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Why IL-2 catches fire so easily?

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Another quote from the book referenced in my previous post;

 

"The IL2's armour shields were unable to resist the concentrated fire from the Bf 109's with the gondola style armament."

 

Finkeren, I always enjoy reading your posts as they are very informative and unbiased. But by Christ if you look anything like your avatar you are bloody ugly.

Edited by pilotpierre

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Finkeren, I always enjoy reading your posts as they are very informative and unbiased. But by Christ if you look anything like your avatar you are bloody ugly.

 

LoL :biggrin: Thanks, I guess...

 

There's a picture of yours truly to be found here: http://forum.il2sturmovik.com/topic/1609-faces-flying-community/?p=37573 Although I do believe I'm sorta hiding behind a mug of beer :drinks:  

 

It's a few years old but not completely misleading.

Edited by Finkeren

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Yes I too see a lot of fires some times, mostly when I get hit in the rear the plane just starts on fire weirdness. also I was expecting jammed wings and flaps and such, but haven't seen it yet.

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Yes I too see a lot of fires some times, mostly when I get hit in the rear the plane just starts on fire weirdness. also I was expecting jammed wings and flaps and such, but haven't seen it yet.

 

Indeed, it is the second kind of damage should be more frequent than ignites. This can be seen in the photos shown by Superghostboy, control surfaces are the Achilles' heel of any airplane. The IL-2 ignite because of shots from above (or rear) is much more unlikely. IMO, it seems more likely that shots from this position damaging the surfaces of control.

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Production numbers were valued over pretty much anything else, and introduction of new types of aircraft invariably slowed production down, so they simply weren't introduced. Instead old designs were steadily improved and ammended to the point where it was hardly recognisable anymore (compare a LaGG-1 to a La-9) while others were discontinued to make room for even higher production of a few types (like what happened to the MiG-3 and nearly happened to the LaGG-3) This strategy cost the Soviets some promising designs like the I-185, but kept the pressure up on the Germans, who couldn't understand, how the Soviets could turn up with seemingly endless reserves of equipment and manpower.

 

Fun fact: "The replacement of the PPSh-41 by the PPS-43 offered a monthly saving of 1000-1100 tons of metal and a reduction in man hours of 55 to 60 percent.*" The PPS-43 did get introduced and manufactured in the millions, but the PPSh-41 still remained in production throughout the war, for reasons you mentioned. 

 

*from "Soviet SMGs of WWII" by C.McNab. 

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'The Shturmovik rear guns proved to be effective against hostile fighters, and during the service trials alone, gunners shot down seven Bf 109s and repulsed many attacks.

 

From Wiki (please don't report me to the university- they will hang me on the nearest tree...lolz)

 

Keep hearing of how many Il-2s shot down. Thought I'd add balance..lol

Edited by whereisoleg

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Heh, I don't think anyone was claiming, that IL-2s were completely unable to defend themselves ;) neither is it strange, that the rear gunners achieved success during combat trials, where LW pilots weren't aware of the danger and usually thought it "safe" to attack IL-2 from behind.

 

It was the same, when LW pilots first met the Pe-2 in combat and weren't prepared for their speed and fast firing ShKAS guns. There are several reports from 1941 of small formations of Pe-2s fedning off repeated attacks by Bf 109s, shooting down many of them and suffering no losses themselves. In time though the LW pilots wisened up, learned to only attack at high speed use the gunners' blind angles and aim for the vulnerable wing tanks.

 

The VVS did in fact experience many victorious moments during the war, and there were elite units, who at times claimed 6 - 8 enemy machines for each one they lost (which due to overclaiming propably means it was really 2 or 3 to 1 - which is still quite good)

 

However, the general picture for most of the war was still that of disproportionately high losses for the VVS despite large numerical superiority and enormous successes for some LW units, especially fighter units (and in particular JG52)

Edited by Finkeren

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The oil cooler is the most vulnerable. Erich Hartmann used to aim for this. Moving his Bf-109 under and firing at close range. Otherwise its a flying tank.

Controlsurfaces was also a weak point, a relativly powerful engine Could however not make it manouverable and fast. So it skuffende huge losses mainly because of abcent escort and groundfire

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Controlsurfaces was also a weak point, a relativly powerful engine Could however not make it manouverable and fast.

 

The early model IL-2s were in fact quite manueverable before they added rear gunner positions and messed with the CG. The IL2 had fairly good powerloading for this type of plane, very effective control surfaces and a wing area the size of a one bedroom apartment. The relatively high-drag design limited its top speed, but it was by no means the heavy lumbering beast that most seem to view it as. Even the later, heavier and unbalanced versions, while much more difficult to handle, still had a small turning radius and were fairly maneuverable in all but the rolling plane.

