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About Jonners

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    Established Member
  • Birthday 12/09/1971

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    East Yorkshire

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  1. Having astonished myself recently by completing (eventually) a scratchbuilt 1/144 Avro Bison that actually bears a vague resemblance to the original machine, I decided to ride the wave and resurrect a couple of previously-abandoned 1/144 biplane scratchbuilds. I do like unusual subjects, especially of between-the-wars British aircraft, so the first of these is a Handley Page Hyderabad bomber. The HP 24 Hyderabad was developed from the W.8 civilian airliner, which was itself a development of the famous 0/400 bomber from the First World War. Named after the Indian city, the Hyderabad was visually unusual in that the nose gunner's position was significantly lower than the level of the cockpit, giving the machine a typically British quirky appearance. Power came from a pair of uncowled Napier Lion engines mounted between the biplane wings, which were fitted with slots, and the aircraft could carry a bomb load of 1,100lb (500kg). The Hyderabad prototype, J6994, first flew in October 1923 and, in total, 45 Hyderabads were produced and served with four RAF squadrons. The rudders of early machines had distinctively curved outlines which were soon changed to an angular shape reminiscent of the W8 and W10 airliners. It was the last RAF biplane bomber of wooden construction and was finally withdrawn from reserve squadron use in 1933. I had previously managed to construct a fuselage from plastic card - it is a simple box construction - and had cobbled together the distinctive nose profile by cutting up some spare bombs and fuel tanks. I had added wings, struts, paint and decals, but I wasn't at all happy with the result so removed the wings and consigned the parts to the 'do-it-later' box. Much later, after producing the Bison, I thought I would be able to do a better job second time round. Here we go! This is where I have got to so far: The fuselage is okay and has been rubbed down with fine wet & dry paper. A new pair of lower wings have been shaped from plastic card, rib effect added and cut to give the appropriate degree of dihedral beyond the engine mounting point. The ailerons may have to be replaced - not a major task - and the distinctive fuel tanks from the underside of the top wing were originally 1/72 Heller T-6 gun pods. The two wheels, which will need a clean up as well as a matching pair, are simply plastic discs with rubber O-rings around the outside. The upper wing is taped onto the homemade plan and I am part way through adding the tape strips that will become the lower sections between the wing rib effect; two or three coats of grey primer followed up by a bit of very gentle sanding works well enough for me. The rib spacing isn't perfectly even but it's good enough for me, especially as 'ribs' and gaps are only about 1.5mm wide each. The lower wings already have this effect applied. Fuselage: The engines are about 15mm long and have 22 parts each at this stage; again, they aren't desperately accurate or detailed but are good enough for me: Finding RAF roundels of the right scale size and dimensions can be tricky; I recently found these by Miniscale so picked up a couple of sheets from Hannants: Please accept the usual apology for less-than-stunning smartphone photos. I've no idea how long this will take due to the continued intrusions of real life, but posting a WiP thread should at least stop me from putting it back in the 'do-it-later' box! Jon
  2. Ah yes, XV666's pilot Nick was kind enough to show me around the aircraft at Farnborough. Sitting in the cockpit brought back memories - and a degree of shock at how antiquated it all seemed! Back in the day, it was all I knew... Jon
  3. Jonners

    Scratchbuilt 1/144 Avro Bison 1A

    Neither of those two, Marklo, but coincidentally one of them is in pieces in a box on my desk - another previously-abandoned scratchbuild that I will eventually get round to finishing! I’m certainly toying with the idea of a Dart scratchbuild, though I would probably go for a company floatplane trainer rather than a Royal Navy aircraft. My preference, though, is for prototypes that didn’t make it into service (like the ‘mystery machine’ above!) and there are plenty of those to choose from! Perhaps a Hawker Hedgehog, or an Armstrong Whitworth Wolf, or... Jon
  4. Hi folks, I have spent far too long in making this, as has been documented in the WiP section here: The model is actually representative of a Bison II, as I discovered after starting the WiP thread; it is intended to show an aircraft of 423 Flt aboard HMS Hermes in 1926, seen in this photo: Please forgive the basic nature of the model: it was intended to be enjoyable rather than frustrating, so detail is lacking (and probably accuracy too!). Anyway, some pics: I did add some detail inside the cabin, but I don't really know why I went to the trouble as it can't be seen in this scale! ...and a final slightly blurred (sorry) pic to illustrate the size: Constructive criticism welcomed! (And expected...) Jon
  5. Jonners

    Scratchbuilt 1/144 Avro Bison 1A

    Righto, lines added to chocks so calling this one finished. I had intended to join pairs of chocks together, but lost patience with trying to get the cotton to attach to the second chock, and I haven't yet come up with a suitably-scaled drip tray. More pics will be added in the RFI section. I think my next project - undoubtedly also over a ridiculously long timescale due the impact of real life - will probably be to resurrect this previously-abandoned 1:144 scratchbuild: Any guesses? Jon
  6. Jonners

