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BAE Hawk XX154


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Arrived yesterday from Boscombe Down the original and complete Hawker Hawk prototype. 

For anyone modelling an original Hawk a visit to the Boscombe Down Aviation Collection at Old Sarum Airfield is essential. 

You can get close and personal, take as many photos as you wish and sit in a Hawk cockpit section that sits next to the full size aircraft. 

 

 

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154 arrived yesterday, by air: slung under a Chinook for the hop from Boscombe Down to Old Sarum. 

She is the very first Hawk flown, she spent her life being used for test and evaluation work, spending the last 20 years at the Empire Test Pilots School. At the last major overhaul she was painted black and fitted with a late 900 series RR Adour engine.  

Over the years she accumulated 6000 flight hours, and last flew in December 2018. The engine has been returned to Rolls Royce for re-sale, the pyrotechnic parts have been removed but otherwise she is as last flown. 

 

www.boscombedownaviationcollection.co.uk

 

Happy to arrange a walk round photo session if anyone wants to do it. 

 

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Even without the Hawk, the Boscombe Down Collection is well worth a visit; highly recommended.  [I cheat by living very close by, but I’d say the same even if I had to travel]

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19 hours ago, PhoenixII said:

Hi Peter, @224 Peter, do my eyes deceive or is she fitted with the later type (small head box) seats?

The seats  were  modified  a long time ago. What you must realise that  ejection seats are  not tied to the airframe,  when they are due servicing they are removed and replaced with a servicable set.  the seats in this jet could have concevably  been fitted to Half the hawks in the RAF  fleet over the years. The original seats from 1974,  suitably modified to current standards,  might still be flying in another hawk!

 

Selwyn

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6 hours ago, Selwyn said:

The seats  were  modified  a long time ago. What you must realise that  ejection seats are  not tied to the airframe,  when they are due servicing they are removed and replaced with a servicable set.  the seats in this jet could have concevably  been fitted to Half the hawks in the RAF  fleet over the years.

 

The original seats from 1974, suitably modified to current standards, might still be flying in another hawk!

 

Selwyn

Thanks Selwyn, would have asked the EX Father in Law (senior embodiment loan officer at BAe Bitteswell) but........!

 

M-B Mk.10 seat. Maintenance / servicing carried out at Squadron level (got a mate who used to play with things that go BANG on a number of aircraft, M-B Mk. 9's on Harriers and latterly Mk. 10A bang seats on Tonkas with 11 (F) Squadron)

 

Doubt it Selwyn, the large headbox seats were replaced with the later (small headbox) type due to lack of forward vision, not exactly what is wanted in a training aircraft......

 

Paul

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3 hours ago, PhoenixII said:

Thanks Selwyn, would have asked the EX Father in Law (senior embodiment loan officer at BAe Bitteswell) but........!

 

M-B Mk.10 seat. Maintenance / servicing carried out at Squadron level (got a mate who used to play with things that go BANG on a number of aircraft, M-B Mk. 9's on Harriers and latterly Mk. 10A bang seats on Tonkas with 11 (F) Squadron)

 

Doubt it Selwyn, the large headbox seats were replaced with the later (small headbox) type due to lack of forward vision, not exactly what is wanted in a training aircraft......

 

Paul

Being a RAF armourer for many years  and    on Harriers GR3/T2/4 , 233OCU  in the UK and  4 Sqn  in Germany. I can assure you that ejection seats were removed by squadron  personnel on a time basis   and sent back to the Seat servicing bay where they had the specialist equipment to carry out servicing, repairs, and modifications.   It was part of my job  to be part of the team to remove and replace the seats and to take them to the Seat bay and collect replacements.  In all my time there was only one instance that the seat underwent a modification at Squadron level and that is when the harrier changed from the short strap harness system to the long strap combined harness system in 1982.  As this was basically a safety equipment change which we did anyway on a time basis  it was sensible to do it that way.

 

The seat once serviced  was then "held in stock"  until  issued to the next  aircraft that was due a seat change.  The  only prerequisite on Harriers  was that the front seat of the single seater was different to the T bird front seat  and the T bird rear seat was different again and you had to make sure the right type went in the right place.  

 

 I am fully aware why the Mk 10 headboxes were changed  On Tornado it was because they seriously restricted the rear view of the crew in combat situations and the modification was also found to assist in front vision in the hawk.  And of course it was sensible to standardise  the design across the Air Force.  

 

Selwyn

 

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So glad to see this very important aircraft saves for posterity. I remember the excitement of seeing this aircraft at its first Farnborough outing in the hands if I remember correctly, Duncan Simpson.

 

Keith

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  • 2 weeks later...

Blimey. 6000 flying hours is the fatigue design limit for the Hawk if memory serves. Apart from the test rig specimens, that's the first airframe I've heard of actually reaching the limit.

