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Everything posted by neilfergylee

  1. Thank you. That is the kindest compliment I have ever received with regard to modelling. Neil
  2. Gun blisters - how to make them. This had been weighing on my mind for a while: do I try and fabricate them with card and filleror try to get radical. Eventually, I decided to try and mould them by taking a piece of dowel and shaping it to become a male mould and then take a piece of hardboard to create a female former. Much to my surprise, it seems to have worked. Heat was provided with a hot air gun used for decorating and I managed to get the plastic to the right degree of softness through sheer luck. I shall continue to assemble the panel and publish an image once complete. Neil
  3. Yes, I picked-up a copy for a fiver - best bargain ever - and I have read it in detail. The information has to be teased-out amongst a lot of filler concerning one-of trials that doesn’t really support the narrative.
  4. Interesting. I know the XII was earlier than the VIII as it was yet anothe rush job and your tail section remerk would make sense to me. My understanding was that the VII and VIII were basically the same aircraft only that one was pressurised, them both representing what I can only describe as 'next generation' spitfires designed to use the Merlin 60 series and incorporatng many refinements such as flush rivetting, retractable tailwheels etc. However, they were taking a long time to tool-up and the Mk.IX, in true Spitfire style, became another interim mark that nudged the 'proper' versions out of the running. Does that make sense to you? This particular question has fascinated me for nearly fifty years! Neil
  5. Thank you to every body who has given me support. This week, progress has been glacial as I concentrated on, first prototyping the starboard wing cannon bay and then drawing something to work against and with a bit of trial and error I achieved a result. This drawing is crude, done in PowerPoint and mixes imperial and metic units. I'll never make a draughtsman! The metric measurements were taken after fitting the ammunition tray assembly as it was only with a great deal of filing and trial fitting that I was able to achieve a result. Here is the part-finished result. I have manufactured the gun 'tray', the ammunition tray and the wing covers. The big challenge I face is to create the teardrop blister and I think I am ging to have to learn to do vacuforming! Hopefully, things will move ahead this week! Cheers, Neil
  6. Thanks Graham, As I understand it, 50 Mk. XIIs were based on Mk. V fuselages and 50 were based on Mk.VIIIs. Certainly the latter would have been flush-rivetted and, slowly, I am starting to understand why the Mk.VIII took so long to come into production. Thanks, Neil
  7. Thank you Troy! A few replies to your very helpful comments: I doubt if any plans are perfect and, certainly, I found that some of what I would call fixed features (e.g. the demarcation betweem the leading edge skinning and the underwing) didn't match between the drawing and the model. Meanwhile, there is no doubt that scanning and grpahics packages to open -up a pile of possibilities that were not even dreampt-of forty years ago! Riverts are a whole world of pain and, gradually, I am starting to appreciate the detailed dfferences between marks. I THINK the Mk.VIII might have been the lead version for flush riveting although, of course, the Mk.IX was a derivative of the ealrier Mk.V. I think I am going to have to plump for a specific airframe (hopefully well-photographed) and then try to reproduce it to the best of my abilities. I suspect I am going to have to perform some pretty drastc surgery on the undercarriage legs and see that there is a wealth of resourceon this one subject. Also thank yo for the suggestion regarding the different wheel types. One things is for certain: I won't be using the kit parts! It's interesting you mention usig the Eduard model as a reference model, I didn't have one to hand but did use Airfix's XIVe as a bit of a guide. Not perfect but certainly helpful. Cheers, Neil
  8. Hi Rob, Many thanks for your comments. The nose does make me nervous and thank you for the suggestion regarding the fasteners: brilliant lateral thinking there! I have just learned about Buchon, so they might provide a better alternative with the demise of Heritage. Cheers, Neil
  9. Yes, some of this is a bit tricky to nail-down. What I need to do before too long is to decide on a particular airframe and stick with it and one factor will be to fine one that was well-photographed. Cheers, Neil
  10. Hi Rob, It's a huge subject and I have only really scratched the surface. The subject of cannon blisters is on in its own right and you can be right even if you are wrong! This is what I mean: http://spitfiresite.com/2010/01/cannon-blisters.html So, the fat blister is absolutely fine and if anybody challenges you, just look them in the eye and tell them it all repends on the armament fit! I shall be returning to the ammunition bay later today: I see a lot of plastikard being consumed! Cheers, Neil
  11. Thank you! Yes, I can feel a 1/32 VIV or even XII on the list! Neil
  12. The wings Spitfire IXs had ‘C’ or ‘E’ wings. These were essentially similar from a configuration perspective but, of greatest importance to the modeller, were significantly different to the earlier ‘A’ and ‘B’ wings. Airfix’s model was built with the eight-Browning ‘A’ wing and the 2005 Mk.V re-pop provided a few additional components to make the two cannon and four Browning ‘B’ wing. Frankly, it was a bit of a bodge but was probably good-enough for the purposes of making a passable Mk.V. This aside, the ‘C’ wing is quite a progression from the ‘B’. I was fortunate to obtain a scanned set of 1/48 plans taken from the excellent Modellers Datafile on Merlin Spitfires and these could blow-up to ½ 4 with no difficulty. Using good old PowerPoint, I was able to create templates for cutting and scribing, while the image below shows how I had overlaid a ‘C’ wing over an equivalent ‘B’ wing. This led to quite a few significant points: 1. The upper wing panels for the ‘C’ differ considerably from the ‘B’. The area to remove for the cannon it quite extensive. 