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About Selwyn

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  • Birthday 20/09/61

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    Sunny Manchester!

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  1. There was no 9A sidewinder as such, the first in service variant was the 9B. These are seen in the picture. Colour wise red or black suggests some sort of trials round. it might even be a publicity shot of some kind. with the missiles painted to stand out. Operational 9B was white. Selwyn
  2. Just a silly point, but the green colour of the Harrier camoflage and the green colour of the vehicles was in real life the same! Nice harrier by the way! Selwyn
  3. IIRC That panel was a known weak spot for cracks and was an area that because of this was checked on turn rounds and A/F's. The distinctive shaped patch was mandated in the official repair scheme. The last production batch GR3's I believe had a stronger structure in this area so the patch may not have been seen on that batch. Selwyn
  4. Most probably a staged picture using some spare bod dressed as a pilot, the mask makes him anonymous. Other givaways are that aircrew, especially ones wearing parachutes, certainly wouldn't be involved loading stores, and you notice he's wearing shoes not flying boots as well. the store looks to be "positioned" on something hidden by the man, its not apparently attached to any of the aircraft's carriers! Selwyn
  5. The carrier on under the nose of the captured aircraft is called a 20lb bomb carrier, complete with 4 16lb H.E.R.L. Bombs, not coopers. These are tail fuzed/armed hence no arming vane at the front. Selwyn
  6. Just coat the bottom of the winglet in carpet, they instantly attach! Selwyn (who knows from experience!)
  7. Wouldn't surprise me at all. I believe the type A EMRU actually dates from around the end of WW1 to early 1920s period. I have seen pictures of these Light series carriers fitted to Postwar Bristol fighters. so they have been used in front line service by the RAF/ FAA for near enough the best part of 100 years. So what was that complaint about taxpayers not getting value for money when they buy kit for the forces? Selwyn
  8. ASRAAM is a British manufactured weapon and has a drill version with dark blue bands. Selwyn
  9. For those who would wish to know, on the top picture the winglet has a light series bomb carrier fitted mounted with four Type A Electro Magnetic Release Units (EMRU) Believe it or not The last RAF aircraft type to my knowledge to be equipped with this very same equipment was Nimrod! (and that includes the cancelled MRA4 by the way). Selwyn
  10. To quote from Sqn Ldr Greaves statement when arriving at 54 OTU that restarted this thread: "They have been modified for night fighting by removing the hydraulic gun turret and fitting a seat and small radar set in the back. The aircraft is painted black" Selwyn
  11. OH! and the Red lines on the sidewinders should be brown, and Sidewinders always have yellow caps on their noses when on the ground...............................! Selwyn (Ducking for cover yet again and giggling!) Seriously? A nice Build!
  12. My typo, meant BQ-G! Selwyn
  13. A note of warning, Please do not make the mistake of believing if you have two pictures of blenheims marked ZK-X they are the same aircraft. the only way to identify a RAF airframe positively is by its airframe serial number. in this case Its obvious that the ZK-X pictures were taken at the same time and place (see the chap sat in the foreground). Nobody has stated BQ-G is turretless. It is an assumption not a fact. YX-N was an 54 OTU Training airframe not an operational aircraft, so removing the turret for performance reasons was probably not urgently required, and any conversion kits to blank the turret hole would have gone to operational squadrons first as a matter of necessity. We do have documentary evidence that 54 OTU definitely had turretless Blenheims in january 1941. We do not know when the YX-N picture was taken, only that is after November 1940 when the instruction to paint the aircraft black was given. The closest to confirmation we can come to identification of a turretless Blenheim nightfighter is the aircraft in the crash,L1467. This aircraft was listed in the squadron Operations book as becaming lost whilst at night. flying on AI interception practice, We know know the crewman was a AI operator, both confirming that it was radar equipped. It was identified as Probably being coded BQ-W and we have an indistinct image of a turretless BQ-W taken around that time. And that I am afraid is the closest you will get, unless you find any more evidence! Selwyn
