Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Aircrew Forums > Military Aviation
Reload this Page >

Gaining An R.A.F Pilots Brevet In WW II

Military Aviation A forum for the professionals who fly military hardware. Also for the backroom boys and girls who support the flying and maintain the equipment, and without whom nothing would ever leave the ground. All armies, navies and air forces of the world equally welcome here.

Gaining An R.A.F Pilots Brevet In WW II

Old 17th Jan 2010, 17:58
  #1461 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bournemouth
Age: 76
Posts: 119
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
want a volunteer?

Cliff, my son is fluent in German, I can ask him to put a message in German on the equivalent German forums to this, however.................... as the Father of this thread could I ask you in English (not google German!) to write an introductory paragraph and I would suggest finally adding a link to this forum?

Regards Andy

PS just lent a book to Reg about a 109 pilot I think is was "Spitfire on my tail" I can recommend it. What did you think Reg?

PSS whats this about in the RAF "never volunteer?"
andyl999 is offline  
Old 17th Jan 2010, 18:32
  #1462 (permalink)  
regle
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Spitfire hinter mir !......

Cliff, An extract from the book that Andy mentions...."The voice shaking with fear "Spitfie immer noch hinter mir . Was soll ich tun ? Immer noch hinter mir!" (Spitfire still behind me. What shall I do ?) Then came a clear reply and everyone recognised Galland's voice: "Aussteigen! Sie Bettnasser" (Jump, you bedwetter). The sort of German that is difficult to introduce in ordinary conversation but you never know when it might come in handy. Yes, Cliff, joking aside, I think that you would find Ulrich Steinhilper's "Spitfire on my tail" very interesting and startling in some of the disclosures of the German way of life on a Fighter Squadron. Certainly the question that you posed about rank will be answered. The word "Fahnriche" with the two dots over the 'a' keeps cropping up and I think that it is roughly the equivalent of our "aircrew u/t" but I may be wrong. Best of luck, Reg
 
Old 20th Jan 2010, 16:02
  #1463 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: LIVERPOOL
Posts: 401
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I am just kicking around a rough draft in M.S Word of that witch t I wish Andy’s son to translate into German, so that we can send to the Luftwaffe associations previously mentioned, but am awaiting Andy’s reply . I think it may have to be abbreviated so as not to give Andy’s son too much translating ?
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
COPY OF P.M TO REG AND ANDY.
Hi Reg and Andy.
Herewith a very rough draft of proposed email to German aircrew associations.

I would appreciate your guidance, I don’t want to ‘Upset the apple cart’ , or be accused of ‘Flogging a dead oss’ I would like you to say so. Any constructive criticism would be really welcome.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


I write on behalf of contributors to the thread on PPRuNe (professional pilots rumour network , military section) which can be found on the internet by Googling either PPRuNE or cliffnemo. This is a thread that has now developed into various wartime pilots from all over the world describing their experiences during world war 11. The thread is called ‘ Gaining an R.A.F pilots brevet in W.W 11.’

Although we have tried to make contact with our opposite numbers in Germany , we have had no success and wonder if you could help us to contact either ex Luftwaffe aircrew or near relatives who would be good enough to share information with us. I would assure you that this is a very friendly site, and any ex Luftwaffe aircrew or airmen would be warmly welcomed, and any information appreciated.

I have been frequently informed that many historians obtain information from this thread, and have been asked by certain aircraft museums for permission to use extracts from the thread. Also I have been told that the thread contains a lot of information that does not appear in ,novels, biographies , or other records. I would , therefore, appeal to your organisation for help, and thank you in anticipation.

I would also point out that it may be of interest to current members of the Luftwaffe re the training of aircrew in England and America during the war, as this is described in detail.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Excerpts from PPRuNE.
-us, the flak was less accurate. On this night, over Berlin, it was as light as day because of the low cloud ,the searchlights and the fires blazing below. I had just started my bombing run when I looked out to my left and was astounded to see a Messerschmit 109 about four hundred yards away , literally formated ,just out of our range on our port wing. He stayed there and I told the gunners not to fire as it was useless and would only draw others to the scene. Hee flew across the target with me as we bombed, then the Me 109 pilot pointed towards his guns, shrugged his shoulders, gave me a "thumbs up" sign then half rolled on to his back and dived

Hempy
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: ɐılɐɹʇsnɐ
Posts: 552

best thread on PPRuNe - probably ever.
Old Hairy
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: South Coast
Posts: 92

Thanks Cliff.
Get cracking lad,can't wait to read the rest of your exploits.
All the Best
Old Hairy
cliffnemo is offline  
Old 22nd Jan 2010, 16:16
  #1464 (permalink)  
regle
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
On with the motley..

We had good friends in Brussels and the night life was extremely varied and entertaining. Amongst our friends from the small pre European union British Colony were Johnny and Margaret K. Johnny was head of EMI (The old HMV firm) and often took us with him when he had to entertain some of the visiting recording stars that came over to Brussels. On one of these nights Johnny, who was a charming man but had the reputation of being rather careful, left his coat in the car to save the cloakroom fee when we were going to a nearby Night Club. When we came out in the small hours of the morning he discovered he had left his car keys in the pocket of the coat. That was in the old days when there was no remote locking and you locked the door by pressing the door button as you closed the door. It cost him a small fortune for taxis home and then back in the morning to retrieve his car.

