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  1. Flight Lieutenant Ian Howard Roediger served with 3 Squadron RAAF for two tours of WWII. Married to my Grandmother’s sister, F/L Roediger was my great uncle. Family folklore held his exploits with the Kittyhawk in high regard. He is on the far left of the second row in this photo. F/L Roediger performed a textbook wheels-up landing in Kittyhawk IV FX639 on a whizzer strip, on the 13th May 1944, after being hit by A/A over Cassino. The aircraft was not badly damaged and was returned to service. A few months later on the 13th June he bailed out of Kittyhawk IV FX713 at 800ft, after again being hit by A/A. He was rescued by a forward stretcher bearer patrol. For his airmanship, he was awarded the DFC. When Rex Bayly completed his second operational tour and went on leave on the 21st October 1944, F/L Roediger was made Commanding Officer. On the 29th, Murray Nash returned to start his 2nd tour and resumed command as Squadron Leader. 3 Squadron was the first RAAF unit to be equipped with the North American P-5l Mustang III. From reading through the Operations Record, it’s clear that F/L Roediger initially flew Mustang III FX942, later Mustang III KH613 during November 1944. For the final mission of his second and final tour, on 6th December 1944, he flew Mustang III KH615, code CV-B. The op was an armed reconnaissance run over Sarajevo, and it’s this Mustang I will be building. The Arma Hobby 1/72 P-51B/C will comprise the base on which I will be working. The decal sheet for 3 Sqn. FB244 has everything I need for KH615, apart from the correct codes and serials. In a spot of good luck, one of the other options has the serial KH516, so I’ll chop that up and rearrange it! For the codes, I will utilise a ‘B’ from the Ventura sheet V3279. White 8” serials in 1/32nd scale. 12" 1/48th, 18" 1/72nd. Because I haven’t been able to locate any definitive photos of KH615, I’m making an educated guess on the shape, but there’s a nice blocky ‘B’ that matches the ‘CV’ quite well. One aspect of the KH series of Mustang IIIs I have noticed in photos is that they all have a fin fillet, so I’ll be sure to choose that option. I’m otherwise assuming the camouflage pattern and colour (Ocean Grey / Dark Green over Medium Sea Grey) should match the FB244 diagram, but would love to have this confirmed by anyone in the know. I would really appreciate any input on other details that may be relevant. I'll likely start this a few weeks late, as I've committed to quite a number of group builds this year. It's a special one, so while I'm aiming for the deadline, I'll be happy enough to continue later in the WIP if that's ok. As a final note, the Operations Records above have been copied and posted from my personal Flickr account, as they are now out of copyright and in the public domain. If this is a problem I will willingly remove them.
  2. Another day, another Group Build. This is a project that has been floating around in my mind since the early 1980s. Due to a variety of reasons, not least, missing out on the Falcon conversion kit. The kit has been in the stash, with the odd glance at it from time to time. When I first returned to SMW in 2017, I picked up the Neptune conversion. This GB is a perfect excuse to get on with the model after some 44 years mulling it over. Having a decal sheet with the right markings also helps. The RAF came to use the Neptune as a result of a shortage of MR type aircraft postwar. The Lease-Lend Liberators and Fortresses would have to be returned or bought, which due to the lack of dollar reserves was not going to happen. Lancasters, of which there were plenty were converted as a stop gap, but clearly something better was required As early as 1945, Avro were looking at a Maritime Lincoln, this morphed into the Shackleton, but took more time to enter service than anticipated. In the wake of the outbreak of the Korean War and the growth of the Soviet Submarine fleet, 52 P2V-5 Neptunes were supplied to the RAF. They first entered service in April 1952 and remained as MR aircraft until June 1956 when replaced by Shackletons. The aircraft were returned to the US, and saw further service with a variety of air arms, including Brazil and Argentina. Argentina's aircraft survived until 1982 when they were removed from service as they were literally worn out. the base kit for this project is a fairly old kit that dates from 1972. It is fairly basic and represents the later P2V-7 variant. However, my kit is flash free and well moulded. Surface detail is very fine raised lines and some of the finest rivet detail I have ever seen, and I am going to leave well alone. the Blackbird resin set looks complete to build the earlier MR1 and is all resin. The sole bit of PE I intend using is an Eduard set to furnish the very sparse kit cockpit. Looking forward to doing this kit, it also has the advantage of being one colour
