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Aircraft range and combat radius

 
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Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/14/2018 4:56:58 PM   
jmolyson

 

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Assumptions about the game given below are mine. Please give feedback if I am wrong. See WitP-AE manual 7.2.1.6.

///

RANGE is the maximum distance an aircraft can fly between takeoff and landing, as limited by fuel capacity, and implies a different origin that the destination. Range is affected by power setting, altitude, and cargo or weapons load.

RADIUS refers to an out-and-back mission, that is the origin and destination are the same or close to one another.

FERRY RANGE is the maximum distance the aircraft can fly from one base to another with maximum fuel load and minimum weapons or cargo.

COMBAT RADIUS (aka RADIUS OF ACTION) is the distance from where an aircraft is based to where it flies to carry out a mission, and then return with a safe amount of fuel remaining. In military terms this is calculated as one-third the range the aircraft can fly in a straight line with a full load of fuel and the same weapons or cargo load.

The Combat Radius calculation assumes 1/3 of the range to get to the mission area, one 1/3 for return flight and 1/3 for take-off/mission/landing.

Combat Radius is affected by weather; crew fatigue; fuel consumption; mission altitude; fuel capacity in internal fuel and drop tanks; if any; weapons or cargo load and mission demands.

I believe FERRY RANGE is what is termed MAXIMUM RANGE in the game terminology.

I believe COMBAT RADIUS is what is termed NORMAL and EXTENDED RANGE in the game terminology.

In the game, range and radius is modelled using aircraft endurance, how many hexes an aircraft can traverse in one mission.

Based on previous posts the designers have accounted for weather; crew fatigue; fuel consumption; mission altitude; fuel capacity in internal fuel and drop tanks; if any; and weapons or cargo load and mission demands.

Comments?

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RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/14/2018 7:06:46 PM   
inqistor


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Mostly correct, but you overcomplicate modelling in-game. There are just field for range in editor, they have nothing to do with plane bombload, endurance or anything.

Model works fine for smaller planes, but fails for bigger ones, as the more bombs bomber carries, the bigger chance it will hit something. Just take a look at this table from B-17F manual. There are no external bays for B-17 in-game. Moreover every mission over short range demanded extra fuel tanks in bomb-bay, which is not modeled in-game (but it may be, very easy).

Weather - it influences accuracy, and chance that planes will not fly at all
Crew fatigue - is probably only based on mission range
Fuel consumption - if there is enough supply at base, 100% will be consumed, no matter the mission range. If there is not enough supply, planes will not fly at all.
Mission altitude - it may add some extra fatigue, but is mostly used in calculation if CAP can reach attackers on time.
Fuel capacity - either based on mission, or Max Load. Far too low for bombers, especially 4Es.
Bomb/cargo load - not used, only Max Load is used for calculations. You can probably even define 100 Daisy Cutters, and plane will fly with the same supply consumption.




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RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/15/2018 12:45:20 AM   
jmolyson

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: inqistor

Mostly correct, but you overcomplicate modelling in-game. There are just field for range in editor, they have nothing to do with plane bombload, endurance or anything.

Model works fine for smaller planes, but fails for bigger ones, as the more bombs bomber carries, the bigger chance it will hit something. Just take a look at this table from B-17F manual. There are no external bays for B-17 in-game. Moreover every mission over short range demanded extra fuel tanks in bomb-bay, which is not modeled in-game (but it may be, very easy).

Weather - it influences accuracy, and chance that planes will not fly at all
Crew fatigue - is probably only based on mission range
Fuel consumption - if there is enough supply at base, 100% will be consumed, no matter the mission range. If there is not enough supply, planes will not fly at all.
Mission altitude - it may add some extra fatigue, but is mostly used in calculation if CAP can reach attackers on time.
Fuel capacity - either based on mission, or Max Load. Far too low for bombers, especially 4Es.
Bomb/cargo load - not used, only Max Load is used for calculations. You can probably even define 100 Daisy Cutters, and plane will fly with the same supply consumption.





Fair enough. Is there any way to change 4E bomber characteristics in the Editor to more accurately model the B-17 and B-24?

I already add the Tokyo tanks and modify the Endurance to reflect the longer combat radius provided.



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RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/15/2018 2:43:11 PM   
inqistor


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jmolyson

Fair enough. Is there any way to change 4E bomber characteristics in the Editor to more accurately model the B-17 and B-24?

I already add the Tokyo tanks and modify the Endurance to reflect the longer combat radius provided.

Drop tanks can be exchanged to ordnance, if not used, so that theoretically gives 4 different loadouts for the plane, but B-17 mounts so many MGs in different positions, that there are not much slots left.

I'm experimenting now, with different configurations. There is interesting question about extended range bombload, because they were carrying weight-wise more fuel, than bombs. Even using maximum combat radius it seems they could carry full bomb bay.




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RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/18/2018 7:34:13 AM   
el cid again

 

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Internal fuel tanks can be simulated using drop tanks. I call them "internal drop tanks."
They are a bit tricky because of how code treats drop tanks. Also because YOU should limit
the total load of the ordnance PLUS the added fuel in the "internal" drop tanks so they
do not exceed possible values.

Worse, code does NOT model "maximum bomb load" for Western medium and heavy bombers at all.
[It does this for ex-transports and most Axis bombers in the sense that "normal bomb load"
= "maximum bomb load"]. But for a bomber where these are not equal, carrying maximum
load of bombs would result in a VERY short range. The basic code assumes you want "normal"
bomb load. Statistically, that is 57% of transfer range for most bombers (because they
get to fly back with no load at all, they carry bombs for a bit more than half their effective
range). Extended range is for loads that are typically half of normal load - and never more
than 2/3 of normal load. Thus, you see, we have NO provision for maximum bomb load at all.
BUT you CAN use that load WEIGHT for your "internal" drop tanks. That WILL give you more
range with a normal bomb load (and still more for a smaller "extended range" bomb load).
The calculations are fairly tricky because code rates your capacity as added minutes of
duration at cruising speed.

But US bombers DID carry internal tanks, and SOME (notably B-24s) had very large EXTERNAL
drop tanks. External drop tanks require another calculation. Large ones have great drag - so
you lost a lot of the nominal extra range to drag! On the other hand, code does not charge
enough for using drop tanks - all you have to worry about is getting the right range values.
If you have enough supplies to use drop tanks at all - how much supply it takes is automatic and
very inexpensive. Advise if you want help with range calculations for various combinations of
planes and drop tanks. OR load RHS scenario 125 or 129 (which have the largest number of
possible plane types) and simply read the already calculated values.

