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k5054nz

Low-back Spitfire XIV in 1/48?

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Hi all,

I'd like to build this:

32B30A54-7838-4C84-AA22-4E1780566855_zps

I had an Academy FR.XIVe on order via eBay but got a message saying it was out of stock and I was getting a refund. So I've been thinking: what's the best way to achieve this aircraft in 1/48? I had thought about using the Airfix XIX as a base...beyond that I run out of ideas. Alternatively there's combining the XIX and the Academy XIV...

I'd be grateful for any ideas! Thanks.

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Really no part of the Academy kit is Spitfire-shaped, so you've had a lucky escape there. The way I would do it is by combining the fuselage of an Airfix 24 with an Eduard IXe wing. Radiator housings I would probably scratch out of sheet styrene stock, they are not a particularly difficult shape once you realise they are flat sided, unlike the most model representations. You can copy them off the Airfix PR.XIX, I would rather do that then nick them and leave the rest of that excellent kit incomplete. Tailplanes could come off the Eduard IXe and the fin/rudder could be cut down and re-shaped from that of the 24.

There would remain detail stuff to do. What's your 1/48 Spitfire spares box like? It is a non-trivial thing to undertake but it can be done.

Edited by Work In Progress

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good advice from WIP as usual.

I've seen the Academy kit built up, and on it's own it doesn't look to bad, but put next to an accurately shaped Spitfire it looks wrong.

ONe point, the plane in the photo is a warbird, but a low back XIV in SEAC markings would have the XIV type rudder, this looks to have the later XVIII broad rudder.

This has been discussed here before, and in short, if you want an accurate model, cross kitting or conversions, or a vac form are the only options.

Also, I don't know what kits are cheaply available in NZ, which is where you are, though if you do have Spitfire spares, and fancy a challenge, Falcon Models still do a XVIII vacform

http://www.modelingmadness.com/review/allies/gb/cleaverspit18.htm

but it's pretty basic, and has fine raised panel lines.

The other easy way would be to get the Aeroclub low back XIV/XVIII conversion, but it OOP, and I'd presume hard to find in NZ.

If you want a shelf model, and can live without fine detail, and can do a bit of converting, a Hobbycraft XIV kit is generally well shaped, and could be converted to low back spine, aftermarket conversions have been made, but it's not hard to do and get a bubble hood.

Falcon do a set of Spitfire canopies.

If you like surgery, and could get the kits cheap, add the nose and rudder from a Hobbycraft XIV to a lowback ICM XVI is another way.

The Hobbycraft kit was reboxed by Kitech, and these were about really cheap at one point.

I'd suggest not using an Eduard Spitfire IX for wings, mostly because the kit is covered in fine rivets, and your donor fuselages won't be! So unless you want to fill the rivets or rivet the fuselage, I'd suggest these as possible wing donors are Hasegawa IX, which has an inaccurate fuselage, or the ICM VIII/IX kit.

The Airfix 22/24 has a low back fuselage, and a tail that can be cut down, and can be cross kitted with one of the above.

For more suggestions, have careful read here. the Airfix 22/24 + Hasegawa IX is done here.

http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234936590-theres-more-than-one-way-to-skin-a-cat/

If you wanted to do some other Spitfires, then you can have a lot projects from cross kitting, so you could get 3 kits and cross and get 3 non kitted Spitfire

see here for various combos tested

http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234934815-airfixs-new-spitfire-xix-has-anyone-tried-cross-kitting-wings-yet-for-the-mk-xiv/

Eg

Airfix 22/24, Airfix XIX and ICM IX,

Airfix 24 wing plus XIX fuselage [with mods noted by Bruce] = Mk21

Airfix 24 Fuselage , with modified fin and Aeroclub or scratchbuilt rudder plus ICM E wing= FR XIV or XVIII

XIX wing plus ICM IX fuselage with mods plus Aeroclub deep cowl = PRXI

HTH

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at least we can use Hasegawa's wings for something!

But the indifference from the major producers concerning this important version of the Spitfire, supplemented by a similar neglect within the cottage industry is amazing.

The worst thing that can happen to a missing type, much worse than no kit at all, is the faulty kit, like Academy's Mk.XIVs, or for that matter Hobbycrafts version as well (it has several problems), especially if the faulty kit is, like Academy's, easy to build and looks nice.

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Yes, if you can find an old Hasegawa IXe / XVI highback boxing that would be a good donor. I overlooked the ICM kit which is odd as I have so many in the loft! If you have one without sink marks that is a good wing donor too.

With any IX / XVI wing you will need to shorten the ailerons a bit from the outboard but that's a simple job. A VIII wing gives you the correct ailerons for a XIVe, but the wrong armament configuration, and the aileron is easer to fix than the armament configuration.

I would follow Troy in endorsing the Falcon kit if you are up for a vac-form. Combining it with interior bits from any of the main IX kits will be a help.

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Thanks everyone for the great advice!

Troy - thanks for the PM! Much appreciated. My intention is to build NH799 as she appears today, inaccurate scheme and all. I prefer to build preserved aircraft rather than wartime examples.

