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ReccePhreak

Finnish MiG-21BIS chaff pod questions

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I plan to convert my Eduard 1/48 MiG-21BIS to one of the ones that the Finnish AF modified into a reconnaissance fighter. I can probably scratch build the modified VICON 18 camera pod that they used, but they also carried some kind of chaff/flare pods underneath, where the

RATO units would've been installed. There is one picture of aircraft MG-114 in the book MiG-21 in Finnish Air Force, but it's hard to see what type of pod it is. Here's a closeup of the picture, can anybody help me with more info?

MiG-21bis_Finland_chaff-pod.jpg

It almost looks like an ALKAN 5081, like the one the Super Etendard SEM carries, but wider & flatter. I wonder if it is a pod made in Finland?

http://www.defense.gouv.fr/var/dicod/storage/images/base-de-medias/images/ema/afghanistan/06-10-08-afghanistan-3-mirage-2000d-succedent-aux-super-etendard-de-la-17f/sem-en-vol-1/291702-1-fre-FR/sem-en-vol-1.jpg

sem_de10.jpg

Larry

Edited by ReccePhreak

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Hi Larry,

It is Alkan 5080.

Cheers,

AaCee

Hi AaCee,

Thanks for the info. All I could find online, is that the Alkan 5080 is 2.04M (80.3") long and 245mm (9.65") in diameter.

Those are different dimensions than the 1/48 Alkan 5081 pod I got from L'Arsenal. It's 7.37mm wide and 60.44mm long, which make the real pod 353.75mm (13.9") in diameter and 2.901M (114.2") long.

Do you have any drawings or good photos of an actual Alkan 5080 dispenser? My Alkan 5081 looks like a tube that was flattened on the bottom, but the pod in my photo looks almost rectangular, with rounded sides.

Larry

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Hello ReccePhreak!

This particular aircraft was a prototype which carried every possible piece of equipment when this photo was taken. The flare dispensers were normally carried when the aircraft acted as an ECM- capable adversary in air to air combat training. In normal reconnaissance work the fit was Vicon pod in centerline station and auxiliary tanks under the wings. Vicon pod was actually a modified centerline tank so the modifications should be quite easy.

Note also the non-standard Radar Warning blisters in both wing tips and in the trailing edge of the fin. Also the cockpit lay out is little bit different.

We had six of these planes on the Squadron. They make an interesting subject for a model as the fuselage length differed 25 mm between these six. Okay, that really doesn't make a difference in 1/48 scale :)

If you need more information or photos of the real thing don't hesitate to ask.

Best Regards,

Antti

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Terve!

Thanks for interesting tidbits, Antti. You wrote: "a modified centerline tank" and I think the "Säiliö 1" and "Säiliö 2" shape is modified BAe Hawk drop thank.

You know, my first ever post herre in Britmodeller was asking drawings or dimensions for this very tank and the end purpose was (and still is, sadly lacking the knowledge) to make accurate camera pod for HW and MGT. Are you able to help?

Another question to you about the MGT. Did you see any other individiual than MG-114 installed with and flying with the omni antennas? The things looking like black cylinder hat under the nose and and on spine. I only saw black covers on the place on the other MGTs (MG-124 and -125 or -133 not sure whiich) when at Valmet Lentokonetehdas Summer -89.

The Alkan 5080 installed on the JATO brackets was 1987 mm long, "diameter" (width) 280 mm and height 245 mm.

Cheers,

Kari

Edited by Kari Lumppio

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Hello ReccePhreak!

This particular aircraft was a prototype which carried every possible piece of equipment when this photo was taken. The flare dispensers were normally carried when the aircraft acted as an ECM- capable adversary in air to air combat training. In normal reconnaissance work the fit was Vicon pod in centerline station and auxiliary tanks under the wings. Vicon pod was actually a modified centerline tank so the modifications should be quite easy.

Note also the non-standard Radar Warning blisters in both wing tips and in the trailing edge of the fin. Also the cockpit lay out is little bit different.

