PDA

View Full Version : Ilyushin I12: was it really that effective?



uberweng
02-23-2004, 10:05 AM
While browsing the web i came across an article by someone called A.D. Harvey. In this article, entitled "The Soviet Air Force versus the Luftwaffe: A.D.Harvey assesses the role of the Soviet Air Force in the defeat of Nazism" he described the il2 family of airraft in a manner more negative than most descriptions i have seen.

He states:
"However, it is questionable whether the I1-2 was any more of a practical war-winning weapon than the Pe-8.

Slow and sluggish, the I1-2 in its original single-seater form was vulnerable to attack from the rear. The fitting of a 12.7mm machine gun operated by a gunner perched on a canvas belt in a makeshift rear cockpit reduced losses considerably: among those who fell to an alert I1-2 gunner was Otto Kittel, one of the top four German aces with 267 aerial victories at the time of his death on Valentine's Day, 1945. The main feature of the I1-2 was that, while the rear half of the fuselage was mainly of wood, the front half consisted of a kind of inch-thick bath of nickel steel impenetrable to the automatic weapons of the infantry below. Even so during 1943 I1-2s were downed at the rate of one per twenty-six sorties: a total of 12,400 were lost to enemy action.

The I1-2's 1,323lb bomb load was not much more than half of what could be carried by the much faster Petlyakov Pe-2 dive-bomber or by the American-built Douglas A-20 supplied through Lend-Lease. Normal gun armament was two 7.62mm machine guns and two 23mm cannon capable of penetrating 25mm armour at 400 metres. Since German tanks only had such thin armour on horizontal surfaces and the I1-2, not having dive brakes, could only attack in the most shallow of dives, this equipment was only really effective against German transport vehicles. In July 1943 a variant of the I1-2 with two 37mm Nudelman cannon made its debut at the Battle of Kursk and the Soviet authorities claimed fantastic results -- 270 tanks of the German 3rd Panzer Division destroyed in two hours, and so on. In reality the 3rd Panzer Division lost only nine tanks in the entire battle. The Nudelman-armed I1-2 was phased out of production soon afterwards: the gun was unreliable and its bulk and weight -- and especially its recoil when fired -- made the plane almost unmanageable. By the end of the war, the Soviet I1-2 ace was Aleksandr Nikolayevich Yefimov, who was credited with having destroyed 126 tanks, eighty-five aircraft on the ground (plus two in air combat) thirty railway locomotives, 193 field artillery guns and forty-three anti-aircraft guns. Seven other Soviet pilots were credited with having destroyed between sixty-three and seventy tanks each. (As usual the Germans did rather better, Hans Ulrich Rudel claiming 519 tanks, 800 other vehicles and the battleship Marat in the course of an incredible 2,530 combat missions.) It is clear, however, from the fighting in Western Europe that pilots' claims of success against tanks were often greatly exaggerated. On August 7th, 1944, for example, No. 121 Wing RAF, equipped with Hawker Typhoons armed with rockets, claimed over eighty German tanks destroyed in the course of attacks on 1.SS-Panzerdivision `Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler' near Mortain. Within the next two weeks two teams of Operational Research experts working for eight days were able to find only thirty-two German tanks that had been knocked out by Allied action, of which only seven showed any sign of having been hit by a rocket.

As it pushed forward, recapturing territory lost in 1941 and 1942, and overrunning positions that had been bombed and shot up by I1-2s, the Red Army was able to see for itself how few German tanks were being knocked out by air attacks, and it is difficult to believe that the huge programme of building I1-2s and training their crews was the result of a complete misunderstanding as regards its effectiveness."

He then states later that the il2 had a greater impact on soviet morale than german defensive capabilites.

What do you think about this? I have limited information on the combat effectiveness of the il2 apart from accounts by german soldiers of being attacked by it and infomation in the black cross/red star books and other more general histories. Based on my own reading(and the fact that the il2 is death on wings in the game) i have always thought that the il2 was a suberb ground attack aircraft that played a significant role in the war in the east. I am interested in hearing others opinions on the combat effectiveness of the il2 and whether or not this article is a fair suammary of the il2 contribution.

uberweng
02-23-2004, 10:05 AM
While browsing the web i came across an article by someone called A.D. Harvey. In this article, entitled "The Soviet Air Force versus the Luftwaffe: A.D.Harvey assesses the role of the Soviet Air Force in the defeat of Nazism" he described the il2 family of airraft in a manner more negative than most descriptions i have seen.

He states:
"However, it is questionable whether the I1-2 was any more of a practical war-winning weapon than the Pe-8.

Slow and sluggish, the I1-2 in its original single-seater form was vulnerable to attack from the rear. The fitting of a 12.7mm machine gun operated by a gunner perched on a canvas belt in a makeshift rear cockpit reduced losses considerably: among those who fell to an alert I1-2 gunner was Otto Kittel, one of the top four German aces with 267 aerial victories at the time of his death on Valentine's Day, 1945. The main feature of the I1-2 was that, while the rear half of the fuselage was mainly of wood, the front half consisted of a kind of inch-thick bath of nickel steel impenetrable to the automatic weapons of the infantry below. Even so during 1943 I1-2s were downed at the rate of one per twenty-six sorties: a total of 12,400 were lost to enemy action.

The I1-2's 1,323lb bomb load was not much more than half of what could be carried by the much faster Petlyakov Pe-2 dive-bomber or by the American-built Douglas A-20 supplied through Lend-Lease. Normal gun armament was two 7.62mm machine guns and two 23mm cannon capable of penetrating 25mm armour at 400 metres. Since German tanks only had such thin armour on horizontal surfaces and the I1-2, not having dive brakes, could only attack in the most shallow of dives, this equipment was only really effective against German transport vehicles. In July 1943 a variant of the I1-2 with two 37mm Nudelman cannon made its debut at the Battle of Kursk and the Soviet authorities claimed fantastic results -- 270 tanks of the German 3rd Panzer Division destroyed in two hours, and so on. In reality the 3rd Panzer Division lost only nine tanks in the entire battle. The Nudelman-armed I1-2 was phased out of production soon afterwards: the gun was unreliable and its bulk and weight -- and especially its recoil when fired -- made the plane almost unmanageable. By the end of the war, the Soviet I1-2 ace was Aleksandr Nikolayevich Yefimov, who was credited with having destroyed 126 tanks, eighty-five aircraft on the ground (plus two in air combat) thirty railway locomotives, 193 field artillery guns and forty-three anti-aircraft guns. Seven other Soviet pilots were credited with having destroyed between sixty-three and seventy tanks each. (As usual the Germans did rather better, Hans Ulrich Rudel claiming 519 tanks, 800 other vehicles and the battleship Marat in the course of an incredible 2,530 combat missions.) It is clear, however, from the fighting in Western Europe that pilots' claims of success against tanks were often greatly exaggerated. On August 7th, 1944, for example, No. 121 Wing RAF, equipped with Hawker Typhoons armed with rockets, claimed over eighty German tanks destroyed in the course of attacks on 1.SS-Panzerdivision `Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler' near Mortain. Within the next two weeks two teams of Operational Research experts working for eight days were able to find only thirty-two German tanks that had been knocked out by Allied action, of which only seven showed any sign of having been hit by a rocket.

As it pushed forward, recapturing territory lost in 1941 and 1942, and overrunning positions that had been bombed and shot up by I1-2s, the Red Army was able to see for itself how few German tanks were being knocked out by air attacks, and it is difficult to believe that the huge programme of building I1-2s and training their crews was the result of a complete misunderstanding as regards its effectiveness."

He then states later that the il2 had a greater impact on soviet morale than german defensive capabilites.

