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Thread: Hercules No. 1 Engine Central Admin Unit ?

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    Default Hercules No. 1 Engine Central Admin Unit ?

    I am looking through the 254 Sqn ORB (AIR 27/1516) researching a Danish pilot.

    On 16.01.1944 the entry states, that he "ceased detachment to Hercules No. 1 Engine Central Admin Unit". He is posted to this unit on 09.01.1944, and to the squadron from No. 1 Torpedo Training Unit in December 1943.

    Does anyone know this unit and, perhaps, it's function? I suppose it is linked to the Beaufighter's Hercules engines.

    It is not mentioned in Sturtivant's book on RAF support and training units.

    Regards

    Mikkel
    Last edited by Mikkel Plannthin; 27th December 2011 at 20:42.
    Britain's Victory, Denmark's Freedom. Danish Volunteers in Allied Air Forces During the Second World War
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    danishww2pilots.dk - a resource on Danish aircrew during the Second World War

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    Mikkel,

    Probably closely allied to:

    No.1 Engine Control and Demonstration Unit at Westcott from 2.10.42 'with No.11 OTU in No. 92 Group'. In Nov 42 had 1 x Wellington II and 1 x Wellington III. In Sep 43 a Beaufighter was added. Still at Westcott until Feb 45.

    From Sturtivant's book.

    Errol

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    Erroll
    Thank your for this suggestion.

    Regards

    Mikkel
    Britain's Victory, Denmark's Freedom. Danish Volunteers in Allied Air Forces During the Second World War
    fb.me/britainsvictorydenmarksfreedom
    danishww2pilots.dk - a resource on Danish aircrew during the Second World War

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    Mikkel,
    I have alson seen frequent references in personal histories to attendance at Merlin engine handling courses (as well as the aforementioned Hercules courses), presumably run by Rolls Royce engineers or employees, which were designed to inform pilots and flight engineers of deeper knowledge of operating these engines for longer life and improved fuel consumption. The Hercules and the Merlin were almsot certainly the most widely used engines in RAF service during WW2, and it was well known that many engines were being operated incorrectly by personnel who were not very skilled in their manipulation. I can also imagine that closely related engines (such as Kestrels for the Merlin, and the later Bristol Centaurus, as well as the rather unrelaiable Taurus) could also be generally covered in the same lectures, and certain points of operating the Merlin might be of use to pilots flying aircraft fitted with the Allison V-1710, although this is just speculation on my part. I am fairly certain that there were also Napier Sabre courses for Typhoon/Tempest pilots. These courses were not very long (perhaps a week or so) but were considered extremely valuable. I don/t know how people were selected for these courses, but one can imagine a squadron commander sending a pilot who in his opinion seemed clueless in engine operation and was suspected of gradually ruining all the engines in the squadron! However this might be a waste of time, and perhaps interested personnel only were sent, the idea perhaps being that they could then circulate useful information around the rest of the chaps on their return.
    David D

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    Here is an example of a posting to Napier & Sons for a Sabre engine handling course (from Vol Three of my 'For Your Tomorrow'):

    POWELL, Warrant Officer John Robert.
    NZ413889; b New Brighton 5 Jun 22; Marist Bros Coll, Tuakau (1st XI/XV); clerk - Blackburne, Smith & Co, builders merchants, Chch. RNZAF Levin/ITW as Airman Pilot u/t 6 Jul 41, 1EFTS 16 Aug 41, e/f & f/ldg (uninj) 9 Sep 41, 1FTS 27 Sep 41, Pilots Badge [wef 15.11.41] & Sgt 20 Dec 41, att RAF & emb for UK 20 Jan 42, 3PRC 10 Mar 42, 3(P)AFU 21 Apr 42, 1SS (Proctor) as staff pilot 9 Jun 42, 58OTU (Spitfire) 24 Feb 43,

    486 Sqn RNZAF (Typhoon, Tempest; 27 ops) 1 Jun 43 [att D Napier & Sons for engine handling cse 13-17 Sep],

    1PHU 16 Jun 44, 16PTC 25 Jul 44, 486 Sqn RNZAF (Tempest) 28 Jul 44, 84GSU (Typhoon?) 13 Aug 44, 18APC (Typhoon) Aug 44, 257 Sqn (Typhoon - 13 ops) 23 Aug 44, kao 8 Oct 44. Runnymede Memorial - Panel 263. Son of Robert Henry & Teresa Margaret Powell (née Enright), Waltham, Chch. [phot. TWN 3.1.45].

