Steady, steady – bomb gone! (part 2)

Hardcore Microsoft Flight Simulator enthusiasts may already know about this, but others might not: Ross McLennan has spent a number of years developing a highly realistic Lancaster cockpit in which you can take part in the whole Dams Raid experience. I’m not an expert in this (and don’t even have a Windows computer on which I could use it) so I can’t comment on its accuracy or degree of fun. I’d welcome your comments!
It’s interesting to note that Ross’s simulated attack on the Möhne Dam follows the path outlined in most of the earlier books, from the east with a sharp starboard turn after crossing the Hever promontory. According to 617 Squadron historian Robert Owen this is no longer thought to be correct. The actual route is now thought to be directly from over the forest area in the south east coming over the larger spit, as seen in the lower map. This is the one I drew for my book, Breaking the Dams.
Attack route in Flight Simulator
Map showing what is now thought to be the actual attack route

One thought on “Steady, steady – bomb gone! (part 2)

  1. Ross McLennan May 2, 2010 / 3:41 am

    Charles, thank you for adding me to the blog.

    My interest began in 2003 when I tried to simulate the DB raids for a Tribute Film (DVD) which I did in Feb 2004. In the film (35 mins), after studying maps and building the dams in the 1st simulator, I chose the route you show and later changed it to that of the sim image. In 2003 it was very difficult to get non conflicting information, particularly from down-under.

    I find it rather interesting. In the image which is from a book by Jonathon Falconer it shows “explosions” of some of the upkeeps.

    One you will note is near the left tower and I find it very diificult to accept that these skilled crews could get it so wrong as to be that far out (at least a 110 yards) in a straight run. In the sharp turn such a spread is possible if the release is during the turn or when the aircraft is not quite level. Certainly the turns make the whole exercise very much more difficult.

    Our National War Museum in Canberra shows the “right turn” route and to my amazement does not mention the Eder. No recognition of Les Knight is incredible. Oh of course, someone else cracked it first.

    I wonder if there is accurate crew feed back on where the weapons hit the wall. The official questionnaire does not appear to have asked that question. Then again, the aircraft would be ahead of the weapon so perhaps only the tail gunner would see the outcome.

    I know this is not an Eder Dam page but having visited the dam and also sat in the pilots seat of Just Jane in 2007 I marvel at the skills these young crews developed in 7 weeks. After the visit I question that the route shown in the book was actually used.

    I am very pleased to have achieved the impossible in a flightsimulator as a TRIBUTE TO THE DAMBUSTERS. Few sim pilots will ever make the grade into 617 Squadron, its very difficult to achieve the breach outcome as it was in 1943.

    I fly the 1st combat simulation every year as close as possible to the 16-17th May and not always do I get back to Scampton. Must practice for this year or I will not survive for 2010.

    Cheers now.

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