What do you think about this? I have limited information on the combat effectiveness of the il2 apart from accounts by german soldiers of being attacked by it and infomation in the black cross/red star books and other more general histories. Based on my own reading(and the fact that the il2 is death on wings in the game) i have always thought that the il2 was a suberb ground attack aircraft that played a significant role in the war in the east. I am interested in hearing others opinions on the combat effectiveness of the il2 and whether or not this article is a fair suammary of the il2 contribution.

crazyivan1970
02-23-2004, 10:08 AM
I think he`s full of crap, sorry, can`t say much more. He knows nothing or very little and just blubbers something he heard somewhere.

Nothing against you mate, just answering your question http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

V!
Regards,

http://blitzpigs.com/forum/images/smiles/smokin.gif

VFC*Crazyivan aka VFC*HOST

http://www.rmutt.netfirms.com/coop-ivan.jpg

Kozhedub: In combat potential, the Yak-3, La-7 and La-9 fighters were indisputably superior to the Bf-109s and Fw-190s. But, as they say, no matter how good the violin may be, much depends on the violinist. I always felt respect for an enemy pilot whose plane I failed to down.

uberweng
02-23-2004, 10:14 AM
[QUOTE]

Nothing against you mate, just answering your question http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif


Dont worry, i also disagree with him so no offence taken. Just keen to hear what others think and see if any info on the il2's combat performance surfaces in the process

Uberweng

Platypus_1.JaVA
02-23-2004, 10:19 AM
Probably true. Imagine that the life-span of an average B-17 crew wasn't much more.

Anyways, also keep in minde that almost 40.000 of Il-2's where build.

1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.
2 For with what judgment ye judge,
ye shall be judged: and with what
measure ye mete, it shall be measured
to you again.

http://server5.uploadit.org/files/JaVAPlatypus-1java.JPG (http://www.1java.org)

JG26Red
02-23-2004, 10:20 AM
I have read quite a few things online and in books, and in reality the IL2 was decent, but not great... German LW engineers looked at captured ones and where amazed that it even flew, it had quite a few bad faults...

crazyivan1970
02-23-2004, 10:24 AM
I think it earned title of Black Death for a reason guys... and it`s not a myth either http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

V!
Regards,

http://blitzpigs.com/forum/images/smiles/smokin.gif

VFC*Crazyivan aka VFC*HOST

http://www.rmutt.netfirms.com/coop-ivan.jpg

Kozhedub: In combat potential, the Yak-3, La-7 and La-9 fighters were indisputably superior to the Bf-109s and Fw-190s. But, as they say, no matter how good the violin may be, much depends on the violinist. I always felt respect for an enemy pilot whose plane I failed to down.

Chuck_Older
02-23-2004, 10:28 AM
Some of the planes listed as aircraft that could do an Il-2's job may be reasonable on paper, but could they have been as durable just in normal operation in the climates and temperatures the Il-2 routinely functioned in? Sure, A-20s would be great, too, but if they are all grounded due to cold weather related issues and an Il-2 could still fly, then the A-20 is worthless in that situation.

*****************************
from the Hundred Years war to the Crimea, from the lance and the musket and the Roman spear, to all of the men who have stood with no fear, in the service of the King~ Clash

Sturmtrooper
02-23-2004, 10:47 AM
I tend to beleive most of what that article states . I have read similar articles before .
The Ilyushin-2s were not constructed that well . They were massed produced quickly as a stop-gap measure to halt the advance of German armor . The early models were really bad , the later ones a little better . Yes , they had thick armor protecting the pilot and engine . But what good is that armor when a wing can be ripped right off ?(a favorite tactic of Luftwaffe pilots i.e. Hartmann was to go for the wing root or oil cooler).
The most amazing thing about the Il-2 series isn't the fact that it was a great plane . It's the fact that the Soviets were able to gear up their factories and industries and produce as many as they did in such a limited time . Strength in numbers .
The T-34 was by far a more effective weapon against armor on the Eastern front .
Okay , break out your flamethrowers , I'm done . http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

http://home.bellsouth.net/coDataImages/p/Groups/183/183586/pages/456377/untitled1.gif

Mitlov47
02-23-2004, 10:58 AM
Two points.

1) Regarding the original post: like you said, "I stumbled across it while browsing the web." I've run into some pretty wack articles while browsing the web.

2) Regarding Sturmtrooper's post: no, the Il-2 was not perfect. HOWEVER, it worked very well with Soviet tactics, because it could be mass-produced quickly, in large numbers, so that it could be used in steamroller-style offensives. And its all-weather capabilities were CRITICAL, considering the weather on the Russian front. It wasn't the right tool for ALL jobs, but it was the right tool for THIS one.

One on one, Germany probably had the best war equipment of the war, whether you're talking small arms, tanks, or aircraft. However, what good is a slightly better aircraft or tank when the other side is building five for every one you have?

clint-ruin
02-23-2004, 11:02 AM
If you read the article it is clear that he seems to discount attacks on supply columns, is surprised at the casualty rate for aircraft operating in low-level close air support, and seems to favour raw bomb load over accuracy of delivery.

That he does not have a good impression of the Il-2 is not surprising given those factors. Personally I am left with a negative impression of his comprehension of what is important on a battlefield :>

http://home.iprimus.com.au/djgwen/fb/leninkoba.jpg

LEXX_Luthor
02-23-2004, 11:04 AM
Note the author/authorette focus only on combat against tanks. Warfare against troops and transport are more important for WAR fighting than attacking the pop~culture tanks. Same with the "allied" tactical air forces--they didn't do much against German tanks but they cut the arms and legs of the German Army including wiping our German tank fuel supplies and so allowing the US Army to Finish the Job.

You can tell the author is a Noob cos all he talks about are the popular Tanks like any school kid watching USA TV. BAM! POW! just like the old Batman~n~Robin show. haha


__________________
RUSSIAN lexx website http://www.lexx.ufo.ru/members.shtml
Stanly is a moron, kai is a walking dead beet, Xev just want sex.
:
you will still have FB , you will lose nothing ~WUAF_Badsight
I had actually pre ordered CFS3 and I couldnt wait... ~Bearcat99
Gladiator and Falco, elegant weapons of a more civilized age ~ElAurens

p1ngu666
02-23-2004, 11:12 AM
check the casulity figures of typhoon, there damn scary
rookie had 5missions average http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-sad.gif
pe2 a 2 engined plane too, if it didnt carry more it would suck
plus starving the germans of supplies was probably more important
oh and germans didnt have best equipment, thats partly myth
the russians had better guns to some extent, better tanks, tiger was uber but u couldnt make many. aircraft swayed about abit but never desive

http://www.pingu666.modded.me.uk/mysig3.jpg

JtD
02-23-2004, 11:32 AM
I think this article is accurate. Airpower in WW2 was generally overestimated. This is even more true for anti-tank aircraft. If every IL-2 had destroyed only one tank, the Germans would have surrendered in 1942 (about 25000 tanks total war production 39-45).

However, I don't think it's fair to completely evaluate the effeiciency of air attacks by numbers only. With air attackes you had the initiative, there is hardly anything more important than that.

Ground attacks in FB in no way resemble reality. In my IL-2 career I destroy an average of 2 aircraft and 10 ground objects per mission. If that was true, a squadron of IL-2 would have singlehandedly stopped the German invasion in June, 1941.

Jippo01
02-23-2004, 11:34 AM
I agree to a point with the article. Il-2 was not a precision weapon by all means, but instead was used en-masse. It was not considered worth being taken in to action as a war booty neither by the Germans nor the Finns. And Finns took even I-153's (+20 pcs) and SB's (+10 pcs), but wouldn't accept Il-2's because of their very bad construction.

Of course Il-2 had it's importance for winning the war for Russian's, no doubt about that, but it is an overly effective weapon in the game we are playing. With realistic deployment and weaponry it would be significantly less effective.

It has to be noted though, that some Finnish infantry men who experienced a Ju-87 attack in Lappland considered it easier to endure than a Sturmovik attack. But that could be result of many factors.


