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  #1  
Old 13th May 2018, 21:15
Lagarto Lagarto is offline
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Question Dallachy Strike Wing and their escort losses (?) on 16 Feb 1945

Hi all,
I'm looking for details of losses, if in fact there were any, of the Dallachy Strike Wing - Beaufighters of 144 Sqn RAF, 404 Sqn RCAF, 455 Sqn RAAF and 459 Sqn RNZAF - and their escort - Mustang Mk IIIs of No 65 Sqn RAF.
On 16 February 1945 they were intercepted near Alesund off the coast of Norway by Bf 109s of 10./JG 5 led by Walter Schuck. He claimed two - a Mustang and a Beaufighter - which were his 197th and 198th victories, and his last ones at the control of a Bf 109 before he went to Germany to fly Me 262s.
Could anyone confirm/deny that the aforementioned squadrons suffered any losses on that day? Thank you
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Old 13th May 2018, 22:04
MW Giles MW Giles is offline
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Re: Dallachy Strike Wing and their escort losses (?) on 16 Feb 1945

Anti Shipping Patrol -Norangs Fjord
65 Mustang 12 sorties
Came across 30 Fw190s from N and 10 Me109s from SE in target area. Fw190s not engaged and not seen again. Attacked the 109s The squadron made three claims for Destroyed and one Probable claim. Three Mustangs slightly damaged
144 Beaufighter 6 sorties of which 1 made early return
Nothing sighted and returned to base. Believes Luftwaffe attacked Mosquitos raid
279 Warwick 2 sorties
333 Mosquito 1 sortie - early return
404 Beaufighter 8 sorties
Did not attack due to cloud cover over Norwegian coast, returned to base, reports Mosquitos were ones engaged
455 Beaufighter 5 sorties
Banff contingent went ahead, could not keep up with them. Cloud cover over Norwegian coast, returned to base, nothing seen
489 Beaufighter 2 sorties

No losses from any cause on this strike, or the one in the same area by the Banff Wing

143 Mosquito 1 sortie
235 Mosquito 3 sorties
248 Mosquito 3 sorties
333 Mosquito 4 sorties - of which 1 returned early
14:54 sighted 5 Me109s SW of target at 5000ft, R/333 attacked by one but no damage caused

Martin

Last edited by MW Giles; 13th May 2018 at 22:38. Reason: Adding detail
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Old 13th May 2018, 22:38
Lagarto Lagarto is offline
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Re: Dallachy Strike Wing and their escort losses (?) on 16 Feb 1945

Very revealing, thank you!
And Walter Schuck in his book "Luftwaffe Eagle" wrote about the events of that day:
"After our first pass I saw four of the Beaufighters go down into the water. Thoroughly alarmed, the remaining machines jettisoned their bombs and went into a circle. Manoeuvering sharply, I managed to insert myself into the circle and get on the tail of one of the Beaufighters. When it was almost completely filling my windscreen, I opened fire. The English machine shuddered under the heavy impact of my shells, then the fuselage broke in two behind the wings".
Makes one wonder... By the way, the victories he claimed on that day were the only ones of his 206 victories claimed against the RAF. Och, and the Dallachy Beaufighters carried rocket missiles and (rarely) torpedoes into the battle, but never bombs.
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Old 13th May 2018, 22:58
MW Giles MW Giles is offline
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Re: Dallachy Strike Wing and their escort losses (?) on 16 Feb 1945

It is very interesting, the claims (I think they come from Mombeek's JG5 books) are

10/JG5 Oblt W Schuck Mustang - Alesund
10/JG5 Oblt W Schuck Mustang - Alesund
10/JG5 Fw M Wollmann Avenger - Alesund
14:43 14/JG5 Lt H Neumann Mustang 10km NW of Lister
15:11 10/JG5 Uffz W Baasch Mustang 55km SSE of Alesund

It seems he did not claim a Beaufighter at all.

