TA122 at The Mosquito Aircraft Museum

 

April 2010

TA122 is back on her wheels again for the first time in over 55 years! The Mosquito team has completed the undercarriage and the photos below show the results...

Many congratulations to all involved!

Overall view of TA122 from the front starboard quarter Overall view of TA122 from the front starboard quarter. Image courtesy of Keith Newsome. For a larger (2685x1742, 3.85Mb) version of this image, click here.
TA122 on her wheels again! A good view of the work which has been completed TA122 on her wheels again! A good view of the work which has been completed. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x683, 207kb) version of this image, click here.
Front-on view of TA122 showing the work which has been completed on the undercarriage Front-on view of TA122 showing the work which has been completed on the undercarriage. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x683, 227kb) version of this image, click here.
Overall view of TA122 from the front port quarter showing the port undercarriage unit and engine bearer in place Overall view of TA122 from the front port quarter showing the port undercarriage unit and engine bearer in place. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x683, 217kb) version of this image, click here.
Close-up of the starboard side of TA122's nose. The port undercarriage and engine bearer can be seen in the background Close-up of the starboard side of TA122's nose. The port undercarriage and engine bearer can be seen in the background. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x683, 152kb) version of this image, click here.
Close-up view of the port engine bearer in place Close-up view of the port engine bearer in place. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x683, 187kb) version of this image, click here.
An engine ready to go! Note the exhausts already in place An engine ready to go! Note the exhausts already in place. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x683, 211kb) version of this image, click here.
 

7th March 2009

On the 7th of March, TA122 was reassembled for the first time since the late 1940's by a small team at the de Havilland Heritage Centre. TA122 is the only surviving FB.VI in Europe and has been undergoing a detailed restoration for a number of years.

Many congratulations to all involved in getting TA122 together again!

The fuselage of TA122 being lowered onto the wing. Note the fuselage
      braces in the gap in the fuselage The fuselage of TA122 being lowered onto the wing. Note the fuselage braces in the gap in the fuselage. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x682, 275kb) version of this image, click here.
Nearly there! Nearly there! Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x682, 275kb) version of this image, click here.
The fuselage and wing together, the first time TA122 has been together 
      since the late 1940's The fuselage and wing together, the first time TA122 has been together since the late 1940's. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x682, 275kb) version of this image, click here.
The team who made it happen The team who made it happen. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x682, 275kb) version of this image, click here.
 

13th August 2006

Masking the fuselage codes in preparation for painting Masking the fuselage codes in preparation for painting. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x682, 93kb) version of this image, click here.
The rest of the fuselage of TA122 masked to stop overspray when the codes were painted The rest of the fuselage of TA122 masked to stop overspray when the codes were painted. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x682, 100kb) version of this image, click here.
The paint applied to the masked codes on the fuselage of TA122 The paint applied to the masked codes on the fuselage of TA122. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x682, 97kb) version of this image, click here.
Bruce obviously very pleased to remove the code masking on the fuselage of TA122! Bruce obviously very pleased to remove the code masking on the fuselage of TA122!. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x682, 100kb) version of this image, click here.
Touching up the codes on the fuselage of TA122 Touching up the codes on the fuselage of TA122. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x682, 103kb) version of this image, click here.
Overall view of the codes on the fuselage of TA122 Overall view of the codes on the fuselage of TA122. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x682, 99kb) version of this image, click here.
Overall view of the codes on the fuselage of TA122 Overall view of the codes on the fuselage of TA122. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1024x682, 100kb) version of this image, click here.
 