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RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/19/2018 8:12:19 PM   
jmolyson

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: el cid again

Internal fuel tanks can be simulated using drop tanks. I call them "internal drop tanks."
They are a bit tricky because of how code treats drop tanks. Also because YOU should limit
the total load of the ordnance PLUS the added fuel in the "internal" drop tanks so they
do not exceed possible values.

Worse, code does NOT model "maximum bomb load" for Western medium and heavy bombers at all.
[It does this for ex-transports and most Axis bombers in the sense that "normal bomb load"
= "maximum bomb load"]. But for a bomber where these are not equal, carrying maximum
load of bombs would result in a VERY short range. The basic code assumes you want "normal"
bomb load. Statistically, that is 57% of transfer range for most bombers (because they
get to fly back with no load at all, they carry bombs for a bit more than half their effective
range). Extended range is for loads that are typically half of normal load - and never more
than 2/3 of normal load. Thus, you see, we have NO provision for maximum bomb load at all.
BUT you CAN use that load WEIGHT for your "internal" drop tanks. That WILL give you more
range with a normal bomb load (and still more for a smaller "extended range" bomb load).
The calculations are fairly tricky because code rates your capacity as added minutes of
duration at cruising speed.

But US bombers DID carry internal tanks, and SOME (notably B-24s) had very large EXTERNAL
drop tanks. External drop tanks require another calculation. Large ones have great drag - so
you lost a lot of the nominal extra range to drag! On the other hand, code does not charge
enough for using drop tanks - all you have to worry about is getting the right range values.
If you have enough supplies to use drop tanks at all - how much supply it takes is automatic and
very inexpensive. Advise if you want help with range calculations for various combinations of
planes and drop tanks. OR load RHS scenario 125 or 129 (which have the largest number of
possible plane types) and simply read the already calculated values.


The B-17F and B-24 received Tokyo tanks during manufacture in the wings. These were self-sealing fuel bladders that fed into the original fuel system. These would not have affected bomb loads because of cube, but certainly because of weight. Probably way beyond the considerations as far as being coded-in the game.

The original B-17Es of Fifth Air Force wouldn't have this upgrade, although there were removeable tanks available for the bomb bay. In the actual event B-17s staged through Port Moresby to refuel on the way to Rabaul, at least until PM was built up as the campaign progressed. No way to easily model that in the scenario, though.

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RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/19/2018 8:20:36 PM   
Dili

 

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If you put the bomb bay bombs (or part of) as external any external tanks when in use take the bombs from mission.

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RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/21/2018 5:56:32 AM   
el cid again

 

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Actually, it DOES affect the bomb load. The lift capacity of the airplane does not change. If one carries more
fuel, then one carries fewer bombs (to slightly oversimplify the problem). The great advantage of INTERNAL
tanks is they do NOT add drag, as the external drop tanks on the B-24 did. I am going to see if I can document
"Tokyo Tanks" and will consider adding them (which is hard - RHS has almost no remaining aircraft slots; but
this matters - even if we have to get rid of some minor type). Thanks for pointing this out.

quote:

The B-17F and B-24 received Tokyo tanks during manufacture in the wings. These were self-sealing fuel bladders that fed into the original fuel system. These would not have affected bomb loads because of cube, but certainly because of weight. Probably way beyond the considerations as far as being coded-in the game. The original B-17Es of Fifth Air Force wouldn't have this upgrade, although there were removeable tanks available for the bomb bay. In the actual event B-17s staged through Port Moresby to refuel on the way to Rabaul, at least until PM was built up as the campaign progressed. No way to easily model that in the scenario, though.



_____________________________ Joe


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RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/21/2018 3:37:47 PM   
jmolyson

 

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No Axis country had anything like the Fortress or the Liberator. These were different aircraft with different design assumptions, the benefit of a large and aggressive aviation industry.

Here's the bomb loadout for the B-17 and B-24D, all loaded into the bomb bay. Note the greater load capability of the B-24, although its greater flammability made it less popular that the rugged B-17. The slab-sided B-24 also had more room in the bomb bay than the svelte B-17.

B-17 -
2 x 2,000lb
2 x 1,600lb
2 x 1,000lb
12 x 500lb
16 x 300lb
16 x 250lb
24 x 100lb

B-24 -
4 x 2,000lb
8 x 1,000lb
8 x 500lb
12 x 300lb
20 x 100lb

Larger bombs were used against hardened and point targets (factories, bunkers) while smaller bombs were used against area targets such as airfields, troops in the open, etc. A string of 500lb bombs could destroy hangers, tanks and dispersed aircraft more easily than one or two 2000lb bombs.

Drag-inducing external bomb racks may have been an option for short range missions but would have not been the norm.

For example, the 8th Air Force missions into Germany which were full combat radius missions used only bomb bay mounted racks for their bombs. Conversely some heavy bomber attacks around D-Day in Europe used external racks onto which very heavy 4,000lb bombs could be fitted. These cut range but that wasn't a factor for these short-haul missions.

Bombs on external racks have to be armed before takeoff, normally at the end of the runway. Bombs in bomb bays are armed by the bombardier on the way to the target. Safer for plane and crew.

Incidentally the C-47 also had external bomb racks available on some variants, mainly to drop supply cannisters.

These racks only needed a separate electrical circuit to trigger bomb release.

These racks would have to be plumbed for external fuel tanks. This would require additional pipes and pumps.

The only reference to external fuel tanks (sometimes called "drop" tanks) on the B-17 or B-24 I have found was for two Navy B-17G which were rebuilt as PB-1W early warning aircraft late in the war. This mod required adding the aforementioned plumbing but only to the two B-17G aircraft modified.

I spent 10 years and two wars in an A-10 wing. Like the B-17 and B-24 the A-10 has a large internal fuel capacity and great range. We had the capability to carry external fuel tanks, but used them only for ferry missions across the pond. NEVER for combat.

"Tokyo" tanks were not external to the aircraft. "Tokyo" tanks were additional internal tanks in the wings fitted to the B-17F and G models. This was extra fuel internally carried that did not affect bomb load. Few if any went to the B-17E seeing depot maintenance in 1942. I think pretty much the B-17E was the predominant model used in the Pacific 1942-1943, being replaced by the longer-legged B-24 as they became available.

So adding extra fuel by adding extra tanks means a 410-gallon "ferry" tank in the bomb bay, cutting the payload of bombs in half. This added 700 miles to the range, about 230 miles to the radius. These were self-sealing later in the war, not sure about 1942. Not sure how this would affect the "durability" number for the sturdy B-17.

