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I had no idea V1s were air launched.

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I had no idea V1s were air launched.

Old 17th Jun 2019, 00:29
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I had no idea V1s were air launched.

Just seen it on a FB comment and that took me to a paperback on the subject.

I saw them in the night sky, and one was displayed in Colchester - if you had 3d to go behind the canvas.
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Old 17th Jun 2019, 01:23
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Yep, Heinkel's dropped them, see link, they also tried a flame thrower in the tail of the 111 to dissuade fighter attacks but abandoned it after they found it worked the opposite, pilots attacking assumed they had set it on fire so pressed home the attacks.


https://1000aircraftphotos.com/Contr...Bill/11860.htm

http://ww2today.com/24-december-1944...over-north-sea
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Old 17th Jun 2019, 09:02
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Air launching couldn't have done much for the targeting accuracy. But I suppose at that late stage in the war it was just a case of fire and forget.
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Old 17th Jun 2019, 11:45
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The Germans had more success with their air launched glider bombs which were wire guided from the parent He 111.
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Old 17th Jun 2019, 15:11
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In the book Target London (which some kind soul had recommended on this forum) some astonishing figures were given.
32,000 V1s were made. 10,492 were launched against our capital. 4,261 were shot down by AA, fighters or collided with barrage balloons.
17,981 (mostly civilians) were injured and 6,181 killed.
No less than 1,402 V2 rockets were launched against the UK. There was no defence possible against these.
The damage caused by both these weapons was staggering. 107,000 homes destroyed and over 1.5 million damaged.
The figures given almost beggars belief.
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Old 17th Jun 2019, 15:41
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Originally Posted by Blossy View Post
In the book Target London (which some kind soul had recommended on this forum) some astonishing figures were given.
32,000 V1s were made. 10,492 were launched against our capital. 4,261 were shot down by AA, fighters or collided with barrage balloons.
17,981 (mostly civilians) were injured and 6,181 killed.
No less than 1,402 V2 rockets were launched against the UK. There was no defence possible against these.
The damage caused by both these weapons was staggering. 107,000 homes destroyed and over 1.5 million damaged.
The figures given almost beggars belief.
Still far less than the bombing damage in Germany and deaths in firestorms.
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Old 17th Jun 2019, 15:51
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True, Sallyann1234 but the data I submitted was about only the V1 & V2 and then in answer to your question. I didn't mention the conventional bombing by the Luftwaffe.
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Old 17th Jun 2019, 15:55
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North Weald was in at the beginning and end of the V-1 campaign:

On 16 June 1944 the USAAF base at Boreham reported that an ‘unusual missile’ had come down near that airfield. F/Lt Cripwell from 6210 Bomb Disposal Flight at RAF North Weald took a squad of men to investigate. Several pieces of debris were collected and taken to Boreham for examination by intelligence officers. This V-1 impact was only three days after the first launch in operational service.

A V-1 Flying Bomb was shot down by F/Lt Jimmie Shottick of 501 Squadron flying a Hawker Tempest V out of Hunsdon on 26 March 1945. It was the final V-1 destroyed by Fighter Command and crashed to earth near North Weald. It had been released from a Heinkel He 111 bomber over the North Sea.
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Old 17th Jun 2019, 20:52
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Originally Posted by Sallyann1234 View Post
Still far less than the bombing damage in Germany and deaths in firestorms.
What a nonsensical post, given that the London blitz alone destroyed some 2 million homes and killed ~32,000.

This thread is about the V1.
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Old 17th Jun 2019, 21:27
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V-1 was more significant than its reputation.

Indeed, we often see the V-1 portrayed as a somewhat crude example of Nazi technology -- hence the "Doodlebug" nickname.

However, by shortly after D-Day the Allies had come into possession of several intact examples, and took them to the US for study and reverse engineering. With some tweaks to guidance this became the JB-2 Loon. Almost 1400 were built, the plan being to launch these onto Japan at a rate of 500 a day, likely air launched from B-29's. Another more famous program resulted in the War ending before any were actually used.

