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  1. Hurricane Mk.IIc Trop (40005) 1:48 Arma Hobby The Hawker Hurricane was one of Britain's foremost fighters of WWII, and although overshadowed by the more graceful and slender Spitfire during the Battle of Britain, it was a capable aircraft that was available in large numbers, and achieved more than its fair share of kills during the conflict, usually from going after the bombers while the Spits kept the fight cover busy. It went on to see service to the end of the war, but was relegated to less onerous tasks as technology leapt forward resulting in faster, more agile aircraft that came on stream on both sides of the conflict. The type originated in the early 30s and first took to the sky in 1935, despite the Air Ministry’s tepid reaction to monoplanes at the time, and it was eventually an aircraft that set standards for fighters that followed it, being a monoplane with a predominantly metal airframe, retractable landing gear, an enclosed cockpit and of course the delightfully powerful and throaty Rolls-Royce Merlin engine. Compared to the Spitfire it was a little old-fashioned, starting out with a fabric-covered ‘rag’ wing that was eventually replaced by an all-metal aerofoil, and it was less aerodynamically streamlined, with a thicker wing and overall chunkier, blunt appearance. Although the wing was replaced by a metal aerofoil later, it retained the fabric rear fuselage and as such was able to have minor damage there repaired quickly and easily, compared to the Spitfire that would have to go back to a repair facility for structurally insignificant through-and-through bullet damage. A fabric patch followed by a few coats of dope, and the Hurri would be back to the fray, which endeared it both to its pilots and ground crew alike. By the time the improvements to the airframe resulted in the Mk.IIC, it was tasked with ground attack, hunting German tanks, which weren’t as easy to crack as first expected, because 20mm cannon shells would often ricochet off the frontal and side armour, and bombing a relatively small target such as a tank was a matter of pure luck, all while the enemy poured rounds in your general direction. It was withdrawn from front-line fighter service at this stage of the war, as by then the enemy aircraft outclassed it in most respects, but it carried on in ground-attack, night fighter and intruder roles where it excelled, without unnecessary exposure to enemy fighters where top speed might be a disadvantage. It was succeeded by the D that mounted a pair of 40mm cannon in gondolas under the wings, increasing its offensive power appreciably, at which point it acquired the nickname ‘The Flying Can Opener’, adding additional frontal armour to the airframe that was exposed during dangerous low-level attacks. They carried on in that role until the Typhoon came into service, which carried out the job faster and more efficiently without having to worry about being bounced by enemy fighters, partly because their numbers were dwindling due to attrition, but also because the Typhoon had additional power that allowed it to hold its own. The Kit This is a reboxing of a brand-new tooling from Arma Hobby that many 1:48 modellers were waiting for, as their 1:72 kits have a reputation for excellent detail, with the inference being that in a larger scale the detail would be even better. It came as no surprise that it is, and this new boxing reinforces that. The kit arrives in an end-opening box with a sturdy tray inside that prevents the box being crushed in the stash. The painting of a cannon armed Hurricane dropping bombs from its wing stations while firing its cannons, and like the initial boxing, it is dramatic and well-executed, with the side profiles of the decal options on the rear of the box. The package has the same design cues and layout as the 1:72 boxes, which makes it feel larger than it really is when handling it. Inside the box is the tray that contains three sprues of grey styrene, a clear sprue, a sheet of pre-cut kabuki-tape masks (not pictured because it’s pointless – just imagine a featureless yellow square), instruction booklet that is printed on glossy paper in colour, with each decal option getting a full page of colour profiles at the rear of the booklet. Detail is everything we have come to expect from Arma, with crisp engraved panel lines, fine raised rivets, restrained fabric scalloping effect on the fuselage rear, and plenty of raised and recessed features that should result in a superb model if care is taken during building and painting. If this is your first Arma kit, you should know that they have a technique of adding stiffening ribs and stringers inside their kits, and they hide away their ejector-pins in places that won’t be seen, usually with a circle of tiny turrets around them. They are usually positioned so that they can be left intact without affecting assembly, but if they do need to be removed, you’ll