Edited by Twobad
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I had a good look around the Hawk and the other exhibits at Old Sarum last week with my two children. We thoroughly enjoyed our visit and they loved sitting in the cockpits. If you’ve not been you must go! The Hawk is a superb addition! 

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On 8/23/2019 at 1:50 PM, Selwyn said:

Being a RAF armourer for many years  and    on Harriers GR3/T2/4 , 233OCU  in the UK and  4 Sqn  in Germany. I can assure you that ejection seats were removed by squadron  personnel on a time basis   and sent back to the Seat servicing bay where they had the specialist equipment to carry out servicing, repairs, and modifications.   It was part of my job  to be part of the team to remove and replace the seats and to take them to the Seat bay and collect replacements.  In all my time there was only one instance that the seat underwent a modification at Squadron level and that is when the harrier changed from the short strap harness system to the long strap combined harness system in 1982.  As this was basically a safety equipment change which we did anyway on a time basis  it was sensible to do it that way.

 

The seat once serviced  was then "held in stock"  until  issued to the next  aircraft that was due a seat change.  The  only prerequisite on Harriers  was that the front seat of the single seater was different to the T bird front seat  and the T bird rear seat was different again and you had to make sure the right type went in the right place.  

 

 I am fully aware why the Mk 10 headboxes were changed  On Tornado it was because they seriously restricted the rear view of the crew in combat situations and the modification was also found to assist in front vision in the hawk.  And of course it was sensible to standardise  the design across the Air Force.  

 

Selwyn

 

Same/similar procedures that we carry out in the RCAF.

 

I think this Hawk may have spent time in Canada for cold weather testing.

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Scooby, XX154 could have done: she spent 20 years at Boscombe Down, involved with all sorts of trials, including overseas. 

 

XX154 first flew on 21 August 1974 from Dunsfold piloted by Duncan Simpson, Chief Test Pilot of HSA (Kingston), reaching 20,000 ft in a flight lasting 53 minutes. She arrived at Boscombe Down on 20 January 1982 and stayed at EPTS until 21 August this year.  

The original concept included the importance of a base line for the aircraft’s development. Subsequent perseverance by engineers, marketers, demonstrations by test pilots, RAF and Navy, including the Red Arrows, resulted in excess of 1,000 Hawks operating and on order today. This includes the US Navy integrated training system T45 Goshawk, a programme of design and development to make the Hawk aircraft carrier capable. XX154 became that bench-line aircraft and as such is a significant part of aviation history. 

 

This link shows her arrival at Old Sarum: https://www.qinetiq.com/blogs/2019/08/hawk-xx154-retires-after-45-years-service

 

Edited by 224 Peter
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  • 1 month later...
On 9/7/2019 at 3:32 PM, Twobad said:

Blimey. 6000 flying hours is the fatigue design limit for the Hawk if memory serves. Apart from the test rig specimens, that's the first airframe I've heard of actually reaching the limit.

Current flying hour life is 12,000 now, on y unit we have one a./c in excess of 10380 flying hours, the in service Hawk T1/1A fleet had a fuselage [centre & rear] replacement a few years ago, the Mainplane was replaced  back in late 80's/early 90's, tailplanes were replaced & fin mounts reworked too in early to mid 2000's, current out of service is looking at 2027 - 2030.

Edited by Hawkkeeper
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Not allocated.  Possibly to mark a gap between the first prototype and the first production aircraft.  There was no 2nd prototype.  I was working at Kingston at the time, and I don't recall any suggestion for such an aircraft which conceivably could have been XX155.  Just the Ministry doing their thing.

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Hi

    Remember XX156 carrying out hot weather trials in Malta in 1975. At the time the aircraft was camouflaged in DSG/DG/LAG and ended up as a trials aircraft at RAE Bedford. When it eventually made its way into the RAF fleet it recieved the overall black scheme but also ended up with the Red Arrows as a non smoke equipped aircraft for a while. Quite ironic that the last time I saw it airworthy was as a static aircraft at the Malta Airshow all those years since the first time I had seen it in Malta.

 

      John

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 9/8/2019 at 12:13 PM, 224 Peter said:

Which is why we have it! 

The EPTS people seem to have flown it right up to the "end of life". 

 

No longer relevant to the new 5th generation glass cockpit aircraft that are entering or are in service, Hawk TI is all analogue gauges in the cockpit, only 100Sqn, Red Arrows &736NAS fly T1 now.

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The Red Arrows Hawks could almost be classified as museum material.....!

What will replace them? I can't see the MOD funding a new fleet of Hawk T2s. 

I'd like to have seen a new unit of Tornados painted red..there are quite a few examples with plenty of fatigue life being scrapped. Now they would have made an interesting display...

 

Back to reality...BDAC is negotiating to take into the collection two development aircraft with a particularly strong link to Boscombe Down. No details yet....but watch the BDAC website and social media pages next year. 

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  • 5 months later...

I seem to remember that the Matchbox 1/72 Hawk had this aircraft as one of it's colour options, the other was Red Arrows.

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