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Heather Kay

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Heather Kay last won the day on July 13

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  1. What a great GB this was. It ought to be an annual fixture, if only to show there’s more to life than injection moulded plastic! I was sort of disappointed I couldn’t complete my last builds. There were reasons, many reasons. But I’m happy to have arrived at fifth place with Dennis. And hearty congrats to Ray, Marklo, Adrian and Torbjorn for their excellent entries. Well done all!
  2. Thank you. I think it worked out okay. I don’t go for the concourse shine, as the planes were operational and I doubt getting a good view from the fuselage was high on priorities when in the thick of it. Suddenly I’m here. The fuselage halves weren’t a bad fit, but there was a little gentle sanding once the glue had set. I’m accepting some of the fine panel lines may have been sacrificed in a good cause. I’ll be able to see how things look with a coat of primer. The wing halves join without major pain. The usual thing with these sorts of kits is concentrating on getting a nice fine trailing edge. A bit of careful scraping and sanding got me where I felt happy. The fit was pretty good overall. The nacelles are bit of a mixed bag. Three pieces, including a firewall/bulkhead, go together reasonably. There’s going to be a little filler smeared in the wing-nacelle joins. The trailing edge ends of the nacelles though is a right old mess. It is supposed to be a nice smooth transition. Quite a bit of filler and sanding will be needed. The wing roots aren’t all that bad, and a smear of Perfect Plastic Putty ought to deal with them. I hope I’ve managed to get the wings on level. There’s a set of bombs in the kit. I decided to leave them out, as they’ll never be seen, even with the bay window glazed bomb hatch underneath. Now I’ve sort of run out of steam. I’ll leave things so the wings set nice and solid, then work out what's next.
  3. My mood improved following our evening meal. Further internal details. The various switchgear boxes and magazines went in. The mags had location holes, the switchgear didn’t. The instructions are also very vague as to location of the boxes, but they’re all but invisible with the fuselage halves together. Last job today, so the solvent has time to set nice and hard, was fitting the eight tiny fuselage windows. They are a tight fit, they all needed a careful swipe on each edge with a fine needle file, but they all fit well. I carefully followed the number sequence to fit each pane in its set aperture. I let some solvent cement just wick around the edges. Each pane is proud of the fuselage, on purpose. I plan to sand each one flush and polish them to a glorious shine before making masks for them.
  4. Well, this is proving to be slow going. I thought I’d just quickly finish the cockpit fittings and retouch paintwork. The PE belts fought me so much I nearly trashed them and substituted masking tape ones. At this scale and through the glazing, frankly, no-one would tell the difference. I found the instrument panel isn’t wide enough to meet the opposite side of the cockpit, so that was fun. Anyway, I’ll let the paint dry a bit more then add some silver/aluminium dry brushing for wear and tear, followed by a wash of black to bring out details. The current mood is "don’t care", so I’m not certain I’ll do any more today.* *I'm sure I will. It’s just been a funny sort of few days here.
  5. All the new models have Škoda on them. The accent on the S is what we hear in the correct pronunciation.
  6. I never really take note of scores, ranks or whatever. I come here not to be competitive like that. I come to share, to learn, to make friends and the craic. All the other forum software nonsense really doesn’t matter to me. Still, if the upgrade fixes the 500 bug, all good, eh?
  7. Nice one. I see the squadron codes were transferred from the Bombay that crashed in France - the subject of my recent build. My obsession ought to mean I have a Sparrow as well. Perhaps I should save up for another kit and do the transport conversion.
  8. Hello all. I wonder if any of you fine people might have the Valom HP Harrow kit in your stash and might be able to send me a copy of the instructions. I ask because I have the Sparrow variant, but I note most of the parts for the bomber variant appear to be in the kit as well. I’d rather like to build an example as one of the 420 Flight Harrows used for the Operation Pandora aerial minelaying experiments - and I’m too cheap to buy a whole other kit just for that if I can build it from the box I have. Thanks!
