First, i like the Cl.II very much ! It looks phantastic, form and details are top notch.
My books say the CL.II was used from november 1917 on (so a "late" plane), and "used the Mercedes D.III series engines". It makes sense to assume some received the IIIa and au versions then, depending probably on role. The book "Aircraft types of WW1" (translated, german book from the 1970ies) also states it was built in masses, but no exact numbers given there.
Took the Halberstadt CL.II out for three flights yesterday on the Syndicate server, without making any test flight before. Handles nice, rolls a bit sluggish to the right. Good visibility, but observer blocking rear view. Landing holds no perils, just let it do enough speed when touching the ground, and let it flare out and settle smooth , which is not difficult at all. Ground loop easy to counter with engine running.
First two flights i took out artillery positions at enemy side near the front, all on the Syn server.
In the first flight i dropped my bombs and made back for the front, low. A SPAD attacked, and my AI gunner damaged it (trailing fuel), but it also damaged my engine, which seems to me much more prone to enemy fire, than e.g. the DFW - only logical with the DFW's engine armour. Emergency-landed with dead stick in No-man's land, but close to my side. Did a ground loop, but no damage to lower wing.
Second i finished off the arty positions, and made it back unharmed, if not unharrassed.
Third flight was a ball. Flew over the front high, and then descended to attack trucks far behind the frontline. Managed to destroy all three in one run and wanted to drop the rerst on the nearby aerodrome, when my observer started firing away - SPAD !
Was hit, but not badly and began to circle tight to get the SPAD in my gunsight. Was too slow though, and another stream of bullets dameged my left wing, killed my gunner, and made us trail more petrol. I still had some small bombs left, but completely forgot them. Managed to shoot at the SPAD, but no reaction. Going vertical and falling back i managed to damage the SPAD now trailing coolant. Another circle and it also trailed fuel. Then we circled again and when i had it in my gunsight several times i realized i had no ammuntion left
. But the SPAD was unable to run away, or shoot at me due to me evading his attacks everytime.
So we circled until the SPAD had to land, and i made my way back. Had a short idea of shooting at him with my Colt, but did not want to be an a$$. Was not awarded a "kill" (seems he managed to land before killing his engine) but saluted anyway, was a great fight
So survived three attacks, and landed all three times without shredding the CL.II (3rd time the SPAD making a wreck of it though, but made it home holed and trailing fuel).
Was great fun, and the CL.II is not such an Ueber-plane like the Brisfit. For all i have seen on youtube videos, the performance of the Brisfit is unreal, in RoF.
If this was the first journeyman's piece of new team members .. congrats. Very. well. made.
Also it make me real enthusiastic that we have the D.IIIau engine now, which may be later built into some Albatros D.V versions, and other planes ..
It may well have had 200 hp, a lot of pilots in Zuerls' "Pour le mÚrite" report about this number. Some british test personnel fitted it with the wrong carburettor, but no one ever seems to have took the german high-octane "Fliegerbenzin" into account, with which the engine was never tested by the Entente.
Thanks and greetings,