German light bombers and reconnaissance aircrafts

Discussion in 'Aircraft Pictures' started by gekho, Dec 8, 2011.

  1. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    Blohm Voss Ha-139

    It was in the middle of the 1930s, when the Deutsche Lufthansa, that operated already a veritable far-distance mail transportation service via North and South Atlantic, needed a modern, catapultable long-range seaplane. Among the primary claims there was a payload of 400 kg, a range of 5,000 km and a cruising speed of 250 kph. This range was necessary to manage the distance of 3,850 km between Horta on the Azores and New York at a headwind of 60 kph. Also demanded was high seaworthiness, because landings on the open seas had been always to be calculated.

    Lead by Dr. Richard Vogt, chief constructor of Hamburger Flugzeugbau, some drafts were submitted to the Deutsche Lufthansa. The one project named P.17, equipped with two floats, was accepted by the technical heads of the airline. The demanded high performances required small sizes of the airplane. After the drafting was finished, Hamburger Flugzeugbau got the order to manufacture three prototypes under the type deignation Ha 139. For propulsion, Jumo 205C Diesel engines were chosen, for their specifically few fuel consumption (165 g / PS *h). They had a take-off performance of 600 hp. The demanded high safety resulted in the installation of 4 engines. The aerodynamical valuability of the concept allowed to fly with only two engines, with reduced payload. The wing was formed with a bend to keep cockpit and tail surfaces away from splashing water. Like usually in Dr. Vogt's designs, the wing structure was a steel-tube spar, which contained five fuel tanks with a capacity of 6,500 l. The wing contained of three parts, had a span of 27 m and a constant depth of 4.5 m. The outer wing ankle was 7 degrees. The fuselage had an oval cross section. The crew consisted of four or five. The vertical stabilizer also had a constant depth and was strutted against the fuselage. The horizontal fins were formed as disks, changed more than one time and equipped with an aerodynamical balance. The fin cover was metal, while the rudders were covered with fabric. All rudders were equipped with trim flaps, while the inner wing had hydraulically operated spreading flaps. The fixing of the engines was done in a new system what resulted in a very smooth running.

    The Ha 139 V1 registered D-AMIE "Nordmeer" (= "Northern Sea"), facility no. 181, was finished during late summer 1936 and had its successfull maiden flight in October of this year. The calculated flight performances were surpassed. The Ha 139 V2 registered D-AJEY "Nordwind" (= "Northern Wind"), facility no. 182, became ready at the same time, and both machines were taken over by the Lufthansa in March 1937. "Nordmeer" took off on August 15th, 1937, catapulted from the Lufthansa catapult ship "Friesenland" laying off the Azores, to her first Atlantic flight. After 16 1/2 hours, she landed in Port Washington, the seaplane station off New York. For the return flight, the catapult ship "Schwabenland" off Long Island was used (the original article mentions again the "Friesenland", what is impossible. The "Schwabenland" is the sister ship, I hope I don't confuse them). Until end of November 1937, another thirteen flights were successfully performed by both machines. Although the Ha 139 proved exceptionally, some changes, in engine radiation and vertical rudders were necessary. All complaints found their respect also in the manufacturing od the third sample, Ha 139 V3 registered D-ASTA "Nordstern" (= "Northern Star"), facility no. 217, that should be the prototype of the planned B series and was finished beginning of 1938. "Nordstern" also was thoroughly tested on the Northern route between July and October 1938.

    Then, all three machines were used, first on the Horta-New York line and later in regular line service between Bathurst in Western Africa and Recife in Brasil. Now it was possible to restrain from catapulting, the improvements made even take-offs on overload and rough sea possible. In June 1939 the 100th crossing of the Atlantic Ocean was performed, so it could be proved that there was no more obstacle for any airline service to North and South America.

    Not included in the original article is the reason why the North Atlantic route was closed down. Contrary to the situation now, in the late 30s there was no mutual air traffic agreement between the USA and the European countries. An admission of the US authorities was required. We have to speculate that the visits of European aircraft in the USA was not just welcome. Only some weeks before the Ha 139 did their last flights on the northern route, on August 10th to 11th, 1938, a FW 200 had made a non-stop flight from Berlin to New York. Shortly after this, the US authorities refused to renew the landing admission for the German aircraft. Political reasons can be supposed, but also economical ones, because at least one time before also a French Latecoere 521 missed the allowance to come to the US east cost (original information (exluding the "French" one by a friend from luftarchiv.de/bullet-board (*Ali*), conclusions by RT).
    The last flight of the Ha 139 on the northern route was on October 18th, 1938. The next machine following in service, the flying boat Dornier Do 26, was never used on the northern route.

