He162A-2 Volksjäger

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Matt L
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He162A-2 Volksjäger

Post by Matt L » 19 Apr 2003 05:24

In another thread someone suggested that over 60 pilots had used the Volksjäger ejection seat by the end of the war.

Most books say that no authenticated combat reports of Allied fighters even encountering an He162 exist. Erich Mombeek's history of JG1 'Defending the Reich' mentions no He162s lost in combat, 11 pilots killed in accidents, and even 2 combat victories over RAF fighters- but no ejections.

So I'm really curious where this number came from... especially since only about 170 He162A-2s were delivered to the Luftwaffe in total.

Matt

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Post by varjag » 19 Apr 2003 12:29

I'm as curious as you are. If sixty guys ejected from the Volksjäger there may have been even more 'testing accidents' than I've heard about. Air 'victories' ? You've gotta be joking - I cannot hold my breath before the replies....

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Trommelfeuer
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Post by Trommelfeuer » 19 Apr 2003 19:33

In September 1944 the Deutscher Volkssturm was established. Within this "people's movement" organisation several Luftwaffe units were supposed to be formed and equipped with Volksjagers. In January 1945 the Volksjager-Erprobungskommando 162 was formed with Oberst Heinz Bar in command. This unit started its training in Rechlin and then in Munchen-Riem. In February 1945 I./JG1 gave its Fw-109s to II./JG1 and all the personnel started training on He-162. After the training was completed the unit was moved to Leck. The II./JG1 was also equipped with Salamanders later on. Because of the lack of fuel there was almost no operational or training flights. On 24 April commander of II./JG1 Hauptmann Paul-Heinrich Dahne died when ejecting from his He-162, because the canopy did not eject. On 2 May 1945 the first victory was recorded by Unteroffizier Rechberger, who shot down an American P-47 Thunderbolt. Two days later Leutnant Schmitt shot down a British Typhoon near Rostock. The airfiled in Leck was taken over by the British Army on 8 May 1945.
http://www.angelfire.com/ab4/airplanes/ ... story.html

MFG, Sven

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Erich
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Post by Erich » 19 Apr 2003 19:44

those two victories are still debateable today. We may never know.....
I have E. Mombeeks and Dr. Priends histories of JG 1 and I question these claims

~E

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Post by Matt L » 19 Apr 2003 21:17

Indeed Mombeeks states that no Typhoon was lost on the day one was claimed shot down by an He162 pilot, but with the well-documented issues that arose around proper aircraft identification, who's to say it wasn't a Tempest or even a Spitfire? At the end of the war one's personal score hardly mattered as victory confirmations were not forthcoming any more- so why would the pilot make it up? It was hardly a large-scale interception where mistakes could have been made. I suppose that if no Allied aircraft was reported missing in the area on that date, doubt would definitely be reasonable, but, unfortunately, no mention of ANY Allied aircraft being lost is made- just no Typhoon.

The other victory I referred to is described as follows:

"On 19th April, Feldwebel Guenther Kirchner, a veteran of II. Gruppe who had been posted to I. Gruppe following a recent break, shot down a British aircraft. This was admitted by the British pilot when he was captured. A Flak unit was, however, attributed with the victory."

That sounds pretty definitive to me- the shot-down pilot admitting that he had been bested. Presumably this account was either relayed by a former member of JG1 or from an acutal document.

I hadn't heard of Uffz. Rechberger's victory over the P47- so that's 3 claims then. Again, I'd think that only documentary proof of NO Allied losses in the area on 2. May would be reason to disbelieve the claim.

Why then, Erich, do you question all of them? Do you know of evidence that contradicts these claims? It's tough accepting authors' words without being able to check primary sources onesself, so I'm always interested to know as much about an event as possible- especially if there's contradictory information around.

Matt

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Post by Erich » 19 Apr 2003 21:36

wish we could have the likes of Hans Ring or someone similiar with the records of confirmed Luftwaffe victories amongst us. The other alternative would be to try and get to Freiburg and the BA/MA to check the late months claims for downings of Allied a/c in April and May of 45. So much chaos and lost materials from many of the JG's and NJG's that it throws detailed researchers in to hypothesizing what may or what could of happened. Also Addi Dickefelds commando of HJ He 162 boyz have even made claims and yet there seems to be documentative proof of any contact with RAF fighters.......

~E

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Post by Trommelfeuer » 19 Apr 2003 21:37

I./JG1 was declared combat-ready on April 23rd, but it had already claimed an RAF fighter on the 19th of April. Feldwebel Günther Kirchner was posthumously credited with the fighter when the captured pilot described the plane that had shot him down, Kirchner had been shot down and killed by another British fighter while returning to Leck. Although other planes would be claimed, this is the only kill for the He 162 that can be confirmed.
source:

http://www.csd.uwo.ca/~pettypi/elevon/b ... 62_mm.html

With friendly greetings, Sven

P.S. Not all He-162 pilots were 16 year old boys...
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Erich
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Post by Erich » 19 Apr 2003 22:23

who said they were ? I am fully aware of who flew in JG 1. simply put the He 162 was like the Me 163, a waste of time and monies. It would of done Germany better to re-equip Jg 400 and parts of JG 1 with the Me 262A-1a

~E

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Post by Matt L » 19 Apr 2003 22:28

Hi Erich,

It's not the Luftwaffe claims that is the issue here though- presumably the authors we're quoting have learned of the claims somewhere- it's the reason that people doubt them that is the question. It's pretty unlikely that at least 2 of the 3 victories that have been mentioned can be proven, so that only leaves the issue of whether they can be definitively disproven. Unless this can be done, I see no reason to doubt them...

