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Roger Holden

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Everything posted by Roger Holden

  1. The Culver PQ-14As were used by the US Navy and painted in their standard drone colour scheme of gloss Insignia Red. (Orange-Yellow aka Chrome Yellow, Insignia Yellow, etc was the Navy's official WW2 colour for target-TOWING aircraft.....). A smaller number of PQ-14B were used by the USAAF. These should have been painted in their standard drone scheme of gloss International Orange, just like their most famous drone, the Bell RP-63, (but there seem to be few good photos of the Culvers) : https://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/Visit/Museum-Exhibits/Fact-Sheets/Display/Article/196305/bell-p-63e-kingcobra/ Whatever that yellow Hellcat was, it was definitely 'non-standard' : https://www.keymodelworld.com/article/platzs-remotely-piloted-1144-hellcat The Navy definitely had no yellow Culvers and I doubt the Army did....
  2. Maybe; but they are more recently applied than the anti-glare panel and with glossier paint, which could also account for the difference.
  3. Fuselage is NMF with BLACK anti-glare. USN trainers had red bands on rear fuselage AND wings to denote instrument trainers, but that's not what we're seeing here. My guess is the fuselage band is black or Insignia Blue and maybe indicates the base.....
  4. You should give it a go Dave. But time is one of the most important ingredients.......takes about 10 X as long as building a kit, Thanks Michael ! 'Cute' is good. There are several modelling 'themes' within my interest and one is vintage lightplanes, which aren't so arduous as the bigger stuff....
  5. Thanks Marko ! Nice of you to say so. But let's say, there are some aspects I find more challenging than others....
  6. Lots and lots of practice (40+ years). Started in my early teens and found it difficult to make everything square and precise to start with, but got better tools and plenty of practice until it became second-nature. There are multiple disciplines in modelling. Some people are best at painting, I'm best at whittling plastic.
  7. Thanks Dave. I saw Orde-Hume's article in AM, but didn't buy it as I already had quite a lot on the plane. Ord-Hume has also done quite a good article on the Key Publishing website. Not sure if it's the same article: https://www.key.aero/article/designing-foster-wikner-wicko Best articles are probably the 4-parter on Wikner's monoplanes in Air-Britain civil mag, last 2 of which cover the Wicko. I've always liked it, but never had enough info for a model. Then I found the restoration website, which had lots of detail photos taken as the restoration progressed, which were ideal for modelling. Unfortunately they chose to give it one of the colour schemes worn by the prototype, rather than the correct version for 'FJB, as depicted by my model.
  8. Geoffrey Neville ‘Wicko’ Wikner was a self-taught Australian aircraft builder of Swedish descent. Having designed and successfully flown a series of home-built aircraft in his home country, Wikner had become disillusioned by a lack of support from the Australian aviation authorities, who he felt were effectively thwarting his attempts to build light aircraft in the country. Thus, he decided to follow in the footsteps of his illustrious uncle, Edgar Wikner Percival and re-locate to England. After several years working in various aeronautical jobs, notably for Miles, Wikner entered into partnership with one Jack Foster and furniture manufacturer Lusty & Sons, to design a new plywood lightplane suitable for factory manufacture or home-building. The prototype was built in Lusty’s furniture works in the East End of London and powered by a modified Ford V8 car engine, made its first flight in 1936. Despite it’s racy, bullet-nosed appearance, it was seriously underpowered. A couple of years (and engine changes) later, it finally entered production in a factory at Southampton airport (Eastleigh), with the popular DH Gipsy Major engine as the definitive powerplant, which gave it the desired performance. After only a year of production, which resulted in 11 airframes , WW2 intervened and brought things to a halt. Most of the planes had found ready buyers in flying clubs, with 2 having gone abroad to New Zealand and South Africa. All were readily impressed for military service, where they were mainly used for ferrying ATA pilots around the country. In fact, a military version optimised for this activity was proposed, to be named ‘Warferry’, but came to nothing as the Lend-Lease Fairchild Argus was used instead. Several aircraft survived the war and took part in King’s Cup races in the 1950s. Ultimately, only a single aircraft, G-AJFB has survived to the present day, which underwent a complete restoration to better than new condition in the 2000s : http://www.wicko.com/ Here is my model of this aircraft, in its original 1938 colours. It was donated to the Midland Aeroclub, Pendeford, Wolverhampton, by the Wolverhampton Express and Star newspaper, on the condition that it was used for training 4 local youngsters to fly as part of the Civil Air Guard scheme and was named ‘Wulfrun II’ (after the Anglo-Saxon woman who founded Wolverhampton). Model is 100% scratchbuilt from plastic sheet. With its boxy shape, I thought it would be a straightforward scratchbuilding project, but the complex colour scheme and window arrangement elevated it into a more challenging category.... A few WiPs :
  9. Definitely dark green. Their whole fleet was in that scheme. Google their 747s and 727s. There are numerous clear photos and it's quite obvious.....
  10. Another nice result Michael. I like your thorough approach to studying your subject, which matches my own. Unfortunately there are no short-cuts to building accurate models.
  11. Eberspacher's drawing is of various versions of Winnie Mae and included (in a very small form), in the NASM Winnie Mae book. Think it also has some faults. Wylam's drawing is ok as a starting point as it gets the basics correct, but some of the secondary aspects are incorrect like the wheel/pants size and ailerons.
  12. Thanks Tim, Never knew they were like that ! But note that the Dora Wings Vega (like the 1/72 MPM one), is based on Wylam's drawings which incorrectly show too-small 30x5 wheels rather than the correct 32x6. Knowing that, it really sticks out when I see photos of both models built.
  13. The registration letters are definitely not white, but some intermediate shade, possibly with a white outline. There's a small photo in the Air-Britain Miles Aircraft book. It's very difficult to be sure which parts are green and red, but probably not AZ's choice....
