The most secret weapon of the Luftwaffe

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by pampa14, Nov 7, 2015.

  1. pampa14

    pampa14 Active Member

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    I share with you a lot of pictures, some of them previously unreleased, rare and never before seen by me, referring to one of the secret weapons of the Luftwaffe. We are talking about the Horten flying wing. Perhaps, the aircraft of the Second World War the most ahead of its time than any other, went into production too late to be put into service. Do you think if he had gone into production would have changed the course of the war and history? Visit the link below and give us your opinion about it.


    Aviação em Floripa: A mais secreta arma da Luftwaffe


    Best Regards.
     
  2. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    #2 fastmongrel, Nov 7, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2015
    Theres a reason why virtually every single aircraft flying today is not a Flying Wing. The more the Germans played with VunderVeapons the quicker the inevitable defeat the LW needed more Me262 and Ar234s not an aircraft that after years of development and hundreds of test flights might have been made into a useful combat aircraft.
     
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  3. BiffF15

    BiffF15 Well-Known Member

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    It's the first WW2 aircraft I have seen with an instrument panel the is close to a "modern" or normal layout. Very cool.
     
  4. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    I disagree. There are a multitude of WWII era wonder weapons which worked just fine. For instance:
    Proximity fuze.
    HE mine shell.
    MG42 machinegun.
    Bounding anti personnel mine.
    Panzerfaust.
    7.5cm/48, 7.5cm/70 and 8.8cm/56 armored vehicle cannon.
    Atomic bomb.
    120mm infantry mortar.
    Napalm.
    P-51 long range escort fighter.
    Mosquito pathfinder aircraft.
    Radar.
    Landing Ship Dock (which 1930s Japan called a landing craft carrier).

    The hard part involves determining which design proposals have a chance for success and which are simply pipe dreams.
     
  5. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    What does the M-60 offer that the MG-42 doesn't?
    Would the US have been better off adopting the MG-42?

    Also, it seems many post-war versions reduced the rate of fire.
    Does this mean the initial rate of fire was a mistake?
     
  6. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Also bear in mind that the Germans were pioneering high-speed aircraft designs. The Allied jet projects all incorporated a form of straight wing while the later German designs (post He280, Me262) were incorporating a swept design: Me262 HGIII, Me P.1101, Ta183, etc.

    Also, Dr. Lippisch's delta wing design (DFS194, Me163) had an enormous influence on aircraft design post-war.
     
  7. pbehn

    pbehn Well-Known Member

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    I always think that a flying wing is a great idea but to be useful today it must be as big as a jumbo jet flying sideways, something like two times the wingspan of an A380.
     
  8. Gixxerman

    Gixxerman Member

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    No offence but I just don't get this.
    It was a flying wing, that was not unique even in 1944/45.
    It had 2 jet engines, again not unique at this stage.

    It never flew in production form ( of the 3 prototypes only 2 flew, 1 was a glider the other crashed killed its pilot on its 3rd flight).
    That's about as 'prototype as it gets so far off knowing anything much about what it could do as to make, in my opinion, so much of the various comment about it more than a little faintly absurd.

    Anyone who has seen the plane can see it's a tubular steel frame with plywood covering, again not exactly cutting-edge advanced.

    Interesting but hardly justifying the 'coulda-woulda'shoulda' claims many seem determined to make on its behalf....and lets be honest almost all derived because if you squint your eyes it has a shape a little bit like a B2 Stealth bomber

    ( all of which studiously ignores the thousands of hours super-computers spent designing a military FW which worked properly, the thousands of hours spent perfecting fly-by-wire systems which enable the B2 to be properly controlled, the vast difference in scale, the vast resources spent on true stealth etc etc).
     
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  9. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Northrup's B-2 did borrow from the lessons learned from their B-35 and B-49 projects. The B-2 even had the exact wingspan of the B-49: 172 feet (52.4m).

    Northrup, like the Horton brothers, were pioneers in flying wing technology...
     
  10. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    Later machine guns got slower for a reason. A slower rates of fire allows the shooter to see what his fire is hitting and adjust the aim before running out of ammunition.It isn't so important ona tripod or mounted weapon, but seems to be vital for a hand-held weapon.

    When I shot a Thompson, you could point it close and walk your impact point around your target in a figure eight easily.. It was one of the very slow-firing Thompsons. Something like Mac 10 is nothing but a room broom. You can't really hit anything specific with it. No so with a Thompson. Almost anyone can hit with it after a few tries.
     
