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Curtiss Tomahawk Mk.IIA AH965 of Lt. S.G. Ridniy,126 IAP PVO
Updated on June 12, 2014
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Drawing by Tapani Tuomanen

 

This drawing represents the Tomahawk Mk.IIA AH965, supplied to Soviets from British stocks. It was flown by Lt. S.G.Ridniy, flight leader of 126 IAP PVO (Air de fence), Moscow region, December 1941.

Ridniy was made Hero of the Soviet Union on August 9, 1941, and was killed in action on February 17, 1942.

128 IAP was the first regiment equipped with Tomahawk in SSSR; the first mission with this type was made on October 12, 1941.

The plane was finished with a layer of white washable paint over the British dark green-dark earth camouflage (or its US Dupont equivalent). The undersurfaces were painted sky, but there is some possibility that the black wing had a black undersurface; in facts, there is at least one similar plane (serial unknown) with black left wing undersurface in the unit. This was an heritage of its service in RAF: this painting was abolished in spring 1941, but some planes hadn't black repainted with sky before being shipped to Soviet Union. .

On the photo below we see that the stars under the wings received a rough white background on some planes, perhaps to make them more recognizable for AA gunners.

Note that the third plane of the photo has it serials overpainted with winter paint.

Below, a detail of AH965.

Below: an image of the same plane before the winter finish.

Images from Red Stars 4, ed. Apali.