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Spitfire VB Italeri 1/72 (Pic heavy)


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Those of you following my ramblings know I planned to build this as a rest from my Memphis Belle build but was distracted by a present from my daughters, a Gromit Aeroplane. Belle is now curing and I find myself at a loose end, so I thought I'd have a look at this again.

I have several good reasons for choosing this:

  • everyone else is building Spitfires and I want to build one now ("What a shining wit", as Mr Spooner would say)
  • the kit has the fewest lessist smallest number of parts of any kit in my stash
  • Malta because it's one of the schemes and "The Malta Story" was on tele (telly?) recently (Alec Guinness and Jack Hawkins - yes!) and I could pick up some detailing tips from the film as they're always realistic. And some clarification on the aircraft colours*.

It's this kit:

258748-13150-60.jpg

Look - "No 001"!

Procopius (my Spitfire guru) has already warned me that this is not one of his favourite kits and Cookie commented that the trop filter "turns the Spitfire from a young blade about town into a grumpy old man who has just sucked on some lemons." Nevertheless, I shall proceed!

* Just kidding, it's a black and white film. I thought of that 'witticism' one night. Then I thought "Why not build a Spitfire exactly the same as the reference photos? Sort of Greyscale?". That'd be really accurate and will get the rivet counters going! Then I came to my senses and had some more wine. Drink responsibly - no shouting.

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I can't find any reviews, WiPs or RFIs on this one (is that a warning?) so some sprue shots first. Just two and the clear plus transfers:

6807C4D2-801B-40FB-B110-53B85E336789_zps7309201F-179A-4CFD-AEE5-CA187DB6C449_zps

A61EE2AF-CBDB-4B4A-BCAE-098A10082DE1_zps

Note that some of these parts are options so even less to do! One of those options is the wig tips and some help please. The scheme shows the Malta version ('A') with standard wingtips but the instructions say to fit the squared off ones:

EA7A4FC7-5FC5-47AB-9E89-B8D8F301991D_zpsD95EB626-B672-4C0E-A86A-76740F23474B_zps

Which is right? Any advice appreciated! You may also notice I've noted '71.029' against the colour key. I'm going to use my Vallejo Model Air (VMA) RAF colours on this one, mainly to get some use out of the non-European colours!

Thanks for looking (assuming anyone's interested!!??)

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I have seen EP706 (that is the Spitfire, right?) depicted with both full and clipped-span wingtips; when I get home I can look through my Malta Spitfire Vs book and see if I can't find a photo of her, or you can assume that she had both at differing times and go with whichever please you more, as I've seen photos of other 249 Squadron Spitfires where some aircraft had clipped and some had full-span wings.

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Thanks PC - yes, it is EP706. I've had a search on the 'net but can't find a good shot. Thanks for the help :)

Hi PlaStix and welcome!

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It's not the worst kit in the world, it builds up much better than Italeri's evil Mk IX and it's a good enough Spitfire lookalike to fool 99.9% of people. It does have the advantages of being easily available and sells for peanuts (well near enough) at 2nd hand dealers and under the tables at shows.

Another advantage is that you can build just about any Vb from the kit because as illustrated in the sprue pic, you can do it with or without tropical filters, you get both types of tropical filter and you can do clipped and standard wings. If you wanted to build lots of Vb's to show off all the differences including different camouflage schemes, I think this is the ideal kit, I prefer the Tamiya kit for it's high quality engineering and finesse but you can get 2 or 3 Italeri kits for every Tamiya kit.

thanks

Mike

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I've built a couple and like them (horror!).

Things to replace, propeller blades (awful), aerial (ditto), cannon barrels (the Airfix Vb is better as a source for these). Also the separate entry hatch is too thick if modelled open.

Odd things that may or may not be wrong are the oil cooler and the underwing vent(?) near the wing tips, as both are much bigger than the Airfix kit.

There is no cockpit wall detail, so this needs doing.

Still prefer it to the old Airfix Vb though.

Trevor

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Looking forward to this Ced. If your work on the Frog Mk XIV is any indication, this should become a masterpiece.

I did not know that my distaste for the giant tropical filter was well known Ced. Yesterday, I even bought an Admiral VB (on a recommendation from PC), but bought the boxing with the Soviet markings as the cover art did not depict a tropical filter as the RAF/USAAF boxing did. I have no intention of using the Soviet transfers, and the sprues for the two are identical (both have the 'regular' chin and tropical chin included), I just couldn't get over the "grumpy old man that just sucked on some lemons' look of the box art. I am an idiot.

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I've built a couple and like them (horror!).

