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Sunday at the Mossie Museum

Discussion in 'Living History' started by Martin Bull, Oct 9, 2005.

  1. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    I would have given my eye teeth to fly down and see the inaugural flight. As far as I can find out - no notification what so ever.

    Same for the Victoria BC Project, which should be ready to fly any time now.
    I will be fit to be tied if they do not pre-announce engine runs and its first and only flight. I am only a couple of hours away...

    They have moved to a Facebook Page.
    Stay tuned for updates at: https://www.facebook.com/VicAirMtnc

    Previous years work on the project is still archived at http://vicair.net/projects/mosquito
     
  2. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    Hopefully one of these years the UK MOD will send out an aircraft carrier and collect an entire load of old warbirds for THE penultimate memorial display.
     
  3. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    As work continues on Mosquito Prototype W4050, we continue to be amazed by the 'finds' which are now being unearther every weekend. Yesterday, the underwing fuel tank-bay doors were removed, revealing the interiors for the first time over 50 years. The interiors are pristine, and it was fascinating to see the warning notices which had been painted by hand ( all production Mosquitoes used stencils ). Again, something totally unique to the first Mosquito ever built...

    [​IMG]

    Beautifully done ; the faint pencil lines used to guide the long-forgotten signwriter still visible. When the aircraft goes back together, this will be hidden from sight again..........
     
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  4. gtblackwell

    gtblackwell Member

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    Martin, this thread has long been one of my favorites and I always look read and listen when it pops up. agree that Fred's video is like Mozart, especially with no extraneous sounds save that of the Merlins.

    I noticed a few post back a question about the Packard built Melins being SAE threads and the Rolls being metric. I always thought a WW2 Rolls would be Whitworth, someone correct me if I am wrong. My 50's MG was Whitworth so I base this on that.

    Another question , what glues were used during that era on the Mosquito. I realize a number of screws and bolts are there but also some glue. The notable American architect , Charles Ames, designed a molder plywood splint to stabilize fractured legs on the way to hospital ( of course we colonials would say "the hospital" also during the war. They are very rare and fetch 750-1000 USD today.

    It seems to my novice eye that the Mosquito has extraordinarily large wheels proportional to the fuselage, is that just me ? But then many British bombers seem that way. Of course when wheels up they look rather splendid.

    A last question is the small number of Mosquitos left actually normal for WW2 planes of it's type. I know the Axis planes are rare but it seems a fair number of B-25's are left. True it is not comparable to the mosquito but just wondered.

    Glad you chaps are so diligent !

    Gaines
     
  5. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    Moved

    Tnx. Fried Ed. <===(-:
    (A Smiley that has Tied One On!)
     
  6. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    I only just noticed the above questions - sorry !

    the threads on the Mosquito are BS/BSF ( British Standard / British Standard Fine ) as are both Rolls and Packard Merlins ( imagine the chaos on operational squadrons if both had different sizes ! ). Glue ? This started out as Casein but this - being a natural substance based on milk - was very quickly found to attract fungal growth. Luckily, a lot of very dedicated work was being done at a company based at Duxford, Cambs ( the Aero Research Co ) which rapidly came up with an epoxy resin called 'Beetle' which sets in a similar fashion to todays' Araldite adhesive.

    To save weight and complexity, the Mosquito completely did away with hydraulic shock absorbers and instead used solid rubber and big tyres !

    And so to today and the Prototype wing continues to reveal hidden secrets...such as this long-forgotten pencilled mark on a fuel tank...

    [​IMG]

    More exciting were two parallel lines revealed by the removal of the underwing fabric. These mark the area where the very first underwing bomb-racks were ever fitted to a Mosquito - the central fixing marks can just be seen i nfront of the yellow mark.. Quite appropriate as next week is the 70th Anniversary of the Amiens Jail Raid carried out by fully 'bombed up' Mossies.....

    [​IMG]

    Lastly, an unwelcome discovery but one which demonstrates the very reason for the dismantling of the aircraft - a small area of 'rot' just inboard of the wingtip. Nothing too bad....but if it were allowed to spread............................


    [​IMG]
     
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  7. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    great thread martin again big thanks, fun to watch the developments of the "wooden bird" come back to life ............. still the interest in 100th grp Mosquito units - 85th, 239, 157th sqdn runs high and alludes me for individual history books.
     
  8. gtblackwell

    gtblackwell Member

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    Thank you, Martin, for the updates. I often wondered about thread size and confusion, glad it did not exist. I frequently said a few unsavory things to the Whitworth bolts and Lucas electrics !!! Water in the distributor cap under the bonnet, what ???? But I loved that car !