    Sea King HAR3

    Nicely done, DL. Top tip: when stationary the SK’s rotor blades each have a slight droop. Not much, but enough to notice. They got very grubby in service, which was especially noticeable on the yellow blade, and they all had a pretty matt finish. I’m also pretty sure that the blade undersides were matt black, but it’s been quite a while since I looked at one! It’s probably a bit late now, and you might well have a reference to show otherwise at some point, but the squadron - 22/202/203(R)/78 - emblems were nearly always applied to the lower part of the crew door (‘lower personnel door’) on the port/left side. The marking was simply a big vinyl sticker and was a pig to remove, so it wasn’t uncommon for them to be applied on top of the previous one(s) as the Mk 3 airframe moved between SAR flights. Jon
  7. Jonners

    Scratchbuilt 1/144 Avro Bison 1A

    Prop now added. All but finished (at last)!
  8. Jonners

    Scratchbuilt 1/144 Avro Bison 1A

    Ha! Very good, Marklo ! That made me smile... If it was in 1/72 then I definitely would, but as it is 1/144 I definitely won’t! I’m sure it’s feasible, although 1/144 wires would be extremely thin. Something like EZ Line would look way out of scale and trying to keep sufficient tension on anything to scale thickness (thinness?) would be very tricky. It’s enough for me that it’s recognisably Bison-shaped. I think. Jon
  9. Stunning paint finish, especially as you say it was done freehand. The overall result is very impressive. I’m glad that you won’t be spoiling it by hanging every weapon you can think of from the wings! Less is definitely more here. Jon
  10. Jonners

    Scratchbuilt 1/144 Avro Bison 1A

    At last, I've been able to find some brief moments to do a little more work on this. Firstly I've carved a tiny prop from a cocktail stick; unfortunately I can't get my smartphone camera to focus on it so no pic yet. I was cheesed off with myself for giving up on hand-carving earlier in the build, so gave it another go with a little more success this time. The rear gun mount (the gun was, apparently, rarely actually mounted) is simply a bent staple. Basic and lacking in both accuracy and detail, but frankly I'm past caring. (Heretic!) The small base as received some attention in the form of a piece of plastic card engraved with what I think represents steel flight deck. It was sprayed with Humbrol 67 then white primer for the lines, followed by light weathering using oil paints. Chocks are tiny bits of cocktail stick, and still need connecting ropes adding: Putting it all together: Only the prop left to add on the Bison, chock ropes to add and I'm working on a drip tray to put under the engine. Jon
  11. Jonners

    Sea King HAR3

    I only remember white undercarriage legs, and the wheelbay interiors were also white (under the grime...) - but that was over ten years ago. Perhaps grey legs were fitted in the latter years, or maybe the Hendon aircraft has ex-RN undercarriage. The exhaust staining was widespread across the fleet; the severity depended on the local approach to cleaning, by which I mean the amount of effort that was expended and/or directed! Some were usually filthy (especially those from the OCU, in my experience) and were very difficult to get clean as the exhaust and hyd fluid leaks combined to form a tar-like deposite that only a solvent could shift properly. It was very rare indeed to see a pristine yellow SK, and those that were cleaned to that standard didn’t stay that way for long. The starboard/right side was especially prone to soot staining. Don’t be fooled by the condition of any yellow SK in the background of a photo of royalty...
  12. Jonners

    Sea King HAR3

    Looking good, DL. As I see you are modelling XZ596, you might be interested in these photos from my logbooks: 1. XZ596 aboard RFA 'Grey Rover' in Falkland Sound, 4 July 2000. Deck landing practice, as RAF crews did very little of that other than in the Falklands! I am in the co-pilot's (ie left-hand) seat: 2. XZ596 in the Peak District this time, at a place called Broadlee Bank Tor on the southern side of Kinder Scout. The photographer (the winchman!) is standing at the 1937 crash site of a Leconfield-based Handley Page Heyford; we were based there, coincidentally. I'm in the right-hand seat peering at the camera! 3. Final XZ596 pic: having said that RAF crews very rarely carried out deck landings, this one really wasn't too challenging! HMS Ark Royal, 17 Feb 2004, for a phototask off the Yorkshire coast on the occasion of the final departure of 800NAS from the ship. I was the aircraft captain in the right-hand seat. You might even be able to see a trial Harrier GR9 in the background: If I ever find my Mk3 walkaround photos I'll post them in the appropriate BM section. Jon
  13. Fantastic result, Valerio. This is one of my favourite kits, unfortunately let down by its very poor cockpit under that big canopy, but yours looks stunning. I'll be coming back to use this for reference when I build my next one (which will need those aftermarket tanks!). Jon