    When WWII broke out, two Ha 139s were still in the South Atlantic. They reached their home base Travemünde only on an indirect route (which one would be interesting, RT). They were taken over by the Luftwaffe immediately and became converted to auxiliary transporters. Blohm Voss drafts for a development of the Ha 139 as long-range reconnoisater had not been realized. The Ha 139 V3 also became converted, in her case as minesweeper. She got MG 15 defensive weapons, in the now glazed bow, dorsal and two side-ventral stations. While the wingspan remained unchainged, the lenght grew to 20.2 m and the weight to 19.500 kg. A big amount od this additional weight resulted from the ring-shaped mine detector, that was fixed on bow, outer wings and tail of the airplane. The first test flight of the Ha 139 V3, now called Ha 139 B/U1, was performed on January 19th, 1940, again from catapult ship "Friesenland", in the Baltic Sea. At a take-off weight of 19,500 kg, the machine achieved a maximum speed of 310 kph. The maximum range a t a speed of 200 kph was 5,000 km, what corresponds with an endurance of 25 hours! None of the three aircraft remained in service for long, soon being grounded by a lack of spares. Plans for a bomber version came to nothing, although a land plane based on the same design was built, as the Ha 142.

    Source: http://warbirdsforum.com/showthread.php?t=976
     

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  2. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    In February 1937 a Reichsluftfahrtministerium specification for a short-range reconnaissance aircraft was issued to Arado, Hamburger Flugzeugbau​ and FockeWulf. Kurt Tank​ responded with the Focke-Wulf with Fw 189 Uhu (eagle owl), an all metal stressed-skin low wing monoplane that had an extensively glazed fuselage pod, and twin booms carrying the tail surfaces. The mainwheels retracted to the rear, into the booms. The crew nacelle provided accommodation for pilot, navigator/ radio operator and engineer/gunner, and power for the prototype was supplied by two 430-hp (321-kW) Argus As 410 engines. Construction of this aircraft began in April 1937 and designer Tank performed the first flight in July 1938. The Fw 189 V2 second prototype, flown in August, was armed with one 7.92mm (0.31-in) MG 15 machine-gun in each of nose, dorsal and rear positions, two fixed MG 17 weapons in the wing roots, and four underwing racks each carrying a 110-lb (50-kg) bomb. A third, unarmed, prototype was flown in September, this Fw 189 V3's engines driving Argus-designed air-pressure-actuated variable-pitch propellers.

    The award of a development contract was followed by the first flight of a fourth prototype, forerunner of the production Fw 189A, which was powered by two Argus As 410A-1 engines and armed with only two MG 15 machine-guns. The fifth prototype was representative of the proposed Fw 189B dual-control trainer, its redesigned fuselage nacelle having a stepped cockpit and much reduced glazing. It was the dual-control trainer which gained the first order in the summer of 1939, for three Fw 189B-0 pre-series and 10 Fw 189B-1 production five-seat crew trainers. These preceded the Fw 189A into manufacture and service, some being used as conversion trainers by 9.(H)/LG 2 during the spring and summer of 1940. In a similar manner the construction of 10 Fw 189A-0 pre-production aircraft began in 1940, some of them being delivered to 9.(H)/LG 2 for operational trials, and being followed by the initial production Fw 189A-1 which was armed similarly to the Fw 189 V2 prototype, except that the MG 15 was deleted from the nose position and an Rb 20/30 or Rb 50/30 camera was carried. Further developments of this version included the Fw 189A-1/ Trop which carried desert survival equipment, and the Fw 189A-11U2 and Fw 189A-11U3which were equipped as personal transports for the use of Generalfeldmarschall Kesselring and General Jeschonnek respectively. The remaining Fw 189A variants included the Fw 189A-2 introduced in 1942, which had the flexibly· mounted MG 15 machine-guns replaced by twin 7.92mm (0.31-in) MG 81Zs; the Fw 189A-3 two-seat dual-control trainer which was built in limited numbers; and introduced in late 1942, the light ground-attack Fw 189A-4 which was armed with two 20-mm MG 151/20 cannon and two 7.92-mm (0.31-in) machine-guns in the wing roots, and had armour protection for the underside of the fuselage, engines and fuel tanks. Unbuilt project included the c1ose-support Fw 189C and the Fw 189D twin-float trainer; the seventh prototype, which had been intended to serve as the development aircraft for this last variant, was completed instead as an Fw 189B-0. The use of alternative powerplant was planned for the Fw 189E, a French-built Fw 189A-1 airframe being modified by the installation of two 7oo-hp (522-kWI Gnome-Rhone 14M radial engines, but when this prototype crashed while being flown to Germany for evaluation, further development was abandoned. Final production version was the Fw 189F-1, basically an Fw 189A-2 re-engined with two 580hp (433-kW) Argus A 4llMA-1 engines; a similarly-powered Fw 189F-2 introducing electrically-actuated landing gear and increased armour and fuel capacity was planned, but none had been built when production ended in 1944.

