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10 Bear Badge

Old 25th Oct 2015, 07:27
  #41 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
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CM
Maybe a discussion for early next month?
Sadly not. Owing to the new job and my being a notorious lightweight, I'm not coming to the TDPU this year.
Ali Qadoo is offline  
Old 25th Oct 2015, 08:00
  #42 (permalink)  
 
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When supporting Northern Q with the FunBus, it was normal to give the F-4 crew a position update after AAR. In those days we only had Carousel IV and Omega and the INS wasn't automatically updated by any external navigation system such as DME or GPS. So it was monitored carefully by the on-board food-powered universal navigation device.

INS gave position to a tenth of a degree; however, it has been known for the position to be passed to the F-4 with a spoof extra place of decimals....

Why on earth a decision wasn't made to move the FGR2 to Leuchars, I really don't know. The Lightning wouldn't have operated as far from land or a tanker as the FG1; I doubt whether operating miles from anywhere without comms or navaids would be acceptable these days.....
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Old 25th Oct 2015, 18:30
  #43 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
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In those days we only had Carousel IV and Omega and the INS wasn't automatically updated ...
only had Carousel IV etc etc? We dreamt of Carousel IV (or we would have if it had been around then )

Still we could usually get an NBS fix off the Shetlands or Iceland which was pretty well where all our Dragonfly* sorties took us.

(*Tansor to you young' uns!)
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Old 25th Oct 2015, 20:49
  #44 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
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TTN

Carousel was in civvy use when you were on Victor K1s. It only became available to the AAR Force after we bought the old BA VC10s and discovered that the buy included 50-60 Carousels. Some of the Victor K2s in the South Atlantic in 1982 had a Carousel fitted in the 6th seat position (Crew Chief seat). They had been removed from the VC10Ks before they arrived at Brize and were only refitted later.

Still there was always Astro to keep the Nav Rad/Petrol Pump Attendant awake and amused.
Tengah Type is offline  
Old 25th Oct 2015, 22:10
  #45 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 1999
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Certainly the V-force astro skills were, in the main, vastly superior to those of certain VC10K navigators....

Chaps such as Tengah Type could plot the aircraft's position within half a heartbeat to a very high degree of accuracy at any time of day or night. Whereas others, shall we say, didn't have quite the same level of 'TLAR' instinct and years of navigational witchcraft without the benefit of devices such as TACAN or Omega.

Mind you, it was said of 'Animal' that he'd use astro for taxying in the Tin Triangle, given half a chance!

Joking aside, I wonder whether there's anyone left in the RAF with the level of specialist navigation knowledge that was relatively commonplace 15 years ago.... GPS is great, but if it all goes tits-up at the wrong moment....
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Old 25th Oct 2015, 22:19
  #46 (permalink)  
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Astro, as taught 25 years ago to FJ navs was that if it was morning the Sun was East and afternoon it were West. Between the two its direction changed 15 degrees every hour.

I think they were taught sunrise and sunset.

As for limited aids navigation, follow the shepherd or ask for radar steers. Anything more sophisticated was unnecessary as the jet didn't fly very far or very long.

Of course, 25 years later, most of those assumptions are wrong - fewer radars, longer endurance and flying in less hospitable climes.
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Old 25th Oct 2015, 22:20
  #47 (permalink)  
 
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So, why, when they didn't know where they were, didn't the pilot of the F-4 that had to ditch all that hardware tell his nav to get his sextant out?
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Old 25th Oct 2015, 22:38
  #48 (permalink)  
 
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CM, you know very well, you little bugger!

When I first started instructing on the Bulldog, it had no navaids whatsoever. We didn't even have a transponder with which to elicit some assistance from whoever might be awake on the weekends we flew over the Berkshire Downs above 8/8ths... So we developed a sixth sense based on 'the wind is from that direction, I've been flying this way for this time, so I'm probably about here'....

I went through training before the -A models of the JP came into service. So developing a mental air picture was part of the skill set we had to learn - although the wonderful offset TACAN of the Gnat was the answer to a student's prayer during advanced training.

I queried the 'procedural' emphasis of civvy IR training with a mate who had become the CAA's Chief Examiner some years ago. Because I'd found that the Playstation Generation was quite good at flying published NDB/ILS procedures, but less so when flying diverse vectors to the localiser. He'd never thought of that; pilots of our generation and earlier had relied on radar-to-radar, rather than pilot-interpreted procedures, so were perhaps rather better at having a sixth sense about our whereabouts?

Last edited by BEagle; 26th Oct 2015 at 00:03.
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Old 25th Oct 2015, 23:10
  #49 (permalink)  
 
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Fair cop, BEgs. I know. It's because the navs never bothered to bring their sextants with them.
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Old 26th Oct 2015, 07:43
  #50 (permalink)  

Gentleman Aviator
 
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Drifting the thread (quite) a bit, but still on badges....