I've built one 1/48 Spitfire - the Revell/Monogram Mk.II when I was 12. So my Spit spares in that scale are pretty minimum! On that subject, this will be the only 1/48 Griffon Spit I intend to build so the shape issues of the Academy kit wouldn't be so terrible, and the photos I've seen of built examples on their own don't look as awful as I'd been led to believe.

I'll have to compile everyone's advice and make a decision at some point. Thanks again, I really do appreciate everyone's views.

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Hi, everyone,

k5054nz: as you have seen, you are pretty alone in the dark here, if you are looking for a simple, OOB solution. Every single solution with any degree of accuracy involves kitbashing of some sort.

NPL: that´s not true. Aeroclub has issued good conversions, involving full fuselages; for the F.21 (which could be used for a F.XIV high back using the proper wing); and for the FR.XVIII (sort of "universal" conversion appropriate for the F.XIV low back). They even come with the proper radiator baths to replace the ones in a IX wing (or the misshaped ones in the Academy´s); a five-bladder and even a contraprop was issued.

Work in Progress: Wings in the Academy kit are not exactly state-of-the-art, but they are not wrong either. They are not thick as many people say; in fact, the stumps in the Aeroclub fuselages are thicker and some work has to be done to get them to mate. Of course they have too-shallow-wheel-wells and lack some bulges, as a product of the times. They may have an incorrect airfoil profile, but that´s extreme WTP (way-too-picky). I have built a couple of XIVs using Aeroclub fuselages mated to them (and good radiator baths, of course).

FErnando

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...Or you could just build the Acadamy kit and not worry!

I can confirm it falls together as a kit and looks like a Spit MKXIVe to me!

Just my tuppence worth.

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Although it's a high back Mk.XIV, the shot may help you decide if you can live with the Academy kits' shape errors.

Spit14BelgL.jpg

And this is the Hobbycraft Mk.XIV dome up to resemble a PR.19 a couple of decades ago may give you an idea of the profile of Hobbycraft's kit.

SpitfirePR19.jpg

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Hobbycraft's Mk.XIV is amazingly correct when put together with the Airfix PR Mk.XIX. Just checked it today. Of course it will be a kind of golding the lily if you make a try, but it can certainly be done. Academy's is too fat and incorporates faults that are unbearable. I, at least, cannot live with them.

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isn't the Falcon vac-form not a Mk.XVIII? They made a high back Mk.XIV fuselage, but it was quite awful. Their Mk.XVIII is on the other hand as fine as vac-form gets.

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I personally don't think the Academy low back and high back are related.

The low back doesn't look pregnant at all!

I'm going to have to dig it out now and look!

Grrr..

Rick.

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Ok, just a couple of snaps of the Academy FR.MK XIVe low back:

_MG_6781_zpsgggxrnh7.jpg

_MG_6782_zpstqd9gwdk.jpg

_MG_6783_zpsz6dgehfz.jpg

HTH,

Rick.

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You could always graft an extended fin & rudder, new nose and radiators onto the Eduard XVI, which is due in about 3 months.

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I personally don't think the Academy low back and high back are related.

The low back doesn't look pregnant at all!

I'm going to have to dig it out now and look!

Grrr..

Rick.

It has all the problems of the high back. Put it up next to, say an ICM Mk.XVI, or an Airfix Mk.24, and follow the line of the back. The nose is still fat. Then we have the problems--often mentioned--of the wings.

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Thanks again folks. I really do appreciate your advice and input, hopefully this thread can be a reference for other folk in the same boat.

I think NH799 has the OOB Academy rudder, going by pics and what I've seen in person. Correct me if I'm mistaken?

URL=http://s15.photobucket.com/user/ZacYates/media/CF15/NH799%20Omaka%20ZY%2001_zpsfc0uzjfn.jpg.html]NH799%20Omaka%20ZY%2001_zpsfc0uzjfn.jpg[/url]

I certainly did realise a week or so ago that there is no truly accurate low-back XIV kit. After seeing several reviews of the Airfix XIX, and given it's readily available in NZ, I thought that would be a great base to start with. I think I may have to buy one regardless of whether I do that, it's too nice to leave out of the stash!

Rick - thanks for your photos. The rear fuselage certainly looks a little thick, but as I said previously I'm not likely to build any other low-backs any time soon. I've seen a few builds of the Academy low-back XIV online - both corrected/kitbashed and OOB - and the OOB examples still look okay to my eye. The big things for me are:

- correct propeller blades

- correct radiator baths

- correct vertical tail and rudder

Again, I'm very grateful for all the input and I'll have to look at all options. I'm hoping to see NH799 again at an open day at the end of May, that will likely push me into making a decision one way or the other.

Edited by k5054nz

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......The low back doesn't look pregnant at all!......

Rick.

Ok, maybe three months gone then..........

Rick.

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Also! The nose/prop/fuse issues with the Academy kits are well-covered, so what are the issues with the wing?

