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Peter Lloyd

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About Peter Lloyd

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    Obsessed Member

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    Deloraine, Tasmania or Arras, France. Depends where the sun is.

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  1. Peter Lloyd

    The 'Stuff You Wouldn't Want To Go To War In' GB

    Good points gentlemen, worthy counters and elucidations for my post. I don't to come across as too anti-British specifically, all sides had their problems, but it's hard not to notice that the British were almost unique in the world in their skill at using support aircraft in 1918, but so independent (and survival!) minded was the interwar RAF that they forgot how to support the army on the ground. And post 1945 their procurement was certainly a shambles of shifting requirements, ideas, inconsistencies. The manufacturers were often complacent but this was nothing compared to the inability of the Ministry of Supply and the government itself to issue a clear requirement and see it through. One point I must really reflect on from Giorgio is that the US and British could afford some 'wastage' in a way the Soviets, and post 1943 Germany, could not. And Troy is right about the Zero: no Allied pilot could or should have gone to war without armour or self-sealing fuel tanks.
  2. Peter Lloyd

    The 'Stuff You Wouldn't Want To Go To War In' GB

    I'd like to add to all this without writing a very long post... I'll try! 1: On tank-infantry co-operation. The British were hampered by their brigading system so the infantry and tanks remained psychologically divided, whereas in the Panzer Division there was a greater sense of unity. But still in Normandy infantry battalions that had trained for months with tanks were 'pulled' and replaced with new units (sorry I can't quite remember the example(s), unfamiliar with how to work this way. The desert fighting was full of examples, it drove Auchinlek nuts that his subordinates seemed helpless to even analyse their failures. Tank responsibilities being foisted on cavalry regiments immediately before the war, which didn't help, as they'd spent the entire post 1918 period trying to hold back the Tank Corps and maintain the importantance of the horse. Rommel's famous quote to a prisoner at Gazala about being handed British regiments one at a time shows what I'm talking about, and that co-operation still wasn't nailed down in mid 1944 is truly amazing. 2: On British tank quality. I can forgive Britain's early issues: pacifism (not a bad attribute I reckon) meant there was no real tank engine and all tanks were being designed for economy first and foremost by just one or two designers. In June 1940 they had to maintain production of obsolete designs. BUT, in Britain the industrialists were far too powerful (see earlier comments by Harris on Handley-Page), got paid for units produced, and had no incentives to improve either quality or basic design. The British were far too ready to compromise weapons' effectiveness to meet limiting factors such as railway widths, hangar sizes, runway lengths, and established production techniques (still riveting Cromwell turrets in 1944!). Churchill was far too friendly toward many of these upper class 'establishment' figures, too reluctant to listen to intelligent front-line soldiers (unless they were proposing some zany scheme to go behind enemy lines). Complaints about everything from 303 guns in Lancasters to the 2-pdr being useless were wilfully ignored. 3: Bad tank and planes are better than no tanks or planes. The oft-heard argument that rubbish had to be built because there was no time to interrupt production (you can often almost hear 'case dismissed!' after this argument is used) has some truth, but very often manufacturers lacked foresight and made much more money by churning out junk in massive amounts. In the West, industry leaders were far closer to the politicians than were the poor bloody infantry. In the USSR and Germany, they were imprisoned and threatened with the firing squad. Take a look at the production periods of things from Wellingtons to Valentines... they were being pumped out long after they were utterly obsolete. We very often find not a grim acceptance that this bad material was a necessary compromise, but rather those on high immersed in the delusion that this stuff was as good as anything on the battlefield. This is to say nothing of Hawker Henleys, Blackburn Bothas, Bristol Buckinghams, A-W Albermarles... all were wastefully produced in serious numbers. 4. Reverse engineering. This is a case of the fallacy of hindsight. Any nation considering reverse engineering an enemy weapon will of course want to produce their own and think they can do this in a timely manner. It's only with the failure of a major scheme the situation occurs where, in hindsight, it looks like a good idea. Perhaps the closest major example was the T-34, which was seriously considered for imitation in Germany (they couldn't build the engine though, apparently). The Daimler entrant for the Panther design competition was very T-34-like, and was smaller and cheaper than the successful design. (I note here the Germans went from a standing start in autumn 1941 to have Panthers available in some numbers by mid-late 1943... by which time the British had managed to get a 6pdr in the Crusader!). One thing that really should have been reverse engineered was the Japanese Zero! Dammit, that's a long post.
  3. I'm searching for a Czechmaster Resin Supermarine Scimitar. I did find one only for over 100 euros, I'm hoping to pay something in the vicinity of half that. Y'all let me know if you see one, okay?
  4. Peter Lloyd

