Bf-109 increased production - effects?

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mack8

Airman 1st Class
197
175
Jan 4, 2023
Playing with various scenarios recently, i just realized this: if the germans somehow don't get into the whole destroyer thing and drift toward a more soviet style rationalization of aircraft production (concentrating on fewer and most useful types), which destroyer obsession overall did a lot more harm than good (even if the Me-110 was a fairly useful night-fighter), and use those resources to just build more Bf-109s instead, and assuming engine production is similar, replacing the over 6000 Me-110, 700 Me-210 (but the whole debacle cost another potential 1500 airframes) and 1200 Me-410 will give us no less than roughly 15,000 (!) Bf-109s and roughly 2500 FW-190C normaljagers (which is an ATL in itself, as i understand the FW-190C could face the P-51 and P-47 at least on equal terms). PLUS if those 1500 potential zestrorers production is not lost, we have ANOTHER 3000 Bf-109s.

And if we really go the whole hog, scrapping the He-177 debacle gives us enough engines for another say 4500 Bf-109s easily.

Yes, they need more nightfighters to cover for the lack of Me-110s, but building more Ju-88s for instance instead of the He-177 (remember the overproduction of Jumo-211, with 7000 engines sitting around in depots) gives us about 2500 Ju-88. And if for instance they don't mess about Henschel and they let them keep building Ju-88s (and just forget about Hs-129 too), probably number wise the lack of Me-110s is almost covered.

The Me-109 of course has shorter range, which can be partly compensated by putting drop tanks on the 109 before the war. But whereas the Me-110 proved unable to cope with opposing fighters except early in the war and mostly against obsolete opponents, the Bf-109 was deadly all the way to 1945, especially so until 1943. One 110 actually consumes more fuel than two 109s.

So, how this affects the airwar? More Bf-109s means daylight bomber or Stuka attacks are better protected so there will somewhat fewer losses, and with drop tanks the 109 can fight over London for another 20 minutes or so. RAF will be more hard pressed as the 109 had a positive kill ratio against the RAF fighters, unlike the lumbering 110.. There would be more 109s over places like Malta, or Crete, North Africa, the Channel or in the east where the Bf-109 was always deadly against contemporary british, US or soviet fighters. There could be more exports to Italy, Hungary, Romania or Finland, which would be absolutely thrilled to exchange the obsolete motley collection of machines they were using all the way into 1944 for the deadly 109s. There were a lot of very experienced pilots in those countries flying obsolete planes, with Bf-109s they would be far more effective and deadly to the opposition, be it british, american or soviet.

What you make of this? Could those 20,000 Bf-109s actually tip the balance in some crucial battles/campaigns?
 
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This scenario is a major boon for the Luftwaffe.

Drop-tank outfitted Bf 109s, deployed in greater number than it was historically the case during the BoB, would've made the life for the RAF harder, and, in the same time, easier for the LW bombers.
 
If we go by the 110 numbers used in BoB, instead of 250-300 Me-110 we would have 500-600 extra drop tank fitted Bf-109s. There are a lot of numbers around, but as an exercise if we take for instance the same number of 110 losses, say 220 or so, then roughly 300 Spitfires/Hurricanes would have been lost in return. I haven't seen anything to suggest that the 110 got anywhere close to that number of kills vs Spitfire/Hurricane. So instead of FC maintaining it's numbers they would actually steadily decrease, probably left with about 600 fighters in September instead of roughly 700 or more OTL (again, i see a lot of figures, would be great to see the most accurate figures).
 
The Bf 110 did things that a 109 couldnt do, not just about range but also communication. Its performance in the BoB was better than many people think John Vasco John Vasco published the figures some time ago. It is possible to construct scenarios where the LW did better in the BoB but they had enough Bf109s, it was bombers they ran out of. In any case there was no reason to sacrifice other types just make more 109s. During the battle German production of Bf 109s was around 250 per month, that was around half of the Spitfires Hurricanes the British were making. There was no need to fight over London, to destroy the RAF there were many airfields in and around Kent and not one was forced to be abandoned. When the LW did attack London fighters outnumbered bombers by five to one and they still took heavy losses of bombers.
 
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If 34,000 Bf 109s could not turn the tide of war, I doubt another twenty thousand would. You don't win a ground war with fighters. Now, twenty thousand more trucks…. or half and half trucks and AFVs… now we can take and hold ground.
Agreed, add to that the dearth of fuel, and the lack of trained pilots and the increased production really wouldn't have mattered much.

