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DukeIronHand

Your stable of starting pilots?

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Other posts and topics here got me thinking again.

 

In OFF (and even back in the RB3d days) I always have a stable of pilots I start with and they are always the same.

 

My usual roster always consists of:

 

1) 56 Squadron. Usually spring or summer of 1917.

2) 60 Squadron. February/March, 1917.

3) Jasta 11. March, 1917.

4) Naval 10. Spring, 1917.

5) 94th Squadron/USAS. April, 1918.

 

My only "new frontier" that I will be trying soon, and adding to the stable, will be a BrF2b Squadron...probably Summer, 1917.

 

I am curious where people like to start their careers in OFF and with what units and time period.

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I like to have pilots from all nationalities and mostly from the earlier periods so that I can try to progress through the war with them and have a long career. Usually they aren't that long though. :cool:

 

I often have SPAD pilots in the American 13th Aero for some exciting late war action. I'm something of Pfalz fan, so Jasta 10 is one of my favourite German fighter units. FA(A) 250 is for bombers pilots (I love the DFW!). My British and French careers are more evenly spread among various squadrons/escadrilles. I've flown Quirks and Strutters a lot in the early war careers, and as the French it's possible to fly Strutters even longer, well into 1917.

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In RedBaron3D I really liked the 'optional' two-seater careers that were added with the Western Front Patches. I had a particular fondness for my Farman chicken coop crates careers and the Aviatik CII careers, ( OFF needs some Farmans and older German two seaters, like the Aviatik, and the Ago.. ;) ) Once I get my OFF DVD I'm planning a bunch of early war two seater careers. That OFF has Fee's is just the icing of the cake.

 

How about careers with Happe's Bomber Group 25 with Salmson engined MF11's, Breguet Michelins, and Farman Horaces.. There's a reason that the German air service had a 25,000 Duetschmark price on Happe's head.

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I'm flying German mostly, and there the Albatros variants. Must be love at first sight.

But I like to fly in different areas and Jastas.

I have been flying with many of them, but still not with all.

If I should make a choice of my top 5 Jastas, I'd say:

 

1. Jasta 2

2. Jasta 5

3. Jasta 21

4. Jasta 28w

5. MFJ I

 

My favourite time for German pilots is from the first appearance of the Albatros (Sept. 1916) to the autumn

of 1917 (I don't like fying in grey and dull weather, so I often start pilots with the beginning of May).

 

If I fly British:

- the DH-2 in RFC-24, Bertangles-West, early 1916

- the S.E.5a in 56 Squadron

- the Triplane with RNAS

 

If I fly French:

- the SPAD XIII in northern Flanders mostly

 

My favourite airfields are

- Lagnicourt 1916 (Flanders)

- La Selve and Bantheville (Marne region), Wasquehal, Brayelles and Roucourt (Flanders) in 1917

- Vivaise (Marne), Ercheu and Cappy (Somme) in 1918

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I'm flying German mostly, and there the Albatros variants. Must be love at first sight.

But I like to fly in different areas and Jastas.

I have been flying with many of them, but still not with all.

If I should make a choice of my top 5 Jastas, I'd say:

 

1. Jasta 2

2. Jasta 5

3. Jasta 21

4. Jasta 28w

5. MFJ I

 

My favourite time for German pilots is from the first appearance of the Albatros (Sept. 1916) to the autumn

of 1917 (I don't like fying in grey and dull weather, so I often start pilots with the beginning of May).

 

If I fly British:

- the DH-2 in RFC-24, Bertangles-West, early 1916

- the S.E.5a in 56 Squadron

- the Triplane with RNAS

 

If I fly French:

- the SPAD XIII in northern Flanders mostly

 

My favourite airfields are

- Lagnicourt 1916 (Flanders)

- La Selve and Bantheville (Marne region), Wasquehal, Brayelles and Roucourt (Flanders) in 1917

- Vivaise (Marne), Ercheu and Cappy (Somme) in 1918

 

Aren't Cappy and Perrone two of the allied fields that changed hands a couple of times during the 1918 offensive?