My eldest son, Peter's girl friend and later his Wife, had a small flat in Brussels and we had a wonderful party there one evening. Dora's parents were over staying with us and they thoroughly enjoyed the difference from their quiet life in St.Helens, Lancashire . Freddy and the Dreamers were over performing for EMI and we all piled into Mary's small flat and partied until the small hours. Dora's Father had been in the infantry during the first World War and had , like so many of his generation, joined the Army at seventeen falsely stating that he was eighteen. His experiences with Army Kitchens had put him off Restaurants for life and he would wander round the Antique shops of Brussels whilst we went to one of the multitude of fine little places that could always be found. In one of the few occasions when we persuaded him to come with us he rather disconcerted the "Garcon" who had politely enquired "How would you like your steak cooked, Monsieur ? by his usual reply of "Burnt to Bu...ry".
We caught him once, though when we had persuaded him to come with us and we ordered Frog,s legs. We told him they were "Chicky bits" and he scoffed the lot saying "Delicious".
On one of my later trips I was en route to Bombay when the Steward asked me to talk with our only First class passenger, a Mr Ramamruthram, who had refused all the food offered. I went back and he told me that the food was fine and there was nothing wrong but he was not hungry as he had just come from a company lunch at Eindhoven. When he said "Eindhoven" I knew that he must be with Phillips, the Dutch electonic giant. He confirmed this and I told him that I had been a Mosquito pilot with the Squadron 105, that had been part of the 2 Group low level daylight attack that had taken place in 1942 on the factory which had been forced to make electronic components for the Germans. He told me that he had been talking with a retired fellow Director about that very raid and the chap recalled seeing a Mosquito flash past his window. The window was on the second floor of the building. We talked a lot and eventually became great friends. He was the Director for India and I visited him and his lovely family many times in Bombay. One day many months later I answered the phone in Brussels to find the secretary from his office in Eindhoven on the other end. "When are you coming to Holland to pick up your Tape Recorder ?" she asked me. I had , one day half seriously, expressed an interest in the new VCR's that Phillips had just brought out but the price was astronomical...well over £1,200 in the 1960's. I had completely forgotten this and I asked her what the price was. The answer made me say immediately that I would be over next day to collect it. We, my Wife and her Mother, now staying for long periods with us as she was widowed, all set off for Holland and we had lunch in one of the famed Indonesian Restaurants where we had the "Rijstaffel"which consisted of some sixty odd dishes. Counted one by one by Dora's Mother.
The VCR was a hihgly complicated affair and the tapes were enormous things with the take-up spool mounted on top of the playing one. They were always jamming but Queen Nana, as my Wifes Mother was always known, soon mastered it and would beam with pride when we said "Nice picture , Nana." One of the requests that Mr R. had made of me was that I would take him recordings of "It Aint 'arf 'ot, Mate" whenever I came to Bombay. He told me that he would play them to the Board of Directors before a board meeting and that they would always be helpless with laughter .
I must confess that I have not said much about flying but Airline flying was getting more and more mass transportation minded and so the anecdotes are becoming fewer and fewer. I will try and see what I can pull out of the battered old flying helmet, later. Regle
 
Old 23rd Jan 2010, 19:41
  #1465 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Los Angeles
Age: 71
Posts: 21
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Eindhoven Raid

Two films of the Eindhoven Raid:

Contemporary Movietone newsreel
YouTube - Operation "Oyster", attack on Philips Radio Works, Holland

Documentary extract with voice over of raid footage by Sqn Ldr Charles Patterson
YouTube - RAF Bomber Command's famous Eindhoven raid

Keep it coming, Reg!



The TB
Tabby Badger is offline  
Old 24th Jan 2010, 11:48
  #1466 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: where the north starts
Posts: 104
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Memoirs of a WW-II Typhoon pilot part 7

Sorry, I have been a bit busy over the last few months, so have not been able to post more of Peter Brett's memoirs. However, I now have a chance to catch up, and post a few more instalments. Here is part 7 - Peter is still in Canada in 1942 doing his pilot training. More soon - TOW


