|This page is about the German jet fighter MiG-21MF (Germany). For other versions, see MiG-21 (Family).|
- 1 Description
- 2 General info
- 3 Armaments
- 4 Usage in battles
- 5 History
- 6 Media
- 7 See also
- 8 External links
The ◊MiG-21MF (NATO Code: Fishbed-J) is a rank VII German jet fighter with a battle rating of 10.0 (AB), 10.3 (RB), and 10.7 (SB). It was introduced in Update 1.95 "Northern Wind".
It is a single-engine delta-wing supersonic interceptor with conventional tail and fully-moving elevators.
The ◊MiG-21MF has mediocre flight performance in every aspect among top rank jets. It will get out-accelerated by British Phantoms or MiG-21 bis, outturned by Draken or Mirage, and out-sped by 2nd gen US Phantoms (F-4E/EJ), Starfighters or MiG-21 bis. The delta wing provides great angle-of-attack (AoA) while turning but it also mean the plane loses huge amount of speed doing so. This means that staying behind enemy in 1 vs. 1 is fairly simple, but when there are multiple bandits one might lose all their speed and become an easy missile target if turning too much.
|Characteristics|| Max Speed
(km/h at 13,000 m)
| Max altitude
| Turn time
| Rate of climb
| Take-off run|
|Combat flaps||Take-off flaps||Landing flaps||Air brakes||Arrestor gear||Drogue chute|
|Wings (km/h)||Gear (km/h)||Flaps (km/h)||Max Static G|
|Optimal velocities (km/h)|
|< 650||< 600||< 950||N/A|
|Engine name||Number||Wing loading (full fuel)|
|Tumansky R-13-300||1||5,962 kg||359 kg/m2|
|Engine characteristics||Mass with fuel (no weapons load)|| Max Takeoff|
|Weight (each)||Type||11m fuel||20m fuel||30m fuel||38m fuel|
|1,135 kg||Afterburning axial-flow turbojet||6,651 kg||7,170 kg||7,774 kg||8,258 kg||9,900 kg|
|Thrust to weight ratio @ 0 m (WEP)|
|Condition||100%||WEP||11m fuel||20m fuel||30m fuel||38m fuel||MTOW|
|Stationary||3,825 kgf||6,483 kgf||0.97||0.90||0.83||0.79||0.65|
|Optimal|| 3,825 kgf
| 6,977 kgf
Survivability and armour
The MiG-21MF lacks armour plating. It also has one engine unlike some other planes. This means that the survivability is very low, even among jets. Getting hit is something that should be avoided at all cost, because should the plane survive it, even small wing damage will force the pilot to return to base. The plane has a radar warning receiver (RWR), and countermeasures, including flares and chaff.
Modifications and economy
Your main priority is to get to the R-60s as soon as possible, this will require you to unlock two tier III modifications. Unless you particularly want to research the ground attack ordnance you will be wanting to unlock "Wings repair" and "New 23 mm cannons" at tier III. Therefore you should research "Offensive 23 mm belts" as your first modification at tier I. This will then unlock tier II modifications where you can research "R-3S" and your choice of "New boosters" or "Airframe" (up to you in which order you unlock these), it may be appealing to unlock missiles first to help with the grind but you should keep in mind that the R-3S missiles are slightly worse than the AIM-9B, which means they cannot be fired in even a gentle turn or climb. Once tier III modifications are accessible, you can unlock "Wings repair" and "New 23 mm cannons" in whichever order you want and then go for the R-60s. Once the R-60s are available you can unlock the remaining modifications in whatever order you see fit, however it is highly recommended to go for G-suit and engine upgrades first.
|CCIP (Guns)||CCIP (Rockets)||CCIP (Bombs)||CCRP (Bombs)|
The MiG-21MF (Germany) is armed with:
- A choice between two presets:
- 1 x 23 mm GSh-23L cannon, belly-mounted (200 rpg)
- 1 x 23 mm GSh-23L cannon + 64 x countermeasures
The MiG-21MF (Germany) can be outfitted with the following ordnance presets:
- Without load
- 2 x R-3S missiles
- 2 x R-3R missiles
- 4 x R-3S missiles
- 4 x R-3R missiles
- 4 x R-60 missiles
- 4 x S-24 rockets
- 64 x S-5K rockets
- 64 x S-5K rockets
- 4 x 250 kg OFAB-250sv bombs (1,000 kg total)
Custom loadout options
|250 kg OFAB-250sv bombs||1||1||1||1|
|S-5K rockets||16||16, 32||16, 32||16|
Usage in battles
While the ◊MiG-21MF itself is a pretty mediocre fighter, it has access to 4 deadly R-60 missiles. These missiles work the best when enemy is slow, so the recommended tactic is to wait a bit before engaging into the battle.
