FW190 v others

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paul.mercer
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FW190 v others

Post by paul.mercer » Tue Apr 17, 2012 8:04 pm

Gentlemen,
Inyour expert opinions, how did the FW190 compare against allied aircraft such as the later marks of Spitfire (including the one with the Griffon engine) the Mustang and the Tempest as well as other US fighters?

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Re: FW190 v others

Post by dunmunro » Tue Apr 17, 2012 11:08 pm

The FW190 had a definite advantage over the Spitfire V, but after the Mk IX/VIII came out, the Spitfire generally held the edge, as it could out manoeuvre and out climb the FW190 quite easily and had superior high altitude performance. However a FW190 with an altitude advantage was always a very dangerous opponent. The Allies did mock combats between the Fw190 and various allied aircraft and some of the reports can be read here:

http://www.wwiiaircraftperformance.org/ ... 190a3.html
http://www.wwiiaircraftperformance.org/ ... 190a5.html
from
http://www.wwiiaircraftperformance.org/

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Re: FW190 v others

Post by tommy303 » Tue Apr 17, 2012 11:37 pm

I generally agree with Duncan. However, the introduction of the Fw190 D series, with its more powerful engine, brought about sufficient climb and altitude improvement to bring the Fw190 up to par with the Mk IX/VIII Spitfires sufficiently so that there was really little to choose between the them. The Spitfire still held the edge in turning provided the pilot could lure his opponent into a turning engagement.

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Re: FW190 v others

Post by dunmunro » Wed Apr 18, 2012 12:10 am

Of course the Supermarine counter to the Fw190 D series was the Spitfire XIV and it's Griffon engine.

Here's a quick comparison of 190D speeds with the Tempest V, which was Hawker's reply to the D series:

Image

and a brief summary of Spit 14 trials against the Tempest V, Mustang , Fw190 and 109G:
http://www.spitfireperformance.com/spit14afdu.html

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Re: FW190 v others

Post by Byron Angel » Wed Apr 18, 2012 11:26 am

It can be a bit dangerous trying to extract practical conclusions solely from statistical performance comparisons. Evan assuming a theoretical one-on-one engagement with equal altitude, equal speed, equal awareness, equal initial tactical positions, and equal pilot skills, the height and the initial entry speed at which the engagement is imagined will tend to favor one a/c over another to one degree or another. A Tempest V versus 190D engagement at 13,000 ft will favor the German a/c, while a 6,000 ft altitude will give advantage to the Tempest; a slow entry speed to such an engagement will favor a lighter a/c with better acceleration; a higher or lower entry speed to such an engagement may also dramatically favor one a/c over another with respect to roll rate.

I accept that the temptation to perform such comparisons is always intriguing and, in certain cases, the performance disparities between two a/c will be sufficiently dramatic enough to permit a firm verdict to be reached. But, when overall performance capabilities are proximate, it is IMO quite difficult to draw a clear line.

B

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Re: FW190 v others

Post by paul.mercer » Wed Apr 18, 2012 8:51 pm

Thanks chaps,
I never ceases to amaze me about the depth of knowledge available from people like yourselves on this Forum.

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Re: FW190 v others

Post by RF » Thu Apr 26, 2012 8:56 am

Changing the subject slightly I recall some years ago - I can't remember the source - that copy of blueprints for the FW 190 were given to the Japanese in 1944.

I haven't seen anything else on this - did the Japanese or indeed the Americans do a comparison between the Zero and the FW 190? Did the Japanese try to copy the FW 190?
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Re: FW190 v others

Post by Byron Angel » Fri Apr 27, 2012 12:02 pm

RF wrote:Changing the subject slightly I recall some years ago - I can't remember the source - that copy of blueprints for the FW 190 were given to the Japanese in 1944.

I haven't seen anything else on this - did the Japanese or indeed the Americans do a comparison between the Zero and the FW 190? Did the Japanese try to copy the FW 190?

..... There is photographic evidence that Japan received a FW190-A8 for evaluation from Germany in 1943. Whether there was any prior receipt of FW190-related data is uncertain, but the design concept of the Ki-44 Shoki (Allied: Tojo) very much paralleled the FW190 theme.

