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Sean_M

All the Hurricane questions you want to ask here

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Have read elsewhere that the Sea Hurricane Mk Ic was "just" a case of bolting MkIIc wings to a Mk I body, plus adding the arrester hook etc. Is this a fair description or a little simplistic?

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Have read elsewhere that the Sea Hurricane Mk Ic was "just" a case of bolting MkIIc wings to a Mk I body, plus adding the arrester hook etc. Is this a fair description or a little simplistic?

I've read somewhere hat the Sea Hurricane Ic was a one-off?

Trevor

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Have read elsewhere that the Sea Hurricane Mk Ic was "just" a case of bolting MkIIc wings to a Mk I body, plus adding the arrester hook etc. Is this a fair description or a little simplistic?

it's basically correct description , BUT the Sea Hurricane Ic as quoted in many Hurricane books is a myth, apparently originating from Francis K Mason.

A couple were done. Why not used? Too heavy.

http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/72790-hms-avenger-deck-colors/

specifically - http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/72790-hms-avenger-deck-colors/#entry797206

Mason does say this, but he is wrong. Despite his many merits, he isn't particularly good on Sea Hurricanes generally. Ray Sturtivant could not find a single Mk.Ic in the FAA records. Neither is there any evidence of any on Pedestal, as confirmed by an 880 Sq armourer. Cork is not known to have ever mentioned such, but he did complain about the slowness of the Sea Hurricane trying to catch a Ju88. He'd have been even more vocal with an overweight 4 cannon aircraft. The individual aircraft on Pedestal have been identified, and the only one not a standard Mk.Ib was a converted RAF Hurricane Mk.IIb with a Merlin III. It had been left behind with engine trouble on a ferry to Java, and adapted for carrier use. It was unpopular because it was heavier - had they been able to fix the Mk.XX Merlin it might have done a better job of chasing that Ju88.

801 Sq did not serve on Avenger. 802 and 883 had SH Mk.Ib for PQ18 then re-equipped with Mk.IIB in September. After the November sinking 883 was not reformed (later RCN) and 802 was equipped with Seafires.

What has confused matters is that the suffixes on Sea Hurricanes Mk.Is did not reflect the armament. The a suffix was used for aircraft with catapult spools but no arrester hooks, used on the CAM and Fighter Direction ships. The b was for aircraft with both spools and hook, for the fleet carriers. Both variants had eight guns. I have a piece of paper (dated much later, from a BAe document) which states that the c suffix was for aircraft without spools but with arrester hooks, intended for escort carriers. I've seen nothing to suggest that this was ever used although perhaps here is the root of the confusion over the aircraft on Avenger?

the other Mason 'myth' is that the MkIIA series 1 was the same length as the mk I, which is impossible as the merlin XX is longer, and is hard up against the main spar, hence the extra length of the Mk II.

drawings, photos etc here

http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/64364-hurricane-noses-and-the-hasegawa-172-kits/page-2

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The story of a cannon-armed Sea Hurricane on Pedestal predates Mason's books, as it appears in a wartime HMSO booklet called Fleet Air Arm (IIRC).

Mason has different versions of the early Mk.IIs in different publications, and I don't think he ever published anything that pinned it down convincingly. Despite shortcomings, he is still the best historian of the Hurricane but perhaps not the Sea Hurri.

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My own personal theory about the so called cannon armedSea Hurricane flown by Dicky Corke during Pedestal is that he was actually flying a Hurricane Mk.IIb converted to Sea Hurricane status after it was left aboard the carrier when it went u/s during a ferry mission to the Far East! This aircraft was given a hook by the groundcrew by the time the carrier left Aden and put into sqn service and the larger armarment of 12 x 303in Browning`s has most likely been misinterpreted along the way as being `up gunned' or words to that effect (I think that it was referred to as this in Corke`s autobiography?) and somebody has heard this,...put 2 and 2 together to come up with ten and assumed that `up gunned' meant cannon armed?

The aircraft in question was BD771, coded 7-Z,.........although Corke was also listed as flying 7-K on a regular basis too.

A bit flimsy I know but that is my take on things anyway!

Cheers

Tony

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IIRC Arthur Bentley drew a SH Ic - if I read this thread correctly, that one would be open to question, or is it something different ? Given his reputation, I'd tend to think he'd have worked from sources like factory drawings - if it's the version in question he drew .

