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Briefly the National Gas Turbine Establishment at Pyestock Fleet was built in 1949 beginning with some small test cubicals inside buildings like the plant house and has since been added to over the years resulting in the huge site that stands there today.


For over 50 years Pyestock was at the forefront of gas turbine development. It was probably the largest site of its kind in the world. V bomber, Harrier and Tornado engines were tested on site. The power of the air house allowed Concorde’s engines to be tested in the purpose built Cell 4 at 2,000 mph. Every gas turbine installed in Royal Navy ships was checked here; captured Soviet engines were discreetly examined.


NGTE Pyestock closed down in 2000 and decommissioned to make way for a business park.


Pyestock was used for several scenes in the 2005 film Sahara by Breck Eisner, based on the best-selling book of the same name by Clive Cussler. Internal sections of Cell 3 and Cell 4 were suitably reworked for the film’s supposedly solar powered waste disposal facility.

Береговой ракетный комплекс. Объект 100, стартовая площадка. В 1997 году при разделе Черноморского Флота передан Военно-Морским Силам Украины. В 2002 дивизион расформирован, в 2003-2004 оборудование порезано на металл и разграблено.


Coastal missile system. Object 100, launch pad. In 1997 at the section of the Black Sea Navy it is transferred to the Navies of Ukraine. In 2002 the division is disbanded, in 2003-2004 equipment is cut on metal and plundered.

Amsterdam // Holanda // mayo 2012*


Junto a Bastardilla // La Ira // Anna // El Conde - Graf //


Amsterdam // Holanda // mayo 2012*


Junto a Bastardilla // La Ira // Anna // El Conde - Graf //


Rickmer Rickmers is a sailing ship (three masted barque) permanently moored as a museum ship in Hamburg, near the Cap San Diego.


Rickmer Clasen Rickmers, (1807–1886) was a Bremerhaven shipbuilder and Willi Rickmer Rickmers, (1873–1965) led a Soviet-German expedition to the Pamirs in 1928.


The Rickmer Rickmers was built in 1896 by the Rickmers shipyard in Bremerhaven, and was first used on the Hong Kong route carrying rice and bamboo. In 1912 she was bought by Carl Christian Krabbenhöft, renamed Max, and transferred to the Hamburg - Chile route.


In World War I the Max was captured by the Government of Portugal, in Horta (Azores) harbour and loaned to the United Kingdom as a war aid. For the remainder of the war the ship sailed under the Union Jack, as the Flores. After World War I she was returned to the Portuguese Government, becoming a Portuguese Navy training ship and was once more renamed, as NRP Sagres (the second of that name). In 1958, she won the Tall Ships' Race.


In the early 1960s the Sagres (II) was retired from school ship service when the Portuguese Navy purchased, from Brazil, the school ship Guanabara (originally launched in Germany in 1937 as the Albert Leo Schlageter and renamed NRP Sagres (III)), and was laid up in a shipyard. She was purchased in 1983 by an organisation named "Windjammer für Hamburg e.V.", renamed for the last time, back to Rickmer Rickmers, and turned into a floating museum ship.

MAD boom on a derelict lockheed P-3 orion antisubmarine aircraft. during the cold war, these aircraft would fly 200ft above the ocean surface, the MAD boom, or "magnetic anomaly detector" could sense the metallic hulls of submerged soviet submarines that would be otherwise invisible.


nikon D7000 + nikkor 10-24mm, 60 exposure under full moon + 5x 60sec stacked exposures for star trails. light painting with magenta gel and LED flashlight.


taken during the "boneyard" night photography workshop hosted by mike hows and joe reed.

Rickmer Rickmers is a sailing ship (three masted barque) permanently moored as a museum ship in Hamburg, near the Cap San Diego.


Rickmer Clasen Rickmers, (1807–1886) was a Bremerhaven shipbuilder and Willi Rickmer Rickmers, (1873–1965) led a Soviet-German expedition to the Pamirs in 1928.


The Rickmer Rickmers was built in 1896 by the Rickmers shipyard in Bremerhaven, and was first used on the Hong Kong route carrying rice and bamboo. In 1912 she was bought by Carl Christian Krabbenhöft, renamed Max, and transferred to the Hamburg - Chile route.


In World War I the Max was captured by the Government of Portugal, in Horta (Azores) harbour and loaned to the United Kingdom as a war aid. For the remainder of the war the ship sailed under the Union Jack, as the Flores. After World War I she was returned to the Portuguese Government, becoming a Portuguese Navy training ship and was once more renamed, as NRP Sagres (the second of that name). In 1958, she won the Tall Ships' Race.


In the early 1960s the Sagres (II) was retired from school ship service when the Portuguese Navy purchased, from Brazil, the school ship Guanabara (originally launched in Germany in 1937 as the Albert Leo Schlageter and renamed NRP Sagres (III)), and was laid up in a shipyard. She was purchased in 1983 by an organisation named "Windjammer für Hamburg e.V.", renamed for the last time, back to Rickmer Rickmers, and turned into a floating museum ship.

Inside pyestock abandoned testing area.closed down in 2000 .For over 50 years Pyestock was at the forefront of gas turbine development. It was probably the largest site of its kind in the world. V bomber, Harrier and Tornado engines were tested on site. The power of the air house allowed Concorde's engines to be tested at 2,000 mph. Every gas turbine installed in Royal Navy ships was checked here; captured Soviet engines were discreetly examined.


Regno Unito, London, Southwark, Estate 2013


HMS Belfast è un ex incrociatore leggero della Royal Navy ora nave museo, ormeggiata permanentemente lungo il Tamigi a Londra, nei pressi del Tower Bridge. La sua costruzione iniziò nel 1936 e al tempo fu la prima nave della Royal Navy ad essere chiamata con il nome della capitale dell’Irlanda del Nord. Fu varata il giorno di San Patrizio del 1938. La Belfast ha scortato i convogli artici in Unione Sovietica nel 1943, e nel dicembre dello stesso anno ha svolto un ruolo importante nella battaglia di Capo Nord, assistendo alla distruzione della nave da battaglia tedesca Scharnhorst. Ha continuato a combattere anche dopo la seconda guerra mondiale e precisamente nel 1950-1952 durante la guerra di Corea e fu rimodernata tra il 1956 e il 1959 prima di essere messa in riserva nel 1963 e poi è diventare un museo.


HMS Belfast is a museum ship, originally a Royal Navy light cruiser, permanently moored in London on the River Thames. Near the Tower Bridge. Construction of Belfast, the first Royal Navy ship to be named after the capital city of Northern Ireland. began in 1936 and she was launched on St Patrick's Day 1938. Belfast saw action escorting Arctic convoys to the Soviet Union during 1943, and in December 1943 played an important role in the Battle of North Cape, assisting in the destruction of the German warship Scharnhorst. Belfast saw further combat action in 1950–52 during the Korean War and underwent an extensive modernisation between 1956 and 1959 before entering reserve in 1963 and then becoming a museum.


A view from above shows the unusual tail cone configuration from its days with the Soviet Navy at Cork in 2000.



The NRP Sagres is a tall ship and school ship of the Portuguese Navy since 1961. As the third ship with this name in the Portuguese Navy, she is sometimes referred to as Sagres III.

Design and specifications.

The ship is a steel-built three masted barque, with square sails on the fore and main masts and gaff rigging on the mizzen mast. Her main mast rises 42 m (138 ft) above the deck. She carries 22 sails totaling about 2,000 m2 (22,000 sq ft) and can reach a top speed of 17 kn (31 km/h; 20 mph) under sail. She has a sparred length of 89 m (292 ft), a width of 12 m (39 ft), a draught of 5.2 m (17 ft), and a displacement at full load of 1,755 long tons (1,966 short tons).


Ship history

The three-masted ship was launched under the name Albert Leo Schlageter on 30 October 1937 at Blohm & Voss in Hamburg for Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine. The ship was named after Albert Leo Schlageter, who was executed in 1923 by French forces occupying the Ruhr area. Her first commander was Bernhard Rogge. Sagres is a sister ship of the Gorch Fock, the Horst Wessel, and the Romanian training vessel Mircea. Another sister, Herbert Norkus, was not completed, while Gorch Fock II was built in 1958 by the Germans to replace the ships lost after the war.


Following a number of international training voyages, the ship was used as a stationary office ship after the outbreak of World War II and was only put into ocean-going service again in 1944 in the Baltic Sea. On 14 November 1944 she hit a Soviet mine off Sassnitz and had to be towed to port in Swinemünde. Eventually transferred to Flensburg, she was taken over there by the Allies when the war ended and finally confiscated by the United States.

The Sagres at OpSail 2000

Sagres at dock in Mar del Plata, Argentina, February 2010

In 1948, the U.S. sold her to Brazil for a symbolic price of $5,000 USD.[1] She was towed to Rio de Janeiro where she sailed as a school ship for the Brazilian Navy under the name Guanabara. In 1961, Ambassador Teotónio Pereira of Portugal, who was also a man of the sea, loved sailing ships, and had been an organizer of the first Tall Ships’ Race, persevered in his mediations and the Portuguese Navy bought the Guanabara to replace the previous school ship Sagres (which was transferred to Hamburg, where she is a museum ship under her original name Rickmer Rickmers). The Portuguese Navy renamed Guanabara as Sagres (the third ship of that name), where she remains in service to this day.


In 2010, the ship performed her longest voyage, a round the world trip performing an approximate total of 35000 miles, under the command of CMG Pedro Proença Mendes. The ship left Lisbon on 19 January and returned on 24 December, having participated in Velas Sudamerica 2010, a historic Latin American tour by eleven tall ships to celebrate the bicentennial of the first national governments of Argentina and Chile. She also took part in the Expo Shanghai, among other events during that year.

The ship has sailed under the Portuguese flag since 1962. For that reason, in 2012 there were major commemorations of her 75th anniversary and 50 years in the service of the Portuguese navy.

From Wikipedia

A panoramic shot of HMS Belfast at night.


HMS Belfast is a museum ship, originally a light cruiser built for the Royal Navy, currently permanently moored on the River Thames in London, England, and operated by the Imperial War Museum.


Construction of Belfast, the first ship in the Royal Navy to be named after the capital city of Northern Ireland and one of ten Town-class cruisers, began in December 1936. She was launched on St Patrick's Day 1938. Commissioned in early August 1939 shortly before the outbreak of the Second World War, Belfast was initially part of the British naval blockade against Germany. In November 1939, Belfast struck a German mine and spent more than two years undergoing extensive repairs.


Belfast returned to action in November 1942 with improved firepower, radar equipment, and armour. Belfast saw action escorting Arctic convoys to the Soviet Union during 1943 and in December 1943 played an important role in the Battle of North Cape, assisting in the destruction of the German warship Scharnhorst. In June 1944, Belfast took part in Operation Overlord supporting the Normandy landings. In June 1945, Belfast was redeployed to the Far East to join the British Pacific Fleet, arriving shortly before the end of the Second World War. Belfast saw further combat action in 1950–52 during the Korean War and underwent an extensive modernisation between 1956 and 1959. A number of further overseas commissions followed before Belfast entered reserve in 1963.

USS Iowa (BB-61) is the lead ship of her class of battleship and the fourth in the United States Navy to be named after the state of Iowa.


During World War II, she carried President Franklin D. Roosevelt across the Atlantic to Mers El Kébir, Algeria, en route to a crucial 1943 meeting in Tehran with Prime Minister Winston Churchill of Britain and Josef Stalin, leader of the Soviet Union.


In 2011 USS Iowa was donated to the Los Angeles–based non-profit Pacific Battleship Center and was permanently moved to Berth 87 at the Port of Los Angeles in 2012, where she was opened to the public as the USS Iowa Museum.

© All rights reserved

Kris Kros Photography


'fireball' On Black


These two historic vessels, the HMS. Surprise and the Soviet's B39 Attack Submarine are part of the exhibits of the San Diego Maritime Museum.




Strike a pose at the helm of the HMS. Surprise just like Russell Crowe as Captain "Lucky Jack Aubrey." The ship used in the academy award winning film, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World found a permanent home at the Maritime Museum of San Diego in 2004. The HMS Surprise is a magnificent replica of an 18th century Royal Navy frigate.


HMS. Surprise is a 179-foot full rigged ship. Her designers and builders made a painstaking effort to recreate a 24 gun frigate of Great Britan's Nelson era Royal Navy. The result is a replica vessel unmatched in its authenticity and attention to detail. Originally christened H.M.S. Rose when she was launched in 1970, she served as a sail training vessel operating out of several East coast ports for over 30 years. the ship underwent extensive modifications for the production of the film in 2002. The museum acquired the ship in October, 2004. Plans include restoring the ship to seaworthy condition.


B-39 Soviet Attack Submarine

Project 641/Foxtrot Class Diesel-Electric Submarine


One of a fleet of diesel electric submarines the Soviet Navy called “Project 641,” B-39 was commissioned in the early 1970s and served on active duty for more than 20 years.

300 feet in length and displacing more than 2000 tons, B-39 is among the largest conventionally powered submarines ever built. She was designed to track U.S. and NATO warships throughout the world’s oceans. B-39, assigned to the Soviet Pacific fleet, undoubtedly stalked many of the U.S. Navy’s ships home ported in San Diego. Now, less than 20 years after the collapse of the Berlin Wall signaled the end of the Cold War, she will be berthed on San Diego Bay amidst her former adversaries. Soviet Project 641 submarines, classified as “Foxtrot” by NATO, are essentially larger and more powerful versions of German World War II era U-boats. Low-tech but lethal, she carried 24 torpedoes while she was on patrol-some capable of delivering low-yield nuclear warheads. B-39 carried a crew of 78 and could dive to a depth of 985 feet before threatening the integrity of her nickel steel pressure hull. The Soviet and then Russian Federation’s navies deployed these submarines from the mid 1950s through the early 1990s. They played a part in many of the Cold War’s most tense moments including the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Digitally composed graphics. Please see the original below.


General characteristics

Crew: One

Length: 6.13 m (20 ft 1 in)

Wingspan: 9 m (29 ft 6 in)

Height: 3.25 m (10 ft 8 in)

Wing area: 14.5 m² (156.1 ft²)

Empty weight: 1,490 kg (3,285 lb)

Loaded weight: 1,941 kg (4,279 lb)

Max takeoff weight: 2,095 kg (4,619 lb)

Powerplant: 1× Shvetsov M-63 supercharged air-cooled radial engine, 820 kW (1,100 hp) driving a two-blade propeller


Maximum speed: 525 km/h (283 kn, 326 mph) at 3,000 m (9,845 ft)

Range: 700 km (378 nmi, 435 mi (with drop tanks))

Service ceiling: 9,700 m (31,825 ft)

Rate of climb: 14.7 m/s (2,900 ft/min)

Wing loading: 134 kg/m² (27 lb/ft²)

Power/mass: 346 W/kg (0.21 hp/lb)

Time to altitude: 5.8 minutes to 5,000 m (16,405 ft)


2 × fixed forward-firing 7.62 mm (0.30 in) ShKAS machine guns in upper cowling

2 × fixed forward-firing 20 mm (0.79 in) ShVAK cannons in the wings

6 × unguided RS-82 rockets or up to 500 kg (1,102 lb) of bombs


The Polikarpov I-16 was a Soviet fighter aircraft of revolutionary design; it was the world's first cantilever-winged monoplane fighter with retractable landing gear. The I-16 was introduced in the mid-1930s and formed the backbone of the Soviet Air Force at the beginning of World War II. The diminutive fighter, nicknamed "Ishak" by Soviet pilots, prominently featured in the Second Sino-Japanese War,[1] the Battle of Khalkhin Gol and the Spanish Civil War—where it was called the Rata ("rat") by the Nationalists or Mosca ("fly") by the Republicans. The Finnish nickname for I-16 was Siipiorava ("Flying Squirrel").

Design and development

While working on the Polikarpov I-15 biplane, Nikolai Nikolaevich Polikarpov began designing an advanced monoplane fighter. It featured cutting-edge innovations such as retractable landing gear and a fully enclosed cockpit, and was optimized for speed with a short stubby fuselage (similar to Gee Bee R-1) and a Wright Cyclone radial engine in a NACA cowling. The aircraft was small, light and simple to build.


Full scale work on the TsKB-12 prototype began in June 1933 and the aircraft was accepted into production on 22 November 1933, a month before it took to the air. The TsKB-12 was of mixed construction using a wooden monocoque fuselage and wings based around a KhMA chrome-molybdenum steel alloy wing spar, dural ribs and D1 aluminum alloy skinning on the center and leading edges, with the remaining portions of the wings fabric covered. Another modern feature were the ailerons which ran almost the entire trailing edge of the wing and also operated as flaps (in the manner of more modern flaperons) by drooping 15°. The cockpit was covered by a 40 cm (16 in) wide canopy which featured an Aldis tubular gun sight which could slide back and forth on runners fitted with bungee cords of rubber. A 225 l (59.4 US gal) fuel tank was fitted directly in front of the cockpit. The main gear was fully retractable by a hand-crank. The armament consisted of a pair of 7.62 mm (0.30 in) ShKAS machine guns in the wings, mounted on the outboard side of the main gear and carried 900 rounds of ammo.


These features were proposed at first by Andrei N. Tupolev, however the NII VVS was more concerned about the stresses a typical combat aircraft was subjected to in combat, and initially considered the risk too great. However TsAGI, with the help of the 3rd Design Brigade under the leadership of Pavel O. Sukhoi and Aleksandr P. Putylov eventually convinced NII VVS that what was being proposed was not only feasible, but would enhance the aircraft's performance.


The TsKB-12 was designed around the Wright Cyclone SR-1820-F-3 nine cylinder radial engine (rated at 529 kW/710 hp); a license to build this engine was being negotiated. As the license was not yet approved, Polikarpov was asked to settle for the less powerful M-22 (Soviet-built version of the Gnome-Rhone Jupiter 9ASB which itself was a licensed version of the Bristol Jupiter VI ) with 358 kW (480 hp). This was deemed acceptable because the projected top speed still exceeded 300 km/h (185 mph).


