10 September 2013

Dicta Boelcke

It works.  It's about one hundred years old and the fundamental truths he discovered about air combat apply as much to an F-22A as they did to a Pfaltz.

It applies to combat flight simulators.

They even work if you're in an F-105D and your opponent is in a MiG-17 Fresco A.

Coming in from behind, getting close and giving him a gentle caress of 20mm means he's walking home.

It doesn't matter how maneuverable he is if he doesn't know you are there or see you coming.

The F-105D, when clean, runs at the speed of heat so it controls the engagement.  A MiG-17F needs burner to keep up with a Thud on military.  Just about the only thing that can catch up is a MiG-21 and we make note of that before we try to engage.

Remember your maneuvering flaps!  The Thud has a combat flap setting that's good down from 455 kias.  It cuts into your speed but it gives you a fighting chance to get guns on that MiG-21PF you can't outrun and has the advantage of keeping your ass pointed so his AA-2 can't lock.

It's not part of the Dicta, but it should have been:  Do not fight how your opponent fights!

The MiGs like turning engagements, don't fall for it.  Use the vertical.

The dicta are tactics, but they're tactics for pros.  Pros study logistics, right?  It's in Rule 7.  Make sure you know your fuel state.

Aside:  It really is spelled Boelcke not Bölcke.  Quite often a German word with an 'oe' means someone didn't have the means to type umlauts.

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