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TOPGUN-ROB

Color of Matra type 155 rocket launcher pod (on Hawker Hunters)

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Hello all,

I'm working on the Italeri (Academy) Hunter F6 and I'll be adding the rocket launcher pods that comes with the kit. I've done extensive modifications to the pod for a better look but I'm still deciding which color I'll use to pain them.

Most pictures I've been able to find of these pods show them in a natural metal (almost chrome) color. However, I just stumbled on to this photograph (link below) showing what looks like an overall dark green/olive drab color.

Can anyone confirm the color of these pods on this Hunter? It would be great to show them off in a overall green color if they did indeed carried them.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/toteavbods-pictures/2904599356/

Thanks very much!

Rob

Edited by TOPGUN-ROB

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They were silver up until the mid/early 70s then dark green ones started to appear. Same with the Harrier fleet. So it depends on the timeline of your Hunter

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To possibly add confusion I always believed (because I was told on an ATC Camp) that the silver and black pods were reusable and the green were single use warshots. I'm sure a members of plumbers union can confirm or deny this

George

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They were silver up until the mid/early 70s then dark green ones started to appear. Same with the Harrier fleet. So it depends on the timeline of your Hunter

Thank you very much for the feedback. Dave. The markings I chose for mine (whenever it is I get to the decaling stage) are definitely earlier than mid-70s so I guess the silver one it is then.

To possibly add confusion I always believed (because I was told on an ATC Camp) that the silver and black pods were reusable and the green were single use warshots. I'm sure a members of plumbers union can confirm or deny this

George

Thank you as well, George. That's an interesting tidbit about the pods. Now that you mention it, in a few of the pics I've been able to find of the green ones, they do look very clean - almost brand new. Perhaps, as you state, these were for single use only.

Rob

Edited by TOPGUN-ROB

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To possibly add confusion I always believed (because I was told on an ATC Camp) that the silver and black pods were reusable and the green were single use warshots. I'm sure a members of plumbers union can confirm or deny this

George

In the early days there was a difference between the 116 pod (with the frangible round nose), and was single use (being lightly constructed) and the 155 (with pointed nose) which was for practice use and therefore re-usable), but I beleive that the RAF standardised on the 155 for both as an economy. Certainly Hawks and Harrier mainly flew with green ones in later years.

No doubt a bombhead will be along soon to give us chapter and verse! :winkgrin:

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In the early days there was a difference between the 116 pod (with the frangible round nose), and was single use (being lightly constructed) and the 155 (with pointed nose) which was for practice use and therefore re-usable), but I beleive that the RAF standardised on the 155 for both as an economy. Certainly Hawks and Harrier mainly flew with green ones in later years.

No doubt a bombhead will be along soon to give us chapter and verse! :winkgrin:

The 19 shot 116 pod was green had a frangible dome on the front and was a single use disposable pod for war use only. they came pre loaded with operational HEAT rockets. I never saw one loaded to a harrier GR3 in my time and have only ever seen a few pictures of them loaded to any aircraft.It looks very different to the 155 launcher, in fact it looks more like an american LAU 3A pod, than a Matra launcher.

The 18 shot 155 launcher which is the most common pod was reusable and reloadable and for training used smoke head rockets or it could be loaded with HEAT operational rounds. With HEAT heads the pod was fitted with a fibreglass heat shield on the nose. If you used the shield with smoke heads by mistake the heads would break on launch and release the smoke chemical inside the pod which was a bit messy! (and smokey, and smelly).

The 155 pods were originally natural metal with a black nose but in the 1970's the bodies were painted green. However as they wore out in use, (they had a flying hour life) they were replaced with unpainted pods that were held in store, some were painted green before use, some were left in natural metal. I have seen, and loaded many aircraft fitted with one silver and one green pod. Later in life when they were cobbling together bits to keep some operational pods you could see green pods with silver rear fairings or vice versa.

The colour scheme is your choice I suppose!

Selwyn

(Duty Armourer)

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The 19 shot 116 pod was green had a frangible dome on the front and was a single use disposable pod for war use only. they came pre loaded with operational HEAT rockets. I never saw one loaded to a harrier GR3 in my time and have only ever seen a few pictures of them loaded to any aircraft.It looks very different to the 155 launcher, in fact it looks more like an american LAU 3A pod, than a Matra launcher.

