Okay, if by "match" you mean "some number sort of in the range of 5,500", given glenn239 was winging it. You bring up an interesting question though as to where exactly Price derived his figures from, since they do not in fact match any of the records I have available. For example, 17 May 1943 is an odd date for German accounting given the Luftwaffe at that time was firmly on the standard German Dekade reporting system and had been since 30 April 1942. Given Price reported both type totals and individual unit reports it appears to be a combination of reporting and at least falls within the range given by the "Einsatzbereitschaft der Fliegenden Verbände".KDF33 wrote: ↑28 Aug 2021 02:56Well, inasmuch as 'combat aircraft' are a subset of overall aircraft, yes.
My point was that glenn239's figure of '5,500' aircraft seems to match the number of German combat + transport aircraft deployed within operational Gruppen and Staffeln for the dates 5/17/43 and 5/31/44, as found in Price's Luftwaffe Data Book, reproduced here.
In any case, on neither of those dates is the operational strength of German combat + transport aircraft deployed within operational Gruppen and Staffeln anywhere near 5,500. On 17 May 1943, the figure is 4,641, at least according to Price, but was 4,604 on 20 May 1943 according to the "Einsatzbereitschaft der Fliegenden Verbände". On 31 May 1944 it was 4,928 according to Price, but 4,655 according to the "Einsatzbereitschaft der Fliegenden Verbände".
Why yes, the "Einsatzbereitschaft der Fliegenden Verbände". For example, serviceability of the 1E fighter force during 1944 amounted to 1,397.22 serviceable average/1,999.17 average on hand = 69.89%.I agree with you. I would only add the caveat that a larger dataset would be needed than just 1-2 dates per year to reach conclusions about average Luftwaffe serviceability rates within operational units.
Indeed, but the problem - for the Germans - is that the massive overstrength of aircraft and crews you are not counting as operational enabled the USAAF to maintain unit strength and operations without letup. The Germans could not.I only meant that we cannot arrive at a '73 to 74 percent' estimate.
I'm afraid that is an assumption based upon no evidence. The repair/damage categorization in use was adapted from the British:For heavy bombers, no. For fighters, I would assume that a smaller share would be in maintenance/repair outside of their units, if only because of their lesser ability to return to base after suffering catastrophic damage. For medium/light bombers, I would guess they'd be somewhere in the middle.
Cat A – Damaged: repair on site by operating unit
Cat AC – Damaged: repair on site not by operating unit
Cat B – Damaged: repair at maintenance unit
Cat C – Damaged: repair for ground instruction purposes only, i.e. as static display
Cat E – Write-off: salvage impossible
Cat E1 – Write-off: major components salvageable
Cat E2 – Write-off: scrap salvageable
Cat Em – Write-off: failed-to-return (missing)
In the Eighth AF, 4,299 HB were counted as missing in 293,599 credit sorties, 1.46%. 1,556 returned Cat E, E1, and E2, 0.53%. For fighters it was 2,222 missing in 242,931 credit sorties, 0.91%. 778 returned Cat E, E1, and E2, 0.32%. Or, to look at it another way, 26.6% of HB lost returned, while 25.9% of fighters did. The difference is negligible.
As I pointed out, your point 3 is fallacious and while points 1 and 2 have basis in fact, the real difference is the large reserve of combat-ready aircraft and crews maintained by the USAAF, but not counted as "operational", something the Germans never had. The Germans could not compare to the ability of the USAAF to sustain operations.Well, 60% for 11/30/1944, yes. Here is a summary of the basic breakdown:
Total '1st Line' heavy bombers in the ETO: 3,444 (100% of total)
Total assigned strength of heavy bomber units: 2,784 (81%)
Total heavy bombers on hand with units: 2,457 (71%)
Total heavy bombers serviceable with units: 2,071 (60%)
My points 1, 2 and 3 are what I assume accounts for the differential between 3,444 and 2,457 (987 bombers).
No problem.Thank you, I genuinely appreciate the gesture. It is so rare online.
The problem is the German concept of an "apple" was not the same as the USAAF.I can understand that. I propose we collaborate to get a proper apples-to-apples comparison.
