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  1. Back in 1972 Airfix released this kit and I bought and built it - not very well as the plastic cement in those days had been modified to combat glue sniffing and although it smelled nice, it was not to good at sticking plastic together! Later I would add the Frog Do-17Z and I already had the Airfix Do-217E, and much later I bought the Italeri Do-217K1. which I hope to build in this GB also. About 10 years ago I decided to strip and refurbish this kit and maybe add an undercarriage, as originally I had built it wheels up. Unfortunately it never got rebuilt but I have managed to find most of the bits. Since taking the above photo I have also found the transparent parts, but I have a Falcon replacement set I may use instead. It needs a bit more cleaning up before I start but the only parts currently glued together are the horizontal and vertical tails and the props mounted on the engine fronts, so it is below 25% complete. It is going to take a fair bit of work and given the number of GB I am involved in at the moment it might not get finished but we will see. Unlike the Do-17Z this is the true "Flying Pencil" version and will make an interesting comparison. As far as I can see the only difference between the E and F involved the bomb sight on the E, the F being a recce version, and the different windscreen, with the F having an extra mg stuck through it on the right. The Falcon set only provides this later type which it claims was standard on the E as well, but that is not quite true I think. Certainly I have seen pics labelled E with the later windscreen but also ones with the earlier one, but more on that later. See you later. Pete
  2. Hi everyone, this entry in the Do 17 GB confirms that I am not playing with a full deck. Considering all the builds I have in progress, I should crawl back into my burrow and keep on modelling. But... So here is the Do 17 E/F from Airfix in 1/72. I bought this kit when it came out, in the early seventies, When I opened the box, the other day, my jaw dropped. On the wings the panel lines are very delicately engraved: definitely not the run of the mill, rivet-crazy Airfix kit of the days. The air vents have razor sharp lips, etc. Only a few minute rivets on the fuselage, easy to erase. This kit is a revelation! Bar for a few additions in the cockpit, it will be built OOB. Unfortunately the decals seem good for the bin. I will see if anything can be salvaged! Here are a few photos: A very surprising kit indeed Have fun! JR
  3. I see that FROG have re-released the above ex Airfix kits. I have been unable to find a list of the suggested paints (presumably Humbrol) for them. Does anyone know what they are, as although they are listed on Scalemates website, the instructions (and hence paints) are not. Many thanks in advance
  4. These days we are used to companies either merging or being taken over, but it is not a new phenomenon. The company founded by W. G Armstrong was a major player in heavy engineering and armament, when in 1897 it merged with one of its rivals to become Sir W G Armstrong, Whitworth and Co Ltd. They expanded into building cars in around 1906 and then set up an aircraft subsidiary in 1912, but when they were taken over by another big conglomerate – Vickers in 1927 to become Vickers Armstrong, the car and aircraft arm were split off and merged with the Siddeley-Deasy company. It continued to trade as Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft even after a take over by Hawkers in 1936, but after building the Argosy freighter the name changed to Hawker Siddeley in around 1960! A-W aircraft were originally based at Whitley, a suburb of Coventry, hence the name chosen in 1935 for my next build. but they moved to a larger site at Bagington in the late 1930's. In 1972, Frog brought out their Whitley and I bought one. It was a nice enough kit and filled a glaring gap in the aircraft of Bomber Command, but it remained the only mainstream kit of this aircraft until Fly released theirs in around 2011, but I seem to remember it had mixed reviews. Then I saw that Airfix intended to release one at last and so I put in a pre-order - it arrived in 2015 and has been in my stash since then for a variety of reasons but now I hope to get it built. And here it is- Quite a lot of plastic on some of the biggest sprues I have seen in quite a while - it is certainly British and I think it qualifies as big! Compared with my MPM Wellington II, this should be fun - I hope. I have to clear a few other builds from my desk and get another storage shelf put up in my roof, but should be able to start within a few days. Cheers Pete
  5. When I started building 1/48 Cold War jets my aim was to make the ones I saw at early 80s airshows. So generally that meant a lot of grey/green. I think I have most of the main kits that are available now - Tornado, Phantom, Hawk, Hunter, Lightning, Jaguar, Canberra, Hercules. But one was always a bit tricky to get hold of. The Airfix Buccaneer. I finally got one at a reasonable price and it has sat in the stash for a little while. Chances were that Airfix would bring out a new one before I got to it! Anyway I finished my Chipmunk recently and couldn’t resist the big grey/green beastie any longer. And yes, to me they were RAF jets. I never saw the Navy ones flying although I built a couple of 1/72 sea grey & white ones as a kid. Anyway the kit Not the newest. The instructions talk about them being expected to retire in 94! Nice recessed panel lines, but not sure they will line up! My preference would be for a Honnington jet, but the kit decal options are ex-Honnington at Lossiemouth so I am sure that will do. No large two letter tail codes though. looked at the resin cockpit, but I have settled on an etch set. Got it from Hannants today with a nice note! Now I can’t just do OOB. I considered powered wing fold but can’t see a good way to do it without making it look like a toy. But I plan some working lights. Plenty of room in that bomb bay for a battery. Looks a good size next to a Phantom
  6. Celebrating Her Majesty's Platinum Jubilee with this trip to Malta, by Trident. Her Majesty The Queen, Greeted By Archbishop Michael Gonzi, Luqa Airport, Malta, 23 November 1967 This kit. The only mod necessary - creation of that X on the registration.
