What Criteria should be used for determining the best land based piston fighter

Discussion in 'Old Threads' started by Lighthunmust, May 18, 2011.

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  1. Lighthunmust

    Lighthunmust Banned

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    #1 Lighthunmust, May 18, 2011
    Last edited: May 29, 2011
    First off if the Mods feel the way I am presenting this topic is not sufficiently new in approach I will understand it being closed.

    This is purely a hypothetical situation in that what is being chosen would be what you would choose if you had to begin fighting WW2 again on September 1, 1939 with any of the aircraft available at any time during 1939-45 (DOES NOT NEED TO BE IN PRODUCTION BEGINNING IN 1939). The Fighter you choose would be the one to arm your air force if you could choose only one aircraft type and it must be adequate for all missions and superior in some missions.

    Listed below in no particular order of priority are my suggestions for what must be considered in determining the best piston engined land based fighter aircraft for WW2. Please feel free to post any additional criteria you believe is required. When sufficient criteria is agreed upon I would like members to determine the aircraft they believe to be the best match.

    1. It must be possible to produce in sufficient numbers.

    2. Its flight characteristics must be benevolent enough to allow inexperienced pilots to gain experience without frequently making fatal mistakes.

    3. Its flight characteristics must be benevolent enough to allow experienced pilots who are disabled from fatigue or wounds to fly without making fatal mistakes.

    4. It must have average or better than average ease of maintenance.

    5. It must have average or better than average comfort to reduce pilot fatigue.

    6. It must have average or better than average ability to continue to fight and fly after receiving battle damage.

    7. It must have average or better than average primary armament.

    8. It must have average or better than average ability to be modified to use secondary armaments.

    9. It must have average or better than average ability to be modified to fight at night.

    10. It must have the speed, maneuverability, armament, and resistance to catastrophic damage to allow a pilot with skill equal to his opponents to have an equal or superior chance to survive in a one on one fight by victory or retreat.

    ADDITIONAL NOTES:

    SEE POST #100 FOR ADDITIONAL CRITERIA POSTED IN THIS THREAD BY MEMBERS

    SEE POST #100 FOR FIGHTERS SUGGESTED OR CHOSEN BY MEMBERS

    AS OF POST #100 THE MOST SIGNIFICANT POST IS #72 BY SHORTROUND6 AND IS AN EXCELLENT EXAMPLE OF REPLYING TO THIS THREAD

    READ POST #161
     
  2. krieghund

    krieghund Member

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    Need to define the operational requirement, Bomber escort, Counter Air, Fast Ass CAS or interceptor, etc. These will also have a bearing on the final outcome of the design.
     
  3. drgondog

    drgondog Well-Known Member

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    It must consistently prevail in fighter versus fighter contest assuming equal pilot skill. That is the fundamental metric.
     
  4. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    Dont think such a plane existed in WWII not sure if it has ever existed a warplane in fact any plane is a series of compromises. The least worst on balance is about as good as it gets.
     
  5. Readie

    Readie Well-Known Member

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    May I venture to suggest the Hawker Hurricane?
    It hits a lot of the points.
    Cheers
    John
     
  6. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    Agree anything else is a bonus.
     
  7. Lighthunmust

    Lighthunmust Banned

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    This criteria is included with the statement "The Fighter you choose would be the one to arm your air force if you could choose only one aircraft type and it must be adequate for all missions and superior in some missions."
     
  8. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    Out of all piston-engined planes that were produced from Sept 1st '1939 - 1945, we can choose either Spitfire or Bf-109. So I'd choose Spitfire.
     
  9. Lighthunmust

    Lighthunmust Banned

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    #9 Lighthunmust, May 18, 2011
    Last edited: May 18, 2011
    It will never get the opportunity to "prevail" unless the other listed criteria are consistently met over the course of many engagements and various missions. Remember the criteria is to decide how could prevail consistently.

