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Author Topic: Barn find help. Spitfire seat???  (Read 5181 times)
NI-SPITFIRE
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« on: January 29, 2012, 12:56:58 PM »

So i found this in a friends barn the other day...









We think its a Spitfire seat but we are not 100% sure. Any help on this would be great. Nice find and im sure its pretty rare?
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Edgar Brooks
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« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2012, 09:38:11 AM »

Yes, it is, and possibly (probably) from a Westland-built aircraft, since it's a Seafire-style seat.
The frame, on the front, was to hold Very pistol cartridges (16 during the war, and reduced to 8 post-war,) and the framework, above the seat raising/lowering lever, is the "holster" to hold the pistol itself. The frame appears to have been modified, with the middle front cut out, possibly to allow more movement of the stick.
The hole, in the right armrest, held one end of the device used to hold the control column rigid, and the sheet of metal, under the seat, is armour plate, designed to reassure the pilot by covering his family jewels.
The lozenge-shaped depression was designed to hold the compressed-air bottle of the dinghy, early seats didn't have that, so that and the armour plate probably date it as 1941-onwards.
You will have people tell you that it's made of Bakelite (it wasn't,) or Tufnol (wasn't that, either,) but it was just known as "the plastic seat," made by a company called Aeroplastics, based in Glasgow. The material was a mix of resin and paper (or possibly flax.) There's no sign of it being modified for late/post-war harnesses, so it's more likely to be a wartime seat than not.
Plastic seats were first fitted in the Spitfire in May, 1940, and continued through to the 22/24; similar seats were also in the Vampire and early Meteors.
Edgar
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Editor
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« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2012, 10:47:46 AM »

Unmistakably this is a Spitfire seat, as Edgar described so eloquently. What a find! Congratulations.

/Martin
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NI-SPITFIRE
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« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2012, 01:42:30 PM »

Thank you so much for your help, we are still looking for the hood. It was used to fill a hole in a hedge so mite have blown away  Cry I live near the old Maghaberry Airfield in N Ireland where after the war Spitfires and other planes were scraped. I beleive the person who lived in my friends house during the war worked on these planes.

Im going to go have another look for the hood, hope we find it, more pics to follow...
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figurefreaks
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« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2012, 12:36:04 AM »

That is too cool Shocked  Shocked  Shocked nice find, congrats.  Grin


Tom.
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Edgar Brooks
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« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2012, 12:35:11 PM »

Just a (slight) addition, the seat is definitely from a Seafire; the two wooden battens, on the backrest, were additional, presumably to act as a buffer against G forces on the seat back, during arrested landings. They rested against the seat armour.
Edgar
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