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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

Quite an eventful sortie for the group today; both the 402nd and 485th were assigned air patrols in the area east of Verviers between Malmedy & Eupen. It was a beautiful, clear dawn, however

Debrief from the 410th BG A flight of 3 A20s took off from Eindhoven and, showing great airmanship and engine management skills, carried out a steep climb out and up to the fighter rendezvous at

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Mission Date 25/11/44

402nd FS - Attack Transportation Targets, Emmerich

485th FS - Fighter Sweep, Emmerich-Mönchengladbach sector

410th BG - Attack Rail Targets, Krefeld

 

Debrief:

370th FG

402nd:

Again in the face of spirited AAA resistance the 402nd remained un-phased and wrought terrible destruction upon the enemy ground forces in the target area. Finding themselves with ammo and ordnance to spare they pushed SE along the front and discovered further opportunities to beat-up on the Krauts in the vicinity of Weeze, breaking off through a combination of low ammo and the instance of Lt. Finknottle receiving damage to his airframe; he elected to make an emergency landing at Ophoven, making it safely but not without incident - his right engine quit on him as he approached the threshold! Nonetheless he seems re markedly unperturbed, though we suspect a few shots of whiskey may have had their medicinal effect!

By the time they broke for home the 402nd claimed 37 ground targets destroyed. Another excellent performance chaps, well done! Particular mention goes to 2nd Lt. Patrick Last who claimed 14 targets alone - a most impressive haul we're sure you'll agree. Great work that man!

402nd Sqn Log 25-11-44 a.PNG

402nd Sqn Log 25-11-44 b.PNG

402nd Sqn Log 25-11-44 c.PNG

402nd Sqn Log 25-11-44 d.PNG

402nd Sqn Log 25-11-44 e.PNG

 

470th:

Major Payne-less' debrief covers  the salient points - unfortunate showing gents; looks like we've been too effective hammering the Luftwaffe of late. Regards the flak, there's not much you can do against that 88 stuff; it often seems to creep up as the gunners gradually correct their fire and the only possible recourse is to regularly adjust course and alt if you're in a known 88 area, but they move the guns around so much it's almost impossible to be sure of where you'll encounter it. The major towns and airfields will certainly have some but we're regularly seeing stuff near the front also. Guess we've just got to keep a wary eye out for the bursts.

485th Sqn Log 25-11-44.PNG

 

410th BG

The 410th flattened their assigned target, primarily due to the excellent low level bombing skills of 2nd Lt. Dave Haggis who single-handedly took out an entire train consisting of a locomotive and 9 wagons! Great job that man!

410th Sqn Log 25-11-44 a.PNG

410th Sqn Log 25-11-44 b.PNG

410th Sqn Log 25-11-44 c.PNG

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370th FG

Awards and Promotions:

None.

Personnel:

A new pilot has been posted to the 402nd Fighter Squadron - we await confirmation of his identity.

A new pilot has been posted to the 485th Fighter Squadron - we await confirmation of his identity.

 

Rosters:

402nd Roster 26-11-44.PNG

485th Roster 26-11-44.PNG

 

 

410th BG

Awards and Promotions:

None.

 

Personnel:

No changes.

 

Roster:

410th Roster 26-11-44.PNG

 

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410th BG Debrief

A partially successful mission was carried out by Crash, Delta and Sid. We were tasked with bombing transport locations in Schiedem. Again, cloud cover dictated that we stayed below the cloud at approximately 6000ft and we set ourselves up for a run in with a tailwind by heading west out to sea and returned east inland. The ground targets were quite elusive and couldn't be confirmed from this height until we were close, also there were many flak units mixed in so it was decided to carry out a low level bomb run. All pilots broke off from height and made individual runs onto the target destroying trucks, facilities and buildings. We each made 2 runs however Delta unfortunately stalled in a tight turn and crashed....too low to survive. His determined and accurate persona will be missed. Crash and Sid returned to Eindhoven with no damage to either aircraft via a longer route to the south in order to avoid a dog fight further north.

