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Old 01-22-2012, 08:21 AM
whoarmongar whoarmongar is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 265

John Wray 137 sqdn

"We were the first squadron to become operational on the Hurricane 1V, carrying eight 3 inch rockets with 60lb explosive warheads or, as an alternative two 40mm guns. We opted for the rockets as principle armament becouse they were so devastating. However we were not allowed to take the rockets overland into enemy territory as the air ministry wanted to keep them as a surprise for the invasion when it came,so we kept six aircraft armed with the 40mm cannon just for "Rhubarbs". These weapons were very accurate and really sorted out trains,the 40mm would blow the boiler right off.

Four of use set off on a "Rhubarb" in an area near Le Touquet. The Hurricane IV had no defensive armament the two remaining brownings being used to keep heads down when attacking ground targets with our primary weapons to which our gunsight was harmonised. Moreover with all the weight we now carried, the poor old Hurricane never the quickest climber had a pretty poor rate of climb. On the instrument panel was the boost overide toggle a red knob you could pull out to give emerency boost if required. However if you used it for more than two minuites the engine was liable to blow up. The red toggle had a piece of wire which extended through the instrument panel to the boost control on the engine.

We had just attacked a train when the air was suddenly full of Fw 190s. We had a big turning match, the Hurricane still retained its amazing manouverability and one by one we managed to make cloud cover. We landed back at base individually but more or less at the same time. As we walked in I said "That was a bit of a dicey do, by God". A canadian said "I wasnt the least bit worried, I didnt see any problem." I noticed he was clutching something in his hand and asked what he was concealing. Unknown to himself, he was clutching the red toggle of the boost overide, with a couple of feet of wire attached. He had pulled it right out of the instrument panel !
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