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Greetings all! Im pleased to show you my latest the well-known and oft-built Matchbox 1-72 scale Armstrong-Whitworth Meteor, built in this instance as the NF.14 variant. This, the last in a series of night-fighter variants of the Meteor, really only saw active service for about 2 years ( I think from 1954-56), largely as an interim solution prior to replacement by Gloster's own Javelin. Common to all the NF variants were performance problems due to the extra aircrew and associated radar equipment, meaning that climb-rates and performance-at-altitude etc., were unfavourable when compared to other contemporary aircraft like the Canberra. Despite this I find the NF.14 a graceful-looking aircraft: theres something about the morphing of the various Meteor variants - from early to late - that seems to illustrate the evolution in jet aircraft design of the period,This is perhaps best typified by the NF.14 canopy and nose more flowing and aerodynamic feeling than early versions you can almost feel the later shapes of Hunters and Phantoms straining to burst out (if that makes sense?) The WIP for the build is over here: http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235002360-the-dual-build-diaries-a-meatbox-apocalypse-172-edition/page-1 A final bit of background: this was a dual-scale, dual-build, started at the same time as John (The Spadgent), who was himself building a 1-48 Gloster Meteor F.1 from Tamiya. You can find Johns RFI over here: http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235004487-meteor-dual-build-the-tamiya-148-one/ Wed done this once before as Britmodeller virgins (doing dual-scale Stringbags) earlier in the year, enjoying the process of building in tandem so much that we decided to do it again here with Meteors. For myself, its been a blast! My build is a largely pro forma job, using the included Matchbox 85 Sqn decals and paint scheme - the only AM items were an Airwaves photo-etch set for cockpit walls and aerials; everything else additional was scratch-built. This is, of course, an absolute creature of a kit to wrestle into shape (had I read some of the build reports of other modellers more thoroughly, I might have got cold feet). Im not going to criticize an old kit for different production values, but be prepared to spend a long time filling and sanding and scribing. The decals showed their age by being very brittle, which caused a number of problems that I covered in the WIP. Paint was self-mixed by eye, from a range of Tamiya acrylics. I started the build convinced that if I was going to build a model that had been done umpteen times before, I had to offer people something different to look at, so I decided to build the NF.14 variant with a removable radome, in order to show the AI.21 radar unit. I havent seen this done before. <pauses for flood of corrective replies> The biggest problem I faced was an almost complete lack of photographic documentation for this part of the aircraft lots of shots of empty nose units, but nothing with the radar in. As I predicted early on, it was only after Id built everything that I finally found a single photo of an NF.14 undergoing maintenance, in the archives at the RAF Church Fenton website here: http://www.rafchurch...er pic 015.jpg From the photo, (which isnt very detailed) my guesses about form and scale dont seem too amiss. If anyone wants to follow the research for this build with a view to making something similar themselves, its in this topic here in the Cold War discussion thread: http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235001940-meteor-nf14-radar-images/ as well as further info here: http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234990198-nf-meteors/page-5 The following BMers were extremely generous with technical and historical advice on this build: 71chally, (who put me on to the YAM restoration of an NF.14). You can catch up with the lads here: http://forum.keypublishing.com/showthread.php?137187-A-W-Meteor-NF-14-WS788-Restoration-Thread Jun in Tokyo, John Aero, fatalbert, and NAVY870 all weighed in with a selection of drawings culled from various official sources, all of which were immensely helpful in visualizing form. John (canberra kid) also provided a couple of photo references, which helped greatly in terms of colour work. Thanks, you are gentleman all. The WIP says it all in terms of what needed doing. The scratch-built elements on this briefly were: cockpit (pilots gunsight area and observers radar units, seat frames), wheel wells, AI.21 radar equipment and radome, Hispano muzzles, brake lines on main gear, rudder pedal assembly, landing-light window in nose-gear door, topside aerials and flap at rear of sliding canopy, the Derwent engines, maintenance trolley for removal of radome. Be warned that some of the Airwaves etch for this kit is insanely small, to the point that there is so little surface area to glue onto the aircraft (like the steps) that I ended up leaving these out as simply impracticable. Also, the rudder pedal assembly seems oversize for the scale when compared to reference photography, hence I discarded these for my own scratched-up items (a biro refill seems the right scale for the rudder-pedal channels!) Aside from the above web links above, books I found useful on the build were the Warpaint (Good panel drawings!) and SAM volumes on the Meteor, as well as the Pilots Notes for the NF.14. My thanks to John, for being such an engaging and amiable companion on the build. Tony Firstly some plan views: Some obliques: Finally: the 'Night-Prowler': Thanks for all your support, comments, criticisms during the build