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Me-262 "Schwalbe"

67.9k SimplyPlain  one month ago

the first operational jet fighter

Small update: I made a few tweaks and re-uploaded the XML. First of all, a very well-deserved Arigato gozaimasu to @Ian_Yashima for having the wits and patience to ferret out a rather strange weapons issue and handing me the solution. And while I was at it; the stuck flap is fixed, and the 262 now has elevator trim tabs as suggested by @BogdanX. Thanks for the help, guys!

Yes, I finally built something to join the growing ranks of Me-262’s on SP! I could hardly leave out the world’s first –albeit somewhat unreliable- operational jet fighter.


Messerschmitt’s design team actually dreamed up their “Project 1065” as early as 1938. When it was finally submitted to the German government in 1940, the RLM ordered three prototypes under the designation Me 262, to be powered by BMW 003 engines.

The Me 262 had a roughly triangular fuselage section –mainly to make room for substantial amounts of fuel for the thirsty turbojets- giving it a menacing, shark-like appearance. It featured thin, swept-back wings with nacelles for the turbojet engines. Since the wings were optimized for high speed, automatic slats were installed to improve low-speed handling.

Messerschmitt completed the design of the airframe long before useful turbojet engines were available, and so the first prototype made its maiden flight… with a single piston engine. When the BMW 003’s were fitted to the plane in 1941, the piston engine was retained just-in-case, and luckily so; the turbojets proved extremely unreliable, and it was clear that BMW still had a lot of development and testing ahead of them. The Junkers Jumo 004 engine seemed more promising, and was significantly more powerful.


With the Jumo 004, the Me 262’s future suddenly looked a lot brighter. The pilots who had a go with it –among them the rather famous ace Adolf Galland- were suitably impressed; the Luftwaffe brass however were not entirely convinced, and some of them wanted no part of “adventures”, favouring good old (meaning, reliable) piston power instead. Additionally, there was this angry, stubborn little man in Berchtesgaden who wanted fighter-bombers rather than fighters… and unfortunately, the 262 was designed to be a fighter.
And so, due to politics, technical problems with the plane’s development, production capacity issues after Allied bombing raids etc it took until mid 1944 for the Me 262 to get into the fight… and by that time, it was already too late for the dwindling Luftwaffe.

The Me 262 gave the Allied bomber crews and fighter pilots a proper scare though; the plane proved too fast for a single fighter to intercept, and multiple P-51’s using special “anti-jet tactics” were needed to bring one down. By the end of the war, Me 262’s had downed a total of 542 allied planes, at the cost of 100 of their own. But… there simply weren’t enough operational 262’s, there wouldn’t have been enough experienced pilots to fly them anyway, and –last but not least- there was no fuel to power them. And so the Me 262 goes down in history as a formidable weapon that didn’t make even the slightest bit of difference.

The build

The build is a pretty straightforward example of a standard fighter version; no night fighters, bomber versions, mistels, flying artillery platforms or other exotics. Just a run-of-the-mill “Schwalbe”, featuring;

• Full interior that works -or so I hope- with SP VR…
• Detailed cannon compartment, showing the MK-108’s. I admit, a useless detail and one that could be chucked out for a low(er) part version
• Standard late-war livery in RLM 82/83 splinter pattern with RLM 76 undersides
• Automatic slats
• Working canopy with (VR) emergency release handle

Controls

This plane too should be VR-ready, if all is well. Controls are otherwise pretty standard; Roll, pitch and yaw work much like they should, as do the flaps and elevator trim. Special controls/Activation groups are few;

AG1 : open/close the canopy (VTOL up all the way for emergency release)
AG2 : open/close the cannon bay
AG3 : swivels the gun sight up when needed, or down for normal flight
AG4 : moves fuel between tanks to rebalance the plane
AG8 : nav lights toggle

Some of the VR-ish (and untested) controls in the cockpit;

• The stick’s trigger fires the selected weapon, the button on top cycles through weapons.
• Throttle is a double (yellow) lever on the cockpit’s right panel
• Elevator trim is a (red) lever on the cockpit’s right panel
• A switch for AG1 is on the cockpit’s right panel; AG2, AG4 and AG8 are on the left
• A switch for AG3 is located below the gun sight
• Pulling the red lever on your right all the way back pops the canopy (emergency release)
• Handles for landing gear and flaps, both red, are in the left panel

Haven’t found a useful VR-solution for rudder and brakes though… you wouldn’t be able to reach the pedals, so I suppose the only good option is to connect a pedals set to your computer. No idea how to activate and select AA or AG weaponry through a VR-switch either.