  7. I found this in the stash and thought it ideal for this GB as well as another attempt at stash reduction. It's been sitting in a box for quite a long time. Two small green sprues with the upper and lower hull. Classic Airfix moulding but little flash, though I suspect there will be a little bit of cleaning up along the way. Classic Airfix instructions on one page and colour call outs for a single tank. And a tiny transfer sheet.
  8. North American P-51D Mustang (A05131A) 1:48 Airfix The P-51D was developed by the North American Aviation company as a possible fighter for Great Britain, but due to the poor performance of the engine initially fitted it wasn’t all that good. Luckily, they strapped a Rolls-Royce Merlin engine into the airframe and it brought out the best of its design, which included the energy efficient laminar flow wing that gave it the potential to escort Allied bombers all the way to Berlin with the addition of drop-tanks and a lean mixture when not in combat. It was flown in this guise as the Mustang III in British service, and as the P-51B/C in US service, then as the P-51D with the bubble canopy and cut-down aft fuselage, with an additional fin-fillet added later to improve stability that had been reduced by the new shape and fuel tank location. This is the Mustang that most people think of when they hear the name, unless they’re more of a petrol head. The Kit This is a reboxing with different parts and new decals that is based upon the initial release in 1:48 in 2017 of this accomplished fighter, a release that was greeted with enthusiasm by the modelling community in general. It has a so-called cuff-less prop, which was sometimes fielded alongside the cuffed variety. The box is typical Airfix with a red-theme, and a digital painting of one of the decal options in the midst of splashing an Me.262, which Allied fighters were prone to doing when the German Schwalbes were in their vulnerable landing or take-off phase of flight, as the early Junkers Jumo engines were unable to spool up their engines for last-minute combat in the event of an emergency. Inside there are four large sprues and one small one in pale grey styrene, a clear sprue that is separately bagged, a medium decal sheet and the instructions in Airfix’s modern style, with colour profiles for painting and decaling on the rearmost pages. By now we’re mostly familiar with the Airfix Mustang, and detail is still good, with crisp panel lines, clever moulding to maximise detail and variants from the same tooling, coupled with good raised and engraved details where appropriate, including fasteners around the engine cowling and other parts. You even get a pilot with separate arms if that sort of thing appeals to you. Some love them, others don’t. Construction begins traditionally with the cockpit, which has a nicely detailed and quilted seat with moulded-in seatbelts, and lap belts that are moulded into the backrest support. The seat attaches to a chunky piece of pilot armour, and is joined in the long cockpit/radiator trunk/tail-wheel well base by the radio gear that sits on top of the fuselage fuel tank. The tanks were self-sealing, but it still must have been a little unnerving for the pilot to be that close to liquid fire. The control column and instrument panel with coaming are added too, along with a decal for the instruments, then the radiator bath and trunking assembly is made up and fitted to the underside of the cockpit, while the tail-wheel bay is boxed in with optional open doors captive to the side parts. These doors can be removed if posing your model with wheels up, and the tail strut minus wheel is set inside after painting. The cockpit sidewalls are separate parts that are added to the insides of the fuselage, rather than risking surface sink-marks by moulding them in, and permitting better detail with additional parts plus a couple of decals to busy up your painted ‘pit. These are put in place with a perforated panel insert in the underside of the nose, and the filleted tail insert that you are advised to check is perfectly upright before the glue sets – good call. The completed cockpit assembly is added to the port side, then closed up within the fuselage, with a separate top nose cowling part ensuring no tricky seam is present in the middle of this prominent area. The wings have a full width lower, into which the main gear bay is fitted with a small length of wing spar depicted, and a choice of opening up two holes in each wing to accommodate the included two styles of drop-tanks. The separate upper surfaces with the distinctive leading edge root kink are fitted to the top with three clear ID lights showing through the underside, triple .50cal wing inserts (4 per wing became common later), and a choice of dropped or retracted flaps by using different parts from the sprues, plus a couple of decals from the sheet, complete with a scrap diagram that shows their location on the flaps. The ailerons are outboard, and can show a deflection of 15o in either direction at your discretion, remembering to make one go up, the other go down. Next the instructions show the correct insertion method of the wing to the fuselage, fitting the trailing edge under the radiator intake first, then pressing the leading edge into place ready for the lower wing/chin insert that closes the area over. At the tip of the nose is another small insert with a back plate that holds the stub axle for the prop in place, and a front plate plus chin intake that completes the nose, save for the prop, which is added later, although exhausts are placed in their slots at this point. Speaking of intakes, the radiator intake lip is separate to achieve a nice fine edge and do away with any frustrating sanding in that area, which is great news. At the opposite end of the radiator trunking there are two exhaust flaps, the larger of which can be posed open or closed by cutting off the mounting pips on the inside of the trunk. The filleted tail fin is joined by the elevators with separate flying surfaces and these too/two can be set to between 30o positive and 20o negative deflection, remembering that they always work in unison unless they’re broken. The rudder too can be posed deflected to 30o to either side should you so wish. Airfix have a very sensible approach to landing gear in their modern kits, supplying separate