  14. Further to my post above,some more information I have discovered. According to "Gentlemen in blue" the gunner in BQ-O listed above, CPL John Holmes survived the crash and made his way back to the UK in the same ship that brought the Dutch royal family to the UK.(P/O's Haine and Kramer also got back). On returning to 600Sqn He was subsequently awarded the DFM and was commissioned Flying Officer, and retrained as a AI operator remaining with the squadron. On 20th December 1940 he was flying on AI interception practice with pilot Sgt Thomas Wilson. The aircraft got into difficulties when returning to Catterick, and crashed on Skelton Moor, Hurst, Richmond N Yorks killing both crew. The crashed aircraft was identified as Blenheim L1467 At the time of the accident its is believed to have been coded "BQ-W". 600Sqn were re-equipping with Beaufighters in late 1940, so it seems that the black turretless Blenheim BQ-W identified as being in the background in Ed Russel's picture was probably L1467. Blenheim Crash Selwyn
  15. Got to my references tonight. Some confirmation that Isaccs was a gunner, and indicates that BQ-W was turreted at the time of its loss: No. 600 Squadron was ordered to conduct an attack on Rotterdam airport, which was in enemy hands after being captured earlier that day by German parachute troops; six Blenheim’s taking off at 12.00 hours. A strafing attack was conducted on Luftwaffe Junkers Ju. 52 transport aircraft on the aerodrome, immediately following which, the Blenheim’s were in turn attacked by Me. 110 long-range twin-engine fighters from 3/ ZG. 1. The No. 600 Squadron Narrative of the attack on Rotterdam aerodrome and subsequent patrols is reproduced below verbatim: “At 1200 hours the COMMANDING OFFICER with FLYING OFFICERS MOORE, ROWE AND HAYES, and PILOT OFFICERS ANDERSON AND HAINE were sent off to attack ROTTERDAM aerodrome which had been taken by GERMAN parachute troops and to destroy any aircraft in the air or on the ground. Arriving there they dived over the aerodrome attacked and destroying a JU 82 (should read Ju. 52) on the ground and climbing,were immediately attacked by 12 ME 110 which had apparently been patrolling above. There was a fierce fight the exact effects of which on the MEs cannot be stated as it is not certain how much the rear gunners were able to fire. FLYING OFFICER HAYES was very ably directed by CORPORAL HOLMES as to how and when to turn and succeeded in shaking off his pursuers. The machine was severely damaged in the starboard wing and the petrol tank was pierced. He made for home but almost immediately encountered 3 HE 111s which he immediately attacked with his remaining ammunition and succeeded in breaking up the formation before bringing his aircraft back safely. Neither the pilot nor the air gunner were wounded. The remaining five machines were reported missing. The crews of the missing were SQUADRON LEADER WELLS, CORPORAL KIDD (gunner), SERGEANT DAVIS (observer) PILOT OFFICER HAINE, PILOT OFFICER KRAMER (gunner), FLYING OFFICER ROWE, PILOT OFFICER ECHLIN (gunner), PILOT OFFICER ANDERSON, L.A.C. HAWKINS (Gunner), PILOT OFFICER MOORE CPL. ISAACS (gunner).” Source Harkins, Hugh. Blenheim MK.IF Combat Log: Fighter Command Day Fighter Sweeps/Night Interceptions September 1939 - June 1940 Further to that "Gentlemen in blue" Lists the aircraft lost on 10th May 1940 at Walcheren and confirms BQ-W was L1335 a different aircraft,as blenheim night fighters were only painted black after November 1940. The caption on the turretless picture is obviously wrong. Pilot Air Gunner Navigator Aircraft S/L Jimmy Wells Cpl Basil Kidd Sgt John Davis L6616 BQ-R P/O Norman Hayes CPL John Holmes - L1517 BQ-O P/O Dick Haine P/O Mike Kramer - L1514 BQ-N Second Section F/L Hugh Rowe P/O Bob Echlin (RCAF) - L1401 BQ-K F/O Roger Moore Cpl Laurie Isaacs - L1335 BQ-W P/O Mike Anderson LAC Bert Hawkins - L1515 BQ-L