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Thread: Ilyushin Il-2 Sturmovik, the russian attacker

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    Default Ilyushin Il-2 Sturmovik, the russian attacker

    Ilyushin Sturmovik, russian assaulter.

    The Il-2 Sturmovik was designed in response to a 1936 requeriment for a low-level close-support aircraft capable of defeating enemy armor and other ground targets. Hardly the fighter, the system was exclusively engineered to take an enormous amount of damage and still keep pilot and critical mechanical components safe. In the end, the IL-2 would become the most important aircraft available to the Soviet Union in their defense of the homeland against the advancing Panzer brigades.




    Interestingly enough, the IL-2 began as a two-seat aircraft project, but was then modified to only accommodate one crewman. Apparently the armored 'bath' that the pilot and rear gunner sat in proved to make the aircraft much to heavy in this role - one can imagine that a slow moving low altitude aircraft became a sitting duck to both ground and air fire. Thusly the rear gunner position was removed entirely for the first production models. This single-seat IL-2 model was the IL-2 that became available to Soviet air crews at the start of the German invasion of the Soviet Union in 1942.

    Tksb-57 single seat prototipe




    With the invasion in full swing, production of the IL-2 hit a peak of 300 aircraft per month. In the first few months of operation, the aircraft was found to be extremely susceptible to rear attack from enemy fighters and the rear gunner position (with applicable 12.7mm machine gun) was reinstituted in the IL-2M. The rear gunner position was added in an extended cockpit area behind the pilot with a fuel tank separating the two positions.

    As mentioned, the rear-firing gunner area featured a .50 caliber (12.7mm) positional machine gun with a somewhat limited arc of fire. Aircrews were known to completely remove the rear-ward part of the canopy to allow the rear-gunner and increased field of vision. The implementation of the originally designed rear-ward firing position afforded the IL-2 an increased loitering time over the battlefield as the system could now offer up a defense against oncoming enemy fighter escorts.

    Several aerodynamic refinements were instituted in further models and the 20mm wing mounted cannons replaced by 23mm types. Improvements to the bomb-dispensing cell doors in the wing-underside were also implemented, allowing for a quicker response times of the 200 dispensing anti-tank bomblets. Provisions for 4 x 132mm rockets replaced the 8 x 82mm rocket armament arrangement from before. A torpedo bomber and a two-seat trainer version followed.

    The IL-2 became an highly respected and highly feared adversary. Soviet air crews dubbed the machine the "Flying Tank" for its incredible ability to withstand a tremendous amount of damage and still release its payload only to return home intact. Naturally, one would think this would be related more to the structural core of the armored bath cockpit but the overall structural design contributed greatly to the systems resilience. Likewise, the German infantry referred to the Sturmovik as the "schwarzer tod", or "Black Death" for its very capable payload arrangement.

    As improvements were made to the airframe and tactics, so too did the armament improve. More powerful cannons were integrated as were more potent rockets and bombs. The system proved so effective, in fact, that most of the Soviet aircrews piloting IL-2's were recipients of the "Gold Star of Hero of the Soviet Union" award.

    At war's end, it was reported that upwards of 36,000 IL-2's were produced for the Red Air Force (1943-1944 alone reported up to 12,000 IL-2's in operational service). The aircraft more than returned the value of initial investment and went on to become the symbol of the oft-forgotten East Front in World War Two. The much improved IL-10 would go on to supplant the successful IL-2 by 1944, but the IL-2 would still remain in service in one capacity or another through the end of the war.

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    I really find this to be a beautiful aircraft. A rugged "flying tank," yet a sleek symmetry...



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    The flying tank thing have some backup, the aircraft was perfectly armored to withsatnd attacks from the dead astern position ( the 6 o clock) and it had also an armored bathhub for pilot and its liquid cooled engine.







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    A very nice IL 2 pilot manual in color - original WW 2 couldt be downloaded from my account.

    http://rapidshare.com/files/73296622...a_po_.rar.html


    Enjoy :-)

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    Sehr Gut !

