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  1. Dear fellow Britmodellers, here's my 1/72 Arma Hobby P-51C Mustang in markings of 382nd Fighter Squadron, 363rd Fighter Group, in France 1944. I built from the "Expert Set", photographs by Wolfgang Rabel. A full build review will be featured in an upcoming edition of Phoenix Aviation Modelling magazine. Thank you for your interest, best greetings from Vienna Roman
  2. A 1/48 scale Tamiya kit build of Major George Bostwick’s extremely colourful P-47M ‘Hotrod’ Thunderbolt as it was in mid-1945 after shooting down a Messerschmitt Me-262A jet. To celebrate this feat, it was marked with the addition of a black cowling band to the already colourful 56th Fighter Group dark blue and light blue scheme. Spent rather longer on the weathering and chipping than usual for this build as without it, this scheme tended to look rather too ‘cartoony’ for my taste. Pleased with the end result though
  3. Dear fellow Britmodellers, here's my 1/72 Revell P-47D Thunderbolt, built from the box. I received this kit from the legacy of a fellow IPMS club member. The kit's box was badly crushed and torn, and every time I saw it in my stash I felt sorry for it. Looking for a 'quick build', I moved it to the workbench. The Revell model was released 20 years ago: https://www.scalemates.com/de/kits/revell-04155-republic-p-47d-30-thunderbolt--107126 It still holds up well today, with nice details and clean mouldings, and is a cheaper alternative to the Tamiya kit. Markings represent "Chuck's Wagon", an aircraft of 362nd Fighter Group, operating from Rouvres aifield (allied code A.82) in early 1945. The decals are from Eagle Strike (#72058, "362nd FG Jugs Pt.II"). Painted with Tamiya, Mr.Hobby and Alclad II. Photographs by Wolfgang Rabel. "Chuck's Wagon" carried colorful wheel hubs. These were punched from plastic sheet and painted according to instructions. Thank you for your interest. Best greetings from Vienna! Roman
  4. An interesting but very sad website. In addition to the hundreds of thousands of aircraft sold and scrapped here in the U.S. there were numerous sites around the world where aircraft were not flown back to America, but were scrapped in place; in the PTO aircraft were either dumped offshore or were parked in long trenches and covered by bulldozers. I can remember seeing C-82's, BT-13's, and T-6's parked in the grass behind the aprons at the San Antonio Municipal Airport awaiting sale and/or disposal in the 50's. Amazing that Paul Mantz bought almost 500 aircraft in one purchase; he kept eleven, drained the others of their avgas, which he sold, and then sold the remaining aircraft for scrap. If only Paul Allen had been alive with his fortune back then, or if Hap Arnold's wishes for a postwar military aviation museum had been followed... Mike https://www.airplaneboneyards.com/post-wwii-military-airplane-boneyards.htm
  5. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.Vb (A50125A) 1:48 Airfix The Spitfire is perhaps one of the best known and well-loved aircraft in Britain, and deservedly so for its work in the Battle of Britain alongside the doughty Hurricane. It thrived in its point-defence role, and shone during its finest hour, then on through many versions and types to the end of WWII and beyond. The Mk.I was predictably the first in-service type, and sported eight .303 Browning machine guns, and by the time hostilities commenced in 1939 many of them were using the blown canopies that gave the pilot a better field of view with less likelihood of smacking his head against the glazing. The Mk.I was superseded by the Mk.II, Mk.III, and then the Mk.V due to the introduction of the Focke Wulf Fw.190 by the Germans that gave the British Spitfire pilots a nasty shock when they first encountered it. The Mk.V gave them the extra horsepower to cope with these pugnacious little fighters, and so the tactical leapfrog continued to the end of the war with the Mk.22/24 being the last mark of the Spitfire with cut-down fuselage, bubble canopy and the monstrous power of the Griffon engine in front of the pilot with all the torque steer he could handle. The Kit This is a reboxing of Airfix’s recent Mk.V that has been given new decals and box art to depict it as a couple of different aircraft, and leaves the tropical filter parts in the box. It arrives in a standard Airfix red-themed top-opening box, with five sprues of light grey styrene inside, a clear sprue, decal sheet and the spot-colour instructions that have a colour painting guides on the rear pages. It brings with it all the detail you would expect from a recent Airfix tooling, and the knowledge that if you want more detail, the aftermarket industry will be there to help you out if you don’t fancy the DIY option. It shares a lot of parts with the rebox of the Mk.Ia we reviewed recently, which is to be expected due to their common heritage. Construction begins with the cockpit interior, which consists of two inner skins that are decorated with the usual items we all probably know and recognise instantly. The pilot's chair is made from an L-shaped seat with separate sides, that is mounted on an armour panel, with the adjustment lever on the right side. The frame behind the pilot has moulded-in lightening holes that you can either fill with wash or drill out at your whim, then add the seat frame and head-armour, finally fitting the seat to the frame on its four corners. The rudder pedal assembly goes through a section of the wing spar and has separate pedals that you should leave off if you are intending to fit the pilot, and the control column with separate top is planted in the middle of the sub-assembly. The instrument panel is glued to the next frame forward and has a nice decal with just the dials printed and an outline to help locate it correctly on the panel. A little decal solution should help that to settle down into the recesses nicely. The compass attaches to the rear of the panel, and is then inserted into the port cockpit side along with the rudder