There are a few pics of then on early GR1s

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The 19 shot 116 pod was green had a frangible dome on the front and was a single use disposable pod for war use only. they came pre loaded with operational HEAT rockets. I never saw one loaded to a harrier GR3 in my time and have only ever seen a few pictures of them loaded to any aircraft.It looks very different to the 155 launcher, in fact it looks more like an american LAU 3A pod, than a Matra launcher.

The 18 shot 155 launcher which is the most common pod was reusable and reloadable and for training used smoke head rockets or it could be loaded with HEAT operational rounds. With HEAT heads the pod was fitted with a fibreglass heat shield on the nose. If you used the shield with smoke heads by mistake the heads would break on launch and release the smoke chemical inside the pod which was a bit messy! (and smokey, and smelly).

The 155 pods were originally natural metal with a black nose but in the 1970's the bodies were painted green. However as they wore out in use, (they had a flying hour life) they were replaced with unpainted pods that were held in store, some were painted green before use, some were left in natural metal. I have seen, and loaded many aircraft fitted with one silver and one green pod. Later in life when they were cobbling together bits to keep some operational pods you could see green pods with silver rear fairings or vice versa.

The colour scheme is your choice I suppose!

Selwyn

(Duty Armourer)

Thank you VERY much for the information, Selwyn. I just looked at the markings I'll use and they're actually markings from 1972-73. So, the question is, were the green pods available then? I've seen Hunters from the same squadron (No. 63 Squadron, RAF Chivenor) carry the natural metal pod but, if I can make mine a little different, why not.

Rob

Edited by TOPGUN-ROB

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Thank you VERY much for the information, Selwyn. I just looked at the markings I'll use and they're actually markings from 1972-73. So, the question is, were the green pods available then? I've seen Hunters from the same squadron (No. 63 Squadron, RAF Chivenor) carry the natural metal pod but, if I can make mine a little different, why not.

Rob

No Idea!

The pods were green when I Joined in 79...................!

Selwyn

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Agree with you all, either green or natural metal for the body. But....has anyone ever seen a shield fitted behind the nose-cone? I seem to recall seeing one in Plumber training at Cosford in the dim and distant past. It was a kind of fibreglass similar to that used for radomes, sort of dull beige?

I believe the dull metal pods were for training / practice.

Edited by Lancbuilder219

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Agree with you all, either green or natural metal for the body. But....has anyone ever seen a shield fitted behind the nose-cone? I seem to recall seeing one in Plumber training at Cosford in the dim and distant past. It was a kind of fibreglass similar to that used for radomes, sort of dull beige?

I believe the dull metal pods were for training / practice.

I have fitted the shield many times, it was a optional uncoloured thin fibreglass cone that was held in place with an optional metal fairing. The colour of the shield was a translucent yellowy beige colour which was the colour of the basic fibreglass resin. The shield and fairing was only used with the operational HEAT rocket.

The body colour of the pod had absolutely nothing to do with what type of rockets were loaded.

look here post 23;

http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234973686-raf-jet-fest-part-2-phantom-fgr-mk2-wbig-ed-jaguar-tba/page-2

Selwyn

Edited by Selwyn

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The 155 pods were originally natural metal with a black nose but in the 1970's the bodies were painted green.

P1010995%20Medium.jpg

AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!! :suicide:

Edited by RMP2

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P1010995%20Medium.jpg

AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!! :suicide:

I wouldn't worry as those pods in the picture are not Matra 155s anyway!

Selwyn

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I know, theyre what comes with the 1/48 hunter. Cheaper than AM for ten too.

While I'm here, couldn't RAF jaguars carry the 155s in pairs, ie 2 on each outboard pylon?

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I know, theyre what comes with the 1/48 hunter. Cheaper than AM for ten too.

While I'm here, couldn't RAF jaguars carry the 155s in pairs, ie 2 on each outboard pylon?

Nope. There never was a twin stores carrier for the outboard pylons.

