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618 Sqn - Mosquito help


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This is going to be more of a long shot query.

 

I've identified most of their aircraft from a variety of sources, but there's one that I'm coming up blank.  The ORB gives a great deal of info but whilst it mentions that they received a Mosquito T.III , along with ten FB.VIs that were used for training (and I do have all the serials plus some code tie ups*), it doesn't mention said T.III's serial, although it was borrowed from RAF Dyce.

 

A look through a list of production aircraft plus potted histories lists all the Mosquitoes but no T.III.

 

So the questions are did 618 actually get a T.III, and if so what was the serial?

 

 

*These were entirely separate aircraft from the FB.VI that the unit used in Australia. They also had another pair of PR.XVIs in the UK

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Did you get DZ700 ? A MkII which shows up in Des Curtis book "A Most Secret Squadron" in April 1944 - but I suspect you are looking at an earlier period. There's no obvious mention of a T.III though.

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Posted (edited)

IIRC DZ700 was an F.II that was with 333 sqn - there's a shot of it in Bowyer's Mosquito Squadrons of the RAF.  I'll have look at that aircraft's history (I have decals for it on an Aviaology sheet) and another scan of Des Curtis book won't go amiss either. Incidentally, there's an interview with him on YouTube where he's talking about Highball.

 

The period I'm interested for the T.III is July 44 - the ORB lists receiving the ten FB.VI from De Havilland on the 14th and the T.III from RAF Dyce at the same time.  It's very detailed - I've the serials for the Mosquitoes they borrowed from 105 and 139, the Beaufighters, the two Ansons, a pair of PR.XVIs and a Spitfire VIII, in addition to all the Highball aircraft and the FB.VIs used for training, but frustratingly not that T.III!

 

Thanks for the help.

Edited by The wooksta V2.0
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@The wooksta V2.0

Were the TIII's all conversions or new builds? If they were conversions, going to the IDF Serials website and going through the FB VI liist, you might find your 618 Sq TIII, as the website gives the squadron assignments of each aircraft since acceptance. Worth a try? I came up empty with every search parameter I could think of, and I thought of a bunch! (Is this a great hobby or what?) Good luck, W!

Mike

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618 was in Scotland, with Mosquitoes from formation in March 1943 to late August 1944 and had detachments at Dyce.  There does not appear to be any other Mosquito units at Dyce during this period, there was a station flight though why it had a scarce Mosquito III to allocate seems odd, 22 III built to end 1942, 74 in 1943 and 44 January to June 1944.

 

8 OTU certainly had lots of Mosquitoes, based at Fraserburgh and using Dyce

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8 (Coastal) OTU moved from Fraserburgh to Dyce on 8 Feb 1943. By March 1944 its establishment is noted as including 6+2 Mosquito T.III, amongst many other marks, which grew to 10 by Jan 1945. It then moved to Haverfordwest. No serials though.

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Posted (edited)

I've got the serials of all the T.3s that were with 8OTU, although I didn't go past the LR range aircraft as they were built after July 44. At a guess, I'd say it could be one of the HJ range, simply because the LR range machines were delivered before and after the date I'm looking at.  An HJ machine could be spare if 8OTU were getting new aircraft. Now to find a photo of one.

 

A scan of Most Secret Squadron doesn't reveal much more, other than they acquired a Dominie late in 43 that doesn't appear in the ORB.  That's another one to add to the build pile...

 

Thanks to all for the pointers. They are very appreciated.

Edited by The wooksta V2.0
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You're probably aware of this pic of DZ700 https://www.airhistory.net/photo/136604/DZ700 which looks like it could be at a Coastal OTU. It's mentioned in Curtis' book near the back in the copy of a page from a logbook - sorry, don't have the book to hand at the mo to be more exact.

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12 hours ago, The wooksta V2.0 said:

I've got the serials of all the T.3s that were with 8OTU, although I didn't go past the LR range aircraft as they were built after July 44. At a guess, I'd say it could be one of the HJ range, simply because the LR range machines were delivered before and after the date I'm looking at.  An HJ machine could be spare if 8OTU were getting new aircraft. Now to find a photo of one.

