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Cockpit of BoB Memorial Flight Spitfire MK356

X Trapnel

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I'd appreciate any guidance from the experts on the differences between the cockpit of Memorial Flight Spitfire MK356 as it was originally in 1944 and what it looks like today. I know there have been upgrades in the instrumentation, but I'm interested in the more obvious visual changes. For example, does it still have the armour plate, gunsight, and oxygen bottle, is the seat russet, and what type of harness does it have, etc?

I understand the aircraft recently had its silver painted over with a D-Day colour scheme, but I'd imagine this didn't affect the cockpit layout.

Thanks for any insights on this.

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That first pic isnt of 356 as she is now.

I have a picture from a couple years back of 356's cockpit (somewhere ill try to find it) its your usual MkIX cockpit however it has no gunsight and instead it has a (might be bendix king) mode c transponder and modern radio equiptment.

It should look something like this



Edited by wellsprop
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The pics posted by "CRASHGATE" and "pbfoot" are definitely MK's 'pit.

Been to Coningsby myself and seen inside her.

Ben has it pretty well in his flightsim cockpit shot too.

BTW,she's one of my favorite Spits,there's a real live Merlin 66 under the bonnet too.

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Thanks very much for all the info, which is incredibly helpful to me. A question I have from the photos concerns the seat color. To me it appears it may be painted grey rather than the grey-green of much of the rest of the cockpit. This may be just result of the lighting, but any clarification on the seat color from those of you who've actually been lucky enough to lay eyes on the cockpit would be much appreciated.

One other question I have is whether there's a headrest on this aircraft. I assume not, but haven't been able to find a photo definitively settling this.

Thanks again.

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  • 8 months later...

Can't see the end of the left strap,but that looks like a standard post-war/modern QS seat harness to me.

Airworthy Spits have by law to be fitted with some modern equipment,seat harness,radio/transponder

for example,and if required,nav.equipment too.

IIRC,the BBMF's Spits(and Hurris)are also modified upto modern 24v electrics and also fitted with

modern industry standard pipework for hydraulics and fuel systems.

Wherevever possible though,originality and provinance are retained as much as possible.

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  • 2 months later...

I note Mk has the hand fuel pump fitted. This feature is included in the 1/48 Aires Spitfire IX cockpit set , but not in the 1/32 set which differs. It's also been left out of the Barracuda update sets which surprises me. A bit of scratch building is required to build an accurate MK cockpit.

Edited by Whitewolf
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