    Total production of the Fw 189 then amounted to 864 aircraft including prototypes, built not only by Heinkel but also by Aero in Prague from 1940 to 1943, and by SNCASO at Bordeaux-Merignac until 1944. Fw 189s were supplied in small numbers to the Slovakian and Hungarian air forces operating on the Eastern Front, in which theatre the type was deployed most extensively by the Luftwaffe, but at least one Staffel used the type operationally in North Africa.
     

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  3. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    At the start of the war German short range reconnaissance was carried out by squadrons designated as Aufklärungsstaffeln (Heer), abbreviated to Aufkl.(H) or (H). Thirty six existed in August 1939, and were under army control. Each squadron was self-supporting and fully mobile and could move from location to location under its own steam.

    The first few Fw 189s reached experimental sections of the Luftwaffe in the spring of 1940. At about the same time some aircraft reached the reconnaissance squadrons for service trials, but large-scale deliveries didn't really begun until the end of 1942.

    On 22 July 1941, at the start of the invasion of the Soviet Union, the number of squadrons had risen to 54, most of which were still using the Hs 126. Production of the Fw 189 increased in pace during the year, but even at the end of 1942 the Hs 126 was still significant. In the winter of 1941-42 the squadrons were organised into short-range reconnaissance groups, each of which was meant to contain three squadrons. On the southern sector there were nine groups with sixteen squadrons, of which six were still using the Hs 126. In the middle sector things were worse, with six groups and thirteen squadrons, of which nine still had the Hs 126. Finally both squadrons operating in the north were still using the older aircraft. Of a total of 31 short-range reconnaissance squadrons, 17, or just over half, were still using the older aircraft.

    When the Fw 189 did appear in strength in the East it performed well. The air-cooled inline engines were more reliable in extreme cold weather than liquid cooled engines, while the aircraft provided to be very rugged. 1942 was probably the heyday of the Fw 189, and saw it operate in comparatively large numbers against weak opposition. After that things became increasingly difficult. Ever stronger Soviet fighter defences and ever-improving Soviet fighter aircraft made the skies increasingly dangerous for the Fw 189. Reconnaissance missions either needed an increasing number of fighter escorts, or took place at night. By the summer of 1944 the Fw 189 had been forced out of the daytime skies, and the surviving aircraft were forced to operate at night, or as training and liaison aircraft.

    Source: Focke-Wulf Fw 189 Uhu (Eagle Owl)
     

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  4. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    The Arado 95 was designed in 1935 as a two-seat seaplane, for coastal patrol, reconnaissance and light attack roles. The first prototype, an all-metal biplane powered by a BMW 132 radial engine, flew in 1936, while a second prototype was powered by a Junkers Jumo 210 liquid-cooled engine. The two prototypes were evaluated against the similar Focke-Wulf Fw 62. The BMW-powered version was considered worthy of further study, and a batch of six were sent for further evaluation with the Legion Condor during the Spanish Civil War. The Arado Ar 95 was the basis for the prototype Ar 195 carrier-based torpedo bomber, which was proposed for operation from the German aircraft carrier. The Ar 95 was not ordered by the German armed forces, and so was offered for export in two versions, the Ar 95W floatplane and Ar 95L landplane, with a fixed, spatted undercarriage. Six Ar 95Ls were ordered by the Chilean Air Force, being delivered prior to the start of World War II. Turkey placed an order for Ar 95Ws, but these were taken over by Germany on the outbreak of war.

