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Questions tagged [wwii]

Aviation in World War II

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What is this black teardrop-shaped object under the C-47 Skytrain cockpit?

I was recently at the Airborne Museum in Sainte-Mère-Église, France, and I saw a C-47 Skytrain for the first time in person. I saw that, under the cockpit, there was a black, teardrop-shaped object. I ...
Easymode44's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
219 views

WWII fuel gauge: single needle and dual range

In T-34 movie there is a scene where a WWII small aircraft is flying: and the pilot warnings the official that they're running out of fuel and a quick close up of the cockpit shows the fuel gauge: ...
Mark's user avatar
  • 293
4 votes
1 answer
1k views

What if the bomb bay is hit?

The bomb bay on s heavy bomber is a somewhat big target. If the ordnance were to explode, it would be very dangerous for nearby aircraft. But I haven't really seen much evidence of concern over this ...
Abdullah is not an Amalekite's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
639 views

Why weren't WWII piston aircraft able to fly at 500mph?

So, I just noticed that typical WWII piston engine fighter aircraft had a power to weight ratio of around 300W/kg, even at gross weight and altitude. This means that if we assume that an aircraft has ...
Abdullah is not an Amalekite's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
173 views

Confusing justification for new engines for Bomber B

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bomber_B With engines in the 2,000 to 2,500 hp range, twin-engined aircraft would have considerably more surplus power, allowing for much greater payloads. In theory, ...
Abdullah is not an Amalekite's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
206 views

Are there other examples of Brown-Stigler incident?

I have just finished reading A Higher Call and wondered if there are other cases where a pilot showed his mercy to the foe when they are in desperate situation. Looked through several B17 related-webs,...
Lady Be Good's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
236 views

Seeking the memoir of a WWII Luftwaffe pilot

Around 40 years ago, or perhaps a little earlier (say around 1980), I read the memoir (or perhaps the biography) of a fighter or perhaps light-bomber pilot who flew for the Luftwaffe on the Russian ...
Captain Cranium's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
588 views

Could "Lady Be Good" Incident Prevented by the Technology of its Time?

For those who don't know, Wiki page of the incident sums up. I don't have much knowledge about communication systems of WWII, but I know how radio communication work. This page has The aircraft flew ...
Lady Be Good's user avatar
25 votes
1 answer
7k views

Were there any planes used in WWII that were able to shoot their own tail?

In Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, there's a scene where Indiana is piloting a plane and his father is acting as gunner. While shooting at incoming enemy planes, he accidentally shoots his own ...
Elerium115's user avatar
15 votes
1 answer
2k views

Why does this Curtiss Kittyhawk have a Question Mark in its squadron code?

There is a Curtiss Kittyhawk 1V undergoing restoration in the RAF Museum in London, with an unusual squadron marking. A comprehensive history of the aircraft can be found here, which says: The ...
Party Ark's user avatar
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3 votes
2 answers
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What technical features account for the P-51B/D's low drag relative to other fighters of the day (e.g, Spitfire Mk IX)?

I am really sorry to dredge a popular topic up again. Unfortunately, after reading through some papers on the P-51 as well as all the past forum threads I could find on this topic, I have found myself ...
interested22's user avatar
-2 votes
1 answer
299 views

Why did the British Royal Air force not see a mass adoption of American Fighter planes and bombers?

I understand the RAF made extensive use of C-47 and other support aircraft from the US, but they never seemed to adopt fighters and bombers for frontline service like the British Army so eagerly did ...
fishbed's user avatar
  • 103
10 votes
2 answers
2k views

Twin-Engine WWII Japanese Bomber

I recently inherited a number of pictures taken by my father in August & September 1945. During the process of Japanese surrender at the end of WWII. Several are of captured aircraft, most of ...
Chenmunka's user avatar
  • 278
3 votes
1 answer
352 views

Jumo 222 What are the design choices that lead to this particular nose cone and spinning cowling setup?

Looking for Jumo 222 powered aircraft, I came across this picture of a Junker Ju 288, with this strange spinning cowling and propeller setup, what are the considerations behind this design, how does ...
user avatar
19 votes
1 answer
2k views

Identifying WWII reconnaissance plane wing

Between 1944 and 1945, a US Photo Reconnaissance Squadron or (or something alike) did a survey of the whole Chilean territory using the Trimetrogon camera system (228 rolls of film and about 49.000 ...
Camilo Rada's user avatar
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24 votes
4 answers
7k views

Incidents of V1 flying bombs being nudged instead of shot down

There are stories regarding V1 flying bombs being nudged off course that I have heard numerous times over the last 50 years. I can understand the reluctance to shoot a bomb from directly behind it but ...
SDH's user avatar
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10 votes
1 answer
350 views

How was the problem of dive bomber scope fogging resolved during WW2?

