Best Messerschmitt Bf109 subtype

Discussion in 'Polls' started by claidemore, Apr 1, 2008.

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Best Bf 109 subtype:

  1. Bf 109 A/B/C/D

    1 vote(s)
    1.9%
  2. Bf 109 E3/E4/E7

    4 vote(s)
    7.5%
  3. Bf 109 F2/F4

    12 vote(s)
    22.6%
  4. Bf 109 G1/G2

    5 vote(s)
    9.4%
  5. Bf 109 G6 variants

    10 vote(s)
    18.9%
  6. Bf 109 G14

    2 vote(s)
    3.8%
  7. Bf 109 G10

    6 vote(s)
    11.3%
  8. Bf 109 K4

    13 vote(s)
    24.5%
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  1. claidemore

    claidemore Member

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    This poll thread area has been kinda slow lately.
    I'm curious, what in your opinion was the best Bf109? There are a lot of choices, but I'll go with eight general subtypes that should encourage some discussion, Bf109 A/B/C/D, E3-7, F2/F4, G2, G6, G10,G14, K4.

    Claidemore
     
  2. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    I personally like the G-6 the best. I think it was a good all around varient. It combined good speed with decent handling. Was it the best fighter of the war? By no means but it was a competitor.
     
  3. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    To me definitely 109F-4, IMHO the best fighter around when it began its front-line service, maybe a bit lightly armed but anyway MG 151/20 was an effective cannon with very good ammo.
    E-3/-4/-7 were also top class at their time but IMHO not so outstanding as F series in its haydays.
    IMHO early Gs lost the relative supremacy of Fs, mostly because problems with DB 605A. In itself for example the thicker skin of the wings was necessary improvement but because the use of 1,42 ata in DB 605A was forbidden rather long time the extra weight had negative effect. IMHO during the reign of early Gs other fighters catch up and some even overtook 109.

    IMHO with G-10 109 again reached at least near parity with the best enemy fighters.

    Juha
     
  4. kool kitty89

    kool kitty89 Well-Known Member

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    Erich has posted that the G-10 was the fastest (even more than the K-4 at 460 mph iirc) on several threads, but this doesn't seem to match up with figures I've seen.

    Most sources show it was still quite fast though with most figures giving ~440 mph as max speed.
     
  5. drgondog

    drgondog Well-Known Member

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    I am torn based on 'the mission' - I would favor the F in the east where high altitude performance was not as critical as bomber defense in West.

    Then the question of G-10 versus G-6 is another of those questions about 'what are we trying to fight?

    The A/S certainly had good performance where they needed to fight US Escorts - so did the -10 and the -10 had better mid altitude/low altitude performance than the G-6 if I recall correctly?
     
  6. pbfoot

    pbfoot Active Member

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    this is my reason
    look you guys in California and Australia green grass
     

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  7. claidemore

    claidemore Member

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    My pick of this litter is the 109 G1/G2. The G2 was in IMO, the ultimate 109, because it was the model flown at the zenith of Luftwaffe power. 1942 saw the furthest expansion of the Reich in the east, and the G2 was a big part of that. Earlier models didn't have the performance superiority the G2 enjoyed over it's enemies, and later models were faced with fighting a retreating battle against better and better planes in ever increasing numbers.

    I feel the G2 was the last improvement of the 109 (except 109 K4) where it didn't lose substantially in one capability or performance area to gain in another. I think from a design standpoint, the G2 was a highpoint before they started moving away from Messerschmitts original concept of building the lightest plane possible with the most powerful engine available. The K4 was a return to that philosophy, but a day late and a dollar short.
     
  8. Fokker D21

    Fokker D21 Member

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    The 109 F is praised by Luftwaffe pilots as the best flying one. The 109 K4 had superb climbing capabilities and a high speed. I choose the K4.
     
  9. Konigstiger205

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    I'll go with the G6, highly versatile with lots of mounts, it could be adapted to fighter, bomber and ground attack plane.I also like the K version but that appeared late in the war and the materials used were not so good.
     
