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Last night I uploaded the Rumpler 6B-1, a single seat, seaplane version of the Rumpler C.I. The plane includes two skins and a set of number decals. Thanks to Ojcar for making another great FM for my plane.

 

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Now I have a question for all of you:

I recently upgraded my computer and I'm still calibrating the monitor. Do the skins, screens, and screen captures look OK to you? Too light or too dark? Feedback would be helpful.

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Kind of hard to tell with just the blues and greys in the above photos. Make a new plane and post some more pics.

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Another beauty Stephen1918! It's nice doing a coastal patrol at the northern tip of the front lines.

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Sweet! I like your seaplane base.

I have some Entente planes coming, then I'll finish the naval terrain.

(By the way, your screen shots were a good way for me to check my monitor.)

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Does your Naval terrain have any land? Or just all water? It's a shame the "Shipping" only works when creating a single mission.

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The terrain is all water. There are a lot of ships scattered around. It will require a separate install, but you'll be able to fly single missions.

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Are the "Airbases" placed around or between ships then? Or at least the WWI_Airfield.ini in the terrain folder should have us take-off and land around ships, I assume. Either way it sound very cool. Looks like I should make up some MFJ Albatrosen too. The Naval 3 Pups and Naval 10 Triplanes will work well with air start single missions. If I make a couple of airbases around Ostend and Zeebruge and a couple on the good guy side, then they can be used in the Flanders terrain. This game never ends.

Edited by quack74

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I created a new "airfield" for the naval terrain. Each airfield has a seaplane tender and a gunboat escort to provide AA cover. The fields are quite small, there's only room for 6 planes and there are no "parking" spaces for static planes. In WWI, most seaplane carriers only carried 4-6 planes. Some of them only carried one.

All the targets are small battle groups of 2 to 6 ships. There are also cargo ships, subs, and airships scattered around.

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This is looking pretty amazing. Stephen! Wil get some stick time with the Rumpler as soon as I get back from home sunny Spain.

 

'...some entente planes' coming'...I wonder if this means the long-awaited BE2, as well as the Spowith Baby for the seaplane theatre?

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'...some entente planes' coming'...I wonder if this means the long-awaited BE2, as well as the Sopwith Baby for the seaplane theatre?

 

I've been having issues with the BE2c. With the observer up front, under the wing, his field of fire will be limited. Because of the way FE handles the AI gunner, he will be able to fire to the right OR to the left OR to the back, over the pilots head - But not all three. And, there is no way to make him sit down, so he will always be blocking the pilot's view.

 

I'll keep working on it, but I'm stumped until I figure out how to rig the gunner.

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I don't know if this coul;d be of any help but in the Sf section Monty's He-111b has a ventral bathtub gunner. while on the runway it stays retracted but after a bit it deploys and works like any other gunner. I have no idea if the code for it is in FE but it might be wortha try for somone to look and see if it can be applied to the Be2c gunner in some way.

 

I do know that animations were working because Capun had a test Bristol Scout that would raise and lower the lewis gun to simulate reloading

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With the early DAT BE2, the gunner is always standing too, but when he swings the MG, he can swing it from the left all the way to the right.

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Capun's BE-2 (and Aviatik CI) has a nice (but not 100% right, sorry) method to solve this. I'd try something like that (and of couse, limit the gunner's field by DATA.ini)

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Thanks for the quick response, gentlemen! I'll take a look at some of the SF planes, especially Monty's HE-111.

 

Can someone describe how the gunner in Capun's plane moves? Does the gun pass through the struts as it rotates? In a lot of the photos I've seen, there were multiple mounts and the gunner moved the gun to a different position (I think?)

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It moves through the struts, so, some "take it as is or leave it" is required. I can limit the movements between the struts if you like. I think it's easier this way (and I think i't the old approach to the problema in RedBaron series too). About the multiple guns, it's the correct way, but I don't think it's feasible in the game. You'll need a lot of movements in the gunner. It's simply too difficult.

 

I don't know how is it solved in Over Flanders Fields.