parts for closed bays that avoids all the fiddly task of trying to make separate sections of the doors fit snugly together. The main and tail wheel doors all work in this way for the wheels-up modeller, and for wheels down there are separate parts, retraction jacks and even linkages for the captive parts of the doors, which is really nice to see. The inner main doors attach back-to-back in the centre of the bay, while the main doors fix to the struts with a C-shaped linkage, adding a clear landing light into the bay. The wheels are two-part affairs with a seam round the circumference of the diamond treaded tyres, which will take a little clean-up, but probably won’t reduce you to tears, or you could pick up some resin wheels if you really can’t face the task. The little tail-wheel just fits onto the strut’s circular attachment point, leaving you only one hub to cut the demarcation between tyre and hub on. You have a choice of two types of drop-tanks, either smooth with a seam round the centreline, or fluted with ribs, both of which fit onto the same type of pylon in the holes you drilled earlier. An L-shaped pitot probe goes in the hole under the starboard wing, then the prop is made up from either the four cuffed blades or cuffless variety on a central hub, back-plate with internal detail, boss and spinner, which all fits onto the stub axle you buried in the nose earlier. The final jobs include deciding whether you want to crew your Mustang with the included three-part pilot, then providing him with some cockpit glazing. The windscreen has a small portion of the fuselage skin moulded in for ease, and has the coaming cover and gunsight added inside on a bracket before it is fitted, plus the rear canopy that has a stiffener bar and rear cover before it too is attached in the open or closed position. It’s really nice to see Airfix paying attention to the small details such as canopy internals, which is also bound to expand the market for two-sided masks such as those offered by Eduard and NewWare Masks. The rear-view mirror and aerial mast on the spine are last to be added, although that’s probably going to be a long time later after main painting is complete. Markings There are two decal options in this boxing, both substantially different from each other to please many, and with a full sheet of A4 devoted to each one. The stencils are covered on a separate page for simplicity, and all the Humbrol colours are called out on each page to minimise flicking backward and forward, which many (self-included) find a little confusing and annoying. From the box you can build one of the following: P-51D-15-NA Mustang ‘The Millie G’ Maj. Edward Bonfoy Giller, 343rd Fighter Sqn., 55th Fighter Group, 8th Air Force, USAAF, RAF Wormingford, Essex, England, 1944-5 P-51K-1-NT Mustang ‘Frisco Kid’ Lt. John Carl Casey, 363rd Fighter Sqn., 357 Fighter Group, 8th Air Force, USAAF, RAF Leiston, Suffolk, England, 1944 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 Airfix have widened their repertoire of Mustangs yet again with the choice of cuffed or non-cuffed props plus some new decal options, and as per the previous releases it’s good model that’s a sound seller. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  9. Hi all Been working on this little beauty from Airfix, what a cracking little kit. Built OOB apart from the seat harness. Brush painted with Humbrol and Colourcoats enamels and weathered with oils and pastels. A really enjoyable kit Thanks to those who offered support and encouragement during the build. Chris
  10. I've become infatuated with Eduards Spitfire (probably a bit too much) lately and that got me thinking. Would it be a good idea to chop the Griffin of the Airfix XII and marry that to an (preferably Overtrees) Eduard VIII airframe? That way you'll get a lovely detailed XII, with a sliding hood that isn't made in one piece and looks a bit weird. Or am I trying/thinking too much, since the Airfix XII is a quite fine kit anyway? //Christer
  11. "Semper Paratus" Remembering the "Badge crew" Lancaster B.1 - ED412 - EM-Q (12/13th July 1943) Crew of ED412 (Left to right) (Photos courtesy of Jim Wright, Drew MacIntyre and Mark Chandler) (Top row) Sgt Robert Wood- Flight Engineer- RAF(VR)- Age 21 F/S Ronald Oswald Charles ("Roc") Brett- RAAF- Age 27 Sgt James Arthur Spence- RAF(VR)- Age 21 Sgt Edward Higgins- Wireless Operator- RAF(VR)- Age 24 (Bottom row) Sgt Arthur Charles Wright- Observer (Air Bomber)- RAF(VR)- Age 32 P/O Horace Badge- Pilot- RAF(VR)- Age 20 Flt Lt Arthur Charles Jepps- Observer (Navigator)- RAF- Age 29 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Hi everyone, With the exams over, and the summer months providing a brief period of time in which I can resume a spot of modelling, I have decided to have a go at starting this long term project. Many years ago I picked up a 1:72 Airfix BBMF Collection set and built the two Spitfires that came with it. However, I never got around to building the Lancaster. Over a period of years and through my family becoming interested in researching our family history, I became more aware of my great uncle Horace Badge. And over recent weeks I started to delve more into the events of the 12th and 13th of July 1943, and the loss of the crew of Lancaster ED412. At the end of this project I would like to have made a suitably accurate representation of Lancaster ED412 alongside a written collection of Horace Badge's life, his service in the RAF, and the loss of the Badge crew over Switzerland in 1943. The 207 Squadron RAF History site (linked here) has provided a comprehensive account of the events surrounding the events of that evening, and I would suggest that anyone interested have a read of their information first. Lancaster ED412 and its crew set off from RAF Langar at 22:35 on Monday 12th July 1943 on a night raid to attack Turin, Italy. ED412 carried a 4000lbs "Cookie" alongside incendiary munitions. Following a route that took them over Lake Annecy in France, the formation encountered poor weather and some 100 aircraft crossed over into Swiss territory. Whether ED412 was hit by Swiss anti aircraft fire, or whether the aircraft fell victim to the poor weather encountered that night, is still up for debate. Regardless of the cause, the aircraft was seen to break through the clouds North of Lake Geneva and circle twice, before finally impacting Le Grammont at approximately one o'clock in the morning on the 13th of July 1943. One day I would like to visit the area and see both Le Grammont and the CWGC cemetery of St Martin's in Vevey. In the meantime, however, we were able to visit the International Bomber Command Centre in Lincoln, and locate Horace Badge's name on their wall of names (a surprisingly moving experience, and a place which I will happily encourage you to visit if you're in the area). Based on this, you might be able to get a sense of why I want to model Lancaster ED412. As a tribute to the Badge crew, and in a larger part as a tribute to the crews of Bomber Command, some 57,000 of which would never return from operations. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ The Build Based on the documentation that has been unearthed regarding ED412, I intend to model the aircraft on the ground at RAF Langar as she would have been before her final mission. A variety of aftermarket additions will be added, including (but not limited to): -Eduard photo-etch interior -Kits-World lettering decals -Quickboost gun barrels -Quickboost air intakes -Eduard resin wheels -AIM (Transport Wings) crew ladder -Eduard canopy masks -Kits-World seatbelts -CMK engine -Belcher Bits small bomb containers (SBC's) -Airfix bomber resupply set I am currently aiming to have the crew door open, with one engine being worked on (cowlings removed), with part of the payload on it relevant trolley, and (maybe) the crew members waiting nearby prior to boarding. We will see how it goes but first things first is the Lancaster. For the exterior of the Lancaster I would like to use the technique used by "viper_models" on Instagram (an example of whose technique can be seen here)- this seems to involve making lines of rivets and then filling in the panels with Mr Surfacer to create a stressed skin appearance. While I appreciate this might not be an entirely authentic addition (especially for a Lancaster with relatively few flying hours) I feel that it would provide a nice visual addition to the aircraft. (For those following along with the Midlands Air Ambulance EC-135 build, I will be working alongside that at the same time!) --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Photo courtesy of Jim Wright and the IBCC) "A few months before he was killed Badge stood in the Quad talking to us, chuckling at the unexpected destiny which has called him from his father's Devon farm: fit, solid, unperturbed, he grinned as he recounted awkward and dangerous incidents during his flying instruction in Canada and England. In his even tones there was not the mildest hint of swagger: as in his eyes there was no hint, no shadow fear: Devon stock this. He went away to fly a Stirling; and shortly after a great flight to Turin there came the news that his aircraft, and another, had crashed near Vevey in Switzerland. He and his crew lie buried on a hill above the old church of Saint Martin that looks out over the Lake of Geneva. He was at Shebbear from 1937-1941, finishing in the Sixth; he served Shebbear faithfully, as librarian, a cadet in the A.T.C., member of the 1st XV, and not least as a member of the choir whose playing of the violin we remember. Throughout his training in the R.A.F. he kept in touch with Shebbear, though so keen about his work that the days were hardly long enough: "Although it is time for bed," he wrote, "I still have some more work to do, so I must close this letter." It was hard to believe that so much life was quenched." (Entry in the Shebbear College Roll of Honour booklet- With thanks to Amy Bernstone and Andy Bryan). So until next time, thank you ever so much for reading and following along. Best wishes, Sam "We have loved him in life, let us not forget him in death" -Epitaph of Horace Badge
  12. Hi Folks, I'd like to join this important GB if I may. Important in historical terms, and important to me as I was involved (in a minor way) as a young MOD cartographer making maps for those at the other end of the Atlantic. Yet another Harrier. They seem popular which is unsurprising to me and the GR.3 is missing from my collection. So without further ado... the very nice box art; A box of un-butchered (yet) plastic... And some aftermarket additions. The Pavla seat looks very nice, And if only the AIM 9L Sidewinders in the kit actually looked like those on the box. So some Eduard resin/brass replacements to hang on the pylons, Great - I can start cutting! Cheers,
  13. North American F-86F-40 Sabre (A08110) 1:48 Airfix The North American F-86 Sabre was a first-generation swept-wing jet that saw active service in Korea and beyond in US service, and was also license-built by Canadair in a number of variants. It was a spiritual successor to their own P-51D Mustang, and entered service with American squadrons in 1949 and stayed on-strength for many years, latterly in their Air National Guard as well as with overseas operators. The F-40 variant was considered the definitive version of the Sabre, as it was a later version that benefited from the hard-won lessons of earlier marks. It used the larger so-called 6-3 wing, but added improved leading-edge slats that gave it better manoeuvrability, as well as a lower landing speed that wasn’t quite so scary for the pilot, especially if the aircraft had taken some damage before reaching home base. The improved General Electric J47-GE-27 engine also gave the type additional power, plus the streamlining of production made it a cost-effective fighter that became more affordable to overseas customers, and a total of over 2,200 were built of the F-model by the time that the nuclear-capable H-model went into production. The Kit This is a partial re-tooling of the initial Canadair built Sabre Mk.4 from Airfix, and there was plenty of excitement in the run-up to that release, but this one has its own buzz. After the initial release there was some chatter about various relatively minor issues, and as no kit is perfect that’s not surprising, but they’re pretty easy to fix once you’ve got your head around them. This boxing includes one different sprue that contains the new parts for the wing, which differs greatly from the initial tooling, although there are very often plenty of caveats when building models of aircraft that went through so many variations during