We had six of these planes on the Squadron. They make an interesting subject for a model as the fuselage length differed 25 mm between these six. Okay, that really doesn't make a difference in 1/48 scale :)

If you need more information or photos of the real thing don't hesitate to ask.

Best Regards,

Antti

Antti,

Thank you so much for the informative reply. Even though they did not fly with both the Vicon recce pod and the flare pods at the same time, I may wind up making my model as MG-114 in that photo, IF I can get enough info on the Alkan 5080 pod to scratch build them. Otherwise, I will make MG-125, which I saw a photo carrying both the Vicon recce pod, 2 fuel tanks on the outer pylons and R-60 missiles on the inboard pylons. Do you have more detailed info on the flare pods, such as drawings or more detailed photos?

I also plan to make 1/72 & 1/48 kits of the recce MiG-21F-13 version.

Best Regards,

Larry

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Terve Kari, Hello Larry!

I have access to MG-114 as it stands almost outside my office window. I also have access to all it's manuals. I just checked the Aircrew Manual (MG Ohjaajan ohje) and "Preparation Manual" (MG Valmisteluohje) but couldn't find any information about the recce systems. I will have a look at the Weapons Manual when I go the office on Wednesday. I couldn't find any information about the flare dispenser or the Swedish built chaff dispenser either.

MG-114 still carries those black "Top Hat" omni-directional antennas Kari mentioned. At least they were installed also on MG-125 and MG-133. I have a photo of MG-133 taken back at 1994 when on detachment in Ivalo in Northern Finland. I guess you both know that all recce MiGs (MiG 21 F-13 and MiG 21BIS) were based at Tikkakoski AB some 25 km north of Jyväskylä.

I'm not sure which pods we still have for MG-114. At least one standard centerline tank and "Missile Shoes" for R60 are still around. But I will check that also and give you all the information.

I have one photo showing the camera pod that was used in Hawk. If I remember correctly it was called either "Säiliö 301" or "Säiliö 302". MiG carried a camera pod which might have been a combination of the Vicon pod (front part) and an original Russian built centerline tank (rear part). I also wonder what happened to those beautiful Vinten F95 cameras; no one seems to know.

Best Regards,

Antti

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Kari and Larry,

here you can find some detail photos of MG-114.

http://www.pienoismallit.net/galleria/referenssi_13421/

Best regards,

Antti

Antti,

Thanks for those shots, they help a lot. That is the first clear shot I have seen of the "Top Hat" antenna. Now all I need is some clear detail shots of the flare pods and the Vicon recce pod., although I can probably make do with what shots I do have of the recce pod.

Best Regards,

Larry

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Hi ReccePhreak,

The MGT is an interesting subject! I was toying around with the idea of making one for some time. Have a few Overtrees Eduard bis kits on the shelf waiting for Finnish markings. ;)

The flare dispenser is a problem but there are a lot of things which have to be converted on the Eduard kit:

- first of all for making it into the Finnish AF version of the bis

- and then some further conversion into the MGT version.

Look forward to you work!

Hi Antti_K,

I envy you for the neighbourhood, would love to spend some time with a camera and a measuring tape around that MGT airframe!!! Thanks for posting those photos, they are great!

OK, I know many would say the same for me (fortunately many MiG’s and Mil’s are not very far from where I am so . . .) but that MGT is something special!!!

Good to see that it is preserved in such a perfect condition! Respect for this to the Finnish! :worthy::worthy::worthy:

Best regards

Gabor

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Hi/Hei all,

My reference was another book from same author than the MiG-21 about test flying in Finland 1984-2013. As Antti and Kari has been dealing with them I have not so much to add.

Not so much help for the Alkan but it reveals that the tail of the Vinten pod was not a modified MiG tank but made by Valmet. Also IIRC MGT had the under fuselage air brake removed and different fuselage pylon. Some old IPMS Finland magazine had a picture about the uninstalled brake.

Cheers,

AaCee

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About Alkan pod, it appears that it was modulable, kind of; in term of weight and lenght.

"Depending on customer's needs".

That doesn't help at all!

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Hello all!

I added one photo to the reference gallery (see link in an earlier message).