-jippo

LeLv28 - Fighting for independency since 2002
http://www.lelv28.com

Falkster's Ju-88 fan site:
www.ju88.de.tf (http://www.ju88.de.tf)

Mitlov47
02-23-2004, 11:49 AM
If my memory serves me properly, the German Sixth Army didn't surrender at Stalingrad because they ran out of tanks. They surrendered because they ran out of food and winter clothing.

I guess hitting supply trains IS important after all, huh?

Cossack_UA
02-23-2004, 11:50 AM
The article is written by dilettante. Il-2 was a superb ground attack a/c. The il-2 losses were high mostly inflicted by the German fighters. No matter how good the bommer is, it requires escort to protect it from enemy fighters.

in 1941 the primary tactics of Il-2 squadrons was ground level flight to hide from fighters.

Stalker58
02-23-2004, 11:50 AM
Troops....milions and milions Red Army's troopers with reliable Mosin 1891 rifle with bayonets, often without ammo....They won the horrible Great Patriotic War and not Il2 or T34, both are nice for GAMES/movies.
P.S.: A lot of (thousands?) Il2 were lost for not having compasses and radios, never RTB, reason unkown.
This is not from Web, but from man who had lived it through....

Altitude, speed, manoeuvre and.... CRASH!

Jippo01
02-23-2004, 11:53 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by EMitton:
I guess hitting supply trains IS important after all, huh?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Stalingrad was encircled, there was no way those trains would get into the city even if they were not strafed...


-jippo

LeLv28 - Fighting for independency since 2002
http://www.lelv28.com

Falkster's Ju-88 fan site:
www.ju88.de.tf (http://www.ju88.de.tf)

p1ngu666
02-23-2004, 12:04 PM
true
but, think of a more effective ww2 ground pounder http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif
u could send il2s on a free hunt, with stukas u couldnt so much, 190f was only in last stage of war, so its against il10..
plus limitin the germans ability to manouver is a VERY good thing

http://www.pingu666.modded.me.uk/mysig3.jpg

Jippo01
02-23-2004, 12:17 PM
Fw 190 was available in ground attack units at least by january 1943 - with one and half years of the war gone and 2 and a half still to go.

Il-2 didn't have the pinpoint accuracy of the dive bombers (bombs were aimed with the stripes painted on the cowling!), rockets were and still are area not precision weapons (like in FB), it's machine guns and cannons were not really anymore effective than those on the fighters - pretty useless against tanks effective against infantry and light vehicles (compare P-47, P-38 & Fw-190).

Il-2 was slow, very crude weapon, which lacked the refined effectiveness of it's counterparts all over the world. It was succesful because Soviets could produce it in large numbers and man it with inexperienced pilots that were expendable just like their planes.

Calling Il-2 the finest ground attack plane is like calling a Lada best car in the world because it is easier and cheaper to produce than a Mercedes.

War was won by the Russian infantryman, not a machine.


-jippo

LeLv28 - Fighting for independency since 2002
http://www.lelv28.com

Falkster's Ju-88 fan site:
www.ju88.de.tf (http://www.ju88.de.tf)

Sturmtrooper
02-23-2004, 12:23 PM
EMitton,
Von Paulus' 6th Army surrendered because they ran out of food , water , AND tanks .
In fact , the only reason they were defeated(annhilated more like) is because Goering assured Hitler that he could keep them supplied by air transport . Out of 320 Ju-52s only a third were servicable . That's about a hundred aircraft . The 6th Army needed 300 tons of supplies flown in everyday . It was an impossible task !
The 6th Army of Von Paulus could've broken out of the encirclement had Goering not assured Hitler that he could keep them supplied . However , ever since the Battle of Britain , Goering had fallen out of favor with Hitler . He was keen to prove himself (and his ego) . By falsely convincing Hitler that the 6th Army could be resupplied and should stay put ,he signed the death warrants of 250,000 men . In the end it was too late . The Ju-52s broke down in the subzero temperatures or were shot down by Russian fighters or flak . The encircling Soviet Armies grew stronger and the breakout that was once possible was now impossible .
It was not the Il-2 that won the battle of Stalingrad . It was the Russian winter, the stubborness of Hitler , and the ego of Goering .

http://home.bellsouth.net/coDataImages/p/Groups/183/183586/pages/456377/untitled1.gif

Cossack_UA
02-23-2004, 12:37 PM
You don't have a slightes understanding of economical system of the soviet union.
Soviet economy didn't have a consumption oriented economy of the west. They din't have any competition in the automobile market, hence soviet people drove outdated crapy Ladas (the lucky ones http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

In the military segment, wich was a huge part of Soviet economy, they faced fierce competition. A system of perks attracted the brightes and the smartest to work in the industry. The ones that couln't perform as expected would loose their perks and would go down to the level of common people, wich ment standing in the line to get everything (10 years to get an appartment, 20 years to be able to buy a Lada).

This system produced amazing military machines at a fraction of cost of their western counterparts.

MandMs
02-23-2004, 12:42 PM
Il-2s never had a chance to wear out. They were shot down to quickly for that to happen.



I eat the red ones last.

Cossack_UA
02-23-2004, 12:44 PM
Harsh winter effects both sides.
It's not like for Russians it's worm and cozy and for Germans it's freezing and brutal.

dizeee
02-23-2004, 12:51 PM
the article is neither inacurate nor is it written by a dilletant. the spectacular thought of hords of aircraft punding the **** out of whole enemy armies is idd something for a movie or a computergame.
a very nice article, dealing with the effeciency of allied air attacks on the german army during normandie campaign, was posted in one of those "0.50cal can kill tiger threads". this article is just another glimp on reality.
il2 was just another means to deliver firepower in a different way than simple artillery. il2 did ok in CAS. the whole russian interdiction strats where bad to very bad though out the war.
russian artillery coused 80% of german cassualties (kia and wia). if any means, besides the russian infantry man, can be pointed out to "have won the war" then it is the russian artillery.

p1ngu666
02-23-2004, 12:51 PM
they knew the lw couldnt sustain the 6th even in perfect conditions, summer, no fighters etc
ppl told hitler..

http://www.pingu666.modded.me.uk/mysig3.jpg

p1ngu666
02-23-2004, 12:56 PM
didnt the 23mm cannon have uber velocity?

http://www.pingu666.modded.me.uk/mysig3.jpg

Jippo01
02-23-2004, 01:02 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Cossack_UA:
You don't have a slightes understanding of economical system of the soviet union. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


I have lived most of my life less than 500km from Russia. Actually my family farm is now part of Russia (it wasn't 1938, though http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif) I have quite a good idea how Russia has been since 1970's, and I have worked for a year with Russian military equipment too. http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif Sure T-72 is a great cheap tank, but anybody who would say it is as good as Leopard or Abrams would be a fool. http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif


-jippo

LeLv28 - Fighting for independency since 2002
http://www.lelv28.com

Falkster's Ju-88 fan site:
www.ju88.de.tf (http://www.ju88.de.tf)

uberweng
02-23-2004, 01:08 PM
I finally found what A.D. Harvey qualifictaions are. He is a historian but his published material is limited to pre-1919 so maybe he is a little out of his depth writing about world war 2 weapon systems.

I think the point someone made about disrupting german supply coloumns is important. Disrupting logistics is a significant contribution to the prosecution of a war and due to german shortages of motor transport, destroying trucks could be as important as destroying tanks (although obviously not on a one for one basis). The problem with this is that it is impossible or at least very difficult to evaluate the importance of actions which affect the conduct of the war in an indirect manner. It is therefore easy to ignore or dismiss them.

Also, while it may be difficult for an il2's armament to destroy a german tank, destroying fuel or spare parts and therefore causing it to be immobilized or abandoned, or forcing supporting infantry to take cover and exposing it to enemy anti-tank forces has to effect combat efficiency. Plus, if a few shots from a fifty cal can knock-out a tiger a 23 mil cannon should be able to knock-out anything from a maus on down. http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Still, if anyone can provide information on the number of armoured vehicles lost to air attack in the east i would be very gratefull.

