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JRJacobs
01-30-2005, 01:50 PM
Part 1
A test pilot recalls
By the late Rear Adm. C.C. €œAndy€ Andrews, U.S.Navy (Ret)

Butcher Bird vs. Hellcat & Corsair

Many Fw-190s were captured and evaluated by the U.S. and UK, over Wright Test Field in 1946.

If the Corsair was attacked by the Fw-190 from behind, it could evade the Butcher Bird by performing a tight loop. The Fw-190 would frequently stall out when attempting to follow this maneuver.

The posted dive restrictions on the Fw-190€ss airspeed indicator were comparable to those of the F6F-3 Hellcat: 405 knots below 10,000 feet; 370 knots at 10,000 to 16,500 feet; and 313 knots at 16,500 to 25,000 feet

DURING WW II, WE IN THE MILITARY WERE not allowed to save notes, keep diaries or take pictures, and being a Boy Scout type, I lived by the rules. Now, after 55 years, when I'm called to write about some of my flight experiences, I wish that I had bent the rules a little. Thank goodness I have a copy of our Patuxent Naval Air Test Center "Report of Comparative Combat Evaluation of the Focke-Wulf 190A-4," which was obtained by Corky Meyer from The Air and Space Museum under the Freedom of Information Act. Using that report for specific test data and as a memory jogger, I will relate some results and impressions from those tests. Keep in mind that this was before there was a test-pilot school in the U.S. We were long on flying experience and very short on technical flight-test experience.

Just back from fleet carrier duty in early 1944, I was transferred to the Tactical Test Center at Patuxent River in Maryland. The skipper, Cdr. F.L. Palmer, greeted me with great enthusiasm and saying "I'm glad to see you! We are loaded with fighter projects, and our last fighter pilot has just been transferred. How many hours do you have in the F6F-3 Hellcat?" I replied, "None." "How many hours in the F4U-1 Corsair?" "None." With some dismay, he asked, "What the hell have you been flying?" I told him that although my squadron, the Red Rippers, had always been the first fighter unit to get every new Navy fighter, we were still flying the older F4F-4 Wildcat. I sheepishly told him that I had flown F4F-4s during my Navy fleet career. He looked out a window at a row of planes€"all different€"and told me to fly them and then come to see him. He must have been pleased by my action because in a few days, he sent for me and told me I was to go to Anacostia, Maryland, to get a German fighter, and I could take Jeanie, my new wife, with me. Having been at sea since our wedding and now having unlimited access to a row of planes as if they were my toys, this treat was too much. I wryly thought, "War really is hell, ain't it?"

On site at Anacostia, just across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., I tried to conceal my awe and acted as though I flew a captured foreign plane every day. There was no pilot's handbook€"no manuals of any kind. This was a real credit to the mechanics who made a flyable airplane out of several crates of pieces. I was given a German/English glossary of aviation terms and spent a few days familiarizing myself with the Fw-190 while it was being readied for flight. I convinced myself that if I pushed the stick forward, the nose would go down, and if I pulled the stick aft, the nose would go up. So, what the heck! I was checked out. Pax sent an escort plane, and we were off on the flight to the Test Center, with me at the controls of the Fw-190. I had reviewed my freshman physics notes so that I'd be able to convert some of those funny numbers in the Fw-190 cockpit to knots and feet. En route, having decided that flying in German was almost like flying in English, I stalled it a few times. Two things surprised me: it stalled at what my calculations indicated was more than twice the stall speed of the aircraft with which I was accustomed. At first, I suspected that I had made a mistake when converting those "funny" numbers to knots; the second surprise was the suddenness of the stall€"sudden, but controllable. I got my nerve up to slow-roll it a couple of times, and we arrived at Pax. The moment had come to see whether I'd be able to land that mother. The landing was uneventful at what I remember to be 137 knots. This was more than twice the landing speeds of our carrier fighters. I had met a truly "hot" plane.

