Junkers Ju 88

The Junkers Ju 88 was a World War II German Luftwaffe twin-engine, multi-role aircraft. Designed by Hugo Junkers' company in the mid-1930s, it suffered from a number of technical problems during the later stages of its development and early operational roles, but became one of the most versatile combat aircraft of the war. Affectionately known as "The Maid of all Work" (a feminine version of "jack of all trades"), the Ju 88 proved to be suited to almost any role. Like a number of other Luftwaffe bombers, it was used successfully as a bomber, dive bomber, night fighter, torpedo bomber, reconnaissance aircraft, heavy fighter, and even as a flying bomb during the closing stages of conflict.

Junkers Ju 88 Airborne

Despite its protracted development, the aircraft became one of the Luftwaffe's most important assets. The assembly line ran constantly from 1936 to 1945, and more than 16,000 Ju 88s were built in dozens of variants, more than any other twin-engine German aircraft of the period. Throughout the production, the basic structure of the aircraft remained unchanged, proof of the outstanding quality of the original design.

Dr. Heinrich Koppenberg (managing director of Jumo) assured Göring in the autumn of 1938 that 300 Ju 88s per month was definitely possible. Göring was in favour of the A-1 variant for mass production.

Production was delayed drastically with developmental problems. Although planned for a service introduction in 1938, the Ju 88 finally entered squadron service (with only 12 aircraft) on the first day of the attack on Poland in 1939. Production was painfully slow with only one Ju 88 manufactured per week, as problems continually kept cropping up. The Ju 88C series of heavy fighter was also designed very early in 1940, but kept secret from Göring, as he only wanted bombers.

General characteristics
  • Crew: 4
  • Length: 14.36 m (47 ft 2⅞ in)
  • Wingspan: 20.08 m (65.88 ft)
  • Height: 5.07 m (16.63 ft)
  • Wing area: 54.7 m² (587 ft²)
  • Loaded weight: 8,550 kg (18,832 lb)
  • Max takeoff weight: 14,000 kg (30,865 lb)
  • Powerplant: 2× Junkers Jumo 211J liquid-cooled inverted V-12, 1,044 kW (1,420 PS, 1,401 hp) each

  • Maximum speed: 510 km/h (317 mph) at 5,300 m (17,388 ft)
  • Range: 2,430 km (1,429 mi) maximum internal fuel
  • Service ceiling: 9,000 m (29,500 ft) at average weight

  • 1 × 7.92 mm MG 81J machine gun on flexible mount in front, firing forward with 1,000 rounds.
  • 2 × 7.92 mm MG 81J on flexible mounts with 1,000 rounds
  • 1 × 7.92 MG 81Z twin machine guns with 3,000 rounds
  • 3,000 kg (6,614 lb) bombs max load internal and external
  • 2 × LT aerial torpedoes

** Warbird Fare - Junkers Ju 88

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