Incredible story and incredible plane

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Nothing, absolutely nothing could survive damage like the Jug. Bob Johnson's P-47 was beat all to hell too and he made it home. They regularly came home with cylinders shot out and even foreign objects from the ground inbedded in the wings from low, low strafing passes.
luckily the pilot did not experience 30mm HEI or it would of been all over........

by the way the 368th fg will be having quite a book come out soon on the hard fought unit. The Jug is a hot bird.

I know a few Stang boys that came home with tail rudders nearly blown off after the wild strafing missions of spring 45.

miraculous is the word for what these fighters converted to fb's could do and come back. thank God !
Erich said, "luckily the pilot did not experience 30mm HEI or it would of been all over........"

I say luckily both of them weren't flying P-51's cause it would have been all over for both of them. (One plane took a 20mm hit to the engine and the other took 40mm hits to the wings.)

I think that's the lesson here.
Well this is a incredible story. I knew the P-47 could take a lot of damage but jeeezzzzz. If those pilots were in a p-38 or a P-51 they wouldn't have come out alive. Not saying anything against the pilots, but the mustang and p-38 couldn't take the damage a Jug could.
CC said, "Wouldnt bet against a P-38 being able to sustain a similar amount of damage..."

I would agree with respect to the one plane taking a 20mm hit to the engine. The P-38's engine would have just quit leaving another engine.

I would disagree with respect to those 40mm hits though. The P-38 wasn't known to be a particularly tough bird. I address your attention to an excerpt from the Joint Fighter Conference posted by Magister on another thread:

P. 87

Colonel Garman: "I can speak only for the African theatre and only for a particular type of operation. The P-38 was used at low altitude on many occasions and we found that it was quite vulnerable to ground fire - any type of ground fire, even small arms fire. But other planes also experienced that same ground fore and the radial engines brought the planes home. You can't lay down any hard and fast rule and say the in-line engine is no good at low altitude as far as ground fire is concerned, It all depends on the operation entirely."

Lietenant Colonel Tyler: "We have data which shows that in the entire European theatre the P-47 is much better able to take punishment and return after any sort of mission - either ground attack or any mission which incurs damage. That may be due to the P-47 airplane or due to the air-cooled feature. We don't know which, but it certainly can take it better than other types."
I agree with both of you, the jug took a great deal of damage and getting home after a cylinder or three was shot out happened many times. The 2800 would run until the oil was gone and with a dry sump that could be awhile!

I have a picture of a P-38 (F-5B) that had a colllision with a Halifax
The right prop is bent back, the right wing leading edge is smashed flat outboard of the engine. Outboard of the left prop, embeded in the wing is an entire rudder of the Halifax, 90deg to the wing and flat side to the airflow. The P-38 made it home and landed safely. Source Warren Bodies P-38 Lightning book.

I've also seen a picture of a P-38 that had collided with a Bf-109 which had cut the right boom aft of the radiators almost all the way through. The rudder was several feet lower than normal. Anothe had the stabilizer/elevator cut all the way through. The plane made it home ok even with the one side of the elevator hanging 3ft lower than it should.

this will probably not change anyones mind but the Jug in this case was not hit by 40mm's as the gun was a naval fit not issued to Army, W-SS or Luftw. AA units dug in or operating off of trucks.

the photos reveal what appears to be 20mm only
Erich, we have all seen the effect of numerous 20mm impacts on various aircraft. That is not damage from a 20mm. I believe the Germans did utilize the 37mm in addition to 20mm and 88mm. Could it be 37mm damage?

German 37mm anti-aircraft gun.
Wjether we call it a 40mm, a 20mm or a 88mm, it is still a testiment of the tougheness of the P-47. The damage speaks for itself. How many planes could have com back with damage like that to both wings.
sure it could easily be 20mm, the 3.7cm would of had more effect. to answer your question the P-51 could as I have pics of 8th AF stangs in similiar shape with the rudder nearly torn off the tip to 1/3rd of a wing shorn completely off due to 2cm Fla.

it is obvious though beyond anyones reason the US P-47 razor and bubble top could take it more than any other Allied craft though the RAF tempest could handle a crap load of 2cm and get back as well........

let the stones fly

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