    Before the introduction of the rear gunner with the model Il-2M the heavy armored but somewhat clumsy sturmovik was very vulnerable to stepped astern and 6 o clock high attacks, this single seat Il-2 is caught by the guncamera of Werner Mölders ( BF-109F2) in september 1941. The main fuel tank is already in flames.



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    Oh excellent thread PZ.
    Good matter, thank you
    I just want to add a bit.
    The early series of Il-2 was actually were vulnerable from attack of enemy fighters. The nessesary needed the escort fighter.( Uusially Jak-1 or P-39 Airacobra).
    In the most beginning stage of war the Soviet aviation had a strong lack of fighters - therefore the Il-2 was practically indefensible.
    As the resault the high rate of loses forced the Sergey Ilyushin add back the rear cocpite (as it was realised in germans Stuka U-87). Afte that moment to hit Il-2 in air from rear half-sphere was very hard.And some of famouse germans aces were shot down by the rear Il-2 gunners.

    Yes the Il-2 was an impressive aircraft in ground attacks, but sometimes it was used as the...... fighter.
    Really . Agains bombers like U-88 and transports.
    His 2x23 mm gun was very effective agains any air targets except fighters.
    The Il-2 missions was extremaly danger.Coz germans conscantrated all AA-gun fire on the low-altitude flying Il-2.
    I heared the Soviet aces got the award of Hero of SU just for the 30 succesfull flyghts.

    "I decide who is a Jew and who is an Aryan "- Hermann Goering

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    few more photos



    "I decide who is a Jew and who is an Aryan "- Hermann Goering

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    Yes the Il-2 was an impressive aircraft in ground attacks, but sometimes it was used as the...... fighter.
    Really . Agains bombers like U-88 and transports.
    I believe that it was an specialized fighter variant of this...Il-2E or something.

    The single place IL-2 seems a lot more powerful than the two place...dont know why.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Panzerknacker View Post
    I believe that it was an specialized fighter variant of this...Il-2E or something.

    The single place IL-2 seems a lot more powerful than the two place...dont know why.
    This is easy to explain.
    The additional weight of rear cocpite with gunner, mashine-gun and ammo was over 300-400 kg.
    This mean that you should decrease the weight of other systems to save the flying ability.
    For instane the figrepower, number of guns or ammo, or reduce the thickness of armor.
    I ve read that the one intersting testing of single-cabin Il-2 in the 1942.
    The aim of tesing was to check the manevreability of Il-2 during the attack of fighter.
    The Soviet fighter Jak-1 imitated the attack of germans one.
    To the great wonder of soviet commanders ( who observed this scene form the land) - the Il-2 not just succesfully dodged form the attack , but few times took the fighter in the rears
    So his manevreability was a great , but the lack of speed did not get him chance to be fully equal for the fighter.
    I just do not remember - it seem the Il-2 was without of bombs and rockets.Fully empty, except meabe the guns ammo.

    "I decide who is a Jew and who is an Aryan "- Hermann Goering

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    I ve read that the one intersting testing of single-cabin Il-2 in the 1942.The aim of tesing was to check the manevreability of Il-2 during the attack of fighter.The Soviet fighter Jak-1 imitated the attack of germans one.To the great wonder of soviet commanders ( who observed this scene form the land) - the Il-2 not just succesfully dodged form the attack , but few times took the fighter in the rears
    Hmm, Only with the best pilots I guess.

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    Correction, the fighter variant was the IL-2I ( istrebitel = fighter)

    Here I ve found and translated a beautiful report about this aircraft:

    Il-2I, bomber destroyer.




    The experience of Stalingrad with the successful application Il-2 as the destroyer of transport and bomber aircraft of Luftwaffe contributed to the development of idea about the transformation Il-2 into an armored fighter. In accordance with this concept, during May 1943 starts the solution about building of the fighter version of attack aircraft Il-2.