The M-22 powered TsKB-12 first took to the air on 30 December 1933 with the famous Soviet test pilot Valery Chkalov at the controls. The second TsKB-12 with a Cyclone engine and three-bladed propeller flew in January of the following year. Initial government trials in February 1934 revealed very good maneuverability but the aircraft did not tolerate abrupt control inputs. Thus the TsKB-12 was deemed dangerous to fly and all aerobatics were forbidden. The M-22 version was preferred due to vibration of the Cyclone-powered aircraft. Pilots commented early on about difficulty in climbing into the cockpit, a trait that persisted through I-16's service life. Before continuing test flights the designers had to answer the question of spin behavior. Wind tunnel testing suggested that TsKB-12 with its short tail would enter an unrecoverable flat spin, but real-life trials were necessary to confirm this. Since Cyclone engines were rare it was decided to risk the M-22 prototype for this purpose. On 1 March and 2 March 1934, Chkalov performed 75 spins and discovered that the aircraft had very benign stall behavior (dipping a wing and recovering without input from the pilot when airspeed increased) and intentional spins could be easily terminated by placing controls in the neutral position. The stories of vicious spin behavior of the I-16 perpetuated in modern literature is unfounded (perhaps extrapolated from Gee Bee experience). In fact, the I-16's stablemate, the biplane Polikarpov I-153, exhibited much worse spin characteristics.


Service trials of the new fighter, designated I-16, began on 22 March 1934. The M-22 prototype reached 359 km/h (223 mph). The manually-retracted landing gear was prone to jamming and required considerable strength from the pilot. Most of the test flights were performed with the gear extended. On 1 May 1934, the M-22 prototype participated in the flyover of the Red Square. Approximately 30 I-16 Type 1 aircraft were delivered, but were not assigned to any V-VS fighter squadron. Most pilots who flew the I-16 Type 1 for evaluation purposes did not find the aircraft to have many redeeming characteristics. Regardless of pilot opinion, much attention was focused on the Cyclone powered aircraft and the M-25 (the license built Cyclone). On 14 April 1934, the Cyclone prototype was damaged when one of the landing gear legs collapsed while it was taxiing.


The third prototype with a Cyclone engine incorporated a series of aerodynamic improvements and was delivered for government trials on 7 September 1934. The top speed of 437 km/h (270 mph) no longer satisfied the Air Force, who now wanted the experimental Nazarov M-58 engine and 470 km/h (290 mph). Subsequently, the M-22 powered version entered production at Factory 21 in Nizhny Novgorod and Factory 39 in Moscow. Because it was the fourth aircraft produced by these factories, it received the designation I-16 Type 4. Aircraft fitted with these new engines required a slightly changed airframe, including armor plating for the pilot and changes to the landing gear doors to allow for complete closure.


The M-25 fitted I-16, the I-16 Type 5, featured a new engine cowling which was slightly smaller in diameter and featured nine forward facing shuttered openings to control cooling airflow, a redesigned exhaust with eight individual outlet stubs, and other changes. The M-25 was rated at 474 kW (635 hp) at sea level and 522 kW (700 hp) at 2,300 m (7,546 ft). Due to the poor quality of the canopy glazing, the I-16 Type 5 pilots typically left the canopy open or removed the rear portion completely. By the time the Type 5 arrived, it was the world's lightest production fighter (1,460 kg/3,219 lb), as well as the worlds fastest, able to reach speeds of 454 km/h (282 mph) at altitude and 395 km/h (245 mph) at sea level. While the Type 5 could not perform the high-g maneuvers of other fighters, it possessed superior speed and climb rates, and had extremely responsive aileron control which gave the Type 5 a very good roll rate which lead to precision maneuvers in loops and split-Ss.


A total of 7,005 single-seat and 1,639 two-seat trainer variants were produced.

Operational history

Initial service experience revealed that the ShKAS machine guns had a tendency to jam. This was the result of the guns being installed in the wings upside-down to facilitate the fit. The problem was addressed in later modifications. Evaluations from pilots confirmed the experience with prototypes. Controls were light and very sensitive, abrupt maneuvers resulted in spins, and spin behavior was excellent. A barrel roll could be performed in under 1.5 seconds (roll rate over 240 degrees/second). The machine guns were fired via a cable and the required effort, coupled with sensitive controls, made precision aiming difficult. The rear weight bias made I-16 easy to handle on unprepared airfields because the aircraft was rather unlikely to flip over the nose even if the front wheels dug in.


The pilots had poor visibility and the canopy tended to become fouled with engine oil and the moving portion was prone to slamming shut during hard maneuvers which caused many pilots to fix it in the open position. The I-16 was a difficult fighter to fly. The front section of the fuselage, with the engine, was too close to the centre of gravity, and the pilot's cockpit too far to the rear. The Polikarpov had insufficient longitudinal stability and it was impossible to fly the aircraft "hand off".

Spanish Civil WarAt the start of Spanish Civil War in 1936, Republican forces pleaded for fighter aircraft. After receiving payment in gold, Joseph Stalin dispatched around 475[6] I-16 Type 5s and Type 6s. The first I-16s appeared in Spanish skies in November 1936.[7] The Polikarpov monoplanes had their baptism of fire on the 13 November 1936, when 12 I-16s intercepted a Nationalist bombing raid on Madrid. Soviet pilots claimed four air victories. Two Germans Heinkel He 51 pilots were indeed killed. But the Soviets suffered losses too; the group commander collided with an enemy aircraft and another I-16 pilot crash landed.[8] The Polikarpovs immediately began dominating the enemy He 51s, Arado Ar 68 and Fiat CR.32 biplanes, and remained unchallenged until the introduction of the Messerschmitt Bf 109. The arrival of the newest Bf 109Bs and the Nationalist overwhelming quantitative superiority of fighters were the primary cause of the heavy combat losses suffered by I-15s and I-16s throughout 1937.[9] A number of aviation publications called the new Soviet fighter a "Boeing" due to the incorrect assumption that it was based on the Boeing P-26's design. The Nationalists nicknamed the stubby fighter Rata (Rat), while the Republicans affectionately called it Mosca (Fly).


Combat experience showed that the I-16 had deficiencies; several aircraft were lost after structural failure of the wings which was quickly remedied by reinforced structures. Heavy machine gun bullets could sometimes penetrate the armored backrest and fuel tanks occasionally caught fire in spite of being protected. The hot Spanish climate required the addition of oil radiators, and dust adversely affected the life of the engines. Although some aircraft accumulated up to 400 hours of flying time, the average life of an I-16 was 87 days, of which one sixth was spent on maintenance. The biggest complaint in service was the light armament of only two 7.62 mm (0.30 in) machine guns. This was urgently addressed with Type 6 which added a third ShKAS in the bottom of the fuselage. The four-gun Type 10 was nicknamed "Super Mosca" or simply "Super". The total number of I-16s delivered to Spain in 1936-1938 amounted to 276. When the war ended, on 1 April 1939, 187 Ratas had been lost in Spain: 112 lost in combat, one shot down by anti-aircraft fire, 11 destroyed on the ground, one force-landed and 62 lost in accidents.

The Far East

Another 250 I-16 Type 10 were supplied to China. This model added a second set of 7.62 mm (0.30 in) ShKAS machine guns, armor behind the pilot, and had a slightly upgraded 560 kW (750 hp) M-25 engine. In 1939, these aircraft fought against the Japanese, fighting the fixed-landing gear equipped Nakajima Ki-27 Nate of the IJAAF and IJNAF's Mitsubishi A5M Claude. Further large scale action took place in fighting between the Soviet Union and Japan in the Battle of Khalkhin Gol in 1939. The next year, the Imperial Japanese Navy introduced the A6M Zero which was more than a match for the I-16.


Further attempts were made to upgrade the firepower of the aircraft using 20 mm (0.79 in) ShVAK cannons, making the I-16 one of the most heavily armed fighters of that moment,[11] able to fire 28 pounds of ammunition in three seconds. Pilots loved the results, but the cannons were in short supply and only a small number of I-16 Type 12, 17, 27, and 28 were built. The cannons adversely affected performance with the 360° circle time increasing from 15 seconds in Type 5 to 18 seconds. Type 24 replaced the skid with a tailwheel and featured the much more powerful 670 kW (900 hp) Shvetsov M-63 engine. Type 29 replaced two of the ShKAS guns with a single 12.7 mm (.50 in) UBS. Types 18, 24, 27, 28, and 29 could be equipped to carry RS-82 unguided rockets.


A 1939 government study found that I-16 had exhausted its performance potential. Addition of armor, radio, battery, and flaps during the aircraft's evolution exacerbated the rear weight distribution to the point where the aircraft required considerable forward pressure on the stick to maintain level flight and at the same time developed a tendency to enter uncontrolled dives. Extension and retraction of the landing flaps caused a dramatic change in the aircraft attitude. Accurate gunfire was difficult.


The pilots nicknamed the aircraft Ishak (Russian: Ишак, Donkey/Hinny) because it was similar to the Russian pronunciation of "I-16". When the Great Patriotic War erupted on 22 June 1941, 1,635 of 4,226 VVS aircraft were I-16s of all variants, fielded by 57 fighter regiments in frontier areas.[12] Then main assault delivered by Luftwaffe's Luftflotte 2 (in support of Wehrmacht Army Group Centre) was directed against the Soviet Western Special Mililtary district, that deployed 361 (424, according to other sources) I-16s. [13] During the early phase of the campaign the I-16 bases were main targets for the German aircraft and after 48 hours of combat, of the 1,635 Polikarpov monoplanes in service on 21 June 1941, only 937 were left.[14] By 30 June the number of I-16s of western frontline units had dropped to 873, including 99 that required repairs.[15] To stem the Luftwaffe aerial assault several I-16 pilots adopted the Taran tactic and sacrified their lives, ramming German aircraft.[15]


Its main opponent in the sky of 1941 was the German Messerschmitt Bf 109.[16] The I-16 was slightly more maneuverable than the early Bf 109s and could fight the Messerschmitt Bf 109 '"Emil" on equal terms in turns. Soviet skilled pilots took advantage of Polikarpov's superior horizontal maneuverability and liked it enough to resist the switch to more modern fighters. The German aircraft, however, outclassed its Russian opponent in service ceiling, rate of climb, acceleration and, crucially, in horizontal and diving speed, due to better aerodynamics and a more powerful engine. The main versions of the I-16 had a maximum speed of 450–470 km/h (279-291 mph), while the Bf 109E had a maximum speed of 560–570 km/h (347-353 mph), and the Bf109F, of 600 km/h (372 mph). Superior speed was the decisive factor in a dogfight so German pilots held the initiative and could decide if chasing their opponents, attacking them from above and behind and then gaining altitude for an eventual new attack. Meanwhile Polikarpovs could only defend each other by forming a defensive circle or via horizontal maneuverability.[16] Moreover, in terms of armament, Messerschmitts had a slight edge on the I-16. The "Emile" carried two wing-mounted 20 mm MG FF cannon and two synchronyzed 7.92 mm MG-17 with a weight of a one-second salvo of 2.37 Kg, while the most common version of the I-16 - armed with just two synchronized and two wing-mounted 7.62 ShKAS - could deliver 1.43 kg of bullets each second.[17] Finallly, the ammunition storage on a Messerschmitt exceeded that of the I-16, carrying 1,000 bullets for each machine guns (plus 60 rounds for each cannon), while the Polikarpov carried just 450 rounds for each ShKAS.[18]


The I-16 and had a more durable engine than the liquid-cooled engine of the Bf 109. Around half of all produced I-16s were still in service in 1943, when they were finally replaced.


Specially modified I-16s were used in the Zveno parasite aircraft experiments using the Tupolev TB-3 mothership.


The Luftwaffe was known to have captured some I-16s and UTI-4s two-place trainers (two of which were marked with the Stammkennzeichen codes DM+HC and DM+HD) and flown from Rechlin by Kampfgeschwader 200 (KG 200).[19] The Luftwaffe was not the only air force able to test its fighters against the I-16; the Japanese captured a few I-16s as well.[1] and the Romanian Air Force also got one when a Soviet pilot defected.[20] The Finnish Air Force (FAF) captured along with several other Soviet types, some I-16s. During the Winter War and the Continuation War, the Finns captured six I-16s and one I-16UTI. Two of the captured I-16s and I-16UTIs were put back into flying condition and flight tested.


From Wikipedia

Sally is number 5 of 25 greyscale pictures in the hard cover colouring book: Intricate Ink ANIMALS IN DETAIL Volume 2 by Tim Jeffs.

A male blue crab is a Jimmie whilst the female is called Sally.

Female crabs start off as Sally, when pregnant are called Sponge Crabs, and after thir pregnancy are called Sook, although they can become pregnant again without re-mating!

It is the female that has the orangey red tips to their claws.


Colouring this crab made me recall an international incident that happened when I was 16 to an English frogman called 'Buster Crabb'.

So I dedicate this picture to:

Lionel Kenneth Phillip Crabb, OBE, GM (28 January 1909 – presumed dead 19 April 1956), known as Buster Crabb, who was a Royal Navy frogman and MI6 diver who vanished during a reconnaissance mission around a Soviet cruiser berthed at Portsmouth Dockyard in 1956.

His headless and handless recovered body dressed in his clothes could not be identified by relatives or friends.

The UK Government will not release their records of this incident until 2057!


On a lighter note I used very few FC Polychromos pencils colouring this one and used a Uni-ball Signo fine white gel pen on some (if not most!) of the finer white detail.

I hope you like it.



Nothing you see here is real, even though the conversion or the presented background story might be based historical facts. BEWARE!


Canadair’s impressive CF-151 ‘Kodiak’ interceptor had a long development story, and the fact that Canada developed an indigenous high-end fighter after the demise of Avro Canada’s CF-105 ‘Arrow’ in the late 50ies was an amazing achievement.


The Kodiak’s stillborn predecessor, the Avro Canada CF-105 ‘Arrow’, was a heavy interceptor aircraft, designed and built by Avro Canada as the culmination of a design study that began in 1953. Considered to be both an advanced technical and aerodynamic achievement for the Canadian aviation industry, the delta wing CF-105 held the promise of near Mach 3 speeds at altitudes likely exceeding 60,000 ft. (18,000 m), and was intended to serve as the Royal Canadian Air Force's (RCAF) primary interceptor in the 1960s and beyond.

It was a very promising aircraft, but not long after the 1958 start of its flight test program, the development of the Arrow (including its Orenda Iroquois jet engines) was abruptly and controversially halted before the project review in 1959 had taken place, sparking a long and bitter political debate. UK also had interest in the Arrow, but this, too, was halted when the Government decided that the age of manned fighters had come to an end – the EE Lightning was just lucky enough to survive this decision.


Anyway, this sudden end to the national interceptor project left Canada with a touchy defense gap in the vast Northern Territories. In 1961, the RCAF obtained 66 CF-101 Voodoo aircraft, one of the American designs the RCAF originally rejected, to serve in the role originally intended for the Avro Arrow. But this was only seen as a stopgap solution – what was needed was a missile-equipped long range interceptor with excellent range, loiter time and the ability to make prolonged dashes at high speed. A true dogfight capability was not required, since it was expected that the targets would be heavy bombers, coming in at high altitudes and subsonic speed.


With the technical advances in the late 60ies, variable geometry aircraft became a promising solution to combine these requirements in a single airframe. Canadair (at that time heavily linked with General Dynamics in the USA) started in 1962 a design study for a heavy swing wing interceptor for the RCAF, which would replace the Voodoos in the 70ies. This was surely driven by the multi-purpose F-111 development for both USAF and USN at that era, but the Canadian aircraft would be a completely new design, tailored to the local needs and with an indigenous weapon system.


The project received the internal code of CL-151 and was an impressive, if not elegant aircraft: with its low-set wings and the tandem cockpit for pilot and system operator it differed greatly from the F-111.

Most fuel was carried in the fuselage, between the air intake ducts and the fixed wing roots. Only the outer wing parts were moveable – a much simpler construction than the F-111. The main weapons, exclusively missiles, were carried semi-recessed under the fuselage, even though pylons under the fixed wing parts, just outside of the landing gear wells, could carry drop tanks. Additional smaller hardpoints on the inner wings' leading egdes could carry up to two Sidewinder AAMs each for short range combat and self-defense. An internal gun was not mounted, even though external SUU-23 gun pods were an option.


Unique features of the CL-151 were its ability to take-off and land on semi-prepared airstrips (specifically, on packed snow and soggy ground), so it received a massive landing gear with low presure twin wheels on all legs, as well as an arrestor hook for forced landings. In order to fit the main landing gear into the wing roots without sacrificing too much depth in the fuselage it received tandem bogies, similar to the Swedish Saab A37 Viggen. Another novel feature was an APU, which was installed together with a heat exchanger in the fin root, so that the CL-151 could be operated with as little maintenance infrastructure as possible.


Core of the CL-151 weapon system was the indigenous CMG-151 radar. This was a state-of-the-art all-weather, multi-mode X-Band pulse doppler radar system with a huge 38” dish antenna in the aircraft’s nose - light years ahead of the vintage Hughes MG-13 fire control radar of the F-102, which was also installed in the CF-101, a design of the early 50ies.


Functionally the CMG-151 was very similar to the American AN/AWG-9, even though less capable. It was designed to detect bomber-sized targets at ranges exceeding 60 miles (100 km) and it featured look-down/shoot-down capabilities, making the fighter suitable to various interception tasks, e .g. against low flying tactical bombers.


The CMG-151 offered a variety of air-to-air modes including long-range continuous wave velocity search, range-while-search at shorter ranges, and the first use of an airborne track-while-scan mode with the ability to track up to 16 airborne targets, display 8 of them on the cockpit displays, and launch against 4 of them at the same time. This function was originally designed to allow the CL-151 to shoot down formations of bombers at long range. The CMG was also coupled with an infrared sighting and tracking (IRST) under the aircraft's nose, which offered with a fire control system enhancement against hostile ECM. This feature was incororated in parallel to "Project Bold Journey", which was an CAF F-101B upgrade programm, running from 1963-66.


