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Thread: RAF Pilots

  1. #21
    JJ'sGirl Guest

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    Dearest Ed,

    It means so much to me that you took the time to write and share your experiences. Thank you so very much. Im simply thrilled to have an answer from a RAF Hero.

    How uncanny and special this is, the Pilot and crew I'm researching was at 19OTU the same time you were. I've sent you an private message to explain further, hope you get it.

    Best wishes,

    JJ's Girl

  2. #22
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    This is just a small bit of anecdotal information, which is offered just because it shows some of the ways people could be knocked out of pilot training. First of all, I think most young men volunteering for the RAF dreamed of being a pilot, because it was clearly the most glamorous job. My late uncle was one of these men, and he applied to the RAF for pilot training in 1942. On paper, he must have looked a good candidate, because he was a trained mechanical engineer who had worked in the aerospace industry (for Boulton Paul, in Wolverhampton). However, he was knocked back for pilot training because at 6'4" he was considered too tall. I suppose he was simply too big to comfortably fit in the cockpit of the aeroplane: perhaps someone else might be able to comment on this. The same thing happened to a friend of his who was also a very tall man: as often seems to have happened, they were sidelined into the navigation stream and became navigators instead.

  3. #23
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    A DFC recipient may not be a "typical" pilot (but then what is typical ?). The following is offered as an example of training:

    SHUTTLEWORTH, F/O Douglas Dalton (J13018) - Enlisted in Regina, Sashatchewan, 18 July 1941. To No.2 Manning Depot, Brandon, 5 August 1941. To No.2 BGS, Mossbank (guard duty), 10 October 1941. To No.2 ITS, Regina, 24 November 1941; graduated and promoted LAC, 17 January 1942; to No.5 EFTS, High River, Alberta, 18 January 1942; to No.7 SFTS, Macleod, 12 April 1942; graduated and commissioned , 31 July 1942. To "Y" Depot, Halifax, 15 August 1942. Embarked from Halifax, 20 August 1942; disembarked in Britain, 1 September 1942. To No.3 (Pilots) Advanced Flying Unit, 11 September 1942. To No.22 OTU, 24 October 1942. To No.426 Squadron, reporting 13 February 1943. Attached to No.1679 Conversion Unit, 1-20 June 1943 before return to No.426 Squadron. Attached to No.1535 Beam Approach Training Flight, 19-26 July 1943..

    Notes on Training:

    No.2 Initial Training School: Ground School only in the following courses: Mathematics (146/150), Signals (150/150), Anti-Gas and Armament (87/100), Aircraft Recognition (97/100), Drill (74/100), Law and Discipline (95/100), Navigation (143/200), General Studies (83/100). Placed 23rd in a class of 139. Described as follows: "Is young but has applied himself. Has been alert, dependable and cooperative. Should be average pilot but if washed out as pilot, feel will make a good observer. Possibly suitable for commission by end of training.

    No.5 Elementary Flying Training School: Flew in Tiger Moths - 27 hours 20 minutes dual and 37 hours five minutes solo. Of this, 10.10 on instruments; also 10.50 on Link. Described as "Careless with general flying." Ground school subjects and marks as follows: Airmanship (167/200), Airframes (76/100), Aero Engines (85/100), Signals (100/100_, Theory of Flight (90/100), Air Navigation (102/200), Aircraft Recognition (70/75), Armament (90/125). Chief Ground Instructor wrote, ":Above average, good type, hard worker, consistent, conduct excellent."

    No.7 Service Flying Training School: Flew Anson aircraft - 51.25 day dual, 64.10 day solo, 5.40 night dual, 12.40 night solo. Of this, 26.40 on instruments. Also logged 20 hours in Link. Described by F/L H.A. Beer (instructor) as "A high average pilot, independent and alert. No outstanding faults. Instrument good average. Conduct very good." On ground he took the following courses with marks indicated: Airmanship and Maintenance (181/200), Armament-W (83/100), Armament-P (82/100), Navigation (124/150), Meteorology (39/50), Signals-W (45/50), Signals-P (100/100). "A capable and industrious student", placing 5th in a class of 57 and awarded a "Distinguished Pass". However, he was subjected to an "Altitude Tolerance Test" on 19 August 1942 and recommended only for "flying only to 25,000 feet" (tests covered heights to 35,000 feet and above 35,000 feet).

    No.1531 Beam Approach Training Flight: Although his list of postings indicates that he was at No.3 (P) AFU, there is no training report from there. There is, however, a report of training at No.1531 Beam Approach Training Flight, 17-24 October 1942. Flew Oxford aircraft (ten hours 25 minutes, all beam and instrument flying, plus five hours in Link. Described as "A good average pilot; has trouble in maintaining height when under hood. Knows the procedure well and has made good use of the course."

    No.22 Operational Training Unit: Course was 27 October 1942 to 14 February 1943. All flying in Wellington aircraft: 8.15 day dual (4.15 to first day solo), 34.25 day solo; 7.55 night dual (three hours night dual to first night solo), 32.35 night solo. Logged 16.25 on instruments and 14.15 in Link. No ground courses marked (if taken); flying courses and marks as follows: General Flying (300/400), Applied Flying (140/200), Instrument Flying (160/250), Night Flying (85/100), Link Trainer (35/50). Assessed 60/100 under "Qualities of Character and Leadership". Described as "Above the average captain, keen and deliberate."

    No.1535 Beam Approach Training Flight: Course lasted from 20 July to 26 July 1943. Flew Oxford aircraft (11 hours day dual, all of it beam flying on instruments). Also logged five hours in Link. Flying Tests were in the following subjects: Beam Approach Procedure and "Q" Code, all in Link Trainer (150/200), Test Paper (96/100), Instrument Flying (130/250), Cloud Flying and Night Flying (130/250), General Application of Beam Approach Procedure in Flying (115/200). Described as "Above average. Took in keen interest in the course and should make good use of the Beam." In Link also rated as "Above average".

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    Fascinating reading Hugh, I've never seen such a detailed posting before on training. May I ask where you got it?
    Regards
    Max

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    Re: Natalie post

    For example in some period (I suppose 1941-1942) Czechoslovak Inspectorate General - the highest authority of Czechoslovak airforce in the RAF - was informed by Air Ministry that only men up to some height can be accepted for Air Gunner's course as there were used Botha aircrafts for training and there was only very limited space for the gunner.

    I have read this in one book, can not remember the title and also I do not know if it is true or not.

    Pavel
    Czechoslovak Airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
    http://cz-raf.webnode.cz

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    Default Shuttleworth training

    Max (alias Galgos) - you asked where I got Shuttleworth's training details. He was a wartime fatality and as such his RCAF files are open for inspection at the National Library and Archives of Canada.

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    Thanks Hugh.
    Max

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