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Giorgio N

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Giorgio N last won the day on January 2 2020

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About Giorgio N

  • Birthday 07/22/1969

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  1. Yes, as John said the conversion is now back in stock at Italian Kits, see here https://www.italiankits.it/cunarmodel.html Not cheap but would avoid a lot of work. If you want one I'd not wait too long, production runs for these are quite small
  2. Interesting ! Do you have details of what was required for the downward facing camera ? Was the additional access panel on the starboard side required for this camera ?
  3. Do you mean Italian Kits ? If so this is pretty much a one man operation, the kind of requests that HM Revenues asked foreign dealers to sell into the UK are a burden for such small businesses, several have simply stopped selling to the Country rather than go through the whole hassle.
  4. Giorgio N

    African Mig-29

    I would not be surprised to find they have stencils in English language. Exported MiGs often have stencils in the language requested by the customer, although there are exceptions. English language stencils seem to have been quite common on MiGs in Middle East and African service while stencils in French language are also used, for example on the Algerian MiG-29s
  5. Yes for Dark Green as the colour remained the same and IIRC Tamiya's XF-81 is ok. No for Ocean Grey as this fell from use after the war and when camouflage returned on RAF fighters they used Dark Sea Grey. The two are quite different, better look for a proper dark sea grey paint
  6. Interesting point ! Sure the modification was well known by the end of the war, afterall hundreds of PR aircraft had been built in the meantime... Your comment made me wonder if all aircraft had the control linkages re-routed, however looking at pictures of a standard Mk,IX inner fuselage does not seem to show this. This would mean that such modification would have only been applied to aircraft carrying the vertical cameras and was not standardised. These aircraft were all former RAF machines that had served in the MTO. Now no proper PR variant was delivered to Italy, but since the F-24s were likely supplied from the RAF it is sure possible that all other parts were supplied in the same way... although the camera controls were Italian and the camera heating system was different, so even if the RAF supplied parts they may have not supplied the complete package for one reason or the other. Italian technicians already knew the Spitfire thanks to the Mk.V service in the Cobelligerant Air Force, so they may well have known the differences between variants of this aircraft. And then there's the matter of PT656... if this was actually a recce configured aircraft it would have been easy to copy the solutions used on this aircraft. But was it really so configured from the start ?
  7. Since this is your first post, let me first say welcome to the forum ! I'm sure you'll enjoy this place regarding the excessive weight reason, I have heard this explanation before but I've always found this hard to believe. Paint once cured is not that heavy and an aircraft with the kind of power of the Lightning would have had no problem carrying around the 20-30 kg of paint needed for an aircraft of that size. Drag may be a more serious concern but we have to assume that paint was applied in a very "unprofessional" way to have a serious effect on drag. Afterall the RAF flew camouflaged Lightnings for many years and they never complained about any reduction in performance In any case both schemes would make for very interesting modeling subjects !
  8. They were in natural metal with some Saudi Exceptions as discussed here
  9. There are a couple of good reasons to spray national markings, one being that it's possible to introduce on the markings the same effects used for the camo scheme, so obtaining a more realistically weathered finish. Of course weathered finishes and similar stuff are not to everybody's taste but having nice shiny and clean roundels on a weathered model does not look too realistic. To avoid ridges the main things are used thin coats and never spray against the mask edge, same as with every kind of masking. Clearly the smallers size of markings mean a lot more care but with some practice it's possible. Speaking of suppliers, I quite like Maketar products: https://shop.maketar.com/?product_cat=aircraft-insignia-markings They have masks for several types of markings and also do custom masks. Of course there are others around, for example Montex who have a huge catalogue: http://www.montex-mask.com/en/home I've made many masks at home for markings, for circles I still tend to use a compass cutter but for other stuff I use the same cutter as MikeC. A computer controlled cutter is a great tool, it's not cheap and every mask need work to be correctly drawn and sized but the possibilities are endless