 

A scan of Most Secret Squadron doesn't reveal much more, other than they acquired a Dominie late in 43 that doesn't appear in the ORB.  That's another one to add to the build pile...

 

Thanks to all for the pointers. They are very appreciated.

You've got me looking at the ORB now, mostly because I want to build an XVIII from the detachment at Predannack/Portreath before or after it was absorbed into 248 Squadron. I've the Tamiya kit and Paragon conversion set so just need to decide code/serial and source the decal for the code - if I do the well known 'O' then a red letter with a white outline is needed. I assume the same red/white would be needed for other aircraft. I fancy "L" or "I" as they were involved in attacks on U-boats and I think the serials are MM425 and HX903?

 

As an aside there is a Dominie (X.7383) mentioned in the ORB for 17/8/43.

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1 hour ago, rossm said:

You've got me looking at the ORB now, mostly because I want to build an XVIII from the detachment at Predannack/Portreath before or after it was absorbed into 248 Squadron. I've the Tamiya kit and Paragon conversion set so just need to decide code/serial and source the decal for the code - if I do the well known 'O' then a red letter with a white outline is needed. I assume the same red/white would be needed for other aircraft. I fancy "L" or "I" as they were involved in attacks on U-boats and I think the serials are MM425 and HX903?

 

As an aside there is a Dominie (X.7383) mentioned in the ORB for 17/8/43.

 

618 sqn detachment aircraft accordingly to the Alex Crawford book on the type are:

HX902 'O' lost during attack in trawler, crew killed

HX903 'I' Damaged, to De Havilland. 248 23/5/4. Lost in collision W. HR138 crew lost

HX904 'E'

MM424 'H'

MM425 'L'

Coders are dull red, serials in night.  All the photos of TseTse Flies appear to have needle props and finished in the nightfighter scheme of Med Sea Grey overall with Dark Green disruptive on the upper surfaces. 424 is on the cover of the Crawford book, at De Havilland before issue, and has shrouded exhausts and underwing tanks.

A profile in said book of NT225  'O' has it with a dull red letter with a yellow outline.

 

That Paragon conversion is lovely and fits well, although you will need to remove the pouring lug from the nose section as it fouls on the cockpit bulkhead.

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4 hours ago, rossm said:

You're probably aware of this pic of DZ700 https://www.airhistory.net/photo/136604/DZ700 which looks like it could be at a Coastal OTU. It's mentioned in Curtis' book near the back in the copy of a page from a logbook - sorry, don't have the book to hand at the mo to be more exact.

I have it and putting a date to it is hard as it's still carrying the code it had with 333 sqn. DZ700 seems to have got about a bit

235/333/248/235/132 OTU/143/51 OTU, ending it's days as a maintenance aircraft 5913M 3.46

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3 hours ago, The wooksta V2.0 said:

I have it and putting a date to it is hard as it's still carrying the code it had with 333 sqn. DZ700 seems to have got about a bit

235/333/248/235/132 OTU/143/51 OTU, ending it's days as a maintenance aircraft 5913M 3.46

Lee,.... I saw you mention somewhere that the 618 PR.XIV`s in Oz looked to be overall light grey or something,...... surely they were PRU Blue mate?

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The FB.VIs they used for training in both the UK and Australia (two different batches of aircraft, PZ range in the UK, HJ in Australia) were in the nightfighter scheme  of overall Med Sea Grey with disruptive Dark Green uppers. The Australian batch received some extra green on the fins. That batch was part of a larger consignment of aircraft delivered to the RAAF so it would interesting to see if other aircraft in that consignment had the same oddity or perhaps the extra colour was to denote the aircraft allocated to 618?

 

At least one of the Oxtail PR.XVIs was in PRU Blue, the other one photographed with it at Narromine appears to be Aluminium dope. 

 

The Highball aircraft themselves. Different sources state different colours underneath, either PRU Blue or Azure Blue, although they seem to agree on Dark Green and Med Sea Grey for the uppers. I'm minded towards Azure Blue underneath, as the photos of the aircraft in Australia look to have a lighter colour underneath, certainly lighter than PRU Blue.

