From: Cobleskill, New York, USA
I have done some experiments using the TTMW scenario. The rules on manual page 213 indicate that there are 3 distinct possible conditions which affect Airfield operations:
1) Airfield size relative to bomber size (including bomb load).
2) Aviation Support relative to total number of aircraft.
3) AF overstacking:
a) Physical aircraft overstacking (by number of aircraft engines).
b) Administrative overstacking by numbers of groups (units).
Each condition has specific effects according to manual page 213-214:
1) Condition 1 has 3 possible bomber performance penalties.
2) Condition 2 has only one penalty – 25% reduction in bomber missions.
3) Condition 3 penalizes aircraft launches, increases ground aircraft losses and delays aircraft repairs, unfortunately with no insight into any penalty magnitudes.
The single Condition 2 penalty surprised me, but I think that we tend to confuse Condition 2 and 3 penalties. I am still surprised at the minimal effect of Condition 2 deficiencies. If I am correctly interpreting the rules, a level 8 Airfield will support 8 squadrons of 24 single engine fighters with little or no Aviation Support and incur no Airfield penalties in any manner. Add an Air HQ with a combat radius of 8 and 16 squadrons of 24 single engine fighters are possible without penalty or Aviation Support?
I also wonder how seaplanes, which may or may not have their own AV ship support, are treated relative to overstacking group count, assuming, maybe incorrectly, that engine count does not matter, since seaplanes are not physically on an Airfield? With inadequate AV ship support, do seaplanes add to the overstack group count or are they ignored for overstack group counting and engine count?
Using the initial Dutch Harbor setup from the TTMW scene, Dutch Harbor is a level 4 airfield with an Air HQ (combat radius = 5) present, which should allow 200 engines and 9 groups without overstacking, before rest/training adjustments . The pure aircraft engine count and group count seem to be 320(284) and 11(9) respectively (seaplane deductions, if appropriate, are shown in parentheses). With all aircraft in Training/stand down general training with 0% patrol, an asterisk appears in front of the airfield info on the bottom screen info display with an apparent rules indicated 107(95) division by 3 engine count and 0 group count (since PBYs have different HQ, they could count as 2 against the group count if this is not negated by their separate AV ship support or the fact that they are resting). If I place 118 squadron in Training 100%, the asterisk disappears. This would seem to indicate that the group number went from 10 to 9, which removes the overstack? This seems to indicate that PBYs are included in overstack calculations in spite of logic. It also seems to indicate that groups only qualify to not be counted for overstack if they are in 100% training, not just rest or in training. Unfortunately, the group count before I changed the 118 squadron status to 100% training seems to have been 10 which I can not follow since the 2 PBY groups are attached to a different HQ if they are counted at all which yields an initial group count of either 11 or 9.
I can find no other mitigating “circumcisions” and I do not think that the other HQ contributes? WHAT A CAN OF WORMS!