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Acklington

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  1. An update - not only did I incorrectly fit an aerial wire to this model, I also completely missed the obvious in the photos of the real thing i.e. it had the earlier style canopy, not the 'blown hood' of most Spitfire Mk.Vb's. So I've prised the wrong canopy off, and fitted the correct style. Here are a new set of photos, and I'll eventually delete most of the earlier photos; EN821, 243 Sqdn, Ouston, July 1942 (21) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr EN821, 243 Sqdn, Ouston, July 1942 (25) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr EN821, 243 Sqdn, Ouston, July 1942 (28) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr EN821, 243 Sqdn, Ouston, July 1942 (35) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr EN821, 243 Sqdn, Ouston, July 1942 (44) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr EN821, 243 Sqdn, Ouston, July 1942 (47) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr Ignorance is bliss where Spitfires are concerned, and the more that you learn about them the more you realise that you don't even know half of it!
  2. Drat! I did look long and hard for the little stub on top of the rudder, and wondered why it wasn't there. But I'm very glad to be corrected as I hate doing aerial wires. I'm also puzzled, in the "Aeroplane" photo above, by the apparent absence of the prominent canon blister on top of the starboard wing. It may have been removed by the censor, but why? Many thanks for the comments everyone, they are much appreciated.
  3. After a run of difficult models, I fancied doing something simple for a change, at least that was the plan! So here is Airfix's 1974 model of the Spitfire Vb, which has been released and re-boxed several times. It is a reasonably accurate kit, although much simpler than today's CAD generated models. EN821, 243 Sqdn, Ouston, July 1942 (2) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr EN821, 243 Sqdn, Ouston, July 1942 (5) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr EN821, 243 Sqdn, Ouston, July 1942 (12) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr EN821, 243 Sqdn, Ouston, July 1942 (14) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr EN821, 243 Sqdn, Ouston, July 1942 (16) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr I had to find a replacement for the canopy, as mine had bad air bubbles. Also fitted a larger oil cooler (from a more modern Airfix kit), and scratch built two heating pipes coming out of the rear of the exhausts. The marking became a big challenge, as the real machine had obviously started life with 1941 style roundels (and their brighter colours), before being partly repainted into the mid-1942 scheme. Also the code letters were a funny size, which I couldn't quite find a match for. The letter 'M' is always difficult, as no matter how many M's you have on decal sheets, they never include the one you want, so I made mine using letter 'V's. It is a Spitfire Mk.Vb serial EN821 of 243 Squadron at RAF Ouston, Northumberland in July 1942. It was being flown by their commander Squadron Leader Allan E.Johnston when the "Aeroplane Magazine" took a series of photos, which have since been widely published. Does this one look familiar to you? 243 Sqn Ouston 1942 original by Philip Pain, on Flickr You will recognise it as the following art print that has become the most common Spitfire painting to adorn living room walls; Vickers Supermarine Spitfire Mark VB of 243 Squadron by Philip Pain, on Flickr And then the story of EN821 gets even more interesting. Later on in 1942 it moved on to 65 Squadron, before being returned to manufacturers throughout 1943, for various updates and mods. In February 1944 it was transferred to the Fleet Air Arm, but apparently it was not 'navalised' or hooked, just being intended for shore based training. It was issued to 808 Squadron at RNAS Lee-on-Solent, and then on D-Day 6th June 1944 it was shot down by an enemy aircraft over Le Havre while spotting and gun-laying for Royal Navy warships. Sadly Sub Lieutenant Cogill was seen struggling to bail out, but he was killed. Most versions of D-Day say that the Luftwaffe was nowhere to be seen, but 129 allied aircraft were lost during the invasion. It must have been a rare event for an aircraft to fall to a Luftwaffe fighter. It is not known if EN821 wore navy camouflage, but it would undoubtedly have had full D-Day stripes.
  4. Many thanks for the comments, they are much appreciated. If you are intending to build one I should add a word of warning. I had a real problem getting the canopy to fit as the back end was sitting well proud of the fuselage. I had to shave the curved fuselage to a triangular shape and also shave down the aerial mount. It was only when trawling the internet for similar, that I found a comment that Brengun subsequently introduced a revised fuselage to solve the problem. I don't know if this is true, and I don't know how you can tell if you have the revised kit.
