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Valiant Tankers

Old 26th Feb 2018, 16:44
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If you visit the RAF Cosford Museum and care to look at the underside of 818s mainplanes
I believe that when 818 was moved from Marham to Cosford the wings were cut off. On reassembly the reinforcing plates were required to hold the wings on.
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Old 26th Feb 2018, 20:13
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[QUOTE was given a week to remove all classified equipment[/QUOTE]

As a matter of interest, what equipment was still deemed classified in 1965 ?
Some of the kit eg Gee with the Universal Indicator, was World War 2 ish
There was no ECM, Window Dispensers and Orange Putter were hardly ‘state of the art’.
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 10:36
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Hadn't been aware of Orange Putter before so I Googled it. My first attempt produced page after page of colourful golf clubs until I had the idea of adding the word "radar" to my search criteria!
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 13:36
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Originally Posted by Tankertrashnav View Post
Hadn't been aware of Orange Putter before so I Googled it. My first attempt produced page after page of colourful golf clubs until I had the idea of adding the word "radar" to my search criteria!
Did you find out that it was the most spread out piece of kit in a Valiant?

The indicator was in front of the co-pilot, there was a junction box in front of the AEO, the waveform generator was up the Organ Loft and the Tx/Rx was the extremity of the fuselage.

Changing a Tx/Rx in the dark & cold of a winters night, was in modern parlance, a bit of a challenge.

It also wasn't a very good piece of kit.

I might have some course notes in the garage. I know I still have the Green Satin ones, and they were both on the same 'Fitter Bomber' course.

It was supposed to be for 'tail warning' of hostile a/c. On 214 in the IFR trials days, there were hopes of using it to detect incoming receivers, but in general it wasn't much help.

Edited to add.
The commonest reported problem was spurious 'Wings Range' audio warnings been fed into the intercom, so the OP was switched off!

I dunno if Red Steer was better, as that was after my time.
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 14:33
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The indicator was in front of the co-pilot,
Pedantic mode on: It was in front of the captain between the elevator trim indicator lights and the port landing lamp switch.

Cos. my copy of Pilot's Notes says so.
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 15:25
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Originally Posted by Fareastdriver View Post
Pedantic mode on: It was in front of the captain between the elevator trim indicator lights and the port landing lamp switch.

Cos. my copy of Pilot's Notes says so.
I claim senility!

Being in the RH seat, you had the knob for the low level Radio Altimeter Mk V and the 'traffic lights' in front of you.
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 17:17
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Correct; you're not that senile.
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 17:44
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Racingrigger is right. 818 was a 49 Sqn machine before the test ban treaty and took part in operation Grapple. I know because it is my logbook. All Grapple aircraft had the reinforced wings because it was feared that the blast wave from a weapon might prove too much. It was certainly a bit bumpy but it felt no worse than moderate to strong turbulence. Are you sure that 818 went tanking? 49 went to Marham after our fun was curtailed and became main force. When the Valiants were grounded and 818 was to be parked outside the Ops block I was its inventory holder (a secondary duty for co-pilots). I collected all the paperwork, both flying and technical, bundled them up, had then vacuum wrapped and left on the nav's shelf. Never knew what happened to it but now I do. It's living with my Pucara!
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 18:02
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Srill on Valiants but on a slight tangent. When I was an Operations Instructor with British Rail circa 1981 I came across a chap called "Doug", I can't recall his surname. I mentioned that my pop had been in the R.A.F. and that we had been at Gaydon 1963-67. Doug's eyes lit up. He explained that he had been a pilot and he was on the first squadron of Valiants that were formed at Gaydon before moving to....I can't remember where he said. He was quite a small chap of about five foot six or seven.
Anyone know him - assuming that his tale was true and he did seem genuine.
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 19:28
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Are you sure that 818 went tanking?
When I escorted my Whirlwind brethren through 818 in 1966 at Marham, Ops having given me the keys, it was finished in grey green camouflage so I presume it was a Main Force aeroplane.

