The Wellington

technical info

Just a few miles from the place where I live, the remains of an aircraft was discoverd during dredgingwork. First few things that has been secured (a non-used parachute and some iron parts) gave the idea that it might be a missing aircraft of the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), a Wellington. There are no other missing aircrafts reported within the borders of Dronten.

According to the loss registry of the Ministry of defence of 1943 with the Vickers Wellington registration HD-Q and serial number HF544, showed that this airplane was shot down on 26 June at 1.11 hours. That happened by Helmut Lent of Nachtjagdgeschwader 1. The registry mentioned the location in the IJsselmeer near Urk, but this turns out to be so further South.

The Wellington of the 466 Squadron of the Royal Australian Air Force conducted a mission to Gelsenkirchen. The crew consisted of pilot a. g. Green, Airy, Bombardier navigator w. Riley, radio operator t. Atkinson and gunner g. Johnson. Only the body of navigator Riley is recovered and he is buried in Amsterdam.

Read the whole story on Back to Normandy

Reason for me to tell more about the Wellington.

My wonderful source: Alec Lumsden

 

Type

Twin engined medium bomber.

Wings

Mid-wing, cantilever monoplane; aspect ratio 8.83 light alloy Vickers-Wallis construction on geodetic principles.
Wing built in inner and outer sections connected through engine nacelles. Inner wing attached to fuselage by reinforced inner ribs, the single Warren truss main spar (pin-jointed at centre line) passing through, but not attached to, fuselage. Auxiliary spars fore and aft attached to inner ribs and fuselage main frames. The rear spar carries split flaps and Frise ailerons. Wing pane-ls fabric covered before assembly.

Fuselage

Four tubular longerons act as pickup points for nodal points of intersecting geodetic members. Fuselage fabric covered, oval sectioned and jig-assembled on two fabricated main frames at Wing attachment points. Other principal frames at tail attachment and cockpit wall. Bomb-bay divided longitudinally into three cells. Later Type 423 accommodated 4,000lb bomb.

Tail unit

Cantilever monoplane, geodetic construction, fabric covered. Trim tabs and horn balance on elevators (linked to flaps) and rudder. Rudder mass-balanced.

Undercarriage

Hydraulic retraction of all units. Vickers oleo-pneumatic shock-absorbers. Mkl version had main wheels enclosed by doors-later Marks had larger wheels leaving tyre partially exposed. Vickers pneumatic wheel-brakes.

Powerplant

Two Bristol Pegasus, Pratt and Whitney Twin Wasp, or Bristol Hercules radial air-cooled or Rolls-Royce Merlin liquid-cooled engines. Three-bladed de Havilland, Rotol, Curtiss or Hamilton Standard propellers on air-cooled engines (except test installations) and three- or four-bladed Rotol on Merlin engines. 
Standard fuel 634 imp gall in removable self-sealing wing tanks and 116 in nacelles-total 750 gall. In later Marks, long range tanks could be fitted in bomb-bay bringing total up to 1,305 gall giving nearly 17 hours endurance on ferry flights (about 2,000 miles).

Accommodation

Up to six crew, according to requirements. Could be flown solo.

Armament

Mkl-three hydraulically operated Vickers turrets-nose, tail and ventral. Single Browning gun in nose, twin in tail, 52 and single in retractable under turret. Nash and Thompson turret controls. Frazer-Nash ventral turret substituted for Vickers. Later had FN turrets, 2-gun front and 2- or 4-gun rear. Ventral deleted in favour of Vickers ‘K’ gas operated or Browning belt-fed .303in window-mounted beam guns. rWarload-bombs (up to 18 250lb in 3 cells or one 4,000lb ‘Cookie’ in Type 423 bomb cell) or mines or two l8in torpedoes and/ or long range tank(s) as required.

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