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RMP2

Buccaneers & BL755s?

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I think the Bricks were cleared to carry them, but photos of any on a Buccaneer (in typical BL755 fashion) are proving elusive.

Does anyone have any photos of such a load, either in the bay and/or under the wings?

 

I ask as Ive a 48th Airfix S2B on its way to me (unsure if thats stupid or brave) and I wondered about putting less often seen boomy things on it. Other seldom seen bits would be considered too if anyone has alternate suggestions.

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5 minutes ago, Scimitar said:

Sorry I haven't had time to look through this but here you go :

http://www.blackburn-buccaneer.co.uk/Pages1_files/Payload_Stores_Index.html?

 

Thanks. I saw that in my searches, but no photos of how they were loaded which is what Im really after.
I read about a firepower demo, I think in Cyprus (?) where they were allegedly used by Buccs, but not found out any more about that, nevermind photos.

 

The BL755s tend to be tricky to find on anything other than Jaguars and then still theres few photos. Could be a no score on this front unless you guys know better..? :)

Edited by RMP2

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My mate up in Lossiemouth is as mad on Buccaneers as I am on a certain other type operated by the Royal Navy.

He is away just now but due back soon so I'll ask then.

 

I can't get this film to run but it shows a West Freugh Buccaneer on BL755 tests.

https://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=8&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwigvb7qks3UAhULZFAKHdb_C2gQFgg5MAc&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.iwm.org.uk%2Fcollections%2Fitem%2Fobject%2F1060025629&usg=AFQjCNEOcfXQgq0hiqwdWzObtHpOzoA0Dw

 

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1 minute ago, Scimitar said:

My mate up in Lossiemouth is as mad on Buccaneers as I am on a certain other type operated by the Royal Navy.

He is away just now but due back soon so I'll ask then.

 

Im equally interested in BL755s on Phantoms, but theres the well known photos of those out there, although not RN versions... did the Royal Navy carry them at all?

 

1 minute ago, Bangor Lad said:

Plenty of photos of them carrying CBLS units.

 

Sadly yes, there are. ;)

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I have just looked through the Wings of Fame edition on the Bucc and although it says that it could use the BL755 there are no pictures of any aircraft carrying them. Will carry on looking though.

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Cheers for the looking and asking, guys. Ive spent a couple of hours here searching and photos are properly elusive, yet as said - they appear to have been cleared to use em.

Edited by RMP2

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6 minutes ago, RMP2 said:

did the Royal Navy carry them at all?

Don't know but would wonder why as it was designed for armoured/soft skin/personnel attack.

Somebody who knows will be along shortly. (Selwyn ??)

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1 minute ago, Scimitar said:

Don't know but would wonder why as it was designed for armoured/soft skin/personnel attack.

Somebody who knows will be along shortly.

 

Pretty sure they got used in the Falklands by GR3 Harriers. If so that would suggest theyre ok to carry on board, unlike the RAF style rocket pods... which may be a hint that the RN could use them if required, but could just be a RF safe coincidence too?

Just thinking that a carrier has more uses than just anti shipping, so why not? Im not about to start searching for Navy FG1s with them loaded though, that might require more beer than the fridge contains. :)

 

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56 minutes ago, Scimitar said:

Don't know but would wonder why as it was designed for armoured/soft skin/personnel attack.

Somebody who knows will be along shortly. (Selwyn ??)

Technically the BL 755 was introduced by the RAF to replace the SNEB  rocket   it was standard fit on RAFG Harrier and Jaguar so I assume it was the same for Buccaneer as the RAFG main target was to attack the soviet tanks hoards if ww3 was to happen. We just don't seem have any images to prove it. Perhaps they were normally internal carriage?

 

Selwyn

Edited by Selwyn

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4 minutes ago, Selwyn said:

Technically the BL 755 was introduced by the RAF to replace the SNEB  rocket   it was standard fit on RAFG Harrier and Jaguar so I assume it was the same for Buccaneer as the RAFG main target was to attack the soviet tanks hoards if ww3 was to happen. We just don't seem have any images to prove it. Perhaps they were normally internal carriage?

 

Selwyn

 

Internal was my thoughts too. But for Germany based units, would they really have required the slipper tanks? External carriage would have been an option on top of the bay I would have thought?
Funny how the CRV rocket pod and higher altitude stuff prevailed in the end (political cluster stuff aside) with the Jags at least.

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1 hour ago, RMP2 said:

Pretty sure they got used in the Falklands by GR3 Harriers.

Slightly different from normal Navy targets though. They were attacking troop concentrations or similar I suspect.

I was thinking more about the traditional anti-ship role

 

See what you've started RMP2...I was supposed to be doing some work related study for a case conference tomorrow..but this is more interesting !

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1 minute ago, Scimitar said:

Slightly different from normal Navy targets though. They were attacking troop concentrations or similar I suspect.

I was thinking more about the traditional anti-ship role

 

See what you've started RMP2...I was supposed to be doing some work related study for a case conference tomorrow..but this is more interesting !

 

Surely the Navy werent so narrow minded as to think carrier deployment only meant anti-shipping was needed? A carrier is an offensive weapon in my eyes to cover whatever conflict is required/instructed. Flexibility and versatility are key.

If thats not the case then I need a job at high level in the ranks of the stripey shirted lot. :)

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Someone - Tom Eeles? David Cousins? I forget, but possibly in the Buccaneer Boys book - observed that some of the RAFG crews were unconvinced by the switch to BL755 rather than SNEB, since they didn't have to overfly the target with the forward firing weapon that was the unguided rocket. ISTR that the switch (nominally) occurred in the early/mid 70s.