    Really, the Hurricane? Of the criteria listed it is equal or superior to a Spitfire, Mustang, FW190, Lagg, Macchi, etc., etc. Why?

    See reply to original quote.

    I think you may want to give this a little more analysis. Bf109 losses due to pilot error were so extremely high due to its landing gear that alone may be reason for elimination, amongst other reasons. More 109s made than anything else and still not enough. Spitfire on the other hand is meets average or better than average in many criteria, but may be below average in others that are of equal or at least significant value.

    Some of you made quick choices. Using the ten criteria I listed and the specified need to perform all missions, please explain your choices. And again I ask that you add other criteria you think is important, but not something that is a part of what has been listed or a statement of the ultimate mission to consistently prevail. Remember it must perform all missions: fighterbomber, armed photo recce, intercept, escort, nightfighter, etc.

    Yes, "the least worst on balance" may be "about as good as it gets" and that is what I am asking. I think there is an aircraft that may be better than all the rest using the criteria listed. Lets determine what it is. Any ideas?
     
  10. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    ??
    Should I/we contemplate Hawker Sea Fury (the one with Centaurus, from 1945) for 1939?
     
  11. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    A critical issue for everyone except the USA. Germany was able to produce 30,000 Me-109s and 20,000 Fw-190s because both aircraft were relatively inexpensive.
     
  12. Lighthunmust

    Lighthunmust Banned

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    #12 Lighthunmust, May 18, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: May 18, 2011
    It is not a land based fighter but certainly could be used as one. Why not? Apply the criteria and compare it to something comparable, like a P-47N or F8F or FW190D or Late mark Spitfire or P-51H. My first impression is that it is less than average due to maintenance issues.

    I think this issue is somewhat covered by "1. It must be possible to produce in sufficient numbers." Production cost is certainly important, and may be part of the reason for the production of the Mustang since it was cheaper than the 38 and 47. However, in a countries struggle for life or death cost can be largely negated by deficit spending and sacrifice of other budgeted items. Part of the reason for 30,000 109s is due to not have much else as good to produce.
     
  13. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    The Fury was just an example of a fighter from 1945 contemplated in 1939 - no point in doing that. I'll apply that for P-47N, Bearcat the rest: no point.
    Now, if you want a discussion about the plane that was in production from Sept 1939, let me/us know.
     
  14. Lighthunmust

    Lighthunmust Banned

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    The original posting states"This is purely a hypothetical situation in that what is being chosen would be what you would choose if you had to begin fighting WW2 again on September 1, 1939 with any of the aircraft available at any time during 1939-45. Being in production on 9-1-39 is not necessary. Please re-read the original posting.
     
  15. Shortround6

    Shortround6 Well-Known Member

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    given the advance in technology in those 6 years it is a bit like asking which computer or cell phone do you want that was available from 2005 to 2011.
    I doubt very much if anybody is going to take the 2005 models.
     
  16. Lighthunmust

    Lighthunmust Banned

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    I am glad that someone other than me stated the obvious. So what 1945 version of a piston fighter aircraft would you choose and why is it better than its contemporaries? I know which one I think is the right answer, but I would like to hear some answers and explanations from other members. I don't want to bias responses and I don't want emotion based dismissals of my choice.
     
  17. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    Martin Baker MB 5 excellent performance, range, armament, with a very reliable engine and superb pilot view. It was designed to be easily built using simple jigs and was to be built in sections allowing easy transport and damage repair.

    Martin-Baker MB 5 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    However it was a cavalry sabre, beautiful and efficent but no longer needed on the battlefield.
     
  18. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    I disagree.

    Weapon cost is a reflection of material requirements and labor requirements. Low cost means you use less of these scarce resources.
     
  19. Readie

    Readie Well-Known Member

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  20. Shortround6

    Shortround6 Well-Known Member

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    I don't know, I kind of like the idea of dozens of squadrons of Hawker Tempest IIs blasting hapless He 111s out of the sky in the BoB in the summer of 1940. :)
     
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