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Anti Shipping Aircraft

Discussion in 'The War at Sea' started by Mutant Poodle, Mar 23, 2004.

  1. Ebar

    Ebar New Member

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    I was suprised to read recently the the British Wellington Bomber after it's time as a heavy bomber was over racked up a number of useful careers. These included service in the Med as a torpedo bomber.

    The Wellington could carry two torpedoes and used them to carry out two separate attack runs rather than dropping them both at once.
     
  2. corpcasselbury

    corpcasselbury New Member

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    I wonder if that was because it was a lash-up, rather than a purpose-built torpedo bomber?
     
  3. Ebar

    Ebar New Member

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    Not a hundred percent sure but I think that dropping both torpedos at once didn't offer any great advantage. If you drop both at once then obviously both torpedoes are coming in on the same baring. If the target dodged one then it likely dodged both. Given that the Wellingtons in the med were generally chasing Rommels supply ships it was better to have two shots than one big shot, as a general rule merchant ships don't react well to having a bit of their hull removed with high explosives so one torp should do the job.
     
  4. DesertWolf

    DesertWolf Member

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    Good point Ebar, but merchant ships do not always sink with one torp, so better ensure that a valuable merchant ship (especially if filled with panzers) doesnt reach Rommel by adding an extra torp for good measure.
     
  5. Ebar

    Ebar New Member

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    True enough, it was accepted that while in a merchant ship supplies could be destroyed by a single sortie. Once on land those same supplies would take thousands of sorties to destroy. However no merchant ship ever laughs off a torpedo strike. A merchant ship that's stopped a torp is, under best case scenarios, a lame duck and highly vunerable to follow up strikes.

    On a slightly seperate note. If you were to launch both torpedos at once the odds are one torpedo would strike at least a fraction before the other. Would there be the possiblity that the first torps blast would knock out the second torp?
     
  6. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 New Member

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    A merchant ship that's stopped a torp is, under best case scenarios, a lame duck and highly vunerable to follow up strikes.

    ...or to the torpedo plane (in this case) coming round for a second pass with its remaining torp?
     
  7. DesertWolf

    DesertWolf Member

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    The early allied torpedo bombers in the med werent likely to find fighter opposition as they usually flew their sorties at night. But then again, its much harder to make a torpedo run at night.
     
  8. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 New Member

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    The Black Cats in the Pacific did pretty well though, and they operated a lot by night.
     
  9. DesertWolf

    DesertWolf Member

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    That means that the Black Cats are pretty good pilots :wink: :p
     
  10. corpcasselbury

    corpcasselbury New Member

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    Night torpedo attacks do require great skill and training if you're going to hit anything smaller than the ocean. :wink:
     
  11. DesertWolf

    DesertWolf Member

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    Id like to take the liberty of adding courage! :wink:
     
  12. Ebar

    Ebar New Member

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    In the case of the Wellingtons operating in the Med attacks weren't made in total darkness.

    The target would be found by a Wellington carrying radar and parachute flares. The search Wellington would act as a homing beacon for the approaching strike. Once the strike arrived the search Wellington would drop flares in an L pattern behind the target. The target would be silhouetted against the flares while the strike would approach from darkness.
     
  13. scaramouche

    scaramouche New Member

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    The Heinkel HE-IIIH-4, an improved version of previous "H" variants, which retained the basic profile of the series, was introduced in 1940. Torpedoes were carried externally, as can be seen in this photograph. .
     
  14. corpcasselbury

    corpcasselbury New Member

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    Interestingly enough, the only torpedo bomber I know of that carried the fish in an internal bomb bay was the Grumman Avenger. Given the amount of drag an externally carried torpedo generated, I wonder why it took so long for someone to design a plane that carried it internally.
     
  15. Tony Williams

    Tony Williams Member

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    The Avenger carried specially-designed, very short, aerial torpedos. Other nations carried much longer items which were far harder to carry in bomb-bays except for much larger planes like the Wellington (which carried two internally IIRC).

    Tony Williams: Military gun and ammunition website and Discussion forum
     
  16. corpcasselbury

    corpcasselbury New Member

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    Can you provide details of the different dimensions of the Avenger carried torpedo as opposed to the fish used by American subs and destroyers?
     
  17. Tony Williams

    Tony Williams Member

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    With pleasure:

    The standard US airborne torpedo was the Mark 13, which weighed 2,216 lb, was 22.4 inches in diameter and 13' 5" in length

    The standard USN submarine torpedowas the Mark 14, which weighed 3,280 lb, was 21 inches in diameter and 20' 6" in length.

    The FAA aerial torpedo in use in the latter part of WW2 was the Mark XV, which weighed 1,800 lb, was 18 inches in diameter and 17' 3" long.

    Tony Williams: Military gun and ammunition website and Discussion forum
     
  18. DesertWolf

    DesertWolf Member

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    It would be alot of help Tony Williams if you could please tell me the weight of HE the torpedos carried. Thanx! :D
     
  19. Tony Williams

    Tony Williams Member

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    No prob.

    US Mk 13 = 600 lb Torpex
    US Mk 14 = 643 lb Torpex
    RN Mk XV = 545 lb Torpex

    TW
     
  20. DesertWolf

    DesertWolf Member

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