I decided that for the Fw-190, "fighter" was a misnomer. In my opinion, it was an interceptor€"not what we in the Navy expected to fly on fighter missions. I also questioned the title of the project assigned to us. It was "Comparative Combat Evaluation of Focke-Wulf 190A-4 Airplane." The comparison was with F6F-3 and F4U-1D fighters. As we got into the program, I remember telling project engineer Bill Holmes, "This plane is not a fighter." I said this with a certain cockiness and meant it as a put-down of an enemy plane that didn't stack up very well in fighter-to-fighter simulated combat. In our final analysis, the Fw-190 was about what you would expect for a lightweight plane: reasonably high powered, it had a high wing loading and poor stall characteristics.

On what was probably my second flight, I made a steep dive to see how fast the plane would go. I don't remember the numbers, but I experienced alarming vibrations. I later learned that I had foolishly and grossly exceeded the limits marked on the airspeed indicator. At that stage, if it wasn't written in English, I wasn't reading it. It was more fun to spend our time dogfighting and hot-dogging than doing serious flight tests, but Bill Holmes got us working seriously and provided long lists of data to be collected on each flight, and we did so€"reluctantly but dutifully. Here are some test results and a few of my impressions:

€ Rate of climb. We compared climb rates from 140 knots to 200 knots at altitudes of 200 feet to 25,000 feet. The Fw-190's best climb speed was 165 knots compared with 130 knots for the F6F-3 and 135 knots for the F4U-1. Its faster rate of climb gave it an important advantage: it could break off an engagement at will and re-engage head-on, if its pilot chose to.

€ Horizontal speed. This was measured in two-minute, level-flight runs that ranged in altitude from sea level to 25,000 feet. The Fw-190's maximum true airspeeds varied from 290 knots at 200 feet to 356 knots at 25,000 feet. It had a speed advantage over the F6F-3 that varied from zero at 200 feet to 17 knots at 25,000 feet. Against the F4U-1, it had a 25-knot disadvantage at 200 feet, and that was reduced to even at 15,000 feet and increased to a 6-knot advantage at 25,000 feet.

We did our best to calibrate the instruments. Looking back, I realize that we probably didn't have a very accurate comparison when tests were flown individually instead of side by side. When you test planes side by side, the comparison has a good chance of being reasonable, even if exact quantitative performance measurements may be doubted. Horizontal speed differences measured at a fixed altitude did not indicate much tactical advantage for any plane, but when the horizontal speed was combined with best climb speeds, the Fw-190's 165-knot top climb speed gave it a considerable advantage when used properly to avoid a fighter-to-fighter engagement.

€ Horizontal accelerations. These tests were made by flying in line at predetermined initial speeds from 140 to 200 knots at altitudes of from 200 feet to 25,000 feet and applying full power simultaneously in all three planes. It was readily apparent that it was much easier to achieve full power in the Fw-190 with its uni-lever control; this required a simple throttle advance to control propeller pitch, manifold pressure, mixture, magneto timing and throttle setting. This made a difference during our evaluations, but I never felt that it meant much tactically because when the pucker factor is tight in combat, it doesn't take long for a pilot to firewall everything in the cockpit.

Relative accelerations from all speeds of more than 160 knots showed the F4U-1 and the Fw-190 to be slightly superior to the F6F-3 and showed the F4U-1 to be slightly superior to the Fw-190 up to 15,000 feet, above which the Fw-190 had a slight advantage. At speeds of less than 160 knots, the Fw-190 and the F6F-3 were equals. None of these differences offered much of a tactical advantage or disadvantage.

Rate of roll. In roll rate, the Fw-190 was slightly superior to the F6F-3 and about equal to the F4U-1. It rolled very easily, didn't require any excessive stick forces and didn't show any tendency to drop its nose; it did, however, exhibit roll reversal at slow speeds and in turns. This forced the Fw-190 pilot to keep his speed up in tight turns, and that limited his slow-speed maneuvering.

This Fw-190A-4/trop was captured at Gerbini, Sicily, and was repainted in 85th FS, 79th FG markings. It was flown by the Group's pilots until spare parts and some serious scowls from the brass became a problem.