That is problematic insofar as the "Einsatzbereitschaft der Fliegenden Verbände" reported a strength of 2,998 1E fighters, of which 2,256 were operational on that date. Obviously, the Germans did not count the Ergänzungs-Jagdgeschwader as einsatzbereit Fliegenden Verbände. However, Jagdgruppe 10 was counted, probably since as of July when it was formed from Erprobungskommando 25 it was considered an einsatzbereit Fliegenden Verbände. Erprobungskommando 25 was a weapons testing unit, but as reformed it was not.I have never seen the Einsatzbereitschaft der Fliegenden Verbände, but I have dug into the Flugzeugbestand und Bewegungsmeldungen, available online here.
For 11/30/1944, I get:
-2,930 single-engined fighters in 18 combat Jagdgeschwadern: JG1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 11, 26, 27, 51, 52, 53, 54, 76, 77, 300, 301 and 400
-638 single-engined fighters in 2 replacement training Jagdgeschwadern: EJG1 and 2
-52 single-engined fighters in 1 weapons-test Jagdgruppe: JGr.10
For a total of 3,620 single-engined fighters.
Indeed, those aircraft, 30 alone in JG 1, were essentially those 60% damaged and not repairable by the unit. They were returned to factory for rebuild or to depots for repair/salvage...exactly the same as in the USAAF. There in Eighth Air Force, 1,556 HB were so treated, for the entire period 17 August 1942-8 May 1945.It doesn't appear to be the case. Regarding aircraft undergoing maintenance and/or repair, the Flugzeugbestand und Bewegungsmeldungen exclude aircraft overhauled/repaired at a higher level than the Gruppe. This is made clear by looking at the monthly flow of aircraft. To give but one example, in November 1944 45 Fw 190As left Jagdgeschwader 301 to undergo 'Überholung'. They were subtracted from the 11/30/1944 strength report.
Or that they are sitting in factory yards "completed" (but lacking engines, propellers, and weaponry in many cases) but waiting delivery.By inference, we can conclude that aircraft in-theater, but as yet unassigned to Gruppen also aren't counted.
Or that they are sent to the Ergänzungs-Jagdgeschwader.
Perhaps the British definitions can help us. They used 4 categories: A to D. Here are their definitions:
To be precise, you assume the German data approximately corresponds to that.Category A - Aircraft operationally serviceable or under inspection in units and
aircraft operationally serviceable complete with war equipment ready for
issue to operational units.
Category B - Aircraft under repair in units which it is anticipated will, in the case
of operational units, become available for operations within 14 days and
in the case of maintenance and repair units will be ready for issue to
operational units within 14 days.
Category C - All new aircraft either boxed or flight delivered which (through lack of
Appendix A items rectifications and modifications) will not pass into
Category B till after 14 days.
Category D - All salvaged aircraft and those undergoing major repair in maintenance
units; some of the Category D aircraft will be long term repair jobs and
some will ultimately have to be written off.
(snip) The German data approximately corresponds to most of Cat (A) + (B), whereas the American data corresponds to the overall total across the four categories.
Except that it does not. The actual serviceability of aircraft given for operational units was 2,256 of 2,998, or 75.3%...except we have no accounting of crew availability, which was critical in the Luftwaffe. I will try to dig into the Maxwell files for some more clarity on the Jagdwaffe.Thus, the proper comparison for 11/30/1944 would be:
-USAAF: 2,457 heavy bombers within operational units in the ETO, of which 2,071 were serviceable (84%)
-Luftwaffe: 2,930 single-engined fighters within operational units in the entire Luftwaffe, of which 2,256 (?) were serviceable (77%) - assuming my Flugzeugbestand und Bewegungsmeldungen figure corresponds to yours taken from Einsatzbereitschaft der Fliegenden Verbände
Actually, the figures for first line aircraft in theater for the USAAF included all assigned to units and all those held for issue or repair by the Base Air Depot. For HB, the number processed through Base Depots for repairs to 30 November 1944 was 476. In 1944, only an average of 35 per month went through that process, so it wasn't that large a number.The figure of 4,454 USAAF singled-engined fighters for 11/30/1944 would match the 2,930 single-engined fighters within operational units, plus the unknown number of fighters undergoing 'Überholung', those recently accepted by the Luftwaffe now waiting to be issued to the Jagdgeschwadern, and whatever fighters in higher-echelon reserve there were or not.