by Massimo Tessitori
Updated on July 15, 2010
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Pilot's cockpit
Some color photos of the cockpit of Avia B-33 (Czech-manufactured Il-10) in the Prague-Kbely museum. The colors look original, with the possible exception of light grey. 

Note the thickness of the armoured windshield.

Image from Il-2 type 3 and Il-10/avia B-33 in detail, WWP

Two furter images of the cockpit and seat from the same source.




The PBP-1B aiming device of the pilot.




A great image of the open cockpit showing the seat, with belts, console and other details. Note the rusty color on the canopy armour, whose original color was probably grey A-14.

The armoured plate at the back of the pilot was cutten, allowing to communicate easily with the gunner; usuallu that plate separed completely the pilot from the gunner, as can be seen in the drawing below.

Note the wire limiting the opening of the canopy to about 80°.

An image of the canopy from the rear, with the well-preserved rear turret without the gun. From outside, BV-7, BV-8. BV-9 and BV-9M turrets appear identical, differing only for the gun or other internal details.

Below: photos of the open rear canopy of an early Il-2 equipped with UBK 12,7 mm gun.. 

The trasparent part of the turret extends well inside the opening. 

The trasparent nail over the turret doesn't open with the canopy of the gunner, but has its own strut (see photo below).

Note the different thickness of the heavy windshield when compared to the plates of the other parts of the canopy, equipped with plexiglas; the lateral transparent panels could open by sliding rearwards.

The external handhole for the crew was only on the left side.

In the second image, a reversed-T-shaped back cushion for the gunner is visible.

The VU-7 turret of the Il-10 prototype, armed with a Sh-20 20 mm gun, doesn't show esthetical differences when compared to later versions.

The VU-8 turret of early Il-10s was armed with UBK 12, 7 mm machine gun. 

Note that the gun is arranged in different way than on Il-2, where gas cylinders were over the barrel; on Il-10, all the weapon was reclined on its side to allow better visibility.

The ammo box is on the side of the machine un; two furter ammo boxes are stored on the rear wall.

Note that the gunner seats on a sort of belt, only marginally more refined that those of Il-2; it allows better side movements for aiming.


The VU-9 turret for late Il-10, aesthetically identical, is equipped with the 20 mm B-20 gun, hardly distinguishable from UBK except for being thicker.

There is only an ammo box suspended to the turret frame, and connected to the gun by a flexible ammo guide.

Those weapons were provided for the external installation of a gun camera on the barrel for training purposes.


The turret VU-9M was electrically actioned, and armed with 20 mm Berezin BNT-20 E (on Avia B-33) or BT-20 EN (on Il-10M).

The ammo box arrangement was as on VU-9.


Above: the gun on the B-33 in Praha-Kbely museum.

Image from Il-2 type 3 and Il-10/avia B-33 in detail, WWP

Above: differently from Il-10, this B-33 has an aluminium seat for the gunner.

On the wall, a radio set is visible.