Trucks though, just imagine if the German Army was even half as mobilized as the Russians were, thanks to us....
 
There was no need to fight over London, to destroy the RAF there were many airfields in and around Kent and not one was forced to be abandoned.
This is not correct. Following attacks from 12th August onwards, Manston was finally abandoned on 24th August and became an emergency landing ground. Squadrons were simply withdrawn to Hornchurch.
 
I am not very familiar with the Eastern Front. Did the Luftwaffe suffer any particular shortage of fighter aircraft during the mid-war period where significantly larger numbers might have made a huge difference?
 
Playing with various scenarios recently, i just realized this: if the germans somehow don't get into the whole destroyer thing and drift toward a more soviet style rationalization of aircraft production (concentrating on fewer and most useful types), which destroyer obsession overall did a lot more harm than good (even if the Me-110 was a fairly useful night-fighter), and use those resources to just build more Bf-109s instead, and assuming engine production is similar, replacing the over 6000 Me-110, 700 Me-210 (but the whole debacle cost another potential 1500 airframes) and 1200 Me-410 will give us no less than roughly 15,000 (!) Bf-109s and roughly 2500 FW-190C normaljagers (which is an ATL in itself, as i understand the FW-190C could face the P-51 and P-47 at least on equal terms). PLUS if those 1500 potential zestrorers production is not lost, we have ANOTHER 3000 Bf-109s.

And if we really go the whole hog, scrapping the He-177 debacle gives us enough engines for another say 4500 Bf-109s easily.

Yes, they need more nightfighters to cover for the lack of Me-110s, but building more Ju-88s for instance instead of the He-177 (remember the overproduction of Jumo-211, with 7000 engines sitting around in depots) gives us about 2500 Ju-88. And if for instance they don't mess about Henschel and they let them keep building Ju-88s (and just forget about Hs-129 too), probably number wise the lack of Me-110s is almost covered.

The Me-109 of course has shorter range, which can be partly compensated by putting drop tanks on the 109 before the war. But whereas the Me-110 proved unable to cope with opposing fighters except early in the war and mostly against obsolete opponents, the Bf-109 was deadly all the way to 1945, especially so until 1943. One 110 actually consumes more fuel than two 109s.

So, how this affects the airwar? More Bf-109s means daylight bomber or Stuka attacks are better protected so there will somewhat fewer losses, and with drop tanks the 109 can fight over London for another 20 minutes or so. RAF will be more hard pressed as the 109 had a positive kill ratio against the RAF fighters, unlike the lumbering 110.. There would be more 109s over places like Malta, or Crete, North Africa, the Channel or in the east where the Bf-109 was always deadly against contemporary british, US or soviet fighters. There could be more exports to Italy, Hungary, Romania or Finland, which would be absolutely thrilled to exchange the obsolete motley collection of machines they were using all the way into 1944 for the deadly 109s. There were a lot of very experienced pilots in those countries flying obsolete planes, with Bf-109s they would be far more effective and deadly to the opposition, be it british, american or soviet.

What you make of this? Could those 20,000 Bf-109s actually tip the balance in some crucial battles/campaigns?
With all the changes in guns, radios, and other equipment this gets hard to sort over the years.
The 109 with drop tank doesn't give quite the range you need for the targets further to the west in England.
British can also strip the 109s of their drop tanks by attacking as they cross the British coast, then disengage and having a second wave of fighters intercept the German formation a bit further in. The 109E was also ammo limited. After about 6-7 seconds it was out of cannon ammo and was relying on it's twin 7.9mm mgs.
We have been over the radio thing a number of times. Radios changed from nation to nation and from 1940 to 1944.
110s became light bombers, They could carry a heavier load (over twice as much) much further than the 109 could.
110s could also operate further from shore than the 109s could (partially because of the radios and navigation).
110s could carry the standard photo recon cameras and have access for the crew in flight. Germans used, among other cameras, a large one that used a negative about 4 times the size of the cameras used by most British photo recon planes. This gets a bit long winded/technical as the ability of the cameras were dependent on the grain size of the film (think pixels per inch) ability to keep the film flat and the lenses. British just took more pictures to cover the same area, both countries got about the same detail in the photos.
And we haven't even gotten to the 110D, 110E, and 110F versions ;)


Not sure that trading 110s for Ju-88s is that good of an idea. The Ju-88's reputation for speed may be a bit over blown. Most of the early ones wouldn't do over 300mph (early C series fighters) and since a Ju-88 was about 50% heavier than 110 empty increasing production is going to cut into your planned 109 production.

