'V' Bombers

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by Legs, Sep 10, 2010.

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  1. The Vulcan is clearly the most famous of them - and was the only one to see action. The Victor ended up relegated to a tanker. What happened to the Valiant and why did it fade from our hearts whilst the Vulcan is so much loved? Would people pay into a fund to get a Valiant in the air?

    Why do we take certain aircraft into our hearts and others fade into obscurity?
  2. The Valiant was withdrawn in 1964 when it was found that the wing spars were all breaking. If any are left they won't be airworthy. I suspect the flying wing of the Vulcan, as with Concorde, made it a very attractive aircraft; both just 'look right'
  3. rampant

    rampant LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Was it not also something of a stopgap design - simple and quick to introduce whilst the other more sophisticated V's were being brought in?
  4. Vickers Valiant B1 X D818 is on display at RAFM Cosford, this is the only fully intact example in existence, and so is the only place where an example of all three V bombers can be seen together.

    It holds an interesting place in RAF history being the first airframe used to test nuclear hydrodgen ordinance. This is the only reason why it was saved
  5. maguire

    maguire LE Book Reviewer

    didnt the Valiant do some jobs dropping conventional HE bombs during Suez?
  6. jim24

    jim24 Book Reviewer

    Valiants of 148 sqn did indeed drop bombs on airfields and Army Barracks in Suez one was engaged by an Egyptian Meteor night fighter NF 13 no hits were recorded on the night of 31st October 1956. in fact the Valient was the only V Bomber to drop bombs in action until the Falklands
  7. See, I never knew that. I thought the Vulcan was the only one that had seen action. My question then, is what makes the Vulcan the most loved of the three? They were all designed to drop buckets of instant sunshine, not to look pretty. They should be looked at with the same love as a Polaris Missile. So what is it that makes us love the Vulcan?
  8. jim24

    jim24 Book Reviewer

    Its probably the most beautiful aircraft in the world until Concord
  9. Stick normal wings on a Vulcan and I doubt it would be held in nearly so much esteem. It's that wonderful delta shape, like that of a majestic Manta Ray, that makes it so popular.

    • Like Like x 1
  10. jim24

    jim24 Book Reviewer

    At the rear of RAF St Athen at Beggers Pound there is the site where they were all scrapped, it was heart breaking to drive past and see these beautiful aircraft being smashed up. My late cousin Alan bought a Vulcan XA 903 for £5000 and had it in the Glamorgan Air Museum at Rhoose for some years but when they expanded the Airport all the Aircraft were sold off or scrapped in 1984, it was a sad day at least you can still see the one at Newark. They also had Valiant nose section from X D 826
  11. The Norfolk & Suffolk aviation museum at Flixton in Suffolk have nose sections from a Vulcan, Victor and Valiant. Other than Cosford I think its the only place to see the remains of all three together
  12. maguire

    maguire LE Book Reviewer

    perhaps an embodiment of the same pluck/national spirit/whatever you want to call it that makes the Lancaster such an icon? (perhaps not to the same degree, but in the same manner) not only is there the Black Buck connection, but also from a time when british industry could do it all by itself, from designing it (which at the time looked as though it belonged in the Eagle comic) to building it - when these days you get the impression we'd struggle to provide the replacement nuts and bolts for it from what passes for UK industry these days, let alone being able to build a replacement.
  13. The Valiant was a solid and simple design that did not meet the required spec for the original V bomber requirement but Vickers persuaded 'The Ministry' that they could get their aircraft in the air quickly and so fill the gap until the research and testing had been done to get the other two contenders ready. The 'men at the ministry' agreed to this and all Valiants had AAR and tanking capability built in from the start as they did not have the range called for. The men at the ministry kept the research going on both the Victor and the Vulcan in case one of these advanced (for their time) designs failed to produce the goods and so at the end of the day instead of one new aircraft type we got three. However the Valiants could not cope with low level work when that later became a requirement and most were scrapped on the airfields... There was still a need for tanking though and this role was handed over to the Victor.

    It depends how you define a bomber but as a pure and simple load carrier the Victor was superior to the Vulcan which is probably why it got to truck the fuel about.

    btw.. saw and heard XH558 today at Leuchars and she still looks and sounds beautiful.

    Quick edit to say that the Shorts Sperrin was the fourth contender... It was rejected.
  14. rampant

    rampant LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Interesting you say that, when Legs first opened the thread I went for a net wander and came across this video:

  15. rampant

    rampant LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Apparently Victors also carried out an attack in the Borneo Conflict too:

    Borneo Air War