JUNKERS JU 86 [WOII-D]

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JUNKERS JU 86 [WOII-D]

Berichtdoor Tandorini » 25 feb 2009, 22:30

Afbeelding

Afbeelding

Afbeelding

Afbeelding

Afbeelding

History and notes

It would be fair to say that the Junkers Ju 86 was already obsolescent at the beginning of World War 11, and was accepted rather grudgingly by the Luftwaffe, which preferred the Heinkel He 111. It is all the more surprising, therefore, that within two years the type was operating in the reconnaissance role at higher altitudes than other Luftwaffe aircraft could reach.

Like the contemporary He 111, the Ju 86 was developed as an airliner and bomber, and five prototypes of each were ordered in 1934. The Junkers aircraft flew five months later, four months ahead of its competitor, and had been designed around the new Junkers Jumo 205 diesel engine.

Initial flight trials were disappointing, handling in particular being poor, and during subsequent modifications (which may have improved but not eradicated the problems) gun positions were installed. The third prototype was completed as a bomber and flew in January 1935, four months before the second prototype which was built as a commercial aircraft with 10 passenger seats. The fourth prototype, destined to become the first definitive Ju 86B airliner, flew in May 1935, followed three months later by the fifth prototype, the production prototype for the Ju 86A bomber.

Production at Junker's Dessau factory began on both versions in late 1935 with an initial batch of 13 Ju 86A-0 and seven Ju 86B-0 pre-production aircraft, the first deliveries being made in February 1936. Bombers carried a crew of four and had a defensive armament of three machine-guns. The first export delivery was of a Ju 86B-0 to Swissair in April 1936 for night mail service, and the balance of six of these pre-production aircraft went to Lufthansa. In February 1937 a second aircraft went to Swissair under the export designation Ju 86Z-1, but when re-engined subsequently with BMW 132Dc radials it was redesignated Ju 86Z-2. Lufthansa also received an additional six aircraft in 1937 and these, powered by Jumo 205C diesel engines, had the designation Ju 86C-1.

Junkers had received some export orders for military models with alternative powerplants. Sweden acquired three Ju 86K-1 aircraft with 875-hp (652-kW) Pratt & Whitney Hornet radial engines, and subsequently 16 more were built under licence by SAAB in Sweden and powered by either Swedish- or Polish-built Bristol Pegasus engines, both variants having the designation Ju 86K-13. Other versions of the Ju 86K were sold to Chile, Hungary and Portugal and these (with Gnome Rhone, Bristol Pegasus III or Swedish-built Pegasus XII engines) had the respective designations J u 86K-9, Ju 86K-4 and Ju 86K-5. Hungary later assembled 66 more aircraft under licence, powered by licence-built Gnome-Rhone radials, and these had the designation Ju 86K-2.

Meanwhile, modifications to the military models resulted in the Jumo 205C-engined Ju 86D-1, five of which served. with the Legion Condor during the Spanish Civil War, but the diesel engines were not standing up well to combat conditions and the aircraft had proved markedly inferior to the He 111. Disenchantment with the Ju 86D and the very poor serviceability of its engines led the Luftwaffe to make savage and sudden cuts in the Junkers programme and the diesel engines were dropped. Instead, the 81O-hp (604-kW) BMW 132F radial was installed, resulting in the designation Ju 86E-1, this type being followed by the Ju 86E-2 with uprated 865-hp (645-kW) BMW 132Ns. Performance showed little improvement but reliability was greatly improved.

In 1938, in an attempt to improve pilot visibility, Junkers redesigned the entire nose section,
bringing the pilot farther forward and shortening and lowering the nose to provide a fully glazed enclosure of more streamlined contours. The revisions were included on the final 40 production Ju 86E-2s under the designation Ju 86G-1, and manufacture of the Ju 86 ceased in 1938 with a total of about 390 aircraft (excluding licence manufacture).

Withdrawal of the type from Luftwaffe front-line service began in late 1938, but at various times during World War II it was found necessary to recall groups from training establishments, for instance in the relief of Stalingrad, but casualties were heavy. In spite of its unsuitability for front-line service, the Ju 86 still had one useful (and unique) role to fill for the Luftwaffe.

Junkers had been experimenting for some time with a high-altitude version of the Jumo diesel engine, together with pressure cabin design, and in September 1939 submitted proposals for a high-altitude reconnaissance version of the Ju 86. The go-ahead was given, and two Ju 86D airframes were converted, gun positions faired over (since no fighter would be able to reach the aircraft at its operational altitude) and a twoseat pressure cabin was fitted. The prototypes flew in February and March 1940 as Ju 86P aircraft, and reached altitudes of more than 32,810 ft (10000 m). A third prototype with wing span increased by 10 ft 2 in (3.10 m) reached 39,700 ft (12100 m), and the success of the trials earned an order for the conversion of 40 Ju 86Ds to Ju 86Ps. Two models were built, the Ju 86P-1 bomber with a load of2,205 lb (1000 kg) and theJu86P2 reconnaissance aircraft with three cameras.

One of the prototypes flew a reconnaissance mission over the UK at 41,010 ft (12,500 m) in the summer of 1940 and was undetected, and this was followed by other production models both over the UK and USSR. While standard Allied fighters were unable to reach them the Ju 86Ps remained unscathed, but in August 1942 a stripped-down Spitfire Mk V caught a Ju 86P at 37,000 ft (11275 m) over Egypt and after a chase to 42,000 ft (12800 m) shot it down.

In an effort to gain more altitude a higher aspect ratio wing was designed, increasing the span to 104 it 11%in (32.00 m), and uprated Jumo engines with fourblade propellers were installed. Two versions were again built, the Ju 86R-1 reconnaissance aircraft and the Ju 86R-2 bomber, each comprising conversions of the respective Ju 86P types. Only a few aircraft reached service, but during tests an altitude of 47,250 ft (14400 m) was reached. Further development of the Ju 86R-3 with l,500-hp (1119-kW) supercharged Jumo 208s and designed to reach 52,500ft (16000 m), and of a proposed Ju 186, with four Jumo 208s or two Jumo218s (which were coupled Jumo 208s) was abandoned.

Probably the last surviving Ju 86s were those with the Swedish air force which completed their service as transports in 1956; one is preserved in the Swedish air force museum.

Specification

Junkers Ju 860-1

Type: four-seat medium bomber

Powerplant: two 600-hp (447-kW) Junkers Jumo 205C-4 diesel engines

Performance: maximum speed 202 mph (325 km/h) at 9,840 ft (3000 m); cruising speed 177 mph (285 km/h) at 11,480 ft (3500 m); service ceiling 19,360 ft (5900 m); maximum range 932 miles (1500 km)

Weights: empty 11,354 lb (5150 kg); maximum takeoff 18,078 lb (8200 kg)

Dimensions: span 73 ft 9 ¾ in (22.50 m); length 58 ft 7 ½ in (17.87 M); height 16 ft 7 ¼ in (5.06 m); wing area 882.67 sq ft (82.00 m2)

Armament: single 7.92-mm (0.31-in) machine-guns in nose, dorsal and ventral positions, plus a bombload of up to 1,764 lb (800 kg) carried internally

Operators: Luftwaffe, Chile, Hungary, Manchukuo, Portugal, South Africa, Sweden
NEC JACTANTIA NEC METU ("zonder woorden, zonder vrees")

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