You also have to get around the conventional thinking of the time. Only the US failed to field twin engine multi-seat general purpose fighter. They built the P-61 night fighter and they fooled around with some other prototypes but they did not field a twin engine multi-seat general purpose fighter. They tried to use converted bombers and used reverse-lend lease British Beaufighters and Mosquito night fighters. French, Italians, Japanese and the Soviets all at least designed and put into production (some times in small numbers) that class of of aircraft. Soviets may be a bit debatable with the PE-2. They started with a high altitude, twin engine multi seat interceptor, turned it into a dive bomber/attack plane and then turned it back into a heavy fighter (PE-3) and also built recon versions.
 
Playing with various scenarios recently, i just realized this: if the germans somehow don't get into the whole destroyer thing and drift toward a more soviet style rationalization of aircraft production (concentrating on fewer and most useful types), which destroyer obsession overall did a lot more harm than good (even if the Me-110 was a fairly useful night-fighter), and use those resources to just build more Bf-109s instead, and assuming engine production is similar, replacing the over 6000 Me-110, 700 Me-210 (but the whole debacle cost another potential 1500 airframes) and 1200 Me-410 will give us no less than roughly 15,000 (!) Bf-109s and roughly 2500 FW-190C normaljagers (which is an ATL in itself, as i understand the FW-190C could face the P-51 and P-47 at least on equal terms). PLUS if those 1500 potential zestrorers production is not lost, we have ANOTHER 3000 Bf-109s.

And if we really go the whole hog, scrapping the He-177 debacle gives us enough engines for another say 4500 Bf-109s easily.

Yes, they need more nightfighters to cover for the lack of Me-110s, but building more Ju-88s for instance instead of the He-177 (remember the overproduction of Jumo-211, with 7000 engines sitting around in depots) gives us about 2500 Ju-88. And if for instance they don't mess about Henschel and they let them keep building Ju-88s (and just forget about Hs-129 too), probably number wise the lack of Me-110s is almost covered.

The Me-109 of course has shorter range, which can be partly compensated by putting drop tanks on the 109 before the war. But whereas the Me-110 proved unable to cope with opposing fighters except early in the war and mostly against obsolete opponents, the Bf-109 was deadly all the way to 1945, especially so until 1943. One 110 actually consumes more fuel than two 109s.

So, how this affects the airwar? More Bf-109s means daylight bomber or Stuka attacks are better protected so there will somewhat fewer losses, and with drop tanks the 109 can fight over London for another 20 minutes or so. RAF will be more hard pressed as the 109 had a positive kill ratio against the RAF fighters, unlike the lumbering 110.. There would be more 109s over places like Malta, or Crete, North Africa, the Channel or in the east where the Bf-109 was always deadly against contemporary british, US or soviet fighters. There could be more exports to Italy, Hungary, Romania or Finland, which would be absolutely thrilled to exchange the obsolete motley collection of machines they were using all the way into 1944 for the deadly 109s. There were a lot of very experienced pilots in those countries flying obsolete planes, with Bf-109s they would be far more effective and deadly to the opposition, be it british, american or soviet.

What you make of this? Could those 20,000 Bf-109s actually tip the balance in some crucial battles/campaigns?
The lack of strategic alloys and management failures in engine development just mean (by say 1943) more semi obsolete short lived unreliable planes. You can do stuff like this but you need about three other major things fixed at the same time.

Trucks isnt a game changer IF you dont have air superiority as a prerequisite as they will all just get shot up, which is exactly what happened to the German ground forces
in 1944 when they totally lost control of the air in the west.
 
There is also the problem that you need to be able to use air assets to attack enemy infrastructure and ground / sea forces. The 109
wasn't the best example for the job and more would have only delayed the inevitable. When you are slowly forced onto defensive operations
only with no hope of outbuilding the opposition there is only one outcome.
 
