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  • Achtung! Messerschmitt!

    Ok, so this isnt very likely but this is the 'What if' section.

    Imagine that RJ Mitchell and Willy Messerschmitt were at their drawing boards and each come up with the design of their opposite number (a British BF109 and a German Spitfire). Imagine too that although the respective air forces had each others aircraft, they were supported by their factual stablemates (the RAF still had the Hurricane while the Luftwaffe kept the BF110).

    How would this about turn in their respective designs effect the coming war? Would the British be able to keep the 109 upgraded in time for a replacement to become available? What would that replacement be, would Camm build a more effective fighter than the Typhoon (the Tiffie was originally built as a pure fighter but found its niche as a ground attack fighter -bomber) or would the Tempest come on stream earlier or would British designers go in entirely different directions?

    Galland was reputedly asked by Goring during the BoB what he needed to deal with the RAF, if he had not a Staffel of Spitfires but a whole force of them would he have been any better off? As the Spitfire developed as the war progressed would it fare any better in Russia and against the clouds of USAAF B-17's, B-24's and their escorting fighters (Thunderbolts, Mustangs Lightnings)? If the Spitfire had of been a German design (and what a horrible thought that is!) would its design effect the development of a German successor - would the Focke Wulf 190 have come about or again, would German designers be led down different paths based on the experience gained by operating the Spitfire (or whatever they would have called it)? That is a thought - would the British version of the 109 still have been called 'Spitfire'?

    Humour me here, what do you think the effect (if any) would be on the future conduct of the war and development of the respective aircraft and air forces? I'd be interested in your thoughts.
    HONNEUR ET FIDÉLITÉ

    "Believe me, nothing except a battle lost can be half so melancholy as a battle won." - Duke of Wellington at Waterloo.

  • #2
    What an interesting idea .... I think.

    Both fighters had 'short legs' and had certain strengths and weaknesses that experienced pilots learned to exploit. One point that needs to be made is that the Spitfire benefited, performance wise, from the supply of higher octane fuel compared to that of the Me-109. If that's reversed I think it would give the Messerschmitt a considerable performance advantage all other things remaining equal. I'll happily stand corrected on that last point if someone knows better (apart from that closet Hun P***** F*** - just kidding mate).
    Signing out.

    Comment


    • #3
      IIRC the Spitfire had a tighter turn radius, but also bore less firepower, especially the 20mm cannon through the nose. That 20mm is your real bomber-killer, unless you're running 6 .50s to match it. Just think a moment. A 20mm cannon firing simple ball ammo is putting bullets in the air that are rougly 80% the weight of a twin .50 cal shot. That alone is going to mean a lot.

      Now if Messerschmidt had built the spitfire with the weapons loadout of their brother belligerents, say the Zero, you've got a serious anti-bomber weapon on your hands. A little light on the ammo for extended dogfighting, but powerful in the hands of a skilled pilot against lumbering bombers.
      Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

      Comment


      • #4
        For the purpose of this thread a Germanic Spitfire needn't be an exact copy of its real life counterpart, likewise a British Messerschmitt. I suppose on the subject of armament (as has been pointed out), eight .303 machine guns are going to make downing a B-17 VERY hard work but by that stage of the war the Spits armament would have been upgraded (as indeed they were in reality in RAF service) to include cannons.

        Still (and I know it was I who started this thread), the thought of a Teutonic Spitfire seems unnatural - or is that just me?!
        HONNEUR ET FIDÉLITÉ

        "Believe me, nothing except a battle lost can be half so melancholy as a battle won." - Duke of Wellington at Waterloo.

        Comment


        • #5
          This has happend before,Spitfire becoming a German Messerschmitt.

          Spitfire fighter plane that were caught by the Germans and were not too damage were converted to a Messerscmitt.

          Germans Kept the shell of the Spitfire exactly the same but they change the Merlin/RollRoyoce to a german motor.
          Germans painted it in german colours exactly the same as a Messerscmitt fighter aircraft.

          A german test pilot,stated that he preferr to fly a Spitfire over a Messerschmitt.

          This is all facts!