Due to the immense speed bleed in turns, it is strongly recommended to keep the speed high near enemies, unless one really wants to closely meet AIM-9J. Dropping below 800 km/h makes it really hard to dodge this missile. When an enemy is spotted, it is recommended to turn roughly into their direction, so when they engage, they'll have to make a 180° turn, which will give time for MiG pilot to disengage without risking getting hit by a missile.
Engaging in 1 v 1 situation can sometimes be done, but unless a faster opponent forces it (which happens rarely, as faster opponents turn worse than the MiG) it is only recommended if there are no other enemies nearby. However, do never turn-fight with Draken or Mirage. A good tactic for defensive dogfights is trying to make enemy overshoot, especially against Phantoms. Keep in mind however that you can outrun F-4C.
Specific enemies worth noting
- MiG-21 bis and MiG-21 SMT, if you play against the Soviets. They are faster and have better acceleration (bis in particular) but are slightly heavier and less agile
- Mirage IIIC, has very similar acceleration and top speed, but will outturn MiG-21 MF and has great Matra Magic missiles.
- F-4E/F-4EJ. They are armed with great missiles, fighting them at altitude is not recommended. One the deck they are faster and have better energy retention.
- J35 Draken, will always outturn you. It is very important to keep an energy advantage when attempting to fight the Draken, turn fighting is the worst thing possible against a Draken and tactics that involve retaining energy is best when attempting to fight the Draken. Forcing the Draken to dump its energy is the best way to fight against it.
The MiG-21MF is equipped with a Sapphire-21 search and tracking radar. The radar is mounted in the nose of the aircraft.
|Sapphire-21 - Target Detection Radar|
| 30,000 m
|Sapphire-21 - Target Tracking Radar|
|20,000 m||300 m||±30.0°||±17.0°|
Pros and cons
- Access to four R-60 missiles with great tracking and G-tolerance
- High AoA, very agile and light
- Middling ground attack loadouts
- A small profile which is harder to hit
- Equipped with flares, chaff is available
- One of the many MiG-21 variants capable of using a radar missile, being the R-3R
- Unsatisfactory cannon armament
- Atrocious energy retention
- No combat flaps
- Excessive fuel burn when using afterburner
- Does not get R-13M1 missiles
- R-60s chase flares constantly
- Using afterburner on the deck can overspeed the aircraft even in a slight climb
The MiG-21MF (Germany) is a second-generation variant of the popular MiG-21 'Fishbed'. Operated by the East German Air Force (Luftstreitkräfte der Nationalen Volksarmee; LSK) between 1972 and 1990, the aircraft was an export variant of the MiG-21SM, and is highly similar to its counterpart, the MiG-21SMT. Designated the 'Fishbed-J', the aircraft formed the bulk of the LSK in the late stages of the Cold War. All German MiG-21 aircraft were retired following the German Reunification, though some survive as museum aircraft to this day.
Design and procurement
The East German Air Force received many MiG-21 variants due to their ties with the Soviet Bloc. 76 MiG-21F-13 aircraft had been delivered to the East German Air Force in the early 1960s, and they later received 50 MiG-21PF 'Fishbed-D' planes, which were known as the MiG-21PFM in East German service. This generated considerable confusion as the German MiG-21PFs had inadvertently been given the same name as the later, Soviet-made, MiG-21PFM 'Fishbed-F'. However, in the early 1970s, the LSK received its first 3rd-generation MiG-21s, the MiG-21MF. This aircraft was essentially an export variant of the Soviet MiG-21SM. 50 MiG-21MFs were delivered to the LSK between 1972 and 1974.
