Messerschmitt Me163

Discussion in 'Aircraft Pictures' started by Snautzer01, Dec 16, 2014.

  1. Snautzer01

    Snautzer01 Well-Known Member

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    #1 Snautzer01, Dec 16, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2016
    I have never seen before pic 1 and 3 in any publication.

    me163_11_Wright Field_T-2-500.JPG me163_12_Wright Field_T-2-500.JPG me163_13_Wright Field_T-2-500.JPG
     
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  2. Wurger

    Wurger Siggy Master
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  3. stan reid

    stan reid Member

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    Yes, interesting. I think I recall that the Brits test flew one but didn't know about us. Surprised that it still has the German markings.
     
  4. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    Great shots.
     
  5. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    Oddly enough I've seen 1 and 3 somewhere, but don't recall number 2 :) I've never seen them in this resolution so thanks for posting them.

    There were no powered flights. The Me 163 was towed behind a B-29 and released at altitude for gliding flight. There were many problems and even with Lippisch present nobody seems to have known how all the systems worked, particularly the undercarriage.

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  6. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    These photos were taken during the tests at Muroc during spring of 1946...

    I used to have a few photos somewhere that showed both the tow cable and a communications cable attached.
     
  7. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    Had they replaced the wings by then? I can't remember.

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  8. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    did they remove the engine and replace it with ballist? or did they have enough of those engines laying around risking it in a crash didnt worry them?
     
  9. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Don't know about the 2nd photo, but the first and third photo were taken at Edwards (Muroc). You could see the mountains in the background, especially in the 3rd picture.

    Found this info from another fourm...

    "Post-War research was carried out by the USA
    Britain, France and the USSR.
    United States: tested in 1946 towed by B-29 for unpowered flight. Powered test were planned, but not carried out due to the delamination of the 163s wings.
    Aircraft was stored until 1954 and later trasferred to the Smithsonian, were it is on display today.

    Britain: Tested the Me 163 in unpowered and
    powered flight with the assistance of German technicians. The Me 163 Reached 32,000ft in 2 1/2 minutes what a ride!...

    France: Tested in unpowered flight its unknown if any powered flights were carried out.

    USSR: The Russians captured a number of 163s
    at the Junkers plant plus some trainer models
    After the war, unpowered tests were conducted its unknown if any powered test took place.
    The supply of T-Stoff and C-Stoff were limited, and if the fuel was available it wasn't enough to use for testing, the fuel was unstable and dangerous, this was a problem all the Allies faced.

    Delamination:
    Splitting, pealing of layers of the Me 163s wooden wings, this would make the aircraft
    dangerous to fly."


    Me 163 Komet Jet Fighter | World War II Database

    Also thought this was interesting as we have discussed the Komet's combat record on many occasions..

    2 Oct 1941 The third Messerschmitt Me 163A rocket-powered prototype aircraft, piloted by Heini Dittmar, achieved an unofficial world speed record of 623.85 mph.

    13 May 1944 Major Wolfgang Späte, in a Me 163 jet aircraft launched from Bad Zwischenahn in northern Germany, pursued two USAAF P-47 fighters. Mechanical problems with the aircraft cause Späte to eventually lose contact with the US fighters.

    29 Jul 1944 A Me 163 jet fighter attempted to disrupt a B-17 raid on Mersburg, Germany but was instead pursued by Captain Arthur Jeffrey in a P-38 fighter. Jeffrey chased the Me 163 jet fighter to a very low altitude and confidently reported a victory, but post war records indicated that there was no Me 163 lost on this particular date.

    7 Oct 1944 1st Lieutenant Elmer Taylor and 1st Lieutenant Willard Erfkamp of USAAF 364th Fighter Group, flying P-51 fighters, together shot down the German Me 163 rocket fighter piloted by Husser; Husser would survive the subsequent crash landing.

    2 Nov 1944 About 12 Me 163 rocket fighters of German Jagdgeschwader 400 fighter wing intercepted a group of US bombers escorted by P-51 fighters east of Leipzig, Germany. The Germans shot down two bombers, while the American fighters shot down four Me 163 rocket fighters; the four German pilots shot down were Oberfeldwebel Horst Rolly, Oberfeldwebel Herbert Straznicky, Oberfeldwebel Gunther Andreas, and Jacob Bollenrath (rank unknown). Bollenrath's fighter would be the final Me 163 downing by a P-51 fighter.
     
  10. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    From what I understand, is that only glide tests was conducted. Dr. Lippisch discovered the delamination in the wings, so they were replaced by wings from the Me163 airframe of FE495 (which was thought to have been scrapped at Wright Field in 1950) and cancelled the planned power tests.

    There were a number of problems during the testing, which largely revolved around the landing skid/dolly arrangement. I recall reading that the controls were also troublesome. If that wasn't bad enough, test pilot, Maj. Lundquist, USAAF, had a heck of a time keeping the Komet under control while in tow, due to the wash from the B-29.

    Here's an original color photo of it on display at Wright Field during the victory display in 1946

    Me163A_191301_Wright-Field1946_victory-display_003920015.jpg
     
  11. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    There were several airframes available, but the testing of T-2-500 was done with it's engine intact (it was planned to do powered flight tests, but these were cancelled), but the airframe was lightened by removing non-essential items, keeping in mind the CoG needs.

    If you look at the first photos posted, you'll see that the pilot's armored glass is removed but in the Victory display photo I posted, it was still in place.
     
  12. Snautzer01

    Snautzer01 Well-Known Member

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    I wonder why the USAF would lightened the aircraft. I was supposed to glide back to base after firing the rocket. Full combat load minus ammo and fuel.
     
  13. Capt. Vick

    Capt. Vick Well-Known Member

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    Oh man, look at that Ju 290 in the background. If only...
     
  14. Snautzer01

    Snautzer01 Well-Known Member

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    #14 Snautzer01, Dec 17, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2016
    me163_14_Wright Field_T-2-500.JPG
     
  15. evangilder

    evangilder "Shooter"
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    Interesting. Glad I read through the whole thread, as I was going to say it couldn't be at WPAFB with the mountains in the background. I am surprised they left the swastika on the aircraft, but I guess by 1946 it didn't really matter.
     
  16. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    I was thinking the exact same thing Jim!
     
  17. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    I have a few more color shots of the '46 Victory display at Wright Field, if you guys want to see them...
     
  18. CORSNING

    CORSNING Active Member

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    Color shots? Let 'm rip GrauGeist. Please.

    Jeff
     
  19. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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  20. Gnomey

    Gnomey World Travelling Doctor
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    Nice shots! Thanks for sharing.
     
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