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IIRC Arthur Bentley drew a SH Ic - if I read this thread correctly, that one would be open to question, or is it something different ? Given his reputation, I'd tend to think he'd have worked from sources like factory drawings - if it's the version in question he drew .

Tempestfan

there certainly were 1 or 2 Sea Hurricane IC's, that is not disputed

this is the famous photo, oft reproduced of V6741

Hawker-Hurricane-MkII-RAF-V6741-01.jpg

but Mason quotes these as being fairly widely used, and it seems they were not, or even made in any quantity, which is the 'Myth' part of my posting.

It seems that the confusion is that the Navy used the term "IC" to describe a Sea Hurricane I with arrestor hook and no catapult spools, I have never seen the Sea Hurricane IB being described as having a 12 gun wing for example

The positive is that as Bentley drew the IC, his drawings have the cannon wing shown, and it if you combine his drawings with the nose drawings of Peter Cooke then you can have a decent drawing of a MkII Hurricane, well, a IIA and IIC at least.

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IIRC Arthur Bentley drew a SH Ic - if I read this thread correctly, that one would be open to question, or is it something different ? Given his reputation, I'd tend to think he'd have worked from sources like factory drawings - if it's the version in question he drew .

Gawd, I would hope not. Hawker factory drawings are the main reason that most Hurricane kits were so inaccurate for so long...

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Gawd, I would hope not. Hawker factory drawings are the main reason that most Hurricane kits were so inaccurate for so long...

just as a reminder, see this post a few pages back

http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234963507-all-the-stupid-hurricane-questions-here/page-2#entry1674970

the General Arrangement drawings are incorrect, Bentley's plans were based on the detailed sub assembly drawings used for actually making Hurricanes. Much more detailed information on this in the link.

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"Factory drawings" does not translate as "GAs" in this instance, IIRC he worked from parts/components drawings - as the various overviews simply wouldn't match up.

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Yes. Well, coming back to the fabled Ic, the existence or otherwise of any factory drawings labelled Hurricane Ic would not say anything about whether or not they actually supplied the RN with zero, one, two or 5,000. Aircraft manufacturers draw lots of things that don't go into series production, and lots of things that don't even get built at all.

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The story of a cannon-armed Sea Hurricane on Pedestal predates Mason's books, as it appears in a wartime HMSO booklet called Fleet Air Arm (IIRC).

Mason has different versions of the early Mk.IIs in different publications, and I don't think he ever published anything that pinned it down convincingly. Despite shortcomings, he is still the best historian of the Hurricane but perhaps not the Sea Hurri.

Graham

Just trying to clarify a couple of errors in Mason's otherwise very helpful histories, and this seems like a good place to note them.

My own personal theory about the so called cannon armedSea Hurricane flown by Dicky Corke during Pedestal is that he was actually flying a Hurricane Mk.IIb converted to Sea Hurricane status after it was left aboard the carrier when it went u/s during a ferry mission to the Far East! This aircraft was given a hook by the groundcrew by the time the carrier left Aden and put into sqn service and the larger armarment of 12 x 303in Browning`s has most likely been misinterpreted along the way as being `up gunned' or words to that effect (I think that it was referred to as this in Corke`s autobiography?) and somebody has heard this,...put 2 and 2 together to come up with ten and assumed that `up gunned' meant cannon armed?

The aircraft in question was BD771, coded 7-Z,.........although Corke was also listed as flying 7-K on a regular basis too.

A bit flimsy I know but that is my take on things anyway!

Cheers

Tony

Tony

see

http://www.rafcommands.com/forum/showthread.php?10464-Number-of-Hurricanes-ferried-to-Ceylon-by-Indomitable

post #4 from Graham

As a sidelight, the Hurricane that returned unserviceable has been recorded as returned to RAF India and destroyed by sparks from the engine whilst undergoing transfer by rail. However, after this ferry 881 Sq operated a Mk.II Hurricane (BD771, 7.Z) that had been re-engined with a Merlin III and converted to Sea Hurricane standards, at least until after Operation Pedestal. The aircraft was unpopular because of the excess weight.

