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PWCG P-38 Lightning Strikes Co-op Campaign - Next Mission Sunday 24th January 2021 21:00 BST

PWCG P-38 Lightning Strikes Co-op Campaign


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Apologies to all that last night was a bust; obviously there were a number of technical issues, many of which that were no one persons fault,  but considering it took 40 minutes to get from server up

Heads up gentlemen: Thanks to postponement of last Sundays Campaign mission the next event day is now Tuesday October 27th 2020. Apologies for any disappointments at Sundays cancellation but than

Debrief 410th BG What started as a flight of four A20s soon became a flight of three as unfortunately Sheriff encountered a recurring technical issue that prevents him from moving beyond the hang

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On 11/3/2020 at 4:39 PM, DD_Fenrir said:

Not so Nick:

http://akvictoria.by/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/P-38-Lightning.pdf

Pages 92-97 cover emergency landings, single engine, forced landing and ditching.

 

Besides, you've done alright!

I stand corrected - now, I wonder who it was who told me that when I had an engine out the first time around...hmmm.

Great footage there Chris, you obviously have far too much time on your hands lol.

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This is gonna be tight as a ducks butt for me tomorrow, I really want to fly, but i have a work call at 8:30pm. Australians and time zone differences.
is it a definite 9pm GMT kick off for P38s? or is there any wiggle room for a few minutes either side?

I can have my pc up and running and TS and IL2 all booted and ready to go, so I can jump right in, as I work on another machine.
Just bloody typical this call is on Tuesday. its one of those calls that cant be avoided as its with the board of directors in the APAC region, and Im very much below their paygrade., so I would be taking the piss if I even attempted to re-arrange it.

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9 minutes ago, xTbonex said:

(...) is there any wiggle room for a few minutes either side? (...)

Don't think so, the other side has only AI - them do not wait around you know - them just go!

 

Oh wait... you mean ...

Well, not my place to state it, but if Fen knows in advance, and it's only a few minutes, it should be possible - though, can we please be a bit more specific re 'a few'? It's all rather vague at the moment ... 

Now what if, at 8:50pm, you tell 'm you gotta throw another shrimp on the barbie, they'll get it ... :shaunhb:

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8 minutes ago, FoolTrottel said:

Don't think so, the other side has only AI - them do not wait around you know - them just go!

 

Oh wait... you mean ...

Well, not my place to state it, but if Fen knows in advance, and it's only a few minutes, it should be possible - though, can we please be a bit more specific re 'a few'? It's all rather vague at the moment ... 

Now what if, at 8:50pm, you tell 'm you gotta throw another shrimp on the barbie, they'll get it ... :shaunhb:

LOL, those guys probably throw Lobsters on their barbie.

as for specific timing, thats going to be really hard to answer, as it depends on who is on the call and how gobby they are, Aussies do like the sound of their own voices in my experience. So I will state that if I cant be on by a certain time (you can decide what is reasonable) then I will have to wait at the station and wave a goodbye hanky, then hack the radio so I can listen in whilst quietly crying into my lap.

I think thats the fairest way to do it. otherwise you guys will be having me clean out the commodes and gerry cans with a straw and my tongue for a month as punishment.

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My guess and feel is that 15min. would be the max = But in the end, Fenrir should decide.

In the past we've had some startup / spawning issues, and well, time flies when you try and fix them.  And next, before you know it... we are running late. Mostly, when all goes well, we finish flying around 23:30 CET (which is my time zone) - then a of debrief ... before I know it, it's tomorrow already! For sure, I can postpone bed time, but I know there's also people going to work after the mission ends ... lol. 

 

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3 minutes ago, Painless said:

If a fifteen minute max delay would help you out then ask Fenrir for special dispensation Tbone. Maybe offer to buy his first 6 pints at Flying Legends next year ? 😉

Everybody has their price! :)

and it would be sods law that I joined late, and crashed into the control tower on takeoff. or get nailed by flak when just 3 feet over the front line. lol
No seriously, I will do my best to get on for the 9pm, but a bit of leaway may be helpful. I'd say 10 mins will be sufficient, and if Im not there just go without me.

I'll mop up the tears before you all get back from the mission. my VR may need a hairdryer though when it fills up with salty water.

 

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12 minutes ago, Crash said:

Could you take a "comfort break" select your plane and the take off when the meeting is over?

What about the brief? In this campaign, we would not want to hear "So, what are we doing?"  .... I called it a dead line, but basically the proper term is "cut off" ... 

