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Aircraft formation lights-static or blinking?

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  • Member since
    July 2009
Aircraft formation lights-static or blinking?
Posted by Blackbelt2 on Tuesday, February 21, 2012 8:48 AM

I am building a 1/24th scale DeHavilland Mosquito. I am lighting the cockpit instruments, cabin, wingtip, and formation lights.I have a question that I hope our readers can help me with. On the Mosquito there is a formation light in the tail cone. Would this be a static white light or a blinking light? I don't know if the aircraft, during World War II, used blinking lights or random color lights. The walk-around book that I am using for reference just states that it is a white formation light. Any ideas?


  • Member since
    July 2004
  • From: Sonora Desert
Posted by stikpusher on Tuesday, February 21, 2012 8:38 PM

I am fairly certain that would be a steady/static light and not a blinking strobe or rotating type.


F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton



  • Member since
    March 2007
  • From: Carmel, CA
Posted by bondoman on Tuesday, February 21, 2012 11:13 PM

Here's the best I could find quickly, from an R/C site.


x1 Red permanently on wingtip navigation light bulb
x1 Green permanently on wingtip navigation light bulb
x1 White permanently on tail position light bulb
x1 Red double strobing under fuselage position light bulb
x2 White triple strobing wingtip position light bulbs
x4 bulb holders
x1 red reflective lens cover
x1 clear reflective lens cover
x4 tie wraps
x1 velcro pad

The several pictures I could find show a single light at the very tail that looks clear. (Why don't people ever take any pictures except 3/4 front views?)

Lot's of British bombers had so-called "resin" lights, which I think stood for "restricted intensity", very narrow beam and blue, but Mossie was not one of them.

  • Member since
    December 2004
  • From: Houston, Texas
Posted by panzerpilot on Tuesday, February 21, 2012 11:18 PM


I am fairly certain that would be a steady/static light and not a blinking strobe or rotating type.



  • Member since
    March 2010
  • From: MN
Posted by Nathan T on Tuesday, February 21, 2012 11:32 PM

Formation lights, ie navagation lights are red-left, green-right, white-tail(rear). All are static lights as stated.



  • Member since
    July 2009
Posted by Blackbelt2 on Wednesday, February 22, 2012 12:06 PM

Thank's everyone! I thought they might be static but needed to be sure for accuracy. Thanks for your help!

  • Member since
    June 2008
  • From: Iowa
Posted by Hans von Hammer on Friday, March 16, 2012 4:20 PM

Ok.. Y'all got your lights all screwed up folks.. "Formation Lights", "Position Lights", "IFF Lights" and "Navigation Lights" are not the same thing, and are not to be used interchangably...

The wing-tip and tail lights are: Navigation Lights and are Port-Red, Starboard-Green, and Rear, White.

On the De Havilland Mosquito Recognition Lights (Sometimes called "Position Lights", and "IFF Lights" are, from nose to tail,  White, Amber, and  Red, with round, flat lenses, and located on the lower rear fueslage center-line...

Some aircraft have as few as one Recognition light (The Spitfire had a white one located in a teardrop fairing just behind the cockpit on to of the fuselage), some are bloody Christmas Trees..

One such "tree" is the TBF/TBM which has as follows:

'Supplement to Grumman TBF/ TBM "Avenger"

1. Left Wingtip Navigation Light (red) - port wing tip.
2. Tail Navigation Light (white) - trailing edge of rudder, above trim tab.
3. Right Wingtip Navigation Light (green) - starboard wing tip.
4. Recognition light (green) - aft of bomb bay, centre fueslage line, ahead of amber.
5. Recognition light (red) - aft of bomb bay, centre fueslage line, ahead of green.
6. Recognition light (amber) - aft of bomb bay, centre fueslage line, immediately ahead of ventral gun position.
7. Formation (or Recognition) Lights (blue) - port and starboard wings, near the tips, in line with outside edge of ailerons.
8. Approach Recognition Lights (green, amber, red) - inboard leading edge of folding part of port wing.
9. Section Light (blue) - along aircraft spine, before, and almost touching tail fillet.

Another was the B-25... Lights all over it..


  • Member since
    April 2015
  • From: New Hampshire, USA
Posted by UKguyInUSA on Monday, November 12, 2018 11:52 AM

Helo Hans,


I'm presently building an old 1959 tooling of the Revell 1/48 De Havilland Mosquito Mk.IV, doing a lot of scratch building to enhance the old dated and detail-less parts. On this Mosquito, at the wing tips, there are lights at the front leading edge and the rear trailing edge. Would I be correct in assuming that the rear trailing edge lights would be white, similar to the tail end light, so when viewed from the rear, all lights are white, or, are they red and green, also, to match the front leading edge lights?

Here's a photo to show the two cut outs at the wing tips for navigation lights....

Image may contain: airplane


Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.


Martin YesSmileBeerBeer


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