    Source: Arado Ar 95 | Facebook
     

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  5. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    The Dornier Do 24 was designed to meet a Dutch navy requirement for a replacement of the Dornier Wals being used in the Dutch East Indies. It was an all-metal monoplane with a broad-beamed hull and stabilising sponsons. The aircraft was powered by three wing-mounted radial engines. The first two aircraft built were fitted with 447 kW (600 hp) Junkers Jumo 205C diesel engines. The next two had 652 kW (875 hp) Wright R-1820-F52 Cyclones, this was to meet a Dutch requirement to use the same engines as the Martin 139. The third aircraft (with Cyclone engines) was the first to fly on 3 July 1937. Six Dutch aircraft (designated Do 24K-1) were built in Germany, followed by a further aircraft built under licence by Aviolanda in the Netherlands (designated Do 24K-2). Only 25 aircraft had been built on the Aviolanda assembly line before the German occupation. The Luftwaffe were interested in the completed and partially completed aircraft. The Dutch production line continued to produce aircraft under German control. 11 airframes were completed with Dutch-bought Wright Cyclone engines, but later models used the BMW Bramo 323R-2. A further 159 Do 24s were built in the Netherlands during the occupation, most under the designation Do 24T-1. Another production line for the Do 24 was established in the old CAMS factory at Sartrouville, France, during the German occupation. This line was operated by SNCAN and was able to produce another 48 Do 24s. After the liberation, this facility produced a further 40 Do 24s, which served with the French Navy until 1952.

    Thirty-seven Dutch- and German-built Do 24s had been sent to the East Indies by the time of the German occupation of the Netherlands in June 1940. Until the outbreak of war, these aircraft would have flown the tri-color roundel. Later, to avoid confusion with British or French roundels, Dutch aircraft flew a black-bordered orange triangle insignia. A Dutch Dornier Do 24 is credited with sinking the Japanese destroyer Shinonome on December 17, 1941 while the ship was escorting an invasion fleet to Miri in British Borneo. On 10 January 1942 a Dutch Dornier Do-24K spotted a Japanese invasion fleet heading for Tarakan Island in Dutch Borneo, giving adequate warning so that all oil instalations could be destroyed before the Japanese arrived. After the Japanese invasion of the Netherlands East Indies, six surviving Do 24s were transferred to the Royal Australian Air Force in February 1942. They served in the RAAF through most of 1944 as transports in New Guinea, making the Do 24 one of the few aircraft serving operationally on both sides during World War II. During the war, a German Do 24 made a forced landing in neutral Sweden, was impounded and eventually bought, and remained in Swedish service until 1952. In 1944, 12 Dutch-built Do 24s were delivered to Spain with the understanding that they would assist downed airmen of both sides. After the war, a few French-built Do 24s also found their way to Spain. Spanish Do 24s were operational at least until 1967, and possibly later. In 1971, one of the last flying Spanish Do 24s was returned to the Dornier facility on Lake Constance for permanent display.
     

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  6. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    I've always loved the Uhu, one of the first models I ever remember building.
     
  7. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    The origins of this twin-engine flying boat go back to 1934 when Deutsche Lufthansa asked Dornier Metallbauten G.m.b.H. to develop a more modern successor to the Wal. It was expressly designed for Trans-oceanic mail service and is notable for being the first commercial flying boat fitted with diesel engines. Fitted with two 500-560 hp Junkers "Jumo 205D" compression-ignition engines, the Do-18 type was used for experimental work on the North Atlantic crossing to the United States. Six Dornier 18s were entrusted to the German airline between 1935 and 1937 and because of its exceptional range (2,765 miles) the aircraft aroused the interest of the Luftwaffe as well, who ordered a military version. D models were armed with light machine guns but the most important series proved to be the heavier armed DO-18G-1 reconnaissance version. This version exchanged the light machine guns for a heavier one and a 20 mm cannon. By 1938 it had already been introduced into the coastal flying units of the Luftwaffe being used for air sea rescue and reconnaissance. Before too much longer the open aft gun position was replaced with an enclosed turret and heavier armament. In the North Sea the large British flying boats often clashed with enemy aircraft that was about the same business. The Do-18, which was smaller, less powerful, less well armed and generally considered harmless by Allied flyers was nonetheless useful to the Germans.

