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About AndyL

  • Birthday 01/30/1968

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  1. Apparently my inbox was full, so I had to delete a few old ones. Feel free to drop me a line now, if you so wish.
  2. The darker Prestige Suit was very popular with the pilots of 264 Squadron. They can be seen in the image taken at RAF Debden which is part of the life magazine set. The other image is my late friend Bertie Wootten who wore his Prestige into 1942.
  3. Hope this may help a bit...
  4. AML do resin 'Bluenote' exhausts in their set AMLA 48050, available from Hannants for £6.40.
  5. Just thought I'd add these for reference. Had a rummage through my 604 Squadron material and hooked these out.
  6. I thought you might like to see this for reference, in particular the variations on the finish. The rear fuselage has been repainted, as you can see where they have painted round the serial number and the stencil on the rudder. I'm pretty sure that this is one of the Defiants that were on strength with the Fighter Interception Unit at Ford, where they were used to develop Mk VI radar.
  7. @HAAFPhot I've had a rummage in my spare decals box and I have PR-Q R6690 from the old Aeromaster sheet if you want it.
  8. I can suggest two 234 Squadron Spitfires - X4036 AZ-D and N3327 AZ-H Also attached are images of 609 Squadron Spitfires flown by David Crook. PR-L is R6699 and PR-G is R6961. Hope this helps.
  9. @Fritag - in answer to your question ref the winch operator, IIRC the bulkhead was insulated to reduce the heat in the compartment. I've had a rummage and found a few images that may be of use.
  10. Hi Peter, Sadly I had a hard drive failure on my laptop last year and lost 98% of the data. The other 2% was unreadable, so a total write off. Luckily I had material backed up on an external hard drive, and some rough draft chapters, so it's been a rebuilding project, so I'm nearly at the point at where I was when the HD self destructed. On the plus side I have had material come through which would have missed the final cut. Also, I have had the input from 73 families of Defiant aircrew, which has been a great help. And now I have plenty of time to get the job done as I lost my job last week, so until I find somebody stupid enough to employ me, I'll be writing. Regards Andy
  11. Boulton Paul gave their first recommendations for armoured protection on 9th December 1938, which included an armoured windscreen, ( to be made by Triplex ), a 10 s.w.g decking over the oil tank that extended to the base of the windscreen, and head armour for the pilot. All up weight of 48 1/2 lbs. The air gunner was given a face plate weighing 6 lbs. Ten days later there was a 'ad-hoc' meeting of the armour committee at Boulton Paul, which decided to drop the armoured windscreen due to the way the Defiant would engage enemy bombers - it would not be involved in DFS/NA ( direct frontal shooting/near astern ). The decking over the oil tank was also dropped, however it was agreed that 4 mm non magnetic armour plate would be fitted behind the pilot, covering the entire bulkhead down to the decking. Size was about 3 1/2 square foot. BP began re-designing a strengthened bulkhead and made up a mild steel template. Head armour was also included, with it also being 4 mm thick. This was to be incorporated into the first 87 airframes. The first turret face plate was tested on a turret in January, firing into the stop butts at Orfordness, and experienced no adverse effect on the turret. Armour thickness was 9 mm. It eventually became fitted to the sighting bar by rubber mounts. HTH Andy
  12. That's looking superb - makes me want to dig out the Defiant kit I donated the turret parts from and cobble together the Defiant two seat trainer. This was first proposed in 1940 to cut the wastage of Hurricanes and Spitfires at the Operational Training Unit level, but it was dropped as being 'too complex' to undertake. They tried again in 1942, with the same outcome. When the first TT Defiant was converted, they were concerns for the drogue operator as in the prototype it was deemed way too hot for them ( seating was close to the radiator ) and the possibility of the operator falling through the open floor!
  13. Lovely work so far. I'm keenly watching! As to previous comments, the Defiant did a lot more useful stuff than it's been credited, as it's always been seen as a failure during the Battle of Britain. But when moved night operations it found it's calling, becoming the top scoring night fighter during the Blitz. Some of the encounters are pretty hair raising, with engagements opened as little as 30 yards from their targets. Those pilots stalked their targets and got in close. The Defiant had it's 'killing time' in May 1941, especially during the raids on Liverpool and Manchester. But in 1942 after it was withdrawn from the front line, it saw it deployed in a different role - that of radar counter measures on Moonshine and Mandrel sorties. It started as the Special Duties Defiant Flight and eventually became 515 Squadron. What I like in this story is that Fighter Command began looking for the experienced Defiant aircrews, pulling in those ex Battle of Britain aircrew, and experienced air gunners, with some being pulled out of Bomber Command ( a lot of ex Defiant air gunners were in BC by this time ), and many of those air gunners were Gunnery Leaders having completed their GL Course at the Air Gunnery School. First CO was Sam Thomas who had been on 264 Squadron at the start of hostilities; notably he had evaded escape when he was shot down over the Dutch Biesboch on 13th May 1940. And to elaborate - Moonshine 'spoofed' German radars into thinking that a large formation was on it's way, and more or less made the Luftwaffe scramble fighters to engage aircraft which didn't exist. Apologies for the thread drift everyone!
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