Was the Zerstorer concept really that flawed?

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by schwarzpanzer, Dec 14, 2006.

  1. schwarzpanzer

    schwarzpanzer Member

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    I was just wondering, if Me110's were used to soften up airfield defenses ahead of the bombers. You know, strafing aircraft, AA guns personell etc. Maybe having Me109's as high-alt top cover for dogfights.

    Then maybe a second wave of bomb-equipped 110's to soften the defenses further.

    Also, if they went ahead of the bomber group as escorts and met any attackers head-on and boomed and zoomed where possible, but not getting into dogfights.

    They could also have been used as pathfinders and torpedo bombers?

    I think it was silly that the best pilots were put in 110's though.

    I would probaly uparmour the 110's too (forget maneuverability:lol: ).

    One counter to this that I've heard before is that reliance on the 110 delayed development of the 109, especially drop-tank equipped Friedrichs.
     
  2. Erich

    Erich the old Sage
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    the a/c was a sitting duck against Allied and Soviet fighters. the best possible useage was in Reich defense as a bomber destroyer as the machine was an excellent weapons platform proved through all the experimentation it went through with the ZG's and NJG's. Again during daylight the a/c proved itself on a repeated basis as long as Allied fighters were not present.

    for me in all other categories it was too slow a puss to be effective, and even as a night fighter when put on day light ops against US heavy bomber formations the Bf 110G-4's had an extremely hard time pulling up with speed to catch the B-17 and B-24's, with heavy radar, cannon and even fitted with the 21cm rocket launchers as well ...... yikes, shoot me please !
     
  3. Twitch

    Twitch Member

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    I feel the 110 was best when gunned up against the bomber stream too. The night fighters did well also.
     
  4. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Against bombers and as a night fighter she was not a bad aircraft. I think the 110 was not a bad design was just used improperly atleast at first.
     
  5. Hunter368

    Hunter368 Active Member

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    Agreed. The only way it could of been used in the role "they" wanted to use it in was if it was produced 5 or so years before it was. Then Allied fighters would not been as good, bombers would of been slower.

    But I agree Chris it was used poorly in real life.
     
  6. twoeagles

    twoeagles Member

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    I would love to see some capable modeller kit-bash a 110, get rid of
    the bird cage canopy, go single seat with a streamlined bubble...Now that
    would shape up to be something lovely.
     
  7. Smokey

    Smokey Member

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    The FW 187 seems to have been so much better than the BF110 in almost every way. Does anyone know why it didn't go into service?


    [​IMG]

    Focke-Wulf Fw 187 Falke "Falcon"
     
  8. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    I think that you are being a little hard on the 110. When it was designed and enetered service it was a capable fighter. In the Battles up to the BOB it proved itself a number of times. Compared to the other fighters it faced in France it had firepower and speed, being faster than almost every fighter it flew against.
    As long as it stuck to avoiding a turning battle it could handle itself well. It came unstuck in the BOB when it faced the faster Spitfires and Hurricanes that had an improved performance due to the availability of 100 octane fuel compared to the 87 (I think) that they had to use in France. Hurricanes in France couldn't run from the 110 and a number were shot down when they ran out of ammunition.
    Clearly from the BOB onwards it was outclassed in daylight by almost all the fighters it faced.
     
  9. Smokey

    Smokey Member

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    When you look at the stats for the FW 187 the 110 does not compare well
     
  10. delcyros

    delcyros Well-Known Member

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    The Fw-187 actually was in Luftwaffe service up to late 1943 in Norway.
    After been used in the Industrieschutzstaffel in winter 40/41, the three pre production Fw-187A0 were send to Norway. It is not known whether or not they were involved in combat.
    The decision not to use the plane may partly belong to political issues and to the fact that the Me-110 was ahaed in development. A mass production of the -187 would cause significant delays. You know, not always do receive the technically impressive designs the attention they deserve.
     
  11. loomaluftwaffe

    loomaluftwaffe Active Member

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    and the dudes back at the RLM asked for a rear gun in the specification
     
  12. mkloby

    mkloby Active Member

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    What would I rather have in a dogfight - an 110 or a small SE figther... I'm going w/ the single engine. I'd take maneuverability over a speed increase any day.
     
  13. schwarzpanzer

    schwarzpanzer Member

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    I'm kinda thinking the other way. A long ranged, ground attack fighter, armed with a rear gunner that could boom and zoom and go head to head with a fighter if need be. Also it could be used as a nightfighter. It would need to have a lot of power and armour though. Kinda like a cross between a P38/Mosquito and Il-2, a WW2 A10 if you will. The FW was good, I know it was very sturdy and it would possibly be a better starting point. The thing is, how aerodynamic was it, compred to the 110? and how was it at low altitude?

    I think the FW190 F/G proved this concept later in the war?

    BTW Erich, what does a/c stand for?

    Also, how about replacing all bombers, Ju87 and He111 included, with the Ju88 - as it could fulfill both roles. I think standardisation was a trick Germany missed in the BoB.
     
  14. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    a/c stands for aircraft.

    The Fw-187 would have been a much better fighter than the 110 hands down. I think mostly it did not recieve its recognition and put into mass production for political reasons and because the factories were allready geared to the Bf-109 and the Bf-110.
     
  15. Gnomey

    Gnomey World Travelling Doctor
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    Yep, the "Falke" was a much better fighter than the BF-110. I always believed that it wasn't selected because Goering/Hitler didn't particular like Focke-wulf and much prefered Messerschmitt to the extent of taking the worse plane just because it was a Messerschmitt.
     
  16. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    Standard FIghters in France were Hurricanes lucky to make 300 mph, MS406 lucky to make 290 mph, Curtis Hawk 300 mph, Blocke and Dewoitine around 320.
    The Dewoitine was the largest threat but only available in small numbers. The 110 at 340 has a good advantage and as I said would be a fool to dogfight but keep its speed up. Its what they could and did do.

    After all, its only what the USA did to the Japanese with a similar speed advantage in the P40!!

    That said the point was that when it was designed and entered service it was better than most fighters and the equal to the rest.
     
  17. mkloby

    mkloby Active Member

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    D.520 i'm showing [email protected],030'
    P-40B [email protected],000'
    Bf 110C [email protected],965'
    Hurricane Mk I [email protected],000'
    Not exactly a hefty speed advantage. Especially when you factor in the fact that once a 110 climbed like a porker and could not regain potential energy easily once engaged.
     
  18. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    To be exact I have the following
    Me110c4 348mph
    Curtis Hawk 75A-3 311mph (The last ones delivered to France)
    D520 325mph
    Hurricane 1 325mph (but considerably less in France due to the fuel available where around 310 was the norm)
    MS406 290mph (its most numerous opponent)
    Obviously I have left out the PZL's, Fokker D21, Gladiators etc the 110 also faced, as they were clearly outclassed

    So I would defend the speed difference and point out that the P40 also climbed like a porker when faced with a Zero. Similar tactics would and did pay dividends for the 110 in the Battle for France where it was a formidible foe.
     
  19. mkloby

    mkloby Active Member

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    A couple knots is no big difference - that was my only point. It's short lived success was not due to it's SLIGHT speed advantage.
     
  20. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    I totally agree that when the single engined fighters caught up with the 110 then it came badly unstuck.

    What I have always wondered is how would the Whirlwind have managed in the BOB which it only just missed. With its speed and firepower would it have avoided the 109's and made it through to the bombers which would have been vulnerable to those 4 x 20. Or would the 109's have done to it what we did to the 110. We will never know
     
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