The B-24 was already vulnerable to battle damage to its fuel system so I don't think its durability would be further reduced.

Also, due to geometry not sure anything larger than 500lb bombs would load with a ferry tank in the bomb bay.

_____________________________

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RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/21/2018 5:17:46 PM   
el cid again

 

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I do not entirely agree. There were indeed Axis heavy bomber designs and developments. A good case
can be made that some designers were leading the world in their concepts. In particular, the He-177,
which did eventually reach production, was a very sophisticated bomber in many ways well ahead of US
practice. It was the basis for numbers of Japanese designs by two companies, in two and four engine
configurations. Which is not to say there were not significant flaws: the original idea for four engines
in only two nacelles turned out to be a significant problem (which Japanese companies rejected on principle,
opting for either four separate engines, or to wait for more powerful engines to mount in a two engine version -
both choices resulting in delays that were too long to cope with during WW2). To which add the outrageous
requirement imposed by Hitler that the machine be a dive bomber, which was utterly impractical, and which had
tragic results. It is, however, misleading not to admit it was a very sophisticated aircraft, for which there is
nothing comparable in its design year, or for several years thereafter. It is not unique. The Me-264 was
without peer, ever, although it only reached prototype form - one of these did cross the Atlantic in a test run.

It is true that most Axis heavy bombers were improvised variations of commercial aircraft, as indeed was the first
US bomber to achieve modern mass production (the Hudson - originally adapted from an airliner for the British -
and the pioneer in true mass aircraft production). The Hudson was very Axis like - with a maximum load equal to its
normal load - rather than the heavy bomber practice of max load, normal load and an extended range, minimum load.
This is because airliners were not designed to carry truly heavy loads. But it isn't as if the US didn't use the same
design concepts - it did - and it was able to do that faster than it could develop the B-17 or B-24. It also
needs to be noted that the British achieved real heavy bombers of unique capabilities, including the largest
of bomb loads, which US heavies could not equal. The British regarded their designs as superior, and only used
US bombers because they were available in greater numbers. I tend to sympathize with that view. Never mind I worked
at Boeing Renton, and both my parents flew B-17s during WW2 (pretty unusual in my mother's case), which is how they
met. My mother's story might be worth telling - never thought of that before. My grandmother built B-24s, her
"tool" being a sewing machine (used on canvas which was part of the internal materials). I also used to go to
Willow Run when it was an airport (formerly the largest airplane factory in the world building B-24s when my grandmother
worked there). I grew up more or less inside the US Auto industry, which is very proud of its wartime bomber
production (and believes myths like Japan did NOT use auto plants to build airplanes: I learned in Japan that
they DID that TOO MUCH! - resulting in more planes than they could crew or fuel - and not enough tanks - a mistake
understood too late). US wartime bombers were not perfect (B-24s in particular were dangerously flawed,
and yet operationally more important than B-17s in PTO - the tanker versions were so dangerous I won't fly in one -
generally leaking aviation fuel). My father was a tail gunner and my mother was a photographer, both on B-17s.
I later worked for both GM and Boeing, and even on the B-1B bomber project. I thought I would probably be the
last advocate of the manned bomber (but am not - I no longer believe it is safe to fly manned combat aircraft -
nor necessary - because of the lethality of missiles and because unmanned aircraft can maneuver better not to
mention have more range if they do not need to have humans on board). I got this view working in a USAF R&D
activity in the 1980s - THEN USAF developers did NOT expect what we see today - plans for yet another manned bomber
being advocated for post 2030 use.

However, I am not sure the Axis should have developed heavy bombers. In spite of my USAF books about how it was
a bad mistake not to field them, I think for Germany at least it made geographic sense to go with two engine aircraft.
For Japan, it is only slightly more iffy: they really are cheaper and Japan did achieve oceanic range with
two engine solutions. I would have focused on a G7N two engine solution to replace the G4N - but that decision
was not taken in time. A variation of the He-177, it was still quite advanced by the time it might have achieved
production. Armed with torpedoes or missiles or bombs, it might have been superior to the Ki-67, which did demonstrate
utility with two of those weapons. Its success in raids on Saipan and Guam was classified Top Secret until this century,
and was the reason Iwo Jima was not bypassed, but invaded. Japan used it in JOINT raids, brilliantly timed to
catch armed and fueled bombers on the ground (we never understood how - but they noticed our use of weather planes
in a consistent pattern before a major raid), and they were never able to be opposed by fighters because they bombed
at night (making one wonder why we did not set up radar picket ships and night fighters on carriers?). They
did NOT need to see their targets - they were good enough to hit the fields - amazing for the navigation techniques
of the period. Imagine those raids with a rather better bomber, with more load and more defensive armament, and more
speed.


quote:

ORIGINAL: jmolyson

No Axis country had anything like the Fortress or the Liberator. These were different aircraft with different design assumptions, the benefit of a large and aggressive aviation industry.

Here's the bomb loadout for the B-17 and B-24D, all loaded into the bomb bay. Note the greater load capability of the B-24, although its greater flammability made it less popular that the rugged B-17. The slab-sided B-24 also had more room in the bomb bay than the svelte B-17.

B-17 -
2 x 2,000lb
2 x 1,600lb
2 x 1,000lb
12 x 500lb
16 x 300lb
16 x 250lb
24 x 100lb

B-24 -
4 x 2,000lb
8 x 1,000lb
8 x 500lb
12 x 300lb
20 x 100lb

Larger bombs were used against hardened and point targets (factories, bunkers) while smaller bombs were used against area targets such as airfields, troops in the open, etc. A string of 500lb bombs could destroy hangers, tanks and dispersed aircraft more easily than one or two 2000lb bombs.

Drag-inducing external bomb racks may have been an option for short range missions but would have not been the norm.

For example, the 8th Air Force missions into Germany which were full combat radius missions used only bomb bay mounted racks for their bombs. Conversely some heavy bomber attacks around D-Day in Europe used external racks onto which very heavy 4,000lb bombs could be fitted. These cut range but that wasn't a factor for these short-haul missions.

Bombs on external racks have to be armed before takeoff, normally at the end of the runway. Bombs in bomb bays are armed by the bombardier on the way to the target. Safer for plane and crew.

Incidentally the C-47 also had external bomb racks available on some variants, mainly to drop supply cannisters.

These racks only needed a separate electrical circuit to trigger bomb release.

These racks would have to be plumbed for external fuel tanks. This would require additional pipes and pumps.