  3. This will be fun. Let's see if I can build this wee kit, minus all the armaments, and turn it out as one of thousands of post-war surplus vehicles that went on to see civilian use. At this point I am thinking 'Rural Volunteer Fire Department', but it may end up as 'Department of Public Works.' I'll see what I can dig up from the spares boxes and how much I want to scratch build. I'll be choosing 'The Great Escape' route... I built this a while back. Sorry..I can't find the original image on Flickr. It would be cool to have a whole fleet of surplus vehicles in various roles. --John
  4. As the X20 is finished and just awaiting some brighter weather to photograph, I reckon I just about have time to build this one. The kit is one of a number produced by Bandai in 1/72nd of Star Wars craft. They can be built as snap together with no or minimal painting, or as traditional kits. Both self-adhesive and waterslide transfers are provided with options for Luke Skywalker's Red 5 or an X wing from a later film. The kit is very well moulded and well detailed. Of course, the film models details were courtesy of a variety of kits from the seventies. I trust the force will be strong with me on this one.
  5. My first entry for this GB will be the AModel DH60M Metal Moth. The DH 60M was introduced in 1928 for areas where a steel tube fuselage covered in fabric would be more rugged and easier to repair than the ply fuselage of earlier versions of the DH60. The RAF bought 135 between 1928 and 1931 for use as trainers, and several were also used as squadron 'hacks' The AModel kits is part of a series of different versions of the DH60. Different fuselages, wings and other parts have been tooled, and this particular version has an appropriate fuselage with stringers visible and wings with Handley Page slats. There is no PE and the overall feel of the kit is of a shortish run with fairly heavy attachments points. Detail looks pretty reasonable, and wing rib detail etc. I have an old 'Scale Models' from January 1978 that has quite a useful article with plans for the DH60 that I used to convert a Frog/Novo kit later that year. Stringers were from heat stretched sprue and the wings were thinned. It will be interesting to see how this one turns out. This is my 1978 effort, now sadly gone. The rigging is stretched sprue attached with PVA, and it was painted with Humbrol Metalcote Aluminium applied by brush. Few fancy metallics and not the range of decals we have today, not that at the time I could have afforded them anyway.
  6. My entry is the Tarangus SF 37. A few extras - ejection seat, RAT bay, wheels, pitot probe and canopy and camo masks. My main references.
  7. This is my first entry for the Group Build. It is the fairly recent Vespid kit of the A34 Comet tank. I have not built a tank kit for fifty years, and the last one was the Matchbox kit of the Comet. IT is out of my comfort zone as it is: a) a tank, not an aircraft. b) it doesn't go together like an aircraft kit, and isn't finished in MAP colours c) it has far too many wheels than a respectable vehicle should have, as well as tracks Having said all that, the kit is well moulded with the use of slide moulds to make life a bit easier. For example, the return rollers (note use of armour terminology her, I have been reading up), do not have an obvious mould line, which is going to help with cleaning up. There is a small fret of PE, for some items that look sensible to use this medium for, and a turned brass barrel that looks nice. I am going to use some aftermarket decals for a post-war tank in bronze green, as it may be cleaner. Building a tank will be traumatic enough without covering it in loads of muck. There are some alternative parts for use with later variants of the tank. The Comet tank was designed as an up gunned Cromwell with a newly designed 77 mm gun that was smaller than the 17pdr Anti tank gun, but offered similar performance. A new turret was needed, but the turret ring diameter was the same as the Cromwell. The Comet entered British Army service in 1945 and remained as a gun tank in British service until 1959 in Hong Kong. It also survived quite a while with other countries including Ireland, Finland and South Africa.