and also from Graham

881 Sq retained BD771, and it was delivered to Yeovilton when the squadron returned to the UK after Pedestal. It was handed over to 759 Sq from 2.43, in whose hands it had a landing accident 26.11.43, and was declared Cat.X - which should mean repairable but no further service is known. The FAAM does have a rather nice sideview photo of her in a temperate surrounding, still carrying 881's codes.

is there a copy of this photo published? Not one I have seen, but would like too.

cheers

T

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I don't think Cork flew BD771 - I don't recall seeing it in his logbook. Discussing it with Owen Dinsdale, he did name one pilot who did fly it, but I don't think he was one of Cork's flight. It may be that BD771 was at the core of the "4 cannon on Pedestal" story but I don't know how to prove it. I used to think it had retained its RAF colour scheme, for it shows a lot of contrast to the older Sea Hurricanes beside it, but there is colour film of Indomitable with a very obvious 7.Z in TSS. There appears to be a number of different stories about Hurricanes brought back from Sumatra (or a distant eastern part of the Indian Ocean) on Indomitable, but I've never identified any handed back to the RAF. BD771 appears to be the best recorded, with at least three photos.

7.K, eh? I can't possibly comment.... but I haven't seen such direct mentions. His logbook has regular mention of Z4642, which unfortunately was not a Sea Hurricane despite its inclusion in Sturtivant's FAA Aircraft - a text apparently entirely based on Pedestal accounts. However, he also flew Z4624, which has an FAA history before and after Pedestal but curiously not on it. According to the kind gentleman in the FAA Museum, Cork was a notorious transposer. Which is a bit of a shame, as it would be interesting to track down the Hurricanes he flew in the Battle of Britain, listed in his logbook with the individual code and the numeric part of the serial, IIRC. A job for another time.

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is there a copy of this photo published? Not one I have seen, but would like too.

I'd like to point your attention to another photo of 7-Z, that was published on page 129 of "Pictorial History of the Fleet Air Arm", by J.D.R. Rawlings. The book dates back to 1973 and the photo credit is IWM.

It is an almost front-view, with the 'Z' individual letter barely visible, but very interesting in that it shows the aircraft having:

- tropical filter

- what appears to be a Rotol propeller

- machine-gun armament (I am unable to say whether 8- or 12-gun)

- Sky rear fuselage band, as carried by all 880 Sqn. (not 881) Sea Hurricanes

- a bomb-rack under the starboard wing only (!?!)

I assume that retaining the Rotol propeller was made possible by the forward shift in CG produced by the longer nose.
Claudio

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Thanks for the info guys, just one more. What was the colour scheme in that picture above? Looks to be a single colour but not sure what shade.

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Thanks for the info guys, just one more. What was the colour scheme in that picture above? Looks to be a single colour but not sure what shade.

No. Should be standard TSS, Temperate Sea Scheme, Extra Dark Sea Grey/Dark Slate Grey over Sky

Cause, the effects of film types and filters, as well as natural light.

like this, camo demarcation just visible, orthochrome film, note how yellow is turned black

shurr-10.jpg

another example

shurr-7.jpg

Interesting pic as lacks 3rd access panel, indication of conversion of early plane, and note the difference in tone between the metal and fabric parts, especiall the 'doghouse' which is plywood covered in fabric.

standard TSS, Temperate Sea Scheme, Extra Dark Sea Grey/Dark Slate Grey over Sky

like this period colour shot. The colours are quite low contrast, another factor in the apparent single uppersurface colour.

6970130755_dc680d2b8d_z.jpg

Note aluminium painted gun bays and the plimsoles. the 'green' is Dark Slate Grey BTW.

notice this is not posted here as well, so for completeness. I think this is the 'B' Scheme, the 'A' scheme became standard in 1940 and is more common, but is a mirror image of this.

Note how precisely laid out the factory pattern is.

Hurricane_camouflage_diagram.jpg

the A and B scheme are clearly seen in this pre war photo

1937-5778-1-H-Hurric-I.jpg

EDIT- Gray corrected to Grey....

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Nice set of pics Troy - as a complete aside I have always wondered why Dark Slate Grey is called Dark Slate Grey when it is anything but. Answers on a postcard :bleh:

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Giorgio: I'll have to dig out that photo to confirm, but (from memory) I don't think it's a bomb rack but a piece of equipment on the deck. BD771 was probably too early for the bomb carriers and fairings as production - the first Hurricane fighter-bomber unit was 607 Sq. with BExxx-serialled aircraft. It will have had the fixed fuel tank and pylon for the ferry, but the pylon would come off with the tank.

