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Mark Joyce

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Mark Joyce last won the day on April 27

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About Mark Joyce

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  1. I've built oodles of P-40s over the years but this is my first P-51...ever. So be gentle. And, yes, I do know the Malcolm hood isn't completely on. Unfortunately I didn't discover that it wouldn't quite fit until the photos were taken; an issue caused when I attached the windscreen prior to painting a wee bit to far aft. I thought about trying to force it in place, but with my luck the cure would be worse than the disease. Also unfortunately, the hood looks ludicrous in the open position since the fit there is even worse. I'll figure out what to do about it later... This is the 72nd scale Academy kit in all its glory, including the decals that are every bit as horrible as legend says. I don't know about nowadays, but back when I was in the U.S. Army Reserves in the mid 80s to early 90s, we referred to the little squares of toilet paper found in MREs as John Wayne paper, for it was "rough and tough and takes no....poop." Okay, we never actually said "poop" but something a bit more profane. These decals are similar: rough and touch and take no setting solutions. Fortunately I found a build article on Modeling Madness by George Oh who detailed his trials and tribulations with Academy decals and, putting his experience to use, I pretty much beat them into submission, although some silvering still occurred. I'm just thankful I decided to mask and paint the invasion stripes and used some other decals for the national insignia (although they weren't opaque enough to hide the black invasion stripes). I decided to keep the weathering to a minimum, mainly just exhaust staining, based largely on a nice photograph of "Old Crow" taken when the stripes were just slathered on. And speaking of invasion stripes, these are the first ones I've painted in 15+ years. No P-40 had them. Trust me. If any P-40s were still flying around England in 1944, they were probably used to ferry cans of black and white paint on June 5th from the supply depot to the front line bases. And what's this about "puttied wings?" Again, no P-40s had them. And if so many P-51s did have them, why do the manufacturers insist on releasing kits with panel lines and rivets. Thanks for looking, and for those who actually read all this, for spending your valuable time doing so. And as always, comments and constructive criticism is welcome. But as I said at the beginning; be gentle! Cheers, Mark
  2. Very nice job! I agree; those panel lines look fine as they are. Great looking NMF and subtle weathering, and you must have a steady hand to highlight in silver those lines, etc. in the wheel wells. Cheers, Mark
  3. For what it's worth, here's my take on your questions: 1. Yes to the ventilation windscreen window. I'm not as confident it had the six guns now, though, based on looking more closely at the photographs. 2. Yes to the two color upper surface scheme. 3. From the information Buz recently posted, it appears most but all OD/NG P-40Fs (later ones) and P-40Ls were slated for the Pacific or at home. So it's possible that a Trixie #40 could be OD/NG, although I myself don't have photographic documentation of one. All I'm aware of is the profile in Carl Molesworth's book that shows it. Perhaps he might be able to clarify things if and when he gets back to me. Cheers, Mark
  4. Thanks for the input, Buz, especially regarding the information about the destination of the different P-40s. Regarding the port side of Trixie, I'm not finding a photo for #40, just the one for #61. Is there one out there that you're referring to? All the ones I'm finding show the starboard side.
  5. Hi Brian, We are starting to go, if not yet already gone, beyond my knowledge here, but I'll give it a go! At the very least it appears that by the serial numbers provided we are dealing with three P-40s named "Trixie." First we have the two #40s, which based on the information provided in Carl's book are the P-40F-15 shown in the photograph (possibly taken in June '43, when the caption indicates Bloomer got this second victory?) and the P-40L-5 shown in the profile, which indicates a date of September '43. Then we have one #61, which based on the serial number that Buz provided would be a P-40L-1. And since #61 in the photograph has no checkertails, and Carl indicates these were applied starting in June '43, was this the first "Trixie?" Remember also that, as Buz mentioned earlier and is detailed in Carl's book, the P-40F-15 went to the 324th FG and was renamed "Anne." There is a photo of "Anne" in Carl's book as well. I personally don't know why some P-40Fs and Ls were camouflaged whilst others the basic OD/NG, or if there is any way to determine by serial number or such. Perhaps Buz can enlighten us. Also, as I've looked into the 79th FG P-40s it's come to my understanding that the yellow surround came and went in a couple of phases, so is not necessarily something to nail down a date. Noted aviation historian and color expert Dana Bell is the one best suited to answer this, along with the particularities of the national insignia. And to how and why the profile of #40 in Carl's book came about, I obviously don't know but perhaps when he gets back to me he might be able to provide some additional information. I'm not sure if any of this makes sense, but it's getting really confusing! Cheers, Mark