Bogun
02-23-2004, 01:13 PM
What made IL-2 extremely effective weapons against tanks were not general purpose high explosive bombs or its 23mm cannons (not even 37mm cannons) but PTABS – small shaped-charge bombs deployed in large numbers covering comparatively large areasâ...

First used over Kursk it was genuine surprise for Germans – there were cases when four tanks were hit by one drop, which forced Germans to change the way tanks were deployed. And Il-2â's strength was obvious when attacking â"softâ"ť targets.
Nothing compare to Il-2 was available to any other army in the world at a time.
Germans introduced Hs-129 – extremely poor substitute for IL-2, well armed and armored, but hopelessly underpowered with unreliable engines and with no defense armament at all. Situation was even worth for the Western Allies – no aircraft capable IL-2 role was there at all. Those words – â"one bullet was enough to bring down P-51â"ť hold true for any other fighter of the Western Allies. There were planes with higher survivability (like P-47) but still they were flying cans full with gasolineâ... They were adapted to the task at hands.

Finnish acceptance of some of the planes was most likely related to the planes Finnish could possibly maintain with whatever spare parts in their possessionâ...

Regards,

http://bogun.freeservers.com/609_bogun.jpg
"The best fighters I met in combat were the American P-51 Mustang and Russian Yak-9U. Both of those types obviously exceeded all Bf109 variants in performance, including the 'K'. The Mustang was unmatched in altitude performance, while the Yak-9U was champion in rate of climb and maneuverability."

- Walter Wolfrum (137 victories)

Curly_109
02-23-2004, 01:18 PM
If the real IL-2 was effective just 50% in compare to our sim one(especially damage model), than this was the best ground attack A/C in ww2 http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-happy.gif .

d:\My Documents\My Pictures\Z\6.jpg

??????????????

tttiger
02-23-2004, 01:18 PM
This short piece seems to sum up the goods and the bads of the Sturmo quite nicely. I'm not sure I agree with all of it, but much of it seems to make sense:

http://www.ctrl-c.liu.se/misc/ram/il2-art2.html

ttt

"I want the one that kills the best with the least amount of risk to me"

-- Chuck Yeager describing "The Best Airplane."

faustnik
02-23-2004, 01:28 PM
Bogun,

I'm surprised to hear your comment on the P-47. Wasn't it a very tough machine? Certainly it had a loadout that could rival the IL-2. It didn't need defensive armament or an escort because of its speed. Do you think that the IL-2 was better than the P-47 in the air-to-ground role? http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif

http://pages.sbcglobal.net/mdegnan/_images/FaustSig
www.7Jg77.com (http://www.7jg77.com)

Bogun
02-23-2004, 01:31 PM
Great page, thanks tttiger!

Also, Russians recognized the shortcomings of Il-2 pretty early, but there was a war to be fought and not many changes could have been made into the design without interrupting production. That was true for any party in the war, even for far removed US (remember P-40 or P-38 histories). When they could start Il-10 production – they did.

I wish we had IL-10 in the game one day (but of course – Pe-2 first)!

Regards,

http://bogun.freeservers.com/609_bogun.jpg
"The best fighters I met in combat were the American P-51 Mustang and Russian Yak-9U. Both of those types obviously exceeded all Bf109 variants in performance, including the 'K'. The Mustang was unmatched in altitude performance, while the Yak-9U was champion in rate of climb and maneuverability."

- Walter Wolfrum (137 victories)

Jippo01
02-23-2004, 01:34 PM
Spares for such widely used and unsophisticated plane like Il-2 were most likely available. I suspect that they were much easier to find than for example modern high performance plane Pe-2 spares, and Pe-2 was part of Finnish arsenal.

I doubt the spares were part of the problem.


-jippo

LeLv28 - Fighting for independency since 2002
http://www.lelv28.com

Falkster's Ju-88 fan site:
www.ju88.de.tf (http://www.ju88.de.tf)

uberweng
02-23-2004, 01:45 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by dizeee:
the article is neither inacurate nor is it written by a dilletant. the spectacular thought of hords of aircraft punding the **** out of whole enemy armies is idd something for a movie or a computergame.
a very nice article, dealing with the effeciency of allied air attacks on the german army during normandie campaign, was posted in one of those "0.50cal can kill tiger threads". this article is just another glimp on reality.
il2 was just another means to deliver firepower in a different way than simple artillery. il2 did ok in CAS. the whole russian interdiction strats where bad to very bad though out the war.
russian artillery coused 80% of german cassualties (kia and wia). if any means, besides the russian infantry man, can be pointed out to "have won the war" then it is the russian artillery.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I disagree strongly with what you said about the russian interdiction strat being very bad throught the war. What is this assertion based on? The russian military developed a strong doctrinal base for air-ground co-operation priorto 1941. While the german invasion disrupted the air-ground system, by November 1942 the soviet army had established a reasonably efficient system and bridged the gap between doctrine and practise. Air units were centralized at the front level and air command posts were established close the front line while increasing numbers of radios were made available to air and ground units. Throughout the rest of the war soviet air ground coordination and overall effectiveness continued to improve due to the introdution of improved equipment in ever increasing numbers, the proliferation of radio equipment, and increasing numbers of trained personel.

On these grounds i think the statement "the whole russian interdiction strats where bad to very bad though out the war" is not " just another glimp on reality" to use the words of its author.

Bogun
02-23-2004, 01:45 PM
Faustnik,
P-47 was superb fighter bomber indeed - it could dive, dump all bombs on lightly protected target somewhere in the enemy rear and quickly get out, but it wasnâ't the plane which could hang near frontlines, under ground fire in search of hidden targets, car columns, artillery positions, etc., the way Il-2 could (or IL-10 or A-10 or Su-25)â...

Read the memoirs of Il-2 pilots what kind of mission were they flying, compare those missions to typical P-47 mission.

Jippo,
How many Pe-2 were Finnish flying? Also engines for it were probably bought from Germans when it was still a possibility...
Finnish themselves were flying pretty crude aircrafts and maintaining them, no doubt, took a lot of ingenuity and hard work. Il2 was probably beyond the capabilities of what was possibly done to maintain captured equipment.

Regards,

http://bogun.freeservers.com/609_bogun.jpg
"The best fighters I met in combat were the American P-51 Mustang and Russian Yak-9U. Both of those types obviously exceeded all Bf109 variants in performance, including the 'K'. The Mustang was unmatched in altitude performance, while the Yak-9U was champion in rate of climb and maneuverability."

- Walter Wolfrum (137 victories)

Jippo01
02-23-2004, 01:51 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by tttiger:
This short piece seems to sum up the goods and the bads of the Sturmo quite nicely. I'm not sure I agree with all of it, but much of it seems to make sense:<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


Well at least the comparison table with Stuka is pure rubbish. I'm sorry to say that but it really is.

Selection of plane variants for comparison is strange to say the least. There is 1938 version with poor range and payload and specialised tank killer compared to mid war ground attack plane. There is no mention of a D which was more contemporary opponent of the 1942 type 3. D-carried more than twice the amount of bombs compared to type3, not to mention the fact that with Ju-87 it was possible to deliver the payload with pinpoint accuracy. Variants with drop tanks had almost twice the range of type3, and there was not that much difference between the top speeds either.

Why, if Il-2 was such a good plane, the writer needs to take such stupid comparison which only makes him look stupid and untrustworthy?


-jippo

LeLv28 - Fighting for independency since 2002
http://www.lelv28.com

Falkster's Ju-88 fan site:
www.ju88.de.tf (http://www.ju88.de.tf)

uberweng
02-23-2004, 01:54 PM
Bogun,
i would love to read the memoirs of Il-2 pilots, do you know the titles of any that arent in russian? If so please post them so i can track them down.

