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Rick Kent
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Camouflage & MarkingsArmstrong Whitworth Siskin

January 31, 2015 · in Aviation · · 12 · 2.5K

The first prototype of the flew in May 1919. Unfortunately its Dragonfly engine, of which much was expected, proved to be lacking in power and was unreliable. Hence, after some long time, the aircraft was redesigned with a metal airframe and fitted with the Siddeley Jaguar engine. Designated Siskin III, it first flew early in May 1923 and six were delivered to the RAF for evaluation in January 1924. It entered front-line service with 41 Squadron at Northolt in May 1924. The improved Mark IIIA Siskin with the later, supercharged, Jaguar IVA engine entered service in 1926.

The Siskins were replaced by Bulldogs in front-line service by October 1932. They were all painted silver with coloured squadron markings on them, the Mk. III's and some Mk. IIIA's having the noses painted grey.

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12 responses

  1. Where do you find these color plates...or do YOU create them ?

    • Hi Craig. I draw all the profiles myself. Started drawing and painting them by hand as a kid about 7 years old. Since 1995 I've been doing them on computer graphics, no stopping me since then! At the current count I've done 1,630 in a bit less than twenty years. I find researching the information and doing the drawings very absorbing and satisfying, just as much as I used to with making models. That's fine for me since my aged hands don't allow me to make models any more.

      Where on earth could I put that many models anyway HaHa?

  2. Thanks Rick for posting these. The Siskin is my favourite RAF biplane fighter from the inter war era. I built about 7 Matchbox Siskins in 1/72 scale in the early 1980's. I liked the engine that was exposed and the exhaust along the fuselage. Well done. Would love to see all your drawings. Keep them coming!

    • Thanks Morne. The uncowled engine must have made things a little easier for the ground crews too, I imagine.
      I will keep on posting the drawings as you say. I'd guess it will take a l-o-o-n-g time to post them all.

  3. Great profiles (as always) The Siskin is one of my favorite Bi plane fighters too. It seeems, its time to dig out the plastic bag with the Matchbox parts and having fun.

    • Thanks Bernd. Good luck with your bag of Matchbox parts. There seem to be plenty of that kit still available - currently nine available on ebay.

      • Some day ago, i searched on Ebay for some of their ships and tank kits, its really amazing how many of these old kits are still around. The Siskin and some other i got on a swap meet.
        It was impossible to walk away from them.

        • As you say, it's amazing how many of these old kits are still available after so many years, since before 1980 in the case of the Siskin. Ebay is always worth checking - even if you don't know of any actual kit, you might find there is one. I use the same technique looking for aircraft books by type as well.

  4. Thanks for the profiles Rick. especially the older and rarer types.

    • I enjoy doing them Simon, and posting them for others to see and use. It's interesting to see the same coloured squadron markings still in use on modern/current RAF aircraft like the Typhoon, Tornado, etc, so you can trace the unit histories through.
      I suppose it helps too, being an "older and rarer type" myself HaHa!

  5. Thank you for this profile! It is these days, I looked matchbox 1/72 on my stash.

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