5th/6th August 2006

Preparing the fuselage of TA122 for painting, masking off the areas of the fuselage which should remain unpainted Preparing the fuselage of TA122 for painting, masking off the areas of the fuselage which should remain unpainted. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 321kb) version of this image, click here.
The first of the new paint goes on; Bruce applying the roundel centre on the port side of the fuselage The first of the new paint goes on; Bruce applying the roundel centre on the port side of the fuselage. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 224kb) version of this image, click here.
The fuselage of TA122 masked ready for painting The fuselage of TA122 masked ready for painting. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 248kb) version of this image, click here.
Bruce applying a coat of grey paint to the fuselage of TA122 Bruce applying a coat of grey paint to the fuselage of TA122. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 263kb) version of this image, click here.
The overall coat of grey paint complete, fuselage starboard side The overall coat of grey paint complete, fuselage starboard side. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 236kb) version of this image, click here.
The overall coat of grey paint complete, fuselage port side The overall coat of grey paint complete, fuselage port side. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 301kb) version of this image, click here.
The fuselage of TA122 masked for the second phase of painting The fuselage of TA122 masked for the second phase of painting. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 333kb) version of this image, click here.
The green camouflage outlines being applied to the grey, masked fuselage The green camouflage outlines being applied to the grey, masked fuselage. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 244kb) version of this image, click here.
Bob applying the main blocks of green camouflage Bob applying the main blocks of green camouflage. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 174kb) version of this image, click here.
Bob applying the main blocks of green camouflage Bob applying the main blocks of green camouflage. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 150kb) version of this image, click here.
Overall view from the front port quarter of the fuselage of TA122 with the camouflage complete and masking still in place Overall view from the front port quarter of the fuselage of TA122 with the camouflage complete and masking still in place. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 303kb) version of this image, click here.
Overall view from the starboard side of the fuselage of TA122 with the camouflage complete Overall view from the starboard side of the fuselage of TA122 with the camouflage complete. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 275kb) version of this image, click here.
Overall view of the fuselage of TA122 with the camouflage complete from the rear looking along the port side of the fuselage Overall view of the fuselage of TA122 with the camouflage complete from the rear looking along the port side of the fuselage. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 262kb) version of this image, click here.
Overall view from the front port quarter of the fuselage of TA122 with the camouflage complete Overall view from the front port quarter of the fuselage of TA122 with the camouflage complete. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 335kb) version of this image, click here.
Overall view of the fuselage of TA122 with the camouflage complete from directly in front of the fuselage Overall view of the fuselage of TA122 with the camouflage complete from directly in front of the fuselage. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 380kb) version of this image, click here.
Bruce masking the fuselage registration in preparation for painting Bruce masking the fuselage registration in preparation for painting. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 218kb) version of this image, click here.
Bob painting the fuselage registration on the rear of the fuselage of TA122 Bob painting the fuselage registration on the rear of the fuselage of TA122. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 167kb) version of this image, click here.
The complete registration on the rear of the fuselage of TA122 The complete registration on the rear of the fuselage of TA122. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 148kb) version of this image, click here.
Overall view of the almost-complete roundel and registration on the rear fuselage of TA122 Overall view of the almost-complete roundel and registration on the rear fuselage of TA122. Image courtesy of Bob Glasby. For a larger (1536x1024, 167kb) version of this image, click here.
 

April 2005

TA122 fuselage, overall view TA122 fuselage, overall view. Image courtesy of Brendon Deere. For a larger (2288x1712, 816kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122 cockpit interior TA122 cockpit interior. Image courtesy of Brendon Deere. For a larger (2288x1712, 861kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122 cockpit interior TA122 cockpit interior. Image courtesy of Brendon Deere. For a larger (2288x1712, 802kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122 nose showing machine guns mounted TA122 nose showing machine guns mounted. Image courtesy of Brendon Deere. For a larger (2288x1712, 800kb) version of this image, click here.
 

March 2005

TA122's fuselage enjoying the March sunshine TA122's fuselage enjoying the March sunshine. Image courtesy of Darren Harbar.
TA122's cockpit interior showing significant progress TA122's cockpit interior showing significant progress. Image courtesy of Darren Harbar.
 

6th April 2003

The wing of TA122 The wing of TA122. For a larger (1368x1712, 405kb) version of this image, click here.
Close-up of fuselage rear bulkhead Close-up of fuselage rear bulkhead. For a larger (1712x1368, 398kb) version of this image, click here.
Close-up of the front of the fuselage in its red dope finish. Note the progress that has been made on fitting out the interior Close-up of the front of the fuselage in its red dope finsh. Note the progress that has been made on fitting out the interior of the fuselage. For a larger (1712x1368, 433kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122 cockpit interior TA122 Cockpit interior. For a larger (1712x1368, 527kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122 rear fuselage and interior. Note internal fittings TA122 rear fuselage and interior. Note internal fittings. For a larger (1712x1368, 289kb) version of this image, click here.
 

