cavebloke Posted January 5, 2021 Share Posted January 5, 2021 Hi Everyone, For the last few years, I’ve been researching my grandfather’s Cierva C.30a autogiro and I would really like your help to model it accurately. During the time it took to set up my Britmodeller account, I’ve enjoyed reading the forum archives and it seems that @petetasker is a bit of a C.30/Rota expert – so it would be great to get your thoughts. I am full of admiration for @pierre Giustiniani's model of G-ACUU as HM580 – it was fantastic to see. And another incredible find was @Fastcat's story of sneaking into Elmdon hangar to see G-ACUU in the 60s. Wonderful stuff! The time now seems perfect to model G-ACUU given the availability of the Mini-Art 1:35 kits, which look great to my untrained eyes but as they come in so many flavours, I'm not sure which one to start with (or are all the kits the same, just with variation in the decals?). I want to model G-ACUU as it was in 1950 when my grandfather bought it. It was also in the same scheme when it flew at Hendon’s 50 years of flying display 1951. My grandfather loaned the aircraft to Norman Hill (who was a F/O in No.529 Squadron) to fly the display. My grandfather was an RAF signals F/L involved in radar development during the war and I have his service record but have been unable to tie it to the autogiros so far, despite my best efforts. The liveries pre- and post-war look very similar in the images from “Aeroplane Monthly” magazine (below) but the longitudinal stripe is different widths. The colours are a complete mystery though because all the images I have seen to date are black-and-white. The aircraft has been well photographed since the 1960s when, following the birth of my father, my grandmother forced Guy to stop flying and it was loaned to the Skyfame collection and has latterly found a prominent home at the IWM Duxford next to their glorious Spits. The IWM have returned to G-ACUU to a wartime scheme, so I would really like to commemorate its civilian life. Some have linked the nickname “Billy Boy” to G-ACUU but nobody in my family has ever heard this name and so we don’t know where it came from. In the book “Spitfires and Autogiros: A history of Upper Culham Farm, RAF Henley-on-Thames”, the author Darren J. Pitcher claims the following which I have not been able to verify: - G-ACUU/HM580 was crashed on the 18th October 1943 whilst returning to Thornaby in bad weather flown by P/O Gillies. I’m hoping there might be a photo of this somewhere. - G-ACUU was the last autogiro to fly with the RAF. This is a sad footnote to the story but I haven’t heard this before and it would give the aircraft extra importance. Sorry, that’s a bit of a full-on first post - hope it's interesting to some and starts a conversation. Cheers, Simon 1 Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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