€ Maneuverability. The F4U-l's and F6F-3's turning characteristics were far superior to the Fw-190's. From directly behind the Fw-190 holding its tightest turn, the F6F-3 and the F4U-1 could turn inside it and be directly behind it again in approximately three circles. This, of course, was not a tactical maneuver, but it was a good indication of the planes' comparative turning abilities. Both could easily follow the Fw-190 in tight turns at any speed, but the Fw-190 pilot could not keep his gunsight pipper on either when they made tight turns. When in a tight turn to the left and near stalling speed, the Fw-190 exhibited a tendency to reverse aileron control and then stall without warning. When turning to the right and nearly at stalling speed, it tended to drop its right wing and nose and to dive as a result; this frequently put it in a good position to be attacked. When this happened, the fight was over. Its pilot would have to recover and would probably dive to try to break off the engagement. In our dogfighting, if a pilot escaped and wanted to re-engage, he would try to use his top climb speed to get away and come back for a one-pass, non-maneuvering attack. It was never advantageous to the Fw-190 to try to mix it up in close. It couldn't fly any turning maneuver that the F4U-1 and the F6F-3 couldn't follow. It required a much greater radius in a loop than the F4U-1 or the F6F-3 did and tended to stall when trying to follow in a loop. Looping was a very effective defensive maneuver for the F4U-1 and F6F-3 when the Fw-190 attacked from their rear. The Fw-190 stalled with very little warning but recovered easily. The F4U-1 and F6F-3 could take advantage of this propensity to stall when close in and in situations during which the Fw-190 was required to make tight turns to stay engaged. The difference in maneuverability was the greatest tactical disadvantage faced by the Fw-190 pilots in one-on-one encounters. In zooms after dives, the three aircraft were about equal. Close formation flying was extremely difficult for the Fw-190 because of the lack of fine power adjustments achievable with its uni-lever control.

JRJacobs
01-30-2005, 01:50 PM
Part 1
A test pilot recalls
By the late Rear Adm. C.C. €œAndy€ Andrews, U.S.Navy (Ret)

Butcher Bird vs. Hellcat & Corsair

Many Fw-190s were captured and evaluated by the U.S. and UK, over Wright Test Field in 1946.

If the Corsair was attacked by the Fw-190 from behind, it could evade the Butcher Bird by performing a tight loop. The Fw-190 would frequently stall out when attempting to follow this maneuver.

The posted dive restrictions on the Fw-190€ss airspeed indicator were comparable to those of the F6F-3 Hellcat: 405 knots below 10,000 feet; 370 knots at 10,000 to 16,500 feet; and 313 knots at 16,500 to 25,000 feet

DURING WW II, WE IN THE MILITARY WERE not allowed to save notes, keep diaries or take pictures, and being a Boy Scout type, I lived by the rules. Now, after 55 years, when I'm called to write about some of my flight experiences, I wish that I had bent the rules a little. Thank goodness I have a copy of our Patuxent Naval Air Test Center "Report of Comparative Combat Evaluation of the Focke-Wulf 190A-4," which was obtained by Corky Meyer from The Air and Space Museum under the Freedom of Information Act. Using that report for specific test data and as a memory jogger, I will relate some results and impressions from those tests. Keep in mind that this was before there was a test-pilot school in the U.S. We were long on flying experience and very short on technical flight-test experience.

Just back from fleet carrier duty in early 1944, I was transferred to the Tactical Test Center at Patuxent River in Maryland. The skipper, Cdr. F.L. Palmer, greeted me with great enthusiasm and saying "I'm glad to see you! We are loaded with fighter projects, and our last fighter pilot has just been transferred. How many hours do you have in the F6F-3 Hellcat?" I replied, "None." "How many hours in the F4U-1 Corsair?" "None." With some dismay, he asked, "What the hell have you been flying?" I told him that although my squadron, the Red Rippers, had always been the first fighter unit to get every new Navy fighter, we were still flying the older F4F-4 Wildcat. I sheepishly told him that I had flown F4F-4s during my Navy fleet career. He looked out a window at a row of planes€"all different€"and told me to fly them and then come to see him. He must have been pleased by my action because in a few days, he sent for me and told me I was to go to Anacostia, Maryland, to get a German fighter, and I could take Jeanie, my new wife, with me. Having been at sea since our wedding and now having unlimited access to a row of planes as if they were my toys, this treat was too much. I wryly thought, "War really is hell, ain't it?"

