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View Full Version : P39 vs. Ki43 and A6M2. Vote!



Atomic_Marten
01-08-2005, 02:56 PM

Bull_dog_
01-08-2005, 04:16 PM
Cobra is better...Oleg has fond russian memories of the Cobra and US folks don't.

Besides, the biggest issue with the cobra is it couldn't fight above 15,000 ft. Zeroes in particular, flying from Rabaul, started from higher altitude and if that were how things were on Hyperlobby, the poll would look different.

Cobra could dive better, roll better, better armed and faster at low altitude. Imagine if the US whoseitsofthegreatestmagnitude would have lightened the aircraft up and installed the supercharger...history would have been much different I think.

SkyChimp
01-08-2005, 04:24 PM
The first Airacobra, as well as some later experimental planes, had superchargers. Unfortunately, they didn't perform much better than the plane without them.

Blackdog5555
01-08-2005, 05:49 PM
The truth in real life stories ive read from WWII accounts in the PTO is that the P39:
1. Could not outturn the Zero or Oscar in a dog fight. not fun.
2. Worse, All the Plumbing in the P39 is in the back so it took only one bullet hole in the radiator or plumbing and the pilot wasnt coming home. dead bad. worst part of a the irondog.
3. Bad high Altitude performance for the P39.
4. Russkies took guns and armour out and the thing was an Ace Maker on the Eastern front. It could out turn the 109 at low altitudes.
5. Whats a P400....its a P40 with a Zero on its tail. LOL ..common knowledge......cheers. Id take a Zero or Oscar over a P39 and so would most pilots in the PTO in '41

Tvrdi
01-08-2005, 06:11 PM
which aircraft is better? noobish question....first of all, all fighters had their weak and strong points (their good and bad characteristics)....Cobra is reported to be a worst US plane in ww2...it had only good guns (big cannon on ex.) ....zeke and ki43 were more agile (maneuverable) but without any good protection for the pilot (at least for zeke),.also they were slower but with better flight charasteristics at low speeds....thats what i can say to u in a few words...just to realize how funny ur question is....fly ur favourite plane but learn his good and bad points and ur safe....cheers

Stiglr
01-08-2005, 06:11 PM
Bulldog wrote:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Cobra could dive better, roll better, better armed and faster at low altitude. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

All of which was worth exactly nothing when the mission at hand was to get quickly to 15,000 feet and shoot down the Nells and Bettys that are inbound to blast your airbase into the stone age.

The fact that the P-39 couldn't climb was almost as d@mning as its hosed stability and jam-after-firing-2-shells cannon. It was totally unsuited to the mission it was called upon to perform.

Atomic_Marten
01-08-2005, 06:23 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Tvrdi:
which aircraft is better? noobish question....first of all, all fighters had their weak and strong points (their good and bad characteristics)....Cobra is reported to be a worst US plane in ww2...it had only good guns (big cannon on ex.) ....zeke and ki43 were more agile (maneuverable) but without any good protection for the pilot (at least for zeke),.also they were slower but with better flight charasteristics at low speeds....thats what i can say to u in a few words...just to realize how funny ur question is....fly ur favourite plane but learn his good and bad points and ur safe....cheers <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

If you even give second thought to my question then you will realize that it is attempt for you guys to post your thoughts about these aircraft and your experiences with 'em in this thread. I did not have space in my answers in poll to say something more polite instead of "P39 is better than Zero.." http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif. If you find it so unlikely and unwanted to be posted in this forum, then sorry. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

WUAF_Badsight
01-08-2005, 06:41 PM
the P-39 better at turning ? no

better at surviving a DF ? yes

WUAF_Badsight
01-08-2005, 06:41 PM
i dont know why the P-39 is so good in FB , but it sure is a early Zeke killer

Blackdog5555
01-09-2005, 01:24 AM
but if you like the P39, fly the P400..It has a 20mm which has a good rate of fire. Better DF gun than the general motors thumper.

LEBillfish
01-09-2005, 07:57 AM
Accounts I have read from both sides puts the Cobra at an "initial" first blush disadvantage from either. Try and turn or climb with a zero let alone the Ki43, more so Ki61 on climb and you were done for.

However, do you turn fight a J8 when in P51? Sure if you like being a target drone.

