Spitfire Mk XIV                

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Supermarine Spitfire Mk XIV

Scale 1:33
Author: Evgeniy Polovinnik
File Size: 13.1Mb
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Spitfire Mk XIVc
610 Squadron RAF, Squadron Leader R. Newbery
April 1944

Price $10.00

Model # 039_1

Spitfire Mk XIVc "Channel Picket-III"
Unit X
9 confirmed V-1 kills

Price $10.00

Model # 039_2

Spitfire Mk XIVe
17 Squadron RAF, Squadron Leader J. Laisy
Autumn 1945
Price $10.00 Model # 039_3
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Technical data:
  Length 9.96 m    
  Span 11.23 m    
  Engine Rolls Royce Griffon 65, 2,050hp
  Max Speed 721 km/h    
2 x 20mm, 2 x 0.50cal, 2 x 250kg or 1 x 500kg bomb
2 x 20mm, 4 x 0.33cal, 2x 250kg or 1 x 500kg bomb
  Crew 1    
     The first Griffon powered Spitfires suffered poor high altitude performance due to having only a single stage supercharged engine. By 1943 Rolls-Royce engineers had put together a new Griffon engine, the 61 series, with a two-stage supercharger. In the end it was a slightly modified engine, the 65 series, which was used in the Mk  XIV. The resulting aircraft was as great an improvement over the Mk  IX as the Mk  IX had been over the Mk  V. Although initially based on the Mk  VIII airframe, common improvements made in aircraft produced later included the cut-back fuselage and tear-drop canopies, and the E-Type wing with improved armament.
    As the next major step in the Spitfire's evolution, the Mk XIV's Griffon engine produced 2,050 HP at altitude. It could climb to 20,000 ft. in less than seven minutes and its top speed which was achieved at 26,000 ft. was 448 mph. F Mk XIVs had an 85 Imperial Gallon main tank and a 12.75 Imp. Gal. fuel tank in each leading edge wing tank. Unfortunately, the fighter's maximum range was just a little over 450 miles on internal fuel since the new Griffon engine consumed much more fuel per hour than the original Merlin engine of earlier variants. By late 1944, Spitfire XIVs were fitted with 75 Imp. Gal. in a rear fuselage fuel tank. Mk XIVs with "tear-drop" canopies had 64 Imp. Gal. and the FR Mk XIV (the armed reconnaissance version), with its tear drop–shaped canopy and port fuselage camera, had an additional rear fuel tank with 33 Imp. Gal. As a result, F Mk XIVs had a range that was increased effectively to over 600 miles on internal fuel while the FR Mk  XIV had a marginal increase in range. A 90 Imp. Gal. drop tank was often fitted to these Griffon Spitfires to give even more range.
     The first test of the aircraft was in intercepting V1 flying bombs, with the Mk  XIV was the most successful of all Spitfire marks in this role. The new Griffon engine—to the surprise of a few test pilots—rotated anti-clockwise when seen from behind, unlike the Merlin engines which spun their propellers in the opposite direction. This caused a mirrored split stream effect which could sway the aircraft strongly to the right. Fortunately, pilots became used to this feature and later, the Mk  XIV was used by the 2nd Tactical Air Force as their main high-altitude air superiority fighter in northern Europe. In total, 957 Mk  XIVs were built, over 400 of which were FR Mk XIVs. After the war, second hand Mk  XIVs were exported to a number of foreign air forces; 132 went to the Royal Belgian Air Force, 70 went to the Royal Indian Air Force and 30 of its reconnaissance variant went to the Royal Thai Air Force. (Wikipedia)

Model built and photographed by the author, used with permission.

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