On site at Anacostia, just across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., I tried to conceal my awe and acted as though I flew a captured foreign plane every day. There was no pilot's handbook€"no manuals of any kind. This was a real credit to the mechanics who made a flyable airplane out of several crates of pieces. I was given a German/English glossary of aviation terms and spent a few days familiarizing myself with the Fw-190 while it was being readied for flight. I convinced myself that if I pushed the stick forward, the nose would go down, and if I pulled the stick aft, the nose would go up. So, what the heck! I was checked out. Pax sent an escort plane, and we were off on the flight to the Test Center, with me at the controls of the Fw-190. I had reviewed my freshman physics notes so that I'd be able to convert some of those funny numbers in the Fw-190 cockpit to knots and feet. En route, having decided that flying in German was almost like flying in English, I stalled it a few times. Two things surprised me: it stalled at what my calculations indicated was more than twice the stall speed of the aircraft with which I was accustomed. At first, I suspected that I had made a mistake when converting those "funny" numbers to knots; the second surprise was the suddenness of the stall€"sudden, but controllable. I got my nerve up to slow-roll it a couple of times, and we arrived at Pax. The moment had come to see whether I'd be able to land that mother. The landing was uneventful at what I remember to be 137 knots. This was more than twice the landing speeds of our carrier fighters. I had met a truly "hot" plane.

I decided that for the Fw-190, "fighter" was a misnomer. In my opinion, it was an interceptor€"not what we in the Navy expected to fly on fighter missions. I also questioned the title of the project assigned to us. It was "Comparative Combat Evaluation of Focke-Wulf 190A-4 Airplane." The comparison was with F6F-3 and F4U-1D fighters. As we got into the program, I remember telling project engineer Bill Holmes, "This plane is not a fighter." I said this with a certain cockiness and meant it as a put-down of an enemy plane that didn't stack up very well in fighter-to-fighter simulated combat. In our final analysis, the Fw-190 was about what you would expect for a lightweight plane: reasonably high powered, it had a high wing loading and poor stall characteristics.

On what was probably my second flight, I made a steep dive to see how fast the plane would go. I don't remember the numbers, but I experienced alarming vibrations. I later learned that I had foolishly and grossly exceeded the limits marked on the airspeed indicator. At that stage, if it wasn't written in English, I wasn't reading it. It was more fun to spend our time dogfighting and hot-dogging than doing serious flight tests, but Bill Holmes got us working seriously and provided long lists of data to be collected on each flight, and we did so€"reluctantly but dutifully. Here are some test results and a few of my impressions:

€ Rate of climb. We compared climb rates from 140 knots to 200 knots at altitudes of 200 feet to 25,000 feet. The Fw-190's best climb speed was 165 knots compared with 130 knots for the F6F-3 and 135 knots for the F4U-1. Its faster rate of climb gave it an important advantage: it could break off an engagement at will and re-engage head-on, if its pilot chose to.

€ Horizontal speed. This was measured in two-minute, level-flight runs that ranged in altitude from sea level to 25,000 feet. The Fw-190's maximum true airspeeds varied from 290 knots at 200 feet to 356 knots at 25,000 feet. It had a speed advantage over the F6F-3 that varied from zero at 200 feet to 17 knots at 25,000 feet. Against the F4U-1, it had a 25-knot disadvantage at 200 feet, and that was reduced to even at 15,000 feet and increased to a 6-knot advantage at 25,000 feet.

We did our best to calibrate the instruments. Looking back, I realize that we probably didn't have a very accurate comparison when tests were flown individually instead of side by side. When you test planes side by side, the comparison has a good chance of being reasonable, even if exact quantitative performance measurements may be doubted. Horizontal speed differences measured at a fixed altitude did not indicate much tactical advantage for any plane, but when the horizontal speed was combined with best climb speeds, the Fw-190's 165-knot top climb speed gave it a considerable advantage when used properly to avoid a fighter-to-fighter engagement.

€ Horizontal accelerations. These tests were made by flying in line at predetermined initial speeds from 140 to 200 knots at altitudes of from 200 feet to 25,000 feet and applying full power simultaneously in all three planes. It was readily apparent that it was much easier to achieve full power in the Fw-190 with its uni-lever control; this required a simple throttle advance to control propeller pitch, manifold pressure, mixture, magneto timing and throttle setting. This made a difference during our evaluations, but I never felt that it meant much tactically because when the pucker factor is tight in combat, it doesn't take long for a pilot to firewall everything in the cockpit.

