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Early Swiss aircraft rockets? (Pre 8 cm Oerlikon)

blockhaj

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So it has come to my attention that the Swiss developed some type of airborne attack rocket during WWII, however finding information, let alone pictures of it has proven impossible for me. Does anyone here happen to have more information on the subject?

I do know that the Swiss had some type of airborne rocket by the end of the war as there exist several photographs of Swiss aircraft featuring rocket pylons from that period, however i have only ever found one picture which i think shows the rockets; or well.... parts of it.
1616662328353.png
Source: https://old.hermannkeist.ch/c-36/bilder-c-36/c-36/c-3603-1867.html
Above shows a Swiss EKW C 3603-1 reconnaissance attacker aircraft.
 
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Spaceman

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The C-3603-1 was never equipped with rockets. During the war, options for external loadouts were either 8 x 50 kg blast bombs, or 16 x 12,5 kg fragmentation bombs or 40 x 1,5 kg incendiary bombs.

The first aircraft rocket developed in Switzerland that reached operational status, was the Oerlikon 8 cm aircraft rocket for ground attack. Its development started in 1947. I don't know if there were any earlier attempts.
The Swiss Air Force first used the Oerlikon 8 cm aircraft rocket on the Morane D-3801 and the P-51D Mustang, later also on the DH-112 Venom and the Hawker Hunter.
 

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blockhaj

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The C-3603-1 was never equipped with rockets. During the war, options for external loadouts were either 8 x 50 kg blast bombs, or 16 x 12,5 kg fragmentation bombs or 40 x 1,5 kg incendiary bombs.

The first aircraft rocket developed in Switzerland that reached operational status, was the Oerlikon 8 cm aircraft rocket for ground attack. Its development started in 1947. I don't know if there were any earlier attempts.
The Swiss Air Force first used the Oerlikon 8 cm aircraft rocket on the Morane D-3801 and the P-51D Mustang, later also on the DH-112 Venom and the Hawker Hunter.
I dont doubt that but there exist several photos of the C 3601-1 with what looks to be rocket mounts. Below i have attached such photos. The closeup just confuses me. It seems to have supports for bombs but there are no bomb-locks (the hook that connects to the bomb). Did Switzerland maybe use some weird uncommon bomb-mount method?
 

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blockhaj

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А related question: was there any guided bomb/torpedoes development in Sweden during WW2?
1616769346089.png
Sweden and Switzerland are two different countries.

However, define guided? Also Switzerland is land-locked and most likely did not develope torpedoes.
 

blockhaj

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Even Swiss Bf 109E-3's got these wack mounts at some point.
 

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blockhaj

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I should also note that i do not think these are mounts for 8 cm Oerlikon rockets (well if they are then they are for an early variant maybe) because the 8 cm Oerlikon rocket ignites from a fixed ignitor at the back.
 

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Petrus

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As for the C-3604, some sources say that it was armed with 7.5-cm rockets, eg. https://old.hermannkeist.ch/c-36/c-3604.html

Bewaffnung1 Flugzeugmotorkanone 20 mm FM-45 HS
2 Flugzeugflügelkanonen 20 mm FF-45 HS
2 Flügelmaschinengewehr 7,5 mm FLMg-29
1 Beobachter Doppel Maschinengewehr 7,5 mm FL.Mg-29
2 Werfer zu je 6 Raketen 7,5 cm.Diverse Bomben je nach Bedarf

In the article "Enduring Tug. The Swiss C-36 Series" ("Air Entusiast" Issue 91, Jan-Feb 2001) there is a brief info on rocket armament:

Carrying two additional wing-mounted 20mm cannon and fitted with underwing rails for air-to-ground rockets, C-3604s saw only limited service (...)

The article contains also a photo of C-3603 with rocket rails under its wings (attached here - sorry for its low quality).

In the book "Schweizerische Strahlflugzeuge und Strahltriebwerke" several types of unguided rockets (other than 8-cm) 8.7-cm, 10.5-cm, 12-cm are mentioned. Obviously the book is about projects of jet-engined aircraft that were designed after the war, but probably in projects from the late 1940s some types of equipment or armament developed during the war could have been used.
 

