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  1. Hi folks! You can never have enough projects in progress So I thought in parallel with my other constructions I would commence yet another one. Two very early British jets. A Whittle/Pioneer/E.28/39 from new Ukrainian brand Clear Prop and an almost venerable now Special Hobby kit as a Vampire mk.I. The pair will share same top colours and of course some overlaps for interior painting so I'm looking for some synergy of this micro group build. Cheers, Dennis
  2. Pilots Replicas is working on a family of 1/48th de Havilland DH.115 Vampire Trainer (two seats) kits. Source: https://www.facebook.com/390440134419981/photos/a.390448977752430/2158553184275325/ V.P.
  3. Two-seater Vampire to be precise. Contents of the box. I have some aftermarket, such as resin intakes and interior PE. Decals are sourced from Galdecal sheet. This Airfix kit is looking real nice. Right, so I will be building my hometown planes. Vampires were the first jet planes Finland acquired (single seaters first, followed by double seaters) - and they were stationed in Pori. Why? Because Pori had the only tarmac field that was suitable for jet fighter operations in whole of Finland in 1955! Top photo is taken during the plane's arrival in 1955. I will be doing mine sometime during summer 1957.
  4. VAMPIRE T.11, FINNISH AIR FORCE, VT-4, spring 1957, Pori, Finland Kit: Airfix 1/72 De Havilland Vampire T.11/J-28C (#A02058A) Scale: 1/72 Paints: Vallejo Model Air, Vallejo Metal Colour Aftermarket: Quickboost intakes, Kuivalainen PE set, Galdecal decals Weathering: Tamiya Panel Line Accent Colour Beautiful kit of a beautiful plane. Not really anything bad to say about it, enjoyable build overall. Painted with Vallejo Metal Color Silver, only minor panel line accent coloring, no other weathering. Built for Nordic II GB: https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/forum/742-ragnars-return-nordic-ii-gb/ WIP thread for the build here: Together with other Finnish jet trainers:
  5. Hi all, After some time away from CAD modelling and 3D printing, I'm back with a new product! Vampire F1 conversion that is a direct drop-in replacement for Airfix's 1/48 Vampire F3. £12 each plus £3 postage (UK), worldwide postage is £10. Drop me a message if you would like a kit. Sea Vampire F20 to follow Heres the kit CAD Individual parts breakdown https://www.facebook.com/WellsPropsModels/photos/a.107592737843774/335846051685107/ Cheers Ben
  6. DH.100 Vampire Mk.9 ’Tropicalised Fighter-bomber’ 1:72 Special Hobby (72455) The distinctive de Havilland DH.100 Vampire was designed to fulfil a wartime requirement for a small, lightweight jet fighter for the Royal Air Force. Although the prototype aircraft first flew in September 1943, the production aircraft arrived too late to see service in the Second World War. In spite of this, well over 3,000 were eventually produced and the aircraft enjoyed a relatively long service life by the standards of the day. Powered by a single De Havilland Goblin turbojet, the Vampire was capable of a maximum speed of 548 mph and had a service ceiling of over 40,000 ft. In common with many other RAF fighters of the day, armament was comprised of four 20mm cannon. The FB.9 was a tropicalised Goblin-3 powered F.5 fighter-bomber with air conditioning; 348 built, most by de Havilland, and some by Fairey Aviatyion. The Kit the top opening box are two sprues of grey plastic and a clear one. There are no resin or photo etched parts in the box though Special Hobby do offer s a PE set through their CMK line. It should be noted that not all of the parts need to be used to build the variants catered for in this edition. The kit looks excellent on the sprue, with lots of crisp, moulded detail and surface structures made up of fine, recessed lines and fasteners (although some of the detail on the underside of the fuselage looks a little heavy). The overall impression is closer to a modern, high pressure injection moulded kit than the older MPM/Special Hobby kits in my collection. Construction starts with the well-detailed cockpit. This area is made up of the floor, rear bulkhead and head rest, the pilot's seat, the control column and the instrument panel. The instrument panel features recessed detail and a decal is provided for the instrument dials themselves, while the gun sight is moulded from clear plastic. The inside of the fuselage halves benefit from some separately moulded sidewall details. Taken together, the overall impression is of a well detailed and suitably busy cockpit. Other internal detail includes the front and rear faces of the De Havilland Ghost turbojet engine. Special Hobby have elected for a bit of a smoke and mirrors effect here, splitting the front face of the engine into two parts so each can be seen through the intake trunking (part of which is cleverly moulded to the lower