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I can give you 10 min Tbone but that'll be a hard limit - one second after 21:09:59 and we're committed, with you or without.

I've given others a little grace if they've been polite enough to forewarn us, so I don't see why you shouldn't get the same.

 

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Perf is going to miss this mission

In theory you could clear cache and cold boot ahead of time.

Join server, select plane. Flight leader says air-ground or air-air loadout in chat. (100 gas 6x500 lb extra ammo) Touch nothing while loading - wait.  Spawn in. Leader types start engine in chat.

He can idle at the start point for a long time by just pulling ahead a bit and ultimately either take off and catch up or finish mission and at least get an abort under his belt.

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Debrief for the 5th November 1944:

402nd - Air Patrol of the front-lines between Gerolstein and Nettersheim.

485th - Attacking Rail Targets in Bonn

 

It would be difficult to have so productive a mission again today as we had on our previous outing, and so it bore out; that it is not to say that either squadron did not accomplish their missions, quite the opposite: both squadrons successfully completed their assigned tasks and then some, just that the level of over-achievement that has been in evidence with the groups activities of late was not quite so staggering today!

As is becoming common the 402nd took a brace of 1,000lbers each today in case the Luftwaffe refused to show, and for the patrol portion of their mission, our erstwhile foes were conspicuously absent in the air. As such Lt. Efftee led the formation down below cloud level to search out the Boche on the ground. However, the Lts. run of ill-luck seems to be continuing as he was struck by flak on his first pass and yet again he was forced to retire early taking his faithful wingman, 2nd Lt. Dennis Wingy with him. We are glad to report he made a safe landing at home base.

With 2nd Lt. Casey Baker taking over the lead further attacks were made on a lone gun position South of Nettersheim but this gun too found his mark, managing to hit Baker's aircraft as he pulled up from his bomb run. Despite a fuel tank leak, he decided to press on and with ground targets appearing to be meagre in their patrol sector, the formation set off towards the airfields East of Euskirchen in the hopes to find bounties as fruitful as the last outing.

On Odendorf field there was a fairly brisk reception from the flak guns, but several well coordinated runs silenced these. Expecting to now have free reign to work over the aircraft on the field, the 402nd boys were somewhat bemused to find nothing but trucks and fuel bowsers dotted across the grass. Moving to the larger airfield of Strassfeld to the North to see if there were any more lucrative targets, they found the same, with further AAA to boot. A 485th aircaft was working over the field and the 402nd assisted in shutting down the remaining flak but with no valuable targets really in evidence, and with 2nd Lt. Baker's fuel situation suddenly becoming somewhat critical, the 402nd departed the area - though not before 2nd Lt. Finknottle set the entire fuel dump ablaze.

With the remainder of Red section headed direct back to Florennes, Baker and his wingman, 2nd Lt. Fenton Rea set course for Bierset - it was looking all too unlikely that Baker would be able to return to home base, such was the rate at which his fuel was disappearing. Spotting a flak gun on the front line Rea asked permission to break off and attack, which was granted. Having attacked and destroyed the gun, Rea then attempted to rejoin his leader who was now several miles ahead and a good few thousand feet above, aiming to get above cloud and if necessary glide to a friendly field. Struggling to gain on his lead Rea watched Baker disappear into the cloud layer and was blindly following suit when through a chance gap in the clouds spotted two bogeys high above, and duly warned his leader. Sure enough these resolved into 2 long nosed Fw 190s who were setting up to jump Baker, though thanks to Rea's warning, Baker was able to evade their attack. Despite a couple of close calls, Rea and Baker (even with the damage to his aircraft) managed to down one bandit apiece. 

With the skies now apparently clear, Rea covered his leads forced landing at Bierset and then made his way home to Florennes.

Total 402nd ground claims this mission, a respectable 17, though the two Fw 190D's and getting everyone back safe was a sweetener.

The 485th did an exemplary job of wiping their assigned target from the map, with trains, wagons, trucks, AAA guns and half tracks in the target area being remorselessly annihilated. With no targets left, they pushed on to Bonn-Hangelar airfield to see if they too could repeat the outstanding levels of destruction they wrought last mission. However, as with the 402nd, they discovered only AAA and trucks, the AAA proving particularly effective and forcing the early withdrawal of two of their pilots and actually knocking down two more - it is with bitter-sweet tones that I have to inform you that both Lt. John Artiesbi and 2nd Lt. Sidney Gittins were the two unlucky pilots who went down; Artiesbi was made a PoW over the target and Gittins, despite a valiant effort to make the front lines, crash landed just a few hundred yards too short and practically on top of an enemy forward Observation Point. He too was captured. They are at least alive, for now, and god-willing may see the war out.

