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Author Topic: MK716 September 1944 particulars?  (Read 8805 times)
jenshb
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« on: March 30, 2009, 01:30:51 PM »

I guess it's not just me who find Spitfire combinations a minefield, and as there are a lot of Spitfire connoisseurs here, I thought I'd go through my checklist to make sure I haven't forgotten anything.  I have one pic of the plane, and that verifies it's a c-wing.  From posts and infromation on this site, this is what I've found so far.

MK716 - LF IXc with Merlin 66 engine - modified to FR.IX with camera port on left hand side only.

Blister behind nose - none
Enlarged horn balances on elevators
Normal rudder
Internal armoured windscreen
Cowling - "flat"
Wire aerial - none
Wheel hub covers - yes
2x20 mm cannons, narrow blister
Light on spine - no

So, items I still haven't determined;

Would the outer shell ejector ports be sealed?  As the wing would only be able to take the inner 20 mm, then I assume the answer would be yes...?

The photo from the 3/4 rear is too evenly lit to clearly make out whether there are blisters on the wing or not.  The ground it's parked on is grass/soil, and as mentioned, the blisters were a result of modifying the undercarriage geometry to reduce wear on hard surfaces.  My assumption would therefore be that the wing upper surface was smooth.  Would both blisters on the Hasegawa kit have to go?  What is the function of the narrow, tall one?

Scissor links on the undercarriage?

Gun camera port?

Anything else that is relevant to this model?

Jens
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Spits
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« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2009, 11:30:27 AM »

In regards to shell ports,"maybe".Have seen an "E" wing MkXIV with all the fittings etc still fitted for the Brownings so shell ports will be still be available.Unless they were taped over or something.Blisters was to add more room to the ammo feed drum on the upper surface and also for the wheels.Scissor links yes,not sure of other stuff.
Geometry change was for better handling while taxying IIRC.
Other stuff seems Ok.
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jenshb
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« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2009, 12:08:51 PM »

Thanks for your input Spits.  So the introduction of the scissor links was independent of the geometry change that also introduced the blisters on top of the wings?

Are there any rules as to when these bilsters and scissor links would be implemented from?

Jens
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gingerbob
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« Reply #3 on: April 03, 2009, 12:49:36 PM »

Would the outer shell ejector ports be sealed?  As the wing would only be able to take the inner 20 mm, then I assume the answer would be yes...?

The photo from the 3/4 rear is too evenly lit to clearly make out whether there are blisters on the wing or not.  The ground it's parked on is grass/soil, and as mentioned, the blisters were a result of modifying the undercarriage geometry to reduce wear on hard surfaces.  My assumption would therefore be that the wing upper surface was smooth.  Would both blisters on the Hasegawa kit have to go?  What is the function of the narrow, tall one?

Scissor links on the undercarriage?

The "Hasegawa bumps" do pertain to the track change and/or wheel/tire change (not certain offhand), and those would not be present in Sept '44- I think it was just about at the time of VE Day that they started to appear.  If I remember right the narrow tall one is just a fairing over a bit of reinforcing angle.

The link gear is another question.  It was introduced somewhere around start of '44 or late '43, I think.  If I get a chance I'll try to find some clues for this serial, though "Spits" seems to have already answered it.  The change there (other than the scissor links) is the extra little wedge on the gear door and corresponding 'notch' in the well cutout.  It IS unrelated to the track change.

I'd expect the outer shell ejector ports to just be doped over, but that's conjecture.

Another point to check is the blister at the wing root- I imagine it will be present.

bob
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Antoni
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« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2009, 03:58:07 PM »

The extra humps on the wings were required when AH8375 wheels (three section hubs) were fitted. I think they were post war and retro fitted. Something to do with operating from concrete runways when they returned to the UK after the war. Apparently the older types of wheels/tyres could not cope with the harder surface. The theory is that they appear on kits because the manufacturers see them on museum examples which had a post war use. Still, it's easier to remove them than to make them if you wanted them.

Link type oleo legs were introduced in late LF.IXs and XVIs. From spring/summer 1945 on, retrofitted to earlier aircraft.
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jenshb
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« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2009, 04:18:49 PM »

Thank you very much for your help gentlemen - the lack of bumps seems to be confirmed by the sole photo, but in the right (or wrong) light they could be hard to see.  I'll get rid of them this evening.  The scissor links do add some more features to a rahter featureless undercarriage,  so if no evidence to the contrary is forthcoming, noone cn say I'm wrong in including it.

