Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Misc. Forums > Aviation History and Nostalgia
Reload this Page >

Bristol Britannia details

Aviation History and Nostalgia Whether working in aviation, retired, wannabee or just plain fascinated this forum welcomes all with a love of flight.

Bristol Britannia details

Old 15th Dec 2008, 08:16
  #41 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: london
Posts: 378
Douglas C-54 and Lockheed C-69 sired civil families from military priority and production volume. All their vendor bits and bobs - the items causing Brit's SNAFUs - emerged from multiple applications, large production runs. Brabazon Type III, to compete with them, was deferred, in the 1943-47 timeframe, because the obvious designers were the Heavy bomber teams, whose efforts were to Pacific schemes (which apart from Avro Lincoln, lapsed), and then to atomic platforms which settled mid-1947 as (to be) V-Bombers.

Bristol had no large structures expertise, but had been selected, 3/43, for Brabazon Type I, in part because they were "spare", in part because their local MP was Minister of Aircraft Production, and in part because their 11/42 bid for a 75ton Pacific bomber included a wing thought fit to lift pax Transatlantic. In 1946 Brabazon III was redefined as Medium Range Empire, selected 7/47, when Avro/HP/Vickers were preoccupied with Bombers, as Centaurus/Bristol T.175: the precise intent was to constrain $ spend by limiting BOAC/BSAAC to a mere few interim US products. So through 1947-50 Bristol tried to do huge Brabazon Type I (T.167) and large MRE, Type 175. Proteus was substituted for Centaurus in 1950; then Korea distracted every vendor. From pressurisation to power, Bristol became overloaded, out-of-their-depth. Piston/MRE had been intended for service by 1950, but entered, as Britannia 102, on 1/2/1957, by when it was a generation adrift in terms of component maintainability/reliability.
tornadoken is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2008, 14:30
  #42 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: U.K.
Posts: 615
My father took a Britannia down to Khartoum and Entebbe in July 1956 to undertake de-icing trials. Pictures of pictures I'm afraid.

Not sure what the event surrounding this picture was;
GK430 is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2008, 17:16
  #43 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: South of the M4
Posts: 1,509
Early RAF Britannia operations were bedevilled by engine problems and engine changes were a regular occurrence.

Below are some screen grabs from my 8mm cine film that I took during a double engine change at Entebbe in April 1960. I was with 99 Sqn and we flew out two replacement engines, a portable (an oxymoron if ever there was one!) loading platform and six fitters to do the engine changes.

First the loading platform had to be off-loaded with the aid of a crane and assembled, replacement engines off-loaded next, the fitters removed the duff engines and installed the replacements.

At the end the reverse procedure was followed. The whole process took four-days during which we stayed in the opulent splendour of the Lake Victoria Hotel.

Apologies for the quality but 8mm cine film screen grabs are not likely to match ‘proper’ camera photos.

The 'portable' Britannia loading platform.

Replacement engines are off-loaded.

The two Brits at Entebbe.

Engine changes in progress.

The fitters take a break.

Last edited by Warmtoast; 25th May 2018 at 20:18.
Warmtoast is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2008, 19:50
  #44 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Southeast U K
Posts: 291
I hated the Britannia. Bl**dy AWFUL aircraft.
Low and Slow and grossly overweight it was
a typical British lashup!
Old Fred Murray that flew them for Monarch
and IAS loved them for that reason, he made
more money out of them because they were SD
bl**dy slow.
I worked for Monarch and IAS. I HAD to work on
the heaps at Monarch, no choice, but I refused to
have anything to do with them at IAS, the DC 8
was a much better aircraft in ALL respects.
A generational thing I suppose.
Mind you, I've still got a Brit 300 Vol 1, and a
Proteus engine Overhaul Manual lurking in the
loft. Collectors' Item? Britannia?
Storminnorm is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2008, 19:55
  #45 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: It wasn't me, I wasn't there, wrong country ;-)
Age: 74
Posts: 1,757

At least you got to anoint Africa on the lawns at the Lake Vic after a few G & Ts Old Boy Terrible shame that the Shacks blew donks there and in NBO as well

Bought many a Tusker & White Cap for the lads in the late 60s in East Af
merlinxx is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2008, 19:57
  #46 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: It wasn't me, I wasn't there, wrong country ;-)
Age: 74
Posts: 1,757
Err Stormin

When did Fred Murray leave IAS ? G'day Member
merlinxx is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2008, 20:47
  #47 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Near Bridport, Dorset UK
Age: 72
Posts: 91
Here's some more from Changi in the early 60's.
First a Brit having one of those engine changes.
The C-47 with US Air Force looking markings is actually Vietnamese- pre 'the war'. Probably on delivery.