Aerobatics were perhaps the most enjoyable but also the most demanding exercises. The straight loop was the first to be taught and was relatively simple. You dived the aircraft to get sufficient airspeed and then eased back on the control column, as the nose of the aircraft rose above the horizon the throttle was opened fully to assist the climb. We were then told to look out sideways until the horizon went past the vertical in order to keep the wings level, and then to look 'upwards' to check that the inverted horizon was level as we went over the top of the loop.
In contrast the slow roll was a relatively complex manoeuvre. After diving to increase the airspeed, the nose was pulled up until just above the horizon. Full sideways movement of the control column was then made to start the roll. As the angle of bank increased you had to apply 'top' rudder (Left hand for a right hand roll) gradually increasing the amount of rudder until, when the wings were vertical to the horizon, the most rudder was needed in order to keep the nose up. As the roll continued to the inverted position the rudder was gradually reduced but the control column moved forward to counteract the tendency for the nose to drop. At the same time the throttle had to be closed since the engine would not run inverted, being gravity-fed with fuel. As the roll continued further the control column had to be eased back again and once more 'top' rudder applied until the aircraft regained straight and level flight. Much later I found that the 'slow' roll in a high performance aircraft was a much simpler operation altogether, but more of that later.
The 'Roll off the top of the loop' and the 'Stall turn' were also taught. The latter being what was once known as the 'Immellmann Turn' after the WW1 German fighter pilot who introduced the manoeuvre. One stunt which we were not officially taught but which Sgt Farrell showed me and which I enjoyed very much was the 'Flick Roll'. This was, in effect, one turn of a horizontal spin. The aircraft was slowed up to a few knots above the stalling speed and then full rudder and full back stick applied. The aircraft shuddered violently and 'flicked' round its horizontal axis. The speed of rotation was fast enough to keep you in your seat without the discomfort of negative 'g'. Of course, if you kept the controls in the original position the aircraft continued to rotate and at the same time drop down until you were in a normal spin.
The 'Barrel Roll' was different again. It was a sort of badly performed loop where the aircraft was flown round a horizontal spiral with sufficient speed to keep positive 'G' at all times. Although aerobatics were fun and did give one confidence in handling the aircraft, we soon found that they were rarely used in combat or operations where the most useful maneuver was the very tight vertical turn, but once again this was still in the future.
'Restarting the engine in flight' was also an unusual experience. It was never explained how you could accidentally stop the engine in flight since, in order to do so, you had to close the throttle, switch off the ignition and then practically stand the aircraft on its tail before the propeller ceased to turn. Restarting then consisted of switching on the ignition and standing the aircraft on its nose until the airspeed was sufficient to turn the propeller against the compression of the engine.
Practice forced landings also provided many opportunities for making glorious mistakes! When flying we were told that we must always keep an eye out for suitable forced landing fields within gliding distance in case of engine failure. We were also to always be aware of the prevailing wind direction by keeping watch on the smoke from chimneys etc. This latter was easy at Windsor Mills since the paper mills gave off vast quantities of both smoke and steam.
The instructors would now and then unexpectedly close the throttle and say "Engine failure, forced landing". Luckily I had no major howlers when doing this exercise except for once. When making very sure that I tried to land downwind, I misread the wind direction from the chimney smoke. The most common fault was trying to reach a field which was too far away and then trying to 'stretch the glide' to reach it. This always resulted in the instructor opening up the throttle and taking over to the accompaniment of some choice advice regarding the inadvisability of committing suicide in company with a reluctant companion. It was also considered inadvisable to land across a ploughed field, or to choose a very green field which turned out to be a bog!
The course at EFTS lasted until mid-June. The last few flying exercises were cross-country flights and a final 'Sixty Hour' check. We also had ground school examinations. Fortunately I have been blessed with the sort of temperament which does not suffer from 'exam nerves' and consequently, although I may not always have known as much as some of the others, I always managed to finish up in one of the top five positions. The course finished on 14th June with a party in the Services Club and we were then given 14 days leave until we had to report for SFTS (Service Flying Training School).
tow1709 is offline  
Old 24th Jan 2010, 11:58
  #1467 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: where the north starts
Posts: 104
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Memoirs of a WW II Typhoon pilot - Part 8

Peter Brett mentions his friend Leigh Woodbridge in this extract. They have lost touch but Peter believes he became a commercial airline pilot after the war. Does anyone know what happened to him? TOW>

Flying Training SFTS (Service School)

During the two weeks between EFTS and SFTS we split up and went our various ways. Four of the lads clubbed together and bought a very old model 'A' Ford. They then drove from Quebec down to New York where they had a fabulous and very drunken fortnight. One thing that they all remembered was being pulled over by the police, when driving on what was then known as the 'Dream Parkway' as they approached New York, for driving too slowly!

My friend Leigh Woodbridge and I made our way in a more normal fashion, by train, to Rochester in New York State. Leigh's younger brother had been evacuated to Rochester under a scheme run by the Kodak company. Rochester is the “Kodak town” and Leigh's father was employed by Kodak in England, at Wealdstone, just outside London. We were made very welcome by the foster parents who were looking after Leigh's brother and spent a glorious two weeks being feted by the locals. Nobody had seen an RAF uniform before and, after our arrival had been reported in the 'Rochester Democrat and Chronicle', we were constantly being stopped and made welcome in the streets. Nobody was willing for us to pay for anything and it became a sort of game with us to try to buy something without the vendor refusing to accept any money! Even going to the cinema was an experience. The face of girl on the cash desk registered surprise and confusion when we presented ourselves to buy tickets. Her reaction was to pick up her internal phone and obviously speak to the manager who then appeared and, once again refusing any payment, escorted us personally to the front of the circle. This however was not the end. During the interval between the second and first features the manager appeared on the stage and announced that "We have with us today the two RAF fliers who are spending a furlough in our town": Spotlights on us! We had to stand up and acknowledge the applause of the audience!
This was typical of the general reaction and we received many more invitations than we could possibly have accepted in the two weeks we were there. During the first week we went to a swimming gala at the local baths where Leigh's brother, who was a member of the boy scouts, won his swimming badge. The next day the main headline in the newspaper was "RAF Flyer sees brother win 'Tadpole' swim award".

We were taken around all over the northern part of New York State and one memorable trip was to visit a family in Buffalo. There we were taken out to see Niagara Falls. We left there after dark when the floodlights were turned off for the night. At the meal which we had later with the family I attempted a joke by saying that we left when they turned out the lights and turned the water off. This remark was actually taken seriously at first and our hosts explained at great length that Niagara Falls was a natural phenomena! However the misunderstanding was soon taken care of and normal relations reestablished.

A baseball game was of course a 'must' and we were introduced to the ritual of everybody standing up and massaging their bums between innings. The rock- hard benches were obviously the origin of this!