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Re: FW190 v others

Post by Dave Saxton » Mon May 14, 2012 3:42 pm

When it comes to objective evaluations and comparisons of such matters, I can think of no one I trust more than Donald Caldwell. From Caldwell’s JG26 book:
…although problems with the engine continued to plague the test program, the FW190 was cleared for service in July, Erprobungsstaffel 190 moved to the Paris air field of Le Bourget to begin training pilots of II/JG26 on the service model FW-190A-1…The Second Gruppe introduced their FW-190s to combat slowly and cautiously. Their BMW 801C engines were still giving trouble. The unit’s safety record was excellent however-no pilots were killed while training on the FW-190 and only one was injured. The first FW fatality, on Aug 29th , was caused by German flak. The first loss of an FW-190 in aerial combat did not occur 18 Sept, …..
..6th Staffel pilots had by now gained confidence in their FWs and began to score with them. On the 21st of Sept they shot down 4 Spitfires over Boulogne without loss. In Oct and Nov Muencheburg and some of his more experienced pilots such as Karl Borris, bagged a number of Spitfires, as did newcomers Wutz Galland and Addi Glunz. Encounter reports describing a fast radial engine fighter were first discounted by British Intel. Not until Oct 13th was the first clear gun camera evidence obtained and the new fighter properly identified by the RAF….
…The spring of 1942 found Fighter Command no closer than in 1940 to finding a defense agaist the Jabo raids. Spitfires were unable to catch the FW-190 at low altitude; the most effective weapon against low level raiders remained light anti-aircraft fire. The new Hawker Typhoon, proved to have excellent speed and acceleration at ground level, and was assigned the anti-Jabo role. By mid 1943, the Typhoon, had made low level daylight operations over England unprofitable for the Germans, and the Jabo’s were transferred to other, less well defended theaters….
…No 403 Sqd. took part in the second Rodeo of the morning, which was a two wing sweep over St Omer. Deere’s wing flew high cover at 27,000 feet over the Hornchurch Wing. Again the German radar controllers waited until the British were over overland before ordering up the defenders... ( Muencheburg’s II/JG26 and Seiffert’s I /JG26). As the Spitfires headed back out to sea a Staffel of FW-190s was spotted behind No. 403 Sqd. and closing fast. Deere ordered a three way break…. Deere’s Spitfires were hit from the clouds by the other two Staffeln of the pursuing Gruppe. (Then) the Spitfires were struck from the clouds, by the second Gruppe of JG26. Deere’s pilots fought for their lives while their comrades in the other Spitfire squadrons, mindful of their orders to avoid combat in tactically unfavorable conditions, left them to their fates and returned to England…Three Spitfires made it back to their field at Rochford. Two more force landed at Manston: one of these was a complete write off. The other seven planes came down in the Channel. Only one of their pilots was rescued….Hptm. Muencheburg tallied his 80th and 81st victories. Hptm. Seifert scored his 35th victory and three other 1st Gruppe pilots scored. The Cumulative effect of encounters such as these (which were common) was the demoralization of all levels of fighter command…The air ministry was slow to react, apparently lulled into complacency by its own government’s constant claims of aerial success. Sholto Douglas put the matter bluntly in a letter to his superiors:

“ We are now in a position of inferiority…. There is no doubt in my mind, nor in the minds of my pilots, that the FW 190 is the best all around fighter in the world today.”

…on 23 July (1942) The adjutant of III/JG2 presented the British with a brand new FW190A -3…Mock combats with Spitfire Vb rapidly proved what Fighter Commands pilots had been claiming for some time-the German fighter was significantly superior in all parameters of flight except turning radius. The seemingly magical ability of the FW fighter to disappear in the blink of an eye was attributed primarily to its well balanced (fly by wire) aileron controls, which gave the aircraft the highest rate of roll of any WWII fighter, Allied or Axis. The split S maneuver, a half roll followed by a dive, would leave any pursuing Spitfire (of any mark, but not so easily P47s or P51s) hopelessly behind….Spitfire pilots were instructed to draw the FW’s as close to England as possible and then circle until the FW’s ran low on fuel and were forced to break off combat
…The Spitfire IX was only now starting to reach the squadrons. The Spitfire IX was an even match to the FW190A. The climb rates and top speeds of the two fighters were nearly the same at low and medium altitudes; the two stage supercharger of the Merlin 61 gave the advantage to the Spitfire at altitudes above 25,000 feet. The usual generalities concerning relative maneuverabilities still held-the British fighter was better in turns on the horizontal plane, while the German fighter excelled in zoom climbs and dives, and aileron rolls….
I might add that at this point in time that the BF-109G was being introduced. They did not shut down production of the 109 to increase production of the 190 and other AC. The FW-190A was superior to the BF-109G (1-6) at low and medium altitudes, but the BMW radial engine was not a good performer at higher altitudes- above 25,000 feet. The Germans still needed the 109 in production because of this fact. The 109 with Daimler Benz engines retained superior high altitude performance and was an excellent dog fighter by any standard. The long nose 190s with inline engines gained improved high altitude speed performance, but they were not as maneuverable as the 190A ( 190As still had very similar speed performance at low a medium altitudes to that of a late war F4U Corsair nonetheless) and the long noses were not the dog fighters that the Spitfires and 109s were.