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Heidi View Post
            This has happend before,Spitfire becoming a German Messerschmitt.

            Spitfire fighter plane that were caught by the Germans and were not too damage were converted to a Messerscmitt.

            Germans Kept the shell of the Spitfire exactly the same but they change the Merlin/RollRoyoce to a german motor.
            Germans painted it in german colours exactly the same as a Messerscmitt fighter aircraft.

            A german test pilot,stated that he preferr to fly a Spitfire over a Messerschmitt.

            This is all facts!

            Then give us some references for your FACTS
            "Ask not what your country can do for you"

            Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

            you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Half Pint View Post
              Then give us some references for your FACTS
              Here's one link...

              http://www.unrealaircraft.com/hybrid/spitfire.php
              "In modern war... you will die like a dog for no good reason."
              Ernest Hemingway.

              In english "silence" means yelling louder than everyone else.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Achtung Baby View Post
                All of which still does not make it a Messerschmit. At most, a Spit with an MB engine.
                "Ask not what your country can do for you"

                Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

                you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Half Pint View Post
                  All of which still does not make it a Messerschmit. At most, a Spit with an MB engine.
                  Sure, to view a link for some reading is my preferred method....

                  It's quite apparent reading from the link that the Germans loved the Spitfire, purplefang where art thou?
                  "In modern war... you will die like a dog for no good reason."
                  Ernest Hemingway.

                  In english "silence" means yelling louder than everyone else.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Achtung Baby View Post
                    Sure, to view a link for some reading is my preferred method....

                    It's quite apparent reading from the link that the Germans loved the Spitfire, purplefang where art thou?
                    PLEASE, save us.
                    "Ask not what your country can do for you"

                    Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

                    you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Achtung Baby View Post
                      Sure, to view a link for some reading is my preferred method....

                      It's quite apparent reading from the link that the Germans loved the Spitfire, purplefang where art thou?
                      Noooooooooooooooooo! You'll invoke his presence. And I am already weary.
                      Signing out.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Does not halfprint like to know that germans like the british spitfire??? Yes half print,germans did like britsh technolghy,not just the Americans.


                        Half print- yes,it does make it an messerscmitt!
                        You can't call it a Spitfire any more when it has got a German engine and German markings.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Dogsbody67 View Post
                          For the purpose of this thread a Germanic Spitfire needn't be an exact copy of its real life counterpart, likewise a British Messerschmitt. I suppose on the subject of armament (as has been pointed out), eight .303 machine guns are going to make downing a B-17 VERY hard work but by that stage of the war the Spits armament would have been upgraded (as indeed they were in reality in RAF service) to include cannons.

                          Still (and I know it was I who started this thread), the thought of a Teutonic Spitfire seems unnatural - or is that just me?!
                          A WWII aviation-related what if...sweet.

                          Riddle me this...

                          Are we talking about Merlin engined 109's and Spitfires with DB 600 series?...or does the aero-engine situation change as well?

                          This is significant.

                          As a side note, the problems with the Hawker Typhoon (mentioned in your initial post) are all related to the teething troubles with it's powerplant; a 24 cylinder H-block was a significant engineering challenge for the "tech" of the times.

                          Airframe against airframe there's little to differentiate between the two; the "jumps" in "generations" of the powerplants provided most of the significant differences. The delay with service introduction of the 60 series Merlin saw the Spitfire at it's nadir; the MkV (in it's numerous "optimized" variants) was no match for late F's and early G's (despite alot of erroneous information which has been published and is now accepted as "fact"). The MkV and the 190?...we'll just leave that one alone. The shoe was truly "on the other foot" during 1941-42 and the Spitfire's short legs were it's Achilles Heel.

                          As for using either of these machines in the anti-bomber role; I don't feel that one would have any significant advantage over the other, they're just too much alike.

                          As per history, the Luftwaffe found the solution in the Fw 190; in a "perfect" world (shudder), they would have filled the skies with the optimized "Sturmbock" variant (Fw 190A-8/R8) in the spring of 1943 and wiped out the 8th AF. The lightweight Spitfire would survive no better than did the lightweight Bf 109, if entering the gauntlet of return fire put up by a USAAF combat formation of heavies. This limited the 109's utility in the role; it would have the same effect upon your German Spitfire.

