Bf-109K

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by Nikademus, Dec 19, 2007.

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  1. Nikademus

    Nikademus Member

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    Hello.

    Looking for some more in-depth info on this last varient of the venerable 109 series. Also would like some opinions on how it stacks up in high alt combat vs. the P-47D. Done some self research online but so far havn't found enough to satisfy.

    thx in advance.
     
  2. Erich

    Erich the old Sage
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    what books do you own on the K variant... ? JaPo actually has a good title or two covering this 109.

    check you local Seattle hobby shops - the ones that carry a half decent line of WW 2 aviation titles, that should have something for you
     
  3. Nikademus

    Nikademus Member

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    None specifically. My knowledge base (aka, my "library") tends to be filled with sources on air history, development and campaigns vs. books devoted to a specific plane type. The detail level on the weapons (i.e. the "aircraft") can be extensive for some but not for all types. I'm well familiar with the 109 but don't have alot of info on the K varient.

    Reason i'm curious relates to a comment i made on the "Best Aircraft III" sticky. On the board I have frequented most in the past several years, such discussions can't be held without the thread being locked because they ultimately degenerate into noxious appendage wagging flame-fests with the favorite plane/nationality taking the place of the appendage. :lol:

    The most recent contest flamed out litterally at 30,000 feet with one offender boasting that the P-47D beat the Bf-109K hands down in every catagory. I think the quote went along the lines of, It can outclimb it, out-turn it, out roll it, outgun it, out-run it, do a dance on the nazi plane's head etc etc. (you can quickly tell why the thread got locked shortly thereafter)

    Now what I know....is that yes, the P-47D was arguably the best high alt fighter deployed given it's attributes. I know that the K varient for the 109 was a bit of a interim fix vs. a born high alt killer like the Ta-152H. Basically an over-muscled 109 that i've read was wicked in it's ability to accelerate but the engine was proving beyond the capabilities of the airframe by that point. (not that thats a mark of shame given the plane's been around and viable for nearly 10 years by 1945)

    The usual set of stats were posted "PROVING" the P-47D's accendancy but only contained the basic stats most easily googled....i.e. climb rate and max speed which in RL are not absolutes but in messy threads like that one are treated as absolutes.

    Still, despite the sillyness, the thread did arouse my curiousity as the K is one of those planes i don't have a tremendous amount of info about. My best sources on the airwar over Germany only give it a paragraph or two and suprisingly, the Internet had not alot save for one website about an up and coming flight simm.

    I've seen some serious in depth analysis of planes here, most notably one in the Best Plane about the P-51D. Hoping someone can do that with the K. :p
     
  4. Njaco

    Njaco The Pop-Tart Whisperer
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    Don't know if they'll help or if they have the info you're looking for but I have several books about the Bf 109. I'm not sure how accurate they are - I've read bad reviews about Squadron - but others on here may tell you if they're worth it. I would check Amazon or Ebay for them.

    "Me 109" by Martin Caidin - part of Ballantine's Illustrated History of WWII:Weapons book # 4

    "Messerschmitt Bf 109" by Dr. Alfred Price - Salamander Books, Ltd.

    "Messerschmitt Me 109" by Uwe Feist - Aero Publishers 1965

    Hope it helps. Check through some of the threads here as that argument has been done here too, with a little more grace. :lol: Some here are VERY knowledgable about the Bf 109, P-47, etc.
     
  5. Kurfürst

    Kurfürst Banned

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    There you go, some primary performance figures on the Bf 109K-4.

    Kurfurst - Your resource on Messerschmitt Bf 109 performance

    Taking a brief look at performance, I can`t see much of a difference. The 109K was a high altitude variant with a high altitude engine and propeller. It was competitive at any altitude.

    Looking at a random July 1944 test the P-47D did 420 mph at 30 000 feet, or 676 km/h at 9144m. Cross checking that against the K-4 figures, the latter did 696 km/h at the same altitude.

    The climb rate is an odd suggestion for the P-47 was known for everything but for it`s astonishing rate of climb.. I mean, looking at the figures, the 47D has lower ceiling (yup!), the RoC at 30k is ca 1300 fpm, or ca 6.6 m/sec vs K4`s 10 m/sec at the same altitude or about 1970 fpm.
     
  6. Njaco

    Njaco The Pop-Tart Whisperer
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    Kurfurst, I was trying to remember your website for him. :oops: Thanks.
     
