Avro Vulcan B.1 XA901 of 617 Squadron retracts its undercarriage while overshooting during a demonstration at RAF Bovingdon’s open day in 1960. The Vulcan B.1 was in service with RAF Bomber Command during the 1950s and early 60s.
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avro vulcan b 1 xa901 raf royal air force 617 sqn no 617 squadron the dam busters bomber atom bomber nuclear bomber v bomber nato cold war deterrent jet delta aircraft aviation aeroplane airplane classic vintage overshooting undercarriage retracting undercart
Excellent Colin. And in it’s white paint too. Like the Valiants at RAF Wittering when I was there. – Ted
Thanks Ted! Every Vulcan I ever worked on was white, both Mk 1s and 2s. We used to spend more time cleaning them than actually servicing them – much more. – Colin.
Thanks Shane! Those were the days!
Yes I remember cleaning these white B*** at Finningley for AOC inspection. Yorkshire was a dirty place in the late 1950s.
Bet you didn’t clean then as often as we did, 617 was a “bullshine” squadron and got all the publicity jobs.
When I was at Edinburgh Field in South Australia, (1960-63) testing the Blue Steel missile, we invited the crew to one of our social evenings and I discovered I knew half the crew from 101 Sqdn at Finningley. Nothing changed for 617. !!LOL Cheers
“On 20-21 June 1961 the first non-stop UK – Australia flight was made by a Vulcan of 617 Squadron. The flight involved three aerial refuellings (over Cyprus, Karachi and Singapore) and covered the 11,500 miles (18,510 km) in 20 hr 3 min – an average speed of 573 mph (922 km/h).”
I remember the Australia record flight well! If you ever see the BBCTV footage of the departure you’ll see me! I’m the guy who drags the crewchief’s toolkit out of the way and then goes back for the chocks. The aircraft was our first B.1A XH481 before it got it’s anti-flash paintjob. The pilot was the deputy CO of 617, Sqn Ldr Mick Beavis (later AVM Sir Michael Beavis) and he brought digger hats back for all the groundcrew!
Excellent Capture Colin , into faves , My brother Andy always tells me of the time he saw 4 of these do a scrambled takeoff at a airshow at RAF St Mawgan he thinks in the late 60`s….Mike
As a member of 617 Sqn groundcrew I did quite a few 4-ship scrambles with B.1/B.1A Vulcans. We started the aircraft while the crew were still getting in, with a simstart trolley we could start all 4 engines at the same time. My job was to stand on the mainwheels and pull the leads out as soon as the donks had caught. Sometimes I would have to run backwards when the Vulcan started to roll before I had fininished struggling. Then I would have to throw myself flat as the aircraft rolled over me and away! I remember we did a scramble at Waddington one year and got all 4 ships in the air in 1 minute 17 secs! No-one ever beat that! The last ship was airborne and climbing before the pilot realised he only had 3 engines running – not that it made much difference to a Vulcan without a bomb load! Thanks for the fave Mike!
This is superb work !! – Colin
Thanks a lot Colin!
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