    The 'Stuff You Wouldn't Want To Go To War In' GB

    The brilliant David Fletcher called his book on British World War II armour (actually I think it just covered the first half of the the war) The Great Tank Scandal, the 'scandal' being that having invented them and deployed the first armoured, combined-arms force, the British went to war with such terrible tanks and failed to improve them. Of course, in the 1930s parsimony affected many nations, so there were all sorts of 'tankettes' and puny things sent out in 1939.
  5. Hello again gentlemen and any ladies of course. With the Sea Hawk and MiG-15 done, and my Attacker stalled for the moment, it was time to open another box. This is for you, Serge! The parts look tasty... I think some nice detail there, the wing fences were considerably finer than those of the Eduard MiG-15 and inspired me to shave them down for the MiG build. Of course, A-Model kits do not fall together, but I've built a couple of them and they are far from impossible with a bit of extra patience and some sanding sticks. The Yak-25 was an all-weather interceptor, perhaps loosely analogous to the Gloster Meteor in that being a little larger, it lent itself to development for alternative roles in a way the smaller jets did not. It had straight-wing and swept-wing incarnations, and A-Model have boxed most of them. It later became the Yak-28, a heavier, swept-wing beast reminiscent of the de Havilland Vixen. I would have built one of those but I couldn't verify their use in the 1950s.
  6. Peter Lloyd

    Airfix F-86D

    Terrific result. This is a 'childhood kit' for me, built it when I was in 5th class! I remember being annoyed Airfix chose to do this 'non combat' Sabre rather than the hole-in-the-nose one from Commando comics. The 50s was such a time of flux in aircraft development, technically and doctrinally. The Dogship was the epitome of dealing with bombers by a radar-guided, collision-course intercept. Such a method did not allow more than a moment for a firing pass, hence the use of rockets to make a sort of 'cloud of death' at the spot the radar decided the bomber would be. A sort of interim between a stern chase employing cannon, and guided missiles.
  7. Peter Lloyd

    Hobbyboss 1/72 Hawker Sea Hawk

    I've had good luck with the MiG and this Sea Hawk, and with the Attacker stalled because I've misplaced the canopy- those observing the clutter in which I work will not be surprised- I do need another project. But I think I owe it to Serge and the balance of forces in this Group Build to try something else first!
  8. Peter Lloyd

    The 'Stuff You Wouldn't Want To Go To War In' GB

    This is great stuff Giorgio, I love your posts. Gunston does use the F-104G story (and the 139/100,000 was for the worst year of service) to highlight how complicated it can get, and he notes the safety of the F-104 in other circumstances. Another of his books (I don't get a commission!), Plane Talking, discusses the B-26 and the massive training loss rates when new pilots were being encouraged to handle the plane gently. Apparently they changed the training regime so pilots were shown how to get out of control and then recover, rather than merely trying to avoid trouble. And that reminds me of the same thing being applied in the Royal Flying Corps from about 1917! All of which highlights your discussion point: when is it the machine itself, rather than the many other factors that might be applicable, training standards being an obvious one? I would hope for this group build the mods will apply a generous spirit, as at the very least we will not be seeing too many of the 'usual types' in this group build (but aren't Bf109s supposed to have killed over 10,000 pilots or something?). I hope not just the machine itself, but the time and place might be taken into account. An Fw190D sounds like a good plane to be in, unless it's one of the many novice pilots lining up for Operation Bodenplatte. A Hurricane would have been a popular machine in 1940, but to be launched from a CAM ship in the mid-Atlantic... stones like coconuts I reckon.
  9. Peter Lloyd

    "Come Back Dead", the Kamikaze Group Build

    I have a Betty with Okha that calls to me from the shelf quite often. So I'll build that if this gets up. This might be niche, but it seems to be more popular than my SE5a proposal...
  10. Peter Lloyd