During the first half of 1942, US Navy SBD bombers had problems with their bomb aiming scopes fogging over, which reduced the accuracy of their bombing during several early war operations. Was this ...
Davidw's user avatar
  • 867
2 votes
2 answers
324 views

Battle Damage Checks / Procedures [closed]

Studying the damage model of DCS, especially on Warbirds, I encountered an operational doubt about the Battle Damage Checks. Here is the question: Suppose that after a sortie you are RTB, and you don'...
Spitfire01's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
599 views

Why did Japanese aircraft carriers in WW2 carry both high and normal octane aviation fuels?

According to Parshall & Tully's Shattered Sword, the four Japanese aircraft carriers lost at the Battle of Midway (1942) carried both high and normal octane aviation fuel. Does anyone here know ...
Davidw's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
300 views

What were the typical military training aircraft of the mid- to late-1930s in USA?

I am writing a novel that includes 1939 to present. I am interested in what pilots in training first used when they were entering flight school during the mid-late 1930s in USA. Can you advise me?
Philmb's user avatar
  • 19
11 votes
2 answers
4k views

Did WWII fighters do a roll before engaging to identify themselves to radar operators?

There's some folklore in the radar world about the Nazi fighters doing a roll before engagement to mark them to a German radar operator. This makes a lot of sense because it allows you to change your ...
b degnan's user avatar
  • 291
3 votes
0 answers
595 views

How effective was the computer-controlled gunnery on the B29?

The Boeing B29 Superfortress was equipped with multiple gun turrets which were linked to a central computerised fire control system. This training film covers the gunner's control interface, which ...
DrMcCleod's user avatar
  • 391
6 votes
3 answers
1k views

Did the jet stream really stop the B-29, or was it just bad luck?

The B-29 bomber, used in WWII, was designed as a high altitude bomber, capable of operating from altitudes in excess of 30,000 feet. However, starting with their first missions to Tokyo in Nov 1944, ...
Phil Crowther's user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
616 views

Could Sudden Decompression Cause You to be Shot Out of the Tunnel on a B-29?

One of the features of the WWII B-29 bomber was that it was pressurized. The aircraft had pressurized areas in the front and the back of the aircraft. Connecting the two was a pressurized tunnel over ...
Phil Crowther's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
1k views

Tail Warning Radar on the P-51

One of the "features" of the P-51 was a tail warning radar that was supposed to let pilots know if an enemy fighter was on your tail. However, a P-51 pilot told me that they generally ...
Phil Crowther's user avatar
24 votes
1 answer
5k views

Did LeMay actually require crews to remove their guns on B-29s?

There is a persistent rumour/storyline that, during and after the successful low-level raids on Tokyo in March 1945, LeMay ordered that all B-29s remove their guns, except for the tail gun. However, I ...
Phil Crowther's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
890 views

Did WW2 airplanes ever jettison their empty external fuel tanks to act as weapons?

Jettisoning an external fuel tank over a populated area is prohibited by the FAA as it will almost certainly cause injury and damage to the people in that area. But did war airplanes during World War ...
Ginger's user avatar
  • 1,167
19 votes
1 answer
4k views

What is this plane from WWII (probably French or Allied forces)?

Picture should have been taken after or during the end of World War II, probably close to Marrakech French base (but that is not sure). Can anyone tell us what these planes are? My grand father could ...
Valentin Gies's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
730 views

Can anyone help me with the Make, Model (version), and Unit of this WWII army trainer. Appears to be an AT-6 version

Location: Madison, WI Municipal Airport on May 21, 1939. Notice the straight bottom on the vertical stabilizer, crest emblem, pitot tubes, landing gear, exhaust location, antenna, etc. I have two ...
FreshBreeze's user avatar
  • 1,221
24 votes
2 answers
6k views

Can anyone identify what appears to be a crashed WWII German plane?

This photograph is in my family's photo collection. The only information with the photo is, "Cousin Bud Kohl - aircraft wreck." If anyone can identify the make and model it is greatly ...
FreshBreeze's user avatar
  • 1,221
1 vote
1 answer
357 views

I'd like to know the name of this aircraft

I recognize it but can't recall the name, if anyone can tell me that would be great.
warwizard57's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
873 views

Was the P-82 twin Mustang better than the P-51D? [closed]

The P-82 twin Mustang was made to replace the P-51D in the escort role. It was faster, and had two engines with two pilots. It also had a better armament but wasn't as maneuverable as the P-51D. Which ...
J Lopez's user avatar
  • 585
12 votes
2 answers
4k views

Did the Germans ever use captured Allied aircraft against the Allies?

I have noticed that during WWII the Germans captured quite a few P-47s, P-51s, Spitfires, and other Allied aircraft. I know that they tested them extensively but wanted to know if they ever used them ...
J Lopez's user avatar
  • 585
4 votes
1 answer
511 views

What were the common crew ranks on WWII US Navy flying boats and bombers?

