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Thread: Harvard KF373 RAN-A of 607 Squadron - fitted with 'porcupine' exhaust?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Northumberland, UK
    Thanked 137 Times in 133 Posts

    Default Harvard KF373 RAN-A of 607 Squadron - fitted with 'porcupine' exhaust?

    Hello everyone

    I hope you're all keeping safe and well.

    I'm working on an illustration of 607 Squadron Harvard IIb KF373 RAN-A, and have noticed that it's fitted with a flame-damped or 'porcupine-style' exhaust. I've only seen two or three photos of Harvard thus fitted, and wondered if it was an unusual fitting?

    Air Britain's 'The Harvard File' has the following for KF373:

    607 Sqn - RAN:A/LA:A 8.46 - 2.51
    611 Sqn - 2.51 - 10.53
    SS (Avex) [?] - 5.57

    From that it seems it didn't see wartime service so didn't need to hide its exhaust glare from night fighters, so why the flame damped exhaust? Perhaps to prevent the exhaust glare affecting night vision on night flying training?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Thanked 34 Times in 34 Posts


    Hi Simon
    Hope you keeping well also.

    I would not have thought 373 'needed' or was required to have a flame damper exhaust fitted to act as a trainer for a 'Day Fighter' Aux Sqn,607 was equipped with Spitfires at that time so not sure how much night flying they were required to do (if any).

    I think the fighter Aux Sqns usually had 2 x Harvards for Training/Sqn 'Hack',they usually had 3 regular (full time) RAF Officers on strength - one of whom would be a QFI (Qualified Flying Instructor) to train Sqn pilots and carry out routine flying checks/tests.
    I wonder if 373 was originally earmarked for a different unit or perhaps had taken part in a trial installation of the flame damper exhaust.
    Having said that the flame damper exhausts might have been useful in a North Eastern England winter when it can be virtually dark by 1600hrs.

    rgds baz

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