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US (Brit/Japanese/German/USSR) Use of Gun Cameras in Fighters??



 
 
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  #1  
Old July 15th 03, 07:59 PM
ArtKramr
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Default US (Brit/Japanese/German/USSR) Use of Gun Cameras in Fighters??

Subject: US (Brit/Japanese/German/USSR) Use of Gun Cameras in Fighters??
From: Stephen Harding
Date: 7/15/03 11:11 AM Pacific Daylight Time
Message-id:

When precisely did the US begin using gun cameras in their fighters?
How about the other antagonist air forces? Was one air force ahead
of the other in using this as a combat reporting aid?

I recall an episode in "Piece of Cake" (I think) about BoB spitfire
pilots having gun cameras installed and being very shocked at some of
the outcomes of combat reports. The film showed clear misses where
pilots claimed hits; spitfire attacking another spitfire claiming it
as a 109; etc.

Not certain how much of this story was entertainment as history, but
I'll presume the British had standardized gun cameras on their fighters
by, or shortly after the BoB.

How about with the US? Were US fighters (Navy and Army) equiped
with gun cameras by 1942 when actual combat began? Any gun camera
footage from Pearl Harbor? Did the ETO become gun camera equipped
before the Pacific or other theaters? Was the Navy ahead of the Army
in this effort?


SMH



They were called GSAP cameras for Gun Sight Aiming Point. And all our fighters
had them. They took 16mm film in magazines.

Arthur Kramer
Visit my WW II B-26 website at:
http://www.coastcomp.com/artkramer

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  #3  
Old July 16th 03, 04:25 AM
Guy Alcala
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ArtKramr wrote:

Subject: US (Brit/Japanese/German/USSR) Use of Gun Cameras in Fighters??
From: Stephen Harding
Date: 7/15/03 6:21 PM Pacific Daylight Time
Message-id:

ArtKramr wrote:

They were called GSAP cameras for Gun Sight Aiming Point. And all our

fighters
had them. They took 16mm film in magazines.


Do you know how the GSAP cameras actually worked?


Simple. When the guns were fired the cameras rolled.

I believe I've seen sequences where the film is clearly still running
after the shooting has stopped, so I'm thinking pulling the trigger
started the film rolling, and then it would run a few secs after the
trigger was released.


Possiber. I guess there might have been more inertia in the film transport than
in the firing mechanism of the guns


snip

No, it was a design feature; the camera was intended to overrun for a few seconds
after the trigger was released, allowing for time of flight and high deflection
shots, and subsequent damage assessment. At least some of them had a lever in the
focal path that appeared in one of the upper(?) corners of the film frame, which
showed when the guns were actually firing. Can't remember if it just dropped into
place and stayed there while the trigger was pressed, or if it oscillated in and
out of the frame. You needed to know when the guns were actually firing (or to be
more precise, when the pilot had the trigger depressed) to assess the pilot's
gunnery technique (firing range, lead etc).

Guy

  #4  
Old July 17th 03, 06:02 AM
The Enlightenment
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Stephen Harding wrote in message ...
ArtKramr wrote:

They were called GSAP cameras for Gun Sight Aiming Point. And all our fighters
had them. They took 16mm film in magazines.


Do you know how the GSAP cameras actually worked?

I believe I've seen sequences where the film is clearly still running
after the shooting has stopped, so I'm thinking pulling the trigger
started the film rolling, and then it would run a few secs after the
trigger was released.

Did they ever put gun cameras on bombers?


I certainly recall a few famous shots. The FW190 pilot who after
jetisoning his canopy and pushing himself clear of his aircraft is
seen (from the waist gunners position on a B17 I think) with his arms
flailing in the wind. Don't know if he made it.

Then there is a picture form a German gun camera. Looks like Mk108
30mm chewing up a B17s starboard engine nacel: the undercarriage is
blown clear of. There seems to be a clock in the corner of their
film.






I'd suppose not since there
would be a lot of guns to record, and the wide angle of action would
make for a more complicated camera mounting system.

How about your B-26's with the fixed gun packs up front? Did a GSAP
go with that installation?


SMH

 




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