By Mike Spick
Mike Spike, writer of a couple of acclaimed books on fighter pilots, now turns his awareness to impressive ground-attack pilots. He outlines the Luftwaffe’s innovative strategies, first proven through the Spanish Civil struggle, and highlights person options and techniques used opposed to particular different types of target.
Biographical sketches of the top bombers – lots of whom have been provided the Knight’s pass – permit an perception into the various occupation and backgrounds of Luftwaffe group of workers and description simply what it took to be a winning bomber pilot.
First-hand money owed upload gripping drama to the narrative, and provides an unsurpassed appreciation of simply what it used to be wish to dive-bomb, come lower than assault through opponents or courageous a barrage of anti-aircraft weapons.
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Additional resources for Luftwaffe Bomber Aces. Men, Machines, Methods
The first is that bombs let fire rather than air into the top of a ship. The second is that torpedoes tend to have a rather long running time. This puts a premium on the fine judgement of the torpedo-bomber pilot while giving the target plenty of time to take evasive 51 LUFTWAFFE BOMBER ACES action. Early German torpedoes were not very effective: they were relatively slow, giving a long running time from operational ranges, typically 1,500m, and they also had a tendency to run too deep, taking them under the target ship.
The two fixed forward-firing machine guns in the wings were essentially for strafing; in air combat their lethality was questionable. The area in which the Ju 87 was least vulnerable was in the attack dive. With speed brakes extended, velocity built up slowly, whereas a following fighter quickly built up speed and more often than not overshot its intended victim before it could bring its sights to bear. The really vulnerable time came at the pull-out after the dive. Formation cohesion had been lost, speed had been bled off by the pull-out and at low level there was little room for manoeuvre.
On board were bombs for the fortress, set to drop at 10m intervals, and containers of pamphlets calling for surrender. Now came one of those odd incidents on which the fortunes of war so often turn. An observer in one of the other aircraft had mistakenly set 100m intervals for the bombs instead of 10, with the result that the final two fell in the city. Whilst the fortress withstood the bombing, the Mayor of the city, expecting more bombing, ordered its commander to surrender. As if this were not enough, while the afternoon raid, on a barracks near Oslo, went according to plan, Herrmann's aircraft was damaged by flak from the German cruiser Blucher.
Luftwaffe Bomber Aces. Men, Machines, Methods by Mike Spick