The Beaufighters on the raid were either rocket armed or just cannon/mg for flak suppression

Cannot find a FAA strike on that date to account for the Avenger

Martin

PS It seems the RAF claiming was not too bad as 10/JG5 lost 4 Bf109s on that day, plus a fifth that crashed on take off
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Old 14th May 2018, 16:54
Stephen M. Fochuk Stephen M. Fochuk is offline
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Re: Dallachy Strike Wing and their escort losses (?) on 16 Feb 1945

ORB entries from No.404 Squadron, RCAF for the 16th:

540: A very mild day with few scattered showers. W/C E.W. Pierce led eight Squadron aircraft in a large formation of thirty-nine other aircraft, Beaufighters and Mosquitos, together with twelve Mustangs. Owing to bad weather enroute, the Mosquitos flew below cloud with the Mustangs, and the Beaufighters started above cloud, but on arrival on the Norge Coast the weather was very bad ad cloud covered the hills completely. No opening could be found but the target was located by the Mosquitos, however, could not be attacked owing to the poor visibility and the position of the ships, so the leader ordered the return to base. The Mosquitos were then engaged by approximately forty enemy single-engined fighters who were in turn engaged by the Mustangs. Fortunately, our force was not attacked. All our aircraft returned safely to base. F/L B.J.H. Daventry, RAF, from Air Ministry (PR3) arrived to take some pictures of the Coastal Command boys.

541: Time up & down: 1225-1722 hrs. 8 Beaus. of 404 accompanied by 13 Beaus. of 144, 455 and 489 Squadrons, 12 Mosquitos of the Banff Wing, 12 Mustangs of 65 Squadron, from Peterhead, and 2 A.S.R. Warwicks of 279 Squadron, were ordered on a shipping strikes in Norange Fjord. Wing Commander E.W. Pierce led our Squadron. Rendezvous was made at Banff with their 12 aircraft and these together with the Mustangs flew below cloud while the Beaufighters started out above the cloud. At estimated time of arrival, on coast, land could not be seen and although an opening was searched for almost the entire coast was covered and formation had to return to base, sortie being abortive.
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Old 14th May 2018, 21:44
Delmenhorst Delmenhorst is offline
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Re: Dallachy Strike Wing and their escort losses (?) on 16 Feb 1945

Aircraft recognition can be a very difficult art. Walter Schuck attacked a Mosquito from No. 333 Squadron, which was part of Banff Strike Wing.
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Old 14th May 2018, 21:48
MW Giles MW Giles is offline
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Re: Dallachy Strike Wing and their escort losses (?) on 16 Feb 1945

R/333 attacked by one Me109 but no damage caused; it definitely did not, "After our first pass I saw four of the Beaufighters go down into the water. Thoroughly alarmed, the remaining machines jettisoned their bombs and went into a circle. Manoeuvering sharply, I managed to insert myself into the circle and get on the tail of one of the Beaufighters. When it was almost completely filling my windscreen, I opened fire. The English machine shuddered under the heavy impact of my shells, then the fuselage broke in two behind the wings". Bordering on fantasy

Regards

Martin
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Old 14th May 2018, 22:50
Delmenhorst Delmenhorst is offline
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Re: Dallachy Strike Wing and their escort losses (?) on 16 Feb 1945

He is just as good as Bob Braham
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Old 15th May 2018, 00:55
Stephen M. Fochuk Stephen M. Fochuk is offline
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Re: Dallachy Strike Wing and their escort losses (?) on 16 Feb 1945

Here we go...in what sense, Delmenhorst, over claiming? Provide some input here, reference and examples... back up your claim.

Stephen
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Old 15th May 2018, 14:30
Delmenhorst Delmenhorst is offline
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Re: Dallachy Strike Wing and their escort losses (?) on 16 Feb 1945

Yes, Stephen, overclaiming and claiming wrong a/c or targets. It was quite common in the heath of the battle.

About Braham:
24th of March, 1944. He claims a Ju 52 and a Bf 109 at Aalborg. The Ju 52 is correct but the Bf 109 is a W 34. Quite a difference.
13th of April, 1944. Braham claims a He4 111 and a Fw 58 over Denmark. He shoots down a Fw 58, but no He 111. It is probably the same plane.
7th of May, 1944. Braham shoots down a Ju 88 near Roskilde in Denmark, which is absolutely correct.
12th of May, 1944. Braham claim that he is shooting down a Fw 190 over northern Jutland. He had a combat with a Fw 190, but he did not shoot it down. On the same trip he attacked a civilian car (a vetenerian) a couple of hundred miles from the place where the air combat took place.
25th of June, 1944. Braham shoots up a 'german staff car' - in reality a taxi and kills the driver and a passenger.

We have many, many false claims in Denmark. Air combats that never took place or where the opponent was not shot down. Especially the american pilots had a different picture of the ground targets that they attacked. An unarmed civilian fishing boat became a 'German minesweeper', an old age home became 'a German military headquarter with the flag flying outside' (the flag was Danish and due to a birthday of one of the people living at the old age home) and a train was always a troop train. I guess that they saw what they wanted to see. And yes, I have also been in 'a stressed situation' where the situation was quite different from what I saw at the moment.
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