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Found 142 results

  1. Well, it's been a rollercoaster for the last 15 months or so. I never said I was quick... Presented for your delectation is HKM's Great Big Lancaster. Build log is here. I decided to do an approximation of R5868 as she is now in Hendon, so that means the groovy two-tone squadron codes, paddle blade propellers (handily, they come as an option with the kit) and some extra radar kit over and above what the version of R5868 the box builds is equipped with. Again, the parts are in the box; I augmented them by removing the moulded antennae and replaced them with wire. Things to note - it is engineered to extremely tight tolerances, such that paint makes a difference. Once the wings go on, certainly the one associated with the transparent fuselage side ain't coming off again, so if you have any ideas about removing them for storage, be warned! I thought I would indulge myself in spiffing it up a bit, supplying copious amounts of entirely fictitious wiring looms and pipes within the fuselage and engine bays. You get 4 engines OOB; they are a bit skinny but hey-ho, I wasn't in the mood to acquire 4 Tamiya Spits or ZM Mustangs just for the engines! Painting the internal framing was an act of insanity, but if you want to do it I recommend *not* masking and then painting the frames - just freehand the frames and polish off the edges with a wooden toothpick or similar, the transparent plastic is surprisingly robust. The front section was done with masking, the rear was free handed and then cleaned up. I experimented with one of the spare opaque fuselage halves with cutting out the panels to leave the framing... I wouldn't do that, if I were you! Paints were Tamiya for the camouflage, a mixture of Tamiya and LifeColor acrylics for the black areas. The codes and insignia were custom masks made for me, I have a few spares if peeps are interested in buying some. The Goering quote proved to be just too spindly, so it, along with the walkway stencil writing, are just about the only decals I used. Camouflage masks were from Top Notch. Right, on with the show... A couple of overviews, left and right sides: Some close ups of various bits: And finally, these two: I think I'll take the summer off, until the Special Hobby Whirlwind finally appears. Although the ICM Gladiator looks like fun... It'll certainly be smaller! Laters, taters! Mike
  2. Dear comrades... This is one of my favourites aircrafts and making this is a very special for me. I made this model during the lockdown here in Spain. I used to build 1/48 models, and this is my first 1/72 since my childhood The kit doesn't have the best quality... but is acceptable. I've added several Eduard photo etched parts (flaps, interior, exteriors, bomb bay, etc...), Quickboost gun barrels, CMK engine set, etc... Here yoy can see the entire album: https://flic.kr/s/aHsmPLMNYf
  3. Lancaster B.Mk.III LM739 'GROGS the SHOT' No. 100 Squadron R.A.F. Elsham Wold April 1945 Here is my entry to the Avro Lancaster STGB, built from the Revell kit with some PE for the interior along with a couple of bits of scratching, replacement resin wheels and gun barrels. I amended the radiator intakes slightly and the same with the wing dihedral. Overall not a bad kit at all but with some contentious shapes here and there; I chose to replace the mid upper turret and fairing with parts from the Airfix 'Dambuster' kit. Weathered with oil paints and Tamiya powders. The build thread is here: And some proper sunshine shots: Thanks for looking and as always comments more than welcome. Cheers, Mark.