  10. rochie

    rochie Well-Known Member

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    i voted for the G6 it seems to be the best allrounder but the emil looks to me to be the classic bf109
     
  11. Zarathos

    Zarathos New Member

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    F2/F4 - it was the plane, that kicked RAF during Kanalkampf and, in my personal opinion, the final stage of Bf 109 developement. G and K were just an attemt to make use of outdated airframe by placing stronger engine in it.
     
  12. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    I admit that G was a logical response to changing requirements of air war but
    my reasoning went like this, 109E was better than other fighters but Spitfire in 1939-40 and E and Spit Mk I/II were more or less equal.
    109F was better than any other fighter in 41-mid 42. Especially F-4 from mid41 to mid-42.
    109G-2 superiority lasted only a couple months before Spit Mk IX arrived, after that IMHO Spit IX was a better fighter than G-2/-4/-6. And anyway Spit Mk IX , LaGG-3 Series 66 , La-5F or La-5FN were more dangerous enemies to 109G-6 than Spit V, LaGG-3 series 3, MiG-3 (very high altitude excluded), I-16 or P-40 had been to 109F-4. So I have looked the question from a bit different viewpoint.

    Juha
     
  13. Fokker D21

    Fokker D21 Member

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    Was an early Spitfire MK9 really better than a Me 109 G2?

    Topspeed of the 109 G2 at combat rating (30 minutes) is 649 km/h.
    Topspeed of the Spitfire Mk9 F at emergency rating (5 minutes) is 656 km/h.

    That makes the 109 relative the much faster plane.
     
  14. drgondog

    drgondog Well-Known Member

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    Not for the five minutes that may count the most? how is 7km/hr slower 'much faster'..

    If the 109 was chasing a Spit on a long run he would have an edge. Most fights didn't last more than 5 minutes at WEP..

    But the argument is best 109. I have said for me that its tough to say. I agree with Juha that for its time the F2/F4 may have been the best relative to its opponents. I would have a far harder time making the statement that any Me 109 variant was better than say a Spit XIV or a P-51B or an Fw190D-9 or Tempest V. Pilot skill and numbers dictated fortunes in 1944 and 1945.

    I ended up picking the -10 based on observations Rall and several others made even though the K-4 had better performance.. for some reason more than a few of the 'old hands' felt more secure in the G-10 than the K-4.. all that I have ever talked to liked the F2/F4 but the competition the F2/4 faced was not the same as the G and K series in a much more hostile environment.

    Regards,

    Bill
     
  15. Hunter368

    Hunter368 Active Member

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    Agreed Bill,

    I like your comment "Pilot skill and numbers dictated fortunes in 1944 and 1945", thats so very true.
     
  16. claidemore

    claidemore Member

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    Those are top speed figures for one altitude, and not the same altitude at that. At 33,000 feet the Mk IX is 45 mph/72 kmh faster, at 15/16000 feet they are exactly the same speed. Thats at 15lb boost combat rating for the Spit IX Merlin 61.

    Better performing Merlin 66 and 70 Mk IXs in early 1943 would have squared off against G4's, which had exact same performance as G2.

    Of course top speed doesn't make a plane better, we have to look at all of its capabilites. Mk IX had twice the firepower of the 'clean' G2, had higher ceiling, smaller turn radius and shorter turn times (by about 2 seconds, which ain't much). Climb rate was very similar, and the 109G2 had quicker initial dive. MkIX had better visibility form the cockpit and lighter controls during high speed pullouts.

    I think the G2 was as close a match for the Mk IX as the 109E was for the Mk1, but to say it was better would be ignoring too many factors.
     
  17. Fokker D21

    Fokker D21 Member

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    I didn't say the 109 G2 is better, merely that the Spit might not have been so superior as often assumed. Most Spitfire Mk9's were Low Flying variants though. (4010 LF, 1255 F and only 400 HF = 5665 Spit MK9).

    The three Spit versions have very different top speeds at different altitudes. For an honest comparison the Spit Mk9 HF (Merlin 70) should be compared with a 109 G1 with GM 1 installation (not a 109 G2).

