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View Full Version : High altitude fighting, how the hell do you do it?



Zoring
11-14-2007, 07:40 AM
Hey fellas, give me a mission below 12,000 feet and i'll take out any plane in the air, but as soon as we get up to 20,000 i can't seem to get anything to happen for me. All that seems to happen is i end up flopping around at 240km/h flying straight with full boost on, can't seem to gain any speed or do anything right.

Meanwhile the AI and players online seem to be roaring around happily and shooting me down with impunity, so what's the trick to get my plane to work at high altitude?

stathem
11-14-2007, 07:44 AM
What plane are you flying?

Have you remembered to change your Supercharger gear?

Do you have smoke coming out of the exhausts up there?

Ratsack
11-14-2007, 08:17 AM
Originally posted by stathem:
What plane are you flying?

Have you remembered to change your Supercharger gear?

Do you have smoke coming out of the exhausts up there?

And also remember that Indicated Air Speed (IAS) is a lot lower than TRUE Air Speed (TAS) at high altitude. You might think you're wallowing at 240 km/h, when really you're wallowing at 500 km/h. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

cheers,
Ratsack

Zoring
11-14-2007, 08:53 AM
Might as well give me some tips for the 109 series as it's my most commonly used plane. But it dosen't seem to matter which plane im in as soon as i get over 20,000 feet i might as well be sitting in a brick.

I play with the complex engine controls turned off so i shouldent have to faddle with propeller pitch and all that stuff right?

X32Wright
11-14-2007, 09:24 AM
Ok since you are asking about the 109, not all 109 can perform well above 5K meters although the Friedrich are very good even above 5K meters. The real high alt perfromance 109s are the G-6/AS and the K-4s but the late gustavs like G-10 can handle it as well as the G2!

The secret in high alt fighting is to do E-management (energy) and this means watching out for your speed and not doing drastic moves and maintaining smooth turns and if somebody is closing in you eiether level off to gain more speed or dive a little to gain alot of speed and them zoom back up. The secret that you do have to learn is KNOWING WHEN to dive and when to climb without losing much speed and gaining distance away form your enemy as well as gaining distance TOWARD your enemy. This is done by gauging how fast your enemy is based on the silhouette size and looking at the contrails it makes.

Not everybody is cut out for high alt fighting since the plane behaves so differently in lower alt. You lose a lot of enrgy quickly when you do drastic moves.

You need CEM for high alt fighting although less for the 109 since the mixture is AUTO as well as the prop pitch. In other planes you will need to set mixture and prop pitch properly as you gain altitude.

In a well flown 109, your real nemesis are few in high alt (means above 6K) and this are the mustang,P-47 and the late spits although the spit25lb loses performance above 5.5K. Watch out for the late macchi's since those are quite fast at high alt too http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

M_Gunz
11-14-2007, 09:31 AM
Ratsack said it and I'll try to word it a bit different.

The higher you go, the thinner and colder the air gets. Thinner air doesn't make as much lift
for the same true air speed but then it doesn't affect the indicated air speed sensor just as
much -- your stall IAS is about the same all the way up, turn G's at the same speeds but you
can't go as IAS fast as down lower even though your TAS is actually faster. Your turns will
be wider for the same G's up high compared to down low so expect that. It's due to throwing
the weight of the plane (turn G's) around at higher true speed.

Be gentle and smooth up there. Just don't pull any harder than you would at the same IAS down
low and maybe a skosh lighter just to conserve your E.

stathem
11-14-2007, 10:12 AM
Originally posted by X32Wright:
Ok since you are asking about the 109, not all 109 can perform well above 5K meters although the Friedrich are very good even above 5K meters. The real high alt perfromance 109s are the G-6/AS and the K-4s but the late gustavs like G-10 can handle it as well as the G2!