There are camera angles for the pilot’s view, an additional and somewhat wider cockpit overview, and a gunsight-view for dogfighting or ground attacks.

For takeoff: half flaps, throttle up to 100%. You should be able to take off at 180-200 km/h. Like in the actual 262, there will be some redistribution of fuel (weight) once you’re airborne. This is automatic, but you can also use AG4 (or the corresponding cockpit switch) to move the COM a bit at any time.

The slats are automatic; on the Me 262 they mainly extend in climbs or turns below 450 km/h, or below 300 km/h at a glide angle. The Me 262 is a fairly forgiving plane to fly; a bit too big & heavy for real aerobatics, but fairy agile and in any case faster than piston fighters.

For landing; throttle back to 30-35%, extend your flaps, approach at around 250 km/h. Remember that the Me 262 doesn’t have air brakes or drogue chutes, so you will have to lose speed before and after landing in other ways… approaching the runway fast and making a steep descent won’t work very well.

Sticks and stones

Well, the Me 262 comes equipped with something more than just sticks and stones. As standard, the 262 has 4 (four!!) MK-108 30mm cannon. These don’t have a very long range and a considerable drop, but the explosive shells can tear up anything they hit.

The Me 262 in this build is also fitted with 24 unguided R4M rockets, mounted on wooden racks under the wings; these weren’t intended for ground attacks (although they would serve the purpose) but were mainly used to wreak havoc on bomber formations. A single hit will bring a heavy bomber down…

Now Go Hence and Shoot Some Stuff Up…


Spotlights

General Characteristics

  • Created On Windows
  • Wingspan 40.4ft (12.3m)
  • Length 34.9ft (10.6m)
  • Height 12.6ft (3.8m)
  • Empty Weight 9,270lbs (4,205kg)
  • Loaded Weight 12,815lbs (5,813kg)

Performance

  • Power/Weight Ratio 2.183
  • Wing Loading 30.4lbs/ft2 (148.5kg/m2)
  • Wing Area 421.5ft2 (39.2m2)
  • Drag Points 5982

Parts

  • Number of Parts 1851
  • Control Surfaces 0
  • Performance Cost 6,027
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  • Profile image
    15 Azk1712

    I've been waiting for a good one for a long time lol. Btw thanks this is the best me262

    24 days ago
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    @SimplyPlain oh ok

    25 days ago
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    0 Dxii

    Cool

    28 days ago
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    109k belugasub

    Super cool

    28 days ago
  • Profile image
    15.1k FeatherWing

    @SimplyPlain
    Ok, it's actually a bit hard to pinpoint which aircraft first entered combat service as the sources give conflicting information, so.

    29 days ago
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    67.9k SimplyPlain

    @FeatherWing AFAIK the 262 beat the Meteor in terms of first flight of the prototype (july '42 vs march '43) as well as first operational/combat use (april '44 vs july '44)...

    29 days ago
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    15.1k FeatherWing

    Can I just point out that Me 262 wasn't the first operational jet fighter?
    The Gloster Metor did beat the 262 to operational service. Not by a whole lot, quite a small margin I believe, but it still beat the 262.
    (Other then that, great build)

    29 days ago
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    The best Me-262 on the site, no doubt on it. Good work !

    29 days ago
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    67.9k SimplyPlain

    @FairFireFlight Thanks for the tips! To be honest, I have partly given up on trying to get "real" performance all the way, because of the somewhat weird physics. If you tweak one thing, another usually suffers -e.g. the bleeding of speed in turns, or the climb rate, speed in a dive or whatever. Getting them all right takes more playing around and testing than I'm willing to spend time on. BTW, I don't think the 262 was notoriously slow in its acceleration; the problem was that the pilots had to throttle up slowly to prevent the Jumo's from flaming out or catching fire. So to mimic that, you just have to throttle up slowly as well. Perhaps I should rather add some FT code that causes the engines to quit or blow up if you're not careful ;p

    +1 one month ago
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    Accelerates way too quickly, specially that its a 262 and those are known for having notorious acceleration.

    you can fix this by reducing drag to ~1.2k and then reducing the engine power to achieve the desired top speed, personally i go one step further and give the engines the real amount of thrust then change the drag points to what makes the top speed realistic.

    +2 one month ago
  • Profile image

    Ausgezeichnet! Sehr gut gemacht, jetzt werde ich suchen um diese Bomber und Kämpfer zu finden und zu jagen! Gute Arbeit!

    Okay, but seriously, this is probably one of the best Me-262s on this site, nice build! I am impressed!

    one month ago
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    67.9k SimplyPlain

    @ta152h1 and I think you're overdoing it with the suggestions. I'm not a build-on-demand operation; I build what I feel like building, and because I think it would be fun. So please -no more.