  4. I was given a Dambuster book as a present, which had sleeves containing flight plans, logbooks etc. On looking at Guy Gibson's logbook, I made an interesting discovery. The last entry before the raid was regarding the dress rehearsal, that included flying over 'Colchester Reservoir'. Strange I thought, posted here with 3 PARA in 2000, retired from the Regiment in 2011 and stayed in Coly - I do not know of 'Colchester Reservoir'. I know Abberton Reservoir, which is 3Km away where I often take the kids, has a small nature reserve. http://www.essexwt.org.uk/reserves/abberton-reservoir So I bought the book , 'The Dambusters Raid', by John Sweetman. This described how the area was used to train the crews whilst the 'revolving depth charge' was developed and tested. The road 'dam' crossing the reservoir from Layer de le Haye was indeed the simulated target over those weeks. I now can imagine the noise of those Merlin engines at 60ft in the night, as waves of Lancaster MkIII (type 464) bombers practiced for what was to become the most audacious bombing raid of WWII. On looking further, I found that much of the testing for the 'Upkeep' device was carried out at Reculver, in Kent. Prior to our move to Coly, 3 PARA were based at Dover for 5 years, and I spent some time up on the North Kent coast carrying out various training activities. With a natural interest in all things aviation and military, (I was bought up in Lakenheath and school was in Mildenhall and then 25 years in the Army!) I knew the basics about the Dams Raid and 617 Sqn. But this grabbed my interest and I have some good reference material. I am normally a 'Jet' builder, but have decided to trace 617Sqns history with models. I have bought 3 x 1/72 Lancs, 1 x new Revell, 1 x old Airfix and 1 x new Airfix tools. The plan is to build them side by side, in flight to hang in my den (double garage!). I have also managed to get a Tamiya 1/72 Mosquito Mk VI, 1/72 Academy Mustang III, as flown post Dams raid for target marking. Looking forwards, I have then got a 1/72 Vulcan (I know, a fight!) which will be a B2 but in anti flash white, a Revell Tornado GR1, possibly converted to GR4 with the special 70 years markings. I am looking for a 1./72 Canberra B2 (difficult to find with the correct canopy) or a B6 - references for these in 617 Sqn markings seem rare, even on 617 websites etc. Now there have been various BI/BIII mods, also the BVII. My logic says the 3 BII (464s) cover it! Then there's the Lincoln - hmm, I take the only option is a conversion from a Lanc? Not original I know, plenty have done it, but with local connections and something different, I thought, 'why not'! Another project in the same vain: https://modelbrouwers.nl/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=40310 Clearly a long term project, but something different for me until the GBs that interest me kick in next year. So I have started, will post some pics. Any advice, direction, references, spare Canberra's etc welcome!
  5. I'm thinking about converting a Tamiya 1/48 Lancaster B I/III into a Lanc B II (Hercules radial powered). I plan on using Tamiya's Beaufighter engines, props, intakes and cowls (with the cylinder head bumps removed) . I have some plans for the nacelle's, but lack any info on two other area's. 1 - The bulged Bombay doors fitted to the RCAF Lanc B II's. I know there were at least two styles fitted, as well as the fairing to the ventral turret (which was removed in service, while the fairing MAY have remained). I have no diagrams, or measurements for these doors. Just some blurry photo's. 2 - The bracing struts for the cowl exhaust ring, were they the same 3 tripod arraignments as the Beaufighter, or 4, or what? I can't find any photo's, or reliable drawings. … also, are there any other details I should know about? If anyone could help. it would be much appreciated, Thanks, Colin
  6. With the B-17 STGB fever rising in me I noticed some members were wanting an Avro Lancaster STGB too. Quite quiet on that front since then, so I thought why not think aloud and ask if other members would be interested in one? The first Lancaster STGB took place from January to April in 2011, which means it´ll probably be all of ten years between them, if and when we manage to gather the required number of interested! Since I built my latest Lancaster... that must have been in the 1970´s! Because the then-host of the GB hasn´t been active in the BM forum for almost a year, I hope no-one regards me as a theme-thief by doing this . Back in 2011 not just Lancasters, but also Manchesters and Lincolns, were eligible - but in this case and in our STGB 2.0-era I´d say no to them. "Just" Lancasters EDIT: and Lancastrians EDIT 2: Oh let's let them Manchesters and Lincolns in too Best regards, V-P. Oh, I almost forgot the list: 1) vppelt68 2) MarkSH 3) Colin W 4) Mancunian airman 5) Ozzy 6) Arniec 7) zebra 8 ) franky boy 9) JOCKNEY 10) Paul821 11) CliffB 12) rafalbert 13) Hockeyboy76 14) Romeo Alpha Yankee 15) Redstaff 16) Boman 17) PZGREN 18) dnl42 19) Rob G 20) jrlx 21) Angus Tura 22) theplasticsurgeon 23) nimrod54 24) JohnT 25) BlackAck - thank you!
