Jump to content
This site uses cookies! Learn More

This site uses cookies!

You can find a list of those cookies here: mysite.com/cookies

By continuing to use this site, you agree to allow us to store cookies on your computer. :)


Airfix Lancaster III EE136 WS-R 'Spirit of Russia' 9 Sqn, 1943

Recommended Posts

Hello again everyone


Having wrestled the Airfix Lancaster II into submission, I'm starting on their Lancaster III. Forewarned being forearmed, it should be a little less of a struggle this time round. Added to which I've already got a lot of the detailling stuff done and ready to drop in. I'll be doing it as EE136 WS-R 'Spirit of Russia' of 9 Squadron, one of the 'Ton Up' Lancs. On the night of September 5th 1943, it was on an Op to Mannheim, its 22nd mission. It encountered an enemy night fighter near the target, and the combat report reads as follows:


5/6 September 1943, Mannheim. 23.32, 20,000 ft.

Lancaster ‘R’ Captain P/O/McCubbin

E/A sighted by R.G. (Sgt. Elliott) following Lancaster. Pilot informed and Lancaster commenced to corkscrew. E/A closed on Lancaster from port quarter and R.G. opened up with a long burst at a range of 400 yards. E/A continued on a course to attack and broke away to port quarter after firing a long burst. M.U. (Sgt. Houbert) fired a few round only before being hit and took no further part in the combat. More attacks ensued making five in all, firing long bursts in each attack and the Lancaster’s R.G. also firing long bursts. During the final attack the E/A burst into flames as shots from the rear turret hit him. He dived beneath the starboard wing, obviously on fire. This was confirmed by the flight engineer and bomb aimer. This E/A is claimed as destroyed.

No searchlights or flares were seen to be connected with this attack. The Lancaster suffered considerable damage, with bullet holes being too numerous to count.

M.U. Gunner – 20 rounds

Rear Gunner – 3,000 rounds

The rear gunner was F/Sgt. James Lindsay Elliott, of Amble, Northumberland, who was awarded the D.F.M., his award being gazetted on May 19th 1944.


To make life a little easier, I've got the Xtradecal sheet which includes markings for EE136, a set of Eduard paint masks and their Lancaster III interior etch set, plus some Quickboost intakes and gun barrels.


I'd managed to get a lot of the cockpit done at the same time as the Lancaster II, so here are a couple of photos:






I've also replicated the detailing for the turrets that I'd done for the Lancaster II, having made two of everything the first time round:


Front turret:




Upper turret:






and the rear turret:




All much the same as the Lancaster II so far. More soon....














Edited by Simon

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Good work looking forward to seeing more. Whats the history of “Spirit of Russia” ? Does it have to do with the Codes ? 

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a copy of 'Ton Up Lancs' by Norman Franks, and the entry for EE136 states:


"Given the Squadron codes of WS, its individual letter became 'R'. There was a good deal of pro-Russian feeling in the mid-war years, no doubt encouraged by our war leaders, Russia being our only European ally fighting from its own motherland. This was evidenced too in Bomber Command which had several bombers named with Russian themes."



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Looking good Simon. I'm not really a WWII fan but I like the work you 0 re doing...



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

A quick update - apologies for the delay, but D.I.Y. projects have got in the way. I just think of them as 1/1 scale modelling, so not to much of a change. :)


I've been busy finishing off the fuselage interior, before buttoning it all up. Here's the computer for the Mk. XIV bombsight, with a scratchbuilt frame for the Eduard etch part:




And here it is in situ, with the strike camera and bomb aimer's parachute stowage:




I've also added the mount for the bombsight itself, and the fuselage was then all glued up, filled and sanded (thank you Airfix...:doh:).


Next up I replaced the kit's (pretty rubbish) upper escape hatches on the fuselage - this is something I'd already done on the Airfix Lancaster II. Firstly, I'd sanded off the kit's representations of the hatches before the fuselage had been glued together:




I drilled out the centre circular sections - which should be glazed, not solid, and then made some replacements from clear plastic sheet so they can have the glazed sections, using some Eduard masks from another kit (1/72 He-111, I think), and glued them in place:






Needs a little tidying up, but should be okay under a coat of primer.


Meanwhile, the wings have been all glued up. Like the Lanc II build, I'd separated the parts of the wing spars that make the front and rear of the mainwheel bays so the wings can be done as a complete unit before adding them to the fuselage, rather than the way Airfix recommends in the instructions. Here's the ones from the Lancaster II build, to show what I mean:




It means the fuselage and wings can be completed separately, making life a little easier. With the undercarriage bays already done and painted, the wings have had the engine nacelles added. Fit was a little 'relaxed' shall we say, but nothing that can't be fixed with smidge of filler:






More soon...







Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello again


Back with an update. Not much work been done for the last few weeks, with work and D.I.Y. projects getting in the way, but some progress to report at last.


I've got the main undercarriage all done, as the main undercarriage legs need to be dropped into the wings before they can all be finished. After checking references for other Lancasters around the sane serial number, it seems the main undercarriage legs were not just black. Here's the various elements all painted up:




It's not easy to tell from the photo, but I used Tamiya's Titanium Steel for the legs - it's got a slightly gold tinge to it, and Revell semi-matt black, which has a slight sheen. The mainwheel legs were then dropped in the wings and glued in place:




I'm sure soemone at Airfix thought this was a good idea, but it's a right clart on - it makes the undercarriage legs vulnerable to damage while the wings are painted and makes it complicated to mask them off while doing so. It also involves the fitting of panels over the tops of the engines, including the outer engine nacelles. I guess it means more commonality with their Lancaster II, but as I found out when I made that, fit of the parts is slightly iffy - here's one of the outer engines:






Speaking of ill-fitting parts, I'm doing the bomb bay doors closed. Seemed a good idea at the time, however the bay doors were badly twisted, as can be seen when I test-fitted them at an earlier stage:




Now I'm ready to fit them , they don't seem to fit well at all. The front section is fine:




but the rear has a pronounced step - in the words of Nat King Cole, That Ain't Right:




I did wonder if I'd got them back to front (:doh:), but not the case. Not sure what to do about that - some fettling required somehow. I did however come up with a cunning plan for giving the centre of the bomb bay doors a little more support while trying to fit them:




I taped them together, then added a section of ballpoint pen, cut to size and taped in place - it helps them keep their shape while I try to bully gently persuade them into place. Otherwise they have a mind of their own. :swear:


Would be much easier if they'd just supplied a single part for the option of closed bomb bay doors. :shrug:


More soon....













Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now