  7. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    The Bf-109 K-4 was one of the hottest rides of WW2, boasting a top speed of 716 km/h and a climb rate well over 5,000 ft/min, as-well as being one of the very best turn fighters of the war. The Bf-109 K-4 would easily out-turn any American fighter in the ETO, and it would give the Spitfire a run for its money in both turn climb performance.
     
  8. AL Schlageter

    AL Schlageter Banned

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    The climb rate graphs on the Kurfurst site don't back up your claim of a climb rate of well over 5000ft/m. The best climb rate shown is just under 25m/s or 4920ft/m and that is for under 1000m height.

    Why anyone would want to compare the P-47 to the 109K-4 doesn't make sense unless it is to make the 109K-4 look better. The primary opponent of the 109K-4 would be the P-51.
     
  9. davparlr

    davparlr Well-Known Member

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    P-47D-25 will do 433 mph (697 km/h) at 30k.

    The P-47D was no match for the Bf-109K in climb.

    Nope! The P-47D-25 had a service ceiling of 42k (100 f/m ROC). According to your charts the Bf-109K has .6 m/s ROC at 12.75 km (41,830 ft) or roughly equivalent.

    All in all, the Bf-109K was superior to the P-47D at all altitudes. However, it was basically a stripped down, hopped up aircraft with a point defense mission. It is most probably like the Bf-109G-10, which had only a 350 mile range and had only two guns. Also, to be fair, since the Bf-109K was the last model, we should compare it to the last P-47, the N. If so, it appears that the P-47N and the Bf-109K is roughly equivalent at 25K (P-47 is faster, Bf-109 climbs better), but above that, the P-47N has both a speed advantage and climb advantage.
     
  10. davparlr

    davparlr Well-Known Member

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    I have no reason to doubt any of this.
     
  11. Kurfürst

    Kurfürst Banned

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    The 109K wasn`t a 'stripped down, point defense' version. It was, basically, a normal fighter like the 109G with an aerodynamically refined airframe and a later, improved high altitude engine. Actually it`s the heaviest version, but the difference is not particularly great compared to other 109G models. Like all 109s, it`s benefitted from the base concept of combining a small, light airframe with a powerful engine.

    Range of the Bf 109F/G/K was 1000 miles, not 350. It had three guns, one 30mm MK 108 and two 13mm MG 131s (the G-10/U4, G-14/U4, G-6/U4 carried the same), whereas the basic G-6, G-14, G-10 and their AS models carried the 20mm MG 151/20 cannon instead of the 30mm.

    I fail to see any climb advantage for the P-47N. The figures show only up to 28k feet, or 8500 meter, where it does, and 14 000 lbs weight, something like 2200 fpm, or about 11.2 m/sec. Corresponding figure for the 109K is 11.4m/sec, the same for all practical purposes. Below that altitude the climb advantage of the 109K is pronounced. OTOH, the P-47N has speed advantage in the extreme altitude regions thanks to it`s sizeable turbocharger. Up to the most common altitudes however, the 109K holds some slight speed advantage, and considerable climb rate advantage.

    Overall, I cannot see great difference, certainly not anything to justify any great claims of superiority, expect perhaps when it came to manouveribility it the turning plane - the P-47 wasn`t particularly hot in that regard, but it had great controllability in the lateral axis.

    Basically, the two aircraft display typical qualities of a lightweight, high powered interceptor and a heavier, long range fighter with high fuel capacity. The former sports high performance and agility, high caliber weapons, the latter`s greatest virtue is it`s operational radius.
     
  12. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    AL,

    Yes with the Dünnblatt Schraube, with the thicker std. prop climb went up and speed went down. With the std. prop the climb rate of the Bf-109 was well over 5,000 ft/min - also that kinda says itself with 1,975 HP !

    Funny you didn't correct the speed I listed though as its 727 km/h with the Dünnblatt Schraube... Am I detecting bias ???
     
  13. Crumpp

    Crumpp Banned

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    This does not make much sense to me. Is the contention that the Bf-109K4 high altitude performance is not as good as the P47's?

    If that is the case, our figures show the Bf-109K4 is climbing 18% better than the P47 while only 170 ft below it. We still have not reached the 100fpm ceiling of the Bf-109K4 in this case.

    Given that performance is a percentage variation over a mean average, it is reasonable to conclude that these aircraft were equal in high altitude performance.

    All the best,

    Crumpp
     
  14. AL Schlageter

    AL Schlageter Banned

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    No bias on my part but you sure you are not biased.

    Not charts on the site give over 5000ft/min.

    How many 1875hp K-4s?
     
