Silver Spitfire starts its round the world expedition

In September 2018 a project was launched…this project would be aiming to put a restored spitfire on a first if its kind trip for the aircraft type

Brief aircraft type history

The Supermarine Spitfire is a British single-seat fighter aircraft that was used by the Royal Air Force and many other Allied countries before, during and after World War II. The Spitfire was built in many variants, using several wing configurations, and was produced in greater numbers than any other British aircraft. It was also the only British fighter to be in continuous production throughout the war.
The Spitfire was designed as a short-range, high-performance interceptor aircraft by R. J. Mitchell. Mitchell pushed the Spitfire’s distinctive elliptical wing (designed by B. Shenstone) to have the thinnest possible cross-section, helping give the aircraft a higher top speed than several contemporary fighters, including the Hawker Hurricane. Mitchell continued to refine the design until his death in 1937, whereupon his colleague Joseph Smith took over as chief designer, overseeing the development of the Spitfire through its multitude of variants.

The Airframe Mthat is to be used on this journey was built in hanger 8 at the Boultbee Flight Academy Goodwood Aerodrome in Chichester in England, UK.
In April the group finished the restoration of the original 1943 aircraft.

Airframe History
The Silver Spitfire is one of the most original airworthy Spitfires in the world.

Manufacturer:
Vickers Supermarine Ltd

Built:
1943 in Castle Bromwich, UK

Serial number:
CBAF IX 970

Historic registration:
MJ271

Modern registration:
G-IRTY

51 combat missions flown

On October 24th 1943 MJ271 is delivered from Castle Bromwich to 33 Maintenance Unit at RAF Lyneham.

From there she’s sent to 411, a Polish Repair and Salvage unit tasked with harmonising the guns and performing test flights before passing the aircraft on to an operational unit.

118 SQUADRON

118 was a fighter Squadron that spent much of its time flying fighter sweeps and escorting bombers over occupied Europe.

Delivered to the Squadron in February 1944 the aircraft sees action in 16 operational sorties from RAF Detling near Maidstone in Kent which inluded withdrawal cover and escort for B-24, B-17 and B-26 bombers attacking V1 launch sites as well as fighter sweeps over France.

132 SQUADRON

Formed in 1941 as a day fighter unit equipped with Spitfires 132 Squadron moved between defensive duties in Scotland and offensive duties in France from bases in the south of England.

MJ271 moved to 132 Bombay Squadron and followed the Squadron to RAF Ford in Sussex in April/May 1944.

She saw action in 28 operational sorties which included close escort for B-25 and B-26 bombers as well as dive bombing of targets on the French coast, before having a ‘wheels-up’ landing at RAF Ford during the night of May 9th 1944.

401 Squadron were heavily involved in D-Day and the European offensive in 1944 operating in fighter-bomber, ground attack and armed reconnaissance operations.

The Spitfire moves with the Canadian pilots of 401 RCAF (City of Westmount) Squadron to the Netherlands on November 23rd at Volkel. After performing ten dive-bombing missions she is ‘over-stressed’ on December 24th and sent to RCAF 410 – a repair and salvage unit.

On June 21st 1945 MJ271 is delivered to 29 Maintenance Unit at High Ercall before passing on to the Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNAF) on November 25th the following year with the designation H-8, later becoming 3W-8, the designation she would wear for some 70+ years before rolling into a hangar at Duxford to begin the restoration which is transforming her into airworthy condition once again, ready to begin her next adventure as the Silver Spitfire.

image

The Aircraft was unvailed near the end of April start of May to the public and to begin the flying programme pre-expedition.
May seen G-IRTY fly around the UK and do tests to make sure she was up to the task of the round the world trip.

The group started their trip on the 5th of August flying from Chichester to RAF Lossiemouth in North of Scotland and has 43,000km still to go.

The trip is projected to return back to the UK in December this year.

You can go and support them and follow them on social media and on the website to where i got most of this information as my source.

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No Australia 😯

Via Singapore? Although if it went direct it wouldn’t be much longer than the US - Greenland leg

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I was fortunate enought to see it as it arrived for a fuel stop at RAF Lossiemouth yesterday, just love the sound of a Spitfire :)

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To Darwin that is

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great post! The pilot was interviewed on BBC Radio 2 on Saturday (available on the BBC iPlayer, link below)

Sounds an epic journey…When it was restored it was fitted with the long distance tanks that the photo recon birds had towards the end of WW2, range now extended to about 1000nm, longest leg will be in Russia of 454nm. Apparetly the only non-orginal parts are a modern radio and GPS oh as well as some iPod speakers!

A PC-12 is acting as the support aircraft as well.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m00079xz (Pilot interviewd about 1hour into the show)

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Thank you for this post!! This is really interesting!!

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This plane popped into EGNT yesterday

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That’s why he will stop at many airports

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i know im going be recreating and doing this in IF starting in the next week or so

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@Ruky‘s spotting post of the IWC Schaffhausen Junkers JU-52 prompted me to see if I could track it down. I was sidetracked though once I found this link.

Friends, you gotta check this out. Watch the video of the Pilot’s Watches collection to start.

Next, go to their journal and open THE AVIATION SERIES link.

Enjoy!

Please excuse me. I have a #Feature request to post 😉

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