  6. Brian, Carl Molesworth got back to me and he's traveling, so is unable to let me know if he can even clarify things once he returns and checks his resources. In the meantime I looked again at all the photos. I'm 99% sure that the photograph of Trixie in Carl's book is the same P-40 on the top of page 12 in the "Checkertails" book; in fact, the same plane in all the photos on page 12. The only difference I see are the 'napalm' tank and the standard drop tank, plus the change in shadows. I could most bet they started with photos of the drop tank on, then off, then later in the day (hence the change in shadows) with the 'napalm' tank finally installed. Photos can be deceiving, but it appears this P-40F had the dark earth and middle stone over azure blue camouflage, the small window on the windscreen, and all six wing guns. Unless something new comes to light, when I model "Trixie" this is what I'm going with. The main thing missing is what the port side of this airplane looked like. If you look closely at #61, it appears the nose art is the full 'green dragon' emblem of the 318th FS, similar to what's shown on page 10 in the same book. Did Trixie #40 have this too? Again, artistic license and assumptions come into play! Cheers, Mark
  7. John, I have both kits although I've yet to build the XB-43. The fin on mine appears identical to yours, except my kit has greenish resin. It wouldn't surprise me if Anigrand uses as many of the same parts on both kits and simply failed to take into account the fact that the XB-43 has a noticeably taller fin than the XB-42. The horizontal fins almost look the right size. Too bad I didn't get an extra one of those with my kit! Cheers, Mark
  8. Brian, if we assume (here I go assuming again) that the four photographs of page 12 in McDowell's 'Checkertail' book are all the same aircraft, then it looks like it was six wing guns. It appears that the photos were taken at roughly the same place, based on the landscape, but there are some minor details, such as what if any ordinance is under the fuselage and the presence or lack of a cover on the radiator opening, all of which are simple changes, that I wouldn't bet much money on it. Then you have not only the photo of #61 on page 16 of the same book, which appears to be a P-40L based on the partial serial number seen on the tail, regardless of what the last digits are, but the one on page 18 in which the caption indicates its also Trixie, although no identifying markings can be seen. As you noted, it has no small window on the windscreen. Personally, I wouldn't use this photograph as a reference since we can't be positive that it's any Trixie. I'm confident Buz will have better input, but in the meantime I can email Carl Molesworth and hopefully get some clarification from him. I plan on also modeling Trixie someday so need to know the information as well! Cheers, Mark
  9. Col. Robert Baseler had the outboard guns removed on his P-40F-20 41-20006, named 'Stud,' according the Carl Molesworth's book. There are likely others but that's at least confirmation. It's blisteringly hot in my neck of the woods so I did the lawn work this morning. Cheers, Mark
  10. I don't have available photos of my Anigrand XB-42, but my landing gear arrangement arrangement appears identical to hsr's. Like he said, the airframes were basically the same and since there seem to be more photos of the XB-42 on the Internet I would base it on those pictures. For either kit, the landing gear is a bit flimsy and I wouldn't trust it to support the weight of all that resin over time. I had a spare 9 volt battery sitting around so have used it to keep the weight off the gear. Someday I might actually replace it with something a bit less noticeable! Cheers, Mark
  11. Brian, I think that the information isn't necessarily contradictory, just not fully explained. Keep in mind that, like any operational group, aircraft losses were high due to combat, accidents, etc., and replacement aircraft came in from various sources. So for example on Trixie, Bloomer might have gone through two (or more) P-40Fs and/or Ls during his tour. I would assume (and I know what's said about people who assume!) that, if possible, he would retain the same plane number on each P-40 and also the cowling with the artwork. I've come up against the same dilemma in modeling other P-40s. If you look at the photos of "Sawtooth Apache" on page 14 in the same Squadron/Signal book, you'll see that it appears we are dealing with two different P-40s based on at least that windscreen...and I can almost guarantee that one of those never flew again! I ended up modeling the one in which you see the nose art, which had the windscreen and was hopefully also coded 17. If you have Jeff Ethell's book, "P-40 Warhawk in World War II Color" you'll see very nice photographs of 'Jazz' Jaslow's P-40 "Sweet Bets" of the 79th FG. Look closely at the cockpit details and you'll think you are looking at two different P-40s. In addition, you can just barely make out the serial number under the cockpit in one of those photos, and at least to me it doesn't seem to match the number seen on the rudder in another photo. As Buz said, and what I do, is just go with the best photographs you can find of your subject. Some artistic license might be required but that's almost always the case. Speaking of 79th FG P-40s, I've been trying for years with no success to put together information to build at least one 85th FS P-40F/L with completely correct markings. Trying to match the names on the nose with the plane number with the Vargas-style rudder art has so far eluded me. I've pretty much decided to go with the one that I have the most information on, even though I know it has some, unknown to me, name on its nose. By the way, the 325th passed many if not most of its P-40s to the 324th FG when the former transitioned to the P-47. Cheers, Mark
  12. I agree with Mike's comments 100%. I don't know why, bur Marauders really seemed to have suffered more from paint chipping than any other airplane out there. Looking forward to your next presentation! Cheers, Mark
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