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Spitfire Mk.IXc "Beer Delivery" ICM 1:48 A fairly well-known aircraft of WWII, the Supermarine Spitfire was the mainstay of British Fighter Command for the majority of WWII, with the Mk.IX being the most popular (with many) throughout the war, seeing extended periods of production with only minor alterations for the role that it was intended for differentiating between the sub-variants. Originally requested to counter the superiority of the then-new Fw 190, a two-stage supercharged Merlin designated type 61 provided the performance in spades, and the fitting of twin wing-mounted cannons in wing blisters gave it enough punch to take down its diminutive Butcher-Bird prey. In what was no doubt considered good publicity for the war, following D-Day the the Heneger and Constable brewery donated free beer to the troops, however as stretched as the logistics chain was there was no way to transport it across the channel. Spitfire pilots and ground crew came up with the idea to fit beer barrels to the racks on a Spitfires wing, and to transport beer in adapted fuel tanks. Such aircraft often had to return to the UK for "important" duties only to return with their valuable cargo. It even came to be that an offical mod XXX was referred to for these beer mountings.The practice came to an end when Customs stepped in as the Brewery was exporting beer without a licence. Even in Wartime officialdom ruled. It does seem that even though it was not officially done after this point various squadrons continued with the practice! The Model This new tool kit arrives in a rather small box making you think they have boxed the wrong scale kit! however be assured it is the right kit in the box. The moulds from ICM look cgood and crisp. Construction starts with the Merlin Engine as ICM have managed to squeeze a full engine onto the sprues. It should be noted that if you dont want to build your model with the engine covers off then you dont have to add the full engine, though the fact it is there is great. Once the engine (or not) is in the fuselage can be closed up with a few cockpit parts and the area behind the pilots head being added before closing up. The cockpit is now built up with the pilots seat being added to the rear cockpit bulkhead. the fllor is then added joingin up the seat and instrument panel area. Once complete the whole thing is added through the bottom of the fusselage. The engine top cowling is then added along with the front canopy and main aerial. Construction then moves onto the wing. This is convention one part bottom and left/right uppers. The underwing radiators are added and the cannons are added into the bays moulded into the lower wing. The uppers are then added along with the cannon covers (these can be left off as needed). The main fuselage can then be added to the completed wing assembly. The main canopy is then added (this is provided as a one part closed, or two part open affair), followed by the rudder and tailplanes. The ailerons can then be added to the main wing, and under the fuselage the lower engine cowl. The propeller is made up from its four individual blades and added to the front. The main landing gear is then made up with the single piece mainwheel being added to the leg, then the door added on. They can then be added to the model. Last up the all important beer barrels can be made up. They can be made as normal barrels or some which were fitted with an aerodynamic front nose cone as I would imagine the drag from a pair of barrels was considerable! Mounting racks are provided. A centre line beer tank (an ex fuel tank) is also provided to add to the centreline as needed, this also comes with its own rack. Decals A small decal sheet provides marking for two aircraft know to have done these flights, the modeler will have to paint their own invasion stripes. The decals are printed in house by ICM, look to be in register and colour dense. MJ452 No.412 Sqn Royal Canadian Air Force. ML316 No308 (Polish) Sqn Royal Air Force. Conclusion There is something totally British about going to the time and trouble to send beer to fighting troops in the midst of one of the biggest battles on the Western front. It is good to see ICM providing a kit to model this eccentricity of the time, and even if you dont want to model this the kit is a fine example of the Mk.IXc Spitfire. It also seems to be available at a good price point. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
This photo appeared on Facebook and the last line of the inscription is giving me fits trying to figure out what it says: 127. WING. WING COMMANDER FLYING Please Advise the Wing of the "Arrival of this Bxxxxx… "? of the "Delivery of this xxxxxx … "? of the "Officer of Unit Canteen… "? 127 Wing was an RCAF Spitfire Wing. I figure it would have to a very straightforward message to the groundcrew loading or unloading the tank, to show who owned the cargo and who was to be contacted upon arrival..., or delivery..., or something else. Does anybody have a better quality image of this shot, and/or do you know what this last line says?
Howdy all. Hopefully you will not mind someone from over the pond joining you in this build. I plan to make one of Eduard's little gems in the form of Mk.IXe, MK329, flown by W/Cdr J. E. Johnson, CO of No. 144 Wing, June, 1944. Yes this is the one from the Eduard Royal Class with the beer kegs, who does not like the idea of inflight beverages! I will be using the Mk.IXe over-trees, with bits from the royal class box as needed. I like this one, and it will be my second spitfire with invasion stripes. The first one was...,not good, so hopefully I am a little more experienced. I have already built one in Czech markings from the Eduard "Boys are Back' edition and it went together wonderfully, so I do not see any problems. I am sure everyone is aware of this kit, as a few others are building them, so forgive me for not posting shots of the sprue trees. More photos of the build to follow. Thanks.
Hi all, I completed this Spitfire a week or two ago but have only just completed this diorama. This diorama is almost a what-if, I have no idea what actually happened JEJ-Jr when Johnnie Johnson left the Canadian wing, however my best guess is that they kept hold of it and used it for beer runs. Officially designated Mod. XXX, HM R&C stepped in and prevented any further exports of beer as taxes were not paid on the exports. Despite this, squadrons still did weekly runs to collect beer with little (if any) opposition from Commanding Officers. Ben.