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Bombers, speed over defensive armament, why were lessons ignored ?

Discussion in 'Aircraft' started by Justin Smith, Oct 24, 2011.

  1. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

    Jun 20, 2002
    Likes Received:
    London, England.
    That's a very interesting photo which I've never seen ( or anything quite like it ) before. All I can do is contribute a few random thoughts/guesses.....

    The theory about removal of weight sounds reasonable enough. From all the accounts I've read, it really seems that the front turret was little-used. The exception of course was the Dam Buster raid where the turret was manned throughout the raid, mainly to 'keep the heads down' of the German light flak. If the photo had been taken later in the War, I'd have suggested that this mod was undertaken for all-out speed, but in May '44 Bomber Command hadn't weren't heavily involved in daylight raiding. Also, if outright speed were needed, it's a little odd that the exhausts retain their fairings.

    I'd certainly agree that this is a non-standard modification ; as I'm sure you're aware records indicate that ND567 went straight from 32MU to 405 Squadron and wouldn't appear to have been selected for special duties elsewhere.

    I'm sorry not to be able to shed more light - but many thanks for sharing that image with us.
  2. TiredOldSoldier

    TiredOldSoldier Ace

    Sep 14, 2008
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    Yhe whole idea of a fast bomber assomes you can design one the's faster than fighters. The emnemy has access to equivalent tech so:
    - The bomber has to carry bombs, this is not a big issue for drag but adds a lot of weight.
    - The fighter has to carry guns and ammo, tihis affects both drag and weight.
    - For nightfigters the fighter has to carry a radar, big effect on drag.
    - Both would be affected, if used, by exhaust masking and simlar visibility reducing methods, reducing engine performance

    IMO the speed advantage is to the fighter, the reason the mossies got trhough is that the four engined bombers attracted most of the attention and the Germans never did put an all out effort into buildingh a very fast night fighter, with no lancs to worry about they would and a stripped down twin engined 4000hp twin engined night fighter with couple of Mk 108 will be faster than a loaded mossie, and this is without factoring in the effect of jet technology that would have made a "mossie only" fleet obsolete overnight.

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