be told in the instructions. Their instruction booklets are incredibly well detailed, and will help immensely, so take note of the minutiae and add your own remarks to help you remember if you need to – I know I do. Construction begins with the lower wing for a change, drilling out holes applicable to whether you intend to fit bombs or drop-tanks under the wings of your model. The holes are marked in red for tanks, and blue for bombs, which is helpful, and the diagrams are accompanied by a little explanatory text that advises that the tanks can be used in the third decal options of this boxing. The gear bay is created from a well-detailed section of spar that has a pair of retraction jacks and a pressurised cylinder applied to it, then it has the remaining walls and their ribs mated to it and is covered by the bay roof, feeding a brass-painted hose through the bay once completed. Attention then shifts to the cockpit for a moment, building the seat from four parts, which is supplied with decal seatbelts and is glued to the rear bulkhead after painting for later installation in the cockpit. We return to the wing again, removing the drop-tank location points for one decal option, and cutting a new rectangular hole nearby, filling in the original with a piece of scrap styrene or filler whilst you are there. The gear bay assembly is glued into the full-span upper wing along with another short spar section to the rear, then joining them together after removing a short portion of the stiffener behind the landing light bays to achieve a better fit for their inserts, finally covering the lower wing with the two uppers. Now we learn why we didn’t start with the cockpit, as it is built in the space between the wings once they are completed, starting with the control linkage and frame under the pilot’s legs, with the foot rests/trays over the top, and a small lever glued to a cross-member on the left. The sidewall frames are painted and added to the sides, locating in slots in the wing centre, and these are joined by the rudder pedals on a central mount, and a V-frame that stiffens the assembly at the rear. The control column is built from three parts and includes the linkages that lead under the pilot’s seat, which is inserted last over the V-braces at the rear, locating on more slots in the wing centre. Flipping the wing over, a pair of rods are inserted into the bays, their location shown by another drawing that highlights them in blue, although these might be best done before starting to add parts to the cockpit to avoid breaking the parts. The instrument panel is next, with raised details depicting the instrument bezels, plus other switches and controls, with a decal included for it and the compass that fits between two brackets under the panel. It is glued into the starboard fuselage half with a pair of small pieces of equipment, with four more in the port side, and the option to pose the foot step on the exterior skin pushed inward, which is a nice touch. There is also a decal for a pair of dials moulded into the fuselage sidewall. With that, the fuselage halves can be brought together, seams dealt with, and then carefully mated with the wings, taking care not to damage the lovely detail in the cockpit. If you are closing the canopy, it could be best to remove the rails on which it slides before you start assembling the cockpit within to avoid damage. The underside of the fuselage has an insert with the tail-wheel fairing moulded-in, which will be useful for the Sea Hurricanes that are being released in the future. The central radiator housing has its core made from front and rear sections with the matrix texture moulded-in, and a circular insert with hosing, all of which is glued to the underside of the fuselage and covered by the cowling that is made from body, intake lip and cooling flap at the rear, locating in a shallow recess in the lower wing that has a horseshoe flange with fasteners to add to the detail. You have a choice of painting the tail wheel strut silver or azure blue depending on your decal choice, inserting it in the recess under the tail, which is made next from a two-part full-span elevator panel with separate flying surfaces that fills the depression in the rear of the fuselage, adding the two-part fin to a step in the fairing and fixing the rudder to the rear, allowing all the tail surfaces to be posed deflected if you wish. The main gear legs are made from the strut with a lateral retraction jack moulded-in, and another added to the rear, plus a captive bay door that fits on the outboard side, and a two-part wheel on the inward-facing axles. There is a choice of two styles of gun camera fairings in the starboard wing leading edge using two different parts, two options must be sanded back flush with the surface of the wing. There are clear lenses for the gunsight on the coaming in the cockpit, and more clear parts to cover the landing lights. Helpfully, the clear wingtip lights have