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He-111 seems to suffer as much as the Il2, haven't tried the Pe2.

 

I wonder if it is simply because of the size and placement of the fuel tanks. In fighters,other aircraft parts might limit the number of hits to fuel tanks and thus the chance of fires so nothing appears excessive, but on bombers, with larger tanks, in the wings, this isn't the case so we end up with a higher incidence of fires ?

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Just to ask :

Is damage model development finished in BoS ?

Or do they need to add something ?

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Just to ask :

Is damage model development finished in BoS ?

Or do they need to add something ?

I'm sure they will continue to tweak it, but I think otherwise it is complete.

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He-111 seems to suffer as much as the Il2, haven't tried the Pe2.

 

I wonder if it is simply because of the size and placement of the fuel tanks. In fighters,other aircraft parts might limit the number of hits to fuel tanks and thus the chance of fires so nothing appears excessive, but on bombers, with larger tanks, in the wings, this isn't the case so we end up with a higher incidence of fires ?

 

The Pe-2 is something of a fire trap too, as it was IRL.

 

Yes, wing fuel tanks are generally more prone to damage and fires (as was the case historically) Both of the Lavochkin fighters in BoS have wing tanks and suffer much more from fuel fires than the rest of the fighters (at least in my experience.

 

I tend to think fires happen a bit too often in BoS. In most planes I see more fuel fires than fuel leaks, which I think should be the other way around. Setting a fuel tank ablaze is not something that just happens like that. It takes quite specific circumstances and usually involves a direct hit from a high caliber HE-shell to blast open the tank and vaporize enough fuel to let it ignite. I don't know about the other fighters, but at least the La-5 had a system that gradually filled the fuel tanks with oxygen deprived gasses (I think from the engine exhaust) as they emptied, thereby minimizing thre risk that an incendiary bullet would ignite the tank.

 

As for the DM being complete, I'm pretty sure Zak mentioned, that the upcoming changes to engine modeling will include updates to engine DM. Don't think this is going to have any effect on the fuel fires though.

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The thing to remember about the He 111, though, is that it's a 1930's design based on the "fast bomber" theory and entered service at a time when fighters were still typically armed with rifle-caliber machine guns. It could - as it was shown in the Battle of Britain - survive being peppered with .30-cal machine gun fire but, like most other designs of the period, it was highly vulnerable to high-caliber cannon fire and even more so when those rounds were filled with HE. There's only so many holes a self-sealing fuel tank can plug before its overwhelmed and catches fire.

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All aircraft ever built are vulnerable, fragile machines. All of them, even those normally considered "heavily armoured".

 

Republic P-47 Thunderbolt.

Edited by RDW

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i would really like to see DM and particle effects tweaked. its BoS weakest visual link. just doesnt match the detail of the AC.

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Republic P-47 Thunderbolt.

...will come apart nicely under cannon fire, just like any other plane. It just stays flying a little while longer.

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You might have read this about how Werner Molders showed another pilot how to bring down IL-2s in November 1941.

 

"He positioned himself of to one side of - and some distance away from - the last IL-2 in a formation of six. He then turned in quickly and opened fire at the enemy's cockpit from an angle of some 30 degrees.  The IL-2 immediately burst into flames and crashed. "Do you see how it's done?" Oberst Molders voice came on the R/T. "Right, now you take the next one".

 

I carried out the same manoeuvre and sure enough the next IL-2 went down on fire. "And again!". It was like being on a training flight. Another short burst and the third IL-2 was ablaze. The whole lesson had lasted no more than 12 minutes!" 

 

From German Aces of the Russian Front, John Weal, Osprey 2002

 

The area of vulnerability was the unprotected top of the fuel tanks just behind the cockpit.  Would this also work on the IL-2 variants with a gunner?

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I do hope the damage model is more in-depth by the time this game is released.  It's one thing where I think BoS loses out to RoF (particularly in the 3d modelling of the damage etc.

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To be honest: That Werner Mölders story says more about the sorry state of VVS tactics in 1941 than it does about IL-2 vulnerability.

 

The fact alone that the LW pilots had a free hand taking turns to line up and shoot precisely aimed shots to most quickly bring down the Sturmoviks is amazing. From the describtion it sounds like the IL-2s take no evasive action but just keep formation waiting to be shot down.

 

More sad than impressive.

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Well yes I suppose it is sad, but that is what happens when you throw virtually untrained pilots into action.