  9. Thanks for the lovely comments everyone! It’s hard to thank everyone individually.
  10. It still surprises me with the variety. I keep finding new aircraft I have add to my wish list! And I’ve not even begun to explore the French naval aircraft yet! I hope so. I like Azur kits. Life? Don’t talk to me about life. </Marvin> Ta. Now that’s setting the bar. I’d better do my best. Incidentally, the Vichy colours is one very good reason why I've concentrated on stuff up to the end of June 1940! They can wait until I start thinking about the Mediterranean theatre aspect of 1940. More of a googly than a curve, I think. Cheers Terry. The Breguet is one of the more attractive designs of the period. There’s more than a hint of Beaufighter round the nose, before Bristol got there, and it looks like someone used the French curves at the drawing board instead of the set squares! I wish we could say that about all the other French planes! Thanks! Progress will be slow, for various reasons. I have to admit to not buying reference books these days. I’d love to, but sometimes the amount of information I need doesn’t really warrant the expense. There’s tons of images on the internet, plus the knowledgeable folk here, and to be honest most modern kits are fairly accurate right out of the box these days. We shall see how I get on. After last year's GB overload I’m purposely taking several steps back this year, and only entering a couple of builds in the four GBs I’m signed up for. I’ve already built a Fergie for Best Beloved, but we mistakenly ordered two kits. The other currently remains unopened. The styrene gods are tempting me with some super detailing from photos of the real thing, perhaps even a nicely weathered well-used example of the French licence-built Fergie… What am I saying‽ *gives self a stern talking to about priorities* Right, what’s been happening? Not a lot, by the looks of it! My first steps in these sorts of kits is to go through the instructions and mark up the colour call outs. At the same time, I get a feel for how the kit goes together. I also got the fine Sharpie out and wrote the part numbers on the runners and the parts themselves so I didn’t need to keep referring back to the little map at the front of the instructions. Then, some Humbrol 96 acrylic got slapped about the interior parts, and then mostly scraped off again for gluing purposes! To prove I do learn, I drilled out location dimples in the cockpit tub to make locating the rudder pedals and control column easier. I’ll detail paint the various control boxes and panels, and fit the other parts at some point today. There are lots of little windows. I’m wondering whether to fit the glazing now and get it all sanded flush before joining the fuselage up. Slow progress, then, but a start has been made.
  11. No, that’s fair enough. It’s your model, after all, and you do what you want. I'm looking forward to seeing how this develops, thats for sure.
  12. I’m worried by the location of your fighter pens. Blast pens were usually at dispersal points a long way from the hangars and technical sections of the airfield. The areas in front of hangars was usually clear and unobstructed. Please don’t think I’m being critical. I think your ambition with this diorama setup is amazing. I just wish I had space for something similar!
