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Junkers 87 (Irene) Operations in the Pacific

By the 1st April 1945 the Tenth United States Army 7th Infantry Division had captured a small airfield called Yara Hikojo near the small village of Kadena on the Japanese home islands of Okinawa. After repeated attacks by U.S. naval aircraft, the airfield was in dire need of repair with the first Allied aircraft to arrive within 24 hours to start operations over mainland Japan. It was at this point that allied intelligence officers received a call to visit the airfield. On their arrival they discovered a Junkers 87G `Stuka` had been discovered sitting amongst other Japanese aircraft. A quick inspection had found high explosive within the aircraft and it was concluded that this example had been prepared for a Kamikaze mission. After the `Irene`, (this was the Allied Codename for the Ju 87 in the Pacific Theatre of Operations), had been made safe it was removed from the rest of the aircraft and wrecks for a more detailed examination. Although the Allies had known that the Germans had sent Japan various aircraft and weapons for trails and testing, they were still surprised to see a late war `G` variant of the Ju 87 on Japanese soil. They had known about the two Ju 87` `B`s that had been sent for evaluation purposes at the start of the war but that was where they thought the story had ended. They were in for a surprise.

With the war now over a more detailed examination of the Japanese Air Force records could take place and documents analysed. They soon discovered that a total of ten airframes had been sent by submarines from Germany to Japan as early as January 1944. Of those ten airframes 7 were made airworthy, (airframe 8 had been lost when the submarine it was on was sunk and airframes 9 and 10 were then used as spares), and prepared for combat on the island of Guam. They had been sent there to work up for the crews and the Island was not considered a target at that time by the Japanese High Command. This soon changed however when the Carriers of U.S. Task Force 58 turned into the wind in the early hours of June 19th 1944 and started launching aircraft for the attack and then invasion of the Mariana Islands.

It was soon discovered via the documents that the Japanese Ju 87`s combat debut, and ultimately only mission of the war, was on the evening of the 19th. In an amazing bit of luck all seven `Irene`s` had survived the days attacks and were readied for a night assault on the U.S. fleet. Just before take off one aircraft went unserviceable while the other six slowly made their way into the dark night.

At approximately 11.45pm U.S. radar picked up six approaching aircraft heading for the fleet and Hellcat night fighters from the USS Lexington were sent to intercept. The intruders were correctly identified as hostile, but incorrectly identified as six Aichi B7A `Ryusei` which by coincidence had the same `bent` wing appearance as the Ju-87. With the Japanese aircraft crashing into the sea on a dark night and the fact that `Stuka`s` where purely a European based aircraft, no one questioned the pilots reports and the war went on.

It was only the discovery of the 7th example at Kadena that this tiny untold part of the war can be revealed. When the files were declassified, four pictures and the only ones in existence came to light. They show the 7th example of the Ju 87 `Irene` as found at the airfield near Kadena.






Edited by tc2324
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Hi, most of you will probably have already seen this in the RIS section but it was built for this GB, (sadly due to work load the F8U Crusader 3 won't be finished in time!)................So in a galaxy...far, far away...

The cold war had hotted up, technology was moving forward with gathering momentum and deterrent requirements were moving all the time. The MacMillan government were concerned about the vulnerability of the land based Blue Streak MRBM's and therefore started to look for a creditable airborne alternative. After sifting through the various systems then on offer a decision was made to purchase the US Douglas Skybolt ALBM, a system which had had more than it's fair share of development problems due to the advanced technologies employed but which had eventually won the day and been selected by the USAF to equip the B52 wings that SAC had dotted around mainland USA. In RAF service it was intended to replace ground based Blue Streak and the V-Forces Blue Steel as the primary nuclear weapon to be employed should events escalate and was duly issued under contract ASR.1187 on 24th of April 1964.

Skybolt was in competition with the Lockheed developed submarine based missile system known as Polaris which was so greatly favoured by the admiralty however the government weren't totally convinced and stated that they were not overkeen on keeping all their eggs in one basket as it were and so decided to compromise and issue proceedure orders for both systems thus sharing the burden.The decision was based on the desire to keep the current V-Force in service as long as possible rather than expend a fortune on a multi million pound submarine weapons project. In addition to this the American 'know how' already in place would keep the dollar expenditure down to a minimum.

The big problem with the system was one that the US didn't face, namely that to be effective it would need to a be an airborne deterrent using standing patrols in pre designated launch areas thus denying the Soviets a sitting target.The problem lay with the current aircraft considered to use the system, namely the Vulcans and debatably the Victor which only had limited loiter endurance capability and which would require prolific refuelling sorties to maintain credibility.The other problem was that no purpose built tankers were available only converted V-Bombers (Victor and Valiants) as these were readily available and these sorties would drastically reduce the fatigue life of the types.