their service. Construction begins in an unusual place for a change, the intake trunking. It is split horizontally, and has alignment pegs on the outer edges, plus a rectangle of four pegs on the topside to which the cockpit tub is fixed. The rear deck is moulded into the tub, and here is one of the first areas where a little work might be on the cards if it perturbs you, as it hasn’t changed from the initial release. The details here are a little simplified, and if you’re detail focused there are some minor changes you can make. You have a choice of two types of seat, both of which are put together from the L-shaped base, two side supports and the headbox cushion, the more modern-looking seat having olive drab cushions, while the “commode” looking seat has a bright red head rest. Your choice of seat is inserted into the cockpit tub, and a pair of decals are supplied for the side consoles, and another is there for the instrument panel that slots into the front of the tub. The decals have a clear background, so you’ll be able to paint the panel in the correct colours, which incidentally should be black, as mentioned in the instructions. A very dark grey with some lighter highlights, followed by a black wash should achieve the desired effect. The control column has a gaiter at the bottom that has a separate section added to one side to give it the appropriate width and shape. The cockpit/intake assembly has a set of stator blades fitted to the rear along with a two-part curved intake bullet, and at the front you have a choice of either the hollow intake lip, or the same part with a FOD guard inserted into the trunk first, blocking off the intake for a ground-side aircraft. Airfix have helpfully provided a pilot figure in their traditional “hands on lap” pose, and apart from the slightly passive posture, the moulding and detail is good. Flipping over the trunking, there are some ribs and equipment moulded into the underside for the nose-bay roof, which is boxed-in by a two-part C-shaped wall, and should be painted interior green, while the doors should be silver. The fuselage has a couple of holes in the forward end to accept inserts, including the gun bay doors that can be closed up, or left open to show off the gun bays. The bays are a single curved box, into which the breeches of the guns fit at an angle, with the help of scrap diagrams showing the correct orientation as each one is glued into position. The magazines are inserted into the lower section of the bay, and have their ammo feeds glued to the top, leading to the gun breeches. The same process is carried out in mirror image on the other side of the fuselage, then the bays are glued in place from the inside, correctly marked as painted in silver. The airbrakes on the rear fuselage sides can also be posed open or closed by inserting a closed bay door with supporting ledges that should allow you to glue them flush to the outer skin (possibly after some fettling, so test fitting is essential), or the open bay with the bay doors fitted in the open position later, with the back of the panel painted interior green. A small section on the rear spine of the fuselage has an area removed as per a couple of scrap diagrams that are marked out in green to accommodate a different tail-fillet shape later. In order to close up the fuselage you need to make up the exhaust trunk, which has the rear engine face inserted in the wider forward end, and an optional circular FOD cover over the hot end. There are two supports for the forward end that fix into sockets on the inside of the port fuselage, and a moulded-in lip near the aft end that slots into a corresponding groove inside the rear, ensuring correct positioning. You are advised to put 10g of nose weight in the gap between the cockpit and intake lip, but a little more probably wouldn’t hurt, as there’s plenty of space. The cockpit & intake are also inserted into the left fuselage with the aid of sockets to hold them secure, then a long insert is placed in the area between the tail and the exhaust trunk, which also makes up the lower side of the tail pen-nib fairing. If you are modelling your Sabre in-flight, you need to put in the single nose bay door insert in now, and this too has ledges to help with fitting, then you can close up the fuselage and set it aside to cure while you make up the new slatted wings. Airfix have moulded the lower wing as a full-width part again, but this version has the necessary shape for the 6-3 slatted wing. Again, if you’re going for wheels-up, the single main gear bay door insert should be fitted now, as this too has ledges around the edge to help with alignment. A pair of pylon holes should be drilled in each wing if you are fitting them (see my note later about positioning), and the bay walls are made up from narrow parts around the rear edge, plus a more substantial front wall that will need a pair of blocks removing if you are depicting your Sabre with the inner doors dropped open, as these are only useful when the doors are closed, again to stop them from dropping inside the bay during fitting. There’s another nubbin under each door on the front bulkhead, so treat that the same if you’re dropping all the doors. The bay roof has two depressions moulded-in to accommodate the wheels, and this assembly is fitted into the lower wing, with additional parts installed in the outboard section, and don’t forget to give the upper wing interior a quick squirt of the same interior green, as there is roof detail moulded-in there too. If you took the decision to open up the gun bays, the very tips of the wing roots should be cut off the wing leading edge uppers along the panel line, as that section is integral to the bay door and is supplied as part of the open door parts as well as the tips of the leading-edge slats. A scrap diagram holds your hand through all of this, then you can join the wing halves and fit the leading-edge slats in either open or closed position by using appropriate parts, with their chopped off tips if appropriate. Another hole may be needed for the drop-tanks too. Before you can join the wings to the fuselage, there are two intakes under the fuselage that are moulded as holes in the lower wing that are installed from the inside, so fitting them later would be horrible. With that, the two-part insert in front of the tail fin is fitted