The only reference to external fuel tanks (sometimes called "drop" tanks) on the B-17 or B-24 I have found was for two Navy B-17G which were rebuilt as PB-1W early warning aircraft late in the war. This mod required adding the aforementioned plumbing but only to the two B-17G aircraft modified.

I spent 10 years and two wars in an A-10 wing. Like the B-17 and B-24 the A-10 has a large internal fuel capacity and great range. We had the capability to carry external fuel tanks, but used them only for ferry missions across the pond. NEVER for combat.

"Tokyo" tanks were not external to the aircraft. "Tokyo" tanks were additional internal tanks in the wings fitted to the B-17F and G models. This was extra fuel internally carried that did not affect bomb load. Few if any went to the B-17E seeing depot maintenance in 1942. I think pretty much the B-17E was the predominant model used in the Pacific 1942-1943, being replaced by the longer-legged B-24 as they became available.

So adding extra fuel by adding extra tanks means a 410-gallon "ferry" tank in the bomb bay, cutting the payload of bombs in half. This added 700 miles to the range, about 230 miles to the radius. These were self-sealing later in the war, not sure about 1942. Not sure how this would affect the "durability" number for the sturdy B-17.

The B-24 was already vulnerable to battle damage to its fuel system so I don't think its durability would be further reduced.

Also, due to geometry not sure anything larger than 500lb bombs would load with a ferry tank in the bomb bay.


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Post #: 10
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/21/2018 6:49:47 PM   
Dili

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: jmolyson

No Axis country had anything like the Fortress or the Liberator. These were different aircraft with different design assumptions, the benefit of a large and aggressive aviation industry.

(...)



Italians had Piaggio P-108 but only made 24.



< Message edited by Dili -- 12/21/2018 7:02:34 PM >

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Post #: 11
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 12/22/2018 2:30:07 PM   
jmolyson

 

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"No Axis country had anything like the Fortress or the Liberator. These were different aircraft with different design assumptions, the benefit of a large and aggressive aviation industry." (quoting myself so that I can explain what I meant)

First. Readiness. These aircraft (B-17E and B-24D) were ready for combat in 1941. Not perfect, but combat capable.

Second. Production. They were produced and deployed in huge numbers. Saying that the Germans and Japanese had prototypes flying in tiny numbers later in the war does not impress me. Saying that the Italians had 24 Piaggio P-108 does not impress me. More B-24s and B-17s were produced before lunch than that.

Third. Design. Four engines (4E) provide survivability and range as well as lift. Luftwaffe was always limited by its 2E bombers. Puny payloads that could not reach defended targets in defended airspace. So, we can bomb Rotterdam to dust but London never gets knocked out. A great tactical air force but no strategic chops. Later the missiles worked to a degree, but not enough for the Nazis to win. The Japanese stripped their aircraft of survivable design elements (self-sealing tanks, etc) but chewed up their crews as a result. Again, an effective tactical air force but short on strategic capability.

Fourth. Personnel. Crew training and support training was aggressively implemented. American (and Russian) aviators were produced in overwhelming numbers. The Germans flew their combat pilots until they died or were maimed. Little or rotation to train new guys safe in the homeland. Ditto the Japanese. The Americans rotated combat crews and trained huge numbers of replacements. So the average GI Joe pilot (or gunner) may not have been as good as his cream-of-the-crop 1941/42 Luftwaffe or IJN counterpart, but his chances of surviving were much better and he got better as his career progressed.

Fifth. Maintenance and Battle Damage Repair. The B-17 and B-24 were weapons systems in the truest sense. Large numbers of maintenance personnel were deployed forward with the planes to keep them flying. As the war progressed lessons learned were rolled back into the production process. The planes that went into maintenance overhaul received some of the same upgrades as new production aircraft were receiving. Enough aircraft were being produced that "war weary" planes could be scrapped without reducing the war effort.

Sixth. Employment. Success in the above efforts meant that these aircraft were produced and employed in effective numbers. Where were the 1,000-plane He-177 or P-108 raids over New York, Seattle or even London? Didn't happen because the Axis had neither the economy or organizational smarts or national leadership to make it happen. One or a few Me264 hopping the Atlantic when the war is already lost does not victory make.

Seventh. Daylight bombing. Effective bombsight with range and bombload to reach strategic targets. Production of crews and planes sufficient to sustain campaign from mid-1943-May 1945.

"It also needs to be noted that the British achieved real heavy bombers of unique capabilities, including the largest of bomb loads, which US heavies could not equal. The British regarded their designs as superior, and only used US bombers because they were available in greater numbers."

The RAF Chief Harris had a specific tactic for his 4E fleet: "Dehouse" the German workforce. If you burn down the cities at night, the factory workers are killed or driven away. This leads to emphasis on night-capable aircraft with weak defensive armament carrying large numbers of incendiary bombs. Shielding of engine exhaust to make bombers less visible. Bomber stream tactics rather than concentrated self-defending formations. Primitive bombsights if any - just drop on the flames. Accepting losses to German night fighters as opposed to developing long-range fighter escorts. Chaff to confuse search and anti-aircraft radars. A different war at a different time of day needing different kinds of aircraft. And of course the British thought that anything they designed and built was superior. The B-17 and B-24 were not especially efficient night-bombers, they were never designed to be employed that way.

The very-heavy bombs (Tallboy, etc) were developed for specific purposes and were not often employed because it did require a good bombsight and daytime delivery. In those missions the Lancaster was vulnerable to day fighters. Fortunately by that time the day fighter force had been whittled down by long-range USAAF escort fighters, attrition of Luftwaffe pilots by escort fighters and bombers' defensive fire and the precision bombing of German airframe and powerplant factories.


So as I said IMHO no Axis country had anything like the Fortress or the Liberator.




_____________________________

Joe

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Post #: 12
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/22/2019 8:24:51 PM   
engineer

 

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Perhaps a better point of comparison for the He177 and Me264 were the late war Allied heavy bombers like the Lincoln, Lancaster FE, B-29, B-32, and B-35 (an exotic Northrop example of overkill). At least Boeing eventually figured out how to manage the engine overheating but that was the Achilles heel of the He177.