 

I'm fairly certain that about 30 were expended during Red Flag in 1977 during the instances where live ordnance was delivered, and Graham Pitchfork refers to the BL755 in the history of 208 Sqn, noting that its preferred mode of delivery was a laydown attack at 540KIAS and 100ft.

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My comments on the Royal Navy were obviously generalised as we would need a whole different thread regarding weapons logistics on aircraft carriers!

I think we can accept that at least on some occasions RAF Buccaneers used this weapon and it was used by the Royal Navy during the Falklands episode but not on their Buccaneers as they had gone in 1978. Whether they used the weapon from its introduction in the early seventies I don't know.

 

Anyway..photographs are proving rather elusive.

Perhaps a request on PPrune or Key forums?

I have asked the question on World Naval Ships forum so hopefully will get some info soon.

 

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Thanks again, guys, much appreciated all round. :)

 

I do rather perversely enjoy being difficult with such things... But - there has to be photos out there somewhere!!

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From a spot of digging in notes at work today (no photos yet...)

 

Buccaneers in RAFG got BL755 in 1973. The reason for the switch was in part the fact that the BL755's dispersal pattern (whichever was chosen) offered a greater likelihood of destruction of a tank/tanks in the area covered by the bomblets delivered by an aircraft (based on 2 weapons on the airframe) than the SNEB pods; the OTR (Over Target Requirement) for handling T-54s was calculated as 20 aircraft equipped with 2x SNEB to inflict the necessary level of destruction on the target and 9 if the aircraft were carrying BL755. Clearly, the (theoretical) ability to send the other 11 aircraft off to attack other target sets was an attractive idea...

 

The delivery profile for the BL755 was also 'safer' than that for the SNEB, as it would be delivered at about 300ft AGL, whereas the SNEB (according to the experts, and who I am I to argue) was likely to be most effective in a 10 degree dive at 700ft AGL.

 

Now, there are photos somewhere...

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Here is one with the twin beam rack normally seen on a Jag, perhaps that is how they loaded them?

 

The Buccaneer about to take to air from HMS ARK ROYAL's waist catapult.

 

 

Jari

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Digging around for photo's came up with the same blank as everyone else.

My Bucc course notes refer to BL755's being able to be loaded to any of the wing pylons and in the bomb bay.

 

In the 3 1/2 years I spent on them at Honington & Lossie, I never saw any sign of their use. Not even any drill versions for weapon load training.

 

The tandem beams shown in Finns picture were only used for 8 inch Lepus recce flare carriage, no bombs were ever fitted to them.

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12 hours ago, Finn said:

 

Here is one

 

In proper colours too :D

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18 hours ago, Phone Phixer said:

Digging around for photo's came up with the same blank as everyone else.

My Bucc course notes refer to BL755's being able to be loaded to any of the wing pylons and in the bomb bay.

 

In the 3 1/2 years I spent on them at Honington & Lossie, I never saw any sign of their use. Not even any drill versions for weapon load training.

 

The tandem beams shown in Finns picture were only used for 8 inch Lepus recce flare carriage, no bombs were ever fitted to them.

 

I'm fairly certain that the BL755 was only for use by RAFG Bucc squadrons - the assumption behind that planning notion being that UK-based units would've been busy enough if the balloon had gone up without having to worry about a sport of tank-bashing over the Central Front.

 

I have seen (open source) a reference to a maximum load of eight weapons - four in the bay and one per wing pylon.

 

Edit (before pressing post, so perhaps not an edit...) - Knew I'd seen one somewhere. Obviously not one with which anyone would've done any aviating, but even so:

 

https://plus.google.com/photos/101072341150285679861/album/5985037427509489505/5999204158565467330

 

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The thing with the BL755 I am told was that it was a sealed unit until it needed to be loaded which is why you dont see many pictures.  

 

TBH there are not even many pictures of the drill rounds for loding, and I have only ever seen one picture of an inert training round designed to be dropped filled with inert bomblets.

 

Julien

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1 hour ago, Julien said:

The thing with the BL755 I am told was that it was a sealed unit until it needed to be loaded which is why you dont see many pictures.  

 

TBH there are not even many pictures of the drill rounds for loding, and I have only ever seen one picture of an inert training round designed to be dropped filled with inert bomblets.

 

Julien

 

I don't know about the Buccaneer but i loaded many live BL755s on the CF-104 and CF-18 in Germany during alerts and there were 3, sometimes 4, days a month the alerts happened. They just came on a trailer with a tarp over them.

 

Jari

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11 hours ago, Finn said:

 

I don't know about the Buccaneer but i loaded many live BL755s on the CF-104 and CF-18 in Germany during alerts and there were 3, sometimes 4, days a month the alerts happened. They just came on a trailer with a tarp over them.

 

Jari

BL 755 was stored on a special pallet covered with a rubber bag that had all the air vacuumed out. The bag was a nightmare, its edge was basically an bicycle inner tube that when deflated fitted into a slot on the pallet base. this tube was inflated and supposedly made the bag seal to the base, then the air in the bag was sucked out, vacuum packing the bomb.  In real life the "inner tube"deflated over time and the bag filled with air, so it was a sould destroying, never ending job for the dumpies to re vacuum these. On issue to the line the bombs would be taken out of the pallets and put on a bomb trolley on special cradles that protected its thin skin in transit. One consequence of this for modellers was that however dirty your aircraft weathering these bombs were always immaculate showroom finish to look at.

 

Selwyn

Edited by Selwyn

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