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1/72 Gotha bomber +++ FINISHED +++


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My entry for the GB will be a 1/72 Huma Gotha Go.145

Gotha-box-art_zpsdc8a48eb.jpg

These (and other light aircraft), were fitted with bomb racks and exhaust flame dampers and used for night harassment raids.

I'll be using this Owl decal sheet.

Gotha-decals_zpse52234ee.jpg

To be honest, I was first attracted to the sheet by the black and white Gotha at the bottom. However, when the sheet arrived I discovered that this particularly aircraft came from the Eastern front, Winter 1942/43 - so too early for the GB (I seeing this model as being part of the land war).

Fortunately, the scheme above it represents an aircraft in Spring 1945.

In fact, this aircraft is particularly interesting. It was actually a training aircraft used by 5./SG III to train the night harassment pilots, but towards the end of the war, to quote Owl, 'the instructors and most capable educatees flew operational sortees with the unit's planes'. So it seems to capture the desperate nature of the German defence pretty well.

In 1/72, the squiggle camouflage will require sublime air brush control and application - alternatively, I might be better off handing it over to my 3 year old grandson (squiggles are his forte)....

Unfortunately, I've got two other projects to finish before starting on this, so please don't expect any progress until just a few weeks before the end. I will be back though and will be keenly following the other GB builds along the way.

Cheers

Cliff

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An interesting project - good luck with the airbrush and that camo pattern! :hypnotised:

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Good luck, indeed, Cliff!  I have this kit and decal sheet, but I'm going to opt for the black/white scheme as I find that quite attractive (and frankly I don't think I'm up to the squiggles!).  I shall be watching with interest!

 

Regards,

 

Jason

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Very interesting choice Cliff. I really had no idea that such aircraft were in use late in the war, let alone for offensive operations. That scheme looks challenging but the end result will be very rewarding, so good luck and looking forward to seeing it progress!

 

Mike

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Thanks everyone.  Yes, there are some other good schemes on that decal sheet.  I've also got an unmade Ar.66 in my stash, but unfortunately that scheme is not so inspiring!

 

The concept of using slow flying biplanes for night harassment (started by the Soviets?), was continued into the Korean War where the North Koreans used Polikarpov Po-2's to good effect (destroying/damaging a number of US Mustangs and Sabres on the ground).

 

Cliff

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Cliff, I believe it was the Soviets who started the large-scale use of obsolete/slow/training aircraft for night harassment raids during WWII using the U-2 biplane trainer and utility aeroplane (it wasn't officially called the Po-2 until 1944, after Nikolai Polikarpov's death, so it was used under this designation during the Korean Conflict).  The Germans copied this as although the actual material damage was relatively small, the harassment value was great as it deprived the Germans of sleep.  The Germans called the U-2's "Duty Sergeants".  The Germans first started using obsolete aircraft and training aircraft in 1942, with the Storkampfstaffeln, which then became the NachtSchlachtGruppen in 1943(?), which continued in use until the end of the war.  Besides the Ar-66 and Go-145, the Germans used the He-46 and Fw-58 Weihe, as on the Owl decal sheet, the He-50, the Letov S.328 (with the Storkampstaffeln), the Cr.42 (in Italy and the Balkans), the Ju-87, the Hs-123, and even the Hs-126.  No doubt there are other aircraft I'm not remembering, and perhaps someone who knows more about the German night harassment units can add to this.  It was quite an assortment of aircraft, and someday I'd like to reproduce all these types in model form (I already have the Ju-87 and Hs-123 completed, and an old resin RS He-46 nearly completed).  The Go-145 is definitely on my list.

 

Regards,

 

Jason

Edited by Learstang
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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi guys and thank you for all your comments :) .

Encouraged by all the progress that others have made in the GB, I've decided to make an earlier than planned start on the Gotha!

So far just the interior. I've added some simple internal structure using plastic rod, along with a seat harness from Tamiya tape. I've also started to cover over the rear cockpit opening (one of the mods needed to make a night harassment Gotha), by inserting a liner from 10 thou plastic card. All in all it looks a bit of mess in the photo, but in reality looks just fine once the fuselage is closed up - God bless 1/72! ;)

P1080618_zpsbd8a6dfe.jpg

Cheers

Cliff

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Cheers Andy and here's some more progress for you!

I've been assembling the fuselage and flying surfaces this morning.

One nice touch is the provision of a simple 'engine insert'.

P1080621_zps1ebe06f1.jpg

Now I know that this is hardly the last word in detail, but I've made plenty of 1/72 Argus engined kits in the past that have just left you with a gaping hole....

The parts went together pretty well.

