Winter operations of the Luftwaffe

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by pampa14, Apr 3, 2016.

  1. pampa14

    pampa14 Active Member

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    I share with you this amazing, impressive and interesting collection of photos showing the various types of winter camouflage applied in Luftwaffe aircraft during World War II, especially in the Theater of Operations of the Russian front. Visiting the link below you will find a lot of pictures, some rare and colorful. Some of them I did not know and had never seen. No doubt an excellent source of research and references.


    Aviação em Floripa: Camuflagens de Inverno da Luftwaffe


    Best Regards!
     
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  2. airminded88

    airminded88 Member

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    Cool pictures! :thumbright:
    Two things come to mind: the sheer strenght of those guys on both side to operate under such murderous conditions and the LW camouflage schemes which were pretty cutting edge in every theater they operated.
     
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  3. BiffF15

    BiffF15 Well-Known Member

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    Interesting how many Me-109s had their gear doors removed!
     
  4. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    They occassionaly removed the gear covers on the Fw190, too. It seems that the snow would pack in there and cause problems.

    During muddy spring on the eastern front, you'll also see photos of the Ju87's spatz being removed in photos, too.
     
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  5. michaelmaltby

    michaelmaltby Well-Known Member

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    .... interesting thermal 'muff' on the Me-109 tail surfaces
     
  6. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    #6 stona, Apr 4, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2016
    That is Hans Philipp's Bf 109 F. The tail/empennage is garlanded as part of the ceremony to celebrate his 100th victory.
    Cheers
    Steve
    Edited to remove wrong dates.
     
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  7. Wayne Little

    Wayne Little Well-Known Member

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    some great shots!
     
  8. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    Here's a shot of the fin and rudder of Philipp's Bf 109, taken a little earlier and showing 50 + 40 (90) 'abschussbalken.'

    [​IMG]

    I removed the date above because Philipp's 100th claim wasn't confirmed until August 1942 and he had several claims turned down in the meantime. I can't say for sure when he and JG 54 reckoned he had 100 and applied the 'abschussbalken'. FWIW Ries and Obermaier give a March 1942 date for the photograph, but that doesn't seem correct. Philipp stayed in the East until April 1943 so....

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  9. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    and 1 Russian plane....lol
     
  10. MrMojok

    MrMojok New Member

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    I recently read a book about Stalingrad, and several times it was mentioned that the crews would start fires underneath the nose of the 109s to get things in there un-frozen, to the point where they could start up.

    Think about that for a moment.
     
  11. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    The Fw190s had the oil pumped through a circulating heater, otherwise the engines wouldn't turn at all
     
  12. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    in those temps 30w oil gets pretty thick..heck av fuel doesn't want to vaporize or evaporate very quickly either. they didn't have multi-viscosity blends like we do today.
     
  13. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Wasn't just the eastern front, either...U.S. (and Japanese) aircrews in Alaska operated under similar conditions
     
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  14. Shortround6

    Shortround6 Well-Known Member

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    I once read a daily diary of an Italian fighter unit operating on the Russian front and the amount of work and broken engines and aircraft involved in putting up patrols 3 times a day and not even contacting the Russians that day. Broken oil pump drives leading to blown engines, frozen shock absorbers in the landing gear causing landing accidents. Crewmen ending up in the hospital with frost bite. The list was quite extensive.

    BTW some aircraft engines in WW II used 60w oil. A number of planes had piping to mix gasoline with the oil to thin it out before shutting down the engine. Running the engine for a number of minutes upon start up before even trying to move the plane would bring the temperature up to point where the gasoline would evaporate back out.
     
  15. Gixxerman

    Gixxerman Member

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    Interesting stuff, I've wondered about engine oils & the behaviour of fuels at very low temps (I have read the stories about setting fires under engines etc) but it does make me wonder about the behaviour of these oils/fuels/coolants at altitude where temps are similarly very low.
    Presumably because the machine had already warmed this was nothing like the same problem?
     
  16. Shortround6

    Shortround6 Well-Known Member

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    Once at temperature the oil performed normally, however the temperature was difficult to maintain through the entire system. Oil coolers sometimes did not have a uniform temperature across the entire unit/matrix in the sense that some areas were colder than others. Depending on conditions the outer areas could be a different temp than the inner areas (this was sometimes referred to as "coring").
    In the account of the Italian squadron they only had a few engine heating units and they needed two for each aircraft so the procedure was to start one airplane, move the heaters to a second aircraft and warm it up while the first plane sat at idle and then on to a 3rd aircraft and so on. It could take the heaters around 15-20 minutes ? ( I read it a long time ago) to get one engine started. It was possible to overheat the engine just sitting on the ground idling for 1/2 hour or more even in those temperatures so they would shut off the engine on plane #1 while working on plane #3 for example and then restart it before it cooled off too much. They ran into trouble because while the 1000-1100lb engine might take a while to cool off the oil tank, oil cooler and piping cooled off quicker and the oil thickened up in those parts of the system. Upon restarting they could either run into oil starvation as thick oil didn't flow to the oil pumps fast enough or they sometimes broke the oil pump drive shaft as the thick oil in the pump overloaded it. Depending on the oil pressure gauge construction (some oil pressure gauges ran a thin line/pipe of oil to the gauge itself) the gauges could read zero or a low pressure until the oil pipe and gauge warmed up so the crew had no easy way of knowing if the pump had failed or not.
    In either case the result was a wrecked engine as the engine was running without fresh oil being supplied to the bearings.
    Hydraulic systems could also refuse to operate properly at low temperatures.
     
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  17. michaelmaltby

    michaelmaltby Well-Known Member

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    #17 michaelmaltby, Apr 6, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2016
    ".... aircrews in Alaska operated under similar conditions" 140304-F-IO108-001.JPG
     
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  18. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    yeah I know it was heavier...I was just thinking of the automotive grades I used to sell a lot of. I remember reading several different accounts from pilots and tankers. armor on the ground had the same issue. the cutting the thick oil with gas was frowned upon as there was a fear ignition would get past a cracked piston ring or in some other way ignite the vapor in the crankcase or sump. one account I read was a german pilot on the eastern front claiming they got the idea from captured Russian pilots who told them they mixed fuel with the oil. another account was that the oil was drained shortly after the flight and taken in where it was warmer or was warmed close to the fire and then put back into the plane or tank just prior to start up.
     
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  19. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    'Dilution' of the oil with fuel was a common procedure for starting many aero engines in very low temperatures and a system to enable this from the cockpit was installed.
    Cheers
    Steve
     
  20. Lefa

    Lefa Member

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