Fact of the matter was the zero and Ki43 were respectively fast, climbed better, turned better. But they had poor armaments their explosive bullets going off upon contact with the outer skin of a plane not delayed to reach inside the fuel tanks. Armor piercing only of value at 100m or less.

So what do you do? You roll, dive and make your "straffing" type runs on both count and the Cobra can hold it's own.

What actually amazes me is the failure of U.S. history to really appreciate the U.S. built Cobra due to it's foolish bypassing of it. The more I read it's as though Cobra's were the AK-47s of the aircraft world. Everyone had them, and made great use of them.

The Cobra certainly a plane that "earned" fame whether it got it here in the U.S. or not.

Atomic_Marten
01-09-2005, 09:44 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>LEBillfish:
However, do you turn fight a J8 when in P51? Sure if you like being a target drone. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

LMAO http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/59.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif Yup.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>LEBillfish:
The Cobra certainly a plane that "earned" fame whether it got it here in the U.S. or not. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I agree.. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_cool.gif

Saburo_0
01-09-2005, 07:15 PM
The cobra isn't all that bad because of speed etc. you mentioned. But takeing off on a scramble in New Guinea you can't get to the bombers. I find I'm in good shape to take on Ki's & Zeros that drop down to strafe the airbase after I've run out to sea to get a bit of altitude, but getting to the bombers is tough. Esp since PF has us going up against Bettys with that 20mm in the tail. Ouch!
The superior climb & turn of Zeros & Ki s allows them to dodge an attack & then get the altitude advantage. Of course they are very weak when hit...
Also gotta agree that the engine on the Cobra's is quite vulnerable.
One thought, playing a campaign I'm quite happy if I can shoot down some the Japanese fighters making strafing attacks, but in real life I'd be a bit more concerned about my mates on the ground getting pounded by those bombs than I am in PF. Also I'd probably get court martialed for not going after the bombers if that's what my orders were. Surviving is one thing, but the Cobra isn't too good at achieving air superiority over it's own base. And it doesn't have the range to maintain standing patrols for hours on end either.
Interesting poll tho!

AFJ_Locust
01-09-2005, 07:44 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by WUAF_Badsight:
the P-39 better at turning ? no

better at surviving a DF ? yes <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Agreed

Blackdog5555
01-10-2005, 12:39 AM
well in RL the P39 had a terrible time surviving in a DF. In this "game" it does ok. the slow rate of fire of the Cannon and weak guns made it a terrible gun platform. Couldn't shoot for squirt. Without the Supercharger it was cannon fodder as it just couldnt climb and a Zero just had to put a single 7.7 in the unprotected radiator plumbing and you didnt come home. It was hated in the PTO. anyway thats what I read from P39 Pilots interviews. In Russia, it wa modified to be quicker and so Against the low flying 109 it was awesome. i read that 2 of the top five Russian aces were P39 flyers. cheers

Lizard_Lipps
01-10-2005, 03:58 AM
P-39's biggest drawback in the pacific was its short range. That's why pilots rejoiced when they recieved the P-38.

Atomic_Marten
01-10-2005, 04:00 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Blackdog5555:
well in RL the P39 had a terrible time surviving in a DF. In this "game" it does ok. the slow rate of fire of the Cannon and weak guns made it a terrible gun platform. Couldn't shoot for squirt. Without the Supercharger it was cannon fodder as it just couldnt climb and a Zero just had to put a single 7.7 in the unprotected radiator plumbing and you didnt come home. It was hated in the PTO. anyway thats what I read from P39 Pilots interviews. In Russia, it wa modified to be quicker and so Against the low flying 109 it was awesome. i read that 2 of the top five Russian aces were P39 flyers. cheers <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I agree. But.. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif see below:

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>LEBillfish:
What actually amazes me is the failure of U.S. history to really appreciate the U.S. built Cobra due to it's foolish bypassing of it. The more I read it's as though Cobra's were the AK-47s of the aircraft world. Everyone had them, and made great use of them.

The Cobra certainly a plane that "earned" fame whether it got it here in the U.S. or not. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

It seems to by countless reports and stories that I have heard of Cobra (in different air forces) that the only ones who actually widely used that aircraft to it full potential were VVS guys. Why is that?

Till this moment I'm unsure of that. Someone say: "They removed armor. They removed guns. So therefore they had light version of P39". While it's all true, it still remains unknown why the USAAF did not test that out -> if that was doable for VVS I fail to see why USAAF did not do just that. Also I have read stories about difference in climate, and for sure it way playing some part, but..