    On Tuesday, the 26th of September,1939 the Do-18 played an interesting role in history. A Dornier Do-18D flying boat of 2/Küstenfliegergruppe 506 trying to shadow the carrier Ark Royal was engaged by Lieutenant B.S. McEwen and his air-gunner Petty Officer Airman B.M. Seymour in their Blackburn Skua of No 803 Squadron just north of the Great Fisher Bank. The Do-18 was forced down and the destroyer HMS Somali rescued the four-man crew. The aircraft, which was still afloat, was sunk by gunfire. The Do-18 played another ‘first’ role just a few days later when on October 8, 1939 another Do-18D tangled with a Hudson Mk I of No. 224 Squadron. The Dornier was shot down off Jutland marking the first combat kill of a Hudson. By 1942 the Dornier Do-18s were replaced in service by the Bv-138 flying clog.
     

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  8. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    Development of the three-seat Dornier Do 22 floatplane was the responsibility of Dornier's Altenrhein factory in Switzerland, where.two prototypes were built. Of all-metal construction with fabric covering throughout, except for the metal-skinned forward fuselage, the Do 22 was powered by a Hispano-Suiza 12Ybrs engine driving a three-bladed propeller. The Do 22 carried a crew of three, the rear cockpit providing accommodation for a gunner, and a radio operator whose position in the front half of the cockpit was protected by a glazed canopy. Four 7.92mm MG 15 machine-guns were fitted, one in the forward fuselage above the engine, one in a ventral position and two in the rear cockpit. Although not ordered by the Luftwaffe, approximately 30 were built at Friedrichshafen in Germany and the first production aircraft was flown on 15 July 1938. Do 22s were supplied to the Greek, Yugoslav and Latvian air forces as the Do 22Kg, Do 22Kj and Do 22Kl respectively

    Source: Dornier Do 22 - recon, torpedo-bomber
     

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  9. Wayne Little

    Wayne Little Well-Known Member

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  10. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    The fabric-covered Storch observation monoplane served the German Forces throughout World War Two wherever the Germans saw combat. With ten times the life expectancy of the Bf 109 fighter, the Storch ("Stork") proved to be a rugged Short Take Off and Landing (STOL) airplane that gained the respect of all its pilots.

    The Storch was first flown in 1936. Using a fixed slat over the leading edge of the wing and slotted camber-changing flaps along the trailing edge, the Storch achieved incredible short take-off performance. In a light breeze the Storch could take off in just 200 feet (60 meters) and land in about 66 feet (20 meters). It had a crew of three, and with extensive windows surrounding the occupants, made an excellent observation and liaison aircraft. Production for the German armed forces began with the Fi 156A-1. The Fi 156C, which had the rear glazing raised to accommodate a machine gun for defense, soon replaced the A-1. Other variants included a tropical version with dust filters, an ambulance version carrying a single stretcher, and an enlarged version (Fi 256) with seating for five built in limited numbers in France between 1943 and 1944. Fieseler began building the Storch in Germany, but was soon forced to move production to Morane-Saulnier in France (as the M.S.500 Criquet) and Mraz in Czechoslovakia (as the K-65 Cap). This was done to make room for the BF 109 at the Fieseler plant.

    The Fieseler Storch was the last dogfight victim of the western front. Pilot Duanes Francies and his observer, Lieutenant William Martin, of the 5th US Army Division, spotted a Storch circling below them while looking for ground targets in their Piper Cub. Diving on the Storch, the two men opened fire with their Colt .45s and the plane spiraled to the ground. After a short gun battle, Francies and his observer took the two Germans into custody. Lt. Martin was awarded the Air Medal for his part in the fight, but Francies would have to wait until the story was reported in Cornelius Ryan's book "The Last Battle," to finally be awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. The USAF was 22 years late. Apart from being the last Luftwaffe plane lost in the west, this Storch was also the only enemy plane downed by pistol fire during the war. After the war Morane-Saulnier continued to produce the Storch as the M.S.500, and Mraz continued to build the K-65 Cap. Over 2,900 Fi 156s were produced. Today, approximately 30 Fi 156s and their brethren have survived in Europe and North America, and only four are still capable of flying today.