Things to replace, propeller blades (awful), aerial (ditto), cannon barrels (the Airfix Vb is better as a source for these). Also the separate entry hatch is too thick if modelled open.

Odd things that may or may not be wrong are the oil cooler and the underwing vent(?) near the wing tips, as both are much bigger than the Airfix kit.

There is no cockpit wall detail, so this needs doing.

Still prefer it to the old Airfix Vb though.

Trevor

Regarding the cockpit interior - I wouldn't bother adding anything other than seatbelts if the canopy is modelled closed, you can't see much of the cockpit in a small model like that!

thanks

Mike

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I am an idiot.

Given how badly you're beating me at WITP as it is, I'd hate to see what the map would look like if you were firing on all cylinders.

Cookie, did your boxing have a fully formed Rotol spinner? On mine, the three-blade spinner had a serious mold flaw that left it almost entirely filled in solid. Fortunately I have a spare.

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Glad to see that you have given this a proper wip! I know this kit is inaccurate but it will be good to see how it builds... Looks like it comes with so good options.

Rob

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Also cookie- I see what you mean about its chin not as beautiful as a normal spit... One of the reasons I picked a chinless Malta spit for the kids ceiling... But they do have a certain something about them that i find appealing like a model can be ungainly I suppose but still a looker... You know?

Rob

Edited by rob85
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Thanks everyone - crikey, lots of interest in this one already - so much for me having a rest with this one, looks like I'll have to try and do a good(ish) job! :D

I will warn you though that I always build OOB and wheels up and I'm not skilled up for any scratch building, sorry.

Beard thanks for the link - spent ages on that and I now have a list of Spitfires for my reference - thanks!

Mike: "...it builds up much better than Italeri's evil Mk IX..." er, I have one of those in my stash :( I'll go with your suggestion of no cockpit detail and I may try to scratch some belts.

Philp: Thanks for the links, interesting. Full wingtips it is then?

Trevor: Thanks for the tips and the link to your WiP - I didn't know about that problem with rattle cans and I'll certainly watch out in the future - shame, it was going so well. Should I be waiting the seat red? Any tips on paint number, Humbrol preferred?

​Cookie you're no idiot as we all know! I'd put it down to a senior moment :D Perhaps this build will pass on a little lurve? (Famous last words!)

So, IG splashed around a bit on the sprue but nothing really to show yet. I'm over the pub tonight and I'll be back to Belle tomorrow, but I may squeeze a bit in (fnaar fnaar).

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Ced!

I painted the seats red because that seemed to be the collective 'right' answer and I'm easily persuaded!

No idea of the shade, as I just reached into the paint box.

You can tell I don't build to competition standard........

Trevor

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I'm sure that there's a thread on here discussing Spitfire seat colours (indeed, I'd be surprised if there isn't) where Humbrol 160 was recommended for the resin-bonded seats.

If you want to be exact, you ought to make sure what type of seat the aircraft you're modelling had. Or you could just paint it red and not give a damn.

Edit: to correct the material from which the seats were manufactured. Not bakolite.

Edited by Beard
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The V does look very purposeful with its chin intake, perhaps I can be persuaded! Either way, I'm really looking forward to this build Ced.

PC, I haven't received the Admiral Mk V yet, so I can't check, but the spinners look fine on my AZ Mk II and V which I think are the same sprues as the Admiral. I used an Airfix Rotol prop and spinner front half for my IIB build, and so have spares if you were to need them. It's funny that we both think we're losing in WitP. Sorry for the thread jack Ced.

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PC, I haven't received the Admiral Mk V yet, so I can't check, but the spinners look fine on my AZ Mk II and V which I think are the same sprues as the Admiral. I used an Airfix Rotol prop and spinner front half for my IIB build, and so have spares if you were to need them.

Oh, my AZ kits are fine, it was just my Admiral rebox; if it's not a bother, I'm hoping you'll let me know if you run into the same thing.

It's funny that we both think we're losing in WitP.

Playing as Japan, if you're not dictating peace in the White House in June of 1942, you've lost already.

Sorry for the thread jack Ced.

I blame Cookie.

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Okay! EP706/T-L was delivered in August of 1942 by HMS Furious during Operation BELLOWS. "Screwball" Buerling shot down four 109s flying her in October. I can't seem to find a photograph, but I've seen pictures of a dozen 249 Squadron Spitfire Vs, and only one of them seemed to have clipped wingtips. It seems unlikely EP706 had them. People seem to cautiously agree that it's at least possible she arrived in the classic desert scheme rather than one of the exciting and confusing variations that grown men have almost come to blows over in various fora.

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