There was also a projected, corresponding long-range missile, the AIM-151 ‘Swan’. This was a derivate of the US-American Bendix AAM-N-10 ‘Eagle’, which had been developed for the US Navy’s fruitless ‘Missileer’ program. During its development, the capabilities of the new missile grew tremendously. Growing ever larger, the missile's range was extended to 100 miles (160 km), using an Aerojet-General XM59 solid-fuel motor. Since this would be beyond the range of effective semi-active homing, a new active-radar terminal seeker was added to the missile. But things got more and more complicated, and in the end the AIM-151 was cancelled in 1966. Nevertheless, the CL-151 needed a guided weapon to fulfil its task - and the aircraft' armament were also an important political decision, since the CF-101’s unguided, nuclear AIR-2A ‘Genie’ missiles had been a constant issue of debate and controversy.


In the end, and as a cost-effective compromise, an updated version of the AIM-7E 'Sparrow' was bought, the AIM-7EC. This version was optimized for a longer range (50ml/80km) and equipped with better avionics, making it comparable to the British Sky Flash AAM. Four of these weapons could be carried under the fuselage, and up to four more could be mounted on the wing hardpoints.


Overall, the CL-151 system was a very ambitious and prestigious project – just like the failed CH-105 before. It was not before 3rd of April 1968 until the first prototype made its maiden flight in Montreal. The aircraft’s all light-grey livery and sheer, massive size earned it the nicknames ‘Moby Dick’ and "Grey Goose'. Officially, with its service introduction in November 1969 as CF-151A, the aircraft was christened ‘Kodiak’.


The Kodiak proved to be THE interceptor Canada had long been searching for – but it was costly, could have achieved more and fell victim to ever new political controversy, so that effectively only 43 airframes (two prototypes, one static test airframe, five pre-series aircraft and finally 35 serial aircraft) were eventually built at slow pace until 1973. There had been hopes to find foreign customers for the CF-151, but potential users of sucha specialized, complex and simply large aircraft limited the circle of potential users.


Great Britain was already settled on the Tornado ADV and Sweden, as a neutral country, preferred a national solution which would lead to the JA37 Jaktviggen and later to the JAS 39 Gripen. So, the CAF would be the only user of the Kodiak, and all machines, except for the three initial development airframes, were allocated to various interceptor squadrons and served alongside the ageing CF-101 Voodoos, primarily in long-range patrol duties in Canada's far north.


Time did not stand still, though, and technology developed in a fast pace: through the 1970s, the increasing obsolescence of the CAF’s CF-101 and the CF-104 led the CAF to plans for their joint replacement by a single type. This respective ‘New Fighter Aircraft’ program was launched in 1977 with the intention of finding a replacement for the CF-5, CF-104 Starfighter and CF-101 Voodoo. An updated Kodiak as well as Grumman F-14 Tomcat, F-15 Eagle, F-16 Falcon, McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet, Panavia Tornado and the Dassault Mirage F1 (later replaced by the Mirage 2000) were all considered and evaluated as potential replacements.

Cost considerations eventually reduced the choice to the F-16 and F-18, and the F-18 ultimately prevailed, likely because of the additional safety of twin engines when flying in remote areas. The decision for the (C)F-18 was announced on 10 April 1980.


This was the end of the CF-151A, just after one decade of successful service. Ironically, the CF-101s, which the CF-151 had been supposed to replace, soldiered on until retirement in the 1980s. When these had been replaced with McDonnell Douglas CF-18 Hornet fighters, the death knell for the big and complex Kodiak rang, too.


The CF-151 was quickly becoming outdated and an aircraft of very limited use, despite its formidable capabilities as a heavy interceptor. But potential war scenarios had changed, and economical as well as political developments could not justify the expensive (and small) Kodiak fleet anymore. Consequently, the last CAF CF-151 flight took place on August 18th 2000, when the last indigenous Canadian fighter type was replaced by CF-18s, too.


Canadair CF-151A general characteristics

Crew: 2

Length: 21.2 m (69 ft 10 in)

Wingspan: spread (20° sweep): 17.14 m (66 ft 3 in); swept (65° sweep): 11,65 m (38 ft 3 in)

Height: 5.55 m (18 ft 2 in)

Empty weight: 47,200 lb (21,400 kg)

Loaded weight: 82,800 lb (37,600 kg)

Max. takeoff weight: 100,000 lb (45,300 kg)



2× GE TF30-P-3 turbofan jet engines, rated at 12,000 lbf (53 kN) dry and 18,500 lbf (82 kN) at full afterburner



Maximum speed: Mach 2.5 (1,650 mph, 2,655 km/h) at altitude and in clean configuration

Combat radius: 1,330 mi (1,160 nmi, 2,140 km)

Ferry range: 4,200 mi (3,700 nmi, 6,760 km)

Service ceiling: 66,000 ft (20,100 m)

Rate of climb: 25,890 ft/min (131.5 m/s)



4× AIM-7E3 'Sparrow' medium-/long-range AAMs, semi-recessed under the fuselage

4× AIM-9M 'Sidewinder' short range AAMs on wing hardpoints

2× drop tanks under the outer fixed wings

Theoretical external ordnance of up to 15.200lb (6.900kg)


The kit and its assembly

A bold and weird project. It all started when I was pondering the idea of a whiffy, large VG fighter in the class of a F-4 or MiG-25. While reading book about OKB Tupolev, when I realized that the Tu-22M had pretty fighter-like lines, even for a bomber. Some math revealed that reducing the aircraft by 50% in any dimension would yield a proper airframe, and so I started out searching for a 1:144 kit which would be turned into a fine 1:72 interceptor!


Strangely, respective kits are rare and expensive. The Dragon kit is 1st choice, but I found a re-boxed Dragon kit from 1985 under the obscure “New Craft” label (supposed to come from Japan) in North Carolina, only for US$12.

Its fuselage and wings would be taken 1:1. Three areas needed modification/donations, though. One issue is the tail fin. The Tu-22M’s fin, with its broad root section and the tail barbette, would not look good on a 1:72 kit, so it was completely replaced with a fin from a Panavia Tornado (Italeri). On the other end of the kit, I decided to implant a new front with a tandem cockpit. At first I just wanted to cut open the fuselage’s upper side, implant some seats and cover it with a TF-104 canopy, but I discarded it as impractical. Additionally, too much of the Tu-22M’s silhouette would be left.


As a surprising solution I found that the forward fuselage from a Su-15 (I had fuselage parts from a PM single-seated version still in the scrap box from my Ha-410 project) could be easily transplanted onto the Tu-22M fuselage, just in front of the air intakes! Dimensions and shape fit VERY well, and since the PM kit is cheap and widely available I ordered a NiB Su-15UM (a two-seater) from PM as a donation kit, for just US$8, instead of fighting with the single-seater.


The rest were rather minor modifications: the cockpit interior was built from scratch, with dashboards from a Tornado IDS, two IAI Kfir ejection seats and side consoles made from styrene strips. Nothing fancy, but the PM kit is totally bleak... Externally, the fairing for the 1:144 AS-6 ‘Kingfisher’ missile was closed (with a piece of styrene, cut to size), jet nozzles from a Tornado IDS added (drilled open and simply glued onto the Tu-22M nozzles), and a spine implanted between the canopy and the fin.


The landing gear is also completely new: the front wheel comes from a F-18 (reversed, though), the tandem bogies for the main landing gear are leftover pieces from a VEB Plasticart Tu-20/95 bomber kit, placed on struts from a F-117 kit and fitted with wheels which actually belong to the dolly in a Amodel X-20M missile kit.


The missiles are leftover pieces from a wrecked Italeri Tornado F.3. The drop tanks belong to a Revell F-16 - I originally wanted to use even bigger ones, from a vintage "box-scale" F-100 from Revell, but these proved to be to bulbous: they'd contact the landing gear.


Painting and markings

While a lot of Soviet design went into this aircraft, the idea of a Canadian alternative/successor to the F-101 and CF-105 prevailed. Additionally, I also organized a complete marking set for CAF CF-101s (from Wintervalley in Canada), so that authentic markings could be applied. While it sounds a bit boring, the simple, all-grey livery of CAF interceptors suits the Kodiak’s elegant lines well. Hence, the whole aircraft was painted in glossy FS16515 (Testors 2039), with a black radome and a blue fin rudder with three black stripes (a 409 Squadron marking) – very simple.


In order to emphasize details and pint out panel lines the model received a wash with thin black ink, as well as some dry-painting with lighter shades of grey on the upper surfaces. Canadian aircraft look rather tidy, so a thorough weathering or true worn look was not intended.


Cockpit interior was painted in medium grey (Humbrol 140), the landing gear as well as the air intakes in white (Humbrol 130). The landing gear interior was painted white, too, everything was kept rather simple. Additionally, some weathering and stains were added with dry-brushed shades of grey.


As mentioned before, all markings come from an aftermarket decal sheet from Wintervalley Model Products from Canada (now Canuck Models). Great stuff - if you search for authentic and high quality markings for ‘something Canadian’, look there!


Finally, everything was sealed under a coat of Tamiya Semi Gloss acryllic varnish, just the glare shield in front of the cockpit became totally matt.


What should I say? An idea that lingered for months finally became hardware, and it is a big and impressive bird. Surely, with the real CF-105 background, this model has a melancholic touch... Who knows what might have been if the CF-105 had not been axed in the late 50ies...? Maybe the Kodiak! ^^

Finally found a good way to make accurate MG42 gunners. They both use Roaglaan's decals as a base, and the holster from his tanker decal. The MG42 pouch on the Heer one is made by Capt. Kirk, from Eurobricks, and the one in the Fallschirmjäger is from another of Roaglaan's decals, can't remember which one. The ammo chain is from this one. I swear the Heer soldier's decal is a better match in person.


Correct gear for MG42 gunners: Walther P38 holster, Walther P38 handgun for personal defense, MG42 pousch by H&K, ammo drum (assignation of ammo drum depends on various factos, including availability of soldiers and the drum iself), all the rest of the standard German soldier equipment, and of course, the MG42 and its corresponding ammunition belts.


How do y'all like the new background and editing, eh?

HMS Ursula was a U-class submarine, of the first group of that class constructed for the Royal Navy. The submarine entered service in 1938 and saw action during the Second World War in the North and Mediterranean Seas. In 1944, Ursula was transferred to the Soviet Navy and renamed V-4. ... Ursula was transferred on loan to the Soviet Union on 26 June 1944

Sometime ago, I made a version of the Blackburn Buccaneer for the Imperial Lego Air Force and now I decided to transform the plane into the “real” Bucc (in the Royal Air Force colours).


Please visit my Flickr page:


I still need to improve the cockpit and the nose (which will be done eventually).


Info from Wikipedia:

"The Blackburn Buccaneer was a British low-level subsonic strike aircraft that served with the Royal Navy (RN) and later the Royal Air Force (RAF), retiring from service in 1994.

Although they originally rejected it in favour of the supersonic BAC TSR-2, the RAF later procured the Buccaneer as a substitute following the cancellation of both the TSR-2 and its planned replacement, the F-111K. When the RN retired the last of its large aircraft carriers, its Buccaneers were transferred to the RAF.

Later known as the Hawker Siddeley Buccaneer when Blackburn became a part of the Hawker Siddeley group."


In my opinion, besides the Grumman A-6 Intruder, the Buccaneer was the best Cold War strike plane.


The MOC features retractable landing gear, tail hook, movable airbrake on the rear, internal bombs bay and folding wings for carrier operations (although the RAF planes never used it).

Now I have 4 British planes of the Cold War, the Sea Hawk, The Gloster Javelin, the Armstrong Meteor and the Blackburn Buccaneer. Enough for a RAF/Fleet Air Arm display. The next British plane is already being assembled.


Don´t forget to visit my Flickr page for dozens of other planes:


Hope you like it!




Victory Day in Moscow, May 1993. Taken near the Kremlin and Red Square just to the side of the eternal flame marking the Soviet heros of World War II


Nikon F3, 300mm Nikkor

Kodak Ektachrome 200

HMS Belfast is a museum ship, originally a light cruiser built for the Royal Navy, currently permanently moored on the River Thames in London, England, and operated by the Imperial War Museum.

Construction of Belfast, the first ship in the Royal Navy to be named after the capital city of Northern Ireland and one of ten Town-class cruisers, began in December 1936. She was launched on St Patrick's Day 1938. Commissioned in early August 1939 shortly before the outbreak of the Second World War, Belfast was initially part of the British naval blockade against Germany. In November 1939, Belfast struck a German mine and spent more than two years undergoing extensive repairs. Belfast returned to action in November 1942 with improved firepower, radar equipment, and armour. Belfast saw action escorting Arctic convoys to the Soviet Union during 1943 and in December 1943 played an important role in the Battle of North Cape, assisting in the destruction of the German warship Scharnhorst. In June 1944, Belfast took part in Operation Overlord supporting the Normandy landings. In June 1945, Belfast was redeployed to the Far East to join the British Pacific Fleet, arriving shortly before the end of the Second World War. Belfast saw further combat action in 1950–52 during the Korean War and underwent an extensive modernisation between 1956 and 1959. A number of further overseas commissions followed before Belfast entered reserve in 1963.

In 1967, efforts were initiated to avert Belfast's expected scrapping and to preserve her as a museum ship. A joint committee of the Imperial War Museum, the National Maritime

The abandoned NGTE Pyestock Gas turbine testing facility: CELL 4


Time for your history lesson:


The National Gas Turbine Establishment (NGTE Pyestock) in Fleet, part of the Royal Aircraft Establishment (RAE), was the prime site in the UK for design and development of gas turbine and jet engines. It was created by merging the design teams of Frank Whittle's Power Jets and the RAE turbine development team run by Hayne Constant. NGTE spent most of its lifetime as a testing and development centre, both for experimental developments and to support commercial engine companies.


The newly merged venture was nationalised. Pyestock, a former golf course in a secluded wooded spot between Farnborough and Fleet was chosen as the turbine development site, as the activities at the NGTE would be top secret and the surrounding woodland would dampen the noise. Construction began in 1949 with small test "cubicles" inside buildings like the Plant House. When the possibility of supersonic jets arose, the site was expanded to the north west, with the Air House and several large test cells built circa 1961.


For over 50 years Pyestock was at the forefront of gas turbine development. It was probably the largest site of its kind in the world. V bomber, Harrier and Tornado engines were tested on site. The power of the air house allowed Concorde's engines to be tested at 2,000 mph. Every gas turbine installed in Royal Navy ships was checked here; captured Soviet engines were discreetly examined.


NGTE Pyestock closed down in 2000 and decommissioned to make way for a business park.


Daniel Barter Photography on Facebook


My Website "Black Widow was built at Sudomekh shipyard in Leningrad and commissioned in 1967. She was based at Riga and served with the Soviet Baltic Fleet before being used as a training vessel for crews from overseas who would be operating "Foxtrot" class subs in their own navies. She was decommissioned in 1994 and sold.


After passing into private hands, and under the name "U-475 Black Widow" she was moored at Long's Wharf near the Thames Barrier in England where she was open to the public as a museum ship. in 1998 she was moved to Folkestone, where she was again opened to the public. In 2004 she was moved to her present location, in a state of disrepair, and is currently awaiting restoration."

Moscow. July 2010. Navy Museum.

Tango Class Submarine

Russian Designation: Project 641B (also known as the Som)

Manufacturer: Gorki Shipyard

Role: Conventional Attack Submarine

Year Adopted: 1972

Number in Class: 18 Ships

Displacement: 3,000 Tons Surfaced, 3,700 Tons Submerged

Operational Status: Russia - Still in Use

Produced from 1972 to 1982


6 x 533mm (21 inch) torpedo tubes in bow

2 x 533mm (21 inch) torpedo tubes in stern

2 x SS-N-15 anti-submarine missiles

18 anti-submarine/anti-ship torpedoes or 36 AMD-1000 mines.


Sensor Suite:

1x 'Snoop Tray' surface search radar

1x Low frequency bow sonar

1x Medium frequency fire control sonar

1x 'Brick Group' passive intercept ESM system


3x diesel engines delivering 6000 hp (4474 kW) with two electric motors driving two propeller shafts.

Crew: 60 Officers and Sailors


Length: 301 feet, 8 inches (92.0 meters)

Draught: 23 feet (7.0 meters)

Beam: 29 feet, 6 inches (9.0 meters)

Maximum Speed:16 knots surfaced 15.5 knots submerged

Operating Depth: Operational: 300 meters (984 feet)

Maximum: 500 meters (1640 feet)


The Russian Tango class submarines (Project 641B Som [Catfish]) were the successors to the Foxtrot class submarine based in the Black Sea and Northern Fleet areas. The first of the class was completed in 1972 at Gorky. A total of 18 were built in two slightly different versions. The later type was several metres longer than the first possibly because of installation of ASW missile equipment.


The bow sonar installations appear to be similar to those fitted into Soviet nuclear attack submarines. The propulsion plant was the same as the last subgroup of the Foxtrot class submarine. The Tango class had far more battery capacity, far higher than previous conventional submarine class in the Soviet Navy. As a result, pressure hull volume increased. This allowed an underwater endurance in excess of a week before snorkeling was required.


Coupled with new armament and sensor fit, the Tango class were ideal for ambush operations against Western nuclear submarines at natural chokepoints.


Construction of this class has now stopped. One unit remains in the Black Sea Fleet but it may be decommissioned in 2010.


Submarine pens inside an abandoned Soviet nuclear submarine base. Balaklava Bay near Sevastopol, Ukraine.


Please hit 'favourite' if you like this picture!