  8. My first entry to this GB will be the recent KP kit of the Spitfire PR X. Originally intended to be the PR equivalent of the Spitfire VII/VIII, it was overtaken by the need to get a higher performance PR Spitfire into service. The 'quick fix' was the PR XI, based on the Mark IX with a high altitude rated engine. The PR X was apparently based on the VII fuselage with a pressurised cockpit, and the enlarged oil tank and wings as of the PR XI. Delays meant that the PR X was late into service, and did not appear until April 1944, and appeared to offer little advantage of the PR XI. It may also have been that the type was overtaken by the PR XIX, the first of which flew in April 1944 and deliveries started in May 1944. Only 16 were built, and not all saw service. The KP kit shares its sprues and instructions with the PR XI kit. The only differences are a different decal sheet and a fighter type windscreen. Fortunately, the deeper rear section of the canopy found on pressurised Spitfires seems to have been catered for. The box art shows an aircraft in PRU Pink that has been illustrated in profiles elsewhere, but I understand is unlikely to be accurate. The kit parts are cleanly moulded with no flash and what I consider to be an adequate level of interior detail, and exterior details looks well done and not too heavy. No locating pins on the main airframe parts apart from the tailplanes, I can live with that. I remember a time when some authors in magazines suggested that the location pegs should be removed as they obstructed a better fit. Eee, it were hard bein' a modeller in olden days, no photo etch or fancy paints, and thy could get an Airfix Lancaster for two shillings, and still have enough change to buy all the paints and glue, and a fish supper. Tell it to these young ones today, and they don’t believe you, just cos' it's a pack o'lies. (With apologies to Monty Python) Python)
  9. As I've had to temporarily put my Supermarine Seafire FR.47 on hold, @TonyOD gave me the go-ahead to bring this into the group build. It was started at the beginning of the New Year and is currently at the painted innards stage. I intend to do it in the kit 217 sqdn scheme, with EDSG/DSG/Night camouflage. I am hoping for a "no surprises" build 😁. The only extras are an Eduard steel photo-etched seatbelt and the Eduard canopy mask set. I mean, what can possibly go wrong with that?
  10. This is a build that has finished after being started in the Prototypes, Special Schemes etc GB. The AW52 was built to test the feasibility of the flying wing planform and also laminar flow, for a projected flying wing airliner. Two were built, the first one flew in late 1947 and crashed in May 1949, the pilot John Lancaster, becoming the first British pilot to make an emergency ejection. This airframe, TS363, being the depicted by the model. The kit is by Mikro Mi,r is a bit of a curates egg, but eventually built up into quite an imposing model. The WIP is here
  11. Hi Gents, Checkertails clan !! famous MTO US Air Force unit ! Attached to the 15th AF The "heavy" part of US air forces in Italy , the 12th AF being the one of medium bombers .Thus main task of 325 th FG was to cover heavies of 15th AF ( mainly B-24 and some B-17 BG) by sweeps on axis airflieds and of course escort of bombers streams over south and east front of this theater of operation. Being as as read first fighter group to operate " shuttle trips" between Italy and USSR ( not quite sure of that any comments welcomed ) So I represent my P-47 with quite a "marker" for 325th FG P-47 , ie , big 150 Gallons Wing tanks. Use that was may be helped by vicinity of P-38's and P-61's around location (personnal feeling) Some misses , in my built , wings bomb racks should have been painted yellow at last front part ( I see color picture but too late 🤭 ) , and backward metal rod on wing tank.. will , may be, correct that in the future ..😁 Hope you'll like it and as usual comments welcome ! The pics :
  12. As the P1A has about reached the finish line and the Meteor in the STGB awaits paint, I am looking at another build. This going to be the Pavla kit of the Supermarine S6B, the winner of the final Schneider Trophy air race in 1931. It is a short run injection moulded kit with some resin for detail parts, cylinder fairings and beaching gear. Going to be fun, as basically no location tabs etc at all. The plastic parts have a fair amount of flash. This kit is going to be interesting.