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RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/23/2019 2:20:13 AM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

"No Axis country had anything like the Fortress or the Liberator. These were different aircraft with different design assumptions, the benefit of a large and aggressive aviation industry." (quoting myself so that I can explain what I meant)


Not exactly. Mention was already made of an Italian bomber rather similar to the B-17. But it is not well
understood that the He-177 was actually significantly better than either the B-17 or the B-24 in important
respects. This design superiority gets lost in the political and operational disasters that plagued the
type in both Germany and Japan for some years. Designer Dr. Engineer Ernst Hoenkel actually spent some years
in Japan just before the time the US enters the war, partly to market a number of aircraft, including a recon
design, what was then the world's fastest fighter plane (the He-100 - a renamed He-112), and the He-177 bomber.
A factory was built for the He-100, as was a factory for its inline engine, both at Hitachi. Ultimately, Japan
decided to use the engine only, and to wait for "superior" Japanese fighters, of which only the Ki-61 entered
production. While rather successful, it was much later in time than a 1942 vintage He-100 would have been.

Like the He-100, the He-177 had armor. Further, Japanese designers from two companies both rejected the coupled
diesel engine concept that led to so much trouble in Germany. They produced both four engine and two engine
solutions. Four engine designs could use lower powered engines, but four engines reduced speed and maneuverability
compared to two more powerful engines. And waiting for more powerful engines to be developed took too long.
Ultimately none of variations (Army and Navy variants of bombers and recon bombers) entered production: bombers
were no longer a priority by the time it was an option. But these WERE STILL very superior bomber aircraft,
derived from a design ahead of the US state of the art in the late 1930s. The Navy Nakajima versions are best
known as the G7N series. There were also Hitachi versions. All feature the rather superior He-177 crew layout
and many other features unrivaled by US bombers. Japan contemplated dropping full sized Long Lance torpedoes
in the anti-shipping role, and opted to trade the larger bombload inherent in the He design for longer range
with a still impressive weapons load. A student of aircraft and missile design, among other places, at Boeing,
I have worked out these options with realistic dates if anyone wants to contemplate their use in a non-strictly
historical mod (the only place they can be used since they were not put into production in history).

It remains, there WERE Axis options in the same class as the B-17 and B-24, and one could argue, in some ways,
superior options. Politics (requirements the German version be a dive bomber, and use a coupled engine which
was impractical to cool properly; lack of sufficient priority for bomber design early enough in Japan) got
in the way of fielding them. Which is just as well - they were all impressive aircraft.

(in reply to jmolyson)
Post #: 14
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/23/2019 8:16:49 PM   
jmolyson

 

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I think you're missing my point or perhaps it's just a matter of opinion.

The Fortress and Liberator were available at the beginning of the war and were produced in huge numbers. They were logistically supportable and adequate to task.

The B-17 and B-24 were not only were superlative in their intended role of daylight high-altitude strategic bombers but also in other combat and support roles, just as the British Lancaster was superior in the night bomber-stream incendiary role. The Lib, along with escort carriers, for example closed the so called Mid-Atlantic Gap. No other country had aircraft with the requisite range and payload to do that and the production capability to bring them to the fight in effective numbers.

These late-war Axis curiosity aircraft may have had a few new design wrinkles, but the countries they were built to defend lost the war before they could be employed effectively.

This is like the old "Germany has a genius for war". Really? They didn't win one in the Twentieth Century. Uniforms were classy though.

Japanese had better 4-engine bombers. Really? Why weren't they bombing the B-29 bases in the Marianas while the B-29s were leveling Japanese cities. Too busy cranking out swords, I guess.


One other thing. Politics is what wins or loses wars. The Axis Powers all had comic-opera governments and it shows in their inability to sustain the war against economically robust Western democracies or even the Soviets. Which was good for everybody and still is.




_____________________________

Joe

(in reply to el cid again)
Post #: 15
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/30/2019 2:27:51 AM   
el cid again

 

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I do not engage in "this country is better than that country" banter. Everything is relative,
and there is generally no superior aircraft. IF there was such a thing, early in the war, a good
argument can be made for Japanese candidates. The decision to trade armor for range was not
good in the long term, but it did result in significant operational advantages in the short run.

Axis bomber policy failed because of poor political choices, not because of inferior technology.
I will repeat - and I speak as someone who worked in the industry (and on a US bomber project) -
German bomber technology was SUPERIOR to US bomber technology in the 1930s. Further, some of this
WAS shared with Japan early on. [Partially, the political infighting in Germany caused the designer
of the He-177 to move to Japan and spend years there, promoting his products and building aircraft
and engine factories for German products. It turns out Hoenkel designed the best bomber of the
age in terms of fundamentals. It was in spite of him it did not end up in early production in an
effective form in either Germany or Japan.] Other far sighted Japanese tried to adapt aircraft
to the bomber role, as indeed the Allies did in the same time frame. [The world's first mass produced
aircraft was the Lockheed Hudson, a bomber adaptation of the Lockheed 14 transport if memory serves.
It was from the lessons learned of that effort that the US was able to mass produce your B-17s and
B-24s.] The Japanese tried to adapt the original DC-4 (renamed DC-4A), the FW-200, and the Ju-89/90
as 4 engine bombers. [Indeed, but for the Japanese prototype FW-200 project, Germany could not have
fielded "the scourge of the Atlantic" when it became the plague earning that comment by Churchill. This
was originally designed for the JNAF.]

A good simulation does not try to recreate historical events with precision. Instead, it offers players
a chance to see what happens if they make DIFFERENT choices from history.

(in reply to jmolyson)
Post #: 16
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/30/2019 3:21:18 AM   
jmolyson

 

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First of all, thank you for your service in the aircraft industry and in support of a U.S. bomber project.

Actually you engage in banter constantly. This thread has continued since last December. I enjoy discussing these kinds of things with you but that doesn't mean I have to agree with everything you say.

If we are now comparing resumes, I am a 32+ year Air Force veteran, graduate of the Air War College and a former member of the Air Force Doctrine Working Group. I also have authored a monograph at the Air Force Historical Research Agency on Allied vs Axis aviation in relation to the Battle of the Atlantic and Operation Neptune/Overlord. The "scourge of the Atlantic" quote is typical Churchill hyperbole, a grain of truth and a whole lot of exaggeration. 2/3 of my career was spent in flying units working with real aircrew, maintenance and support personnel. It takes people, as you know, to get airplanes out of the design lab to the factory and from the factory to the target. So my viewpoint is different from yours. That doesn't make your opinions wrong but they are different from the ones I have developed in my experience. More specifically it makes the way I look at AE fundamentally different from yours.

"A good simulation does not try to recreate historical events with precision. Instead, it offers players a chance to see what happens if they make DIFFERENT choices from history."

Actually I think a good simulation should generate realistic results "with precision" if the resources committed and the decisions executed are duplicated by the player. I like AE because pretty much that's what happens. If I land the 1st Marine Division on Guadalcanal and get it ashore pretty much I win. There are variables because some of the results depend on probabilities, just like real life. That's precise enough for me.

