Tuesday, 2 May 2017

RN Phantoms of 892 Sqn (Airfix new tool colours and markings options)

With the forthcoming release of the new Airfix RAF/RN F-4 Phantom, the 892 Sqn nose flashes are bound to be a popular choice of markings. This small article looks at the variations. The Queen's Silver Jubilee markings were applied in June 1977 to celebrate the 25th year of Queen Elizabeth's reign. The red, white and blue nose flash extended from the tip of the radome to the nose number, with a break in the middle for the superimposed yellow-gold figures 77 topped by a five pointed crown and was applied to nearly all the squadron's then current aircraft. The exception was XV 568 which had the rounded Prince of Wales crown, applied for his own Royal visit to RNAS Yeovilton, Prince Charles having completed his Royal Navy period of service by then. Rather than remove the markings after the Jubilee and air display season was over, the '77 and crown' motif was replaced by 892 Sqn's badge and that version was retained until the Phantoms left the Navy in November 1978. Please note some of the images that follow are in my collection, others are not. Please contact me for credit and/or removal. The composite image below is courtesy Patrick Martin.

Bow catapult launch (Gordon Lewis)

"..The front wheels remained on the deck with the nose extended, as a naval air mechanic I used to have to extend the nose for launch and the control switch was in the left undercarriage bay, the Buccaneers nose wheel left the ground when pulled back on the launch hooks.." Richard Fagg on the British Phantoms FB Group

Above, Queen's Jubilee scheme 1977 at that year's Prestwick Airshow (Terry Hughes photo)
British F-4 undergoing sea trials on HMS Eagle - Joe Wilkinson in the foreground on the tractor. According to Joe this is probably the aircraft currently on display in the FAA museum now repainted as XV586 - see above.  (pic via Joe Wilkinson)

(Above) FG. 1 XT 867 (152/VL) with 767 NAS, probably during the early 70s - note the 'yellow bird' emblem on the tail fin, otherwise known as the 'ten ton budgie'.. The Naval Air Squadron 767 was established to train FG. 1 pilots between 1969 and 1972. Note the extended nose oleo of 152/ VL on approach..(unknown photographer, photo print in my collection)

  "..the undercarriage just sags under its own weight until it touches down, then compresses. Hooks weren't routinely used for airfield landing unless the 'chute candled and they dumped it for a go-around.." (Charlie Brown)

" Everything drops when the weight is off the wheels. For carrier ops the nosewheel extended to give better angle of attack on launch. 1/2 flap for take off and full flap for landing. The leading edge flaps came down for both..On the FGR2 we didn't have the extending nosewheel although it might have been useful on a QRA launch from Stanley! We also landed into the cable. It was a 600 foot pull out not too dissimilar to The Ark. The oleos extended under gravity. so what you see on landing is normal. I think the early FG1s had the extending nose wheel but Badger Bolton will pitch in. A few of the Navy mods were retained such as the slotted stabilator but most were slowly phased out."

Dave Gledhill in response to a question of mine on the British Phantoms FB group..

Below; Chris Bolton photo via Mike Young

The SNEB rocket (French: Societe Nouvelle des Etablissements Edgar Brandt) is an unguided air-to-ground 68 mm (2.7 in) rocket projectile (RP) manufactured by the French company TDA Armements, designed for launch by combat aircraft and helicopters

Decal options for the new-tool Airfix RAF/RN FG.1 Phantoms on this blog http://falkeeinsmodel.blogspot.co.uk/2017/01/british-raf-f-4-phantoms-new-f-4.html

Phantom FG.1 XT869/R-002 FAA/892 Sqdn September 1973

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