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XyZspineZyX
08-30-2003, 04:44 PM
Just finished reading Geoffrey Wellum's book 'First Light'.
What a great read ! This has got to be one of the best books I've read. His accounts of battle are so realistic, it actually made me feel nervous reading them !
In one of them, he has a 109 on his tail and they are both pulling tighter and tighter in the the turn till the stall buffet,waiting to see who flicks out first.



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XyZspineZyX
08-30-2003, 04:44 PM
Just finished reading Geoffrey Wellum's book 'First Light'.
What a great read ! This has got to be one of the best books I've read. His accounts of battle are so realistic, it actually made me feel nervous reading them !
In one of them, he has a 109 on his tail and they are both pulling tighter and tighter in the the turn till the stall buffet,waiting to see who flicks out first.



http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/0670912484/202-0117016-1904643

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XyZspineZyX
08-30-2003, 06:26 PM
I just ordered "To Fly and Fight" By Bud Anderson, should be here in a week.

Maybe I'll check this one out too.

XyZspineZyX
08-30-2003, 06:41 PM
That
BlackAdder_ wrote:
-
- Just finished reading Geoffrey Wellum's book 'First
- Light'.
- What a great read ! This has got to be one of the
- best books I've read. His accounts of battle are so
- realistic, it actually made me feel nervous reading
- them !
- In one of them, he has a 109 on his tail and they
- are both pulling tighter and tighter in the the turn
- till the stall buffet,waiting to see who flicks out
- first.

Impossible!! Everyone knows that 109 pilots NEVER engaged in turn fights since their turn performance was so poor. /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

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XyZspineZyX
08-30-2003, 07:59 PM
Must have been a rookie German then !

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XyZspineZyX
08-30-2003, 09:28 PM
Yes Blackadder that was a great read - I picked it up earlier this year. I have just finished 'Fighter Boys' by Patrick Bishop - excellent account of the Battle of Britain aircrew experiences on both sides and full of previously unpublished accounts of the action. I found this one equally unputdownable........

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XyZspineZyX
08-30-2003, 10:07 PM
You might like to read 'Fly for you Life' - the story of british ace Robert Stanford-Tuck.

I would recommend it.

The best clip I have read is by Ian 'Widge' Gleed.

I may write it out for you later.

BobTuck.

XyZspineZyX
08-30-2003, 11:10 PM
The best book by a fighter pilot I've read sofar is "the diary of Hauptmann Lipfert" by himself (a 203 kill ace from JG 52).
Sadly it is out of print, at least in german and it took me a long time to get one.

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XyZspineZyX
08-30-2003, 11:55 PM
Chadburn wrote:
-
- Impossible!! Everyone knows that 109 pilots NEVER
- engaged in turn fights since their turn performance
- was so poor. /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif


It is possible! In the Luftwaffe were pilots who liked turn fights.

XyZspineZyX
08-30-2003, 11:59 PM
" just ordered "To Fly and Fight" By Bud Anderson, should be here in a week"

Hey man, you ought to try the library - I read this from library, and they have tons others to read.

S!
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XyZspineZyX
08-31-2003, 12:16 AM
I've checked my local libraries, they havent heard of it. I would rather own it anyways.

I ordered it from his son's website, cebudanderson.com

XyZspineZyX
08-31-2003, 07:18 AM
BlackAdder_ wrote:
- Must have been a rookie German then !


Probably the exact opposite, an experienced 109 pilot. Maybe I should have added more winkies, but I was joking about 109 pilots never engaging in turn fights.

I've read accounts of LW pilots who were very confident of turning with Spitfires in the BOB and scored victories doing so.


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XyZspineZyX
08-31-2003, 07:41 AM
Thanx for all the book suggestions guys, I will be going to the book store tomorrow (if I can get away from my comp)

"Any information that we receive concerning the real world is carefully controlled"

XyZspineZyX
08-31-2003, 08:43 AM
Thanks for the tip. Hadn't heard of this one. I'll order it from Amazon fairly soon. Cheers!

XyZspineZyX
08-31-2003, 09:49 AM
I would suggest the reading of Cpt. Lacalle's memoir book "La aviaci├┬│n de caza durante la Guerra Civil Espa˝ola" ("Fighter aviation during SCW"), a magnificent but disordered view of a changing world. Unfortunately, it was written and edited during his exile in Mexico, and there's only one edition (in Spanish), by a publishing firm that, I'm afraid, has disappeared. I'd like to contact Lacalle's relatives, to have permission to translate it into English and have two nice eBook versions.

It would be a good idea to rescue the experience of this man for posterity. I'd enjoy doing it, and I'd do it for free.

It's really a sincere and interesting book, not a simple compilation of romantic or epic moments.

S!

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XyZspineZyX
08-31-2003, 10:51 AM
BUMP for 'First Light'

....best air-war book i've read.

