Ar 234 Blitz

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the old Sage
May 20, 2004
Platonic Sphere
guys hate to start a new topic like this but I just got word from a couple of Norwegian friends. price on this neat book is 14.50 Euros

looks like it maybe worth the monies ? will hunt down more specs but I am considering it as it covers the last two months of the war with the Ar 234 in mind and it's bombing and recon actions protecting the northern lands from the British/American forces as there were B-1's and B-2's stationed up there............


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the P-51 units of the 15th and 8th US AF scored a total of 12 Ar 234's. I covered one kill at length by Don Bryan of the 352nd fg. Don scored 1 of 2 scored by the 352nd, and Don actually was engaged 4 times with the fast low jet.

4th fg 1
52nd 1
78th fg 2
339th 2
352nd 2
355th 1
356th 2
479th 1

E ~
GT there was no 385th fighter group. do you mean the 385 th squadron of the 364th fg ? If so I do not find the fighter group scoring any Ar 234's. Maybe I have old data.....
feb 25 1945

A 234 WNr 140456, (F1+FS ??) piloted by Uffz. Arnold Przetak (KIA), of ( 8 ) III./KG76 was lost to American fighters in the Bohmke area. Oblt Koln was attacked by fighters near Achmer and bailed out with slight injuries.


found a reference to a gun pack. WNr 140344 (NM+BR and later T9+EH) flown by Oblt Sommer had a Magirusbombe gun pack. Written off after an attempted mainwheels up landing at Udine April 16 1945.

edit: darn emicon codes.
40 different varinats of the jet, usually engine makeovers.

many accidnets and shot down by German AA by accident.

2 Arados are lost in the Magdeburg area on 19 November 44, 23 December 44. 1 shot down over the Rheine by ? : December 3, 44.

Feb. 10, 45 1 lost to fighter attack at Rheine.

Feb. 17, 45 1 lost while landing at Burg

Feb. 24 1 losat in combat, but the jet actually landed and later captured by US forces. nothing till.........

2 march, 2 shot down in combat with one trying to make an emergency landing, both from 9./KG 76.

the losses don't say too much and things are out of order.......ok someone really needs to make a good all around operational/tech book on thsi bird and not just the late war C model by Schiffer pubs either.

E ~
this I wrote awkwardly from 2003 when I interviewed Don Bryan of the 352nd fg....

ok this is going to be somewhat mixed up as this was the case with Don as he started to reminisce about other missions with the materials on the Ar 234.
first off midway through our conversation Don was telling me about contrails, since the 352nd had some time on the east coast of the USA before being shipped over to England. They were practicing flight formation continually anywhere between 15 and 25,000 feet in theri P-47's and the first time they formed contrails Don and his wingman both announced that each other was on fire with smoke billowing out of the tails......we both had a good laugh over this as Don was just telling me about "us" kids going up having some pure fun and scaring the New Yorkers like crazy as this seemed to be the first time contrails had been seen over the city.

alright then, this will be in order I hope and bear with my spelling please....
The first time Don witnessed an Ar 234, and the (date is unclear to him except it was probably September/October 44) don was flying with his flight heading towards the sun, a scary proposition as they had already escorted some A-26's of the 9th Air force and having a difficult time keeping up with them since they were so fast. P-51's on air portection would fly zig-zag over and under the light bombers, but as the bombers flew a straight course the P-51's would lose contact and the A-26's would crank on ahead. During this withdrawl called out an A-26 coming towards them and overhead, don;s number 4 man shouted over the intercom it looks like an A-26 with big black crosses on it ! After the mission and almost 2 hours of debrief intel showed Don and the flight aerial pics of Ar 234's on an airfield for id as the guys could not really figure out what they had seen. So the A-26's without props and flying like hell were the Arado's. this was most likely the first time an 8th Air force pilot and flight were in contact with one of the new Jets.

Second instance with no date but probably November of 44, Don was above with his flight and he banked down and chased the Ar 234 to make a rear attack, " but the jet kept on going and I never caught up "

Third instance on December 31, 1944, saw my third jet and I dove down and behind it roughly 800 yards out and gave it a burst and saw strikes on one wing. My camera proved it though I didn't think I had made any hits. JC Meyer had me bank off as another Ar 234 was right behind me. We didn't know at the time that the jet did not have any forward armament......JC got in behind and gave it a burst in the fuselage which sent the Arado down confirmed. "My jet just kept on going.......damn !"