    Source: Warbird Alley: Fieseler Storch
     

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  11. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    #11 gekho, Dec 11, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2013
    The Storch could be found on every front throughout the European and North African theaters of operation in World War II. It will probably always be most famous for its role in Operation Eiche, the rescue of deposed Italian dictator Benito Mussolini from a boulder-strewn mountain top near the Gran Sasso, surrounded by Italian troops. German commando Otto Skorzeny dropped with 90 paratroopers onto the peak and quickly captured it, but the problem remained of how to get back off. A Focke-Achgelis Fa 223 helicopter was sent, but it broke down en route. Instead, pilot Walter Gerlach flew in a Storch, landed in 30 m (100 ft), took aboard Mussolini and Skorzeny, and took off again in under 80 m (250 ft), even though the plane was overloaded. The Storch involved in rescuing Mussolini bore the radio code letters, or Stammkennzeichen, of "SJ + LL" in motion picture coverage of the daring rescue.

    On 26 April 1945 a Storch was one of the last planes to land on the improvised airstrip in the Tiergarten near the Brandenburg Gate during the Battle of Berlin and the death throes of the Third Reich. It was flown by the test pilot Hanna Reitsch, who flew her lover Field Marshal Robert Ritter von Greim from Munich to Berlin to answer a summons from Hitler. Once in Berlin von Greim was informed that he was to take over command of the Luftwaffe from Hermann Göring. A Storch was the victim of the last dog fight on the Western Front and another was downed by a direct Allied counterpart of the Storch—a L-4 Grasshopper—from the L-4's crew directing their pistol fire at it. The pilot and co-pilot of the L-4, Lts. Duane Francis and Bill Martin, opened fire on the Storch with their .45 caliber pistols, forcing the German air crew to land and surrender. During the war a number of Störche were captured by the Allies; the British having captured 145 from which 64 were given to the French as War compensation from Germany, one becoming the personal aircraft of Field Marshal Montgomery.
     

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  12. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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  13. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    In 1933, the Kriegsmarine looked for a standardized shipboard reconnaissance aircraft. After a brief selection period, the Reichsluftfahrtministerium (German Air Ministry, RLM) decided on the Heinkel He 60 biplane. This was one of a line of developments of a basic biplane airframe that appeared as a number of floatplanes, trainers, and fighters. Deliveries started in a matter of months. By 1935, it was found that the He 60's performance was lacking, and the RLM asked Heinkel to design its replacement. The result was the He 114. The first prototype was powered by the Daimler-Benz DB 600 inline engine, but it was clear that supplies of this engine would be limited, and the production versions turned to the BMW 132 radial engine instead. The plane proved to have only slightly better performance than the He 60, and its sea-handling was poor. Rushed modifications resulted in a series of nine prototypes in an attempt to solve some of the problems, but they didn't help much. The Navy gave up, and the planes were eventually sold off to Romania, Spain and Sweden.

    In October 1936, the RLM asked for a He 114 replacement. The only stipulations were that it would use the BMW 132, and they wanted prototypes in both twin-float and single-float configurations. Designs were received from Dornier, Gotha, Arado and Focke-Wulf. Heinkel declined to tender, contending that the He 114 could still be made to work. With the exception of the Arado design, they were all conventional biplanes. That gave the Arado better performance than any of the others, and the RLM ordered four prototypes. The RLM was also rather conservative by nature, so they also ordered two of the Focke-Wulf Fw 62 design as a backup. It quickly became clear that the Arado would work effectively, and only four prototypes of the Fw 62 were built.