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blockhaj

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As for the C-3604, some sources say that it was armed with 7.5-cm rockets, eg. https://old.hermannkeist.ch/c-36/c-3604.html

Bewaffnung1 Flugzeugmotorkanone 20 mm FM-45 HS
2 Flugzeugflügelkanonen 20 mm FF-45 HS
2 Flügelmaschinengewehr 7,5 mm FLMg-29
1 Beobachter Doppel Maschinengewehr 7,5 mm FL.Mg-29
2 Werfer zu je 6 Raketen 7,5 cm.Diverse Bomben je nach Bedarf
I have read this as well and it is one of the reasons i started this thread. However the stated sources on that article lacks any information on these suposed rockets?

In the article "Enduring Tug. The Swiss C-36 Series" ("Air Entusiast" Issue 91, Jan-Feb 2001) there is a brief info on rocket armament:

Carrying two additional wing-mounted 20mm cannon and fitted with underwing rails for air-to-ground rockets, C-3604s saw only limited service (...)

The article contains also a photo of C-3603 with rocket rails under its wings (attached here - sorry for its low quality).
1616794459318.png
Here it is in higher quality (posted above)
In the book "Schweizerische Strahlflugzeuge und Strahltriebwerke" several types of unguided rockets (other than 8-cm) 8.7-cm, 10.5-cm, 12-cm are mentioned. Obviously the book is about projects of jet-engined aircraft that were designed after the war, but probably in projects from the late 1940s some types of equipment or armament developed during the war could have been used.
I have heard about the 8,7 cm rocket before.
1616794603550.png
 

Petrus

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From "Schweizerische Strahlflugzeuge und Strahltriebwerke":

10.5 cm rockets are mentioned as armament of the P-25.20 fighter (project of 1948).
120 mm rockets are mentioned as armament of the P-12.05 fighter (of 1947).

I think both rockets could have been designed before the fighter projects came into being, so the development of the rockets probably started during the war.
 

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iverson

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I believe that the C-3603 served post-war. So a photo of one carrying rockets doesn't necessarily date the rockets to WW2.
 

blockhaj

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I believe that the C-3603 served post-war. So a photo of one carrying rockets doesn't necessarily date the rockets to WW2.
That is true. However considering that the visible pylons do not match up with common 8 cm Oerlikon ones there are still unanswered questions. However if necesary then it might be worth changing the title of the thread to something like "Early Swiss aircraft rockets".
 

iverson

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I believe that the C-3603 served post-war. So a photo of one carrying rockets doesn't necessarily date the rockets to WW2.
That is true. However considering that the visible pylons do not match up with common 8 cm Oerlikon ones there are still unanswered questions. However if necesary then it might be worth changing the title of the thread to something like "Early Swiss aircraft rockets".

I can't claim to be an expert on 8-cm Oerlikon aircraft rare common on ockets and Swiss ordinance generally. But I have seen post-1947 -84, photos of these rockets mounted on the MS406/D3801, Mustang, Venom, Hunter, Hispano Buchon, F-86, H-21, and MiG-17. The one thing that my pictures have in common is a variety of launcher arrangements, including locally improvised ones on the F-86. So I see no reason why they could not attach to any given rack or rail given a suitable adapter.

Given the above, I don't see how the type of rack shown in an undated photo argues for a completely different, WW2-era rocket--or even for a rocket at all, since it's hard to see what the racks looked like.

While these rockets are common in photos of Swiss piston-engined airplanes that remained in service in the later 1940s, I've never seen a rocket on an unambiguously WW2-era Swiss airplane. The absence of evidence is not evidence of absence, of course. Earlier rockets might have existed,and been in service or development. But if so, there does seem to be any obvious evidence.

See:


 

blockhaj

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I should also note that i do not think these are mounts for 8 cm Oerlikon rockets (well if they are then they are for an early variant maybe) because the 8 cm Oerlikon rocket ignites from a fixed ignitor at the back.
This is a mount for Oerlikon rockets under the wing of a P-51 Mustang. The Mustang was in service with the Swiss Air Force from 1948 to 1958.
https://www.swissmustangs.ch/swiss-mustangs-intro
9591908-1951_x1.jpg
 

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So it has come to my attention that the Swiss developed some type of airborne attack rocket during WWII, however finding information, let alone pictures of it has proven impossible for me. Does anyone here happen to have more information on the subject?