Developed during the Cold War, the P-3's primary mission was to track Soviet Navy ballistic missile and fast attack submarines and to eliminate same in the event of full scale war. (Wikipedia)


3xp HDR


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These guys are 6th generation Beluga's born in Marineland Canada. Their ancestors were Soviet Belugas used for Soviet Navy reasearch. After retirement they were sold to Canada / Marineland.

The background picture is entitled: St. Louis, May 1940. "Downtown street on Sunday morning." and is the property of The original picture can be viewed here


* Obviously the following commentary is quite lengthy and makes for difficult reading "on screen". (If) you care to take to trouble of reading the entire text, my suggestion would be to copy the text and paste it into a Word document.

........... and you think the world is in chaos today?..............


The New York Stock Exchange crashed in October 1929 throwing the nation into the grips of poverty and financial despair. 1930 was the beginning of the Great Depression. It would last a decade in the United States, where, at its nadir in 1933, 25 percent of all workers and 37 percent of all nonfarm workers were completely out of work. Some people starved; many others lost their farms and homes. Homeless vagabonds sneaked aboard the freight trains that crossed the nation. Dispossessed cotton farmers, the “Okies,” stuffed their possessions into dilapidated Model Ts and migrated to California in the false hope that the posters about plentiful jobs were true. Although the U.S. economy began to recover in the second quarter of 1933, the recovery largely stalled for most of 1934 and 1935. A more vigorous recovery commenced in late 1935 and continued into 1937, when a new depression occurred. The American economy had yet to fully recover from the Great Depression when the United States was drawn into World War II in December 1941. Because of this agonizingly slow recovery, the entire decade of the 1930s in the United States is often referred to as the Great Depression.


Socialism declared the Death of Capitalism; Hitler rose to power; From July 1936 to April 1939 Spain was ravaged by a Civil War, In 1931, the Japanese Kwangtung Army attacked Chinese troops in Manchuria. Ominous clouds of impending war loomed on the horizon. In the United States, the majority of its citizens were too preoccupied with trying to survive another day under the strains of the depression to notice.


But all of this drove technology forward: Radio was now the dominant mass medium in the so-called civilized world; the first commercial intercontinental airline flights began.


Some inventions and innovations of the 1930s and 40’s that shaped the culture:

1930: Planet discovered: Pluto, by Clyde W. Tombaugh at Lowell Observatory

1930: Photoflash bulb

1930: Freon invented by Midgley et al.

1930: Artificial fabric polymerized from acetylene (J. Walter Reppe, Germany)

1930: High-octane gasoline invented by Ipatief (Russia)

1931: Cyclotron invented (Ernest O. Lawrence, USA)

1931: Neoprene (synthetic rubber) developed by Julius A. Nieuwland

1931: Synthetic resin, invented by Hill (England)

1931: Electronic microscope, Lroll & Ruska (Germany)

1932: Vitamin D discovered

1933: Electronic television invented by Philo Farnsworth (USA)

1933: Pure Vitamin C synthesized by Tadeusz Reichstein

1934: Launderette, invented by Cantrell (USA)

1935: Aircraft-detecting radar, by Robert Watson Watt

1935: First sulfa drug (Prontosil) for streptococcal infections (G. Domagk, Germany)

1936: Artificial Heart invented by Dr. Alexis Carrel

1937: Nylon patented for DuPont by Wallace H. Carothers

1937: First jet engine, built by Frank Whittle

1938: Fiberglass invented at Owens-Corning

1938: Teflon invented at Du Pont

1938: Vitamin E identified

1938: Fluorescent lamp, at General Electric

1939: First nylon stockings

1939: Polyethylene invented

1939: First helicopter, built by Igor Sikorsky (Russian-American)

1939: FM (Frequency Modulation) radio invented by Edwin H. Armstrong

1940: First USA helicopter flight, Vought-Sikorsky Corporation

1940: Penicillin perfected by Howard Florey as useful antibiotic

1940: Cavity Magnetron developed (key to Radar)

1940: First transuranic element (Neptunium) discovered (Philip Abelson & Edwin McMillan)

1940: First electron microscope, RCA


Meanwhile, Hitler's Nazi party gained power (in 1930), and soon led to the annexation of Austria (1938) and the invasion of Poland (1939), which drew France and Great Britain into World War II, despite the dithering of Neville Chamberlain. In June of 1940 the rapidly advancing German Army captured Paris. Franklin Delano Roosevelt is U.S. president (1932 into the next decade). Great Britain sees three kings in the decade: Edward VIII, George V, and George VI.


1930 – 1940 (what were we reading, what were we watching and what were we listening to)



1932 Aldous Huxley: "Brave New World"

1932 “Tobacco Road” by Erskine Caldwell is published. It is about Georgia sharecroppers.

1938 Ayn Rand: "Anthem”

1939 James Joyce: "Finnegans Wake"

1939 “The Grapes of Wrath” by John Steinbeck is published.



1931 “Frankenstein”

1932"The Mummy" - With Boris Karloff.

1933 “Deluge” - New York is wiped out by tsunami. Based on 1928 novel of same name by S.

Fowler Wright. (Plot sound familiar?)

1933 “The Invisible Man” - with Claude Rains as Dr. Jack Giffin, John Carradine, Walter Brennan,

directed by James Whale.

1933 “King Kong” - with Leslie Fenton, Conrad Veidt, Jill Esmond, George Merritt. Directed by Karl Hartl.

1934 "The Thin Man" - With William Powell, Myrna Loy, Maureen O'Sullivan. Based on the book by

Dashiell Hammett.

1935 "Top Hat" - With Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Edward Everett Horton, Eric Blore.

1936 “Flash Gordon” (many sequels to follow)

1936"The Charge of the Light Brigade" - With Erroll Flynn, Olivia DeHavilland, Donald Crisp, Nigel

Bruce, Patric Knowles, David Niven.

1937 "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs"

1938 "The Adventures of Robin Hood" - With Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Basil Rathbone, Claude

Rains, Eugene Pallette, Alan Hale. Directed by Michael Curtiz.

1939 "Gone With the Wind" - With Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, Leslie Howard, Olivia DeHavilland,

Thomas Mitchell, Hattie McDaniel.

1940 "The Grapes of Wrath" - With Henry Fonda, Jane Darwell, John Carradine. Directed by John


1940 "The Bank Dick" - With W.C. Fields, Cora Witherspoon, Una Merkel, Franklin Pangborn, Shemp

Howard, Grady Sutton.


MUSIC – 1940

“When You Wish Upon a Star” - Glenn Miller

“In The Mood” - Glenn Miller

“When The Swallows Come Back To Capistrano” - Ink Spots

“Frenesi” - Artie Shaw

“Beat Me Daddy, Eight To The Bar” - Will Bradley

“Tuxedo Junction” - Glenn Miller

“Body and Soul” - Coleman Hawkins

“I'll Never Smile Again” - Tommy Dorsey

“Sierra Sue” - Bing Crosby

“Blueberry Hill” - Glenn Miller

“Careless” - Glenn Miller

“Ferryboat Serenade” - Andrews Sisters

“The Woodpecker Song” - Glenn Miller

“Only Forever” - Bing Crosby

“Imagination” - Glenn Miller



Although the origins of television can be traced back as far as 1873 the discovery of the photoconductivity of the element selenium by Willoughby Smith, the first regularly scheduled television service in the United States was not available until July 2, 1928 and yet then it was in its infancy and certainly not perfected and not a widely accepted form of media. Radio was the media of the time. Most Americans, although barely able to put food on the table or clothes on their backs, had some type of radio in their living quarters.


1932, November 7th - the First radio broadcast of "Buck Rogers"


What followed was a whole host of Science fiction, mystery, comedy, westerns, detective and music programs. During the mid to late 30’s and 40’s millions of American families gathered around their radios in the evening listening to their favorite radio shows. Radio broadcasts continued well into the late 50’s when eventually television became readily accessible and affordable to most Americans.


A few of the earliest radio shows:

“Flash Gordon” – September, 1935:

“The Town Crier” 1929 - 1942:

“Sam Bass, Death Valley Days” 1930 – 1945:

“The Aldrich Family” – 1939 - 1953:


If you would care to delve a little further into the world of radio entertainment (before the days of sex, graphic violence and endless commercials on TV), I suggest you check out this excellent site -


Notable events:

1931 - Empire State Building opens in New York City

1931, September – Japanese invade Manchuria

1932 - Ford introduces the Model B, the first low-priced car to have a V-8 engine

1933 - Franklin Delano Roosevelt sworn in as President; he is the last president to be inaugurated on

March 4.

1933, February - Less than a month after Hitler became chancellor, the Reichstag burns down. When the police arrive they find Marinus van der Lubbe on the premises. Upon being tortured by the Gestapo van der Lubbe confesses to starting the fire. However he denies that he was part of a Communist

Conspiracy. Hitler later gives orders that all leaders of the German Communist Party "will be

hanged that very night." Hermann Goering announces that the Nazi Party plans "to exterminate" German communists.

1934 Chancellor Dollfuss of Austria assassinated by Nazis. Hitler becomes führer. USSR admitted to League of Nations.

1934 - John Dillinger is killed in Chicago

1935 - Mussolini invades Ethiopia; League of Nations invokes sanctions. Roosevelt opens second

phase of New Deal in U.S., calling for social security, better housing, equitable taxation, and farm assistance. Huey Long assassinated in Louisiana.

1935, September - The Nuremberg Race Laws deprive German Jews of their rights of citizenship, giving them the status of "subjects" in Hitler's Reich. The laws also make it forbidden for Jews to marry or have sexual relations with Aryans or to employ young Aryan women as household help. The Nazis settle on defining a "full Jew" as a person with three Jewish grandparents. Those with less were designated as Mischlinge or a "mixed blood."

1937, May - the German passenger airship, the Hindenburg, catches fire and is destroyed while attempting to dock during a electrical storm at the Lakehurst Naval Air Station. Of the 97 people on board, 15 are killed along with people killed on the ground. The exact cause for this disaster is still unknown.

1936, August – The 1936 Summer Olympics officially known as Games of the XI Olympiad, are held in Berlin, Germany. Jesse Owens wins four gold medals: the 100m sprint, the long jump, 200m sprint and after he was added to the 4 x 100 m relay team, he won his fourth on August 9.

* Owens was allowed to travel with and stay in the same hotels as whites, while at the time blacks in many parts of the United States were denied equal rights. After a New York City ticker-tape parade of Fifth Avenue in his honor, Owens had to ride the freight elevator at the Waldorf-Astoria to reach the reception honoring him.......... a sad chapter in the history of the United States. Owens said, "Hitler didn't snub me – it was FDR who snubbed me. The president didn't even send me a telegram." On the other hand, Hitler sent Owens a commemorative inscribed cabinet photograph of himself. Jesse Owens was never invited to the White House nor were honors bestowed upon him by president Franklin D. Roosevelt (FDR) or his successor Harry S. Truman during their terms. In 1955, President Dwight D. Eisenhower honored Owens by naming him an "Ambassador of Sports."

1936 - Germans occupy Rhineland. Italy annexes Ethiopia. Rome-Berlin Axis proclaimed (Japan to join

in 1940). Trotsky exiled to Mexico.

1937 - Hitler repudiates war guilt clause of Versailles Treaty; continues to build German power. Italy withdraws from League of Nations. U.S. gunboat Panay sunk by Japanese in Yangtze River.

Japan invades China, conquers most of coastal area. Amelia Earhart lost somewhere in Pacific

on round-the-world flight. Picasso's Guernica mural – an abstract depicting the chaos and human calamity of the Spanish Civil War.

1938, November - The Kristallnacht or the "Night of Broken Glass" is a night when the Gestapo and the SS go through towns of Austria and smash the windows of Jewish occupations. Thousands of homes and businesses are ransacked, 91 Jews are murdered and 25,000 to 30,000 are arrested and placed in concentration camps.

1938, March - The Anschluss, Germany takes over Austria. The German speaking part of Austria wanted to unite with Germany and Hitler states that this was his purpose for the annexation of Austria. However, this is against the Treaty of Versailles.

1939, September - Nazi-Germany attacks Poland, essentially the beginning of World War II. Many

countries around Germany declared war on Germany but do not take overt action against the Third Reich. Recently, Adolf Hitler had agreed in the Munich Agreement that he would not invade Poland. Great Britain and Poland have a mutual aid treaty that requires either country to come to the aid of the other in the event of war. When Germany invades Poland, Britain (and the Commonwealth) is obligated to come to the aid of Poland by declaring war on Germany. The United States, however, does not officially declare war against Germany. Many countries rise up and voiced anger over Hitler’s betrayal but only Britain and the Commonwealth take overt actions to try and stop Hilter’s military aggression.

1939 - President Roosevelt, appears at the opening of the 1939 New York World's Fair, becoming the first President to give a speech that is broadcast on television. Semi-regular broadcasts air during the next two years

1940, August - The Battle of Britain begins. The German Luftwaffe attempts to take over British airspace and destroy the Royal Air Force with the intention of eventually invading England. Against all odds, Britain and The Royal Air Force resist the Luftwaffe aggression causing Hitler to abandon the idea of invading Britain and to turn his attention to Russia.

1940, March - "Lend/Lease" is the name of the program under which the US supplied the United Kingdom, the Soviet Union, China, France and other Allied nations with vast amounts of war material in return for military bases in Newfoundland, Bermuda, and the British West Indies. It

was intended to promote the defense of the US. This act also ended the neutrality of the United States.

1940, May (This picture) – A mostly vacant downtown area of St. Louis on an early Sunday



As this picture suggests, the United States lay basically asleep, as many Americans are either unaware , or prefer to ignore the ominous winds of war swirling all around them. In a few short months, the hammer would fall and Americans would find themselves anxiously gathered around their radios listening to the President of the United States announce:


“Yesterday, December 7th, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.


The United States was at peace with that nation and, at the solicitation of Japan, was still in conversation with its government and its emperor looking toward the maintenance of peace in the Pacific.

Indeed, one hour after Japanese air squadrons had commenced bombing in the American island of Oahu, the Japanese ambassador to the United States and his colleagues delivered to our Secretary of State a formal reply to a recent American message. And while this reply stated that it seemed useless to continue the existing diplomatic negotiations, it contained no threat or hint of war or of armed attack.


It will be recorded that the distance of Hawaii from Japan makes it obvious that the attack was deliberately planned many days or even weeks ago. During the intervening time, the Japanese government has deliberately sought to deceive the United States by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.


The attack yesterday on the Hawaiian islands has caused severe damage to American naval and military forces. I regret to tell you that very many American lives have been lost. In addition, American ships have been reported torpedoed on the high seas between San Francisco and Honolulu.


Yesterday, the Japanese government also launched an attack against Malaya.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked Hong Kong.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked Guam.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked the Philippine Islands.

Last night, the Japanese attacked Wake Island.

And this morning, the Japanese attacked Midway Island.

Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday and today speak for themselves. The people of the United States have already formed their opinions and well understand the implications to the very life and safety of our nation.


As commander in chief of the Army and Navy, I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense.

But always will our whole nation remember the character of the onslaught against us.

No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.


I believe that I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost, but will make it very certain that this form of treachery shall never again endanger us.

Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory and our interests are in grave danger.


With confidence in our armed forces - with the unbounding determination of our people - we will gain the inevitable triumph - so help us God.


I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December 7th, 1941, a state of war has existed between the United States and the Japanese empire.”


From this day forward, life as American’s knew it, will be drastically and forever changed.


Cell:3 of the abandoned Pyestock NGTE Gas Turbine testing facility.

This is one of the many cells spread across the sprawling complex.


Single exposure tonemapped image.


Time for your history lesson:


The National Gas Turbine Establishment (NGTE Pyestock) in Fleet, part of the Royal Aircraft Establishment (RAE), was the prime site in the UK for design and development of gas turbine and jet engines. It was created by merging the design teams of Frank Whittle's Power Jets and the RAE turbine development team run by Hayne Constant. NGTE spent most of its lifetime as a testing and development centre, both for experimental developments and to support commercial engine companies.


The newly merged venture was nationalised. Pyestock, a former golf course in a secluded wooded spot between Farnborough and Fleet was chosen as the turbine development site, as the activities at the NGTE would be top secret and the surrounding woodland would dampen the noise. Construction began in 1949 with small test "cubicles" inside buildings like the Plant House. When the possibility of supersonic jets arose, the site was expanded to the north west, with the Air House and several large test cells built circa 1961.


For over 50 years Pyestock was at the forefront of gas turbine development. It was probably the largest site of its kind in the world. V bomber, Harrier and Tornado engines were tested on site. The power of the air house allowed Concorde's engines to be tested at 2,000 mph. Every gas turbine installed in Royal Navy ships was checked here; captured Soviet engines were discreetly examined.


NGTE Pyestock closed down in 2000 and decommissioned to make way for a business park.


Maritime Museum of San Diego, California, USA

( Please View Full Screen ... )

Note periscope on right of this photo. Length overall: 299'6"; Diesel engines: 3x2000 HP; Electric engines: 3x1350 HP; Torpedo tubes: 4 aft, 6 forward. B-39 was part of the Soviet Navy's "Project 641" and had the NATO designation of a 'Foxtrot" class submarine. She patrolled the oceans of the world with her 78 man crew and often spent time at depths as deep as 985 feet.

Note: It did feel strange being alone aboard this totally deserted ship, with only the sounds of my moving about, my camera, and some 'deserted submarine sounds' ...

The boat Castor


And a funny sory for you all


The boat was designed in 1946, just after the second world war as a mulitifuctional ship.

The Netherlands needed a lot of boats in that time, and all as soon as possible and at the same time please (not much has canged since then)

The Castor was delivered in 1950, building boats cost a lot of time doesn't it? So the royal navy gave her the pennant A810 and the name: Castor.

It was a pilot vessel, which is in dutch: loodsvaartuig, so it is also known as: MLV Castor (Marine Loodsvaartuig Castor)

Hope you're still following the story? And now for the interesting part.