We had one phone call from a chap who spoke in authentic strong cockney! He had been living in America for many years but had never lost his accent. We found that, if we spoke to each other rather fast with a cockney accent, it was completely unintelligible to the Americans. Even when we spoke normally there were misunderstandings. We once asked a policeman which road was Main Street. His reply was that they didn't have a “Mine Street”.

All too soon it was time to return to Canada and we made sure that we knew all the trains to catch and had the right tickets. We arranged to leave early on the Sunday morning so as to arrive in Montreal at about 10pm in time to get to St.Hubert and book in before our passes expired at midnight. (23.59 hours to be exact).

We left Rochester in the morning and arrived at Utica, where we were to change trains, in good time to catch our connection at 1 o'clock. So much for careful planning. The train to Montreal was due at one o'clock in the morning! We spent a very boring Sunday afternoon and evening walking around the suburbs of Utica which seemed to have closed down. Nothing was open, not even the Station cafe, and, although we still had most of our leave money intact, we could not buy anything. The train eventually arrived on time and we spent a sleepless night worrying about being A.W.O.L.!
Fortunately, when we arrived at St Hubert, we found that we were not the last to return and that the powers that be had deliberately set back everything until the Tuesday morning in order to save a lot of unavoidable paperwork if there were many absentees. Nobody failed to return but the last arrivals were the group with the model 'A' Ford who had finished up driving nonstop from New York in relays in order to get back.
tow1709 is offline  
Old 24th Jan 2010, 12:33
  #1468 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: where the north starts
Posts: 104
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Memoirs of a WWII Typhoon pilot - Part 9

More training in Canada...

We noticed a difference between Windsor Mills and St Hubert immediately. St Hubert was a peacetime RCAF station and much larger than Windsor Mills. The whole atmosphere was different, much more disciplined and service orientated. There was a very large parade ground across which you were forbidden to walk. You could cross this area but had to march properly and not forget to salute the flag when it was flying. Everything was on a much larger scale, including the aircraft, which were North American 'Harvard' low wing monoplane trainers.

These had Curtis 'Wasp' radial engines with inertia starters. These starters were wound up by inserting a crank handle into a socket in the side of the aircraft just aft of the engine bay. The handle needed quite a lot of effort to get it turning and the first slow turns were accompanied by a low growl which gradually ascended in pitch as the handle was turned faster until, with the handle turning about once every two seconds, the sound was a high pitched whistle. This was an internal flywheel rotating at high speed. The pilot then engaged the clutch when everything was set for engine starting. The energy stored in the flywheel was then used to turn over the engine. If everything had been done correctly the rapidly descending howl of the flywheel was then drowned out by the staccato firing of the unsilenced exhausts. If however the startup procedure had not been done properly and the engine failed to catch, the poor chap at the starting handle had the unenviable job of winding the flywheel up to speed again.

The correct procedures were encouraged by penalties. Two false starts meant that the student pilot had to spend a morning as an engine starter and wind up the flywheels himself!

As well as an engine starter, these aircraft had retractable undercarriages, trailing edge hydraulic flaps, variable pitch propellers, and a full complement of flying instruments. This meant that there was much more to pay attention to and much more comprehensive cockpit checks for preflight, pre takeoff, pre landing and shutdown. The most common fault, in the first few hours of solo flying at SFTS, was to come in to land with the undercarriage up. There was a very loud warning horn which blasted in the pilot's ear if he closed the throttle with the undercarriage up.

However this was a 'last resort' device since, if the pilot was doing a powered approach and landing, he would only close the throttle just before touch down and it was a toss-up as to whether he could open up in time to avoid stalling or whether his reaction would be too late to avoid an expensive belly flop. Also this horn could be switched off as it was a nuisance if you were doing exercises such as stalling or spinning which required you to close the throttle in flight. However, the flying control staff were always 'on the ball' for this error and fired a red Verey light across the front of any aircraft approaching to land with the wheels up - making you "go round" again. If they had to do this, they took a note of the aircraft number and the unfortunate pupil pilot had to spend half a day parading up and down the aircraft parking area, in full view of all the other pilots, prominently carrying a large notice on a long pole proclaiming "I tried to land with my wheels up!"

My first flight in a Harvard was on the 8th July 1942. My instructor was a F/O Fairbanks. He was an American who had joined the Canadian Air Force, and had a big disregard for what he thought were petty restrictions. During the course we did a lot more low flying and aerobatics than were laid down in the curriculum.

I soloed a Harvard after some seven hours dual. The flying course, apart from the initial 'Circuits and Bumps', had a much greater emphasis on navigation and instrument flying and, towards the end, on dive bombing and formation work. The ground school course was also more practical and included such things as parachute packing and basic engine maintenance.
tow1709 is offline  
Old 28th Jan 2010, 13:33
  #1469 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: LIVERPOOL
Posts: 401
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Wizzo !!, fantastic!!!!. A reader has sent me a P.M translating to German my recent post asking for contributions from former Luftwaffe personnel. I print it below so that you can appreciate the amount of work involved, and at the same time hope it may be noticed by an ex Luftwaffe chap. I now intend to copy, paste and email it to the two Luftwaffe associations previously mentioned . I don’t know if he wants to be named at this stage, but I hope he will make himself known. What I can say is he is an ex Halton brat living in Australia (sensible man), and have P.Md my thanks.
-------------------------------------------------------------
COPY.
I am sending this as a pm as I don't want to 'big note' myself, nor do I wish to step on Andy's son's toes. I hope it is of some use to you.

The translated portion is where your letter starts... "I write on behalf of" and ends "England and America during the war, as this is described in detail."