Thanks

Uberweng

Jippo01
02-23-2004, 01:59 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Bogun:
Jippo,
How many Pe-2 were Finnish flying? Also engines for it were probably bought from Germans when it was still a possibility...
Finnish themselves were flying pretty crude aircrafts and maintaining them, no doubt, took a lot of ingenuity and hard work. Il2 was probably beyond the capabilities of what was possibly done to maintain captured equipment.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Most of the war booty material was bought from Germans. FAF used 7 Pe-2's and one Pe-3. Pe-2 was much more complicated machine than Il-2 so I cannot see how it should be more difficult to maintain a simple plane like Il-2? Again Ju-88 was again was much more complicated lane compared to both of the previous, and Finns managed to maintain even those.

But to cut the story short I read long time ago a Finnish evaluation of Il-2 and it was mentioned not fit to be taken in to use because of it's construction quality.


-jippo

LeLv28 - Fighting for independency since 2002
http://www.lelv28.com

Falkster's Ju-88 fan site:
www.ju88.de.tf (http://www.ju88.de.tf)

Whatsmypassword
02-23-2004, 02:09 PM
There are plenty literature in Russian on the practical use of IL-2s of more scientific kind based on reports and statistics. Indeed the main anti-tank weapon of Il-2 was not cannons but 200 anti-tank bombs (PTUBs) any of them could destroy most of German tanks. Believe me if IL-2 was not so effective it was not mass-produced.

Nunsuch
02-23-2004, 02:40 PM
The Russians couldn't afford to build what they didn't believe was effective equipment. In 1941-1943 they were fighting for their existence. Right off the bat I knotised something I think is wrong with the originall article I believe Otto Kittel was shot from the main guns of the Il2 when he overshot. The article indicates he was shot from the tail gunner.
I don't think the P-47 was as good at ground attack as the Il2 it didn't have internal bombs it could carry more weight but it had to go faster to attack because it would stall if it didn't. For ground attack the forgivness of the Il2's flight charachteristics because of its huge wings I think would be apreciated by the pilots.

BfHeFwMe
02-23-2004, 02:47 PM
It's follow on, the Il-10 was a total failure in the Korean theatre, and immediatly withdrawn. Allied pilots considered it a freebie.

It could be the Germans didn't regard it as much of a threat, so didn't waste the time and resources to eradicate it.

Cossack_UA
02-23-2004, 02:51 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BfHeFwMe:
It's follow on, the Il-10 was a total failure in the Korean theatre, and immediatly withdrawn. Allied pilots considered it a freebie.

It could be the Germans didn't regard it as much of a threat, so didn't waste the time and resources to eradicate it.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

So if Il-2 was a failure, why wasn't it withdrawn, but produced in such great numbers?

uberweng
02-23-2004, 02:55 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Cossack_UA:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BfHeFwMe:
It's follow on, the Il-10 was a total failure in the Korean theatre, and immediatly withdrawn. Allied pilots considered it a freebie.

It could be the Germans didn't regard it as much of a threat, so didn't waste the time and resources to eradicate it.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

So if Il-2 was a failure, why wasn't it withdrawn, but produced in such great numbers?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Also, if they didnt waste much time and resources to eradicate it why were 12,000 lost?

Curly_109
02-23-2004, 02:55 PM
the game is one thing, a reality is something else (from our perspective we can argue each other for eons about this but there is no real answer to this question). In the game however, it's harder to down IL-2(especially later series)than Ju-87.
cheerz http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_cool.gif

p1ngu666
02-23-2004, 02:57 PM
ive always wondered about that koera stuff. but then again, if your ground pounding, your in a prime position to be bounced

http://www.pingu666.modded.me.uk/mysig3.jpg

VW-IceFire
02-23-2004, 03:10 PM
I heard something about the problems of the IL-10 in Korea weren't related to the aircraft itself but to other factors (can't remember - pilot, repair, situation it was used in, etc.).

I think the author kind of overdoes his case on the IL-2. Like aircraft such as the P-40...they weren't fantastic aircraft that would be breaking records for high performance...but they were there, available in large quanities, and capable enough to do the job with reasonable success. Frankly, losses for any aircraft that is in the tactical ground attack role is going to be huge.

Thats why aircraft like the IL-2 and the Hawker Typhoon were designed (or redesigned) with as much armor plating and strength of airframe (in the case of the Typhoon) as possible. Even so...the casualty rates for tactical aircraft were huge. That shouldn't be much of an indication of the aircrafts overall effectiveness if the numbers in comparison are fairly similar for other types of similar role (although it definately is hard to compair the Typhoon with the Il-2 either since the Typhoon was a interceptor turned tactical attack aircraft).

The other point to make is something made by one of my history profs and that was the role of armor in WWII. It was certainly present all over the place but it certainly wasn't the only ground weapon used (the so called all mechanized army). There was still thousands of horses used and infrantry was still the primary weapon of the army. The main point was that armies were not 100% armor divisions...so the critical supply lines were definately targets for IL-2's.

http://home.cogeco.ca/~cczerneda/sigs/temp_sig1.jpg
RCAF 412 Falcon Squadron - "Swift to Avenge"

blabla0001
02-23-2004, 04:07 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by JtD:
Ground attacks in FB in no way resemble reality. In my IL-2 career I destroy an average of 2 aircraft and 10 ground objects per mission. If that was true, a squadron of IL-2 would have singlehandedly stopped the German invasion in June, 1941.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Air attacks in FB are not accurate either, I collect about 7 kills per mission average in my German campaign.
Every mission that I fly with only 7 other members in my flight and sometimes there are a few other planes roaming around and eventually enter battle somewhere we kill nearly every Russian plane they throw at us.
Every mission we fly the air losses on the Russian side stack up in the double figures, sometimes reaching over 30 planes lost but it's usually between 15 and 23 against our 1 to 5 losses.

If all German Squadrons finished their missions like ours the Red airforce would have been smashed in weeks, and we aren't even a full Squadron with only 8 planes so go figure.

blabla0001
02-23-2004, 04:12 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BfHeFwMe:
It's follow on, the Il-10 was a total failure in the Korean theatre, and immediatly withdrawn. Allied pilots considered it a freebie.

It could be the Germans didn't regard it as much of a threat, so didn't waste the time and resources to eradicate it.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

So IL2 was called the "the Black Death" by the German soldiers and the IL10 was Nato designated "the Beast" and both planes where a total failure.

That's very strange.

If they really where total failures they would have been called very different by their enemies.

blabla0001
02-23-2004, 04:20 PM
And here we have someone else that doesn't agree with BfHeFwMe.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Oleg_Maddox:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BfHeFwMe:
IL=10's were loved by allied pilots in Korea, and easy and sure kill. They were quickly withdrawn, what was left of them. Don't believe it, take one of the fighters with all the fifties in the wings and shred a few IL-2's. Nothing tears them up quicker.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

The official looses of this aircraft doesn't confirm your text http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif
And why American's gve this plane intersting name: BEAST http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

So BfHeFwMe, how many IL10's where lost according to your well documented figures?

WWMaxGunz
02-23-2004, 05:08 PM
Anyone wants to see how and what effect ground attack planes had on battles can read about what happenned where they were used. Normandy and the breakout as well as the Ardennes (Bulge) after the weather broke come clearly to my mind.

As others have said, you kill the support and the tanks become quickly useless. Tanks require infantry, infantry requires tanks, both require artillery and all require fuel/food and ammo not to mention medical services. Cut the mutual support and... well how long do you keep advancing in your tank when you know you only have one tank of fuel and maybe 40 to 60 rounds of ammo? Sure, you keep going till it runs out, right? LOL! Only in a stupid game, stupid comic book or stupid dream!