When pondering this question, I was wondering whether it would be possible to make an overview in a Gantt-chart of all features and changes for the various marks.  It might not be totally accurate for a particular model, but at least it would enable people to pinpoint more likely configurations and combinations.  And it would be a hefty work in progress...

Jens
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Editor
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« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2009, 06:35:13 PM »

Yes, IIRC I don't remember seeing these u/c bumps on wartime photos either.
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Antoni
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« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2009, 08:52:25 PM »

I forgot. The orifice on the port wing is the air intake for the fuel cooler not a gun camera. No fuel cooler was fitted with the Merlin 66 (see earlier thread http://spitfireforums.com/index.php?topic=39.0)  but production F.IX airframes invariably featured an intake there.

Eventually the gun camera installation was relocated into the leading edge fillet of the starboard wing, and the system retrofitted to operational aircraft. The modification was carried out at Air Service Training, Hamble Hants (and other locations) overhaul facilities to which the aircraft were ferried, two or three at a time, by squadron pilots.

Not sure, but I think only Dunlop AH2061 wheels (five section hub) were fitted with hub covers on (usually) unprepared airfields.
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NZTyphoon
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« Reply #8 on: April 04, 2009, 12:34:57 AM »

There are two photos of MK716 in Alfred Price "The Spitfire Story" (1982 pp.156-157.). One of these was taken from the left front and it shows the shell ejector ports to be open, with a reasonable amount of staining around and behind the gun ports.

The undercarriage is definitely the earlier splined variety; the leg fairings have not been modified in shape to cover the top section of the torque links (the leading edge doesn't have the small fillet between the straight leg of the fairing and the round wheel section)


For interest Matusiak 2007 http://www.hyperscale.com/2007/reviews/books/classicwarbirds10reviewbg_1.htm believes that the X was dull roundel red, rather than black. Because the black and white photos were taken using ortho film it is hard to know.
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Spits
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« Reply #9 on: April 04, 2009, 05:28:06 AM »

There is a local mod here in Australia that added a scissors link to earlier splined legs on the MkV,s who operated on rough strips up in the Northern Territory.It does include the removal of a couple of cast on lugs and the adding of the top collar for the links.The process is irreversiable. Sad
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jenshb
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« Reply #10 on: April 04, 2009, 05:02:28 PM »

Thanks a lot for your help gentlemen.  I'll just have to use my shortened undercarriage legs with scissor links on another Spitfire:)

Jens
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jenshb
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« Reply #11 on: April 17, 2009, 11:18:31 AM »

Have got some more pics of the aircraft now, and it seems to me that the "stains" under the wings are overpainted invasion stripes.

Here's the thread.

http://www.trashmodeller.com/index.php?topic=1157.15

On page 2, there is a front 3/4 view of X (note small X behind spinner on lower cowling), and there is a darker band under the port wing behind the cannons.  This seems too defined and constant to be cordite stains (if they were, surely the cannon fairings should be stained as well?), and there is another, faint and dark area about one stripe's width inside it.

Jens
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Edgar Brooks
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« Reply #12 on: April 19, 2009, 07:11:34 PM »

The torsion link u/c was not fitted, by the factory, to the IX until September 1945, as mod 832.  The overwing bulges were covered by mod 1545, which introduced a new oleo leg, and wheel.  The factory dated this mod as June, 1945, and the leaflet was issued January 9th., 1946.  The wheel covers were just an attachment, originally to stop snow, but eventually used as counter to sand and mud, and could be seen from April, 1941.  When wings were converted from "C" to "E" configuration, the instructions were simply to cover the redundant chutes, and l/e holes, with a double thickness of the canvas patches, so that would probably have been sufficient for your airframe.
Edgar
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jenshb
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« Reply #13 on: April 20, 2009, 11:55:14 AM »

Thanks for the input Edgar.

Do you know if the aircraft was stripped of paint and then repainted pink, or was this applied over the dark green/ocean grey/medium sea grey camouflage scheme?

Jens
« Last Edit: April 20, 2009, 04:42:41 PM by jenshb » Logged
Edgar Brooks
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« Reply #14 on: April 20, 2009, 09:13:51 PM »

I don't know, for sure, but best guess is that they'd have been stripped.  Red shades of paint have poor coverage, and there's no sign of any demarcation showing through the colour, in the RAF Museum's photo.  Even the roundels have been repainted, red/blue on the fuselage, and about 1/3rd smaller on the upper wings; there's no sign of any residue from the old roundels, or on the fins, where the red/white/blue square has been repainted to the P.R. size.
Edgar
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