The reason may be because they had something better in plans (P47s, P51s), but still..

I'm now reading D Loza's book "Attack Of The Airacobras", and I did not even imagine that one mechanic could face that many problem with maintainance of land-lease aircraft.http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif If they were short on some a/c spare parts, they were import them; but in lot of cases they were forced to prodece them via blueprints.

Also what I find interesting, is that the VVS pilots actually consider Kittyhawk inferior to P39.(P40s were dispatched in some of the P39 sqn's in VVS).
Some of the VVS pilots were ruined their P40 engines due to lack of superchargers..(the P39s that were in service at that time were equipped with superchargers).

Stiglr
01-10-2005, 03:36 PM
I can't prove it, of course, but I think the Russians liked the P-39 so much because, compared to worse pieces of sh*t like LaGGs and early Yaks, it was pretty decent.

faustnik
01-10-2005, 03:38 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Stiglr:
I can't _prove_ it, of course, but I think the Russians liked the P-39 so much because, compared to worse pieces of sh*t like LaGGs and early Yaks, it was pretty decent. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>\

The Cobra had a heater and a radio.

Blackdog5555
01-10-2005, 06:03 PM
They could listen to the latest western big band music on the radio and have a cold vodka from the mini refrigerator the P39 had in the back. It was an awsome party machine.

ZG77_Nagual
01-10-2005, 06:45 PM
Alot of it was tactics - back then, and getting the bugs worked out - and being up against the japanese when they were at their absolutely awesome best and had tactical superiority. Along with new planes came new tactics. P39 was in fact a pretty decent climber once it got sorted out.

In the simm there is no question. When I get frustrated in the 38 or 190 I just climb into a 39 for a few runs http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

JG53Frankyboy
01-10-2005, 07:23 PM
both allison engines , the one of P-39 and of P-40, had a single stage& single speed supercharger ! it was just not rated to higher alt.

the prototype of P-39 , that had a very good alt perfomance , had a turbosupercharger. but thre USAAC thought they would not need high alt (for that time) interceptors. so, the torbo was deleted.
and not all P-39s used 1942 in NG&Cactus had the M4 gun , the P-400 had 20mm Hispanos.

its funny that all early Cobras in ga´me has the hispano as default. espacially the P-39D-2 shuold have the M4, and most poropably no hispano option at all.

woofiedog
01-10-2005, 10:13 PM
Bud Anderson on the P-39
Bud Anderson first flew the P-39 in late 1942, from Hamilton Field in Novato California while training with the 328th Fighter Group. As he relates in To Fly and Fight:
http://images.andale.com/f2/103/126/10920756/1097026402430_1943_Bell_1.jpg
But the Airacobra was mincemeat above 15,000 feet, and useless in Western Europe, where virtually all of the flying and fighting was at double that altitude. ...

But in October of 1942, I was thrilled to be flying it. It was unique, with its engine behind the cockpit, and the propeller drive shaft running between the pilot's legs. It had a tricycle landing gear, unlike anything in our arsenal except the P-38. And the cockpit was more like a car's, with a door instead of a swing-up or sliding canopy, and windows that actually rolled up and down with a crank. You could taxi the thing while resting your elbows on the sill, like cruising the boulevard on a Saturday night.

Maj_Death
01-11-2005, 01:11 AM
In RL, the USAAF P-39/400 was possibly the single worst fighter of WW2 for the types of missions it flew. In PF it is pretty good but by no means superior to the Ki-43 or A6M2. While the P-39 is faster and dives faster, it can't climb anywhere near as fast as the Ki-43 or A6M2. The A6M2's advantage stops there because its superior turn rate at low speed is hampered by poor roll rate and terrible high speed handling. But the Ki-43 has other advantages as well, such as superior roll rate and superior turn rate at most speeds. The Ki-43 vs P-400 setup is comperable to putting a Yak-3 against an Fw-190A9. It is a fair fight, the Yak-3 or Ki-43 must use superior agility and climb rate to gain the advantage either in energy or position. The Fw-190A9 or P-400 must simply kill the enemy before they can do so or flee before the enemy gets the advantage.

Yimmy
01-11-2005, 03:29 AM
Why does everybody rate the Ki43 so highy anyway? It may be agile and the likes, but it has a useless gunsight and a useless armement.