Some posts on the Forum in the past have suggested that AE is NOT a simulation, just a game. So when I get Allied aircraft whose combat radius is short of historical fact I wonder about what other errors are hard-wired in for so-called play balance for a game rather than a simulation. That was the basis for my original post back in December. So I adjusted the combat radius of Allied aircraft back to historical values using the Editor because no one in the Forum could explain to me why the real values are not used in the stock game.

Once I know the simulation is reliable (in your terms "precise"), then I can deviate from the historical to see how different tactics and strategies might have affected the outcome of WWII. It's how I enjoy the experience.







_____________________________

Joe

(in reply to el cid again)
Post #: 17
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/30/2019 12:57:17 PM   
Gridley380


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jmolyson

So when I get Allied aircraft whose combat radius is short of historical fact I wonder about what other errors are hard-wired in for so-called play balance for a game rather than a simulation. That was the basis for my original post back in December. So I adjusted the combat radius of Allied aircraft back to historical values using the Editor because no one in the Forum could explain to me why the real values are not used in the stock game.



I've found a few instances where historical bomber missions can't be carried out, but *so far* I've yet to identify one where I can confirm that the bomb load historically used is the one available for extended range in the game. Thus I've shrugged and moved on (figuring that the historical load might be lighter than the 'extended range' load in the game and thus the game is correct for the bomb loads modeled; not perfect but not worth trying to fix, especially since winds aloft, time forming up, etc., need to be considered).

If you've got a source that gives payload/range/altitude charts for various WWII aircraft would you mind sharing? I love those kinds of details. :-)

(in reply to jmolyson)
Post #: 18
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/30/2019 2:23:24 PM   
spence

 

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quote:

If you've got a source that gives payload/range/altitude charts for various WWII aircraft would you mind sharing? I love those kinds of details.


If you go to the vpnavy.com website you will find the actual USN Aircraft Action Reports for multiple missions over Paramushiro/Shimushu of PV-1/PV-2 aircraft flying as part of the "Empire Express" from Attu. The exact bombload of each aircraft in each raid is one of the attributes noted on one of the pages of the reports.

The squadrons involved were VB/VPB-131, VB/VPB-135, VB/VPB-136, VB/VPB-139
The Aircraft Action Reports can be found in the 1940-1949 section of the History Summary Page for each of the squadrons.

There are a couple of other interesting articles in the same sections: an account of the internment in the Soviet Union of the crew of an aircraft damaged in its attack in the VB-135 section and the translated diary of a Japanese doctor killed in the Battle of Attu in 1943 in the VB-139 section.

NOTE: The PV-1/PV-2s in the game AE do not have the range to attack Paramushiro from Attu. Although this may be the result of map distortion it should be noted that other raids by the same aircraft flown from the Marianas Is against Truk are also not possible in the game AE (not sure about map distortion in AE but it would be different at different latitudes wouldn't it).

(in reply to Gridley380)
Post #: 19
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/30/2019 4:46:41 PM   
Gridley380


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quote:

ORIGINAL: spence

quote:

If you've got a source that gives payload/range/altitude charts for various WWII aircraft would you mind sharing? I love those kinds of details.


If you go to the vpnavy.com website you will find the actual USN Aircraft Action Reports for multiple missions over Paramushiro/Shimushu of PV-1/PV-2 aircraft flying as part of the "Empire Express" from Attu. The exact bombload of each aircraft in each raid is one of the attributes noted on one of the pages of the reports.

The squadrons involved were VB/VPB-131, VB/VPB-135, VB/VPB-136, VB/VPB-139
The Aircraft Action Reports can be found in the 1940-1949 section of the History Summary Page for each of the squadrons.

There are a couple of other interesting articles in the same sections: an account of the internment in the Soviet Union of the crew of an aircraft damaged in its attack in the VB-135 section and the translated diary of a Japanese doctor killed in the Battle of Attu in 1943 in the VB-139 section.

NOTE: The PV-1/PV-2s in the game AE do not have the range to attack Paramushiro from Attu. Although this may be the result of map distortion it should be noted that other raids by the same aircraft flown from the Marianas Is against Truk are also not possible in the game AE (not sure about map distortion in AE but it would be different at different latitudes wouldn't it).


Nice! So in game terms a PV-1 should have at least a 17-hex range with a load of 3x500 pounders. Good data point, thank you.

(in reply to spence)
Post #: 20
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/30/2019 7:33:37 PM   
engineer

 

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The US Navy Naval History and Heritage Command has a public website with a cornucopia of data on assorted WW2 aircraft, including combat radius by load-out and the exact drop tank configuration associated. See https://www.history.navy.mil/research/histories/naval-aviation-history/naval-aircraft.html

This is much like the flight info presented above on the B-17, but in a slightly different format.

I've been hoping to find a USAAF equivalent with good primary reference material but haven't been successful for a free source. This outfit sells PDF for about $19 a pop: http://www.flight-manuals.com/index.html

< Message edited by engineer -- 7/30/2019 8:02:39 PM >

(in reply to Gridley380)
Post #: 21
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/31/2019 1:05:08 PM   
Gridley380


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Joined: 12/20/2011
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quote:

ORIGINAL: engineer

The US Navy Naval History and Heritage Command has a public website with a cornucopia of data on assorted WW2 aircraft, including combat radius by load-out and the exact drop tank configuration associated. See https://www.history.navy.mil/research/histories/naval-aviation-history/naval-aircraft.html

This is much like the flight info presented above on the B-17, but in a slightly different format.



Brilliant - and this lets us see where the AE model isn't wrong, but did make a choice that wasn't ideal; they don't give a profile with one bomb bay fuel tank, the wing tanks, and a bomb load; looking at the data and figuring the extra fuel linearly expands the bombing radius (trading off the extra drag from the external tanks against the takeoff/climb) we can calculate a range of almost exactly 17.5 hexes with three 500 pound bombs (aft bomb bay tank and external tanks).

quote:



I've been hoping to find a USAAF equivalent with good primary reference material but haven't been successful for a free source. This outfit sells PDF for about $19 a pop: http://www.flight-manuals.com/index.html


Hmm. Might be worth it for particularly critical aircraft - I see they've got PBY-5 operating instructions and a -5A pilot's handbook; seems like both should have payload/range/altitude data?

(in reply to engineer)
Post #: 22
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/31/2019 2:06:15 PM   
jmolyson

 

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My sources are mostly old books and historical atlases to study actual missions. I don't use online data because often the numbers are unreliable. If you are looking for something quick and easy, though, there's probably more available online today then there was a few years ago when AE first published.