Relative accelerations from all speeds of more than 160 knots showed the F4U-1 and the Fw-190 to be slightly superior to the F6F-3 and showed the F4U-1 to be slightly superior to the Fw-190 up to 15,000 feet, above which the Fw-190 had a slight advantage. At speeds of less than 160 knots, the Fw-190 and the F6F-3 were equals. None of these differences offered much of a tactical advantage or disadvantage.

Rate of roll. In roll rate, the Fw-190 was slightly superior to the F6F-3 and about equal to the F4U-1. It rolled very easily, didn't require any excessive stick forces and didn't show any tendency to drop its nose; it did, however, exhibit roll reversal at slow speeds and in turns. This forced the Fw-190 pilot to keep his speed up in tight turns, and that limited his slow-speed maneuvering.

This Fw-190A-4/trop was captured at Gerbini, Sicily, and was repainted in 85th FS, 79th FG markings. It was flown by the Group's pilots until spare parts and some serious scowls from the brass became a problem.

€ Maneuverability. The F4U-l's and F6F-3's turning characteristics were far superior to the Fw-190's. From directly behind the Fw-190 holding its tightest turn, the F6F-3 and the F4U-1 could turn inside it and be directly behind it again in approximately three circles. This, of course, was not a tactical maneuver, but it was a good indication of the planes' comparative turning abilities. Both could easily follow the Fw-190 in tight turns at any speed, but the Fw-190 pilot could not keep his gunsight pipper on either when they made tight turns. When in a tight turn to the left and near stalling speed, the Fw-190 exhibited a tendency to reverse aileron control and then stall without warning. When turning to the right and nearly at stalling speed, it tended to drop its right wing and nose and to dive as a result; this frequently put it in a good position to be attacked. When this happened, the fight was over. Its pilot would have to recover and would probably dive to try to break off the engagement. In our dogfighting, if a pilot escaped and wanted to re-engage, he would try to use his top climb speed to get away and come back for a one-pass, non-maneuvering attack. It was never advantageous to the Fw-190 to try to mix it up in close. It couldn't fly any turning maneuver that the F4U-1 and the F6F-3 couldn't follow. It required a much greater radius in a loop than the F4U-1 or the F6F-3 did and tended to stall when trying to follow in a loop. Looping was a very effective defensive maneuver for the F4U-1 and F6F-3 when the Fw-190 attacked from their rear. The Fw-190 stalled with very little warning but recovered easily. The F4U-1 and F6F-3 could take advantage of this propensity to stall when close in and in situations during which the Fw-190 was required to make tight turns to stay engaged. The difference in maneuverability was the greatest tactical disadvantage faced by the Fw-190 pilots in one-on-one encounters. In zooms after dives, the three aircraft were about equal. Close formation flying was extremely difficult for the Fw-190 because of the lack of fine power adjustments achievable with its uni-lever control.

Athosd
01-30-2005, 06:41 PM
Worth a bump

LEXX_Luthor
01-30-2005, 11:51 PM
Ya, very interesting read, ~thanks~

Where did this come from?

mynameisroland
01-31-2005, 04:51 AM
Ive read this post and also the part 2 post

Both make interesting reads, after having read many comparitive reports between Axis aircraft vs Allied aircraft written from the allied viewpoint you realise how although they are interesting from a pilots perspective their actual relevance to aircombat in WW2 is greatly reduced.

In this particular example the A4 tested was a trop and it was also most likely of 1941 vintage against fresh well maintained 1943 US aircraft. The pilot stated on several occasions that the Fw was an 'interceptor' not a dog fighter. I think history would dispute that claim as the Fw (especially the early models )was a superb dog fighter more manuverable than many of its contemporaries.

Also it shows the tactical doctrine of the US fighter pilot who wrote the report to be a little skewed. The advantage held by the A4 in the test over the Hellcat was a similar to the advantage the Hellcat held over the Zero - the Fw was faster could out climb it and disengage when the pilot wanted to. The fact that the test pilot also stated he went in to the test with the mindset of ' our planes were better than these guys planes ' makes me treat his account with a pinch of salt. What made the Hellcat an effective fighter in comparison to more manuverable Japanese fighters were the same qualities he has ignored in the Fw A4.

