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OTUs anyone? - 8/9/2011 4:39:12 PM   
Don Bowen


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Thinking about putting in some of the Operational Training Units as permanent Training air groups (in my personal mod). Would set these up using the "training" checkbox in the editor and some (newly added) training aircraft: Fairey Battle, Hawker Hind, AT-6 Harvard.

Question is what OTUs. Been doing some looking, and would appreciate any input.

US Army Air Corps: A number of "combat" groups were used for operational training and replacement training. These were "formally" designated beginning in early 1942. I can find no groups in existance as of Dec 7, 41 that were OTUs. Leaning toward the 84th, 88th, 382nd, and 383rd groups as OTU, all in 1942. There were others later, but would really like to find some that were so used earlier. Pre-war the USAAC sent pilots directly from flight school to their combat groups for additional training. Worked well "tween wars" when the number of green pilots was small but broke down during the immediate pre-war expansion when groups would receive dozens of rookies at one time and the squadrons became overloaded. Especially noticable in the Philippines.

US Navy: Have not found any actual OTU squadrons. There were some replacement units later in the war, but these appear to be "pools" rather than pure training units.

US Marines: A number of individual squadrons were designated "replacement-training" in 1944. The VMF in the 500 and 900 range come to mind. Again, would like to find something earlier (if they should exist).

RAF: Only things I can find in-theatre are No. 151 OTU and No. 152 OTU, dating from mid-1942. Some later "conversion" units set up to cross train aircrew when their squadrons change aircraft type (bomber to fighter, etc).

RAAF: Lots here. Eight OTU (No.1 OTU thru No.8 OTU RAAF).

RNZAF: Looks like two OTU, No.1 OTU RNZAF and No.2 OTU RNZAF).

RCAF: Can't seem to find a thing.

Dutch NEI: Nothing here either. Dutch closed their flight schools to form operational squadrons and don't seem to have had any OTU per se.

Japanese: No data.




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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/9/2011 5:01:06 PM   
Bradley7735


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Don Bowen

RAF: Only things I can find in-theatre are No. 151 OTU and No. 152 OTU, dating from mid-1942. Some later "conversion" units set up to cross train aircrew when their squadrons change aircraft type (bomber to fighter, etc).



Hi Don,

The RAF wouldn't need to have training units in-theatre. They could use squadrons in the UK and ship replacements to theatre. If you can't find any specific in-theatre units, consider using UK units and basing them in the off-map location.

I wish I could help you with specifics. Unfortunately, this topic is WAY out of my league.

bc

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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/9/2011 7:28:19 PM   
Kereguelen


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Don Bowen


RCAF: Can't seem to find a thing.



No. 5 OTU RCAF (located at Boundary Bay near Vancouver) trained Liberator Crews from April 44 onwards (many RCAF pilots serving in India were trained by 5 OTU).

quote:

ORIGINAL: Don Bowen


Japanese: No data.




If I remember correctly, at least one JAAF OTU (Yasen Hikotai) was located on Sumatra.

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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/9/2011 7:36:13 PM   
Kereguelen


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Don Bowen

US Navy: Have not found any actual OTU squadrons. There were some replacement units later in the war, but these appear to be "pools" rather than pure training units.



What about the Carrier Replacement Air Groups (e.g. CRAG-10 at San Diego)?

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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/9/2011 9:14:57 PM   
Don Bowen


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Kereguelen


quote:

ORIGINAL: Don Bowen

US Navy: Have not found any actual OTU squadrons. There were some replacement units later in the war, but these appear to be "pools" rather than pure training units.



What about the Carrier Replacement Air Groups (e.g. CRAG-10 at San Diego)?


As far as I can tell, the CRAGs were not OTUs. Rather they were "replacement" groups that were formed and trained and then used as a complete replacement. Sometimes, when a carrier came back from operations, it's current air group would be transferred ashore and new air group would replace it. This happened with Air Group 10 when it replaced Air Group 6 aboard Enterprise in late fall, 1942.

Switching air groups is not really implemented in AE, it's better to retain the original air group and assign individual replacements to it.


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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/9/2011 10:45:36 PM   
noguaranteeofsanity


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Don Bowen

RCAF: Can't seem to find a thing.