  7. Hi I recently bought a Second hand Raf Bomber command which comes with A Lancaster and the resupply set. It came without the decal sheet and while I was looking for a new one for the Lancaster which came with the stencils and I saw this one by Kit world. I have never heard of them before and I was wondering if the where good quality decals. The last decal set I bought disintegrated, so I want to make sure that this one won’t do this. I was also wondering if there is a decal sheet for the resupply vehicles.
  8. Despite unfinished builds all around me, I could not resist the temptation to join this GB, with this long time stash resident ! This is a placeholder until later on in the week, when I can post pictures of the contents Good luck everyone Cheers Pat
  9. Hi all, I've finally got around to starting my 1/72 Lancaster B.VII, to be finished as NX611. I've used the Eduard B.III (S) interior set for this kit, which, although not entirely authentic for a B.VII, has all of the important bits. The biggest visual discrepancy using the Eduard set is that of the starboard handrail, which is simply a less complex design than that in '611. The aircraft will be built in the condition as shown in my illustration. The fuselage has not been 'buttoned up' yet, in case anyone notices any glaring irregularities before I close her up. The B.III (S) mid-upper blanking plate is being fitted and the new mid-upper turret opening will be cut once the fuselage is closed. The aircraft will be brush painted, as with my B.III (S) ED825/G. The landing gear will be down, but I am yet to decide if the bomb bay doors will be open or closed. The interior has been an interesting first proper foray into building etched details.
  10. This is a placeholder for my build The kit no doubt will be very popular in its various guises here: Airfix 08013A Avro Lancaster B.III 1:72 The goodies are: Glazing Masks: Montex MM72205 Aires gun barrels And xtradecal set I’ll post better pictures when i’m back at my workbench. The plan is to create that pretty white-finned lm583 ‘PO-T’ of Raf 467 squadron (australian) based at raf waddington in august 1944 from the decal set. I also have an interior PE detailing set from eduard. Looking forward to see all the other variations in the gb. This is gonna be fun. edit: heres a shot of PO_O (same squadron and white-tailed livery)
  11. 617 "Dambusters" Squadron - A Tribute Morning all! I hope that you are all well and keeping cool in the stiflingly hot weather that we've been having recently! To cut a long story short, last year was my first time at RIAT (and wow, if you haven't been before then I absolutely recommend it), As part of the RAF100 celebrations a flypast was arranged to pay tribute to the legendary 617 "Dambusters" Squadron with a trio of aircraft that they have flown throughout the squadron's life: the BBMF's Lancaster, a Tornado GR4 (courtesy of 41 Sqn), and a brand-new F-35b Lightning II (courtesy of the recently reformed 617 Sqn). This year has been special for 2 of these aircraft, as I'm sure you are all aware. The F-35b fleet is starting to be built up and achieved Initial Operating Capability (IOC) in January, and has recently been reported to have conducted their first operational missions over Iraq and Syria earlier this month. And as one aircraft enters the stage, another took its final bow. After almost 40 years in service and having stood guard during the Cold War, and after action in the Gulf War and over the Middle East, in recent years, it was withdrawn from RAF service in March. I saw the Tornado in flight for the first time in 2017 when I made my first trip to RAF Coningsby. After a morning of Typhoon takeoffs (including a practice QRA scramble) and lunchtime recoveries, we decided to walk to the opposite end and visit the BBMF hangar. And it was then, as we rounded the corner, that she appeared: A thing of beauty, for sure. Since then I've seen only a few more Tornadoes: one at a flypast at the 2018 Cosford airshow, another as part of the RIAT 617 Sqn flypast shown previously, and a trio of Tonkas at the National Memorial Arboretum as part of the farewell flypasts that took place in February. Enough of my rambling, time to have a peek at what I'll be building. So there we have it: 1x Airfix Lancaster 1:72 1x Hasegawa F35b 1:72 (with RAF decals from the Xtradecal sheet shown above) 1x Revell Tornado 1:72 (with extra bits: Xtradecal sheet for 41Sqn, Freightdog GR4 FLIR pod, and Master pitot and AoA probes. Right, that's all for now- more to come soon! Best wishes, Sam
