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About klunker

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  1. klunker

    Early SOE Whitleys

    Rossm - Thanks for the interesting information and for taking the time to look into it. Much appreciated. I have cross referenced with Freddie Clark "Agents by Moonlight" and Nick Livingstone's "Before Tempsford". P5025 was written off almost immediately on arrival in a non operational landing crash. P5029 into Flight 419 service later damaged on landing and stranded for a considerable time at Sumburgh. Z6473 was delivered Feb. 10 1940 equipped for a long distance operation to Poland. Following that operation T4264 is lost the next night over Belgium leaving the Flight with one serviceable aircraft. Since the Flight no longer has any aircraft suitable for a string of parachute jumpers, T4166 and T4165 are brought in as replacements from 78 Squadron since they were already equipped during COLOSSUS for that purpose. It seems pretty clear to me at this point that code letters were not being used. I would assume that T4166 and T4165 would therefore have had their code letters painted out. Didn't 78 Squadron have their aircraft painted all black in 1940? mhaselden - thank you for the excellent link and the photo which, in conjunction with Rossm's data on Z4673, confirms the paint scheme for that aircraft. Other data I have acquired is that the rear door was modified to open inward (and possibly backwards?) because the extra fuel tanks that were installed in the fuselage negated the use of a "jump hole". It is not clear if this aircraft had a jump hole at all or if an existing one was covered by the internally mounted fuselage fuel tanks. Any data on that would be greatly appreciated. Again my thanks to you both.
  2. klunker

    Early SOE Whitleys

    Love the early SOE Flight 419 Whitleys. Any info or discussion on paint schemes and code lettering for P5029, Z6473, T4264, or T4165 and T4166 (both from Operation Colossus) would be greatly appreciated. Given the diversity in Whitley paint schemes, information as to how these aircraft were painted on arrival at Flight 419 is hard to find. The only concrete info I have is that early Flight 419 Whitleys had no code letters. That would pre suppose that previous squadron letters were painted out. I'm also assuming they would come with the existing paint schemes from their prior squadrons. So I am trying to backtrack by figuring out which squadrons they came from and then trying to source model diagrams and paint schemes for those prior squadrons. For example 4165 and 4166 came from 78 Squadron so perhaps they kept the 78 Squadron paint schemes and had the letters painted out? My assumptions may be incorrect so feel free to point out any flaws in my thinking.
  3. klunker

    Wheels Up or Down - What's your opinion?

    MikeMaben - really nice work with the stands. Also love that P-51.
  4. klunker

    Wheels Up or Down - What's your opinion?

    Thank you. Yes he was. Bomb aimer, 45 trips, DFM, Berlin 8 times, returned once on 3 engines and u/s rear turret. Lost outer port over Berlin. Forever and always my hero.
  5. klunker

    Wheels Up or Down - What's your opinion?

    UP. Unless of course there is fixed undercarriage. I have an original 1/48 Tamiya Lancaster built in the late seventies. Dad wanted wheels up since that's how he spent most of his time in the real one. As a kid I built wheels down but definitely prefer wheels up on a stand.
  6. klunker

    Put a face to your name...

    New member, i've been a member before but all my info is lost in the sands of time.... Live in the US, love model aircraft and model trains. This is a great forum and I wanted to be a member. Love the British connection since I was born on the old sod. Dad served in Lancasters; 12 Sqdn, 166 Sqdn, 7 Sqdn and then on to India where the record gets thin, perhaps 355 or 159 Sqdns. Mum served in the ATS and was one of the first REME trained women electricians and was tasked with rewiring Sherman tanks for re- use. My grandfather on my mum's side was a Merchant Navy Captain and was torpedoed and lost in Oct of 1942. Areas of interest include Bomber Command and SOE operations (particularly mid 1940 to mid 1942). Favorite World War 2 aircraft include The Lanc (of course), Whitley, Lysander, Hurricane, P-40 B/C (Flying Tigers), Halifax, SBD Dauntless, and F4F Wildcat. I'm always open to discussion with regard to WW2 history in general and aircraft in particular.
  7. klunker

    Airfix Armstrong-Whitworth Whitley Mk. V

    General Melchett, Just a quick note to let you know that I have clarified my initial post on S/Ldr Keast's flights. He flew to Poland in Whitley Z6473 (equipped with fuselage fuel tanks and a modified, inward opening entry door for the agents to free jump from). He was shot down the next night in Whitley T4264 (equipped with jump hole for multiple jumpers). Info on either one would be greatly appreciated. Respectfully yours and in AWE of your modeling skills. Klunker
  8. klunker

    Airfix Armstrong-Whitworth Whitley Mk. V

    General Melchett, Thank you sir for looking into my query. I'm fascinated by the early SOE's begged, borrowed and not quite stolen collection of Whitley's. Truly a secret service on a shoestring. It's nice to see Livingstone's 'Before Tempsford' finally give those men and this particular aircraft some recognition. Eleven plus hours to Poland and back in a Whitley beggars the imagination. This could be fertile ground for Airfix to release another version of the Whitley. All the best and thanks, Klunker
  9. klunker

    Airfix Armstrong-Whitworth Whitley Mk. V

    Great job on this kit. I can only hope to come close with mine. I am working on an early SOE version of this aircraft. Whitley T4264 which was one of the first operational losses from Flight 419 in Feb. 1941 when it was based at Stradishall. I am interested if anyone can help out with visual data on this aircraft. It was the only paratrooper configured, Flight 419 Whitley, complete with "jump" hole, and it's loss was keenly felt. Interesting details include a picture from Freddie Clark's AGENTS by Moonlight (pg 9 - the caption has a typo listing the flight as 416) and numerous references from Nicolas Livingstone's awesome work in progress "Before Tempsford" which chronicles the 1940 - 1942 history of Flight 419 (later renumbered to 1419) at Stradishall and Newmarket Heath. Flight 419 was the genesis of the Tempsford based 138 and 161 Squadrons and as followers of SOE know they took the lion's share of the limelight in recent years. But it was the incredible dedication of these early SOE pilots and crews fighting shortages, bureaucratic prejudice and a generally unhelpful attitude who laid the groundwork for the future. Also on an interesting note, the pilot of this aircraft S/Ldr FJB Keast was shot down on this mission, his third in as many nights. He had just returned from flying Whitley Z6473 (retro fitted with long range tanks) on an eleven hour 20 minute op to Poland to successfully drop 3 Polish agents in the border area between Poland and Germany. The next night he flew to Belgium in T4264 to drop an agent (which he did successfully) and was then shot down. He crash landed the plane in a field in Belgium and he and and his crew survived and were POW for the duration. Another interesting note is the lack of squadron or aircraft letter identifiers on these early aircraft. Serial number and no more. So there, I've sort of thrown it all out there. Anything members can assist with be it photos, drawings, descriptions or just general discussion I would sincerely appreciate.