                          As a top cover aircraft for the Fw 190 bomber killers, the 109 performed very well; it was the pilot training situation which was the biggest drawback, not the failings of the machine per se...The MkXIV Spitfire might be seen as having the upper hand (for the high altitude top cover role) by the time of it's introduction, but this is (again) all down to it's powerplant, not the airframe.

                          It was not until the adoption of the "Emergency Fighter Program" (and curtailment of the production of "offensive aircraft") that capacity became available to allow for mass production of the Jumo 211 series in it's "fighter" variant...the Jumo 213. This engine (and the much delayed DB 603) represented the epitome of German piston-engined fighter evolution; exemplified in the "stop gap" Fw 190D and Tank's ultimate version, the Ta 152. This is (of course) tied to the (likely) largest production/development catastrophe of the entire German war effort...the Jumo222/Bomber "B" saga. When the "follow on" for the Ju 88 failed, they had no choice but to continue producing it, and it was powered by...? You guessed it...the Jumo 211 series (as was the Ju 87).

                          In closing:
                          As Kevin mentioned earlier, the widespread availability of tetraethyl lead to the RAF had a huge impact on the relative performance of these two machines as well. Higher octane fuel allowed the poorer performing Merlin variants to be run at significantly higher manifold pressures (i.e. "Boost" levels) without suffering catastrophic detonation problems. German supply of this vital additive was always in short supply; most of it was produced through a complex series of chemical syntheses, starting with "feedstock gasses" from the synthetic oil facilities. Producing it from natural oil "feedstock" was a much simpler process, but the natural oil which Germany produced/imported was generally reserved for production of lubricants (which could not be produced synthetically with the "tech" of the times). There exist many documented cases where certain Luftwaffe fliers enjoyed a "position of privilege" and flew machines kitted out for high octane fuel. The little triangle at the fueling point of these machines contains the characters "C3"; machines burning standard (80/87) grade have "B4" in this triangle. The DB 601N was one such engine, introduced as a "stop gap" while the DB 605 was proven for service.

                          Things happened as they did for a reason...

                          The evolution of aero-engine technology during the ten year period from 1935-45 is a testament to man's ingenuity in the extreme. In my estimation, it dwarfs many far better known "innovations" (such as the Manhattan Project) significantly, when viewed within the proper context.

                          Cheers, Ron
                          48 trips 'round the sun on this sh*tball we call home...and still learning...
                          __________________________________________________ __________________

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by TacCovert4 View Post
                            IIRC the Spitfire had a tighter turn radius, but also bore less firepower, especially the 20mm cannon through the nose. That 20mm is your real bomber-killer, unless you're running 6 .50s to match it. Just think a moment. A 20mm cannon firing simple ball ammo is putting bullets in the air that are rougly 80% the weight of a twin .50 cal shot. That alone is going to mean a lot.

                            Now if Messerschmidt had built the spitfire with the weapons loadout of their brother belligerents, say the Zero, you've got a serious anti-bomber weapon on your hands. A little light on the ammo for extended dogfighting, but powerful in the hands of a skilled pilot against lumbering bombers.
                            How about the messerscmitt having clip wings with like one of the newer versions of the Spitfire?
                            It turn out that the Spitfire flew with much more % of great performance.
                            Now had this to the messerschmitt,i wonder how well she will go?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Heidi View Post
                              Does not halfprint like to know that germans like the british spitfire??? Yes half print,germans did like britsh technolghy,not just the Americans.


                              Half print- yes,it does make it an messerscmitt!
                              You can't call it a Spitfire any more when it has got a German engine and German markings.

                              You have little to teach me about Germany or Germans.

                              Spit or 109 the differences are greater than just changing the engine. Take a look at the early P 51. First it had an American Engine, then the famous Merlin. It reamined a P 51. Just like painting stripes on a lion doesn't make it into a tiger, it reamins a lion.
                              "Ask not what your country can do for you"

                              Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

                              you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

                              Comment

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