The secret in high alt fighting is to do E-management (energy) and this means watching out for your speed and not doing drastic moves and maintaining smooth turns and if somebody is closing in you eiether level off to gain more speed or dive a little to gain alot of speed and them zoom back up. The secret that you do have to learn is KNOWING WHEN to dive and when to climb without losing much speed and gaining distance away form your enemy as well as gaining distance TOWARD your enemy. This is done by gauging how fast your enemy is based on the silhouette size and looking at the contrails it makes.

Not everybody is cut out for high alt fighting since the plane behaves so differently in lower alt. You lose a lot of enrgy quickly when you do drastic moves.

You need CEM for high alt fighting although less for the 109 since the mixture is AUTO as well as the prop pitch. In other planes you will need to set mixture and prop pitch properly as you gain altitude.

In a well flown 109, your real nemesis are few in high alt (means above 6K) and this are the mustang,P-47 and the late spits although the spit25lb loses performance above 5.5K. Watch out for the late macchi's since those are quite fast at high alt too http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

What he said.

Good summary.

SeaFireLIV
11-14-2007, 11:28 AM
Spit certainly suffers at higher altitudes and takes great care in using.

I hate taggling high with 109s or almost anything Axis with a competent pilot. I can almost see the big smily grin on his face as my aircraft struggles to gain. The only way to take him is with 2 Spits working together and that`s only if he does something stupid... Which he usually never does.

Me and a wingman online have had many exciting times chasing 109s into the stratosphere for 40-45 minutes to no avail.

These guys can be masters of inducing frustration.

p.s. I advise learning engine management it helps, a bit like learning to use gears instead of auto in a car.

Divine-Wind
11-14-2007, 11:49 AM
I tend to stick to medium-low altitudes. Probably comes from my love for close air support. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-tongue.gif The plane just feels more stable at, say, 5,000 feet. Then you get to 20,000 or so and I feel like I'll freefall if I don't take care, which is a feeling I don't much like.

Just my random thoughts on it. Anyone who can dogfight up there effectively has my respect.

BlitzPig_DDT
11-14-2007, 12:06 PM
Ride a Komet.

Rocket power baby. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_cool.gif http://www.blitzpigs.com/forum/images/smiles/JetHelmetSmilie.gif

But as far as props go, Wright nailed it.

Choctaw111
11-14-2007, 12:18 PM
In a T-Bolt http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif
It's one of the best hight altitude fighters around. It is very heavy and when you manage all that weight and keep you speed up, you can dive down, make your attack and then zoom climb back up. You can do this in any plane, but the heavier ones really do this well. In a proper dive and zoom climb you can gain 10,000 feet from the bottom of your dive in a T-Bolt. As already stated, Write has given many good tips on this.

X32Wright
11-14-2007, 04:04 PM
I use a K-4 C3 to fight P-47s up there since they can turn better as well as dive WITH the P-47 http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif A dora can too but i like the ability of the kurfeurst to out turn the Jug at high alt.

All this requires patience. High alt fighting is all about maximizing your plane's abilities while minimizing your opponent's while you wait for the BEST FIRING SOLUTION moment.

VW-IceFire
11-14-2007, 04:28 PM
The real fun is at 9000 meters where tight turns are these huge wide circles in the sky and the combat happens very slowly in some respects. Your actual true speed is very high but the indicated speed is quite low. Its totally different up there.

Xiolablu3
11-14-2007, 04:36 PM
Originally posted by SeaFireLIV:
Spit certainly suffers at higher altitudes and takes great care in using.

I hate taggling high with 109s or almost anything Axis with a competent pilot. I can almost see the big smily grin on his face as my aircraft struggles to gain. The only way to take him is with 2 Spits working together and that`s only if he does something stupid... Which he usually never does.

Me and a wingman online have had many exciting times chasing 109s into the stratosphere for 40-45 minutes to no avail.

These guys can be masters of inducing frustration.

p.s. I advise learning engine management it helps, a bit like learning to use gears instead of auto in a car.

Thats wierd - the SPitfire was supposed to be great up high. I would expect the IX to do well up there. Have you tried the High Flyer? (HF)?