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Yes - they were occupied in the last big German offensive. I like the area - beautiful terrain.

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See?

That's why I was curious - you really couldn't get a group of more different responses.

 

Part of the items that help me select is the time period (early 1917- the start of the "serious" air war in my book), aircraft type (each of these units fly one of my favorite A/C at the start or shortly thereafter), and its a "top" squadron personnel wise (at least historically).

 

My BrF2b Squadron for the stable will probably be 20 or 48. I need a good Camel squadron - beside some of the RNAS squads is their a "famous" Camel squadron in the RFC? Oddly none ever come to mind. Was thinking about 70 Squadron as, IIRC, they were the first to fly Camels on the Western front.

 

Olham's favorite airfield category is neat - I'll have to pay more attention.

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I'm something of Pfalz fan, so Jasta 10 is one of my favourite German fighter units.

 

I have always been curious about this. Jasta 10 is a unit famous for using the Pfalz - in a otherwise all (or mostly) Albatross JG1 in 1917.

 

What is the story there if you know?

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No. 45 and 46 Squadrons RFC should be good for Camel operations. And of course No. 3 Squadron RNAS.

 

As for the Pfalz: this craft was supposed to take over from the Albatros D.V, but wasn't an improvement.

So many Jastas stayed with their Albatros.

But the Pfalz is a sturdier craft - with her, you can make a steep and fast dive, without breaking the craft.

So, after an attack with altitude advantage, you can dive away fast. Only the S.E.5a and SPADs can follow that.

Hasse Wind should be more of an expert for this craft - he flew it for quite some time.

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45 and 46 are pretty well known Camel squads but 46 didn't get them till October 1917 and 45 a little before that if memory serves - or am I thinking of 3 Squadron. Sounds like a research project for me.

 

As for the Pfalz I have never really understood its "2nd class" status among some historians and some German pilots reportedly.

 

Allied fliers, test flying captured examples, thought highly of the aircraft IIRC.

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Duke, if you want to find out in OFF, just enter the "Enlist new pilot" and go through the squadrons.

You will see in the blackboard stripe at the right, which aircraft a squadron will get.

When you found your plane among them, click the time advanve button above, to check, when they

will have that plane, and where they will be then (on the map).

To leave it, just click okay - nothing will happen, cause you didn't enter a name.

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I have always been curious about this. Jasta 10 is a unit famous for using the Pfalz - in a otherwise all (or mostly) Albatross JG1 in 1917.

 

What is the story there if you know?

 

No special story I'm aware of. Jasta 10, an elite Staffel, was the most famous German unit that used the Pfalz. They were the first to receive the new fighter in the summer of 1917. Jasta 4 also used the Pfalz and was one of the Staffeln in JG1. But most of them went to the Bavarian Staffeln. I think Bavaria had a deal with the company or something. Also the Pfalz wasn't meant to replace the Albs, but to keep another type of fighter in service for reasons of safety and production capability. The Albatros was the main fighter, but the Germans didn't want to put all of their eggs in the same basket, so to speak. Even in 1918 when the Fokker D.VII became the fighter plane number one, production of other fighter models was continued (including the new Pfalz D.XII), though some other factories in addition to Fokker were indeed ordered to build the D.VII.

 

Some pilots preferred the Pfalz, because it was considerably sturdier than the Albatros. You could dive fast and long with the Pfalz without breaking its wings, which couldn't be done with the Albs D.III and V. This made the Pfalz excellent for balloon attacks. But the Pfalz was also somewhat heavier and more difficult to fly than the Albatros. Overall the Pfalz was no improvement over the Albatros, but then I don't think it was supposed to be something completely revolutionary. I like the Pfalz's toughness as an energy fighter, and there's no better unit to fly them than the elite Jasta 10 (I also like the yellow and white colour combinations in skins, which happens to be Jasta 10's trademark).

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