Effectiveness FW190F/G in Ground Attacks

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by wiking85, May 30, 2013.

  1. wiking85

    wiking85 Well-Known Member

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    Much like the Allied fighter-bombers, the FW190F and G series operated against enemy ground forces with rockets, bombs, and cannons; Allied 'Jabos' were not very effective in the final analysis when comparing claims to losses of German AFVS. What about the German fighter-bombers? Were they as (in)effective as the Allied ones?

    From what I've read the Hs129 and Ju87G (cannon version) were not nearly as effective as claimed and that famed ground attack pilot Hans-Ulrich Rudel vastly over claimed and was highly awarded for propaganda reasons. Reports from around Kursk from Russian tankers suggest that Germans were heavily over claiming against them, as the attacks generated a lot of noise, dust, and flashes, which, from the air, seemed like definite destructive hits on AFVs, while the tankers themselves, though scared by the attacks, were essentially unharmed. Yet the Germans got credit for their 'kills' even as the AFVs survived to retreat from the attacks (yes the attacks were broken off as a result of the air raid). So if the 'low, slow' CAS aircraft were having these issues the faster FW190F and Gs must have been worse, right?
     
  2. Erich

    Erich the old Sage
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    yes and no, at least in the case of the Fw's they could carry rockets so a slightly more lethal salvo could be used from Panzerschrecks mounted to several variants of the Panzerblitz types. angle of attacks were different as well. since we do not have confirmation from soviet sources to the real truth of how many of their tanks were "kaput" we will never really know the true destruction by LW aircraft. and as later the soviets could muster mid alt fighters the LW F's and G's could at least have some sort of chance in a dogfight.
     
  3. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    No aircraft is as effective as claimed. Most of them also enter service late and over budget.
     
  4. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    Does anyone have any data like the ORS reports of the allied air forces for the Luftwaffe? I doubt that any such things ever existed. In the absence of data I would assume that similar aircraft using similar weapons would achieve similar results.
    Cheers
    Steve
     
  5. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    Were they similar? I've never read of Typhoons or P-47s skip bombing enemy tanks from an altitude of 10 meters. Nor have I read of Typhoons and P-47s employing cluster munitions against ground targets.
     
  6. Greyman

    Greyman Active Member

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    They certainly did, however.
     
  7. Snautzer01

    Snautzer01 Well-Known Member

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    P47 April 1944 England

    p47_108_clusterbomb.jpg p47_106_clusterbomb.jpg
     
  8. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    Similar aircraft using similar weapons would achieve similar results. I should have added similar tactics. Skip bombing was not a tactic in general use by the allied air forces, so no comparison can be made with the Luftwaffe units that did employ that method.

    I see someone has already shown the allied use of cluster munitions.

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  9. delcyros

    delcyros Well-Known Member

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    The -F in particular was very heavily armoured (incl. armoured wing leading edges, ~800lbs of armour) and more survivable against tight AAA. Indeed, it often sortied to supress enemy FLAK.
    Some authors claim that the role of -190f equipped SG was instrumental in stalling the red army advance as late as feb 1945, thus, delaying the attack on Berlin by either 2 or 3 months from schedule.
    Soviet loss records are virtually not existing for the period in question, I find it hard to substantiate these thesisses without matching sources.
    When attacking, -190f usually went for soft targets (fuel and ammunition transports), which was effective, and only reverted to directly engage AFV in case of an ongoing ground battle.
    The same tactic proved effective for Typhoons in the west, I guess.
     
  10. Kryten

    Kryten Member

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    From what I have read, the RAF considered the Hurricane 11d with the 40mm's as the more effective tank buster (for which read accurate) but that was earlier in the war before AFV armour increased substantially, I would think the Germans would find similar results?
    Reality is it's more efficient to attack the logistics chain where a salvo of rockets or bombs can cause real harm that trying to hit point targets like AFV's.
     
  11. Erich

    Erich the old Sage
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    LW gruppen in 45 were not totally equipped with rockets but by staffel, the other F's in the unit / gruppe would fly high cover and also attack MT's with cannon or conventional bombs.
     
  12. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    Statistically the most accurate weapon a Typhoon had was its 20mm cannon and by a very large margin. This is adequate for attacking soft skinned targets. It's been covered in other threads but the most important and difficult to quantify effect of rocket firing aircraft on their human targets (including the crews of armoured vehicles) was psychological.
    Cheers
    Steve
     
  13. Civettone

    Civettone Active Member

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    Pilots tend to overestimate their kills. This is even more so with ground attack pilots as a destroyed tank or howitzer is not that easy to recognize as an enemy plane plunging towards the ground.
    The Dupuy institute has published a remarkable paper on the inflated claims of destroyed tanks by dedicated tank hunter aircraft. There is also a similar report on the effectiveness of air power in Normandy. Both seem to support the claim that these weapons were not as lethal as often claimed. Plus, if you read all those stories of IL-2 Schturmoviks you would believe that air power alone destroyed all German Panzers.

    However, the German attack aircraft were of superior quality. Excellently armed and armoured. The Panzerblitz weapons were superior to anything the Allies had. And so were the BK 3,7 of the Ju 87G. The Stuka actually carried more armour than the IL-2. The Hs 129 once returned home with a tank shell in its fuselage...

    Kris
     
  14. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    Not something to make a habit of if your goal is to live a long life. :)
     
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