Help with P-51

Hey all,

I’ll make it short and sweet. I’m struggling with the P-51 because I can’t turn very well with it in a dive. I’m used to playing planes like the p-400 and p-39 which are very maneuverable in a dive.

Should I completely cut throttle and switch to combat flaps at the start of the dive? I’m thinking I should also just dive from more horizontal (less steep) angles.

Thanks all


Cutting throttle should really only be done if it’s a hard dive onto someone from a long distance. If it’s a short one then leaving the throttle up should be just fine. If your being dived on keep the throttle open and hard dive out of the engagement. As for flaps don’t use them in a dive. You should only really use them in quick turns when you have a good amount of speed, but even then you can only do it once or twice. Best way to play is BoomNZoom or yo-yo’s. Also try to keep alt on everyone and don’t try turn fighting anyone. May I ask which one your using? I’m assuming the Cannonstang.

I’m using the very first one in the tree (51-C10).

I’ve been in the habit of diving strictly onto air targets from at least 2km higher. Even if I cut throttle and do just about everything I can to limit speed I cannot seem to make small adjustments in order to get my guns on jinking/ maneuvering bandits. I don’t have this problem with F4U/ P400/39 etc.

I’m playing aracde as of late so can’t make sense of why I wouldn’t use flaps in a dive… did you mean don’t use them if I’m playing RB?

Oh, I didn’t realize they switched that one and the Cannonstang around.

Okay that’s good.

Well the P-51 has some pretty bad rudder lock up at higher speeds. It’s really the main Achillis heal of it. Try maybe diving from shorter distances. I can’t really think of anything else right now to stop that rudder lock up. If your on PC I would maybe recommend setting up the key bindings for rudder control and yawing your aircraft as you dive, just to cut a little speed.

They’re rudders don’t lock up quite as bad.

Ahhh okay. Yes I was talking about RB. I haven’t played the mustang on Ab for quite awhile, so any and all of my advice may be completely wrong for AB.

Well that’s pretty much all that needs to be said lol. My playstyle revolves around diving and maneuvering at least a bit within the dive. I try not to turn horizontally after the dive but to instead go into a vertical maneuver of sorts afterwards. Of course sometimes I just boom and run and don’t maneuver at all. This quote makes me think I’m going to just want to simply move onto the F4U’s tbh.

Are their any P51 variants that are more maneuverable? I hear the 47’s (thunderbolts) are even worse.

Honestly Idk how anyone kills anything with theses stiff strict BnZ fighters that have no rudder control in a steep / fast dive. In simulator battles oh of course… people don’t know you’re coming and don’t maneuver… but arcade is a mode where everyone knows where you are at almost all times and are constantly turning etc.

Just scored another kill with a stock F4U in my last game and am starting to prefer it to the P51…

Yeah :/

That’s good

I enjoy those too

The P-51H can be incredibly maneuverable, granted it’s also a large upgrade from the P-51C. And so can the others, but the rudder is always what gets me killed.

Yeah, I don’t like them very much.

Lol just takes time

Yeah. I play mostly realistic. If you want I’ll play some matches with you in the 51, but you know, in realistic.


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Well thanks for your reply. I think I’ve finally discovered what type of air vehicles work for me and what don’t. Stiff rudders just won’t work for me Idk have the patience for them lol. No doubt someone who can zoom up and down over and over patiently can certainly be efficient with this plane but not enough maneuverability for me.

Any other planes to avoid other than the 47’s and FW190’s if you don’t mind me asking?

Lol yeah no problem. Like do you mean when fighting them or playing them?

I mean playing them. I think I prefer fast / heavily armed/ BnZ sort of planes but as we just discussed, I can’t do with the rudder lockup that some of them feature. So I’m curious if there are others I should avoid.

I’m thinking the thunderbolts, other mustangs, and the FW190’s.


Umm, probably most other mustangs, but the D-30 as well as the H have better rudder control, so you might want to try those out. 47’s aren’t the most maneuverable, but they are heavily armed, so if you prefer BnZ then you might want to just try them a few times, specifically the later ones. As for 109’s their rudder lock up isn’t too bad, but there elevators are really bad. Like you can not turn fight anything expect maybe a B-17 or some sort of heavy fighter. As for BnZ with them I find that they are amazing. Others that I can think of off the top of my head are, 109’s have a somewhat annoying lock up around 400 mph as well as a very annoying roll rate. Like it does not like to roll right very much, I find hat sometimes it’s easier going 270 degrees roll around the left than 90 degrees roll around through the right. It is heavily armed as is the 190 so if you like hard hitting things there amazing. Do-335’s also have a really annoying rudder lock up as well as terrible elevators, but those are also attackers not fighters. I can’t say anything about the F8F because I don’t have the patience for its engine. IDK if it’s a good dogfighter or not, so you might have to check it out yourself. The F6F is pretty good. Rudder lock up isn’t too bad and it’s a surprisingly good turner at high speeds. If you branch out to USSR TT, the yak’s will probably be the way to go for you. Not the best divers, but amazing energy fighters so you can do vertical fighting very well. La-5’s aren’t a bad choice either. Of course for UK go with the Spits. Amazing BnZ for most of them and amazing turn fighters. Only thing they lack is armament and even then it’s fixed with later models. Can’t tell you much about any other nations bc I use aircraft from other nations in those.

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All of this makes a lot of sense to me except for one thing. I’m surprised to hear you say that the Bf109 has a stiff rudder. I’ve heard that it can do absolutely anything and everything other than out turn spits and Japanese planes. Maybe I’ve heard wrong?

Very glad to hear you recommend the Russian aircraft as I’ve heard/ discerned that other than a good handful of American planes, they are some of the best rounded energy fighters in the game. Seems like regardless of what era it is the Russians always have some of the most amazing military vehicles ever… including tanks for that matter.

Remember everything I said is relevant to RB. I also should clarify that I mainly play the F-4 variant, bc I find that it’s just the right mix of maneuverability and weapons for my taste, so that’s what I was talking about. But overall, I probably would say that it’s not like super bad or anything, nut at higher speeds it likes to lock up. But then again, every aircraft has rudder lock up issues at some speed. Still, I’d HEAVLY recommend playing the 109’s they can be so much fun if used right.

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Yeah they have some very good vehicles. Just don’t go into the mindset of “Russian bias” please, I beg of you. Anyways, add me on the game and we can play a few matches. I don’t know if I’ll be on anymore tonight, I have to run and get dinner for the fam. But I’ll be on tomorrow. Username is same as here :)