XyZspineZyX
08-31-2003, 10:53 AM
Geoffrey Wellum's book is indeed a great read, and very hard to put down.

He'd fought in the BoB, did over 100 sweeps across Northern France in '41, and went on to fight in Malta, all by the time he was 21.

His account of what it was like to fly a Spitfire for the first time, to me, prehaps best sums up what I imagined it would be like.

Turnfights, he won that one, perhaps obviously as he was around to write the book! I can't remember wether he scored a kill, or wether the 109 stalled out, and he escaped. Bf109's did engage in turnfights occasionally with Spits, and sometimes won them, but that would usually be by exerienced LW pilots against an inexperienced RAF pilot who wouldn't be flying the Spit to it's limits. An similarly experienced Spit pilot would most likely have won a turnfight as the Spitfire was a more capable turner, and a better low-speed dogfighter. That was the essence of RAF tactics vs 109's and 190's, to try and make them come down and dogfight. That's where the GB planes had the edge.

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XyZspineZyX
09-01-2003, 05:26 AM
Chadburn wrote:
- That
- BlackAdder_ wrote:
--
-- Just finished reading Geoffrey Wellum's book 'First
-- Light'.
-- What a great read ! This has got to be one of the
-- best books I've read. His accounts of battle are so
-- realistic, it actually made me feel nervous reading
-- them !
-- In one of them, he has a 109 on his tail and they
-- are both pulling tighter and tighter in the the turn
-- till the stall buffet,waiting to see who flicks out
-- first.
-
- Impossible!! Everyone knows that 109 pilots NEVER
- engaged in turn fights since their turn performance
- was so poor. /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif
-

Actually, I am guilty of this as well. If I know that there are no other fighters that will creep up on me, I will turn fight with a 109 on VVS aircraft. With correct usage of flaps, throttle, radiator controls and good stick movement, you can stay with him. The only thing is pray that he doesn't get the initiative after you've gotten behind him. I always make 100% sure that I can get him in a turn fight before I engage in this. Usually if the vvs is low and slow, then it makes it much easier.

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XyZspineZyX
09-01-2003, 01:24 PM
Yup - good book, Battle of Britain up to Malta ('43?).


IIRC, the early Bf109's could turn with the early Spits.

Something to do with rates of turn and turn circles - Wellum was lucck to get out of that fight alive.

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XyZspineZyX
09-01-2003, 01:38 PM
I like this story it the first kill over Guadalcanal I think I will have to get this book /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif


An excert from Saburo Saki's book Samurai! Saburo Sakai pages 160-162
The dogfight with James "Pug" Southerland flyingF4F Wildcat Bu 5192, over Guadalcanal

"...The Wildcat was clinging grimly to the tail of a Zero, its tracers chewing up the wings and tail. In despiration, I snapped out a burst. At once the Grumman snapped away in a roll to the right, clawed around in a tight turn, and ended uo in a climb straight at my own plane. Never before had I seen an enemy plane move so quickly or gracefully before, and every second his guns were moving closer to the belly of my fighter. I snap-rolled in an effort to throw him off. He would not be shaken. He was using my favorite tactics, coming up from under.

I chopped the trottle back and the Zero shuddered as its speed fell. It worked; his timing off the enemy pilot pulled back in a turn. I slammed the trottle forward again, rolling to the left. Three times I rolled the Zero, then dropped in a spin, and came out in a left verticalspiral. The Wildcat matched me turn for turn.Our left wings pointed at a right angle to the sea below us, the right wing at the sky.

Neither of us could gain the advantage. We held to the spiral, trmendous G pressures pushing us down in our seats with every passing second. My heart pounded wildly, and my head felt as if it weighed a ton. A gray film seemed to be clouding my eyes. I gritted my teeth; if the enemy pilot could take it, so could I. The man who failed first and turned in any other direction to ease the pressure would be finished.

On the fifth spiral, the Wildcat skidded slightly, I had him, I though. But the Grumman dropped his nose, gained speed, and the pilot again had his plane in full control. There was a terrific man behind that stick.

He made his error, however, in the next moment. Instead of swing back to go into a sixth spiral, he fed power to his engine, broke away at an angle, and looped. That was the decisive split second. I went right after him, cutting inside the Grumman's arc, and came out on his tail. I had him. He kept flying loops, trying to narrow the distance of each arc. Everytime he went up and around I cut inside his arc and lessened the distance between our two planes. The Zero could outfly any fighter in the world in this kind of manuver.

When I was only fifty yards away, the Wildcat broke out of his loop and astonished me by flying straight and level. At this distance I would not need the cannon; I pumped 200 rounds into the Grumman's cockpit, watching the bullets chewing up the thin metal skin ans ahattering the glass.

