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Vampire rips up runway...

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Vampire rips up runway...

Old 30th Apr 2017, 20:57
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Vampire rips up runway...

At the 'Radials and Trainers' event at Halfpenny Green...
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Old 30th Apr 2017, 21:05
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Fascinating, answers Cold War proposal to use disused airfields for bare base ops and justification for not doing it.
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Old 30th Apr 2017, 21:29
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Think that's impressive ...at an airshow in Quebec Canada years ago ..you should see what two F-4 phantoms with afterburners can do. It was a "Holy crap" moment.
Nice display however.
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Old 30th Apr 2017, 21:46
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It's tempting to suggest that this should be in the "Jet Blast" forum!

I wonder if there was any damage to the Vampire's twin tailbooms, tailplane and elevator?
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Old 30th Apr 2017, 21:59
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Spectacular. I'll guess Vamps have not used that runway before OR it has become seriously crap over the years? Probably any debris has missed the aircraft structure.

Having only 264 hours in a dual seat Vampire in RAAF then RAN FAA (under training/fleet support) I knew well the dangers of just taxiing on macadam/tar and DO NOT STOP, which was difficult sometimes when the wheel brakes would run out of PUFF.

The RAAF Vamps had hydraulic foot pedal brakes whilst the RAN FAA Vamps had compressed air managed by a hand lever on the control column - both differential brakes. Over using these systems meant one could have NO BRAKES so one had to stop - NEVER stop on the tar because the exhaust would melt it. Not much concrete in those years so judiciously managing the brake pressure was a real art. I'm hoping those Vamps will operate on better runways in future.

Last edited by SpazSinbad; 30th Apr 2017 at 22:10. Reason: + pics
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Old 1st May 2017, 06:54
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Thats not a Vampire "tarmac puddling due to jet efflux angle" thing,

its an 'unsuitable, unserviceable runway surface' thing !!
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Old 1st May 2017, 07:47
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I think he was very lucky not to re-ingest the initial small pieces dislodged on backtrack.
Could have been a very nasty accident on take-off.

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Old 1st May 2017, 07:54
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What state was the runway surface before the Vampire took off? Due to the minimal time on the runway I suspect that the surface was already breaking up, the Vampire merely helped it on its way?
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Old 1st May 2017, 08:12
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This is the same runway on approach and it looks in poor condition.

One wonders why the FISO allowed the aircraft to continue when the first bit of tarmac lifted on backtrack. Especially when the airport was reporting:

Runway 16/34: Open.
Runway 10/28: Not available to traffic requiring a licensed aerodrome due to poor surface condition.
Runway 04/22: Not available to traffic requiring a licensed aerodrome due to poor surface condition.
I wonder who will pay for the repairs to the runway?

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Old 1st May 2017, 08:49
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I think I understand why, but how was that allowed to happen?
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Old 1st May 2017, 09:05
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Judging by the narrow marked areas compared against the original runway dimensions it seems that all the runways are in a poor state.

Vampires were ideal snow blowers during the winters we used to have. Keep the engine at around 9,000 rpm and let the tractor shove you around so that the jet efflux did the necessary. Four cleared half of Oakingtons 2,000 ft. runway in a morning, enough for one sweeping Vampire to disconnect from the tractor, take off and do a circuit and land.

After that it was two Dewents attached to a fuel bowser. It was not unknown for an untrained MT driver to overcook the throttles and sent the entire ensemble backwards through the bundu.
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Old 1st May 2017, 09:15
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Halfpenny Gren is no stranger to jet efflux damage tho it is an old story now - a Harrier lifted large parts of a runway there in the mid '80s at a show.

Was there a danger of damage to the tail or does the efflux strike sufficiently aft to avoid that?

The way he goosed the power while 90' off runway heading made me thing we were in for a spectacular "off" into the weeds too. Looked hairy.

Santa Pod had a Derwent on a Bedford chassis with a downward facing cowl around the exhaust a la tarmac stripper for drying the strip - it was said that if you overdid the power the back wheels would levitate easily.
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Old 1st May 2017, 09:18
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Nice white RAF issue gloves Leon - the other bloke clearly doesn't have a mate in SES
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Old 1st May 2017, 09:57
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'peterperfect' I do not argue with state of runway being prime cause - see my first sentence above. Already had info about the taxiing perils for a Vampire so just posted that. Then engine efflux is close to the ground and angled that way to avoid toasting the tailplane. Here is a little something from the RAAF Mk.35A Vampire Manual:
“...(c) The aircraft should be standing on firm ground and the surrounding area should be free from loose objects or debris which could be drawn into the air intakes.... Preferably the aircraft should be standing on concrete as the supporting surface is subjected to intense heat as well as air blast from the jet pipe.

(d) The aircraft should be so positioned that, while starting and taxying away, the jet efflux will not cause damage by blowing dust, dirt, or other articles into buildings, vehicles or other aircraft....”
Somewhere online or on this forum there is a photo of the Vamp Snow Blower in use....
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Old 1st May 2017, 10:08
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Several VAMP snow blower stories on this thread:

Snow Clearance [Archive] - PPRuNe Forums

'Thunderguts' 6th Jan 2010, 15:34
Winter of 62/63 RAF Oakington. The 'staish' had the bright idea of getting us students out on the runway with shovels, to help the bowsers with their snowploughs. After two days hard work, there was not a lot to show for our efforts. However the boss had 'a cunning plan'! Vampires had a downward pointing jet efflux, therefore much better to use them than the non existant MRD. So up and down the runway went a series of T11's which turned the snow into slush and water, which promptly froze! So we now had a five thousand foot skating rink...."
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Old 1st May 2017, 11:18
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How sad...
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Old 1st May 2017, 14:53
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Originally Posted by noflynomore View Post

Thanks for posting that- had never seen that- like how it notes Meteor T.7 (modified)- it sure was.

Was is sad- or the fastest snow blower ever?
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Old 1st May 2017, 16:04
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A better fate than being a Fire Training carcass ... at least that Meatbox gave the maximum 'return of service'
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Old 1st May 2017, 16:20
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Old 1st May 2017, 17:28
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Had a couple of hundred hours on the Vampire III&V single seaters on 20 Sqn (Valley '50-'51) and (cadged) hours on 608 (Auxiliary) Sqn ('51-'52). Know nothing about the T-11 (which only entered service in Jan '52 (Wiki). 608 never had a T-11, but a Meteor T-7 for I/F and ratings.

The only time we worried about the tarmac was after a "wet start". Pushing the tail down would empty the tail pipe of unburned fuel into a pool (on the tarmac ?) in which the aircraft was now sitting. We pushed it back clear of the fuel and lit the blue paper. This produced a big "whoomph !" and a fearsome 50-foot flame out of the back for a second or two, after which we taxied off and paid no further heed to the surface below.

After shut-down, the tailpipe was very hot (and not at all smelly, as the heat had burned off any last drops of Avtur). It was commonpace for an erk, who'd bought a cold meat pie from the NAAFI van on a cold morning, to park it inside the pipe to warm up. So our "walk round" always included a look for a pie up the pipe !

Lovely little aircraft to handle, ground vis phenomenal, believe it made a good trainer. Perhaps the T-11 had the tail aimed closer to the ground than the monopostos ?

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