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Chris Thomas

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  1. Chris Thomas

    137 squadron

    There is a photo of SF-K, incorrectly identified in 'Fighter Squadrons' as MN680. Better prints of this photo show it was actually MN660 (confirmed by the ORB), probably red spinner. SF-X was photographed on the same day and can be clearly seen as MN995. Both large tailplane/4-bladers. DN429 and JR261 were both small tailplane/3-bladers but MN421, MN533, MN584, and MN627 were all large tailplane. The latter had a 4-blader, the other 3 could have been 3 or 4-bladers. The large tailplane was introduced on MN307 but only a few of the subsequent Typhoons had 4-bladers
  2. Chris Thomas

    137 squadron

    Lawyer, I am not too sure what is driving your choice here. 137 sqn had Sky spinners up to September 44, then red until early Jan 45 when they were black (plus Sky bands painted out, last of the D-Day stripes removed and Type C1 roundels in all positions). In the last 3 months of 1944 when they had red spinners the spinner backplates and the spinner tips were white. Some aircraft retained the individual codes on the tip of the fin (they had been painted there when full stripes were on in summer 44). Pick your colour period and I can supply code/serials for 3 or 4
  3. Hi Peter I located 15 different serials for 1 Nov 44 in 183's ORB. There were a few more but they were typos. By comparing the individual flights with various pilots logs over the years I have these codes. R8926 F DN248 K EK497 E EK498 N JP682 O JP969 S JR141 M JR263 Z JR390 U MN419 G MN698 W MN868 H MN886 X MN923 P PD500 T The first 9 were all 3-bladers with small tailplanes, MN419 had a large tailplane but could have had a 3 or a 4-blader, the last 5 all had large tailplanes and
  4. There seems little doubt from the account in the squadron ORB that F/O Ackers was shot down by flak. This was at the time the jaws of the Falaise gap were closing and the trapped German forces were both desperate and well-armed with an ever increasing concentration of Flak. It was the day on which most Typhoons, 17 in all, were lost to enemy action - most attributed to flak - and the unknown causes may well also have been flak. There were no German claims for Typhoons that day. R.T.Bickers seems to have compiled his Typhoon listings directly from the Air-Britain serial registers
  5. Sorry Pat but Flg Off Ackers was indeed shot down in MN595 HF-D as confirmed in MoD casualty records. JR128, although it had (famously) been HF-L, was lost on the same day, 18 August 1944, but by that time was flying with 181 sqn (code EL-). Whatever, it will be a terrific model.
  6. Troy, many thanks for posting this. I was really pleased to see this photo emerge as I have been looking for a long time for a shot of one of the Hurricanes my father flew at 16 OTU. This unit was a Wellington OTU and operated Martinets and Hurricane IIc aircraft as a fighter affiliation flight at Barford St John. He flew the Hurricanes between April and September 1944 and they included PG478 S. The OTU was disbanded and reborn as a Mosquito OTU on 1 Jan 45 and this may have been when PG478 was transferred to 1690 BDTF. Put me down in the 'black under-sides' camp. I can't see
  7. Hi Erwin 1) Yes the cuckoo door filters came off in the winter of 44/45 and, purely on photo-evidence, I would say the majority had the concentric rings replaced. 2) In spring 1944 the 2nd TAF's 18 Typhoon squadrons specialised in RP or bombs for reasons outlined above by Graham. Most kept that specialisation until they disbanded after the war but a few (183 and 266) had periods with one or the other. 247 used RP throughout that period. I look forward to seeing the completed model (Excreta Thermo, as 'Stapme' called it). Chris
  8. That may be good for the car-door variants but the production sliding-hood Typhoons had the area under the canopy, when closed, painted Night (black). I have some photos of the 56 Sqn formation Tokyo Raider mentions but I do not find them so convincing; they were shot in April 1943. It was a press day and many photos taken on the ground also exist. One such is US-H photographed from the rear and above - shot from the top of a blast pen. Under the rear canopy looks ocean grey to me. However, I should say this seem to be a period when operational units were painting the co
  9. I agree with Dennis, although I would say the evidence is not completely conclusive. I've never found any documentation on the change in wheel type on Typhoons but, judging by photographic evidence, the changeover on the production line was between DN411 and DN421, i.e. Typhoons deliver mid December 1942. Typically, the pre-DN421 Typhoons would remain in service until late summer 1943. Which Typhoon decals have you chosen to use? Chris
  10. Hi Irwin As you suspected, there are not definitive answers to all your questions. 1) Certainly black above the the tubular structure (which was anodised silver) but below that I think it was cockpit grey/green. No documentation to prove this but my conclusions come from photos and artefacts. NB. the area behind the head armour was black. All this black was to reduce reflections on the canopy and dates from spring 1943 when Typhoons were sometimes used on night operations.. 2) As above posts - Aluminium (painted) 3) Correct as above. 4) T
