The Best Single Air-to-Air Weapon of the War?

Ad: This forum contains affiliate links to products on Amazon and eBay. More information in Terms and rules

You mean schrage musik lanc? That wasnt one gun, it was a collection of guns firing upwards...I mean one gun...
 
When he say " cal .50" I guess that he refer to 12,7x99mm mostly now as .50 BMG.

Good weapon indeed, in the dogfitgh, but a little weak against bombers.

I think the best all around weapon is the 20 mm cannon. I like the Hispano Mk-5 but the virus of germanophilia such common in the fannatics of WW2 aviation make my choice for the Mauser Mg-151/20.

Despite that there are weapons wich have more initial speed of the proyectile, nothing is as fast-firing and carry the large amount of high explosive in this caliber. I have only one criticism, with 40 kg,..it could be lighter.


mg151205zv.jpg
 
Look the 50MM cannon is the best all around wepon even though one round would set a zero from a highly advanced hunk of machineary into a Flaming highly advanced hunk of machineary the cannon round gave you that assurance.
 
CharlesBronson said:
When he say " cal .50" I guess that he refer to 12,7x99mm mostly now as .50 BMG.

Good weapon indeed, in the dogfitgh, but a little weak against bombers.

I think the best all around weapon is the 20 mm cannon. I like the Hispano Mk-5 but the virus of germanophilia such common in the fannatics of WW2 aviation make my choice for the Mauser Mg-151/20.

Despite that there are weapons wich have more initial speed of the proyectile, nothing is as fast-firing and carry the large amount of high explosive in this caliber. I have only one criticism, with 40 kg,..it could be lighter.

.50's did not carry explosives. There were three main types of ammo, the M1 Incendiary round, the M2 AP round, and the M8 API round. The M8 turned out to be the most effective. The .50 BMG had superior velocity to almost any WWII aircraft cannon (a few notable exceptions exist such as the MK103 and the Hispano) and superior ballistics performance because of its excellent shape. The Russian Brezin UBK 12.7mm was actually a better gun, but the ammo was inferior (no incendiary metal types).

For fighter vs. fighter combat there was little advantage to the 20 mm over the .50, especially against the more typical fighters like the Bf-109 or any Japanese fighter. Against the more robust American fighters (and the Tempest/Typhoon), 20mm may have been more useful.

In general I have two favorites for WWII, the MK. V Hispano and the B20 20mm cannons. The Hispano was powerful, but heavy and required aircraft structure to support it (it was not really a complete gun in this respect). It was really too big a gun for the Spitfire. The B20 was weaker but fired faster and was much lighter, two could be mounted for every Hispano carried.

The MG151/20 had lousy ballistics and relied entierly on the mine rounds to deliver kills. I really think both the Hispano V and the B20 were better guns. The MG151/20 mine rounds were really not large enough to kill their bomber targets effectively and the poor ballistics made them inferior to the Hispano against fighters. The B20's weight and high RoF made it nearly ideal against fighter targets, and because of the light weight more could be mounted making it effective against bombers too.

=S=

Lunatic
 
the lancaster kicks ass said:
1) it could well be only one gun...........
2) it is a gunnery system, to me, it counts.............

Yeah but it could be any gun...it doesnt count...if i were to create a thred entitled "best weapon setup" maybe so...
 
Lunatic.

I have the chance of shot some .50 in the local gun range so I now that already.

If you want good armor piercing capabilities sure, there is better guns than Mauser, but the objetive of cannon is deliver explosive round and in this bussines the MG-151 was excellent. The blast effect seems to be more vicius for the plane estructure than put holes on It. Especially in the less robust or with wooden parts aircraft like some russian figthers.

Still it was feeded with some AP like :

APHE

1201fv.jpg



API-Ph: the best of all AP round for the Mauser, his incendiary mixture was parts of withe and red Phosphore that have a very explosive effect when it can reach self sealing tanks.

phospore8lb.jpg


API- E Filled with a substance called "Elektronthermite" that can burn even underwater, mostly used for twin engined bombers in the anti-shipping role.

electron7xf.jpg
 
Because it not a type of weapon, its too generic. It could be comprised of 20 or 30mm, Im looking for the single type of gun...
 
CharlesBronson said:
Lunatic.

I have the chance of shot some .50 in the local gun range so I now that already.

If you want good armor piercing capabilities sure, there is better guns than Mauser, but the objetive of cannon is deliver explosive round and in this bussines the MG-151 was excellent. The blast effect seems to be more vicius for the plane estructure than put holes on It. Especially in the less robust or with wooden parts aircraft like some russian figthers.