  5. Just finished, my take on the very nice Brengun Typhoon (early car-door); DN439, 198 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, Jan 1943 (52) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr DN439, 198 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, Jan 1943 (51) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr DN439, 198 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, Jan 1943 (48) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr DN439, 198 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, Jan 1943 (27) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr DN439, 198 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, Jan 1943 (19) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr This is a Hawker Typhoon 1b, DN439 of 198 Squadron at RAF Ouston, Northumberland in January 1943. The squadron was still working up during their brief three week stay at RAF Ouston, and their intended role was fighter interception. Only later on in 1944 did 198 Squadron become one of the leading exponents of ground attack and close support, using rocket and bomb equipped Typhoons. In early February 1943 198 Squadron moved to nearby RAF Acklington and were declared operational. It was 16th February 1943 on an operational scramble that DN439 swung on takeoff, ground looped and was wrecked. The pilot W/O W.L. Mount was unhurt, but DN439 had lasted barely a month from new. New identification markings for Typhoons had been introduced in December 1942, to try and reduce the number being shot down in mistake for FW190s. Thus the prominent underwing stripes (NOT 'D-Day' markings), yellow uppersurface bands, and black ring around the spinner. My code letter 'E' is not confirmed, but records show that another 'E' served with the squadron, probably arriving not long after DN439 was wrecked, so likely to be a replacement 'E'. The Brengun kit is a very nice 'cottage industry' example, accurate and finely detailed, but like all limited run kits it needs extra work to put together. It contains parts for both early and late Typhoons. The markings were made up from Xtradecal sheets, and the kit's decals were not used.
  6. Many thanks for the comments, they are much appreciated. I spent much time agonising over who built the original! There are conflicting versions in different publications, not to mention equally conflicting versions of what airframe mods appeared on which aircraft. It really is a nightmare. I can't remember which sources I finally went with, but I was convinced that mine was Douglas built.
  7. Just finished today, although I'm not at all happy with it. This is the re-boxed MPM kit and while the surface detail is excellent, the fit of many parts was abysmal and the wings/tail are far too thick. I'm really kicking myself for not doing a massive sanding down before joining the halves. Also had to pinch correct sized wheels from the 1/72 Revell Havoc kit. It also took nine separate lumps of lead squeezed into various places to stop it tail sitting. The Special Hobby kit is for a Boston IIIA, but contains all the necessary parts to do the earlier mark III, but without the relevant instructions. So it was quite a guessing game, and referring to various reference books for the Boston didn't help given the bewildering variations between RAF Boston 1, II, and IIIs , Havocs, A-20B and Cs. Douglas Boston III, AL275, 226 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, 4 Aug 42 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Douglas Boston, AL275, 226 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, 4 Aug 42 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Douglas Boston III, AL275, 226 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, 4 Aug 42 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Douglas Boston III, AL275, 226 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, 4 Aug 42 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Douglas Boston III, AL275, 226 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, 4 Aug 42 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Douglas Boston III, AL275, 226 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, 4 Aug 42 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Douglas Boston, AL275, 226 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, 4 Aug 42 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Douglas Boston, AL275, 226 Sqdn, RAF Ouston, 4 Aug 42 by Philip Pain, on Flickr 226 Squadron was detached from their base at RAF Swanton Morley, Norfolk, to RAF Ouston, Northumberland on 4th August 1942, to take part in Army Co-operation Exercise "Dryshod". By the end of that first day they had lost three of their Bostons in accidents, and AL275 'MQ-Z' belly landed in a field some four miles to the west of Ouston when the engines cut. Sgt W.E.Burns was flying and there were no injuries. The markings on this Boston consist of pre-May 1942 roundels and grey codes, over painted to conform to the revised regulations for roundel sizes and code colours. This Boston was built by Douglas and shipped to Liverpool, roaded through the streets and assembled at Speke. It is not (yet) known if it flew again after its accident.