    The decision GOKO № 3336 of 17 May, 1943, it was indicated that: &.tsuot;Dlya of fight with bombers and destroyers of enemy to consider as necessary the part of the aircraft Il-2 to convert into the destroyers with the limited diving speed, for which to decrease the gross weight of aircraft Il-2, after removing from it bomb load, PC, machine guns SHKAS to convert it from the two-place into the one-place and to improve its aerodynamic properties... of “bombardirovshchikov” ( bomber) to “istrebitel” (fighter) with the motor of AM -38f , a sole copy of the Il-2I was bulit and underwent official tests during August 1943.

    New aircraft was altered into the one-place from the usual series two-place Il-2 (head № of 7581) the production of plant № 1. The wing of aircraft was reinforced due to an increase in the area of glueing and riveting of the wood covering to the top flanges. From the aircraft were deprived of his machine guns SHKAS 7.62 MM , the rocket racks guide PC and internal bomb shackles bays were sealed. The armament of aircraft composed two guns Vya (150 projectiles in the magazine) and two FAB-250 that could be carried externally.

    In the report about official tests from 28.09.1943 g. it was indicated that:

    “2) flight-performance data Il-“ in the comparison with the two-place Il-2 are improved: maximum speed on 6 km h is more (401 km/h instead of 395 km/h), on the full-throttle height to 10 km/h; ceiling on 1200 m higher (6500 m instead of 5300 m); takeoff reduced in 115m (275 m instead of 390 m).

    3) an improvement in the flight-performance data occurred due to reduction in the weight on 760 kg.

    4) The handling Il-2I is analogous to the aircraft of release 1941-42( single place).

    5) The removal of rockets and internal bomb shackles for attachment of small aircraft bombs decreased the fighting value of aircraft as attack aircraft and excluded the possibility of its use for the destruction of live enemy target...

    6) The aircraft Il-2I can be used for dealing only with some types of the bomber and transport aircraft of enemy, which have comparatively low speeds (He -111, Fw-200, Ju-87, Ju-52) at the heights 4000 m or below; however, aircraft Fw-200 can depart from the attacks Il-м by the climb due to the best rate of climb. Il-м it can attack more high-speed bombers Ju-88 and Do-215 is only by chance, since the latter, due to the larger speed, always have the capability to leave from Il-2i.

    7) The Il-2I cannot conduce combats against enemy fighters”


    http://www.23ag.ru/html/il2_page_22.html

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    Yea that very interesting document.
    Well i ve tryed yesterday to attak the formation of U-88/87 in my combat fly simulator IL-2.
    This was interesting test .
    Actually the U-88 was a hard aim due to its speed.
    Howerer in the frontall attack the german aircraft has no any chanses and usially was tired into the pieces by the couple of 23 mm gun.
    Rear attack was not so effective coz of lack of speed of Il-2 but it was stillpossible to hit few of them from a distance 200-300 metres. The shoters of U-88 ONLY once could damage the Il-2 critically. Usially it engine armor and frontal glass easy absorbed the lot of 12-mm bullet.( but not the wings )
    So it was still possibly to fly on a wings, full of holes
    The U-87 was a more easy target, but it was also more reliable agains Il-2 guns.
    Some of them was still flyable after the getting the 3-5 23-mm shells.
    Once i,ve tryed to attack the two of fighters- it was a FW-190A2.
    Without rear mashunganner - it was pure suicide. Fockers easy took my back and ...cut off my wings by short precise burst

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    Quote Originally Posted by genkideskan View Post
    A very nice IL 2 pilot manual in color - original WW 2 couldt be downloaded from my account.

    http://rapidshare.com/files/73296622...a_po_.rar.html


    Enjoy :-)
    Cool document!!! Very fgood looking indeed! I can feel I can fly already!

    May I ask where did you get it? Do you have more?

    There is one thing. IIRC it has a price (8.75 rubles) mentioned on it (can not double check it right now). I think it is strange that an internal document of this matter has a price on... It is not a fake one, is it?

