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Thread: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

  1. #151
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Quote Originally Posted by J.A.W. View Post
    Not many concrete strips for belly landings in Russia, Africa or New Guinea...

    Although, the Russian 37mm cannon in the MiG 15 [fitted to kill B-29s] was a generation ahead of the Oldmobile fitted to the P-39, for fighter vs fighter, high G turning/high angle deflection shooting it was inadequate..
    Of course it was a generation ahead. But a single 37mm shot from either could destroy an aircraft. With the twin .50's what more did they need?

    Low rate of fire, few rounds available, low velocity/poor trajectory, prone to jamming,[esp' when under G], were the P-39 37mm issues, which is why they were replaced by by the 20mm in the P-38..

    Bf 109G climb/dive combat performance was superior to P-39, so - do check the Kurfurst site for the relevant Luftwaffe technical centre test documentation...
    Few rounds available? There weren't even all that many produced and the problem with the P-38 was the small ammo capacity and feed mechanism didn't work as well. There were several versions of the Me109G, and the later war versions should have had superior performance characteristics...
    Last edited by Nickdfresh; 03-30-2013 at 12:02 PM.

  2. #152
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    What more did they need? Well, the USAAF regarded 4 free-firing .50s as a minimum for its fighters, & preferred 6 or even 8...but they'd already rejected the P-39, [& the 37mm] as inadequate..

  3. #153
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Quote Originally Posted by J.A.W. View Post
    What more did they need? Well, the USAAF regarded 4 free-firing .50s as a minimum for its fighters, & preferred 6 or even 8...but they'd already rejected the P-39, [& the 37mm] as inadequate..
    We're not talking about the USAAF, it was the Soviet (Red) Air Forces. They developed tweaks in which all three guns would fire simultaneously and the 37mm was more than enough to hunt Stukas, twin engined bombers, and Ju52's. As for the USAAF they had a love affair with .50 caliber machine-guns. Not that that was a bad thing, but few planes used anything else including the successful 20mm Hispano aside from your beloved Lightening. It was also clear that the USAAF would face less of a bomber threat since the Luftwaffe tactical bomber force was already waning and they were probably more worried about achieving multiple hits on the more nimble Jadgwaffe...
    Last edited by Nickdfresh; 03-31-2013 at 09:42 AM.

  4. #154
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Well, the USAAF did specify the 4 20mm fit for the P-61.., & putting them in the P-38 would 've doubled its firepower too.

    The Soviets didn't really put a heavy armament into their fighters til post-war, when the need for punching big holes in the likes of B-36s was seen as a factor..

  5. #155
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Quote Originally Posted by J.A.W. View Post
    Well, the USAAF did specify the 4 20mm fit for the P-61..,
    Correct, forgot about the nightfighters...

    ...putting them in the P-38 would 've doubled its firepower too.
    The P-38 never lacked for firepower and the fire concentration out of the nose mounted combo was enough to saw anything in half...

    The Soviets didn't really put a heavy armament into their fighters til post-war, when the need for punching big holes in the likes of B-36s was seen as a factor..
    Most of their aircraft had 20mm cannons...

  6. #156
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Soviet wartime fighters generally only had a one or two cannon plus a m.g. or two, none had a 4 cannon fit [standard in `42 on Typhoon] 'til post war..

    P-38 armament might have 'sawed' lightly built Nippon airframes...but had only 1/2 the punch of the Typhoon/Tempest 4 cannon set-up.

    P-39 was also too small/underpowered to carry such a potent armament..

  7. #157
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Quote Originally Posted by J.A.W. View Post
    Soviet wartime fighters generally only had a one or two cannon plus a m.g. or two, none had a 4 cannon fit [standard in `42 on Typhoon] 'til post war..
    Correct. "Perfection is the enemy of good enough." --Soviet/Russian adage...

    P-38 armament might have 'sawed' lightly built Nippon airframes...but had only 1/2 the punch of the Typhoon/Tempest 4 cannon set-up.
    Who cares? They weren't going up against British tactical ground attack fighters nor were they in a ****-contest with them over who had bigger cannons or more machine-guns. The configuration was more than enough to saw open anything Germany had as well...

    P-39 was also too small/underpowered to carry such a potent armament..
    The P-39 wasn't underpowered, it's engine didn't work as well at medium or high level --there's a difference. The armament was enough for the Soviets and comparable to their other fighters and by 1942 (if not earlier) .30/.303 machine-guns were pretty much useless on fighters anyways. You just keep making the same points over and over...
    Last edited by Nickdfresh; 04-03-2013 at 02:13 AM.

  8. #158
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Funny, I wonder why it was that the USN [who rated the 20mm Hispano cannon to be worth 3 .50 Brownings] - went to the 4 20mm set-up postwar..

    & obviously the the P-61 specification required more than twice the P-38s hitting power...maybe they figured 'sawing' an He177 in 1/2 would take too long?

    The P-39 was one of the late `30s 2nd generation monoplane fighters [ P-38, F4U,MiG 3, Fw 190,He 100,Tornado/Typhoon] that were designed to beat 400mph in level flight.

    The He 100 & Airacobra were the only ones with power in the 1,100hp range, the others had closer to 2,000hp...& the Soviets were given He 100s by Hitler as tech support..
    Last edited by J.A.W.; 04-03-2013 at 03:29 AM.