  8. Many thanks for the comments, much appreciated. I do feel inclined to do another civil one, if I can find a suitably colourful scheme. Perhaps my namesake 'Buster' Paine's all-red G-AHNA, or G-ALCK sister aircraft to G-AIHD at Sunderland. There is one update to the story of G-AIHD, I have just been contacted by a former Air Cadet who was on summer camp at RAF Ouston in August 1967. They found G-AIHD being dismantled in the hangar, and he picked up a hose pipe clip from the floor. This 'souvenir' is still one of his cherished possessions.
  9. Following on from the WIP thread, it's finished, but not without some difficulty. The exact colour is something of a mystery, there is a colour photo of it on the internet, but it doesn't help much, looking like a faded shade of PRU blue. So I just went with my notebook description from 1966 i.e. "medium blue". I found a tin of "Revell" number 50 which seems to do the trick. Also my later 1968 photo shows a light faded colour. These are the two photos, both taken by me at RAF Ouston; G-AIHD (DX241), WD332 no engine, RAF Ouston, 4 Jan 66 by Philip Pain, on Flickr G-AIHD (DX241), WN948, RAF Ouston, 15 Aug 68 by Philip Pain, on Flickr The other difficulty is that I somehow cracked the windscreen, presumably applying too much pressure when gluing. I then tried to find how to buy spare parts from 'Dora Wings' in Czech land, but I'm getting nowhere. So the crack remains for now, disguised with some black paint. G-AIHD, Airwork manager Knox, RAF Ouston, c 1962 (2) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr G-AIHD, Airwork manager Knox, RAF Ouston, c 1962 (9) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr G-AIHD, Airwork manager Knox, RAF Ouston, c 1962 (12) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr G-AIHD, Airwork manager Knox, RAF Ouston, c 1962 (14) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr G-AIHD, Airwork manager Knox, RAF Ouston, c 1962 (15) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr G-AIHD, Airwork manager Knox, RAF Ouston, c 1962 (17) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr G-AIHD, Airwork manager Knox, RAF Ouston, c 1962 (22) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr G-AIHD, Airwork manager Knox, RAF Ouston, c 1962 (25) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr G-AIHD, Airwork manager Knox, RAF Ouston, c 1962 (28) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr At RAF Ouston this Proctor was owned by Mr T.G.Knox, the Airwork Ltd manager responsible (as a civilian contractor) for maintaining the RAF Chipmunks. It was wfu in September 1963 but continued to languish in the back of the main hangar for a few more years. By 1968 it had been given to the RAF Firemen to burn on the fireground. However, I never realised until researching this week, what an interesting history it had. Built in 1942 as an RAF radio trainer with the serial DX241, it was demobbed and converted for the civil register as G-AIHD in September 1946. Its first owner was the Lancashire Aircraft Corporation Ltd, possibly operating on air taxi and joy-ride work out of Blackpool. It served with LAC throughout the period of the Berlin Airlift 1948-9, and while there is no record that it participated, it seems to have been the favourite mount of LAC's Chief Pilot and Operation Manager, Squadron Leader W.I."Wally" Lashbrook DFC, AFC, DFM, and it was he who organised the legendary participation of 24 of LAC's Halifax freighters in the Airlift. He commuted regularly between Bovingdon and Wunstorf in Germany, and may have used this Proctor to do so? In any event this Proctor became his favoured mount in subsequent air races, and his first success with it was on 22 August 1950. He flew it in the Air League Challenge Cup at Sherburn-in-Elmet but was unplaced. He then flew it later the same day to Yeadon and won the Yorkshire Aeroplane Cup Trophy Race at an average speed of 161.5 mph. He also entered the Proctor in the Daily Express Air Race at Hurn on 20 September 1950, beating the only Halifax ever to air race, G-AKEC (averaging 267 mph at sea level!), but losing out to some stiff competition including Jeffery Quill in a Spitfire F.22. On 11-12 July 1952 Lashbrook entered the Proctor in the National Air Races at Woolsington, competing in the Kemsley Challenge Trophy, but again losing out to some illustrious competitors including Group Captain John Cunningham in a Vampire FB.9 WR211. The prizes were presented by Field Marshall Montgomery. On another occasion at Sandown on 18 June 1950, Lashbrook had raced