half of the fuselage pod. There is no separate tail pipe for the jet exhaust, with the pipe and protruding lip being moulded as part of the upper and lower fuselage halves. The nose cone is moulded separately to the rest of the fuselage, and it follows a panel line which should reduce the need to clean up the joint when finished. It will also enable you to fit the nose weight after the main structure of the model has been completed. Once the two halves of the fuselage pod have been joined together, attention turns to the wings and the horizontal stabiliser. The wings are simply moulded in upper and lower halves, with control surfaces moulded in place. Surface details are very nicely represented, although the trailing edges are a little on the thick side (nothing that can't be sorted relatively easily though). The shallow main landing gear bays are moulded as part of the lower wing but are pretty well detailed. The engine air intakes are separately moulded, complete with vanes. Nice as they are, they look quite inaccurate as the openings are too small. The plastic looks too thin to correct the flaw, so hopefully one of the aftermarket manufacturers will have a go an producing some resin replacements. The tail booms look pretty good and, as with the wings and horizontal stabiliser, the control surfaces are moulded in place. There are a couple of nice balance weights for the underside of the horizontal stabiliser though. With the airframe together, attention turns to the undercarriage. The undercarriage itself is quite nicely moulded without being overly complex. A choice of hubs are provided for the main landing gear wheels, so you'll need to choose the right pair for the version you want to build. Ordnance is catered for by the inclusion of a pair of drop tanks, and 60Lb rockets. . The canopy is nicely moulded and is split into two parts, so it can be finished in the open position if desired. Decals The in house decal sheet brings 5 options. These are; MK.9 - WR 266/b No. 607 Sqn RAuxAF, Ouston U< 1950s FB Mk.52 L158 No.1 Sqn Lebanese Air Force, Beirut, May 1954 Mk.9 WR 250, No.1 Sqn Royal Jordanian Air Force, Amman, Jordon, 1955 Mk.9 NZ5755, Yellow Hammers Aerobatic Team, No.75 Sqn RNZAF, Tauranga, New Zealand 1969 Mk.9 WR 120/U, No.213 Sqn RAF, Deversoir, Egypt 1954 Conclusion Overall this looks like a really appealing kit. The level of detail is very good indeed, and provided there are no surprises in terms of fit and finish, it should build up into a nice model, My only real gripe is the undersized engine air intakes, but hopefully these can be sorted with aftermarket parts. Overall recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  7. Thanks Largescale32 Time to open a dedicated thread, isn't it ? Infinity Models (new plastic injected kit brand from HpH) is to release 1/32nd de Havilland DH.100 Vampire FB.3/.5 kits. Sources: https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235064691-infinity-models/ https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235064691-infinity-models/&do=findComment&comment=3602067 So , now we are waiting the pics! V.P.
  8. Hi All Haven't posted for a while but i thought this one would be fairly important as there's been a lot of fuss around this kit. As i'm sure were all aware this is a brand new design, not a re-mould of an old kit...just wanted to make a few points that Airfix could have taken the opportunity to address... 1. For a 1:48 there is not a lot of detail! 2. The plastic itself is fairly thin and can easily be bent, the nose was out of alignment 3. Difficult to add enough weight to the nose of the model, a supplied ball bearing would have been perfect! 4. Although this a brand new design, there are still a lot of the same fixtures and fittings we've seen from Airfix for last few decades, namely the landing gear, cockpit and the canopy are all fairly basic 5. The Vampire never had the most elaborate liveries, but the 3 on offer all more or less the same! A few good points though: 1. The top/bottom design of the fuselage/wings does make for a better looking finish, even though the plastic is thin, once the internal structure is added it is fairly sturdy 2. The decals are bright and clear, you can tell they're new! 3. the overall fit and finish is actually pretty good, there was no need for filler and the seams mostly follow actual panels from the aircraft. I had a few pointers from my Grandad, who used to work on planes during his national service in Burma! ive always had an affiliation with the Vampire! Anyway let me know what you think
