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View Full Version : The ol' "50.cal vs Tiger" Issue



beepboop
12-19-2005, 05:47 AM
I know this has been brought up a lot before, and I'm not trolling here by bringing it up again. I just saw an excerpt on Google Video that I think demonstrates how these myths get turned into generally accepted fact. Here's the link:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6635752499311348219&q=tank

Apologies if you've all seen it before. It shows footage used by the history channel, narrated by a vet. In it, he basically makes all the classic mistakes in his description.

Firstly, like so many allied servicemen, he makes no distinction between "Tiger" and any other german tank - there's no mention of the improbability of any given German tank being a Tiger. Secondly, he recites the usual dubious story about "German tanks towing fuel trailers". Then he tops it off with the classic "bouncing bullets off the road to penetrate the unarmoured underside".

beepboop
12-19-2005, 05:47 AM
I know this has been brought up a lot before, and I'm not trolling here by bringing it up again. I just saw an excerpt on Google Video that I think demonstrates how these myths get turned into generally accepted fact. Here's the link:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6635752499311348219&q=tank (http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6635752499311348219&q=tank)

Apologies if you've all seen it before. It shows footage used by the history channel, narrated by a vet. In it, he basically makes all the classic mistakes in his description.

Firstly, like so many allied servicemen, he makes no distinction between "Tiger" and any other german tank - there's no mention of the improbability of any given German tank being a Tiger. Secondly, he recites the usual dubious story about "German tanks towing fuel trailers". Then he tops it off with the classic "bouncing bullets off the road to penetrate the unarmoured underside".

ploughman
12-19-2005, 06:51 AM
Quite, what I find interesting about this sort of thing is not the improbability of actually bouncing bullets off the road into the belly of the beast, but that the pilots thought this method of attack would be effective. Someone, somewhere, decided it would work and the pilots were told it would work. What would be interesting would be some background on this.

beepboop
12-19-2005, 07:36 AM
I hadn't thought of it that way, but you're right. Someone must have actually told the piolts that this should be done. I suspect that many pilots who never did or even witnessed the "tactic" were aware that somewhere someone thought this was a good idea. It might have been one of those daft official pieces of combat advice that was happily ignored by the actual combatants.

Tator_Totts
12-19-2005, 07:44 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by beepboop:
I hadn't thought of it that way, but you're right. Someone must have actually told the piolts that this should be done. I suspect that many pilots who never did or even witnessed the "tactic" were aware that somewhere someone thought this was a good idea. It might have been one of those daft official pieces of combat advice that was happily ignored by the actual combatants. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Maybe in practice runs in the states it did work.

beepboop
12-19-2005, 08:33 AM
The odd thing is that the only way that "bullet bouncing" would ever work in theory would be if you assumed that the ground was harder than the bottom of the tank. So unless they put a steel plate on the ground and had a plane skip its bullets off that into the underside of a softsteel dummy tank, then I don't see how they dreamed it up.

Grue_
12-19-2005, 08:40 AM
It's a well known fact that Tiger crews sat on their helmets to defeat this 'bullet bouncing' tactic.

Sintubin
12-19-2005, 08:41 AM
Wel now BS http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/35.gif

WOLFMondo
12-19-2005, 08:43 AM
In one of the numerous other threads it was pointed out, with statistics and facts that a .50 round will not go through the belly of a Tiger regardless of angle or elevation.

beepboop
12-19-2005, 08:48 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Grue_:
It's a well known fact that Tiger crews sat on their helmets to defeat this 'bullet bouncing' tactic. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

You're joking, right? If they did this at all - which i doubt - then it would have been out of fear of mines, not bullets.

OldMan____
12-19-2005, 08:58 AM
Does anyone have data about armor tickness on belly or any weak point on the tiger?

Also is plain stupid to discosider that a bounced bulelt would have lost a lot of energy and probably could be stoped by a quite thin armor.