3rd April 2003

Cannon mounting assembly Cannon mounting assembly. For a larger (1712x1368, 425kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122 upper nose panels (machine gun covers) TA122 upper nose panels (machine gun covers). For a larger (1712x1368, 415kb) version of this image, click here.
Restored crew hatch. Note the level of detail going into the restoration. Restored crew hatch. Note the level of detail going into the restoration. For a larger (1712x1368, 405kb) version of this image, click here.
Machine gun mounting brackets in the nose of TA122 Machine gun mounting brackets in the nose of TA122. For a larger (1712x1368, 424kb) version of this image, click here.
View of the instrument panel from the wing location area View of the instrument panel from the wing location area. For a larger (1712x1368, 400kb) version of this image, click here.
Bomb release mechanism following restoration Bomb release mechanism following restoration. For a larger (1368x1712, 387kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122 canopy structure TA122 canopy structure. For a larger (1712x1368, 421kb) version of this image, click here.
Bulletproof windscreen awaiting fitting Bulletproof windscreen awaiting fitting. For a larger (1712x1368, 424kb) version of this image, click here.
The inside of one of the cannon bay doors. Note slots for used cartridge casings. The inside of one of the cannon bay doors. Note slots for used cartridge casings. For a larger (1368x1712, 354kb) version of this image, click here.
Closed crew hatch, view from outside Closed crew hatch, view from outside. For a larger (1712x1368, 399kb) version of this image, click here.
 

14th July 2002

Superbly restored bomb-release mechanism for TA122 Superbly restored bomb-release mechanism for TA122. For a larger (1712x1368, 522kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122's nose machine gun mounting hardware TA122's nose machine gun mounting hardware. For a larger (1712x1368, 508kb) version of this image, click here.
Reverse side of TA122's instrument panel Reverse side of TA122's instrument panel. For a larger (1712x1368, 512kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122's instrument panel from the pilot's side TA122's instrument panel from the pilot's side. For a larger (1712x1368, 535kb) version of this image, click here.
Another view of TA122's instrument panel Another view of TA122's instrument panel. For a larger (1712x1368, 529kb) version of this image, click here.
The fuselage of TA122 outside enjoying the sunshine The fuselage of TA122 outside enjoying the sunshine. the fuselage has just received a wash prior to a further coat of dope being applied. For a larger (1712x1368, 510kb) version of this image, click here.
Rear bulkhead of TA122's fuselage Rear bulkhead of TA122's fuselage. For a larger (1712x1368, 510kb) version of this image, click here.
Cannon mounting brackets Cannon mounting brackets - the cannon protrude back into the forward half of the bomb bay. For a larger (1712x1368, 513kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122's fuselage receiving another coat of dope TA122's fuselage receiving another coat of dope. Shortly after this picture was taken I lent a helping hand (and still have the stains on a pair of jeans to prove it!) For a larger (1712x1368, 517kb) version of this image, click here.
Another view of the reverse side of the instrument panel Another view of the reverse side of the instrument panel. For a larger (1712x1368, 519kb) version of this image, click here.
Cockpit interior showing equipment attachment points and trim wheel Cockpit interior showing equipment attachment points and trim wheel (elevator?). For a larger (1712x1368, 556kb) version of this image, click here.
View of cockpit interior from crew access hatch looking at the side of the instrument panel View of cockpit interior from crew access hatch looking at the side of the instrument panel. For a larger (1712x1368, 553kb) version of this image, click here.
View into the rear of the fuselage of TA122 looking from the wing attachment area View into the rear of the fuselage of TA122 looking from the wing attachment area. Note interior fittings. For a larger (1712x1368, 524kb) version of this image, click here.
Port undercarriage unit attached to wing Port undercarriage unit attached to wing. For a larger (1712x1368, 545kb) version of this image, click here.
Instrument panel viewed from the wing attachment area Instrument panel viewed from the wing attachment area. For a larger (1712x1368, 509kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122 fuselage front close-up TA122 fuselage front close-up. For a larger (1712x1368, 519kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122 nose area close-up TA122 nose area close-up. For a larger (1712x1368, 514kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122's fuselage, general view from starboard front quarter TA122's fuselage, general view from starboard front quarter. For a larger (1712x1368, 526kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122's nose from the starboard side TA122's nose from the starboard side. For a larger (1712x1368, 529kb) version of this image, click here.
View along the starboard side of the fuselage View along the starboard side of the fuselage. For a larger (1712x1368, 516kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122's nose/cockpit from the port side TA122's nose/cockpit from the port side. For a larger (1712x1368, 542kb) version of this image, click here.
View along the starboard side of TA122's fuselage View along the starboard side of TA122's fuselage. For a larger (1712x1368, 526kb) version of this image, click here.
General view of the nose area of TA122's fuselage General view of the nose area of TA122's fuselage. For a larger (1712x1368, 517kb) version of this image, click here.
TA122 direct nose-on view TA122 direct nose-on view. For a larger (1712x1368, 498kb) version of this image, click here.
Instrument panel reverse close-up Instrument panel reverse close-up. For a larger (1712x1368, 518kb) version of this image, click here.
 

