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View Full Version : Spitfire XIV's from HMS Trumpeter.



Waldo.Pepper
05-30-2005, 10:40 PM
This is further to this discussion

http://forums.ubi.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/26310365/m/3661...871016932#7871016932 (http://forums.ubi.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/26310365/m/3661016932/r/7871016932#7871016932)

about Spitfires taking off from Carriers using wooden blocks in their flaps. In this case they were Spitfire XIV€s

This is from the book

Canadian Wing Commanders
ISBN: Not listed in the book!
Author: Brown and Lavigne
Battleline Books Langley, B.C.
Pages 284-5


They were informed that they were expected to take off from the 420 foot-long deck of the small escort carrier HMS Trumpeter, which was to carry them to within flying distance of Kluang Airfield near Port Swettenham in Malaya. No Spitfire XIV had ever flown off such a small carrier and it was not even certain that it was possible. Hiram and his pilots worked out a system by marking out the dimensions of a flight deck on the tarmac at Madura to practice their take-offs. In order to get the planes airborne as quickly as possible, it was found necessary to put wood blocks in the flaps to keep them down 20 degrees, and line the aircraft up at an angle of 30 degrees from the line of take-off, because of the torque exerted by such violent acceleration. Also they had to remove two cockpit instruments to get absolute full throttle.
For take-off, the wheels were chocked as the engine revved up, while two ground crew stood by to pull the chocks away when the aircraft could no longer be held back. As full throttle was applied, the chocks were snatched away, the torque quickly twisted the plane onto the line of take-off and it was eased into the air with the shortest possible run. After becoming airborne, the flaps had to be lowered to let the blocks fall free. It was estimated that the minimum cross-deck wind required for successful take-off was 17 knots. Trumpeter could only do 16 knots flat out, so it was hoped that there would be a good breeze blowing when the great day arrived.
The day was the 9th of September 1945. The sea was flat and calm, but it was estimated that there was a wind of one knot, so Hiram led the Spitfires of No. 11 and 17 Squadrons into the air with nothing to spare and no mishaps. An hour later, Wing Commander Smith had the privilege of being the first person to land a Spitfire in Malaya. The British Spitfire Squadrons landed among rows of parked Japanese Kamikaze aircraft, all ready to take off on their deadly one-way missions; but the atomic bombs had been dropped on Japanese soil, and the war was over. Thus the wartime career of Wing Commander Forgrave Marshall "Hiram" Smith came to an end after 273 operational sorties. He was one of the few pilots who was flying Spitfires at the beginning of the war, and still flying them right at the end. In fact, it might be said that he was one of the few pilots who were actually flying before the war started, and who was still actively flying at the end. The pilot from Edmonton stayed in the RAF until 1957, when he retired to take up residence in Scotland.


Hooray for OCR software. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Waldo.Pepper
05-30-2005, 10:40 PM
This is further to this discussion

http://forums.ubi.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/26310365/m/3661...871016932#7871016932 (http://forums.ubi.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/26310365/m/3661016932/r/7871016932#7871016932)

about Spitfires taking off from Carriers using wooden blocks in their flaps. In this case they were Spitfire XIV€s

This is from the book

Canadian Wing Commanders
ISBN: Not listed in the book!
Author: Brown and Lavigne
Battleline Books Langley, B.C.
Pages 284-5


They were informed that they were expected to take off from the 420 foot-long deck of the small escort carrier HMS Trumpeter, which was to carry them to within flying distance of Kluang Airfield near Port Swettenham in Malaya. No Spitfire XIV had ever flown off such a small carrier and it was not even certain that it was possible. Hiram and his pilots worked out a system by marking out the dimensions of a flight deck on the tarmac at Madura to practice their take-offs. In order to get the planes airborne as quickly as possible, it was found necessary to put wood blocks in the flaps to keep them down 20 degrees, and line the aircraft up at an angle of 30 degrees from the line of take-off, because of the torque exerted by such violent acceleration. Also they had to remove two cockpit instruments to get absolute full throttle.
For take-off, the wheels were chocked as the engine revved up, while two ground crew stood by to pull the chocks away when the aircraft could no longer be held back. As full throttle was applied, the chocks were snatched away, the torque quickly twisted the plane onto the line of take-off and it was eased into the air with the shortest possible run. After becoming airborne, the flaps had to be lowered to let the blocks fall free. It was estimated that the minimum cross-deck wind required for successful take-off was 17 knots. Trumpeter could only do 16 knots flat out, so it was hoped that there would be a good breeze blowing when the great day arrived.
The day was the 9th of September 1945. The sea was flat and calm, but it was estimated that there was a wind of one knot, so Hiram led the Spitfires of No. 11 and 17 Squadrons into the air with nothing to spare and no mishaps. An hour later, Wing Commander Smith had the privilege of being the first person to land a Spitfire in Malaya. The British Spitfire Squadrons landed among rows of parked Japanese Kamikaze aircraft, all ready to take off on their deadly one-way missions; but the atomic bombs had been dropped on Japanese soil, and the war was over. Thus the wartime career of Wing Commander Forgrave Marshall "Hiram" Smith came to an end after 273 operational sorties. He was one of the few pilots who was flying Spitfires at the beginning of the war, and still flying them right at the end. In fact, it might be said that he was one of the few pilots who were actually flying before the war started, and who was still actively flying at the end. The pilot from Edmonton stayed in the RAF until 1957, when he retired to take up residence in Scotland.


Hooray for OCR software. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

ednavar
05-31-2005, 04:12 AM
Thx Waldo,

a great read, as always with your posts http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

S!

E.