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  1. As my early Mk I is nearing completion my thoughts are turning towards my next Spitfire build. I had thought to do a very late marque variant, probably the F Mk 22 or 24, but have decided instead that any self-respecting Spitfire collection needs a classic day fighter scheme, sky-spinner-and-band Mk V in its line-up. The airframe I have chosen is a fairly well known one – for 20 years or so it was the box star of Airfix’s 1/72 Vb, first tooled in the 1970s: Spitfire Mk Vb EN951/RF*D, flown by Squadron Leader Jan Zumbach during 1943. EN951 was originally issued to No. 133 “Eagle” Squadron in June 1942 and flown by Lt. Don Blakeslee, an American, before being transferred to No. 303 “Kosciuszko” Squadron in April 1943 to be flown by Zumbach, a Pole. This airframe was in fact the third Mk V to be flown by Zumbach, coded RF*D and painted with his personal “Donald Duck” emblem. It is a well photographed subject. Zumbach on the left: At one time the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight had their Mk Vb painted to represent this airframe, in fact I have a little bit of history with it, Ten or so years ago I went to a Spitfire “technical day” at RAF Coningsby. This was outside the flying season, so the BBMF planes were in various states of stripped-downness for winter maintenance, and I was able to get up close to them in the course of a very interesting day. Here’s me with said Spit on the day: And a shot of the same aircraft during a different visit to Conigsby: Zumbach himself was a colourful character. He began his military career as an infantryman, but qualified as a pilot in 1938; unfortunately he was unable to take part in the defence of Poland against German invasion due to a broken leg sustained in a flying accident, but his unit evacuated to France where he flew the Morane 406 and the Curtis Hawk. He was shot down in June 1940 but escaped unscathed. The following week he travelled to England by boat, and was one of the founding members of No. 303 Squadron in September of the same year. Flying Hurricanes during the Battle of Britain he chalked up eight kills and one probable. He was shot down again in May 1941, but again was unharmed. By May 1942 he was Squadron Leader of his unit, and was the first allied pilot to come up against the Fw 190. His war ended rather ignominiously when he spent a month as a prisoner of war, having accidentally landed the Auster he was piloting behind enemy lines due to a navigational error. After the war, under a Swiss passport (his Germanic surname comes from his Swiss grandfather) he made a living around Africa and the Middle East as a second-hand aircraft dealer, smuggler and mercenary. Zumbach died in slightly shady circumstances in France in 1986; an investigation into his death was closed by order of the French authorities without public explanation. No. 303 Squadron was one of the most storied units of the wartime RAF. Unlike squadrons made up of young, inexperienced, newly-trained British and Commonwealth pilots, 303’s Polish pilots with their combat experience and aggressiveness (it’s fair to say they had an axe to grind with the Germans over the invasion of their homeland) made them a formidable fighting group, and they scored the highest number of kills of any squadron during the Battle of Britain in their Hurricanes (despite joining the battle two months in), before converting to Spitfires in January 1941. Here they are with EN951: Anyway, that’s the background. The kit I’ll be using for this is the new-tool Airfix Mk Vb, which apart from the decals I’ll be building OOB. @stevej60 is very kindly sorting me out with decals, as the Techmod sheet I had in mind now seems to be discontinued. I'm going to have a look at the kit during the weekend. Thanks for looking in.
  2. First of all, I'd like to give a big shout out and thank you to @mark.au, @AliGauld, @bigbadbadge and @Winded Penguin for the opportunity to join in with this informal PRU Spitfire GB: thanks guys! My choice of subject is Kovozavody Prostejov's 1/72 Spit PR.XI in USAAF guise. I'll be finishing it as an aircraft flown by the 14th PRS of the 7th PRG, in the scheme shown for MB950 (scheme 2), but not necessarily MB950 as I'm a bit of twit when it comes to serials! Obligatory box and sprue pics: Before making a start, I needed to clear a small space in which to begin work: The Quality Control Officer sleeping on the job..... However, the Quality Control Officer soon awoke and gradually encroached, so that at the enforced end of play I'd put the seat frame together and fitted the wheel well walls: And she's sat on the instruction sheet, too! Gotta love that Daisy Following @Giorgio N's advice on @AliGauld's build thread, I've hacked the centre out of the rearmost bulkhead which as supplied is the type fitted to pressurised cockpit variants. For a pattern, I used the corresponding part from Airfix's Mk.Vc. I'll also be scratching up a new "floor" as the supplied part is a bit short - thanks Alistair for the heads-up on that. And that's it so far: not much to show for my weekend, but I've got a couple of free evenings this week before taking Jane away for a long weekend for her birthday. Thanks for looking in! Mark
  3. Wolfpack Design is to rebox (with upgrades ?) the Academy 1/48th Supermarine Spitfire F.Mk.XIVc - ref. WP14817 Source: http://www.wolfpack-d.com/htm/kit.html V.P.