 

The context of the story was that the pilot Molders took out for a hunt had been complaining about how difficult IL-2s were to shoot down (presumably despite them taking little or no evasive action). Molders showed that they were easy to bring down in flames if you hit them on top of the fuel tank, just behind the pilot. I imagine that there should be little or no tendency to burn from hits anywhere else.

 

Time to get my game updated and try it out!

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S!

 

 Finns shot down IL-2's with Brewsters armed with 4 x .50cal. It could penetrate the cockpit and sides of the plane. Ilmari Juutilainen shot down IL-2's very much in the same way as Mölders describes, kicked rudder and peppered the cockpit from side. Kyösti Karhila said the Bf109G-6/R6 with the additional 20mm guns shredded IL-2's to pieces in one pass. The plane could take hits, but not so many if something critical was hit like controls or similar. Sometimes 1 bullet is enough no matter how much armor you have ;)

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...will come apart nicely under cannon fire, just like any other plane. It just stays flying a little while longer.

 

True, true. The P-47 probalbly wasn't immune to a 30mm in the wing root. Of course we're talking about the Il-2. Sorry for getting off topic.

Edited by RDW

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The il2 seems pretty tough ingame to me. Its basically immune to .30 bullets and it takes a lot of cannon fire to bring one down. I watched a ju87 pump probably 1000 bullets into an il2 on an airstrip and all he ended up with was a fuel leak. Even 20mm rounds the il2 is much, much tougher than a he111 or pe2.

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Yesterday I flew the Il-2 in MP on the Lapino map. It's been awhile since I flew it last, and I was actually surprised at how durable it was. I'd say it rivals the toughness of the old IL-2-1946.

 

The tide of battle was not with us, so it was few sorties, where I managed to make it back. Still the IL-2 soaked up the punishment far better than any other plane in BoS. Sure, there were a few cases, where I was set on fire by a short burst, but mostly it took a concentrated effort by several German fighters to bring me down.

 

On one occasion (I really wish I had taken a screenshot of this) I escaped attacks by 4-5 Bf 109s. One I shot down, and the rest were caught up in other fights. As I limbered home I went into external to look at the damage: The entire vertical stabilizer and rudder was gone, the entire plane looked like Swiss cheese, I counted 3 fuel leaks and a leaking radiator, my gunner was dead and the canopy hood blown off. Still the IL-2 was (just barely) flying, and took me over half the way back to base before I had to crash land.

 

I think the IL-2 is strong enough.

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I'm suffering from lots of wing and engine fires in the He111.  As alluded to in an earlier post, I wondered if it was the placement of the tanks, and that they were more exposed to damage in as much as enemy fire didn't have to penetrate anything else in order to damage the fuel tanks , whereas in more compact fighters bullets were more likely to hit something else before hitting the fuel tank  (this, I think, was an issue in RoF when trying to shoot rear gunners).

 

Anyway that is not really the point of this follow up post.  Finkeren thought that the increased propensity for fires might be something to do with cannon rounds or maybe different round types, this didn't seem unreasonable.  However on reflection my main opponent at the moment in the QM is flak when practising bomb runs.  I would have thought that flak was very unlikely to cause fires, unless it was a reaction to it hitting something else that then caused the fire.  Sure flak causes all sorts of problems but I should have thought that fire was the least likely, especially if it just piercing fuel tanks.

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I'm suffering from lots of wing and engine fires in the He111.  As alluded to in an earlier post, I wondered if it was the placement of the tanks, and that they were more exposed to damage in as much as enemy fire didn't have to penetrate anything else in order to damage the fuel tanks , whereas in more compact fighters bullets were more likely to hit something else before hitting the fuel tank  (this, I think, was an issue in RoF when trying to shoot rear gunners).

 

Not only are the wing fuel tanks more exposed, because there are fewer Things to get in the way. The flattened and often quite big wing tanks also presents a much larger target from most angles. IRL as well as in BoS most attacks come from behind or from above. Especially in the last case, the wing tanks will constitute a very big part of the target and even from dead six, the thick wings of the He 111 are quite easy to hit and it's practically imposible to hit the inner wings from behind without also hitting the fuel tanks.

 

Anyway that is not really the point of this follow up post.  Finkeren thought that the increased propensity for fires might be something to do with cannon rounds or maybe different round types, this didn't seem unreasonable.  However on reflection my main opponent at the moment in the QM is flak when practising bomb runs.  I would have thought that flak was very unlikely to cause fires, unless it was a reaction to it hitting something else that then caused the fire.  Sure flak causes all sorts of problems but I should have thought that fire was the least likely, especially if it just piercing fuel tanks.

