The Cheapest Fighter of WW2?

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by KimJongIl, Oct 19, 2007.

  1. KimJongIl

    KimJongIl New Member

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    hi,guys ,i found these data in Warren Bodie's P-38 book

    P-38 B-17 B-25 P-47
    1938 163000 - - -
    39-41 134280 301221 180031 113246
    1942 120407 258949 153396 105594
    1943 105567 204270 151894 104258
    1944 97147 204270 142194 85578
    1945 95150 187742 116752 83001

    anyone knows the price of mustang / spitfire /me-109 /fw-190?

    thanks
     
  2. Civettone

    Civettone Active Member

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    First, the price doesn't mean much in a war economy.
    Second, it's difficult to compare these prices between different countries.
    Third, the Spitfire, Bf 109 and Yak-9 were easier to produce, and cheaper.

    Kris
     
  3. Hunter368

    Hunter368 Active Member

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    I think number of man hours needed to make per plane would be a more accurate measure.
     
  4. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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  5. Kurfürst

    Kurfürst Banned

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    Indeed. Apart from different wages paid, you also have different profit rates 'swallowed' by the goverment. I guess US firms worked with huge profits (and I also guess some senators grew very rich during the same period - pure coincidence of course), but in other countries there were differring levels of state control over the industry, or even some sub-contractors were totally state-owned (Castle Bromwich, Wiener Neustadt I believe). Or, in the USSR, it was entirely state-owned and controlled, working by entirely different mechanism of socialsm.

    IIRC the Bf 109E costed some 55 000 or so RM -? I`ve got the figures somwhere..? Singe unit price is of course hugely depends on the size of production run, of course (development, setting up a production line for 100 aircraft of course makes a single aircraft very expensive).
     
  6. AL Schlageter

    AL Schlageter Banned

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    In Germany, there was much use of 'slave' type labor which would reduce the cost. Messerschmitt was sent to prison for 2 years for using 'slave'.

    Kim, look at this link for more American a/c costs.
    Army Air Forces Statistical Digest - World War II Table 82
     
  7. JoeB

    JoeB Member

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    I agree that only comparisons *within* countries in WWII are really meaningful. It would still be interesting to see comparisons like US v UK though, or any solid data outside the US.

    On profits, maybe it gets too political, but the assumption that profits are an addition to the cost of something you can just make go away by govt control seems to have been fairly definitively proven wrong in the course of the 20th century. The profit motive creates efficiency, that's the missing piece. Assuming there's some competitive pressure of course. And pure patriotism is worth something in a wartime situation. For example the Soviet economic system proved ultimately unworkable, but patriotism (and fear) partly compensated that, especially in the crisis of WWII.

    On the US planes, the costs came down a lot per those USAAF figures, and that's typical of US weapons (small arms, tanks similarly), so it doesn't seem the companies were actually in a position to set any price they liked regardless of their costs; as costs came down with volume and learning curve, so did prices.

    Joe
     
  8. Njaco

    Njaco The Pop-Tart Whisperer
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    I don't know, I keep having visions of the "Tucker" movie in my head when it comes to cost and the government.

    Of course theres always the troubles Howard Hughes and Brewster had during the war, so you may be right.
     
  9. Soundbreaker Welch?

    Soundbreaker Welch? Active Member

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    If I saw those first figures correctly, interestingly enough the prices for those US fighters keeps going down, instead of up.
     
  10. Civettone

    Civettone Active Member

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    Yeah that's true. In fact I haven't seen a single aircraft or tank costing more as time went on.

    Kris
     
  11. Matt308

    Matt308 Glock Perfection
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    I say Hunter hit it on the head. Assuming labor costs are equal in war time provides some measure of making a meaningful comparison.
     
  12. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    I'm not 100% sure on this but I think during WW2 the War Dept. did set some price control on certain weapons systems. They did pay for R&D costs on certain systems and did offer schedule incentives. I also believe that if the contractor was allowed to cut costs those savings were retained.
     
  13. mkloby

    mkloby Active Member

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    Trying to explain that to socialists is almost impossible. There is a whole century worth of good solid proof - yet they still don't believe it.
     
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