Quote from Johannes Steinhoff, Sicily, Commander JG 77 (July 1943):

' The Malta Spitfires are back again... They're fitted with a high
altitude supercharger and at anything over twenty-five thousand feet
they just play cat and mouse with us.
At 28,000 feet the Spitfire could turn in an astonishingly narrow
radius. We on the other hand, in the thin air of those altitudes had to
carry out every maneuver with caution and at full power so as not to
lose control.'

I believe he is flying Bf109's vs these Spitfires. JG77, Steinhoff's Squadron, flew BF109's in the Med in mid-1943. He was shot down by SPitfires at this time, so hes not joking.



I must confess to not doing much fighting above 4000metres. I usually stick around 3000-3500m...

I do know that the P51 handles well up high. Where some planes are flopping about in the thin air, the P51 feels good.

stalkervision
11-14-2007, 04:40 PM
Originally posted by VW-IceFire:
The real fun is at 9000 meters where tight turns are these huge wide circles in the sky and the combat happens very slowly in some respects. Your actual true speed is very high but the indicated speed is quite low. Its totally different up there.

Yup so true.. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

X32Wright
11-14-2007, 04:49 PM
The only spit that could really follow u on a climb is the spi25lb but it loses its performance above 6k. The HF is good however but most smart german fighters will just take the fight to 9K if not 11K meters and watch the spits really struggle.

ytareh
11-14-2007, 04:53 PM
Forget about fighting the AI offline at very high altitude...they cheat in loads of different ways ...no overheat,perfect trim all the time,no blackouts etc etc ...They will just climb away from you and come back and kill you...

Online high alt fighting is very rewarding -smoothness is the key

Divine-Wind
11-14-2007, 05:30 PM
Originally posted by VW-IceFire:
The real fun is at 9000 meters where tight turns are these huge wide circles in the sky and the combat happens very slowly in some respects. Your actual true speed is very high but the indicated speed is quite low. Its totally different up there.
Yeah, that's why I don't much like high altitude fighting. It's just too slow for me, I prefer the faster-paced kind of dogfighting that takes place down low. Throw in a couple rapid-fire flak batteries (The bofors come to mind) and it's really fun. Of course, I never last long, but what the heck, it's fun while it lasts. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

Okay, I'm done praising low-alt dogfighting.

ImpStarDuece
11-14-2007, 05:59 PM
Originally posted by Xiolablu3:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by SeaFireLIV:
Spit certainly suffers at higher altitudes and takes great care in using.

I hate taggling high with 109s or almost anything Axis with a competent pilot. I can almost see the big smily grin on his face as my aircraft struggles to gain. The only way to take him is with 2 Spits working together and that`s only if he does something stupid... Which he usually never does.

Me and a wingman online have had many exciting times chasing 109s into the stratosphere for 40-45 minutes to no avail.

These guys can be masters of inducing frustration.

p.s. I advise learning engine management it helps, a bit like learning to use gears instead of auto in a car.

Thats wierd - the SPitfire was supposed to be great up high. I would expect the IX to do well up there. Have you tried the High Flyer? (HF)?

Quote from Johannes Steinhoff, Sicily, Commander JG 77 (July 1943):

' The Malta Spitfires are back again... They're fitted with a high
altitude supercharger and at anything over twenty-five thousand feet
they just play cat and mouse with us.
At 28,000 feet the Spitfire could turn in an astonishingly narrow
radius. We on the other hand, in the thin air of those altitudes had to
carry out every maneuver with caution and at full power so as not to
lose control.'

I believe he is flying Bf109's vs these Spitfires. JG77, Steinhoff's Squadron, flew BF109's in the Med in mid-1943. He was shot down by SPitfires at this time, so hes not joking.



I must confess to not doing much fighting above 4000metres. I usually stick around 3000-3500m...

