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Subject: Fire from the ground rss

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I've never seen a flying hogfish. I saw one gliding once, but never flying, not actually flying.
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From what I've read (not a lot, mind you), it seems that planes were more likely to be damaged by small-arms fire from the ground than anti-aircraft fire, at least at the start of the war.

If you're playing a bombing mission, or any mission with a 'target', it would make sense to include the soliders on the ground, at least at important locations.

Use a marker to indicate the position of the troops - they can't move as any plane passing over represented opportunity fire. If the plane passes within half a ruler of the marker (they're firing upward, so range is reduced), they can shoot at the plane. Take a damage card, the plane takes that amount minus one. In order to show the '-1', place the damage card upside down. Zeros are still zeros.

If it is a bombing mission, then on a successful drop, any troop markers within a ruler of the target are removed from the board.

NOTE: One marker does not represent one solider, necessarily - if the bombing target was a railway station with a troop train at the station, you might place three or so markers to represent the whole body of men.

Also, if you're playing with altitude rules, the troops can only fire if you're at 'low' altitude. If you're parked on the ground, then they can fire a full ruler distance. (There's also some room to allow troops to move if you're playing a mission where the plane is landing, enemy troops would rush toward the place where the plane had landed - in case a spy was being landed, for example).
 
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Andrea Angiolino
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Re:Fire from the ground
flyinghogfish (#41484),
very nice! And if you have two damage deck, you can have A firing counters (artillery, firing at one ruler distance) and B firing ones (infantrymen, firing at half ruler)...
 
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Jay Duval
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Re:Fire from the ground
angiolillo (#41485),
Ground fire was a susbstantial danger...ask the Red Baron (von richtophen, excuse my spelling of his name)he was killed by ground fire...even though history says he was killed by Brown(from a plane)...balistics show that an Australian machinegunner killed him from 600 yards away from the ground..a single 303 bullet killed him almost instantly...if the greatest ace of wwi was killed by ground fire I would have to say it was quite a risk.
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
Xasher (#41617),

"the greatest ace of wwi"

No doubt one of the most vain too, giving himself a silver cup for each victim. Somewhere along the way I read these tid bits too. Manfred racked up the most kills but there were many aviators who were better pilots and better shots. The Baron was not a great pilot but he was an excellent cold blooded tactician and a good shot. He was not exactly a Knight of the Air. Most of his kills were against 2-seaters not fighters. Most of his victims didn't see him until it was too late. Which is as it should be. He died chasing a lone Sopwith Camel which was trying to flee a larger engagement. Greedy?

The reckless and chivalrous didn't live long enough to score 80 kills, Werner Voss was an outstanding aerobatic pilot but taking on 7 SE5s single handedly in a Fokker Tri-plane was down right dunderheaded. Once he engaged he couldn't change his mind and disengage due to the speed difference between the two types.

The Fokker Triplane was not a popular aircraft. Most German pilots really preferred the faster Albtross fighters but it was the Baron's favorite so it remained in use. Despite it's maneuverability it was too slow to force a fight against the SE5s and Spads if they chose to run and it couldn't run away from a fight with these aircraft either.

Mick Mannock was blind in one eye. Supposedly when taking the vision test he covered his blind eye first and read the chart. When told to cover the other eye he just switched hands but covered the same eye and they didn't notice the sleight of hand.
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
scribidinus (#41621),
Manfred did die while chasing a lone sopwith camel...and it was a rookie pilot on top of it...but he was protecting a rookie from his own squad who was jumped by the sopwith camel. All this happened after a few weeks earlier, Manfred took a head wound from ground fire over the front...his fellow pilots say the wind was taken out of his sail after that incident and Manfred became accutely aware that he was not immortal and probably would not survive the war. They say the head wound gave him headaches and blurred vision and could have caused his poor judgement when he decided to chase after the rookie sopwith camel pilot.
Your right about his tactics too in his own book about fighter pilot tactics he says that a pilot should come out of the sun and jump his enemy before his enemy sees him. He also said that they should shoot for the pilot, because if you destroy the plane the pilot will be back to fight but if you kill the pilot you get both. Not very chivalrous, by no means. During the early years of the war when immelmann ruled the sky pilots respected one another more and air combat was a gentlemans game.
Manfred also said in his book that a fighter pilot needs to be a marksman first and a pilot second, and he lived by his own doctrine, up until that faithful day he decided to chase after a rookie pilot back over enemy lines without support from his squad, low and slow. That day he broke every rule in his own book, and it cost him his life...but be aware he we shot down by ground fire so The Red Baron was never shot down in a dog fight.
 