a recess in their mating surface that you can add some green or red paint to depict the bulb before you glue them in position. There is also a choice of one or two cannon barrels per wing, and you guessed it, it depends on which decal option you are building, so the outer holes will need filling and sanding back flush for one decal option. While the model is inverted, a pitot probe and crew step are added to the port underside, and a clear recognition light is inserted just behind the radiator, painting it a clear amber. The rest of the work on the airframe is done with the model resting on its wheels (if you’ve fitted them yet), installing the fishtail exhausts and blister fairings in the nose, and an aerial mast in the spine behind the cockpit, cutting off the little spur near the top for all options, and removing the short post on the tail fin. The tropical filter is made from two halves, and is glued together first, fixing it under the nose once the glue has cured and seam has been dealt with to your satisfaction. The windscreen is glued in place with a square rear-view mirror added to the apex of the part. To close the canopy, part T2 is used, but if you intend to leave the canopy pushed back, a slightly wider part is supplied, marked T3, with pre-cut masks supplied for all options, as well as the wheel hubs and landing lights. Two styles of prop spinner are included for the different decal options that use the same blades, but substituting different front and back spinner parts, plus a washer that can be glued carefully to allow the prop to remain mobile after building. Drop-tanks are built from two halves that trap the linked location pegs between them, and there is a small stencil for one side, only to be used for one decal option. The bombs are built up from four parts each, along with their pylons, but you can only fit bombs or tanks, as this isn’t an F-16! Markings There are three interesting options on the decal sheet, each having a full page of colour profiles at the back of the instruction booklet, with letter codes corresponding to a table on the front page that gives codes for Hataka, AK RealColor, LifeColor, AMMO, Humbrol, Vallejo and Tamiya ranges, which should be sufficient for most of us. From the box you can build one of the following: Mk.IIc Trop ‘Hurribomber’, LB792/C, 34 Sqn., RAF/SEAC, Dergaon (Assam) I Imphal (Manipur), Spring 1944 – Pilot: S/Ldr C P N Newman Mk.IIc Trop, HL885/AX-Z, 1 Sqn. SAAF, Egypt, September 1942 – Pilot: Lt. Stewart ‘Bomb’ Finney Mk.IIc Trop, HL851/GO-P, ‘The MacRobert Fighter, Sir Iain’, 94 Sqn., RAF El Gamil Airfield, Egypt, 1942-3 Decals are by Techmod, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. Conclusion I’d been waiting for this new tool Hurricane for a while since it was announced, and was not disappointed. It’s a fabulously well detailed model that shows amazing attention to detail, and deserves to be the new de facto standard in this scale. The tropic fittings give it a different look that is accentuated by the desert and pacific colour schemes. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  2. Greetings. Since I got the wonderful book "Spitfires in the Sun" written by @Linescriber I have tried my hand at some of the wonderful Spitfires profiled in the book. This is MA368, one of the rare handful of Vs that flew in India. When it arrived in India and delivered to 607 squadron RAF, it was in the Middle East scheme and after a cpl of different paint jobs ended up in the correct temperate land scheme with 16" ACSEA blue India roundels. Shown here as it was with 1 SFTS at Peshawar and Ambala. The kit itself is nice and gets you excited for a bit before disappointing you as well. The fit is fine though requires some muscle and putty for the wing root and vokes filter fitting. They have even included decals for parts not in the kit like the fuel cap on the nose 🤷🏻‍♂️ and missing some parts altogether like the rearview mirror. A thin cockpit door would have been a nice option for those of us who like to build it that way. I still need to sand the door thin but calling this done for now. The rearview mirror comes from the Italeri kit. Paints are Tamiya. I am not a very good photographer so please pardon the quality of the images as I used my very outdated phone camera. Here is the link to the build thread. Thank you for looking 🙏