  12. Hi, all. I've had an idea for a project brewing for a while and thought I should start to log my progress somewhere. My girlfriend's father gave me an old mould Airfix Lancaster in 1/72. As I've already got a Hasegawa Lanc Mk.I/III I thought I'd try something different with the old Airfix kit. The Lancaster in the Museum of Transport and Technology in Auckland was donated to the people of New Zealand by France. It's currently dressed up as "The Captain's Fancy" of 75 Squadron (NZ), but it was previously an aircraft of the Aeronavale flying in the Pacific. There will be some modifications to make and some detail to be added. Haven't decided if I want to commit to a rescribe. Perhaps some limited scribing. I've got exhausts from a Hasegawa Lanc' (not mine), the Hasegawa Zoom kit from Eduard, and a Montex mask. First up, a bit of scratch building to busy up the interior. Next I'll start adding interior detail and ribbing modelled on the Hasegawa kit. I've got a reference book on request from the local library. Hoping it can help a bit further with the details.
  13. I am thinking of taking the plunge and attempt to rivet my Airfix Lancaster, having seen the excellent result achieved by others. Does anyone know of a diagram or plan which details the rivetting pattern please? Ideally accessible via the internet. Thank you in advance.
  14. Hi Chaps, I am entering an old BBMF boxing of an Airfix Mk1 Lanc, has been partially started but below the 25% rule. Looking at finishing this one wheels up on a stand, potentially might order some prop blur propellors as well. Here's the boxing below; Will be ordering new decals for this build and thinking of potentially finishing her as "Uncle Joe Again" from 463 Sqn, RAAF. Also have a revell Dambuster to build but I won't overcommit just yet!
  15. It is with a little trepidation that I start yet another Lancaster topic in here, not least because I’m rubbish at meeting deadlines (usually in BM group builds) and because there are some really good examples in here of lovely Lancasters. The reason for this one is because I have foolishly offered to build a Lanc for an RAF squadron, to celebrate their move into a newly refurbished building which will be named after a former member of the squadron with a quite remarkable story. My plan is to build the aircraft in question, but more of that later. The Squadron hopes to move in sometime in November, so I’ve got about 6 weeks to try and do this!! No pressure Before I start I should say a big thank you to @Alpha Delta 210, who kindly agreed to sell me his Airfix B.II after I missed out on a couple on E-bay. Thanks L To kick off, a few pictures of the kit and some extra bits corralled so far just to set the scene. Oo’er! That’s a lot of bits!! More to follow....
  16. Does anyone know, or have any good reference pictures or diagrams regarding Lancaster radio aerials? I’m close to finishing a B2 for 115 Squadron, and I just need to know whether and where any HF (?) are attached. These would be the long wire aerials that appear on some line drawings (such as in Wiki https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avro_Lancaster) but are rarely visible in photos of the period. Any help appreciated
  17. I have one of the older mold Airfix Lancaster kits from the 1990s in my stash and (now effectively grounded at home with my wife who is in an 'at risk' group viz the coronavirus) thought I would see what I could do with this older model (though I am at best a mediocre modeller). Flicking through my Lancaster books and decals I thought I would try an aircraft from one of the less glamorous Heavy Conversion Units or Finishing Schools. But, subject to one exception, I cannot find any photo of a Lancaster from an HCU or a Finishing School which clearly shows both unit codes and serial. The one exception is W4113 (GP-J), a BMkI of 1668 HCU, though as an early Lancaster she has the flatter bomb aimer's clear perspex nose blister which isn't replicated in the kit (this has the more pronounced and bulbous later production blister). I have Harry Holmes book on the Lancaster and this gives me the codes and serials used by a number of HCU aircraft - but no photo and without a photo I can't be sure of the font and position of the codes etc. Can anyone help?