I do know that the P51 handles well up high. Where some planes are flopping about in the thin air, the P51 feels good. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

There is a major difference between the altitude performance of the 1941-1942 Mk V and the 1942-1943 Mk IX though, which is what Steinhoff was probably facing.

With a Merlin 45, (two speed, single stage supercharger) the Mk V's peak performance altitude is about 19-20,000 feet. RoC drops below 1,000 f/t a minute at about 30-31,000 ft

With a Merlin 61 (two speed, two stage supercharger) the Mk IX's peak performance altitude is about 26-27,500 ft. RoC drops below 1,000 f/t a minute at about 37-38,000.

That doesn't really sound like that much, but actually represent a huge disparity in performance. In game, our Spitfires are generally either single stage, two speed engine types, or LF types (the HF IX and HF VIII being the exceptions), with lower full throttle heights than the earlier production IX's with Merlin 61s.

By the middle of 1943 the Mk IX were arriving in Malta, to combat the arrival of the G2, which had more power and better altitude performance than the Mk Vc with Volkes filters that the RAF were fielding in Malta at the time. The Volkes robbed the Mk V of up to 50 hp and the additional drag cost 5-10 mph.

Xiolablu3
11-14-2007, 06:20 PM
Thanks for that info Imp, very interesting...

The MkV with the Volkes filter was the slowest Spitfire of all marks, I believe.

Did the MkIX ever use the Volkes filter?

I know the MkVIII had tropical filter built in so didnt need one, but I dont recall ever hearing about a MkIX with a Volkes. But with the earlier MkIX's having almost exactly the same airframe as the MkV, didnt they need a Volkes filter to operate in the Med/Desert?

mortoma
11-14-2007, 07:01 PM
How do you fight at high altitude?? With a great deal of difficulty, that's how. I knew you'd find my post to be most helpful. Actually some of our experts have already said it better than I could have anyway.

-HH-Quazi
11-14-2007, 09:29 PM
You know, one thing I have learned from Joint-Ops classes is how to profile aircraft. Profile your favorite ride and find out at what altitude it flys the fastest, along with stall speeds for each altitude. At each altitude you will need to convert IAS to TAS. For instance, let's say that at 4000m your TAS is 320kmh. And then at 5000m you find your TAS is still 320kmh. But when you do the conversion to IAS you will find one is faster than the other. Actually the IAS could be slower at 5000m than at 4000m but still be faster TAS. I suggest testing in 500m increments.

Then profile the aircraft that you find yourself going up against most often. If you know how fast you are at a specific high altitude, and if you know the profile of the ac you are fighting, then it will help you get away for another run with the pilot you are fighting, or just get away period.

Diablo310th
11-15-2007, 06:51 AM
To fight at high altitude takes tons of patience. Keep your speed up, fly smooth and gentle. If your in a 109 or 190 beware of the Jug flying a climbing spiral. I'm setting you up for a high alt B&Z.

Brain32
11-15-2007, 07:30 AM
Some of you people are really something http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif If you can't force an entire air force to run away from you in a SpitIX at high altitude then I don't know what to say about your flying except that it's cr@ppy. I often fought multiple contacts at 8000m+ with my squaddie and after some time I got bored for lack of any kind of challenge that I switched for CW version, not even that helped them lol they still had to run like mad while I was laughing between my vapuor trails doing insanely tight climbing turns and then diving on their helpless six.
At those altitudes planes that are also VERY good(but nothing compares to the floatfireMkIX) are P47D_Late, P51's, TA-152,Fw190D9.
Me109's are utterly useless at higher altitudes as although very fast and with very good climb they are nearly completely unmovable...you will either feel like you are on the edge of a stall or you will need a full elevator up trim for any remotley meaningfull movements.

What people forgot to mention in this thread is that your engine losses more or less(depending on the engine) power with altitude increase, so once you bleed of your energy you better do it for a good reason, because you will not regain it as easily as on lower altitudes.

