View Full Version : Erich Brown and the Zero

11-07-2011, 06:25 PM
Capt. Eric Brown, the Chief Naval Test Pilot of the United States Navy, recalled being impressed by the Zero during tests of captured aircraft. "I donít think I have ever flown a fighter that could match the rate of turn of the Zero. The Zero had ruled the roost totally and was the finest fighter in the world until mid-1943."


Chief test pilot of the USN?!

Anyway, if this is correct in the essence, could have him been talking about only naval fighters?

11-08-2011, 06:34 PM
CAPT Brown was Royal Navy (Fleet Air Arm), and considered one of the best naval aviators in the world (hard to believe that he got that kind of credit, considering the egos of USN pilots...).

In any case, he was one of a small number of very brave pilots who were tasked with flying and evaluating Allied aircraft as well as captured enemy aircraft, so he, especially as one of the FAA's first combat Martlet/Wildcat pilots, probably had an extra special appreciation for the Zero.

However, I doubt that he thought it was the "best fighter in the world until mid '43", given that the FW 190A, P-38 and Spitfire Mk V/IX were all vastly superior if their pilots were remotely self aware.

Somebody either made the quote up or left out the word "naval".



11-11-2011, 06:53 PM
Eric Brown was a pilot in the Fleet Air Arm before becoming a test and evaluation pilot in 1944. He ran a team of pilots tasked with bringing back captured enemy aircraft to Britain for study.

I have an original copy of Eric Browns book "Wings of the Luftwaffe" in which he gives a detailed account of the foibles, strengths and weaknesses of various German aircraft and compares them against the allied aircraft of the day.

I have noticed that there is a revised copy available now with added content so I may be replacing it soon.

Very informative and interesting book. Recommended reading.

11-12-2011, 05:55 AM
Bo, would be cool if you could write a short review of the new issue, as my (translated) copy is the earlier version http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

11-14-2011, 04:25 PM
As luck would have it I went to the IPMS Nationals at Telford, Uk on Sunday 13th November 2011 and had the opportunity to peruse a copy of the revised "Wings of the Luftwaffe". My conclusion?

If you have an original copy then do not bother with the new one. It is essentially exactly the same just repackaged in a flashier format.

If you do not have the book already then it is worth buying.

11-14-2011, 05:17 PM
Just reading 'Wings On My Sleeve' by Eric Brown at the moment, (thanks Fenrir, aka tommytheyak).

if/when i come to the zero stuff, will report.

11-17-2011, 01:50 PM
And wait for my new book with Capt Eric on the Miles M.52!