One of our engineers saw these pictures also and reminded that the gun sight was not installed when this aircraft served "Tiedustelulentolaivue" (Reconnaissance Squadron). At that time there was a control box for the camera equipment and on top of it, a small collimator type gunsight. I will contact some of my friends and ask if they have pictures about the camera control box.

Best Regards,

Antti

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About Alkan pod, it appears that it was modulable, kind of; in term of weight and lenght.

"Depending on customer's needs".

That doesn't help at all!

Salut!

In my earlier post (#5) I did give the MGT Alkan 5080 dimensions.

I quote: "The Alkan 5080 installed on the JATO brackets was 1987 mm long, "diameter" (width) 280 mm and height 245 mm."

HTH,

Kari

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Hi/Hei all,

My reference was another book from same author than the MiG-21 about test flying in Finland 1984-2013. As Antti and Kari has been dealing with them I have not so much to add.

Not so much help for the Alkan but it reveals that the tail of the Vinten pod was not a modified MiG tank but made by Valmet. Also IIRC MGT had the under fuselage air brake removed and different fuselage pylon. Some old IPMS Finland magazine had a picture about the uninstalled brake.

Cheers,

AaCee

AaCee,

Even though they did not use a modified fuel tank, the tail still looks a lot like the tail on a standard MiG-21 fuel tank. So i think I will start with that.

I would love to see that picture (and any other info) from that IPMS Finland magazine.

Larry

About Alkan pod, it appears that it was modulable, kind of; in term of weight and lenght.

"Depending on customer's needs".

That doesn't help at all!

Antoine,

Based on my experience with ECM pods, the only thing "modular" about it is probably the number, and type of chaff/flare "buckets" it carried. Some of the early QRC series of ECM pods used in Vietnam could carry 2, 3 or 4 "cans", to cover different frequencies, which would make the pod different lengths. But they had a strong "hardback" that supported everything. I have never heard of any chaff/flare pods, that were built the same way. They all had only a set number of spaces, to carry the buckets. If some were not used, then the had blanking plates installed.

Saying all that, maybe the Alkan 5080 was different. I would love to be proved wrong on my statements, but would need hard facts, such as a manufacturer's data sheet.

Larry

Salut!

In my earlier post (#5) I did give the MGT Alkan 5080 dimensions.

I quote: "The Alkan 5080 installed on the JATO brackets was 1987 mm long, "diameter" (width) 280 mm and height 245 mm."

HTH,

Kari

Kari,

Your dimensions differ from the dimensions stated online, but they are still different than the 1/48 Alkan 5081 pod from L'Arsenal. Also, the picture of the pod I started this thread with looks flatter than the width & height dimensions you gave. I still wish I had more hard facts about the actual shape of the pod.

Larry

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Hello all!

I checked all the MiG manuals and prints we have left. Everything that deals with these planes is still highly classified. Not as military equipment but as trade goods (The Russians...) I couldn't find any information about the recce installations and we don't have a recce pod; only a center line tank.

I also took some more photos. Follow the link in my previous posting in this topic to see them.

The light was good so I made also comparisons for the original Russian camouflage paints still found on the center line tank.

Light Green: NCS S5040-G60Y (Not a perfect match, add a little white or pale grey. Closest FS595b equivalent 34258.)

Dark Brown: NCS S8505-Y80R (Not a perfect match, add some black to cut the reddish hue. No FS match.Closest RAL 8022 which is too dark.)

Light Grey, Main Gear Well: NCS S3502-B (Perfect match. FS 36375 is a good match.)

Light Grey: NCS S2005-B50G (Perfect match. Closest FS 36473 is a little bit too green.)

Bright Green, wheel hub: NCS S4550-G20Y (Very good match. Closest FS 14090 is too light.)

Bright Green, antenna fairings in fin: NCS S5040-G20Y and RAL 6002 (Good matches, but add a hint of yellow or sand brown.)

Blue (Finnish roundel, painted in Finland): RAL 5015 (FS 35183 is a perfect match.)

I heard today that the Air Force Museum is taking over this MiG in the near future. After that I guess I don't have access to it.