  9. DH.100 Vampire Mk.3 ’European and American Operators’ 1:72 Special Hobby (72453) The distinctive de Havilland DH.100 Vampire was designed to fulfil a wartime requirement for a small, lightweight jet fighter for the Royal Air Force. Although the prototype aircraft first flew in September 1943, the production aircraft arrived too late to see service in the Second World War. In spite of this, well over 3,000 were eventually produced and the aircraft enjoyed a relatively long service life by the standards of the day. Powered by a single De Havilland Goblin turbojet, the Vampire was capable of a maximum speed of 548 mph and had a service ceiling of over 40,000 ft. In common with many other RAF fighters of the day, armament was comprised of four 20mm cannon. 1,202 Mk 3 were produced for the RAF, 86 For Canada, and 20 for Norway. The Kit the top opening box are two sprues of grey plastic and a clear one. There are no resin or photo etched parts in the box though Special Hobby do offer s a PE set through their CMK line. It should be noted that not all of the parts need to be used to build the variants catered for in this edition. The kit looks excellent on the sprue, with lots of crisp, moulded detail and surface structures made up of fine, recessed lines and fasteners (although some of the detail on the underside of the fuselage looks a little heavy). The overall impression is closer to a modern, high pressure injection moulded kit than the older MPM/Special Hobby kits in my collection. Construction starts with the well-detailed cockpit. This area is made up of the floor, rear bulkhead and head rest, the pilot's seat, the control column and the instrument panel. The instrument panel features recessed detail and a decal is provided for the instrument dials themselves, while the gun sight is moulded from clear plastic. The inside of the fuselage halves benefit from some separately moulded sidewall details. Taken together, the overall impression is of a well detailed and suitably busy cockpit. Other internal detail includes the front and rear faces of the De Havilland Ghost turbojet engine. Special Hobby have elected for a bit of a smoke and mirrors effect here, splitting the front face of the engine into two parts so each can be seen through the intake trunking (part of which is cleverly moulded to the lower half of the fuselage pod. There is no separate tail pipe for the jet exhaust, with the pipe and protruding lip being moulded as part of the upper and lower fuselage halves. The nose cone is moulded separately to the rest of the fuselage, and it follows a panel line which should reduce the need to clean up the joint when finished. It will also enable you to fit the nose weight after the main structure of the model has been completed. Once the two halves of the fuselage pod have been joined together, attention turns to the wings and the horizontal stabiliser. The wings are simply moulded in upper and lower halves, with control surfaces moulded in place. Surface details are very nicely represented, although the trailing edges are a little on the thick side (nothing that can't be sorted relatively easily though). The shallow main landing gear bays are moulded as part of the lower wing but are pretty well detailed. The engine air intakes are separately moulded, complete with vanes. Nice as they are, they look quite inaccurate as the openings are too small. The plastic looks too thin to correct the flaw, so hopefully one of the aftermarket manufacturers will have a go an producing some resin replacements. The tail booms look pretty good and, as with the wings and horizontal stabiliser, the control surfaces are moulded in place. There are a couple of nice balance weights for the underside of the horizontal stabiliser though. With the airframe together, attention turns to the undercarriage. The undercarriage itself is quite nicely moulded without being overly complex. A choice of hubs are provided for the main landing gear wheels, so you'll need to choose the right pair for the version you want to build. Ordnance is catered for by the inclusion of a pair of drop tanks. The canopy is nicely moulded and is split into two parts, so it can be finished in the open position if desired. Decals The sheet brings 4 options. These are; 067-BQ, No 438 Sqn 'City of Montreal' RCAuxAF, St Hubert, 1955. B-AG, C Flight, No. 331 Sqn RNoAF, Gardenmoen, 1948. Yellow 2, 200 Sqn FAM, Mexico City 1961-70 (Ex RCAF) VT799 No. 614 Sqn 'County of Glamorgan" RAuxAF, Llandow, 1951. Conclusion Overall this looks like a really appealing kit. The level of detail is very good indeed, and provided there are no surprises in terms of fit and finish, it should build up into a nice model, My only real gripe is the undersized engine air intakes, but hopefully these can be sorted with aftermarket parts. Overall though, this is a nice kit which I am looking forward to building. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  10. Special Hobby is to re-re-release (Original thread link) its 1/72nd de Havilland DH.100 Vampire F.Mk.3 kit - "European and American Users" - ref. SH72453 Source: https://www.specialhobby.net/2021/07/sh72453-dh100-vampire-mkiii-european.html Box art V.P.