Try here: http://www.rcaf.com/history/orders_of_battle/index.php It has the RCAF Orders of Battle at the start of the war, as well as 1943, 1944 and 1945, which includes the following OTU units:

No. 12 (OT) Group - HQ Halifax, Nova Scotia
No. 31 (RAF) OTU - Derbert, Nova Scotia (ferry)
No. 36 (RAF) OTU - Greenwood, Nova Scotia (fighter bomber)
No. 1 (RCAF) OTU - Bagotville, Quebec (fighter)
No. 3 (RCAF) OTU - Patricia Bay, British Columbia (bomber reece)
No. 5 (RCAF) OTU - Boundary Bay, British Columbia (bomber (Liberator))
No. 6 (RCAF) OTU - Comox, British Columbia (transport)

< Message edited by noguaranteeofsanity -- 8/9/2011 10:46:00 PM >

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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/10/2011 12:12:40 AM   
Blackhorse


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IIRC, the Commonwealth OTU's trained pilots from across the British Commonwealth -- not just pilots from the home country -- and many (most?) of them were assigned to Eurpoe.

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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/10/2011 12:18:42 AM   
Lesbaker


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Air Training Squadrons based in Canada

10 September 1939
Air Training Command HQ Toronto, Ontario
No 111 (Army Co-op) Sqn (auxiliary) Toronto, Ontario Avro 626
No 114 (Bomber) Sqn (Aux) London, Ontario None Assigned
No 119 (Bomber) Sqn (Aux) Hamilton, Ontario D H 82A Tiger Moth
1 January 1943
No 12 (operational Training) Group HQ Halifax, Nova Scotia
No 31 (RAF) OTU Derbert, Nova Scotia Ferry
No 32 (RAF) OTU Patricia Bay, British Columbia Torpedo Bomber
No 34 (RAF) OTU Pennfield Ridge, New Brunswick Light Bomber
No 1 (RCAF) OTU Bagotville, Quebec Fighter
No 3 (RCAF) OTU Patricia Bay, British Columbia Bomber Reconnaissance
6 June 1944
No 12 (OT) Group HQ Halifax, Nova Scotia
No 31 (RAF) OTU Derbert, Nova Scotia Ferry
No 36 (RAF) OTU Greenwood, Nova Scotia Fighter Bomber
No 1 (RCAF) OTU Bagotville, Quebec Fighter
No 3 (RCAF) OTU Patricia Bay, British Columbia Bomber Reconnaissance
No 5 (RCAF) OTU Boundary Bay, British Columbia Bomber (Liberator)
No 6 (RCAF) OTU Comox, British Columbia Transport
British Commonwealth Air Training Plan
No 1 Training Command HQ Trenton, Ontario
No 2 Training Command HQ Winnipeg, Manitoba
No 3 Training Command HQ Montreal, Quebec
No 4 Training Command HQ Regina, Saskatchewan
10 August 1945
No 5 (RCAF) OTU Boundary Bay, British Columbia Lancaster X
No 6 (RCAF) OTU Comox, British Columbia Liberator

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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/11/2011 9:28:50 AM   
el cid again

 

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I just did this in the test game I am now playing. It works far better than I imagined: code seems to have been set up for it - but since most training units only show up as kamakaze units late in the war - you don't get to see the effects. The game tells you when "trained" pilots may be assigned to the pools (or stay in training - to get more hours - it tells you the hours of the pilot too). Yes - set them up as training units. If at some time you want the planes and pilots, disband the unit.

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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/11/2011 11:52:22 AM   
m10bob


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Thousands of American aviators got their training at local universities, in a government sponsored program which began in the very late thirties, (IIRC)..It is mentioned in FIRE IN THE SKY..


There were of course service schools like Kelly and Randolph fields.

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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/15/2011 12:23:10 PM   
timtom


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Old post from a few years back ->

quote:

ORIGINAL: timtom

Regarding operational training, I think it's useful to sort out what is/was actually meant by the term. Confusion arises from the fact that the term meant different things to different services (if at all) and often used dialectially in a manner different from the original meanings (if any).

Prior to the outbreak of war, all the major air services conducted training along broadly similar lines. Trainees were given basic flight training of about 200 hours. Basic training was segmented into primary, intermediate, and advanced phases with aircraft flown becoming increasingly demanding (the RAF initially only had the first two stages). "Primary", "intermediate", and "advanced" weren't necesarily the terms used by individual services and is only used here in a general sense. During the "advanced" stage trainees would train on obsolete combat-type aircraft. This training stage is sometimes termed "operational" in the literature, which is the term used by the RAF and its sister-services but not by other services (in the USAAF an OTU had a different function, fx). However what is remarkable about basic training is that it was broadly similar in length and structure between the services and remained so in outline throughout the war, nonwithstanding that those who could afford it lengthened training and those who couldn't shortened it.

The way the term "operational training" is commonly used on the forum is to denote training AFTER graduation from basic training but BEFORE assignment to a combat unit proper, like that conducted by the Advanced Carrier Training Groups of the USN at the time of Pearl Harbor. Hence it's important that we're clear about what we're talking about and don't presume that all mention of operational training means the same thing. Here I'll use the term to denote post-graduate, ACTG-type training.

