Balloon busting Frank Luke question

Discussion in 'World War I' started by Jerry W. Loper, Jun 10, 2010.

  1. Jerry W. Loper

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    (1) Was an observation balloon considered equivalent to a fixed wing aeroplane for the purpose of claim for a kill? That is, if somebody shot down 5 balloons, was he considered an ace? (I think that during the war, going after balloons was considered dangerous because of the defenses, Archie and scouts guarding them.)
    (2) Would Frank Luke have still been an ace if all his balloon kills were erased? That is, how many fixed wing planes did he shoot down, plus how many balloons?
     
  2. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Balloons were counted as aircraft kills. Here's info on Luke.

    Frank Luke
     
  3. Jerry W. Loper

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    Thanks, Flyboy!
     
  4. CharlesBronson

    CharlesBronson Well-Known Member

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    2 Images of Luke`s Spads 13s.
     

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  5. skeeter

    skeeter Member

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    What I have heard is that those ballons had tons of triple A around them on the ground. Luke is lucky to have survived as long as he did, most likely. It was suicidal to fly through a cone of machine gun fire like that. Give the guy credit though. He had, well, you know what he had.
     
  6. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    ...and all done in a brief period of time.
     
  7. norab

    norab Well-Known Member

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    just as a little bit of trivia one of the two 7.7 mm vickers guns on Luke's Spad was replaced with an near identical 11mm vickers to give him the ability to fire incendiary rounds with more burning material in each cartridge
     
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