Tanks don't have to be shot through the armor to be stopped. You pop a track and that sucker becomes a pillbox. In the early war and up till 42 there were anti-tank rifles used. They aimed for the tracks, the vision slots, and other vulnerable places. Armor isn't the same everywhere. You hit a tank from the sides or rear and that thick frontal armor does nothing for it. A stuck tank is just easier to get angle on. The turret turns to cover the rear and a gun from the front can hit the often even thinner armor on the rear of the turret. And there is a feature on most tanks where the turret joins the body of the tank that is even more vulnerable than the rear armor... the turret ring. It's not anti-tank rifle vulnerable and it's a small target but when firing loads of high-rof rounds at a tank, the chances for a hit go up.

And you still don't have to kill the tank itself. Just convince the crew to quit the fight. They retreat or bail out and the tank is ineffective. Later on a recovery team gets the tank or the crew gets back in and takes it home or if they just retreated then the end is the same, and the people who count wrecks never get to write any of that down. They only see destroyed or abandoned tanks that weren't retrieved.

There's many more ways to stop tanks than by blowing them up or shooting holes through them. Many.

Sorry but Russian infantry did not win the war alone. Alone they could not. Russian armor, often very powerful stuff and often very fast was needed. Russian AT guns was needed. The Russian artillery was simply amazing when massed, esp from mid war onwards and by the end... oooh! And yes, the Russian airforce because if you are dominated in the skies then you will lose.
But there was a LOT of Russian infantry who were the backbone of the Russian armies. The Red Guards and other units (Tankodenashti's? Did I spell that right?) of first line quality just had balls of steel with what they stood and did. I've read that even into the war the Russians would bring trucks with AT guns on them (Portee's) right up to the front lines and use them, keep them there and use them. No wonder they took heavy losses! But they also dished them out! What heart!


Neal

Menthol_moose
02-23-2004, 05:19 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by uberweng:
Bogun,
i would love to read the memoirs of Il-2 pilots, do you know the titles of any that arent in russian? If so please post them so i can track them down.

Thanks

Uberweng<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

http://www.iremember.ru/pilots/khukhrikov/khukhrikov.html

http://simpsons.metropoliglobal.com/fotogramas/2f13/09.jpg

Eh, mates! What's the good word?

HerrGraf
02-23-2004, 05:37 PM
The IL2 may not be the "uber" attack plane that some think it is, but it is hardly a pile of junk either. One must keep in mind that the Russian philosophy is "The best is the enemy of good enough". The IL2 was considered to be an effective enough weapon to get the job done. Even the T34 had crude construction when compared to the rest of the tanks of the period. Russian out look on all their equipment is that it is to have a fair chance to survive the battle, but it is NOT intended to be like a Mercedes car.

DaBallz
02-23-2004, 05:41 PM
The Soviets did not allow the western
allies much in the way of statistics.
It is diffacult to analyse the IL2's success
with the sparse information allowed to be released.
For instance we thought the P-39 was used primarily as
a tank buster, but surprise....It was primarily
used as an air to air fighter!

The IL2 was an effective weapon. Strafing troops
and tanks, disrupting or destroying lines
of communication.
That it was dead meat to fighters is of no consequence.
The German Ju-87 was a very effective weapon
but it was usless against fighters.

The Soviets showed that they would take more
casulties than the enemy to insure victory.
To loose more Sturmovics than German tanks killed
was of no consequence.
The germans could not sustain that loss rate.

The IL2 was at least an effective weapon.
It may have been VERY effective.

the IL10 was regarded as "meat on the table"
by UN pilots over Korea.
It was completely obsolete by the time of
the PDRK invasion of the south.

Da...

Menthol_moose
02-23-2004, 05:50 PM
[QUOTE]
That it was dead meat to fighters is of no consequence.
The German Ju-87 was a very effective weapon
but it was usless against fighters.
QUOTE]

Thats right. No ground pounder is going to be effective unless it has air superiority. Both JU87 and Il2 were easy pickings unless there was proper fighter cover. Just because they were vunerable to fighters does not make them ineffective aircraft.

I seriously doubt the soviets built just 70,000 of them to please the right people. They must have been effective. Yes, losses were high but that was a part of tactics. I read somewhere that the IL2 was a plane designed for 3 missions. Crude, cheap, but effective and the losses were recoverable and men were limitless.

http://simpsons.metropoliglobal.com/fotogramas/2f13/09.jpg

Eh, mates! What's the good word?

SKULLS_LZ
02-23-2004, 06:53 PM
I can easily imagine the effect of thousands upon thousands of IL-2s would have had on German logistics, artillery, and infantry, but I just realized that I don't recall ever reading a German soldier mentioning IL-2 attacks in his memiors (I've read at least 10 books on the subject). Maybe they were all killed?

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
http://www.jwilliamsmusic.it/belushi.jpg
Yeah I vulched ya. Now put a cork in it and pick another base before I bust a c@p in your sorry @ss.

tenmmike
02-23-2004, 07:11 PM
Il-2 - our proud or tragic error?
V.Bakursky

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Role
played by Il-2 in the Great Patriotic War is hard to overestimate. But at recent time some sentences appear in the press where Il-2 is presented as a ... terrible error of soviet aviation industry, "flying coffin" - perfect target for German aces which costs tens of thousands lives of soviet pilots and gunners.
Indeed, for many years Il-2 was presented by our press as the best and the most produced WWII aircraft, and any critics appeared to be a heresy. Now our "experts" fell into an opposite extreme... For example, newspaper "The Beginning" published exactly the next : "Soviet stormovik Il-2 gave up to German Junkers Ju-87 'Stuka' factor 1.5 in ceiling, factor 4 in range, factor 3 in bomb load, advancing only in gun firepower... by 1 machine gun. Briefly, famous Il-2 was cheap, primitive and bad aircraft. It was a plane for a death squad. Average survivability, as proved by practices, was only 5 combat missions." Such an opinion. It is unclear, indeed, why author started from comparison of aircrafts from different classes - ground attacker and dive bomber. And moreover - where he got all those numbers?
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Comment by A.Savin :

Il-2 vs 'Stuka'
Il-2type3 Ju-87b1 (1938) Ju-87g1(1942)
Range 740 600km 320km
Speed 404km.h 358km/h 314km/h
Bombs 400kg internal
200kg external 700kg none
Machine guns 2x7.62mm
1x12.7mm 3x7.9mm 1x7.9mm
Cannons 2x23mm
or 2x37mm none 2x30mm
Rockets 8xRS-82
or 4xRS-132 none none
According to Il-2 item, "Il-2 in Action", and Gustin's Military Aircraft Database;


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Statistics is a tough thing, and it confirms that for every lost Il-2 there were in average 30 combat missions. Including heavy losses in the early period of war, when German fighters could practice shooting on single-seat Il's which had no defence weapons and practically no fighter escorts.
Single-seat Il-2 crashed. Often the only way to bring down one of these aircraft was to shoot off the ailerons, elevators or rudder, since the pilot and engine were invulnerable to machine gun fire.
Photo Almark from 'Ground attack' by Christopher Chant (47k);