  3. Hi, Fairchild F24 was a light utility and communication machine produced in UC in different variants since early 1930s till mid 1940s. . During WW2, like many other airplanes - they went militarized, named in US UC 61 Forwarder and in UK Argus. More details hers: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fairchild_24 The main army customer was UK (RAF). Variant Argus Mk II was with radial Warner Super Scrub engine, whereas Argus Mk III with in-line Ranger engine. The first injected kit of Fairchild F 24 in 1/72 was Pavla kit from 2001, You may build variant Ranger or Walter engine, however the engine in Ranger had details rather of the last variant, the UC 86. This was a short run with vacu clear parts and some resin elements. Eleven years later AZ-Legato issued an improved kit in which some problems of shape of tail in Pavla kit was corrected. I had in my stash a Pavla kit, but I decided to build both basic engine variants (in line and radial) so I bought the Legato kit. Finally I did them. The Pavla kit I used for Argus Mk III and Legato for Mk II. There were some corrections done by scratch working. 1. A bit too conical shape of the part between cowling and windscreen was modified to get almost cylindrical shape. 2. The canopy top windows (present in Mk II and Mk III) were added 3. Tail shape in Pavla kit was unified to Legato shapes. 4. Filaments (tubes) in canopy were added, in machine from India (Mk II) also w anti-sun cloth (teflon tape) 5. The Ranger engine covers shapes in Mk III were a bit modified in bottom side (rounded profile of air outlet introduced). I used the Legato engine parts to Pavla main airframe. 5. Non-box painting schemes applied. 6. Landing light added and the navigation light moved to the wingtips from leading edge (typical for early variants) 7. In Pavla kit I added the reinforcements seen on the wing fuel tanks. I made both in RAF colors: from mainland RAF Argus Mk III HB690 and SEAC Argus Mk II FS626. The emblem (nose art) is a hand painting on decal, I made them on both sides, maybe wrong... The nose art was discussed in WW2 section here Here is the result : Argus Mk II alone (Legato/AZ kit): Argus Mk III alone (Pavla kit) I am very thankful to everybody, who helped me by discussion in two WW2 section threads. Special thanks to @Ed Russell for his support in e-mails. The one thread in WW2 oart was that already mentioned above, and this second one: Comments welcome Regards Jerzy-Wojtek P.S. Here is a photo showing a difference in fin size between Legato and Pavla kits
  4. I know, there were patrol Hudsons and anti-shipping Beaufighters painted like that in Africa and the Mediterranean. But my display case of machines from Africa and the Middle East is already bursting at the seams, and I still do not have any "coastal' machine with Azure Blue undersides, which, after all, since 1941 was recommended by the HQ for all "warm" locations, and therefore also Ceylon, Burma and India. Perhaps Beaufighter should be in the VIC version, because most of the TFX has already flown in the Indian Ocean area in the TLS scheme with the SGM undersides. And from Europe they came in TSS with the Sky undersurfaces. However, when it comes to Hudson, it can ultimately be transport (they mostly flew in such colours) - as long as it retains the dorsal turret. Although apparently patrol bombers from No.353 squadron also had blue undersides. Does anyone have any photos, profiles, links? Cheers Michael
  5. I started off this vintage Airfix kit without a particular example in mind. I was hoping for a service example with Night undersides and the late windscreen (and there are some), but I couldn't resist this odd duck: A lingering Mk.I, with blister cowling and turret still, in service late enough for India White roundels, and in aluminum dope like the originals in the late thirties. In the Warpaint number on the type, the picture is captioned as belonging to 1331 Communications Unit, at Digri. I like to find something out about an aeroplane I make a model of, and Britmodeller is a great place to ask. I posted a query, and the boffins have spoken. We may perhaps add to 'don't trust a profile without a photograph' injunction not to trust the photograph's caption. A good many guys, Graham Boak, Tonyot, Geoffrey Sinclair, Sgifford among them, straightened the matter out for me in short order. There was no 1331 Communications Flight. There was a Check and Communication Flight from late 1943, at Mauripur, which became 1331 Conversion Unit a year later, after which it became a Heavy Transport Conversion Unit, at Risalpur. This was disbanded early in 1946. EG645 was delivered around Christmas, 1942, and shipped to India in 1943, arriving in May. It was struck off charge in spring of 1946. Aluminum dope finish was instituted for Ansons in the SEAC during 1945, so this photograph was definitely taken late in the machine's service. In light of all this, I suspect that in fact the photograph shows the machine in the early stages of its being put out to pasture. It does not seem to have radio or direction-finding equipment. That's one helluva boxtop, that I remember well from youth. I expect that being an early pressing helped with fit. I blanked off the wing-roots inside, and the gun trough outside, otherwise this is just as it came in the box, with ribs sanded flat. Finish is Tamiya rattle-can Bright Silver, with some upper surface matte coats. The 'India White' is a home mix, painted over centers that were, in the homemade roundels, too pale, and in the old Altmark flashes too, too turquoise.