To add to my gripe that this report would have little or no relevance to an actual USN or Marine pilot taking on a LW pilot is that the LW pilot would know how to manuver his aircraft, be familiar with its performance characteristics. It would be in better condition (which was mentioned) and the LW pilot would also most likely be flying an A5 or A6 not an A4 if indeed the combat took place when either the Corsair or Hellcat entered service. The A6 had a speed or 424 mph at around 20000 feet which is a hell of a lot faster than the Hellcat (389 mph) and also slightly faster than the F4U1.

In a nutshell if this pilot took to the sky the next day and encountered an Fw flown by a LW pilot from a geschwader on the channel front I dont think even he would pay any attention to his report or if he did he would quickly find himself in trouble having to fight like the japanese pilots flying a slower more manuverable ( was the Hellcat more manuverable than a Fw ? debatable) aircraft.

Matz0r
01-31-2005, 06:02 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>This was a real credit to the mechanics who made a flyable airplane out of several crates of pieces. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

So they put an A4 together from pieces, flew it against 1943 US aircraft and dismissed it as inferior? Sounds like Sherman promises to me.

macd1102
01-31-2005, 06:28 AM
may i ask, he was a test pilot during this time, what are your quals,(qualifacations), flight hours so on, i did enjoy the article.

geetarman
01-31-2005, 06:30 AM
Where's the surprise? Almost everything he stated rings bascically true. FW-190 was a great fighter, but turn-fighting wasn't it's forte. A Hellcat and Corsair WERE more maneuverable in that regard!

Jeesh - a yank pilot states he doesn't think much of the german wonder-weapon and people start getting their panties in a bunch. typical.

TgD Thunderbolt56
01-31-2005, 06:56 AM
Actually, they dismantled a complete aircraft from its own parts. After being captured and flown by the local pilots, it was dismantled and crated for shipping (as were most planes at the time when short of pilots to ferry them around...not to mention the "delicate" nature of a captured enemy aircraft).

I think the pilots' accounts are likely accurate whether he was biased initially or not. The qualities of the A4 that he describes as making it a class bird (climb + speed, throttle control/cockpit layout) are legitimized in his report. The high-speed stall characteristic has always been the strike against it and is also defined.

Minor points of contention can always be debated, but reading between the lines is better left to attorneys and psychiatrists...not me.

Good post and good read nonetheless...thx.


TB

KarayaEine
01-31-2005, 09:04 AM
Definitely bump-worthy!

Great stuff. thanks for posting! http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

Johann

VMF-214_HaVoK
01-31-2005, 04:02 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by F16_Matz_:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>This was a real credit to the mechanics who made a flyable airplane out of several crates of pieces. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

So they put an A4 together from pieces, flew it against 1943 US aircraft and dismissed it as inferior? Sounds like Sherman promises to me. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Umm where in there did you read that it was dismissed as inferior? Ive read this document countless times and never seen such a comment. It clearly states the FWs advantages and disadvantages. Its better acceleration, speed, and climb are its advantages. It lack of manuverability as far as turning at anyspeed and looping versus the F4U and F6F are its disadvantages.

Your comment is typical for anyone that refuses to believe German aircraft were not always superior to US aircraft.

One poster stated that this was a thrown together A4 flying against mint F4Us and F6Fs, how would you know? How do you know the A4 ever seen combat? How do you know how many hours of flight time it had? How do you know the US aircraft were in perfect condition? Fact is you dont and none of those factors would play too much into the manuverability issues. Power issues...maybe.

What is always funny is how self proclaimed experts dispute facts stated by actual fighter pilots. If you got a German comparison report then feel free to post it.

What nation fanboys need to realize is their favorite plane is not always going to be the best. US, Ger, Brit, Rus all had excellent aircraft that had strengths and weakness.

icrash
01-31-2005, 04:43 PM
If this is the same article I think it is, one thing was left out. The pilot openly admitted that the 190 may have not been tuned to perfection or best performance. US mechanics working on unfamiliar engine versus a German groundcrew on one of their own engines. Also the US pilot didn't have the knowledge to truly wring out the Butcher bird to its best advantage like a LW pilot that spent lots of time in it.

