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Stew Dapple

Airfix 1/72 Belgian Fairey Battle - FINISHED

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I must have built about 3 of these when I was a kid - but always the RAF one. Brings back some memories as others have mentioned and nice work too

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Hi Wolwe, thank you very much, that sounds like good advice and I shall follow it (except I will most likely mask them with tape, I never really get on with Maskol) - I think it was your recent Hurricane build that inspired me with the lights, so thank you twice :thumbsup:

Andy, thanks very much, yes I built the 12 Squadron 'plane too, hard not to when you read about the heroism of the crews - then after having read about the earlier raid on the bridges I wanted to do the Belgian one too.

I will probably do the last bit of canopy masking tonight and perhaps mask the navigation lights if I am happy with their clarity, but not much else as the dog and I are away to the seaside for the weekend, and it actually looks like the weather might be quite pleasant :coolio:

Hope you all have a good one too B)

Cheers,

Stew

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haha, no problem, i m taking inspiration all around here, so if my work inspires someone too, its just the right chain reaction! ;)

as for the masking, i m chosing mascol only because it is hard to bend the tape into such a shape like position wings, but might be just my fingers :) so good luck either way you go

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I'm liking this build very much, a great job with a not very good kit. What's wrong with the tail is that it's slightly offset to the starboard on the trailing edge, this was designed to counteract the torque and resulting swing on take off. I'm just starting a Battle target tug in the Training types GB.

Max

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Hi Stew, coming along nicely. I too have this in the V.C. set, so I'm very interested to see how builds up, Some decent tips already.

Sean

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Nice one Stew - looking the part. Couple of things to check - Belgian Battles had light grey undersides ( just in case that black primer makes you think you are doing an RAF machine!! LOL), and, though it may not bother you they also had a longer radiator fairing under the nose which covered over the smaller carb intake.

http://www.belgian-wings.be/Webpages/Navigator/Photos/MilltaryPics/interbellum/Fairey%20Battle%20I/Fairey%20Battle%20I%20frontpage.html

Cheers

Jonners ( hoping he's helping rather than being a twoddle)

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Just to reinforce what Jonners has said, a few pictures from the Battle File and the Battle Aviation Guide:

DSCN3453_zpse8962e2f.jpg

DSCN3449_zpsba538703.jpg

DSCN3451_zpsc1a3b33d.jpg

DSCN3447_zpsa0f00ca0.jpg

Hope they're of some use,

Max

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hello again stew! i got some proper pics of my battle today heres how the repositioned gunner looks-

2i7buyg.jpg

and you done your wing lights the same way as i tackle them now, although i drill a small dent into the back, fill it with either tamiya X-25 clear green or X-27 clear red as appropriate, to get it to look like a coloured bulb under a clear cover.

2l6q14.jpg

not the best pic i know but does show what i'm talking about!

Edited by phil B.

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Hi Jonners, can I ask how confident you are that the undersides of the Belgian Battles were light grey? It is what the kit instructions call for but from what I have been able to find online the balance of opinion seems pretty solidly behind Aluminium undersides (painted, not natural metal) - hence the black primer as I had heard this was the best colour base for an aluminium finish. I did have the longer intake fairing pointed out to me but I thought seeing as I am not fixing the length of the nose there wasn't much point in worrying about the other issues :D - thanks for looking in and for the pointers - and you're an Iain Banks fan too, I see :coolio:

Max, thanks for the pics, most illuminating B)

Hey Phil, that looks the business mate, nice work. I had a look on the instructions and the diagram shows the gunner's seat being fitted much further along, roughly where yours ended up I would guess, but the hole to fit the seat in the kit floor part is right up toward the front end... curious. I'm going to have to go for tinted covers for my lights as I can't get them off to drill a hole in to represent a coloured bulb and leave the covers clear as yours are :unsure: -a shame but something that hopefully I will remember to look for in future before I stick anything on :)

Cheers,

Stew

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Hi Stew - sorry - no - I said light grey to just differentiate from Night. Consensus of painted aluminium is good for me, though in pics it does seem very flat and dull, and in 1/72nd scale I'd say a mix of a touch light grey in with aluminium would give a good depiction of an aluminium paint.

Sorry if I confused you.

Jonners

PS no idea why they had the lengthened rad intake, other than perhaps Avions Fairey in Belgium, just deciding it seemed like a better idea....