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  11. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    a lot of the german MGs had a 2 stage trigger....pull one place for ~800 RPM and the other for ~1200 RPM. the latter was used when you had a narrow field of fire and a lot of targets filling it or you were about to get overrun....
     
  12. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    MG34 and early MG42 had two-position trigger (single shot and full auto, not slower rate of fire), deleted on later MG42.
     
  13. nuuumannn

    nuuumannn Well-Known Member

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    I'm with Gixxerman about this. There is a lot of hype about this aircraft and most of it has surfaced after the B-2 entered service. There was certainly information about the aircraft before the B-2 made the flying wing fashionable again, but before it, there were no claims about it being the big-secret-the-Luftwaffe-had-that-could-have-won-the-war-had-this-or-that-not-happened yada yada. The whole stealth angle was never examined before the B-2 either, so I think the media is guilty of painting a picture of something that wasn't really there - now there's a first.

    The Wonder Weapon tag is a bit of a misnomer for this aircraft, to be honest. The flying wing and jet combination was an abstract approach to what was being worked on - around the world, not just in Germany - at the time. The fact was, aircraft like the Me 262, which to all intents and purposes was a conventional fighter produced as a result of an evolutionary process, was the Luftwaffe's front line fighter at the end of the war was definitely what the Germans had their hopes on (the Me 262's swept wings were as a result of altering the aircraft's centre of gravity/lift, not specifically to improve its speed performance). The Horten was not exactly given a high priority until near the very end when the Germans were desperate for quick solutions - look at the Natter and Me 163. Even the Germans didn't place that much priority on it, so why is the modern media? Placing expectations that didn't exist at the time on something that looks the part, I reckon.
     
  14. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    There is a certain "romance" to the mysterious machines that Germany was developing. Yes, the Ho.IX was not unique as far as flying wings go and of course, there were other jet powered aircraft at the time. However, the Ho.IX was the first jet powered wing, which did make it unique.

    As time passes, the mystique grows...much like World War I was in the spotlight of "romanticism" 40 - 50 years afterward, stirred by the media and such. I recall the fascination they had with the Fokker Dr.I and Zepplins, building them up to legendary status even though the Zepplins were easy kills and the D.VII was a far superior aircraft.

    So now, WWI has faded into the background and WWII draws the crowds...
     
  15. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    And hyped by authors/writers/TV presenters with little knowledge, into 'secret weapons' placed into 'what if' scenarios, which surely should have made a difference ...... if given a further ten years development, and un-limited resources of man-power, finance, materials, fuel and time !
    Heck - was that a 'Luftwaffe '46' flying saucer which just flew past my window ..............
     
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  16. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    Some of the Luft 46 stuff makes me laugh; some looks interesting.

    NONE of it had a prayer of getting built and flown ... except maybe the Ta 182. It probably COULD have been built and flown, but wasn't. So it's pie in the sky.
     
  17. Milosh

    Milosh Well-Known Member

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    Finger problems again Greg > Ta182? :twisted:

    .... but some of the ideas can be found in a/c post war.
     
  18. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    #18 GrauGeist, Nov 9, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2015
    Actually, the Ta183 was built postwar as the Brazilian Pulqui II and one of the 4 even saw combat.

    If you look at the Ta183 concepts, the most popular design was V1 that people associate with the Ta183. However, after extensive testing and modifications, it was V3 that was decided to produce, but time ran out before anything came of it.

    The Russians did get the plans, and it's been said they built and flew it...and apparently, they borrowed several design features although Russian historian Yefim Gordon says that the MiG-15 was completely a native design with no western influence...

    This is the Brazilian "Ta183" AKA the Pulqui:

    Pulqui_II.jpg

    Hmmm...sure looks familiar, doesn't it? :lol:
     
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  19. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    thanks for posting pampa and very interesting

    As far as the new tech question is concerned, new technology is good to have but only of value if you are in a position to exploit it AND your availabilities don't suffer. That's where the Germans fell down many times. much of their technology was well ahead in terms of capability, but that very advantage could be costly and therefore limit the numbers.

    The most successful German designs are those examples where attention to "producability" was part of the equation, like the MP38 and the MG 42. where they didn't worry about production costs and production times, their force effectiveness unquestionably suffered, such as with the Tiger tank, and dare I say it, the Me 262.

    Speer criticised the impracticality of many German designs repeatedly and he has good reason to do so. In the case of AFV production for example, a smaller, cheaper mobile ATG was what they needed, not a tank that took about three times as many man hours to produce as their counterparts......
     
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  20. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    I thought the Pulqui was Argentinian
     
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