Fourth instance was on March 14, 1945 and this is the painting depicted in Troy Whites Perfidia. don was using another 352nd's pilots a/c at the time.
withdrawl with 9th air force B-26's heading west. Notice a Ar 234 below me heading and crossing me going south. I banked and chased him but he made a right turn and then "walked away" from me then as I slowly caught up he made another right turn heading north to the Remagen bridge. I let him go and thought when he passes after his bombing I'll catch him. Well that is what happened, he flew past the bridge and pulled up and put on the steam but I got in behind and dove on him and got under and behind about 1000 feet. I rolled on my back and slid a 275 degree swing and up and watched him and closed the gap to within 50 to 100 yards, pulled in and behind and at 200 yeards gave him a burst which knocked out both engines. He kept flying and I had my whole 352nd fg and another 9th air force P-47 group right behind. Well I wasn't going to let anyone bag this one, so I follwed him until he finally all at once rolled over and in so doing his canopy popped off but the pilot didn't bail. He went straight in. I followed down to tree top level and pulled 8 g's over the trees....(laughing)...geez Don !

whoa !

a little extra as we were also talking about the big Bodenplatte mission on 1-1-45 too. Don and some of his 328th squadron buddies were in a 4 foot by 8 foot ditch at a right angle and they watched as the Bf 109's and Fw 190's of JG 11 came screaming over the airfield of Y-29, Asch Belgium. The German a/c were making repeated dives and strafes at the end of the field where lined up were B17's, B-24's a Wellington or two (south-west corner)// I've got to include this....don and his mates went to the bombers previously and drained all the fuel from the bombers to use in their camp stoves for heating as it was one of the coldest winters in Belgium on record// anyway the German a/c kept going after the vacant bombers and hit after hit with the heavy 20 and 30mm kanons did minimal damge except to scatter aluminum all over the end of the field. They could not understand why the bombers were not going up in flames with their you know why !
JgC Meyer and his 428th fs had just tanken off and with their expertize massacered JG 11 as the German a/c were trying to get away. Don witnessed some unbelievable flying and on two occassions this day saw and could not believe two Bf 109's trying to split-S 50 feet above the tarmac. The end result was scattering(disintegration) of both a/c all over the field.
The only P-51 that the 352nd lost this date was Don's gorgeous P-51 "Little one III", named after his honey and future wife. Was Don pissed off to say the Don traded with Lt. George Middleton and flew P-51 "Worra Bird 3rd" till wars end, coded PE*J.


--------------------GT you date of December 21, 44 is incorrect.
GT, apoligies !

Don damaged a Ar 234 on 21 December 44 as you said and his CO Meyer scored a confirmed Ar 234 on the 31 of December 44. Don got his date mixed up. Had to check the 352nd fg dat base...........

E ~
getting back to the book from Norway the author just wrote me a private and although the covers says the B-2 bomber covered it is also covering the Recon, which is not the B-1 but the B-2b............I thought that was interesting....

just had a friend visit the Smithosonian where he noted step by step the existing Ar 234 there. Hopeful to have some copied pics for the site soon.........
summary of the above book by the authors......get the book !

Arado Ar 234 in Norway

In February 1945 the first jet planes appeared over occupied Norway in the shapes of Ar 234. The airplanes belonged to Einsatzkommando 1/FAGr 5, which was then being established at Sola / Stavanger with the purpose of high altitude recconnaissance over the North Sea, Scapa Flow and Scotland. Sola was to be the only airfield in Norway used by the Ar 234. At the same time FAGr 5 changed its name to FAGr 1.The Sola unit, however, did not change its name until May when it was renamed Einsatzkommando 1/FAGr 1. The unit operated three Ar 234B-2b coded 9V+AH, 9V+BH and 9V+CH. During February and March the unit worked itself up and started operational missions. An Ar 234B-2 belonging to its sister unit 2/FAGr 5 also paid a visit to Sola at this time. During a mission on 23 March the pilot Hellmuth Hetz "lost" one engine on 9V+AH, and he had to abort his mission and return to Sola. On his inbound leg, he also "lost" the other engine , resulting in loss of height and a crash into some trees at the end of the runway. Hetz, strapped to his seat, was thrown through the cocpit and landed a considerable distance away from the wrecked airplane. Compared to the 80 % damaged airplane, Hetz was lucky to escape with a broken leg. When FAGr 5 was renamed FAGr 1 in February, another Ar 234B-2b unit also became subordinated the group. This was 1.(F)/33 which later started operations from Grove / Denmark. In April this unit performed some operational missions out of Sola / Stavanger. A third unit, 1.(F)/123, based in Germany performed a few missions via Sola in April / May.

When the german capitulation on continental Europe became effective on the 5. May, the hard pressed germans looked for geographical areas of regrouping their remaining air forces. One of few alternatives was Norway. This resulted in a massive transfer of airplanes to Norway on the 5. May. Two units operating Ar 234s were represented in this transfer, namely KG 76 and 1.(F)/123. KG 76 at this time was based at Leck / Germany with all its remaining Ar 234B-2s subordinated III/KG 76. During the early morning hours of 5. May the last 9 operational Ar 234 left Leck directly for Sola under the command of Oblt Kolm. However, three pilots experienced problems. Very bad weather with heavy rain appeared this morning and this may explain their problems. This resulted in one crashing into the North Sea, one returning to Flensburg and one returning to Leck. Thus, only 6 Ar 234B-2 from KG 76 reached Sola. At the same time 1.(F)/123 based in Germany transferred two of their Ar 234B-2b to Sola. It is possible that these two airplanes transited through Grove / Denmark on their way to Sola.