  18. My latest completed kit is the 1980s Airfix 1/72 Lancaster which my dad picked up for me at a car boot sale. She's pretty much built out of the box though I added a bit of detail in the cockpit with plasticard and scribed some extra panel lines on the wings. She goes together really well for a forty year old kit and very little filling or sanding was required so I managed to preserve most of the raised rivets. I decided to model her wheels up - there's not much detail on the undercarriage or wheel wells and I figure it's hard to beat a Lancaster in flight anyway! The stand isn't finished yet, I'll add a proper piece of threaded rod to the wooden base, rather than balancing on the m8 caphead which you'll see in the photos. The stand will screw into a nut glued into the bomb bay doors and the doors are held on the model using two small neodymium magnets at each end of the bomb bay. This allows the Lanc to be easily removed from the stand (without unscrewing anything) and also reveals the bombs. The paints are mostly Tamiya acrylics but I went for the Mr Color version of Dark Earth. The only real problem I had with the kit was trying to use the original decals. I ended up cutting away as much of the yellowed carrier film as possible and had to "glue" some of them on with Future, they also reacted oddly to the decal softener (with and without Future) so aren't settled down particularly well. One good decision I made was to mask and spray the thin black and red lines on the top and bottom of the wing so I didn't need decals for these. Finally, the weathering was a bit of an experiment. I did a mottled pre-shade between the rivet lines to get the tonal variation in the panels and I added to this with brown and black oil paints. The chips are done with Tamiya flat aluminium and a fine brush and the exhaust stains are a combination of sprayed and painted oils. Spraying thinned oil paints works really well and has the advantage of being very easy to clean off if things don't quite go to plan. Thanks to everyone who tagged along for the WIP, your reference photos, tips and encouragement kept this one going right to the end, even when the decals were driving me mad! The WIP is here if you're interested: Enjoy the photos! I hope you like, thanks for looking! Sam
  19. Hello! I've been thinking for a while that my next project has to be a 1/72 Lancaster and I've been reading up on the various pros and cons of the new tool Airfix v. Revell v. Hasegawa , etc, etc. Well, a few weeks ago my dad (who loves a sunday morning car boot sale) turned up with this venerable old beast which he'd picked up for a tenner and wondered if I wanted it... With some trepidation I peered into the slightly battered box and lo and behold everything was still bagged and untouched. On closer inspection I was amazed to see that this 40 year old kit looks crisp! There's no flash and the raised panel lines and rivets look pretty good. There's not much internal detail and the wheel bays, bomb bays, etc are bare so I think it's going to get made wheels up with pilots in place. The decals are all present and correct but a little yellowed, maybe they'll be alright though? I've very nearly finished my twin build of F35 and Harrier and promised myself I'd get them over the line before the Lanc is started, hmmm, I bet a few of us have thought that in the past... I've not really started but I couldn't resist painting up the pilots - the moulding on them looks great, better imo than recent new tool airfix pilots I've seen. I found a few tips on painting 1/72 pilots but I thought I'd explain how I've gone about it here. First I cleaned off the mould lines with a sharp knife and gave them a rinse with soapy water. I then airbrushed a base coat of xf78 wood deck tan mixed with a touch of white. Next I carefully brush painted the boots, trousers, jackets, life vests and helmets with black, xf54 dark sea grey, brown and yellow. I had a bit of a hunt around for photos of Lancaster pilots and there seemed to be some who wore RAF blue and others with leather jackets - in the end I decided the individuals probably made their own choice so did one of each. I added a few touches of detail with goggles, straps, wool cuffs and face masks and then sprayed a layer of Vallejo flat coat which got me to here: To finish them off I used oil paints, thinned with white spirit, as a wash. I think this has gone well on the clothes but doesn't look quite so good on the faces. How do others paint 1/72 figure faces - what are the tricks?!? The final step was then to add some highlights to the jackets and trousers and this is the finished pair: They should look good in the cockpit of a wheels-up Lancaster! I enjoyed painting these two so much I wondered if you could find the rest of the crew as an after market set, I've had a quick look but can anyone point me in the right direction? That's it for now, I am going to get the other two models finished before doing any more, promise!