Just messing around in a hurricane I let a Ki43 shoot me all it liked by flying in a straight line, and it still didnt give me more than a fuel leak.

WUAF_Badsight
01-11-2005, 04:37 AM
Hayabusa cant E-fight the P-39's on equal terms

man manouverability , but not enough Hp to hang with the Cobra's

JG53Frankyboy
01-11-2005, 06:24 AM
the most annoying "feature" of the Ki43-I is for me the realy bad rearview !
and that is because its missing the "normal" gunsight view , where your head is more forward and the headrest is not direct in front of your nose http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif
so, i like the View system of the F2A-2 much better - i dodnt need that "mega" telesopview of the Oscar- zooming in the F2A-2 sight is enough for me if i want to looke that close http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

btw, offline, its realy no proplem to kill engines of P-39s and P-40s in a Ic ( came december 42 to NewGuinea)

killing Hurricane MkIIb and F2A-2 (instead of B-339) in Ia & Ib (main version) is harder , but not much.

horseback
01-11-2005, 02:54 PM
1.) In early 1942, the 'Cobra was not a well-known quantity with the groups in the Southwest Pacific, particularly for the groundcrewmen tasked with its care. In some cases, units that had been flying P-40s until they had been run out of the Phillippines and Java were shipped P-39s or rejected Airacobra Mk Is (P-400s), often both types in the same shipments, without manuals or useful documentation of any kind. It was simply the only fighter type available for rushing halfway around the world at the time; missing manuals doesn't necessarily mean there hadn't originally been some sent, but that they never got there with the aircraft. The P-39 in the Pacific theater never got over the 'hard to maintain' reputation.

2.) Pilots used to P-40s weren't likely to fly a P-39 any differently, especially if they weren't 'old hands' at flying different types. The P-39 was quite different from the P-40 in some critical ways; it wasn't quite as torque-y, but that stall and flat spin thing could put you off a bit, especially in combat. The other problem was that USAAF pilots in the Pacific at the beginning of the war had little appreciation for the outstanding maneuverability of the Japanese fighters--flying fighters in a dogfight meant whirling around in circles and loops until you got the other guy in your sights. The survivers learned different tactics. Below 12,000 ft, the Cobra was competitive with or superior to almost everything out there, but the climb was nothing special (especially after passing 12,000ft), and if the enemy came to you at 15-20,000 ft and you had to climb up to him, well...

3.) Part of the Soviet preference for the Airacobra may well have its roots in the fact that while it's design was a bit unorthodox in some ways, it was the 'right size' for a fighter. A P-40 must have seemed like a truck to a guy used to I-16s or LaGGs, no matter how well it turned or how fast it (eventually) could be flown. Conversely, to most Yanks, it must have seemed a little cramped and puny by contrast to the P-38 or P-40.

4.) The first Cobras received by the Soviets were ex-British Mk Is, and it was almost love at first sight. The only modification these first aircraft received was the addition of an oil drain c o c k, so that oil could be drained completely and not freeze in and burst the oil lines in the winter.

cheers

horseback

Maj_Death
01-11-2005, 05:19 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by JG53Frankyboy:
the most annoying "feature" of the Ki43-I is for me the realy bad rearview !
and that is because its missing the "normal" gunsight view , where your head is more forward and the headrest is not direct in front of your nose http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif
so, i like the View system of the F2A-2 much better - i dodnt need that "mega" telesopview of the Oscar- zooming in the F2A-2 sight is enough for me if i want to looke that close http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

btw, offline, its realy no proplem to kill engines of P-39s and P-40s in a Ic ( came december 42 to NewGuinea)

killing Hurricane MkIIb and F2A-2 (instead of B-339) in Ia & Ib (main version) is harder , but not much. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

The armament of the Ki-43-I's is poor, no debate there but that super gunsight is what makes up for it. It allows good marksmens to place those few bullets you get with extreme accuracy. You may not be able to use that gunsight effectively, but it is my favorite gunsight in PF. Agility is not the Ki-43's only advantage as I've already said, it climbs like a rocket too. Sure the P-39 can outrun it in a flat run, but the Ki-43 can soundly outclimb the P-39. With the Ki-43's gunsight and gun accuracy, simply running flat out is a good way to get shot by a Ki-43 cause if he knows what he is doing then he can shoot you from 800m with reasonable consistancy.