After the second world war everybody was looking with scared eyes towards the U.S.S.R. or the Sovjet Union because mankind was so clever, ….they had invented the nuclear bomb, wasn't that a cool thing?

But one problem, the others (always the others, in this case the U.S.S.R.) had that bomb as well, so the west (let's give it that name to make the contrast clear between the... others and us, lol!) created the NATO. And ofcourse the NATO , of which the Netherlands is a member, needed much war stuff, because of that nasty U.S.S.R.


To make this long story a bit shorter, because of that, the dutch had Castor , at first as a communication vessel, later as an outpost boat. A bit later as an evacuation vessel, and now , if you all please will sit down, grab a handkerchief to whipe the tears from laughter that you will get soon.


And what would the Castor evacuate then?

Well, if the U.S.S.R. (or Russia if you prefer) would make war on us, and drop an atomic bomb or ten , the Castor and six other vessels would evacuate the government and the royal family to South-Africa !

Well , the Castor even has a cute little cannon on board, (it's so huge you can't even see it on my picture because it is on the back side of the ship)

So that evecuation of all those important persons through the nuclear war zone wouldn't be to much of a problem, now would it?


The story may be a bit exaggerated for humor purposes, but completely true and public available on the internet.


Now the Castor is a museum ship, so the story ends well.

Copyright :copyright: PRH Photography. All Rights Reserved.


This work is protected under international copyright laws and agreements. No part of this photostream may be reproduced, stored in retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without my prior permission.


MV Esperanza is a ship operated by Greenpeace. Previous to being a Greenpeace ship it was a fire-fighter owned by the Russian Navy, built in 1984. It was recommissioned in 2000 and launched in 2002 after being named Esperanza ('hope' in Spanish) by visitors to the Greenpeace website. It had undergone a major refit by Greenpeace to make it more environmentally friendly. A new helicopter deck and boat cranes were also added.


The ship has a heavy ice class,[clarification needed] giving it the ability to work in polar regions. It has a top speed of 16 knots and an overall length of 72.3 m. This makes it the fastest and largest of the Greenpeace fleet.


It has been involved in many campaigns, starting with the logging 'save or delete' campaign and currently in the Arctic off the coast of Greenland, protesting against an offshore drilling project by Cairn Energy.

Totalitarianism is back in vogue


by John Hayward 4 Jan 2014, 6:55 AM PDT


One of the most disturbing things about Barack Obama's reign of lawless executive power is that it has people fantasizing about outright totalitarian dictatorship, and not in a faculty-lounge-B.S. kind of way. We've always had to put up with the likes of Thomas Friedman at the New York Times rhapsodizing about the joys of Chinese authoritarianism - provided a duly accredited Democrat gets to be America's temporary dictator, of course - but now we've got Jesse Myerson at Rolling Stone daydreaming about hard-core communism as the solution to America's ills.


He's not fooling around, either. He wants the government to guarantee a job and income for every single person, and seize all private property to overthrow capitalism, although he would generously allow the Glorious Peoples' Republic of America to rent the land back to private individuals... as long as everyone is clear that the dictatorship of the proletariat is the ultimate landlord:


Ever noticed how much landlords blow? They don't really do anything to earn their money. They just claim ownership of buildings and charge people who actually work for a living the majority of our incomes for the privilege of staying in boxes that these owners often didn't build and rarely if ever improve. In a few years, my landlord will probably sell my building to another landlord and make off with the appreciated value of the land s/he also claims to own – which won't even get taxed, as long as s/he ploughs it right back into more real estate.


Think about how stupid that is. The value of the land has nothing to do with my idle, remote landlord; it reflects the nearby parks and subways and shops, which I have access to thanks to the community and the public. So why don't the community and the public derive the value and put it toward uses that benefit everyone? Because capitalism, is why.


And the wise and loving State will fix all of that because it really cares about the people, man. Politicians are completely devoid of greed or ambition, and their brilliant plans always work perfectly. Just ask the doctor who spent two hours on hold with the ObamaCare commissars on Friday waiting for approval to perform surgery.


Much of this idiocy is based on a religious faith in the absolute moral and intellectual superiority of the Ruling Class. They are the avatars of the people, the executors of the general will. What is owned by the government belongs to "the public," and is used for their common good by selfless and brilliant central planners who went to all the right schools. Capitalism, on the other hand, is portrayed as the unending theft of The People's time and resources by a procession of robber barons.


I guess it's possible for deeply stupid people to keep believing this swill as long as they completely ignore what actually happens when property and control over individual lives is handed over to the Ruling Class elite, which is given enough deadly force to make the reforms Myerson calls for. (He seems blissfully unaware of how many people the government would have to shoot, in order to steal all the private property in America for the good of the people it didn't perforate, or force everyone into indentured servitude for their mandatory employment and income.) I never miss an opportunity to invite those obsessed with "income inequality" to visit a communist country and check out the difference between how the apparatchiks of the regime live, versus the common standard of living. Now that's what I call income inequality! And if you try to escape from it, you'll be jailed or killed.


Over at Politico, Michael Auslin wonders if "American needs a king." He's actually talking about a ceremonial royal figurehead separate from the functional head of government, basically living Obama's life of celebrity luxury without the dictatorial executive power our beloved super-President has been using to wreck the country. Instead of an Empty Chair, Obama could be the Empty Throne. I can't tell from the article if he thinks this would be a term-limited elected position, or a lifetime hereditary appointment.


But Auslin's musings about the need for some kind of unified "national consensus" government put us right back on the road to smiley-face totalitarianism, where the government controls everything for the good of the people, and we do away with "gridlock" by boiling representative government down to one nationally-elected benevolent dictator with a rubber-stamp legislature:


As the only nationally elected official, the president has become a symbol of the country. Such symbols, whether in a democracy, monarchy, or authoritarian state, must serve a purpose above politics, both at home and abroad. Yet that is impossible for a U.S. president who is head of his own government, putative head of his political party and invariably a competitive, partisan politician. For example of just how awkward this can be, hours after a mass shooting at the Navy Yard in Washington last September, President Obama unleashed a blisteringly critical speech on the budget, accusing the Tea Party faction in Congress of promising “economic chaos” and questioning whether Republicans were “willing to hurt people just to score political points.”


Maybe what Auslin is driving at is the need for an entirely symbolic figure who could divert and ground those passions for trans-partisan national unity, leaving the messy business of the representative Republic to grind along with fewer calls for totalitarian submission to a benevolent authoritarian regime. But in practice, people would expect the King of America to actually have power and get stuff done. We already hear frequent charges from Democrats that Republican resistance to Obama's agenda is either tantamount to, or literally, treason. The King of America would never settle for a purely ceremonial role; he'd "suggest" certain policies, and his ardent followers would insist on obedience... with increasingly violent frustration if resistance continued.


We should be running away from this "nationally elected symbol of the country" stuff, and remembering that the chief executive has a sharply limited role in a carefully balanced, separated government. There are very few things on which the citizens of a vast and prosperous nation should express a "unified" opinion, backed up by the coercive force necessary to make dissenters submit.



Violence In The Face Of Tyranny Is Often Necessary


Submitted by Brandon Smith


It was the winter of 1939, only a few months earlier the Soviet Union and Hitler's Third Reich had signed a partially secret accord known as the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact; essentially a non-aggression treaty which divided Europe down the middle between the fascists and the communists. Hitler would take the West, and Stalin would take the East. Stalin's war machine had already steamrolled into Latvia. Lithuania, and Estonia. The soviets used unprecedented social and political purges, rigged elections, and genocide, while the rest of the world was distracted by the Nazi blitzkrieg in Poland. In the midst of this mechanized power grab was the relatively tiny nation of Finland, which had been apportioned to the communists.


Apologists for Stalinist history (propagandists) have attempted to argue that the subsequent attack on Finland was merely about “border territories” which the communists claimed were stolen by the Finns when they seceded from Russia during the Bolshevik Revolution. The assertion that the soviets were not seeking total dominance of the Finns is a common one. However, given the vicious criminal behavior of Russia in nearby pacified regions, and their posture towards Finland, it is safe to assume their intentions were similar. The Finns knew what they had to look forward to if they fell victim to the iron hand of Stalin, and the soviet propensity for subjugation was already legendary.


The Russian military was vastly superior to Finland's in every way a common tactician would deem important. They had far greater numbers, far better logistical capability, far better technology, etc, etc. Over 1 million troops, thousands of planes, thousands of tanks, versus Finland's 32 antiquated tanks, 114 planes which were virtually useless against more modern weapons, and 340,000 men, most of whom were reservists rallied from surrounding farmlands. Finland had little to no logistical support from the West until the conflict was almost over, though FDR would later pay lip service to the event, “condemning” soviet actions while brokering deals with them behind the scenes. Russian military leadership boasted that the Finns would run at the sound of harsh words, let alone gun fire. The invasion would be a cakewalk.


The battle that followed would later be known as the “Winter War”; an unmitigated embarrassment for the Soviets, and a perfect example of a small but courageous indigenous guerrilla army repelling a technologically advanced foe.


To Fight, Or Pretend To Fight?


Fast forward about seven decades or so, and you will discover multiple countries around the globe, including the U.S., on the verge of the same centralized and collectivized socialist occupation that the Finnish faced in 1939. The only difference is that while their invasion came from without, our invasion arose from within. The specific methods may have changed, but the underlying face of tyranny remains the same.


In America, the only existing organization of people with the slightest chance of disrupting and defeating the march towards totalitarianism is what we often refer to as the “Liberty Movement”; a large collection of activist and survival groups tied together by the inexorable principles of freedom, natural law, and constitutionalism. The size of this movement is difficult to gauge, but its social and political presence is now too large to be ignored. We are prevalent enough to present a threat, and prevalent enough to be attacked, and that is all that matters. That said, though we are beginning to understand the truly vital nature of our role in America's path, and find solidarity in the inherent values of liberty that support our core, when it comes to solutions to the dilemma of globalization and elitism, we are sharply divided.


While most activist movements suffer from a complete lack of solutions to the problems they claim to recognize, constitutional conservatives tend to have TOO MANY conceptual solutions to the ailments of the world. Many of these solutions rely upon unrealistic assumptions and methods that avoid certain inevitable outcomes. Such strategies center mostly on the concepts of “non-aggression” or pacifism idealized and romanticized by proponents of Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr, and the anti-war movements of the 1960's and 1970's. The post-baby boomer generations in particular have grown up with an incessant bombardment of the “higher nature” of non-violence as a cure-all for every conceivable cultural ailment.


We have been taught since childhood that fighting solves nothing, but is this really true?


I can understand the allure of the philosophy. After all, physical confrontation is mentally and emotionally terrifying to anyone who is not used to experiencing it. The average “reasonable” person goes far out of their way on every occasion to avoid it. Most of the activists that I have met personally who deride the use of force against tyrannical government have never actually been in an outright confrontation of any kind in their lives, or if they have, it ended in a failure that scarred them. They have never trained for the eventuality. Many of them have never owned a firearm. The focus of their existence has been to hide from pain, rather than overcome their fears to achieve something greater.


There is nothing necessarily wrong with becoming an “intellectual warrior”, unless that person lives under the fantasy that this alone will be enough to defeat the kind of evil we face today.


Non-aggression methods rely on very specific circumstances in order to be effective. Most of all, they rely on a system of government that is forced to at least PRETEND as if it cares what the masses think of it. Gandhi's Indian Independence Movement, for example, only witnessed noticeable success because the British government at that time was required to present a semblance of dignity and rule of law. But what happens if a particular tyranny reaches a point where the facade of benevolence disappears? What happens when the establishment turns to the use of the purge as a tool for consolidation? What happens when the mask comes completely off?


How many logical arguments or digital stashes of ethereal Bitcoins will it take to save one's life or one's freedom then?


Arguments For And Against Violent Action


The position against the use of “violence” (or self defense) to obstruct corrupt systems depends on three basic debate points:


1) Violence only feeds the system and makes it stronger.


2) We need a “majority” movement in order to be successful.


3) The system is too technologically powerful – to fight it through force of arms is “futile”, and our chances are slim to none.


First, violence does indeed feed the system, if it is driven by mindless retribution rather than strategic self defense. This is why despotic governments often resort to false flag events; the engineering of terrorist actions blamed on scapegoats creates fear within the unaware portions of the population, which generates public support for further erosion of freedoms. However, there is such a thing as diminishing returns when it comes to the “reach, teach, and inspire” method.


The escalation of totalitarianism will eventually overtake the speed at which the movement can awaken the masses, if it has not done so already. There will come a time, probably sooner rather than later, when outreach will no longer be effective, and self defense will have to take precedence, even if that means subsections of the public will be shocked and disturbed by it. The sad fact is, the faster we wake people up, the faster the establishment will degrade social stability and destroy constitutional liberties. A physical fight is inevitable exactly because they MAKE it inevitable. Worrying about staying in the good graces of the general populace or getting honest representatives elected is, at a certain point, meaningless. I find it rather foolish to presume that Americans over the next decade or two or three have the time needed to somehow inoculate the system from within. In fact, I'm starting to doubt that strategy has any merit whatsoever.


Second, the idea that a movement needs a “majority” of public backing to shift the path of a society is an old wives tale. Ultimately, most people throughout history are nothing more than spectators in life, watching from the sidelines while smaller, ideologically dedicated groups battle for superiority. Global developments are decided by true believers; never by ineffectual gawkers. Some of these groups are honorable, and some of them are not so honorable. Almost all of them have been in the minority, yet they wield the power to change the destiny of the whole of the nation because most people do not participate in their own futures. They merely place their heads between their legs and wait for the storm to pass.


All revolutions begin in the minds and hearts of so-called “outsiders”. To expect any different is to deny the past, and to assume that a majority is needed to achieve change is to deny reality.


Third, I'm not sure why non-aggression champions see the argument of statistical chance as relevant. When all is said and done, the “odds” of success in any fight against oligarchy DO NOT MATTER. Either you fight, or you are enslaved. The question of victory is an afterthought.


Technological advantage, superior numbers, advanced training, all of these things pale in comparison to force of will, as the Finnish proved during the Winter War. Some battles during that conflict consisted of less than a hundred Finns versus tens-of-thousands of soviets. Yet, at the end of the war, the Russians lost 3500 tanks, 500 aircraft, and had sustained over 125,000 dead (official numbers). The Finns lost 25,000 men. For every dead Finn, the soviets lost at least five. This is the cold hard reality behind guerrilla and attrition warfare, and such tactics are not to be taken lightly.


Do we go to the Finnish and tell them that standing against a larger, more well armed foe is “futile”? Do we tell them that their knives and bolt action rifles are no match for tanks and fighter planes? And by extension, do we go to East Asia today and tell the Taliban that their 30 year old AK-47's are no match for predator drones and cruise missiles? Obviously, victory in war is not as simple as having the biggest gun and only the uneducated believe otherwise.


The Virtues Of Violence


The word “violence” comes with numerous negative connotations. I believe this is due to the fact that in most cases violence is used by the worst of men to get what they want from the weak. Meeting violence with violence, though, is often the only way to stop such abuses from continuing.


At Alt-Market, we tend to discuss measures of non-participation (not non-aggression) because all resistance requires self-sustainability. Americans cannot fight the criminal establishment if they rely on the criminal establishment. Independence is more about providing one's own necessities than it is about pulling a trigger. But, we have no illusions about what it will take to keep the independence that we build. This is where many conceptual solutions are severely lacking.


If the system refuses to let you walk away, what do you do? If the tyrants would rather make the public suffer than admit that your social or economic methodology is better for all, how do you remove them? When faced with a cabal of psychopaths with deluded aspirations of godhood, what amount of reason will convince them to step down from their thrones?


I'm sorry to say, but these questions are only answered with violence.


The Liberty Movement doesn't need to agree on the “usefulness” of physical action because it is coming regardless. The only things left to discern are when and how. Make no mistake, one day each and every one of us will be faced with a choice – to fight, or to throw our hands in the air and pray they don't shoot us anyway. I certainly can't speak for the rest of the movement, but in my opinion only those who truly believe in liberty will stand with rifle in hand when that time comes. A freedom fighter is measured by how much of himself he is willing to sacrifice, and how much of his humanity he holds onto in the process. Fear, death, discomfort; none of this matters. There is no conundrum. There is no uncertainty. There are only the chains of self-defeat, or the determination of the gun. The sooner we all embrace this simple fact, the sooner we can move on and deal with the dark problem before us.


Digitally Composed Graphics.


On December 19, 1939, KV-1(Kliment Voroshilov) Heavy Tank was accepted for the service. At that time, KV-1 took part in combat tests on the Russian-Finnish War (so-called « Winter War»). During those battles, the Soviet High Command come to conclusion that the heavy tank with more powerful armament is highly needed to combat with enemy bunkers, pillboxes and other fortifications.


The North-Western Front HQ ordered first four KV-1 tanks from experimental party must been armed with 152 mm howitzers. To do this, the best engineers from KTZ's design bureau were summoned. After two weeks a new project was completed. In a first time engineers decided use the 152 mm mod.1909/1930 Howitzer, but later it was replaced with more modern 152 mm M-10 Howitzer Model 1938/1940. A new, bigger turret was designed to accept such heavy cannon. That turret was named «MT-1».


At the beginning of 1941, the this tank was renamed to KV-2. Before this, the KV-1 called as «The Tank With a Small Turret» while KV-2 called as «The Tank With a Big Turret». The MT-1 turret was placed on the chassis of a twin-turret experimental tank instead of small turret (a large turret was also removed from the hull). On February 10, 1940, first trials were conducted. At the time, Soviet tank designers weren't very experienced in vehicles of such a heavy weight. They added a small lid on the the howitzer's barrel. That lid was intended to prevent a gun from the dust, shell's fragments and bullets. However, after the first shot this lid was torn away, after that it was never used.