  20. Evening all, Have been finishing up some long standing projects. This one came about by accident - was given the Revell Dambuster Lancaster, and had the Hasegawa F-35B, so it made sense to combine the two! The Revell Lancaster went together very well - all OOB, with Xtracrylix and Tamiya paints. I also used Windsor Galleria varnish, which is the best matt I've come across. The Hasegawa F-35B went together perfectly - the cockpit and canopy are click fits, and I used Hataka Have Glass paint, which again is the most convincing version of this 'stealth' coating I've come across. The 'other' gray on F-35s is again a bit difficult to nail down; I used Tamiya XF-75 which to my eye works well. I did originally plan to use the new F-35B decals from Xtradecal presented as a bonus on their recent C-130 sheet; what they are not is 1/72, and inaccurate to boot. I used the decals from Italeri's new F-35B which while not as good as Hasegawas will make a pretty fine model in its own right - but that's another project! Anyway, here they are!
  21. UPDATE Thanks gavingav ! Three new Wingnut Wings kits in development to be announced at the All Japan Model & Hobby Show in Tokyo - 28-30 September 2018. Source: http://www.wingnutwings.com/ww/ - ref. 32043 - Avro Lancaster B.Mk.I/III : 1/32 - http://www.wingnutwings.com/ww/product?productid=3193 - ref. 32044 - Avro Lancaster B.Mk.III "Dambusters" : 1/32 - http://www.wingnutwings.com/ww/product?productid=3194 - ref. 32062 - Halberstadt Cl.II (late) - see Britmodeller thread here: link - Scale: 1/32 - http://www.wingnutwings.com/ww/product?productid=3195 V.P.
  22. “They were so weak- they allowed everything to happen – to be done to them. They were people with whom there was no common ground, no possibility of communication- that is how contempt is born. I could never understand how they could just give in as they did.” -- SS-Brigadefuhrer Franz Stangel, second commandant of Trebelinka "Six men with tommy-guns were posted at each pit; the pits were 24 m in length and 3 m in breadth - they had to lie down like sardines in a tin, with their heads in the centre. Above them were six men with tommy-guns who gave them the coup de grace. When I arrived those pits were so full that the living had to lie down on top of the dead; then they were shot and, in order to save room, they had to lie down neatly in layers. Before this, however, they were stripped of everything at one of the stations - here at the edge of the wood were the three pits they used that Sunday and here they stood in a queue 1½ km long which approached step by step - a queuing up for death. As they drew nearer they saw what was going on. About here they had to hand over their jewelry and suitcases. All good stuff was put into the suitcases and the remainder thrown on a heap. This was to serve as clothing for our suffering population - and then, a little further on they had to undress and, 500 m in front of the wood, strip completely; they were only permitted to keep on a chemise or knickers. They were all women and small two-year-old children." -- "Major General Walter Bruns’s Description of the Execution of Jews outside Riga on December 1, 1941, Surreptitiously Taped Conversation (April 25, 1945)", National Archives WO 208/4169, Report SRGG 1158 A mountain of footwear was pressing down on me. My body was numb from cold and immobility. However, I was fully conscious now. The snow under me had melted from the heat of my body. ... Quiet for a while. Then from the direction of the trench a child's cry: 'Mama! Mama! Mamaa!'. A few shots. Quiet. Killed. — Frida Michelson, I Survived Rumbula, describing the events of the second Rumbula Massacre on 8 December 1941 "Meanwhile Rottenfuhrer Abraham shot the children with a pistol. There were about five of them. These were children whom I would think were aged between two and six years. "The way Abraham killed the children was brutal. He got hold of some of the children by the hair, lifted them up from the ground, shot them through the back of their heads and then threw them into the grave. "After a while I just could not watch this any more and I told him to stop. What I meant was he should not lift the children up by the hair, he should kill them in a more decent way." -- Testimony of SS-Mann Ernst Gobel at the SS trial of Untersturmfuhrer Max Taubner for ordering the "unauthorized" killing of 459 Jews in late 1942; the court ruled that "[t]he accused shall not be punished because of the actions against the Jews as such. The Jews have to be exterminated and none of the Jews that were killed is any great loss." "We are going to scourge the Third Reich from end to end. We are bombing Germany city by city and ever more terribly in order to make it impossible