  11. Because I'm a glutton for punishment, my next project is Classic Airframes' DH Vampire Trainers kit. I've got the Flightpath detail set for it, too. After lots of work with a razor saw and sanding sticks, it's ready to assemble. I've made a start on the cockpit. Still need to paint the Face Blind Ejection Handles with yellow stripes before fitting it to the fuselage. I also decided to open up the holes in the intakes where they pass through the fuselage, which means you can see through to the inside of the fuselage (slightly). To that end, I scratched up a representation of the engine intake. It's not meant to be accurate, just something that looks like the engine. I'll also replace the exhaust pipe with a piece of aluminium tubing before closing up.
  12. I thought I had it there for a moment. I did. I really thought I had it. Subject matter with extra added interest. Don’t you feel somehow diminished by all these hordes of modelers who manage to find subject matter with extraordinary background stories, exciting histories, and tales of derring do ? You know who you are mes amigos What do I get? Another mundane, dull, run of the mill, and oh so boring 28 Squadron aircraft. I must have picked the most boring Squadron in the whole of the RAF to choose as my modeling subject matter. Not even a fancy nickname. Boring. Those of you who follow my ramblings may remember some time back that I acquired this little bundle of joys. Two of those have since fallen off the top of the stash, somehow got assembled, and I'm now left with just the CA Vampire (with all its warts and carbuncle's) So anyways, as always, I've been amassing what few photos there are of 28 Squadron Vampires which I can pretty much count on the thumbs of both hands. Yes, 'twas that many. At some point in my google bashing I stumbled across this little beauty That was 2 years before I was born. I probably bought her a drink in Red Lips (which was akin to an initiation rite for those unsuspecting new arrivals destined for Sek Kong back in the 80's) sunk deep in the depths of Tsim Sha Tsui Ah, nostalgia. Enough of that. I won't mention that fact that the aircrew of 28 conned Hot Gossip into making a trip to Sek Kong for a little party when HG were in mid tour back in the early 80's. Just in case you were wondering, us groundcrew types didn't get within 100 meters of Sarah & Co as they were ushered off the pan surrounded by a bunch of salivating green flying suits, never to be seen again. Enough digression and back to the (boring) matter at hand. That one photo of a BOAC stewardess perched precariously atop a small portion of Vampire doesn't quite get the blood rushing to one's head does it? Then I happened across this little snapshot entitled "Sek Kong Vampire and Audrey." with Tai Mo Shan just visible in the background. Okay, we've got an aircraft with a 'Y' on its nose. A little better I suppose, but still not one of those Cor, this is really interesting moments forever carved in the squadrons stone tablets is it? Nope? I thought so. It was then that it happened. The thing. The thing that made me think I had it. Immortality At last. Following breadcrumbs and diving into worm holes I somehow stumbled across this rather intriguing shot That's interesting said I. Or maybe just words to that effect. Or along those lines. My interest was piqued further when I started chasing down the story and found this. Aha! That's not your typical runway I noted observantly. What happened here then? On further investigation I discovered that the pilot flew in from Singapore, somehow missed Hong Kong, ran out of fuel and had to perform an emergency landing on a strip of beach. That beach happened to belong to China. And a bunch of (Chinese) Pirates. It probably wasn't one of his better days, but it was for me as I stumbled across this shot. Wow! That's it!. That's the one. What a shot. Mystery. Intrigue. Tension. Suspense. It has it all. The Army, the Navy, the RAF. Interest in abundance. What an absolutely wonderful diorama that would make. Then I read all about the adventure here It wasn't 28 Sqn after all VG703 was part of the Vampire Trials Unit. Therefore, I'm afraid you are stuck with just another boring 28 boring Sqn boring aircraft, this time a Vampire. Not even Gothic. Gee up folks, it maybe not that bad - it's all relative, right? It begins: In the never ending quest for stash incrementation I appear to have purchased the Flightpath PE set Along with a nicely yellowed Sepia toned canopy from Aeroclub. That should add that nice vintage touch to the finished model. let's look on the bright side. It's not a biplane Plastic has been fettled. More to follow. if I can be interested.
