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    Tacoma, WA, USA

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  1. I'll probably do these two as a start, a Mitsubishi Ki 15-II and a Nakajima Ki 27, both in the service of the Manchukuo Air Force... IMG_5539 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr
  2. Hey, there. Put me down for that 50th spot. Ive got some stash clearing to do and have a bunch of Japanese airplanes that need doing...
  3. The news article says that it is a 737-89P, not a MAX
  4. Yes, a “Fat Cow”, is a FARP, but not all FARPs are “Fat Cows”. the distinction is that Fat Cow allows the FARP to be continuously moving. Whereas most FARPs tend to be stationary on a Forward Operating Base (FOB) or Combat Outpost (COP) and are largely dependent on ground based tankers. This is a pretty big distinction as it allows a much more fluid approach, such as with highway based airfields or landing strips set up on unimproved fields. Also, we can set up or break down in less than ten minutes. It’s hard for the other guy to target an airfield that just got up and left.
  5. Here's a couple pictures that I plucked from wikimedia that shows a Fat Cow mission in Lithuania in 2015: ...you can see the fuel lines stretched out to the taxiway, forming two fueling points. The second aircraft is either another fuel aircraft, providing another 2400 gallons of fuel, or could also be configured for re-arm duties with ammo/rockets at hand, or as a communications platform. And an old brochure (from the year 2010) from the manufacturer of the ERFS system showing who was then using them: http://www.robertsonfuelsystems.com/pdf/aircraft/brochure_44_ch-47_erfs_ii.pdf
  6. The logistic nightmare of forward operating aircraft is something we trained for at length when I was flying just a few short years ago. One of the Chinook Helicopter's not-often mentioned capabilities is a mission called "Fat Cow". We load three 800 gallon fuel tanks inside with a pumping station and can become a mobile fueling station anywhere any time. Often we would train with two aircraft, one pumping, one going back to the rear to get another load of fuel. This capability is often used in the real world here in America fighting wildfires in the western states. We can reduce turn-around time for "mission birds" significantly by reducing the distance to the fight. There are also C&C pallets that can be rolled into a Chinook. Effectively being able to put up a control tower anywhere, anytime, and able to "bug-out" just as quickly as we got there.
  7. Thanks guys. Looks like I’ll head to the shops and see if I can dig up an Airfix Beaufighter. I’ve got plenty of styrene and putty if that’s what it takes. Now to the second part of the question, why was 27 Sqn using a night fighter variant as a day fighter-bomber, and what modifications did they make to them. In the aforementioned book, it says at least a few had cameras mounted in the nose. I assume this would be in place of any radar set.
  8. I have always wanted to do a model of a No. 27 Squadron Beaufighter... Way back, my first overseas deployment as a Chinook flight engineer was as a part of the humanitarian relief effort in response to the October 2005 earthquake in Kashmir. My US Army unit shared living space, hangar space, and the mess hall, airfield, and missions with 27 Sqn for nearly five months during the fall and winter of 2005/06. We flew mixed formation missions from Rawalpindi up into the Himalayas every day and evenings were spent sharing tools and or holding dart or trivia tournaments. Now that I'm a retired old guy, I think it's time to build a few models honoring those wistful recollections. I recently picked up "Beaufighters Over Burma" by David J. Innes, and I've decided to build a 27 Sqn Beaufighter Mk. VIF, such as those featured in the book. Here's an Imperial War Museum photo showing 27 Sqn Beaufighter Mk. VIF X8092 in March of 1943: ROYAL AIR FORCE OPERATIONS IN THE FAR EAST, 1941-1945.. © IWM (CI 167) IWM Non Commercial License Anyway, what does the hive-mind here at BritModeller think is the best way to skin this cat in 1/72 scale? It would appear that the only explicitly Mk. VI Beaufighter on the market is the Hasegawa offering, but that model has the later high-dihedral tail while as far as I can tell every 27 Sqn Beaufighter in my book shows the earlier flat tail'd Mk. VI. Should I start with an earlier-mark and convert it newer, or a later mark and backdate it? And for that matter, why the heck was 27 Sqn. using the night fighter variant of the Beaufighter anyway when they were largely used as low level ground attack and heavy fighters? Seems like what was supposed to be a simple project has turned into something a bit more complicated. Of course, I tend toward such ill-advised ventures...