for her to go on with the war. That is our object; we shall pursue it relentlessly." -- Air Marshall Sir Arthur Harris, 28 July 1942 "The first thing we can see now is a wall of searchlights, not the thirties we saw as we came in over the coast, but they're in hundreds, there's a wall of light with very few breaks, and behind that wall, there's a pool of fiercer light, glowing red and green and blue, and over that pool there are myriads of flares hanging in the sky. That's the city itself." -- BBC reporter Wynford Vaughan-Thomas, recording an op against Berlin by Lancaster ED586/EM-F "F-for-Freddie" from 207 (City of Leicester) Squadron on 3 September 1943 During the long, hard period from 1941 to 1944, when nowhere outside of Russia were the Allied armies in action against the main might of the Third Reich, which fell across the continent like a great funeral shroud, the only way to strike back was by air. In 1909, when Bleriot's fragile monoplane had first crossed the Channel, the Daily Express's headline had blared "BRITAIN IS NO LONGER AN ISLAND", and the entire underpinnings of Britain's splendid isolation had seemed to totter, but in 1940, Shakespeare's "precious stone set in a silver sea, which serves it in the office of a wall, or as a moat defensive to a house, against the envy of less happier lands," held once more, when the RAF's fighters bought the nation and the world time to prepare for the titanic battles that would be needed to free Europe. Until the moment when the Allies fell from the sky at night or stormed ashore at dawn, the great burden of the offensive would fall upon Bomber Command. There has long been a contention that the Bombing Offensive did little to effect German war production, because output continually rose despite the thousands upon thousands of tons of bombs dropped over Germany by day and night. Economic historian Adam Tooze, however, in his magisterial history of the Nazi war economy The Wages of Destruction writes that: "In the summer of 1943, the disruption in the Ruhr manifested itself across the German economy in the so-called 'Zuligieferungskrise; (sub-compnenents crisis). All manner of parts, castings, and forgings were suddenly in short supply. And this affected not only heavy industry directly, but the entire armaments complex. Most significantly, the shortage of key components brought the rapid increase in Luftwaffe production to an abrupt halt. Between July 1943 and March 1944 there was no further increase in the monthly output of aircraft. For the armaments effort as a whole, the period of stagnation lasted throughout the second half of 1943. As Speer himself acknowledged, Allied bombing had negated all plans for a further increase in production. Bomber Command had stopped Speer's armaments miracle in its tracks." This was what 16,229 Bomber Command personnel died for in 1943. Not, as Arthur Harris hoped or believed, to win the war outright, but to buy the time for breath to be drawn and the war to be won. Night after night, the bombers went out, each aircraft its own entire universe for the seven men inside, who had only each other to count on against the terrifying power of the German air defences. Laden with fuel and bombs, they stood little chance of survival if hit. But in the great black bellies of their aircraft, they carried with them the great sledgehammers that would shake the firmaments of the Nazi Empire. The aircraft I'm building is a "Ton-Up" Lancaster, one of only thirty-five aircraft to survive over a hundred ops, in this case EE139, "The Phantom of the Ruhr", which flew 121 missions, including Hamburg, the V-Weapon research site at Peenemunde, and a staggering fifteen trips to Berlin before being taken off operations on 21 November 1944, by that time utterly clapped-out. EE139 flew with both 100 Squadron and, when 550 Squadron was formed out of C Flight in November 1943, EE139 went with, which is where she finished her war. I'm using the rather elderly Xtradecal RAF Bomber Command Part 2 sheet, which has her in her guise as HW-R with 100 Squadron in November of 1943, shortly before her transfer to 550 Squadron. Notably, in this photo she lacks the circular yellow gas detection patch frequently seen on other 1 Group aircraft, though this would be added later on (and is present on the Xtradecal "Ton-Up Lancs" sheet, go figure -- and if anyone has the 1/72 Ton-Up sheet, let me know, I suspect the nose art may be better rendered). I also have a small assortment of aftermarket: Eduard photoetch set for the interior, canopy mask, seatbelts, and Quickboost's hollowed-out intakes for the Merlins, which I think should be a great improvement. The kit's just come out of a soak in soapy water, so we can hopefully get started soon.
