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Captain Hans Wind's Lectures On Fighter Tactics

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Quite interesting read (especially for lw pilots) and lots of useful info about tactics against russian planes.

Hans Wind was Finnish fighter ace with 75 confirmed victories.

http://www.virtualpilots.fi/hist/WW2History-CaptainWindsAirCombatTacticsLecture.html

 

Quote from article:

 

Enemy fighting methods with different planes:

The I-153 Chaika is mainly used at low altitudes of 0-2,000 m. Quite difficult to shoot down because of its excellent manoeuvrability. If attacked from below and rear, tends to evade by pulling up and after that shoots back when we go up. Superior in dogfights. The best way to shoot it down is to approach fast from lower rear quarter, in which case you can pull up behind it after firing.

The I-16 and I-16bis are very nimble fighters used at lower altitudes. A formation of several planes (about 5-10) willingly form the so called "Spanish fly", that is, the planes fly round in circles on a horizontal plane [Lufberry circle], so when attacking against one of them you become target of the next plane. The best method against this kind of circle is to form a similar one above it. The circle goes around in the same direction, but you attack from above, and after firing, pull up. When flying alone the I-16 (as well as the Chaika) prefers to shoot head-on. In such a case you should try to evade either up or down depending on [original text illegible] using the rudder with force.

The LaGG-3 is not especially agile in dogfight. It usually tries an outflanking approach from up and behind, shoots and pulls up. Likes head-on shooting. The tail has a heavy armour. When attacked it tries to evade with a quick half aileron roll to either side. The most vulnerable points are the engine and the radiator below the aircraft.

The LA-5 is an extremely agile and fast fighter. Similar hooking tactics as LaGG-3 thanks to its good climb performance. The method of fighting: usually an attack in sections from above; the flight leader fires first and his wingman when the target is evading.

The YaK-1 is nowadays mainly used as a close escort for bombers. The ailerons are very effective. Tends to attack head on because of the small and thin airframe. Evades even at low altitudes with a half aileron roll down and pulls away. Not especially fast. YaK-7B and YaK-9 are noticeably faster and as manoeuvrable.

The Hurricane and Spitfire are slow and clumsy fighters at low altitudes. They seek dogfights at high altitudes (over 5,000 m.) where their characteristics are extremely good. Used these days as night-fighters by the enemy. The Spitfire is faster than the Hurricane.

In addition to aforementioned planes the enemy uses American types, such as the Tomahawk and Kittyhawk, which are not as good as the LA-5. They are about on a par with LaGG-3 but more vulnerable.

There is nothing special to tell about bomber tactics. If a bomber (PE-2, Boston) flies alone it uses high altitudes (5,000-8,000 m.), in which case it is extremely difficult to shoot down. If the bombers appear in larger formations, they fly regularly at very low altitudes (below 2,000 m.), mostly at 200-300 meters. In such a case they rely on their combined firepower. If attacked, the bombers gather together into a tight formation, and all the rear-gunners fire whenever they have the slightest opportunity. The bombers don't make any evasive manoeuvres.

The IL-2 uses side slip in evading; they always fly at low altitudes in formations of several planes. If possible they try to use their forward-firing guns and rockets under their wings.

 

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As a side note, he was flying Brewster at the time when he wrote these tactics (1943) so not everything will fit straight to 109 pilots.

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Shows a great deal of respect for the VVS opposition as well.

 

Interesting.

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The Spitfire is clumsy? I think that may be the first time I've ever read that. Perhaps it was the pilots assigned to the Spitfire, rather than the aircraft itself.

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The Spitfire is clumsy? I think that may be the first time I've ever read that. Perhaps it was the pilots assigned to the Spitfire, rather than the aircraft itself.

 

It continues: ..."They seek dogfights at high altitudes (over 5,000 m.) where their characteristics are extremely good"

B-239 was propably more manouverable at lower altitudes.