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Andrea Angiolino
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Re:Fire from the ground
Interesting debates. If you are really interested, I'd advice you to join the forum at www.theaerodrome.com where there are a lot of threads on those subjects. About "Who killed Richthofen?" I think you can find really hundreds on posts in the last years...

There is even a section devoted to games: boardgames and videogames alike.
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
Xasher (#41638),

Thanks, WoW has rekindled my fascination with WW I air combat and pilots. I probably owned or played almost every game on the subject at one time or another but haven't indulged since the mid-90s. So, as I said these are things I've read over the years and per other posts I don't recall all the details about everything anymore. (But for some reason I can never forget a joke no matter how bad). The personalities of the pilots is a fascinating subject. Frank Luke, shooting it out with his .45 pistol versus German infantry when surrender and the possibility of escape were a better alternative. The French pilot(help, I'm drawing a blank on his name) who was so ill he had to be carried to his aircraft in order to fly is another amazing story.
Mick Mannock's hatred of the Germans and his demise, jumping from a burning aircraft and falling to his death.

I read somewhere that Ernst Udet, who went on to be a barn stormer in the US right after the war and was the basis for the German character in The Great Waldo Pepper, managed to capture a British submarine from his aircraft! Seems he caught it on the surface and damaged it enough that it couldn't dive. Using his machine guns to herd it in the right direction it was eventually captured.

A fellow by the name of Arch Whitehouse wrote a personal account about being a WW I pilot. He was one of Manfreds victims, 37th one I think. Damn, can't remember the book title.


Keep us informed on WoW. It's on my buy list.
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
angiolillo (#41485),
flyinghogfish (#41484),
very nice! And if you have two damage deck, you can have A firing counters (artillery, firing at one ruler distance) and B firing ones (infantrymen, firing at half ruler)...

Actually Andrea the machine gun teams on the ground used the same machine guns as the bi-planes did and they usually were in teams of 3 (depending on the nationality) so using the A deck for infantry wouldn't be far off either.
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
Xasher (#41720),
ok... I was thinking more about riflemen. Like in Corto Maltese comics, actually, and in an Italian Army officer manual from 1917 that belonged to a brother of my granma and said: "Firing at an airplane, have half of your men shooting right at the aircraft and half of them 50 meter ahead of it" (I quoted it in some other thread).

For machineguns you are rights. And we should probably make a C damage deck, sooner or later, with more 0s but more lethal or high-score cards: for AA guns... and for the gun in the fuselage of Guuynemer's SPAD XII!
http://www.theaerodrome.com/aircraft/france/spad_xii.html




 
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Re:Fire from the ground
scribidinus wrote:
Xasher (#41617),

"the greatest ace of wwi"

No doubt one of the most vain too, giving himself a silver cup for each victim.


Manfred was not the only one to do this. I don't remember the names but I know there were others. Many pilots would also land next to their kill and cut or dismantl a trophy as well.

He was not exactly a Knight of the Air. Most of his kills were against 2-seaters not fighters.

You fail to realize this was the reason there were fighter aircraft. The fighter was supposed to take down the two-seaters. They had the bombs, cameras, wireless radios, and information officers. To protect the troops on the ground (hundred of thousands of them) lives. The two main missions were to chase down their two-seaters or chase of the their fighters so your two-seaters could operate.

Most of his victims didn't see him until it was too late. Which is as it should be. He died chasing a lone Sopwith Camel, which was trying to flee a larger engagement. Greedy?

I read on another board one guys tag line "if your enemy is in range, so are you. Enough said! And the Sopwith Q was answered on different post.

The reckless and chivalrous didn't live long enough to score 80 kills, Werner Voss was an outstanding aerobatic pilot, but taking on 7 SE5s single handedly in a Fokker Tri-plane was down right dunderheaded.

I have read many books on Voss, including just finishing new book called, September Evening. I don't think he was all that reckless. He was in a flight with three other aircraft when he attacked. There were also many other German squadrons in the area. Even many from his own Jasta (10). There were reports that many of these planes just hovered above and did not engage, while others were fending off with there own problems, Sopwith's and S.P.A.D's. Also, one of his three wingmates was flying a tripe as well. It is reported that this tripe booked as the fight started, inexplicable.

Once he engaged he couldn't change his mind and disengage due to the speed difference between the two types.

This is not really true either. McCudden, Cronyn and Davids all wrote that the Fokker pilot could have disengage at will any time, due to this aircrafts rate of climb. A senament viewed by other 56 pilots too. They mussed that he was very brave, as he kept coming back into the fray. This may have been foolhardy, but the pilots of 56 squadron also wrote they could not get a bead on their opponent. That as they would shoot he would flip the plane out of the way. So Voss would have known this and have a feeling of superiority over the SE 5a. If he had lived he might have been credited with Five victories, as three dropped out of combat fairly early on. And two more later in the fight. Voss was hitting everyone he shot at, as he was as good a shot as Richthofen.

