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Spit Fan

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  1. Hi Walter, many thanks for your reply. I had a feeling that the color(s) would depend on which supplier provided the the leather items. Given this I would imagine that it wouldn’t be that unusual to find a mix of colors in one airframe. I ended up painting the seats dark brown. I’m not totally happy with the color but there is still time to change it if I can find a shade I like better. If anyone from Airfix read this please consider releasing the Blenheim MK.IVF sooner than later! John R
  2. Hi All, I wondering if there was a specified leather color for seat cushions, back pads and head rests in WW2 RAF aircraft? Over the years I have seen leather in colored images and model builds in Black, mainly Spitfires, Dark Brown, light brown and dark greens Lancaster’s. I am currently working on the Airfix 1/48th Blenheim and note that the instructions list one color Humbrol #62 (leather brown) for the observer and gunners seat but a different color, Humbrol #83 (ochre?) for the pilots seat. Colored pictures in the Valiant “Airframe Album No.5 The Bristol Blenheim “ show the pilot’s seat and a rear fuselage seat next to the turret, in a light drab green. The observer’s seat and seat back and the forward seat in a medium green. The gunners turret seat is in a light brown. These of course are in the rebuilt MK.I in the UK. Other images show them in black. I understand that restored aircraft do not necessarily reflect original equipment and colors of war time aircraft. Did the color depend on the manufacturer, the supplier, the time frame the aircraft was built. Would all the leather items be the same color or could there be a mix of colors? What color would you use if you were building this kit? Any information greatly appreciated and as always many thanks in advance. John R
  3. Many thanks to all who replied to my questions on the interior color(s) on the early Blenheim MK.I. Given what I have read here and on other posts I plan on going with Aluminum for the interior of the wheel wells, nacelles/cowls, Interior grey-green for the fuselage and semi gloss black for the landing gear. The Airfix 1/48th Blenheim is a lovely kit and I am enjoying the build so much so that expect there will be another on my work bench in the not too distant future. Now Airfix needs to think about doing the MK.IV!
  4. Hi All, I have just started on the 1/48th Airfix Blenheim MK.If and have a question or two on what colors were used in the interior of the wheel wells and engine nacelles? I have the Valiant book (Airframe Album No.5) but the interior images of these areas are of the restored/rebuilt Blenheim based on a Bolingbroke airframe and I suspect aren’t the original colors. The kit instructions, if I am not mistaken, show everything but the landing gear assembly, which is black, in aluminum. Does this sounds right or am I missing something? Also there are colored images of the rebuilt aircraft showing the wooden floor sections in the rear fuselage as clear coated natural wood. Is this just a feature of the restored airframe or were the wooden floor sections on war time Blenheim’s also unpainted? If so would that apply to the Beaufighter too? As always many thanks in advance to any assistance given. John R.
  5. Thanks Andy for the heads up on the spinner color. I have the Ducimus book on the Defiant sitting in front of me, open to pages 186-187 showing the camouflage patterns. According to the notes at the top of the page these drawings are based on the B.P. Factory drawings for painting the Defiant in either the “A” or “B” pattern. If these drawings are an accurate representation of how the Defiants were supposed to be painted then the turret base was painted either Dk Earth or Dk Green where the camouflage pattern past through the turret base with the turret facing aft. This is also shown on the full color profile of L7006 shown p. 172. The B&W profiles show a mix of manly completely black turrets frames and base and one with the port side of the turret with the base in Dk Green. Why the discrepancy? Perhaps it’s a simple matter of urgency. Initial production was at a slower pace allowing time to paint the turrets to meet the appropriate camouflage pattern. Then as time was of the essence then the entire turret base was painted Dk Green as it was close enough to satisfy both A&B patterns. As for those turrets that were painted entirely black perhaps they were replacement turrets installed by a M.U. and left to the gaining squadron to paint when time permitted. Food for thought. On Page 14 of the Mushroom Model Magazine Special by Mark Ansell there are formation images of six 264squadron Defiants. Does anyone know the serial number of PS@Z, the Defiant with the oversized fuselage roundel with the pre-war blue ring? Unfortunately the images aren’t clear enough to show the camouflage pattern as to A or B. Once again greatly appreciate the input.