  9. Speaking as an American, the problem with just about everything that most of the world sees as "American" is the only the overly hyped commercialized swill that is made for the "average white-bread American". I can however say that the actual experience is somewhat different. Most Americans equally gripe and hold a distain for those things and would much rather eat the local, regional, or more exotic fare in their own neck of the woods. Sure there seems to be a McDonald's every thirteen feet here, but in-between them are much better options. Being such a "melting pot" of different cultures has a distinct advantage. Here in Tacoma (a smaller city just south of Seattle) we are spoilt for choice. Within a few blocks can be found mind alteringly good Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Thai, Indian, Italian, English, Mexican, French (my wife is a Cordon Blue trained chef), or "traditional" American restaurants. But they are all small, hole-in-the-wall type places that out-of-towners have never heard of. Or for the uninspired, you can pick one of the three McDonalds' here in town. I can't speak for the British Isles, having only ever been to Ireland on a layover, but I found my time in continental Europe much less varied. Sure, the German food was great in Germany, the French food was great in France, and the Spanish food was "present" in Spain, but there was no vast variety that I could find. As for Necco Wafers, as I don't have a sweet tooth, I love them. Many don't as they are a decidedly "old fashioned" taste; very powdery, and quite bittersweet. But those that like them, will defend their honor to the grave.
  10. Thanks guys, This little build was an enjoyable one. I won't say it just fell together. However, the fact that it was my second kit started in this GB, but my first completed, as illustrates that it truly was a brief build. Now, I've got to finish that Heyford, and decide what to tackle next. One of the two other unstated Matchbox kits in the stash, or maybe something completely different...
  11. Thanks @Vulcanicity had I not just read about it while researching for this build I would nhave never thought the same about the Fulmar when compared to the Buffalo. The Buffalo was about 30km/h faster than the Fulmar and had a better rate of climb. The Fulmar was clearly a good plane in terms of utility and was adequate against early Italian aircraft in the Med, but when the Germans started showing up, there were problems. I read one report of Ju.88s simply “pulling away” from the Fulmars sent to intercept them.
  12. More Pictures: IMG_5372 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5373 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5371 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5374 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5376 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr And the actual subject aircraft, after she was shot up and captured on Crete:
  13. I built this ancient little Buffalo as part of the Matchbox 50th Anniversary Groupbuild here. This is AMT’s 1979 re-release of Matchbox’s 1974 kit of a 1/72 Scale Brewster Buffalo. With careful work and a bit of added detail, this four-decade-plus-old model builds into a respectable little Buff. IMG_5364 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr The Buffalo was the brainchild of the former luxury car and coach builder Brewster, and built in downtown Long Island, NY. Endeavoring to make the most streamlined fighter, it had as near-perfect a teardrop shape as then possible and was the first aircraft tested, at full-scale, in a wind tunnel. Much maligned by postwar analysts, the early models of the Buffalo were actually quite a good fighter in the right environment. It wasn’t until the third iteration of the design, specified by the US Navy, did it’s poor reputation start. Loads of additional armor, equipment, redundancy and a poor engine spoiled the speed and good maneuverability of the formerly nimble aircraft. Export-model Buffaloes flown by the Finnish Air Force achieved a staggering kill ratio: on average they downed more than 40 Soviet planes to the loss of a single Buffalo. This aircraft represents Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm Serial AX814. Originally ordered by the Belgian Air Arm, she was taken over by the British and sent to 805 Squadron in Egypt in 1940. The Buffaloes were welcome as the early Fairy Fulmars they supplemented could be outrun by German Bombers. AX814 was one of three Buffaloes sent to the Greek island of Crete to defend against the impending German invasion. Unfortunately, she never saw combat; while awaiting spare parts, she was strafed by the Luftwaffe and written off. The model was improved with a scratch-built cockpit, several scratch-built details including a wired and plumbed engine and all the markings were put together from a plethora of leftovers from the spares bin. IMG_5368 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5366 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5370 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5365 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr
  14. Here's the 1979 AMT release of Matchbox's 1974 PK-024 Brewster Buffalo. I scratch built a cockpit out of styrene, with instrument panel decals and seat belts out of the spares bin. The engine, prop, and spinner were missing from my kit, so I substituted the same from an even earlier Revell kit. The engine received detailing in the form of styrene rod pushrod covers, lead wire ignition loom, styrene and lead crankcase details, and spark plug leads from fine copper wire. The wheels and tires were replaced with appropriate-sized replacements from the spares bin (I think Airfix Fw.190?) and modified with hub covers made from styrene card. Markings, also scrounged entirely from the spares bin, represent Buffalo AX814, one of three FAA 805 Sqn Buffaloes dispatched to Crete during the invasion of Greece. AX814 never made it into the fight as she was strafed on the ground while down for maintenance and awaiting spare parts. IMG_5364 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5373 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5376 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5366 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5370 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr
  15. MORE PICURES! IMG_5372 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5373 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5371 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5374 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr IMG_5376 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr
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