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    Probably it could engage the fighter also by chance but as you said is too slow, actually in th report said the FW-200 condor climb better that the Il-2I ...crazy.

    The weight of the armor took its penalty.

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    Stormovik with 37 mm guns (I)

    At the end of december 1942 the VV-s high command decide to munt a pair of the ehavy caliber Shpitalny SH-37 guns in the IL-2 fon combat test against armor.




    The ninth Il-2 with the guns SHFK-E ( Shpitalny large caliber gun, wing mounting) arrived in the regiment only of on 18 January, 1943, and in the troop tests the participation did not assume. Attack aircraft Il-2 with the guns SHFK-E participated in the war shooting of air regiment with 27.12.42 g. at 23.01.43 g. in the environs of Stalingrad with the liquidation of the German surrounded group in strip 65-1 of army of lieutenant general p.I.Batov. War shooting they conducted from the field airdromes of Proletariy then cossack village Kachalinskaya.

    Task for building of this aircraft Of s.V.Ilyushin obtained still in the spring of 1941 however, in connection with the strong overloading OF OKB by works on the series Il-2 AM-38 the defects of gun SHFK-E", which were appeared in the course of operation, Il-2, armed by such guns, it was built with plant № 18 only toward the end of June 1941, and all necessary flight tests of attack aircraft were carry ouied to 8 July. Il-2 AM-38 with the guns SHFK-E In view of nondelivery in time in NIP AV VVS KA with the people's commissariat of the armament of projectiles to SHFK-E the chief for the 3rd administration of the experimental building GU VVS KA voenny1 the engineer of the 1st rank Of p.I.Matayev at the end of August only permitted the chief OF NIP AV VVS KA of p- ku of Shevchenko to accept Il-2 with SHFK-E" for the carrying out of range tests, after which during two weeks (in the period from 1 to 15 September) the armament of new attack aircraft was satisfactorily tested shooting on the earth and in air. Official tests Il-2 with SHFK-E for the purpose of the development of his flight-performance data were conducted in NII - SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH INSTITUTE VVS KA from 23 September through 12 October, 1941, in all according to the test program (chief engineer - voyeninzhener of the 3rd rank of serfs, the chief pilot - Maj. stadnik) were executed 24 flights

    . The large overall dimensions of guns SHFK-E and magazine feeding (magazine capacity of 40 projectiles) determined their arrangement in the fairings under the wing of aircraft Il-2. Because of the installation on the gun of its large store it was necessary to reinforce the lower structure of the wing which not only complicated the construction of fastening gun to the wing (gun it were fastened to the shock absorber and with the shooting it were moved together with the store),

    but also it required to make for it fairings bulky with the large cross section. Gun SHFK-E, including store for the cartridges as its component part, in the wing version had 387 components. The weight installation of this 37 mm cannon on the aircraft was 302,5 kg. Besides the guns and the machine guns, into the composition of the armament of attack aircraft entered 8 rocket RS -82 or 200 kg of bombs.

    State conducted tests showed that flight-performance data Il-2 with the 37 mm cannons SHFK-E", in comparison with the usual series one-place Il-2 with the guns SHVAK or Vya, were noticeably reduced. The stormovik became more “inert” and more complex in the to maneouver, especially on the turns and the turns at the low altitude. The agility deteriorated at the high speeds. Pilots complained about the significant loads on the controls when turning or yawing.

    Nevertheless, the flight-test results of new attack aircraft were acknowledged as a whole satisfactory. With the normal gross weight of 5864 kg the maximum speed in the earth did not exceed 373 km/h, at the height 2400 m of -409 km/h.

    It take 2, 12 min to reach 1000 meters height and 5,36 minutes the height of 2500 m .


    The landing speed was slightly increased 146 km/h. Takeoff 515m, path on the landing - 535 m.
    Highest velocity in a step dive: 590 km/h . maximum 728 km. Rate of fire SHFK-E according to the data of range tests average was equal to 169 shots per minute with the initial velocity of projectile approximately 894 m/s.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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