2. This came as a surprise: in the ‘C’ wing, the inner Browning gun is further outboard than the ‘A’ and ‘B’ versions. The ammunition tanks for the cannon occupied the bay formerly used by the inner gun. 3. Airfix used the position of the inner machine gun as the position for the cannon. It appears that in the ‘C’ wing, the cannon is fractionally further outboard: only a small difference but significant when tying it into the undersurface scribing and internal panelling. The undersurfaces are also significantly different. The panels in the mid-wing area needed filling and rescribing, the cartridge ejection chutes need repositioning for the cannon and the repositioned inner machine gun. None of this is especially difficult but it does need filler, patience, and a lot of rubbing down! The pictures below explain some of the work. In this drawing, I have placed the 'C' wing drawing over the 'A'. Note the very large panels covering the cannon and ammunition bay, and - most important but surprising - the repositioning of the inner browning gun further outboard. In this underside view, some of the Mk.IX panels have been highlighted in bluw. This is a bit confusing because it includes both 'A' and 'C' wing panels. However, it does show how most of the cartridge ejection slots need to be repositioned. Here is the (slightly wet) unmodified port wing underside. By way of contrast, here is the modified starboard wing with a coat of primer to provide a consistent surface. There are more details to add but it does contrast well with the unmodified version. A comparison of the upper wing surfaces with the port wing inverted to provide a contrast to the modified starboard wing. Note the repositionied inner Briwning gun. A quick 'how does it look?' view with the new nose tacked in place. Finally, a trial fit of the cannon in the starboard wing. Thats all for now: let's see what the coming week brings! Kind regards, Neil
  13. Thank you all and welcome onboard! @bigbadbadge is that the Grey Matter conversion? Neil
  14. Many thanks for that. The undercarriage falls into a whole world of pain for me that, so far, I have looked-away from. I have the offer of a Mustang engine (although it comes with strings) but I might 'bottle' that one but you are right to remind me about the upper cowling. I must be mad! Nonetheless, it's assistance like this that keeps me going. Cheers, Neil
  15. Thank you! Accessories: a great way of separating a middle-aged man from his future pension!
  16. Peter, Thanks for your kind comments: it's heady stuff indeed! You are right: it is indeed a blank canvas and those goodies will, I hope, create an acceptable result. Or a crushing failure! Cheers, Neil
  17. A few months ago, I went on eBay and purchased this: "HERITAGE AVIATION 1:24TH SPITFIRE IX CONVERSION OOP LAST ONE..I'VE NOW RETIRED". In other words, Heritage Aviation's final 1/24 Spitfire IX conversion. I contacted the seller (Mr. Heritage Aviation himself) who advised me that he had sold some of his moulds and disposed of the others and was going to enjoy his other hobbies. So, what this meant was that if i messed this up, then there was no 'Plan B'! As a break from 1/48 BritJets, converting Airfix's venerable 1/24 Spitfire Mk.1A, later upgraded (I use that word advisedly) to a Mk.Vb feels like a big and potentially expensive project and it sure isn't a Shake and Bake, but having seen some of the superb 1/24 conversions on this forum, one may as well go big or go home. The Challenge Grafting Heritage Aviation's nose and extra bits is a pretty challenging task in its own right but there are two other factors: Airfix's model is very good but it getting-on a wee bit Quite apart from the little task of replacing the oil cooler under the port wing with a second radiator, the differences between the 'A' wing in the standard kit and even the kit's conversion parts to a 'B' wing, are significent when one considers the 'C' wing used by the Mk.IX. As an aside, the differences between the 'C' and 'E' wings are minor in comparison. Therefore, this is certainly no shake and bake but it does promise to be a fascinating project, requiring a great deal of research. First impressions Heritage Aviations components are all resin and appear well produced. I have added a picture below and the parts include: A complete new nose with side cowlings and lower panel as one moulding; A replacement top cowling; A new spinner and four propellor blades; Replacement tailplanes with horn-balanced elevators; A broad-chord rudder A pair of underwing radiators. The Airfix model is probably very familiar to many on this forum and it's hard to believe that the original moulds are fifty years old. Mine is the 2005 re-release with parts to convert it into a Mk.Vb and, to be brutally honest, the conversion was not Airfix's finest hour. It does provide a very nice later windshield and blown canopy, but some of the additional parts are not great. Perhaps the very worst parts are the cannons: it's probably unfair to compare them alongside the Eduard resin alternatives, but see for yourself below. As an aside, the machine guns that came with the original version are really quite sweet and when enhanced with Czech Master barrels, look superb. I have been working on the wings first to convert them to 'C' wing standard and shall provide an update soon. I hope this will be of interest. Kind regards, Neil
  18. My only contribution this this: and it's a classic "I got it from a bloke who knows a bloke" is tha when I worked for a certain British defence contractor in the 1990s, one of our Military Business chaps told me he had been flying Canberras in Chile during the Falklands conflict. Thats all I have and it's been a long time since I was told that. Neil
  19. @PeeWee21, can I recommend this as a great source of information on Coastal Command Lancasters? https://boxartden.com/reference/gallery/index.php/Aircam-Aviation-Series/Avro-Lancaster Kind regards, Neil
  20. Just diving in to 1/48, the Airfix F.4 model just happens to have all the spare parts to make a GA.11. Neil
  21. The FR.9 still had guns fitted, hence the 'F' in FR.9. Neil
  22. There is one other option: cut a masking disk to the correct diameter, paint the aircraft white to begin-with and then mask the roundel positions. I did something similar when painting an FAA Buccaneer: it allowed me to avoid the roundels having a grey cast behind them Cheers, Neil
  23. "Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence"! I cannot find any explicit references saying FR.9s could fire rockets but neither did I find anything saying they could not. This might be useful though. Cheers, Neil
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