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F540 Operations Record Book September 1954.
RAF Museum Hendon. Holds 2nd copy of F540 1945 to 1970.
PLACE DATE TIME SUMMARY OF EVENTS                     COMPILING OFFICER   __Fg. Off. B. Watson___ Refs

BrianWatson.jpg, 6056 bytes

Jever 1.9.54        Two raids of Exercise Lucifer were flown today.   Targets were the Hague, Brussels and
the airfields in Holland.   So far the Dutch have shown very little opposition to these
     Other practices included low level battle formation dog fights and cine quarter
                       Sabre Flights            39   Hours     38.10
  2.9.54   The last three raids of Exercise Lucifer were flown today - Still no opposition.
Practices of low level battle formation, dogfights and cine level quarters were
carried out.
                    Sabre Flights  55    Hours     55.20
  3.9.54   Normal practices of aerobatics, and cine level quarters were carried out.
                                  Sabre Flights     30   Hours  24.55
  6.9.54        Low cloud cleared more quickly than expected allowing a prompt start to the day.   Over
the week-end all pilots were issued with 'dinghy daggers' which are now worn on the
upper left arm.   Apart from solo aerobatics flights all exercises were pair cine
level quarters.
                         Sabre Flights   27        Hours 19.40
  7.9.54   The weather cleared slowly again today the first pair getting airborne at 1200 hours.
Normal flying with assorted exercises of aerobatics I.F. with Shepherd, tail
chases, and simulated flame out approaches were carried out.
                           Sabre Flights       23     Hours      18.00
JEVER 8.9.54   Poor visibility delayed the start of flying this morning.   Five aircraft of the
nine serviceable were used in an interception exercise against the Day Fighter Leader
School from West Raynham.   Not all the interceptions were successful.   Nineteen
meteors of D.F.L.S. landed at 12.15 fifteen minutes before flying finished for the day.
                                 Sabre Flights     13     Hours    7.40
  9.9.54   Normal flying today.   The principle exercises were cine, high quarter attacks and
high level battle formations.
The D.F.L.S. course returned to the U.K. at lunchtime.
The squadron commander has criticised 'turn round' times.   At the moment the average
is 50 minutes - more than double the vampire figures.
                                 Sabre Flights   27     Hours    27.40
  10.9.54   One of the disadvantages of the swept wing aircraft is its susceptibility to a cross-wind.
This morning gusts of 25.30 knots prevented early flights.
At 10.30 hours full flying started with successive pairs on cine level quarter flights.
A number of aircraft have radar working and this is being used when possible.
                          Sabre Flights   24     Hours    25.45
  11.9.54   The wind which only delayed flying yesterday, stopped all flying to-day.   Gusts were
from 30 - 40 knots.   A programme of films was shown after Met Briefing.
The C.F.S. Examining Wing arrived this morning.
  13.9.54        The C.F.S. Examining Wing have started testing ten selected squadron pilots in general
handling and aircraft knowledge.   Two Vampire T.11 are being used.   Air Commodore Paul
commandant of C.F.S. visited the squadron today.   He was most interested in the
American trained pilots and their views on aircrew training
     Normal flying continued throughout the day mainly cine level quarter attacks using
radar ranging.
                          Sabre Flights       23        Hours    22.35
JEVER 14.9.54        Checks by C.F.S. Examining Wing continued to-day.   Experiments have continued with
various types of metalised flag for use next week at Sylt.   Two methods have been
tried so far, the first with metal reflectors stitched in bags attached to the front
of the flag and the second using metal foil.   More success was gained with the first
method although "lock on" was late.   The foil flag was unsuccessful as the metal
stripped off shortly after take-off.
                              Sabre Flights  25            Hours 28.15
  15.9.54        Today is Battle of Britain Day.   To commemorate the anniversary a wing parade was
held early this morning.   The squadron standard was paraded carried by Flying Officer
     The C.F.S. Examining Wing have left.   Preparations are well in hand for the Sylt
detachment.   Only twenty five pilots and fourteen aircraft are to go.   The squadron
is not expected to return to Jever until November 20th and will be based at Wunstorf
after Sylt.
                      No Flying
  16.9.54        Two well developed fronts passed across Jever today making flying impossible before
16.00 hours.   No ground programme was organised as much work remains to be done in
preparation for Sylt.   The advance party left by road early this morning.   Two
flights late in the day carried out attacks on a new design of reflecting flag.   It
is not possible to tell yet how successful these attacks were.
                                         Sabre Flights        2        Hours   1.45
JEVER 17.9.54        Flying today comprised: one air test and two solo low flying cross - countries.
All other time was spent preparing and packing for Sylt.
                       Sabre Flights        3    Hours     2.35
  18.9.54        Two target towing flights took place to-day.   The first was successful, the first sabre
towed flag from Jever.   The second flag failed to become airborne and the aircraft was
slightly damaged during the take-off.
                                          Sabre Flights 2         Hours  1.20
R.A.F. Sylt 19.9.54        The main party of the squadron left Jever at 07.30 hours this morning for Sylt.   Those
remaining behind were pilots to fly fourteen aircraft to Sylt.   All squadron pilots are
on this detachment
                                    No. Flying