  15. AL Schlageter

    AL Schlageter Banned

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    Range at most economical cruise. :rolleyes: Not a good idea in a airspace dominated by the USAAF if one wants to live to old age.

    P-47D-25-RE: range ~1500 miles. Range with maximum external fuel was 1800 miles

    P-47N-5-RE included a maximum speed of 397 mph at 10,000 feet, 448 mph at at 25,000 feet, and 460 mph at 30,000 feet. Range (clean) was 800 miles at 10,000 feet.
     
  16. Nikademus

    Nikademus Member

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  17. Nikademus

    Nikademus Member

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    Pretty much. I went back and reviewed the offending thread. Here's a posted example:

    One trick the poster is using is quoting the max speed off the N varient which IIRC didn't see ETO service save for a few prototypes and was meant for high alt ops in the PTO. The poster though then switches to a generalization about "all" P-47's being superior (all encompasing) at alt's > 28K
     
  18. Nikademus

    Nikademus Member

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    At 30K or higher, which plane, (P-47 or 109k) would turn better or have better "maneuverability"? From what i've read I gather thats a bit of a misnomer since the two planes are energy fighters and any attempt to maneuver into a turning contest will quickly burn off speed and altitude putting the 47 in particular at a more disadvantagous situation but the question of the Bolt's maneuver/agility is oft quoted. I've read that it did become suprisingly "nimble" or "agile" for such a heavy plane at high alt due to the supercharger allowing so much engine power in the thin air but at least one website put that into context saying "It was never a greatly agile but was "suprisingly" agile at high alt for such a big plane" This in heated discussions though is usually translated as "most maneuverable" and/or "most agile" I'm not sure thats the case.

    I agree. I misread the old thread a bit. The person didn't specify out-climb but rather kept saying "out-accelerate" so lets turn the question towards that end. At high alt, (say 28-30K) which plane will accelerate faster? My guess would be the lighter plane (without trying to do the math which I try to avoid to save Axons and Dendrites!)

    Again...agreed. Like I said, it's the usual appendage wagging contest with limited paper stats being posted to which sweeping generalizations are then added talking about superiority in an artificial 1:1 contest in which the superior plane allegedly holds all the cards. I call it "air combat in a box" type thinking. Chronic on the website i've fruquented. In RL such small differences in preformance don't mean squat in comparison to the other variables. (pilot exp...tactical setup...weather, alt advantage..numerical setup etc etc etc)

    I do recall the flight simm analysis of the K varient suggested that the plane was not very nimble at higher speeds due to the airframe being unsuited to the hot-rotted 1850+HP engine. Truth to it?
     
  19. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    :lol:
     
  20. Crumpp

    Crumpp Banned

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    Yes, the poster is also listing what appears to be TAS at higher altitude.

    This tells us absolutely nothing about the relative velocity. To do that we must convert to EAS.

    The effect of altitude is to increase velocity by the SMOE. An aircraft traveling a velocity of 200KEAS at sea level is traveling 200KTAS.

    An aircraft traveling 200KEAS at 35,000 ft is traveling 326KTAS.

    Both aircraft however are traveling at exactly the same velocity of 200KEAS and neither aircraft has any speed advantage. One just benefits from the effects of altitude.

    A quick SWAG of altitude effects using the data provided in this thread shows the Bf-109K4 to be traveling at an equivalent airspeed of 299mph while the P-47N is traveling at 272mph.

    440mph / 1.4678<SMOE FL24> = 299 mph EAS
    467mph / 1.71295<SMOE FL325 = 272mph EAS

    The Bf-109K4 is the faster of the two aircraft according to this data.

    Since the onset of compressibility errors was not and is not universal even today, we have no way of actually comparing the relative velocity without taking IAS, a PEC, and applying a universal standard of CEC to determine EAS velocities.

    All aircraft traveling at the same angle of bank and velocity will make exactly the same turn. There is no difference in maneuverability between a P-47 traveling at 200mph KEAS and a Bf-109K4 at 200mph KEAS. At a 60 degree bank both aircraft will exactly the same turn.

    Sustained maneuvering envelope will be determined by the excess power characteristics and the shape of polars.

    The P47N generates a considerable amount of power at FL325. It also requires a considerable amount of power at FL325. A very quick SWAG of the Nzmax sustainable shows that at combat weight, the P47N is very close to the Bf-109K4 at 1.8ata at Take Off weight. The Bf-109K4 at 1.98ata has a substantial advantage.

    In my SWAG I do convert using standard formulation from listed IAS with the types PEC.

    All the best,

    Crumpp
     
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