View Full Version : damage effects, particularly the vert stab

05-12-2005, 05:27 PM
ive noticed something whilst flying online and damaging aircraft.

when i shoot off the vertical stabiliser, i.e. the "fin", pretty much nothing happens.

sure the individual loses rudder control, but generally, flies with impunity. No wild yawing into a fiery oblivion, no tumbling out of control, nothing but serene albeit rudderless flight.

ive sat there, agog, watching a 109 i had removed of its vert stab wobble its way thru the sky and actually stay in the engagement. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif

and dont start about AI controlled aircraft... the only way to sink those suckers is to snip off the entire empenage.

what gives?

anyone else found the apparent superfluous nature of the vertical stabiliser?

05-12-2005, 05:47 PM
Actually I found it kind of useful in a cheap kind of way...

I dove down on a Ju-88 with a Yak-1b one time and flying too fast I had to try and duck under his right wing...I felt a little shake but I was okay...and looking back I saw the Ju-88 plunge to it's death.

It wasn't until I began landing that I realized I have no rudder! I saved the track and checked it out, and there it was, my rudder had cut off the bomber's wing (and my vertical stabilizer). My first 'rudder kill'.

05-12-2005, 06:05 PM
its just so bizarre.

i would expect, not being a pilot i dont know, that why does an aircraft bother with a freaking tail fin when clearly, it doesnt need one to remain in level flight.

i have several tracks where my trusty zero had been removed of its fin, and yet i could still fight by rolling and using pitch.

all manner of violent maneouvers are possible without a fin it seems.

05-12-2005, 06:42 PM
The vertical stab isn't necessary for level flight, but it does help.

Other parts of the plane also provide stabilization. Mainly, the fuselage acts as a stabilizer. Also, in a slip, the leading wing produces more lift (and therefore drag) than the trailing one, which creates a tendancy to return to center.

The loss of the vertical stab or rudder does cause a significant loss of yaw stability in PF. You'll notice the plane slipping and skidding violently when you bank or turn. Even in level flight, the nose will usually yaw back and forth like a pendulum. If you stall the aircraft, it will usually enter an irrecoverable spin. It's difficult to land, very dangerous to do hard turns and all but impossible to shoot accurately in this condition.

I'd suggest you try this yourself, Engaurde. A good way is to break it off when you fly under a bridge.

05-12-2005, 07:24 PM
The Rudder/vstab is EXTREMELY important...in modern aircraft(which I happen to work with, honestly 60-70's era) the increased power multiplies the risk of an unstable condition in level flight requiring the use of rudder to maintain control of an aircraft's orientation. In fly-by-wire top of the line jets there is usually two tail fins and plenty of auto control to keep the aircraft from turning into a flying saucer.

besides that, the rudder provides for steady and efficient flight (uneven engine power, drag, curving flight path and many other factors that conspire to take you off course), and proper rudder use is enforced with the trainees where I work. This gives a young pilot the automatic response he needs to crosswinds and various unstable flight conditions he/she may encounter when making violent maneuvers.

05-13-2005, 12:24 AM
i know it sounds ridiculous, but i just had to check.

Id heard of aircraft becoming fence posts rather promptly after losing their tail surfaces, and all manner of aircraft needed huge amounts of vert stab to maintain especially hi AOA flight.

Which is why we see most stall fighting jets and naval aircraft having two outward canted vert stabs?

I didnt see this behaviour reflected in PF. Seriously, ive seen it so many times and flown with stabless aircraft that i wondered if it was modelled sufficiently, IMHO.

05-13-2005, 12:38 AM
Keep in mind that planes managed to land IRL with torn off vertical stabs. Of course not aerobatics, but they can still fly without being fence post.

I've seen one of B-17 at least, and probably others.

Some pics here. Not completely gone, but some are close.


Though, I somehow doubt you'd see pics of single engine planes landing. Would be smarter to bail out.

05-13-2005, 01:11 AM
dont know if this will work, but, hmmm.... i think stansdd got it in one?


05-13-2005, 01:30 AM
The worst case of a finless flight without crash that I know of was a YB-52 that lost it's full flying fin/rudder (no fixed fin) over the Rockies on a test flight. Differential thrust and the rudder post with a tiny scrap of rudder still left on it (and other factors) was just enough to keep it under control.

You just have to have a at least a third or so of your fin/rudder or it's virtually impossable on these planes to fly on. Photos posted above are gettin close to that (the B-17 can lose a lot more because its fin is oversized to begin with - check early versions).

I've landed a Frank, Mustang, 109 and Wildcat without any fin or rudder - be sure and use brakes for stearing on touchdown.



05-13-2005, 01:32 AM
Couldn,t quite pull off a landing in this, though I managed to fly it back to base, too difficult to control descent, ahhh.


The game has its understandable limitations . . .