The Fokker Triplane was not a popular aircraft. Most German pilots really preferred the faster Albtross fighters but it was the Baron's favorite so it remained in use.

I'm not sure of this statement. Yes there were better A/C speed wise and airframe wise too, but maneuverability at this time in air combat was highly valued. It wasn’t till the D.VII came out that the pilots were willing to give up their tripes. The Alb D.V was no real improvement over the D.III and the D.Va was better speed but turn rate was unchanged. And getting your guns around to bear on the enemy was vary important.

Despite it's maneuverability it was too slow to force a fight against the SE5s and Spads if they chose to run and it couldn't run away from a fight with these aircraft either.

Same response as above.

Mick Mannock was blind in one eye. Supposedly when taking the vision test he covered his blind eye first and read the chart. When told to cover the other eye he just switched hands but covered the same eye and they didn't notice the sleight of hand.

Vary interesting, I have to start reading more on the Brits. This makes his exploits even more remarkable. Just yesterday I almost rear-ender someone on the E-way when I got a fleck of dust in my right eye and it watered up. Thanks for this insight.

Jim P cool
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
Last word (possibly) on death of MvR.

Roy Brown (veteran Camel pilot) was actually credited with shooting him down, though as one book said, "You can still get into a fight in a bar in Sidney if you say that." Brown was English. The troops on the ground were Australians.

I've seen different reports on post-crash evidence and an autopsy and a "case" could be made for either side.

Speaking of good books, look for "Iron Men with Wooden Wings." Awful title, but a wonderful read, with many comments like the one I just cited.
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
Next to last word (not) on MvR demise

kduke wrote:
Last word (possibly) on death of MvR.

Roy Brown (veteran Camel pilot) was actually credited with shooting him down, though as one book said, "You can still get into a fight in a bar in Sidney if you say that." Brown was English. The troops on the ground were Australians.

I've seen different reports on post-crash evidence and an autopsy and a "case" could be made for either side.


I think "most" historians now agree that ground fire took down the great ace. Not Brown with his one deflection shot.

Speaking of good books, look for "Iron Men with Wooden Wings." Awful title, but a wonderful read, with many comments like the one I just cited.

Thanks for the tip I'll have to try this book next.

Jim P cool
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
jasta6 (#42213),

"You fail to realize this was the reason there were fighter aircraft."

Nah, I didn't fail to realize that, I just didn't expound on the thought. Forgive me. It goes hand in hand with being an excellent tactician and leader. The protection or killing of two-seaters conducting recon or artillery spotting were the main missions. I used to know how many German pilots became aces during Bloody April of '17. I think the Richoften Brothers, Manfred and Lothar, got 36 by themselves! I think I read somewhere (forgive my memory) that eight different German pilots accounted for nearly 100 allied planes in a 3 week period. Whoa! I'm sure Manfred and his squadron had the priorities straight but many cavalier types sought out glory for one reason or another.

I know the factors that gave the Se5 it's stability as a gun platform and easy flight characteristics could also cause reverse yaw in a very tight turn and thus it wasn't the best in a turning fight.

There many published accounts and opinions(many are just that, some harsh and some over romanticized)of the Baron's and other aces attributes and I haven't read them all so I will defer to your more extensive research, Jim.

But regardless of the circumstances that put Voss up against seven Se5s and again I defer to your research, I've read that most of the rank and file pilots who conducted most of the work-a-day patrol and escort missons preferred the faster, sturdier and easier to fly Albatross D series over the Dr1 since one did not have to fight its idiosyncracies as well as fight the enemy.

If I recall Rudoplh Berthold and a couple others preferred the Albatross series and even the Pfalz, dive like brick, D3 over the Dr1. But ace pilots have choices and fly to their personal strengths and the strengths of the aircraft. Average pilots fly what they're told to fly.

Nevertheless, I'll take 6 wingmen and 30 to 40 mph speed advantage over a single quirky nimble tripe anyday

Good thread, Jim.

BTW, I always thought an operational level game about the air war during Bloody April would be a good subject. Roughly 360 Brits, including 100 scouts versus 200 or so German a/c, also about 100 scouts. It has gaming attributes that intrigue me...quantity versus quality...both sides must complete missions protecting their own 2 seaters while attempting to prevent the other players thus trying to balance offense and defense with limited resources, disparate reinforcment rates with British getting more but even lower quality. Hell, I thought it might make a good block game with the fog of war factor. It could be done with about 50 60 blocks. Maybe special blocks for the famous aces. Ya think?