The 109 with drop tank doesn't give quite the range you need for the targets further to the west in England.
British can also strip the 109s of their drop tanks by attacking as they cross the British coast, then disengage and having a second wave of fighters intercept the German formation a bit further in. The 109E was also ammo limited. After about 6-7 seconds it was out of cannon ammo and was relying on it's twin 7.9mm mgs.

Expecting that British strip all of the escorting 109s (600-700-800?) of their tanks assumes that Germans are flat-out panicking and/or are tactically inept - and that is for every day of the BoB. It also assumes that LW will not do the fighter sweeps, despite they actualy doing that before the close escort order.
Even with a number of squadrons dropping their tanks above Kent, that means they have full 400L of fuel when the combat starts, vs. 300+- as they had historically.
Not all Bf 109Es were with just two LMGs in 1939-40, a lot of them was with 4 LMGs. Even having such fighter escort above Midlands beats the hell out of no-escorts situation.

110s could carry the standard photo recon cameras and have access for the crew in flight. Germans used, among other cameras, a large one that used a negative about 4 times the size of the cameras used by most British photo recon planes. This gets a bit long winded/technical as the ability of the cameras were dependent on the grain size of the film (think pixels per inch) ability to keep the film flat and the lenses. British just took more pictures to cover the same area, both countries got about the same detail in the photos.
And we haven't even gotten to the 110D, 110E, and 110F versions ;)

Make a handful of Do 215s to do the long-range photo-recon job.
 
The lack of strategic alloys and management failures in engine development just mean (by say 1943) more semi obsolete short lived unreliable planes. You can do stuff like this but you need about three other major things fixed at the same time

There is a lot of war to suffer before we're at 1943.
A Bf 109G with a restricted engine is a far better alternative to the fully-working MC.202, MS.406, D.520, Hurricane I or IAR-80 the German allies were using.
 
Jeschonnek has a famous quote from March 1942, saying he would not know what to do with a production of 360 fighters per month. What is usually missed is his reason was the number of fighter pilots in training, some 1,662 fighter pilots were trained in 1942, and another 3,276 in 1943 after the training system was overhauled. And requirements changed in June 1942 to asking for 900 fighters a month by end 1943. It was only in 1943 the Luftwaffe began graduating fighter pilots at a rate that would cover the Battle of Britain losses.

While you can come up with 20,000 extra single engine fighters by getting German production "right" that is over the period 1939 to 1944.

Using the figures from German Aircraft Production. In 1939 there were 315 Bf110 built, another 1,231 in 1940. Ju88 production was just starting in 1939, with 110 built then another 2,184 in 1940. Bf109 1,540 and 1,868. However in September 1939 the Luftwaffe front line units still had nearly 650 Do17, down to around 400 in August 1940 and 150 in June 1941. The Ju88 was needed to improve the bomber and reconnaissance force quality. Any requirements for Ju88 night fighters means more Do17 stay in the front line. The Bf110 had performance issues intercepting the RAF 4 engined bombers, the Ju88C was slower and so would need replacement in 1943 versus 1944 for the Bf110.

Without additional pilot training the Luftwaffe fighter force goes from 1,107 Bf109 to 1,464 as of end June 1940 if you replace each Bf110 with a Bf109, add another 357 fighters if the extra pilots are trained, historically the Bf109 force lost 47% of its initial strength during the battle. By definition the extra fighters, plus adding drop tanks to all Bf109, will increase Luftwaffe effectiveness, the 1940 bomber force was too big for the historical fighter force to properly protect, against this the pilot losses were such that towards the end of the battle new Bf109 pilots were arriving having never fired the 20mm cannons. On 15 September there was something like 3 to 5 escorts to each bomber, mostly Do17, and the bombers took unacceptable losses. The Luftwaffe seriously over estimated the effects of bombing and underestimated the losses and time it would take to wear down the defences, plus had to do and thought it could do pre invasion missions as well as air superiority. In October 1940 day bombers were usually the faster Ju88.