Here's some showing they did fly.

This ones about to load a Ghurka detachment going to Borneo in 1963

Postfade is offline  
Old 15th Dec 2008, 21:24
  #48 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: norwich, norfolk, UK
Age: 70
Posts: 620
And one with all bits burning, and ready to go ...........

norwich is offline  
Old 16th Dec 2008, 16:15
  #49 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Okay A Bit East
Age: 75
Posts: 122
Prop Holding

I was a very young airman on 'Aircraft Prep' at Lyneham in the early sixties and was one of those who used to hold the prop until the engine had spooled up to the point where the prop was engaged(?) (there was always a solid clunk when that happened) There was no real need to run away because it was a fairly slow exercise at first when spinning up. No what was worse and I have nightmares when I think about what we were doing then , was we would have a dare as to how fast the props would be spinning and 'calmly' walk out from between the blades of the two engines!
cliver029 is offline  
Old 16th Dec 2008, 18:59
  #50 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: London
Posts: 311
One of the routes on which Civilian Britannias had a long career was the Courier Service to Woomera:
BUA - Who lost the contract to:
Cunard Eagle which became
British Eagle and after their demise
Monarch took it over.

I only remember ever seeing one picture of an Aircraft at the Woomera end of the service (Eagle, but which entity cannot remember) does anyone have any Pictures of a Brit on the ramp at Woomera?
Opssys is offline  
Old 16th Dec 2008, 22:19
  #51 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Sale, Australia
Age: 75
Posts: 3,829
What was the reason for hanging onto the prop during the start?
Brian Abraham is offline  
Old 1st Jan 2009, 07:57
  #52 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Asian Region:
Posts: 140
Britania 102 Flight Deck Photograph


I flew BOAC's Britania 102,s in the 1960,s when they were on lease to Malayan Airways based in Singapore. Can anyone tell me where I can find a good picture of the 102 flight deck that includes the consol with the brake dwell lever, the centre panel showing the BMEP indicators and both pilots instrument panels. Just a whim to once again look at something I knew so well but has now slipped away with the galloping years. With thanks,

828a is offline  
Old 1st Jan 2009, 08:27
  #53 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Under the clouds now
Age: 81
Posts: 2,132
Try this link and have a look at G-ALRX.
brakedwell is offline  
Old 1st Jan 2009, 13:54
  #54 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Near Bridport, Dorset UK
Age: 72
Posts: 91
Here's the BOAC Britannia 102 G-ANBF during it's charter period with Malayan Airways. This is Paya Lebar 1963.

The only cockpit photo of inside a Brit I got was this RAF one. My teenage friend Brian Mitchell tries out the pilots

We occasionally blagged our way onto planes at Changi. I also remember getting into the visiting Boeing 727 demonstrator at Paya Lebar in '63. Not likely to happen these days alas.

The Malayan Airways Brits were then replaced with BOAC Comets on charter. Air Ceylon also had BOAC Comets I recall.

David Taylor.
Postfade is offline  
Old 1st Jan 2009, 18:30
  #55 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Asian Region:
Posts: 140
Thanks for the repy but the link to G-ALRX did not come up. Would you mind trying it again. ( I like your nom de plume, it says a lot ) Best,

Thanks, nice picture of G-ANBF I remember it well. The tarmac scene is familiar as is the Paya Lebar background and the Malayan Airways tiger head logo on the tail. Unfortunately the only thing missing are the scrumptious Singapore hostesses ( nice word hostesses ) that decorated the cabin. I dont recall the second identical ground pointer Artificial Horizon on the Captains panel but this may have been a RAF mod or perhaps it's longer ago than I care to admit. Best,
828a is offline  
Old 1st Jan 2009, 20:13
  #56 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Near Bridport, Dorset UK
Age: 72
Posts: 91
828a- glad to be able to bring back some memories, so (hoping that I'm not diverting this thread too much) - here are a few more:

A general view of the Paya Lebar maintenance hangars with the Admin Block and Control Tower in the background. Taken from around the flying club 1962.

Here's G-ANBJ taken looking down from the Admin Block. a hive of activity as she's turned around.

What routes were Malayan Airways running with the Brits then, I can't remember now?