However, the V-1, now as the Loon, was the early "air-launched cruise missile". A very significant bit of kit indeed.
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Old 17th Jun 2019, 23:57
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Originally Posted by Blossy View Post
In the book Target London (which some kind soul had recommended on this forum) some astonishing figures were given.
32,000 V1s were made. 10,492 were launched against our capital. 4,261 were shot down by AA, fighters or collided with barrage balloons.
17,981 (mostly civilians) were injured and 6,181 killed.
No less than 1,402 V2 rockets were launched against the UK. There was no defence possible against these.
The damage caused by both these weapons was staggering. 107,000 homes destroyed and over 1.5 million damaged.
The figures given almost beggars belief.
I watched a TV program about the V2 the other night. Apparently the number of slave laborers who died building the V2 out numbered the number of British killed by the weapon by something like a factor of 5...
It wasn't mentioned in this program, but I understand that the German civilians also suffered from the V2 - the diversion of a large portion of the potato crop to creation of alcohol fuel for the V2 contributed greatly to the mass starvation of the German populace in the later stages of the war.
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Old 18th Jun 2019, 03:45
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Putting to one side, for a moment, the appalling loss of life, on both sides, of the aerial bombing campaigns, there's the question of the effectiveness of the German missiles. On Blossy's figures, the V1s caused roughly 6 deaths per sortie. That is, I would have thought, lower than the average deaths per sortie of the Allied bombing campaign. Civilian deaths were not the primary objective of the bombing campaigns, but they might work as a rough proxy for all the desired outcomes (chiefly loss of industrial capacity and damage to morale).
How do the cost calculations work? Each V1 was a total loss on its first and only mission, whereas bombing aircraft were reusable--up to maybe 30 missions. How did airframe costs compare? There is also the loss of highly trained (and very brave) aircrew--I don't know quite how you figure that in, or how you offset it against the deaths of slave labourers building the missiles.
The economics of destruction and suffering is a horrible thing to contemplate, but presumably it's worth knowing whether the missiles were in fact effective weapons. Intuitively, one would expect the costs (of all kinds) of the V2 exceeded the damage caused by a good measure, but does anyone know about the V1?
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Old 18th Jun 2019, 12:22
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There are far worse stats. The most startling [for me] was to discover that 75% of all the men who went to sea in a german submarine during WW2 died in a submarine. That's a shockingly high number, made more so by the way that the British generally view the "U-boat war" as being largely won by Germany.

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Old 19th Jun 2019, 08:07
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A story in R. V. Jones’ “Most Secret War” fascinates me. Turned German agents were used to feed back false information about V1 impact points. The times given were correct but the locations were given as areas in NW London and Middlesex.

As a consequence, the Germans thought the missiles were overflying their targets in Central London and reduced the distance-to-fly in the propeller-driven odometer. This moved the average target location to the southeast and reduced overall damage and casualties. Tough if you lived in NW Kent though!
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Old 19th Jun 2019, 09:36
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The last but one V2 landed in my great grandmother's back garden. The impact blew all the windows in and half the tiles off the roof but the warhead didn't go off so the house stayed upright. Five years later there were still a couple of holes in the ground with bits of the combustion chamber. Because the warhead hadn't gone off the surrounding trees were unaffected.

Rumour has it that the warhead was down far too deep and dangerous to recover safely so they left it there.

I must wander around there one day and tell the present owners, who paid something like 485.000 for the property, my concerns.
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Old 19th Jun 2019, 09:49
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I am sure I read somewhere the the Germans spent more on the "V" weapons then the Allies spent on the Manhattan Project...
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Old 19th Jun 2019, 11:45
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My Dutch born mother was in The Netherlands during the war. She had a scar on her forehead and told us young boys it was caused by a V2 rocket. Of course I assumed she meant that the rocket had hit her on the head. Well, not quite!

It seems that the town she was in - Utrecht I think - was used for launching the V2s at night and they were very noisy and so woke everyone up. They could also hear when they went wrong, which a lot of them did. In that case they could land on the civilian areas. That is what happened on this night - the rocket landed 200m down the road and as my mother was trying to dive under the bed the door frame blew in and hit her on the head. Nowhere near as dramatic a story!
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Old 19th Jun 2019, 18:12
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The Hague is more likely than Utrecht.
V2 rocket

About the V1 I have read that V1 launch rails were not (very) mobile and could be easily spotted and destroyed from the air.
Launching from airplanes was more difficult to intercept.
I think I have also read that the gyro could not handle the G-forces of skid launching very well. Therefore it could be off course from the start.

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Old 20th Jun 2019, 07:29
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At the small but very well laid out museum at Headcorn they have a 'V1' with a cockpit for a very brave pilot.
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Old 20th Jun 2019, 08:54
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the gyro could not handle the G-forces of skid launching very well.
Apparently Hanna Reitsch was a part of a group of test pilots that flew a manned version of the V!. They discovered gyroscopic precession on the autopilot when it was launched. A lock on the controls until the pulse jet was stable solved that.
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