According to the RAF the Luftwaffe had 1,107 Bf109 and 357 Bf110 as of 29 June 1940, that went down to a low point of 899 Bf109 and 166 Bf110 (plus 144 night fighters) on 5 October. Air 20/2037 says 1,025 Hurricanes and Spitfires in 52.5 squadrons on 21 July, 960 in 54 squadrons on 6 October. Air 22/33 says as of 29 June Fighter Command had 7 Blenheim (but one with Coastal Command, strengths later dropped from Fighter Command figures) 2 Defiant and 19 Spitfire squadrons operational along with 20 operational Hurricane squadrons, only the Hurricane force would gain more operational units during the battle. June 29 strength 78 serviceable Blenheims, 237 Spitfires, 222 Hurricanes and 23 Defiants, total 560. On 29 July with 27 operational Hurricane squadrons, strength 62 serviceable Blenheims, 224 Spitfires, 308 Hurricanes and 11 Defiants, total 605. On 6 October with 33 operational Hurricane squadrons, 48 serviceable Blenheims, 229 Spitfires, 411 Hurricanes, 18 Defiants and 8 Gladiators, total 714.

The Luftwaffe was supply constrained the further north, east and south it went, limiting the number of aircraft it could deploy in places like the Arctic, Sicily and North Africa, and near the front line in the east during 1941. By 1942 in the east the Luftwaffe strike force was largely staying at the front line, to compensate for the lack of ground firepower. The Red Air Force was not a major problem in 1941/42, in fact the allied air forces were not a big problem unless the Luftwaffe chose to force a fight.

1941 to 1943, Bf110, Me210 (including Hungarian production), Me410, by year 880, 671, 2,086, Bf109+Fw190 2,849, 4,536, 9,626.

In 1944 Bf110, Me210 (including Hungarian production), Me410 production 2,254, Bf109+Fw190 25,623.

While finding the engines for the Fw190C can come from cancelling the Messerschmitt twins someone has to build the additional Fw190 airframes. In any case the Jumo 213 was around in 1943, the historical D-9 engine.

He177 production was 157 in 1942, 282 in 1943 and 282 in 1944. Assuming 4 Bf109 to the He177 is another 2,800 or so Bf109 over the three years. As far as Ju88 production is concerned the lines at Heinkel, Arado and Dornier were shut down in early 1942, Henschel continued until September 1944.

According to the RAF report on Luftwaffe strength, between 2 September 1939 and 10 January 1945 the twin engine day fighter force was on average 15.8% of the single engine force. Assume the extra pilots are trained, drop tanks supplied, then the Luftwaffe day single engine fighter force is about a third bigger on average. The peak of twin engine day fighters being 30 to 40% of the single engined types during the Battle of Britain before the night fighter force was formed, dropping below 20% in May 1941 and largely staying there for the rest of the war.

The Battle of Britain is about the only time when reallocation of resources from twin to single engine day fighters with drop tanks in the given situation is big enough to make a significant difference. It does not get the German Army across the channel, it does not stop the regular low operations bad weather days, and more operations does not help the condition of the various airfields in use and the problems of supplying them including with spare parts. The estimated peak of Luftwaffe fighter sorties was 26 August to 1 September, 4,700 sorties from 839 serviceable Bf109 and 266 Bf110 on 24 August and down to 692 and 215 respectively on 31 August. Fighter Command flew 5,005 sorties that week.
 
Expecting that British strip all of the escorting 109s (600-700-800?) of their tanks assumes that Germans are flat-out panicking and/or are tactically inept - and that is for every day of the BoB. It also assumes that LW will not do the fighter sweeps, despite they actualy doing that before the close escort order.
Even with a number of squadrons dropping their tanks above Kent, that means they have full 400L of fuel when the combat starts, vs. 300+- as they had historically.
Not all Bf 109Es were with just two LMGs in 1939-40, a lot of them was with 4 LMGs. Even having such fighter escort above Midlands beats the hell out of no-escorts situation.
You are right.
The British are not going to be able to force all the incoming fighters to drop their tanks, but some.
The British are not going to know which German formations are short range raiders without tanks and long range raiders with tanks. They are going to be able to sort out fighter sweeps/feints vs bomber raids to some extent.
The drop tanks are not going to give the range/endurance that some people hope for. It was just about as far from London to Birmingham (about 100 miles city center to city center)as it was London to just inland of Calais. Rather useful but not really opening up even 1/2 of Britain to daylight bombing.
The 110s actually worked when they did fighter sweeps, perhaps not great, but at least 1:1 ? others have better figures.
Make a handful of Do 215s to do the long-range photo-recon job.
So the idea is to stop 110s which use two engines and substitute more Do-215s which use two of the same engines?
The 110C will max speed cruise about 10mph faster than the Do-215 will go at full speed. In fact the 110C will max cruise at about 50mph higher than the Do-215 will max cruise at.
Maybe that is not fast enough but trying to use Do-215s wasn't going to work well in a high threat area.
Before anybody gets the bright idea of using Ju-88s the Ju-88s of 1940 (mostly) had the 1200hp engines and were lucky they could do 280mph max speed. DB was not delivering the latest 601 engines and Junkers was running well behind on the newest Jumo 211s.
The Ju-88 didn't get to be a speed demon until they stuck BMW 801s or Jumo 213 in them. It could barely break 300mph with even the best Jumo 211s.