I have been trying to figure this out for some time, but have not had much luck elsewhere. I have found info on USAAF bombers, and what ranks the crewmembers often had, but nothing for larger navy ...
Jazzyamx's user avatar
  • 153
1 vote
0 answers
308 views

During WWII, what did internal bomb bays and turret layout look like on flying boats?

I am writing an alternate WWII story, and I was wondering if you fine fellows on this site could help me. I am trying to make a fantasy bomber version of the USN Boeing C-98 Clipper, AKA the Boeing ...
Jazzyamx's user avatar
  • 153
8 votes
1 answer
5k views

Did Japan actually use any production aircraft with inverted gull wings during WW2?

The anime film The Wind Rises presents a fictionalized account of Jiro Horikoshi and the development of the Mitsubishi A5M. Throughout most of the anime, Jiro visualizes the plane with this shape: I ...
user45623's user avatar
  • 317
5 votes
1 answer
993 views

What is this part on the Me 262?

I have seen this part on a me 262 model kit but I don't know what it is... I've make some research on it but I find nothing! Maybe it can be radar, or a weapon? Do you know what is this? And also its ...
L'aviateur's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
1k views

How is fuel drawn from drop tanks in WW2 airplanes?

Low-wing tanks typically have fuel supply lines at the bottom. For external drop tanks, I thought they came built with internal lines that mate with the plane. That appears to be the case for ...
user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
586 views

Was there any kind of preventative collision training for dogfights during WWI and WWII?

Watching some old films on YouTube about dogfighting has me curious about this. Definitely seems like most dogfights around this time were extremely close, involving tight formations and turns. Was ...
George Clooney In a Mooney's user avatar
18 votes
1 answer
4k views

What is this board given to a pilot in World War II?

What is this board given to a pilot in World War II?
Peter Kay's user avatar
  • 183
7 votes
1 answer
4k views

How did War Emergency Power work?

Someone can explain how WEP (War Emergency Power) worked on the planes of the Second World War? And if it was really effective during a combat?
Carlo Nava's user avatar
9 votes
1 answer
1k views

What's an "outrigger" for parking aircraft on a carrier?

In this picture of the USS Intrepid (CV-11), there appears to be an aircraft parked with the tail hanging off the deck: (Source) The caption gives a clue: The U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS ...
built1n's user avatar
  • 563
1 vote
1 answer
502 views

Why were german pilots more successful on the eastern front than the western front? [closed]

I was wondering why big german aces shot down the most enemy aircraft while fighting on the eastern front. Is this because the soviet pilots were undertrained, or their flying machines were inferior? ...
J Lopez's user avatar
  • 585
4 votes
1 answer
965 views

What are L/D ratio of famous WWII fighters?

I'm looking for L/D ratio of old warbirds. I'm particularly interested by the P-51D, the Supermarine Spitfire Mk.VII and the Mitsubishi A6M3 Zero, but I'm also quite curious about other warbirds that ...
Manu H's user avatar
  • 16.5k
0 votes
1 answer
240 views

What are the advantages of centerline armament?

In the ME 109, Messerschmidt went through a lot of effort to squeeze a cannon into the fuselage firing between the piston banks of the DB engine, exiting the spinner. Why not just put the cannons in ...
Rob Abbanat's user avatar
10 votes
3 answers
4k views

What is this WWII four-engine plane on skis?

I've seen this plane but I don't know its name:
user43959's user avatar
  • 101
14 votes
2 answers
3k views

In WW2, how did aircraft navigate to the carrier?

In World War 2, how did aircraft navigate to the carrier after their mission? I was thinking of something like a beacon installed in the carrier but wouldn't it reveal the location of the carrier ...
Jaebum's user avatar
  • 243
24 votes
3 answers
5k views

Would jet fuel for an F-16 or F-35 be producible during WW2?

I understand that different types of engines use different types of fuel, and as the description of the [jet] tag says, turboprops and jet engines use different types of fuel. So if – like in the ...
JoSSte's user avatar
  • 395
3 votes
1 answer
582 views

What are these openings on the TBD/TBM Avenger?

I've been looking at some pictures and models of the TBF1 and TBM3 Avengers, a torpedo and dive bomber from WW2. I've noticed in some cases there are these openings/slots towards the leading edge of ...
Zebrafish's user avatar
  • 275
2 votes
0 answers
140 views

Can a plane help a second aircraft with landing gear issue mid-air?

My Father received his flight training in the Navy in 1941. He flew mostly Curtiss Wright SNC's (a model of the CW-22) and Grumman F3F's. The story I was told is hard to believe, so I'm hoping that ...
Tom Duffy's user avatar