    Dassault Aviation Gb @13 on 12th March

    Having actually finished three group build aircraft this year, I'm getting all confident I might follow through on my commitments. So, time to skew the Group Build program in my favour. I am stepping forward for this, gentlemen! I really hope to have my Special Hobby Mirage F1C built before 2020, but if not it will be that. If it is done, I'll seek a Mirage IIIO. Might even do a Bloch 152... would that count? Possibly against the spirit?
  11. Peter Lloyd

    Night and Day GB @20

    Anything that lets me build another Bomber Command aircraft I'm in: I'll build a Wellington or a Lancaster. Or both.
  12. Peter Lloyd

    He-111 STGB 2 to go

    I'm stepping up! I have a Hasegawa Heinkel He111P. I also have the Roden -C, but, I'm not sure I have enough pills to get me through that build.
  13. Peter Lloyd

    The 'Stuff You Wouldn't Want To Go To War In' GB

    Please do add me, Mr Churchill, though I have no idea exactly what I'll build. Harris had an amusingly colourful turn of phrase which, with other attributes, made him a hero to his men. A favourite was in regard to heating of aircraft: "I seriously suggest the time has arrived when disciplinary action should be taken against the individuals at Farnborough... There are plenty of countries where such failures would be expunged by the firing squad on the charge of sabotage". We are all familiar with how poorly armed were Bomber Command's main aircraft, much less well-known are Arthur Harris's constant and strident efforts to have this and other equipment/build quality issues addressed. The Halifax got better after a serious effort to improve simple things like exhaust shrouds, the poor design and fit of which was wiping 10-12 mph off the planes' speed! It's well known the Hercules engined variant was better, but part of the improvement was the more serious quality control that also came in during 1944. An additional tidbit on the F-104G, from Bill Gunston's Supersonic Fighters of the West: "(Loss rates of up to 139 aircraft per 100,000 hours are) unacceptable in peacetime, though it may be encountered when a nation is in the final phases of losing a war. The F-104G, Germany's double key to military strength and reborn industrial capability. became known as the Flying Coffin, the Widow Maker, and other unkind names. An American rival published a brochure picturing the families of all the dead F-104G pilots. Sick jokes arose by the score- for example, the Luftwaffe's definition of an optimist was 'a Starfighter pilot who gives up smoking because he is afraid of dying of lung cancer'. Pilots were found taking sedative drugs, and others were court-martialled for refusing to fly. After his court martial one former F-104 jock sued the defence minister, Kai-Uwe von Hassel, for wrongful dismissal. Von Hassel became personally identified with the Starfighter in a way that Strauss, who was the minister responsible for buying it, had avoided. By 1967 von Hassel had become the object of bitter attack by millions of Germans; in 1970 he lost his own son in a Starfighter crash".
  14. Peter Lloyd

    50s NATO v Warsaw Pact Gallery

    Hobbyboss 1/72 Hawker Sea Hawk. Build thread here.
  15. Peter Lloyd

    Hobbyboss 1/72 Hawker Sea Hawk

    This has sat very close to finished for a week or so, while the MiG has drawn my time. But, got the chance to add the little bits, or which there are rather few. Hobbyboss are vague and possibly inaccurate about the dorsal antennae. The little ones at the back have the mounts moulded into the fuselage, so they're easy enough. HB give some crude 'sticks' for the two VHF antennas, but the paper instructions show the rear one as a small aerodynamic blade. This is the arrangement I ended up with, don't copy me, use real references! I'll have to attend to the bleeding on the canopy at some point. The gear doors are massively thick, modelmakers with standards should cut new ones from plastic card. Hobbyboss supply two drop tanks, ubiquitous on Sea Hawks, and six rockets moulded rather oddly as front and back halves. Given these rockets and their mounts are pretty crude by modern standards, it's hard to see what benefit they were seeking. I would have liked optional pylons to add bombs outboard of the fuel tanks. Lots of specks from my flat clear coat, oh well. Having finished this I am rather interested in doing a Hunter, the evolved expression of Sydney Camm's jet design. The acorn on the tail fin was added to production aircraft to reduce flutter, a common issue for early high subsonic planes. It's kind of cool that my three entries (so far!) in this Group Build all use the Rolls-Royce Nene engine... with the MiG both by far the most advanced plane, and in service considerably earlier than the two Fleet Air Arm jets. Next images will be in the gallery, many thanks to all who looked and to the mighty moderators for their diligent work.