Thanks for the link Sven- it must be where whoever quoted the '60-aircrew ejected' statement got his information because there it is- big as day. Unfortunately, the author gives no references and I still think that number is ridiculously high. According to Mombeek, even the loss of Hauptmann Daehne due to a failed ejection is just supposition. His source, Uffz. Konrad Augner, states that those on the ground saw Daehne's aircraft somersault and splinters of glass fly off the canopy. They supposed that he'd tried to eject without releasing the canopy, but since they never recovered his body this was just conjecture. Although I'm not expertly familiar with the ejection system of the He162, it surprises me that the engineers wouldn't have coupled the canopy jettison with the ejection controls.

Matt

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Post by Trommelfeuer » 19 Apr 2003 23:15

P.S. Not all He-162 pilots were 16 year old boys...
who said they were ?
One might get the impression that these birds were only flown by poorly trained 16 year old 'Hitlerjugend' boys and never saw actual combat, while reading several articles in the net....that's why I made this "general" statement. :)
(I really didn't intend to offend Erich or others by this statement...)

Here's another source:
The He 162 contained an ejector seat and on 20 April 1945, the first and only successful use of this device (in an He162) was made by pilot Rudolf Schmitt. Shortly after, on 4 May, Rudolf Schmitt (unhindered by his previous ejection) shot down a Hawker Typhoon ( or Hawker Tempest, different sources...)
Check this source please! Great pictures including a photo of Rudolf Schmitt's "Weisse Eins" with soot on the gun... :)

http://www.pilotenbunker.de/Jagdflieger ... rudolf.htm


With friendly greetings, Sven.

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Post by Matt L » 21 Apr 2003 02:50

Okay,

I emailed the guy who wrote the webpage about the He162 Ejection Seat and he replied that he has a number of references that state over 60 German aircrew had ejected in combat by the end of WWII. Unfortunately, he's unable to provide them at this time. He further said that what he meant was not that 60 He162 pilots had ejected, but that 60 aircrew in the Luftwaffe had. Apparently, the majority of those 60 were from other aircraft- but to my knowledge the only Luftwaffe machines to be equipped with ejection systems were the He280, He219, He162 and the Do335. I can only find one combat use of the He162 ejection seat, and of the other aircraft, only the He219 saw combat. I can't believe that 30 He219s were shot down and their crews ejected. Actually, I doubt that 30 He219s were shot down at all. I have read of one He219 pilot who successfully ejected from his aircraft in combat, so if he and his radar operator would make 3. The other 57+ are a mystery to me.

Does anyone know of a Luftwaffe aircraft that had an ejection seat that I'm missing? One that was operational?

Matt

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Scott Smith
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Post by Scott Smith » 21 Apr 2003 05:00

Matt L wrote:Does anyone know of a Luftwaffe aircraft that had an ejection seat that I'm missing? One that was operational?
The Dornier 335, but I don't know how operational. Only about 11 were accepted.
:)

Image

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Erich
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Post by Erich » 21 Apr 2003 15:12

The He 219 really was the only German a/c to use the ejection seat operationally. there are at least 6 instantces the seat was used with very few a success......you can let your mind wander as to what actually happened but in fact it was quite fatal. matt the quote is just way too many. In the prototypes I could believe maybe 20 but not in actual operational useage.
30 claims of lost He's doesn;t seem feasible either but will check through I./NJG 1 records as it was the only NJG to use the a/c operationally. NJG 5, 2./NJGr 10 and Nachtjagdstaffel Norwegen also had 1-2 on hand for trials and the He 219 failed all attempts to statisfy their crews. The Ju 88G-6 was the performer for the units in 45.

The Do 335 was used in test flights and transfers through one testing unit but was never used in combat. In fact a couple of Tempest units claimed they met the beast in combat but this is false.

~E

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Post by Trommelfeuer » 21 Apr 2003 18:41

some comments on the Dornier Do 335 "Pfeil" :

referring to this source:

Image
(...click on pic please...)
Es wurden insgesamt 37 "Pfeile" gebaut und es gab noch Teile für weitere Maschinen. Die Historiker streiten bis heute ob die Do 335 jemals zum Einsatz kam, denn US-Piloten wollen eine Silhouette dieses Flugzeugs am Himmel gesehen haben, aber die deutschen Aufzeichnungen aus diesen Jahren berichten, dass sie nie eingesetzt wurde.
Auf jeden Fall konnten die Amerikaner bei der Eroberung des Dornier Werks in Oberpfaffenhofen neun A-1, vier A-4 und zwei A-12, fertig montierte Maschinen erobern. Zusammenfassend läßt sich sagen, dass die Do 335 ein gelungener Entwurf war und ihr Abschneiden gegen Muster wie P-51D Mustang wäre bestimmt nicht schlecht gewesen, aber die desolate Lage der Rüstungsindustrie und die durch die hastige Entwicklung aufgetretenen Kinderkrankheiten verhinderten einen Einsatz.
37 "arrows" were built and there were parts to build some more.
Historians still argue if the Do 335 ever saw combat action, 'cause american pilots claimed to have seen the form of this plane in the sky, but german records from these years report they were never used in combat.

Anyway, when americans conquered the Dornier factory in Oberpfaffenhofen they captured nine A-1, four A-4 and two A-12 "arrows", all of them complete.

Summing up one can say that the Do 335 was a good design, and that it would surely not have been shown up bad against planes like the P-51D Mustang, but the bad situation of armaments of war industry and the "childhood" problems due to the fast development hindered operations.

Do 335 "Pfeil" photo source :
http://www.luftwaffepics.com/ldo3351.htm (...101 Do 335 photos !!!...)

With friendly greetings, Sven
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