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-   -   Chipmunk Cockpit Interior (https://www.pprune.org/military-aviation/496751-chipmunk-cockpit-interior.html)

Courtney Mil 2nd Oct 2012 21:41

I love the notice in post 42. The flap limiting speed being precisely 71 kts. Not 70 kts, mind you. 71.

Stuart Sutcliffe 2nd Oct 2012 22:28

Dora-9 & CoffmanStarter, as I stated in my post, I know that '671' had never been RCAF but I didn't want this to turn in to a thread about Chippie variations - there are so many! All I was trying to highlight was that it is the only Chippie I have ever seen that doesn't have a black cockpit.

".... what were the Shuttleworth people thinking?" Exactly! As I wrote, "I suspect the scheme was chosen for being bright and attractive?" It looks nice against a green airfield perhaps? Who knows? There are so many pleasant enough RAF schemes to choose from (some slightly out of the ordinary) that it is a mystery. :confused:


Dan Winterland 3rd Oct 2012 04:22

Dora - 9. As you know, I flew your aircraft many times when she was in the RAF and the VNE was 173 then. I probably exceeded 155 in her once or twice - sorry!

A fabulous restoration, and good to see she has the original instruments. The stopwatch isn't quite correct though. Although it's a Tag Huer Monte Carlo as fitted to many RAF aircraft, it's not the one fitted to the Chippy. The RAF Chippys didn't have one fitted pernamently, but we needed them for navigation training. So they had a clip in each cockpit to hold a standard hand held Monte Carlo which we had to sign out from the adjutant before flying, on pain of death and a large bill for non return!

Dan Winterland 3rd Oct 2012 04:42

"As an aside, I'm told that the MoD supplied DH with the instruments to be fitted in the Chipmunk."

Knowing how the RAF procured aircraft, they would have specified the instruments and these were the standard instruments fitted to many RAF aircraft at the time. The 'Standard Blind Flying Panel' was a RAF specification prior to WW2 and fitted to many aircraft from fighters to bombers in the conflict. It eventually led to the industry standard layout and the 'Selective Radial Scan' we were tought in flying training. Although it's interesting to note that the Chippy didn't have this standard layout - the altimeter was below the ASI which is how the Canadian aircraft were instrumented.

Dora-9 3rd Oct 2012 07:23

OK Dan I'm intrigued, so what was fitted in the Chipmunk? Mine came from an EE Lightning and originally had a massive backplate...

Dan Winterland 3rd Oct 2012 10:50

One of these.


It was clipped into a permanently mounted clip on the main panel. Your stpwatch is original RAF but as far as I know, not fitted to the Chippy. If it was, it would be mounted on the coming at aye level which was the usual position for these watches.

CoffmanStarter 3rd Oct 2012 10:57

THS (@ #56) ...

You might try these people at Shoreham ...

The Real Aircraft Company

Best ...


Dora-9 3rd Oct 2012 11:53


it would be mounted on the coming at eye level
So what fitted in the clip below the tacho? Mine came with a G-meter mounted on the coaming, left of centre...

212man 3rd Oct 2012 12:58

One of these.
I remember signing for these from stores, for NAVEXs in the Bulldog - as close to a Navaid as it came! Used, also, in competition aerobatics although - if not firmly clipped in - it could become a loose object at inopportune moments (as one of my competitors discovered...)

Innominate 3rd Oct 2012 13:06

Coming back to the original question...

It is difficult to trace official instructions regarding the internal colours of aircraft, but the following extracts may help:

Air Publication 2656A "External and internal finish of aircraft" Amendment 49, June 1950 "A matt finish is used, usually grey or grey-green in colour, but at any station which may be used for visual search at night, a matt black finish is applied." This was still valid in December 1953, when Amendment 65 was issued.

AvP 970 "Design requirements for Service aircraft" Chapter 100, Amendment 65, September 1957: "On all aeroplanes, a matt black finish... shall be provided for the whole interior and all items of equipment at each pilot's station, and at all other crew stations from which night visual search may be made.""

Presumably the original mention of "any station which may be used for visual search at night" would include the pilots' cockpits, to avoid reflections and so in 1950 (when the Chippy entered RAF service) cockpits would be black.

Dan Winterland 3rd Oct 2012 16:28

Sorry, Dora-9; I'm confusing you. The stopwatch clip was on the main panel and had four prongs. I can't remember it's exact location, but if that's where yours is - then that's where we clipped it. If the permamant stopwatch were fitted, (which I don't think it was to the Chippy - not on any of the ones I flew) then it would be on the coming as it's the main low level nav instrument and it needs to be in palin view all the time. All aircraft that had it fitted (to my knowlegde) had them attached to the coming.

BTW, check your PMs.

Dan Winterland 3rd Oct 2012 16:50

Quote: ''Dan Winterland is correct (as usual) on both counts.''

But not about the basket for carrier pigeons. I made that up!

If anyone is interested in the details about the comms fits, I do have the details. (But as a warning - it is very boring!)

CoffmanStarter 3rd Oct 2012 17:28

Dan ...