  14. Carlos, Many of AZ's recent kits seem to be lifted off unavailable resin kits. In the case of the Hawk Major, there was an old Czech kit produced by Alliance Models I suspect may be the origin. Those parts are certainly poor.....the aerofoil section of the wing looks like it's on upside down ! And the decals for the vintage civil subjects they provided are just as inaccurate as the parts. Nothing usable there ! Fwiw the SBS kit (ex-Plastic Passion) doesn't look much better, with a too shallow fuselage and too long landing gear....
  15. Thanks Colin. Yes, I have a passion for the history, too and like to convey some of that....
  16. Village Photos is finished, I'm afraid. Need to find another hosting site, like I did (Imgur). It's my 4th different hosting site, since I started posting stuff here, 3 yrs ago.
  17. Thanks for your kind comments, gents ! All the surfaces are covered with very thin plastic sheet, embossed on the inside surface with a sharp object ( scriber, fine ball pen,etc). Basically the method 'pioneered' by Harry Woodman in his classic 1970s book ' Scale Model Aircraft in Plastic Card'. I read that book as a teenager and have been using the techniques I learned there ever since, sometimes with my own 'tweaks'.
  18. Thank you Michael ! Your work is pretty special, too. Plus, we share a passion for the history/context of our models and good aviation books.... Thanks, Joachim ! Yes, my projects usually require me to be most of the above. Most people think of Fieseler in connection with the Storch, but he was much more than that..... Well keep at it Steve ! Us scratch builders are a fairly rare breed, nowadays.. Thanks Keith ! Got a few older models to post, which I'll get around to in due course.
  19. Germany’s Gerhard Fieseler was one of the most important figures in the history of aerobatics. He dominated the formative era of European competition aerobatics from 1926-34, a period which saw it evolve into a disciplined sport, in which a series of pre-determined figures were performed and given scores by judges, according to degree of difficulty and precision of execution. Aerobatic competition was the second phase of Fieseler’s remarkable aviation career. He began as a fighter pilot in WW1, where he became the top scoring fighter ace in the Turkish theatre with 19 victories, where he acquired the nickname ‘Tiger of Macedonia’. Some of his victories were scored in second-rate types like the Roland DII, which perhaps gives some indication of his proficiency as a pilot. After the war, he became involved in sporting aviation, one of the few fields left open to German pilots after the limitations imposed by the Versailles Treaty. He was test pilot for the small Raab-Katzenstein company and flew modified versions of their sporting biplanes in his early contests, winning the German aerobatic championship 4 times in the late 20s/ early 30s, as well as performing at demonstrations throughout Europe. A significant factor in this success was his pioneering development of an inverted fuel system which permitted sustained inverted flight and negative ‘g’ manoeuvres. By the early 30s, Raab-Katzenstein was experiencing financial difficulties, so he decided to strike out on his own and build a new aircraft, optimised for aerobatics. To that end, he used his competition winnings to acquire a small maker of sailplanes in his home town of Kassel, along with the services of their designer, Emil Arnolt. The Fieseler F2 Tiger was the result, the first aircraft in the world designed specifically for aerobatics. It had an extremely robust structure, designed for the highest ‘g’ manoeuvres, but was consequently heavy and needed more power than was available from the low-powered German engines, leading him to select a 400 hp Czech Walter Pollux. The plane had marginal stability about all 3 axes and Fieseler refused to allow any other pilot to fly it on safety grounds. A cramped second cockpit behind the pilot was incorporated, in which Fieseler’s trusty mechanic rode with him to events across Europe, with his legs wedged on either side of the pilot’s seat. Another interesting innovation was the ‘sunburst’ marking used on the top wing, known at the time as ‘Fieselerstreifen’ (= Fieseler’s stripes) and widely copied by aerobatic or sporting aircraft the world over, ever since.... Fieseler used the Tiger to great effect, winning the 1932 & 33 German aerobatics championships, the 1933 European championship and finally, the crowning achievement of his career, the first World Aerobatics Championship held in Vincennes, France, in June 1934. His main competition in the international events came from Frenchmen Marcel Doret and Michel Detroyat, whom he usually managed to narrowly beat. After this victory, he announced his retirement from aerobatic competition to concentrate on aircraft manufacture, the final phase of his career, which lead eventually to his best-known creations the Storch and V-1 flying bomb. The F2 Tiger was retired to a museum in Berlin, which it occupied with many historic German aircraft from WW1 and the pioneer era. All were sadly destroyed by RAF bombing in November 1943. Some nice films of the Tiger in action are seen here, with Fieseler executing some of his hallmark manoeuvres. Good also to hear the rather rare Walter engine : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LFl0pGVWmwk https://digital.tcl.sc.edu/digital/collection/MVTN/id/685/rec/307 Here is my 1/72 model in its 1933 season markings, scratchbuilt (apart from the modified resin engine) in plastic sheet. It's a small model, with a wingspan of around 4.5 in (11cm) : Some WiPs: Walter Pollux IId and Schwarz propeller: Fieseler and mechanic :
  20. Indeed, which of course makes sense as it was operated on behalf of Imperial Airways, who had that colour scheme at the time. I think the red assumption came from the fact it was a De Havilland hire aircraft which was leased and retained their dark red colour scheme, but probably it got repainted.
  21. The Azur brand is finished, since the retirement of its proprietor, Jose Fernandez. The FRROM Azur brand continues, but is different people, AFAIK.
  22. Agreed, J-W. The 1933 Madrid-Manila flight by Fernando Rein-Loring was one of the greatest made by a Swift and it would be nice to have those markings.
  23. Definitely not Moa, or one of his followers. He builds 30 models in the time it takes me to build one. Our modelling philosophies are as far apart as our politics....
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