the Proctor against others including Peter Townsend in Hurricane G-AMAU/PZ865 (also painted bright blue overall). Lashbrook gave up flying in 1953, but the Proctor was still racing in April 1959, being seen as race '66' at Oxford. Also of note in the Woolsington air races, was a Mr.T.G.Knox, flying Proctor G-AMBS to win the Kings Cup Handicap Race. He subsequently became the final owner of Proctor G-AIHD. Knox also won the Air League Challenge Cup Trophy Race on 20 August 1955, this time flying Proctor 3 G-ALCK which is now preserved at Duxford as LZ766. Lashbrook deserves a book in his own right, and suffice to mention that he also flew 29 bombing raids over Germany in Halifaxes; managed to crash land a shot-up 35 Squadron Halifax near Tollerton in complete darkness with minor crew injuries; led the first airbourne para raid 'Operation Colossus' in Whitleys to destroy an aqueduct in southern Italy; was shot down in a Halifax in 1943 over the French Belgian border, but escaped through the French resistance 'Comet' escape line over the Pyrenees to Gibraltar, helping to bottle the Champagne harvest on the way; was a close friend with fellow 1930's Aircraftsman "Ross", later Lawrence of Arabia; and lived to the age of 104, collecting an MBE on the way for sports services the the Ayshire Army Cadet Force. Proctor G-AIHD was sold by LAC in June 1953, and subsequently became part of Airwork Ltd's fleet, and in 1956 was based at Sunderland/Usworth with fellow Proctor 3 G-ALCK. G-AIHD is also known to have appeared at air displays including RAF Acklington B of B Display on 20 September 1958, and Coventry on 15 July 1961. I'm really pleased to have brought this forgotten Proctor 'back to life', so to speak.
  10. Just after Christmas I was delighted to find this kit on Ebay. It was released in 2017, but somehow escaped my attention. Proctor (1) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr Proctor (2) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr It comes with no less than five military options, and includes optional parts for all the early Proctors, plus the Vega Gull. However the only canopy included is for the Proctor 3. It has etched brass parts, canopy mask (for painting), no less than three tail wheels, two propellors and spinners, and a pile of optional seat parts, none of which are explained in the instructions. The overall quality and detail is excellent, but as I soon discovered it requires very careful and fiddly assembly, and if parts are not trimmed exactly to fit there are knock on problems later on. The extensive instruction sheet compounds the problem by not clearly showing where some parts are meant to fit. I'm not going to illustrate all of the build, so this will be a short thread; Proctor (5) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr This photo shows the best part of a week's work. There are no less than 60 parts already assembled in this photo! The interior colours took quite some research for my chosen model, and no interior colour guidance is given in the instructions. The propellor was unlikely to rotate, or likely to fall off, so I'm making a new shaft, etc. Proctor (6) w by Philip Pain, on Flickr There is one obvious error in the kit, which does not include the curved underside fairing for the engine. Yet strangely one of the assembly drawings in the instructions does show it. So I fashioned mine with modelling putty, having first put the kit's engine exhaust in place. Painting is now well underway.
  11. Many thanks for the comments, which are much appreciated. Yes, the 'dark green' is Humbrol's standard tin, as is the dark earth. The difference between the Anson and the Wellington is that the Anson has been varnished, two coats of gloss then transfers then a coat of matt (which annoyingly clouded in places, but I call it "weathering"). The Wellington I just buffed the paint and did not use any varnish, just touched up around the wing roundels where any carrier film showed. I wanted to keep my future options open with the Wellington, in the hope that further information may emerge regarding its markings. For example, could it have been painted like the Anson? Regarding my paints, I have a problem living on the Isle of Man, because UK suppliers will not ship paint by airmail. Surface mail charges are horrendous, becoming 'special deliveries' by freight carriers. So there are only a couple of shops on the Island that stock Humbrol paint tins. However, when I'm in England I stock up whenever I can, but usually only manage to get to Humbrol stockists.