  4. My modelling “career”, such as it is, has been littered with false starts: unfinished projects, good intentions, themic obsessions, complete losses (and findings) of mojo, total reboots, that sort of thing. Sometimes it feels like the ebb and flow of life is reflected in what I’m building and how I’m building it, and yet again I find myself at a crossroads, figuratively speaking. I won’t lie, this year has been traumatic, with the break-up of a 25-year marriage and everything that goes with it. While it’s all been going on I haven’t had the time or the inclination (or, to be honest, the heart) to do any modelling at all, though I have looked in on the forum from time to time, and am keeping my 2023 GB proposal bumping along (if the time comes, I will be there – bunfight willing!) But it’s also seen the enforced gradual liquidation of a stash that I don’t have the luxury of being able to keep any more, plus while my new living circumstances are by no means terrible I now don’t have the time or the room to build or display those four-engined heavies. I feel like I’m ready to have another go, though, and am going to take it right back to where I started: a Spitfire, and a very early one at that. When I started out (last time round) a dozen years ago I used to build nothing but Spits, actually. But I’m going to use this opportunity (let’s call it that) to switch scales from 1/72 to 1/48, an acknowledgment of my clumsy fingers and not-quite-what-it-was eyesight. So I’ve ordered one of Eduard’s excellent Profipacks to see if I can get back into it. I plan to only ever buy a kit once I’ve finished the previous one (“yeah, keep telling yourself that”, I hear you say) – the world will never be empty of choice in this regard! – so I’m not throwing silly money at the hobby like I used to. Needs must, and all that. I’ve always been appreciative of the culture of mutual support around this forum. Hopefully I’ll get a result out of this. Keep on keeping on, as they say. Cheers all Tony Blast from the past: my little of squadron of 1/72 Spitfires, all long since MIA!
  5. After building (but not getting bored of) lots of Bf 109s and Fw 190s, I decided to pick this 1:32 Spitfire Mk.IIa from Revell. I read about its inaccuracies, but they don't detract the fact that the aircraft will, most likely, look like a Spitfire. I'm aiming for a start past December 6 of this year.
  6. Fellow Modellers, It's been some time since i've done any aircraft models. Lost my modelling mojo a bit during the very hot Summer and been having a lot of physical problems this year with my hands, wrists, elbows and shoulders. oh well! guess this is just age, but at times i can't grip any small things without a lot of pain! Arghhhhh! I did manage to do the Airfix 1:72 USAAF Airfield Bomber Re-Supply kit, but it took me since April until now. I'll do a RFI post for this soon. btw i thought this kit was excellent! I found working at this scale at times quite painful so... my thoughts have turned again to larger scales. I got this kit some time ago for about £22. I can't really afford the excellent Tamiya offering in 1:32 - maybe one day! The Revell kit has it's known limitations and errors and omissions so i understand. I've added a bit of plastic in the cockpit behind the pilot's seat for the missing armoured plate (this was the spare doors from the USAAF tanker cut to size) You will hardly see it of course but thought i'd add it for good measure! I've not decided if i'll do this OOB or pick another Spitfire as i still have some unused Xtradecals 1:32 RAF decals I can use. I'm always partial to a 56 Squadron aircraft as my uncle flew Tempest Vs with them in combat. I will have to do some research to see if i can pick a suitable a/c from 56. It may turn out that it was never flown by them? Any suggestions for a famous pilot\squadron combination for this Mark of Spit would be most welcomed! I'll add some pics for this thread very soon of course. i've only done the cockpit initial assembly though so not much to show yet! Here's a couple off progress so far. Cockpit almost ready.. Fuselage halves ready to be glued! ' Here's the pilot's seat armour plate modificatiion i did. It's not correct in the pure sense but you won't see the back of the seat when it's closed up.
  7. I believe the thread hit its maximum size so was automatically locked. I have had a few PM's. If you don't like the thread don't subscribe. For those who enjoyed the melting pot...knock yourself out HERE IS THE LINK TO THE 1ST THREAD WITH LOTS OF QUESTIONS, ANSWERS and PHOTOS - START here TIP: search from Google, enter the search parameters followed by site:www.britmodeller.com
  8. Source: http://www.modelarovo.cz/supermarine-spitfire-mk-1a-1-72-kp-kovozavody-prostejov/ - ref. KPM72260 - Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IA - Wats Prop https://www.kovozavody.cz/produkt/spitfire-mk-ia-wats-prop/ - ref. KPM72261 - Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IA - Three-bladed Propeller https://www.kovozavody.cz/produkt/spitfire-mk-ia-three-blade-prop/ https://www.hannants.co.uk/product/KPM72261 - ref. KPM72262 - Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IA - Commanders https://www.kovozavody.cz/produkt/spitfire-mk-ia-commanders/ https://www.hannants.co.uk/product/KPM72262 - ref. KPM72262 - Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IA - Black and White https://www.kovozavody.cz/produkt/spitfire-mk-ia-black-white/ https://www.hannants.co.uk/product/KPM72263 V.P.