 
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Re:Fire from the ground
jasta6 (#42242),

"It wasn’t till the D.VII came out that the pilots were willing to give up their tripes."

That would be true of the pilots who liked the tripes in the first place since the D VII had more of everything the Dr1, the Albatross and the Pfalz had. At some point the dive rate becomes a moot point, like right before you hit the ground.

It might even be true that a lot of French and British would have traded in whatever ever they were flying for a D VII.
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
scribidinus wrote:

.....Bloody April of '17. I think the Richoften Brothers, Manfred and Lothar, got 36 by themselves! I think I read somewhere (forgive my memory) that eight different German pilots accounted for nearly 100 allied planes in a 3 week period. Whoa!


Whoa! is right. Vary interesting fact (side note: is that Voss missed most of April as he was on leave.)

I know the factors that gave the Se5 it's stability as a gun platform and easy flight characteristics could also cause reverse yaw in a very tight turn and thus it wasn't the best in a turning fight.

I've talked to some pilots that have made full size flying replicas of this aircraft, they say it is a vary stable flying machine. If one was to get into flying Great War replicas this is the plane to get.

....I've read that most of the rank and file pilots who conducted most of the work-a-day patrol and escort missions preferred the faster, sturdier and easier to fly Albatross D series over the Dr1 since one did not have to fight its idiosyncracies as well as fight the enemy.

Good point, I do tend to read about the Known pilots, which would be the aces. Limited reading time and these are the easiest books to get. The rank and file pilots with less air time would be more comfortable in the Alb and Pfalz.

...Albatross series and even the Pfalz, dive like brick, D3 over the Dr1.

Yes I have also heard this too.

Nevertheless, I'll take 6 wingmen and 30 to 40 mph speed advantage over a single quirky nimble tripe anyday

May be true. Voss was a bit of a loner (might be why other sat on the side and watched) and ended up finding himself in a pickle. Though the author of "September Evening" concludes Voss was fatally shot and not that the A/C was critically damaged.

Good thread, Jim.

Yes John, this is good fun! But we better be careful not to turn this page into a History group

BTW, I always thought an operational level game about the air war during Bloody April would be a good subject.

Sounds interesting. I believe W3 or GDW did a similar game on the Battle of Briton. It was a good game with a decent fun factor. (Short memory too. I will see if I still have it and post the name later)

...Maybe special blocks for the famous aces. Ya think?

Sounds good, start writing.

Thank
Jim P cool
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
scribidinus wrote:

At some point the dive rate becomes a moot point, like right before you hit the ground.


LOL very funny stuff!

It might even be true that a lot of French and British would have traded in whatever ever they were flying for a D VII.

I'm sure they would’ve. Especially the pilots that were shot down by a D V.II.

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Re:Fire from the ground
jasta6 (#42348),

"If one was to get into flying Great War replicas this is the plane to get."


Jim,

As a sidebar, I hope our immersion in this history thread helps players understand why the maneuver decks are as they are. My sons, for example, and many others to whom WW I air combat is a relatively unknown field, may find it easier to grasp a completely bogus sci-fi game using this system than get a handle on the theory of flight. Since I'm pinned down doing laundry on a beautiful day, permit me to continue this thread.

The long broad top wing on the SE5 made it easy to fly, very forgiving and very stable. I'd read that in a sustained nearly vertical bank turn, the wing pointed straight up could lose lift and stall before the wing pointed down. This caused the reverse yaw, the nose of the a/c pulling upward and in the opposite direction of the desired turn. If the pilot continued to push the maneuver the aircraft would lose lift completely and stall. As this only happened when abusing the flight characteristics of the design, many considered this preferential to fighting a 130HP rotary engine that wanted to stay still and spin a stubby little airplane around on its axis for an entire mission. The good characteristics and speed of the SE5a far out weighed this one quirk if flown to it's strengths. Thus, the solution being a paraphrase of this old joke.

"Captain, my plane stalls when I do THIS."
"Well, don't do that!"

To compliment your statement regarding the preferences of the aces, I think Albert Ball still preferred his agile but fragile Nieuport 17 over the SE5 that the squadron was re-equipped with. And if I'm not mistaken managed to keep one around for awhile for his lone wolf prowling.

Good pilots who were also good shots probably did prefer aircraft that made it easier to bring the guns to bear.

