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One of the more unusual, if not incongruous cockpit instruments installed in the wooden-framed, Hawker Hurricane was the toggle switch for the aircraft's large wing-mounted landing lights.
With its ceramic base and brass 'bell-shaped' cover, the Hurricane's Air Ministry stamped 5D/551 sat nestled in the far left corner of the aircraft's cockpit, adjacent to Hurricane's Engine Starter Switch.
Compared with the more streamlined bakelite or cast aluminium cockpit controls of many contemporary RAF aircraft, the Hurricane's Landing Light Switch had a distinctly domestic look about it - something more likely found in the hallway of Grandma's cottage than in a high performance Battle of Britain RAF fighter.
Also installed in the early RAF Avro Anson twin-engined, light transport/spotter and the Handley Page Halifax bomber, the Air Ministry 'Bell' Switch had a ceramic base with the Air Ministry Crown cast into its undersides and the AM & Crown with its 5D/551 part number stamped around its edge.
The brass 'Bell' screws onto the all-brass rocker switch housed beneath with the pimple ended toggle switch protruding through the centre.
While the Hurricane eventually became outclassed by the faster and more heavily armed German Bf 109E and the later Focke-Wulf Fw 190, the Hawker Hurricane was an ideal interceptor for the more lumbering German bombers such as the Heinkel He 111 and Dornier Do 17.
When the Luftwaffe changed tactics from daylight raids to a night-time bombing campaign, it was the Hawker Hurricane and the Bolton Paul Defiant that found themselves in the new role of night fighters, defending Britains industrial cities against the onslaught of the German Blitz. They were to continue in this role until eventually replaced by the new, radar-equiped Bristol Beaufighter and De Havilland Mosquito.
Mounted into the leading edges of the Hurricane's wings, the aircraft's landing lights featured a 'dipping' function which allowed the beam to angled up or down. This was controlled by a small 'dipping lever' with a knurled knob which locked the spring-loaded lever into position.
This is an extremely rare Hawker Hurricane artefact and combined with a highly detailed scale model of the Hawker Hurricane atop its Mango Wood Display Stand and accompanying Fact Sheet, would make a fantastic gift for any budding aviator, aviation enthusiast or experienced pilot!
This Hawker Hurricane Instrument comes complete with detailed Scale Model, Mango Wood Stand & Plaque plus Printed Fact Sheet featuring photo of instrument in aircraft cockpit.
* Note that this Hawker Hurricane Instrument is pictured with a 1/48 scale model rather than the standard detailed, but smaller 1/72 scale. Click on the ‘Model Upgrade’ option at the top of this page for the larger 1/48 scale.
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Your Hawker Hurricane 5D/551 Landing Lights Toggle Switch, Original Recovery Curios Warbird Collectable includes:
- Original Warbird instrument
- Highly detailed hand-built and airbrushed 1/72 plastic scale model of the aircraft,* or 1/72 scale Die-Cast model
- Hand-crafted and beautifully finished 100yr, Far North Queensland Mango Wood display stand
- Detailed, 2-sided, printed and laminated Instrument Fact Sheet detailing aircraft and instrument
- Removable Magnetic Display Arm
*An upgrade to the larger and more detailed 1/48 scale model is also available in the hand-built and airbrushed plastic version for an additional $35 (Click on the 1/48 scale option)
Both the 1/72 & 1/48 scale hand-built and airbrushed plastic models are available with 'wheels & flaps up or down' and 'canopy open or closed' options with a choice of two Squadron markings and camouflage.
While the 1/72 scale Die-Cast Hurricane model comes with a 'wheels up or down' option, the canopy is sealed and the Squadron markings and camouflage are preset.
Upon order placement you will receive an email asking for your preferred configuration.
Your complete Recovery Curios Original Instrument Collectable is securely packed and delivery normally takes between 3 - 4 weeks approx.
Did you fly, crew or maintain a Hawker Hurricane or have a friend, colleague or family member who did? Check out our PERSONALISED ORIGINAL INSTRUMENT COLLECTABLE OPTION here.