  9. Hi Everyone Following on from the excellent little 1/48 P-51D from Redshift Aug 28, I thought I would post a similar themed model from the distant past. My Dad made it back in 1969 just before Airfix released their brilliant 1/24 MK Ia and it's been collecting dust pretty much since then. As the you might have guessed this is a hand carved 1/24 scale wooden Spitfire made from Jelutong, which is like Balsa but more dense and thus easier to carve. Judging by the condition of the model it's also a very stable wood because it’s been in a loft space with the cold and hot extremes all these years. The canopy is from a single piece of acrylic. Modelling back in the 60’s was very much a case of getting some plans (in this case Model Allied Plans) and making it from scratch for some model makers at least. Who would have thought we’d be blessed with the kits available these days. For many years it was finished in just varnish and it looked amazing, but at some point it was decided to hand paint it as a 611 Sqn Spitfire from 1943. About the same time the wheels were also replaced for the Airfix ones. There’s couple of cracks here and there but she’s fine other than that. My part in all this is that I’ve got the photography gear and the Britmodeller account but Dad will be delighted to see it online after all these years. Keep it in the family so to speak, hope you enjoy it. Kind regards Trace
  10. I've finished - at last ! - two more kits, the Airfix F. Mk. 22 and the SMER Dewoitine D.520, which had been nestling quite comfortably in one of the stash boxes for some time. And they weren't in any hurry on the bench, either. The Smer kit proved to be a bit of a struggle to get it out of the box and into shape - and it shows. The Airfix spit? Well, given the paint job makes it look like it was left outside one bitterly cold morning in January 1947 and the frost on it sparkles in the bright morning sunlight, instead of a nice smooth all over hi speed silver, it hasn't ended up too badly. (I did lose the will to live with the stencils and didn't put them all on) I must have made enough spits, hurricanes, me 109s, Focke Wolfe 190's, mustangs and zeros as a child to not be the slightest bit bothered about making another, but a chance visit to Aldi and some of their £2.99 kits several years ago meant I have a spit to build. It's the Airfix spitfire Mk 22 out of the box, in the box scheme for 603 (City of Edinburgh) squadron spray painted in Hycote BMW titanium silver. Which gave the sparkly bits. I think I should have used Halfords nissan silver, which I did on a previous build and looks a lot more like the finish on the box art for the kit. Oh well, you live and learn. Tamiya X7 red was used for the spinner, oh I do like Tamiya paints, it went on in one coat, fully covered the primer, didn't need a second coat. It was OOB, well except for the seatbelts I hadleft over from something else, and a pair of very lovely quickboost resin exhausts. I finished it in a coat of Xtracrylic gloss varnish for the decals, and then another glossy coat of Xtracrylic varnish. The decals went on like a dream, incidentally. There was also an attempt topaing some panels in varying finishes, but I didn't want to overdo it. Now the Dewoitine D. 520. It's a Smer kit. If that means anything to others, it'll probably mean what I found, so so fit, poor detail, absolute basic cockpit, and a canopy that not even canopy masks could prevent looking like I'd painted it free hand after a lot of Scotland's finest falling down water. The raison d'etre for the build was a magazine article. Which described a build of a Hasegawa D.520 re issued by Hobby 2000, in Free French colours, based in Lebanon in 1942. (Model Airplane International, July 2022 and August 2022) I thought I like this, I wonder if I can do the D.520 I've got like it? You'll see I didn't. Essentially, as far as I can make out, the real aircraft were captured by the Free French when they and other allies re took Lebanon and Syria in 1942. Which may explain why the Cross of Lorraine roundels are added to rather than replace the French roundels. The real plane was painted in a champagne colour, but the nearest I could find to that was a hycote Ford Ivory white colour, which actually doesn't look too different to the paint used in the magazine build. The spinner - described by Smer as off white - was indeed painted off white using the off white paint from the ghost of Kyiv kit. The propellor is interesting. I took the kit propellor off the sprue to paint black, but haven't seen it since I did that. Wherever I put it, I can't find it. Was I going to give up without a propellor? Nope, I did what real modellers did and raided the spares box, and found a propellor that kind of looks like it might be the kit one, but I think it might have come from an airfix spitfire. It looks alright to me, but to others probably stands out like a sore thumb. The attempt at weathering was done using humbrol enamel tan washed over the kit using a brush dipped in turps, I'm not satisfied really but it's a brave attempt, I think. I used a set of Berna decals which contained Cross of Lorraine roundels, and I have to say Berna decals' decals go on like a dream. I didn't need a gloss varnish to put the decals on, the Hycote rattle can paint was very glossy, but I have painted it with a coat of eztracrylic matt varnish. On the bench now is a Yak 11 "Moose" in Austrian Air force livery from RS models.