Von_Rat
11-15-2007, 08:15 AM
i gotta agree with brain.

your totally correct about the 09 up hi. if the elevator worked it'd be a killer up hi. but as it is its useless for anything but running away.

as for the spit, ive found that in a d9 even with more than a 1k advantage, ill get 2 passes max. then the spit will be above me. the spit will make incredably hard turns, but then still have e to zoom up above me.

Fighterduck
11-15-2007, 09:31 AM
always wanted some high alt fights...but online this is really rare. most of the pilots fight at really low altitude or at max 3000m...when i fly at 7000m-9000m well..its hard to find someone over there...and when i find it...he dive quickly so no engagement.

but i got a question...lots of times we speak of "this planre climb better than this one"..ok..but at which angle? because if i go an hight angle my speed will drop quickly and the ennemy will take me easely.

Zoring
11-15-2007, 09:50 AM
That'd be good information to have, what is the optimal angle for climbing in the major types, 109, 190, Spit, P51?

BlitzPig_DDT
11-15-2007, 09:51 AM
Originally posted by Von_Rat:
i gotta agree with brain.

your totally correct about the 09 up hi. if the elevator worked it'd be a killer up hi. but as it is its useless for anything but running away.

as for the spit, ive found that in a d9 even with more than a 1k advantage, ill get 2 passes max. then the spit will be above me. the spit will make incredably hard turns, but then still have e to zoom up above me.

This is because Oleg linked the elevator stiffness to TAS, rather than IAS. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/53.gif

X32Wright
11-15-2007, 11:34 AM
There is no optimal angle but ratrher rate of climb. The ideal rate of climb is between 260-280kph but the Antons and Dora can manage with 310-330kph climbs.

Von_Rat
11-15-2007, 11:40 AM
Originally posted by Fighterduck:
always wanted some high alt fights...but online this is really rare. most of the pilots fight at really low altitude or at max 3000m...when i fly at 7000m-9000m well..its hard to find someone over there...and when i find it...he dive quickly so no engagement.

.


try warclouds, we often have long fights at 7+ meters with multiple planes.

BSS_Sniper
11-15-2007, 11:43 AM
Although there has been some good gaming only info posted, remember, IL2 was never intended to be used up high. I remember oleg IIRC stating that. The game just grew past the low altitude combat, but the coding was never really added to support it.

Brain32
11-15-2007, 11:46 AM
It was done up to 10000m or 32808ft, that's high enough for me http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

BSS_Sniper
11-15-2007, 11:52 AM
Originally posted by Brain32:
It was done up to 10000m or 32808ft, that's high enough for me http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Didn't think it was done up that high? Eh, it sure doesn't feel it.

BlitzPig_DDT
11-15-2007, 11:54 AM
Yep. It was originally 3Km, becuase it was originally supposed to have only 1 flyable type - the IL2 Sturmovik.

By about FB, or Aces it was up to 5 or 8, forget which, and now, AFAIK, it's 10Km.

Not much is doable up there anyway, so yeah, it's good enough. lol

(Except for whose who ride the Kometen http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_cool.gif )

MOH_MADMAN
11-15-2007, 12:22 PM
fly as straight as possible, zoom as high as possible, and turn when it costs you as little as possible. anticipate where your opponent will fly to and fly to that point to intercept. if he turns in defense, zoom out straight or slight turn towards direction you need to go, turn at top and start again, if you keep bandit turning more than you(ie: on the defensive), you will be gaining E on him. and last, know where your aircraft performs best, and worst, and have an idea of same for your opponent.

MAD

Xiolablu3
11-16-2007, 03:14 AM
My God, if you guys cant handle a Spitfire MkIX whilst in a Fw190D9, then I dont know what to say except that you must be goddam awful pilots!

The Dora is the best prop plane in the game bar none. Just a little brainpower and good flying allows you to be absolutely untouchable.

I gave up flying the Dora because its just too easy and no challenge. Any time a plane gets behind you, you can just nose down and zoom away. What skill does it take to do that?