Here it is:

Ich schreibe im Namen des Web der PPRuNe (professional pilots rumor network, military section), welches im Internet bei Google oder cliffnemo unter PPRuNe gefunden werden kann. Das ist ein Forum, dass entwickelt wurde von verschiedenen Kriegspiloten aus aller Welt, um ihre Erlebnisse während des 2. Weltkrieges zu beschreiben. Die web Seite heißt "Gaining an R.A.F pilots brevet in W.W.II"

Auch haben wir versucht mit gleichgesinnten aus Deutschland Kontakt aufzunehmen. Wir hatten keinen Erfolg und bitten Sie uns zu helfen entweder ex Besatzungsmitglieder der Luftwaffe oder andere Beteiligte zu kontaktieren, die bereit sind, Informationen mit uns auszutauschen. Ich kann Ihnen versichern, dass wir eine sehr freundliche Seite sind und jedes ehemalige Mitglied einer Luftwaffen Manschaft (Pilot, Besatzung, Ingenieure)wird herzlich aufgenommen und jede Information wird geschätzt.

Ich werde regelmäßig darüber informiert, dass viele Historiker Informationen durch unsere web Seite erlangen und wurde von verschiedenen Flugzeugmusen um die Erlaubnis gebeten, Ausschnitte aus der web Seite zu benutzen zu dürfen. Mir wurde auch mitgeteilt, dass in der web Seite viele Informationen enthalten sind, die nicht in Romanen, Biographien oder anderen Aufzeichnungen enthalten sind. Ich würde hierfür gerne auf Ihre Organisation für Hilfe verweisen und bedanke mich hierfür im Voraus.

Ich möchte hervorheben, dass es vielleicht interressant sein kann von den Mitgliedern der Luftwaffe, betreffend des gängigen Trainings der Besatzungen in England und Amerika während des Krieges eine detalierte Beschreibung zu erhalten.

I don't know if you want to print it out and post it snail mail or post it here or on other fora. I'll leave that decision in your capable hands.

Best regards and may the stories keep coming for a long time.
-------------------------------------------------END OF COPY
A sudden thought. Will the Luftwaffe associations suspect that it is spam and not open the email. Has any one any ideas how to overcome this problem if it arises ? Perhaps I can register and log in, so will also try this approach

Thing seem to have quietened down a bit so will compose another post covering Bruntingthorpe New Market, and Kirkham.. I have had a nice rest. for which many thanks to Tow and the previous contributors.
cliffnemo is offline  
Old 28th Jan 2010, 15:19
  #1470 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bournemouth
Age: 76
Posts: 119
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
German Forum

Apologies to Cliff, been a bit busy and haven't even read my PM's

Nice translation, however my recommendation is that you need to either post it in a German forum or contact Cliff's equivalent in that forum.

A good start would be here:-

Feldgrau.net • View forum - Luftwaffe

If anybody else has German Luftwaffe links may I suggest that they post them, many hands etc..........................................
andyl999 is offline  
Old 28th Jan 2010, 15:33
  #1471 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bournemouth
Age: 76
Posts: 119
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
more links

Google Nachricht

German Luftwaffe - Forums & Discussions


Remember that even though the forums are in German you can set up Internet Explorer to automatically translate it back to (Pigeon) English?

Happy hunting, Andy
andyl999 is offline  
Old 28th Jan 2010, 15:57
  #1472 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bournemouth
Age: 76
Posts: 119
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I keep finding more

Axis History Forum • Index page


Andy
andyl999 is offline  
Old 30th Jan 2010, 10:10
  #1473 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: LIVERPOOL
Posts: 401
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
ONE RESULT ?
Yahoo! My Yahoo! Mail (TRANSLATOR)


GOLLY HECKY . POSTED TWICE SO EDITED
cliffnemo is offline  
Old 30th Jan 2010, 10:12
  #1474 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: LIVERPOOL
Posts: 401
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
ONE RESULT ?
Yahoo! My Yahoo! Mail (TRANSLATOR)


Yahoo! Babel Fish

Babel Fish Home - Help
----------------------------------------------------------------
In English

Thank you for your interest. Their inquiry is as fast as possible worked on
---------------------------------------------------------------
GERMAN MESSAGE RECIEVED.

Vielen Dank für Ihr Interesse. Ihre Anfrage wird schnellstmöglich bearbeitet
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Translate a web page


Add Babel Fish Translation to your site
SYSTRAN - Internet translation technologies
cliffnemo is offline  
Old 30th Jan 2010, 16:06
  #1475 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Under the clouds now
Age: 86
Posts: 2,509
Received 16 Likes on 12 Posts
Cliff, I make it - Thank you for your interest. Your request will be processed as quickly as
brakedwell is offline  
Old 30th Jan 2010, 19:55
  #1476 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: where the north starts
Posts: 104
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Memoirs of a WW-II Typhoon pilot - part 10

In this instalment, Peter Brett describes the final stages of his pilot training in Canada... more soon -TOW

I have several vivid memories of flying at SFTS. The most memorable was a manoeuvre that F/O Fairbanks introduced me to, which was the 'Hammerhead Stall'. This consisted of putting the aircraft into an absolutely vertical climb, cutting the throttle, bracing the controls with the stick slightly back, and waiting! The aircraft slowed up, stopped, and then slid backwards until the elevators took effect and the front end of the aircraft whipped down (like a hammerhead), until it was pointing straight down. During the actual hammerhead movement one experienced about 2G negative! The cockpit filled with dust as all the odd things that previous users had lost whipped up from the bottom of the fuselage between the footrests!