8th April 2001

The fuselage of TA122 making good progress The fuselage of TA122 making good progress.
Some of those working on TA122 Some of those working on TA122.
Inside of the cockpit section of the fuselage Inside of the cockpit section of the fuselage.
External view of the fuselage of TA122 External view of the fuselage of TA122.
Another view of the inside of the cockpit/nose section of TA122 from the wing mounting point looking forward Another view of the inside of the cockpit/nose section of TA122 from the wing mounting point looking forward. The mounting points for the internal equipment are clearly visible.
Clearly a 'work in progress'! Clearly a 'work in progress'! Nose interior looking rearwards. The four .303 machine guns mount in this space.
Fuselage underside showing the cannon bays Fuselage underside showing the cannon bays.
TA122's cockpit 'glazing'. Note the flat windscreen of the fighter version TA122's cockpit 'glazing'. Note the flat windscreen of the fighter version.
Leading edge ribs Leading edge ribs.
Bulletproof flat windscreen Bulletproof flat windscreen.
...And other assorted components to be fitted ...And other assorted components to be fitted.
.303 machine gun mouting brackets .303 machine gun mouting brackets.
 

25th November 2000

TA122 nose The nose of TA122 showing off her new silver dope following attention from Skysport Engineering.
TA122 fuselage No, it's not a Sea Venom!
TA122 interior looking forward The interior of TA122 looking forward from the wing attachment bay. Notice the control column left of centre in the photo.
 

27th August 2000

TA122 wing following the move to the main hanger TA122's wing following the move to the main hanger.
TA122 fuslage, nose TA122's fuselage following attention by Skysport Engineering.
 

18th July 1999

TA122 wing, top surface TA122 wing, top surface from starboard wingtip.
TA122 wing, top surface TA122 wing, top surface closer view from port wingtip. Note construction details.
TA122 wing, bottom surface TA122 wing, bottom surface from starboard wingtip.
 

1997/1998

TA122 fuselage The fuselage of Mosquito TA122 stored at the Mosquito Air Museum.  Note construction details.
TA122 fuselage The fuselage of Mosquito TA122 stored at the Mosquito Air Museum.
TA122 fuselage The fuselage of Mosquito TA122 stored at the Mosquito Air Museum.
TA122 wing The wing of Mosquito TA122 under reconstruction at the Mosquito Air Museum.
TA122 wing  
TA122 cockpit interior, view towards the rear of the aircraft through the canopy frame TA122 cockpit interior, view towards the rear of the aircraft through the canopy frame.
TA122 cockpit interior TA122 cockpit interior. Note equipment attachment points on the fuselage interior.