Hawker has made no secret of the fact that the fabulous post war Hawker Sea Fury was based directly on the FW-190A, but scaled up in size.
Entering a night sea battle is an awesome business.The enveloping darkness, hiding the enemy's.. seems a living thing, malignant and oppressive.Swishing water at the bow and stern mark an inexorable advance toward an unknown destiny.

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Re: FW190 v others

Post by Dave Saxton » Mon May 14, 2012 5:31 pm

Heres some more quotes from Caldwell on spefic Fw190 type that shed some more light:

190A -3 and 190A-4
The FW190A -3 had a new BMW 801D-2 engine with greater power than its predecessor. Cooling Louvers, cut into the cowling, finally solved the FW fighter’s overheating problem. The FW190A-3 was succeeded in late 1942 by FW190A-4, which had the FuG 16Z radio and methanol-water injection power boost system to increase engine output below 16,000 feet. The natural limitations of the BMW 801 engine could not be overcome; the FW190A would remain a low-to medium altitude fighter.
FW190A-6
The standard production version of Kurt Tank’s robust little fighter was now (1944) the FW190A-6. The A-6 featured a strengthened wing and heavier armament and armor than earlier models. It was originally intended for the eastern front but since its greater weight imposed no noticeable performance penalty, it became a very popular mount with the pilots defending the west. The FW190A-6’s 1700 HP BMW 801D engine gave the plane a top speed of 405mph at 20,700 feet, but the fighter’s performance decreased sharply above that altitude. The fighter’s armament of four MG 151/20 wing cannon and two MG17 machine guns provided ample destructive power against Allied aircraft…..

In early 1944, the Schlageter pilots found themselves opposing five types of Allied fighters…The German pilots never lost their high regard for the Spitfire’s capabilities but generally found the large and normally un-aggressive formations easy to avoid….. The other important RAF day fighter, the Hawker Typhoon, had excellent speed near the ground and was being used effectively on Rhubarbs. Single flights of FWs from JG26’s first and second Gruppen were scambled frequently to oppose these intruders. The victor in these small scale encounters was usually the pilot with the better luck-or the better eyesight.

Of the three American fighters, the P-51 mustang was still very much an unknown quality to the Germans, at year’s beginning it equipped only a single group. The P-38 Lightning was flown by two groups. Its unique appearance made it easy to spot, and to stalk and to avoid, as appropriate. The only feature of the Lightning that impressed the Germans was its heavy, concentrated armament. The most numerous American escort fighter was the P-47 Thunderbolt, which equipped ten groups. When flown by an experienced pilot, the Jug had proved able to hold its own at high altitudes against any German fighter. Newer models had engines equipped with water injection, which boosted combat performance at all operational altitudes. Another modification, the paddle blade propeller, markedly improved low altitude climb rate…. In the P-47D the Americans had an airplane capable of driving the Luftwaffe from the sky….
FW190A-7 and FW190A-8
…The rest of the Geschwader was equipped with the FW190A-7 (now summer 1944) and the more common FW190A-8 …one common variant, the FW190A-8R/4 had GM1 (nitrous oxide) boost, which increased top speed by as much as 36mph….
FW190D-9
…the pilots opinions of the “long nosed Dora” or Dora 9 ...were mixed. The new model was intended to correct its most glaring weakness, its poor high altitude performance. What came out of Kurt Tank’s shop was a compromise. Tank did not like the liquid cooled Jumo 213 engine but it was the best available (DB engines were already spoken for) The long inline engine had to be balanced by a longer rear fuselage to maintain the proper center of balance….The new airplane lacked the the high turn rate and incredible roll rate of its close coupled, radial engined, predecessor. It was a bit faster, with a maximum speed of 426 mph at 21, 650 feet. Its 1750hp, which water/methanol injection boosted to 2240hp, gave it excellent acceleration in combat situations. It also climbed and dove more rapidly than the FW190A, so proved well suited to the dive and zoom ambush tactics favored by the Schlageter pilots….
Entering a night sea battle is an awesome business.The enveloping darkness, hiding the enemy's.. seems a living thing, malignant and oppressive.Swishing water at the bow and stern mark an inexorable advance toward an unknown destiny.