Same way many other soviet planes were doomed, including SB, R-5, TB-3, and others. But in the second half of Great Patriotic War Soviet (and Allied - A.S.) aviation took over domination in air from Germany, and Il-2 started to operate with escort fighters. Pilots-stormoviks learned effective defence maneuver called 'circle'. (Stormoviks form circle protecting tail of previous aircraft, and their powerful guns are ready to welcome fighters from any direction.) As a result Il-2 losses became much smaller.
Losses from German front line anti-aircraft fire were also significant, but German front line air are known to be extremely strong, and any other aircraft should be much more vulnerable under those circumstances.
There is a reasonable question: why Allied Forces on the West Front had low losses and high efficiency despite they used just heavy fighters "Thunderbolt". May be this aircraft was more efficient that armored Il-2? Indeed, no. The reason is that active use of "Thunderbolts" as an attack aircraft begins in 1944, when German front line aviation was almost paralyzed, and air defence interceptors were busy with defeating "Flying Fortresses". Plus main target of Allied Forces attackers was not on front line but deep behind enemy lines (thanks to range of US fighters - A.S.), where they hunted trains and automotive escorts.
Indeed, such a targets could not be protected by strong anti-aircraft defence. In case of front line operations losses of Thunderbolts could be much heavier, because armour of Il-2 protected pilot and engine from shrapnel and bullets.
Situation with gunner's protection was much worse. Gunner in Il-2 (see history of the problem in 'Special Class' - AS) was not protected by armored cockpit, and for every pilot casualty there were about 7 killed gunners... (may be this is a legend, but some Gulag prisoners volunteered to serve as Il-2 gunners in exchange for chance to get freedom - AS). This problem was solved only on seriously modified Il-10 with both crew members sharing common armored cockpit.
Other "experts" mention liquid cooling engine of Il-2 as its disadvantage, because it required additional armoring. Now, as late as 50 years they blame S.V.Ilyushinthat he did not employed more combat-robust air-cooling engine. Good idea, but was such an engine available at the moment? When Il-2 was under development, there vere no such engines available to supply sufficient power. Only low-altitude AM-38 could give a chance to the Il-2. It is not surprising that more advanced Sukhoi Su-6 with M-71 engine did not reach mass production - the M-71 (ASh-71) engine was available only as an experimental. Of course S.V.Ilyushin understood significance of power plant "survivability", but he had no alternative "proper" solutions.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
S.V.Ilyushin developed and flight tested the Il-2M-82, (also designated Il-4) with M-82 14-cylinder 2-raw engine, but it has almost identical performance. (A.Savine)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I guess many of you had chance to listen that Il-2 was heavy and clumsy, so it suffered big losses. Yes it was, but it was not a fighter but ground attacker (take for comparison Fairchild A-10, this plane was designed following exactly the same concept ! - A.S.). Nobody will blame Pe-2 or Il-4 that they were not as maneuverable as Messerschmitt was. Stormovik as well as a bomber must be capable for destruction of ground targets, and its protection from enemy fighters is a duty of escort fighters.
It is not a guilt but trouble of our stormovik pilots that up to the middle of the war they had to operate without fighter protection. And where young pilots could get experience of defensive air combat tactics when they just started to fly under cut training program ? Some of them came to action with only 10 flight hours on stormovik...
This was a cause of simplified attack tactics - small angle dive on target, what made aircraft a good target for concentrated anti-aircraft fire. One more reason for heavy losses...
But Il-2 itself was not such an "iron" as one can imagine. Experienced pilots could perform complex "figures" on Il-2 and were quite successful in defence combat alone face-to-face with enemy fighters.
Moreover, test photo-combats proved that on low altitude Il-2 was capable to defeat such a maneuverable fighters as Yak-3. Concerning the more powerful and advanced Il-10, on low altitude it was not only as maneuverable as a fighter but also as fast as a fighter. Unfortunately stormovik pilots in mass were not specially trained for active air-air combat...
Few words about Il-2 armament. Unprepared people will not be impressed by fact that it had two 23-mm guns VJa-23. Indeed, it only 3mm more than ordinary 20mm ShVAK (or similar German MG/FF and MG-151/20). But last three were nothing more but modified heavy machine guns with increased (from 12.7mm to 20mm) diameter of barrel. As a result speed of a shell was almost same as for machine gun prototype. But shell of VYa-23 was two times heavier than one of ShVAK, and had significantly higher speed. It is not an occasion that German fighters tried to avoid frontal attacks against Soviet stormoviks. For ground targets destruction VJa-23 was also very effective, specially if was accompanied with rocket missile launch.
Conceptual analysis of Il-2 stormovik proves that this aircraft came exactly in time and played exceptionally important part in slowing down of German tanks and motorized infantry on early stages of the (Great Patriotic - AS) war, and later did help in Soviet army advance.
Il-2 was the only Soviet strike aircraft capable to operate effectively in 1941 under conditions of complete domination of German aviation. Exactly at this time I.Stalin said that "...Il-2 is needed by the army as an air." Did those words played a bad joke with this great aircraft? Was it for good that so many Il's were produced during war? How many resources were consumed by overproduction of this plane? What was a final result of all this?
It is not a secret that during the War more than a half of Soviet air force were Il-2's. Absolutely clear that under those circumstances there will be always shortages of escort fighters... and unavoidable heavy losses.
Moreover, Il-2 was involved into solving non-typical combat tasks such as reconnaissance, routine bombing of railroad stations, depots, other ground objects, also ships. With removed guns Il-2 was used... as a torpedo-bomber. But if instead of stormoviks with relatively small bomb load those tasks were addressed to "classic" bombers like Tu-2, enemy losses could be much more significant. And is it justified to replace heavy bombers by Il-2 to make massive strikes against large targets?
Unfortunately Soviet airforce had no other choice in the situation when production of "classic" bombers was much smaller than one of Il-2. It was necessary to crash enemy with all available resources. And Il's did it.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
'Wings of MotherLand' January 1992

Translated (Brrrr...) by A. Savine - corrections very welcome...

http://images.ar15.com/forums/smiles/anim_50cal.gif U.S INFANTRY 1984-1991

Fehler
02-23-2004, 07:18 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SKULLS_LZ:
I just realized that I don't recall ever reading a German soldier mentioning IL-2 attacks in his memiors.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

http://webpages.charter.net/cuda70/FehlerSig.gif
http://webpages.charter.net/cuda70/9JG54.html

owlwatcher
02-23-2004, 08:42 PM
The Il-2 seris is one of the best ground attack aircraft of the war. Looking at the IL-2 from western eyes it is a peice of crap.
The different stlye or tactical use ,concept of war makes the IL-2 the best or crap plane of the war.It must be remenbered that both the Russian & Germany still used horses and the US had radios in wide spread use.
The russian stlye in your face warfare,Steam Roller
Makes the IL-2 the right choice. 100 T34's 25 IL-2 make a nice moblie force.
The western stlye warfare was to try to isolate the battle field with air power.
The P-47 worked for the US in this role.

Had the US designed a A-10,IL-2 type plane and attached it to the armour Division I think it would have added alot to the fire power .

I bought this Dammed game cause of a IL-2 on the cover!?!?!

WUAF_Badsight
02-23-2004, 09:16 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BfHeFwMe:
It's follow on, the Il-10 was a total failure in the Korean theatre, and immediatly withdrawn. Allied pilots considered it a freebie. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Bullsh1t & Lies

DONB3397
02-23-2004, 09:38 PM
Haven't read the whole thread, but with regards to the opening question -- you probably should read what the people who fought it have to say.

- German tank commanders said the IL2 was the one they they feared more than the T-34 (Source: History Ch. Documentary). Possibly because there were so many.

- LW pilots called it a "concrete" plane because they couldn't bring it down. Helmut Lipfert, JG52 Experten, said he had to saw off the wings to get one down. He had 203 kills. (Source: War Diary of HL)

- Hans Ulrich Rudel, the LW tank killer mentioned in Harvey's comments, wrote that "the Shturmovik was slow, ungainly, ugly and brutally effective." And, of course, the Stuka was better; even though many considered it slow, ungainly, ugly...especially the G-3 with which Rudel scored many of his 509 kills.

If Yefimov, the IL2 pilot, only killed 129 German tanks, I suspect it may be because he only flew a quarter of the 2,500 missions Rudel flew. That doesn't make Rudel's feats any less impressive; he was extraordinary!

Yes, the Il-2 was numerically overwhelming by the end of the Eastern campaign, and it may have been almost as important to Soviet morale as it was destructive to German defenses. But modern wars aren't won in one-to-one combat; they're won through attrition of the enemy resources. The IL-2 certainly hastened that process.