In 1940, a pair of KV-2 were sent to the battlefront on the Karelian isthmus. In spite of some rumors, KV-2s didn't take part in battles before the Great Patriotic War. The pair of KV-2 fired on already captured pillboxes. The results of those tests were excellent and later, in 1940, a KV-2 Heavy Tank was accepted for service. Soviet tankers often nicknamed those tanks as «Dreadnoughts».


During the production, the tank's turret was slightly improved and additional DT Machine-Gun was mounted in it. The shortened M-10 Howitzer was able to fire a 52-kg high-explosive projectile with muzzle velocity of 436 m/s.


Please notice, only high-explosive shells with reduced propellant charge were used for KV-2's gun! No armor-piercing and concrete-piercing ammo used! It was allowed to use Naval Semi-AP Round M.1915/28. However that ammo used only in Red Navies, it was absent in Red Army's warehouses. Despite some modern sources, the usage of armor-piercing and concrete-piercing ammunition was prohibited; it was specially highlighted in the KV-2's Operational Manual. The problem was with its big recoil; it definitely jammed KV's turret. Untill the middle of 1941 Soviet engineed tried to develop a special concrete-piercing projectile for KV-2, but unsuccessful and then Germany invades to the USSR so all further works were stopped at all.


KV-2 had 36 rounds for its main gun and 3087 rounds for its bow and rear machine-guns. The crew of six crewmembers: tank commander, gun commander, second gun commander (loader), gunner, driver, and radio operator.


Besides of the 152-mm howtzer, there were some other guns which were either tested or intended to be mount on the KV-2. One of that was an attempt to mount a long barreled 106.7 mm Gun ZIS-6 (initially, this gun was proposed for the perspective KV-3 and KV-5 tanks). From May to June of 1941, the KV-2 with the ZIS-6 was tested on factory's trials, after that it was sent to the ANIOP's trials which it failed. Main problem was with gun's ammunition: the gun had single-loading rounds. Such a lond and heavy shells were wery hard to handle and operate by a single loader.


Additionaly, the KV-2 armed with the 85 mm Gun F-39. Ordered by the NKO, in March 1941, a KV-2 with this gun was tested but I was unable to find results of those tests.


Unfortunately, the new tank had same drawbacks in transmission and chassis as the KV-1. Besides, most of KV-2 tanks didn't have a proper number of ammunition. Nevertheless, the appearance of KV-2 became a shock for German tankers. There wasn't any weapon, with the exception of the 88 mm AA-Gun, that could successfully defeat this beast.


Up north, the 6-Panzer-Division under Panzer-Gruppe 4 had encountered Russian heavy tanks. As related in the war diary of Panzer-Regiment 11 on 25 June 1941 (cited from T. Jentz «Panzertruppen»):


«During the morning, the II.Abteilung/Panzer-Regiment 11 together with Kampfgruppe von Seckendorff advanced along the right-hand march route. Throughout the day both units fought off repeated attacks from the Russian 2nd Armored Division. Unfortunately, the Russian 52 ton heavy tanks showed that it was almost insensitive to hits from the 10.5-cm. Several hits from a 15-cm gun were ineffective and bounced off. However, continuous attacks by several Pz Kpfw lV managed to knock out a large number of tanks throughout the day, which allowed our own attack to again drive forward to about three kilometers west of Dubysa.


The bridgehead of Kampfgruppe Raus was held. During the afternoon, as a reserve, a reinforced company and the headquarters of Panzer-Abteilung 65 were pulled back along the left attack route to the crossroads northeast of Rossienie. In the meantime a Russian heavy tank had blocked the communications route to Kampfgruppe Raus, so that contact with Kampfgruppe Raus was broken for the entire afternoon and during the night. An 8.8-cm Flak battery was sent by the commander to fight this tank. It was just as unsuccessful as a 10.5-cm battery whose fire was directed by a forward observer. In addition, an attempt by a Pioneer assault troop using balled explosives failed. It was impossible to get close to the tank because of heavy machine gun fire».


The most of KV-2 tanks were lost because of breakdowns. For example, 41st Tank Division lost 22 KV-2 tanks of 33 tanks total. The only 5 tanks were destroyed by the enemy, other 17 tanks were abandoned because of breakdowns or run out of fuel.


In October 1941, the KV-2's manufacture was cancelled. Totally 334 KV-2 tanks were produced.


Article is written by Valeri Potapov


This is another one of my early 2 1/4 x 2 1/4 Ektachrome slides recently retrieved and scanned with some needed color restoration. When this was taken I was recently graduated and commissioned in the Navy at barely 21 years of age. I reported aboard the heavy cruiser, USS Helena, in Long Beach, California. Almost immediately after reporting aboard, the Egyptians seized control of the Suez Canal from England. The British and French responded by parachute landing to retake the Canal. These events were occurring at the height of Cold War confrontations between the U.S., Soviet Union and Communist China. There was serious risk that China would seize the opportunity to launch an invasion of Formosa (Nationalist China) which the U.S. was committed to defend. My ship was ordered to Westpac (the Far East) to be prepared to repel invasion. By the time we reached Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, President Eisenhower was requiring England and France to yield, and our ship was placed on standby as the crisis eased. We remained at Pearl Harbor on standby for a month during which my shipmate and I seized every opportunity to go to Waikiki Beach to surf. This photo was made with the Rolleiflex camera on one of these excursions.

Those familiar with Oahu will note that the image is reversed. Diamond Head is actually in the opposite direction. The technician that did the scan made a slip or perhaps didn't realize that the slide must face correctly or suffer mirror image reversal.

For those who might not be aware, these canoes surfed right alongside and amidst crowds of individual surfers. And woe to the surfer who fell in the path of one of these canoes!

The abandoned NGTE Pyestock Gas Turbine research facility, left empty since its closure in 2000.


I am hoping the shadow figure on the far left (see note) was a fellow explorer!



Time for your history lesson:


The National Gas Turbine Establishment (NGTE Pyestock) in Fleet, part of the Royal Aircraft Establishment (RAE), was the prime site in the UK for design and development of gas turbine and jet engines. It was created by merging the design teams of Frank Whittle's Power Jets and the RAE turbine development team run by Hayne Constant. NGTE spent most of its lifetime as a testing and development centre, both for experimental developments and to support commercial engine companies.


The newly merged venture was nationalised. Pyestock, a former golf course in a secluded wooded spot between Farnborough and Fleet was chosen as the turbine development site, as the activities at the NGTE would be top secret and the surrounding woodland would dampen the noise. Construction began in 1949 with small test "cubicles" inside buildings like the Plant House. When the possibility of supersonic jets arose, the site was expanded to the north west, with the Air House and several large test cells built circa 1961.


For over 50 years Pyestock was at the forefront of gas turbine development. It was probably the largest site of its kind in the world. V bomber, Harrier and Tornado engines were tested on site. The power of the air house allowed Concorde's engines to be tested at 2,000 mph. Every gas turbine installed in Royal Navy ships was checked here; captured Soviet engines were discreetly examined.


NGTE Pyestock closed down in 2000 and decommissioned to make way for a business park.


The Gloster Gladiator (or Gloster SS.37) was a British-built biplane fighter, used by the RAF and Royal Navy as well as a number of other air forces during the late 1930s. It was the RAF's last biplane fighter (and the first with an enclosed cockpit!) and was often pitted against more formidable foes during the early days of the WWII, although it acquitted itself well in combat.


It first flew in 1934 and entered service in 1937. It had a top speed of around 257 mph yet even as it was introduced, the design was being eclipsed by the new generation of monoplane fighters, such as the new Hurricanes and Spitfires and the Messerschmitt Bf 109. Gladiators were also modified for carrier operations and flown by the FAA as the Sea Gladiator. 747 airframes were built (483 RAF, 98 RN; 216 exported to Belgium, China, Egypt, Finland, Free France, Greece, Iraq, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Portugal, South Africa and Sweden, some of them from the total allotted to the RAF).


The Gladiator was largely replaced in front-line RAF service by the Hurricane and Spitfire by September 1939, although two squadrons were used in the French and Norwegian campaigns. It also performed reasonably well in limited Finnish service against Soviet fighters during the Winter War, but was found to be outclassed by German fighters in other theatres. Carrier-based Sea Gladiators were more successful, since their slower speed made them more suitable for carrier operations and they were less likely to be facing more modern fighter opposition.


One of the most enduring campaigns fought by Gladiators was the siege of Malta in 1940. Malta was for 10 days protected by a small force of Sea Gladiators, the Hal Far Fighter Flight, giving rise to a myth that three aircraft, named Faith, Hope and Charity formed the entire fighter cover of the island. In fact, more than three were operational, although not always at the same time; others were used for spare parts. The fuselage of the only surviving Gladiator from the Hal Far Fighter Flight, N5520, Faith, was presented to the people of Malta in 1943 and has been preserved in Malta. - more details on Wikipedia.


This example was seen flying during the Shuttleworth Collection's 50th Anniversary Air Show at Old Warden, Bedfordshire.

Part of a top secret Russian torpedo testing facility at lake Issyk-Kul, Kyrgyzstan. During the Cold War these cranes were used by the Soviets to lift torpedo debri and schrapnell out of the lake. Although abandoned and rusting, the site is still off-limits to foreigners.

Top secret Russian torpedo testing facility in Prezhevalsk, lake Issyk-Kul, Kyrgyzstan. Still in use today, this facility was established at a secret site by the Soviets, far away from American spy planes of the Cold War. Its current use is unclear, as the area is restricted to foreigners and under heavy military guard. However, flotillas in the lake and a buslte of soldiers suggest torpedos are still being tested like times have never changed.

Regno Unito, London, Southwark, Autunno 2015


HMS Belfast è un ex incrociatore leggero della Royal Navy ora nave museo, ormeggiata permanentemente lungo il Tamigi a Londra, nei pressi del Tower Bridge. La sua costruzione iniziò nel 1936 e al tempo fu la prima nave della Royal Navy ad essere chiamata con il nome della capitale dell’Irlanda del Nord. Fu varata il giorno di San Patrizio del 1938. La Belfast ha scortato i convogli artici in Unione Sovietica nel 1943, e nel dicembre dello stesso anno ha svolto un ruolo importante nella battaglia di Capo Nord, assistendo alla distruzione della nave da battaglia tedesca Scharnhorst. Ha continuato a combattere anche dopo la seconda guerra mondiale e precisamente nel 1950-1952 durante la guerra di Corea e fu rimodernata tra il 1956 e il 1959 prima di essere messa in riserva nel 1963 e poi è diventare un museo.


HMS Belfast is a museum ship, originally a Royal Navy light cruiser, permanently moored in London on the River Thames. Near the Tower Bridge. Construction of Belfast, the first Royal Navy ship to be named after the capital city of Northern Ireland. began in 1936 and she was launched on St Patrick's Day 1938. Belfast saw action escorting Arctic convoys to the Soviet Union during 1943, and in December 1943 played an important role in the Battle of North Cape, assisting in the destruction of the German warship Scharnhorst. Belfast saw further combat action in 1950–52 during the Korean War and underwent an extensive modernisation between 1956 and 1959 before entering reserve in 1963 and then becoming a museum.


B-427 was a Project 641 (Foxtrot-class) diesel-electric attack submarine of the Soviet Navy. The "B" (actually "Б") in her designation stands for большая (bolshaya, "large"). Commissioned in 1971, the submarine operated with the Russian Pacific Fleet until decommissioning in 1994. The boat was sold to a group of Australian businessmen, who converted her into a museum vessel and placed on display at the Australian National Maritime Museum (under the name Foxtrot-540) from 1995 until 1998, then at Long Beach, California (under the name Podvodnaya Lodka B-427 Scorpion) in 1998. The submarine is still on display as of 2013. - Wikipedia


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Check out my 500pix site: Konaflyer


All rights reserved by Mark Patton. Any use of my images without my express written consent is forbidden!

The St. Nicholas Cathedral is the visual and spiritual dominant of the whole Karosta area. The Cathedral has been designed and erected in the style of the 17th century Russian orthodox churches with central and four side cupolas symbolising Christ and four Apostles.

Erection of the Cathedral began in 1901. That same year the Russian Tsar Nicholas II with his family members, courtiers and supreme officers took part in the solemn ceremony of consecration of the foundation stone of the Cathedral. The first service in St. Nicholas Cathedral and its consecration took place in 1903. The Russian Tsar Nicholas II and his family and courtiers also took part in this ceremony.

On the outbreak of World War I, numerous items were evacuated to Russia including the bells and icons, and the valuables that had were left were pillaged by the German occupiers. During the 1920s and 1930s, under the Latvian government, the Church was adapted to the needs of the Liepāja garrison's Lutherans.

Finally, upon the conclusion of the Second World War, the Soviet Navy base in Liepāja was made a secret territory and was closed to public. So they established a sports hall, a cinema and the so-called "red corner" (a recreation and entertainment room) here in the former Cathedral for the needs of sailors and soldiers. It was then that the sphere of the central cupola was bricked up, to destroy its great acoustics and allow the naval personnel to hear their films.


Address: Katedrāles iela 1, Karosta, Liepāja


Information taken from:

The Kamov Ka-27 (NATO reporting name 'Helix') is a military helicopter developed for the Soviet Navy, and currently in service in various countries including Russia, Ukraine, Vietnam, People's Republic of China, Republic of Korea (South Korea), and India. Variants include the Ka-29 assault transport, the Ka-28 downgraded export version, and the Ka-32 for civilian use.

Sevastopol, Crimea.

The world would never be the same again


It was a year of seismic social and political change across the globe. From the burgeoning anti-Vietnam war and civil rights movements in the United States, protests and revolutions in Europe and the first comprehensive coverage of war and resultant famine in Africa.


To some, 1968 was the year of sex, drugs, and rock and roll. Yet it was also the year of the Martin Luther King, Jr., and Bobby Kennedy assassinations; the riots at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago; Prague Spring; the antiwar movement and the Tet Offensive; Black Power; the generation gap; avant-garde theater; the upsurge of the women’s movement; and the beginning of the end for the Soviet Union.


1968 In both Europe and America Japanese imported cars and other goods were continuing to rise and trouble the governments of UK and USA as they worried about industries in their own countries being effected and jobs lost. In the spring of 1968 on 4th April The Rev Martin Luther King was assassinated and Robert Kennedy was mortally wounded when he is shot by Sirhan Sirhan.


The peace movement had continued to grow and more and more Americans were against the war in Vietnam, and once again more riots occurred throughout cities in America. The music scene was once again set by the "Beatles" and the "Rolling Stones" , and fashion flirted with see through blouses and midis and maxis skirts joined the Mini Skirt as part of the fashion trends. There is a Flu Pandemic in Hong Kong and the first Black power salute is seen on Television worldwide during an Olympics medal ceremony.


Another 96 Indians and Pakistanis from Kenya had arrived in Britain, the latest in a growing exodus of Kenyan Asians fleeing from laws which prevent them making a living. The party included nine children under two, and all flew in on cut-price one-way tickets costing about £60 - less than half the normal single fare. Omar Sharmar, an Indian who was forced to close his haulage business in Mombasa when the government refused to grant him a licence, estimates he has lost £2,000.


Enoch Powell's Rivers Of Blood Speech


The Conservative right-winger Enoch Powell has made a hard-hitting speech attacking the government's immigration policy. Addressing a Conservative association meeting in Birmingham, Mr Powell said Britain had to be mad to allow in 50,000 dependents of immigrants each year.


He compared it to watching a nation busily engaged in heaping up its own funeral pyre.


The MP for Wolverhampton South West called for an immediate reduction in immigration and the implementation of a Conservative policy of "urgent" encouragement of those already in the UK to return home.


"It can be no part of any policy that existing families should be kept divided. But there are two directions on which families can be reunited," he said.


Mr Powell compared enacting legislation such as the Race Relations Bill to "throwing a match on to gunpowder".


He said that as he looked to the future he was filled with a sense of foreboding.


"Like the Roman, I seem to see the river Tiber foaming with much blood," he said.


He estimated that by the year 2000 up to seven million people - or one in ten of the population - would be of immigrant descent.


Mr Powell, the shadow defence spokesman, was applauded during and after his 45-mintue speech.


However, it is likely his comments will be less warmly received by the Conservative party leader, Edward Heath.


Several opinion polls were stating that the majority of the public shares Mr Powell's fears.


Top Of The Pops from 15th February 1968 introduced by Jimmy Savile & Dave Cash and featuring: Manfred Mann - Mighty Quinn, The Foundations - Back On My Feet Again, Status Quo - Pictures Of Matchstick Men, Alan Price Set - Don't Stop The Carnival, Brenton Wood - Gimme Little Sign, The Move - Fire Brigade, Hermans Hermits - I Can Take Or Leave Your Loving, Amen Corner - Bend Me Shape Me, Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich - Legend Of Xanadu.


1968 Timeline


January – The Ford Escort car is introduced to replace the Anglia.


Dutch Elm Disease continues to increase with tens of thousands of trees now destroyed.


British Post office introduces First Class Post.


London Bridge sold for 1 million. and later re-erected in Arizona.


The popular rock band the Beatles released the “White Album,” an untitled double album that featured some of the legendary band’s most experimental music. Many of the songs were written when the band was in Rishikesh, India while they were attending a meditation camp. While the album received mixed reviews at the time, it still reached the number one spot on the music charts in both the United Kingdom and United States. Modern critics mark the album as on of the best albums ever created and it remains popular today.


The first public demonstration of the computer mouse, video conferencing, teleconferencing, email, and hypertext.


1 January – The Colour television licence is introduced when a £5 "colour supplement" is added to the £5 monochrome licence fee, therefore making the cost of a colour licence £10.


1 January – Cecil Day-Lewis is announced as the new Poet Laureate.


5 January – Gardeners' World debuts on BBC1 television, featuring Percy Thrower.


8 January – The Prime Minister, Harold Wilson, endorses the 'I'm Backing Britain' campaign, encouraging workers to work extra time without pay or take other actions to help competitiveness, which is spreading across Britain.