    On paper the Spit has twice the firepower, the central placed guns on the 109 compensate this at least partially. The ammo load for the 109 is not that far behind, 200 versus 240 cannon rounds and 1000 versus 1400 machine gun rounds. And if the cannons were depleted you better consider going home.

    At 33000 feet the speed of a 109 G2 at combat rating is 398 mph. Add 45 mph and you get a Spit Mk9's top speed to be 443 mph. No Spit Mk 9 version was that fast. With Merlin 66 at 25 lbs boost the top speed at 25000 feet is 394 mph, any higher altitude results in a lower top speed.

    At around 15000 feet the 109 G2 does 386 mph at combat rating, the merlin 66 engined Spit does 373 mph at 18 lbs boost. Only the later use of 25 lbs boost brought the Spit up to 397 mph in 1943.
     
  18. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    Persoanlly I went for the Emil. The reason being it dominated the opposition in the first year of the war and ruled the skies over France.
    Only over the UK in the BOB did it meet a plane that was its equal and even here it had two priceless advantages
    1) Its cannons.
    2) The Fuel injected engine

    The first gave it a punch that totally outclassed the 8 x LMG, which in itself, was at least as good if not better than any other non German fighter in the air.
    The second gave it an evasion tactic that was both effective and very simple to use by any German pilot, of almost any level of experience.

    We can (and have) debated the later versions against the opposition but in its time the Emil was the one to beat.
     
  19. kool kitty89

    kool kitty89 Well-Known Member

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    Twice the number of guns doesn't mean twice as good an armament, especially in a Fighter vs Fighter sense. The 'clean' 109G-2 had all its armament nose mounted making it much more accurate with no convergence zone and simpler aiming. That said the Spit still had a slight edge with better spread and more round out there making a hit more likely at least near the convergence zone. And the single MG 151/20 was certainly better than the 2x MG FF of the 109E, particularly in a dogfight. (due to the poor velocity and RoF of the FF gun, and the wing mounting)

    That changed once the 109 got the 13mm guns though. (I'd say it had the edge, even with the Spit's 2x 20mm 2x .50 cal armament)



    But we're getting off topic. The best true "dogfighter" 109 would probably be the F-2/4 with the best agility. The Armament was better than the Emil's, except maybe the (relatively) weak 15mm gun, though in a dogfight it would probably be superior and it had excellent velocity and decent RoF and ballistics as well.

    I'm still wondering about the performance of the G-10 though...
     
  20. claidemore

    claidemore Member

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    I guess I should clarify my argument about the Spitfire weapon advantage.

    The Spitfire with 2 x 20mm Hispano II and 4 x .303 Brownings was putting out 133.2 lbs of projectiles per second.

    The 109G2, with 1 x 20mm Mg151 and 2 x 7.92 Mg17, put out 64.4 lbs of projectile/second.

    Thats better than double the weight of projectiles per second. Add to that a 2 x 25% greater explosive charge of the twin 130 gram Hispano cannon shells vs the 105 gram Mg151 shell, and the 880mps velocity of the 20x110 Hispano vs the 725 mps of the Mg 151 20x 82 and you see quite a marked advantage to the Spitfire. All those numbers from this website:

    The WWII Fighter Gun Debate: Gun Tables


    But, KK makes a good point about the 13mm armed G6 onwards, that gave the plane 94lbs/second, with the E wing Spit at 130.8lbs/sec and B wing at 133.2lbs/sec.
    Better, but still not equal. (the l/s figures for the.50 mg on that site are incorrect)
    The .50 is 880m/s, (130m/s faster than Mg131) same as the Hispano, so that would make aiming simple for the first couple hundred meters.

    Stick two wing cannon gondolas on the 109 and you get 124 lb/s for G2 and 154 lb/s for G6> with subsequent loss in other performance areas.

    Nobody is voting for the ABCD 109, those models were the absolute best monoplane fighters in the world during their time weren't they? :)
     
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