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Pacific Profiles Volume 11 (Paperback)

Allied Fighters: USAAF P-40 Warhawk series South and Southwest Pacific 1942-1945

Aviation WWII

Imprint: Avonmore Books
Pages: 108
Illustrations: fully illustrated; colour
ISBN: 9780645700435
Published: 15th August 2023

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The ongoing Pacific Profiles series presents the most accurate WWII profiles of aircraft which served throughout Australia, New Guinea and the South Pacific. This Volume 11 covers the P-40 Warhawk series, which served with a dozen USAAF Fifth and Thirteenth Air Force fighter and reconnaissance squadrons, service units, combat replacement pools and other miscellaneous units.

 

Most profiles are presented for the first time, alongside markings derivations, including squadron heraldry and codes. Frequent airframe reassignments between units resulted in wide-ranging and oft-changing unit markings and nose art. Until now there has been a paucity of material about several units, particularly those in the Thirteenth Air Force. This volume also rectifies past mistakes which continue to be perpetrated, especially those representing the early Australian theatre.  

 

Wide ranging primary reference material is cited including official Australian assignment data, squadron records, colour slides and movies, maintenance logs, diaries, wreck site inspections and factory specifications. A brief history of each unit and the rationale of its unit markings accompanies the text.

 

The author is world-renowned for his expertise on the Pacific air war. Never before have USAAF Pacific P-40s and their colourful artwork been illustrated with such accuracy and detail.

A 108-page small format soft-cover book.
This sets out the use of the various marks of the P-40 Warhawks as used by the USAAF and USMC units in the 5th Air Force in New Guinea, the 13th Air Force in the Solomon Islands, and their base/maintenance sites in Australia itself. Amongst the notes explained in the introduction, individual airframes were often moved between units over time. As they required major servicing/repairs they would be sent back to facilities in Australia, so when ready were often issued to other units. That makes tracking colours and markings over the course of the war a more complex problem. The first chapter tackles some basic detail on Markings and Technical Notes, including basic stencils, National and Tailplane markings, as well as a handy set of drawings illustrating the basic visual recognition features to help identify the various marks of P-40. The very first examples were shipped to Australia before they went out to specific units. The remaining chapters cover the 7th, 8th, 9th, 35th, 44th and 68th Fighter Squadrons, along with the 110th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron and 312th Bombardment Group and then all rounded off with some unique Warhawks of a mix of minor operators. As well as information on each unit, plenty of archive photos, the heart of the book are a series of 110 colour artwork profiles illustrating colours and markings, including unit markings, which are all accompanied by notes on each one. We get the benefit of a huge investigation task that the author has completed to gather all the detail from available official records.
The detail in here is impressive, and this is another welcome addition to the available material on the many aircraft types, and the units which flew them, in the was against Japan in the Pacific Theatre of Operations. This is volume 11 and there are more to come, and together they make up a marvellous source for your reference shelves if you are a historian or modeller interested in the air war in the Pacific. I don't have any hesitation in recommending the book.

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