I'd be very interested in the Comms fit history of the Chipmunk. My knowledge is limited to the 10 Channel Crystal Controlled 1985/86 Tx/Rx VHF config (see pics below and my previous pic on this thread of WZ845) and would like to know more on the UHF config ... outside the obvious UHF upper and lower blade aerial locations v the VHF quarter wave rod under wing aerial :ok:

I also experienced a 360 Bendix VHF config on WK518 before she moved to the BBMF.





Best ...


BEagle 3rd Oct 2012 17:37

I remember signing for these from stores, for NAVEXs in the Bulldog - as close to a Navaid as it came!
The pre-avionic upgrade Bulldog didn't have a stopwatch fitted, although we had a good Monte Carlo stopwatch after that Mod. - very firmly attached to the instrument panel.

Pre-Mod., the custodian of our stopwatches even expected fellow QFIs to sign them out from him, the miserable git. We took rather a dim view of this and a chum unscrewed his desk drawer assembly wherein he kept the watches from the desk top. So, if you needed a stopwatch, you just lifted up the corner of his desk and grabbed one from the exposed drawer - he never did find out!

BEagle 3rd Oct 2012 17:58

In the late '60s and early '70s, our ULAS Chippies had that ancient VHF set, which was lovingly fitted with crystals tuned to long-dead mil VHF frequencies such as 142.29 Mc/s and 115.56 Mc/s.....

We had the same UHF radio in the Bulldog as was originally fitted in the UHF Chipmunks. Another large lump of ironmongery strapped down behind the left seat. I think it was also stuffed full of crystals; presumably voltage controlled oscillators working at UHF were but a distant dream when this ancient wireless set was first designed..... Fortunately the avionic upgrade included a proper multi-channel UHF set!

India Four Two 3rd Oct 2012 19:00

75 posts in five days! There is something very special about the Chipmunk. :)

In my time at UBAS (67-69), we did not have stopwatches, nor do I remember a panel clip. Was there something else there or just an empty space?

The UBAS fleet was fitted with UHF in mid-68, which was actually a backward step, since all the other Shawbury-based aircraft - Marshalls' Vampires and Piston Provosts - were fitted with VHF.

My knowledge is limited to the 10 Channel Crystal Controlled 1985/86 Tx/Rx VHF config (see pics below
Coffman Starter, thanks for the picture. I had never seen the interior before. They don't make 'em like they used to, thank goodness! How much did that weigh and where was it mounted?

what were the Shuttleworth people thinking?
Dora-9, I absolutely agree with you. Having flown both versions, the T10 in Canadian colours looks awful to me.

XN593 3rd Oct 2012 20:33

For what its worth, my recollection is of all black cockpits but it is some time ago.

I guess VH-MMS used to be WG478.
I am sure you know where it has been and when but just in case, here is an extract from my log book for 1973. Your photographs show it looking much better than it was when it took me on my first solo. If memory serves it was from Church Fenton to Elvington and the ground was covered in snow.
Please let me know when you grow tired of it!


CoffmanStarter 3rd Oct 2012 21:09

Hi IFT ...

I'm guessing the weight was about 15/20 Kgs. If you look at my pic at post #15 of WZ845 you can just see the extraction handle of the VHF set up under the front cockpit instrument panel ... the Ground/Flight switch was to the left of the VHF set located on the floor. If you we're lucky you could get about 5 to 8 Watts of ERP at the aerial. Although premitive compared to today, the set offered 25 Khz frequency spacing and good AM modulation. Mind you the inbuilt 24 Volt rotatransformer used to generate HT for the valves was noisy and generated quite a bit if heat ... useful in the winter !

I remember our Radio Technician just loved changing the crystals and retuning the set if we had to ferry our aircraft ! Tuning was achieved using a 12 Volt bulb soldered across an aerial plug ... optimal tuning was achieved when the bulb burned the brightest !

As you say ... they don't make em like that anymore !

Best ...


gpugh 3rd Oct 2012 21:09

Hi, apologies nothing to do with subject of this thread, I have a vivid memory/imagination,of when I was about 12 and Airfix were just releasing their kit of the Chipmunk,about 1967 ish ? that the chap who ran the local toy shop in Plymstock nr Plymouth told me,as I worried him about it's imminent arrival, that he had flown the first flight of a Chipmunk in the UK, I wonder if I imagined it or if it was actualy said and true, I remember he walked with a limp


Fareastdriver 3rd Oct 2012 21:33

Way back at the end of 1965 the Valiants were suffering from wing spar problems. At the end of that year the captains were keeping in flying practice in an Anson and the co-pilots had a Chipmunk to play with. We started off with one borrowed from Marham but eventually we got our own: WP850.

This was painted in a standard disruptive green/grey camoflage finish. The reason, we were told, was that it had been last used in Cyprus as an air observation aircraft which is why it wore warlike colours. It had very few hours on it and it soon sported a 90 Sqn pennant on the tail as per the squadron aircraft.

I wish I had taken a photograph or our baby Spitfire. I believe that it is still in existence in the United States.

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