Yak 23 Bulgarian / Romanian wing insignia

SirFrancis

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Feb 10, 2022
Hey guys,

Trying to find out a couple of things.
1. Did any of these Yak 23s have the national star on the upper wing surface?
The photos I've seen lack upper wing stars, however kit instruction (attached) shows them on.

2. Did either nation use yellow numbers on the nose?
There is a photo of a Bulgarian Yak 23 on display 'yellow 23.' But not sure if that is historical or repainted in modern times for show. I've seen another photo of what looks like the same aircraft with 'red 45' on nose. If it is same aircraft was it originally red?
The same kit instruction is for a Yellow 23 over Red 33. Did they replace red with yellow at some point? Or was this a 'one off'?

Ok cheers
 

Attachments

  • Yak 23 Bulg Yellow 23.jpg
    Yak 23 Bulg Yellow 23.jpg
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  • Yak 23 red 45.jpg
    Yak 23 red 45.jpg
    9.1 KB · Views: 23
  • Yak-23-3.jpeg
    Yak-23-3.jpeg
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Wurger

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Ad.2 Yes, the Polish Yak-23s had the yellow numbers with the black outline. But it doesn't mean that the red colour wasn't used at all. As memo serves the Polish Yak-23s had the red numbers as well. These were applied on planes delivered from soviet factories directly or after a general overhaul. IMHO the red colour ( the only and right one at that time ) was used often for the planes the were set as the monuments or exhibited in museums. So I wouldn't follow pictures of such planes because using of the colour for the numbers was inspired by political reason rather. Therefore these may have nothing in common with the real markings.

yak23-4.jpg


yak23-5.jpg


yak23-04.jpg

the pic source: the net.

Also it seems that the Bulgarian ones had them too .. the difference in the tone of the numbers comparing to the starts can indicate that. Also it looks like the yellow numbers had the black outline but not the red.

yak23-8bulg.jpg


yak23-9bulg.jpg


yak23-9abulg.jpg


yak23-12bulg.jpg


Certailny the red colour is correct too. Please note the first digit without the outline.
yak23-13bulg.jpg

the pic source: the net.

The main problem with the yellow numbers is that pictures could be taken with filters or using the orthochromatic film. The yellow filter cause the yellow getting very light. In the case the yellow looks almost white. Contrary to that the orthochromatic film causes the yellow and red looking the same. However the yellow is darker in tone than the red often. Below here the examples ...

yak23-1.jpg

yak23-1a.jpg


yak23-2.jpg

yak23-2a.jpg


yak23-3.jpg

yak23-3a.jpg

the pic source: the net.

Ad.1 The soviet system of markings was used by all countries controlled by the USSR. Therefore the wing top markings weren't applied mostly. The Polish Yak-23s didn't have the national markings on the wing tops in the same way as the Russian ones. However the Czechoslovakian ones did have the markings. There is not too many images showing the wing tops but here is a shot of crashed Czechoslovakian Yak-23 with the marking on the top port wing surface seen partially. So the wing top markings for the Bulgarian planes are very likely but not for the 100%.

yak23-6cz.jpg

the pic source: Letecká badatelna
 

CATCH 22

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There is a photo of a Bulgarian Yak 23 on display 'yellow 23.' But not sure if that is historical or repainted in modern times for show. I've seen another photo of what looks like the same aircraft with 'red 45' on nose. If it is same aircraft was it originally red?
There are two (2) Yak-23 in the Museum of Bulgarian Aviation today:
9dd39a88f2dbbdda77583ea16339244f84325576.jpg

Both colours are correct and have been in use. IMHO the 2 Yak's are from different units resp. air bases.
P.S. No stars on top surfaces of the wings during this period AFAIK.
P.P.S. A fellow-enthusiast informed me that the yellow numbers are the original ones - it is possible the a/c were delivered with numbers from the USSR. The "old" a/c had stenciling in Russian language. The red (smaller) numbers were applied after a general overhaul in Bulgaria. At that time the stenciling was changed as well and was in Bulgarian language.
 
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Wurger

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Unfortunately neither any image of the Bulgarian Yaks nor of the Romanian ones shows the insignia on the wing tops. It seems that the rule was to apply them at the six locations. I mean both on the fuselage, fin sides and undersides. The only difference were the Czechoslovakian planes. These didn't have the markings on their fuselage sides. So the two insignias were applied on the wing tops to keep the number of six markings applied. Because the Romanian Yak-23s had the insignias on the fuselage sides it looks there weren't these on the wing tops.

The Czechoslovakian Yak-23s ...
yak23_czechoslovak.jpg

yak23-czech.jpg

the pic source: Rychlý rozvoj letectví „zabil“ jaky, které se u nás měly licenčně vyrábět - iDNES.cz

a Romanian one ...
Yak23_Romanian.jpg

the pic source: Log into Facebook
 

GrauGeist

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Ok, here is an example at the Bucharest Air Museum.

The poor thing is really weathered, but if you look closely at the upper surface, you'll see the insignia located halfway between the wing root and wing tip.

I'm posting the link to the image to respect the photographer's copyright.

https://www.jetphotos.com/photo/852839
4
 

CATCH 22

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Ok, here is an example at the Bucharest Air Museum.

The poor thing is really weathered, but if you look closely at the upper surface, you'll see the insignia located halfway between the wing root and wing tip.