  6. In the wonderful book "Spitfires in the Sun" I found a picture of RN 193 which intrigued me. High back Mk XIVc Spitfires were rare in the far east as it was and RN 193 not only served with No 136 Squadron RAF, but was then passed on to No. 2 (India) Group Command Flight where it served out it's life. The kit is Academy's 1/72 Spitfire XIVc. It is seemingly straight forward to build but requires some TLC, especially with the ventral wing joints and wheels. The cockpit door's dimensions seem a little compressed but I let it be since I had already decided to make an open canopy version. I used Tamiya for paints, wash and clear coat. Pardon the bad cell phone pictures. I might update this later in the week with better pictures. Thank you for looking!
  7. Built this as part of a group build. I have been waiting to dig into my Arma Hurricane but without enough time I chose this old kit. The build itself was very straightforward. I used Tamiya acrylics, wash and some shaved graphite to accent the raised panel lines. I built this to represent KZ371 of 3 Squadron IAF in the CBI theatre. Picture of the real aircraft had the following caption: During an intensive period of bombing around Marghai on June 27, 1944, 3 Squadron’s Fg Off Dilip Kumar Bose flew Hurricane Mk.IIc KZ371/R twice in support of Tochi Scouts on the ground.
  8. Hi Folks, It's been ages since I posted anything on here. So I shall start loading them up again. This is a Hobbyboss Thunderbolt MkII. Airbrushed with a mix of Hataka, Xtracrylics and MRP. I added some seatbelts, trimmed the width of the prop and that's about it. It's a basic kit but it goes together with no problem. Aircraft was based in Wanjing, China 1945.
  9. The postie delivered Revell's 1:32 Mosquito IV in the post today and I have been thinking about how to build it. In particular, the SEAC silver and blue scheme caught my eye. What aftermarket bits and bobs would I need to save up for build up an accurate Mossie, since there are few kits in this scale?
  10. A pair of recent completions, the Hasegawa 1/48 P-47D Thunderbolt I and Spitfire VIII, both in SEAC colours and both basically OOB. The Spitfire is in the markings of 152 Sqn, while the T-Bolt is of 146 Sqn.
  11. Hello All, My interpretation of a 354 Sqn RAF Liberator that carried an all Australian crew. OOB. Interesting to note the different colour saturation between indoor under Fluoro lighting and late evening light. Happy to take questions. Ian
  12. Among several RAF squadrons flying the Beaufighter over the CBI theatre most were either anti-shipping strike units using the Mk.Xs or night fighter squadrons equipped with the Mk.VI. As far as I know only No.27 Squadron (since November 1942 till July 1944) and No.177 Squadron (between May 1943 and May 1944) used also the Mk.VI in anti-shipping and coastal patrol roles. However I haven't seen any photos of these a/c and my question concerns their camouflage. For how long could they wear the factory-applied Temperate Sea Scheme (typical for the Coastal Command Mk.VIs)? Or were they repainted into the Temperate Land Scheme (like most Mk.Xs) before the delivery to the front-line units? BTW were the undersides of DE/DG Beaus painted Sea Grey Medium (like on Thunderbolts and Hurricanes) or Azure Blue (like on Mosquitoes)? Or maybe were they left in Sky Type S like on Blenheims and Vengeances? Cheers Michael
  13. Back in the dim and distant past of 2013, I did the first build of my long-running "Aircraft my Father fixed" project which you can read about here This first build was supposed to be of a Hurricane IIc in 1:32 scale, using an old Revell kit. This was enhanced to be a more accurate IIc and then had some panels cut out to show the internals behind the cockpit and with a figure to represent my Dad, which in the end looked like this: I was never entirely happy with this build as lots of compromises had to be made to get it to look like a IIc. Therefore in this build I wanted to build the newer Fly IId to replace this one. I had already build the Fly IIc, so the IId seemed the obvious choice as a replacement aircraft. So without further ado here are the photos of the finished model The tool box is of course non-regulation for WWII RAF, its actually modelled on the toolbox my Dad had when I was a kid One of the last things I did is add a pouch for the First Aid Kit on the back of the port fuselage panel - there are markings on the outside highlighting its location. These last shots are trying to capture some of the cockpit detail - tricky with the lighting... There it is - another of the builds I've been wanting to do for a couple of years since the Fly kits started appearing. This fits well in the sequence between the Spitfire IX in Tunisia diorama from mid 1943 (You can see that build here:) and the "Clang" diorama which would have been in mid 1944 (which you can see here:) Finally, the box for this kit
