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There is nothing I don't like about a Mosquito. BIG all time favourite. I hope they build a dozen of them and fly them over my house every day.... well maybe not every day, but certainly pretty often.

 

 

Now what we need are some new Mosquito movies like 633 Squadron but without the cheesy plots. These Mosquito missions were better in real life than the plots in the movies. - And occassionally far more tragic too.

 

The boasted very accurate low level bombing, and could 'bowl' their bombs in the front door of Gestapo HQ buildings. One mission however, Operation Carthage, went tragically wrong. The wing tip of a low flying Mosquito clipped a streetlight and crashed into a school. The explosion was misread, and subsequent aircraft dropped bombs on the school too. 86 Children and 18 adults were killed, and what was even sadder was speculation that some kids survived the crash, and the friendly bombing, but were trapped in basement levels and drowned while people tried to dowse the fires. Horrible story, but the attack did destroy the correct target too, and destroyed a lot of Gestapo records and personel. It was late in the war too, March 1945, and a great tragedy for Copenhagen.

Edited by Flyby PC

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... a low flying Mosquito clipped a streetlight and crashed into a school.

That is in this video, Flyby - after 40:00 min. It wasn't a streetlight, but a floodlight tower.

 

... well maybe not every day, but certainly pretty often.

:rofl:

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Is it? (I'm on mobile broadband and it's a bit big to watch).

 

I know they flew very low. I think it was the Operation Jericho raid when one aircraft damaged his tail wheel clipping a rooftop, and on another occassion, a Mosquito flew home after picking up some of the wire rigging from a ship they were attacking. These flights were extremely low.

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Great post Olham...One of my Facebook friend's Dad was a Mossie Pilot...finished all his mission's without ever getting shot at!..(one of the lucky ones)

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I think if I remember correctly the Mossie had one of the best survivability odds of the war. For a long time it was the fastest thing in the air. I'm sure I recall one veteran saying that flying at ground level, you had about 5mph on a FW 190. You were fine, unless of course he went into a dive. Not sure how seriously he meant it.

 

I forget which book, Mosquitopanik it might have been, but there was an extended dogfight between 4 Mossies and 4 FW190's, and they split with honours even, shooting down 2 of each.

 

A Mosquito could carry a 4,000lb cookie bomb all the way to Berlin. A B17 could carry 4,500lbs to Berlin, (although up to 8000lbs for shorter ranges). The 2 man Mossie did it faster than the 10 or 11 man B17 and used less fuel too. I don't mean that as a criticism of the B17, but a measure of just how good the Mosquito was. I believe the cookie bomb was a blast bomb designed to blow the roofs off buildings and leave them more vulnerable to the incendiaries that followed.

 

Having said that, I think the Brits were years ahead of the US and indeed Germany in bomber design. A Wellington could still carry 4,500lbs. Even the Halifax could carry 12,000lbs and the Stirling 18,000lbs. There were clearly some very different theories about bomber designs. Even the B29 could only match the 22,000lbs of the Lanc. I suppose the RAF had the benefit of evolutionary designs, whereas the US had to catch up quick.

 

Pointless conjecture, but I do wonder however what a few Lancasters (or B29s) dropping 12,000lb Tallboy or 22,000lb Grandslam 'earthquake' bombs would have done to the japanese tunnel systems at Iwo Jima and other Pacific strongholds. To the best of my knowledge, they never did but I feel sure they'd have done a lot of damage.

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I think if I remember correctly the Mossie had one of the best survivability odds of the war. For a long time it was the fastest thing in the air. I'm sure I recall one veteran saying that flying at ground level, you had about 5mph on a FW 190. You were fine, unless of course he went into a dive. Not sure how seriously he meant it.

 

The Allies had a significant advantage over their enemies in having more powerful engines and better turbochargers. Part of this, perhaps a large part, was from using gasoline with significantly higher octane, but the bottom line was that standard Allied planes could generally fly faster and higher than standard. The Mossie was definitely in this category, being able both to fly very high and go very fast while up there, so it took specially modified German planes, available only in small numbers and with very limited endurance, to catch them.

 

Having said that, I think the Brits were years ahead of the US and indeed Germany in bomber design. A Wellington could still carry 4,500lbs. Even the Halifax could carry 12,000lbs and the Stirling 18,000lbs. There were clearly some very different theories about bomber designs. Even the B29 could only match the 22,000lbs of the Lanc. I suppose the RAF had the benefit of evolutionary designs, whereas the US had to catch up quick.

