Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Hungarian Hinds

Kecskemet airbase in Hungary was host to a huge airshow on August 7-8 which featured many foreign jets and aerobatic teams. However, the Hungarian air force would not let anybody make it look small and put on an impressive display of everything it has in its arsenal from Mig-29s and JAS39 Gripens to Mi-8s. A total of three Mi-24s flew during each day. Each morning a stunningly painted Mi-24V put on an unbelievable show.

This particular Hind was armed with B-8V20 rocket launchers for unguided S-8 rockets, four "Shturm" anti-tank missile launchers and two 500-liter external fuel tanks. It was also equipped with engine covers to reduce infrared signature. All this made it look even meaner(is that even possible??) than the Mi-24 already does. The pilot took it to the limits showing the maneuverability and agility of the Mi-24 and finally ending the performance with a huge release of flares.

At the end of the day the Hungarian air force put on an airpower display featuring two Mig-29s, four JAS39 Gripens, two Mi-24s, one Mi-8 and one An-26. The Mi-24Ds provided close air support for the Mi-8 which came in to drop off soldiers in a
landing zone.

You gotta love the guy that is curiously sticking his head out o
f the window.

Each Mi-24 had two people inside shooting machine guns out of the windows (with empty shells of course!!). The muzzle of the gun can in fact be seen in the photo of the two Mi-24s breaking.

If anyone is wondering why these Hinds have a camouflage that looks suspiciously similar to Lancaster's own bord 125 it is no coincidence. When bord 125 was in Bulgarian service it was overhauled in Hungary and received a "Hungarian" camouflag
e which is different than the one seen on bord 118 and bord 120. This camouflage is the standard with which all Hungarian Hinds are painted.

A very low shutter speed helps get the whole rotor disk in the photo.

The Mi-8 which the Mi-24s were "protecting":

The Hind is still in service in places besides Hungary and while CWAM has Mi-24s for display let's not forget that this helicopter is still a formidable weapon that arms the air forces of many countries.

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