USAF Sabre, a Korean War memorial


#1

This is newly restored Korean Era Sabre, turned into a memorial in a town of Monroe,NY. It says it has rocket armament but mentions nothing about MG’s. It is difficult to believe that it has no MG’s. So, if it had MG’s, which kind and calibre?





#2

As the plaque says it’s an F-86L, and thus an updated version of the F-86D. Both were single-seat night fighters using rocket armament only. Jack


#3

Daytime F86 had 6 to 8 M3 .50Cal ( High rate of fire) guns distributed on either side of the Nose.

Doc AV


#4

Years ago, the San Diego Aeronautical Museum up near the Zoo has a regular F86 as well as a MIG-15 with Chinese markings pretty much facing each other, as I recall, on the Museum Floor. Those were the two planes to beat when I was a kid in High School, and on a few visits there, that is really all I wanted to look at. They also had a Japanese Zero (could have been a replica, I wouldn’t know the difference). I had a nice talk with an old Japanese gentleman who was looking at it and kind of talking to himself in Japanese. I asked if he spoke English, and was surprised that although a tourist, his English was near perfect. He said he was mulling over which version the plane was, because he saw some things on it that didn’t seem quite right, but then told me he was having a hard time remembering, because it had been so many years since he flew one in the War! Nice old gent. Thought the whole war was pretty stupid on the part of Japan, although that may have been retrospective. At any rate, it was interesting to talk to him. I don’t know squat about airplanes, but I guess the earlier Zero fighters just had 7.7 mm MGs on them - is that true. If so, I wondered how their belts or magazines were loaded. I know the German pilots had quite a bit of personal say in how their guns were loaded - that is, the sequence of ball, ap, tracer, incendiary, etc. At least that is what a gun collector friend and customer of our store told me years ago. He was an enlisted pilot (not an officer) for a short time and then was transferred to the Parachutists. I guess he never actually made a combat jump. I know that he was captured at the Battle of the Bulge, fitting as regular infantry. He told me that the one thing that amazed them, since by that time they were short of everything, was the way American soldiers wasted artillery. He said that if a German was observed relieving himself in a field, the Americans would call in an artillery strike on him. It was from him that I first learned that even that late in the war, much of the German artillery was horse-drawn. He said the saddest thing was watching German sailors, fighting as infantry with no idea of infantry tactics, getting picked off when them moved too slowly or stood up to “see better” for taking a shot. I hadn’t known even that any blue-jacket sailors were at the Bulge. I guess they sent everyone they could spare.

Well, nice pictues Vlad, as usual. Not the Sabre I knew and loved as a kid, but a nice aircraft just the same.


#5

Japanese Aircraft such as Zero ( IJArmy) had 7,7x58 SR (T89/92 Ammo) fired in Vickers Air Type Guns, with a normal Vickers Belt (Prideaux steel Link)

IJN (Navy) equivalent Fighters had also Vickers Guns ( Air Model) but in Calibre T87/92 7,7x56R (aka .303 Brit)…also fed by Prideaux Vickers link.

AS the war progressed, the use of both 12,7mm (aka Breda aka Vickers Semi-rimmed) and 20mm cannon for Fighter Aircraft. There is a very good book on Japanese aircraft and their Armament which shows almost all the types of Guns used by the Japanese.

Doc AV


#6

John: A pair of 20 m/m Oerlikon autocannon were part of the original Zero design specifications. The early marks of the Zero used the Oerlikon with the Becker-like short case, but the later ones employed the long barrel Oerlikon with the longer case and increased muzzle velocity. The plane used mixed cailber armament, and as Doc said two .303 Vickers guns and/or various numbers of 13 m/m Brownings augmented the twenties. There is a pretty well-known photo of a type 3 Browning from a kamikaze Zero which pierced, muzzle-first, the flash hider of an American ship’s 40 m/m Bofors. I think the ship was the Missouri, but don’t quote me. Jack


#7

Jack and Doc - thanks for the additional information. Am not into airplanes or their armament much, although certainly a fascinating field. However, I have always had a thing for the Zero. I guess it came from seeing one as a boy. Not too long after the war, they had a complete Zero parked for display for a few days in the plaza right behind San Francisco City Hall. My Mom, Dad and one of my brothers went with me (I heard about it and demanded to make what was then a big trip downtown to see it) to see it. To a little guy, it looked really big. The thing I remember most is one of the wings had a couple of bullet holes right through it. I was short enough to creep under the wing and look up at them, seeing skylight thru them. Then a big cop ordered me out from under it. Funny the things you remember. Of course, living in a neighborhood one block from the Presidio of San Francisco and filled with families with either active military or veterans in the family, WWII was a big thing in our lives. I still get a kick out of seeing nice airplanes, even though I am terribly ignorant about them. I really like Vlad’s trips to so many museums that have aircraft on display, and his pictures.


#8

Vlad, the retractable tray in the aircraft’s belly was loaded with 24 2.75" Mighty Mouse rockets.