Major E Shoo

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402nd

Took of with 6 a/c, 2x 1000lb, 100 Fuel.

Headed towards Den Haag at 14Kft. Found 4 enemy a/c still over friendly lines. Ditched bombs, dealt with the enemy a/c, headed north for Den Haag.

Once over there, ground control vectored us south to south east. Enemy a/c were encountered, and shot down.

Two of us got damaged during the fight, one engine out. All landed safely at home base.

Good show guys ... made me proud yet once more again!

(Edit: FT took off with 50 Fuel ... oopsie. No problem, still some left back at home base, thanks to tips from the ones with knowledge, 30 on the manifold, 22 on the revs)

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Thank you all for a spiffing time this morning (for me). I am implementing plan A to try overcoming my internet problems. I lost the connection 10 times this morning. My working from home SWMBO has to attend her office in the CBD on Mondays and Tuesdays, so I am reclaiming the main PC in the front office. Hopefully that will provide a stronger and more stable signal.

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Just a suggestion, but due to the 402nd getting most of the action, most of the time, how about 402nd flies 485th missions on alternate nights? This might even out the air to air and might help keep up morale.

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There's really no point in doing that Crash ... Wish it was that simple.

Like last mission, we were basically in the same area, same mission objective, same waypoints... In my opinion, one thing that could have made a difference in outcome was if 485th had taken off first, then they probably would've run into the enemy fighters before we did... (yet no guarantee) ... but they had some delay in take off.

What is there to swap? 

If we really want to force a change in outcome, the only thing I can think of is that 485th always goes first, 402nd in shadow... but that's just ... silly. 

 

Some other changes are needed, and were suggested at mission debrief. It will get followed up soon is my guess... 

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485th were indeed delayed at the start of the mission and in the end we lost Tonar anyway. Hopefully his issues will be sorted for the next one. Not a great mission again. No EA seen at all. We were called onto some EA by 402nd but I deemed it too far away at the time looking at the map. Also memories of belatedly joining a 402nd air to air fight and ending up inadvertently kill stealing due to over enthusiasm when seeing our one and only EA all mission are still fresh.

We did head in the general direction of this 402nd air battle with white flight attacking a few ground targets just to get some scores on the doors (after last missions big 0). Although an air patrol was our primary mission we have learnt through bitter experience that taking bombs and attacking ground targets has more often than not been our only chance of any action. Several radio calls were made to get an up to date sit rep on the ongoing air battle but nothing was heard for some time. Eventually I got a reply and the battle had moved east so we headed in that direction with a four ship flight. One more radio call confirmed that all EA were shot down so we returned home determined to at least all land safely. 
Unfortunately on the down wind leg for 080 We had a collision resulting in two aircraft lost and one pilot.

HQ.... send drunk hookers and cocaine ASAP !

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402 had an initial engagement with 4 109's, I shot at one and he dove through the clouds smoking, did not follow. Another group of FW's was spotted and I followed White 1 in a number of diving attacks and got a few shots in, one a good burst near the pilot. Resumed patrol and then came the end of my day. Too bad there was so much lag just when it mattered.

 

 

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If the mission took then I will have been killed by stupidity, turning too tight to avoid flak

could my new moniker be Major Major please

Middle name Major of course

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I believe many of our sluggish handling losses like stalls and striking terrain on pullout are caused by simply having too much fuel on board. Full fuel is 1575L (416 usg)  at a weight of 2,579 pounds. As seen below in the quote that is fuel for a 600nm radius of action or 1111km. Our last mission was (by my guestimate) the longest mission we've flown to date. Range to target area was almost 200k, return is another 200 for about 400km (240nm) round trip. Yet we carry fuel for over 1200KM ... 3 times the fuel we actually need... You would of course take more fuel for combat but if you added another 200KM range  of fuel that still comes to 1200 pounds of extra fuel we were dragging around(picture a whale with wings).... again, this was our longest mission yet.

I'm not just throwing numbers out there, one pilot actually did fly our longest mission ever beginning with only 50% fuel and still returned safely to base. And note below we can really stretch our range by reducing prop rpm to 1600 and auto-lean (33 mix).