    +1 one month ago
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    @SimplyPlain I think you should build a he 162 next it looks small and will take less time.

    one month ago
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    3,889 RC1138Boss

    Maybe take off rivets, non essential cockpit items fused camo and cannon details? @SimplyPlain

    one month ago
  • Profile image
    24.3k Ian_Yashima

    @SimplyPlain
    problem solved~
    there is an XML called ignoreAircraftCollisions in the ControlBase section, the only thing you need to do is to set the ones of the three joystick bases you used for that two handles from true to false, then that's alright, nothing more is needed.
    so go and update the XML of this post, glad to be helpful~
    ;)

    +1 one month ago
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    67.9k SimplyPlain

    @Ian_Yashima Great! But without the rotators to hold things down, the VR joints were extremely wobbly -which is why I added the free-spinning rotators in the first place. Guess I'll have to find another way to shore things up, then. Unless the devs decide, at some point, to introduce parts that don't behave like they're tied together with rubber bands, paperclips or sticks of gum.

    +1 one month ago
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    24.3k Ian_Yashima

    @SimplyPlain
    No need, already bingo~ ;)
    the Trim handle and the Kabine-Notabwurf handle.
    It seems that you can't use VR joints and rotators at the same time.
    so find some other ways to rebuild these two parts.

    +1 one month ago
  • Profile image
    67.9k SimplyPlain

    @BogdanX Thanks for the valuable input! The flaps issue is already fixed -silly mistake on my part. As for the rest, well... partly a matter of taste I guess. Making working trim tabs is a great idea; will keep that in mind for the future. I'm not a big fan of spending time on detailed gear wells though, except on some builds where they're highly visible when the plane is on the ground. But that's just an opinion of course.

    one month ago
  • Profile image
    67.9k SimplyPlain

    @RC1138Boss It's not possible YET, that's true. I will make a stripped-down version at some point, making it easier to run the thing on a phone or tablet... but all depends on what you call "mobile friendly". I'm never going to get it down to 300-400 parts, that's for sure...

    one month ago
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    67.9k SimplyPlain

    @Ian_Yashima Thanks! Well, I noticed some VR parts do behave rather erratic at times. Cylinder grips that don't behave like they should, switches that stop working for no apparent reason, label that suddenly blowing up to 400% just by selecting it etc... guess there's still a bit of debugging to be done there :P if I get some time I'll try to find out which part(s) exactly are creating the problem. But if I have to, say, remove the plane's main controls to make the guns work I'll have something of a dilemma...

    one month ago
  • Profile image
    24.3k Ian_Yashima

    @SimplyPlain
    well, now I know clearly it is some specific parts in the cockpit caused some change to the collision mesh of the whole aircraft.
    try THIS, I took a group of parts out (you connected them to the hollow fuselage I paint red), if you delete them all then everything goes right.
    I guess it is caused by some VR parts, but I don't know exactly why. XD

    one month ago
  • Profile image
    67.9k SimplyPlain

    @Ian_Yashima very strange, since the parts are not related in any way. If this is a glitch, it may be quite random...

    one month ago
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    3,889 RC1138Boss

    I don’t that’s possible. @MrACEpilot

    one month ago
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    @SimplyPlain I have some interesting variants of me 262
    Me 262 A-1a/U1
    Single prototype with a total of six nose mounted guns, two 20 mm (0.787 in) MG 151/20 cannon, two 30 mm (1.181 in) MK 103 cannon, and two 30 mm (1.181 in) MK 108 cannon.
    Me 262 E-2
    Proposed rocket-armed variant carrying up to 48 × R4M rockets.
    Me 262 HG-I
    "High Speed" variant, modified A-1a with new "racing" style cockpit and additional pieces were added to wing roots at the front.
    Me 262 HG-II
    Second "High Speed" variant, more heavily modified A-1a with "racing" style cockpit and wings swept at 35-degree angle and engine nacelles were moved closer to fuselage. A new butterfly V-shaped tail was tested but was too unstable in wind tunnel tests, so normal tail was kept.
    Me 262 HG-III
    Proposed Third "High Speed" variant, only progressed to wind tunnel model stage. This was the last and the pinnacle of the Me-262 aerodynamical possibility, which would have been built from the ground up as a new Me-262 instead of modifying older ones. In the Me-262 HG-III, its wings were swept at 45 degrees, it also had the aforementioned "racing" style cockpit, however, the largest change was the moving of the engine nacelles right into the fuselage side and changing the engines to the more powerful Heinkel HeS 011 engines.

    one month ago
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    @SimplyPlain hey the flap is working Allright for me

    one month ago
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