This is a very good point, and it's my experience as well, that flak causes way too many fires.

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  Quote Anyway that is not really the point of this follow up post.  Finkeren thought that the increased propensity for fires might be something to do with cannon rounds or maybe different round types, this didn't seem unreasonable.  However on reflection my main opponent at the moment in the QM is flak when practising bomb runs.  I would have thought that flak was very unlikely to cause fires, unless it was a reaction to it hitting something else that then caused the fire.  Sure flak causes all sorts of problems but I should have thought that fire was the least likely, especially if it just piercing fuel tanks. This is a very good point, and it's my experience as well, that flak causes way too many fires.

 

Yes, that is my main concern. 

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Well, I did a little test illustrative: a few shots in the direction of the engine is sufficient. Only machine guns. I used the Lagg-3 because my aim with the Bf109 is terrible. Even so you can see that I shoot poorly  :unsure:

 

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4 points about that video:

 

1: The plane was already leaking fuel, when you started the attack.

 

2: You fired one salvo that achieved hits before giving off the fatal burst. We have no way of telling, how many did damage to the engine compartment.

 

3: The LaGG-3 is armed with a Berezin .50cal heavy machinegun, not a rifle caliber LMG, which is about the only thing the IL-2s cowling armour will protect against at that short a distance.

 

4. In the final burst I counted three consecutive tracer hits in a concentrated area over a period of little over a second. That is equal to at least 10 hits (just because most bullets aren't tracers, doesn't mean they aren't modelled - they are)

 

I'm not saying, there isn't an issue with too frequent fuel fires. This video just doesn't show it very clearly.

Edited by Finkeren
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Yes. The top part of the rear fuel tank in the IL-2 is quite vulnerable. That's well documented.

 

If you had been able to ingnite the front tank with a short burst from the ShKAS, I'd be willing to consider, something was wrong.

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Yes. The top part of the rear fuel tank in the IL-2 is quite vulnerable. That's well documented.

 

If you had been able to ingnite the front tank with a short burst from the ShKAS, I'd be willing to consider, something was wrong.

No, no, no Finkeren, bring back the horrible old man, now you look like a Raaaid look alike.

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First off: The old IL-2 has a rather simplistic hit detection based on so called "hit boxes", where BoS has a modern hit detection based on the actual 3D model.

 

I hate to quote an old post but this is simply untrue. 

 

BoS is using a hitbox system. Loft posted the hitboxes for the il2 and confirmed as much, and that image was posted in this thread.

 

As for "modern hit detection based on the actual 3D model" - no game today is using the visual model you see in game as the basis for hit detection. The reason why is simple; the more faces/vertices you have, the greater the load on the CPU is. If you were to use the visual model you see in game for hit detection then you'd be left with a game that can only run a handful of planes, if that. This is why everything uses hitboxes for detection instead. And don't expect this to change anytime soon unless you figure out a way to do collision detection on the GPU without several frames worth of latency  :lol:

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No, no, no Finkeren, bring back the horrible old man, now you look like a Raaaid look alike.

 

Actually, it's an "original raaaid". I had him make it for me :biggrin:

 

He drew me as an indian giving his feathers to his son. isn't it neat? ;)

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Actually, it's an "original raaaid". I had him make it for me :biggrin:

 

He drew me as an indian giving his feathers to his son. isn't it neat? ;)

:unsure:

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Actually, it's an "original raaaid". I had him make it for me :biggrin:

 

He drew me as an indian giving his feathers to his son. isn't it neat? ;)

 

Frankly, it looks awful.

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Frankly, it looks awful.

That was my intent. Don't know if it was raaaids.

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S!

 

 Looks awful or not, but a nice gesture by raaaid to make you the picture. And after all the slack he has received from the forum. IL-2 catching fire is nothing extraordinary. Based on my experience on working with aircraft do not mix armored and self sealing tanks with impervious to damage or anything else. IL-2 was durable to a certain point within it's design parameters, rest is just an overblown myth and propaganda taking in account some singular occasions when a totally shot up plane came back to base etc. All sides had these miracle stories boosting the reputation of a plane and how good it was.

 

 BoS is the first flight game to me where the guns do damage without insane amount of shots needed, if you aim on right spots and cause critical hits. Sure there are some questionable quirks here and there due limitations of our hardware and unfinished modelling of damage, but the effects of a well placed burst quite well match with battle reports how a plane caught fire or another critical damage. Hopefully the DM gets proper attention and sets the bar high for other flight games to reach for.

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