  13. This is my first entry for this group build. The English Electric P1A was designed as a transonic research aircraft, with possible development into a fighter. It first flew in 1954 powered by Sapphire engines and was the first British aircraft to exceed the speed of sound in level flight. The wings and tail married to a largely new fuselage with Avon engines formed the basis of the Lightning. Not the most elegant looking aeroplane, but one of the most distinctive. I was eight when I first saw a Lightning, on holiday in Norfolk in 1961 when one went supersonic over the sea off Caistor. The kit is the Whirlykits resin model from 2015. It is all resin with a little bit of PE and vacform canopy. It comes with decals and parts for both WG760 and WG763. New wings and a belly tank being applicable for 763 at a later stage in its life. Grey resin is used for most parts, with a hard black resin for the undercarriage legs. The fuselage comes in two halves like an injection moulded kit, which will make the whole thing a bit lighter. The two books above will be primary references. The Datafile has quite a few photos of both P1As. First job will ve to remove the parts from the casting blocks and webs.
  14. This is my entry for this group build. It will be an Israeli F15C from the Hasegawa kit that I bought about 1988-9. The kit decal sheet is for USAF aircraft, but I have an old Cutting Edge decal, which also details the airframe differences and an equally old Microscale decal sheet for the stencils, which on the Israeli aircraft were largely unchanged with just a few in Hebrew. As was typical for Hasegawa kits of the period, there are no weapons, and so these have been separately sourced as shown. The Pythons will need new pylons, which I think are going to be scratch built. There is a Dream model etch set that will tart up the cockpit and ejector seat quite nicely. Been on my to-do list for a while, and now seems a good time.
  15. The Planet Prester. The location for the Japanese Anime Last Exile. A TV series and a film. It's a bit steam punk with 19th Century technology and Anti Gravity! Large Airships are common, as are Vanships. Small agile flying craft used as Couriers and for racing. I watched the film some years ago and have wanted a Vanship kit ever since. This one turned up as spares or repairs on the bay at a decent price so I bought it. It's something of a glue bomb and one engine was missing. Never mind. Here's a link to what it should look like https://www.imgmsplus.com/item/63000/63931_2.jpg This is what I got. I've partially dismantled it and in the centre is the start of my replacement engine. Scale is 1/72nd. The plastic is very nice, Bandai, I think? Weird steampunk engines! The replacement is copper wire from a cable and scrap box parts. I've since remade the smaller circle in plastic. It's easier to work with. My soldering is very poor! Later today. I attacked the seams with extra thin and mostly it came apart nicely. The replacement circle can be seen here. More Austin Allegro steering wheel than circular, but it will do. The carpet monster got the first (better) one I'd made, Ping! That's it for now, back to work tomorrow. Got beer to deliver. No idea what they did with what we delivered last week. Comments welcome as always. Thanks for looking, Pete
  16. Even though the camera has shown me areas that still need attention, I'm calling this sort-of done. Rough and ready photos taken with my phone under my workbench lighting. This is the 1/72nd scale Tamiya Supermarine Spitfire Mk.Vb Tropical, Rising Decal Mediterranean Spitfires decal sheet (RD72-037), aircraft EP200 based at Ta'Qali on Malta in July of 1942. I went with the suggested colours simply because I know nothing compared to folk who've spent thousands of hours researching the subject. Vallejo paint for the main colours, Tamiya X-35 varnish, Tamiya Panel Line Accent Colors, and various oil paint streaks, smudges and washes. I have almost certainly overdone things heavily (and the phone camera has emphasised things a bit), but I'm fairly happy with the results. I will fix the wonky wheels, the paint on the bottle-bottom canopy, and the overdone wheel-well washes. I may even repair the pitot tube. This was, however, more of a "get myself moving" build, after a prolonged period of procrastination. I've learned a lot on this, and will never, ever use Vallejo paint for the main colours again. They do not airbrush well, at least for me, no matter what is used. Pebbly, lumpy texture, and they stick to the surface of the primed model as well as if you'd just smeared Vaseline all over it. Good colours, no stick. A shame, so it's back to Tamiya and Humbrol for me.
