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USAAF Crash Communication

Discussion in 'Allied Aviation Of WWII' started by ww2instc, May 6, 2020.

  1. ww2instc

    ww2instc New Member

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    Hi everybody


    I'm new to this forum, and this is my first post.
    I hope somebody can help me with some questions I have:

    - What was the exact procedure when a plane got hit, and the pilot know he was going down. What exact did they had to tell to the Ground Control? How would a conversation go?
    - How many people were on Ground Control (and what was the exact chain of command,...)?
    - Would an American pilot be able to fly a Japanese Zero, or are the controls to different?
    - How did the uniform of a pilot of a Grumman F4F Wildcat in the Pacific looked like?

    I know these are a lot of questions, but I would be very gratefull if someone can help me with this.


    Thank you so much in advance for answering!!
     
  2. wooley12

    wooley12 Active Member

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  3. wooley12

    wooley12 Active Member

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  4. Class of '42

    Class of '42 Active Member

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    F4F Wildcat pilot circa 1945...some variations throughout the war.

    Wildcat pilot 1945.jpg
     
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  5. Sheldrake

    Sheldrake Member

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    You have asked these questions on two different forums, What is your interest?

    Aircraft operating over enemy territory were often outside radio range of any form of ground control.

    Aircraft on a single radio channel need to exercise strict radio discipline. Only one call sign can transmit at any time. A controller on the ground needs to pass information to aircraft about enemy aircraft and vectors to intercept them. The frequency needed to be clear for urgent information such "enemy low 3 o'clock" or "Red section break left."

    I am not sure anyone was expected to say anything if their aircraft was going down. There wasn't much anyone could do to help. Other pilots understood it was more important to get out before the cockpit turned o a BBQ, and no one would really want to hear your harrowing last words as you burned to death. The is an account of a squadron leader too badly injured to bail out of an aircraft that was going down to say good bye. But that was a frightfully British thing to do

    The F4F Wildcat was a naval fighter used by the US Navy, US Marines and British Fleet Air Arm. I am not sure that the USAAF ever used the type.

    I do not know what the US Ground control organisation looked like, but RAF Fighter command exercised ground control through Sector Control rooms each controlling up to three squadrons.
    The story is covered in several documentaries

    "Repeat Please" shows the group HQ and mentions the concerns about radio discipline


     
  6. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    Of course a US pilot could fly an A6M. LCDR Eddie Sanders was the first USN pilot to fly an A6M2 when he test drove the one recovered from the Aleutians (#4593) and repaired by the A&R shop at NAS San Diego. This was in late September 1942 at NAS San Diego . . . have to scrabble about to find the exact date, but his initial report, based on several flights, was dated 29 September 1942. Sanders was executive officer and chief test pilot for Flight Test which operated out of NAS Anacostia and would soon move to the being constructed NAS Patuxent.

    My father made in five flights in the same plane in September and October 1944 when he was Director of Fighter Training at ComFAirWest, NAS San Diego. He and Jimmy Flatley, his boss, the Director of Training, were the prime movers in having the plane, then stored at NAS Anacostia, ferried west for training purposes. He later, in December 1944, flew an A6M5 (#5357) while briefly again at NAS San Diego ashore with the TF-38 staff and, again, once in February and twice in March 1945. A6M2 #4593 got wrecked in a taxiway collision in early February 1945 with Dick Crommelin at the stick, a story of ineptitude on the part of an SB2C driver. Crommelin survived, only to be killed in a mid-air collision near Hokkaido in mid July 1945 as CO of VF-88. My father found #4593 a pile of junk in a hangar at North Island, during one of the TF-38 staff's sojourns ashore, probably late March, early April 1945, and got permission to make off with the port wingtip and some instruments, historical value and all that. We hauled that stuff around with the household goods from station to station until he retired in 1971. He eventually, sometime in the 1980's, donated it all to the Navy Museum at the Washington Navy Yard. Wish he had asked me first.

    And the USAAF did not utilize F4Fs operationally. There was plenty of opportunity for a USAAF pilot to get checked out in a USN type plane far from the combat zones - I believe at least one did so in F4Fs with VF-6 - just as USN types could get checked out in USAAF types. My father had the opportunity to check out a P-40 in January 1943 while VF-11 was working up at NAS Maui (having already seen the elephant, he said he'd rather not have to face an A6M in one). After war he had the opportunity to check out the P-51, P-59, P-80 and a Mosquito, all in 1946.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2020
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  7. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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    ..here's a great website with many pictures of F4Fs/bombers/etc and pilots
    ... also, a story of pilot Joe Bauer going down in the sea and the effort to rescue him..
    go to ''The Men'', then scroll down to ''The Leaders'' and look for Joe Bauer...click the link under Bauer's
    picture
    ..sometimes no one knew anyone was shot down till they got home

    The Cactus Air Force
    Naval War In The Pacific
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2020
  8. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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  9. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

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    ....in the book [ that's a book Takao --haha ] Baa Baa Black Sheep, Boyington is very detailed on being shot down....but he says nothing about communicating about it--even though it sounds like he had time to
     

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