  20.9.54        Bad weather isolated thunderstorms and a high cross-wind prevented the aircraft taking
off before 1600 hours.   Weather had deteriorated on arrival and the cross wind had
freshened to 35 kts at 80 o to the runway.   After the landing of four aircraft
the remainder returned to Jever.   One aircraft received damage through landing in the
undershoot having already exceeded the 'G' limitations on the flight from Jever.
     For the pilots who had arrived an introductory briefing was held at 1800 hours.
                          Sabre Flights       6   Hours      6.00
  21.9.54        The weather to-day was little more encouraging than yesterday although the cross-wind
had slackened a little.   The remaining aircraft arrived from Jever during the morning.
     In the meantime the flight system was working and the first cine and demonstration
flights had begun.   Flying finished early due to thunderstorms.
                                   Sabre Flights  20    Hours  15.15
SYLT 22.9.54        'B' Flight which flew until 12.30 hours had its programme curtailed by a rapid
succession of thunderstorms.   These storms have been quite frequent and violent
since our arrival.   'A' Flight were more fortunate in the afternoon.   Attacks on the
flag - still only cine -using radar ranging are far slacker than the Vampire using
the G.G.S.   The present method is to commence the attack at 3000   out 3000 ft.
above and abreast of the towing aircraft with an airspeed of 300 kts.   Tracking is
presenting some difficulty at the moment as the aircraft controls are so sensitive and
the piper it would seem unsteady.
                                                     Sabre Flights  17    Hours 10.25
  23.9.54        'A' Flight commenced flying at 0625 with cine flights on Hist Range.   The weather
was good and the programme was carried through without incident.   'B' Flight took
over at 12.30 hours continuing cine practices until 18.55 hours.
                                   Sabre Flights  40    Hours  22.30
  24.9.54        The weather slowly deteriorated after the start of flying at 06.30, although 'B'
Flight managed to complete their programme no practices of 'A' Flight were successful.
                                                  Sabre Flights    18      Hours  9.45
  25.9.54        The first flights of the day were aborted owing to bad weather but later practices
were effective.   Early scores though not good are encouraging.   The squadron
day average was 1.9% gained using fixed sight and radar.
                                      Sabre Flights     8      Hours    5.00
  27.9.54        The scores improved to-day with most pilots using gyro for their attacks.   Two
isolated thunderstorms interfered with the programme and four flags were lost.
                                      SABRE FLIGHTS     34      Hours    18.35
SYLT 28.9.54        As a result of to-days firing the squadron average has risen to 3.5%.   This is a great
improvement on previous Sabre wings at Sylt.   Some difficulty is being experienced
with radar 'locking on' to the tug aircraft due to poor reflectors from the flag.
Towards the end of the day the drogues section ran short of reflector flags.   The
present position using radar is unsatisfactory.
                                 Sabre Flights 17         Hours 8.25
  29.9.54        Very few successful practices were carried out to-day owing to poor weather on the
              Sabre Flights    13         Hours    7.30
  30.9.54        Scores improved again to-day the highest being 15% by Flying Officer Friend.
There has yet to be a large score from a pilot using radar.
                                    Sabre Flights   36      Hours 19.35
            Summary for The Month
     Training and Administration
     The Squadron is now almost up to full strength, lacking only 1 Radar Cpl and 2
radar mechs.   Unfortunately a large percentage of the Ancillary trades are lacking
experience and with the high intensity flying experienced during the month in par-
ticular the last half of the month preparing for the Sylt A.P.C. attachment and when
at Sylt, very little time has been available for training.
     The Squadron completed the move to Sylt successfully as a component of 122 Wing
and training was commenced immediately as a result of favourable weather.  The aim
was to give each pilot up to 3 cine sorties against a "Radar Flag" before firing,
because the radar reflecting flags experimented with at Jever were not ready in time
for all pilots to get sufficient practice in the time available before the attachment,
and that each pilot would be given a Demonstration shoot with a P.A.I. in a Vampire
   The cine training was completed but there is a hold up on demos due
to Vampire unserviceability.   The lecture programme was a trifle scanty this month
mainly due to reasonable weather and Sylt preparations.
     The squadron took part in Exercise Lucifer at the beginning of the month and approx
33 sorties were flown against the Dutch defences and very few interceptions were
Battle Flight carried out a number of P.I's and when D.F.L.S. visited Jever after
attacking Diepholz A/F interceptions were carried out on the attacks formations
with some success.

                 Sabre Flight                 505                Sabre hours       382
                                                                      Compiling Officer.......B.Watson....... Fg.Off.
                                                                                                  (B. WATSON)
                                                                                (J.S.M. WALLACE)
                                                                                Flight Lieutenant,
                                                                                Officer Commanding,
                                                                                No. 4 Squadron.
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