  14. Back in the dim and distant past of 2013, I did the first build of my long-running "Aircraft my Father fixed" project which you can read "all" about here This first build was supposed to be of a Hurricane IIc in 1:32 scale, using an old Revell kit. This was enhanced to be a more accurate IIc and then had some panels cut out to show the internals behind the cockpit and with a figure to represent my Dad, which in the end looked like this: You can read all about the build here: Even though this was awarded a Commended at Scale Model world in 2013, to be brutally honest I was never entirely happy with it. The problems with the wings and the general poor quality of the kit, plus the mistakes I made with the paint job (eg it should have been grey and green not brown and green and I forgot to add the white stripes used on SEAC Hurricanes). So in the years since then along comes Fly and release a series of 1:32 Hurricane kits! Woo hoo! Last year I built the Fly Hurricane IIc as a diorama depicting a story my father told me. You can see this build here So that leaves a gap in my plan, namely a Hurricane IID which 5 Sqn were equipped with for a short time around the time my father joined the squadron from 81 Sqn in late 1943,. My thinking is to build a replacement for the original IIc diorama, replacing the IIc with the IId and improve the pose of my father on the wing at the same time. To start with, here is the box of the Fly kit Funnily enough this kit comes with the options of 5 Sqn markings Here are the inevitable spur shots There is a small selection of resin parts for the exhaust stacks, wheels and undercarriage bays. Here you see the main pieces and some photoetch and decals. I'm thinking of re-using some pieces from the original model the accumulator trolly, which I thought came out quite well in the original -I think this could easily be reused; the toolbox is a non-RAF toolbox and was built to look like the one I remember my Dad having when I was a kit which was a blue enamelled thing, so that will definitely be reused - cleaned up a little from the dust; The figure's pose is almost right but the head is a little off - it needs to be a little more upright that it is currently. I think I can also reuse the stowage pieces and the trestles. As for the base, I think this will need to made afresh... I've got a collection of figure kits that can be used to add another figure or something to the scene As before, I'll be rebuilding the internal structures in the fuselage behind the cockpit and for that I've still got my research from 5 years ago to work with Which should be built out from the rear of the cockpit framework like this from the earlier build: So this will be my big build over the Christmas period, watch this space
  15. Hurricane IIC LB615. I have decals for this aircraft and the decal set says it's a IIC but the Pilots and Planes book says it's a PR IIC. So which is it? I fancied making this as it's different, as apparently it had 2 cannons removed. thanks Mike
  16. Have you ever seen the photo of anti-sub (TSS over White) camouflaged Hudson sporting small-dia "blue" SEAC roundels? There's a very basic profile of such a plane in RAFweb ad perhaps they are right, but I need a proof to follow on with my model. Correct me please where I'm wrong: 1. The small SEAC roundel (in dark and blue or "India white") was introduced in early 1943. 2. Two RAF Squadrons (namely No. 217 and 353) were using Hudsons in maritime role over the India/Burma area at least until June 1943 (October 1944 for transport duties) 3. In October 1942 the AMO A.1096/42 included the Hudson (along with Fortress, Liberator, Wellington and Whitley) within the "large anti-sub aircraft" group, that were to be camouflaged in TSS over White. 4. The same document mentioned Hudson also in "medium coastal aircraft" group (along with Blenheim, Beaufort, Beaufighter and Hampden) that were to be camouflaged in TSS over Sky or TSS over Night (Beaufort, Hampden and Hudson only) 5. Using (over certain geographical areas) Azure Blue instead of Sky has been allowed officially in DTD360 Issue 2 of November 1943 for ASR aircraft, but I have heard (remind me please) about such practice seen much earlier. What's funny the same scheme of TSS over Azure Blue was a recommended/compulsory scheme for transport aircraft overseas. 6. Thus No.217 Squadron Hudsons between January and June 1943 should sport TSS over White with small SEAC roundels 7. No.353 Squadron Hudsons between January and August 1943 should look the same as No.217's machines or (if "coastal patrol duties" aren't the same as "anti-submarine work") they could feature TSS over Sky (or over Night or over Azure) 8. Between November 1943 and October 1944 the No.353 Squadron Hudsons (transport duties now) should be camouflaged in TSS over Azure 9. Between August and November 1943 they could look either like #7 or #8 depending on fact, whether transport was this unit primary or secondary role. Anyhow - each opinion will be aprreciated and thoroughly analysed. Cheers Michael