Low flying of course was always fun and there was one particular place, between Montreal and the American border, where there was a long avenue of poplar trees. These trees were placed just the right distance apart for F/O Fairbanks to weave between them doing vertically banked alternate turns. He never let me try it but did it himself every time he decided to go and have a look at America! At least three times to my knowledge we crossed the American border, and once we landed in a field, I'm not sure if this was in Canada or America, whilst we visited his girl friend!

There were many navigation exercises, mostly triangular cross-country flights. F/O Fairbanks was rather contemptuous of these since he said that, in Quebec, all you needed to know was whether you were North or South of the St.Lawrence river. If you were anywhere else in Canada all you needed to know was if you were North or South of the Canadian Pacific railroad! In either case you couldn't get lost since all you had to do was to find either the river or the railroad and fly along it until you could either recognize somewhere or read a rail sign! Actually, he was a very good instructor and, on cross country flights, would often ask the name of some small obscure place we were passing over in order to check that I was map-reading properly.

One of the later navigation exercises was a complete instrument triangular cross-country 'under the hood'. We were given our destinations and a wind at the height we were going to fly, and had to do all the other calculations whilst flying. We started from above St.Hubert airfield and, when we had completed the triangle we had to tell the instructor when we thought we were once again over the airfield. In my case I was quite confident since I was told that there was virtually no wind and therefore my course (that I would steer) and track (over the ground) would be identical. I very carefully worked out everything such as the time to fly each leg and the airspeed to maintain. The flight was very smooth and it was very much like being in the 'Link' trainer. After the required time on each leg, when I calculated that we would be in the vicinity of the airfield again, I informed the instructor and he flipped open the hood. Where was the airfield? Things looked somewhat familiar but the airfield was nowhere to be seen!. After about half a minute the instructor said "I don't know how you did it!" and put the aircraft into a vertical bank. There was the airfield right underneath us! It must have been a pure fluke since nobody expected you to be closer than two or three miles after flying blind for over 1 1/2 hours.
Towards the end of the course there was a very big parade in Montreal in aid of the 'War Bonds' campaign. Most of the chaps were in the marching part of the parade but I was lucky in that I was selected to take part in the 'Fly past'. We were a nine plane formation of 3 x three's and were led by the Chief Flying Instructor. The Harvard was a particularly noisy aeroplane when the propellor was in fine pitch, since the tips of the blades were practically supersonic. A trick when flying in formation was to do rapid changes of pitch which gave rise to very impressive noises. The CFI flew us quite low over Montreal and round the tallest building which, at that time, was the 'Sun Life Assurance' building. As we circled the building we all decided to do the change of pitch bit. It must have been impressive since, shortly afterwards the C.O. received a bill for replacing over twenty windows which had been shattered by the noise!

I flew, and passed, my 'Wings Test' on 28th Sept 1942 but the course carried on after this for another fortnight, mostly doing bombing and formation flying. One morning I got out to the flight line when F/O Fairbanks told me to get into the rear cockpit, normally the instructors place. We did a few 'circuits and bumps' and some aerobatics and then landed. I could not think why I had been flying from the back seat but this was explained the next day when I was called into the CFI and asked if I would like to be an instructor! I find it difficult now to analyze my feelings at the time but, for better or worse, I decided against it. Had I agreed at that time to become an instructor it is certain that the whole of my life would have been different. I might even have stayed in Canada after the war and become a peacetime pilot.

The last big parade at SFTS was, of course, the Wings Parade when all the members of the course who had passed were presented with their wings. This was a public occasion and most of the Canadians had their parents present. We RAF types had to make do with our local surrogate families.

Throughout my RAF career, at least before I became an Officer, my height of six foot two and a half inches (about 1m 90cm) had one serious drawback. Since I was usually the tallest in any squad I was also the 'Right Marker' who had to march out first and take up my position for the others to form up on me. I have already mentioned the huge parade ground at St.Hubert. On the occasion of the Wings parade we were all standing at ease around the edges of this enormous area. The Station Warrant Officer marched out onto the parade ground in front of the flag staff and bellowed "Parade Marker!!!".

I had previously been briefed and shown the exact spot I was to occupy as marker so I knew where to go. It was still a very lonely feeling to have to march out across this vast open area in front of the whole of the station personnel plus the civilians visitors and the visiting VIP's. Once I had reached the correct spot I came to a smart and practically vibrating halt and the SWO then roared "Markers" and the other squad markers came marching on to form up on my left. On the command "Parade marker stand fast, markers about turn" I had to remain still whilst all the others did an about turn. The next command was "To parade intervals. Markers, quick march". All the other markers then marched away, the first one taking ten paces and then halting and turning about, and each subsequent marker taking a further ten paces and turning until all nine were spaced out. The command "Markers, Dress" then meant that the other markers had to step sideways until they were exactly behind me. The final command of "On Parade" brought the rest of the blokes marching on where they formed up on their various markers in their prearranged positions.

There was then a march-past of the whole station to the accompaniment of the station band and the parade then formed up as a hollow square with our course isolated in the centre. We were given the "Stand at ease" and were addressed by the Senior Officer who was to present us with our wings.

