American Made Planes Used By Germans?
London – German planes, reinforced by American made bombers obtained from France, resumed mass raids on Britain today, especially aimed at coastal shipping but the air ministry reported successful counter action by fighting craft.
Five Germans were downed.
Bomber fleets attacked a British convoy twice in the North Sea in the morning hours. The first fleet was repulsed by anti-aircraft guns of escort ships and British fighter planes beat off the second one. The air ministry disclosed that the Germans were now using American Chance Vought – 156 bomber planes, which had been sold to Britain’s late ally, France, in their attacks on Britain.
(The Chance Vought now is known as the Vought Sikorsky “Corsair” V-156, a model identical to one used in the United States navy but with many exclusive features removed. It is manufactured by the Vought Sikorsky Division of United Aircraft Corp.)
Based on the SB2U-2, the V-156-F incorporated specific French equipment. Briefly after the deliveries started in July 1939, V-156-F crews were trained for carrier operations aboard Béarn, but when the war broke out the old carrier was declared too slow for operational service. As a result V-156-F-equipped units, escadrilles AB 1 and AB 3, were based ashore when the Battle of France started. AB 1 sustained heavy losses while attacking bridges and German ground targets in Northern France, while AB 3’s V-156-Fs were briefly engaged against the Italians. By the time of the Armistice, there were only a handful of remaining Voughts in French hands, and the type was phased out of service.
McKillop, Jack. “Chance-Vought SB2U Vindicator”. The Pacific War: The U.S. Navy.
Two Shot Down
Two of the American made planes were shot down and a third crippled by British Spitfire fighter, asserted to be the fastest military planes in the world, in fighting yesterday. The Chance Vought planes were used as dive bombers. Spitfire fighters encountered them twice yesterday accompanied by German Messerschmidt 109 fighters.
At the first meeting one Chance Vought and two Messerschmitts crashed into the sea early in the fight and a second Chance Vought attacked by a British sergeant pilot in a Spitfire, fell in a spin, with pieces flying from it. In the second fight, a Messerschmitt plunged down out of control and a Chance Vought limped away with a severely damaged wing. Twelve German planes in all were shout down, it was asserted.
Originally Printed : Middlesboro Kentucky Daily News Thursday, July 25, 1940
So did the Germans re-purpose captured Vought Sikorsky Vindicators? Well author Richard North mentions the same incident in his book, The Many Not The Few: The Stolen History of the Battle of Britain.
The truth was that the Royal Navy later reported the lost a Blackburn Skua. “It would seem the “V-156” aircraft attacked by the RAF on July 25 was a case of mistaken identity during the heat of battle, as Spitfires actually attacked a flight of Blackburn Skua of the Royal Navy, shooting down one. “(DanK via Wix)
Another Mystery in History solved.