catrevey
01-11-2005, 09:16 PM
P39 is a very respectable aircraft at lower altitudes and the VVS made the most of it. In the game I like the A6M2 for its maneuverability and decent firepower. The KI43 is hopeless on all counts except for great maneuverability. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_cool.gif

BigKahuna_GS
01-12-2005, 11:33 AM
S!

http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/5thafdan.html


http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/aafwings.jpg
Carlos 'Dan' Dannacher 40th Squadron - 35th FG - Port Moresby - Tsili Tsili - Nazdab - New Guinea 1942/43

http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/dan2.jpg
http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/40th.jpg
..
1942 and 1943 were dark days for Americans. The Axis powers were still on a victorious march and the Army Air Force (AAF) aircrews in the Pacific had to make do with limited shipments of supplies and aircraft considered unfit for the airwar over Europe. What their crews did not lack, was the courage to take the fight to the Japanese. By utilizing the superior traits of their aircrafts more rugged construction, firepower and tactics of teamwork, pilots and air crew like Dan Dannacher held the line and ground down the Japanese combat veterans of the skies over China, Java and the Phillipines.

http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/Papua.jpg
The 40th FS Red Devils -----Townsville Australia was on the peninsula opposite Port Moresby


*************************************

The 40th had just completed two months of combat flying at Port Moresby and were on rest and recuperation. There I got in some good flying time, including high altitude formation and tactics involved battle with the Japanese who controlled the air over New Guinea. Unfortunately, we never had the resources to do air-to-air gunnery. In November 1942 we returned to Port Moresby and took up combat flying again. The 35th Group had two squadrons of P-39s and the 8th Group had two squadrons. These were the only units to defend the Port Moresby area during the April to September 1942 period. . In November we were back in New Guinea at 12-mile strip (Berry Field). We had a mixture of P-39 Ds and P-400s, the Aussie version of the P-39 originally sent to the RAF. Early on the whole group had P-39s, but the 39th were able to get into P-38s in Sept 1942. That left the 40th and 41st to fly P-39s, which we did until Dec 1944. We flew mostly air alerts, escort for bombers and troop carriers, and a small bit of ground support. We only flew in the day time, night time was too hazardous in the mountains of New Guinea. Everything was in short supply - parts, fuel, food, etc. but we managed to fly those old P-39 airplanes into the ground. We could barely get to 20,000 feet altitude because the engines were way beyond change time.

http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/a6m5.jpg
http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/betty.jpg

The P-39s did not have the legs to reach the Japanese base at Lae, but the Japanese with their (Zeros) could accompany their (Betty) bombers to Port Moresby. The Japanese usually had the advantage of altitude in any battle because there was no air warning systems at the time. If the P-39s could anticipate the arrival of the Zeros and get up to their level, then the P-39 could out-dive and outrun the Zeros. Some air to air fights where a P-39 could get behind a Jap bomber made the cannon a good weapon. Otherwise, it was difficult to use manuevering against an enemy fighter and the machine guns had to do. The gunsights were rudimentary, so judgment was in vogue. The best bet was to get a good airspeed, get behind your opponent, and fly right on through their formation firing as you go, and peel off and down to break off contact. I shot at several Oscars but never hit any that I know of. I may have flown two missions with a 250 lb.bomb under the belly, and I destroyed one bridge from an excellent dive bomb run. On one mission we scrambled 12 P-39s to intercept a Japanese formation over Wau, New Guinea. Wau was about 180 miles north of Port Moresby. About 20 minutes out we were at 20,000 and ready to drop our empty belly tanks as we approached Wau, the site of a 2000' strip along side a 5000' foot mountain which was used by the C-47 Troop Carrier units. Just as we passed over Wau, my engine backfired and the manifold pressure dropped to minimum and PRM was about 1200, near to idle. The backfires continued whenever I advanced the throttle. So I dropped out of the formation and circled back toward Wau. I could see the C-47s taking off for the return to Port Moresby after unloading supplies for the Aussie infantry units. I could not see where the enemy lines were so I decided not to bail out.

http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/c47.jpg
[Authors Note: For good reason as the Aussies were still beating back Japanese attacks at the far end of the runway. The Japanese were close enough to mortar the field and the Aussies had to use grenades to pushe them back and allow the c-47 to land.]