into the upper fuselage, and the wings are attached beneath, adding the L-shaped wingtip and aileron insert to the trailing edge of the outer wing as you go. The elevators are both single parts and attach with the usual slot and tab method, while the rudder is separate and can be glued deflected as you wish, but don’t forget to offset the control column to save yourself from the purists. They’re watching you. There are inserts to be added above the wing root trailing edge, then it’s gear and bay doors. If you have elected to pose your model gear up, you can skip this part, but even with the gear down you still have choices. The main bay inner doors can be posed closed by using one part, or down by joining two different parts in a very sharp inverted V-shape, remembering that the short section of bay wall should be interior green, but the door should be silver. They’re supported by a short jack in the front of the bay, then the main gear leg and its captive door can be joined and inserted. Here you’ll need to remove the tiny dog-bone link that has been included in error because Airfix scanned a museum airframe that either didn’t have any pressure in the strut, or was being supported to prevent sag. Some careful trimming and sanding will have it looking correct in no time, and you can carry on with putting the main wheels on, which will line up the flat-spot with the ground automatically thanks to the axles and hubs having a keyed fitting. Moving to the nose gear, there are a pair of flip-down landing lights just in front of the bay, and you can depict these in the flush position by using a clear part and masking off the circular lights, painting the rear silver before you install it, or you can use the styrene part and fit the deployed clear lights later in the build. The nose gear leg is a single part, and fits into a keyed slot in the front of the bay, and has a smaller two-part wheel slipped onto another keyed axle. A retraction jack fixes to the back of the strut, and the folded front door clips in place either side of the wheel, with a scrap diagram showing the correct location and where it links to the strut. The rear door can be posed closed or dropped sideways with a strut holding it at an angle, with that and the open lower gun bay doors shown in place on a frontal diagram for your reference, but the upper gun bay panels aren’t mentioned again, so you’ll either have to severely thin the unused closed-up inserts, or tell everyone some erk wandered off with them. The open air-brakes glue into the fuselage with their stays holding them to the correct angle, and slightly further forward next to the intakes under the fuselage you are given two small parts to locate on tiny depressions between fairing panels. These are jacking points, and were only fitted during maintenance, so unless you are planning a diorama that involves jacks, leave them in the box and if you can see the depressions, pop a tiny amount of filler in there to make them disappear. Under the tail there is a small blade to fit into another small depression, which is best left off until after main painting. There are two types of drop-tanks supplied on the sprue, a pair with two simple fins, and another pair with larger fins plus a perpendicular stabiliser on each tip. They fit to the lower wing on quite stout pins, so when the instructions tell you to make 2.3mm holes, don’t skimp on the size. Both sets of tanks have stabilising struts fitted between the body and the smaller 0.8mm hole in the leading-edge underside panel. We understand that the positioning of the tanks is slightly adrift, and should actually be 52.33mm from the centre line, so if you want to get the look dead-on, you’d better get out your callipers before you drill out the mounting holes. The model is finished off by adding the straight pitot at the tip of the starboard wing, the optional popped-out lights under the nose, a clear gunsight, and the canopy. The windscreen is separate from the sliding canopy, and there is an insert that fits inside with a clear “lamp” at the midpoint, which is actually the radio compass loop antenna. This is a simplification of what is there, and could have been a little better, but it would have required more parts, and those details cost time and money. As it is, you have a reasonable approximation of the parts in the area, but if you have gone to the trouble of detailing the deck behind the pilot, you’ll probably want to do something similar here, detailing the support cross-member and the cockpit pressure regulator in the very rear. Once you are satisfied, the canopy can be posed open or closed to suit you. Markings There are two decal options on the sheet, and as mentioned earlier, thanks to export sales, they’re overseas operator airframes, namely Norway and Japan. Each aircraft is shown in four views on a glossy, folded A3 sheet, and empty space around the profiles is taken up with research notes and drawings of the drop tanks and their stencil locations. A separate single-sided sheet shows the locations of the many stencils around the airframe to avoid repetition and cluttering the pages with too many lines. From the box you can build one of the following: The Flying Jokers Aerobatic Team, No.332 Sqn., Royal Norwegian Air Force, Rygge Air Station, Norway, 2nd June 1962 1st Air Wing, Japan Air Self-Defence Force, Hamamatsu Air Base, Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan, December 1975 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 This is possibly the edition that the Sabre-fans have been waiting for, but everyone seems to have a different favourite amongst the many versions that were around. It’s a good-looking kit with interesting decal choices, and apart from those minor niggles concerning a few of the details, it’s a new tool of the Sabre that’s well-worth having. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  14. I make no claims to accuracy, this is an impressionist build.
  15. Another of Airfix’s classic airliner kits, I made this one straight out of the box. I was surprised to find it’s as big as a 707, I always thought those were much bigger! Sprayed with appliance white, chrome silver and Tamiya light ghost grey, detail touched up with Posca pen. The decals were very good despite the age of the kit. It needed noseweight, but generally the fit was quite good.