I'm not saying "armor piercing capaibility", I'm saying the likelyhood of scoring hits with a weapon of poor ballistic quality is a huge issue for fighter-vs-fighter combat. The MG151/20 round takes 25% longer to reach 300 meters than the .50 BMG round. Furthermore, it has dropped below mach 1.5 (sea level) by 250 meters and gone subsonic by 550 meters, where the BMG round dropped below mach 1.5 at 900 meters. By 600 meters the .50 BMG round is traveling twice the speed of the MG151/20 mine round. It is harder to score with a round that requires more deflection. It is also harder to score with a round that "dies" quicker as it flies (i.e. decellerates more quickly), if you've ever done any skeet shooting you know this is very true.

Finally, velocity not only effects how hard the round hits, but also increases the probablity of a hit on a moving target because the time of intersection increases. If the target is in line with the stream of bullets for 1/10th of a second, a bullet traveling 74 meters has a much better chance of intersecting the target than one traveling only 48 meters (relative speeds of the two types at 300 meters).

Also, approximately 25% of German HE rounds were duds, and a signfiicant number that were not detonated either too early or too late to maximise effectiveness. Contact fuses tore large holes in the planes skins, which might or might not be crippling. Delayed fuses could pass through and through before detonating or could be deflected off armor plate. While the round can do tremendous damage, often they did not achieve their potential.

The Hispano round had most of the positive qualities of the BMG round (only slightly inferior ballistics) and with 3 times the impact damage and armor penetration and delivered 2/3rds the explosive effect of the German 20mm mine rounds. It was the best of both worlds.

CharlesBronson said:
Still it was feeded with some AP like :

APHE

API-Ph: the best of all AP round for the Mauser, his incendiary mixture was parts of withe and red Phosphore that have a very explosive effect when it can reach self sealing tanks.

API- E Filled with a substance called "Elektronthermite" that can burn even underwater, mostly used for twin engined bombers in the anti-shipping role.

German phosphorous rounds were not used that much for a variety of reasons. They were hard to store and dangerous to handle. Also, phosporous often blew away doing minimal incendiary damage, and it requires available oxygen to burn so it does not work well at altitude. The Japanese actually had better phospherous rounds than the Germans (but they were willing to fire unfused pectn HE rounds which could blow up in the gun, no one else was that crazy!).

German "Electron" was composed of a 50/50 mix of Alluminum and Magnesium and required a starter charge of some kind. It was unreliable to burn in most circumstances. Yes it can burn underwater but it does so by creating enough heat to seperate the H2 from the O, so it will not burn effectively at altitude.

The USA (and to a lesser degree Britain) had much better incendiary metal rounds. The USA utilized IM11, an alloy consisting of ~25% Aluminum + ~ 25% Magnesium + ~ 50% Barium Nitrate. Barium Nitrate is a very strong oxidizer. IM11 will spontanously ignite when sufficiently crushed (it becomes quite sensitive under the heat of firing and flight). Because it carries its own oxygen supply, it works equally well at any altitude, and when it ignites it does so uniformly resulting in a small explosion which spews 4000+ degree burning metal perpendicular to the axis of travel. Germany did not have the metallury technology to create such an alloy in anything but labratory quantities.

=S=

Lunatic
 
I believe 'historically speaking', the Hispano 20mm was the best all-rounder, closely followed by the Browning .50......between them, with the old .303, they won the War.......although one must have a healthy respect for the Luftwaffe's 30mm cannons, particuarly the 'Minen' high-explosive rounds they used.....
 

Attachments

  • raf_487__nz__sqn._-_on_the_hunt..._394.jpg
    raf_487__nz__sqn._-_on_the_hunt..._394.jpg
    16 KB · Views: 1,113
Heres a decent diagram from the B-29 gunnery manual concerning the ballistics of a 20mm v. a .50 BMG. It doesnt go into great detail but you get the idea!
 

Attachments

  • bullet_drop_171.jpeg
    bullet_drop_171.jpeg
    15.2 KB · Views: 1,126
DaveB.inVa said:
Heres a decent diagram from the B-29 gunnery manual concerning the ballistics of a 20mm v. a .50 BMG. It doesnt go into great detail but you get the idea!

That is a very crude diagram... it does not show any drop at all for the .50!

Also, it shows the .50 vs. the ANM2 20mm (the US Hispano II) which was fitted in the tail of some B-29's. Not all 20mm are the same, and the Hispano II is the best of the 20mm's for velocity and ballistic performance, almost a match for the .50 BMG.

The MG151/20 was no where near this good.

=S=

Lunatic
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Back