- ARRSE Rating
- 5 Mushroom Heads
Haynes Manuals - Westland Lynx 1976 to present (HAS mk2, mk3 and HMA mk8 models)
The Westland Lynx is the Royal Navy's agile, versatile, multi-role combat ship-borne helicopter that has been in service around the world for over 40 years, from Antarctica to the Gulf and Caribbean. During that time it has fought in wars, provided humanitarian assistance and has been used for geological survey work. Aviation engineer and author Lee Howard was on the MOD's Lynx Project Team for many years and as such he has a unique insider-knowledge of how the Lynx works and what it has done in its long service life with the Royal Navy.
Most of us are familiar with the Haynes Workshop Manual. I have one for every car I've owned! This book represents a bit of a first for me. While specialising in Military transport, I tend to stick to those modes that remain firmly attached to the ground; so when I was given this to review, I was quite surprised. What surprised me more was how interesting the book is. I read it from cover to cover in two nights. I can certainly understand why a fellow modeller took many months building his "Wokka".
The book covers the development of the Lynx as a project idea back in 1963. The Royal Navy needed a small, fast and agile helicopter for small ship work to replace their Westland Wasp which was in need of upgrade or replacement. Covering all aspects of development, the book details the various prototypes, failings and eventual acceptance of an aircraft that has been in service with the Royal Navy and the Army Air Corps for over three decades.
On initial inspection, the book appears very much like the original Workshop Manuals. It is only when you get inside, that you realise what a fascinating subject the Lynx helicopter is. The book appears in it's usual hardback format, 11" x 8" in size and containing 164 pages. There are over three hundred colour photographs in this book, many of them highly detailed and of importance to anyone building models of these aircraft (@Simmerit).
Divided into nine compact and detailed sections, after the Introduction, the book covers development, the Lynx story, Anatomy of the Lynx, operation, maintaining and Action Lynx, where the aircraft is shown in her counter-piracy and counter-narcotics roles. Various appendices list units that operated the Lynx, leading particulars and examples of operations since 2007. The index concludes this book.
By far the biggest section is the Anatomy of the Lynx, starting at page 42 and extending to page 103, there isn't a nut or bolt missed off the list of parts shown. It is quite staggering when one views the depth of detail that the author has gone into! There is also an excellent cut-away drawing by Mike Badrocke, showing over 154 identified parts. Again, this is a nice detail for the helicopter builder, given clear and sharp images of where things are arranged.
Conclusion: For sheer detail and accuracy, this book will only be surpassed by it's own operator's manuals! Detail is clear and sharp and the author has kept the engineer's jargon from the commentaries. In fact, Lee Howard writes in an easy, unhurried style, keeping everything on an informal level. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in the subject and also anyone keen on modelling a piece of aeronautic history.
Rating: Excellent! 5 out of 5