top speed and zero altitude back across the Channel to the nearest RAF airfield.

A less fanciful sheme were to commandos to bring a pilot undetected within observation range of one of JG 26´s fields near the coast,where he would go into hiding,study the bases´s routine and select the opportune moment to steal a Focke-Wulf being readied for flight.It was given seroius consideration even being allocated the code name Airthief.An extraordinary coincidence saw Airthief overtaken by events on the very day it had been formally submitted in writing to Combined Opertaions.

Oberleutnant Arnim Faber become disorientated during aircombat,convinced he headed home to France over the English Channel but in fact the stretch of water beneath his wings was the Bristol Channel and the landfall looming ahead was South Wales.His fuel situation now precarious,Faber made for the nearest airfield he could see,but could not resist performing a victory roll and cockily extending his undercarrige while inverted,before touching down,at RAF Pembrey.His intact Fw 190A-3 was one of the major intelligence prizes of the entire war. Little wonder that his tounge-in-cheek offer to take it back up and demonstrate to the RAF what it could really do-if they would just refuel it for him,please-was turned down flat!

Taken from the "Aircraft of the aces-Fw 190 aces on the attack"

Ba5tard5word
03-05-2008, 11:03 AM
"Wait...that's not France!!!"

Interesting story. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

K_Freddie
03-05-2008, 11:12 AM
I'd like to know the British response to that... just guessing but probably the first time the brits had a sense of humor failure.. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Xiolablu3
03-05-2008, 11:23 AM
Hehe, you have to wonder why he didnt notice the roundels on the aircraft at the airfield, and also the gunners didnt shoot at him!

I guess a Welsh airfield is far away from teh front an dhad few AAA guns.

The last bit reminds me of Bader and Galland talking after he was taken POW in Gallands book 'The first and the Last'. Galland was showing him the Bf109 and Bader asked him if he could take it up for a spin, I guess because of Baders charisma (it is said he had the aura of a real leader of men, probably a real ******* too http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif), Galland said he nearly agreed!

Bader of course would have been straight back across the channel if he had let him, Galland made the right decision..

Pluto8742
03-05-2008, 11:43 AM
Oberleutnant Arnim Faber must have missed the lesson at flying school where they explain how a compass works...

Cheers,

P8.

HuninMunin
03-05-2008, 12:07 PM
Grab an Atlas.
Read the anectote again.

Pluto8742
03-05-2008, 12:21 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by HuninMunin:
Grab an Atlas.
Read the anectote again. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


Pembrey is in Wales and so is NORTH of the Bristol Channel. Faber must have flown on a reciprocal bearing, thinking he was heading South when in fact he was heading North. What an idiot.

Cheers,

P8.

Warrington_Wolf
03-05-2008, 12:51 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Pluto8742:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by HuninMunin:
Grab an Atlas.
Read the anectote again. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


Pembrey is in Wales and so is NORTH of the Bristol Channel. Faber must have flown on a reciprocal bearing, thinking he was heading South when in fact he was heading North. What an idiot.

Cheers,

P8. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>That was my first thought when I studied a map of Wales after first reading about this incident.
Another possible point, if his fuel state was precarious, then he may well have been forced to land somewhere else in the UK anyway.
I wonder what the German translation is for "arrgh bollocks" and if Faber muttered it when he realized his mistake http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif?
P.S. Does anyone know if the aircraft involved survived the war?

mmitch10
03-05-2008, 01:30 PM
The pilot selected for operation airthief was Jeffrey Quill, one of Supermarine's chief test pilots...I'm in the middle of reading his excellent account of his experiences during the war, "Sptifire, A Test Pilot's Story".

The plan was for one commando, Philip Pinckney, and Jeffrey Quill to go alone into occupied France from a gunboat, and then steal a FW190...no details given about how they would get close to the plane. The whole scheme was concocted by Pinckney and Quill in Quill's garden, no doubt after they had enjoyed a few glasses of Pimms http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

I_KG100_Prien
03-05-2008, 01:37 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Pluto8742:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by HuninMunin:
Grab an Atlas.
Read the anectote again. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


Pembrey is in Wales and so is NORTH of the Bristol Channel. Faber must have flown on a reciprocal bearing, thinking he was heading South when in fact he was heading North. What an idiot.

