Wednesday, November 03, 2004

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Flieger - Heinkel He 162 "Volksjäger" on an airfield in Schleswig-Holstein at the end of the war. By the end of 1944 the major problem facing Luftwaffe operations was not a lack of airplanes, but fuel and pilots. The Allied superiority in the skies was so immense that the average new Luftwaffe pilot only lasted two weeks before he was killed or captured. In view of this situation a plan was drawn up to produce a cheap fighther plane which could be flown by pilots with just a minimum of training. The original idea was that the teenage members of the nazi youth organisation the Hitlerjugend should provide the pilots, the plane itself would be made mainly from plywood and powered by a single jet engine.
When flight testing began it was discovered that the plane functioned well, but it took an experienced pilot to fly it and the few "Volkjägers" actually produced were only used briefly during the last weeks of the war.

Babe - "Pick up a book, you might learn something.."
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