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Hauksbee

Sighting your guns in the Aviatik 2-seater...

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Today I found the new pics of the Aviatik. It seems that the MG slides fore and aft on a rail outside the gunners cockpit. But with the gun set so low, how does the gunner manage to sight down the barrel on anything at the same level, let alone draw a bead on attacks from above?

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Maybe he kneels down? Not all gunners in WW1 two-seaters even had seats, it seems. They just stood in the pit or kneeled against something.

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Pics of observers with the later ring mount show them crouching right down in the fuselage with just their head above the ring, to get max elevation; with the Aviatik's inferior rails the field of fire was probably more limited. The OFF devs have had to put an MG on each side, while the real one would probably have carried only one MG switched between mounts á la BE2c. Will be interesting to see how the OFF gunner animation works!

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Are there any tales of an observer droppping his machine gune over the side when switching mounts? Oops!

 

I don't know of any such tales, but I'm absolutely sure it must have happened sometimes.

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There are Aviatik's with 2 guns mounted as we have them (in Windsock for example) so we went with that. But yes technically you'd have to crouch to aim higher.

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Still far away from the comforts of the Liberator's turnable gun turrets, eyh?

Why install a seat, when the guy can sit on his ammo box?

We're not in this war for any cosey comfort, soldier!

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Are there any tales of an observer droppping his machine gune over the side when switching mounts? Oops!

 

I don't recall such an account, but accidents do happen...in 'Army Aviation in Ulster' by Warner & Boyd, there's an account of an Army Gazelle chopper which had just taken off from Palace Barracks near-vertically to clear nearby buildings and masts. After a few seconds, the pilot got a message 'I think you should RTB, you have scored a bullseye'. On landing, they discovered the pilot's HK33 carbine with its muzzle embedded several inches in the tarmac, right in the middle of the painted 'H'. Before takeoff he had hung the weapon from one of the Gazelle's skids and then forgotten about it. It stayed put till about 80 feet up, and the rest is history.

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