  12. Following on from completion of my Anson airbourne interception trainer, here are photos of the assembled 62 OTU fleet, at RAF Ouston, Northumberland in March 1945. The Anson Mk.1 (A.I.), DJ528 '45', is about to be retired, to be replaced by the Wellington Mk.XVIII (T.18), ND113 '27', with Hurricane IIc, LF363 'F' to act as a target. 62 Operational Training Unit, RAF Ouston, March 1945 by Philip Pain, on Flickr 62 Operational Training Unit, RAF Ouston, March 1945 by Philip Pain, on Flickr 62 OTU had over 50 Ansons, replaced by 29 Wellingtons, and they trained all of Fighter Command's night fighter crews. Non-radar equipped Ansons acted as target aircraft, until replaced by 23 Hurricane IIc aircraft. The OTU was split into 3 squadrons, and 'A' Sqdn had white numeral codes commencing '1' to '18''; 'B' Sqdn had light blue numeral codes commencing '32' to '47'; and 'C' Sqdn (the target aircraft) carried single letters commencing 'A', also possibly painted light blue. Hurrican IIc LF363 still flies with the BBMF at RAF Coningsby, and it is not known what code letter it had at 62 OTU. So 'F' has been applied, this being it's known letter when earlier being with 309 (Polish) Sqdn. By 1947 LF363 is known to have lost its guns, and I suspect that they might have been removed at 62 OTU, as there would have been no requirement for a target aircraft to have them. I'm hoping for some definite confirmation before removing the gun barrels from this model. These models at RAF Ouston are part of my project to model all of the main aircraft types based there from 1941 to 1974. So far 31 models have been completed, and they can be found on my "RAF Ouston Research" website at https://sites.google.com/view/raf-ouston-research/models-of-oustons-aircraft
  13. Many thanks for the comments everyone, much appreciated. I wish it had been the 'old' Airfix Anson, without the later and incorrect wing-ribs fabric effect, which I didn't manage to get rid of completely. If I was doing this again (which I won't!), I would find an original Airfix Anson, and swap the wings and tailplane with the later 'fabric effect' fuselage. The 'photo over the grass' originally had my left hand holding the port wing tip. Then 15 minutes later, in 'corel paint shop pro' it was gone. I was going to make the props spin, but ran out of time.
  14. Many thanks for the comments and encouragement. I've now posted pics of the completed model in the 'ready for inspection' section, here https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235049384-airfix-172-avro-anson-mk1-airbourne-interception/
  15. Following on from my work-in-progress thread for this Airfix Anson, here are the photos of the completed model; Avro Anson Mk.1 (A.I.), DJ528, B Sqdn 62 OTU, Ouston, March 1945 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Avro Anson Mk.1 (A.I.), DJ528, B Sqdn 62 OTU, Ouston, March 1945 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Avro Anson Mk.1 (A.I.), DJ528, B Sqdn 62 OTU, Ouston, March 1945 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Avro Anson Mk.1 (A.I.), DJ528, B Sqdn 62 OTU, Ouston, March 1945 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Avro Anson Mk.1 (A.I.), DJ528, B Sqdn 62 OTU, Ouston, March 1945 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Avro Anson Mk.1 (A.I.), DJ528, B Sqdn 62 OTU, Ouston, March 1945 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Avro Anson Mk.1 (A.I.), DJ528, B Sqdn 62 OTU, Ouston, March 1945 by Philip Pain, on Flickr Avro Anson Mk.1 (A.I.), DJ528, B Sqdn 62 OTU, Ouston, March 1945 by Philip Pain, on Flickr 62 OTU at RAF Ouston in Northumberland was Fighter Command's only Anson equipped OTU, responsible for training all Beaufighter and Mosquito Nav/Observers. The Anson airbourne interception trainer was equipped with A.I.Mk.IV, and based initially at RAF Usworth, Sunderland, before moving to nearby RAF Ouston in 1943. From early 1945 the Anson was replaced by the Wellington Mk.XVIII (T.18). 62 OTU had a complement of over 50 Ansons, and the OTU was split into three squadrons; 'A' Sqdn applied white two digit codes; 'B' Sqdn light blue two digit codes; and 'C' Sqdn supplied the 'target' aircraft (not A.I. equipped) with single white code letters. It was a daily sight over Northumberland to see pairs of Ansons chasing each other around the sky.
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