Hunde_3.JG51
01-31-2005, 08:42 PM
I have to come out of hiding again as this test comes up every few months. Just to clarify a few things if this is reffering to the same test (which I believe it is):

Here is link to test:

http://web.cetlink.net/~howardds/id88.htm

-Quote from test: "In order to evaluate properly the results of the comparative tests herein reported, the following should be noted. The FW-190A-5/U4 tested had been employed by the Germans as a converted fighter/bomber and was not the standard fighter version of the FW-190."

-No mention of boost for FW-190, max speed at SL was 537km/h in test compared to 570km/h in FB and other tests.

-Unknown hours on FW-190. Unfamiliarity by crew/pilot.

-Testing of an enemy plane. Note the quote from above: "I said this with a certain cockiness and meant it as a put-down of an enemy plane." And this from the man testing the aircraft. His comments/evaluations in the article match almost exactly with those in the test itself.

-The FW-190 in the test has no outter cannons and was a converted fighter bomber (likely a factory converted "U" variant). The vast majority of FW-190's based in Sicily and those used in the southern theaters were "F" and "G" fighter bombers, and many of the "schlact" ground attack units were based there. Also in the test you can see that "ballast weights" were actually added to FW-190 to make it heavier, if this was an "F" variant then additional armor would have been used already when compared to fighter (A) variant. "Trop" variants were also usually ground attack aircraft for the reasons stated above, and were fitted with sand-filters with an opening on the side of the engine where the usually closed "bulges" are.

Considering these factors I think the FW-190 in the test gives a pretty good account of itself (as does the Corsair), though it was never known for its turning ability or its ability to pull hard loops. "In view of the fact that the FW-190 can out-run the Hellcat and Corsair in a 160+ knot climb (at times with 'marked superiority' http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif), the best solution when on offense is for the Hellcat and Corsair to close with the FW-190.." Sounds ok to me. Also remember that the FW-190 entered combat in mid-late 1941, whereas the Corsair entered combat in early 1943. Still, the FW-190's speed, firepower, and "controls that did not become objectionable at any speed" make it an excellent plane to bounce aircraft in and make it a good hit & run aircraft. These characteristics are also present in-game. The climb results are the only ones that may not be represented in-game (along with "excellent firepower" due to 151/20), but then the climb rates of planes in IL-2/FB/PF have been open to debate for a long time (note I am not suggesting the Hellcat or Corsair are overmodelled in climb, just a general statement about climb-rates, particularly at differing speeds). Still, these tests are fun to look at but should not be taken as law. I was just happy, and surprised, to see two of my favorites (Corsair and FW-190) go head to head.

Oh, and thanks to original poster, I had not seen this before. Edit: Just noticed part 2, thank you for that as well.

Take care.

MiamiEagle
02-01-2005, 07:16 AM
That was a great post TrJacob.I think I have seen it before. I always found it facinating when reports come out about WW2 War Birds Hypothetical match ups.

The reality is that its very difficult to really know how this Birds would have matchup in the real World.

There are just to many unknown factors to consider.

One of the factors missing is was it flown by someone who is not really familiar with plane. Another was weather this really was reflective of the most common vertion of that plane you would most likely meet in combat.

Weather conditions and pilot training and tatics also comes into account.

Their are just to many factors to consider to make any report from a training facility the final report.

The facts are that they rarely meet in actual combat condition. The only contact any them ever encounter with each other was over Norway late in the war. It was over Norway betweeen British flown Hellcats and Fw 190.

In that ocation the Fw190 did not fair well. I beleive they got shoot down in a ratio of 1:5.

In my opinion this should not be taken as the Final word on the subjest since this was the only encounter during the war.

I beleive the Fw190 was the best piston Fighter the Axis ever fielded during the war due to its significant numbers and effect on the war.

It was better than the Zero and the Me109. Better than the Oscar and the Me110 or Ki61. Sure the Ki84 and Japanese George where better. But their significance during the war were not as great.

As for the Test. The same could said of the Zero they tested in 1942. It too was not tested to fullest capabilities as well.