Dark Slate Grey is a grey - it's just a greenish grey rather than a bluish one. It is not Gray, however. This is the US spelling of grey. I have seen it argued that grey implies a tinge of another colour whereas gray mean a properly neutral hue, but I think this is obsolete in English and not present at all in US English. Which I think a bit of a shame, really.

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It is not Gray, however. This is the US spelling of grey. I have seen it argued that grey implies a tinge of another colour whereas gray mean a properly neutral hue, but I think this is obsolete in English and not present at all in US English. Which I think a bit of a shame, really.

Errr.... so what you are saying is that while it is most definitely green, albeit subdued it is really a gray. Well as you're English and you chaps invented the language I suppose ........... :mental::bye:

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I'd like to point your attention to another photo of 7-Z, that was published on page 129 of "Pictorial History of the Fleet Air Arm", by J.D.R. Rawlings. The book dates back to 1973 and the photo credit is IWM.

It is an almost front-view, with the 'Z' individual letter barely visible, but very interesting in that it shows the aircraft having:

- tropical filter

- what appears to be a Rotol propeller

- machine-gun armament (I am unable to say whether 8- or 12-gun)

- Sky rear fuselage band, as carried by all 880 Sqn. (not 881) Sea Hurricanes

- a bomb-rack under the starboard wing only (!?!)

I assume that retaining the Rotol propeller was made possible by the forward shift in CG produced by the longer nose.
Claudio

…and it does not have catapult spools besides the radiator. So, from the FAA viewpoint, it is technically a Mk. …-c. And, thinking about it, adding a hook is one thing, fitting the spools must be quite different as far as the aircraft structure goes.

I'm still left with one doubt. Assuming the original Merlin XX worked fine, why take it out and replace it with a Merlin III? Greater power shouldn't be a bad thing if accelerator-assisted take-offs were not possible (because of the lack of spools). Would it be harder to deal with, maintenance-wise?

By the way, discussing the performance shortcomings of Fulmars and Sea Hurricanes after Pedestal the CO of HMS Victorious suggested considering Hurricanes Mk.II for Indomitable, noting that one of them was "already operating in "Indomitable" and has been found satisfactory".

Claudio

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Assuming the original Merlin XX worked fine,

Do you have any basis for making that assumption?

A more reasonable assumption would be that it was unfixably worn out or damaged in some way, and the III was all they had lying around spare.

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BD771 failed to go to Sumatra because of an engine failure. This has not been further defined anywhere I've seen, but if we look at the assumption that it was repairable then three points are raised. Firstly why the story about it being re-engined? Secondly why was it remembered only as being heavier? Thirdly why wasn't it used to chase the Ju88 shadowers? A properly working Mk.II has a significantly better performance than a Mk.I SH, quite definitely at altitude. Further to that, Indomitable's SH were elderly and well-used. BD771 was considerably newer and less-used. With a Merlin XX it would have starred, not been handed down to junior pilots.

The evidence is all in favour of it being re-engined.

Technically, it simply became a one-off hybrid. A Mk.I because of that all-important engine change, but with a long nose, Rotol propeller and an oddball armament (assuming that they kept all twelve guns).

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Do you have any basis for making that assumption?

A more reasonable assumption would be that it was unfixably worn out or damaged in some way, and the III was all they had lying around spare.

Of course… mine was just a what-if.

Again placing a very big if before everything, 'if' BD771 stayed aboard Indomitable through going u/s before flying-off to Java, there may have been various reasons for this. 'If' the engine was gone, I agree the more reasonable assumption is a Merlin III would have been the available spare. On the other hand, 'if' the fault was of a different nature and the engine was sound, I wondered whether removing a Merlin XX and placing a Merlin III in its place would have been necessary. The other thing that sounds odd to me is this single aircraft being called a Hurricane Mark II in an official report.

Just collecting snippets and asking. I've learned a lot from Britmodeller over the years. :)

Thank you Graham for your comment above… Just as I was writing, which emphasizes the line above.

Claudio

Edited by ClaudioN

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