For real skill, try fighting red in 1941, Me109F4's whilst in a Spitfire mkVb or Vc2 or Hurricane. The 109 holds absolutely ALL the cards apart from tight turn.

MrMojok
11-16-2007, 03:43 AM
You can't set throttle to 85% with minimal speed loss and no overheat in the Dora. You can in the SpitIX+25. I KNOW you know this, because you've posted in several threads about this very thing.

I think you are trolling.

Xiolablu3
11-16-2007, 05:07 AM
And just where can you fly the Spitfire 25lbs? What servers?

Any server I fly on which has the Spitfire 25lbs has the Me262 fopr blue which is far far superior.

Also , whatever you set the throttle at in the 25lbs, it can NEVER catch a Dora at full wack.

Brain32
11-16-2007, 05:52 AM
Bah I didn't even say that's it's wrong that Spit is so good up there yet...the comment http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif
Like I said meet me at high altitude in a Dora and you will either get pwned or you will dive away at 800kmh+, and without rear gunner you are highly unlikely to shoot somebody down by running away, unless you are a modder http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif


I gave up flying the Dora because its just too easy and no challenge. Any time a plane gets behind you, you can just nose down and zoom away. What skill does it take to do that?
None, but then again if you really fly against such idiots that can't catch your diving Dora then you might aswell turnfight Spitfires in a Ju88 they will not be able to handle it http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif
Ever heard of P51,P47,Tempest? Ahh yes probably nobody flies those as they are porked since they can't pull 75G turns, and what is left if they can't turn http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

As for your "real skill", I did it MANY times, no need for "real skill" just for some tactics, but if you fly where pointing your nose down in a FW190 is enough to evade all troubles then...well... http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

BSS_Sniper
11-16-2007, 07:12 AM
I gave up flying everything, except for the P11. It is the only place I feel a challenge, sometimes. If I need an escape and I rarely do, I will just go straight up, hammerhead and kill my prey with a head on whilst diving straight down at 43kph. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif I have mad skillz!

Von_Rat
11-16-2007, 07:38 AM
Originally posted by Xiolablu3:
My God, if you guys cant handle a Spitfire MkIX whilst in a Fw190D9, then I dont know what to say except that you must be goddam awful pilots!

The Dora is the best prop plane in the game bar none. Just a little brainpower and good flying allows you to be absolutely untouchable.

I gave up flying the Dora because its just too easy and no challenge. Any time a plane gets behind you, you can just nose down and zoom away. What skill does it take to do that?

turn.


my god learn to read. d9 is the best plane ingame,, BUT,,,

we're discussing fighting spits up hi, not friggen running away from spits up hi.

i dare you to fight me or brain up hi with you in a d9. you;ll be doing alot of proving your point that you can run away. because thats all you'll be doing.

you must really fly against some god awful spit pilots. if you think your so hot try flying on warclouds, i think our resident spit experts will open your eyes and cool your jets.

Divine-Wind
11-16-2007, 09:24 AM
If you want a real challenge try dogfighting Spitnoobs in a P-40 from 5,000 feet up. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/59.gif I actually managed to do it, scored my first kill that way.

Granted, I crashed a minute later with my other wing still on the other side of the frontline, but I still killed that bloody Spit!

Diablo310th
11-16-2007, 10:19 AM
Originally posted by Brain32:
It was done up to 10000m or 32808ft, that's high enough for me http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

me too Brain ~S~

SeaFireLIV
11-16-2007, 10:40 AM
Just the other day a Wingman and I were in Spits LF flying high when we spotted a lone Jerry who attacked, missed, then sped off yonder.

As we chased higher and higher, I thought, "We were just talking about this on the UBI forum! Here we go again."

The mission time ended the chase... as usuall much chasing for no gain except we kept Jerry from coming back.

MrMojok
11-16-2007, 12:30 PM
Originally posted by Xiolablu3:
And just where can you fly the Spitfire 25lbs? What servers?

point taken