  11. I believe the Airfix kit has a correctly positioned 1000 lb bomb carrier. This position was not used for LRTs - they employed the same location as the earlier bomb carriers ie. almost under the inner cannon. It was not possible to carry bomb and LRT on the same wing simultaneously, but the 1000 lb bomb carrier could be (and was) left in place when LRT were carried on Typhoons so-equipped.
  12. If you can get in Smith's have a look at the current Flypast. Oh dear ... I think it is in a plastic bag.
  13. The caption in 'Spitfire XVI The Dominions' reflects what I wrote in 2ndTAF Vol 3 when I used the same photo. I knew the photo was captioned as postwar in the IWM collection but had my doubts; the IWM photo is a copy of an RCAF photo. I went back to RCAF records and established an approximate date for the photo as late March or early April 1945 - which indicated the base was B.90. CT
  14. Just to expand on the matter of roundels on postwar BAFO Tempests. Initially of course their Tempests were ex-2ndTAF machines so they had 'Type C1' roundels in all positions ie with yellow outer rings and inner white rings. In the last quarter of 1945 new Tempests replaced some of the war-weary specimens and these were delivered in Fighter Command style markings, ie. no yellow rings on upper or lower wing roundels and still wearing the rear fuselage Sky band. These markings were retained in BAFO service. Serials were in the SN300 range. Underwing serial sizes, which on the Mk.V
  15. The Typhoon/Tempest booklet you have been reading contains a lot of useful information but it is badly organised, with some unfortunate typos and some relevant facts are missing. So no wonder you found it difficult to read. 29 September 1942 The yellow stripe was applied in response to several 'blue on blue' incidents; above and below the wing. 2 November 1942 White noses and black stripes under the wings were added - yellow stripes remained over the wings. late November early December 1942 White noses removed and white stripes added between the bla
  16. Which is what you would expect as the photo was taken on 11 February 1943. US-T DN277 overshot its landing run at Matlask.
  17. I suspected that might be the case. The position was changed to take advantage of a better load-bearing position in the wing structure.
  18. I know that 4-blader Typhoons were preferred as 1000 lb bomb carriers (due better take-off performance) but as far as I know there was bo restriction on 3-bladders.
  19. I'm sure you know a lot more about bomb carriers than I do Selwyn, but the fairing and the position on the wing both differed for the 1000 lb carrier that was fitted to Typhoons from April 44, as opposed to the 500 lb carrier on earlier Typhoons. Perhaps the actual carrier mechanism was the same? I'll try to find some photos to post.
  20. Thanks for the heads-up Troy. Brilliant find and great detective work by all. The only 438 Hurricane shot I had seen was of a group of their pilots doing their best to obscure the markings (quite successfully). Sending this to Troy for posting. The only thing I can add is that the 3 RCAF squadrons (438, 439 and 440) which became the 143 Wing - always equipped as Typhoon bombers - were originally planned to be RP Typhoon units. Hence their initial equipment with Hurricane IV RP. This did not change until the end of January 1944 when their first Typhoons arrived. RP Typhoons wer
  21. Excellent! Many thanks for doing the legwork. CT
  22. I was actually at Specsavers this morning, ordering some new glasses! Good spot Dave.l can't think why the codes should have been overpainted ... so maybe they were red. But why? Answers in large print please.
  23. Great find Gomtuu, very helpful indeed. I looked at all the Tempest photos (including the one just before the Spit Pilots Notes - captioned as a Spit 16) An there was no trace of codes either side of the roundels - where I would have expected to see some indication at least. So codes on the nose only - apparent from 'M' there is another, 'U', visible in the Tempest line-up. I have only ever found one report (from an immediate post war 'spotter) of a KZ code (JN764 KZ-R, widely reported in other reference books), so I am wondering how certain that code is. Th
  24. Aah. Good thought Graham. They could well be Typhoon style identity stripes which were carried by Tempests from entry into service through to 20 April 44 when they were ordered to be removed. It is unlikely they would have survived on any of the Tempests until February 1945 (the date of the 287 Sqn Tempest crash) which suggests to me that the photo has been misidentified and actually does depict JN759 which was 'Cat B' due battle damage on 10 May 44. The stripes should have been removed by then but ....? It was SA-R of 486 Sqn at the time and went to Odiham two days later, presumably for r
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