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28ZComeback

Question concerning L'armee de l'Air C-45 Expeditor in Indochine for electronic surveillance platform

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Greetings!  I read in a periodical that the French used at least one C-45 Expeditor as an electronic surveillance platform aircraft in Indochina during the hostilities 1945-1954. Can anyone shed some light on this claim?  Unfortunately I have been unable to confirm this or uncover photos. With its ability to loiter, camera-carrying features on F-2 and manuerabiltiy the Expeditor would be a good candidate for such a mission. Thank you in advance for any leads or references.

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The only Armee de l'Air unit in Indochina that operated C-45 aircraft was ELA 52 (Escadrille de Liaison Aerienne) based at Tan Son Nhut from 1948 to 1954.

AFAIK they had UC-45Fs , but I cannot find a photo online...:(

There are photos of AdA C-45s  in Indochina here:

https://www.amazon.fr/Laviation-militaire-française-Indochine-Collection/dp/B000X6IUVW/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1503755486&sr=1-2

Maybe someone that has the book could help...:hmmm:

 

HTH (somewhat)...:unsure:

 

PS  I've also heard about this story; the aircraft had Radio Direction Finding gear fitted to monitor Viet Minh Radio Transmitters...:whistle:

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Thank you sir!  I have the first tome but cannot find the second. As you mentioned if anyone has the book I would appreciate a glimpse of the profiles and/or photos. Merci beaucoup!  If you happen to recall where you read about the radio direction finders I would also appreciate that source. Thank you very much!

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Sir, this is a big help. May be only one sentence but may be references. I have ordered it and several others. Merci beaucoup! 

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Hi

I have had a look at both my vol's and in Vol 1 there is just a colour plate of the photo that's in vol 2 on page 60, which is a Beech UC-45C ser 44-87145 (V) the photo shows better the E.L.A. 52 badge on the nose. In the text just a small bit about the radio snooping they also used Beech 18's for this as well.

Hope helps , thanks as I have been looking for a different a/c to do my C45 and this one looks ok.

I do know both Jean-Claude Soumille and Jean-Jacques Petit both nice blokes and will help out if they can.

Paul

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Hi Paul, 

 

Thank you very much for your informative and helpful response. I have Soumille's book Volume 1 and could never seem to locate Volume 2. (I have looked high and low for over 10 years!). After a brief round of correspondence with the author ten years ago (in which we discussed the use of Lodestar and Ventura aircraft in Indochina) I lost contact. The photos (both long shots) in Tome one and the beautiful color profile show a very clean plane in natural metal. I found another photo of a ELA.52 plane at Bien Dien Phu, again natural metal with curtains for VIP transport.  No ELA.52 squadron markings. If you would provide your email I will gladly forward the photo to you.  As for me I am focused on modification to the passenger compartment.  A good friend who once flew C-45's tells me that the radio direction finder and other equipment was most likely installed over the main spar at a modified operator station, necessitating removal of the seats, but since there are no blueprints are available it's all speculation.  Also I am adding resin exhaust and props, new engines, photoetch interior and P-61 radio components. I have yet to locate a suitable ELA.52 badge, however. I would like to correspond with Mon. Soumille so if you have his address and/or email, I would appreciate it if you would share it with me offline.  My email is: 34Drive"at"gmail.com 

 

Thank you again Paul for your help and very interested in your project. 

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On 30/8/2017 at 2:53 PM, PaulT 876 said:

Hi

I have had a look at both my vol's and in Vol 1 there is just a colour plate of the photo that's in vol 2 on page 60, which is a Beech UC-45C ser 44-87145 (V) the photo shows better the E.L.A. 52 badge on the nose.

Here is the photo in question:

 

UC-45F_44-87145_ELA52.jpg

 

BTW the aircraft is a UC-45F...:whistle:

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