  17. Good evening all, I hope you’re all well. Apologies for not being around much the last couple of months. I’m doing a bit of catching up with the RFIs at the mo, before I enter another busy period where I might go quiet again for a while. Anyway.... At last, I’m invoking the 80% rule and calling this one done. There’s bits I’d still like to improve on or finish properly but I need to move on from this project. That being said, I’m happy enough with the way it’s turned out….but let’s not talk about the front and rear turrets shall we 😉 So here is my interpretation of Liberator B.VI KL629 of No. 99 Sq. It was a toss-up between this one, KL611 in a similar scheme, or KL654 in an NMF finish; all of these wearing SEAC markings. This was a far cry from my original plan for them both to be USAAF aircraft, preferably from Rackheath or Horsham St Faiths as I lived between the 2 airfields for a couple of years. This kit is the Monogram boxing of a B24J, Kentucky Belle. Apparently KL629 was a Ford built B-24L-15-FO, (BU 44-49800) that later went on to serve with the Indian Air Force as HE834. I managed to get hold of the relevant pages from the book Consolidated Mess and was able to find out what modifications I needed (was willing and able) to make to make it accurate. So additions to the base kit include: · Squadron canopy, high-hat top turret and bombadier’s window. · True Details wheels. · Quickboost engines. · Lots of lead fishing weight ! Other mods: Larger ‘blown’ navigator observation windows. Larger/glazed waist gunner window with staggered guns. Paint was all Tamiya acrylics and I used the salt weathering technique to help give the upper surfaces weathered look. Unfortunately the effect is a bit too subtle to show in the pictures. So here’s the end of B-24 duo project for now, I hope you like them. Comments good bad or indifferent welcome as usual. Cheers Gaz I need to re-do the stbd waist gun window.
  18. Were the early 1945-introduced SEAC white bands around the wings and tail surfaces limited to the day fighters and strike aircraft (namely Hurricanes, Spitfires, Thunderbolts, Vengeances, Mosquitoes and Beaufighters TFX) or is it possible to find a night fighter Beau VIF (only No.89 and 176 Squadrons flew them in this area AFAIK) in DG/SGM scheme and white bands? Having penetrated several books, dozens of magazine articles and hundreds of pictures I cannot understand while still in June 1945 the Ceylon-based Mk.VIF had no white bands painted on. Any help will be appreciated Cheers Michael
  19. Hi all I've began work on a 1/72 Airfix Catalina, inspired by the following photos, and wanted some thoughts about how to interpret it. The same plane has been interpreted in the following colour plate: To my knowledge, this is a 205 Squadron aircraft, JX431, operating in that photo from the flying boat base at Koggala, Ceylon, in 1942. I've actually been past Koggala lagoon on the bus when I visited Sri Lanka, and as I find the scheme with blue SEAC roundels very fetching, I'd love to model it. That photo is a brilliant inspiration. IWM caption it as a Catalina Mk. IVb; AKA a PB2B-1, manufactured in Canada. I feel the colour profile is basically accurate, although the photo shows the engine cowlings are wraparound white. A few things to note for building it from the Airfix kit: - It's not amphibious, so Airfix's wheel wells need filling, and a small window added to the hole. - It has got the de-icer exhausts attached to the engines. An unusual feature! I expect this means the small de-icer scoop on the tail root is present too, although we can't see in this - The wings are heavily weathered, but I don't know how to interpret it. There are several areas with ruler-edge demarcations which clearly show different shades of grey. I'd love to model this. - The photo just shows the fuel jettison pipes protruding from the trailing edge of the wing. So, questions: 1) Can we assume, from the light circles around the wing roundels, that standard blue/red roundels have been overpainted? Why not just overpaint the central circle? I'm planning to paint a circle of lighter-coloured grey around my roundels on the model. 2) What might the dark grey square patch be on the left horizontal stabilizer? I know the ailerons were fabric, so maybe this is a sewn-on patch? 3) What could explain the very square, ruler-edge colour modulation at the centre of the wing? Particularly at the trailing edge, there is a very dark rectangle. 4) Outboard of the roundels, we see some bizarre weathering, where dark streaks appear in a pattern like this: -|-|-|- What might explain this? 5) There are 2 small black rectangles on the upper wing. I've found little information on these and not all Catalinas had them, but I think they're related to the deicing system? I'll throw a WIP up if you guys are interested. I'm doing a bit of interior scratching at the moment. Hopefully this topic is of interest! I love trying to puzzle out the clues that photos like these give us. Thanks for reading!