  6. Thanks to for all the great replies. I have quite a few references on the Defiant but I must have been blind or rather saw what I expected to see when viewing photos showing turret details. My mind set was the entire turret, frames and base were black. The take away is you can’t trust profiles. It makes sense that the turret base/ring would be one color and that color would be Dark Green on those Defiants camouflaged in Dk Earth and Dk Green given the way both A and B camo patterns have Dk Green running through the cockpit/turret area. Andy I am looking forward with great anticipation to the publication of your book on the Defiant. I hope that when it’s released you will post an announcement here on BritModeler. Given it’s intended role as a bomber killer and the tactics that were developed for that role I have long thought that the Defiant was poorly handled during the Battle of Britain. Perhaps it would have been better employed by being kept further inland, just out of range of the 109s, and hitting the bomber formations as the escort had to break off as they reached their fuel limit. Of course this would have been in a perfect world and hindsight is a luxury denied to those making the minute to minute decisions I hope to post pictures of my Defiants here on BritModeler when I finish them. One is in the markings of 141 squadron L7009 TW@H “Cock O’ the North”. The second one will be a 264 Defiant. Most likely PS@O. Please don’t hold your breath while waiting. I am a slow builder but both are in the painting stage so once life quits interfering with modeling I hope to get them done by November. Once again many thanks to all. My thanks also to Airfix as I never thought I’d seen a Defiant in 1/48th let alone one as lovely as the one Airfix released! Keep up the great work.
  7. Hi, I am currently working on Airfix’s fantastic 1/48th B.P. Defiant MK.I which we’ll be finished as a 264 squadron aircraft July 1940 and have come up against a bit of a wall when it comes to what colour(s) to paint the turret. For quite a few years I thought the entire turret, frames and base, was black, which was the way it was depicted in all the profiles and photos I had come across. However after looking at Richard A. Frank’s Airframe Details No. 5, “ The Boulton Paul Defiant” it appears that many Defiants had their turret, except the upper vertical frames, painted in the appropriate camouflage colors. From the profiles it seems that when the turret was painted it was facing aft. So far I haven’t found any references that state what colour the turret was to be painted. Any thoughts on this would be greatly appreciated. If I can add another question to this post there was a rumor that a new book on the Defiant focused on 141 squadron during the Battle of Britain was in the works and with a possible release this year. Does anyone have any further news? TIA John R
  8. As much as I’d love to see a state of the art 1/48 Lancaster, I have two Tamiya Lancaster’s sitting under my work bench, I can’t see Airfix doing one. I’d rather see them showing Revell how a 1/72nd Halifax MK.II should be done along with a new tool Sterling! As for 1/48th still waiting on the Blenheim MK.IV and most definitely wouldn’t say no to a line of Beaufighters, starting with the MK.I, in 1/48th. Since this is a wish list let’s add a 1/48th Gladiator and more airfield support vehicles. One can only hope.
  9. A friend and I got into a discussion over the color(s) that Defiant wheel wells were painted specifically on those Defiants with the half black half white undersurfaces. If a photo of L7012 shown on page 178 of Ducimus No.8, Camouflage & Markings Boulton Paul Defiant is representative of a factory fresh aircraft then the insides of the main gear doors are painted black port side and white starboard side and another image shows the main gear legs the same. The question is was the wheel well painted half black half white or aluminum? The second part of this discussion was when the order came down in June 1940 to change from the black & white undersurfaces to “Sky” I’d think that those aircraft on the production line would have the MLG and wheel wells painted either aluminum or Sky but what about those already issued to a squadron, being held at an M.U or being repaired at an A.S.U.? Good images of this area on Defiants aren’t exactly plentiful but several would indicate that there were a number of possibilities ranging from this area being left as issued, partial repaint or total repaint. A photo of a 264 Defiant shows aluminum struts with the inside of the starboard gear door in a color similar to the Sky undersurface but the inside of the inner port gear door, even tho it is in the shadow, appears to be black. I will appreciate any and all thoughts on this. I have had a very strong interest in the Defiant ever since the first time I saw it in a copy of Williams Greens “Famous Fighters, Volume 2 too many years ago to be believed. John
  10. Back in December 2015 Mancunian Airman posted drawings of his Airfix 1/48th Albion conversions to go with images of several of these lovely conversions. I would like to try my hand at them but do have a question on the drawings. In the lower left corner there is the following notation: “Chassis Raise 6mm, Space 14mm.” Could anyone enlighten me as to exactly what this means and to which conversion it might apply. I plan on doing each of the conversions as I am really interested in airfield support vehicles. I seem to recall reading that some of the unused parts in the Albion kit were a possible indication that Airfix might do additional vehicles based on this kit. I for one certainly hope so. I also would like to know to whom do the Vehicles belong? The squadron or the airfield. My guess is to the airfield at least in the U.K. Any and all answers greatly appreciated.