    The Ar 196 prototypes were all delivered in summer 1937, V1 (which flew in May) and V2 with twin floats as A models, and V3 and V4 on a single float as B models. Both versions demonstrated excellent water handling, and there seemed to be little to decide one over the other. Since there was a possibility of the smaller outrigger floats on the B models "digging in", the twin-float A model was ordered into production. A single additional prototype, V5, was produced in November 1938 to test final changes. 10 A-0s were delivered in November and December 1938, with a single 7.92 mm (.312 in) MG 15 machine gun in the rear seat for defense. Five similarly equipped B-0s were also delivered to land-based squadrons. This was followed by 20 A-1 production models starting in June 1939, enough to equip the surface fleet. Starting in November production switched to the heavier land-based A-2 model. It added shackles for two 50 kg (110 lb) bombs, two 20 mm MG FF cannons in the wings, and a 7.92 mm (.312 in) MG 17 machine gun in the cowling. The A-4 replaced it in December 1940, strengthening the airframe, adding another radio, and switching props to a VDM model. The apparently mis-numbered A-3 replaced the A-4, with additional strengthening of the airframe. The final production version was the A-5 from 1943, which changed radios and cockpit instruments, and switched the rear gun to the much-improved MG 81Z. In all versions, 541 Ar 196s (526 production models) were built before production ended in August 1944, about 100 of these from SNCA and Fokker plants. The Ar 196C was a proposed aerodynamically-refined version. The Ar 196C project was cancelled in 1941.
     

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  14. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    The plane was loved by its pilots, who found it handled well both in the air and on the water. With the loss of the German surface fleet the A-1s were added to coastal squadrons, and continued to fly reconnaissance missions and submarine hunts into late 1944. Two notable operations were the capture of HMS Seal, and the repeated interception of RAF Armstrong-Whitworth Whitley bombers. Although it was no match for a fighter, it was considerably better than its Allied counterparts, and generally considered the best of its class. Owing to its good handling on water, the Finnish Air Force utilized Ar 196 solely on transporting and supplying special forces patrols behind enemy lines, landing on small lakes in remote areas. Several fully equipped soldiers were carried in the fuselage.

    Source: Arado Ar 196 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
     

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  15. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    #15 gekho, Dec 12, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2013
    More pics
     

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  16. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    That has got to be my favorite single engine sea plane, well done.
     
  17. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    The Blohm und Voss BV 138 was officially named 'Seedrache' (Sea Dragon) but unofficially it was instead mostly called 'the flying clog'. It was built and used as a long-range maritime reconnaissance flying boat - often flying for hours far out over the sea in search of allied convoys and shipping. Fully loaded it could fly over 4000 kilometers and stay up for 16 hours. This range could be increased even further when using RATO packs (Rocket Assisted Take-offs) or when launched from catapults on board seaplane tenders. The BV 138C-1 was powered by three Junkers Jumo 205D-1 diesel engines and although they were fuel efficient they made the aircraft very slow and gave it a maximum ceiling of only 5000 m (16400 ft). However, armed with 20mm cannons in two turrets and a 13mm heavy machinegun in an open position as well as an optional MG15 the BV 138 could often take care of itself when attacked. It has for example been known to shoot down a British Blenheim as well as a Catalina flying boat in air-to-air combat. And since the BV 138 could also take a lot of battle damage and keep flying, especially as the diesel fuel rarely ignited when hit by machine gun fire, she was generally well liked by her crews.

    Although the BV 138 was able to carry small loads of bombs and depth-charges and thereby do attack missions such as sub-hunting, most operations were pure reconnaisance and surveillance, often working together with the german U-boats. But they were also used for convoy escort, air-sea rescue, personnel and equipment transport or as a few modified ones for mine-sweeping duties. The BV 138 flying boats were used almost all over Europe and patrolled the North Sea, Skagerrack and Kattegatt, Baltic Sea, Arctic Ocean, Norwegian Sea, Bay of Biscay as well as the Black Sea and the Mediterranean.

    Source: BV 138 flying boat of WWII
     

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  18. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    By the middle of the 1930's the idea of using aircraft against ground targets had been "well understood" to be of little use other than hurting enemy morale. Experiences during World War I had demonstrated that attacking the combatants was generally much more dangerous to the aircraft than the troops on the ground, a problem that was only becoming more acute with the introduction of newer weapons. For much of the 1920s and 30s the use of aircraft was seen primarily in the strategic and interdiction roles, where their targets were less likely to be able to fight back with any level of coordination. For high-value point targets, the dive bomber was the preferred solution.