 

The two Barracudas photographed in Australia. P9911 was photographed at Mascot in overall Aluminium, whereas the other, serial unknown, appears to be in standard FAA colours.

 

That's my reading of the colours anyway.

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The FB.VI delivered to the RAAF in Australia were from the HR serial range. The first batch were issued to 1 squadron in Feb 1945 and were mostly repainted silver in March. There is one photo of A52-526 / HR506 in grey/green but I can’t decide whether the tail is part green or not.

http://www.adf-gallery.com.au/gallery/Mosquito-A52-526/Mosquito_A52_526_Pitoe_Strip_Morotai_Island_Photo_via_Barry_Pattison

 

Have you seen the photos of 618 squadron on board HMS Striker taken while en route to Australia? Not sure if it helps with the colours or not. You need to scroll down the page a bit.

http://www.royalnavyresearcharchive.org.uk/ESCORT/Galleries/STRIKER_Gllery_3.htm

 

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The ORB only mentions a ‘dual Mosquito’, no mark number is stated. As all aircraft are accounted for in the Squadron Record Sheets including the squadron’s Ansons and Spitfire, I would assume that a dual control Mosquito was borrowed rather than allotted so would not be on 618’s books and not have received Squadron markings.

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Posted (edited)
21 minutes ago, EwenS said:

The FB.VI delivered to the RAAF in Australia were from the HR serial range. The first batch were issued to 1 squadron in Feb 1945 and were mostly repainted silver in March. There is one photo of A52-526 / HR506 in grey/green but I can’t decide whether the tail is part green or not.

http://www.adf-gallery.com.au/gallery/Mosquito-A52-526/Mosquito_A52_526_Pitoe_Strip_Morotai_Island_Photo_via_Barry_Pattison

 

Have you seen the photos of 618 squadron on board HMS Striker taken while en route to Australia? Not sure if it helps with the colours or not. You need to scroll down the page a bit.

http://www.royalnavyresearcharchive.org.uk/ESCORT/Galleries/STRIKER_Gllery_3.htm

 

Can't tell that tail either, so I suspect it's just in MSG. For Australian Mosquitoes, David Vincent's Mosquito Monograph is very detailed and well worth the expense, although I think others may baulk at the cost.

 

Ta for the Fencer link, I found those a few weeks back. May not help with the colours, but they're nice photos to have anyway.

 

Thanks again to all of you.

Edited by The wooksta V2.0
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OK, I've tried to resist, but now that someone has mentioned it, any Gen on the Spit VIII would be much appreciated.  Perhaps we shouldn't clutter up this thread, but I don't there's going to be much volume anyway!

 

bob

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I'm away from my scrawled notes, but the serial given in 618's ORB is JF286. It seems to have survived the war, apparently SOC in '48.

 

618 seem to have form for bending aircraft. The Navy weren't too amused about the six Barracudas they damaged during deck landing in '44 - there's a photo of on partially off the deck of Rajah and Wing Commander Hutchinson is laughing, whilst the deck hands are less than amused - and 'Nipper' McClean ditched another.

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On 20/04/2021 at 18:42, The wooksta V2.0 said:

The Highball aircraft themselves. Different sources state different colours underneath, either PRU Blue or Azure Blue, although they seem to agree on Dark Green and Med Sea Grey for the uppers. I'm minded towards Azure Blue underneath, as the photos of the aircraft in Australia look to have a lighter colour underneath, certainly lighter than PRU Blue.

51129997071_864d6d07f3_b.jpg

 

been meaning to post on this,  but I'd suggest RAAF Sky Blue, it often photos near white,  for comparison, and would have been available.

 

http://www.adf-gallery.com.au/gallery/albums/SPITFIRE/Spitfire_Mk_Vc_trop_EE610_later_A58_110_1_APU.sized.jpg

http://www.adf-gallery.com.au/gallery/albums/SPITFIRE/Spitfire_Mk_Vc_trop_EE610_later_A58_110_1_APU.jpg

or, note Spitfire behind

27a0b571-e592-4c8c-838f-4ca48c659be8.jpg

 

see for a colour chart

http://www.clubhyper.com/reference/images/spartanpaintchartpm_1.JPG

 

Note sure what some of Australian members might know or suggest on this?, @Ed Russell, @Magpie22 @Sydhuey ? 

