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Philp

Looking for info on Warsaw Pact hardened shelters

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All,

I picked up the 72nd scale kit of one of these and have been trying to find pictures of what stuff would be on the insides (besides an aircraft)?

 

Haven't decided whose it will be but Polish, East German or something Middle East are where I am leaning.

 

So, what did the insides look like?  What equipment would be stored with the plane?  Did they refuel the plane in place with a tanker?

 

I have found some pics online and they show different types of lighting, tables, storage racks, boxes etc. but nothing really clear.

 

Any help greatly appreciated.

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That's a great question. I went MiG-hunting in East Germany and Poland after the wall came down, but we rarely had a clear view into a shelter. I remember one at Finow-Eberswalde , where you looked straight inside. Maybe I took a picture of that? But in my memory there was a Fulcrum-C parked in front of it. One other memory is from Templin, I noted fuel tanks stored inside one shelter, right side when looking inside.

 

Most of the WarPac shelters were really small, much smaller than the equivalents in the West, so I wouldn't expect too much stored in them. They were quite primitive, bare-bones. Trucks were used to open the doors, no stand-alone system for that. I remember guide rails for the wheels at Allstedt (recce Su-17M) with a winch system. One source says this airbase had 40 AU-13(1) shelters, so it must have been one of those. On many bases with MiG-29s they would park the a/c in front of the shelter since they wouldn't fit inside. One example was Kothen, that had 40 examples of the AU-11 shelter, 10.8 meters wide, whereas the MiG-29 winspan was 11.4 meters.

 

One thing I also noted was that most shelters were built from concrete half-arches, C-shaped with the 'opening' towards the inside, quite narrow, like 500 mm, bolted together. They created a 'ribbed' interior surface. Are you building one of the laser-cut plywood kits? AFAIK they represent a type of shelter that was built in Poland. Apparently there were regional differences.

 

All in all I don't have solid answers, but maybe it helps a bit.

 

Rob

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Google has many good photos to choose from. If you narrow down your search to a specific nation then it makes it easier. You can also begin to see the similarities from shelter to shelter within the same Country/Nation/Air Force .  I did a quick "Poland Hardened Aircraft Shelter" search and found these:

Related image

Notice how this shelter above ^^^ has the same interior layout as this shelter below.

 

Su-22M-4, 7412, 33 BL / 7 ELT ready for service in a HAS at Powidz

 Su-22M-4, 7412, 33 BL / 7 ELT ready for service in a HAS at Powidz

 

And again... compare the three pictures above ^^^with this one below (sorry its small but you can still see the interior similarities... same interior different time periods):

Image result for Polish fighter base shelter

Exterior:

Image result for Polish fighter base shelter

 

There is also a model kit available for a 1/72 Warsaw Pact shelter (also available from the same company in 1/48 and 1/32):

https://picclick.co.uk/Aircraft-Shelter-172-scale-Warsaw-Pact-282508905781.html

 

 

Hope this helps.

 

Regards,

Don 

 

EDIT: Bad links.

Edited by Don

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18 minutes ago, Don said:

Google has many good photos to choose from. If you narrow down your search to a specific nation then it makes it easier. You can also begin to see the similarities from shelter to shelter within the same Country/Nation/Air Force .  I did a quick "Poland Hardened Aircraft Shelter" search and found these:

Related image

Notice how this shelter above ^^^ has the same interior layout as this shelter below.

 

Yep, this looks a lot like what I tried to describe in words. Note the concrete segments, quarter-circle, bolted together, creating the 'ribbed' interior. Judging from the wing tip clearance this could be an AU-13 (or similar) shelter. Tanks on the side like I saw at Templin. But no guide rails on the floor plus winch like I saw at Allstedt. Never saw those rails elsewhere, I remember now.

 

This is the Polish producer of the 1/72, 1/48 and 1/32 shelters that Don mentioned:

 

https://sklep.gpm.pl/en/modele-kartonowe/samoloty/1/72/shelter-on-airplane1/72-cut-with-laser-model

 

The site doesn't tell the inside dimensions, but elsewhere I found an interior width of 18.5 cm, or 13.3 meters full scale. This fits in well with the AU-13 mentioned above.

 

Rob

 

Edited by Rob de Bie

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Yep, that is the kit I got.  Also got the big hanger which they say is a WWII version but I haven't been able to find any pictures online that look like it either.  Figure that one is generic enough not to worry.

 

I found the same pics online and have already saved them along with a few others.  Seen one hanger that just had a single row of lights along the centerline but could be a smaller one.

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