    Condor Legion experience during the Spanish Civil War turned this idea on its head. Although armed with generally unsuitable aircraft such as the Henschel Hs 123 and cannon-armed versions of the Heinkel He 112, their powerful armament and fearless pilots proved that the aircraft was a very effective weapon even without bombs. This led to some support within the Luftwaffe for the creation of an aircraft dedicated to this role, and eventually a contract was tendered for a new "attack aircraft". Since the main source of damage would be from rifle and machine gun fire from the ground, the plane had to be heavily armored around the cockpit and engines. They also required the same protection in the windscreen, which required 75 mm thick armored glass. Since the aircraft was expected to be attacking its targets directly in low level strafing runs, the cockpit that had to be located as close as possible to the nose in order to see the ground. One last requirement, a non-technical one, ended up dooming the designs; the RLM demanded that the aircraft be powered by "unimportant" engines of low power that were not being used in other designs. Four companies were asked to respond, and only two of the resulting three entries were considered worthy of consideration; Focke-Wulf's conversion of their earlier Fw 189 reconnaissance plane, and Henschel's all-new Hs 129.

    The Hs 129 was designed around a single large "bathtub" of steel sheeting that made up the entire nose area of the plane, completely enclosing the pilot up to head level. Even the canopy was steel, with only tiny windows on the side to see out of and two angled blocks of glass for the windscreen. In order to improve the armor's ability to stop bullets, the fuselage sides were angled in forming a triangular shape, resulting in almost no room to move at shoulder level. There was so little room in the cockpit that the instrument panel ended up under the nose below the windscreen where it was almost invisible, some of the engine instruments were moved outside onto the engine nacelles, and the gunsight was mounted outside on the nose. In the end the plane came in 12% overweight and the engines 8% underpowered, and it flew like a pig. The controls proved to be almost inoperable as speed increased, and in testing one plane flew into the ground from a short dive because the stick forces were too high for the pilot to pull out. The Fw design proved to be no better. Both planes were underpowered with their Argus Ar 410 engines, and very difficult to fly. The RLM nevertheless felt they should continue with the basic concept. In the end the only real deciding factor between the two was that the Henschel was smaller and cheaper. The Focke-Wulf was put on low priority as a backup, and testing continued with the Hs 129A-0. A series of improvements resulted in the Hs 129A-1 series, armed with two 20 mm MG 151/20's and two 7.92 mm MG 17's, along with the ability to carry four 50 kg bombs under the fuselage midline.
     

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  19. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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  20. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    In 1933 the Luftwaffe issued a request for an advanced battlefield observation aircraft which would improve on the Heinkel He 46 (which had not then entered service). Henschel responded with the Hs 122, a neat parasol monoplane which offered an outstanding all-round view and excellent low-speed and short-field characteristics. The prototype flew in early 1935 powered by a Rolls-Royce Kestrel, although the Siemens Sh 22B radial was the intended motorplant. Flight tests were successful, but the Luftwaffe was dis*appointed with the maximum speed, which was little better than the He 46. Therefore, Henschel was asked to further develop the aircraft using the Bramo 323 Fafnir radial. This design became then the well known Hs 126.

    Henschel took the opportunity to revise the design, with a longer fuselage, more angular wing layout and also refinements to the vertical tail and cantilever undercarriage. Flight trials revealed excellent short-field capability and easy handling. A pre-production batch of 10 Hs 126A-0s was completed, some of which were issued to reconnaissance squadrons for evalua*tion. The first production aircraft were delivered in early 1938. These Hs 126A-ls switched to the BMW 132Dc engine to overcome the non-availability of the Fafnir. The cockpit accommodated the pilot and a gunner/observer, both provided with a sliding canopy. The back-seater operated a Zeiss Rb topographic camera in a bay behind him, a hand-held camera and the 7.9-mm MG 15 machine-gun with 975 drum-held rounds. The pilot aimed the fixed MG 17 machine-gun with a capacity of 500 rounds, mounted in the upper starboard fuselage. For light bombing missions the aircraft could carry five 10-kg (22-lb) bombs in the camera bay and a single 50-kg (110-lb) bomb on a port-side strut which was braced to the wing and the fuselage.
     

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