Xiolablu3
12-19-2005, 08:58 AM
Its a fuel can on the side of the tank which is knocked off and exploded by another tracer.

The 'puncture' is even by the road/wheel, nowhere near the hull.

beepboop
12-19-2005, 09:06 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Xiolablu3:
Its a fuel can on the side of the tank which is knocked off and exploded by another tracer.

The 'puncture' is even by the road/wheel, nowhere near the hull. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Huh? When did germans store fuel on the side of their tanks? Only the Russians had external tanks mounted on the side of the vehicle.

Grue_
12-19-2005, 09:14 AM
Everyone can relax, I made the helmet thing up.

I thought it would be ironic that crews in a 60 ton tank would need to sit on a piece of thin steel to protect themselves from bullets.

berg417448
12-19-2005, 09:16 AM
P-47 pilot Robert V Brulle wrote the book "ANGELS ZERO". In his book, one thing he sought to discover was the actual effect of the 50 caliber strafing upon armored vehicles.

From that book:

"During the war we thought the penetration power of our armor piercing round was sufficiient to disable a tank by shooting off the tank tracks. To research this issue and keep the record factual, I contacted several armored vehicle historians and speialists. Their collective views on this issue are summarized below.

The 50 caliber armor piercing round fired from fast moving aircraft does indeed have a high momentum but the German tank armor was very hard and massive and the round only dinged the armor. The most vulnerable area (least armor thickness) is the rear deck engine compartment and the top of the turret. The tracks are extremely hard steel and 50 caliber rounds were shrugged off with little damage. A lucky hit was possible that might cause the tank to throw a track, but if they were on a hard surface they could just keep moving on the road wheels. The Germans in 1944-1945 had three main battle tanks in use. They were the Mark IV which was a medium tank comparable to the American M4 Shermantank, and two 50 plus-ton heavy tanks, the Mark V Panther and the Mark VI Tiger. The Panther and Tiger tanks completely dominated the M4 Sherman.

The Mark IV had a lightly armored rear deck that could be penetrated by our 50 caliber rounds and set the engine on fire, but the Panther and Tiger were mostly impervious to our strafing. In those tanks the tank crew would button up and hope that we wouldn't call in some aircraft that had bombs since that would finish them. There is a case on record where a Panther tank was strafed by P-47s for an extended time. The massive strafing shot off all the equipment parts carried outside of the tank, and entombed the crew by dinging the hatch lips, essentially welding the hatches closed. If we could catch the tanks while on the road march far from the front line they sometimes carried extra fuel and ammunition strapped to the outside. In those cases strafing could ignite the fuel or ammunition, possibly destroying them. Although we couldn't be sure of damaging or destroying a heavy tank, our strafing was sure to affect the crew psychologically, having to stay cooped up and hear the constant rattle of our rounds hitting the tank and not knowing when a bomb or other heavy gun would finish them off. In summary, strafing a tank could do nothing or it could destroy them, depending on the circumstances."

Grue_
12-19-2005, 09:24 AM
Sanity is restored http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

beepboop
12-19-2005, 09:34 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by berg417448:


The Mark IV had a lightly armored rear deck that could be penetrated by our 50 caliber rounds and set the engine on fire, but the Panther and Tiger were mostly impervious to our strafing. In those tanks the tank crew would button up and hope that we wouldn't call in some aircraft that had bombs since that would finish them. There is a case on record where a Panther tank was strafed by P-47s for an extended time. The massive strafing shot off all the equipment parts carried outside of the tank, and entombed the crew by dinging the hatch lips, essentially welding the hatches closed. If we could catch the tanks while on the road march far from the front line they sometimes carried extra fuel and ammunition strapped to the outside. In those cases strafing could ignite the fuel or ammunition, possible destroying them. Although we couldn't be sure of damaging or destroying a heavy tank, our strafing was sure to affect the crew psychologically, having to stay cooped up and hear the constant rattle of our rounds hitting the tank and not knowing when a bomb or other heavy gun would finish them off. In summary, strafing a tank could do nothing or it could destroy them, depending on the circumstances." </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