Tandem beams for the inboard's, but for bombs only.

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Thanks. Must be an early memory of a Harrier that I have then.

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Thanks. Must be an early memory of a Harrier that I have then.

If it was on harrier it wasn't on the outboard pylon! As the twin store carrier with stores wouldn't fit between the pylon and outrigger on Harrier. It could only be used on the inner pylon. In fact the Harrier Twin store was for war use only. In all my time on GR3 T2/4 in both UK and Germany I never fitted, or ever saw it fitted to an aircraft. They did have them stored in the carrier bay though.

Selwyn

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Ah, it could well be this image that Im thinking of, the tandem bomb mount making me think Jaguar at a glance -

matra155_sticking_out.jpg

Is is really not a Jaguar? If it is, then a demo/press photo? I dont seem to be able to find the full image to be sure just whats what.

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Ah, it could well be this image that Im thinking of, the tandem bomb mount making me think Jaguar at a glance -

matra155_sticking_out.jpg

Is is really not a Jaguar? If it is, then a demo/press photo? I dont seem to be able to find the full image to be sure just whats what.

That looks like a demo photo as it appears the rockets are sticking out of the pods which you would not see in real life. Also The underside of the wings/pylons are a light colour which suggests a trials or prototype aircraft, as RAF aircraft were wraparound camouflage.

It might be a French aircraft but the bombs are British 1000lb bombs?

Selwyn

Selwyn

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I'm pretty sure that service Jaguars didn't carry Matra pods. I don't recall them being listed in the stores for which we (BAe) quoted a Drag Index. I think that they were on at least one model - the Matchbox or perhaps the first Airfix example, which was a prototype.

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Im pretty sure they did carry 155 Matras, lots of models have them included, although photos of actual aircraft with them fitted seem to be a bit elusive, I did find this one -

6970677958_2dff8072f7_b.jpg

I also found a few references to an option of up to 8 155 pods being fitted... sounds like sales talk for sure, capability is one thing of course, practicality is another and none of the sites I found mention of it look very official. However one place that suggests 8 pods is a listing of Indian spec Jags, so yes, could well be sales/export spec.

I know this means little, but it looks good -

124-1.jpg

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I'm sure the Jag did carry Matra rocket pods in it's past. I can't find any reference or pictures of this though (including my Jag weapons Q course notes).And definitely never on any twin stores carrier

Certainly by the time of Op Granby, they were not used and the CRV-7 rockets were used instead.

The CRV-7 system was considered more accurate and less of a smoke trail from the rocket motors.

Part of the work required for the modification of systems for CRV-7 use (STF/Jag/15/90) included re-programming the weapon computer.

SNEB rocket aiming symbology in the HUD could not be used, as the CRV-7's have a straighter flight path. So there was a reference to Matra/SNEB use there.

The picture of the black T-Bird carrying Matra pods is the training fleet at Cranwell.

These are used to give aircraft operation experience to Engineering Officers in training.

Various drill weapons are fitted to get them thinking about safe headings and safe handling, not necessarily reflecting current standard fits.

Rob.

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Odd isnt it that so many models feature the pods, yet finding a photo of them in use... not easy, likewise re the CRV pods, not many pictures out there at all.

As for the suggestions of twin mounts and a maximum of 8 pods possible - its all a big mystery re Jags and rockets.

Or maybe they just rarely carried any. :)

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There is picture in 'Modern Combat Aircraft 14 - SEPECAT Jaguar of the 2nd Jaguar produced to RAF Spec aremed with twin SNEBs on the outer pylons. Clearly a 'sales' shot it may be the same picture as in RMP2's post above (if that one had been reversed). There are a number of Farnborough shots showing SNEBs which may just be Hype, but there is one picture that looks like a RAF open day type shot. It purports to be from Lossie and shows 4 SNEBs in amongst the B755 and 1000lb bombs. It also show what I assume is a MARTEL. So no real proof but perhaps a hint that it could carry SNEB but hardly ever did

George

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That would make a lot of sense to my faded memory as I used to have that book, so thanks, Im not going completely mad it seems.

Pretty sure the French used the Martel with the Jag, or at least trialled it under the centreline.

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