Cheers,

P8. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Says the comfy seated, arm-chair, virtual pilot many years later.

Heliopause
03-05-2008, 02:01 PM
I think Faber was flying an Fw 190-A5. It happened June 23rd 1942.
Faber wasn't the first german pilot to go wrong in that area. On October 12th 1941 a Dornier Do 217 belly-landed near lydd after flying to long and running out of petrol. They had mistaken the Bristol channel for the English channel during their search for shipping.

80 Wing of the RAF was engaged in a long-running campaign to neutralise the various navigational systems in use by the luftwaffe. (best known are the attacks against Knickebein, X-gert and Y-gert).
Against the german radio beacons the wing could employ a more subtle method. To defeat these its chosen weapon was the so-called Meacon, or masking beacon.
Under favourable conditions, a Meacon would produce a completly erroneous bearing from a german radio beacon.

(scource: Flypast)

Faber probably had bearing problems too after his fight. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

Billy_BigBoy
03-05-2008, 02:11 PM
Thanks, nice story. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

BOA_Allmenroder
03-05-2008, 02:12 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Warrington_Wolf:

P.S. Does anyone know if the aircraft involved survived the war? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I believe I read somewhere that the aircraft was used for test flying and then destroyed deliberately during test gunnery firing (ie it was shot at to see effects of allied weaponry on it).

Can't remember where I read that though.

arthursmedley
03-05-2008, 02:37 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by I_KG100_Prien:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Pluto8742:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by HuninMunin:
Grab an Atlas.
Read the anectote again. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


Pembrey is in Wales and so is NORTH of the Bristol Channel. Faber must have flown on a reciprocal bearing, thinking he was heading South when in fact he was heading North. What an idiot.

Cheers,

P8. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Says the comfy seated, arm-chair, virtual pilot many years later. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I believe his combat was in the Exeter area. If you have a good look at a map you'll see he flew an exact reciprocal. He wasn't the first and certainly won't be the last to do this (pause for extensive coughing.)

Airfields can be remarkably difficult to spot from the air - you need to be familiar with the local landmarks for reference ideally - and I would imagine he would have been rather anxious about his fuel state.

Faber was adjutant of his unit and to pull off the landing he made at Pembrey - undercart lowered while inverted, followed by extensive side-slipping into a 3 pointer - seems to indicate experten rather than idiot.

I dont know what happend to his plane but Faber was greeted by a surprised RAF duty officer holding a revolver and whisked off to Canada sharpish to protect our little secret.

I wonder what happend to him? Presumably he survived the war.

Today Pembrey is a fantastic little race circuit. I recommend a trackday with a Honda CBR600, or better still someone else's CBR600! and several sets of knee-sliders

Schwarz.13
03-05-2008, 02:56 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by BOA_Allmenroder:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Warrington_Wolf:

P.S. Does anyone know if the aircraft involved survived the war? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I believe I read somewhere that the aircraft was used for test flying and then destroyed deliberately during test gunnery firing (ie it was shot at to see effects of allied weaponry on it).

Can't remember where I read that though. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

http://img519.imageshack.us/img519/6057/fwrjhruyrlu6.jpg

"Under new ownership, Faber's 'Anton 3' has had its Luftwaffe Werk-Nummer (5)313 replaced by RAF serial MP499. It has also been given a coat of British camouflage, but whereas the fuselage cross has simply been crudely overpainted, Hahn's 'play-on-words' emblem has been carefully retained. Was the Station Commander at Pembrey a Wg Cdr Cockerill by any chance?! A total of 29 flights totalling 12 hours and 15 minutes, were made by the RAF in MP499 between 3 July 1942 and 29 January 1943, before it was Struck Off Charge on 18 September that same year. The FW 190 was then pulled apart and its various main components shot at or tested to destruction"

from Osprey: FW 190 Aces of the Western Front by John Weal

(please note the above picture is not the one featured in the book - the III/JG2 'cockerill' emblem being on the port side)