This is good stuff, and I think it sounds very convincing. I totally buy the ideas that he puts forward. On their way to the battle line, the Germans would pile up tons of stuff on the back of their tanks, and among this stuff flammable or explosive materials must have increaded the vulnerability of the tank. As for strafing the engine deck, that seems likely to be effective because the Germans themselves saw this as a threat and sometimes welded additional armoured plates over the top of the engine vents and louvres. Even more convincing is the idea that the psychological effect of strafing. Sitting inside even heavy tank whilst being deafened by thousands of HMG strikes can't have been a very morale-boosting experience!

The only thing that I'd take issue with is the statement "A lucky hit was possible that might cause the tank to throw a track, but if they were on a hard surface they could just keep moving on the road wheels." A tank can't ever afford to have a break in its tracks. Any break will immobilise the tank, regardless of whether it's on a road or not. You can't "move on the road wheels" because they are not powered.

Kocur_
12-19-2005, 09:47 AM
In short: there is no such issue.

GR142_Astro
12-19-2005, 11:21 AM
There is no issue, since .50 strafing runs routinely knocked out german tanks.

I won't even give you the words anymore.

http://www.tankzone.co.uk/images/showroom/sherman/tiger_rear_500.jpg

http://www.depothobbies.com/Verlinden/VER%201203%20PANTHER%20TANK%20ENGINE.jpg

beepboop
12-19-2005, 11:43 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by GR142_Astro:


http://www.tankzone.co.uk/images/showroom/sherman/tiger_rear_500.jpg

</div></BLOCKQUOTE>


Although the iamge you've posted implies that the engine deck of a Tiger I was covered in vulnerable pipes, that's not actually true.

1) The pipes are simply part of the Feifel Air Filtering system. This was only fitted to Tigers serving in Tunisia and was not present on any Tiger that was under threat of strafing in Europe.

2) Two of the four heavy gratings are merely exit vents for coolign air. The other two gratings cover up two sets of radiators, which are at an perpendicular angle to the engine deck. The chances of both of them being hit by stray bullets working their way down through the vents are small. Even if they are both punctured, the tank is only damaged, not destroyed, and could keep running long enough to get out of trouble.

3) The exhausts aren't in danger. The actual opening to the engine is covered by a very heavy armoured "cup" at the base of the exhaust.

4) The tubular device on the right of the engine deck is just a standard fire extinguisher, and hardly critical equipment.


Although I agree that tanks could be incapacitated by strafing, I very much disagree with the phrase ".50 cals routinely knocked out german tanks". Much more likely that a decent burst of 20mm hispano from a real ground attack plane would have a reasonable chance of immobilising a tank.

Kocur_
12-19-2005, 12:06 PM
Not to mention findings of US comission, which examined wrecks of German tanks in Normandy and found that tanks were destroyed by airplanes very, very rarely and all cases included bombs or rockets. Or perhaps that was US Navy comission...? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Jetbuff
12-19-2005, 12:14 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by GR142_Astro:
There is no issue, since .50 strafing runs routinely knocked out german tanks. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Well, that at least explains where you get your FM opinions from. I mean, how could the Germans have had a better plane at any point in the war if they ultimately lost it to the mighty 0.50 cal eh? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif

Sintubin
12-19-2005, 12:19 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Jetbuff:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by GR142_Astro:
There is no issue, since .50 strafing runs routinely knocked out german tanks. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Well, that at least explains where you get your FM opinions from. I mean, how could the Germans have had a better plane at any point in the war if they ultimately lost it to the mighty 0.50 cal eh? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Lol http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

GR142_Astro
12-19-2005, 01:06 PM
Outstanding replies folks. No, really.

http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

For the above gentlemen, I cannot help you. In time, you will come to peace with the outcome of WW2. Try Yoga.