  10. Not sure if I should consider this a question, maybe more of a talking point... anyway, here I was a couple days ago stuck into doing very little by a fastidious but fortunaly short-lived health issue and I was contemplating the stash trying to decide on something for a quick build. Having a few Eduard Spitfires (a dozen at the moment..) it was not strange that one of them caught my attention and since on my to-do list is an Italian aircraft I started reading througgh some books. Here I found the story of SM174 and its conversion to a recce aircraft. This was not the only Mk.IX in Italian service to be so converted, there were another few and they were seemingly used to spy on Jugoslavia in the late '40s. These aircraft did not simply feature the oblique camera in the radio hatch, like the well known pink FR.IXs of 16 Sqn, they received two vertical F.24 camers, like in the proper PR variants. This means that such modification was possible without much trouble and brings me to my first "question"... was this something possible from the beginning ? Was the Mk.IX fuselage already equipped to be converted for such missions ? These converted aircraft featured ventral openings for the camera lenses of course but also a new door on the starboard side of the fuselage.. exactly like the PR.XIs and other PR variants, that makes me think that even if the Italian technicians did the work on their own they may have followed a somewhat "standard" procedure. Interestingly while the external configuration was the same of the PR.XI, the controls used were of Italian manufacture and there were differences in the camera heating systems. The chapter in the book interestingly also mentioned the presence of one aircraft already configured for recce mission since it's RAF service, PT656. Now PT656 was indeed one of the aircraft passed from the RAF to Italy, however the only picture I found of this when serving with 237 Sqn. does not show any feature that may make it used for recce work.. that brings me to a second "question"... how common were the FR.IXs ? And were there aircraft configured with ventral cameras ? Were there FR.IXs used by the RAF in the MTO ? If so, were they all in one single unit or were they spread among various units ? I know of a few SAAF aircraft of course, but were these equipped with ventral cameras ? I only seem to remember obliques. Not sure if these doubts will find an answer, in any case I've not almost decided on one of these aircraft, in particular MM.4102 of 51 Stormo, coded 51.31. This was previously MJ571 and was an aircraft with quite a history.... delivered to the RAF in Dec. 1943, she served with 312 and later 317 Sqn. She was later sent to the Mediterranean where she was with 72 Sqn. After the war was passed to the Italian air force where she was converted as described above. In 1952 she went to Israel where she served for another 4 years, being finally SOC in 1956. That brings me to an idea that I had a while ago, building models of the same aircraft in different markings through her life! Here's a subject that could be built in 3 different and interesting markings... P.S. and speaking of this idea, I'm still contemplatining building MK716 in both her pink dress of 1944 and the later French markings worn after the war...
  11. Don't know in NZ but in the UK and Europe the SH kit is actually generally cheaper than the Airfix one or sells at around the same price in the box including a V-1. Of course by the time the kits reach your shores thing may differ quite a lot..
  12. Well, you would have some work ahead.. and I'd rather start from a Mk.ix using parts from the Hase Vb. With these you would have to: - shorten the engine area (or better cut away the tamiya cowling at the firewall and replace with the Hasegawa parts) - find the relevant intake with filter (from the Hasegawa kit) - delete the Mk.ix box style radiator from under the port wing, fill the area, rescribe and replace with the round radiator of the Hasegawa Mk.V - remove the gun bulges and replace with the Hasegawa ones. - add the lower wing bulges - move the location of the outer MG, including its spent cases slot under the wing - use the Hasegawa gun barrels and fairings - use the Hasegawa exhausts and propeller - modify the shape of the elevators (but some ix had the early elevators and some V the late ones) And I sure have forgotten a few details here and there... Doing a Mk.Vc would be slightly easier as the armament related work would not be required. It sure is doable, how easily would depend on the modeller skills and will power. I did convert 1/72 Mk.ix kits in earlier variants so I have a rough idea of the work involved. I would however go for a Vc, the extra work needed for a B wing may sound relatively small but it can be a pain
  13. Michael, I can sure understand your choice. I'll be interested in seeing how you'll improve the look, the Italeri box features an interesting decal sheet and I've been tempted for a while..
  14. This kit has nothing to do with the Esci mould, it's an older kit with raised panel lines issued by Testors and Italeri and later reboxed by Bilek. Said that, this and the Esci kit share some very similar features, that always made me think there was some kind of relation. One thing these kits have in common is the representation of the cockpit: both kits have cockpits too deep, particularly the rear station. Consolles and instrument panels should be higher in the pit, with the rear panel obstructing the view of the systems operator. This eccessive depth explains why the seats in these kits feature very tale bases. The Fujimi kits have the same cockpit, as the company making the moulds for Fujimi and Esci was the same. Fujimi later rectified the problem with their British Phantom series. This means that aftermarket seats will need plasticard on the floor to be brought up to the correct level, otherwise they will " sink" in the too deep cockpit
  15. If you have Klear under the drop of Mr. Surfacer it should not be a problem, just dip the part in something that can dissolve Klear, I use ammonia but Mike's idea is good too. After that just dip in Klear again. Just do not use anything that may attack the plastic, I would probably avoid acetone or similar solvents
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