  17. Abandoned during a previous modelling frenzy from 15 years ago, I found this Amodel Sh half completed, but with wheels swapped out for skiis alongside other red waifs and strays, all forgotten. I had a vague memory of building the Sh. The fit was awful. Consider the lovely Heller SAAB 91 - it needs around 3mm square of putty in total under the fuse join: that's it. It is beautifully and flawlessly engineered so imagine just how awful the whole fit was by comparison. Later, the wings had been lost somewhere but I had already detailed the interior panels where they folded back. It had been primed here and there but really, quite an abandoned project together with a 4 seat limousine Po-2 mod in the same shoebox (for the 'more equal' members of soviet society) and here shown. https://ibb.co/RcF9ywz I had this single visual reference at the time to work from as a guide but forgoed the available PE set to tart her up apropos. A lot of that set seems superfluous. https://ibb.co/pn9qjyD There are choices today. Remake the wings using plastic card and ballpoint pen &c. to add 'engraved' detail from the insides (wings to be folded back) or leave her as per the image above, this machine being assembled in a cozy soviet sweatshop but with skiis for no reason at all (a lazy route). Or buy another kit to add the wings, but this seems too expensive a prospect. Amodel's Sh-2 is rare now, the Choroszy kit not cheap for just two wings. I know of nobody prepared to sell those 2 wings from a trashed or abandoned build that are just crying out to be sold, either A Bigger Picture: Many Sh-2s were done over in a pale grey colour, let's call it Ae9 (hexidecimal) for fun, That's the whole scheme. Civil regs a possibility or "Donated by the Landlocked Fishermen's Soviet of Kazan'!" inscription on account of them being landlocked. You know the routine. Exclamation point essential. No weathering as I can't abide this Jallyvo 'extra sausage and sage greasy grey' or 'rotting Orc's spleen vermillion' acrylic and powder fad -- in no rush to model 72nd scale oil and dust (but respect to those who do). Just enamels and oils. Old school, me. I have a 72nd scale old Zvezda soviet revolutionary figure to add into a possible small 'factory' diorama, Foreman Comrade Oleg is apopleptic about the theft of state property! ( the wings ). The NKVD could already be interested in this wrecking counter-revolutionary act of sabotage. Poor Oleg... helplessly caught in an implausible scenario. https://ibb.co/tB8DwKP Nota bene. There are small details which mustn't be forgotten: the generator windmill, a skii for the tailskid, piping away from the S-11 engine, the skii crank added to the dashboard. The little red weathervane at the hull's very fore. The lateen sail... Now they're mentioned here, I can't overlook them. The Polikarpov limo needs work too, clearly, so could be a parallel project? Maybe she'll get the skiis and swap out some wheels to the Sh-2 once more. Her engine is already a beauty. Could be fun either way. Best wishes.
  18. Here's my entry over on the 'Unarmed' GB, just made it into the gallery as I nearly abandoned it. I made a right mess of filling in the side windows, made a mess of re-scribing the panel lines that were lost and gave up on that! The decals broke up with little handling, especially the walkway lines, the fuselage band broke up as well so I painted it, making it slightly too long. I forgot to add the Aluminium letters that provide the outlines to the figures in the fuselage band! The White on the roundels is a bit translucent so the Red/Orange underneath shows a bit, something I should have foreseen! Nearly on completion I discovered the demarcation from the Aluminium to the main wing Red/Orange panels is slightly different on each wing! Overall though, I'm pleased I finished her and as long as you don't zoom in on the thing it looks Ok in the photo's! OOB with Pavla resin intakes and CMR wheels. AK Extreme Metal Aluminium with Vallejo ModelAir for the rest. Hasegawa didn't supply the mast toward the rear of the fuselage shown in photo's of this aircraft but the kit supplied everything else, I lost the small resin fairing on top of the canopy but fashioned one from sprue. There is no mention of filling in the side windows though, and the metal covering for the turret is in the wrong place for this Canadian built machine which would have had a Martin(?) turret further towards the front. I sprayed random patches of Satin varnish over the Gloss finish to create a bit of variation. Comments and criticism welcome. Davey.
  19. Here's the second MiG-15 I'm doing for this GB, an Algerian Trainer. Will be OOB hopefully using the nice PE supplied and hopefully should be a straight forward build. Doing this in tandem with the Egyptian one as explained in that thread. Davey.