 

The main difference was that all the RAF bombers you list were designed from the get-go as night bombers. As such, they expected to face minimal opposition (mostly flak) so had little defenses. This allowed them to be essentially dumptrucks for bombs. The only daylight bombers the RAF had at that time were the Battle and Blenheim, both of which were slow and inadequately armed with both bombs and defensive MGs, so got slaughtered. The Mossie just happened by pure chance to have become available right at this point (it was a private venture and was initially rejected by the RAF, and only reconsidered once the Blenheims and Battles were no more).

 

The US OTOH built all their bombers for daylight precision attacks. Thus, they put a lot more of their available weight into armor and defensive MGs, which limited their bombload, but they were also reasonably fast. Their medium and light bombers (B-25, B-26, A-20, and A-26) were all quite successful. The A-26, in fact, might have been superior to the Mossie in several respects.

 

Pointless conjecture, but I do wonder however what a few Lancasters (or B29s) dropping 12,000lb Tallboy or 22,000lb Grandslam 'earthquake' bombs would have done to the japanese tunnel systems at Iwo Jima and other Pacific strongholds. To the best of my knowledge, they never did but I feel sure they'd have done a lot of damage.

 

Well, the USN had a dozen or so battleships for such occasions and they seem to have worked reasonably well. But I agree, those earthquake bombs might have done a better job on some targets.

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de Havilland Mosquito - a Plywood Bomber

 

DeHavilland Mosquito gun camera film

Edited by Olham

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There was something about the Amercan superchargers, or perhaps two stage superchargers not being available in the early years I seem to recall. The P51 Mustang was a reject as far as the RAF was concerned because it didn't have a supercharger, and lost performance at altitude. The American supercharger made all the difference.

 

I forget whether the US was reluctant to share turbocharger/supercharger technology, or whether the Brits thought it too complicated. There was something about it, but I forget. I recall it as the US not sharing the tech, but can't place the information.

 

The Mosquito was always a thoroughbred. It wasn't so much the demise of Blenheims and Battles which prompted a rethink of the Mosquito, so much as the Mosquito being a prototype when Britain was under extreme pressure all available production was needed for replacement aircraft of known type. There wasn't any slack capacity or spare materials for experimental bombers. DeHavilland had to convince Beaverbrook that the Mosquito would not hinder production. Once flying, the Mosquito was initially considered as a good replacement for the Beaufighter, but an equally good photo reconnaisance or bomber. At 30,000ft, the experimental aircraft were getting close to 440mph with excellent handling, and that performance and multi-roll versatility was already putting the Mossie in a class of it's own. It was faster than anything else flying, including interceptor fighters like the Spitfire.

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I forget whether the US was reluctant to share turbocharger/supercharger technology, or whether the Brits thought it too complicated. There was something about it, but I forget. I recall it as the US not sharing the tech, but can't place the information.

 

Mostly it was an unwillingness to share prior to the US getting in the war itself.

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The P51 Mustang was a reject as far as the RAF was concerned because it didn't have a supercharger, and lost performance at altitude. The American supercharger made all the difference.

Superchargers? To be sure. But everything I've read on the Mustang gives full credit to swapping out the Alison engine for the Rolls-Royce Merlin.

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Thanks for those links, I just love the Mossie as well.

I have the commercial Mossie expansions for CFS2 & 3, and these are reasonably good, but the missions are quiet hard.

 

Regards MarkL

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The Allison V-1710 was designed to be all things for all aircraft and could rotate in either direction and have various supercharger gearings or a turbocharger as used in the P38 'Lightning'. Unfortunately they put most of their research into the turbocharged version which was not used in the Mustang. That engine was a failure in Europe due to the cold at altitude and many engine failures caused them to move to the eastern war against the Japanese.

 

The 60 series Merlin was quite something with two two-speed superchargers with an intercooler between the stages and an aftercooler. It also ran on 100/130 Octane petrol which helped a lot - the Germans only ever used 87 Octane so needed a bigger capacity engine to get the same power - the Merlin was only 27 litres and the DB 605 was 36 litres.

 

My father worked on Allisons in Egypt in WWII and reckoned they were very unreliable compared to the Merlin. The pilots had to fly with their eyes glued to the oil pressure gauge.

He was not biased against American engines as he loved the P&W R-1830. He also thought American tools were great (and so do I if I can afford Snap-on) :biggrin:

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The Allison V-1710 was designed to be all things for all aircraft and could rotate in either direction and have various supercharger gearings or a turbocharger as used in the P38 'Lightning'. Unfortunately they put most of their research into the turbocharged version which was not used in the Mustang. That engine was a failure in Europe due to the cold at altitude and many engine failures caused them to move to the eastern war against the Japanese.

Very interesting. Thanks, Jim

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