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TonyW

1964 issue Wildcat, buy one , get one free.

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Another for the GB from me, or should I say, another pair from me.

This time around, using the formula that worked with a pair of Hunters, I'm having a crack at a pair of 1964 issue Wildcats. The intention is to finish the pair with the two options provided in the original issue bagged kit.

 

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The one above stays sealed! My collector instincts won't let any harm come its way.

 

I have this pair though, the £1 bargain came from the Telford kit swap area a few years back. The part built one has sat unloved in a box of started models for far too long now. Best I do something about that then!

 

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And to finish the introduction, here's a page from the seventh edition catalogue showing the plane with a few of its mates. Happy days.

 

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I'll be digging out period references, paints and glue etc, for show off pictures along the way. The journey starts over this weekend.

 

Tony.

 

 

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A fair bit of progress, forwards and backwards, over the weekend. The very hot weather at the moment meant that a coat of paint or a bit of glueing dried very quickly on the window sill.

 

The part built kit got hit with a couple of coats of Hi Grade Enamel in preparation for the UK option decals.

 

Once dry, the second kit got a coat or two of Humbrol Glossy Sea Blue.

 

Despite me saying here more than once about clear coating old decals, I ignored my own advice and paid the penalty when one of the US wing decals exploded. Bugger. They were first issue decals, rather thick and very glossy. I looked hard under a magnifier and could see no cracking at all. Wrong! Not to worry, another set were found in my spares box and with a bit of clear coating, went on fine. The blue of the stars and bars was a bit on the bright side though. Nothing a bit of careful paintwork cant cover up though.

 

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The second kit got its Brit cammo applied and a few Extraset decals substituted the dodgy kit ones. The USN one is currently sitting in the sun, waiting for the touch up paint around the stars and bars to dry.

 

The Buffalo is getting a bit of attention as well, but sadly falls outside this GB on account of being nearly completed.

 

More as it happens.

Edited by TonyW

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While on the subject of Wildcats, check out this wonderfully bad Polish FROG boxing...

 

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The artwork is so bad it's brilliant. 

 

Collectors are weird.

 

Tony.

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They're looking good for a dodgy old kit like that Tony. I made one a few years ago & was pleased enough how it came out for something roughly Wildcat shaped. ;) The US markings look very bright but I'm wondering if that might be the lighting, can't expect too much from old decals in that respect I  'spose. :)

Steve.

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The decals are not quite as bright as the flash picture suggests, Too bright for the model though. I've done a bit of filling in of the blue areas, followed by a couple of coats of humbrol satin varnish.

 

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I thought the rivet detailing might look a bit heavy under a dark, shiny finish so I rubbed about half of it out with W+D paper. When added to the varnish coats its starting to look like a far too thick paintjob. I should have rubbed the whole lot off and scored a few lines in place instead. Yet another three footer for my shelves!

 

The FAA version has had a glosscoat, in preparation for a bit of weathering. I've left the rivets alone on this one, hoping the final matt finish plus the cammo will knock them back enough for display.

 

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The Verlinden carrier deck is in 1.48 scale. I'll try scanning it,reducing it to 1.72 and printing a copy as a base for the planes.

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A bit more progress.

Wheels painted, undercarriage cleaned up, that sort of thing. A WW1 Dogfight Double stand got a hit of silver spray after the base black plastic looked a bit severe. it's only a try out at the moment, but it may well get used. It links the two planes nicely and being Airfix in origin follows a theme.

 

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Those marking colours look much better like that, they're looking pretty good indeed now.

Steve.

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The final lap!

 

Not much to do on this pair now. A coat of flat clear for the Brit version and a few bits and bobs to be added to the US jobby. The US version is going to be wheels up, the Brit, wheels down.

 

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The Yellow Peril got called into action. The Dogfight Double stand came in handy for a quick picture.

 

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Once this pair are done, it's all hands to the pumps for the Ferguson rebuild and the SS France liner build. I'm abandoning the Bristol Bulldog for now, I just can't seem to get enthusiastic over it for some reason or other.

 

Having only two on the go seems wrong somehow. I'll see what else I can dig up, there's a whole month to go yet!

Edited by TonyW

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So that’s how the Zero got those bullet holes? Somehow I fancy it’s days (possibly minutes) are numbered as that Hellcat was a brute of a warplane in this theatre of operations. Both Hellcats are looking really nice Tony and I’m excited to read that you’re contemplating even more Airfix builds!! By the way, Heather’s got 8 builds so far (.. just say’n!!). 