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Re: FW190 v others

Post by tommy303 » Wed May 30, 2012 3:03 am

Just to add a little to what Dave has said already: The A4 standardized the 2cm wing armament of four guns, although the two outer guns were usually MG/FF (German designation for the Oerlikon) and two wing root mounted MG151, and the two MG17s above the engine. The A-6 benefited from increased MG151 production and MG151s replaced the two outer MG/FFs. However, many front line pilots had the outer pair of 2cm cannon removed to reduce weight and improve performance to offset the increase in weight incurred with the heavier armour and strengthened wing.

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They stood and Earth's foundations stay;
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Re: FW190 v others

Post by José M. Rico » Wed May 30, 2012 10:46 pm

Hello all,

There was another FW190 thread in the MIlitary History subforum. When I tried to move it here I made a mistake and deleted it. Unfortunately there is no way now to restore it.
I'm sorry for the inconvenience it caused.

José

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Re: FW190 v others

Post by yellowtail3 » Mon Jun 11, 2012 2:44 am

I think the 190 was a very, very good fighter, flexible and adaptable. It suffered at altitude, which is where it was needed when the bombing campaign got cranked up. The 190D was better, but very few and still somewhat inferior to the -47 and -51 at altitude... Rough parity, maybe, using a generous perspective. And by the time the 190D was I squadron service, rough parity wasn't near enough for the Nazis.

Last year at Chino I saw a new production 190 with an R2800... Very cool.
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Re: FW190 v others

Post by Karl Heidenreich » Mon Jun 11, 2012 4:55 am

yellowtail,
The 190D was better, but very few and still somewhat inferior to the -47 and -51 at altitude... Rough parity, maybe, using a generous perspective.
Of course that's your expert opinion. Let's use something easily lost around here: perspective and context.

Have you heard of Richard Bong, the greatest US Air Ace of all time? He got 40 kills in the Pacific flying a P 38.

Now, have you heard of George-Peter Eder? I imagine you don't. He was a Luftwaffe pilot who flew both "inferiors" Me 109 and FW 190 but still shot down some 56 USAF planes out of a total of 68 against all western allies, including 10 P 47s, 7 P51s and some P 38s. Not bad for a kraut flying a plane with altitude performance problems.

Or what about Konrad "Pitt" Bauer? Have you heard of him? Flying exclusively a FW-190 he shot down exactly 40 USAF planes out of 50 western allied.

Did you know that at least some 30 Luftwaffe pilots fighting USAF-only enemy planes had higher scores than USAF pilots against Luftwaffe? Some of these pilots flew the FW 190 against P47s and 51s. This is well researched:

http://www.luftwaffe.cz/usaaf.html

And the FW was considered a "little bit better" than the Me 109. The greatest air ace of all time, Eric "Bubbi" Hartmann in an "inferior" Me 109 shot down 4 P 51s over Ploesti in a single action on June 1st, 1944. Not bad considering the "climbing issues" the German planes had.

Let's remember that the top first 111 air aces not only of WWII but in History are all Germans being 112 a Japanese. A great number of these Germans flew the FW 190 and achieved better results than ANY US pilot in History of warfare.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Wo ... lying_aces

So I recommend you, yellowtail, to be more modest and respectful in your opinions. The FW 190 was at least as good as any allied fighter (using a generous perspective), specially at the hands of pilots of such excellence that have never flown in combat after WWII.

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Re: FW190 v others

Post by yellowtail3 » Mon Jun 11, 2012 12:40 pm

Karl Heidenreich wrote:Of course that's your expert opinion. Let's use something easily lost around here: perspective and context.
perspective and context don't change the facts that I stated, which were... that the 190 was a very good aircraft, though weak at high altitude where it was needed and slower than p-47 and p-51. But sometimes perspective is useful.
Have you heard of Richard Bong, the greatest US Air Ace of all time? He got 40 kills in the Pacific flying a P 38.
Yes, I've heard of him.
Now, have you heard of George-Peter Eder? I imagine you don't.
Then you'd imagine wrong - I've heard of him, too!
Did you know that at least some 30 Luftwaffe pilots fighting USAF-only enemy planes had higher scores than USAF pilots against Luftwaffe? Some of these pilots flew the FW 190 against P47s and 51s.
Yes, I knew that.
A great number of these Germans flew the FW 190 and achieved better results than ANY US pilot in History of warfare.
that may be, but... the 190 (even the D) was still inferior to the P-51 when it came to speed and range, and inferior to the P-47 when it came to all measures of performance at 30K feet.
So I recommend you, yellowtail, to be more modest and respectful in your opinions.

You should re-read my post. That it isn't what you would have written, doesn't make it immodest or dis-respectful... just accurate, in this case.
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