With this attack seemingly of limited profit, the remainder of the 485th pushed on to Euskirchen & Zulipich where some of the number were working over Strassfeld airfield and 2nd Lt. John Mayer discovered a target actually worth some ordnance; he managed to dispatch an entire train single handed - on his first mission!

Other performances of note include Maj. Mick Payne-Less, who alone accounted for nearly half of all the 485th total of ground targets destroyed, with 10 to his name, and 2nd Lt. Key Moe who solo dropped two of the bridges in Bonn city centre, thus hampering enemy troop and supply movements for weeks to come. Great work gents.

All in, the 485th claimed 24 ground targets destroyed - it's a shame about the cost, but well done nonetheless.

 

Regarding the cost...

It would seem that the enemy is attempting to lure our aircraft over airfields, knowing that they (and the airframes that should be on them) are a high priority target for us, using the trucks as bait, teasing pilots to believe there are aircraft on the field when viewed at from distance. They put well sited flak guns with well trained crews in prime positions and when we bite, punish us for it with a flak-trap. 

Group HQ have reacted accordingly: you are now under strict orders that in the future, if there are no aircraft on an airfield that is being sized up for strafing then do not continue the attack. We cannot waste well trained pilots and valuable airplanes on a few - probably already immobilized or damaged - trucks. It's just not worth the cost. 

Take note gents.

 

We await news of Lt Artiesbi and 2nd Lt. Gittins replacements. In the meantime looks like the weather will be clamping in again for a couple of days. Met seem to think the front might clear during the night of the 7th/8th thus leaving suitable weather for ops on the 8th November itself. [Event to be held Sunday 15th November]

So kick back for a bit gentlemen. Though some of you might wanna go out and grab a bottle of something nice to give to your Chiefy, given the amount of flak damaged Lightnings dotted around the dispersal pans....

 

402nd Sqn Log 05-11-44 a.PNG

402nd Sqn Log 05-11-44 b.PNG

402nd Sqn Log 05-11-44 c.PNG

BluBears Bronze Star 08-11-44.PNG

485th Sqn Log 05-11-44 a.PNG

485th Sqn Log 05-11-44 b.PNG

485th Sqn Log 05-11-44 c.PNG

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Interesting, as I landed at the emergency airfield with time to go on the mission I took to counting the bullet holes, and other holes in my aircraft. I counted 73 small calibre holes and 7 large holes ranging from hand to dinner plate size - all on the right wing, right engine and right tail boom of my aircraft. 

My attack on the airfield reminded me very clearly of a passage in Pierre Closterman's "Big Show" where he described a strafing run on an airfield with his section of Typhoons, and after describing how murderous the flak was, after his pass he looked back and realised he was the only one who had survived the run, all other aircraft behind him had been shot down by the flak on a single pass. 😲

After that they tried to keep clear of airfield strafing runs wherever possible. The P38 is definitely more forgiving with damage than something like a Spitfire is - usually any engine damage in a Spit is terminal within a couple of minutes - the P38 seemed to last a fair bit longer as long as the engine was dialled right down. 

Great aircraft 👍

 

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485th Bloody shame we were the first Sqn to fall foul of this new Gerry ploy to cover an airfield in dispersed trucks instead of aircraft and set up devastating AAA. 
Two aircraft damaged and two lost ! Not good. 
We did well on our primary objective and needless to say we would have been better off heading home after that. Trouble is you chaps want to destroy targets so it’s hard to just ignore them. In future we will have a dam good look at exactly how high the value of any target is before risking airframes and pilots.

Talking of which we have heard that 2nd Lt Sidney Gittins and 1st Lt John Artiesbi are making life hell for some poor unfortunate Stalag Luft Commandant who I am sure will end up out of pocket and out of luck ! Replacements are inbound.      
Well done to 2nd Lt David Reginald and 2nd Lt Denis Richard for landing their damaged aircraft at a friendly airfield.

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402ND: Grand show!

Third time in a row your Leader had to like return home at the first moment of interaction with an enemy due to damages, and you'll did good again out there on your own. Three perfect pairs!

 

Special Thanks to 2Lt. Dennis Winger: You have now completed three missions, and in all three you had to escort your damaged leader on his way home - you did a perfect job! 

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