NAS names

Discussion in 'The Fleet Air Arm' started by sfship, Oct 7, 2013.

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  1. Can anyone explain the names of the different NAS to me? How did they choose the different numbers eg 702, 815, 845 , 1710 when naming them?
  2. They are simply a block of allocated numbers given to indicate a squadron's role. For instance, 700 series squadrons were FAA catapult units, now they represent second line units. 800 series for front line squadrons, 1700 and 1800 we're just the second block of allocations once all the 700 and 800s had already been used.

    Breaking it down further:

    800 - 809 fixed wing single seat.
    810 - 819 torpedo (asw) and bomber (asuw)
    700 - 799 training and ancillary role.
    820 - 869 Torpedo (asw) and recon

    Not too up on the 1700 and 1800 series, I'm sure somebody else will know though.

    Edited to add: just been told (yes I'm still at work) 1770 onward was fixed wing double seat. That's the collective knowledge of me and a pilot exhausted.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 8, 2013
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  3. Brilliant, that explains a lot, thank you!
  4. How did the Phantom squadron become 892 then? They were twin-seat...
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  5. In all likelihood 890 - 899 will have meant something that suited the phantom. Probably carrier borne, twin seat FW. Every block has a reason.
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  6. I'm not going to mention 80O 801 and 809 squadron buccaneers :angel8:
  7. Mention what you like, however that's not what the 800 - 809 allocations are for now nor have been in recent years. Much like 815 is no longer a bomber squadron allocation seeing as we don't have bombers any more. The allocations have changed slightly over the years.

    Rather than trying to pick holes, why not offer up some knowledge?

    Edited to add: Oh look, a reference to corroborate what I posted yesterday.
    K5083 - Squadron Number Allocation
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 8, 2013
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  8. 700 squadrons were second line squadrons.
    800 squadrons were front line squadrons (the 8 prefix gave the squadron priority when it came to ordering stores).
    Nothing to do with the number of seats.
    360 Squdron was I believe a joint service squadron and not really part of the FAA as such.
    Well thats what it was between 1963 and 1985, things may have changed.
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  9. 360 was made up from 97 crab and 831 NAS coming together. The best kept secret in the the fleet air arm.
    Disbanded on the 31st October 1994, what a piss up!

    In 1991 360 Squadron achieved 25 years of service, and was presented with a Squadron Standard. No. 360 Squadron had many unique aspects: its role, its number had not been previously issued, and it is the only squadron to have been formed, awarded a Standard, and disbanded during Queen Elizabeth II's reign.

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    Last edited: Oct 8, 2013
  10. Wrong, each block was drawn up to mean something and squadron numbers were designated accordingly. Exactly what it is may have changed over time but it does. How the squadron operates, capability, it's exact role, platform it works from etc. Over the years these have changed or become tenuous but that's what they were for. Allocations given based on arm, type or role.

    As an example there are anomalies such as 824 Sqn which is primarily a training squadron so should have a 700 series number (It used to be 700M of course) whereas there are also squadrons that stick to the rules; torpedo and surface combat capable? That allocation was 810 - 819. (Hence 815 squadron's number) However 700 series used to designate catapult squadrons prior to being reallocated for training squadrons.
    Which is why it was given a crab ancillary number. As the crabs kind of owned the whole allocation thingy.

    They have. Unsurprisingly.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 8, 2013
  11. They may originally have had something to do with role and seat numbers, however it didn't take long for that to change.
    First Buccaneer Squadron was numbered 700Z, however it rapidly became 809. Though second line the 8 designation gave it front line access to stores.
    Now 809 should have been a fighter aircraft but was in reality a bomber, though pilots did practise using it in a fighter role that was not it's main purpose.
    Phantome and Vixens were fighters but when I was on Ark the Phantom squadron was numbered 892
    848 was gannet AEW aircraft so I suppose would loosely fall into the spotter catergory.
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2013
  12. However there was 810 squadron which was also second line? Apart from the small sea flight.

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  13. Well, yes. That's the point. Which is why I said they have changed over the years. However tenuously, they still mean something now and aren't simply designated at random. You won't see a Merlin squadron being given 804 for example as the original spotter / recon / torpedo allocations are suited to role and 804 was, guess what? Single seat, fixed wing in accordance with it's allocation.

    810 - Sea King HAS 6. Front line element ASW capable, falling in line with the 810 - 819 Torpedo / bomber / recon allocation.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 8, 2013
  14. I remember the mk 5 days!! :)

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  15. Were they HAS or HAR? If HAS 5's they still would fit their allocation.
  16. Most squadrons had a mix of HAS and HAR, 819, was predominantly ASW ergo HAS but had two dedicated SAR cabs - HAR!!!

    Likewise with 771, mostly HU but with dedicated HAR cabs. I assume that's how the powers to be got around designations!!!!

    Sorry if it sounds like a suck - egg thing - not intended MLP.
  17. Not at all, I just about remember 810 Sqn, but don't recall the mix of airframes. I wasn't in a position to care back then!
  18. As long as the flying pay rolled in neither did I. A helo is a helo. What Mk or colour scheme didn't matter one iota!!!!
  19. IIRC, 810 was an upgraded 706. Probably granted front line status in the early days as it doubled as CU's long range SAR before 771 received Mk 5/6 SK HAR's.

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