    Very interesting information about the glues and mold. Mold?, does it ever get damp or moist in the UK ????

    Very interesting about the tires, that is a lot of rubber!

    Tanks again for sharing your knowledge and insights about this great project.

    I remember, vaguely, seeing a movie years ago about Mosquitos in the East but forget it's name. It was good to see real planes being filmed.

    Gaines
     
  9. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    Could have been The Purple Plain with Gregory Peck ? Singapore-based Mossies were used in the filming.
     
  10. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    I had the joy of a short drop in to see the Victoria Restoration project. See: https://www.facebook.com/VicAirMtnc
    (No photos allowed, no notice of engine warm up and first flight, though it looks like they are very very close...)

    Question to Martin:
    Their flaps, ailerons and engine cowlings were metal. Presumably aluminium. Is this correct or were they cheating?

    Metal around Engine Cowlings (at least) are understandable. The heat around engines would preclude plywood. Correct?
     
  11. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    Only two weeks until the Museum reopens to the public so the team were getting some display stuff together - attention returned to FB.VI TA122 with new fabric being applied to the tailplane. The gentleman under the tail has more recently been closely involved with a rather famous Dornier Do17 recovery from the English Channel....

    [​IMG]

    As we were closing the hangar, we all heard an 'interesting' sound and looked up to see a P-51D flying low and throttled 'way back over us heading in the direction of North Weald airfield a few miles to the East. It was Peter Teichman's Hangar 11 Mustang....

    http://www.hangar11.co.uk/mustang.html

    ...which rounded the day off rather nicely !
     
  12. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    I asked the experts today ; the Prototype featured fabric control surfaces very early on, but this was quickly changed to alloy due to buffeting, 'flutter' and generally poor 'feel'. This applied to most early-war aircraft including the Hurricane, etc. The Mossie has a surprising amount of metal, including the ( very complex-shaped ) engine nacelles. The rudder remained fabric-covered as this area had less stress than the horizontal control surfaces.

    And lastly, a snapshot taken today.....

    [​IMG]
     
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  13. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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  14. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    Work on the Prototype Mosquito has been proceeding very nicely throughout the Summer, and we're on track for the mid-2015 'unveiling'. Spent yesterday afternoon masking off the canopy perspex ready to paint the framework - just like a big Airfix kit !

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Wonderful once again, it looks better every time.
     
  16. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    OK, cheating slightly here....this was yesterday ( Saturday ) at the Mossie Museum !

    A significant day indeed as the fuselage and wing section of the Prototype were refitted. A lot of very careful thought and preparation went into this operation ; after all, these are 70+ year old wooden sections being put under weight stress. As one of the UK's most historic arframes, no loud cracking noises were needed - this just had to work........

    The two parts ready to go, with the Museum's B.35 in the background....

    [​IMG]

    As usual, the local farmer provided his telehandler to lift the wing -

    [​IMG]

    Very carefully, the fuselage was lowered into place, with just a little heaving and shoving to line up the attachment points.....

    [​IMG]

    Interesting to note that, for all the flying stresses placed on Mossies during the war, the fuselage and wing ( supporting two Merlins ) were held together by just four 5/8" bolts. They're not usually visible - the head of one can be seen here at top right....

    [​IMG]

    At the end of the day - job done, no problems.....

    [​IMG]


    Lastly, a bit of fun. Not a perfect 'Then & Now', but it's the same airframe, at the same location, using the same techniques ; but with a different group of guys, seventy-four and a half years later !

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And now, we can get on with the rest of it........
     
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  17. KJ Jr

    KJ Jr Well-Known Member

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    Good stuff Martin. Coming along nicely.
     
  18. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    What a relief to see it works. It must be quite streesing when you realize the wing rest on the telehandler. that farmer does deserve his pint after the job!
     
  19. Fred Wilson

    Fred Wilson "The" Rogue of Rogues

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    Yippee! Keep em coming Martin! Dang but do I ever like this thread!
     
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  20. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    A tidying-up day yesterday ; next Sunday the new season starts and we're open to the public.

    A lot of shifting stuff around and cleaning the aircraft.....

    [​IMG]

    And there was some 'real work' going on, too. One of the newly-restored engines for the Prototype saw the light of day....

    [​IMG]

    ....the rebuilt undercarriage legs were fitted , allowing the aircraft to be very gently lowered onto its' tyres until they just touched down...

    [​IMG]


    With three Mosquito airframes in the one hangar, it's very difficult to get them into a pic....


    [​IMG]


    But this year we have something unique to offer our visitors - three original Mosquitoes under one roof.......
     

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