EDIT: just found these great pics:

Pic.1 (http://www.asisbiz.com/il2/Holding_the_West/Fw-190A%20JG2.3%20(+%20$Armin%20Faber/pages/Focke%20Wulf%20Fw-190A%20JG2_3%20(+%20$Armin%20Faber%20W_Nr%205313%2 0landed%20in%20Wales%20in%20error%20June%2023,%201 942%2006_jpg.htm)

Pic.2 (http://www.asisbiz.com/il2/Holding_the_West/Fw-190A%20JG2.3%20(+%20$Armin%20Faber/pages/Focke%20Wulf%20Fw-190A%20JG2_3%20(+%20$Armin%20Faber%20W_Nr%205313%2 0landed%20in%20Wales%20in%20error%20June%2023,%201 942%2007_jpg.htm)

Ratsack
03-05-2008, 04:35 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Heliopause:
I think Faber was flying an Fw 190-A5. ... </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

No, it's an A-3. See the photograph in Schwarz 13's post above. Note the aerial attachment at the top of the fin. From the A-4 series onward, the aerial was mounted on the tip of a pointed horn or mast, projecting from the top of the fin. This plane is therefore A-3 or earlier.

In any event, all the docs say this plane was an A-3.


You may be thinking of the various fighter bombers that were captured later. At least one of these - the jabo captured in Sicily by the US - was an A-5. The Brits also got at least one A-4 fighter bomber in Britain.

Faber's A-3 was the only fighter version captured intact, however.

cheers,
Ratsack

JG53Frankyboy
03-05-2008, 05:21 PM
Faber's Fw190 :
http://www.wwiiaircraftperformance.org/fw190/fw-190-rep2092.pdf

PhantomKira
03-05-2008, 09:53 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content"> Pembrey is in Wales and so is NORTH of the Bristol Channel. Faber must have flown on a reciprocal bearing, thinking he was heading South when in fact he was heading North. What an idiot.
</div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Not trying to incite a riot, but you're saying you're Mr. Perfect, and that you've NEVER misread your compass bearing, in a real aircraft?

Common now...

Interesting story about the aircraft! Ah, an A-5. Nice!

JG53Frankyboy
03-06-2008, 01:34 AM
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/5f/Bristol_channel_detailed_map.png

Schwarz.13
03-06-2008, 01:40 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Pluto8742:
Pembrey is in Wales and so is NORTH of the Bristol Channel. Faber must have flown on a reciprocal bearing, thinking he was heading South when in fact he was heading North. What an idiot. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Perhaps you should have a little more respect for veterans (regardless of nationlity) who have been through something thankfully you won't have to!

Besides - i'm sure Faber spent the rest of the war (and beyond) kicking himself. Who knows maybe he had a good sense of humour and laughed about it thereafter...

Pluto8742
03-06-2008, 02:43 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by I_KG100_Prien:
Says the comfy seated, arm-chair, virtual pilot many years later. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I'm a pilot in RL. Flying a reciprocal bearing is an unimpressive bit of navigation. If I did it in real life I'd consider myself an idiot. I don't see why doing it in a Fw-190 exempts one from a charge of idiocy.

Cheers,

P8.

Bewolf
03-06-2008, 02:55 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Pluto8742:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by I_KG100_Prien:
Says the comfy seated, arm-chair, virtual pilot many years later. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I'm a pilot in RL. Flying a reciprocal bearing is an unimpressive bit of navigation. If I did it in real life I'd consider myself an idiot. I don't see why doing it in a Fw-190 exempts one from a charge of idiocy.

Cheers,

P8. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Hey Pluto. Look, there are some differences between a fighter plane and a civilian plane.
Let me explain to you. Fighter planes don't just fly from point A to point B. Unlike civiliann planes, they do not have the luxury of having a constant eye on instruments. Fighter planes actually...fight. Yes, really.
That means planes get seperated from their groups, they take the fight to unkown territories, they change directions all the time. There is lots and lots of potential right there to get lost, especially with the absence of any landmarks.