  20. A little late to the party, but I am starting on my Special Hobby Wirraway. The Wirraway was one of the many variants of the Harvard/Texan theme in this case the NA33 that was licence built by the Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation who modified the type in terms of its armament. When the type was ordered, there was some argument over ordering an American type, but given the need to rapidly expand Australian defence capability, there was little choice. It was to be used as a trainer and General Purpose type and survived in the former role until 1959. As a general purpose aircraft it was caught up in the disasters surrounding the Japanese attack in Malaya and the South West Pacific, but saw the war out in an army cooperation role, often sharing the duty in mixed squadrons with Boomerangs. The Special Hobby kit consists of grey injection moulded parts with no location pins except for the tailplanes and some vague indications for the cockpit parts. There is an injection moulded canopy and landing lights and a resin engine and cowling. Decals are for four aircraft including one which may be in the Sea colours used by the RAAF as it was used for coastal patrols. The instructions mention this, but give no sources. I fancy this scheme as a Boomerang is also planned for this Group build. First off will be the interior, that looks a bit fiddly with a bit of vagueness around the instructions as to what goes where.
  21. My first build for this GB is going to be the Magna 1/72nd scale Martin-Baker MB3 Fighter. The small Martin-Baker company had created some impression with their striking MB2 fighter, which although not selected for production had impressed those who tested it by its simplicity and how easy it was to maintain. When possible Spitfire Hurricane successors were being considered Specification F18/39 was issued to Martin-Baker for a new design that built on the experience of the MB2 but was to be more powerful. This was to be the MB3, originally to be powered by the Rolls-Royce Griffon, but this was changed to the Napier Sabre when it became obvious that the Griffon was not going to be available, although it is not entirely clear who instigated the change (Bill Gunston in an article in Wings of Fame states it was MAP, but Tony Buttler comments that it is currently impossible to know) Construction of the first MB3, and only completed airframe, was slow owing to the small size of the firm and full order books and delays in delivery of components from outside companies. Eventually MB3 R2492 was completed and first flew on 31st August 1942. Its life was brief, crashing on 12th September 1942 in attempting a landing after engine failure and claiming the life of its pilot, Valentine Baker. The partly completed second prototype was rebuilt as the sole MB5, an outstanding aircraft, but at the time of first flight in May 1944, it had no chance of production with the Hawker Fury in view and the first jet fighters already flying. The kit is a typical Magna product in cream resin with a chunky look to them but reasonable surface detail. There are a few air bubbles on the wings near the undercarriage bays. Most parts are attached to resin pour stubs that will need removing The parts count is low and a resin airframe is supplemented by white metal details such as propeller blades and undercarriage legs. These are going to require a lot of cleaning up as most are well-endowed with flash and some pitting on the surface of the propeller blades The resin parts have no locating points and so will need some brass rod to help keep the wings and tail in place. The canopies are vacforms. Four are provided, two with a fuselage spine and two bubble canopies that were schemed but were apparently never fitted, the photo showing the MB3 with a bubble canopy being a 1940s equivalent of photoshopping. One irritating aspect of the kit is that the propeller spinner has holes for four blades, whereas quite clearly the MB3 was fitted with a three bladed propeller. Decals for the yellow P in a circle are present, but no other decals. The First job will be removal and cleaning up with adequate protection against resin dust.
  22. This is a placeholder for the first of my two builds. I'll be using the excellent Academy 1/72nd scale kit with the Berna Decals for the EALA3/1 option. I've got the LF resin bits and bobs to arm the beastie with but I'm in two minds about using them. Kit and gubbins References The eagle eyed amongst you will have spotted there's two kits in that box, well I haven't settled on my 2nd subject yet (and to be fair, I'm hoping Special Hobby get a wriggle on and release their Harvard kits).
