Virtual Museum - Control columns, sticks and wheels


Ref. No. 797. HURRICANE SPADEGRIP.  Made from aluminium and minus black covering and brass firing button.  The spadegrip was mounted on a short column and the gun firing button fitted into the hole at top left.  Complete examples are fitted with a brake handle and tubes for operation of pneumatic firing button and brakes.  Hurricane and Spitfire spadehandles are one of the most prized items of any aeronatical collection.

Ref No. 1214. MESSERSCHMITT BF109 CONTROL GRIP. These grips are one of the most highly prized items sort after by collectors of aviation memorabilia. There were several variations of this grip and they were used on fighter aircraft such as the Bf109 and FW190. The buttons had various functions. The guard seen at top back (looks like a trigger) had two positions. When in the position shown, the machine guns and cannon could be activated by pushing the top button or pulling on the guard lever itself which pushed a button underneath. With the guard flipped over to the back, it would prevent either button being pushed and thus acted as a safety. The button at top left released any ordnance fitted such as bombs. This example was souvenired from an aircraft that had ground-looped and was abandoned at an airfield south of Munich.

Ref. No. 1068. RNZAF P-40 CURTISS P-40 KITTYHAWK FIGHTER HANDGRIP. Includes button on top with the word's "bomb release" on it.

Ref No. 882.  F4U CORSAIR CONTROL COLUMN GRIP.  Circa 1944. Bakelite. Ex-RNZAF. Has part number VS-34430 with mark “CH”. 

  Ref. No. 846. P-40 CONTROL COLUMN AND GRIP. Claimed to be from a “Mk I P-40”, which would mean an aircraft built for the RAF.  The grip is standard for several WWII fighters and can be seen on P-40s and aircraft like Harvards.  The stick is straight and chromed.  This does not match those fitted to P-40s, Harvards (see below), or P-51 that I have seen in book photographs.  The chrome shaft does have an alloy plug fitted to the base however marked “CT1”, which, given the way it is fitted, indicates the shaft is genuine and not a replica.

  Ref. No. 644. HUDSON/LODESTAR CONTROL WHEEL. Circa 1940.

Ref. No. 722.  DEVON CONTROL WHEEL.  Circa 1950s.  Taken from a burnt-out Devon that was located near the Canterbury Gliding Club hanger at Wigram during the 1960s.  Wreck could possibly have been used by crash-fire for training.  It is possible that this aircraft was one of two that crashed at Wigram on 15 October 1953 following at display at Harewood for the 1953 England to New Zealand air race presentation ceremony.  Seven people (including S/L Sholto Russell Duncan - NZ fighter pilot) died in the two aircraft, which were NZ1811 and NZ1810. 

Ref. No. 453. NORTH AMERICAN HARVARD JOYSTICK. Circa 1940s. Plastic head has gun and bomb buttons (same as P-51 Mustang). Hickory shaft. Base made from highly polished white metal (not aluminium) - titanium?. Numbers on base include “88 5210” with stamp “ANA 866 T” and word “..ASSEM” plus “52-52103-W01” with stamp “A H-T 1”.

Ref. No. 1073. A-4 GRIP.  On top is the word “Mason”. Top left switch is for nose-wheel steering as fitted to later models of A-4 . Central switch is for elevator trim (nose up and nose down) and aileron trim, which is marked LWD (left wing down) and RWD (right wing down) on either side. Right switch is for autopilot.  Bomb switch is maked “B” and is in thumb position. Gun switch on front. On bottom is number “708-5101”, on side is number “SN1574 8748” and on base  is "DAC 7821711-1"

Ref. No. 1022. DOUGLAS A-4 SKYHAWK CONTROL GRIP.  On top is the word “Mason”. Top left-hand switch moves up/down and left/right. Central switch is for trim (nose up and nose down) and is marked LWD and RWD on either side. Right switch is for autopilot.  Bomb switch is maked “B” and in thumb position. Gun switch on front. On base is number “22411A” and on side is number “4064-938”. A total of 17 wires are attached.

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