I could not believe what I saw; the Wildcat continued flying almost as if nothing had happened. A Zero which had taken that many bullets into its vital cockpit would have been a ball of fire by now. I could not understand it. I slammed the trottle forward and closed in to the American plane, just as the enemy fighter lost speed. In a momentI was ten yards ahead of the Wildcat, trying to slow down. I hunched my shoulders, prepared for the onslaught of his guns, I was trapped.

No bullets came. The Wildcat's guns remained silent. The entire situation was unbelievable. I dropped my speed until our planes were flying wing-to-wing formation. I opened my cockpit window and staired out. The WIldcat's cockpit canopy was already back, and I could see the pilot clearly. He was a big man, with a round face. He wore a light khaki uniform. He appeared to be middle-aged, not as young as I had expected.

For several seconds, we flew along in our bizarre formation, our eyes meting across the narrow space between the two planes. The Wildcat was a shambles. Bullet holes had cut the fuselage and wings up from one end to the other. The skin of the rudder was gone, and the metal ribs stuck out like a skeleton. Now I understood his horizontal flight, and also why the pilot had not fired. Blood stained his right shoulder, and I saw the dark patch moving downwards over his chest. It was incredible that his plane was still in the air.

But this was no way to kill a man! Not with him flying helplessly, wounded, his plane a wreck. I raised my left hand and shook my fist at him shouting uselessly, I knew, for him to fight instead of flying along like a clay pigeon. The American looked startled; he raised his right hand weakly and waved.

I had never felt so strange before. I had killed many Americans in the air, but this was the first time a mna had weakedned in such a fasion directly before my eyes, and from the wounds I had inflicted upon him. I honestly, didn't know whether or not I should try and finish him off. Such thoughts were stupid, of course. Wounded or not, he was the enemy, and he had almost taken three of my own men a few minutes before. However, there was no reason to aim for the pilot again. I wanted the plane, not the man.

I dropped back and came again in on his tail. Somehow the American calledupon a reserve of strength and the Wildcat jerked into a loop. That was it. His nose started up. I aimed carefully at the engine, and barely touched the cannon trigger. A birst of flame and smoke exploed outward from the engine. The Wildcat rolled and the pilot bailed out. Far below me, almost directly over the Guadalcanal coast, his parachute opened. The pilot did not grasp the shroud lines, but hung limply in his chute. The last I saw of him he was drifiting in towards the beach..."

Sakai's autobiography, originally pubished in 1957.



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XyZspineZyX
09-01-2003, 05:34 PM
Hi,

I picked up this book when on my way out to Prague a couple of weeks ago and it must have been an omen because there was a Spitfire flying around East Midlands airport a short time after (probably the Rolls Royce one?).

A fantastic book with an excellent insight into this life and wartime emotions.

Cheers,
Norris

XyZspineZyX
09-01-2003, 06:36 PM
Mighty fine book (first light).

The scene with the 109 turning to get him is very good and vivid.

I think the book can barely be surpassed by other wwii fighter pilot biographies. I'm after hair raising stories and Bob Tuck's 'Fly for your life' is another mighty fine book. Check his Hurricane v a number of 109s fight over the channel.

Anyone read Pierre Clostermann's account( Big show?) It's supposed to be one of the greatest (and importantly it's about my two favourite types Tempest and Spit).

Also. check the Don Gentile biography and the scene where he and wingman John Godfrey attack 80-100 FWs despite them being the only apparent escort pair in the vicinity. Also, Saburo Sakai's book has a description of a fight in which he evaded Hellcats for about a quarter of an hour in a 1v16 scenario - puts the faith of god in you!

XyZspineZyX
09-01-2003, 06:55 PM
BobTuck wrote:
- You might like to read 'Fly for you Life' - the
- story of british ace Robert Stanford-Tuck.
-
- I would recommend it.
-
- The best clip I have read is by Ian 'Widge' Gleed.
-
- I may write it out for you later.
-
- BobTuck.
-
-

I was once part of an Air Cadet Guard of Honour for Robert Stanford-Tuck. It was at the local premiere of the Battle of Britain film, in Margate. It was a thrill seeing him and a few of the other pilots, and we got to see the film for free as well!
Cheers!

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XyZspineZyX
09-03-2003, 01:18 AM
Dunkelgrun, you lucky b@st@rd!

I was in the Air Cadets too, but nothing as good as that.

BobTuck <--- green with envy!

RichardI
09-03-2003, 04:43 PM
Blackadder:- Just ordered it from Amazon.ca Should arrive at my door in a few days and I'm lookin' forward to it. Thanks for the tip!

Dolemite:- To Fly and Fight is a very good book. My copy is autographed by "Bud". BTW, if you still have a copy of Jane's WWII Fighters around, "Bud" Anderson is one of the pilots interviewed in the cinema portion of the game, along with a British ace, and two German aces. Great stuff if you get a chance to see it.

Rich /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

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