  13. Hello to everyone! After some break in a hobby I'd like to start off WIP topic here with two de Havilland Vampire models in 1/72: Xtrakit DH.100 FB.5 and Airfix DH.115 T.11 DH Vampire is the one of the most interesting looking and important aircraft of my favourite era of 50s - the years of early jets and most advanced piston aircraft. I prefer to build planes participated in actual conflicts, so both Vampires will be from Suez Crisis period. The kit from Xtrakit (wordplay, yeah=) will be used to reproduce Egyptian Vampire. Like this one: Airfix T.11 will be transformed to Jordanian aircraft flown by King Hussein himself. Yeah, I know that this aircraft not participated in Suez Crisis, however it has very beautiful azure blue/middle stone/dark earth camo and from the same era too=) I will use Printscale and DP Casper decals in my build The problem with DP Casper decals is that it gives Egyptian FB5 Vampire with number 1567. This particular aircraft was shot down by Israeli Ouragans in 1955 before the Suez conflict. My plan is to change the number to different one from 1500 - 1550 or 156x ranges. Also I have some goodies for my models to brighten up the build: Resin from CMR for T.11 model as well as Pavla's wheels and two nonejection seats (Jordanian T.11 has no ejection seats) Eduard photoetched set for FB.5. So wish me luck, friends, the build seems to be loooooong enough=)
  14. On evening of the 25th May 1986 my dad called me into the living room, the news was on he said the vintage pair had crashed. As a keen young 15 year old aviation enthusiast I was well aware of the vintage pair and had seen them at airshows on many occasions. It was shortly after that I decided to build models of both the vintage pair XH304 & WA669. The only mainstream injection moulded Vampires in those days was the Heller & Novo ones, both single seaters, I did obtain both Merlin & ID models T11s, but were well beyond my skills and never got built. So the project stalled and my modelling then was put on a back burner with to post school teenage life. Now Airfix has released the T11 the project has been re-awakened. I have also the Pavla and Eduard enhancement sets, I did originally plan to just use just the Pavla stuff but nearly all pics of parked T11s show the flaps down so I decided to build it flaps down too, So the Eduard set was ordered for that, I will also use Eduard instrument panel. There is also plenty of other detail on the Eduard set but I'm not too sure about their inspection panel covers think adding PE ones would make them stand too proud of the surface. Took a trip to Newark last week to get some pics of the T11 there, and also took a colour sample card to match the Grays and yellows. So plan is Xtracolor X15 for the grey and Humbrol HU69 for the yellow, they seemed the best match. From pic I've found of XH304 the inside of the flaps were grey, does anyone know if the inside of the flap bays was grey too? Standard obligatory kit shot:- Thanks for looking Mark Edit 16th Sept 2014 Meteor WA669 build started here
  15. My first build of 2021, and a nice simple one to get back into it. This Special Hobby Vampire is a nice little kit and fits together really well. It does need a lot of nose weight though! I made this one out of the box, including the decals for 601 Sqn.
  16. I couldn’t get motivated for the Sea King yet, too much interior stuff needed, so I thought I’d try a simple (hopefully!) build. This little Vampire should fit the bill, an all-over silver finish and simple cockpit. It’ll sit nicely with my Meteors, Sabre and Javelin, (Hunter and Swift at some point) in this scale. Nice box art, I haven’t made a Special Hobby kit before but it looks nice, lots of detail for its size and five decal options.
  17. Hi there, First I wish you all a happy new year! This build was started around mid december, just for me to see if I could still tackle kits in 1/72 scale. Here we go! This is a nice little kit first released in 2014, but this repop is from 2018. The sprues looks fine and parts are nicely detailed. Wonder if this can still be called short run... No surprise, I've started with the pit, but didn't waisted too much time, as in the end there will be nearly nothing left to be seen. I'd painted it black (!), did a quick drybrush, crushed the decal panel, and tried some sort of micropainting... and quickly closed the fuselage! Believe me, you've missed nothing! The only touchy part was the joint between the half fuselages, and I took care of it with a lenght of stretched sprues instead of putty, achieving a more cleaner look. At least I think!