Prior to the war, all the major services conducted operational training within the combat units themselves. A trainee would graduate and then be assigned a combat unit within which he would then receive additional training prior to being deemed combat-ready. This made sense because of budget restraints and the redundant capacity within the combat units themselves. Within the IJNAF fx, this apprenticeship lasted 12 months. This system worked fine in peacetime, but essentially broke down in wartime.

The RAF was the first service to introduce operational training, but since there was no third segment in RAF et al's basic training, operational training here was essentially equal to the advanced training provided by other nations except that the pilots would fly the same types of aircraft they would operate in combat instead of ex-service types. Later on the Conversion Units would operate in an OTU-esque manner, of course.

The IJNAF never introduced operational training units and the IJNAF only on a limited scale from late '44 onwards. Otherwise there was nowhere for the Japanese pilot to go between basic training and assignment to a combat unit. [K subsequently reminded me of the IJAAF Yasen Hoju Hikotai/1st Field Air Replacement Unit in existance at the outbreak of war]

The USAAF introduced a transitional training course in late '42 which gave 10 hours flight time to fighter pilots and 110 to bomber pilots, although it wasn't until '44 that a majority of pilots underwent transitional training and even then the emphasis was on bomber pilots. From late '42 a pilot could further be allocated an Operational Training Unit, whose function was to provide cadre for the formation of new units, or a Replacement Training Unit, which provided replacements for existing units. Training within these units were 60 hours in type, rising to 120 hours from mid-'44. On top of this each Air Force supposedly operated informal "trade schools" in theatre, although that's about the extend of my knowledge on the subject.

Within the the USN, the ATCG (later RAG) course was pecked at 75 hours of flight time, which later fell to 60 hours, although at what point the pilot would have received an additional 147 hours in basic. However the Navy Department system of replacing whole units rather than individuals meant that pilots would train within CAGs for up to a year or more before deploying, at least from the post-Guadalcanal period onwards.

Over and above this it wasn't uncommon to operate combat units in the operational training role - I think I've mentioned the Chitose Ku during much of '42 and MAG 11 on Samoa during much of the same period.



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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/15/2011 4:40:25 PM   
Don Bowen


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Very interesting. May I ask how you would evaluate the USAAC 88th Bombardment Group?

This unit was formed in 1942 as an OTU, with four bombardment squadrons assigned (316, 317, 318, 399). It was subsequently converted to a replacement training unit and then disbanded in 1944.

I am considering putting in this group's squadrons as OTUs, using the "training group" checkbox in the editor. I would then use it as a standard Training Group, filing it out with "green" pilots from the pool and letting the game train them normally.

Is that reasonable?

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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/16/2011 1:08:19 AM   
JSBoomer


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This link should give you some ideas about the commonwealth system.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Commonwealth_Air_Training_Plan

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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/16/2011 1:32:32 PM   
timtom


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Don Bowen

Very interesting. May I ask how you would evaluate the USAAC 88th Bombardment Group?

This unit was formed in 1942 as an OTU, with four bombardment squadrons assigned (316, 317, 318, 399). It was subsequently converted to a replacement training unit and then disbanded in 1944.

I am considering putting in this group's squadrons as OTUs, using the "training group" checkbox in the editor. I would then use it as a standard Training Group, filing it out with "green" pilots from the pool and letting the game train them normally.

Is that reasonable?


I wouldn't presume to tell you what is or isn't reasonable, Don :) Will it work? Yes, it ought to, but then you know that already. However FYI we tried to at least give a nod to the various training steps in the default XP values.



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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/16/2011 1:48:47 PM   
Don Bowen


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quote:

ORIGINAL: timtom

quote:

ORIGINAL: Don Bowen

Very interesting. May I ask how you would evaluate the USAAC 88th Bombardment Group?

This unit was formed in 1942 as an OTU, with four bombardment squadrons assigned (316, 317, 318, 399). It was subsequently converted to a replacement training unit and then disbanded in 1944.

I am considering putting in this group's squadrons as OTUs, using the "training group" checkbox in the editor. I would then use it as a standard Training Group, filing it out with "green" pilots from the pool and letting the game train them normally.

Is that reasonable?


I wouldn't presume to tell you what is or isn't reasonable, Don :) Will it work? Yes, it ought to, but then you know that already. However FYI we tried to at least give a nod to the various training steps in the default XP values.




Thanks. I'm leaning toward putting it in. If nothing else it is an interesting wrinkle for me to play with!

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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/16/2011 2:12:37 PM   
Terminus


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Playing with your wrinkles, Don? You don't think you need to get out more?



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RE: OTUs anyone? - 8/16/2011 2:48:51 PM   
Don Bowen


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At my age, wrinkles is all I got to play with. Luckily, my beautiful wife likes to play with my wrinkes too.

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