It's fun to get back to near-original sources. As you do your research you get the feel of real decision-making in WWII, when there were no electronic computers and math was done on analog metal flight calculators. Sounds like a lot of math? Remember the real guys dealt with this while eating lousy food and dealing with mosquitoes! If they screwed up, crashing short of home due to fuel exhaustion was a real possibility. Besides IMHO digging into the stock AE data is part of the fun of the game. I did similar fact-checking on the orders of battle and other modifications to get AE as close as possible to WWII reality. I pretty much stick to the Solomons Campaign because it involves all the services and the two sides are evenly matched without "game play balancing".

Be sure to get combat radius (out and back plus target area time) and not combat range (which is one-way endurance). A combat radius is nominally 1/3 of your fuel to get to the target, 1/3 to use in the vicinity of target and 1/3 to get home. Aircraft didn't always get a full fuel load if the target was relatively close. This allowed a larger bomb load. Internet numbers are notoriously bad in ignoring the difference between range and radius.

In an atlas use a drafting compass to determine the radius. Once the compass is set to the range ring for the mission it describes, compare against the mileage scale on the map legend. Be sure of your units: statute miles (5,280 feet), nautical miles (6,040 feet) or kilometers. You will need to convert to the distance and speed units used by AE. AE I think uses MPH rather than knots (nautical miles per hour) for aircraft speed.

In a text, for example if B-17E models were used to bomb Rabaul from Port Moresby for example, carrying 4 x 500lb GP bombs without a Tokyo tank, you can measure the distance from P-M to Rabaul on the map (remember the distance units are important). You know that the combat radius has to be at least that number of the B-17s recovered at P-M after the mission.

For the B-17F I know the combat radius from Fire in the Skyand General Kinney Reports, histories of the 5th Air Force. I went aircraft by aircraft to get the combat radii. Then I modded the endurance and bomb load to get a relatively accurate number.

This is mainly for heavy and medium bombers and their escorts, if any. Carrier aircraft numbers are pretty accurate already, based on verification from numerous histories. Interceptors operate close to base so frankly didn't bother with them.

Self-sealing fuel cells cut the range and radius because the rubberized bladder itself uses some of the volume of the fuel cell itself and of course add weight to the airframe. That's one of several reasons why Japanese aircraft tend to have longer ranges. So data for very early-war Allied aircraft will be mainly for planes without these features. They became widely deployed by mid-1942, too late for many Allied pilots. So you may want to cut the range/radius a bit by July 1942 even for the same model aircraft.

In my own Air Force experience in supporting aircraft in combat I can tell you that real missions are sometimes flown beyond published combat radii. Since Vietnam we have had tanker support but are of course still subject to weather effects and detours around fixed enemy air defenses.

Anyway that's my two cents on the subject.


_____________________________

Joe

(in reply to Gridley380)
Post #: 23
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/31/2019 3:18:50 PM   
Gridley380


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jmolyson

It's fun to get back to near-original sources.


Oh yes. The most fun I've ever had doing "book" research was when I visited AHEC and got to hold actual WWII TO&E's in my hands. (And AHEC, unlike NARA, lets you photograph!)

(in reply to jmolyson)
Post #: 24
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/31/2019 4:14:36 PM   
Alfred

 

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Another thread were the realities of the game code is totally overlooked as some people find some material on the internet which allows them to claim the devs were dumb and produced wrong data.  I wasn't going to provide the correct answers to the OP but post #17 indicates the OP might deserve the benefit of the doubt.  Of course the other responders just go on their usual ego trips and "interesting" claims.

The first thing which is always present in this type of thread is the view that the devs "got it wrong".  That is a rather arrogant attitude.  In fact the two key dvs involved in designing the air component are far more qualified than most people who post.  One of them is a USN officer with both combat experience flying carrier fighters and secondment to naval HQ in Italy.  The other is an actual historian, you know the type who teaches at an educational institution, not the armchair type who relies on googling the internet from their basement.  As a professional historian it is second nature to him to assess the quality of, and compare, the sources.  So when they produce a data point which some indeterminate internet source is at variance, the non arrogant response should be  to assume they had good reason to produce what they did.  Which of course they did have good reason.  One being code limitations which force certain abstractions to cover all the range of real world data points because the code allows only one data point.  Another being the need to use a consistent methodology when translating data into a commercial product.  Individuals who produce a non commercial private mod for their own use can pick and choose which aircraft models they will provide an advantage to compared to other company/nation models, but this course of action is not desirable in a commercial product.

Most of the OP is not applicable to AE.  In general terms, the game methodology regarding range is:

maximum range (= OP transfer range) is 85% of historical maximum range
extended range is 66% of historical maximum range
normal range is 80% of game extended range

This methodology is then massaged to fit into certain game code limitations.  The game endurance number plays no role in determining aircraft model range in AE; it did in classical WITP where range was a hard coded calculation derived from endurance and cruise speed.  In AE each aircraft model's range was manually inputted, endurance is factored into other game aspects.

There is an informative dev post of 12 Feb 2010 which explains why they adopted the above methodology.  Their methodology had to take into account that aircraft were not always flown under best case conditions.  Sure, a Fortress could be ferried from the West Coast to Pearl Harbor in a single air hop.  That is if you recognise, with the expectation of not meeting enemy aircraft en route, that it would be stripped down of unnecessary equipment and surplus crew.  Upon arrival at Pearl Harbor, with its extensive store, all that equipment and personnel could be reattached.  But how, in game terms, do you then strip down a Fortress being ferried from Brisbane to an undeveloped airfield in the South Pacific, with the possibility of meeting enemy aircraft en route not able to be dismissed; a base which furthermore lacked the onsite stores and personnel to reequip that Fortress for immediate operations.  In the real world, even if the air unit could do the ferry in one hop, it still took some time (measured in weeks) before the unit was operational from the new airfield.  Not so in AE where, with the certainty of no possible encounter with enemy aircraft en route, a player can by air transfer long distance a Fortress unit and have it flying air missions at worst the following turn.  The game code does not allow for variable max ranges so selecting 85% as the consistent data point covers both best case and less than best case circumstances.