But, for beepbop, here ya go:


Feifel aircleaner system....um, yeah it's just an air cleaner. I posted this because it is plain as the nose on your face how whole rounds or even FRAGMENTS of rounds can ding their way down into these grates. If you will look at the lower image of a Panther G, you can clearly see the vented fans bordered by 4 radiators. Memory doesn't serve at the moment, but I believe one pair was for engine coolant and the other for oil. Maybe even just one rad was for oil. The water and fuel tanks are safely tucked under the plating and some covers at the rear there.

One fragment strike to the rads and in fairly short order you have one afv sitting along the side of the road KO'ed. They don't need a big hole in the head to be out of action.

GR142_Astro
12-19-2005, 01:12 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Jetbuff:
I mean, how could the Germans have had a better plane at any point in the war </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Dunno, good question. They certainly didn't field one against US aircraft during 43-44 when the **** hit the fan.

The Jugs and Mustangs simply ran outta targets.

http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

Ask this chap.



http://www.leisuregalleries.com/aaandersonB.jpg

faustnik
12-19-2005, 01:22 PM
Astro,

What is your source for your claims of .50 knocking out German tanks? Pilot claims or investigations of knocked out tanks?

neural_dream
12-19-2005, 01:24 PM
I wonder why so many insist that the .50 could actually knock out a Tiger http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif.

I suppose this thread will be the last relevant one.

BaronUnderpants
12-19-2005, 02:08 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Grue_:
It's a well known fact that Tiger crews sat on their helmets to defeat this 'bullet bouncing' tactic. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


Correction: is a well nown "fact" that bombercrews sat on their flakhelmets to evoyd getting a shell peice up their a**. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Airmail109
12-19-2005, 02:18 PM
As this video show....a .50 can penetrate a 3 1/2 inch manhole cover.

http://www.filecabi.net/video/50caliber.html

Hawgdog
12-19-2005, 02:25 PM
video needs externals

FluffyDucks
12-19-2005, 02:28 PM
1.Thats a Barret Light 50 not a .50cal Browning.

2. The rounds being fired were titanium carbide tipped rounds not WWII era ammunition.

3. The targets were at relatively close range and the weapon was stationary.

4. So the film proves what??

Other than that nice clip. BTW, personally I believe that the myth of Tigers routinely being knocked out by .50 cal is just that.

StellarRat
12-19-2005, 02:35 PM
Manhole covers are made from "soft" steel not armor plate. Big difference!

jds1978
12-19-2005, 02:37 PM
i predict lots of Holiday Cheer for this thread if last summer's 20+ page flame-fest is any indicator http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-tongue.gif

Grue_
12-19-2005, 03:01 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Correction: is a well nown "fact" that bombercrews sat on their flakhelmets to evoyd getting a shell piece up their a**. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

The inspiration for my comment http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Xiolablu3
12-19-2005, 03:49 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by beepboop:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Xiolablu3:
Its a fuel can on the side of the tank which is knocked off and exploded by another tracer.

The 'puncture' is even by the road/wheel, nowhere near the hull. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Huh? When did germans store fuel on the side of their tanks? Only the Russians had external tanks mounted on the side of the vehicle. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

People store fuel whereever they can on a vehicle.

I didint know that the Germans didnt usually store fuel on the side of their tanks.

Watch the film and tell me it doesnt look like a fuel can exploding.

GR142_Astro
12-19-2005, 04:47 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by faustnik:
Astro,

What is your source for your claims of .50 knocking out German tanks? Pilot claims or investigations of knocked out tanks? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

No numbers faust, but I am saying it was routine because by German admission this was a serious threat. And by admission, I mean actions are louder than words. Popular field and factory mods adopted late in the war included placing wooden planks below the grate openings to cover the vital components underneath. Mostly for Tiger Is

Source:

Germany's Tiger Tanks D.W. to Tiger I: Design, Production & Modifications, by Thomas L. Jentz and Hilary L. Doyle

Another mod adopted was this one:


http://www.missing-lynx.com/gallery/german/jgjp_13.jpg

Common sense tells you that a Jug spewing a massive stream (RL not, IL2:FB globs) of hot lead at the rear deck has a much higher chance of these types of hits than say, a 2 x 20mm spit or the like.