I do know that the Swiss had some type of airborne rocket by the end of the war as there exist several photographs of Swiss aircraft featuring rocket pylons from that period, however i have only ever found one picture which i think shows the rockets; or well.... parts of it.
View attachment 653494
Source: https://old.hermannkeist.ch/c-36/bilder-c-36/c-36/c-3603-1867.html
Above shows a Swiss EKW C 3603-1 reconnaissance attacker aircraft.
Switzerland never deployed any rockets during WWII. However, in 1936 there was a presentation and shooting of a 2,5 cm rocket in Thun, Switzerland. Mr. Dittli, the inventor of this rocket, was eager to further develop this surface to surface weapon but the war administrators didn't understand the technology and what could be achieved with it. They weren't interested in rockets at all. Only in 1944, when the success of the V1 and V2 was visible, the war administrators hired Mr. Dittli as an engineer. It's unknown what exactly he was doing.
There isn't any information about rockets in the archives of the "Oerlikon" company before 1945. The first official test shooting of an "Oerlikon" rocket took place in 1946. It was a surface to surface rocket.
The Swiss air force was eager to test fly and shoot these rockets. That's why you may see pictures of WWII aircraft with rocket racks, mounts and suspensions.
 

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After a brief search on e-periodica.ch, I found a brief statement about a rocket patent by Mr. Dittli, so after another search on Espacenet I found the following patents. German is still a tough language for me, but at least the pictures are intersting. Enjoy!
 

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Zorii_Bliss

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The following image may be of interest.. https://www.nzz.ch/geschichte/raketenfieber-ld.1548178?reduced=true

The rocket appears to be a sizeable piece of engineering, with a diameter in the vicinity of 10 to 15 cm.
IMHO, this is the starting tube of the 2,5 cm rocket called "System Dittli". In summer 1936 10 rockets were shot in a test or presentation in Thun, Switzerland. The ministry of Defence wasn't interested in pursuing the rocket technology. (image of linked article) c117eccd-162e-44ba-8757-66375a996dfe.jpeg
 

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blockhaj

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So it has come to my attention that the Swiss developed some type of airborne attack rocket during WWII, however finding information, let alone pictures of it has proven impossible for me. Does anyone here happen to have more information on the subject?

I do know that the Swiss had some type of airborne rocket by the end of the war as there exist several photographs of Swiss aircraft featuring rocket pylons from that period, however i have only ever found one picture which i think shows the rockets; or well.... parts of it.
View attachment 653494
Source: https://old.hermannkeist.ch/c-36/bilder-c-36/c-36/c-3603-1867.html
Above shows a Swiss EKW C 3603-1 reconnaissance attacker aircraft.
Switzerland never deployed any rockets during WWII. However, in 1936 there was a presentation and shooting of a 2,5 cm rocket in Thun, Switzerland. Mr. Dittli, the inventor of this rocket, was eager to further develop this surface to surface weapon but the war administrators didn't understand the technology and what could be achieved with it. They weren't interested in rockets at all. Only in 1944, when the success of the V1 and V2 was visible, the war administrators hired Mr. Dittli as an engineer. It's unknown what exactly he was doing.
There isn't any information about rockets in the archives of the "Oerlikon" company before 1945. The first official test shooting of an "Oerlikon" rocket took place in 1946. It was a surface to surface rocket.
The Swiss air force was eager to test fly and shoot these rockets. That's why you may see pictures of WWII aircraft with rocket racks, mounts and suspensions.
Lovely information. Would be great if more info can be found.
 

blockhaj

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After a brief search on e-periodica.ch, I found a brief statement about a rocket patent by Mr. Dittli, so after another search on Espacenet I found the following patents. German is still a tough language for me, but at least the pictures are intersting. Enjoy!
Amazing find. However these looks to be the 8 cm Oerlikon design with the ignition at the back. It is a rare type of ignition as most rockets at the time used ignition cables which were drawn from the base of the rocket through the propellant charge up to an igniter at the top of the charge below the warhead.
 

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