16 January – The Prime Minister announces that the Civil Defence Corps is being stood down.


4 February – 96 Indians and Pakistanis arrive in Britain from Kenya. Some 1,500 Asians have now arrived in Britain from Kenya, where they were forced out by increasingly draconian immigration laws.


4 February – The cult series The Prisoner finishes its first run on British television.


16 February – The Beatles, Mike Love, Mia Farrow, Donovan and others travel to India to visit Maharishi Mahesh Yogi at Rishikesh.


6 – 18 February – Great Britain and Northern Ireland compete at the Winter Olympics in Grenoble, France, but do not win any medals.


18 February – David Gilmour joins Pink Floyd, replacing founder Syd Barrett, who had checked himself into a psychiatric hospital.


14 February – Northampton, the county town of Northamptonshire, is designated as a New town, with the Wilson government hoping to double its size and population by 1980.


24 February – Announcement of the first discovery (last year) of a pulsar by astronomer Jocelyn Bell Burnell working with Antony Hewish at the University of Cambridge.


1 March – First performance of an Andrew Lloyd Webber–Tim Rice musical, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat in its original form as a "pop cantata", by pupils of Colet Court preparatory school in Hammersmith.


2 March – Coal mining in the Black Country, which played a big part in the Industrial Revolution, ends after some 300 years with the closure of Baggeridge Colliery near Sedgley.


12 March – Mauritius achieves independence from British Rule.


15 March – George Brown, British Foreign Secretary, resigns.


17 March – A demonstration in London's Grosvenor Square against U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War leads to violence – 91 police injured, 200 demonstrators arrested.


30 March – The Yardbirds record their live album Live Yardbirds at the Anderson Theater.


1 April – Thames Valley Police is formed by the amalgamation of Berkshire Constabulary, Buckinghamshire Constabulary, Oxford City Police, Oxfordshire Constabulary and Reading Borough Police.


6 April – The 13th Eurovision Song Contest is held in the Royal Albert Hall, London. The winning song, Spain's "La, la, la" is sung by Massiel, after Spanish authorities refused to allow Joan Manuel Serrat to perform it in Catalan. The UK finish in second place, just one point behind, with the song "Congratulations" sung by Cliff Richard, which goes on to outsell the winning Spanish entry throughout Europe.


7 April – Motor racing world champion Jim Clark, 32, is killed when his car leaves the track at 170 mph and smashes into a tree during a Formula 2 race at Hockenheim.


11 April – Popularity of Harold Wilson's Labour government is shown to be slumping as opinion polls show the Conservatives, led by Edward Heath, with a lead of more than 20 points.


18 April – London Bridge sold to American entrepreneur Robert P. McCulloch who rebuilds it at Lake Havasu City, Arizona.


20 April – Enoch Powell makes his controversial Rivers of Blood Speech on immigration. The speech is made at the Midland Hotel in Birmingham to a meeting of the Conservative Political Centre at 2:30 pm. The Birmingham-based television company ATV saw an advance copy of the speech that morning, and its news editor ordered a television crew to go to the venue, where they filmed sections of the speech.


The speech provokes great outcry among the British public, making Powell one of the most popular and loathed politicians in the country, and leading to his dismissal from the Shadow Cabinet by Conservative party leader Edward Heath.


21 April – Enoch Powell is dismissed from the Shadow Cabinet by Opposition leader Edward Heath due to the Rivers of Blood Speech, despite several opinion polls stating that the majority of the public shares Mr Powell's fears.


23 April – Five and ten pence coins are introduced in the run-up to Decimalisation, which will be complete within the next three years.


27 April – The Abortion Act 1967 comes into effect, legalising abortion on a number of grounds, with free provision through the National Health Service.


3 May – Mr Frederick West (aged 45) becomes Britain's first heart transplant patient.


4 May – Mary Hopkin performs on the British TV show Opportunity Knocks. Hopkin catches the attention of model Twiggy, who recommends her to Paul McCartney. McCartney would soon sign Hopkin to Apple Records.


8 May – The Kray Twins, 34-year-old Ronnie and Reggie, are among 18 men arrested in dawn raids across London. They stand accused of a series of crimes including murder, fraud, blackmail and assault. Their 41-year-old brother Charlie Kray is one of the other men under arrest.


11 May – Manchester City win the Football League First Division title.


14 May – At a press conference, John Lennon and Paul McCartney introduce the Beatles' new business concept, Apple Corps, Ltd., a disastrously mismanaged entertainment company that included a recording studio, a record label, and clothing store.


16 May – Ronan Point tower block at Newham in east London collapses after a gas explosion, killing four occupants.


18 May – West Bromwich Albion win the FA Cup for the fifth time, with Jeff Astle scoring the only goal of the game against Everton at the Wembley Stadium.


20 May – Harlech (which became HTV in 1970) starts its dual service for Wales and the West Country, replacing the interim ITSWW, which had replaced TWW on 4 March.


22 May – The General Assembly of the Church of Scotland permits the ordination of women as ministers.


29 May – Manchester United become the first English winners of the European Cup after beating Benfica 4-1 in extra-time at Wembley Stadium.


30 May – The Beatles begin recording The White Album (officially titled, simply, The Beatles). Sessions would span over 4 months, ending on 14 October.


7 June – Start of Ford sewing machinists strike at the Dagenham assembly plant: women workers strike for pay comparable to that of men.


8 June – Martin Luther King, Jr.'s killer, James Earl Ray, arrested in London.


8 June - premiere of Harrison Birtwistle's opera Punch and Judy in the Jubilee Hall, Aldeburgh during the Aldeburgh Festival.


10 June – National Health Service reintroduces prescription charges.


14 June - Manfred Mann appear in the first edition of the BBC2 series Colour Me Pop.


18 June – Frederick West, Britain's first heart transplant, dies 46 days after his operation.


20 June – Austin Currie, Member of Parliament at Stormont in Northern Ireland, along with others, squats a house in Caledon to protest discrimination in housing allocations.


4 July – Alec Rose returns from a 354-day single-handed round-the-world trip for which he receives a knighthood the following day.


7 July – The Yardbirds perform for the last time before disbanding.


10 July – Floods in South West England.


Flooding had been occurring throughout the South West from mid-day but the full fury of the flood was felt during the hours of darkness. By almost every stream, brook and river in the area had burst its banks causing death, devastation and despair on a scale greater than any in living memory.


That night, seven people lost their lives, hundreds more suffered a terrifying ordeal of hardship and loss, bridges that had stood for centuries were washed away or severely damaged and countless houses, shops, factories and other properties were engulfed. It was a night that re-kindled the ‘spirit of the blitz’, a night when numerous selfless acts of heroism and community spirit prevailed.


As night gave way to day and the full extent of the disaster was revealed, it became obvious that for a great many people life would not return to normal for a number of days yet to come.. . for same it never did.


17 July – The Beatles animated film Yellow Submarine debuts in London.


28 July – Final day on air for ABC which had broadcast to the North and Midlands regions during weekends.


The 1968 Contract Round sees the end of weekend franchises in these regions. From the following day, Granada and ATV broadcast seven days a week. The North is split into two regions with Granada broadcasting to the North West and Yorkshire Television broadcasting to the Yorkshire region. It is also the last day on air for ATV London which lost its weekend franchise to the newly formed London Weekend Television.


29 July – ATV begins broadcasting seven days a week in the Midlands, while Granada begins broadcasting seven days a week to the North West and Yorkshire Television does likewise in its newly created region.


30 July – Thames Television goes on air, having taken over the ITV London weekday franchise from Rediffusion, London. Thames is a result of a merger between ABC and Rediffusion, ABC having been awarded the London weekday franchise.


30 July – Magpie premieres on ITV.


31 July – Popular sitcom Dad's Army begins its nine-year run on BBC1.


August - John McVie marries Christine Perfect.


2 August – London Weekend Television takes over the ITV London weekend franchise from ATV London. They went on air initially using the name London Weekend Television but then adopted the name London Weekend before reverting to London Weekend Television (often abbreviated to LWT) in 1978.


August – Independent Television technicians strike immediately after the 1968 franchise changes, causing a national stoppage. The individual companies are off the air for several weeks and an emergency service is established.


The ITV Emergency National Service is presented by management personnel with no regional variations. This was the first time that a uniform presentation practice was adopted across all regions.


4 August – Yes performs for the first time, at a summer camp.


8 August – Royal Navy Leander-class frigate HMS Scylla is launched at Devonport, the last ship to be built in a Royal Dockyard.


11 August – British Rail's last steam train service runs on the standard gauge: steam locomotives make the 314-mile return passenger journey from Liverpool to Carlisle before being dispatched to the scrapyard or preservation.


31 August – First Isle of Wight Festival. Headline Acts – Jefferson Airplane. Other Acts – Arthur Brown, The Move, Smile, Tyrannosaurus Rex, Plastic Penny, Fairport Convention and The Pretty Things.


September - The new school year in England sees the first local authorities adopt three tier education, where 5-7 infant, 7-11 junior schools are replaced by 5-8 or 5-9 first schools and 8-12 or 9-13 middle schools, with the transfer age to grammar and secondary modern schools being increased to 12 or 13.


Japanese car maker Nissan began importing its range of Datsun badged family cars to Britain.


7 September – Led Zeppelin performs for the first time, billed as The New Yardbirds (the Yardbirds had disbanded two months earlier, and guitarist Jimmy Page subsequently formed this new group).


8 September – Tennis player Virginia Wade wins the 1968 U.S. Open Women's Singles event.


15 September – Floods in South East England.


15 September - Song of Summer, Ken Russell's noted TV documentary about Frederick Delius, is shown for the first time as part of the BBC's Omnibus series.


16 September – General Post Office divides post into first-class and second-class services.


19 September – The Who begin recording Tommy, a rock opera that tells the story about a deaf, dumb and blind boy, including his experiences with life and the relationship with his family.


26 September – Theatres Act 1968 ends censorship of the theatre.


27 September – The US musical Hair opens in London following the removal of theatre censorship.


October – The M1 motorway is completed when the final 35-mile section opens between Rotherham and Leeds.


2 October – A woman from Birmingham gives birth to the first recorded instance of live Sextuplets in the UK.


5 October – A civil rights march in Derry, Northern Ireland, which includes several Stormont and British MPs, is batoned off the streets by the Royal Ulster Constabulary.


6 October – British racing drivers Jackie Stewart, Graham Hill and John Surtees take the first three places at the United States Grand Prix.


8 October – Enoch Powell warns that immigrants "may change the character" of England.


12 – 27 October – Great Britain and Northern Ireland compete at the Olympics in Mexico City and win 5 gold, 5 silver and 3 bronze medals.


13 October – The rebuilt Euston railway station opens.


18 October – National Giro opens for business through the General Post Office, with administrative headquarters at Bootle.


27 October – Police and protestors clash at an anti-Vietnam War protest outside the Embassy of the United States in London.


31 October – Alan Bennett's play Forty Years On premiered at the Apollo Theatre in the West End.


8 November – John Lennon and his wife Cynthia are divorced.


18 November – James Watt Street fire: A warehouse fire in Glasgow kills 22.


21 November – The Cyril Lord carpet business goes into receivership.


22 November – The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society released.


22 November – The Beatles (also known as "The White Album") by The Beatles is released.


26 November – The Race Relations Act is passed, making it illegal to refuse housing, employment or public services to people in Britain because of their ethnic background.


26 November – Cream plays their farewell concert at the Royal Albert Hall. It will be the last time Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce, and Ginger Baker play together until their 1993 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.


29 November – The Dawley New Town (Designation) Amendment (Telford) Order extends the boundaries of Dawley New Town in Shropshire and renames it Telford.


30 November – The Trade Descriptions Act comes into force, preventing shops and traders from describing goods in a misleading way.


2 December - Jimi Hendrix's manager Chas Chandler quits over differences with Hendrix during the recording of Electric Ladyland.


17 December - Mary Bell, an 11-year-old girl from Newcastle upon Tyne, is sentenced to life detention for the manslaughter of two small boys.


Official opening of first phase of the Royal Mint's new Llantrisant plant in South Wales.


22 December – The Animals reunite for one benefit concert at the Newcastle City Hall while Eric Burdon & The Animals are disbanding.


Obituarie: Chas Chandler


When Jimi Hendrix set fire to his guitar, Chas Chandler was ready with the lighter fuel. When Slade were desperate for a new image, Chandler dressed the band up as skinheads. The tough, outspoken Geordie was the perfect manager for both these diverse talents. A fouder member of The Animals, he could sympathise with musicians and understand their problems. As a canny businessman he also understood the power of publicity and the importance of image.

Few Sixties stars were able to make the jump from pop to business. They lacked the discipline and know-how. But when Chandler quit The Animals and swapped his caftan for a suit, he swiftly became one of the most respected and successful managers and producers of the rock age.


He discovered Jimi Hendrix, but it was his energy and commitment that helped turn a shy young American backing guitarist into a dynamic performer and a rock legend. Their mutual regard was based on trust and friendship. When their partnership eventually broke down, Chandler found it a bitter blow. But just before Hendrix died in September 1970, he called upon his old manager once more for help and guidance. Chas Chandler was a man that anxious artists knew they could trust.


He was born Bryan Chandler in Heaton, near Newcastle in 1938. After leaving school his first job was as a turner in the Tyneside shipyards. The first brush with with music came when he took up playing a homemade guitar. He later switched to bass and was in the Alan Price Trio when singer Eric Burdon joined the band in 1962.


Renamed The Animals, they quickly became one of Britain's most dynamic R&B groups. From Newcastle's Club A Go Go, they came to London in 1964, when they had a massive hit with "House of the Rising Sun". Many more followed, among them "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" (1964) and "We've Got To Get Out Of This Place" (1965), but disillusioned by their lack of financial reward and exhausted by touring,


The Animals broke up in late 1966. Said Chandler: "We toured non-stop for three years, doing 300 gigs a year and we hardly got a penny. But our manager Mike Jeffery did all right. 25 per cent of the gross of 300 gigs a year, that was good money."


During the Animals' last US tour Chandler was advised by Keith Richards' girlfriend, Linda Keith, to see an up-coming guitarist, Jimmy James, who was playing with the Blue Flames at the Cafe Wha in New York's Greenwich Village.


Chandler was especially impressed by Jimmy James's performance of the Tim Rose song "Hey Joe", offered to be his manager and invited him to London. James asked Chandler if he could introduce him to Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck, and that clinched the deal.


Chandler had already decided to stop playing himself. "I was never that good on bass guitar," he confessed. He brought his new find, now renamed Jimi Hendrix, to London in September 1966, and recruited Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding to form Hendrix's new group The Experience. He also formed a partnership with The Animals' manager Mike Jeffery to look after Hendrix's business affairs for the next two years.


Chandler eventually produced all Hendrix's hit singles including "Hey Joe", "Purple Haze", and "The Wind Cries Mary" and his first two albums, Are You Experienced and Axis: bold as love.


He first presented The Experience at a series of London showcase gigs where Mick Jagger and Paul McCartney were among the stars who flocked to see Hendrix kitted out in Afro hairstyle and military uniform.


When The Experience played with The Walker Brothers at the Finsbury Park Astoria in London, Hendrix and Chandler debated how they could liven up their act.


The journalist Keith Altham said that as Pete Townshend smashed up his guitar, it was a pity Hendrix couldn't set his on fire: "Chas immediately ordered his roadie Gerry Stickells to get some lighter fuel. Jimi only ever set fire to his guitar three times but it made history."


In 1968 Chandler quit as Hendrix's manager half way through the Electric Ladyland album sessions, fed up with endless re-recording and the surfeit of hangers-on in the studio. He fell out with Jeffery over the way Hendrix's career was being handled, and in 1969 returned to London to his Swedish wife Lotta, who was expecting their first child. Shortly afterwards he set up Montgrow Productions with Robert Stigwood.


Their aim was to find and develop new talent but Stigwood didn't share Chandler's enthusiasm for his next discovery, the Wolverhampton band Slade, and pulled out, leaving Chas Chandler as their sole manager. He paid off their previous management with pounds 100 and encouraged the adoption of a skinhead look, with cropped hair and bovver boots. Slade's lead singer Noddy Holder said that the band "worshipped" Chandler for the way he had transformed their fortunes.


Under his guidance they became of the most prolific hit makers of the 1970s - their singles included "Coz I Luv You" (1971) and "We've Got to Get Out of this Place" (1972) - though they failed to gain American success. In 1979 he withdrew from management and formed his own record label Barn Productions. At the same time he separated from his first wife, and left London to retire to Newcastle, where he married his second wife, Madeleine Stringer, a former Newcastle beauty queen.


In 1983 he became part of the re-formed Animals, and had to relearn the bass guitar. It was not a happy experience. The group spent most of the time arguing and at one point Chandler was seen grabbing Eric Burdon by the scruff of the neck.


In recent years he helped local bands in the North East to record their own music, and he also set up in business with architect and saxophonist Nigel Stranger. They established Park Arena Ltd, which developed the 10,500- seater Newcastle Arena, the largest sports and entertainment venue in the north-east. It opened last year after nine years work, and has already featured artists such as Neil Diamond, David Bowie and Pulp.


A big-built man who liked to drink and smoke, he had, said Keith Altham "enormous drive and self-belief. It was that enthusiasm that helped both Jimi Hendrix and Slade become stars. He'd just tell everyone: 'They are the best in the world!'"


Bryan "Chas" Chandler, bass player, manager and record producer: born Newcastle upon Tyne 18 December 1938; married twice (two sons, two daughters); died Newcastle 17 July 1996.