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Hi Jonners,

Understood, thank you, I will tone it down a bit rather than going for a polished look :thumbsup2:

I think it actually looks better with a longer intake, the shorter version looks a bit weird with the small carburettor intake stuck right in front of it like that, as if somebody forgot to design it in and they had to just stick it anywhere at the last minute :D. It seems that the Belgian aircraft had an extra part to the main landing gear cover as well but I've no idea what it looks like - however I found a copy of the Aviation Guide book for a very reasonable four quid which might show me (I probably will stick to OOB in any case, but I'd still like to know)

Cheers,

Stew

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Ooh, I'd love to mate... if you want to do all my filling and sanding? :analintruder:

Anyway, you're building a late-war 109, you couldn't have much less canopy framing :lol:

Cheers,

Stew

Yes, but I'm also doing a 1:32 He-111... ill have a greeat time

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Oops, I am sorry, I feel your pain to a degree but if you are looking for a bright side at least all those tiny windows around the ventral gondola will not be as tiny as they would in 1/72 :analintruder:

Well the Aviation Guide book on the Fairey Battle already proved its worth by informing me that the decking between the pilot and gunner's positions was always Dark Earth whether the aircraft was finished in the 'A' or 'B' camouflage pattern, and I duly painted it before sticking the cockpit on. I primed the uppersurface (but neglected to photograph that, trust me, it was not very exciting anyway :D ) and prepared a mix of thinned Dark Earth to spray the uppers with; I then suffered a personal tragedy with the sudden and unexpected demise of my compressor, but I rose above this and simply brush-painted the pre-thinned Dark Earth, and it covered very well:

DSCN0654.jpg

Once that had dried I painted the underside with a mixture of Citadel Chainmail and Mechanicus Standard Grey paint at about 3:1 - I think I will use a lighter grey for the next coat though:

DSCN0655.jpg

So next I will either build up the undercarriage parts or paint the disruptive pattern Dark Green; I shall see how the mood takes me over the weekend :lol:

Cheers,

Stew

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Hi Stew. Sorry about your compressor but you are right - the paint did go on well with the hairy stick! It's coming along very nicely.

Kind regards,

Stix

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Stew, I noticed in Huntley's guide on the Battle that the Belgian's finished theirs satin/semi-gloss and that this added 7 mph to the top speed! The extra undercarriage part may be a curved mudguard over the wheels, I'll have a look later to refresh my memory but I know I've seen it somewhere.

Max

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Hi Stix,

Thanks mate, yep the paint went on fine, and I've got a new compressor on order too, so set up for belt and braces :thumbsup:

Max, thanks for that, I will make sure the varnish is a satin coat in that case. The undercarriage part is a hinged leg-guard, there is a picture of it in the Ian Huntley book on pages 41 and 43; also the exhaust manifold in the kit is not the same as the Belgian one, in the Belgian aircraft's profile it looks as if it is similar to the 'kidney' type like those supplied in the new Hurricane kit, but in a photo on page 16 of a Belgian Battle's engine bay it describes what is shown as "six-stack exhausts"... so if you were going to really go for an accurate Belgian Battle you would have quite a bit to consider :hmmm:

I was also wondering if anyone had simply transplanted the nose from the Vista/Smer/Revell/Airfix Fulmar (that kit got around a bit if it is the same mould in each case!) to the Battle? Not planning on doing it, just wondered if it would work :D as it would have (presumably) the necessary extra length as well as the extended intake underneath.

Anyway, got to crack on with my lazy weekend, hope you all have a good one :)

Cheers,

Stew

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Yep, just found that picture and ready to upload it, but you've already got it. :thumbsup:

Here's a photo of a Belgian Battle showing those hinged doors from The Battle File:

photo_zps62ea427a.jpg

Max

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Ah yes, thanks Max, I see that has the six-stack exhausts as well, and a venturi tube behind and slightly below them... the more you look the more differences there are :hypnotised:

I made up the landing gear and to be honest it is a bit overdone, it looks like it belongs on a locomotive:

DSCN0657.jpg

I also fitted the tailwheel, the small intake in front of the large intake and the pitot tube. Once I was happy that it had set firm I painted the first coat of Dark Green:

DSCN0659.jpg

...and then there was a bit of picture-taking failure again, but it was just another coat of Dark Green, followed by a couple of coats of Klear. Then to the decals:

DSCN0665.jpg

And then another coat of Klear mixed with acrylic matt varnish to get a satin sort of effect; this was partially successful though I got a bit of 'chalking' occurring around the tail :owww: - then the last details were added, the exhaust manifold, the landing lights and their covers. The navigation lights were tinted red and green (though in fact on the real aircraft the covers were clear and only the bulbs coloured) and the masking removed and... voila:

DSCN0668.jpg

Anyway I am calling this one done. I'll post more pics in the gallery http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234954229-gallery/page-2#entry1561472

I enjoyed this build; yes it's inaccurate in all sorts of ways, the moulds had clearly seen better days even in 1978 so I shudder to think what the newer releases of this kit look like... I imagine that sometime in the next few years this will join the ranks of retooled Airfix kits (and it will be very welcome if that does happen), but it still looks like a Fairey Battle for all that, it builds without any real issues that I remember and it is, most of all, pretty cheap and readily available. It kept me occupied and amused for a couple of weeks for less than £10 so for entertainment value I have absolutely no cause for complaint.

Cheers,

Stew

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For an older kit that turned out really well. Lovely clean build. Well done! I'm off to the gallery for a look.

Kind regards,

Stix

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Looks great, even without corrections. I think that this is one subject that Airfix should revisit.

Martin

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A great job Stew working with a seriously flawed kit, so you've achieved a marvellous result - and as you say, the bottom line is that it looks like a Battle!

Max

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