 

TA122 History

FB.VI TA122 was built at Hatfield and delivered to 44 MU at Edzell on 10 March 1945, and issued to 49 ARF ten days later. TA122 was issued to No 605 (County of Warwick) Squadron at Coxyde in Belgium on 3 April (moving with the squadron to Volkel in Holland on 25th April) where it was allocated to the squadron's Commanding Officer, Wing Commander Angus Horne, who air tested it on the 4th May and, along with Flying Officer Tellett, flew the aircraft on its first and only sortie that night. 605 Squadron operated in the night interdiction role over occupied Europe and Wing Commander Horne's assignment was to discourage enemy ground movements in the area of north-east Germany. In the vicinity of Esens, near Wilhelmshaven, they fired at some lights on the ground, however the remainder of the sortie proved uneventful.

As the end of the war approached, Wing Commander Horne and TA122 flew some 50 hours of training and courier flights to Berlin, following which he was assigned to HQ's 2 Group taking TA122 with him. In the meantime, 605 Squadron re-formed as No. 4 Squadron on 31 August 1945, becoming part of 140 Wing based at Gutersloh in November 1946. It would appear that TA122 was held in 1 BR & SD Pool from 25th November 1948, from where it was 'reissued' to No. 4 Squadron on 13 January 1949 at Wahn in West Germany and later Celle. In fact it appears that the aircraft was at Wahn earlier than its 'official' issue date, Navigator John Archbold flying in TA122 on the 10th January for one and a half hours practising GCA approaches at Gutersloh.

The aircraft was struck off charge on 30th June 1950, and after being used for spares, the fuselage was purchased by Delft University in Holland in June 1951 for the sum of 15 for use as an instructional airframe in their Aeronautics Department. In 1958, the University's aviation section was moved to a smaller building with many items from their collection being disposed of. The university decided to keep TA122, however there was no room for the aircraft's wings which was sawn into small sections, some of which were displayed by the aircraft, others finding homes in the RNLAF Museum and Aviodome Museum at Schiphol.

The fuselage later went into storage with the RNLAF Museum, moving to the Royal Netherlands AF base at Gilze-Rijen from where, following negotiations by Edward Bishop, it was presented to the Mosquito Aircraft Museum in November 1975, with delivery on 26th February 1978, still carrying some of its original markings 'UP-G' of No. 605/4 Squadron.

Shortly after the fuselage arrived at the museum, Stuart Howe decided to try and find the remaining components required to rebuild TA122 completely. The remains of a Mosquito, consisting of a complete wing and numerous metal components, were located soon after on Kibbutz Beit-Alfa in northern Israel. The wing was moved to Salisbury Hall in the UK without cost to the museum, being flown to the UK by El Al and transported from Heathrow by Roy Bowles Transport and Tristar Freight.

Work commenced on the wing in the Spring of 1985 under the direction of Colin Ewer. The wing was in relatively poor shape on its arrival, The leading and trailing edges had rotted away, as had the plywood skins exposing the spruce stringers. There was also damage to the spars and almost all of the 32 ribs. Several feet of the starboard wing and the port wingtip were missing entirely and the four underwing fuel tank doors all required repairs.

The wing's identity is still not known for certain, upon inspection the wing contained components from several Mosquitos, being narrowed to two aircraft, TS449 and TW233, both pre-production TR.33's with non-folding wings. Both of these aircraft saw service with the Royal Navy before being sold to R.A. Short in 1953. Following overhaul, both aircraft were delivered to Israel by Peter Nock from Blackbushe.

The wing has now left it's workshop home of many years and has made the move across to the main hanger at the museum. TA122's fuselage looks pristine following repair at Skysport!

TA122 has made very good progress recently, her fuselage looks resplendent in its coat of silver dope. Reconstruction of the wing leading edges had started when I visited in November 2000 - Lets hope it's not too long before she is once again 'on her feet'.

Notes: A little confusion seems to surround the precise movements of TA122 during her service life:

  • 49 and 417 ARF are both mentioned as destinations for TA122 on 20th March 1945.
  • The move to Volkel has been noted as being on the 25th April 1945 in one source and 28th April in another.

If anyone has further information on the above please contact me.