Of course the old argument ... "what if you're leaking fuel"?  We haven't lost any pilots from a fuel leak, friendly bases are usually close by and our lines aren't that far away for a worst case bailout. We lost many that couldn't pull up in time.

The standard calculation I would have used is to figure the range(one grid square = 10km) and for cruise use 1 liter per km for each engine. Using our last mission as an example, 200km each way is 400 x 2 engines=800 liters. I add 50% as a buffer/combat power reserve, another 400 for a total of 1200 liters or about 75% fuel, again for our longest mission yet.  Yet we always take off with 100 fuel for much shorter hops dragging around 600 to 1200 lbs of unnecessary weight.

If we aren't going to reduce our fuel load now lets at least start looking at how much fuel we're bringing back to base every time. With a light load the 38 is a remarkably agile fighter.  It wouldn't matter if the plane just handles poorly but it's killing our pilots.

 

Quote

 

The key to extracting range from the P-38 was very much in flying technique, using low RPM and high boost (eg: P-38H 2,300/34 for 215 kt at 146 USG/hr for 600+ NM radius), and until 1944 this was the art of individual units and pilots.(4)

4. There has been much written on Charles Lindbergh's contribution to increasing the range of the P-38. Much of this falsely states why he went to the SWPA. Lindbergh's purpose in the SWPA was not originally to instruct P-38 pilots in fuel conservation methods. He arrived in the area as a consultant for United Aircraft. He visited the 5th Air Force Headquarters and managed to convince the brass to allow him to observe P-38 combat operations. He soon discovered that the pilots were not being efficient with fuel. The P-38 manual called for cruise settings of 2,200 - 2,400 rpm in auto-rich. Lindbergh lectured on using 1,600 rpm in auto-lean.

http://www.ausairpower.net/P-38-Analysis.html

 

 

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1 hour ago, Perfesser said:

I believe many of our sluggish handling losses like stalls and striking terrain on pullout are caused by simply having too much fuel on board. Full fuel is 1575L (416 usg)  at a weight of 2,579 pounds. As seen below in the quote that is fuel for a 600nm radius of action or 1111km. Our last mission was (by my guestimate) the longest mission we've flown to date. Range to target area was almost 200k, return is another 200 for about 400km (240nm) round trip. Yet we carry fuel for over 1200KM ... 3 times the fuel we actually need... You would of course take more fuel for combat but if you added another 200KM range  of fuel that still comes to 1200 pounds of extra fuel we were dragging around(picture a whale with wings).... again, this was our longest mission yet.

I'm not just throwing numbers out there, one pilot actually did fly our longest mission ever beginning with only 50% fuel and still returned safely to base. And note below we can really stretch our range by reducing prop rpm to 1600 and auto-lean (33 mix).

Of course the old argument ... "what if you're leaking fuel"?  We haven't lost any pilots from a fuel leak, friendly bases are usually close by and our lines aren't that far away for a worst case bailout. We lost many that couldn't pull up in time.

The standard calculation I would have used is to figure the range(one grid square = 10km) and for cruise use 1 liter per km for each engine. Using our last mission as an example, 200km each way is 400 x 2 engines=800 liters. I add 50% as a buffer/combat power reserve, another 400 for a total of 1200 liters or about 75% fuel, again for our longest mission yet.  Yet we always take off with 100 fuel for much shorter hops dragging around 600 to 1200 lbs of unnecessary weight.

If we aren't going to reduce our fuel load now lets at least start looking at how much fuel we're bringing back to base every time. With a light load the 38 is a remarkably agile fighter.  It wouldn't matter if the plane just handles poorly but it's killing our pilots.

 

 

Kida tend to disagree here ...

I'm sure we will still loose a/c in a nose dive with 50 fuel

Most importantly: 100 Fuel is what they did back in the day - well, that's what I have been told anyways ... and that's what this campaign is about - well, that's what I have been told anyways.

In short: Request Denied!  

:shaunv2:

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