The MiG-21MF differs from the standard MiG-21SM by having a less powerful engine and simplified radar system, meaning that it accelerates slightly slower than its Soviet counterpart. It could reach a maximum speed of 2,230 km/h, and was flown by a single pilot. As an interceptor, it carried a 23 mm dual-barreled cannon with 200 rounds in a ventral pack, and was also capable of fitting a variety of munitions including bombs, rockets and missiles.
The MiG-21MF enjoyed a fairly uneventful service history with the LSK. The aircraft served with Jagdgeschwader (JG, fighter group) 8 and JG 9. It complemented the earlier MiG-21PFM and MiG-21F-13 aircraft in German service. Later on, it was complemented by the MiG-21bis, the final MiG-21 variant to serve with the German Air Force. At the time of the German reunification, many MiG-21s remained in German service. As the new combined Luftwaffe had no plans to continue using the Soviet-era interceptor, all MiG-21 aircraft were retired in late 1990 following the German reunification. Many of those aircraft were reserved as museum pieces, and several survive to this day in museums across the globe.
- Related development
- [Wikipedia] Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21
- [Air Vectors] The Mikoyan MiG-21 - MiG-21 Single-Seat Variants
- Official data sheet - more details about the performance
- Aviata. (2020)
- Museum, D. (2020)
- Aviata. (2020). German MiG-21. Retrieved November 23, 2020, from https://aviatia.net/german-mig-21/
- Museum, D. (2020). Mikojan-Gurewitsch MiG-21 MF. Retrieved November 23, 2020, from https://www.deutsches-museum.de/en/flugwerft/collections/jet-aircraft/mig-21/
|Mikoyan-Gurevich Design Bureau (Микоя́н и Гуре́вич Опытное конструкторское бюро)|
|Fighters||MiG-3-15 · MiG-3-15 (BK) · MiG-3-34|
|Jet fighters||MiG-9 · MiG-9 (l)|
|MiG-15 · MiG-15bis · MiG-15bis ISH|
|MiG-21F-13 · MiG-21PFM · MiG-21S (R-13-300) · MiG-21SMT · MiG-21bis|
|MiG-23M · MiG-23ML · MiG-23MLD|
|MiG-27M · MiG-27K|
|MiG-29 · MiG-29SMT|
|Export/Licensed||␗MiG-9 · ␗MiG-9 (l)|
|◊MiG-15bis · J-2*|
|MiG-17AS · J-4* · Shenyang F-5*|
|◊MiG-19S · J-6A*|
|◄MiG-21 SPS-K · ◊MiG-21MF · ◊MiG-21 "Lazur-M" · ▄MiG-21bis · ◊MiG-21bis-SAU · J-7II**|
|◊MiG-23BN · ◊MiG-23MF · ◊MiG-23MLA|
|◊MiG-29 · ◄MiG-29G|
|*Licensed and domesticated with Chinese designations.|
|**Unlicensed, reverse-engineered and domesticated with Chinese designations.|
|See Also||Shenyang · Chengdu|
|Germany jet aircraft|
|Ar 234||Ar 234 B-2 · Ar 234 C-3|
|He 162||He 162 A-1 · He 162 A-2|
|Ho 229||Ho 229 V3|
|Me 163||Me 163 B · Me 163 B-0|
|Me 262 A||Me 262 A-1a · Me 262 A-1a/Jabo · Me 262 A-1a/U1 · Me 262 A-1/U4 · Me 262 A-2a|
|Me 262 C||Me 262 C-1a · Me 262 C-2b|
|Tornado||◄Tornado IDS ASSTA1 · ◄Tornado IDS|
|◄CL-13A Mk 5 · ◄CL-13B Mk.6 · ◄F-86K|
|◄F-4F Early · ◄F-4F|
|◄MiG-21 SPS-K · ◊MiG-21MF · ◊MiG-21bis-SAU · ◊MiG-21 "Lazur-M"|
|◊MiG-23BN · ◊MiG-23MF · ◊MiG-23MLA|
|◊MiG-29 · ◄MiG-29G|
|◊Su-22UM3K · ◊Su-22M4|
|Britain||◄Sea Hawk Mk.100 · ◌Hunter F.58 (Swiss)|
|Italy||◄G.91 R/3 · ◄G.91 R/4|