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Btw those should be used Mark Vb Spitfires, effectively a 1941 plane. Lend-lease Spitfire IX arrived in 1944. Details also get lost in translation, maybe the Finnish word for clumsy in ACM could refer to engine power, roll rate...?

Edited by Calvamos

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well, that's really interesting! :) thx, i cant will find something like this on this famous site, just because language barrier etc like laziness...

 

if he mean yak-1b, that's absolutely correct because starting from late spring-early summer'43 planes have lower performance by several reasons including german attack on 292 plant... if he mean yak-1 PF, it's correctly too, of course... about efficiency of ailerons of lagg/yak, and tactics of il-2s looks like very correctly too, but p-40 are "more vulnerable"? hmm...

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Any Western planes used in the Soviet Union, especially the British aircraft which ran on high octane fuel, suffered from a performance degrade when operated by the Soviets.  The Soviets only had 87 octane fuel, (or worse) at the early stages of the war.  This meant the British aircraft could not use full boost.  Additionally, many lendlease aircraft were well used by the time they reached the Soviets, many were veterans of combat in North Africa or the Channel.

 

By 1943, the Soviets had generally settled on accepting the P-40's and P-39's in preference to British types, but although the Allison was not as demanding in its requirement for high octane, the levels of boost used in the Soviet service were lower than in U.S. or British.

 

There were no Spitfire IX's in service at Leningrad, the only Spitfires which might have been encountered were Spitfire V's, which were as mentioned, re-treads from N Africa or Britain.

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S!

 

 The "Spitfires" encountered were propably Yak-7b or Yak-1. There has been discussion about these planes. AFAIK most of the Spitfires were used in Kuban area. There were claims of shooting down Mustangs. The only applicable model would be the NA73 or Mustang I's VVS had, but were they stationed near Finnish front is another question. There is also a claim of a P38 being shot down, but that was propably a Fw189 in VVS colors. Also the claim a P39 wounded Hans Wind in 1944 has been studied. Taking in account the plane was fixed overnight and no big damage was done to the plane itself it was propably not a P39 that had the 37mm gun. More likely a Yak-1 or Yak-9.

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S!

 

 Very good book indeed Freycinet :) There is also one about Ilmari Juutilainen from same publisher. Written by Illu himself. Wind and Juutilainen were two exact opposites as pilots. Where Juutilainen was an ice cold and calculating tactician with more or less perfect 3D vision Wind was more of the "into the thick of it" type. Some said even reckless and claim this to be one reason why he got wounded in 1944 and never returned to the skies after that. Juutilainen kept his calm even in tightest of spots and never got hit by enemy fighters. Both handled their planes extremely well and were good marksmen. 

 

 Sadly never had the chance to meet Juutilainen or Wind when they were alive, but I've met some other pilots like Kyösti Karhila (32 victories), Hemmo Leino (22 victories) etc. They were magnificient chaps to talk with and could tell about their experiences so well that you almost were there so to say. Another great ace I met was Günther Rall. He was then at age of 85 but in very good shape and could captivate his audience just like that. And had great sense of humour too. Really sad to see these eagles pass away and going to the Ghost Squadron. A piece of history vanishing :(

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Rall should have let a bit of his humour trickle through in his stone-dry autobiography... Amazingly, for what he experienced, a boring read.

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S!

 

 Maybe so, but maybe he wanted to keep it more "fact like" than coloring it with humour or stories. Johannes Steinhoff's book was a bit odd to, not in a bad way though. I think the translation would be Messerschmitt's over Sicily. There is also a difference in the two Galland's books. The First and The Last was more bitter and punched on the leadership more than the not so long ago published book. Seems years smoothened the things a bit, but still he made remarks of the leadership they had. Still so many books to read :) My bookshelf is filling up nicely :)

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Steinhoffs' Die Strasse Von Messina is a very good read, I liked it. Verschwörung der Jagdflieger is not so much about flying as about all the politics in the Luftwaffe...

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