Aviation of World War II

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Schräge Music

The Battery of Guns

20/30 mm

The powerful arms was placed on English and American heavy bombers in a back part. Besides on night bombers behind was RLS, capable to find out fighters of the opponent and to direct at them defensive armament.

In this connection command of Luftwaffe has decided to conduct attacks against allied bombers from below. The heavy German night fighter flied below the opponent on 100-300 m, suddenly opened fire from the battery of guns which trunks have been directed upwards under a corner 65-90° to an axis of a fighter and ripped up a belly of a bomber. Such artillery installations named Germans "Schräge music", i.e. "Jazz".

On night fighter Ju-88C-6 in addition to the basic armament (three 20-mm of the gun, three 7,92-mm of a machine gun and one 13-mm a machine gun) in the central section of a fuselage it has been established "Schräge music". Installation has been equipped to two 20-mm with MG-151/20 cannon with an ammunition load on 200 cartridges on a trunk. Guns delivered fire under a corner 70 ° to an axis of the machine.

Installations "Schräge music" have received a some number of night fighters. So, in addition to the basic armament in the central compartment of He-219A-1 fighter were two 30-mm of МК-108 cannon under a corner 65° to an axis of the plane (with an ammunition load on 100 shots on a trunk) are established.

On the Me-410A1 and Me-410A2 fighters "Schräge music" has consisten of two 30-mm МК-103 cannon established vertically.

Originally action "Schräge music" has made amazing impression on crews of bombers. But the aiming under the big corner was difficult enough for pilots of a fighter. Besides shooting under a corner to a counter stream of air caused the big dispersion of projectiles.

Nevertheless, the German night fighters working as usual installations, and "Schräge music", in 1944 have achieved definite effect.

By the end 1944 - to the beginning of 1945 efficiency of German night fighters began to be reduced that allies have used during this period the big number of long range fighters for a cover of the bombers.


  • History of aircraft weapons / A.B. Shirokorad /