When I saw it at Cosford it had just arrived and the fuselage was scarred along the wing mountings where there had been some serious metal cutting. IIRC the Valiant core was the bomb bay roof with large webs that enclosed the engines. The wings were tacked on to these with rivets.

It was obvious from the state of 818 that the webs had been cut so as to remove the wings, therefore the wing refits had to be botched.
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 19:40
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If 818 'went tanking' it wasn't with 214, might have been the other lot.
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 19:52
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Pontiflex, did you know "Ted" Dunne on Grapple?
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 20:33
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If 818 'went tanking' it wasn't with 214, might have been the other lot.
It was never with the Honington Social Club.

Addendum. Some people work hard to make life difficult; others arrange it so that it is pleasant.
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 20:50
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Originally Posted by ian16th View Post
I dunno if Red Steer was better, as that was after my time.
It was better, but not that much. Not sure about 18 Sqn but all the other Valiant squadrons had Orange Putter not Red Steer.
To test Orange Putter and Red Steer a special Very Cartridge was used containing ‘chaff’.You switched the equipment on then put the round in the Very Pistol and fired it and then looked for the radar return.
Re other equipment on the Valiant, did the bomber or tanker squadrons have Yellow Aster ?
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 21:34
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Originally Posted by NRU74 View Post
To test Orange Putter and Red Steer a special Very Cartridge was used containing ‘chaff’.You switched the equipment on then put the round in the Very Pistol and fired it and then looked for the radar return.
Cartridge 1 1/2 in Radar Echo Warning - Thanks for stirring my brain cell.
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Old 27th Feb 2018, 22:40
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All interesting stuff. I'm working at Cosford on Sunday, so I'll go take a look.
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Old 28th Feb 2018, 03:17
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After all these years I would just like to know why I was posted from Bruggen,24/12/1964 to 214 Sqdn.Honington .....that’s correct posted to a Squadron with duff Aircraft ...to join a heap of other bored ground crew scratching themselves waiting for the one Victor sortie per day courtesy of 55/57 Squadron.
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Old 28th Feb 2018, 06:40
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Originally Posted by NRU74 View Post
It was better, but not that much. Not sure about 18 Sqn but all the other Valiant squadrons had Orange Putter not Red Steer.
To test Orange Putter and Red Steer a special Very Cartridge was used containing ‘chaff’.You switched the equipment on then put the round in the Very Pistol and fired it and then looked for the radar return.
Re other equipment on the Valiant, did the bomber or tanker squadrons have Yellow Aster ?
I never heard of Yellow Aster. So most likely not fitted to Valiant's.

Sorry, I wasn't very clear about Red Steer.

I was aware that Red Steer wasn't fitted to Valiant's. But being a later development, I thought that it might have been a significant improvement.

To make a really good tail warning radar in those days, it would have needed AI Mk21 from the Lightning fitted to the tail of a bomber.
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Old 28th Feb 2018, 06:47
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Originally Posted by bosnich71 View Post
After all these years I would just like to know why I was posted from Bruggen,24/12/1964 to 214 Sqdn.Honington .....that’s correct posted to a Squadron with duff Aircraft ...to join a heap of other bored ground crew scratching themselves waiting for the one Victor sortie per day courtesy of 55/57 Squadron.
I also was on 214 at that date, but I was at Marham, so we wouldn't have met

Fareastdriver may know more.
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Old 28th Feb 2018, 07:31
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Originally Posted by bosnich71 View Post
After all these years I would just like to know why I was posted from Bruggen,24/12/1964 to 214 Sqdn.Honington .....that’s correct posted to a Squadron with duff Aircraft ...to join a heap of other bored ground crew scratching themselves waiting for the one Victor sortie per day courtesy of 55/57 Squadron.
Not just me then, as a bright eyed, bushy tailed, newly passed out JT, I was posted to Marham where the wreckers had already moved in. It didn't do much for morale, hanging about watching aircraft being torched up before being carted away.

Red Steer Mk1 (ARI 5919) was originally developed as AI20, in case there were problems with AI23. It only became a tail warner when 23 turned out OK. Great improvement over OP. The Mk2 (ARI5959) was even better.
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