Besides, the point, and folks consistently miss it, is that we are not talking armor penetration but rather fragmentation and puncture damage of underlying components.

Don't know why I bother with this topic anymore. At this point it is morbid curiousity to see what kind of fairey world some ppl live in.

Scen
12-19-2005, 05:09 PM
Having been in the military and part of my job was understanding how to kill tanks... Here is my question.

What does "Knocking out" mean...

Even a M2 can harm modern tanks. You can take out optics blind a driver hit the engine compartment and cause problems. Granted I doubt you will actually kill anyone of the crew members and they would certainly issue a quick response with their coax or main gun. So it wouldn't be wise to engage in the first place...

Without having any data... firing 6-8 browning M2s from topside of a tank can cause problems for them and even take them out of action. At least for a little while. I'm not sure about killing the crew but taking the engine out or ripping off antena etc can be just as effective.

Also remember armor is always followed up by support crews with fuel ammo etc which are much softer targets. Take out their fuel and they are just as out of commission as killing it.

I would like to see more data in terms of actually destroying a Tiger.

Scendore

MLudner
12-19-2005, 05:10 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Grue_:
Everyone can relax, I made the helmet thing up.

I thought it would be ironic that crews in a 60 ton tank would need to sit on a piece of thin steel to protect themselves from bullets. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


I know you did: it was funny!
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

faustnik
12-19-2005, 05:15 PM
Yeah Astro, I tend to agree that it would be possible for a fragment to enter the engine compartment and cause damage, however, I imagine that it would very unlikely. The angle is very difficult and closure speeds are very high. If a fragment did enter the engine compartment, it would have to enter with enough force to damage something vital. It's pretty hard to say "never, ever" though.

The RAF investigated knocked out Panthers in the Normady area and found that very few were damaged by air attack even though Typhoon units with rockets and cannon had worked over that tanks in the area. The most common cause of actually knocking out the Panther was found to be the good old AP round. That meant some poor guys in an M4 had to do the work. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

ImpStarDuece
12-19-2005, 05:37 PM
British testing of A.P. Mk III Hispano Ammo (pointed nose tungsten carbide cored round at fired at 3050 fps) in 1943 against Pz Mk III and IVs found that;

a) there was no cance of penetration of external armour if the round riccochet off the ground, even at very slight angles

b) a 6 mm external plate fitted to the tank made a standard 30mm plate undefeatable by Mk III A.P ammo, unless it impacted at 0 degrees and greater than 2400 fps and the plate was spaced less than 20 inches from the main armour.

neural_dream
12-19-2005, 05:39 PM
Why did most of the American planes use almost exclusively .50s instead of nice big cannons and smaller machine guns like all the rest?

berg417448
12-19-2005, 05:55 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by neural_dream:
Why did most of the American planes use almost exclusively .50s instead of nice big cannons and smaller machine guns like all the rest? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I read somewhere that availability was one issue. They had the guns and the capacity to make a lot of them quickly. Someone else...can't recall who just now...posted a link recently about how they messed up the development and production of a 20mm cannon at that time.


EDIT: Here it is...Kocur had the link

http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/US404.htm

jds1978
12-19-2005, 05:55 PM
a better question is why wouldn't the british pull those lame .303 cal MGs out of their planes in order to lighten things up http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

you can carry more ammo for a M2 than for the 20mm cannon. You also get close to the destructive power of a cannon. granted, not as powerfull but they do the trick....

a .50 cal isn't going to be able to brew up a Tiger...however it might kill or wound people in the Tiger due to the phenomenon of internal flaking

FritzGryphon
12-19-2005, 05:59 PM
In PF, it is possible to destroy a Tiger tank with the M2 machine gun. If you haven't, you are not trying hard enough.