 

Cheers.. Dave 

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You wouldn't last long as a Japanese fighter pilot Dave, Hellcats are a different kettle of fish to Wildcats. These two are the lesser of the pair.  

 

Weave Weave Weave!!! Get him off my tail Thatch!!!

 

😉

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1 minute ago, TonyW said:

You wouldn't last long as a Japanese fighter pilot Dave, Hellcats are a different kettle of fish to Wildcats. These two are the lesser of the pair.  

 

Weave Weave Weave!!! Get him off my tail Thatch!!!

 

😉

Ha!! you're so right Tony, I really need to enrol back into Aircraft recognition school don't I? 

I've just dragged myself early out of bed in order to get my teenage son out of his bed - funny how someone with every technological gadget ever invented still can't seem to set an alarm clock??? I'll put down my poor form to slowly waking eyes and not smelling Coffee beans as yet. 

 

Cheers.. Dave. 

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I think I have said before that I love the shape of the little Wildcat - built the red stripe kit as a boy. My Dad called them 'Martlets' - and here is a bit of the history from Wiki:

 

Martlet Mk II

Before the Fleet Air Arm took on charge the Martlet Mk Is it had already ordered 100 G-36B fighters. The British chose the Pratt & Whitney R-1830-S3C4-G engine to power this aircraft; this too had a single-stage, two-speed supercharger. The FAA decided to accept a delay in delivery to get Martlets fitted out with the Grumman-designed and patented Sto-Wing folding wing system first fitted onto U.S. Navy F4F-4 Wildcats, which were vitally important if the Martlet was to be used from the first 3 Illustrious class carriers which had elevators that were too narrow to accommodate non-folding wing aircraft. 

In contrast to the USN F4F-3, the British aircraft were fitted with armor and self-sealing fuel tanks. The Mk II also had a larger tailwheel. For carrier operations, the "sting" tail hook and attachment point for the American single-point catapult launch system were considered important advantages. Nevertheless, the Martlets were modified to have British-style catapult spools. Deliveries of the folding-wing G-36Bs began in August 1941, with 36 shipped to the UK and 54 shipped to the Far East; they were designated "Martlet Mark II".Aeroplane and Armament Experimental Establishment(A&AEE) testing of the Martlet II at a mean weight of approximately 7350 lb showed a maximum speed of 293 mph at 5400 ft and 13,800 ft, a maximum climb rate of 1940 fpm at 7600 ft at 7790 lb weight, and a time to climb to 20,000 ft of 12.5 minutes. The service ceiling at 7790 lb was 31,000 ft.

 

The majority of the Martlet Mk IIs were sent to the Far East. The first shipboard operations of the type in British service were in September 1941, aboard HMS Audacity, a very small escort carrier with a carrier deck of 420 ft (130 m) by 59 ft (18 m), no elevators and no hangar deck. The six Wildcats were parked on the deck at all times. On its first voyage, it served as escort carrier for a convoy to Gibraltar. On 20 September, a German FW 200 was shot down. On the next voyage, four FW 200 Condors fell to the guns of the Martlets, and of the combined total, two of these five Condors were shot down by Eric "Winkle" Brown during his time aboard. Operations from Audacity also demonstrated that the fighter cover was useful against U-boats. Audacity was sunk by a U-boat on 21 December 1941, with only Brown and one other pilot surviving, but it had already proved the usefulness of escort carriers.

 

So it looks like the Wildcats went up against some 'big boys' while in British service. This build has turned out looking great. Cheers Mike.

 

 

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Here's the history as printed on the back of the original Airfix header...

 

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12 hours ago, Rabbit Leader said:

Ha!! you're so right Tony, I really need to enrol back into Aircraft recognition school don't I? 

 

 

Cheers.. Dave. 

 

 

You are in good company Dave. Saburu Sakai, the Japanese pilot, got his Wildcats confused with Avengers while stalking them from lower rear. He snook up on a whole load of carefully aimed lower MG's!  The mistake cost him an eye and he was lucky to get away with it. I remember vividly his account of the incident in his book.

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Half way there, living on a prayer...

 

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...just the US version to finish, then my work here is done. 

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Nice work Tony, that's come up a treat. 

Cheers.. Dave 

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It's a wrap,

 

The USN version is now as done as it's going to be. Here's the pair together...

 

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The pictures are a bit rough and ready, nothing seems to want to focus this morning. Best not worry about it, just walk away and have another go later.

I've got a T6 box that has the USN version on the lid that I want to sit next to the T3 bag for a picture or two. That one's up in the loft somewhere though. 

I'll take some better pictures for the gallery after the weekend.

 

Tony.

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