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    British Cold War aircraft, archaeology, and the Portpatrick & Wigtownshire Joint Railways. Diverse enough ?

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  1. Thanks Bob, all noted. According to Brookes the SACEUR Valiants were using Mk28s by 1962 as they were required to carry two, although it's got the kit Blue Danube in it at the moment !
  2. There is a Valiant B1 sitting almost complete on my shelf, the intention is to put it on a base representing one of Marham's SACEUR-assigned aircraft sitting at Cockpit Readiness at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis with a couple of armed guards wandering past. Initially I was going to have two RAFP acting corporals, one with a dog and one cradling a Sterling, then I remembered the USAF custodians for the B28 bombs. The internet has turned up numerous period photos of RAFP and USAFAP bods with and without dogs, so I'm reasonably sure I can get the uniforms right. But bearing in mind the two man rule and no lone zones, which is the most likely scerario ? Two RAFP patrolling together with the custodian somewhere on the edge of the pan outside the NLZ or a joint RAF/USAF guard? And where would the crew chief be while all this was going on ? Standing outside with his headset on on his own, or accompanied ? Some modeller's licence is to inevitable given the dearth of real pics of nuclear armed aircraft on alert (as opposed to posed publicity pics) but I'd like to not drop too many howlers. A diorama of such a tense weekend consisting of just an aeroplane, two blokes and a dog has a certain 'less is more' appeal about it. Thanks
  3. Superb ! Reminds me of Airfix magazine articles from the 1980s where conversions often involved balsa wood, dope and filler, and a lot of sanding !
  4. Personally I don't get it, like filling in all the panel lines with black wash which was all the rage a few years ago. The real thing fades and collects dirt, sure, but for me pre-shading doesn't capture that. Over-spraying panels does, washes do, dry-brushing does (but can also be overdone). I should point out that I'm personally coming at this as a railway modeller who builds the occasional aeroplane, most of my stuff reflects BR 1960s steam - i.e. not cleaned since the day it was last painted.
  5. https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005002002498614.html Look for US 'O' gauge shipping containers. Beware though - British O gauge is 1:43, US O gauge is 1:48. You're on your own with the differences between 1980s containers and modern ones, sorry. (There are some ...)
  6. Corgi do this in 1:50, I converted a 1/76 one to an RAF fuel bowser a few years ago. They were ubiquitous in the late 70s/198Os until the Scammells appeared. https://www.hattons.co.uk/18364/corgi_collectables_cc10309_d_aec_ergomatic_6_wheel_platform_lorry_pollock_road_transport_contractors/stockdetail.aspx I think I'd be looking in the bargain bin at a swap meet or similar for a battered one rather than paying 'collectable' prices.
  7. Heller did a 109" Series III station wagon in either 1/43 or 1/48, it can be converted easily enough to a Series II and/or 88" wheelbase.
  8. Can I join in please ? Hunter T7 I've been putting off for years (if I can find it !). Ta.
  9. Airfix's first Eurofighter was based on the prototype but, in their defence, it had decals for the prototype ! Same with the MRCA which is, as far as I know, still the only way of getting twin store carriers for a Tornado. In fairness to the manufacturers a lot of respected published reference works (Jane's, Observers books) were using a best guess for some if the Warsaw Pact stuff, often based on not much more than blurry photos. Even for Western equipment a lot of the quality reference material was classified.
  10. It's a damn sight more stylish than some of the gawdy crayon which has appeared in the past - green go faster stripes on grey Buccaneers, almost everything on a Tornado (not painted by a German) etc.
  11. MERDC - now you're asking ! I had the colour call outs written down on the back of the instructions but they were thrown out in an office clear-out a couple of weeks ago ! I think I used Vallejo US Dark Green 70893/095, and Flat Brown 70983/143, brush painted over a basecoat of Humbrol 30 Dark Green (because I had half a spray can going spare). Humbrol equivalents would be 117 or 163, and 29. The pale beige highlights were either Medium Grey 70987/111 or Buff 70976/120. The former I think. And black, let down with a bit of grey.
  12. Hi Danbouy, If you build it straight out of the box without complicating it by making bits move which weren't designed to, it's a very straightforward kit. There is virtually no flash and everything fits just so. It was in fact an absolute pleasure to build. It's well engineered, I still haven't actually glued the cab on yet, it just sits on the cab floor which in turn is just resting on the chassis, it all fits with no gaps and stays put. The photo etch is mostly for the perforated steel platforms behind the cab, it sits on a moulded frame and it fits perfectly with no bending, folding or fettling required. I fixed it with a bit of thin cyano. If you spray paint it there should be no issues, I brush painted with Vallejo and had to be careful not to bung up the very fine perforations with too thick paint. Apart from the wrong spare wheel the only difficulty not of my own making was getting the back of the cab to sit properly on the chassis, I can't remember exactly what the issue was but it was fixed with a bit of trimming. I replaced the stalks for the rear light clusters with brass angle, I've either made them slightly too long or fitted them too far back as they foul the trailer if I pose it with the trailer turned slightly. I didn't check if the kit parts had the same issue The only disappointment in the kit was the painting instructions, the scheme shown bears no resemblance to anything I could find on a real one ! There appear to have been at least two schemes for the trailers and I'm not convinced I haven't got one on one side and another on the other ! Both sides match photos, but not photos of the same launcher. The hinge for elevating the launcher is simply a piece of wire poked through holes drilled in the existing plastic lugs. The hydraulic ram needs a bit of fettling to fit if you make it poseable. I belive the same manufacturer's Pershing II transporter (on my wish list) has a few more issues in that the missile cannot be assembled and raised with the tractor still attached as the box artwork and instructions would have you believe, but the GLCM is bang on as far as I can tell. I still haven't bought the blazer !
  13. The whole point of codenames for operations us that they have absolutely no relevance to what is actually being planned, that way if your communucations are intercepted then your enemy can't easily guess what you're up to. So Dynamo, Overlord, Corporate, Granby etc. They can be picked at random or only have relevance to the person choising them. The codewords for the three types of target marking used by the RAF Pathfinders in WW2 were chosen by AVM Bennett asking his three typists where they were from, hence Newhaven, Parramatta and Wanginui. The point seems to have been rather lost on the Americans recently. They used to follow it - Arc Light, Linebacker, El Dorado Canyon etc but then kind of veered off into Operation Bomb The C**p Out Of Iraq and similar.
  14. I must have built half a dozen of these over the last 40 years and never imagined it could look that good.
  15. Once upon a time before BM was a thing I posted a query on Pprune to get the details right on a Phantom QRA diorama that I still haven't finished. In one of the responses someone confessed to having once sent Q1 off with all the yelllow noddy caps still on the Sidewinders.
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