Winning isn't everything;
It's the only thing!
http://us.f2.yahoofs.com/bc/3fe77b7e_1812a/bc/Images/Sig---1.jpg?BCbi4NAB.0s9LZQo

owlwatcher
02-23-2004, 10:12 PM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by DONB3397:
Haven't read the whole thread, but with regards to the opening question -- you probably should read what the people who fought it have to say.


Yes, the Il-2 was numerically overwhelming by the end of the Eastern campaign, and it may have been almost as important to Soviet morale as it was destructive to German defenses. But modern wars aren't won in one-to-one combat; they're won through attrition of the enemy resources. The IL-2 certainly hastened that process.


Winning isn't everything;
It's the only thing!

Maybe:
"modern wars aren't won in one-to-one combat."
But this was Stalins war , where the Red Army was seeking one-to-one combat. It was designed to fight that way.

Whatsmypassword
02-23-2004, 10:18 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BfHeFwMe:
It's follow on, the Il-10 was a total failure in the Korean theatre, and immediatly withdrawn. Allied pilots considered it a freebie. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

See the reply at http://forums.ubi.com/eve/forums?a=tpc&s=400102&f=23110283&m=345102442&r=703106442#703106442


Btw about Il-2 v Thunderbolt.

The Red Army Air Force get 196 Thunderbolts P-47D-22-RE & P-47D-27-RE. The Russian pilots did not like it. They said that under 6.000 meters Thunderbolt was more like a flying heavy target rather than a fighter. It was probably intended to be a high altitude escort fighter but Russians did not have many heavy bombers to escort. So most Thunderbolts did not reach the front and served in the air defense units in Roumania, Hungary and 50 of them in the North fleet.

tttiger
02-23-2004, 10:25 PM
Jippo: If you read the article carefully (I admit the translation sounds like one of Oleg's posts http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif) I think you will notice the author said it was foolish to compare the Stuka and the IL-2, a dive bomber and a dedicated ground attack aircraft (why he then presented the chart is a bit of a mystery to me). Point is: I think he agrees with you.

As to an account by a real IL-2 pilot, here's a great one (unlike the US Infantry I won't cut and paste the whole thing into the post http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif, hopefully you know how to use a link):

http://www.iremember.ru/pilots/khukhrikov/khukhrikov.html

Those of you who haven't read this before are in for a treat, I believe...

The Il-2 was unique in WWII. It shouldn't be compared to the Stuka or the Jug, neither of which were designed for close air support (although they ended up with the mission). Nor with the Corsair or the P-38, which also were great close air support aircraft but that was a secondary function. The comparison with the contemporary A-10 or even the WWI Halberstadt D-II is more aoppropriate, IMHO.

Aloha,

ttt

"I want the one that kills the best with the least amount of risk to me"

-- Chuck Yeager describing "The Best Airplane."

Cossack_UA
02-24-2004, 08:07 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by owlwatcher:
"modern wars aren't won in one-to-one combat."
But this was Stalins war , where the Red Army was seeking one-to-one combat. It was designed to fight that way.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

It was not a Stalin's war by any means. They people fight for their lives it's no one's war exept their own.

Jippo01
02-24-2004, 09:16 AM
tttiger, I had to go and read it again. http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif I guess you right about the point of the author. But just reading comments like "Il-2 could defeat Yak-3" just camouflaged his point when I first read it. http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif


-jippo

LeLv28 - Fighting for independency since 2002
http://www.lelv28.com

Falkster's Ju-88 fan site:
www.ju88.de.tf (http://www.ju88.de.tf)

Bogun
02-25-2004, 09:34 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>
Originally posted by uberweng:

I would love to read the memoirs of Il-2 pilots, do you know the titles of any that arenâ't in Russian? If so please post them so I can track them down.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I know – memoirs of Russian pilots translated in English are very hard to find. Generally any info about war on the Eastern Front is nearly impossible to find here, on the West.
Field was dominated for 50 years by writings of German pilots and the perception of what air war on the East was like was formed by them.
Cold war prevented any change of unbiased coverage of their story and IL-2 Sturmovik game was a first chance for many of enthusiasts to experience a little bit their part of the storyâ...
Also, in my personal opinion, all post-war memoirs of Russian pilots went through the filters of communist ideology and their value as literature is questionable, but they definitely bring the taste of titanic struggle, horrendous losses and the feel of well deserved victory at the end. One of the books I like (also it was not written by WWII era pilot) – Attack of the Airacobras: Soviet Aces, American P-39S, and the Air War Against Germany (Modern War Studies) by Dmitriy Loza, James F. Gebhardt.

Also good place to start would be this:
http://www.iremember.ru/index_e.htm
You can find interviews with some war participants, and one of them is by Il-2 pilot - Yurii Khukhrikov here:
http://www.iremember.ru/pilots/khukhrikov/khukhrikov.html
Great stuff, unfortunately not all the interviews tranclated to English yet.

Here is another interesting link for you (unfortunately site is in Russian).
You can find 33 pages covering Il-2 development and employment during the WW2
http://www.23ag.sp.mk.ua/html/il2_pub.html
There is everything you ever wanted to know about Il-2, just put it through the on-line translator like
http://trans.voila.fr/
Sorry, cannot give you any better source yet, but if I find – I definitely will.

Regards,

http://bogun.freeservers.com/609_bogun.jpg
"The best fighters I met in combat were the American P-51 Mustang and Russian Yak-9U. Both of those types obviously exceeded all Bf109 variants in performance, including the 'K'. The Mustang was unmatched in altitude performance, while the Yak-9U was champion in rate of climb and maneuverability."

- Walter Wolfrum (137 victories)

jeroen_R90S
02-25-2004, 12:40 PM
Somewhere I read it wasn't even a tactic to suppress AAA before attacking. Is that true?! Would seem a very dangerous and resource-wasting tactic!

Jeroen

Nimits
02-25-2004, 01:20 PM
Many historians are questioning the effectiveness of CAS in WWII. Since the claims of Typhoons and P-47s have been shown to be hopelessly optamistic, it comes as no surprise should one find the same thing true of the IL-2.

Magister__Ludi
02-25-2004, 02:42 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Nimits:
Many historians are questioning the effectiveness of CAS in WWII. Since the claims of Typhoons and P-47s have been shown to be hopelessly optamistic, it comes as no surprise should one find the same thing true of the IL-2.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Those historians usually claim that strategic campaign was a success beyond doubt. Numbers shows precisely the opposite. Tactical strike capability was a necessity in ww2 and the British and American airforces were seriously lacking in this department.

P-47 and Typhoons were only apparently adequate for attack missions. They were not armoured aircraft - if you're were gonna go for knife fighting with the forces on the ground then you have to expect that most hits will come from flak. Both those aircraft were not able to withstand such hits.

Also heavy bomb load slows them to a crawl, at low level they were only 100km/h faster than Sturmovik, still extremely slow for enemy fighters - and they lacked rear gunner. For example Me-410 was faster than both if loaded with 1000kg bombs (again almost 100kmh difference!) and it had twin engine safety and rear turret.

Also the armament options is small, they relied on rockets against armor, which indeed proved ineffective. They lacked heavy high velocity cannons capable to pierce tanks armor. I'm not surprised that British and Americans airforces were not capable to gather a number of ground attack aces compared the impressive gallery of aces from Russian and German airforces.

No doubt Il2 was a success.

Nimits
02-25-2004, 06:38 PM
The effectiveness of Typhoons, P-47s, and most light and medium attack aircraft/fighter bombers was in interdiction. Most trucks/trains/tanks destroyed during the war by aircraft were killed behind the frontlines, not on them. On the battlefield, fighter bombers and attack aircraft were great morale weapons, but did relatively little material damage (in relation to the amount of ordanance expended and the claims submitted).