BLACKBURN BUCCANEER S.Mk 2B (OPERATION “GRANBY” January-March 1991)
Buccaneer S.Mk 2B
It is 1991,and the Buccaneer has been in operational service for nearly 30 years, but still had a vital part to play in the Gulf War. Initially it flew to support the Tornado force as a target designator, but also later dropped Laser Guided Bombs (LGB) in the brief campaign. Like many aircraft in this war, the aged Buccaneer was fighting its last campaign.
This model depicts XW533. Handed over factory fresh to the RAF on the 26th of February, 1971. It served at the RAF Bases Laarbruch (Germany) and RAF Honington/Lossiemouth (UK). In January 1991, the aircraft was prepared for Operation “Granby”, the British code name for the Allied participation in “Desert Storm”. It was painted Desert “ARTF” (Alkali Removable Temporary Finish) and was coded “A” (See tail on model).
On the 27th of January, it flew directly from RAF Lossiemouth, to Muharraq Air Base, Bahrain. Flight time: 8 hours 50 minutes. In-flight refueling was provided by RAF tanker-aircraft
The “Nose Art” was added during the campaign “Miss Jolly Roger/Fiona/Glenfarclas”. By the end of the campaign, eleven mission symbols were displayed on the starboard side, below the cockpit.
On the 17th of March, 1991, it returned to RAF Lossiemouth, in the UK, on a direct flight (8 hours 30 minutes).
In September, 1992, it was scrapped – Elgin, Moray, Scotland.
Full history, even on the actual bombing missions can be found on the website http://www.blackburn-buccaneer.co.uk from webmaster Andy White.
I constructed the airbrakes in “Full Brake” position. Interesting to mention, that these brakes could be deployed under all conditions during flight.
From the spares box, I constructed the typical laser guided bomb (LGB) MK13/18 from the British Royal Ordnance Factory. The bomb contains three parts: 1000LBS center section “Royal Ordnance” and the front/tail section from the Paveway II family. Morale from the ground crew was extremely high and this was reflected in the text on the bombs, so I also added some text.
Dust covers on intake and exhaust pipes were made from Evergreen. These were highly necessary during parking on the tarmac in Bahrain. The “Remove Before Flight” tags were constructed from “Evergreen” strips.
The Martin Baker Ejection seats are enhanced with Eduard seatbelts. Clearly visible the middle windscreen. This kept the navigator “out of the wind” during bail out procedures
XW533, is parked on the tarmac from the Muharraq Air base, in Bahrain. It is armed with the MK13/18 1000LBS laser guided bombs. The date is 24-02-1991, and the attack destination, after take off, will be the POL facilities (Petrol Oil Lubricants) of Tallil Airfield in Iraq.
Configuration during mission:
To complete this mission, the aircraft has the following underwing stores:
Starboard wing (right):
Outer wing pylon: Westinghouse AN/ALQ 101, Electronic Counter Measure Pod (ECM).
to provide powerful radar jamming capability over a broad band of frequencies.
Inner wing pylon (pic 5):
Slipper tank for extra endurance. Not always carried during missions in Iraq. (Fuel tank partly visible on pic 15).
Port wing (left):
Inner wing pylon:
Pave Spike AN/ANQ-23E. Daylight only laser-designator (pic 13).
Outer wing pylon:
The Royal Ordnance MK13/18 1000LBS Laser Guided Bomb with additional text.
Air waves Wingfold set (AC-48-101)
Air Waves Break detail Set (AC48-072)
Eduard Interior Set (E48-132)
Xtra Decal Set (X025-48 / Excellent quality.)
Xtra colour paints (Several)
Evergreen Pastics (Several)
Verlinden (Text on LGB)
http://www.blackburn-buccaneer.co.uk from webmaster Andy White.
Personal contact with Andy White
Personal contact with master modeler Ted Taylor
Gulf War Air Debrief from World Air Power / General Editor Stan Morse/ISBN 1 880588 00 5.
The Airfix company deserves a “thumbs up” for this model and their service department.
Dirk / Imodeler 310118
19 additional images. Click to enlarge.