My Best Regards,

Antti

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Hi Antti,

Thanks for sharing the information and the photos! Really interesting.

For the aircraft 114 I hope the museum will take good care of it and preserve it in just as a good state as it is today!

Unfortunately we here in Hungary are not so lucky. All aircraft in the Air Force Museum at Szolnok have been repainted in the last few months with some "interesting" colours and schemes. :(((((( This also includes the MiG-21MF and 21bis fighters which had the original camo colours. Very sad, just hope that it will not be the same in Finnland!

Best regards

Gabor

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Hi Antti,

Thanks for sharing the information and the photos! Really interesting.

For the aircraft 114 I hope the museum will take good care of it and preserve it in just as a good state as it is today!

Unfortunately we here in Hungary are not so lucky. All aircraft in the Air Force Museum at Szolnok have been repainted in the last few months with some "interesting" colours and schemes. :(((((( This also includes the MiG-21MF and 21bis fighters which had the original camo colours. Very sad, just hope that it will not be the same in Finnland!

Best regards

Gabor

Hopefully you will be luckier on getting your aircraft repainted, than the aircraft at the nearby USAF Armament Museum. The retired USAF officer in charge of the museum did not want to fill out the needed paperwork to have the aircraft painting done in accordance with US environmental standards, so he had the personnel take paint chips to the local home improvement store(s) and have them mix up a bunch of latex HOUSE PAINT that closely matched the FS595 paints. Of course the paint colors didn't really match properly, so the aircraft now look really terrible. But at least he saved a bunch of money. :banghead:

Larry

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Hi Larry,

Yes, your story is "interesting" but not surprising unfortunately it is a practice in most museums all over the world! In the Szolnok museum all aircraft which were once natural metal (be it real natural metal or painted with alu dope all the way from MiG-15 to MiG-21MF) has been now painted in a medium grey (with a little metallic sheen) only because this is the only paint known to the painter man responsible for the work (and I guess he had a discount from the paint supplier)! :mental:

:mental: :mental:

The story is still on going and in the second phase of the “restoration” the Western aircraft will follow into the paint shop of the Szolnok air base with the same person in charge of the spray gun. So he will paint a Viggen, two Starfighters (Turkish and German), Lansen, Swiss Hunter. :nono: Just imagine the result . . . :wall: :wall:

But we are getting very far and off topic from this fab Finnish MGT.

Best regards

Gabor

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Hello everyone

I added a couple of photos to my gallery. Direct link at earlier posting.

Antti

Great photos Antii.

I see now I was mistaken to follow Eduard's instructions and paint my MiG-21R's wheel wells the same interior blue-green as the cockpit. :banghead:

Oh well, i still have a bunch more 1/48 recce MiG-21s to make. I still need enough detailed info on the chaff pod, so i can scratch build one for my Finnish bird.

Larry

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Hi Larry,

I just got time to go through the IPMS magazines I mentioned. Not that much help about the recon-version. Fortunately Antti has already downloaded the needed pictures - thanks! ;)

It would be helpful if you could select the individual aircraft and time frame you are willing to built. There were quite big differences in the upper surface camouflages and in some details.

Cheers,

AaCee

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Hi Larry,

I just got time to go through the IPMS magazines I mentioned. Not that much help about the recon-version. Fortunately Antti has already downloaded the needed pictures - thanks! ;)

It would be helpful if you could select the individual aircraft and time frame you are willing to built. There were quite big differences in the upper surface camouflages and in some details.

Cheers,

AaCee

Hi AaCee,

Thanks for taking the time to look through your IPMS magazines.

As far as deciding which aircraft to build, I only have found 2 photos in the book MiG-21 in Finnish Air Force that are carrying the recce pod, MG-114 & MG-125. MG-114 is in the photo I initially posted, and the photo of MG-125 shows it carrying the centerline recce pod, 2 underwing fuel tanks and 2 R-60 dummy missiles. Since I don't have enough info to scratch-build the Alkan 5080 chaff pods, I will probably do MG-125, as long as it had all the other mods & added bits to the airframe.

Regards,

Larry

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