Luftwaffe loses

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by Dac, May 24, 2006.

  1. Dac

    Dac Member

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    I'm having a debate with a friend over what allied aircraft type was responsible for the destruction of more German planes over western Europe. He claims it's either the Spitfire or the Mustang and I say it's the B-17.

    Can anyone tell me which allied aircraft shot down the most Luftwaffe aircraft? If you have a link to an article that would be great also.

    thanks, doug
     
  2. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    Definatly not the Spit nor the B17.

    I think its either the P38 or P51.
     
  3. Aggie08

    Aggie08 Active Member

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    I'd have to say -51 based on numbers and the fact that everyone was getting them. What about attack missions though, that may put the jug and lightning up there... But yeah, not the spit or 17.
     
  4. Nonskimmer

    Nonskimmer Active Member

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    I know the P-38 was responsible for the most Japanese shot down in the PTO, but as for the plane that shot down the most Germans, I don't know. Good question. :-k

    Hey Dac, long time no see. :cool:
     
  5. Dac

    Dac Member

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    Yah, I haven't had internet for quite a while Nonskimmer, it's nice to be back.

    I think it was in a thread here last fall that I read that the B-17 shot down over 6,000 Luftwaffe aircraft and outscored the P-51 by a bit. I searched but I couldn't find it, so maybe I'm just remembering it wrong.
     
  6. Jagdverband 44

    Jagdverband 44 New Member

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    P-51D and the P-47
     
  7. Twitch

    Twitch Member

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  8. Hunter368

    Hunter368 Active Member

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    P-51 simply b/c it was exposed to more German planes. Spit and P47 had too short range. During Battle for Germany the German pilots would often wait till the Spit and P47 had to turn around to go home before engaging the bombers. That all changed when the P51 came on the scene, then the P51 could stay with the bombers all the way to the target and back home.
     
  9. the lancaster kicks ass

    the lancaster kicks ass Active Member

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    remember with the 6,000+ figure for the B-17 that's with massive over-claiming, often 4-5 gunners would claim the same fighter that was simply smoked or diving a bit as their own kill..........
     
  10. Dac

    Dac Member

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    You'd need to rely on Luftwaffe records over USAAF from the time. For the second half of 1942 and most of 1943 I don't think the P-38s and P-47s had the range to go any further than the German border so it should be fairly simple to find the number of Luftwaffe aircraft destroyed by B-17s.

    When you consider the number of .50 cal machineguns carried by each bomber and the number of aircraft on a mission there must have been alot of German fighters destroyed over time.
     
  11. Erich

    Erich the old Sage
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    it's ny impossible to find out how many Luftw. fighters got popped by US bomber crew gunners.

    P-51's by far from Decmber 43 till war's end had the upper edge in Luftw. A/C bagged
     
  12. Dac

    Dac Member

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    Ok, thanks.
     
  13. Gnomey

    Gnomey World Travelling Doctor
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    I have heard of around 12,000 for the B-17 but that is surely with a lot of overclaiming. Of the rest I would agree with the P-51, although it is hard to know for sure.
     
  14. lesofprimus

    lesofprimus Active Member

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    Dont forget about aircraft destroyed on the ground fellas.... P-47's raked up 1,000's of kills on the ground...
     