  18. Finished this a few weeks ago, but only just got round to taking some decent pictures - not helped by the appalling 'summer' weather we've had of late in the UK. I won the kit at a raffle so splashed some cash on Xtradecal X72-172 and a set of Pavla resin Martin Baker seats. My first foray into the world of resin. Presumably when Pavla say "designed for the Airfix kit" what they really meant was "will go in the Airfix kit if you remove enough of the original cockpit". I had to really butcher the interior of the cockpit to get the seats to fix, but hopefully that's hard to see from the outside WIP is here if anyone's interested: There are so many interesting schemes on the Xtradecal sheet I was spoiled for choice, but eventually settled for XE888/74 of RAF Leuchars Station Flight in 1959. As a Leuchars spotter (although a long time after 1959!) it seemed obvious. Here she is in all her glory wearing the fighter bars of 43 and 151 squadrons, both based at Leuchars at the time. Thanks for looking, and thanks for everyone who commented on the WIP offering advice and encouragement along the way. Bench is now clear for my Tornado GR.1 Al.
  19. Every second post I see on social media at the moment seems to be modelling related, lockdown must be doing wonders for the modelling trade! I'm lucky enough to be able to work at home, so don't have endless days to fill. However, still feeling the other to get something else on the go after finishing my Phantom a few weeks back. I won an Airfix Vampire at a raffle held at once of the Sywell Aviation Museum's talks over the winter. Since it was free, thought I'd splash a bit of cash on it. Got myself the Xtradecal Vampire part 1 sheet and a set of Pavla resin bang seats. First foray into resin extras, I think it'll certainly test my painting skills! Haven't actually started yet, hopefully putting this up will give me that little push... Obligatory box artwork shot (although there can't be many on here that haven't seen one of these!) The Pavla seats. Look pretty good to my (untrained) eye. Presume I have to shave off the big block of resin at the bottom.. And the decals. I had originally thought of going with the Shawbury ATC school markings as the nose at Sywell is in that scheme. However, I'm currently favouring the Leuchars Station Flight machine with the 43 and 151 sqn marks. It'll go nicely with my 43 sqn Phantom. Also means I don't have to get involved in painting that awful dayglo orange again! That's about it for now. Helping my son with an A-4 he got for Christmas in an attempt to inspire him and give him something to do other than stare at screens, so progress may well be slow. Cheers! Al
  20. The de Havilland Vampire has always been my favourite early jet. First flown in September 1943 (5 months before the Soviet La-7, half a year before the Japanese Ki-102 and 15 months before the He 162) she should be called a wartime design. And if she wasn’t British she would be a true WW2 fighter – unfortunately the RAF had huge numbers of already proven „430+ mph” fighters to list just the Mustang, Tempest and Griffon-Spitfires, while development of another British jet – the Meteor – was six months ahead of the „crab”. Thus the plywood-clad twin-boom marvel became the Cold War era fighter. For many years the only 72nd scale kit of this most successful British - and West European - jet (some 4.500 built, or nearly 6.000 including the Venom, whose prototype was called Vampire FB.8) was the FROG F217F, that appeared in 1971 and since 1978 (after the FROG sad demise) was available under the Soviet NOVO label. Although in my youth I have built dozens of FROG/NOVO kits their F217F (later F431) is still unknown for my eyes and hands, so I can only believe it at least looked like the Vampire. Several pictures available do prove it does. Next Vampire kit in the gentleman’s scale was Heller 80283 that appeared in 1979. Although still featuring raised (and few engraved) panel lines it had ribbed undercarriage bays. The box contained 41 parts (FROG had 36) and for next 30 years this was „the kit” used by the modellers all over the world to represent the Vampire. In this period it has been also reboxed by several other manufacturers, including Revell (since 1991) and Airfix (since 1998) as the most important ones. In 2006 there appeared super-detailed resin-cast Vampires from Czech Master Resin. IIRC more than a dozen of boxes are available, including the Mk I, the Sea Vampire, the NF, the Trainer and the Venoms. Every one contains some 50-60 resin parts, a vac-formed canopy, a coloured PE fret of 30+ details and an Eduard pre-cut mask. Unfortunately their prices (some £ 27 in my country) make such high-tech kits unavailable for my wallet. And perhaps for most of us… And then the horn of plenty gave us three brand