Stuka "myth"?

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by ralphwiggum, Mar 13, 2009.

  1. ralphwiggum

    ralphwiggum Member

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    From the books I've read over the decades, I've begun to wonder if the Stuka was as easy to shoot down as is so often claimed It seems that all you had to do (if there was no cover for them) was to blow on it it would
    be destroyed
    Would anyone like to share their own views?
    Thanks everyone
    Ralph Wiggum:whdat:
     
  2. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    My 2 cents:

    The B version lacked amor protection, so it was an easy meat. From D G versions did have substantial armor, but at that time allied fighters were equipped with cannons so it was again dangerous to be in Stuka.
     
  3. Wurger

    Wurger Siggy Master
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    I agree with this above.During the September Campaign in 1939 Polish P-11Cs armed with two MGs only could fight against the early Ju87s ssuccessfully.These equipped with four were much more effective.Unfortunately in that time four MGs weren't good enough any longer as armamant to shot down many of them fully. D.520s or MS 406s in France were much better fighter machines with better armament so no wonder French pilots could shot down Ju87s easier.Spitfire Mk.IA/B or Mk.IIA/B armed with eight MGs or two cannons and four MGs must have been something like flying AAA for Ju87s.
     
  4. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    All dive bombers are easy to shoot down. That's why they started switching to fighter-bombers like the Fw-190F and Typhoon later in the war.
     
  5. Negative Creep

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    It wasn't just the Stuka though; the Blenheim, Battle, Dauntless, He111, IL-2, B5N etc all suffered badly at the hands of fighters. I'd go as far to say that any unescorted bomber would be pretty easy pickings
     
  6. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Actually, the Dauntless was very capable of putting up a good fight. Many an attacking fighter pilot found out the hard way that a SBD could take brutal punishment and still give out some hurt.
     
  7. Njaco

    Njaco The Pop-Tart Whisperer
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    As with any inferior aircraft thrown into a lopsided battle, some Stuka crews were able to compensate for their lack of power and manuverability by grouping close together for mutual fire support when attacked and I've heard and read that sometimes they would pull the old "Brake then fire" routine. Dramatically loose power, let the attacker shoot ahead and either dive away or fire back. Some survived with these techinques.
     
  8. BombTaxi

    BombTaxi Active Member

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    The defensive armament of the Ju87 had a very limited arc of engagement too - an SBD gunner (for example) could cover a much wider area of sky than his counter part in the Stuka because of his semi-open position. I don't imagine it would be too hard for a fighter pilot to get a position against a Stuka that offered relatively low deflection while being outside the effective arc of the rear MG. End result will be one dead Stuka...
     
  9. HoHun

    HoHun Active Member

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    Hi Graugeist,

    >Actually, the Dauntless was very capable of putting up a good fight. Many an attacking fighter pilot found out the hard way that a SBD could take brutal punishment and still give out some hurt.

    Not the early SBD version without pilot armour ... only few saw combat, but they had to be withdrawn after suffering heavy losses.

    Regards,

    Henning (HoHun)
     
  10. HoHun

    HoHun Active Member

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    Hi Tomo,

    >The B version lacked amor protection, so it was an easy meat.

    Interesting ... I had the suspicion that this was the case, considering that Ju 87B shots from the Battle of Britain period show no armour backplate behind the pilot like it's evident in later photos of the Ju 87D, but I have been unable to prove conclusively that they were completely without armour.

    Do you have any good sources in this regard? Thanks in advance!

    Regards,

    Henning (HoHun)
     
  11. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    The Stuka was no different than any other dive bomber. With proper protection it was a very very good aircraft and dive bomber. If she was sent out alone though she was fodder.
     
  12. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    Hi Henning,

    So far two sources claim that "armor protection was increased" for -D series*. One is "Axis aircraft of WWII" by David Mondey, the other is notorious Wiki. The Wiki bases the part of the article that covers armor increase at the "Griehl 2001, p. 95."

    *meaning that the previous series did have armor, but evidently insufuicient; my mistake.
     
  13. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    A substantial number of air to air kills were achieved by Stuka pilots using the two 7.92mm forward firing machineguns. But it's still no substitute for an Me-109. Neither is the Dauntless a substitute for a F4F.
     
  14. slaterat

    slaterat Member

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    I have 2 very good sources for armour on the JU 87. " Knights of the Skies", by Michael C Fox , and " German Aircraft and Armament", a reprint of a WW II intelligence manual. I highly recommend both of these books if you are interested in the armour protection of WW II RAF and Luftwaffe aircraft.

    Both give the following protection for Ju 87 s

    Ju87b pilots seat 8mm , bulkhead for the rear gunner 8mm, coolant flaps 4mm, 2" bullet proof glass for the gunner

    the Ju 87 D is much more extensive , frontal 8mm armour and 2" glass, pilots seat 10 mm head and 4-8mm back(seat), Dorsal 5mm(in roof), lateral 6mm(cockpit sides), ventral 5mm (floor), rear bulkhead 8mm, coolant flaps 3.5mm


    Hohun, you are correct the BoB Ju 87b lacked the visable head armour plate. The pilot only gets a nice little amoured seat to curl up in.

    Slaterat
     
  15. HoHun

    HoHun Active Member

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    Hi Slaterat,

    >Hohun, you are correct the BoB Ju 87b lacked the visable head armour plate. The pilot only gets a nice little amoured seat to curl up in.

    Thanks a lot for the extra data! :) I'm not sure how much of the armour you list was already installed on the Ju 87B during the Battle-of-Britain though - I've seen forward shots from the rear gunner seat showing the much pilot's back with the crossed parachute straps, so it's not only the head armour that was missing.

    (These were propaganda shots taken in a dive, in case you wonder why someone would choose such an odd angle :)

    Regards,

    Henning (HoHun)
     
  16. fly boy

    fly boy Member

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    only thing in my mind that the stuka c and D would stop is the browing .303cal
     
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