  23. Hi all, First out of the blocks is this little Ausf-B, a magazine partwork picked up from WH Smiths a couple of years back. According to the reference material seen alongside, only 15 of this variant were constructed - The most notable difference between this and later versions being the suspension with 8 wheels rather than 6 each side. The plastic itself is produced by IBG and there is some good quality moulding going on here - Gun barrel, exhausts were already open, suspension seems to be slide moulded and nice chequer plate on the fenders. The suspension are 1 part units so a quick build is guaranteed. And so it turned out to be - good fit and little fettling required meant that it took about an hour to get to this stage. Instructions and painting schemes listing Vallejo and Hataka paints are included in the accompanying magazine, I think that I'll go with the early war grey/brown scheme as I have any number of grey German tanks already. Now onto the next one. KR's IanJ
  24. With the Supermarine 224 finished and the Dewotine D510 at the painting stage, I think I might have time for least another entry. So I have started an Amodel Hawker Fury that I have in the stash. This is a 'short run' kit that offers the wheel spats for the Mk II and nice surface detail, but is probably a harder build than the Matchbox kit I first built in the summer of 1973 after my First Year Uni exams. The Mark II Fury was an upgrade to the original Fury bought by the RAF. It had a more powerful Kestrel engine, wheel spats and increased fuel tankage which gave it a top speed of 223 mph compared to 205 mph of the original Fury. 100 were built and production started in late 1936 and the type entered service in early 1937. It was only ever seen as a stopgap and remained with a handful of squadrons for a short period until replaced something a bit more potent. Front line units equipped with the Fury II were 25, 41, 73 and 87 Squadrons, some as interim equipment for a few months with 41 having them longest from between October 1937 and January1939 when they were replaced by Spitfires. The Amodel kit is moulded in fairly hard pale grey plastic. Most parts display noticeable mould lines but no flash and some parts like the struts are quite delicate and will require care to remove them. Surface detail is restrained with the fabric areas being muted with none of the sagging associated with some kits of fabric covered aircraft, One small clear part is provided for the windscreen and the decal sheet provides markings for two Mk I's and a Mk II. The decals are matt and some colours look a bit dubious. The only areas of shrinkage on my sample was on the spatted wheels that I wanted to use and the prop, so out has come some filler. As always seems to be the case work started on the fuselage and cockpit. Some wall detail is provided on the fuselage halves and this was added to with a few scratch-built bits like a trim wheel and map case. There is a seat, rudder pedals and a control column that is added to a floor that never existed on real thing, but some effort has been made add details of the fuselage structure on it. The instrument panel is the correct shape and the bodies of the two Vickers machine guns are there as separate parts, but the location pins for them would leave them much too far forward. Paintwork was taken from the Mushroom Model Publication on the Fury and Nimrod and is largely aluminium with the tubular fuselage frames in black. The floor was finished to march doped fabric of the bottom of the fuselage. The lower wings area butt fit and so to make the join stronger and before too much work was done on the fuselage, I drilled a couple of holes and inserted some plastic rod that fit into holes drilled in the wings. Mrs T is out at the surgery until 8.00pm giving coronavirus jabs and so the fuselage will go together. No location pins, but everything lines up nicely by the look of it
  25. Also from last year, a build that may especially interest the British membership.} This Hart, as all harts do, loved to race. Purchased by Princess Margaret, she entered the plane in the King's Cup race of 1951 (that was cancelled), and after that in other competitions and events, some times in the company of the Hurricane seen also bellow (and that I will post after this one). The opportunity to build this racer came in the form of a set of high-quality decals produced and released by Arctic Decals. The Hawker Hart is from Amodel, and it's typical of their range: reasonably-priced, lots of parts, good detail in their masters, but in general a somewhat indifferent molding creating a bit of flash and occasionally dubious fit, making you perform a thorough cleanup session before starting. But you will get a good model if you do your homework. I have built a number of Amodel kits, showing that ultimately it's a fair deal, as long as you spend some time to get the parts sharp and clean and refine them up for a good fit. Small grumbling aside, you will need of course to de-militarize your Hart. A whole sprue of bombs and similar expendable miscellanea will go the scratchbuilding recycling department to become something better. Then a few external features will have to be modified. There are photos on the Net showing this racer with and without a faired cover for the aft position, so it's up to you. Surely it didn't race with a guy on the back of the pilot, though, so I'll be scratching a cover. The Arctic Decals set and the Amodel kit (there are other 1/72 kits of the Hart, by Airfix, Aeroclub and Kora, and the latter has also resin sets for it) is as usual excellent. (Fire engine is a commercial item) (fueling truck is scratch-built and was posted some time ago here at Britmodeller) With the Hurricane it many times shared the field (also purchased by Princess Margaret):
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