Troy, thanks for sharing!
I am sick of those “fascinating details” about the primitive Russians. Tells a lot about the attitude of those restaurateurs. Did they provide any other, more relevant detail
Isn't that only one of the stereotypes about the Soviet Union and Russians???
I am sure that every Western mechanic has a hammer in his tool box.
no more details as yet, i'm split between 2 computers to the moment, and the emails are on the other one!
The plane is question, again, the details are at home but I was looking at an aviation magazine I got for 10 pence! I got a few a missed that this one had a VVS Hurricane restoration!!! When i looked it had a small pic of a detail i have been looking for for ages, actually HOW the guns were mounted, well, in this case, rusty metal strips in the bottom of the gunbay. I emailed the restorer and he emailed me back, one of the things he said the surprise at how the holes had been enlarged, but the needs of war it made sense. He said that he would send me pics. I will contact him again. I don't think he was being derogatory.
Just a very different attitude to machinery as well, in one book there is a report that the Soviets complained about poor performance from Merlins engines, Rolls Royce sent technical staff who found 50 engines outside rusting providing spares for engines installed at great improvisation already, saying that Russian planes worked OK under these circumstances.
50 years of cold war propaganda does not go away overnight, it was in Soviet interest to play down the sheer amount of materiel supplied, and also to complain about how it was not as good as Soviet equipment, the lend-lease site has plenty of Russian moaning about Hurricanes, while I have never read similar complaints from RAF pilots though.
The British complained about how if the planes are not maintained properly, or they don't get 100 octane fuel they won't work properly.
Yes, some equipment supplied to the Soviets was not cutting edge equipment, like the Hurricane, but was there, and was used until better came along, but much was essential to the Soviets in their fight. (the 6x6 truck is a good example, see below)
yes, equipment needed modification for use in Russia, but Soviet industry was not capable of producing certain items to the required standard either. The ultimate expression of this is reverse engineered B-29 as the Tu-4.
I think Mr Carl-Fredrik Geust puts it better than me.http://lend-lease.airforce.ru/english/articles/geust/aircraft_deliveries.htm
" In addition to the aircraft deliveries American Lend-lease deliveries to Russia included also more than 400.000 trucks, over 12.000 tanks and other combat vehicles, 32.000 motorcycles, 13.000 locomotives and railway cars, 8.000 anti-aircraft cannons and machine-guns, 135.000 submachine guns, 300.000 tons of explosives, 40.000 field radios, some 400 radar systems, 400.000 metal cutting machine tools, several million tons of foodstuff, steel, other metals, oil and gasoline, chemicals etc. A price tag was naturally attached to all deliveries, with following typical fighter prices:
P-40 Kittyhawk - 44.900 dollars, P-39 Airacobra - 50.700 dollars and P-47 Thunderbolt - 83.000 dollars.
Regardless of Soviet cold-war attempts to forget (or at least diminish) the importance of Lend-lease, the total impact of the Lend-Lease shipment for the Soviet war effort and entire national economy can only be characterized as both dramatic and of decisive importance. The outcome of the war on the East front might well have taken another path without Lend-lease. There were undoubtedly big difficulties in the early period: aircraft modified for tropical conditions were delivered to Arctic ports, Russian-language instructions were lacking, a big number of aircraft were grounded because of lack of spares, ammunition, bombs or high-octane fuel. Soon many technical problems 'were overcome, Soviet guns and bomb racks were installed, and numerous other technical improvisations were made in Soviet AF frontal units. Soviet specialists developed also ingenious technical improvements and modifications of the original aircraft versions. In parallel the new American technology was systematically investigated in research and design institutes, and the total impact for the modernization of the Soviet aviation industry was certainly immense. The ultimate peak of this learning process was the post-war copying of the Boeing B-29 in only two years time, resulting in the Soviet nuclear-bomb carrier Tu-4.
Lend-lease aircraft amounted to 18% of all aircraft in the Soviet air forces, 20% of all bombers, and 16-23% of all fighters (numbers vary depending on calculation methods), and 29% of all naval aircraft. In some AF commands and fronts the proportion of Lend-Lease aircraft was even higher: of the 9.888 fighters delivered to the air defense (PVO) fighter units in 1941-45 6.953 (or over 70%!) were British or American. In the AF of the Karelian front lend-lease aircraft amounted to about two-thirds of all combat aircraft in 1942-43, practically all torpedo bombers of the naval air forces were A-20G Bostons in 1944-45 etc.
Some American aircraft types were simply irreplaceable and very highly appreciated on all levels during the war, e.g. P-39 Airacobra fighters, A-20 Boston and B-25 Mitchell bombers and C-47 transport aircraft."
personally I'm fascinated by the VVS modifications of British and US equipment, there is a thread in in itself about modifications of the A-20, fitting of Soviet turrets and the modification of gun noses
Anyway, more when I get more to post.
It's a pleasure to share this with you VVS afficionados!