Then there is the issue of the quality of internet sources.  The OP is well aware of the many variables which impact on aircraft performance.  Specific details of the variables present in determining the published performance aircraft figures are rarely specified.  Not knowing the specific variables, how does one determine for AE the relative performance data between different models of different nations.  Should an aircraft be penalised because it lacks complete documentary data (maybe because the documents were destroyed in a fire bombing mission or to deny the enemy access to the performance data) when compared to a more popularly known aircraft (lets say a Flying Fortress) whose performance data was widely publicised to boost morale and secure fundi8ng.  For a commercial product, such treatment will generate irate comments (and harm product sales) from the disadvantaged aircraft fanbois.  So a judgement call on 85% as a consistent methodology was made.

Alfred

(in reply to jmolyson)
Post #: 25
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/31/2019 4:49:08 PM   
engineer

 

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From the Navy Site:
PBY-6A: Search radius (with 2 drop tanks) 830 NM, 21 hexes
ASW Radius (4 325 lb depth charges) 682 nm, 17 hexes - no tanks
Footnote gives combat radius as 40% of combat range given the very long range.

Need a little research on the 5 vs. 6A differences.

PV-1: Normal bombing radius (6 500 lbs, no tanks) 460 nm (40% range) in good weather and 380 (33% range)in bad (footnote indicates greater reserves allocated for adverse conditions. 380 lines up nicely with stock AE range.
PV-1: An extended mission would put a tank in the bomb bay, a 1000 lb bomb on each wing hard point, and give a fair weather combat radius of 525 nm (13 hexes) or a foul weather range of 460 nm (11 1/2 hexes).
The notes allow you to infer you could also an ultra extended range with clean wings, 3 500 lbs and the bomb bay tank so that might push you up to 14 hexes. A super ultra combat radius (bomb-bay tank, drop tanks, and 3 500 lbs would be about 650 nm (my estimate for what its worth) based on 33% of combat range. So would 16 hexes line up with the historical mission record? It is 15 hexes from Eniwetok to Truk - check. It's 17 hexes from Kiska to Paramushiro but if we went with a fair weather range of 800 nm (20 hexes) from 40% of ~2000 nm range in that configuration still plausible on sunny days. The flight characteristics check out to the mission history (as one would expect).

Whether all of that is plausibly codeable in the editor is a different matter. This gets to the point of AE as simulation vs. game

(in reply to Gridley380)
Post #: 26
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/31/2019 5:46:10 PM   
Gridley380


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Alfred

Another thread were the realities of the game code is totally overlooked as some people find some material on the internet which allows them to claim the devs were dumb and produced wrong data.  I wasn't going to provide the correct answers to the OP but post #17 indicates the OP might deserve the benefit of the doubt.  Of course the other responders just go on their usual ego trips and "interesting" claims.



Are you suggesting the scans of action reports from PV-1 squadrons that bombed Paramushiro from Attu are fake?

Or that the data from the Naval History and Heritage Command (a navy.mil URL, you'll note) is?

Both?

Or should we not be able to reproduce regular historical missions?

Sure, you can't code a game for everything (I'll never fault the developers for not enabling a "Doolittle raid", nor the balloon bombing of the west coast, or a dozen other niche events), but shouldn't the actual history provide a guide for whether the game's parameters and abstractions were done right?


(in reply to Alfred)
Post #: 27
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/31/2019 6:21:53 PM   
spence

 

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The map is surely distorted somewhat simply because of the projection of a "round" object on a "flat surface". In the end it's more important that a 12 kt convoy makes it from San Francisco to Brisbane in roughly the "right amount of time" following the "typical convoy route" than that PV-1s can bomb Paramushiro.

It is, however; advantageous to Japan to essentially ignore a theater of operations to which they historically committed significant resources because of said distortions (the B-25 and P-38 were also apparently able to make the flight from Attu to Paramushiro and return).


(in reply to Gridley380)
Post #: 28
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/31/2019 7:33:49 PM   
Gridley380


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quote:

ORIGINAL: spence

The map is surely distorted somewhat simply because of the projection of a "round" object on a "flat surface". In the end it's more important that a 12 kt convoy makes it from San Francisco to Brisbane in roughly the "right amount of time" following the "typical convoy route" than that PV-1s can bomb Paramushiro.




Actually in this specific case it looks like the map isn't distorted (653 nm, the real distance, comes to a bit over 16.3 hexes and on the map it is 17 - plenty close enough). The NHHC data supports the idea of a real bombing radius of ~17.5 hexes (with a reduced load and bomb bay fuel tanks), and the scans on the vpnavy site provide historical payload data for that mission that match up.

This, as noted above, doesn't mean the game loadouts are inaccurate, but by choosing to model the loudout differently (but still historically accurately) the historical mission can be achieved with historical range and loadout. A 17 hex range with three 500 pound bombs (and aft bomb bay tank plus wing drop tanks) is accurate both technically and historically.

I am perfectly willing to stipulate that the original design team did an amazing job with the data reasonably available to them at the time and the constraints of a need to make a viable game. For that matter there is, sadly, less existing data on the Pacific War now than there was then (artifacts and documents degrade, witnesses die, etc.). But there is more *readily available* data now than there was then. Wrecks have been located and dived on. Japanese sources have been translated and published. Declassified information has been analyzed.

No, you shouldn't blindly accept everything on the net - but you are fool if you dismiss a contemporary source because it has been scanned and uploaded.

Edit to add: the design team were, in my opinion, particularly wise to include a robust and surprisingly user-friendly editor. Hey look, here were are in the modding section talking about something that can be modded!

< Message edited by Gridley380 -- 7/31/2019 7:36:45 PM >

(in reply to spence)
Post #: 29
RE: Aircraft range and combat radius - 7/31/2019 8:46:02 PM   
spence

 

Posts: 5056
Joined: 4/20/2003
From: Vancouver, Washington
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quote:

Another thread were the realities of the game code is totally overlooked as some people find some material on the internet which allows them to claim the devs were dumb and produced wrong data. I wasn't going to provide the correct answers to the OP but post #17 indicates the OP might deserve the benefit of the doubt. Of course the other responders just go on their usual ego trips and "interesting" claims.


Yeah, who cares what the actual Aircraft Actions Reports filed by the flight leaders who personally braved enemy fighters and the abominable North Pacific weather have to say! Frankly I find your haughty dismissal of all that is not Alfred a bit over the top.

BTW: It seems that Paramushiro/Shimushu fell within the range of B-25s (17 hexes is in excess of any models' range per AE) according to the following:

https://www.pacificwrecks.com/airfields/russia/kitanodai/missions-paramushir.html

Although perhaps the above link is some kind of propaganda for the USAAF/USAF photos of the airfield(s) at Attu commonly show B-25s.

< Message edited by spence -- 8/1/2019 12:53:52 AM >

(in reply to Gridley380)
Post #: 30
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