 

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Sorry nothing from me, never really looked much as Aussie Mossies. Boston's , Beaufighter's ,B-25's , Catalina's and Sunderland's are my main interest.  

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The usual interpretation is Earth Brown / Foliage Green over faded RAAF Sky Blue, which is consistent with the photo, which has high contrast. Some experiments at Dulux with the RAAF Sky Blue recipe showed it faded to off white in weeks rather than months in summer direct sun.

I am sure people who look for "unusual" schemes could have a field day with the photo - how about Olive Drab / Dark Green over White? It would look nice. 😀

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Troy makes a good case for RAAF Sky underneath the 618 Highball aircraft.  Richards Franks and Caruana argue PRU Blue, whereas Paul Lucas says Azure Blue as that's what's stated in the official camo instructions. Given the assumptions, errors and downright falsehoods in his Datafile and Valiant Wings books on the Mosquito, I'd trust Boris Johnson more than Richard Franks, who also argues for the codes for the Highball aircraft to be red outlined in black when there's literally no evidence for it. Everyone else says Night and the photos seem to back that up.

 

There's a good photo of one of the Highball aircraft, DZ542, landing on Implacable in Rawlings' RAF Coastal and Special Squadrons book, but I can't make out a code and there's not enough of the underside in view to judge colour, although it still has standard RAF Type C markings,   The photos of the aircraft enroute aboard Fencer and Striker don't show much underside either.

 

Of the aircraft that 618 borrowed from 105 and 109 sqns (4 from each), I've managed to locate their serial/code letter tie up for 4 aircraft, so I can do a pair of representatives, I have a Hasegawa mk VIII for JF286 and a Heller Dominie. 

 

On the subject of Highball, has anyone seen any photos of the two aircraft that were used post war for further trials by Vickers?  I don't have the relevant serials to hand, but IIRC there was an FB6 and a TR33 used.

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11 hours ago, The wooksta V2.0 said:

 

 

There's a good photo of one of the Highball aircraft, DZ542, landing on Implacable in Rawlings' RAF Coastal and Special Squadrons book, but I can't make out a code and there's not enough of the underside in view to judge colour, although it still has standard RAF Type C markings,   The photos of the aircraft enroute aboard Fencer and Striker don't show much underside either.

 

 

 

Is this the one?

https://www.maritimequest.com/misc_pages/john_stanley_wood_collection/john_stanley_wood_collection_page_20.htm

 

Ignore the caption it is clearly wrong since in Oct 1945 Implacable was making a POW repatriation trip from Australia to Canada (some of the other captions in the series are also completely wrong by the way). The squadron ORB dates this to 10 Oct 1944. Odd thing is though that this event does not rate a mention in the histories I have for Implacable.

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20 hours ago, The wooksta V2.0 said:

Richards Franks and Caruana argue PRU Blue, whereas Paul Lucas says Azure Blue as that's what's stated in the official camo instructions. Given the assumptions, errors and downright falsehoods in his Datafile and Valiant Wings books on the Mosquito,

I've not seen the Mosquito books, just got the Valiant Wings Hurricane, and it' s, erm, the same level of accuracy.   

Plenty of things that have been discussed here years ago with corrections and new bits of info,  not in book, same errors repeated are still in the book.... still gets the Mk.IV wing wrong....  I have been complining a glitch list.

I was sent an partial list of faults with their Boomerang book, same deal.

Are any of the books Franks does any good, or are they all just churned out without much care.

 

23 hours ago, The wooksta V2.0 said:

Troy makes a good case for RAAF Sky underneath the 618 Highball aircraft. 

the images in the 2nd Vol of the Thirsk Mosquito book, all the underside photo near white, from several sources,  an I have not seen Azure Blue look like is in B/W pics.   Plus,  RAAF Sky Blue would be available.   Those pics don't seem to be online though.

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