Dan: " I figured with a clean airplane that I could make a good wheels up landing if I could just get into the correct position for a good base leg. I had to make a perfect touchdown. The peak in front of me was about 8000' so there would be no 2nd chance, and I did not want to slide into the C-47 operation. In all I had about three circles of the landing site, losing about 5000' feet per circuit.

(From Dans Letter to Ted Parks on the landing)With a little maneuvering, slipping around and adding some backfires now and then, I managed to hit it just right and hit the ideal spot in some shallow kunai grass. When I contacted the ground my body moved up against the straps and my hand squeezed the grip and each gun fired one round. I had forgotten to de-arm the gun switch and I guess the gunsight wasn't one of my worries.

[Note: on February 6th 8 P-39s of the 40th Squadron were escorting transports into Wau and intercepted a formation of 24 Zekes (Zeros probably Oscars) and 6 Ki-21 (Sallys). In the ensuing battle they brough down 11 of the Zekes and one of the Sallys. It was the first time the P-39 had won such a lopsided battle.]

Dan: "The P-38s came upon the scene and they could control the air battle then. The P-38s and the B-25s knocked out the big Japanese air bases around Wewak on August 17th and that is the big reason we managed to survive.

http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/p38x1.jpg


Squadrons and their P-39s moved 200 miles to a place called Tsili-Tsili. [a P39 named Grace under the cockpit escorting a number of C-47's.

Tsili-Tsili (pronounced Silly Silly)] The place carved out of a plateau in the mountains. The runway was dirt, and the nearest Japanese base was Lae about 80 miles away. Our survival depended upon the C-47s to carry our fuel, food, and ammo in every day. It rained a lot, but somehow we got the P-39s into the air and we began to control the area.

Overhead a Japanese recon plane observed the move. On the 15th as the ground echelon was flying in with the C-47's the Japanese came in with Ki-21 (Sally) bombers from Wewak with fighter escort. Dan "At that moment, the 41st Fighter Squadron escorting the C-47s arrived from Port Moresby and engaged the Japanese bombers and fighters. Tsili Tsili wasn't quite ready for our P-39s on Aug. 15th, but we kept P-39s in the air above the C-47s at all times flying from Port Moresby." From Steve Birdsals Flying Bucaneers. "One C-47 was shot out of the sky, another dissapeared into the jungle and the second flight turned back for Port Moresby. 11 of the 12 Sallys were brought down as well as several fighters. 4 P-39 went down but three of the pilots survived. Since the February fight at Wau it was the best showing ever by the P-39 but more was to come."

http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/ki43.jpg
http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/tony.jpg
Other adversaries of 1942/43 the The Ki43 (OSCAR) and the Ki61 (TONY) of the Army
..
The Japanese Navy's Zero's & Bettys were flown from bases at Lae and Rabaul and the Japanese Armys KI43 (Oscar) & KI-61 Hien (Tony) were encountered around Wewak and other bases on the North Central coast of New Guinea as the advance out of Morseby began.

Dan: "About the Japanese Tony's. The only time I saw one was when he was strafing me in January 1944. I was on the first mission after we had received our new P-47s and had just slung my parachute onto the wing when two of them slipped into Nadzab and sprayed the area. The Tony would have overwhelmed our P-39s, but it was no match for the P-47. Later on when we were up against the Japanese Frank and Georges, which had radial engines, it was an even fight.

http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/george.jpg

Dan: "In September we covered the landings of the Aussies at Lae, and staved off the Japanese air forces whenever the troops were threatened. In October we moved to the new base at Nadzab, just 50 miles north of our first base. Here we had a stabilized runway, but we were in almost daily contact with the Japanese fighters who strafed us and the bombers trying to mount a counter-attack. By December the Japanese forces no longer threatened Nadzab. We turned in our P-39s and transitioned to the new P-47 Thunderbolts.
*************************************