Now let say something some about mynameisroland comment that the Fw190 could or would have use the boom and zoom tactics against the Hellcat and Corsair had they ever had encounter each other during the war.

That would have been very difficult to say the least. The difference in performance was not as great as to allow such tatics on a consistance level.

In other word maybe if the Fw190 was under favorable conditions it could jump the Hellcats and make one pass. But the Hell could close the gap and force a Dog fight that would not be in the Fw190 advantage.

Their is a misconception on the Boom and Zoom tatics that people have beleive all this years.We have all read about it and writters have made it sound easy to perform. In the real world it was not as easy to realze as it sound throught the history books.

The performance difference in world war two planes where not as great as commonly beleive. The only plane if flown properly who could have accomplish it in a consistance level would have been the Me262.

The only reason the Hellcat and Corsair were to a certain degree able to acomplished it against the Zero was because the Japanese did not put as much effencies on team work. The skill of their Pilots had drop during the war and Americans almost always had superior number in most encounters.

In my opinion had they meet the Fw190 would have fair well at the begening but as war continue they would been mastered as the P51 and P47 did master them at the end of the war.

Iam sorry LW lovers but the Fw190 was a dandy of a plane but it was not invincible. The Hellcat and Corsair in the end would probably have beaten your vounted Fw190.

Let me tell another thing that will stand up the hairs of all you LW lovers.

!The Zero was better than the your vounted Me109!

I now you guys will be in a uprour but you have to face reality. I have done many Match up in diffferent Sims and the results have always been the same. The Zero was better if flown properly.

I have read many different books and reports and I come reluctantly to this conclution.

Thank you
Miamieagle

mynameisroland
02-01-2005, 01:41 PM
reply to your post Mr Miamieagle

I think that by stating two things you undermine your post. The Hellcat could not close with an Fw unless the LW pilot wanted to or was caught unawares. A contemporary Fw190 compared to a Hellcat has around a 30 mph speed advantage. Add this to better acceleration, highr climbspeed /steeper angle/rate of climb and a much better all round visability and you have a set of unfavourable circumstances for the Hellcat to force an engagement.

Another point - very relevant - is that the RAF flew comparitive trials between an Fw190 A3 and a Spitfire VB and IX the Fw 190 was found to be more manuverable IN ALL ASPECTS excluding turning circle however even this was countered by the fact that with its roll superiority it could establish itself in a turn quicker than the Spitfire could. The only manuvering advantage a Spit pilot had over an Fw below 25000ft was in the sustained turn. You do not win dog fights using this method.

The Hellcat is an unsuitable match for the Fw in so far as the Fw is a cleaner lighter higher Hp to weight ratio figher. This is because it was a landbased fighter the Hellcat was much heavier for a reason.

Secondly your comment that the Zero was superior to the 109 is laughable

NorrisMcWhirter
02-01-2005, 03:58 PM
Hi,

No bias in that post at all, Eagle http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

Cheers,
Norris

JRJacobs
02-01-2005, 06:02 PM
bump - and a note here. the man who wrote this was an actual American combat pilot, his job was to pick apart the enemy, figuratively and literally, so expect a little bias [what fighter pilot worth his salt isn't sure he and his plane is the best]- but also remember his critiques were designed so that other American pilots could get the feel for their American plane's strengths - expect bias, but not fiction nor incompetence - he did after all retire a rear admiral

P.S from last months Flight Journal

sulla04
02-01-2005, 09:08 PM
I've read one book by a English test pilot and fighter jock,I believe his name was Brown and his picks for the best fighter was a tossup between a spit 14 and a Dora.But he also had good things to say about the other FWs.I also believe he was not overly enthusiastic about the allied carrier planes.I believe he was flying them right after the war in Germany with German crewman.When talking about the zero one must remember it was a carrier fighter,as a land based it could hold its own but in comparision to other carrier aircraft from 40-42 it was head and shoulders above them.When judging what has been "known" about aircraft one has to be careful,everyone knows that a spit 1 would turn inside a 109e.Only problem is that is wrong it has been proven many times over that if the pilot of the 109e pushed the envelope he could turn tighter,many did not go to the limt so it seemed correct.Just my 2 cents.