de Havilland Mosquito NF Mk II

The Mosquito is a well known aircraft that served a variety of roles.

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So let’s look at a night fighter variant of this versatile aircraft.

Perhaps the best known bit of trivia about this attractive twin is that the airframe was made wholly of wood.  That is not quite completely unique, but it was certainly uncommon for the western powers.  The plywood used had good strength to weight characteristics, in addition to being a less critical resource than aircraft grade aluminum.  On the down side, the manufacturing process was labor intensive and the glues involved did not hold up very well to heat and humidity.  This became a big problem for Mosquitos deployed to India and Burma, and partly accounts for their rarity on the modern warbird circuit.

4 x .303 AND 4 x 20 mm makes for a heavy punch from a little Mosquito.

4 x .303 AND 4 x 20 mm makes for a heavy punch from a little Mosquito.

Combining such light construction with two Rolls-Royce Merlin engines made for a very powerful little aircraft.  And when the plywood shell was properly sealed and sanded smooth it was aerodynamically slippery aircraft as well.

I actually bumped the camera when setting and down and took this accidental photo.  But I liked the low angle view so you get to see it too!

I actually bumped the camera when setting it down and took this accidental photo. But I liked the low angle view so you get to see it too!

The Mosquito proved extraordinarily capable in a number of important roles.  It served well as a high speed light bomber (possibly the only such aircraft that truly did not need a fighter escort), strategic reconnaissance, a light strike aircraft, and a night fighter/intruder.

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The Night Fighter Mk II shown here served mostly in the intruder capacity (as opposed to home defense) which meant it was used for hitting German airfields in the middle of the night.  Flight Lieutenant D.H. Blomely used this aircraft to score four kills in the summer of 1943.

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This is the Tamiya kit with Aeromaster decals. I find this particular night camouflage scheme attractive how it combines the blacked out lower surface with the disruptive top side.  The kit and decals were trouble free.

 

 

 

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About atcDave

I'm 53 years old and live in Ypsilanti, Michigan. I'm happily married to Jodie. I've been an air traffic controller for 30 years; grew up in the Chicago area, and am still a fanatic for pizza and the Chicago Bears. My main interest is military history, and my related hobbies include scale model building and strategy games.
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10 Responses to de Havilland Mosquito NF Mk II

  1. Theresa says:

    It was the work horse of the RAF. Quite a beautiful machine.

    • atcDave says:

      Yeah I think it’s very nice looking.

      One was supposed to be at Thunder Over Michigan last year (2013), but apparently it sold about a month before the show, and the new owner backed out. So I’ve still never seen one fly.

  2. Pierre Lagacé says:

    Reblogged this on RAF 23 Squadron and commented:
    Worth the detour…

  3. Pierre Lagacé says:

    I reblog this on my blog paying homage to a little known Mosquito squadron.

  4. shortfinals says:

    You might be interested in the fact that we will be building a Mosquito (an FB.VI). Please see http://peoplesmosquito.org.uk Our site has a rare WW2 colour film – 9 minutes long – of RAF Mosquitoes in action. Ross Sharp, Director Engineering & Airframe Compliance, The People’s Mosquito Ltd

    • atcDave says:

      That’s an awesome project. I’m a big fan of 1/1 scale modeling (!).
      You’ll need to bring it to Thunder Over Michigan once you get it up.

      • shortfinals says:

        Thanks! Please spread the word!! Oh, and we have COOL T-shirts (look at the ‘Night Intruder one….it’s black on black!) bit.ly/TPMShop

  5. jfwknifton says:

    A wonderfully made model. Well done!

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