HE-177 Dive Bombing question

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by comiso90, Sep 27, 2007.

  1. comiso90

    comiso90 Active Member

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    When the He 177 was configured for a Dive Bombing role, was the bomb bay empty? it must have been kept empty but it seems like a terrible waste of space.

    -- I think the photo attached shows a radio guided bomb..

    does anybody have photos of the beast in Dive Bomber mode?



    thanks

    .
     

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  2. Aggie08

    Aggie08 Active Member

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    Sorry, no answers for you comiso. I was wondering, how could such a large aircraft possibly withstand the g's required for dive bombing?
     
  3. comiso90

    comiso90 Active Member

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    Yeahh..

    thats why i think the Bomb bay must have been empty
     
  4. Kurfürst

    Kurfürst Banned

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    I am not sure if the He 177 was ever used for dive bombing. It was in the design specs to be able to do so, yes. Because of the primitive bomb sights in existance at the time (before the war), the LW had a preference for dive bombing capability, to be able to bomb with accuracy.

    By the time WW2 started, bombsights had improved a lot, a dive bombing, even though still accurate, was no longer needed. Does anybody know if the He 177 was fitted with some sort of dive bombing sights..?

    BTW, the picture you have shows a Greif with a Henschel-made, remote controlled glider bomb, that's why it's on external rack.
     
  5. Graeme

    Graeme Well-Known Member

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    From 'Heinkel He 177,277,274' by Manfred Griehl and Joachim Dressel.

    Dive Bombing?
    "The characteristics of gliding attacks using the BZA sight were very good. It was possible to carry out attacks of up to 70 degrees inclination for short periods, but due to insufficient wing strength attack flights were limited to 40 degrees inclination."

    Level Bombing.
    "Thanks to the Lotfe 7D telescopic bomb-sight, under normal conditions it was possible to score hits in a 35m circle from an altitude of 3,000 m."

    During Operation Steinbock, experienced He 177 crews climbed to 9,000 m and attacked in a 'shallow dive' reaching 700km/h to avoid fighter interception. (I don't know what 'angle' this equates to). I'm assuming that all of the above involves a bomb-bay ordnance of some description.
     
  6. antoni

    antoni Banned

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    The initial specification issued in 1936 required the bomber to be able to make medium-angle diving attacks descending at 40-50 degrees. Early on the RLM made a major change to the requirement; wanting the He 177 to be stressed to deliver precision attacks in a 60 degree dive. The standard Goetz Vizier horizontal bombsight gave poor results from medium and high altitudes, dive-bombing was a much more accurate method. The pull-out from 60 degrees put great stress on the airframe which needed considerable strengthening. It was a gamble as nobody knew for certain that so large an aircraft could deliver diving attacks.

    Diving tests were carried out on the second prototype, HE177V2, which retained the original smaller tail surfaces. During an early test dive it developed severe control flutter and broke up in mid-air. The V3, V4 and V5 prototypes nearing completion were all given enlarged tail surfaces. Diving tests resumed using the V4 prototype. During one of these tests the propeller-pitch mechanism suffered a malfunction and the aircraft failed to recover from the dive and crashed into the Baltic.

    During the early test phase three of the five prototypes crashed taking their crews to their deaths. The test programme continued. To make precision attacks in dives up to 60 degrees pilots found that to get the He177 into a diving attitude they first had to reduce speed, and then slowly ease forward on the control stick to get the nose to drop. Almost as soon as it was established in its dive it was time to initiate a relatively gentle pull-out. Even so the He 177 was easily overstressed and would pop rivets. It was too large for steep dive attacks.

    The new Lofte tachometric bombsight that worked in a similar way to the Norden produced accuracies similar to diving attacks so the He177’s dive-bombing role was quietly dropped and after the pre-production batch the dive-brakes were omitted.
     
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