  11. Would love to try my hand at doing these conversions but have a question about the note on the drawings reference “Chassis raise 6mm Space 14mm “ I am having a very senior moment but haven’t a clue how to interpret that or how it might apply. Any explanation would be greatly appreciated. I also have a question as to what type of load might be seen in the bed of the tender as used at a squadron level? Many thanks in advance.
  12. Thanks for that information Fernando. I think that is the boxing that I have. Hopefully my son will be completely moved out into his new house by the end of the month and I can finally get to my stash and get my Tamiya Buffalo out and see where I left off back in 1975 . What we need is a new tool state of the art Buffalo MK.I! Oh wait I think I already said that. Some ground crew in tropical kit to go with it would be icing on the cake. Please no 5’10” 190 pound scale figures. Lately those few RAF/USAAF figures all seem to overly large. At least that’s my view.
  13. Many thanks for those points. At least a few pieces from the True Details set can be used so it isn’t a total waste. As I mention my Tamiya kit is sitting buried in my pile of unbuild kits and I haven’t looked at it for quite a few years so I can’t remember if the kit seat is the correct one for the B339E. From the image of the 488 Sqdn cockpit close up it is clear that the RAF Sutton harness was used which I am sure will need to be sourced. I have been taking notes on all that is needed for this build but it most likely won’t be restarted until very late this year as I have a number of projects that need to be completed first.
  14. Thanks to all who replied to my O.P. After reading all the replies I think I will dig my Tamiya Buffalo MK.I out of the bottom of my unbuild kits pile and finish it rather than try and back date the SH -3. I am afraid at this stage of my life doing all that would be required to get a near perfect Buffalo is more than I wait to attempt so will do it more or less out of the box but add those easier fixes as suggested. I have to say that I was rather surprised that SH didn’t also release a B339E Buffalo MK.I when they did their series. To my mind it was far more important an aircraft that the F2A-3 given its operational history. Would it be too much to hope that possibly Airfix might consider releasing a new tool kit in the not too distance future, 1/48th of course. By chance has anyone used the Squadron True Details cockpit set for the Tamiya kit? I have this set and am thinking of using it in my build. I have the Ginter book on the Buffalo and have to say that I was a bit disappointed with it. I had to really dig to get the information on the B339E I was searching for and a number of images were extremely muddy. I was quite at this surprise as I have seen the same images much cleaner in other publications. That having been said it is still worth having if you have an interest in the Buffalo. Once again all the information is greatly appreciated.
  15. I have the Tamiya kit that I started back in 1975 but it seems a bit on the small size. I also have both the SH F2A-1 and -3 kits and started thinking about converting their -3 to a Buffalo MK.I. Has anyone tried their hand at converting the 1/48th Special Hobby F2A-3 to a Buffalo MK.I ( B339E) ? Off hand I think removing a scale 10 inch section from the cowling in front of the leading edge of the wing would be the major requirement. Other than that the only other things I can think of would be replacing the carrier based tail wheel/tire and removing the arrestor hook. All ideas and thoughts greatly appreciated.
  16. When were the gas detection patches, seen on fighter aircraft during the Battle of Britain, discontinued? I have seen references to both the color, a yellow/green with red dope outline and shapes, circles, squares and diamonds but no time lines. From images and profiles it would seem that their usage begin to decline about December of 1940 and was gone with the change over to Ocean grey/ dark green/medium grey. Many thanks in advance.