The USAF had no such problem with their mighty B-52 and KC-135 force so an alternative was sort.Due to the nature of their business airliner aircraft need long fatigue lives and greater reliability so this was a good place to start looking for suitable airframes. As the transport version of the Vickers VC10 was coming into service it was an obvious choice, so the possibility of converting this great aircraft to the bombing role was investigated. The VC10 had the range, endurance and lifting power required as well as an all important crew rest area and so a ministry working party was set up to investigate the feasibility of such a system .The code name 'Poffler' was given to the project, a term so obtuse that it gave nothing away as to the true intention of the system.

The ALBM carrier was based on the transport command type 1106, with the type 1150 Super's wings and tail but using the shorter type 1100 airliner fuselage and a special cargo door was fitted to assist fitting and removal of the missile guidance system, this only left th problem of powerplants. The standard VC10 Conway bypass turbofans were simply not going to be up to the job of haulling nearly 400,000 lbs of fuel and missiles into the atmosphere and so an alternative was sort.RATO, JATO and even replacement Bristol BS.81 pure turbofans were considered but in the end it was decided to go along with much uprated version of the Supers Rco43 Conway fitted with reheat and water/methanol injection which bumped the max power of each engine up to 42,000 lbs of thrust, more than sufficient to do the job. A new undercarriage was also needed and so a system similar to that of the Soviet TU-154 tri jet liner was designed.This helped to spread the weight/pressure footprint over a larger surface area and so the aircraft could be operated from smaller airfields in case of dispered QRA deployment.Larger diameter lower pressure tyres were used, spares being carriedon long exercises.

Four Skybolts could be fitted using huge twin beam pylons but another two could be fitted to each wing as the centre section through boxes had been strengthened for such an eventuality, bumping the war load up to an astonishing eight ALBM's!.

The mission profiles outlined for these aircraft took them to pre designated launch areas followed by a patrol of up to sixteen hours with one refuelling top up by VC10 tanker required. Circular pattern patrols all overlapped each other and were centred around central Norway, the Skagerrak, the Adriatic Sea and the Aegean Sea, these areas being close enough to the Warsaw Pact countries borders to give good Skybolt cover and launch aircraft protection.

Four squadrons were equipped with the aircraft now known as the VC10 Vengeance Skybolt, namely 139 (Jamaica) and 100 of the Wittering Wing and 617 (Dambusters) and 83 of the Scampton Wing though all could be dispered in groups of four to other airfields if required to do so. Forty two aircraft were produced (12 to 139, 9 to 100, 8 to 83 and 8 to 617 with the last five going to 230 OCU which had moved from Waddington to Wittering in 1965. The weapons facility at Faldingworth near Scampton was used to house and service the weapons. These aircraft served faithfully before relinquishing their nuclear capability in 1972, the airframes being sent to RAF Abingdon for conversion back to heavy transport aircraft, tankers and multi role variants...

My model depicts XM720 of 139 (Jamaica) squadron based at Wittering, (hence the Wittering lion on the fin), where it served alongside the units Victor B2's during 1966 until departing in 1972........but sadly all good things come to an end and the sight and teeth jangling sound of these monsters thundering into the sky in full reheat, obscured by clouds of black smoke from the water injection system are now but distant memories, but for those who witnessed the awesome departure of four fully laden VC10 Vengeance Skybolt's it was an event never to be forgotten,








Edited by general melchett
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Greetings all

Here is the first of my two entries, HMS Queen Elizabeth II. Was looking forward to this build but mainly due to paint issues it turned into a bit of a labour. It isnt as completed as i would like, I did hope for some etch and more detail in the airwing but as the end date is tomorrow I have decided to cut it short. Hopefully it will give you a good idea of the concept.

Cheers now






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Her is my no2! A sea Tornado FRS2 of 892 NAS, Here is the build


Quite enjoyed this build, especially the make it up as you go along way of doing things. Enjoy!!

Cheers now






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In a parallel universe Han & Chewie fly the heavily modified Millennium Lancaster they won from Lando Calrissian.

With twin ion drives pushing the Lanc forward and 4 lazer canons to protect her she was one of the fastest starships in the Galaxy.






Build thread here with more than the 5 photos Link

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Just managed to finish this in time and it now has a name.

This is the first fully equipped prototype of the Junkers/Arado Multi Rollen-Kamfflugzeuge Tornado (1946). Plane is shown before it's twelth test flight with the forward transparencies replaced with temporary aluminium panels fitted as on it's eleventh flight (the first to test all electronic systems at once) the mass of avionics produced so much heat that the perspex melted and filled the cockpit with smoke. Luckilly the pilot, Hans Mueller, managed to kick out some of the windows and could see well enough to save the plane. This had absolutely nothing to do with me spilling super glue all over the model!