  16. #11/2022 So, my dad´s French at war theme is almost at the end now, this is the second last model.....for now. The new Airfix kit is neither really good nor really bad. The detail in some areas is nice, so are the open flaps options. A major issue is the fit problem of upper and lower fuselage half. Had to do sand and cut away some pieces of the bulkhead behind the seat and the cockpit side instruments to join the halves together. Don´t know if my dad did something wrong but the gunsight was too large, so he used one from the sparesbox. The model is a tailsitter. The instructions call for 17g noseweight, my dad added about 30g to be on the safe side. Sadly there´s hardly any space to add weight, used airgun ammo and filled the nose, foot space and the forward areas of the wing tanks. Painted with older selfmixed green and blue-grey paints, Berna Decals used. Build thread here https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235108250-guerre-dalgérie148-de-havilland-vampire-mk5-armée-de-l’air/ In the early fifties, France received a bunch of completed and also still to build up Vampires, used by the Airforce and the Navy. Soon France developed a more powerful license version, the Mk.53, also called Mistral. Best to distinguish by diffently shaped air intakes. During the Algerian War, mostly Mistrals saw combat, but also some original Vampires were used. The Model shows one of these from EC 1/7 "Provence", stationed in Bizerte/Tunisia in 1956. DSC_0001 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0002 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0003 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0004 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0005 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0006 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0002 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0009 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0001 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0011 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0012 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0013 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0014 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0015 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0016 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0002 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0019 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0002 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0020 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0023 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0003 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr DSC_0001 by grimreaper110, auf Flickr
  17. Supermarine Spitfire F Mk.XVIII (A05140) 1:48 Airfix The Spitfire is possibly the most iconic and well-known fighter of WWII from any combatant, so I'll not drone on about how great it was, as we already know - It and the Hurricane were the saviours of our bacon on a number of occasions, and are immortalised in aviation history as a result. The Mark XVIII was powered by the powerful Griffon 65 engine, with the resulting extension in forward fuselage, power bulges, not to mention pure grunt as it was pulled along by the massive five bladed prop. It was based upon the almost identical XIV with a stronger wing structure, and gave a substantial performance increase over the ever popular Mk.IX, having the cut-down fuselage back and teardrop canopy, but more fuel storage onboard as standard for longer missions without tanks. The extra weight of the engine required centre of gravity motivated changes, and the wash off the props necessitated a new larger tail empennage to maintain control authority within acceptable ranges. It entered service too late in the war and consequently saw little action, but as it was capable of almost 450mph at 25,000ft and could climb like the proverbial homesick angel, giving anyone on the receiving end of its wrath a serious reason for concern, it lingered on after hostilities ceased. The Griffon engine had a drinking problem and drained its tanks with a frightening efficiency even after the increase in storage, so drop-tanks were sometimes carried on longer missions, allowing it to range a lot further from home if it wasn’t performing duties close to home. It didn’t truly see aggressive service until after WWII had ended, fighting in Malaya in 1947, and in the hands of the Indian Air Force, who bought 20 ex-RAF airframes that they kept in service for some time. The later Mark.24 was the last of the land-based Spitfires, thus ending its service in the RAF but continuing with other countries that bought retired airframes that they flew for a while longer. The Kit This is a reboxing from Airfix of their Mk.XIV that it was almost identical from the exterior, but with an additional sprue of weapons and new decals for its war-focused service. The kit arrives in a red-themed top-opening box with a Spit on the lid unleashing its un-guided rockets on some unfortunate, five sprues of grey styrene inside, plus one of clear, a decal sheet and the instruction booklet with spot colour throughout and full colour painting and decaling guide on the rear pages. Construction begins with the cockpit interior, which consists of two inner skins that are decorated with the usual items we all know and probably recognise instantly. The pilot's seat is made from an L-shaped sitting surface with separate side supports, which has an armour panel fitted behind it and the adjustment lever on the right side. The frame behind the pilot has moulded-in lightening holes that you can either pick out with wash or drill out at your whim, then add the seat mounting frame and head-armour, finally fitting the seat to the frame on its four corners. The rudder pedal assembly slides through a depiction of 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 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, which should settle down well with a little decal solution. The instrument panel is inserted into the port cockpit side along with the rudder pedal assembly, allowing the two cockpit tub halves to be joined and an angled front firewall bulkhead to be fitted, closing in the foot well. Then the seat assembly and next frame to the rear are slotted into their grooves, and your optional pilot with his two separate arms can be plonked 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 is mated to the starboard fuselage half, together with an insert in front of the canopy, which is where the prominent 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 sprues so you can afford to be a bit brutal in removing the plastic. The full-width lower wing is first prepared with the necessary sets of holes for rockets or bombs, and/or a 2mm hole if you are using the stand that is available separately from Airfix for Airfix kits. It then 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. You then you pop the upper wings on as you join 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 moulded-in rudder fin, then the three flying surfaces are added with any sensible deflection that you might wish to portray, the elevator held in place with an insert that allows it to remain mobile if you are so-minded. The ailerons are also separate and can be posed deflected if you wish. Under the nose the two halves of the chin-insert are glued to each other and then fitted in, noting the finely moulded Amal fastenings there and on the side cowlings. Under the wing the two square radiator baths with textured radiator panels and separate open or closed cooling flaps on the rear are glued into their recesses. The fuselage has a couple of hatches in the sides, which are glued into place, test-fitting them to get a good flush join. The shrouded cannon barrels are inserted into the wing leading edges, and the characteristic Griffon power-bulges added above the exhaust slots. The tail wheel was retractable in the Mk.XIV, so you have the choice of wheels up or down for all three rubbery bits. In-flight a small portion of the main wheels can still be seen, so Airfix have provided a pair of slim wheels to attach to the doors so that a realistic look is obtained, and a single door piece for the tail is also included. For the wheels down option, you have separate struts, scissor-links and doors, which slot into the bay and have a pair of diamond treaded tyres with separate hubs added, making sure that the slightly flattened section is facing the floor. The tail wheel bay and doors are a single part, with the wheel inserted once it is applied to the fuselage. A T-shaped pitot probe goes under the wing with small hooks under the trailing edge and a centreline trailing aerial at the rear, then the tubular exhaust stubs are glued into the nose, and later joined by a one-piece five-bladed prop, two-part spinner, and three prop-shaft parts that slot into the front and will permit the prop to spin if you don’t flood it with glue. The choice of weapons includes a pair of two-part bombs with separate cylindrical tails on an additional support, which fix under the wings on shallow pylons that each have two W-shaped anti-sway braces slotted into them. A larger centre-line bomb can be fitted on a two-part frame, made up in a similar manner to the small bombs, but without the additional support at the rear. The third alternative is a trio of rockets under each wing, the rockets being made up from the body, plus extra parts for the warhead and two of the four fins. They have their mounting lugs moulded-in, and you could add small lengths of wire to the rear for their actuating wires if you’re feeling like it. You then have a choice of open or closed canopies, using the windscreen and canopy assembly for open, and a different canopy sliding part for the closed option. The open option also allows the door to be posed down, which as previously mentioned uses a new door part. The clear gunsight and roll-over loop support are inserted beforehand, and the afore-mentioned cockpit door is fitted around the same time. Markings There are two marking options in the box, one in camo with some fetching nose stripes, the other in silver in the service of the Indian Air Force. From the box you can build one of the following: 60 Sqn., RAF (Air Command Far East), RAF Kuala Lumpur, British Malaya, 1947 Western Air Command HQ, Indian Air Force, Delhi, India, 1947 Decals are by Airfix’s usual partner 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 The Spitfire continued service long after the glory days were over, with that beast of a Griffon engine up front, and many upgrades that showed the promise of the initial design that was able to cope with the changes. A very nice model can be made from the box. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  18. I bought this for a fiver from someone who'd done most of the build. Without knowing their vision, I merely finished it off. One of the few Airfix 1/24 kits I'd not built before, it was a challenge that should stand me in good stead when I build another. Without any further ado... XV788 Flying Officer Paul Meade No.1453 Flight, Port Stanley, Royal Air Force, Falkland Islands, 1984.