When the german forces capitulated in Norway on 8. May 10 Ar 234s were present at Sola ­ 2 from Einskdo 1/FAGr 1 (1 had been lost on 23.March), 6 from KG 76 and 2 from 1.(F)/123. The Ar 234s belonging to KG 76 and 1.(F)/123 by this time had been defined as "reserves" by the germans.

When the british and american forces arrived in Norway , the Ar 234 was a high priority intelligence target. As Norway was a part of the british occupation zone, the british forces decided on Ar 234 dispositions. An american request for 3-4 Ar 234s from Sola was granted in June, and the american colonel H.Watson arrived with a team to collect the airplanes. His team included two american pilots and one german pilot - H.Baur. Three Ar 234s were selected, and these were prepared for flights via Germany to France. From France the airplanes were later to be shipped to USA for evaluation. However on the day of the transfer flights, 3. July , one of the american pilots experienced problems just before take-off, and only two Ar 234s left Sola. The two Ar 234B-2, werk nos 140312 and 140311, were flown by Watson and Baur. 6 days later Werk no 140493 left Sola for Grove piloted by the british pilot Martindale. On 14. July this airplane reached Farnborough for further evaluation. Another two Ar 234 were also brought to USA from Europe. These two came from Grove / Denmark, but their Werk nos were not 140148 and 140343 as often has been published.

During the summer the allied forces performed evaluation and demonstration flights with the Ar 234 at Sola. The actual flying was mainly done by german pilots. During one of these flights an Ar 234 made a hard down wind landing resulting in a nose wheel collaps. This was probably werk no 140148, and the machine was written off and later scrapped in Norway. In August it was decided to prepare another four Ar 234s for transfer to Britain. On the 23. September werk nos 140356 and 140141 left Sola for Grove / Denmark. Pilots were the british pilot E.Brown and the german Miersch. One day later the same two pilots returned to Sola and left for Grove with the other two Ar 234s- werk nos 140596 and 140581. 140356, 140141 and 140581 later reached Farnborough, while 140596 ended up at Eelde in Holland where Miersch had to make an emergency landing on 3. October.

When the last two Ar 234s took-off from Sola on the 24. September, this meant the end of all Ar 234 flying in Norway. Three Ar 234s were left. In addition to the damaged 140148, another damaged Ar 234 was also present. Information and photos indicate that this machine had been deliberatly damaged on 7. May before the german capitulation in Norway. This was probably Werk no 140491. Together with 140148 it was scrapped before the british forces left Norway in November. Parts of it, mainly the engines, were left for the Norwegian Air Force for technical studies. The 10th Ar 234 at Sola was demounted, crated and shipped from Sola in October. This was probably Werk no 140343, its final destination has not been established, but it most likely ended up in Britain.

Not much remain of the Ar 234s in Norway today. A Jumo 004 engine is displayed at the Technical Museum in Oslo. Aviation Museum Sola has a Jumo 004 compressor, a Rb 50/30 camera and parts of a Walter 109-500 rocket-assisted takeoff unit. However, a complete Ar 234 coming from Sola has survived. This is Werk no 140312 which was brought to USA, and which has been restored by NASM. 140312 is also, as far as is known, the only surviving Ar 234 in the world today.

Summary of the Ar 234s at Sola.

Unit Subtype Werk Nr. Comments

Einskdo 1/FAGr 1 Ar 234B-2b 140491 Scrapped in Norway

Einskdo 1/FAGr 1 Ar 234B-2b 140493 Flown to Britain

1.(F)/123 (Reserve) Ar 234B-2b 140141 Flown to Britain

1.(F)/123 (Reserve) Ar 234B-2b 140581 Flown to Britain

KG 76 (Reserve) Ar 234B-2 140148 Scrapped in Norway

KG 76 (Reserve) Ar 234B-2 140311 Brought to USA

KG 76 (Reserve) Ar 234B-2 140312 Brought to USA

KG 76 (Reserve) Ar 234B-2 140343 Probably shipped to Britain

KG 76 (Reserve) Ar 234B-2 140356 Flown to Britain

KG 76 (Reserve) Ar 234B-2 140596 Force landed in Holland
Interview of Capt. Robert Barnhart also who shot down an Ar 234 late afternoon on March 14, 1945:
Robert Eugene Barnhart

The description of the attack comes almost at the end of the inetrview.

Gun camera footage of the action can be found at Google video:

WWII- Combat in the Sky [AX5175.wmv]

It is about 18 seconds from the beginning.

Any information on the aircraft and crew that was shot down? It was apparently headed back to Germany when it was first spotted over the Dutch border. This is a long way from Remagen.
I've interviewed Barnhart personally and his stories are going to be included in my book about US pilots vs the German LW jets

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