In the entire period from June 1942 to December 1943, the 40th Fighter Squadron flying P-39s shot down 55 Japanese aircraft including both fighters and bombers while losing 15 of our own. We lost many others due to weather, and some due to accidents. The 41st Fighter Squadron had a similar record. The P-39 is often demeaned as an ineffective fighter, more to be used as a cannon firing destroyer of enemy tanks. It is true that the Russians earned that reputation. (Russian Lend Lease P-39) But for the USAAF, the P-39s in the Southwest Pacific theater were the first and only aircraft to relieve the Aussies in the defense of Port Moresby in 1942. This was a major battle in WW II annals, but our air historians have neglected it. I am not a good one to assess the skill of enemy fliers. I know from others that the skill of the Japanese Zero pilots was extremely high. They had a good airplane and a lot of combat time when the US fliers finally met them. In the course of the war, it was more difficult for them to produce a lot of highly skilled pilots and so we finally overcome them. In the 1943 era the P-38s really ate up the Nips and turned the war around for us. The Oscars which I saw were flown by the Japanese Army Air Force and I think they were not, as a rule, as well trained and ready as the carrier pilots. In fact, I think that the Japanese Navy pilots really did not care to fly jointly with the Army fliers. I got hit once in WW II, but not by the Japanese. My no. 4 man hit me in the rudder of my P-47. We were on the way home from Wewak, doing some rolls to loosen up. He must have left his gun switch on. I saw the 20 mm. cannons on Japanese fighters blink at me several times, but never took a hit. And I was never able to tell if any of the firing I did was effective. As to which were the toughest missions, it seems to me that all of them were that way. Mainly because we did not know what to expect. And then when I least expected it, I had to land a P-39 wheels up near enemy territory 180 miles from home. Some were more exciting than other, as for an example on Okinawa, four of us in P-51s made a night time takeoff in order to hit the Korean coastline just at daybreak in July 1945. But we did not find any airplanes flying, only water and rail movements which we shot up easily. And a long trip to Shanghai, China made us apprehensive for awhile, but nothing ever came of it.

had a second tour in the Pacific, coming back to 35th Group and 40th Squadron again at Clark Field in May 1945. Johnny Young, my tent-mate at Gusap, had become Group Ops. I believe he convinced Ed Doss that I should be the next 40th C.O. So I had another batch of 40th comrades to relate to and P-51s to fly. When we got P-51s we had the advantage. I never engaged any Japanese fighters during my second tour in WW II in P-51s. The air battle was ending and we were doing direct ground support for the U.S.Army troops in northern Luzon.

In WW II the battle for the Phillipines raged from October to March 1945. The 40th was on Morotai so it flew long distances to engage the battle flying fighter sweeps over Los Negros and Mindoro in P-47D28 models which had the range for it. In January they went into Lingayen Gulf landings and from there they primaily flew sweeps over Formosa. In March the tactic shifted to dive bombing missions and the 40th lost five airplanes and crews over heavily defended harbors.

http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/p51.jpg
In April the 40th traded for P-51Ds, and scored 3 victories on one mission around 6th of the month. After that the Formosa defense sort of evaporated and the 40th took up dive bombing in close support of the 6th U S Army chasing the Nip groundforces up north past Baguio. We lost some airplanes doing that, but it was due to stupid flying, not enemy defenses

On July 1 we were on Okinawa and ready for an air war in the Japanese home area. On July 5, 1945 the 40th downed four Nicks over Kyushu and that was end of aerial combat for WW II. We landed our P-51s at Irumagawa base near Tokyo in Oct 1945.

When I visited the Air Force Museum in 1997 I heard a docent tell her group that "the P-39 was largely ineffective, but that it did fly in Alaska". That certainly is a gross insult to all the airman who put the P-39 into battle. The P-39 and the P-40 were all that the USAAF had in early 1942, and we made the best of our fate for a year and a half in New Guinea.
http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/p40f.jpg
I would like to tell and retell this story until the record can be refreshed, but I fear time is beating us. I flew the P-39s and also flew 200 hundred hours in the P-47.
http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/p47.jpg
What a thrill to get in that big Republic monster after struggling with the Airacobra. Whenever I entered the area over the Japanese bases in a P-47 I was always above 20,000 feet, never to give away the altitude advantage again.

CRSutton
01-12-2005, 11:54 AM
P39 had a problem in offensive missions out of Port Morsby. Frequently they had to fly over mountains to reach the enemy bases-attack and escort missions. On the way home they had to climb again to get back home. Due to poor climb rate, this put the 39 in a very poor tactical position vs zeros. That is, the option to dive away was eliminated by the mountainous terrain, and the zeros chasing the 39s had a distinct advantage.