pedal assembly and a lever, allowing the two halves to be joined and a front firewall bulkhead to be fitted to close in the foot well. Then the seat assembly and next frame to the rear are slotted into the grooves, and your optional pilot with his two separate arms can be placed in if you’re using him. Before inserting the cockpit tub you need to paint the interior of the fuselage above the waistline, and remove a small part of the sill if you are posing the canopy closed. Then it slips inside the starboard fuselage half along with an oxygen bottle, and the port side is joined up together with an insert in front of the canopy, which is where the fuel tank filler is found. You can also cut out the access door on the left side of the fuselage, bearing in mind that you have a new door on the sprue so you can be a bit brutal in removing the plastic. The wings are built next, and the full-width lower wing has two circular bay walls fitted along with a section of the front spar, before the rear spar and front extensions are also attached to stiffen the wing. The tops of the gear legs are inserted into recesses in the bay, then it’s just a case of popping on the upper wings and moving on to joining them to the fuselage after making sure you’ve fitted the light in the belly first. The elevator fins are slotted into the tail at 90o to the rudder fin, then the flying surfaces are added with any deflection that you might wish to portray, remembering that some smart-alec will always complain if you don’t also offset the control column and rudder pedals too. The ailerons are also separate and can be posed with the same caveats applied. Under the nose the chin-insert is glued in, noting the Dzuz fastenings there and on the side cowlings. They could possibly stand a very slight flatting down to look less like semi-flush donuts, but maybe that’s just me. Under the leading edge of the wing there is a two-part intake, then the square radiator bath with textured radiator panels and tubular oil-cooler are added to their recesses, with optional open or closed cooling flaps on the rear of the radiator. The tail wheel was still fixed in the Mk.V, so slots into a hole under the tail, and you then have the choice of wheels up or down. In-flight a small portion of the wheels can still be seen, so Airfix have provided a slim wheel to put on the doors so that a realistic look is obtained. For the wheels down option, you have separate struts and doors, which slot into the top-sections already within the bay and have a pair of tyres with separate hubs added, making sure that the slightly flattened section is facing the floor. A pair of scrap diagrams show the correct angles from the front and sides to help with positioning. A T-shaped pitot probe goes under the wing, then the triple-fishtail exhaust stubs are glued into the nose and the long-fairing equipped cannons, joined by a one-piece triple-bladed prop, two-part spinner, and three parts that permit the prop to spin if you don’t flood it with glue. You then have a choice of open or closed canopies, using a three-part assembly plus rear-view mirror for open, and two-part plus mirror for closed. You did remember to paint and fit the clear reflector gunsight, didn’t you? The open option also allows the door to be posed down, which as previously mentioned uses a new part. There is an aerial mast behind the cockpit with small teardrop light, with a little look at your references showing where to string the antennae wires. Markings There are two decal options in the box, one of which is an American airframe with early stars painted over the roundels, the other in British roundels but with an American at the helm. From the box you can build one of the following: ‘Buckeye Don’ Flown by 2nd Lieutenant Don Gentile, 336 Fighter Squadron, USAAF, RAF Debden, North Essex, England, 1942 Aircraft flown by Sqn.Ldr. Eric Hugh Thomas, No.133 (Eagle) Squadron, RAF Biggin Hill, England, April 1942 Decals are by Cartograf, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. Conclusion A welcome reboxing of this recent tool from Airfix, and the American decal options should appeal to our colonial cousins from across the pond. Detail is good, and you’ll be left with a number of spare parts for the parts bin. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  6. An old and flawed kit, but one that has a special place in the memory banks for me – when I was 12 we were told we could have a home made mascot on our desks for end of primary school exams. I persuaded my parents to get me a Flying Fortress model kit for my 13th birthday and by exam season it was ready. Despite my teachers’ horror at such an oversized mascot, they were amused enough at the odd child with the plane to let it slide, and it sat on my desk proudly for my entire Common Entrance exams (which went well enough to get into the school I wanted). Despite many moves since, I still have the old B-17 ‘Memphis Belle’ sat in my workshop at aged 30, looking more than a little tired. So I figured since I’d got back into model making after a 10 year absence about 3 years ago; it would be a nice thing to find the same very old Revell kit and make it again – to keep the old and the new side by side. I don’t normally do 1:72 scale as I find weathering effects tricky when going below 1:48, and the detail starts to go. Am really pleasantly surprised by how this came out though – despite the atrocious kit transparencies, lackluster detail which necessitated quite a bit of scratch built detail near the windows, and the strange panel texture on the nose. One issue was right at the end, I dropped superglue on the right wing when trying to rig up the radio aerials, which left a very ugly mark and meant I had to eventually sand down and paint over the whole panel. I couldn’t match the colour or weathering again so I tried instead to represent a battle-damage replacement panel with un-faded Olive Drab. Short video build summary video is available on my YouTube channel if folk are interested - BritFlyer.