Conditions are 90 degree dive, less than 100m range, 900km/h+ speed. Target turret top. I suggest using YP-80.

Of course, the necessary conditions cause certain crash for the pilot. You may as well just fly into the tank.

Penetration values for M2 machinegun I find online mirror these conditions. Slightly over 1 inch of armor penetration under ideal circumstances (close range, 90 degree impact). Turret top on Tiger is 1 inch thick. Only under these conditions will the bullet go all the way through. Further away, or at a shallower angle, it will not.

The floor of Tiger is also 1 inch. Impossible to get through at shallow impact angle. Plus, no reason not to just attack turret top instead, it's easier, and no need to ricochet.

Also, use common sense. If bullet ricochets from the road, it will hit the armor at same angle (plus, it may spin, slow down, or fragment, and become useless). If the armor is harder and more dense than asphalt (of course, it is), the bullet will also ricochet from it. At angle steep enough to embed in the armor, it would embed in the road, first. To penetrate, the bullet would have to strike the road at a shallow angle, but hit the armor perpendicular, and without decelerating significantly or spinning. Magic bullet!

It is sad that people, even veterans, repeat things like this like fact. Just another bizarre wishful thinking or propeganda that is repeated enough, becomes true.

ImpStarDuece
12-19-2005, 06:56 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">a better question is why wouldn't the british pull those lame .303 cal MGs out of their planes in order to lighten things up Wink

you can carry more ammo for a M2 than for the 20mm cannon. You also get close to the destructive power of a cannon. granted, not as powerfull but they do the trick....

a .50 cal isn't going to be able to brew up a Tiger...however it might kill or wound people in the Tiger due to the phenomenon of internal flaking </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


The British assesment of .50 calibre airborne guns was that they were "neither fish nor foul". That is to say, that they didn't have the low weight/high RoF advantage of rifle-calibre machine guns, nor the long range punch and explosive capacity of a 20mm cannon. The RN did use some .50 calibre Vickers (12.7x81) HMGs as anit-aircraft mounts on destroyers early in the war, but they were generally removed in favour of 20mm twin Oerlikon mounts.

The British concluded as early as 1938 that 20mm was the minimum calibre acceptable for air to air engagements, and all designs and developments in fighter armament after this time tend to show that. After the entry of the first monoplane fighters into RAF service (Spitfire, Hurricane and Defiant), all following fighters were designed for and armed with 4 20mm cannon. The Typhoon, Tempest, Whirlwind, Beaufighter, Mosquito, Hornet, Spiteful, Fury ect all moved to 20mm as either their primary or only armament.

Even RAF fighters not originally designed with the 20mm cannon in mind used it as their main air-to-air weapon. Spitfires got 2 20mm cannon (supplemented with 4 LMGs or 2 HMGs) and production switched to an exclusive cannon armament in early 1945. The C type wing could carry up to 4 Hispanos, but was rarely used in this configuration. The Hurricane IIc, the most produced Hurricane model, operated with 4 20mm for 3 years.

Daiichidoku
12-19-2005, 07:55 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by ImpStarDuece:
The British concluded as early as 1938 that 20mm was the minimum calibre acceptable for air to air engagements, and all designs and developments in fighter armament after this time tend to show that. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


would this have not been in the context of the prominent thoughts of air war at the time (ala Doucet), in that they would be largely bomber fleets carrying the war (to Britain)?



besides, its well documented that Italian pilots driving thier Fiat G.50s into Tiger tanks from any angle produced most satisfactory resul......oh, wait...

zombiewolf92553
12-19-2005, 08:20 PM
I drive the Hollywood Freeway and I sit on my Helmet