07.11.2021 19:00 GMT
Hello and welcome back to another Forgotten Hope 2 update.
Today we would like to thank everyone who showed up to the Memoriam event. Today marks the last day of the event, and your last chance for a while to play on the event maps. Keep an eye out though, as they may be back in the future for other events.
As for our render, we turn to the skies above France and their most numerous fighter in May 1940.
In 1934, the French Air Force put out a request for modern single seat interceptor fighter. A number of manufacturers began to work on candidates, including Morane-Saulnier. To meet the requirements, they envisaged a low-wing mono-wing airframe, with a fully enclosed cockpit and variable pitch propeller. This was a departure from their usual commercial designs up to this point.
Headed by Paul-René Gauthier, the team had managed to put together the first prototype in time for a first flight in August 1935. This M.S.405 featured a fabric wrapped wooden tail with an aluminium frame fuselage covered in metal coated plywood. Testing of this prototype was slow, with the second airframe only flying in January 1937. Both examples were displayed at the 1935 Paris Airshow, and that year an order was placed for 16 pre-production examples. What would be the M.S.406 was finally put into wide scale production in late 1938.
At the outbreak of the war, the M.S.406 was the most numerous fighter in French service, and would fly a number of sorties during the Phoney War. Pilots liked the handling, but a number of problems began to emerge. The guns in the wings were prone to freezing and jamming, and compared to the faster Messerschmitt Bf 109 the armouring and armament were lacking. The invasion of France in May 1940 saw heavy losses in air combat and on the ground.
A number of aircraft were sold to Turkey, Switzerland and Finland. The latter two nations saw some sucess with the type, but generally the M.S.406 was withdrawn from service before the end of the war. Ours was made by Herc.
That's all for this week, but be sure to come back next time for another update. Until then, feel free to visit our Discord, our public forums, our Twitter, our subreddit, and/or Facebook pages to discuss this update and other news.