  17. Hi all, After reading Dogsbody’s post#14 on whether Airfix based the location of the radio transmitter/receiver aft of the turret on the Canadian built Bolingbroke I started looking through my references for a definite answer. My reference is Graham Warner’s “The Bristol Blenheim, A Complete History” which should be a must have for anyone with an interest in the Blenheim. Starting on page 154 there is a photo of the R1082 Receiver and the T1083 Transmitter mounted on a shelf behind the turret which is removed in this picture. On Page 155 is a description of the installation which mentions the wooden drawers under the shelf ,complete with brass kitchen handles, were the spare coils were stored. On page 275 there is a picture looking aft from just forward of the open overhead rear entrance which shows the very crowded interior with the open entrance hatch to the right of the image, the ladder to the left, the twin Browning turret and the radio sets behind. If anyone plans on leaving the entrance hatch open this is a must see image for detailing this area. According to the narrative the R1082/T1083 were replaced by 1941 with the later T1154/R1155. Starting on p559-560 there is a lovely set of three photos showing the three crew members of an 11 Squadron MK.IV. The image on p560 shows the Wop/Ag reaching beyond the turret controls to operate the side mounted R1155. Somewhere I recall reading that because of their location adjusting the T/R sets was always a bit awkward even under the best of conditions but so far I haven’t been able to lay my hands on it. Sorry to be so long winded but hope this helps. Still waiting for the kit to arrive on this side of the pond and I hope that my build is half as good as yours.
  18. Many thanks for all the replies. I had no idea that leather darkens so quickly with age. I had forgotten that the green leather color was also found in many Halifax’s but it was news to me that was also found in Mosquitoes too. So to recap the leather in WW2 RAF aircraft could be a very dark brown, dark green or black. A closer inspection of war time cockpit photos is in order. I had had tried the search feature but couldn’t get a working match up with my question. Looks like I need to fine tune my queries .
  19. after looking at a number of WIP builds of WW2 RAF aircraft I realized that there seems to be no standard color for the leather seat backs and cushions. Some are black, some various shades of brown and others like the Lancaster are green. Were colors depended on suppliers and aircraft manufacturers? I read somewhere that most Lancasters pilot’s were in a color referred to as Coach Green if so what about the nav’s and radio ops seats? Any information greatly appreciated.
  20. Many thanks for both your replies. Oddly enough I received this book for Christmas and thoroughly enjoyed it. I agree that it was a better aircraft that history has portrayed but unfortunately when needed most, the Battle of France, it was doomed to failure from the start . Given the conditions under which it was forced to operate in even a far more advance aircraft would most likely not have fare much better. The one surprise in the book for me was the claim that when it was felt that invasion was a very real possibility, and even training aircraft like the Tigermoth were being considered as light bombers, several Battle squadrons, who had actual Army Co-Operation experience, were totally ignored by the Air Staff. John R
  21. Thanks for a great story and a great photo give my best to your friend Ken. Not to many left who can say "I flew Spits!" John R
  22. I need to get a good look at the 30 gal and the 45 gal tank side by side or at leased installed so I can make an reasonable guess as to which is shown on the profile of the L Mk.Vb of Fob Fairbanks ' a/c. Thanks for the reply. John R
  23. Many thanks for the replies. As soon as I saw the bit on increased oil required for the increased flight time I realized that there was no way the 90 gal tank was used operationally from the UK (non tropical mod). I suspect that the tank shown in the Osprey profile of the L Mk. Vb was a 45 gal tank. I say that because it seems to be the same size and shape as one shown and labeled as a 45. gal tank on a Spifire Mk. XVI based in Germany July 1945 in "The Spitfire Story" by Alfred Price. If memory serves me right the Tamiya Spitfire Mk.Vb (trop) comes with a 30 or 45 gal tank. I guess I need to see if I can find one. By the way just where is the filler port on the fixed 30 gal tank on the Mk. IIa (LR). There doesn't seems to be one on the SAM resin tank. TIA John R
  24. Back again with another Spitfire question. On page 41 of the Osprey "Spitfire Mk.V Aces 1941-45" book there is a profile of a Mk. VB X4272/SD-J flown by Flt Lt David Fairband 501 Sqn, June 1944. The profile shows the a/c with a 30 gal belly tank. (This is not the cigar shaped tank normally seen on the Mk. IX.) My question is was the 30 gal tank widely used on ops? Was it's bigger brother the 90 gal tank also used on ops? I have a 90 gal tank left over from the ICM Spitfire Mk. IX and though it might be an interesting addition to my current project. Any thoughts will be greatly appreciated. John R.
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