  13. Bristol Type 130 Bombay MkI, L5813 BJ-P, RAF No 271 Squadron, Doncaster, May 1940 The Bombay was designed to fulfil a role as troop or cargo carrier, but also to be operational as long-range bomber. The Air Ministry created a specification for such an aircraft, C.26/31, to find a replacement for the venerable Vickers Valentia - a design that dated back to the end of the First World War. Three companies produced prototypes to meet the specification and which took part in trials. The Armstrong Whitworth AW.23, which would evolve into the Whitley bomber, Handley Page HP.51, which became the Harrow, and Bristol’s Type 130. The Type 130 was chosen, and March 1933 Bristol was awarded a contract to build one prototype. Frank Barnwell, chief designer, decided to use a multi-spar cantilever wing. Filton had been working on perfecting this wing structure after wing distortion on an earlier prototype, the Type 95 Bagshot heavy fighter. The Type 130 used an all-metal wing design, with a large box spar with seven I-section auxiliary spars joined by ribs running the whole length of the stress-skin covered wing. A high-wing design with two Bristol Pegasus radial engines also featured an oval section monocoque stressed-skin fuselage structure. The prototype first flew from Filton in June 1935. It was the largest aircraft to be produced by the company to that point. Official trials recommended some improvements. By 1937, the aircraft had been christened Bombay, and a contract for 80 was signed. Eventually, this was revised to 50 aircraft, to the revised specification 47/36. Bombay MkI aircraft had hydraulically-controlled machine gun positions in nose and tail, covered with fixed clear turrets. The front turret included the bomb sight, with a bomb aimer’s panel below the turret. Various sources say an internal bomb load could be carried, but I’ve not seen any evidence of bomb bay doors on the fuselage. I assume, therefore, the bomb load of eight 250lb bombs was always intended to be carried externally beneath the fuselage. When the Bombay was ordered into production, Bristol was preoccupied with the Blenheim bomber. At the time, the need for the Bombay wasn’t seen as urgent, but the realisation that the RAF did not have any comparable aircraft to Germany’s Ju52/3m bomber-transport, the Type 130 became part of the RAF’s expansion programme. Building was entrusted to Short Brothers and Harland in Belfast. The Bombay entered service, as intended, with three squadrons in the Middle East. Some aircraft were retained in the UK, and at the start of May 1940, No 1680 Flight was reformed as No 217 Squadron at RAF Doncaster. It was a transport squadron, comprising a motley collection of impressed civilian airliners and near-obsolete operational machines. No 217 Squadron’s earliest task was supporting RAF operational squadrons in France, and L5813 BJ-P was performing just that role on 11 May. Flown by Flying Officer Frederick McGevor DFM, with second pilot Sergeant Williams, and AC2 Holdsworth, L5813 was carrying 14 passengers, mainly attached to No 501 (County of Gloucester) Squadron flying Hawker Hurricanes from Bétheniville airbase, Marne, France. On final approach, it was seen the Bombay’s nose came up. McGevor regained control and decided to go around for another landing attempt. The same thing occurred, but this time the aircraft stalled and crashed into a field short of the airbase. Four of the passengers were killed. The aircraft was written off. Some discussion among pilot friends about this incident seems to point to the aircraft being poorly trimmed for the landing. It seems not unreasonable to assume that FO McGevor may not have been completely familiar with the Bombay’s flight characteristics, but that is conjecture on my part. The Valom kit is one of a range of unusual 1930s transport types. I have their De Havilland Albatross and Handley Page Sparrow in my stash. I decided the Bombay would make an ideal entry in the Bristol Aircraft Company group build. I have to admit this is the first Valom I’ve tackled, so I made a point of searching on Britmodeller for others who have been there before me. Once I felt happy with the kit’s idiosyncracies I gathered what references I could and made a start. For a short-run kit, I was actually pleasantly surprised. I found nothing that a competent styrene mangler couldn’t cope with. With hindsight, perhaps I ought to have made a better fist of attaching the main undercarriage, but for all it looks awkward and flimsy it’s actually quite sturdy. Some parts I remade in brass wire, such as the tailwheel oleo fork and the antenna masts. The pitot tube, a PE part in the kit, was substituted for a spare Airfix Blenheim part, and I used spare gun barrels from my Bits Box to replace the rather poor moulded parts in the kit. The kit transfers were slightly out of register. I decided this would be an ideal time to acquire a Silhouette Cameo cutter and learn how to make my own markings and paint stencils. I was quite pleased at how things turned out, for a first attempt, and it's a technique I shall employ a lot more now I have the equipment. I also read around on the subject of camouflage and markings, and made some choices based on what I think these aircraft actually looked like in the spring of 1940. Spoiler: it’s not what Valom think they looked like! The camouflage colours were Humbrol and Revell Aqua acrylics, brush painted. Markings were airbrushed using various enamel colours. The aircraft serials, W/T markings and the walkway markings on the top of the wings came from the kit transfers. The WIP thread can be found here:
  14. Well, you ought to be able to make one good one from that lot!
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