The Tornado is fitted with twin 30mm six-barrel cannon as standard and is carrying a large combination Photo Recon/Radar AEW pod. Three stations are plumbed for drop tanks and various bombs missiles and torpedoes. The protoype carries the deer antler style radar but production machines are fitted with a Berliner type in a thimble shaped radome plus a terrain avoidance radar in the forward lower fuselage.

Paul Harrison

Edit: forgot the build thread. http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=53920

Edited by GreenDragon
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And here is my second build, the Republic of Iran Navy Xian FBC-1 Flying Leopard. Was going to be Islamic Republic but I ran out of decals so it is pictured after the overthrow of the current government ! Build and back story here. http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.p...20&start=20

Some (hopefully!) better pics.






Paul Harrison

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BAe Vulcan B3

Had to rush it at the end so strictly speaking it isn't finished, as theres lots more I want to do. But, here it is....

In 1982 after the end of the Falklands war, the MOD realised that, with the phasing out of the Vulcan B2, a large hole would be left in the RAF's offensive capability.

The newly coming into service Tornado would never have the range that a large bomber inherently has. Immediate reaction to a crisis situation would no longer be possible in any future conflicts. It was therefore decided that the RAF still needed its heavy, long range bombers still, if in a vastly reduced fleet.

A proposal was put forward to maintain a single squadron of at least 6 aircraft, which would be capable of carrying out immediate long-range pre-emptive and counter-strikes.

However, due to its age, the existing Vulcan B2 was deemed as not really suitable for the role within the modern RAF.

The choice of aircraft available at the time was rather slim. The B-1B wasn't yet ready for service. The B-52 was as ancient as the outgoing Vulcan. Mutterings were heard of reviving the TSR-2 program, but were dismissed on cost grounds. There was even talk of re-equipping old B-58 Hustlers, but again, it was decided that the total cost would be too great.

The whole program nearly died a death were it not for a proposal put forward by a conglomeration of British aircraft and electronics companies for a solution to the problem.

The proposal was accepted and work began.

Enter the BAe Vulcan B3.

Six aircraft were chosen from the fleet and were stripped to the bare shell and totally zero-lifed.

Every component was stripped, improved where possible, and rebuilt as new.

All the flight systems were replaced with the latest technology, mostly “borrowed” from the Tornado program.

The main radar was taken from the new Tornado GR1, but fitted under a new radome.

The “Red Steer” tail warning radar was replaced with a watered down version of the Sea Harrier FRS1’s Blue Fox, giving excellent rear coverage. Some thought was given to fitting rearward firing AIM-9 Sidewinders, but there were fears that they might potentially lock on to the carrier aircraft’s own exhaust nozzles.

New ECM and ESM systems were fitted.


The pylons, originally designed for Skybolt and found to be so useful during the Falklands campaign, were fitted and cleared to carry a wide variety of weapons.

The bomb bay was outfitted with a rotary dispenser similar to that of more modern planes.

Pave Spike and LRMTS systems were added. The redundant bombardier’s blister was removed.

The main visible difference between the B3 and its predecessors was in the cockpit area.

The main problem associated with the B2 was the lack of ejection seats for the rear crew. To address this problem and because of a reduced workload thanks to the new systems, the crew was reduced to 4. The crew consisted of Pilot, Co-pilot, Navigator/comms and Weapons/defensive systems operator.

The distinctive enclosed teardrop was abandoned for several reasons. Firstly, it was intended as a blast shield against intense nuclear flash. As the B3 would no longer be operating in the nuclear deterrent role, it was no longer needed. Secondly, as previously stated, the rear crew in predecessors had very little chance of escape in an emergency. This was no longer deemed acceptable. Due to the reduction in crew size, the rear crew were elevated to above the fuselage. They sat in a fighter style cockpit with Martin Baker Mk 10 seats. The canopies opened fighter style, but it was decided to keep the lower entry hatch as, due to the size of the aircraft, ingress/egress at foreign airbases could prove difficult from the canopy.

The aircraft were painted in a Hemp and LAG, as was the current thinking

The Squadron chosen to bear the honour of flying the B3 was 617 Sqn, as they had a long history of flying specialized aircraft.

The B3 acquitted itself well in both Gulf Wars and in Afghanistan, where it ably assisted both B-52 and B-1Bs.

617 Sqn, XH 558






Edited by Devilfish
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Finished this one a few hours ago but got distracted by our baby girl teething so excuse the delay in posting pictures.

Soviet Air Force P-51D serving in Korea during the spring of 1945 against retreating Japanese troops.



Better photos and a finish to the build thread tomorrow hopefully.

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Finished this on the 27th, but the base took longer than I anticipated, plus the weather was brutal all weekend, I got some outdoor pics today. Build thread here.

Irish Air Corps F-15D 'Iolar'. JFK AFB, Shannon 1986.






Iolar (pronounced Ill-er) is the Irish word for eagle.

Thanks for looking, and also thanks to the hosts for a great group build! :speak_cool:

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