    Errol

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    And a Rolls Royce/Merlin course example:

    TROUSDALE, Wing Commander Richard Macklow, DFC*, (bbc).
    NZ2414 (42163 in RAF); b Waimate North 23 Jan 21; Howick DHS; farmer - father's farm at Murvale, Howick. Selected for RAF SSComm c.Nov 38, emb for UK 3 Feb 39, arr 15 Mar 39; RAF & to Perth/11E&RFTS as Pilot u/t 16 Mar 39, 1st solo 6 Apr 39, SSComm [wef 13.3.39] & 1 Depôt 13 May 39, 9FTS [redesignated 9SFTS 3.9.39] 26 May 39, Pilots Badge 22 Aug 39, 10AOS 23 Oct 39, 266 Sqn (Battle, Spitfire - 53 ops) 6 Nov 39, 255 Sqn (Defiant - 37 ops) 23 Nov 40, HQ 12 Gp for staff duties 2 Jul 41,

    409 Sqn RCAF (Beaufighter - 43 ops) 1 Oct 41 [att 1529BATF (Master) 13-18 Apr 42, att Rolls Royce Ltd for Merlin cse 2-5 Jun],

    488 Sqn RNZAF (Beaufighter - 1 op) as CO 9 Jul 42, HQ 13 Gp (various a/c types - 2 ops) as Wg Cdr Trg 20 Feb 43 [att Middle Wallop 16-26 Mar], 51OTU (Beaufighter - 1 op) as OC 15 Jul 43 [att 488 Sqn RNZAF (Mosquito – 3 ops) 12-18 Nov], A&AEE/Test Pilots School [redesignated ETPS 28.7.44] (various a/c types) 13 Mar 44 [att RAE Farnborough (did not fly at) 11 Sep-13 Oct, att de Havilland for airscrew cse 29 Nov-3 Dec, att de Havilland at Hatfield (Mosquito) for production test flts 4-22 Dec], t/frd to RNZAF Comm/att RAF 19 Jan 45, TFU (various a/c types) as OC Flying 5 Mar 45, 12PD&RC 2 Oct 45, emb for NZ 30 Nov 45, ctba 4 Jan 46, rtd to NZ & NNEP 11 Jan 46, Res 17 Apr 46; Re-enlisted at Ohakea & PComm 29 Apr 47, 75 Sqn/Ferry Flt (Mosquito) 30 Apr 47, to UK to ferry Mosquito to NZ May 47, 1FU, kaa 16 Jun 47. Bath (Haycombe) Cemetery - 39.H.F.243, Englishcombe, Somerset, England. Son of Archibald Campbell & Clarice Rebecca Trousdale (née Macklow), Murvale, Howick; h of Dorothy Christine Trousdale (née Barker) & f of 1s & 1d, Howick. Note: credited with 6 [9?] e/a dest [& 1 shared dest?]., 1 [4?]. prob & 1 dam. [OH BoB, OHT1, OHT2, BSD & phot. TWN 27.5.42, & 17.2.43].

    Errol

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    David, Erroll
    Thank you both. Very enlightening.

    Mikkel
    Britain's Victory, Denmark's Freedom. Danish Volunteers in Allied Air Forces During the Second World War
    fb.me/britainsvictorydenmarksfreedom
    danishww2pilots.dk - a resource on Danish aircrew during the Second World War

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