  7. I recently completed my first 1:48 scale Tamiya ' Bubbletop ' P47-D I rather liked this kit so i decide i'd perhaps buy another one. However, i saw a Hobbyboss kit online and thought i'd have a go at this instead. It was a lot cheaper than the Tamiya offering ( whichit'self is superb!). I thought i'd start a new build with this HobbyBoss offering. Here's the kit out of the box as a starting point It looks to be quite a nice kit for the money. Crisp mouldings. NO flash. small pieces are very good. The plastic is nice quality. The engravings are light but appear to be recessed. It's limited in comparison with the Tamiya offering.. No options to add rockets / pylons / bombs or the under-wing drop tanks. (This isn't a problem of course as the 2 examples to build to are probably Escort fighter configurations.) A lot of scope for cockpit improvement here! The seat lacks the upright supports.. but have a pair of these from the a Tamiya kit in spares. No details to speak of for the cockpit side controls and gear.. No pilot figure. A one piece canopy - would have to cut the canopy to do this as an open canopy model. The canopy moulding is actually very nice with very well cast ,slightly lipped dividing lines between Perspex and metal. Looking forward to starting the build .. will decide what options i'll add myself..
  8. Dear fellow Britmodellers, here's my 1/72 KP Cessna UC-78A in USAAF Colors, representing an aircraft of 405th Fighter Group in 1944. The KP kit seems to be a re-box of the Pavla moulds, originally released in the late 1990s. Fit is generally good, but I noticed some surface irregularities, especially on the wings. These are easily corrected with sanding sticks. The clear parts are relatively thick, which resulted in unpleasant light fames around the side windows - I should have painted the fames in a dark color before attaching the clear parts! I've added brake lines from stretched sprue. The model was painted with Gunze/Mr.Hobby acrylics, all photographs by Wolfgang Rabel. Thank you for your interest in this topic. Best greetings from Vienna, Roman
  9. Dear fellow Britmodellers, here's my latest, the 1/72 Airfix B-17G (new tool) built from the box with the addition of photo-etch-seatbelts from my spares box. "Mah Ideel" operated with 401st Bomb Squadron, 91st Bomb Group, out of Bassingbourn/Cambridgeshire in fall of 1944. The model was painted with Alclad II lacquers and Gunze/Mr.Hobby acrylics. All photographs by Wolfgang Rabel. Thank you for your interest in this topic. Best greetings from Vienna Roman
  10. Hello Here is my last finished build with this 1/72 Brengun North American A-36A in USAAF colors. This A-36A 42-83830 was at the time within the 86th Fighter Bomber Group based at Tafraoui Airfield in French Algeria during summer 1943. She was destroyed beyond repair during a wheels up belly landing on 6th August 1943 at Tunis El Aouina Airfield due to mechanical failure but the pilot survived (joebaugher.com). The kit Brengun BRP72025, which I was given by Redboost, was easy to assemble and paints are from Gunze. The markings came from my spare box because I wanted to build an A-36A based in North Africa. In the original decal sheet there were only Italian based aircraft. Patrick
  11. After a rather protracted battle with a Special Hobby Avia B-33 which involved a lot of filling, sanding, groaning, and some useless landing gear attachments - I needed a pick me up. I thought Eduard's Spitfire would do the job. And it did. It's a lovely kit to build, with lots of detail, and all the usual Eduard extras - canopy mask, photo-etch, lovely full colour instructions. I went for a desert Spit for variety - but had forgotten how challenging I find desert schemes. They always look rather toy-ish to me, and as a result I went a bit overboard on weathering... Was the usual oil wash, followed by some post shading and fading which I think in certain portions went too far and resulted in the 'quilted' look. Then I brushed on a top coat of slightly watered down Vallejo satin acrylic varnish before applying some dust effects on the landing gear and area of footfall on the wing roots. I also had a mishap with one of the roundels which managed to attract an errant bit of masking tape... I decided to cut some rectangles from spare decals and told myself it looks sort of ok, and like some hasty patching in the field. Anyway - I fully recommend the kit, goes together very nicely. Thanks for looking - all comments and criticisms most welcome!