So, I hope you grasped those differences here. It's really not that hard once you read a bit bout combat aircraft and their missions during ww2, an epic conflict that went from 1939 to 45, just in case you didn't know that either.

I_KG100_Prien
03-06-2008, 03:46 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Pluto8742:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by I_KG100_Prien:
Says the comfy seated, arm-chair, virtual pilot many years later. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I'm a pilot in RL. Flying a reciprocal bearing is an unimpressive bit of navigation. If I did it in real life I'd consider myself an idiot. I don't see why doing it in a Fw-190 exempts one from a charge of idiocy.

Cheers,

P8. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Ok, so I'll change my statement. The arm-chair virtual fighter pilot.

Still doesn't change my opinion of your statement. I doubt he was the only pilot back in those days to get lost. He made an error, yes but not one that he needs to be considered and "idiot" for.. Especially not by someone who never has, and never will be in his shoes.

Don't think anyone tries to kill you every time you take to the skies in your ultra light.

K_Freddie
03-06-2008, 04:04 AM
There is another story of an allied pilot who managed to steal an FW190 in the closing stages of the war. I think he was either an POW escapee or a downed pilot, who hid in the bushes at the end of the airfield where this FW was parked, only a few metres away. Made his move in the early hours.

He said that he liked the instrument panel and it was easy to start. Took off in a hurry http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif and flew low level for about 50km and landed on a known allied airfield, before he would be shot at.
The ground staff rushed over at him with guns ready, said that were were astonished when he spoke english.

Funny how nobody has actually thought that the compass might have been defective in Faber's FW... this does happen http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

BOA_Allmenroder
03-06-2008, 07:02 AM
Compasses also can move (precess) in flight.

It happend to me once and I got lost before I realized, 'hey, I'm going the wrong way!. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/1072.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/35.gif

Monterey13
03-06-2008, 07:40 AM
Do you think that he just MAY have done it on purpose? He may have planned on "defecting" all along. Maybe he did the victory roll because he knew he had succeeded. The base could have had some prior intel of his intention, therefore no one fired at him. It's a possibility. Guess we'll never know.

Pluto8742
03-06-2008, 08:44 AM
IIRC, I've read somewhere that Faber became almost suicidal when he realised what he had done. I doubt if it was intentional. He certainly wasn't the only pilot in history to make the reciprocal-bearing error either. In fact, I'm sure I've read somewhere that a LW night fighter pretended to have made just such a mistake so that the crew could fly to England and defect.

Incidentally, I suspect that the error is made at the time of planning the route rather than at the time of reading the compass. Looking at the line drawn on the map it is possible to get mixed up as to the bearing by 180 degrees. Looking at a compass has rather less ambiguity.

Cheers,

P8.

Bremspropeller
03-06-2008, 10:25 AM
According to Eric brown's book, Faber downed at least one Spit, before landing at the RAF airfield - not the best way do defect, IMHO.

mynameisroland
03-06-2008, 10:59 AM
I read that Faber was shipped off to a POW camp in Canada and was diagnosed with epillepsy. He subsequently was returned to Germany after a period of internment as a non combatant because according to the Allied doctors he was incapable of flying / fighting again. Faber returned to Germany and rejoined his old unit and resumed flying op.s

Bremspropeller
03-06-2008, 12:22 PM
I guess his fellow friends were really happy about his lil "screw-up" and greeted him as if he was Elvis when he came back...

ultraHun
03-06-2008, 12:23 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by mynameisroland:
I read that Faber was shipped off to a POW camp in Canada and was diagnosed with epillepsy. He subsequently was returned to Germany after a period of internment as a non combatant because according to the Allied doctors he was incapable of flying / fighting again. Faber returned to Germany and rejoined his old unit and resumed flying op.s </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Do you know the source? - I would like to read that in detail.

Vidar_1
03-06-2008, 01:24 PM
Not only Germans fly the wrong way:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Douglas_Corrigan