And also also, my OLHS (online LHS :winkgrin: ) has the Falcon XVIII in stock...and has for a while...so that may also be an option, perhaps combined with the Airfix PR.XIX. What differences between the XIVe and XVIII should I be aware of?

Edited by k5054nz

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My personal course of action would be to combine the Airfix XIX with the ICM Mk.XVI: chop tail and engine cowling from each kit, add the griffon bits on the ICM fuselage and the XIX radiators under the ICM wing and you have most of what's needed for a low back XIV.

Then add the ICM engine, tail and radiator on the XIX, deepen the chin with plasticard and milliput and you'll have most of what's needed for a PR.XI.

Two kits in, two complete Spitfire models out

Differences between the XIVe and the XVIII: some panel lines on the wing (the XVIII deleted the gunbays for the .303), different position of the rear underfuselage light (further back on the XVIII), bigger rudder for the XVIII (but a number of XIV used this too), vertical cameras on the XVIII (the FR.XIV only has oblique), full wingtips only on the XVIII

Apart from the rudder, nothing that a modeller with even limited skills can't sort.

Edited by Giorgio N

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The wing panel lines differ (the XVIII had compartments, for desert/personal equipment, outboard of the ammunition bays, that the XIV did not,) and the later XVIII had provision for vertical cameras, which the XIV did not.

Early XIVe still retained the outboard .303" compartments, while the XVIII did not, and the underside amber light was further back, on the XVIII, than on the XIV.

The broader-chord rudder was not fitted to the XIV & XVIII until post-war (February 1946 leaflet.)

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I think NH799 has the OOB Academy rudder, going by pics and what I've seen in person. Correct me if I'm mistaken?

Rick - thanks for your photos. The rear fuselage certainly looks a little thick, but as I said previously I'm not likely to build any other low-backs any time soon. I've seen a few builds of the Academy low-back XIV online - both corrected/kitbashed and OOB - and the OOB examples still look okay to my eye.

Nope, that's the big rudder. The appearance of the "cap" is quite different- the "XIV rudder" is relatively shallow above the fin, somewhat reminiscent of the original Spit rudder. The big rudder has a much taller top, and the rudder hinge line divides it roughly in half. Also, if I remember right, the big rudder uses a "split" tab, with half going one way and the other half going the other way.

The Academy low-back kit looks better because it lacks the visual "bulk" of the high-back, but the shape errors are still there. If you can convince yourself that the Academy is good enough to satisfy, then just build it "as is", but if you've still got doubts, then go the conversion route, and don't bother with the Academy at all. I won't fault you either way, just don't lie to yourself! :winkgrin:

bob

Edited by gingerbob

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Although it's a high back Mk.XIV, the shot may help you decide if you can live with the Academy kits' shape errors.

Spit14BelgL.jpg

NH799%20Omaka%20ZY%2001_zpsfc0uzjfn.jpg[/url]

I certainly did realise a week or so ago that there is no truly accurate low-back XIV kit. After seeing several reviews of the Airfix XIX, and given it's readily available in NZ, I thought that would be a great base to start with. I think I may have to buy one regardless of whether I do that, it's too nice to leave out of the stash!

Rick - thanks for your photos. The rear fuselage certainly looks a little thick, but as I said previously I'm not likely to build any other low-backs any time soon. I've seen a few builds of the Academy low-back XIV online - both corrected/kitbashed and OOB - and the OOB examples still look okay to my eye. The big things for me are:

- correct propeller blades

- correct radiator baths

- correct vertical tail and rudder

Again, I'm very grateful for all the input and I'll have to look at all options. I'm hoping to see NH799 again at an open day at the end of May, that will likely push me into making a decision one way or the other.

The one bit of the Academy that is supposed to be OK is the tail and rudder. The comparison of the Academy with the real thing above should show up the problem, the fuselage is too deep, making the spinner too big.

Also! The nose/prop/fuse issues with the Academy kits are well-covered, so what are the issues with the wing?

And also also, my OLHS (online LHS :winkgrin: ) has the Falcon XVIII in stock...and has for a while...so that may also be an option, perhaps combined with the Airfix PR.XIX. What differences between the XIVe and XVIII should I be aware of?

Apart from the detail differences, it's apparently too thick.

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If Airfix and Eduard are continuing their present series, they end up spoiling the game for us! Almost perfect Spitfires. What shall we do! :pilot:

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Also, if I remember right, the big rudder uses a "split" tab, with half going one way and the other half going the other way.

NH799, my subject, certainly does. I had to get a picture as I'd never seen one like it:

40E7FD36-9C52-4968-B327-90F370869031_zps

Also I think I won't have to worry about the wing guns?

75B37E79-E853-413B-B1C6-55E35DB08D83_zps

947EB8E6-D4EC-4D73-A3B9-F0220E4155B5_zps

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Not forgetting of course , that the Mk XIV / XVIII had the short span aelirons of the MKVIII Spitfire , so either use a MkVIII wing or your donor wings aelirons will need to be modified.

Andrew

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