And neither the Do-215 or the JU-88 will perform the fighter-bomber role quite like the 110, max load for a 1940 110 was a pair of 1100lb bombs. Later versions (1941) could carry more or add a pair of 300 liter drop tanks to the pair of 1100lbs and long range fighters could hang big drop tanks.

22788a40ea8847f78559d96be454912c--footage-wwii.jpg

Rather useful for the Med or off Norway or trying to keep Coastal Command out of the Bay of Biscay. Jobs the 109 with 300 liter tank cannot do.

Like some other aircraft, the 110 may not have been very good at it's intended role but wound up being used for a number of roles that needed doing as time went on.
It may not have been the best at those roles either but it was available and the Luftwaffe didn't anything that was much better (if any better) for long periods of time to do those roles.

And we are not even talking about versions using the DB 605 engines.
 
So the idea is to stop 110s which use two engines and substitute more Do-215s which use two of the same engines?
The 110C will max speed cruise about 10mph faster than the Do-215 will go at full speed. In fact the 110C will max cruise at about 50mph higher than the Do-215 will max cruise at.
Maybe that is not fast enough but trying to use Do-215s wasn't going to work well in a high threat area.
Note that I've said 'handful' :)
You are right in context of Do 215 being slower than the Bf 110C. Probably the early Do 17 powered with DB 601A is a better bet for this, with it's less draggy front end; the lack of engines meant a swift death to such Do 17 historically.

Before anybody gets the bright idea of using Ju-88s the Ju-88s of 1940 (mostly) had the 1200hp engines and were lucky they could do 280mph max speed. DB was not delivering the latest 601 engines and Junkers was running well behind on the newest Jumo 211s.
The Ju-88 didn't get to be a speed demon until they stuck BMW 801s or Jumo 213 in them. It could barely break 300mph with even the best Jumo 211s.

The further the Ju 88 is away from Allied fighters, the better.

And neither the Do-215 or the JU-88 will perform the fighter-bomber role quite like the 110, max load for a 1940 110 was a pair of 1100lb bombs. Later versions (1941) could carry more or add a pair of 300 liter drop tanks to the pair of 1100lbs and long range fighters could hang big drop tanks.

Not very conductible to the high threat environment, don't you think? :)
 
Not very conductible to the high threat environment, don't you think?
Well, for patrolling the Med (and perhaps sometimes flying from Greece) such tanks allow for a long patrol time (endurance) and the most dangerous aircraft the British have were Beaufighters. with full internal fuel the 110 can engage the Beaufighters (or other Long range British aircraft of the time) and still fly hundreds of miles to an axis base.

You could hang multiple tanks off a 109 but once you are a certain distance from shore if you have to drop them your chances of return are just about the same (or worse) than a Hurricat pilot.
 
Well, for patrolling the Med (and perhaps sometimes flying from Greece) such tanks allow for a long patrol time (endurance) and the most dangerous aircraft the British have were Beaufighters. with full internal fuel the 110 can engage the Beaufighters (or other Long range British aircraft of the time) and still fly hundreds of miles to an axis base.

You could hang multiple tanks off a 109 but once you are a certain distance from shore if you have to drop them your chances of return are just about the same (or worse) than a Hurricat pilot.

We're in 1941 now.
The Bf 109F-4 (the type for what I can show actual data) was supposed to use 145 l/h cruising at 400 km/h TAS at 5 km. If we assume that combat used a bit over 100 L, that gives enough of fuel for two hours at 400 km/h, that is obviously 800 km of 'return to base range'.
Yes, a better thought-out long-range 1-engined fighter would've been doing even better, eg. the Fw 190 with DB 601/605 in the nose (525L in internal tanks vs. 400 in the Bf 109s); here the two drop tanks' installation make even more sense.