.... the Wessi in Norn Iron had a "10 000 000 Rotor Revs in NI" badge as a somewhat ironic take on FJ badges.

If my maths is correct, that equated to about 700 hours in theatre; quite a lot when even the Wessex could get from one side to the other in about 45 minutes ......!
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Old 26th Oct 2015, 09:31
  #51 (permalink)  
 
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Still there was always Astro to keep the Nav Rad/Petrol Pump Attendant awake and amused.
It was a dark day when they removed the R88 camera from above the H2S screen on the Victor K1s. The rubber headrest on the camera was ideal if the petrol pump attendant, fatigued by his onerous tasks, needed to "rest his eyes" for a few minutes
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Old 26th Oct 2015, 10:45
  #52 (permalink)  
 
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Location: Berkshire, UK
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HALYARD & BATTLE FLIGHT

Is there a badge for intercepting a Comet, a Vautour, several Canberras, a couple of F100s, a CF100 and a Valiant?

Up to mid-1960s, Hunter day fighter squadrons were deployed in rotation to Cyprus for training and to man “Battle Flight” during the hours of daylight. Most Battle Flight aircraft got airborne for practice interceptions controlled by Troodos Radar(?), but I remember being scrambled for real to check out an unidentified aircraft which turned out to be a BOAC Comet.

During that particular deployment, on a Hunter T7 PI flight, Troodos called for us to intercept a low-level real bogey heading for Cyprus from the south east. It turned out to be an Israeli Vautour, which did a 180 on being discovered. It was followed and seen off by our performing a barrel roll around it.

Was "Ex Halyard" the 1960s version of QRA? I was scrambled from cockpit readiness on only one occasion, to intercept an unidentified aircraft approaching the UK from the east and “intercepted” a Canberra some thousands of feet above.

The other interceptions were made during UK air defence exercises. On 1 Nov 61 two Hunter squadrons stopped doing interceptions and concentrated on ground attack on being assigned to 38 Group, Transport Command.
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Old 27th Oct 2015, 12:17
  #53 (permalink)  
 
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CM # 41

As the FAA FG1s disembarked to Ark Royal pan at Leuchars it was probably easier to leave them there after change of ownership.
It was not just the FG1s who became AAR Dependent, several Lightnings could barely have made Sumbrugh without help.

BEagle # 46

Night Astro was always easier with you, without the sun glinting off your bonedome.

CM # 50

Bringing the sextant smacks of pre-flight planning. Not an AD strong point in my experience. One day at Goose Bay, after I had delivered the AAR Face to Face Brief for a trail to Eilson AFB in Alaska, the F3 Leader asked to borrow the 1 in 6 million scale map marked with big red and orange markings on it as a visual aid. This was so he could photocopy it so " we have got some idea of where we are going ". He also borrowed Eilson Approach Plates, to photocopy, " in case we need them ".
The Question of the day was why were we not planning to use Lynn Lake
( marked on the map with an anchor ) as a diversion airfield. Reply " Because it is a lake! ".

TTN # 52


" rest his eyes for a few minutes ". My Nav Rad could manage 5 to 6 hours on some of the Op Corporate sorties, using his " pillow ", which was the inflated silver liner from a wine box.
Tengah Type is offline  
Old 27th Oct 2015, 16:02
  #54 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Dunfermline
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FGR.1 AN-ASN-39A better than a sextant ?

Can anyone say how "good" the AN-ASN-39A was in operation? How about Present Position accuracy after say an hours flight.
I know in Auto it had inputs from the CADC, TAS Mag heading fom the CAC, and radar wind from the VSC. Max range of 1999 nautical miles.
Can remember from the navs on 43 that Present Position accuracy was the most requested attribute !
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Old 27th Oct 2015, 17:52
  #55 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: UK
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The Lightning wouldn't have operated as far from land or a tanker as the FG1
Err, that wouldn't be my experience from my (one and only) live Southern Q launch. I found it pretty intimidating being 600nm N of Leuchars on my lonesome at 250ft looking (unsuccessfully) for a Bear with the Victor relaying from FL370. And anyway, I don't think it's quite such a matter of how far from land or a tanker you are as it is how close you are to maximum range when you don't really know where you are...

At one point the Victor decided he'd hit PLE and offered to leave me to get home by myself...fat chance. Yes, I could have shut an engine down to help matters on the way home and stayed for another 15-20 mins, but I wasn't that desperate for a One Bear Badge!

Offset/AA TACAN, Violet Picture and an 80nm scope (albeit extended with second timebase returns) were not much to play with, navigation-wise, and I'm sure there are many more live Q-experienced WIWOLs who scared themselves witless back in the day.
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