ZG77_Nagual
01-12-2005, 12:35 PM
Climbed faster than the mustang http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

"It's interesting to note that the rate of climb of the P-39, which everybody in
the USAAF pissed and moaned about, was actually not that bad. The D and F
models (identical except for props, one electric, one hydraulic) could beat
both the P47C and P-51A to 25,000 ft.--and take *half* the time the P-40E took.
A P-39Q could get to 25,000 ft. in about 10.5 minutes, almost six minutes
quicker than the P-51D. (Of course, the Q couldn't fly from London to Berlin
and back.)
One of the reasons the P-39 got a bad rap in the SWPA was that when it was
initially deployed fairly early in 1942, what was desperately needed was a
super-fast climbing interceptor, because the best warning of an incoming air
raid was about five minutes. What was needed was something like the CW-21
(something with its rate of climb, anyway). The fact was that no fighter would
have been able to respond effectively under those circumstances. But since the
P-39 was what was on hand, it got ****ed by frustrated pilots struggling uphill
at 160 mph while the Japanese, thousands of feet above, winged over and howled
down on them.
It's worth noting that, despite the disadvantages they fought under, the 8FG,
which took over from RAAF 75 Squadron at Moresby, suffered fewer losses with
its P-39s than did 75 Squadron with its P-40s. And it should not be forgotten
that the P-39 was, in fact, not a failure in those desperate early days in New
Guinea. The 8th (and later the 35th) and its Airacobras gave the JNAF's Tainan
Air Wing (and later the 2AW) and its Zeros a well-pulped and very bloody nose.
Air raids on Morseby tapered off from two a day at the end of April to one or
two a week by the end of June. Nobody else was shooting at the Japs, so it
must have been the P-39s that discouraged them."

Be cool to have some of those early p38s too - bet they really shine in the pac in '42

BigKahuna_GS
01-14-2005, 02:36 AM
S!

This kinda sums up the condition of many of the p39's:

"Everything was in short supply - parts, fuel, food, etc. but we managed to fly those old P-39 airplanes into the ground. We could barely get to 20,000 feet altitude because the engines were way beyond change time."

It is interesting what this P39 pilot said about the P47:
http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/p47.jpg
What a thrill to get in that big Republic monster after struggling with the Airacobra. Whenever I entered the area over the Japanese bases in a P-47 I was always above 20,000 feet, never to give away the altitude advantage again.

"The Tony would have overwhelmed our P-39s, but it was no match for the P-47. Later on when we were up against the Japanese Frank and Georges, which had radial engines, it was an even fight. "

http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Runway/9601/george.jpg



___

woofiedog
01-14-2005, 04:17 AM
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif Excellent posting 609IAP_Kahuna!
Thank's

LEBillfish
01-14-2005, 09:34 AM
Frankly that helps recount the only part of the war I'm reading up on as I started flying online as
<span class="ev_code_YELLOW">Taii Ktu*78th*Sentai</span> of the <span class="ev_code_RED">78th HikoSentai, 14th Hikodan, 4th Kokugun</span>
flying Ki61 Sentoki and later when planes were lacking left behind Ki43 Sentoki.

Many are complaining how "dull" PF is due to their is nothing to do except take off from a carrier, fight, then land back on it or bomb ships.

How sad, the sea battles were to position to take the land, the land battle everything. If you start reading up on PNG/and all around it(Papua New Guinea) you soon start to discover virtually ALL Japanese types of planes fought there that we have and virtually All American and British planes.

http://www.j-aircraft.com/research/rdunn/tuluvu/sec_vii-map.JPG

It's the war around that area that is so diverse, just as much as any European Theatre or Eastern Front battles if not more so (due to sea battles) that I have absolutly no concept of how anyone could become "bored".

Best coops I've flown of late have been Ki61/43/Am6 vs P38/39/40/400/47 and all the associated bombers and ground attack planes. The P39/400 vital to the realism and just like anything if flown right deadly.

p.s. No joke, when AEP came out or whatever patch it was my first kill, first time flying a J8 was a P80.....Guess who was flying their plane right http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Papa_K
01-15-2005, 12:03 AM
P-39 is probably too good here. From descriptions, about all it could do better than a Zero, early war, was outdive it. Initial tactics and a lack of combat experience probably got a good number of P-39 pilots killed too. Japanese had been weening themselves in China.

Anyway, I like both sides of the matchup in the game. I've got a few "Quick Missions" set up for both sides. An early war df server with (only) P-39s (plus P-40s, etc) vs. Zeros (and Ki-43s), limited to '41 or '42, would be a fun time.

Papa_K