  15. Dogwalker

    Dogwalker Member

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    "At 10:25 [of 5 july 1943], twenty-seven MC.202s and MC.205s of the 4o Stormo scrambled to intercept fifty-two bombers escorted by about twenty Spitfires, that were heading to bomb the airfields around Catania. The 9o Gruppo was led by Capitano Reiner, while Capitano Franco Lucchini was leading the 10o Gruppo. The 10o Gruppo consisted of the 84a Squadriglia (Lucchini, Sottotenente Francesco Palma, Sottotenente Enzo Dall'Asta and Capitano Luigi Giannella (CO of the 84a Squadriglia) flying MC.202s and Tenente Alessandro Mettimano, Sergente Maggiore Piero Buttazzi and Sergente Livio Barbera flying MC.205s), the 90a Squadriglia (Tenente Luigi Cima, Maresciallo Massimo Salvatore and Sergente Giambattista Ceoletta flying MC.202s) and 91a Squadriglia (Tenente Mario Mecatti (CO), Sottotenente Giovanni Silvestri and Sottotenente Elio Miotto).
    Giannella and Palma was a few minutes late to take-off because the ground crew were checking their weapons.
    The Italian fighters made a frontal attack over Gerbini ignoring the escorting Spitfires. Two B-17s were claimed by Salvatore and Tenente Vittorio Squarcia (73a Squadriglia) together with some Bf109s. Lucchini claimed a Spitfire while Reiner, Salvatore and Mecatti claimed a probable bomber each. Three bombers were claimed damaged by Lucchini, Giannella, Mettimano, Dall’Asta and Buttazzi. Additional damaged bombers were claimed by Reiner, Salvatore, Mecatti (who also claimed a damaged Spitfire), Sergente Ettore Chimeri (73a Squadriglia), Sergente Bruno Biagini (96a Squadriglia), Cima and Ceoletta.
    When the Italian fighters landed again at 11:55, Lucchini was missing. He had been seen by Dall’Asta attacking the bombers against heavy defensive fire and then diving into the ground east of Catania. During the alarm, some of the ground crew also reported to have seen a MC.202 falling with the canopy closed, some kilometres east of the airfield. A car from the unit tried to reach the place, but it couldn't go on due to the bombing of the area. Lucchini’s body wasn’t found until two days later.
    Taking part in this interception were also more than 100 Bf109Gs from I, II and III/JG 53 and I and II/JG 77. They claimed twelve bombers for the loss of four Bf109s including Major Johannes Steinhoff, Kommodore of JG 77, who force-landed his stricken aircraft.
    It seems that the Italian fighters had been in combat with USAAF B-17s from 99th Bomber Group, which were out to attack Gerbini. They were intercepted near Ragusa at 23,000 feet but the escorting Spitfires from 72 and 243 Squadrons intervened. The Spitfires claimed one and one damaged Bf109 while the bombers gunner claimed 45 enemy fighters shot down! According to American records six B-17s from the 99th BG were lost during the day."
     
  16. Hop

    Hop Member

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    The official claims figures for the ETO are:

    USAAF heavy bombers (B-17s and B-24s): 6,098

    Most sources, especially the USAAF, admitted that these figures were far, far too high. Whilst fighter claims might be 2 or 3 times actual losses, bomber claims often exceeded 10 times actual losses.

    USAAF fighters in the air: 7,422
    USAAF fighters on the ground: 6,796 (note that 3,703 of the ground kills come in the month of April 1945, as airfields were being abandoned)

    RAF fighters in the air: 10,731 (I believe the Spitfire accounts for about 6,800 of those)
     
  17. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    I think it was the P-51D.
     
  18. Twitch

    Twitch Member

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    The P-51 of all models accounted for 4,950 air kills and 4,131 on the ground. I found 3,916 for All P-47s in all theaters. I got the P-38 somewhere over 2,500 in the ETO and over 5,700 in the PTO.
     
  19. lesofprimus

    lesofprimus Active Member

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    And the bottom line is that none of those numbers are accurate, any of the numbers in this entire thread, and they will never truly be known... It all guesstimating and overclaiming....

    But a reasonable assumption is that the P-51 series of aircraft destroyed the most aircraft in the ETO, so I will agree witht he majority here...
     
  20. Jabberwocky

    Jabberwocky Active Member

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    I've always wondered about that 5000 + kills figure for the P-38 against the Japanese, so I did a little digging.

    According to the Air Force Historical Research Agency all USAAF fighters (P-38, P-39, P-40 and maybe P-26 in the Phillipenes?) claimed a total of 5120 kills by fighters, against the Japanese. Of these claims, 4050 were aerial and the rest were recorded as straffing victories.

    Fighter kills by theatre:

    Far East Air Forces: 3008 total, of which 2709 were in the air
    China-Burma-India: 1467 total, of which 857 were in the air
    Pacific Ocean Area: 501 total, of which 370 were in the air
    20th Airforce: 97 total, of which 80 were in the air
    Alaskan theatre: 47 kills total, of which 34 were in the air

    So, it seems to me that the commonly sighted number of cliams by P-38s would be overstated somewhat. Undoubtdly the P-38 was the best USAAF fighter in the theatre against Japan, but I dont think it scored more than 4500 kills in the Pacific.
     
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