By Robert Forczyk
With the autumn of France in 1940, Germany without warning had the chance to strike at poorly guarded Allied convoys. The Luftwaffe pressed into carrier the Fw-200 Condor, a aircraft that had initially been designed as a civilian airliner and the 1st airplane to fly continuous from Berlin to ny in 1938. After quite a few changes, the Fw-200 turned the Luftwaffe's long-range maritime patrol and strike bomber. It used to be devastatingly powerful; a unmarried assault by way of 5 Condors on a convoy in February 1941 led to the sinking and destructive of eleven ships. in addition, the Condors handed on convoy sightings to the U-boats with devastating impact. through the summer season of 1941, the probability posed via the Condor was once so nice that Winston Churchill dubbed them "the scourge of the Atlantic." Losses to Condor assaults ended in quite a few crash efforts to discover an answer to the predator. One resolution was once the Hurricate, a transformed typhoon that used to be introduced by means of catapult from a switched over service provider send. yet a far better resolution used to be required. This was once introduced with the construction of the escort service to supply non-stop air hide over a threatened convoy. through 1941 the duel for supremacy over the Atlantic started to flip in desire of the Allies and was once furthered by way of the access of the USA into the struggle. The Germans made a final ditch try and flip the tide via equipping Condors with anti-shipping missiles, higher shielding armament and airborne radar. yet their numbers have been too few to wrestle the ever-increasing could of the Allies.This quantity highlights a vintage duel among opposing strategies, doctrine and know-how, with the Germans trying to box an airborne weapon that may intercept the Atlantic convoys, whereas the Allies tried to supply a good security umbrella over the ships sporting very important war-time offers.
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Additional info for Fw 200 Condor vs Atlantic Convoy: 1941-43 (Duel)
Rate-of-climb indicator 83. Control surface temperature gauge 84. Coarse-fine altimeter 85. Artificial horizon 86. Cylinder temperature gauge 87. Cylinder temperature throw-over switch 88. Starting fuel contents gauge 89. Cruise fuel contents gauge 90. Cruise fuel transfer switch 91. Clock 92. Starting fuel transfer switch 93. Oil contents gauge 94. Starter switches 95. Suction and pressure gauges for undercarriage de-icing and gyro devices 96. Injection valve press buttons 97. Hydraulic systems pressure gauge 98.
Although one of his own engines had suffered damage from a Lewis gunner, in his final pass Jope attacked from astern again and scored a lucky hit near the 3in AA gun with his last bomb. The spreading fire soon detonated some of the ready-use ammunition, which caused the blaze to rage out of control. With his bombs expended and one engine knocked out, Jope reported the burning ship’s position and headed for home. Shortly after Jope departed, the passengers and crew were forced to abandon the vessel.
Around 1000hrs on November 15, a Condor found the inbound convoy SL 53, which had a particularly weak escort of one elderly destroyer and a single AMC. The Condor singled out the 9,333-ton passenger steamer Apapa and boldly executed a “Swedish turnip” attack from the port side at a height of 50m, scoring one solid bomb hit which destroyed the engines and set the cargo on fire. The escorts succeeded in rescuing most of the passengers before the vessel broke in two and sank. All told, KG 40 was able to mount ten successful anti-shipping strikes in Irish waters in November that sank six ships and damaged seven.