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Hanglands
04-07-2007, 12:27 PM
Hi,

In the introduction to his book, Red Star Against The Swastika,Vasily Emelianenko briefly talks about the early Il-2s not having rearward facing gunners.

He quotes a letter from Ilyushin to the Peoples Commissar Shahurin saying 'I don't consider it necessary to include the second person into the air crew of the Il-2... The experience of the regiments prove they do not suffer any casualties to the enemy planes...'

Then Emelianenko writes 'Meanwhile mechanics in many regiments installed 1200 self made machine gun mounts on Shtumrmoviks to protect the rear hemisphere from the fighters attacks'.

That is all that is said on the subject.
So I just wondered if anyone had anymore info on these improvised machine gune set-ups? ie, were they manned, or fixed rearward firing like the Ar-234?

Cheers for any information.

regards.

Hanglands
04-07-2007, 12:27 PM
Hi,

In the introduction to his book, Red Star Against The Swastika,Vasily Emelianenko briefly talks about the early Il-2s not having rearward facing gunners.

He quotes a letter from Ilyushin to the Peoples Commissar Shahurin saying 'I don't consider it necessary to include the second person into the air crew of the Il-2... The experience of the regiments prove they do not suffer any casualties to the enemy planes...'

Then Emelianenko writes 'Meanwhile mechanics in many regiments installed 1200 self made machine gun mounts on Shtumrmoviks to protect the rear hemisphere from the fighters attacks'.

That is all that is said on the subject.
So I just wondered if anyone had anymore info on these improvised machine gune set-ups? ie, were they manned, or fixed rearward firing like the Ar-234?

Cheers for any information.

regards.

stathem
04-07-2007, 12:31 PM
Manned. The 'Field Mod' varient illustrates this.

Hanglands
04-07-2007, 02:25 PM
Hi,

Thanks Stanthem. For some reason I thought that the book was talking about the development of the first series Il-2.

Regards.

mandrill7
04-07-2007, 06:51 PM
As mentioned, the game illustrates the early field mods. A cockpit was rigged up in a very basic fashion OUTSIDE the armoured cockpit of the pilot and some unfortunate was selected to sit out in the open without armour with a rifle-calibre machine gun. Highly uncomfortable in the Russian winter and extremely vulnerable. The attrition rate of these ad hoc air gunners was very high.

I believe I read somewhere that personnel from penal battalions were often selected to work this position.

A regular factory-designed two-seater Il-2 started to become available at the front around the time of Stalingrad.

Hanglands
04-07-2007, 07:05 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">I believe I read somewhere that personnel from penal battalions were often selected to work this position. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I remember a thread on that topic, I think it was discredited.

It was nonetheless a very uncomfertable and unfortunate position as you say.

Thanks for the replies guys.

Regards.