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  #11  
Old 11th June 2006, 14:42
Franek Grabowski Franek Grabowski is offline
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Re: Spitfire P7350

Stig
Just check my previous post.
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  #12  
Old 11th June 2006, 23:12
Christer Bergström Christer Bergström is offline
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Re: Spitfire P7350

Stig, many thanks for your input.

However, circumstances show that it hardly is as simple as a confusion between P7350 (which is the damaged aircraft which still flies today) and P7325 in the sense that martel flew P7325 instead. Martel was hit in the left leg by shrapnel, and landed his damaged aircraft and it was repaired.

This could have been P7350 (as "Then & Now Vol. V" and "The Greatest Squadron of Them All" claim), but definitely not P7325, since that one became a write-off after the incident on 25 October.

Or does Gretzyngier actually claim that P7325 was repaired? If so, it would be very interesting to learn what Gretzyngier has to say about the final fate of P7325? How long did P7325 continue to serve after 25 October 1940? On which date was it finally lost or scrapped? Is there any other source which mentions the existence of P7325 after 25 October 1940?

Here are two other boards where this sunbject is discussed, apparently without coming to any definite conclusion:

http://disc.server.com/Indices/105008.html

http://forum.keypublishing.co.uk/sho...ighlight=p7350

I don't have access to Martel's logbook, and not either to 603 Sqn's ORB, but on the latter forum, "Voytech" claims that "According to his personal Flying Log Book, Ludwik Martel has not flown P7350, unfortunately. P7359 XT-Q was his usual mount between November 1940 and January 1941, and he also flew P7550 XT-W and P7750 XT-L."

Unfortunately, "Voytech" doesn't mention if the serial number of the aircraft in which Martel force-landed on 25 Oct 1940 is mentioned in Martel's logbook. (May we interprete the absence of such a mentioning as a hint that no such note exists in Martel's logbook?)

There are scores of examples of writing errors in logbooks. So maybe the answer is that Martel or the clerk who made the notes in Martel's logbook simply made the error of writing P7550 or P7750 instead of P7350 for 25 October 1940?

Or maybe there was a third Spitfire in No. 603 Sqn which received battle damage on 25 October 1940 - unknown to all previous books and publications? No, that is not likely.

As it stands right now, the most probable conclusion is that there is an error in Martel's logbook, and that he indeed flew P7350 on 25 October 1940.

(A reasonable question is why this is so interesting. The answer is that P7350 is the oldest Spitfire in the world, and it still is flying. Thus it is interesting to know its history.)
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Last edited by Christer Bergström; 12th June 2006 at 06:30.
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  #13  
Old 12th June 2006, 00:41
Franek Grabowski Franek Grabowski is offline
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Re: Spitfire P7350

Beg me pardon, but you have the answer in Fly Past's thread!
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  #14  
Old 12th June 2006, 02:24
penguin832au penguin832au is offline
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Re: Spitfire P7350

Hello,

Yes, This has turned out to be an interesting thread.
I can only add that I reviewed the spitfire aircraft record cards while in the UK some many years ago, and as for P7325, I have noted:

9MU 14-8-40
266Sqdn Wittering 6-9-40
603Sqdn 17-10-40, Cat3 ops 25-10-40
(P/O L Martel was wounded in combat coded W) My note added
GAL
41Sqdn 30-3-41
145Sqdn 28-7-41 19Sqdn 21-9-41
331Sqdn 6-11-41, Flying Acc. CatB 16-11-41
SAL convered to ASR(IIC)
57 OTU 22-5-43
277Sqdn 31-12-43 CatE 25-7-44

And so P7325 was repaired and later sent to SAL at an unspecified date for conversion

I can also add that in relation to P7350, the record card says that in relation to the 603 Sqdn incident on 17-10-40, this was a Flying Accident' resulting in Cat B damage, and there was no mention of any incident on 25-10-40

The squadron ORB and the aircraft accident cards may be of help, I have no further notes on these 2 aircraft.

