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Bendeavour

SAS Dakotas in Malaya and Borneo.

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Hello!

I'm hoping this is the correct place for this post because there isn't a section that I thought worked better but never mind.

I am building Airfix's C-47 as a present for my great uncle who jumped out of them during his time serving in the SAS in Malaya and Borneo but I need some help!

I have no idea as to what paint scheme the dakotas were in when operated by the SAS during the conflicts in Malaya and Borneo, would anybody on here happen to know?

I've done lots of searching in books and on the internet but to no avail.

Thank you very much,

Ben.

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They weren't operated by the SAS but the RAF, and would be standard RAF Transport Command aircraft. They'd be in silver underneath with white tops and blue(or black?) cheatline. It's possible they might have added Night undersides but the threat level wouldn't seem to justify it. Because of the secrecy attached to the SAS, these operations are unlikely to have been mentioned in the standard histories. You'd need to find which transport squadrons operated in the Far East in which specific years you were interested in. Unit codes stopped being used by about 1955. There have been a number of books dealing (collectively) with RAF squadron histories but I don't think any of them are currently in print. For a website try www.rafweb.org.

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If you do a Google Images search,..or follow this link for one that I did earlier;

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=RAF+DAKOTA+MALAYA&espv=2&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=Hje3U7yBM8zo7AaypYGgBQ&ved=0CB8QsAQ&biw=1764&bih=845&dpr=0.75

There are quite a few nice piccies of RAF Daks in Malaya. Most of these were used for sky shouting with large tannoys below the fuselage and operators stations inside the fuselage but it is possible that they were used for jumping too. The RAAF also had Daks in Malaya and it is possible that these were used for dropping troops as they were regularly used for supply dropping.

Hope this helps, cheers,

Tony

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Thank you very much, I'd seen the RAF Transport command dakotas but I was unsure if that was what they used.

If I were to replicate the paint scheme, would I be correct in using Humbrol 56 Aluminium for the bottom, Humbrol 34 white for the top and Humbrol 25 blue for the stripe or are there any better colours to use?

Ben

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Hiya Ben,

The Daks wearing titles on the fuselage were not used by the RAF over Malaya,....it is the ones with the thick blue cheatline and a small name under the cockpit window. At least one of these had Black undersides untidily sprayed on and wore white serials under the wings (beginning KK but nothing else can be made out) but it is a very poor photo. The overall silver RAAF Daks with a blue chealine and RAAF or 86 Transport Wing titles were also used,.....but not those with white tops as far as I know.

Your colours for an RAF Dak model in Humbrol paints are about right.

Cheers

Tony

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A trio of links that may not be as helpful as you would like, but they are probably reasonably truthful:

http://www.cgsc.edu/carl/docrepository/AirpowerMalayan.pdf

The bit that is relevant to you is from page 54 onward.

http://ukmamsoba.org/history_valetta.htm

And for a different, but very relevant, story:

http://www.nmbva.co.uk/Roy%20Russell%20book.pdf

From my limited experience, most parachutists seem to care little about the aircraft they jump out of.

As long as it gets them to where they are due to jump and nobody gets hurt on the way out (the landing is down to them to some extent) then forget it.

However, please look at the RAAF and the RNZAF as they both contributed aircraft and men to the Malaysian Emergency, particularly in terms of delivering freight and people.

Good luck.

John

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You are right John,

My Dad did his jumps course in the 1950`s and swore blind that he used to jump out of Dakotas,...some of which had four engines!!! He had never heard of a Valletta or a Hastings! Nowadays we have more of an idea whether it is a Herk, C-141, Chinook, Caribou etc,...especially as different aircraft have different drills.

Cheers

Tony

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Thank you very much, both of you!

Tonyot, is this the paint scheme you mean:

62_04_18-RAF-Dakota-KJ955-S710A.jpg

If so, I have a couple of questions that I hope you don't mind me asking:

Is the patch in front of the glass to stop the glare (or at least, I believe that's what it did) in the same colour as the cheat line or black like the paint schemes that come with the airfix kit?

And when it comes to decals, do I just need some standard RAF roundels and the little flag-like one on the tail or are there some more key ones that I need?

And thank you for the links, Sanguin! My great uncle has talked about the Valettas before and said that he used to jump of them too!

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Is your great uncle one of those intrepid 'tree jumpers'? I once had to explain to an incredulous American officer that yes, 'tree jumping' really did mean jumping deliberately into trees and it wasn't a cunning spoof on my part...

http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205127185

Shows a Dak of 267 Sqn taking off during the Emergency and gives another view of the type.

Edited by XV107

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Thank you very much, both of you!

