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bootneck

RAF Trainers - Vol 1: 1918-1945

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RAF Trainers - Vol 1: 1918-1945
Book by AIRfile

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The Author

Neil Robinson, AIRfile's editor, is no stranger to the modelling publications world; formerly being editor of esteemed entities such as IPMS (UK); Scale Aircraft Modelling and Model Aircraft Monthly. Neil is also well know for his editing and commissioning of the "Camouflage & Markings" and "Combat Colours" ranges of books.
 

The Book

This book is the first of a two volume series covering the aircraft types and their markings which were used by the RAF for training new pilots and also for conversion and continuation training on other aircraft. This first volume encompasses the period from the end of World War One up until the end of World War Two (1918 to 1945) and, as such, shows the development of British training aircraft requirements; from the formative years of the Royal Air Force up to the period of probably their greatest need - the demands for qualified pilots during WW2.

The book produced in A4 softback format with 74 pages and is profusely illustrated with no less than 148 views of aircraft in full colour, some just side profiles whilst others are of a 4-view full page layout. Each aircraft illustrated has a simple heading which provides details for the aircraft, type, unit and location plus the period that the colour scheme refers to. There is also a historical narrative about the relevant aircraft type and its requirements and roles as a trainer aircraft

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What is immediately apparent is that not all trainer aircraft were yellow! Aircraft of the inter-wars period appeared to have quite garish schemes; however operational requirements, especially those for conversion units and continuation training would have differing emphases on their colour demarkations; especially during the wartime period.

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A caveat in the book is that some of the source images are from black and white photographs, with all the associated problems that come with trying to interpret colours from them. In order to provide the best information for the reader, the team has cross-referenced these details with other well-recognised publications, such as Windsock Datafiles (Albatros); RAF Flying Training & Support Units since 1912 (Air Britain); The History of Britain's Military Training Aircraft (Haynes) to name just a few

 

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There are many interesting subjects illustrated within this book and one nice example is the captured Heinkel III which was not only used as an evaluation aircraft but also for training aircrew and anti-aircraft crews in aircraft recognition.
I'm sure that this scheme will find itself on someone's planned build soon!

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Conclusion

AIRfile continue to produce informative and colourful publications for the modeller and this, their fifth production, looks to be just as good as their previous editions.
The full colour images have been produced with expertise from those excellent illustrators: Peter Freeman and Tim Walsh. The illustrations should be of great help and importance for the modeller who may be looking to enhance their builds; plus the narrative which is supplied with each illustration helps to understand the historical reasoning behind the aircraft and its markings at that period of time.

This book is literally packed with illustrations of trainer aircraft, in various colour schemes and markings and I am sure it will become an essential reference for aircraft modellers of all scales. Highly recommended.
 

Review sample courtesy of spacer.png

 

 

 

 

 

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Thanks for the review.

I was just wondering about getting this volume.

Good thing to add some sample pages to a book review, but would it be possible to have them in a bigger resolution?

I don't think the editor would be upset.

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Thanks for the review.

I was just wondering about getting this volume.

Good thing to add some sample pages to a book review, but would it be possible to have them in a bigger resolution?

I don't think the editor would be upset.

Hi Antoine,

the resolution is deliberately set low as the aim is to show viewers the layout of the book and its illustrations.

If reviewers were to post at a higher resolution it is possible that some would download the images for their own use and then not bother buying the book.

I hope you can understand our reasoning. I can recommend this book as it really does show a large range of different aircraft types and colours for the modeller.

Best Wishes

Mike

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I fully understand why it's done this way.

I just can't see the point, as I think the book contain a little bit more than four pages?

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I fully understand why it's done this way.

I just can't see the point, as I think the book contain a little bit more than four pages?

Hi Antoine,

I am presuming that you are asking these questions in order that you can check the quality of the illustrations and the text?

I have scanned a section of another page in full resolution for you to see this.

HTH

Mike

Page 29

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Page 50

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Hello , Mike.

Thanks, it fits the bill.

Frankly, I don't think that a close-up pics of an entire page or two, say in 800*600, will do any damage to the publisher's benefit on any of its books.

There's also the solution to put pics with BM logo in the background, as it's been done there already.

But I stop bothering you here.

Again, thanks for the review.

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Antoine has a very good point here. I recently brought a book from a well known publishing house to discover it was being printed on demand. Fuzzy drawings, text that had a shadow and muddy drawings.

Sowing a layout as you have and a higher resolution section to show print quality is a pretty good idea, if it's not upsetting the publisher I suppose.

Already ordered two other titles these will be very soon!

Thanks for the good review Mike, tells me exactly what I want to know. That He111 is sorely tempting.......

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I had some additional information for the publisher (August 2012)

Hi,
I recently purchased RAF Trainers Volume 1 (ISBN 978-0-9569802-4-3) and note the lack of information on Tiger Moth N-6983 (page 44). There is a photograph of this a/c with the same markings in AVIATION IN NORTHAMPTONSHIRE An Illustrated History with the caption:
This photograph was taken at Sywell early in 1940, and shows Tiger Moth N6983, which served with No. 6 EFTS for six years from 12 September 1939 to 12 September 1945. The pupil pilot is C. J. Saward…
And goes on to detail his flying record.
On the opposite page is He111 AW177, this moved to Collyweston in Northamptonshire on 12 April 1943 and crashed at Polebrook (also Northamptonshire) on 10 November 1943.
I hope you find this information useful.
Regards

I don't know whether this will be included in any re-print though.

Dear Richard,
Many thanks for you e-mail and information regarding Tiger Moth N6983, and the captured He 111 AW177.

It's always the case that 'additional information' comes to our attention AFTER we have printed the books.... such is life, eh!?!

I will pass your e-mail on to the author/illustrator, Peter Freeman, for his information, and if we ever use these illustrations again, in any other publications in the future, we can add the information you have very kindly supplied. Thank you.

In any event, we trust you enjoyed the rest of the book...
... as much as we enjoyed putting it together.

all the best,
Neil

Neil Robinson
AIRfile Publications

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