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  • Swordfish Under Fighter Attacks?

    Any examples of the Swordfish torpedo bomber attacked by fighter planes. I'm curious about its ability to withstand air attack. Have assumed its fuel tanks had sealing liners & armor behind the crew seats. Any sources to recommend.

    Thanks

  • #2
    Essentially, versus a well equipped and ready naval group with air cover, nil... It was worse than the TBD Devastator at Midway.

    http://www.scharnhorst-class.dk/scha...ncerberus.html

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Carl Schwamberg View Post
      Any examples of the Swordfish torpedo bomber attacked by fighter planes. I'm curious about its ability to withstand air attack. Have assumed its fuel tanks had sealing liners & armor behind the crew seats. Any sources to recommend.

      Thanks
      Its slow speed may have been of a little help in doing tighter turns than the faster enemy fighter but if he was jumped or even if he wasn't,honest answer? not a chance in hell!! They still did do stalwart service in the service that they were intended.Brave blokes those crews,remember the stories of 'Faith,Hope and Charity? lcm1.
      'By Horse by Tram'.


      I was in when they needed 'em,not feeded 'em.
      " Youuu 'Orrible Lot!"

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      • #4
        The biplanes have a tighter turning circle than ww2 monoplanes, it basically denies the attacker a tracking shot from the rear .
        On the vertical they are however dead meat so I suspect they flown very low
        to prevent the monoplanes attack from above or below.

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        • #5
          Swordfish were scrambled to attack the German siops during 'Operation Cerberus'... I think they all got shot down, but can't remember if the Jerry air cover got 'em or the ship's flak gunners?
          The long toll of the brave
          Is not lost in darkness
          Over the fruitful earth
          And athwart the seas
          Hath passed the light of noble deeds
          Unquenchable forever.

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          • #6
            242 Squadron's Hurricanes had an interesting dogfight with Italian biplanes during the BofB. The Eyeties flew rings round 'em, think they did the same to 74 Squadron's Spits too!

            The long toll of the brave
            Is not lost in darkness
            Over the fruitful earth
            And athwart the seas
            Hath passed the light of noble deeds
            Unquenchable forever.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Carl Schwamberg View Post
              Any examples of the Swordfish torpedo bomber attacked by fighter planes. I'm curious about its ability to withstand air attack. Have assumed its fuel tanks had sealing liners & armor behind the crew seats. Any sources to recommend.

              Thanks
              Re.: Swordish Special by W.A. Harrison ISBN 071100742X, Chapter Esmonde VC pages 42 and 43. It describes the Channel Dash action. The German attacking Me-s and Fw-s had to lower their landing gear and flaps to be able to line up with their targets. The general impression I am left with is that the Swordfish got shredded. The British planes targetted the ships
              and once committed they did not deviate providing the German protecting fighter screen with excellent opportunities. What seems clear that the Germans did not chase the Swordfish that were no longer a threat to their ships.
              I've got some references to the same acion from the German fighter perspective and British fighter perspective, but I cannot readily lay my fingers on it.

              Ed.
              The repetition of affirmations leads to belief. Once that belief becomes a deep conviction, you better wake up and look at the facts.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Von Richter View Post
                242 Squadron's Hurricanes had an interesting dogfight with Italian biplanes during the BofB. The Eyeties flew rings round 'em, think they did the same to 74 Squadron's Spits too!

                The Italians lost 5 fighters in these two combats, the RAF lost none.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by redcoat View Post
                  The Italians lost 5 fighters in these two combats, the RAF lost none.
                  Yep I know, but the antics of the Eyetie pilots, made an impression!

                  http://surfcity.kund.dalnet.se/falco_bob.htm
                  The long toll of the brave
                  Is not lost in darkness
                  Over the fruitful earth
                  And athwart the seas
                  Hath passed the light of noble deeds
                  Unquenchable forever.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by dutched View Post
                    Re.: Swordish Special by W.A. Harrison ISBN 071100742X, Chapter Esmonde VC pages 42 and 43. It describes the Channel Dash action. ...

                    ...I've got some references to the same acion from the German fighter perspective ...
                    The German descriptions would be usefull. I've already found some Brit descriptions.

                    Thanks

                    Were there any instances in the Medeterranean of Sworfish bombers attacked by fighters?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Carl, If you can find this book cheap; it has some of the tactics developed by the British for defeating fighter attacks. Very good read.

                      Eagles may fly; but weasels aren't sucked into jet engines!

                      "I'm not expendable; I'm not stupid and I'm not going." - Kerr Avon, Blake's 7

                      What didn't kill us; didn't make us smarter.

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                      • #12
                        Looks like the university library here has it. Now to find the time....

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by dutched View Post
                          Re.: Swordish Special by W.A. Harrison ISBN 071100742X, Chapter Esmonde VC pages 42 and 43. It describes the Channel Dash action. The German attacking Me-s and Fw-s had to lower their landing gear and flaps to be able to line up with their targets. The general impression I am left with is that the Swordfish got shredded. The British planes targetted the ships
                          and once committed they did not deviate providing the German protecting fighter screen with excellent opportunities. What seems clear that the Germans did not chase the Swordfish that were no longer a threat to their ships.
                          Ed.
                          Only 6 Swordfish took part in the attack and of these it is claimed by a British eyewitness* that 3 were lost to AA fire from the ships (though the Luftwaffe pilots actually claimed 13 Swordfish, and the naval ships 6).

                          *Ted Hall, a Spitfire pilot with 129 Sqn flying as escort to the Swordfish
                          Last edited by redcoat; 22 Oct 12, 16:03.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by redcoat View Post
                            Only 6 Swordfish took part in the attack and of these it is claimed by a British eyewitness* that 3 were lost to AA fire from the ships (though the Luftwaffe pilots actually claimed 13 Swordfish, and the naval ships 6).
                            I wonder if there was a single remotely accurate estimate of enemy air losses during the entire war. Since US historians started taking the Japanese records seriously the battle losses in the Pacific have decline greatly over what we used to read when I was a lad.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Carl Schwamberg View Post
                              I wonder if there was a single remotely accurate estimate of enemy air losses during the entire war. .
                              Not really, overclaiming is a factor of air warfare.
                              In large air battles an overclaim rate of x2 is considered to be quite reasonable.

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