  19. With my Wessex reaching the decalling stage I have started on a second build, Airfix’s Harrier GR3. Box and spruces: Some extra goodies: I won’t be using the kit decals as I want to build a Belize based Harrier. I will be building the top one, XZ967, D “Donatello” of 1473 Flight Belize 1993. I have made a start, giving everything a good wash and priming some of the smaller parts ready for painting. More to follow. AW
  20. In Autumn 2022, Airfix is to release a new tool 1/48th Avro Anson Mk.I kit - ref. A09191 Source: https://uk.airfix.com/products/avro-anson-mki-a09191 V.P. For me a Avro Anson C.19/T.21 in the same scale. V.P.
  21. Here's what's in the box. Assembly is illustrated in six exploded diagram stages. For something a little different I like the look of the Falklands scheme that she wore for a time after the conflict. First a dry fit. I airbrushed the wooden decks.
  22. This is the first instalment in my "Last Legs Ponies" project--an ex-Texas ANG P-51D pony that was on its last legs in Costa Rican service in 1955. The kit is Airfix, and only modification is the antenna mast, for which I used a needle. The decals are from Blue Rider. Special shout out to @Corsairfoxfouruncle who pointed out and guided me through the "ghost" Texas ANG markings, which made this model particularly interesting for me. Enjoy! Here is the original:
  23. After the 1/72nd kit (link), Airfix is to release during Winter 2019-2020 (?) a new tool 1/48th Canadair Sabre Mk.4 kit - ref. A08109 https://uk.airfix.com/products/canadair-sabre-f4-a08109 3D render V.P.
  24. This model was a summer love. In July I've bought it to an old guy for just 10€. It was my perfect shot to build a 737 for my collection with the colors of my beloved TAP Air Portugal. In mind that I didn't finished my VARIG yet (and also my DC-10 from Lufthansa), I decided not to loose this opportunity and since it was an easy one to do I've started to do it, since I was alone in town because of the summer holidays. Knowing by hand decals for this plane existed, I've also order them from V1 Decals from Canada. Ben was really helpful and they arrived in one week! As you can see the picture from above, TAP's painting from the 80's/90's is very simple: White with a silver belly. And here is the guy! CE-TEO delivered brand new for TAP in July '83 and seen here in the beautiful Zürich Airport in May '95. This will be the exact plane I will do because it was the only registration available. So hands on work! In a first glimpse, the model looked very easy to do, without much detail. The two parts of the wings were very easy to attach to each other, among cabin and cargo doors. As usual, I've also puttied the windows in order to have that smooth surface to decals sit later on. I first sanded it and later on putty and after it got dried time to sand again. At the first look on this picture after the first sanding part there weren't much gaps on it. After applying the putty in the fuselage and sand it, I've attached the wings and the cockpit windows. Funny fact they broke in two pieces in my hand with the glue on the kit already. So I needed to do it in parts and in the end everything worked out very well. Due to this I needed to also put a bit of plastic putty on the cockpit gap and once again sand. And sand again. The airplane looked way more robust by now and the independent wing parts that alone looked very basic and out of shape started to gain some nice look as a whole now. I put the fuselage a bit aside and I've went to the elevators. Since they had a little gap between them and the fuselage, I've sanded a bit the part that attach them onto the fuselage and after that voila. No more gaps. I've painted them with a light grey (Vallejo 71 046). By the pictures this one was the most similar to the original color. After the grey got dried, I've masked them and I've painted the leading edges with a chromatic color just like I've saw on the pictures! I will repeat the process on the center belly as well in the wings. But first, I will apply the first layer of primary and then moving to the final paintings!
  25. Good evening, I will attempt to build a kit I have always wanted to add to my display case since 1976.... What took me so long... Anyway, here we are, with a box full of plastic, that the world's most famous Scottish Santa has kindly sent me... We all know Pat, aka @JOCKNEY and his legendary kindness. So I will try and do it justice. No pressure. And it will be mostly a kind of OOB, but not quite... Here are two photos of the box and sprues: Have a lot of fun, everyone! JR
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