4 April – Freewheelers (1968–1973)

30 July – Magpie (1968–1980)

15 August – Nearest and Dearest (1968–1973)

21 September – Strange Report (1968–1969)

24 September – How We Used To Live (1968–2002)

25 September – The Champions (1968–1969)

5 November – Father, Dear Father (1968–1973)

8 November – Please Sir! (1968–1972)

16 November – Journey to the Unknown (1968–1969)

Unknown – The Big Match (1968–1992)


1967-1968 Football


First Division - Manchester City

Second Division - Ipswich Town

Third Division - Oxford United

Fourth Division - Luton Town

FA Cup - West Bromwich Albion

League Cup - Leeds United

Charity Shield - Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur (shared)

Home Championship - England

Mediterranean Tall Ships Regatta 2013 in La Spezia harbour


STS Amerigo Vespucci belongs to the Italian Navy. She was launched on 22nd February 1931 and commissioned in June, same year. The ship was built to resemble a wooden warship of the early nineteenth century (and, because of this, the two white stripes on black hull recall the two lines of guns): nevertheless, the hull is made of steel riveted plates, as well as the two lowest thirds and the three lowest yards of each mast. Amerigo Vespucci was the second ship of a class of two: the first one, Cristoforo Colombo, was surrendered to the Soviet Union after World War II, as war damages compensation.


Amerigo Vespucci is a full square rigged ship; she usually carries 24 sails made of canvas (2 to 4 mm.) for a total surface of 2.600 square meters. The overall length is 101 meters (70 meters on waterline), the main-mast is 54 meters tall above the sea level, the maximum draught is 7,30 meters, the displacement is 4.100 tons. She is fitted with an auxiliary engine - an electric motor driven by two diesel-generators, single propeller - which allows a maximum speed of 10 knots; she also carries 11 boats, four of which fitted with sails and oars, used by cadets as part of their seamanship training.


The permanent crew is 270, plus up to 150 cadets.


Amerigo Vespucci carries out mainly two kinds of activity: training campaigns for Naval Academy cadets and showing-the-flag in support of national diplomacy. She began her career as Training Ship for the Naval Academy cadets soon after the launch. From 1931 till 2005, in addition to many short cruises around Italy, she has carried out 71 training campaigns in the Mediterranean Sea, Northern Europe and Atlantic Ocean; in 2002/2003 she sailed around the world, spending several months in New Zealand on the occasion of America's Cup. On board, the cadets learn the basic rules "to live at sea", as well as all the specific teachings in seamanship, navigation, operation of drive systems and auxiliaries, management of logistics, administrative and medical issues.


Nothing you see here is real, even though the conversion or the presented background story might be based historical facts. BEWARE!


Some background:

The Yakovlev Yak-38 (Russian: Яковлева Як-38; NATO reporting name: "Forger") was the Soviet Naval Aviation's first and only operational VTOL strike fighter aircraft, in addition to being its first operational carrier-based fixed-wing aircraft. It was developed specifically for and served almost exclusively on the Kiev-class aircraft carriers.


Some specimen of the initial variant were tested during the Soviet Union's intervention in Afghanistan. These trials revealed several weaknesses of the construction in the form of unacceptable hot and high capabilities as well as a low payload. A further development for the Soviet Navy was therefore decided in August 1981, the abilities of which were fixed in October 1982. Already in November 1982 the first flight experiments of the prototype, leading to the Yak-38M, took place. In mid-1983 the manufacturing tests were completed and the production release was granted.


Anyway, the Soviet Air Force also had interest in a VTOL attack aircraft, which could provide CAS duties in immediate front line theatres, complementing the new Suchoj Su-25 Frogfoot and various attack helicopter types - but the Yak-38 was outright rejected. The Frontal Aviation demanded a much better performance, a dedicated avionics suite for ground attack duties and a higher payload of at least 2.500 kg (5.500 lb) in VTOL mode, plus an internal gun, and 3.000 kg (6.600 lb) when operating in C/STOL mode at sea level and from semi-prepared airstrips. For its primary ground attack role, the machine was also to be armored against projectiles of up to 0.5” around the lower hull and against 20mm rounds in the cockpit section. Finally, the machine had to be, compared with the Yak-38, simplified and be more rugged in order to ease frontline service and endure survivability.


OKB Yakovlev accepted the challenge and dusted off studies that had been undertaken during the Yak-38’s design stage. One of these was the Yak-38L (for 'lift/cruise'), a design built around a single, modified the AL-21F turbojet with vectoring nozzles and no lift engines, which were just dead weight in normal flight. This route seemed to be the most promising option for the Frontal Aviation's demands, even though it would mean a severe re-construction of the airframe.


The new aircraft, internally referred to as 'Izdeliye 138', was based on the Yak-38 airframe, but adapted and literally built around a lift/cruise variant of the large Kuznetsov NK-32 low bypass turbofan engine (originally, with an afterburner, powering the late Tu-144 airliners and the Tu-160 bomber). This engine’s initial derivative, NK-32L-1, adapted for operation with four vectoring nozzles, had a dry thrust of roundabout 110 kN (25,000 lbf) – about 10% more than the Yak-38’s engine trio all together. And the massive engine bore potential for at least 10% more power for the service aircraft.


The overall layout differed considerably from the long and sleek Yak-38: in order to create enough space for the large turbofan stage and its bigger, fixed-configuration air intakes, the fuselage had to be widened behind the cockpit section and the wings' main spar was moved upwards, so that the wings were now shoulder-mounted. The overall arrangement was reminiscent of the successful Hawker Harrier, but differed in some details like the landing gear, which was a classic tricycle design.


Cold air from the NK-32L’s initial turbofan stage was ducted into vectoring nozzles at the forward fuselage flanks, just in front of the aircraft's center of gravity, while the hot exhaust gasses passed through a bifurcated jet pipe through another pair of vectoring nozzles behind the CoG, in an arrangement which was also used in the Yak-38.

Slow speed control was ensured through puffer jet nozzles, fed by bleed air from the engine and placed on both wing tips as well as under the nose and in the aircraft’s tail section.


Teething troubles with the new engine, as well as the new, vectored nozzle arrangement, postponed the Izedeliye 138 prototype’s first flight until March 1986. Work was also slowed down because OKB Yakovlev had been working on the supersonic Yak-41 V/STOL fighter for the Soviet Navy, too. The Soviet Air Force's Frontal Aviation kept interested in the project, though, since they wanted a dedicated attack aircraft, and no complex multi-role fighter.


State acceptance trials lasted until mid 1987, and a total of four prototypes were built (including one for static ground tests). The Yak-138 was found to be easier to handle than the Yak-38, and the single engine made operations and also the handling during flight mode transition much easier and safer.

The prototypes were soon followed by a pre-production batch of 21 aircraft for field trials in frontline units. By then, the NK-32L had been much improved and now offered 137 kN (31,000 lbf) of thrust for short periods, which made it possible to meet all the Frontal Aviations requirements (esp. the call for 2.000 kg ordnance in VTOL mode).


Among its test pilots, the Yak-138 was quite popular and called "Balkon" ("Balcony") because of the good frontal view from the armored cockpit (offering a 17° downwards sight angle).


For frontline service, the aircraft was now equipped with sophisticated avionics, including a Sokol-138 navigation suite with a DISS-7 Doppler radar and a digital computer. A comprehensive ECM suite was installed for self-defence, including SPS-141 and SB-1 active jammers, KDS-23 chaff/flare dispensers built into the ventral pylon and an SPO-10 radar himing and warning system.


In accordance with the Yak-138‘s strike and low-level attack requirements, provisions were made to mount missiles and precision-guided munitions, as well as retaining a nuclear capability in line with other Soviet combat aircraft. An S-17VG-1 optical sight was fitted, as well as a laser rangefinder and marked-target seeker behind a flat, sloped window in the lower nose section.In the upper nose, between the aircraft's two characterisitic pitot booms, a Delta-2NG beam-riding missile guidance system antenna was placed in a small bullet fairing.


By 1989, the initial batch of aircraft had been delivered (receiving the NATO ASCC code 'Flitchbeam') and successfully tested. An order for 42 more aircraft had been placed and a dual training facility with the Soviet Navy at Kaspiysk AB in the Dagestan region (where Soviet Navy Yak-38U trainers were used for transitional training) established , when the disruption of the Soviet Union suddenly stopped the program in 1991 before the Yak-138 could enter production and service on a large scale.


Most of the machines in Frontal Aviation service fell to the Ukraine, where most of the machines had been based. This situation sealed the fate of the promising Yak-138 more or less over night: the now independent Ukraine did not want to keep the exotic type in its arsenal (together with some Yak-38s of the former Soviet Navy, too), and Russia did not want (and could simply not afford) to pay anything for the machines, which had been offered for an unknown sum.


Officially, all Ukrainian Yak-138 were scrapped until 1994, even though rumor has it that one or two airframes had been sold behind the scenes to China. In Russia only five specimen had survived, and since the spares situation was doubtful none could be kept in flying condition. One Yak-138 was eventually handed over to the Ulyanovsk Aircraft Museum, while the rest was either mothballed or scrapped, too. Unfortunately, the sole museum exhibit was lost in 1995 in a fire accident.


General characteristics:

Crew: One

Length (incl. pitot): 15.84 m (51 ft 10 1/2 in)

Wingspan: 8,17 m (26 ft 9 in)

Height: 4.19 m (14 ft 3 in)

Wing area: 24.18 m² (260.27 ft²)

Empty weight: 7,385 kg (16,281 lb)

Max. takeoff weight: 11,300 kg (28,700 lb)



1x Kuznetsov NK-32L-2 turbofan engine, rated at 137 kN (31,000 lbf)



Maximum speed: 1,176 km/h (730 mph; 635 knots) at sea level

Combat radius: 230 mi (200 nmi, 370 km) lo-lo-lo with 4,400 lb (2,000 kg) payload

Ferry range: 2,129 mi (1,850 nmi, 3,425 km)

Endurance: 1 hr 30 min (combat air patrol – 115 mi (185 km) from base)

Service ceiling: 51,200 ft (15,600 m)

Time to climb to 40,000 ft (12,200 m): 2 min 23 s



1x GSh-23L 23mm machine cannon with 250 RPG under the fuselage

5 hardpoints with a total external capacity of

- 3.000 kg (6,600 lb) for C/STOL operations and

- 2.000 kg (4.400 lb) in VTOL mode

Provisions to carry combinations of various types of unguided rockets (up to 240 mm), anti-ship

or air-to-surface Kh-23 (AS-7 Kerry) missiles (together with a Delta N guidance pod), R-60,

R-60M (AA-8 Aphid) or R-73 (AA-11 Archer) air-to-air missiles; tactical nuclear bombs, general

purpose bombs of up to 500 kg (1.100 lb) caliber, or incendiary ZB-500 napalm tanks or up to

three PTB-800 drop tanks under the fuselage and the inner pair of wing pylons


The kit and its assembly:

Sixth contribution to the “Soviet” Group Build at in early 2017, on pretty short notice since the GB had been coming to its end. This totally fictional aircraft was inspired CG illustrations that had been roaming the WWW for some time: a hybrid between a Yak-38 (mostly the tail section), mated with an AV-8B Harrier II (cockpit, wings, landing gear). This did not look bad at all, yet a bit weird, with lift engines added in front of the fin. Certainly not conformal with a good CG balance – but I liked the idea of a single-engine Forger. And actually, OKB Yakovlev had been considering this.


So, the basic idea was a Harrier/Yak-38 kitbash. But the more I thought about the concept, the more additional donor parts came into play. One major addition was the nose section from a MiG-27 – with its slanted nose it would offer the pilot an excellent field of view, and the aircraft would, as a front line attack plane like the Harrier, not carry a radar, so the Flogger’s nose shape was perfect.


Therefore, initial ingredients for the Yak-138 were:

- Rear fuselage, wings and tail from a Tsukuda Hobby/Kangnam/Revell Yak-38

- Mid-fuselage with air intakes and front vectoring nozzles from a Matchbox Sea Harrier

- Cockpit from an Academy MiG-27


Work started with the MiG-27 cockpit, which was more or less taken OOB (except for side consoles in the cockpit and different seat), and the Yak-38 the tail section, built in parallel. To my surprise the Forger fuselage was easier to combine with the Harrier than expected, even though the position of the right cuts took multiple measurements until I came up with a proper solution. Since the Harrier is overall shorter than the Yak-38, the latter’s fuselage had to be shortened. I retained the tail cone, the Forger’s vectoring nozzles and the landing gear wells – and a 2cm plug was taken out between them. Instead of the Harrier’s tandem landing gear arrangement with outriggers under the outer wings, this one was to receive a conventional landing gear for optional C/STOL operations with a higher ordnance load, so that the Yak-38 parts were a welcome basis. Once the fuselage’s underside was more or less complete, the upper rest of the Yak-38 fuselage could be cut to size and integrated into the lower half and the Harrier parts.


After the rear end was settled, the MiG-27 cockpit could be mounted to the front end, which was slightly shortened by 2-3mm (since the Flogger’s is markedly longer than the short Harrier nose). In order to change the overall look of the aircraft, I eventually dropped the Harrier intakes and decided to use the Flogger’s boxy air intakes instead. These are considerably smaller than the gaping Harrier holes, and blending the conflicting shapes into each other for a more or less consistent look took several PSR turns. But it worked, better than expected, and it changes the aircraft’s look effectively, so that almost anything Harrier-esque was gone.


Once the fuselage was completed, I realized that I could not use the Yak-38 wings anymore. They are already pretty small, but with the more voluminous Harrier and Flogger parts added to the aircraft, they’d just be too small!


What to do...? I checked the donor bank and – in order to add even more individual flavor – used a pair of double delta wings from a PM Model Su-15! But only the core of them was left after considerable modifications: The inner delta wing sections were cut off, as well as the tip sections and parts of the trailing edge (for a planform similar to the Yak-38’s wings). On the underside, the landing gear openings were filled up and wing tips from the Yak-38, with puffer jet nozzles, transplanted. The inner leading edges had to be re-sculpted, too. The Su-15 wing fences were kept - a welcome, very Soviet design detail.

A lot of work, but I think it paid out because of the individual shape and look of these “new” wings?


As a consequence of the new, bigger wings, the little Yak-38 stabilizers could not be used anymore, either. In order to keep the square wing shape, I used modified stabilizers from an Intech F-16C/D – their trailing edges were clipped, but the bigger span retained. Together with the characteristic OOB Yak-38 fin they work well, and all of the aerodynamic surfaces IMHO blend well into the overall design of the aircraft.


After the hull was complete, work on smaller things could start. Under the fuselage, a GSh-23-2 pod from a MiG-21 was added, as well as pylons from the Tsukuda Yak-38 under the wings and a donor part from the scrap box in ventral position.

The landing gear is a mix, too: the main struts come from the Yak-38, the balloon wheels from the Matchbox Harrier. The front landing gear comes from the Academy MiG-27, including the wheels with mudguards. It was just mounted in a fashion that it now retracts forward.


The Harrier vectoring nozzles were modified, too, the exhaust “grills” replaced by square, simple ducts, scratched from styrene profile and putty. Care was taken that the nozzles would remain moveable in the fuselage flanks – for later hover pictures. The Yak-38’s nozzles were retained, but since they can OOB only be mounted in a single, fixed position, I added a simple pin to each nozzle, together with two holes in the hull, so that positions can now be switched between hover and level flight.


All around the hull, finally some small details like pitots, blade antennae and air scoops were finally added, and the ordnance consists of a pair of unguided 57mm rocket pods and a pair of Kh-23 (AS-7 Kerry) guided missiles – the latter come from the Yak-38 kit, but they are very crude and their tail sections were modified in order to come (slightly) closer to reality.


Painting and markings:

As an aircraft of the Soviet Frontal Aviation in the late Eighties, I settled upon a typical, disruptive four-tone camouflage with blue undersides. Very conventional, but with an exotic VTOL model I thought that a subtle look would be appropriate – and also separate it from the Naval Yak-38 cousin.


Design benchmark is the scheme on a contemporary MiG-21bis from a Soviert Frontal Aviation unit, chosen because of the disruptive pattern. The tones are guesstimates, though, based on various similar aircraft in more or less weathered condition. I settled for:

- Humbrol 195 (Dark Satin Green)

- Humbrol 78 (RAF Interior Green)

- Modelmaster 2005 (Burnt Umber)

- Humbrol 119 (Light Earth)

- Humbrol 115 (Russian Blue) for the undersides


The cockpit was painted in Russian Cockpit Green, opf course. The landing gear and their respective wells in a mix of Aluminum and Khaki Drab (Humbrol 56 & 26), and the wheel discs became bright green (Humbrol 131). Several di-electric panels and antennae were painted in Humbrol 106 (RAF Ocean Grey).


The kit received a thin black ink wash, in order to emphasize the panel lines, and panel post-shading with subtly lighter tones of the basic colors. National markings, codes and emblems come from several aftermarket sheets, mostly from High Decal Line and Begemot.

After some soot stains (grinded graphite) had been added, the kit was sealed with matt acrlyic varnish (Italeri) and the ordnace added.


Messy work, but I am surprised how consistent and normal the resulting aircraft appears? From certain angles, my Yak-138 creation reminds a good deal of the stillborn Hawker P.1154 (no similarity intended, though), the SEPECAT Jaguar or rather exotic Soko J-22 Orao/IAR-93 Vultur fighter bomber. IMHO, there’s also some A-4 Skyhawk style to it, esp. in planview? Anyway, there’s still some good Yak-38 heritage recognizable, and the tactical Frontal Aviation paint scheme suits the aircraft well - looks like a serious mud mover.

Peter the Great Statue surrounded by twilight blues.


The Peter the Great Statue is a 98-metre-high monument to Peter the Great, located at the western confluence of the Moskva River and the Vodootvodny Canal in central Moscow. It was designed by the Georgian designer Zurab Tsereteli to commemorate 300 years of the Russian Navy, which Peter the Great established.


Jon Reid | Portfolio | Blog | Tumblr

Major news comes from Moscow today as Admiral Kenin of the Soviet Navy has been found dead.


Soviet police have yet to release a statement, more news at 10.


[K]: The police found the body?

[Operations]: Yes Admiral.

[K]: Well done, divert teams 3 and 17 to staging bravo.

[Operations]: Aye Admiral.

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