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Moonbeam McSwine P-51D 352nd FG 1/48 scale

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I started this Mustang around eight years ago but ended up losing interest after installing a True details cockpit,having also drilled out the under nose inspection covers.


Fast forward to the May Bank Holiday deliberating on what to build next,I came across the Mustang lying forlornly in the stash. It was time to have another go.

The choice of which P-51D to model was pretty wide,only restricted by the inspection covers (having drilled them out I was not going to plate them over).Looking at my collection of decals,I settled on a 352nd FG aircraft The possibilities included Whisner's “Moonbeam McSwine” and Preddy's “Cripes a Mighty”. I've always found it strange considering Preddy was the highest ranking Mustang Ace.“Cripes a Mighty” is rarely modelled. The 352nd carried a rather plain scheme,but I think it's understated nature shows the lines of the P-51 off well.


I'd a number of after market parts for the P-51 in my the after market stash and decided to use the Ultra cast prop,exhaust and flaps in place of the kit's parts. I also thought I'd try the Ultra cast replacement gun fairings,the original Tamiya gun fairings are incorrect and are awkward to fix. Having lost the True details instrument panel I decided to use a replacement panel from the Eduard Zoom set.

Having stripped off the original paint the interior was sprayed dark grey to provide shading for the interior green.


The cockpit was painted with Polyscale interior green details being picked out with Tamiya paint. Mike Grant decals were used for the placards and holes were drilled for wiring. On the P-51 the cockpit floor could have been a number of colours (treated wood,painted black or interior green),I've settled for interior green.



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Nice start Mal.

I read somewhere that this kit is probably the best starting point for a Tamiya P-51D build as its got the correct parts for all the D models.

Similar to how the Tamiya P-47M has all the right magnetos etc etc for a D-25 onwards.

Is that the case?



P-47 SIG


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good start. Had the pleasure of building this kit myself earlier in trhe year, it was an absolute pleasure

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The Tamiya P-51B and D are regarded as easy builds,but I've always had trouble with them. I've had to fill sand and re-scribe the area around the radiator on every one I've built. I don't think it's just me as I've noticed other builders have had problems with this area but it's rarely mentioned in build articles ,did you have any problems?

Another issue with the Tamiya P-51D is that the canopy has a separate frame,the joint is all but impossible to hide,this time I'm lucky as I have a spare canopy from a Hasegawa P-51D that I can use in place of the Tamiya part.

Finally the cuffs on the Hamilton Standard are much to prominent.


The F-51D does have an additional sprue that contain 500lb bombs,r.p's and supposedly an Aero Products propeller. The only problem is that the propeller is a cuffless Hamilton Standard (an Aero Products prop has a more curved blade than the Hamilton Standards) This is a pity as P-51K's and Mustang IV's used the Aero Products prop.

I agree with you on the Tamiya P-47 the "M" offers a better starting point for a late "D" & "M"

The reason I would buy the F-51D kit over the “D” is that it's generally cheaper! :thumbsup:


Edited by Mal

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What a great start-looking forward to the rest of the build.



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Mal, its not you, if i remember that was one of two areas that needed attention. the other was on the upper wings where there was slight damage which looked as though it had been done during manufacturing. these were slight scratch like indentations, which were soon filled in.

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