10 Jun 2014

Royal Navy 1940s-1950s Flight Deck Tractor Model

This tiny tractor, known as Clarkat, was derived from an industrial tow vehicle and first saw service with the Royal Navy in 1944. The tractors facilitated flight deck operations on the Royal Navy's fleet and escort carriers during the final stages of the World War II. They continued in their service throughout the Korean War and have finally been withdrawn from carriers in the mid 1950s with the advent of much heavier jet aircraft. Along with their mother ships, a number of such tractors continued to serve on the Royal Australian Navy's HMAS Sydney and the French Navy's R95 Arromanches.

This 1:72 scale model kit (F4Models cat. # 7026) contains resin and photo etched parts. On a carrier deck diorama the model can accompany such Royal Navy aircraft as Avenger, Corsair, Barracuda, Firefly, Sea Fury, Sea Hornet or Firebrand.
A 1:48 scale kit of the same tractor was also produced (F4Models cat. # 4002).
Here are some historic photographs that show this tractor in action: link, link, link.