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Fairey Firefly

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First entry for this GB. This is the new 1/48 Fairey Firefly Mk.I from Special Hobby.

The intention at the moment is to use the kit decals to represent Z1830/5-M of 1770 Sqn flying from HMS Indefatigable in July 1944. This aircraft was the first production Firefly. It particpated in Operation MASCOT, the attacks on the Tirpitz.

Here is the box and some extras.


The plastic parts.




Two sprues of weapons and stores, which I don't think will actually be used for any of the markings included in this boxing. No problem... they'll come in useful for other projects.


The resin parts.


Shown here are the kit transparencies. Two windcreens and cockpit canopies are included - the original shallow one and the later bulged one. Sadly, the windscreen and canopy are in one piece with a complex join line. My intention is to attempt to seperate them so I can show the original shallow canopy in the open position. If I fail to do that, I'll be using the Barracuda vacform canopy instead and I'll choose a different marking scheme. The Barracuda set will come in useful for the open rear canopy as well.

The Barracuda set is shown above the kit transparencies.


The aftermarket stuff. Barracuda canopy and Eduard seatbelts. Ignore the CMK Hellcat wheels. They are for the Splendid Cats GB. Goodness knows how they managed to sneak in here! :wall:


Edited by Enzo Matrix
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Nice one Enzo.

I just bought yesterday the Firefly mk IV/V from Special hobby.


Edited by Arniec
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Ooh, good - looking forward to seeing this one build up; a definite future member of my stash, so it'll be great to learn from your experience of this kit. I'm looking forward to the later marks, too, which I assume must be following on in SH's catalogue.

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Nice choice Enzo, I'm looking forward to your build. I remember seeing the red and cream TT's parked at Fairey's hanger at Ringway AP in the late '50's and always fancied building one.


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At first glance, the cockpits look quite spartan as there is only structure detail moulded into the sidewalls. However, there are a lot of small parts and the build is quite intricate. Here are the parts sprayed and drybrushed ready for installation. The seats have Eduard harnesses added.


Incidentally, I intended to use Airscale instrument decals on the instrument panel as the decals provided by Special Hobby looked very toylike. But I gave the decal a try just to see what it looked like. It fitted perfectly - unlike many IP decals I've seen - and actually looked rather convincing. So it stayed!

Here are the cokpits almost fully assembled, with the seats held in with blutak.


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Cockpits installed with the kit instrument panel decal. Fuselage ready to be closed up.



The undercariiage bay is a honking great chunk of resin!


Fuselage assembled. Wings assembled. Everything is clipped together now.


The wing to fuselage joint will need a fair bit of filing to make sure they fit correctly. The fuselage halves have no locating pins, so I ended up needing to apply a little bit of putty along the joint.

I've also noticed that the rear canopy is a very tight fit, so that will need a certain amount of fettling as well. But it's all coming along nicely...

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  • 1 month later...

I've missed out a couple of steps... :shrug: sorry.

The model is now primed and sprayed with Xtracrylix XA1037 Light Slate Grey.

I know that it should be Dark Slate Grey, but I've found that the Xtracrylix paints are too close in contrast and don't look right. Substituting the lighter slate grey gives the camouflage the correct appearance under a coat of varnish.

The model is now masked up with wiggly worms of blutak and Copydex masking. Ready for the grey.



This is a big model and certainly has a lot of presence.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Me too! I'm really hoping that the Korean War GB takes off so I can build a Mk.V to accompany this one.

Nice bit of plugging... ;)

Your build does look good as others have said.


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A minor setback! The undercarriage legs are actually quite flimsy. I fitted them and all was well. Then came the wheels. All was well. But after sitting for a few hours, the starboard leg broke. :wall:

I tried all the usual repair methods but nothing worked. In the end, I set the leg in a bed of Milliput. It is now nice and secure, but the starboard gear well doesn't bear close inspection. I'll attempt to disguise it with paint, but I'm not too worried about it.


Ideally, an aftermarket producer like SAC will give us some white metal legs, but I'm not going to hold my breath.

I'll have to work out a method of reinforcing this area on my next Firefly. And there will be another one. The flimsy undercarriage is just a minor niggle. I've thoroughly enjoyed building this kit.

I'll probably put up one more photo tomorrow. After that, a couple of hours work and it will be complete. :yahoo:

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