  12. I'm currently modelling subjects used by U.S. forces, and that means I'm going to need some kits of specific British-built aircraft. A fresh order of decals has prompted me to look more closely at the Spitfire Mark Vb. I really only know the basics about Spits and even less regarding the available 1/72 representations. Although due diligence demanded some basic research in this department before starting a new topic, digesting the available information can be likened to drinking from a fire hose. Please forgive me restating this question directly as I'm sure the topic is old hat for the bona fide afficionado. From what I've been able to glean, the Tamiya kit goes together well but has some shape issues (though no reviewer in my quick survey seems to state precisely what these issues are) and the Italeri kit is good WRT to shape, but doesn't go together so well. I like the newest generation of Airfix kits, but apparently their Mk. Vb is an older issue? Do the latest small-run kits from eastern Europe stack up well? I appreciate any light to be shed, and again, I apologise if this seems an oblivious inquiry.
  13. Have just finished this one from Airfix new range of very nice kits, build out of the box one with aftermarked decals from OWL. cheers Jes
  14. Here's a link to hyperscale.com. A thread that contains copies of illustrations about ditching Bombers. Not sure if this inspired confidence amongst the crews but at least someone must have thought about it. http://www.network54.com/Forum/149674/message/1496324353/How+to+ditch+your+bomber I thought someone on here might enjoy seeing these.
  15. Hello all, This is my first RFI (although I did take part in a GB last year), and my first attempt at a base/vignette. It is modelled as the aircraft flown by Lt. Col. Benjamin Mayo, 84th FS, 78th Fighter Group, USAAF, based at Duxford, England, 1944. My wife picked the kit based on the cover art – something to put on her work desk (she’s American and instinctively drawn to the stars and bars). It probably wouldn’t have been a subject that high on my to-do list, but I really enjoyed getting into the project, as you always do once you start and do background research. I also thought a base and figure would be good to go with it, so the project grew… In addition to the many images that I used for reference, these are two which helped me compose the proxject. The first is of P-47s at Duxford, the second is of Capt. Dewey E. Newhart (who was killed in action on the 12th of June 1944 during a mission over Northern France. Incidentally, Benjamin Mayo survived the war): Tamiya 1/72 Republic P-47D Thunderbolt, kit decals (some electrical wiring and stretched sprue added for brake lines, wheel bay hydraulics and instrument panel wiring), Hasegawa figure, MDF/particle board base, 600 grit wet and dry sandpaper, Woodland Scenics grasses on top of sand/ground up cork/paint/PVA mix, and some DIY, including scratch-built wheel chocks. Acrylic paints (Model Masters silver, Tamiya olive drab), acrylic gloss “varnish”, with oil washes and some silver pencil “chipping”. The tarmac also got some pastel and oil treatment. The Tamiya kit is fantastic, but I wish I had done something other than use the kit decal for the seat harness. Many of the decals took some wrestling and involved quite a bit of MicroSol. Feedback welcome (and I appreciate that some of the oil washes are on the heavy side, now that I see the photos!). Thanks for looking, David
  16. The Roden kit does not give the individual code, carried on the tail, of this aircraft. Does anyone know what it was or must I simply invent one? Separately, was this aircraft with the unit for D-Day? The kit lacks the upper wing and fuselage stripes as is correct for the July 1944 date given, but have they been carried and then overpainted, rubbed off? Either would present an additional way of breaking up blank expanses of Olive Drab. Further, did these aircraft appear with the multi-toned ODs often seen on early aircraft (this is after all a 1941-ordered aircraft) including the Medium Green blotches, or were they more consistently painted/repainted? Most views of D-Day period aircraft appear to lack the more extreme variations seen elsewhere, unless I'm just not looking at enough photos.
  17. Hi all I thought I'd finish KP's new Mustang in Don Gentile's markings. I'm confused which enamel to use. Contenders seem to be: Humbrol: 70 Brick Red Matt, 186 Brown Matt Revell: 32180 Mud Brown Gloss, 32137 Reddish Brown Flat. The underneath seems less of a problem. Revell 32143 Flat Grey USAF! I'd be very interested to learn of your recommendations. Cheers M.M.