  9. #159
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Quote Originally Posted by J.A.W. View Post
    Funny, I wonder why it was that the USN [who rated the 20mm Hispano cannon to be worth 3 .50 Brownings] - went to the 4 20mm set-up postwar..
    I have no idea what that has to do with anything, but probably they were going to jets with completely new designs. The USAF kept the .50's in the Sabres, although I think this was a mistake and even a single 20mm or 37mm cannon would have saved lives over Korea...

    & obviously the the P-61 specification required more than twice the P-38s hitting power...maybe they figured 'sawing' an He177 in 1/2 would take too long?
    The P-61 was a larger aircraft with little need for turning-and-burning performance with enemy fighters. Just like the Typhoons weren't all that effective at high level and were used mainly for ground attack...

    The P-39 was one of the late `30s 2nd generation monoplane fighters [ P-38, F4U,MiG 3, Fw 190,He 100,Tornado/Typhoon] that were designed to beat 400mph in level flight.

    The He 100 & Airacobra were the only ones with power in the 1,100hp range, the others had closer to 2,000hp...& the Soviets were given He 100s by Hitler as tech support..
    Apples and oranges. You have a very interesting interpretation of "second gen" fighters. The Typhoon didn't fly until 1942, after advances in aviation and wartime funding. None of the other fighters save for the P-38 even flew in the 1930's! None were ready for the beginning of the war, the Aircobra was! The engine was rated closer to 1200-hp. Again, you're just recycling false equivalency comparisons...

  10. #160
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Typhoon first flew in Feb `40... & this is what US historian D. Caldwell wrote about their effectiveness vs Fw 190..

    "Spitfires were unable to catch the Focke-Wulf at low altitude...The new Hawker Typhoon which began entering service in late 1942, proved to have excellent speed & acceleration at ground level, & was assigned the anti-Jabo role. By mid-1943, the Typhoons had made low-level daylight operations over England unprofitable for the Germans, & the Jabos were transfered to other, less well defended theatres."[Russia & MTO].

    But the Soviet P-39s & Italy based P-38s did not have the ability to do like-wise...

    All the other late `30s 2nd gen monoplane fighters listed flew in `39-40 too..& ~1200-hp is a long way from ~2000-hp...

    The USAF was still using a 4-20mm cannon armed, piston engined, ground attack plane in Vietnam, the Skyraider...

    "False equivalency"- I dont think so... proven - efficacy - actually..

  11. #161
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Quote Originally Posted by J.A.W. View Post
    Typhoon first flew in Feb `40... & this is what US historian D. Caldwell wrote about their effectiveness vs Fw 190..

    "Spitfires were unable to catch the Focke-Wulf at low altitude...The new Hawker Typhoon which began entering service in late 1942, proved to have excellent speed & acceleration at ground level, & was assigned the anti-Jabo role. By mid-1943, the Typhoons had made low-level daylight operations over England unprofitable for the Germans, & the Jabos were transfered to other, less well defended theatres."[Russia & MTO].
    How "profitable" were FW190 missions into England in 1943 anyways?

    But the Soviet P-39s & Italy based P-38s did not have the ability to do like-wise...
    The P-39 shot down numbers of FW190 at low level. Who had to "catch" whom?

    All the other late `30s 2nd gen monoplane fighters listed flew in `39-40 too..& ~1200-hp is a long way from ~2000-hp...
    The P-39 first flew in April of 1938, actually...

    The USAF was still using a 4-20mm cannon armed, piston engined, ground attack plane in Vietnam, the Skyraider...
    Again, so what?

    "False equivalency"- I dont think so... proven - efficacy - actually..
    Not really...

  12. #162
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Well, if the P-39 1st flew in `38, likely it was flying in `39-40 too..just like the others, but it never made 400mph huh?- due to being underpowered..

    If the USAF deemed the Skyraider as effective in the`60s with 4 X 20mm cannon, guess they would've been effective in`42 - but the P-39 could only carry one..[P-51 could tote 4-but only @ RAF call].

    The P-39 LACKED the performance/armament to dictate terms to the Fw 190 on the deck, unlike the Typhoon, eh?

    The point being : H.G. made the big claim that the P-39 was the best performing fighter in `43 & best performing WW2 low level fighter period..

    Well it wasn't, it was another also run...& just like the P-38, unacceptable to the top-guns of the 8th AF & RAF for air-superiority combat in NW Europe in the last year of the war..
    Last edited by J.A.W.; 04-03-2013 at 11:32 PM.

  13. #163
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    H.G. claimed in post #90 that the P-39 was "the best fighter of WW2 [in 1943]."

    & in post #105 that "Nothing out performed the P-39N or P-39Q under 20,000ft. Nothing"

    Now we have the facts laid out, & it just aint so, is it now ? ..H.G..come back..
    Last edited by J.A.W.; 04-05-2013 at 03:49 AM.

  14. #164
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    Quote Originally Posted by J.A.W. View Post
    H.G. claimed in post #90 that the P-39 was "the best fighter of WW2 [in 1943]."

    & in post #105 that "Nothing out performed the P-39N or P-39Q under 20,000ft. Nothing"

    Now we have the facts laid out, & it just aint so, is it now ? ..H.G..come back..
    Then post to him! I didn't say that. Performance is relative to the pilot flying it. The P-39 was an effective fighter that was reported by the Soviets to "exceed early and mid-war models of the Me109 in some respects." The Soviets used group tactics and mutual support and the fighter gave them some breathing space and an improvement over what was generally available....

  15. #165
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    Default Re: Bell P-39 Airacobra & P-63 Kingcobra.

    True, & the Russians did seem to like them, & got the best possible performance from them too..

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