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  1. Thanks all! @stevehnz all the exterior colors came from the Vallejo Battle of Britain set, the cockpit colors were done in one of their US-spec greens but I can't for the life of me remember which one as I type this.
  2. The Curtiss P-40 was sold via the Lend Lease program in great numbers to Great Britain and the Commonwealth throughout WWII. While it's high altitude performance could not compare with that of the Merlin Engined Spitfires and Hurricanes, it found a niche in the low level "Army Cooperation" role, that being the term for infantry air support and ground attack missions. Most importantly, they were available in quantity at a time when the RAF was suffering severe shortages in modern fighters. The Royal Canadian Air Force's 403rd Squadron was equipped with the Tomahawk IIa variant of the P-40 when they deployed to England in 1941. They used their aircraft primarily for high speed low level raids across the English Channel, hunting for German targets of opportunity in northern France. They flew their Tomahawks in this fashion until sufficient numbers of Spitfires came available later in the year. Their Spitfires would eventually be replaced again by another American fighter: the NAA Mustang after the end of the war. A7AB6588-2D85-4111-910A-A73DAF70ABE5 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr E457D014-B1C4-4FA4-A322-6FE2B8F55F7D by Evan Bailly, on Flickr 89F7A483-61CE-4794-9EBD-A1AB94A332BB by Evan Bailly, on Flickr 33A1C91B-450A-4F34-A675-28BB9CA18690 by Evan Bailly, on Flickr This model is yet another 1/72 scale Airfix P-40 for me, this time their Tomahawk IIb version. It was backdated to a IIa by changing the wing armament and re-scribing some panels. The markings came from an aftermarket set and depict Tomahawk IIa serial AH882 of RCAF 403Sqn. Paints are mostly Vallejo Acrylics. I decided to build it wheels up and in flight and made a base with a postcard sized picture frame, a cut down portion of a blurred background form Costal Kits, and a piece of stainless rod.
  3. This period was somewhat transitional for insignia on US Army aircraft. They had recently changed from one roundel under/on-top-of each wing to only one among other changes. This was exacerbated by the fact that Curtiss used slightly non-standard colors, which is especially apparent in the grays. So when crews went to change insignia, they were presented with a mis match unless the repainted a whole panel.
  4. And a few more pictures along with the original photo that provided inspiration for the scheme:
  5. Hello all, after a months-long hiatus over the busy spring and summer months, I've returned to evenings at the model bench. Just like my last reintroduction to the hobby, with that hiatus being a nearly two-decade one, I started back into the fray with what has become an old friend: Airfix's recent line of P-40s in 1/72 scale. Heres the result of my first weekend back... In terms of breadth of use and users the Curtiss P-40 was probably one of the most important aircraft to come out of American industry. Used by a staggering number of air forces in a staggering number of roles the fighter could be found in many shapes and schemes that still capture the mind of historians and modelers nearly a century after the type's introduction. Fighter, bomber, trainer, racer, American, British, Chinese, French, Russian, Indonesian, Turkish… P-40-CU "54P97" was a very early production aircraft that, at barely two years old, was looking somewhat worn when it was photographed by a USAAF photographer in early 1942. Assigned to the 54th Pursuit Group, this aircraft had just transferred from Hamilton Field in California to Paine Field just north of Seattle, Washington. The 54th at the time was assigned to coastal defense duties but was soon to transition to the P-39 and deploy to Alaska to defend the Aleutians. In anticipation of this transfer, "97" was emblazoned with a shark's mouth just before it was to be "donated" to the Chinese Air Force's "American Volunteer Group", better known as the Flying Tigers. This model is my fourth time building Airfix's recent 1/72 kit offered variously as a P-40B, Tomahawk, or Hawk 81-A2. With minor detail changes, this kit can be made to represent a great many different early P-40 types. As "54P97" was an early production P-40-CU (CU wasn't a specific sub model, but the government identifier for the Curtiss factory in Buffalo, New York), this required changing the wing armament to single .30-caliber guns and filling and re-scribing some panel lines on the wings. In the period photograph of the aircraft, she is shown with both wing and cowl guns removed, so I simply drilled holes for the ports and left them empty. The model was completed with photo etched seatbelts and gunsights, and aftermarket decals from AML. The kit was otherwise built out of the box and painted with Vallejo Air paints.
  6. 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
  7. 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...
  8. The news article says that it is a 737-89P, not a MAX
  9. 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.
  10. 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
  11. 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.
  12. 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.
  13. 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...
  14. 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.
  15. 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...
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