  20. Hey All Here’s a wee project I’ve been working on for a few months now, the first of my 2 RAF Liberators. Hopefully this is fair interpretation (with a smidgen of artistic licence) of Liberator GR.V. BZ862 that flew with 354 Squadron from India between September 1943 and May 1944. The kit is the Revell boxing of a B24D, Jerk’s Natural. Additions to the base model include: · Belcher Bits belly radome · Squadron canopy. · True Details wheels. · Quickboost engines. · F.M. Halifax Bolton Paul rear turret transparency with scratchbuilt internal gubbins for the Quickboost B.P. Defiant .303 machine guns. · Lots of lead fishing weight ! I was looking for a Coastal Command Liberator wearing SEAC markings to build when I came across a photo titled ‘Geoff Tomlinson’s aircraft – Early 354’ on Ron Quirk’s website, in Jim Badgleys album ( 354 Sqn photos ). There is also a second in-flight photo of this aircraft in the album titled 'On Patrol over Bay of Bengal'. From the grainy photos I could tell that it was based on a ‘D’ variant, that it had the code letter ‘A’, and that it should make a suitable subject. With no decals available in 1/48, my subject had to be reasonably easy to model. From there I discovered: · Code letter ‘A’ belonged to Liberator GR.V. BZ862 and it was usually flown by Sgt Tomlinson (later P/O) and his crew. In June 1944 the aircraft was replaced on 354 Sqn by Liberator MK.VI. EW319, however it was transferred to 160 Sqn where in August 1945 it would go on to complete a sortie of 24hrs and 10 minutes with F/Lt Jack Muir and crew; this was a record at the time and definitely a subject worth modelling. · 354 Squadron was a general reconnaissance squadron that flew Liberators from airfields in India and Ceylon from its formation in May 1943 until disbandment in May 1945. They carried out armed patrols and convoy escort duties using Liberator Mks IIIA, V and finally VI. First, here's my attempt at recreating to pose of 862 in the photo. There was something bugging me about the roundels shown in the photo, particularly with the relatively small centre circle. I think the answer came in a recently purchased (when I started the project) copy of Eyes for the Phoenix by Geoffrey J. Thomas. The book details a period between Jun and September 1943 where the national markings evolved from the European style to the familiar SEAC two-tone blue. Apparently, when faded, the blue of the RAF Type B roundels blended into the surrounding camouflage leaving only a visible red circle that was sometimes tragically mistaken for Japanese markings. The book details the colours and measurements for the markings and after first applying roundels and fin flashes in the early trial white/blue (as they look to me in the photo), I later changed them to the later light/dark blue to better suit the timeframe. However I can’t be certain that this aircraft did actually wear this style of marking. I wanted the addition of the belly radome to be a feature of this build so I wanted to help minimise the clutter at the back end by making sure that it wasn't a tail sitter. It took a lot of lead ! And here's where it all went. Lastly, I'd bought the Belcher Bits conversion that also came with a Leigh Light. I think it's a great little addition to the CC Liberator and this is my only opportunity to use it, so I have. I'm sure no-one will notice. Thanks for looking, comments, corrections, good, bad or indifferent welcome Cheers Gaz
  21. Whilst trawling the IWM website for other stuff, I happened upon this 8 minute long colour film of 79 Squadron RAF Thunderbolts in theatre. It also shows some aircraft of 42 Squadron. RAF Thunderbolts Seems to show some retained the original US cockpit harness and raises some interesting colour conundrums, especially around the 4:08 mark. Enjoy, Mark.
  22. Hi there, Does anyone have any information on what colours and markings (and what version hurricane) would have applied to XI squadron hurricanes in Burma? My grandfather flew and won the DFC so I would like more info on the plane he would have flown. Thanks in advance
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