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Spitfire Mk.I PR Ib

Bruce Archer

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Hi All!

    I am attempting to build a Mk.Ib PR Spitfire. The issue I am having is the upper wing. I know the cameras for the PR.IB were fitted between the inner gun bays

 and the covers were left to service the cameras. But an additional hatch was added between the bays for the actual camera. What I need to find out is : was there a bulge on the camera cover on the upper wing. I have searched Spitfire the History, Wings of Fame 5, various Spitfire at war, and 7 other volumes Lots of info on the PR.iC and up but nothing really on the PR.IA or IB.  Can anyone help ?


Edited by Bruce Archer
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Spitfires described as PR Mk IB.

1. There is a profile of P9931 in On Target Profiles 8 by Jon Freeman. There two ovals which could be bulges. They do correspond with the bulges here but they are not in the right place for cameras.


There is a picture of this Spitfire in The Spitfire Story by Alfred Price.

2. There are 4 small pictures of K9791 in Classic Warbirds - Merlin PR Spitfires by Wojtek Matusiak. Two of them show the upper wing surface at a fairly acute angle and they are not particularly sharp.

PM me your email if you want a scan of these.

3. There's a photo of N3069 here and the eye of faith might be able to see a bulge but I can't.


So it looks like the answer is no bulges.

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Taken from Valiant wing Publishing "Supermarine Spitfire Part 1 (Merlin Engined)"


PR Type A (Same as Mk I - Mid & late) Except for

  • Gunsight removed and replaced with camera control box
  • Canopy incorporated teardrop shaped blisters on each side to improve the pilots view below and to the side
  • Armament removed
  • Radio transmitter/Receiver and mast/aerial removed
  • Two (2) F.24 cameras with 5 in. focal length lenses installed in the wings in the space vacated by the inboard guns and their ammunition containers
  • The gun ports were covered over and all gaps etc filled with Plaster of Paris and rubbed down.

PR type B - Same as type A Except :

  • Wrap-around style windscreen without armoured glass or frames
  • Extra 29 imp gal fuel tank fitted in the rear fuselage
  • Ballast weights fitted in rear fuselage to balance the weight of the constant speed propeller units removed
  • Camera lenses upgraded to 8in focal length.

Nothing mentioned or shown about any wing bulges to accommodate the cameras.

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