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Thread: Looking for 4 Wapiti serial numbers

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    Default Looking for 4 Wapiti serial numbers

    Hello,
    Am looking for 4 Wapiti serial numbers.
    In October 1939 four Jupiter engined Wapiti's arrived in Cape Town and were the first of the few SAAF Wapiti's.
    SA numbers were "601" to "604".
    What was their earlier RAF serial numbers ?

    Thanks
    Alex

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    Good question Alex.

    I see in the Air Britain series, J9241, J9242, J9243 and J9244 are blank - a coincidence?

    These four a batch of 10 Mk II ordered and delivered around 1930-32. The first of which went to Canada. (J9237)

    720155/26 1 Mk1 J8495 Prototype
    790464/27 25 Mk1 J9078-J9102. Most went to Iraq to Aircraft Depot Hinaldi. Two went to India (J9082 and 9083) 2
    813644/27 10 Mk II J9237-J9246 Known ac went to Iraq. 1 went to Canada. None came to India.
    805331/27 1 Mk IIA J9247 Prototype
    834731/28 35 Mk IIA J9380-J9414. 23 of these came to India. Rest went to Iraq 23
    880023/28 (Part 1) 34 Mk IIA J9481-J9514 25 of these came to India 25
    880023/28 (Part 2) 45 Mk IIA J9592-J9636 only 1 of these J9633 came to India 1
    915859/29 17 Mk IIA J9708-9724 All except 1 Wapiti J9728 were shipped to India 16
    915859/29 35 Mk V J9725-J9759 All shipped to India 35
    933744/29 37 Mk IIA J9835-J9871 All except J9854 went to Iraq or stayed within UK. J9854 made its way to India via Iraq. 1
    I have pictures of only one of them from this batch.. http://www.rafcommands.com/galleries...II-J9237-J9247

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    Alex Smart (7th December 2019)

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    Hello Jagan,
    Yes those four ?
    I have trawled both the J and K files and there is zero on SAAF use. Australia, Canada, India are noted but not SAAF.
    My thoughts on the four were that as they were a consecutive run they would fit, but would they have been too early, 1929/30 dates?


    The SAAF four were numbered originally as 601 to 604, but later when the South African built a/c were put into service their serials changed to J601 to J604. As the SA built a/c had different engine's and those began with P605 to P631. It would seem that one of these was converted as a passenger a/c - I expect it was the last one but only my opinion.
    As far as 85years book goes it looks like none of the SAAF a/c were passed on to any other force ?
    Thanks for the response.
    Alex
    Last edited by Alex Smart; 7th December 2019 at 22:46.

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    Not too early - the contract is from 1929, but the first ac in this lot seems to have been delivered around 1930/31 as per J Serials. this fits right in?

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    Gents

    If it will help with your deliberations, Westland Aircraft since 1916, Derek James, Putnam records on page 148:

    "It is recorded that four Wapitis built in 1932 and supplied to the SAAF were designated Wapiti Ib's. Initially they were basically similar to the Ia with a divided main undercarriage. During their service career, their 480 hp Jupiter VIIIf engines were replaced by the 525 hp Armstrong Siddeley Panther fourteen cylinder, twin row air cooled radial. It is believed that in these aircraft a 75 gallon fuel tank replaced the standard 25 gallon auxiliary tank,"

    DaveW

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    Alex Smart (8th December 2019)

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    Than you Dave, yes they eventually had the Panther engines fitted.
    Which bring up the question -Did the serial numbers reflect the change from J601- J604 to P601 - P604 ?
    Alex

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    Alex

    Do you have this article? https://www.saairforce.co.za/forum/v...=9082&p=113995
    (I would love to read it if someone has it)

    and this https://www.saairforce.co.za/forum/v...=Wapiti#p80480
    29 October 1929 - Sir Pierre v Ryneveld ferried the first Westland Wapiti aircraft, assembled in Cape Town, on its delivery flight to Pretoria.


    and this post https://www.saairforce.co.za/forum/v...t=3110&p=89278
    04 April 1931 - The first flight of the locally (under license) produced Westland Wapiti was conducted in the Union, piloted by Lt Holthouse.



    1929 may fit in just with timeline of those 4 serials.

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    Alex Smart (8th December 2019)

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    Javan,
    Many thanks, Xmas has come early :)
    Alex

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