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Ilya Muromet Level Bombing

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#1 spacemarx

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Posted 07 December 2017 - 08:46



Not sure if this is the right area to post this, but I'm wondering if anyone knows how to level bomb with the Ilya Muromets.


More specifically, how do you do this when you don't have an anemometer of any kind?

I can guess at the speed based on the s-22's specs, but I am inevitably out by more than 5kp/h because of variations with wind speed/direction.


Has anyone overcome this?


Many thanks,



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#2 FourSpeed

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Posted 07 December 2017 - 17:27

The short answer(s) are:


High Alt

A: Use the Simple Gauges for airspeed (cntrl-I)

B: Or, figure 100-105 kph as a loose rule of thumb.




C: Dive bomb from low alt.


In terms of wind, the simple gauges (or the mission briefing) can give you wind information.  In simplest terms, the wind direction line should also be your run-in line (which reduces the need for any trigonometry to calculate offset angles).  On your run-in, if the wind is a direct headwind, set your wind direction to 0, and if it's a direct tailwind, set 180 (since your run-in line is the wind direction, those are the only two wind direction numbers you need think about).  Then you just set the wind speed on the left hand dial, and your altitude on the right hand dials and you're pretty much ready to go.  


Additionally, some folks also adjust their altitude for terrain height, but in general practice it's usually not that big a deal except in hilly terrain (of which there isn't too much in the game), and I usually don't bother with it.


Also remember that the Muromets is one of the few planes with bomb bay doors, so "n" to open them, B / shift B / cntl B to drop (depending on how many bombs to drop at once - 1 , 2, all), and finally, cntl-n to close the doors again (iirc).


After that, it's just practice, practice, practice.    ;)


Hope that helps!






PS> Welcome to the forums  :)

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#3 spacemarx

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Posted 08 December 2017 - 01:22

Much obliged!


I didn't even know what simple guages were - I have never used them. 

It's a shame that there's no way to do this accurately without the aid of 2d guages.


I like your advice about using the wind direction as the run-in line. I've been practicing with the HP-400 and have gotten reasonably fast at claculating the necessary inputs in my head - it never occured to me to go for a relative wind direction of 0!

I wonder, though, does the weight of bombs and fuel not further affect the air speed? It can't always be 5kph out from the maximum, surely! I also wonder about the difference between a head wind and a tail wind in their effect on air speed.

I'll have to test this out now that I have the 2d gauges.


Is this really how the Muromets pilots did it? No anemometer?

After some quick searching, this is what wikipedia says:


Despite many advancements, the flight instruments on the Ilya Muromets were primitive. They included four tachometers, one per engine, a compass, a crude altimeter and airspeed indicator, two glass V-shaped tubes and a ball for bank indication, and a series of horizontal bars situated vertically on the nose of the fuselage for measuring climbs and descents.[9] Later, in the bomber variants, a drift indicator and elementary bombsight was added to aid bombing.


So I'm guessing they did have an anemometer of some kind. It's a shame we can't get the rest of those instruments in via a mod - the S-22 is magnificent!


Any idea on how to use the horizontal bars properly? I tend to use them to gauge level-flight, but I can't really tell much beyond that.


Oh, one last thing - when I fly through clouds, the pilot inside​ the plane gets the water droplet effect, while the gunner outside​ is clear. Do you know of any mod that fixes this?


Pip pip!  :icon_e_salute: 

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#4 FourSpeed

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Posted 08 December 2017 - 17:42

Some good questions there -- let me see if I can provide a few answers.


First, keep in mind that high level bombing in WWI was much more of a wish and a prayer rather than an accurate scientific exercise -- afaik, it's not really until the Norden Bombsight came out in WWII that bombing was accurate and even so, by today's standards, "accurate" was more akin to hitting a dart board with a dart (as opposed to the wall) -- hitting the dart board number you were aiming for was mostly luck -- or the extended result of several bomb attacks over a number of sorties.  In WWI, about the only thing you'd be sure to hit with your bombs was ... the ground ...    :D  Imho, RoF is *much* more accurate in that respect than it probably was in RL at that time.


While weight does affect airspeed, it's not as much as you might expect as that's much more a function of thrust and drag rather than pure weight. Weight has a much bigger effect on climb rates and V speeds (particularly t/o & stall speeds). That said, true airspeed does increase with altitude, but at the heights we're at, it's not too big of a deal. Assuming you're in level flight at full throttle, you're going to be going roughly around 100 kph over the entire range of weight and height the S22 can accommodate.


Regarding headwind or tailwind, your indicated airspeed won't change at all -- what does change is your speed relative to the ground. Keep in mind that wind is really a simplistic term for the direction the local  air mass you're in is moving.  As an analogy, if you're in a boat in a river, your speed through the water is roughly the same upstream or downstream (ie. your boat "cuts through" the same amount of water either way), but your speed relative to the shoreline can change substantially based on your direction relative to the river's current since you're moving with that entire mass of water flow in addition to what your engine is doing.


So, if your run-in line is the same bearing as the wind direction, your bomb sight will account for the ground speed difference due to headwind (setting = 0) or tailwind (setting = 180) but your indicated airspeed through the airmass will still be ~100-105 kph in either case.


The horizontal bars aren't too helpful for bombing -- they're really only useful for gauging level flight, or approximate climb or descent angles.  As for the clouds and water -- no mod I know of to deal with that.  Keep in mind that Muromets was the last (or among the very last) "new" plane to be added to the game, and it's the only one with an enclosed cockpit, so I'm sure the devs never gave that a single moment's thought when it came to the various "goggle effects".





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#5 TheBlackFalcon

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Posted 13 December 2017 - 14:46

A recent report I read concerning the Norden Bombsight was that it was quite inaccurate.  And like most things that came out of WWII was mythologized to the opposite.


However, if anyone has any contradictory information on this point, I would like to hear about it...

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Black Falcon

#6 FourSpeed

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Posted 13 December 2017 - 17:01

Well, accuracy is certainly relative, which is why I prefaced my description with the dart board analogy.   ;)


According to Wikipedia (article here), during initial testing, the Norden's accuracy was reported to be within ~75 ft, which would be quite accurate indeed for the time. Unfortunately, that number did not bear up well under combat conditions, and the accuracy was more often within about 1200 ft, which necessitated repeat sorties with as many grouped bombers as you could find if you wanted to be certain to wipe out a specific target.


That said, I have no idea what actual CEP (Circular Error Probability) values were for WWI bombers (from altitude), but in RoF, we're quite definitely able to hit well within 1200 feet regularly, with only a little bit of practice (which is likely a *lot* better than the actual RL results).  ***








*** As a follow-up, I came upon this document, and the gist of what I've read so far, seems to imply that WWI strategic bombing during that time was quite ineffective (almost to the point of "wishful thinking") and often resulted in few hits -- radically opposite of what we can do in-game.

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#7 J2_Trupobaw

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Posted 13 December 2017 - 18:15

The operational accuracy was closer to that of *next* city block...


In RoF, we forgot to tell Mr Tree that WW1 level bombing isn't supposed to be exact science, so he learned to hit river barges from 3k in his DFW...

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#8 Canvas

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Posted 15 December 2017 - 14:28


*** As a follow-up, I came upon this document, and the gist of what I've read so far, seems to imply that WWI strategic bombing during that time was quite ineffective (almost to the point of "wishful thinking") and often resulted in few hits -- radically opposite of what we can do in-game.


--- Very interesting document, thanks for sharing.

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