Thanks for the tip Silk! Is there a reference for bomber Flight speeds?
I'm not a ME kind of guy (not smart enough) but you can get an approximation with some quick testing. Go into Quick Missions, pick your bomber, full fuel, heaviest load, airstart at an appropriate altitude. Using technochat as an aide, advance the power to the maximum Continuous. Leave the auto-level function on and allow the airplane to accelerate and the airspeed to stabilize. That takes about 4-5 minutes. That is a worst case cruise airspeed (the airplane can't hold any more fuel or carry more bombs). But it is still too fast for wingmen or the player if they lag behind (meaning the need for Combat or Emergency power to catch up).
So let's assume your max Continuous power setting was 65% rpm (like a Bf-19E). Reduce power to 60%, again allow the airspeed to stabilize. Now you have an airspeed that allows players and AI to have some power available to them.
I just did a very short test with the Ju-88 on a winter map, using "normal" realism settings. I had 100% fuel, 44 x SC50s. I tested three altitudes, 300 meters, 1000 meters, and 3000 meters.
At 300 meters, 80% rpm is max Continuous power, and the indicated airspeed settled just above 360 km/h
At 300 meters, 75% rpm power, and the indicated airspeed settled about 340 km/h
At 1000 meters, 80% rpm is max Continuous power, and the indicated airspeed settled just above 360 km/h
At 1000 meters, 75% rpm power, and the indicated airspeed settled about 340 km/h
At 3000 meters, 80% rpm is max Continuous power, and the indicated airspeed settled just above 310 km/h
At 3000 meters, 75% rpm power, and the indicated airspeed settled about 288 km/h
Based on those numbers I would guess that 3000 meters or higher is a difficult altitude to plan if Ju-88s carry 44 x SC 50 on a non-winter map. But again I tested full fuel, and airplanes would burn off fuel getting to altitude. Performance would be better with a lighter bomb load. Without further testing I'd caution against missions in the Ju-88 at or above 3000 meters with this bomb load. It is highest drag configuration costing 84 km/h from your cruise speed per the specifications
Otherwise I'd say 300-350 km/h is a safe cruise speed for the Ju-88, allowing the wingmen some excess power to catch up. I suspect the He-111 numbers are lower as well as the Ju-87.
[Edit additional quick tests] Did some other weapons loads in the Ju-88. I think I found a bug in the process.
With 4 x SC 500 at 3000 meters 75% rpm airspeed settled around 340 km/h, at 80% rpm easily got over 360 km/h. This was the only altitude I tested with this load.
The bug I think I found was the settings window allowed me to select 2 x SC 1000 and 1 x SC 1800. In fact this was identified as configuration #12. I tried to spawn in at 3000 meters but only got a black screen with the ambient sound of the howling winter wind. Same with trying to spawn at 1000 meters. But I was able to spawn in at 300 meters with the realistic bomb load of only 1 x SC 1000 and 1 x SC 1800. I have no idea of the takeoff performance for this load. It could be too heavy for a summer map. Also for some reason starting down at 300 meters and then climbing gave me 88% as max Continuous once I leveled at 3000 meters. I only used 80% rpm to make an apples to apples comparison.
With 1 x SC 1000 and 1 x SC 1800 at 300 meters 75% rpm, airspeed is approximately 375 km/h and 80% rpm gets you over 400 km/h. Then I climbed to 1000 meters.
With 1 x SC 1000 and 1 x SC 1800 at 1000 meters 75% rpm, airspeed is approximately 375 km/h and 80% rpm gets you over 400 km/h. Then I climbed to 3000 meters.
With 1 x SC 1000 and 1 x SC 1800 at 3000 meters 75% rpm, airspeed is approximately 340 km/h and 80% rpm gets you over 380 km/h.
So...after further review. For most Ju-88 bomb loads you could probably safely plan 360 km/h up to 2000 meters, 340 km/h at 3000 meters, and conservatively 320 km/h at 4000 meters.
Edited by busdriver, 21 January 2018 - 23:18.