We knew that the officer was Air Vice Marshal Bishop but it was not until we saw him close to that we realized that his first medal, in the top row of three rows, was the Victoria Cross, the highest possible award for bravery. It clicked then that this was "Billy" Bishop the First World War Canadian fighter ace, whom most of us had read about at one time or another.

After the speech we were each called out by name and had to march out to receive our wings, which were pinned to our uniforms by the AVM. He was not a very tall chap, and he had to reach up a bit to pin mine on. He said something like "You have come a long way for these" and I replied "It was worth it, Sir".

When we were finally dismissed we all rushed back to our billets where we changed into our spare uniforms which had already been prepared with Sergeants stripes and wings sewn on. It was not until a couple of days later that those of us who had been granted commissions were told. The wings parade was on a Friday and that weekend was one long party. I remember it started in the Mount Royal Hotel where F/O Fairbanks took his three pupils, myself, Leigh Woodbridge, and 'Strawberry' Witteridge for a meal. We commenced drinking with a 'Zombie' which was a long drink containing five different kinds of rum carefully poured into layers! From then on the weekend was an alcoholic haze!

Between then and our final departure from St.Hubert, those of us who had been granted commissions were presented with our uniform allowance and told that we could have our uniforms made either before we left Canada or after arrival in U.K. Most of us naturally decided that we would like to arrive in U.K. in our officer's uniforms. This is where the Station Warrant Officer at St.Hubert was most helpful. He knew of a tailor in Montreal who would make up our uniforms quickly. Thinking back it is obvious that he was on to a good thing with the tailor and was probably on a percentage! The tailor was in a small workshop over a shop in Montreal and, innocents that we were, we were most impressed by the uniform that was on a dummy in the corner. "Just being altered for the Air Marshal!". In all fairness the uniforms were very well tailored and only took about ten days to complete and none of us, on reflection, begrudged the SWO his rake-off.

We were given a final weeks leave after St.Hubert and then had to report to No.1 R.D. (Reception Depot) at Moncton in New Brunswick on the 28th October 1942. After a few days here, we embarked for our return journey to the U.K., finally leaving Canada on the 5th November.
tow1709 is offline  
Old 30th Jan 2010, 20:38
  #1477 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: where the north starts
Posts: 104
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Memoirs of a WW-II Typhoon pilot - part 11

In this instalment, Peter Brett writes of crossing back to the UK on the SS Bayano. I believe this ship was known as the "Lucky Bayano" and held some sort of record for the number of safe convoy crossings over the north Atlantic. I have a picture of Peter at the recent 11 November memorial service in the local village in France where he now lives - I will try and post it soon.

Our voyage back to U.K. was not quite so uncomfortable as the voyage out although the weather was not much better. We came back on the SS Bayano, an Elders and Fyffes banana boat which had been pressed into service as a small troopship. There were only about forty of us on board and the ship was run as an Officers' Mess. We were only two to a cabin and there was a fair sized lounge with a bar. It was a slow convoy, and it again took us thirteen days to cross the Atlantic. Also, being a smallish vessel, it rolled a lot. The maximum roll clocked on that voyage was 34 degrees which felt more like 90!

The accommodation was in cabins each side of a very narrow gangway. As you walked along you had to time the roll as you were alternately jammed first against one bulkhead and then the other. In the lounge it was an experience to see the stewards, yes we even had stewards, carrying loaded trays of drinks without spilling a drop. We drew lots to see who would be the Orderly Officers on each day and I was unlucky enough to be drawn. This meant that I was at the beck and call of the more senior officers, of which there were two Flight Lieutenants and a Squadron Leader, (All the rest of us were lowly Pilot Officers), and also had to carry out a deck patrol four times during my 24 hours tour of duty. By doing the first patrol at dawn it meant that only one of the tours, the last one was in total darkness. A somewhat unnerving experience since it was during what the sailors would probably have called a mild blow but which seemed to me to be a full scale hurricane which was determined to blow me overboard! However I survived the day and could then claim to have fulfilled my first obligation as a holder of His Majesty's Commission.

Other than this the trip was fortunately uneventful and we arrived back in Liverpool on the 18th November. We spent one day here at No.1 P.R.C.(Personnel Reception Centre) and were then sent by train to No.7 P.R.C. at Harrogate. I think we all felt the change in atmosphere within the first day or so. We were back in the war! The blackout was of course the most noticeable thing from our point of view. Rationing was very severe but this did not affect us so much since we were catered for 'en-masse' and so did not feel the full effects. Other shortages were more sharply felt, noticeably beer, cigarettes and spirits.

At Harrogate we spent about three weeks square bashing and being lectured. Since we were all Officers the drill sessions were somewhat amusing in that, although we were drilled and shouted at by a very fierce Warrant Officer, he prefaced every order with "Gen'lmen". Thus he would shout "Gen'lmen Hatenn-SHUN". Even more amusing was when we were not performing to his expectations when he might be heard to bellow "Gen'lmen you're an 'orrible shower!". I think he really enjoyed his work being able to get away with shouting at and abusing a whole squad of officers. However it all seemed to be in good part and at least kept us busy until we were due to be moved on. We were granted a fortnight's leave which was over the Christmas period before reporting to our next posting.

I have fond memories of this first leave. Later on, when I started operational flying, we were granted 7 days leave every six weeks and, to a lot of my home town folk it seemed that I was constantly on leave! This first leave however was special. I remember walking up 'Worple Way' in Rayners Lane where I lived with my parents. Our dog, a sort of cross between a collie sheepdog and a Labrador, was sitting on our front porch. I called to him: "Bob", and, although he had not seen me for over nine months he reacted immediately by leaping straight off the porch, over the gate, and performed a sort of rotating dance around me practically wagging his tail off. After greeting him I went up the path and knocked at the front door.