Tonyot, is this the paint scheme you mean:

62_04_18-RAF-Dakota-KJ955-S710A.jpg

If so, I have a couple of questions that I hope you don't mind me asking:

Is the patch in front of the glass to stop the glare (or at least, I believe that's what it did) in the same colour as the cheat line or black like the paint schemes that come with the airfix kit?

And when it comes to decals, do I just need some standard RAF roundels and the little flag-like one on the tail or are there some more key ones that I need?

And thank you for the links, Sanguin! My great uncle has talked about the Valettas before and said that he used to jump of them too!

Yes that is the scheme that I meant,....the anti glare panel in front of the cockpit is matt black. Hannants Xtradecal range have a decal sheet containing the roundels and fin flashes that you need plus others with the black and white numbers and letters for the serials,...white on the fuselage and black under the wings. The name under the cockpit window could also be made from smaller decals.

I have a lot of respect for those Malayan Tree Jumpers as it is no joke landing in a tree and I`ve seen some horrendous injuries as a result. Whilst in Kenya I was supposed to go the Kenyan Jumps Course which still included tree jumps into the Abedare Forest but unfortunately termites overran the parachute store and our course was cancelled!

Cheers

Tony

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Yes, he was. He is also regarded as a bit of a legend, here is his most famous story http://www.ww2incolor.com/forum/showthread.php/4969-Jungle-Adventures

What really hit me about that post is the opening line "...legend among other legends."

It's quite heart warming that after all these stories, he's my great uncle!

Thank you tonyot for all your help, I hope he likes it!

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Ben

Can you confirm the dates that will help narrow it down.

Also get your uncle to confirm how many engines it had.

My farther flew back from Singapore in a 4 engine Dackota l didnt believe him until I saw the photograph. It was a Hastings. But it seems to be a common misconception.

Mike

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My dad flew Dakotas (and Austers) with the 267 Sqn "Voice Flight" from KL and Penang in 1958-60. As far as I know, by that time most of the drops were done by the Valettas, as the few Dakotas left in theatre were either committed to "sky shouting" or were used for other general transport ops.

Don't get me wrong, some RAF Daks did do drops - both supplies and personnel - but it's worth knowing that the "Voice Flight" sky-shouting kit was not a quick-change item, and that the installation - including 7000W of amplification, a battery of speakers and a Ford V-8 engine to power it - caused the aircraft to be operating beyond the safe engine-out conditions. 267 lost a Dak & its crew towards the end of the Firedog campaign when he lost an engine over the jungle and couldn't maintain altitude.

The point about the RNZAF and RAAF transports is a definite possibility, too. The Bristol Freighters of the RNZAF used to do much of the Casevac ops, for example. It's largely forgotten just how closely the commonwealth air forces operated on active service back then - it was a natural continuation of the WWII way of doing things, for the very good reason that many (most?) of the senior aircrew were WWII veterans.

Kevin

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Ben

Can you confirm the dates that will help narrow it down.

Also get your uncle to confirm how many engines it had.

My farther flew back from Singapore in a 4 engine Dackota l didnt believe him until I saw the photograph. It was a Hastings. But it seems to be a common misconception.

Mike

I believe he was in it from the start but I'm not sure.

I am building it as a gift for him so I don't want to ask as it is a surprise but he know his aircraft and has a scrap book type thing with pictures of all the aircraft that he's flown in; the Dakota, Valetta and Hastings were just some of the planes inside!

My dad flew Dakotas (and Austers) with the 267 Sqn "Voice Flight" from KL and Penang in 1958-60. As far as I know, by that time most of the drops were done by the Valettas, as the few Dakotas left in theatre were either committed to "sky shouting" or were used for other general transport ops.

Don't get me wrong, some RAF Daks did do drops - both supplies and personnel - but it's worth knowing that the "Voice Flight" sky-shouting kit was not a quick-change item, and that the installation - including 7000W of amplification, a battery of speakers and a Ford V-8 engine to power it - caused the aircraft to be operating beyond the safe engine-out conditions. 267 lost a Dak & its crew towards the end of the Firedog campaign when he lost an engine over the jungle and couldn't maintain altitude.

The point about the RNZAF and RAAF transports is a definite possibility, too. The Bristol Freighters of the RNZAF used to do much of the Casevac ops, for example. It's largely forgotten just how closely the commonwealth air forces operated on active service back then - it was a natural continuation of the WWII way of doing things, for the very good reason that many (most?) of the senior aircrew were WWII veterans.

Kevin

As I said above, my Uncle definitely flew in Dakotas, he has a picture of himself ready to jump out of the side door of one!

Thanks for the information, you learn something new everyday!

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