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10 Best Combat Planes?

Discussion in 'Military History' started by Twitch, Apr 14, 2008.

  1. HIOAg

    HIOAg recruit

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    “Book figures are a poor indicator of actual combat range. There is more
    involved.”



    - According to my book, there are a number of earlier or same year airplanes that had range
    similar to or greater than the Mustang:
    Warhawk, Wildcat,
    Corsair, Hellcat, Lightning. Are you saying because of their drawbacks it was
    better let the bombers run unescorted? That doesn’t make sense to me!

    - Please explain further.

    Mike
     
  2. Poppy

    Poppy grasshopper

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    Bump
    Slow Friday-
    "The F(4U) was the fifth best fighter of the war, behind the Me262, FW190-D9, then P-51D, Spitfire (late models)"
    Cheers Luke...my opinion- the 262 was a great aircraft, but it didn't really play a part in the war (or even after). Only models that had a higher production number should be considered.
     
  3. Sloniksp

    Sloniksp Ставка

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    Thanks for reminding us that Russia also made some nice birds... :D

    I will add the Mig-3 and the Black Widow to this WW2 list.

    Post war SU30s and the SU35. Wasn't it the Indian Air Force that just beat both the British and the Americans in their SU30s?
     
  4. Poppy

    Poppy grasshopper

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    Look at how old you are becoming, Slp..Old as dirt, eh. lol
    Yes, the SU's above are excellent at gunfights. If any NATO craft were to get into a gunfight with an SU, they have already made a big mistake. In other words, there should be no gunfights. ..The Phantom discovered that a gun should always be included in a fighter. Its' designers were of the mind that guns were obsolete. Which has become almost true- 40 years later. i dunno
     
  5. Dave55

    Dave55 Member

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    Yawn is right. Gets boring being the best.
     
  6. Sloniksp

    Sloniksp Ставка

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    OLD?!?

    That's the only thing I got out off that post :D
     
  7. Poppy

    Poppy grasshopper

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    Old in internet years. Like dog years. (kidding around)
    Just meant that in todays air combat, engagements rarely get to gun range. Superior radar/electronics allow missile defense/offense rather than the gun.
    Wondered though, if aircraft were hit by EMP, would air combat go back to guns...Would older Soviet tech (vacuum tubes, etc) be more immune to the effects of EMP... would that change the playing field. Because China has thousands of old MiGs.
     
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  8. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    I certainly wouldn't consider the Me262 the best fighter of the war or even one of the best. Had it been developed to the point where it was reasonably reliable perhaps but it wasn't. Not sure it makes sense to rate any of the others over one another without stating why or defining what you mean by "best".
     
  9. Sheldrake

    Sheldrake Member

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    Nonsense. All future fighter aircraft looked more like the Me262 than any piston engined fighter. That was the verdict of the market. Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery.

    But that is the problem with picking the "best aircraft" from an era of intense technological development lasting six years. The best aircraft around in 1945 is going to have higher performance than the best around in 1939.

    That isn't the same as the "most influential", or the "best of its time and class."
     
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  10. Poppy

    Poppy grasshopper

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    The swept wing for sure.
    The MiG 15 was maybe the first to use that tech after ww2...were the Meteors engines ultimately the better route?
     
  11. CAC

    CAC Ace of Spades

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    Theres an interesting history behind the swept wing...British spies watched the swept wing 262 and other test aircraft taking off...messaged back to London, and the debate ensued...were the Germans on the wrong track? Why so swept? etc etc...Hostory tells us they didn't trust the German research and kept the Meteor straight winged (DING DONG your WRONG!)
    Later the actual research was uncovered and the swept wing was found to be a sound way of maintaining wing area whilst reducing frontal signature...
     
  12. Dave55

    Dave55 Member

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    I thought the only reason the 262 had a swept wing was to move the center of gravity aft, not for aerodynamic purposes.

    Am I wrong?
     
  13. Poppy

    Poppy grasshopper

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    Thought swept wings allowed maneuver at higher speeds, better gas mileage at speed, also greater load capabilities. i dunno
    To be able to sweep while in flight was a fairly big advancement.
     
  14. CAC

    CAC Ace of Spades

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    Swept for high speed...wings straight out for take-off and landing and slow flight...the drag slows the aircraft.
    The manouvering was more of a discovery, but not one unpredicted since drag is reduced when swept...
     
  15. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Hardly nonsense. Again the Me-262 given it's reliability issues as well as some of it's handling issues could is hardly rate able as one of the top 10 fighters in my book. It wasn't even ready for operational use by reasonable criteria. Not sure if the all future bit is correct or not but in any case the Me-262's wings were swept for balance reasons while the post WWII swept wing fighters had them for aerodynamic reasons. Flattery doesn't mean the plane was that good in any case, certainly there were some good ideas there but that doesn't put it in the top 10 in my book.

    Indeed time is an issue as well. I think I've made that point a number of times in threads like this.

    Exactly the Me-262 is arguably one of the most influential planes to come out of WWII but hardly one of the top 10 combat planes.
     
  16. Poppy

    Poppy grasshopper

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    Seeing as how OP's title never mentioned a time period- kinda looks like the f35 might be a bit of a lemon...The F111 also had teething problems, but eventually blossomed into a real beauty.
    Canada doesn't need the 35.
     
  17. CAC

    CAC Ace of Spades

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    Why doesn't it need the 35 Pops?
     
  18. Sheldrake

    Sheldrake Member

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    Yes the me262 had teething problems and it certainly wasn't a dog fighter.

    However, it had a 100 miles per hour speed advantage over any allied fighter and could attack bomber formations with impunity. It had 4 x 30,mm cannon and free flight rockets which could take down a four engine bomber. That made it better than any other bomber interceptor in service with any country in WW2 and puts it into the top 10. .

    Its main disadvantage was that by the time it was in production there were simply too many allied aircraft. Had the Germans had several hundred in January 1944 "Big Week" might have had a very different result.
     
  19. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Without the Hitler-Göring deal about the fighter-bomber plan who knows what me262 could have achieved in 1944....
     
  20. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    I have read that this didn't make as much difference as is often stated. Primarily because the engines were the main problem and they weren't ready for mass production (according to the engineer overseeing their development from what I recall) even after it went into production.
     

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