Ok, let's talk about movies. Remember the movie, The Blue Max? Aside from the acting (all I can recall about that is the impression that George Peppard said "Thank You" one hell of a lot of times in that flick), the Pfalse Pfalz, SE5s and the RE8 were all built on the tried and true DeHaviland Tiger Moth air frame. Perhaps even the D VIIs since the propellor shaft was mounted high on the radiator instead of toward the bottom as on a real Fokker D.VII. The Dr1s were, of course, the radial engined replicas for reliability. Can't imagine a modern stunt pilot wanting to inhale castor oil fumes all day during a shoot, either.

Kind of wonder what happened to those aircraft copies.

John


 
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Re:Fire from the ground
scribidinus wrote:

...many others to whom WW I air combat is a relatively unknown field, may find it easier to grasp a completely bogus sci-fi game using this system than get a handle on the theory of flight.


How true, My boy (14) can give me specs on a Battle Mech as if it were a current weapons in the US army, but I am getting him interested in the many aspect of Great War aviation. Just this past weekend he was musing at the prospect of a Junker D.I or a SSW D.III/D.IV in WoW.

The long broad top wing on the SE5 made it easy to fly, very forgiving and very stable. I'd read...

Interesting information. That I had not heard. But wouldn't that be true of a lot of the aircraft of this time. With the fuselages mostly flat sided and flat vertical stabs? When on their sides they would have no lift. The motors could not muster the power to just pull the crate on pure HP alone. I would also believe the nature of a dog fight being so fluid that a sustained hard banking turn would get a pilot shot down anyway!

...I think Albert Ball still preferred his agile but fragile Nieuport 17 over the SE5 ...

Yes I had heard/read that too.

Good pilots who were also good shots probably did prefer aircraft that made it easier to bring the guns to bear.

So true, You find a good number of the aces were good shots and or hunters. A long with a great interest in all things mechanical. (Bishop & Voss were such pilots)

..The Blue Max? Aside from the acting (all I can recall about that is the impression that George Peppard said "Thank You" one hell of a lot of times in that flick)

Was George Peppard in that movie? ALL I remember was "Ursula Andress"!! Not really, but the thing that drove me nuts from the vary beginning was them having to pull those silly handles to fire their guns. What was that for?

....DeHaviland Tiger Moth air frame. Perhaps even the D VIIs ...

I believe this is true too. As there were many times you would see what looked like a D.VII then the same plane had the T-Moths wing configuration.

The Dr1s were, of course, the radial engined replicas for reliability. Can't imagine a modern stunt pilot wanting to inhale castor oil fumes all day during a shoot, either.

I have seen Fred Mure's FI 102/17 Rep fly with a rotary along with a Sopwith Pup too. I was in heaven. What a sound, What smells, what a thing of beauty

Kind of wonder what happened to those aircraft copies.

Tripes with lozenge, hopefully they burned 'em.

Jim P cool
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
jasta6 (#42542),

"Tripes with lozenge, hopefully they burned 'em"


laughYou're good. I thought of that too. They probably repainted them for stuff like The Great Waldo Pepper and I saw that same Tripe again in an IMAX film on flight, I think.

I figured out where I read that reverse thing and the SE5. One of my flight sims mentioned it and modeled it that way, so discount that until it can be verified by better sources.

BTW, ever play Flying Corps Gold on the PC. It has a great campaign centered around the month after Bloody April when Manfred is on leave leaving the player in command of Jasta 11.

And yes, George Peppard played Bruno Stachel. I think Jeremy Kemp was in it, too. Funny though, I had forgotten about Ursula, the romantic interest sub plot who wasn't in the novel.
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
scribidinus wrote:
...and I saw that same Tripe again in an IMAX film on flight, I think.


How was that movie? I never saw it.

...flight sims mentioned it...

Sounded good to me. :0

BTW, ever play Flying Corps Gold on the PC. It has a great campaign centered around the month after Bloody April when Manfred is on leave leaving the player in command of Jasta 11.

No, I haven’t. I have Red Baron 1 & 2. Also have Dawn Patrol on CD, but have yet to load it.

...Ursula, the romantic interest sub plot ...

Champaign... ...vintage, 1903!

Jim P cool
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
scribidinus wrote:
the Pfalse Pfalz, SE5s and the RE8 were all built on the tried and true DeHaviland Tiger Moth air frame.


Here they were, on a little image I posted a few months ago:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/image/36576

Bye!

A.
 
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Re:Fire from the ground
angiolillo (#43224),

Very good. I'm so glad I didn't imagine that. If I recall there were 1 to 3 actual replicas of each type used that looked like the real things. I'm trying to find that movie on DVD. In the words of Bruno Stachel, "Zank you."
 
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