Other Britannia 102's that I've got pics of are;

and G-ANBM

I also can't remember how many were on charter from BOAC at any onetime.

Finally the following photo from the first one that I posted. This is G-ANBF starting with port inner running.

Paya Lebar looks quiet in this shot. Aircraft movements were far less than we are used to nowadays and during an afternoon in 1961/2, I could probable expect to see a couple of Britannia turn arounds, a couple of Dak/Friendship or Viscount departures and maybe an Air India Super Connie or 707. Maybe a 'short nosed' Qantas 707-138 or a Convair 880M (anyone remember them?) from Cathay or JAL might come through if I stayed long enough.
Still I'd wander back through the nearby Malay kampong to pickup the bus on the Tamplines Road happy with that. I was only 14 or 15 at the time.

David Taylor.
Postfade is offline  
Old 2nd Jan 2009, 07:40
  #57 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Under the clouds now
Age: 81
Posts: 2,132
Sorry 828a I had a senior moment!
Try Britannia Aircraft Preservation Trust - home of the Bristol Britannia then look at G-ALRX.
Should have stayed in Superfine.
brakedwell is offline  
Old 2nd Jan 2009, 08:33
  #58 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: AEP
Age: 75
Posts: 1,421
Always love to read about airliners of the old days...
With the Britannia, I never forget that Canadair CL-28, CC-109 and CL-44D/J were related.
I do not remember what was common and what was different...
Yes, the engines, the CL-28 with R-3350 power.
And the RR Tyne for the CC-109 and CL-44s...
Only got to fly as passenger on a Loftleidir CL-44J, LUX-KEF-JFK in 1968.
LUX-JFK was $189.oo then.
If I recall, the CL-44J had a capacity of 216 passengers, sardine class.
Was also a "Whispering Giant"...
I enjoy your texts and pictures, thanks.

Happy contrails
BelArgUSA is offline  
Old 2nd Jan 2009, 09:06
  #59 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Chedburgh, Bury St.Edmunds
Age: 76
Posts: 1,106
Flew in Britannia Airways 100series to Sicily with my future wife [it was her first flight]. Were there for the Targa Florio motor race. Leaving Punta Raise we had three rejected take-offs in a row with no explanation. Made it on the fourth.Then to Monaco GP on the Monarch Brit which is now in Duxford, where my wife works on Airshow Days. Lovely aeroplane to travel in. Aaaaah nostalgia.
JEM60 is offline  
Old 2nd Jan 2009, 11:26
  #60 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Asian Region:
Posts: 140
Malayan Airways Memories;

Postfade; Selamat Pagi kawan ( Greetings Friend )

Thanks for the great memories. Those three DC-3 s on the apron in front of the Malayan Airways main hangar turn back the clock for me. Flew all of them for many years and enjoyed every minute of it. There was a total of twelve so the other nine must have been out on the routes in Malaya or British North Borneo or in the hangar. The Britannia 102 on lease from BOAC only flew between Singapore-Hongkong-Kuala Lumpur and Djakarta ( note my spelling of Djakarta, it's an age giveaway ! ) All daylight flying, no time changes, happy flight deck, lovely cabin crew and no brain draining security. Toss in a nice aeroplane that was easy to fly and carried plenty of fuel and one can't but help make special memories. Malayan Airways operated the Britannia only to compete with Cathay Pacific's newly acquired Convair 880-22m which I also remember very well indeed.
Your mention of the Singapore Flying club reminded me of an incident I was involved in that confirmed what a superb aircraft the Britannia was. One of their Chipmunks botched a landing on the grass strip that was positioned between Rw02 and the main taxiway just as we were on the taxiway alongside where it happened. ( we were at max take off weight bound for Hongkong ). The resultant Chipmunk recovery and overshoot could very well have caused a collision and it all happened just as the before take off checklist was being read. The cursing and swearing we directed at the Chipmunk pilot caused the setting of the flaps for take off to be missed and as a result we took off with the flaps up when they should have been extended. There was much silence and personal guilt on the flight deck when we realised what had happened but the 102 didn't seem to mind. Once again thanks for the memories or as you would know-----terima kasih. Best

I've had a look at the Britannia info. Thanks very much. I's a shame someone did not have the sense to keep at least one fully intact. I wonder how many of todays aviation types read your pen name and interpret it as " he braked well " The true meaning of course is known only to those who moved the lever. Best.
828a is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.