I'm posting the link to the image to respect the photographer's copyright.

https://www.jetphotos.com/photo/852839
4
I'm (almost) sure there is another one in the indoor exhibition in a perfect condition. I remember seeing a photo of it when looking for the IAR-80 replica they have in the same museum.
Let's ask Google...
Yep there is one - see here. Maybe there is a photo showing the stars on the top of the wings - I know they are there.
Cheers!
P.S. Google is (sometimes) your friend - check here.
 
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SirFrancis

Airman 1st Class
119
39
Feb 10, 2022
I'm (almost) sure there is another one in the indoor exhibition in a perfect condition. I remember seeing a photo of it when looking for the IAR-80 replica they have in the same museum.
Let's ask Google...
Yep there is one - see here. Maybe there is a photo showing the stars on the top of the wings - I know they are there.
Cheers!
P.S. Google is (sometimes) your friend - check here.
Thanks great find. That's interesting...everything I've seen has no top wing star for Bulgaria and Romania. I just get suspicious of museum markings as they are known for doing non-historical stuff with their 'restorations' in past years. Now that pic of the weathered Yak23 is tricky...that would seem to be more original....but I'm not quite sure I can male out the star...lol. Seems like something halfway down the wing as you say but...my eyes...my eyes!

The kit also has only supplied 6 stars for each national version. So I'm kind of buggered anyway.
 

SirFrancis

Airman 1st Class
119
39
Feb 10, 2022
Ok, here is an example at the Bucharest Air Museum.

The poor thing is really weathered, but if you look closely at the upper surface, you'll see the insignia located halfway between the wing root and wing tip.

I'm posting the link to the image to respect the photographer's copyright.

https://www.jetphotos.com/photo/852839
4
I'm trying to see the star.......straining....... not sure....lol
 

SirFrancis

Airman 1st Class
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Feb 10, 2022
There are two (2) Yak-23 in the Museum of Bulgarian Aviation today:
View attachment 685732
Both colours are correct and have been in use. IMHO the 2 Yak's are from different units resp. air bases.
P.S. No stars on top surfaces of the wings during this period AFAIK.
P.P.S. A fellow-enthusiast informed me that the yellow numbers are the original ones - it is possible the a/c were delivered with numbers from the USSR. The "old" a/c had stenciling in Russian language. The red (smaller) numbers were applied after a general overhaul in Bulgaria. At that time the stenciling was changed as well and was in Bulgarian language.
Ah so they are 2 different aircraft!
 

SirFrancis

Airman 1st Class
119
39
Feb 10, 2022
Hey guys,

Trying to find out a couple of things.
1. Did any of these Yak 23s have the national star on the upper wing surface?
The photos I've seen lack upper wing stars, however kit instruction (attached) shows them on.

2. Did either nation use yellow numbers on the nose?
There is a photo of a Bulgarian Yak 23 on display 'yellow 23.' But not sure if that is historical or repainted in modern times for show. I've seen another photo of what looks like the same aircraft with 'red 45' on nose. If it is same aircraft was it originally red?
The same kit instruction is for a Yellow 23 over Red 33. Did they replace red with yellow at some point? Or was this a 'one off'?

Ok cheers
So just going to throw in a theoretical.... I have the option of using a yellow 52 or reversing it and making it 25. The yellow 52 was meant for a Soviet aircraft. It could have remained yellow 52 if given to Bulgaria / Romania. Since we have a yellow 23 Bulgarian on display, might they have had a yellow 25?

cheers
 

Wurger

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So just going to throw in a theoretical.... I have the option of using a yellow 52 or reversing it and making it 25. The yellow 52 was meant for a Soviet aircraft. It could have remained yellow 52 if given to Bulgaria / Romania. Since we have a yellow 23 Bulgarian on display, might they have had a yellow 25?

cheers

If Bulgarian AF had the "23" and "24" ( see pics above ) so why not the "25".
 

Wurger

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P.S. Google is (sometimes) your friend - check here.

That's true.
Indeed the "Red 14" has the insignias at the wing tops.

yak23 red14.jpg

the pic source: the net.

Ok, here is an example at the Bucharest Air Museum.

The poor thing is really weathered, but if you look closely at the upper surface, you'll see the insignia located halfway between the wing root and wing tip.

I'm posting the link to the image to respect the photographer's copyright.

https://www.jetphotos.com/photo/852839
4

Ok ... just found the "Red 52" pics with the stars applied ...

yak-23-52-outdoor_b.jpg


yak-23-52-outdoor_a.jpg

the pic source:


Well, it could be the evidence that the Romanian Yak-23s had the national insignia on the wing tops applied though.
 

SirFrancis

Airman 1st Class
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Feb 10, 2022
That's true.
Indeed the "Red 14" has the insignias at the wing tops.

View attachment 685828
the pic source: the net.



Ok ... just found the "Red 52" pics with the stars applied ...

View attachment 685830

View attachment 685831
the pic source:


Well, it could be the evidence that the Romanian Yak-23s had the national insignia on the wing tops applied though.

That walk around video is awesome! Ok ... so looks like enough evidence for Romanian stars on top wing... cool. But I'm really keen to use the yellow numbers. Haven't seen any Romanian birds with yellow numbers. Seems all are red so far.
 

Wurger

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And a pic more with a pair of Yak-23s of the Bulgarian AF in ... both B&W and colour.

yak23-10bulg_.jpg


yak23-10bulg.jpg


An interesting thing is that the same pic was retouched and the Bulgarian planes became the soviet ones.

yak23-10abulg.jpg

the pic source: the net.
 

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