BTW - German drop-tanks installations on Bf 109 and Fw 190 were feeding the internal tanks, not the engines directly, meaning that internal fuel was always close to 100% if the drop tanks are dropped with some fuel still in them.
 
BTW - German drop-tanks installations on Bf 109 and Fw 190 were feeding the internal tanks, not the engines directly, meaning that internal fuel was always close to 100% if the drop tanks are dropped with some fuel still in them.
For the US and British (?) the return line from the Carb ran to one of the main tanks, the one the plane started, warmed up and took off with. Depending on length of flight (and time to form up and climb to altitude) a fair amount of the fuel used in the first 15 minutes or so of engine operation (10-20 gallons unless really thirsty) was refilled into the tank.
Cross channel dash not so much but a flight to the Rhine? Pretty much full tank when the dropped tanks were dropped.

I am not saying the 110 was wonderful, just that it did a lot of jobs that could not be done by other aircraft that the Luftwaffe had without worse performance/higher losses.
And that unless people who don't dig deep (like you do) sometimes don't realize how much some planes changed performance over the years.
Germans suffered a lot with the cut back in 110 production while waiting for the 210 to show up. The 210 would have been quite a bit better but since it didn't show up and they slowed down the 110 production there were a lot of units equipped with 110s that were operating below strength.
Or imagine several hundred 110s acting like fast attack bombers (pair of 250 kg bombs under the fuselage, four 50kg bombs under the wing,) during 1941/early 1942.
Something like a German PE-2. Except more bombs and more guns.
 
As the US chief of staff, George C Marshall, wrote in "Biennal Reports of The Chief Of Staff....", the first goal of the air war over Germany was to force them to withdraw aircraft and pilots from the Eastern Front. This worked (just as the western allies reached pretty much all of their strategic objectives), it severely weakened the axis forces on the eastern front. The question is this: what if they had enough fighters to defend the air space over western Europe AND were able to produce enough ground attack aircraft to support their ground troops in the USSR?

An important factor is also the psychology. It is a fact that a war is not lost when x number of soldiers and hardware has been taken out, but when the leaders of a nation conclude that the war isn't worth continuing. Moral and motivation plays an important factor. I doubt that the western allies, especially the US, wanted to defeat Germany at all costs, even though this is what they claimed. Or, maybe I should say: if they could have continued the war, no matter at what cost.
The war wasn't popular in the US, and the US wars of the last 70 years have shown us that the American public doesn't have a lot of staying power. This is a democracy, politicians will have to justify wars, it's not a slave colony like the USSR. On top of it, the threat for the US from Germany was very hypothetical, while the axis was fighting a regime that had the destruction of the anglo-saxon way of life (or what they called "capitalism") as a central part of their state ideology. If the casualties would have mounted to an intolerable level (whatever that would have been), we might have had a "winter war"-situation: this isn't worth the losses, so let's find an agreement and call it a victory.

Anyhow, what would have happened? Does somebody have the kill ratio for the Bf109 and Fw190? One method could be to use the Bf109's air victory statistic and assume that the additional Bf109's would have been just as successful.

Of course, you can only operate as many fighters as you have fuel. So you'd need to pump more out of the ground in Austria and increase the synthetic fuel-production.

But here's another - in my opinion - important factor. A major error Germany made in both world wars is that they switched to "total war"-mode too late. Until then their economy had the limits that the government had set themselves.

According to my statistics, the number of the major aircraft (I only have the numbers for the Bf109, Bf110, Fw190, Ju87, Ju88, Ju188, Me210, Me410, Do17, Do217, He111, Fw200, Me262, Do335, Ta154) produced was:

1940: 7,755 (21,3 per day)
1941: 8,297 (22,7 per day)
1942: 11,471 (31,4 per day)
1943: 19,352 (53 per day)
1944: 34,825 (95,4 per day)
1945: 7,415 (74 per day) (until April 11)

In WW1 the situation was similar. The production of machine guns for the infantry as an example:

1915: 1,154
1916: 3,950
1917: 92,176
1918: 119,530

Numbers for the 7,5cm Fk and 10,5cm lFH:

1915: 2,657
1916: 3,234
1917: 5,004
1918: 11,685

Realize a year earlier that you need to win the numbers game, and that these numbers are huge. As soon as the war with the two U's started, crank all production essential for war up to 11.
 

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