My mother's reaction when she opened the door and saw me was a little disconcerting. She burst into tears! Thinking back it was obviously a sort of shock reaction since, firstly, she had no idea that I was back in England. And secondly, her last sight of me was in a rather ill-fitting heavy RAF Blue serge uniform with clodhopper boots, a lone propellor badge on the sleeve, and carrying a kit bag.. Now here I was in a very smart officers uniform with gold wings over the pocket, wearing shoes and carrying a holdall! My Sister, who was working in London, was there as was my father. My brother who was a staff sergeant in the REME managed to get home for a 48 hour pass during that leave so the family was all together for part of the time.

The only sad thing was that my maternal grandmother, who had lived with us, had died whilst I was on the way back from Canada. I remember her as a very active old lady who helped my mother run the house. Evidently she had been helping my mother in the kitchen one morning and suddenly said. "I feel rather tired dear, I think I will go back to bed.", a thing she had never done before. She went back to bed and within half an hour had died quite peacefully. I remember thinking that, if I ever live as long as she did, she was 97 when she died, I only hope that my end will be as quick and peaceful. Because of her age and the fact that she had led such a full and active life was not such a severe blow as it might have been and my mother quickly hid her grief and carried on with looking after us all.

I spent that first leave looking up the few acquaintances who were not away in the forces and generally 'putting on the dog' in my new glamorous uniform!

After returning from leave to Harrogate our next posting was to No.7(P) A.F.U. ((PILOTS) Advanced Flying Unit) at Peterborough in Cambridgeshire. This was in the nature of a refresher course since none of us had sat in an aeroplane for nearly three months. The aircraft were Miles 'Masters' both Mk.1 and Mk.2. The former had a Rolls Royce 'Kestrel' engine and the latter a Bristol 'Mercury'. These were low wing monoplanes of approximately the same stage of development as the 'Harvard' although there were some very marked differences. Their rate of roll was much inferior to the Harvard and a slow roll was a very complex maneuver similar to that in a Tiger Moth or a Fleet Finch. I remember one occasion when I performed an absolutely perfect slow roll in a Master Mk.1, and was congratulated by the instructor, as it was such a rare occurrence! The Master Mk.2 was much more powerful than the Mk.1 and, at the time had the ability to make steepest angle of climb from take off of any contemporary aircraft. By shoving the throttle 'through the gate' on take off it was possible to climb away at an angle of almost 45 degrees, a really impressive sight. However the power of the Bristol 'Mercury' engine gave a very marked swing on takeoff and I remember that I silently thanked Sergeant Farrell for his early instruction on keeping straight on takeoff!

Last edited by tow1709; 30th Jan 2010 at 20:42. Reason: correct typos
tow1709 is offline  
Old 30th Jan 2010, 22:08
  #1478 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: UK
Posts: 65
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Cliff, just happened on this thread. It is amazing!

So far I have only got as far as post #80, and am really looking forward to reading the rest - a truly 'rich seam'. Very well done to you and the other contributors for spending the time and effort to post.

As an aside, my dad was in the first RAF Regiment as an LAC Gunner. He joined in August 1941 and was captured on Kos in the Dodecanese in 1943 when the Germans assaulted it with paratroopers and took the island. I think it had a small Spitfire squadron there. He spent the rest of the war in Germany as a POW. He rarely spoke of his experiences, which is not unusual. However one day in the 60s when mum was at work, he cooked for me what was a 'special treat' in the camps - a spam fritter ie a slice of spam fried in lard! So one can gather that things weren't that great in the camps. I still have his old 'Service and Release Book' showing he was demobbed in Jan 1946. If he were still alive he would be 86, and he would have LOVED this thread.

I notice you were demobbed at Burtonwood. I live nearby, in a little hamlet known as Prescot. Apparently the M62 motorway runs directly over the old 09/27 runway. Sadly, as you may be aware, the huge old hangers were recently demolished.

Once again, thanks for a fantastic thread.


Last edited by speke2me; 30th Jan 2010 at 22:12. Reason: spelling
speke2me is offline  
Old 31st Jan 2010, 12:07
  #1479 (permalink)  
regle
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
speke2me

Your contribution was very welcome. There was a reputed "Capture" of a small island in the Med by a Spitfire Sgt. Pilot who accepted the surrender of all the German forces on behalf of the Allies when he landed there short of fuel. Can anyone embelllish this ? I think if my 87 year old memory serves me that it was Pamplemona but am not certain. Your Dad's memories of Spam takes me back to when my Father in Law who was a miner/glassworker from nearby St. Helens, raved about some sandwiches that a mate had given to him...turned out to be Spam ! Believe it or not, a lot of people loved it. You have a lot more to enjoy and can you recall any more for the rest of us ? Regle
 
Old 31st Jan 2010, 13:36
  #1480 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: LIVERPOOL
Posts: 401
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
speke2me,

Many thanks.
Spam fried in lard, no thanks. But deep fried in batter, one of my favorite dishes. Unfortunately the M.O says no.

With regard to Burtonwood, The American control tower, visible from the M62, which I thought would be tidied up, and maintained as a memorial, was also demolished.It was, however, replaced with beautiful buildings, Ikea, M&S etc. so we can't really complain.

CLIFF.
cliffnemo is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.