P1080622_zpsf5d4199b.jpg

I scored the the elevator hinge lines and bent them down slightly to give them some droop. A particularly easy task on the Gotha as the hinge lines are straight. Only took a minute, but makes a big difference to the appearance.

P1080623_zps64eaf79a.jpg

One issue though that nearly caught me out is that the undercarriage locating holes in the underside of the wing are not centralised properly (in fact it's not just the holes - the bit of the wing which should match up with the fuselage is off-centre too by a couple of mm).

P1080625_zps40905f66.jpg

Initially I centralised the wing relative to the fuselage using these holes as the guide. If you do this, however, one wing will be longer than the other and the strut spacing will be asymmetric. Luckily I spotted the problem before the glue had set. I'll fill and re-drill the u/c holes in due course.

Next task will be to get out the epoxy putty to fill a few gaps and complete the closure of the rear cockpit.

Cheers

Cliff

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This afternoon's activity.

P1080626_zps152ce64a.jpg

P1080627_zps3946c2a8.jpg

Undercarriage is on and I've also fixed all the wing struts. It's rare for me to do this before painting, but in this case I felt the need as the location holes were again in odd positions and it became clear that I'd need to do quite a bit of work to make it all fit.

Here it is with the upper wing balanced for effect!

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In the (blurry!) foreground are two bomb racks and bombs which I've taken from an Airfix Bv.141. I've reduced the size of the bombs quite considerably (they were 110kg, rather than the 50kg needed for the Gotha), and whilst still a bit too big shouldn't look out of place.

Thanks for watching

Cliff

Edited by CliffB
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Nice work, Cliff! I look forward to seeing how you tackle that rather intricate camouflage. (As I indicated in a previous post, I'm sticking with the black/white camouflage scheme on mine.)

Regards,

Jason

Edited by Learstang
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Thanks Jason

I particularly appreciated your earlier posting - it's a fascinating subject that I only became aware of when trying to find something in my stash that would fit this GB.

The He.46 quite appeals to me too - of all of the aircraft used for night harassment it seems the most 'unlikely'. I'll maybe keep an eye open for that RS kit.

I've given a bit of thought to the camouflage. One thing I won't be doing is using an airbrush, so I'm thinking:

1) brush paint

2) Pastel pencil

3) Felt tip pen

Of these, the last appeals most at present. I just need to try it first........

Cheers

Cliff

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For what it's worth, that title also got me at first, Cliff! Not that I'm disappointed; I'm not that interested in Great War aircraft, but very interested in NachtSchlachtGruppen aircraft.

Regards,

Jason

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  • 1 month later...

Well, it's been 6 weeks or so since I last touched the Gotha - so thank you everyone for your previous support and I hope that this absence has made your hearts grow stronger (or more likely you've all lost interest altogether!).

I've had a fun time this evening picking up where I left off.

First I added a seam around the rear cockpit coaming, as indicated by the Owl decals artwork. I used a thin strip of masking tape, sealed on (hopefully), with a thin coat of Klear.

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Next it was on with the primer, a gentle rub over with 4000 grit Micromesh, then on with the fuselage yellow.

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I was out of my usual Tamiya yellow paint, but found an old, part-used pot of Humbrol acrylic. A mixed blessing as (as is usual for me with Humbrol acrylics), the finish is pretty gritty. Should be OK though after a Micromesh in the morning.

RLM02 and the decals should hopefully follow on tomorrow too. :)

Cheers

Cliff

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Good progress today. RLM02 and decals on as hoped.

P1080664_zps6f091fd4.jpg

I guess she's looking pretty much how she did before the squiggles were added for real - although I have of course enclosed the rear cockpit and I've also fitted the bombs.

P1080666_zps6a8d9caf.jpg

The Owl decals were a delight to use, being thin yet quite resilient once on the model (will tear easily though if left dangling in space!).

They looked good over Klear, although when I misted on a matt coat to seal them, silvering appeared like I haven't seen for a long time. Not sure why - could have been not enough Klear coats (I was rushing a bit). Fortunately, a sharp pin and a bottle of Micro Sol sorted most of the problem out. Worst, of course, were the top wing crosses. Here I reverted to the old trick of painting over the silvering - a 'staple' of my school boy modelling days, which I'm happy to report still works as well today. :)

I've been experimenting a bit with squiggles and for a few seconds at least, can get some quite good results with an 000 paint brush. The potential for a major disaster seems quite high though, so I'd still like to try a felt-tip pen. That would also allow me to replicate the continuous nature of the squiggle. I'll try to get to Staples next week. Just hope that their ever-popular range of RLM coloured felt-tip pens hasn't sold out!

Happy Easter

Cliff

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