  18. I have recently ordered the Academy B-29 in 1/72 and I want to put it onto a base with some figures und vehicles. For the vehicles I intended to use this upcoming Airfix set (http://www.airfix.com/uk-en/shop/vehicles/military-vehicles/usaaf-8th-air-force-bomber-resupply-set-1-72.html) although, as i want to build either the Enola Gay or Bockscar, I can`t use the bomb truck, but are the other vehicles apropriate? Also: What figures could I use? I thought of the Airfix or Preiser kit. Do you have other suggestions? Thank you in advance Levin
  19. STEEL Seatbelt Sets Luftwaffe Fighters, Bombers, Early RAF, USAAF 1:32 Eduard As with the 1:48 scaled sets reviewed by Mike HERE, Eduard have also produced four sets of seatbelts in the new Steel range for those of us who like to build in 1:32 scale. As with the smaller scale, these are also pre-painted and appear to be remarkably flexible, and even with quite rough handling the paint adheres to the metal really well. They are still made from 0.1mm sheet with the resulting etch is thin at around 0.06mm and have the same details printed on them, such as the webbing, stitching, and shadowing. Unlike some sets, all the buckles and clasps are etched as part of the strapping, so there is no fiddly work required to assemble each belt. [32867 – Luftwaffe WWII Fighters] – There are four complete sets of belts on the single sheet. These include shoulder and lap straps along with separate padding that is fitted under the main buckles and a couple of smaller fittings. [32868 – USAFF WWII] – There are four belts included on the single sheet. Two of the belts are in olive green and two in a sandy colour. The shoulder and lap straps are once again separate, as are the the release clips and orange brown padded panels, although for some strange reason, Eduard have only provided three clips and pads. [32872 - Early RAF WWII] – This sheet contains four seatbelts, all in a beige colour and with separate lap straps. Two of the shoulder harnesses have a short attachment strap that I believe is fitted to the seat, and two with long attachment straps that fit to the rear bulkhead of the cockpit. [32873 – Luftwaffe WWII Bombers] – The single sheet in this set contains just two complete seatbelts for the pilot which include shoulder and lap straps, along with the attachment strap assembly and the reddy tan padded panels. Conclusion Those who build in the larger scales generally try to add greater levels of detail into their models, showing much skill and technique. Now, those of us who aren’t endowed with super skills can at least have some nice looking seatbelts fitted to our models, with very little skill needed, other than a bit of bending and gluing. Of course the belts can still be weathered more if required. Review sample courtesy of
  20. REPUBLIC P-47D THUNDERBOLT Hello! This is my 1/48 Tamiya P-47D Thunderbolt finished in the markings of 1st Lt. Raymond Knight, 346th FS/350th FG,USAAF. This airframe was based in Pisa, Italy in 1945. You can see the WIP posts and more pics of the finished build on my blog: http://thescalemodelhangar.blogspot.co.uk Happy Modelling! Darren.
  21. Trying to work out the colours on the cowling of a 1943 USAAF B-25G of the 38th Bomb Group. Its apparent from squadron records that they had 4 flights, and it seem likely from photos evidence that the forward section of the cowl was painted in the flight colour. I have USAAF WW2 Flight colours as follows: A Flight: Blue B Flight: White (yellow) C Flight: Red What was the colour used for ‘D Flight’? Juanita
  22. Hey everyone, As a young lad, I remember being really taken with the story of B-24 'Lady Be Good', the mystery of the plane herself and the subsequent story behind its discovery and its crew. (I think I read about it in a book called 'Great Air Mysteries') Then, there was Shep Paine's iconic diorama of the same plane which like a lot of his work, really inspired me to get into the hobby. I was thinking about maybe having a go at a similar diorama of the plane..but I'm wondering whether you think it's been done before and might look like a sad attempt at copying what is a great build? Even though it was a terrible ordeal for the poor crew, I really think it's a story that deserves telling in a hobby kind of way. Look forward to your thoughts.. Dermot
  23. Sometime in 1943/1944 the pre-war style national markings began appearing on the rudders USAAF aircraft in the Asia theatre (blue vertical stripe, red/white horizontal stripes). I’m wondering when these style of markings first started being reapplied. It obviously wasn’t an official direction, and they weren't widespread, but they can be seen on such aircraft as B-24 (F-7 recon) of 6 RG, recon P-38s and supply/hack aircraft of the 3 BG. They are seen on aircraft by the early stages of the Philippines campaign (eg late 1944)... I am trying to date a couple of photos of a supply (‘chow’) hack aircraft (A-20 & B-25) which gained these rudder markings sometime during 1944/early 1945. Juanita
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