As to who was flying which aircraft, there have been many variations - I notice that in Fighter Command Losses Appendix, Franks states
'25th October 603 Sqn P/O L Martel was wounded in combat, flying Hurricane (???) , P7325 W.'

After 50 years of researhing aircraft serials, I have learnt that this period (1939-1945) was a very distressing time to all concerned, non flying administrative staff included, and that record keeping was not always up to the standard that we might expect today (especially in our world of computers, etc). Many errors were made in recording events (miss-reading hand-writing, typing errors, etc). Many squadrons, mostly fighter due to the frantic activity and fluidity of the situation, only recorded what aircraft had been listed as 'serviceable' for the day, and not those that flew at any particular time, and certainly not 'who flew what' The same can apply to pilot's log books.
Historians should be very careful when 'rebuilding' the past, making educated guesses is acceptable, so long as this is made clear.

I commend all who participate in forums such as this, particlarly in a thread like this one where there is some differing thoughts and info, some day someone will come up with some much needed 'factual' information which might clear things up.

My regards to all,

Tony
Adelaide, Australia
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  #15  
Old 12th June 2006, 11:56
Christer Bergström Christer Bergström is offline
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Re: Spitfire P7350

The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight also belongs to the majority which regards the conclusion that Martel flew P7350 as most plausible. See this latest post from Ted Burrows:

"The BBMF believe it was Ludwik Martel who was flying her when she was shot down on 25th October 1940. They recently changed the markings to XT-W which was her markings when Martel was forced down in her.
It was hoped to reunite pilot & plane at Duxford back in May but Martel was unable to make due to ill health."

http://disc.server.com/discussion.cg...ussion%20Forum

I think we can conclude that the case is pretty much solved now. However, it would be interesting if someone could attach a scan of Martel's logbook to this forum. That wouldn't be too difficult for those who have access to a copy of his logbook. Also, maybe someone could ask Martel what he thinks if there is a possibility that someone made a writing error in his logbook (that is, if the Serial No. even is mentioned for the flight in question).
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  #16  
Old 12th June 2006, 13:52
Franek Grabowski Franek Grabowski is offline
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Re: Spitfire P7350

Why to ask if you know better?
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  #17  
Old 12th June 2006, 14:37
Kutscha Kutscha is offline
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Re: Spitfire P7350

Quote:
Originally Posted by Franek Grabowski
Why to ask if you know better?
Because Christer asked before the post of Ted Burrows on June 12 2006.
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  #18  
Old 12th June 2006, 15:24
Franek Grabowski Franek Grabowski is offline
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Franek Grabowski
Re: Spitfire P7350

Burrows is wrong as is apparent from VERY THIS thread.
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  #19  
Old 13th June 2006, 10:27
paulmcmillan paulmcmillan is offline
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Re: Spitfire P7350

I asked Peter Arnold to look at his transcription of the movement card of P7350.

He said 'If there was an accident on 25 October 1940, it is not recorded on the card. Repair at 1 CRU is recorded as Cat B damage on 31 October 1940.'

So the only thing for sure from the movement card is that SOMETHING happened between 17th Oct (delivered to 603) and then 31 October when sent to 1 CRU at Cowley.

Note: Usually damage is listed as FA or FB, Accident or Battle. In this case it was neither...on the card.

So I (and this is MY interpretation) take it from what Franek is indicating is that the incident was not due to air combat, it was a flying accident (pilot unknown at present and date unconfirmed at present)...

However, we do know that P7350 did suffer air combat damaged at some point during its service. As the evidence is still on the aircraft...


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  #20  
Old 13th June 2006, 16:17
Christer Bergström Christer Bergström is offline
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Re: Spitfire P7350

Thanks a lot for your input, paulmcmillan.

It feels like I'm repeating myself...

...but then when was P7350 forced to crash-land? Flown by whom?

I'll see what I can find at the National Archive in London next week. Vacation just started, friends!
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