  23. Well I have not made a model for over 30 years and this is my first attempt. This is my first foray into using an airbrush and acrylics. I used Vallejo model air for this build. I didn’t realise how things have moved on and the detail now included. Any ideas how to add aging to the paint so it doesn’t look like new would be appreciated. I have a 1/48 P-51d tamiya mustang 8th AF or a Messerschmitt Bf109E-4/7 Trop and can’t decide which to do next ?
  24. After sitting on the partially complete shelf of doom, I finally got up the gumption to finish this rather marvellous kit. A curious mixture of superlative engineering coupled with strange design considerations and lousy construction sequence. All previous incarnations of an Airfix Lancaster allowed you, I believe, to construct it with large sub-assemblies; only bolting the bits together after painting e.g. A Lancaster in bits With their newest Lanc, Airfix has long wing spars on which you hang the wings, and then everything is added to the airframe, including all those easy to break off teeny, weeny delitcate bits. As you can see from the photo above, I cut through the wing spars to leave stubs on the fuselage. All bits were added to the fuselage (and undercarriage to the wings) right at the end when painting was completed. Saved a lot of grief. I notice that Airfix appear to have learnt their lesson. Their Shackleton is a far more sensible beast to construct. I'm afraid photos have come out a bit on the dark side. I had problems with my lens and the light conditions. Photography took place over two days, as I tried various things. This kit fought me all the way to the end - basically self inflicted wounds. It rattles for one. I had inserted some of the side fuselage windows. Only when I came to removing the liquid mask (which had reacted with Halford primer and was fairly solid) I pushed the glazing into the fuselage. Sigh. Deep breath. OK. Reach for the Kristal Clear, which had set over the years. Add water, stir, shake, wait; repeat a few hours later until I had a liquid goo. Fill in all the glazing hole. I noticed that there seemed to be an awful lot of small bubbles in the liquid. Never mind I thought. When the Kristal clear sets, the bubble will disappear. Five days later, and the glazing was milky white. After a lot of swearing, I carefully removed all the milky white Kristal clear, and reapplied it. Two days later it set with no bubbles. Oh, the reason why I have two photos of the Lanc from above is that the lighting conditions changed. Thought I'd include both as one, I think, has better detail but the other shows better colours. I thought I had finished this beastie after the Kristal clear incident. On tidying up my modelling area, I came across a nose blister. Uh oh, I thought. Yep, you guessed it. I forgot that two years previously I had removed the blister from its sprue and cleaned it up already for painting. Roll forward two years, and I had studiously painted and glued on the wrong nose blister. After yet more swear words, I eased off the nose blister I had fitted, and then glued on the proper one - now suitably cleaned and painted. Weathering was done with some rather nice Tamiya weathering sets I discovered I had. I'm not skilled enough to do all this pre and post shading with an airbrush, and didn't dare do the exhaust stains with an airbrush. Yes, the eagle eyed may notice that I have painted the mine red oxide. I decided to do so as I read somewhere that German records regarding a recovered mine said it was painted red oxide. I now have the Airfix Shackleton AEW2 on the go. First eye balling of the instructions indicate it should be easy to construct, with a whole load of sub assemblies to be bolted together at the end.
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