  11. Another lock-down blow-in with another 'Aldi Special' Airfix Mk1 in 1/72nd Like half the country (it seems) I rediscovered model making during lockdown after something like a 20 year break. After following many threads on here and a few attempts all with these 4.99 kits this is the first that feels like some progress is happening. Still lots to improve though but all good learning. Some obvious innacuracies - the Print Scale decals were pretty bad and I had to make a last-minute change due to half the decals being out of register. I realised too late that the K should be either sky or white (probably the latter) but I didn't have the heart to mask that off and re-paint. This was my first attempt at freehand camo and it's really not tight enough in this scale. I'll mask next time. I totally mis-read how the harness terminates from reference so will do that properly next time. Some things worked though especailly using different varnishes on various panels - some are satin and others matt which makes it look more interesting in-hand.
  12. Hello folks. I am modelling the Tamiya Spitfire Vb in 1/48 with an Aboukir filter and am likely to produce it as EP689, mount of Sqn Ldr Stanislaw Skalski. This is clearly a popular subject with many models on show from a Google search. However, I have a question. Take a look at this image: And also this: I'm heading into dangerous territory here, trying to draw inferences about colour on an 80-year-old black and white image but if you look at the tone of the spinner in comparison to the tine of the colours in the roundel and fin flash, is the spinner really red as one tends to believe? I wonder if it is possibly roundel blue? Am I certifiable? Thanks, Neil
  13. Just your basic Eduard kit, not much drama. Painted with Tamiya, a 3:2 mix of XF-18 Medium Blue/XF-2 Flat White for the PRU Blue undersides
  14. Hello everyone! Here's my rendition of the much-maligned Academy 1/72 Spitfire Mk. XIV kit. Dare I say it on Britmodeller of all places, but I admit that I'm not that knowledgeable about the Spitfire, particularly the Griffin-engined marks. The kit was a gift from my now ex-girlfriend back in 2018, when she kindly tried nudge me back into the hobby as a respite from a severe work burnout. It sat in the stash for a while but over the past couple of years I found myself quite in debt (a mortgage and family health issues, not the criminal sort), so having a lot of free time at home, I started building through the kits stash, a dozen kits that were sitting idle for well over fifteen years, when I bought them back in high school. In fact, I completed this kit back in May of this year, but I've been a bit lax about taking photos and sharing the build - because if there's anything worse than my modelling skills, it's my skill as a photographer! I believe much has been written about the Academy kit. It's a strangely mixed bag of very fine engraved panel lines, excellent cockpit detail, incorrect overall shape, very incorrectly shaped radiators, thick and incorrect decals. Given my lack of in-depth knowledge on the subject, I decided to go easy on this one and not try to correct the geometry errors but build it mostly out of the box with minor improvements - I added a glass reflector gunsight, and "padded" the seatbelt decals with masking tape. This didn't turn out as good as I hoped but it's still better than flat decals on the seat. The tires are finely detailed and wight-flattened out of the sprue but there are alignment pins that causes the flat area to sit at an angle against the ground, so I had to reshape them using several layers of CA glue and a lot of sanding to get them aligned. Paints are entirely my own mix of Mr. Color acrylics, top coated with a 1-to-3 mix of Mr. Color acrylic gloss and matt varnish. Initially I used the decals for the DW-D service tag but as the Academy decals were way too dark for RAF Sky, and somewhat transparent, I had to mix a new batch of Sky and paint over them with a brush, then coat with varnish again. Definitely was a nerve shattering experience as I repainted it on the evening before taking the model to an expo last week. It seems that the yellow bands on the wingtips should be smaller but I'm going to overlook that one. Spitfire Mk. XIV RB159, DW-D, No. 610 Squadron "County of Chester, Summer 1944, flown by CO Richard Newbury who shot down 9 V-1 flying bombs. Wikimedia commons photo of the real plane. Anyway, enough blabbering, here's the end result!
  15. This is the ICM 1/48 Spitfire IXc, modified into Spitfire Mk IXc, MK297 was the aircraft marked as AI*A, flown by Squadron leader 'Skipper' {Robert Shaw} in the 'taka taka taka' scene. It was built at Castle Bromwich in late 1943. MK297 had also appeared in the film 'The longest day', and the series 'A piece of cake'. It made its way eventually to Hamilton, Ontario, only to be destroyed in the same hangar fire as G-AWLW (Diemert Hurricane). ... again, thanks for all the advice and suggestions on this website! build log ... ICM SPIT build log Cheers, Colin
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