new Vampire kits in just five years. They were the Ukrainian Amodel (in 2010), the Chinese (Dragon) Cyber Hobby in 2013 and – finally – the Czech CMK (labelled as Azur, Xtrakit and Special Hobby) in 2014. All of them feature engraved detailing, plenty of parts (almost 50 in Dragon, 60 in Amodel and 70 in CMK box) and various inbox reviews call each of them beautiful (if not splendid). Really each of them look like a Vampire… until you place two of them side by side. So the problem appears: which Vampire kit in 72nd scale is the best dimensionally- and shape-wise, as the details of all “new tool” trio are at least acceptable and their prices (£9 for CMK and £10 for Amodel) are not very high when compared to £6 for the Airfix (£8 for Revell) boxing of the ancient Heller kit. At some £19 the Cyber Hobby kit is far more expensive, while not far better. Fortunately I have the opportunity to measure the real bird (a Swiss-built FB.6) at the Polish Aviation Museum where I’ve been working between 1987 and 2014. So I took 21 various dimensions of the original, scaled them down and then measured the kits. The results are very interesting, although one can even call them horrible. It’s incomprehensible – for me at least – why can’t the 21st century kit manufacturer replicate faithfully the real plane, using instead various drawings that are far from reality. Measuring the real craft and making new drawings is far cheaper than NCM-cutting the moulds. And then we – thousands of modellers worldwide – have to use our skills to make a Vampire look like the Vampire… Full size dimensions are given in centimeters, the rest - in milimeters. Abbreviations stand for: R - real FB.5, S - scaled to 1:72, A - Amodel, C - CMK, D - Dragon Cyber Hobby, H - Heller/Revell/Airfix (FB.5) Fuselage length overall (FB.5) R610 S84.7 A81.8 C83.8 D80.8 H81.4 Sliding canopy length R122 S16.9 A18.3 C18.5 D17.8 H17.0 End of canopy to the top of nose bulkhead R192 S26.7 A26.9 C27.6 D26.3 H25.2 End of canopy to the bottom of nose bulkhead R203 S28.2 A28.5 C29.0 D28.1 H27.0 End of canopy to the tip of nose R278 S38.6 A37.2 C38.5 D37.2 H35.0 End of canopy to fuselage joint frame R105 S14.6 A13.4 C12.3 D12.4 H14.1 End of canopy to tailpipe R332 S46.1 A44.6 C45.3 D43.6 H46.4 Half of wing span R579 S80.4 A79.0 C79.9 D77.8 H79.5 Fuselage centreline to aileron inner edge R324 S45.0 A42.8 C43.4 D41.9 H43.8 Fuselage centreline to main u/c bay outer edge R262 S36.4 A34.5 C35.6 D34.7 H36.7 Fuselage centreline to flap outer edge R250 S34.7 A33.0 C33.7 D32.9 H33.0 Fuselage centreline to tailboom centreline R149 S20.7 A20.0 C20.2 D19.6 H19.3 Wing chord at aileron outer edge R99 S13.7 A13.9 C14.0 D13.0 H13.5 Wing chord at aileron inner edge R194 S26.9 A29.0 C29.1 D26.8 H25.9 Wing chord at main u/c bay outer edge R231 S32.1 A33.0 C32.3 D30.6 H30.4 Wing chord at tailboom centreline R265 S36.8 A40.5 C39.6 D38.2 H37.0 Tailboom insert into wing R190 S26.4 A26.0 C26.8 D24.4 H24.8 Tailboom length aft of joint R412 S57.2 A55.0 C56.0 D54.5 H57.4 Tailplane span (between fairings) R282 S39.1 A38.6 C38.8 D37.8 H36.8 Horizontal stabilizer chord R77 S10.7 A10.5 C12.0 D10.0 H10.6 Elevator chord R41 S5.7 A5.5 C5.8 D5.4 H5.8 So the results are: every fuselage is too short (I know that Swiss FB.6 pointed nose is longer) with CMK being the only close. Every canopy is too long with Heller being the only close – but this is easy to correct. Fuselage panel lines are wrong in each case with differences reaching 3.5 mm in scale (10” on real bird). All the wings are too short with CMK being AGAIN the only close. Same applies to the gap between the tailbooms. Chordwise Heller and Dragon wings are too narrow, while Amodel and CMK are too wide (which is easier to correct). Shape-wise only the Heller wing outline is close to real thing with aspect ratio (span to mid-span chord ratio) of 5.97:1 (a bit too slim ) compared to 5.72 in Dragon, 5.56 in CMK and 5.44 in Amodel – the original features 5.88:1. The difference in tailplane chord “by Dragon” and “by CMK” is 15% - funny, isn’t it? Using just the main dimensions (wing span and overall length) all kits are undersized with CMK being the only close (1:72.7), followed by Heller (1:73.2), Amodel (1:73.9) and Dragon (1:74.9). I made several pictures of wings, tailplanes, tailbooms and fuselage nacelles scanned from the real moulds. However it's impossible to compare the fuselage nacelle, as the CMK and Dragon kits feature horizontal split, while in Amodel and Heller there are port and starboard halves. Being unable to measure the real bird fuselage maximum diameter I can only add, that in the kits featured it varies from 16.5 mm in Cyber Hobby through some 18 mm in Heller and CMK to 19.0 mm in Amodel. Though being very difficult to correct it remains an oddity here… Happy modelling!