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Allowing the gun o pass through the struts will solve some of the problems. Limiting the yaw and pitch of the gun will help too. It occurs to me that the gunner can rotate on a slight angle, that will help him raise the gun over the pilot as he swings around.

 

I'll also look at that Heinkel and see what I can learn from that.

 

This will require quite a bit of experimentation. I'll keep working on seaplanes while I experiment with the BE2 gunner...

 

If anyone gets any other ideas, please post them!

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Can't check myself till after I get home from Spain but from memory and as Ojcar's screenies show, Capun/A Team got around this problem by putting the Lewis on a non-authentic Scarff-like ring mount which put the Lewis Gun's barrel on a level just above the pilot's head, and so able to traverse through a reasonably realistic arc from maybe 4 o'clock to 8 o'clock, 'ghosting' thru interplane struts if necessary, and with correspondingly limited elevation/depression. Forward pilot view is of course restricted, no getting (or seeing!) around that really.

 

It might be possible to improve on this by having a ring mount which is mostly unextured and see-through. Or something like a small set of soccer goalposts behind the front, observer's cockpit, but with the crossbar in an arc (in plan view), something short of a semi-circle, with the Lewis on a pintle mount that is able to slide left to right along the curved 'crossbar'. The 'crossbar' could perhaps be fixed between the rear interplane struts, as some real BE2c gun mounts were, tho that might limit traverse a bit too much, even for a BE2.

 

The observer figure might well block much of the forward view but that's less important. You can always fly pre-combat in the exterior view, which I do anyway, and for most players, most of the time, the major benefit of a 1916-17 type BE is likely to be as an AI-flown target that is more realistic for that period than the 1914-15 configurations we have now. Beimg able to be flown by the player is a bonus.

 

I would forget about modellng a BE2d with a rear gunner. Despite reports that this variant reversed the crew positions, I think the reality is that the 2d introduced a form of dual conrtrol, with a crude removeable joystick for the observer, but was not routinely flown this way or armed accordingly. I know the A Team do a variant with a rear Lewis and I'm open to correction, but think this is not accurate, notwithstanding that it may have been tried by somebody, somewhere and was actually adopted on the Belgian Hisso-engined BE2c's.

 

A 'rectractible' gunner whose amination can be controlled - eg to deploy and able to fire at a given key command and 'retract' again (and hold fire) on command, using some of the spare animation keys FE seems to have, would be ideal. However, as the BE2 gunner/observer did (according to some reports) have to kneel on his seat and face backwards to man the Lewis when mounted to fire rearwards, pilot view obstruction was a reality, even with the observer seated.

 

It's probably not worth worrying about trying to simulate the multiple gun mounts BE2s often carried.

 

What WOULD perhaps be useful is two versions of a 1915-17 BE2 (the 'c' version is probably best, 'e' version next; the important things are to have the V-strut undercart with no skid and the sump fairing beneath the engine, with either straight or curved top fins). One with an observer, suitable for all roles except fighter, and one with NO observer OR gun, for bomber use only. The latter should be a simple variant - no need to fair over a cockpit, just leave out observer and gun - would reproduce the practice, common at least until mid-1915 and maybe into 1916, of leaving the observer behind on bombing missions - real 'Fokker fodder', as in IIRC Immelman's first victory.

 

The OFF BE2c gets around the issues with a fixed, seated observer and an (unsynchronised) Lewis fixed to the outer fuselage, like the RE8's Vickers, but this is a pretty unsatisfactory compromise, minimising obstruction of the pilot's view but leaving the BE with no rear protection whatever, not to mention a extremely rare armament fit. Screenies have been posted showing the new BE coming with OFF's next release but these show so far only an observer with a Lee Enfield rifle (an inaccurate WW2 No.4 version). This appears to acknowledge acceptance that a fairly badly-blocked pilot view is the lesser of the various alternative evils available.

Edited by 33LIMA

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An ever easier (and very funny) way is to have a "John Rambo" observer that holds the machine-gun as a rifle (with no mount at all).

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