  21. LEMkits is studying the idea of a 1/32nd de Havilland Vampire FB.Mk.5 resin kit. To be followed Source: https://www.facebook.com/andriy.lemkitscom/posts/2231758820417172 V.P.
  22. Hello colleagues. Its me again. This time with the Vampire. A little history about the pilot: DH.100 Vampire Mk.I, TG/287, HF-L, Squadron Leader Frank J Howell DFC and Bar, No.54 Sqn RAF, based at Odiham, April 1948. In 1940, whilst with 609 (F) sqn, F/Lt Howell shot down several enemy’s aircraft, achieved the squadron’s 100th victory (a Ju 88 shared with P/O SJ Hill) and was awarded the DFC. In 1941 he formed and commanded 118 Sqn and also claimed its first victory, a He 111 on 8 July and was awarded a Bar to his DFC in November. In the winter of 1941-42, he commanded 243 Sqn at Kallang to defend Singapore and flying a Buffalo, he shot down a Ki-27/Type 97 fighter. Captured by the Japanese in February 1942 and released just after the Japanese surrender in August 1945. In January 1948, he took command of 54 Sqn at Odiham only to be killed on 9 May 1948 while making a cine film of the squadron’s Vampires, one of which struck him on the forehead with its wing tip.
  23. A bat that bites? Gotta be a Vampire right? Having divested myself of my studies for the summer, got the garden under control (tomatoes, chillies, courgettes, green beens and lots of herbs on the way), and been on my holibobs, so what do I do with all of that spare time? Join a GB of course! I'm joining this GB with the Azur boxing of the Special Hobby Vampire, I'll be building FB.5 WA331 coded A-T as flown by the OC of 112 Sqn RAF, from 2TAF based at Fassberg in Germany during 1951. I'll be using Modeldecal sheet 14 to provide the markings as it's the only one that has the correct colour sharkmouth. Most profiles, the original Heller Vampire kit boxart and the restored Vampire VZ304 incorrectly show the mouth as having a red infill, it should be black! Modeldecal themselves got this wrong when they first released this sheet in the 1970's, fortunately they corrected this when they reissued the set in the early 1980's, this time with photographic evidence and the testimony of one of the individuals who painted the sharkmouth on the aircraft. Cold War Shield 2 has some photos of the subject aircraft along with some other jets from the Sqn, they too have the black infill on their sharkmouths! I shall be building the kit mostly SFTB but with the addition of the FB.9 type starboard air intake which I've stolen from my Special Hobby Mistral kit. WA331 was one of those FB.5's which received the modification introducing a cockpit cold air unit which was originally installed on the tropicalised FB.9's, this unit was housed in an extended fairing to the starboard air intake. I shall be using Stuart's ( @Courageous } build of the Special Hobby Vampire F.3 as it shows some of the quirks of the kit. Right now Flikr is being in the words of my son, a butt head, it won't let me view the photo to copy the link to show you the kit, decals and a couple of books, There are plenty of useful walkrounds on the web for the Vampire so I have enough gen to help me with the build. I'll post the photo once Flikr learns to play nicely! EDIT: Flikr is behaving now, here's the picture!
  24. Source: http://modelweb.modelforum.cz/2013/08/10/172-pripravovana-novinka-od-firmy-mpm-production/?lang=CS V.P.
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