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Neil Whiteley-Bolton

Merlin engined Seafires

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I have several of the Airfix Seafire III kits in 1:48 and plan on modelling several Mk. Ib; IIc; L. IIc; III and L. III aircraft - I have the Xtradecal sheet. I would like to know about any visible features distinguishing these variants from each other. I am aware of the following:

  1. Mk. IIc -> Mk. L. III - individual exhaust outlets - were these the same as featured on later Merlin engined Spitfires (fishtail) or were they different?
  2. Mk. IIc -> Mk. L. III - different spinner and 4 bladed prop - again were these the same as featured on Spitfire Mk. IX?
  3. Mk. III and Mk. L. III - folding wing

I there anything else?

 

Thanks in advance.

 

Neil

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Distinguishing features between the IIc and III are primarily the wingfold joint on the III. Both had 4 bladed props. The III had the later “Mk VIII type” Vokes filter and generally internal reinforcements in the fuselage. 

 

The Ib had a 3 blade prop, “b” wing armament and typically the early large Vokes filter. Essentially a Vb with an a-frame hook and external reinforcements. 

 

Tim

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The forward rake of the undercarriage is greater on the IIc and III than on the Ib.

 

Justin

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1 hour ago, Greenshirt said:

Distinguishing features between the IIc and III are primarily the wingfold joint on the III. Both had 4 bladed props. The III had the later “Mk VIII type” Vokes filter and generally internal reinforcements in the fuselage. 

 

The Ib had a 3 blade prop, “b” wing armament and typically the early large Vokes filter. Essentially a Vb with an a-frame hook and external reinforcements. 

 

Tim

I was wondering principally about cowling bulges - but I suppose there was nothing particularly unusual about the specific Merlin versions used on these aircraft that would have necessitated these.

Thanks.

 

N.

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6 hours ago, Neil Whiteley-Bolton said:

I have several of the Airfix Seafire III kits in 1:48 and plan on modelling several Mk. Ib; IIc; L. IIc; III and L. III aircraft - I have the Xtradecal sheet.

My suggestion, sell the Airfix kits and get the relevant Special Hobby kits, the do specific Seafire II and III kits.  Thye also have decent decals

 

For a Seafire IB I'd convert the new Airfix Vb.  You might want to use some of the bits from one of the Airfix Seafire III kits for this

 

the reason is that the airfix Spitfire Vc/Seafire III is a dogs dinner,  being the 1978 era Spitfire Vb,  which is decent shapewise apart from a too high thrust line, easy to fix, but that makes the spinner too big, and has mostly fine raised panel lines.

the new parts are derived from the late 90's Airfix Spitfire IX, and are really clunky, the wing is thick, and really hard to scrape back, and many of the additional seafire parts are horrible, in particular the 4 blade prop and exhausts

https://modelingmadness.com/review/allies/gb/brodiespitpreview.htm

and

as @Seahawk says...

 

On 17/11/2015 at 11:17, Seahawk said:

Think your problem is that you threw away the wrong set of parts! The Spitfire Vc/Seafire III dates from a period when Airfix, at what was probably the lowest point in their fortunes, were adding monstrous carbuncles (new sprues of crudely moulded and inaccurate parts) to the faces of much-loved friends (old but basically accurate and well-tooled kits). The basic idea (add new interest to old kits by adding new parts) was sound but the execution was appalling: the pattern-makers for the new sprues were evidently taking time out from finishing Stonehenge. The decline in quality between old and new parts highlighted just how far the brand had sunk.

I admit I fell for Airifx's sucker punch and forsook the One True Scale for this tempting siren, the only Seafire kit on the market at the time. I reckoned it was possible to fashion a decentish Seafire L.III out of it, using an Aeroclub prop and Aeroclub gun bulges to replace horrible kit parts and undertaking industrial-scale thinning of trailing edges. But unaccountably I decided to do something more interesting with my life instead. Since then new Seafires have come onto the market and I have ended my shameful dalliance with Satan's Scale.

To be constructive for one brief moment, you will need to add the strengthening around the radio hatch as well as the fuselage side strengtheners. Good luck!

 

Now, at this juncture there is often a post about how bad the Special Hobby Seafire is,  being too short and etc etc.

the kit is too short, but even if you you fix this, it will still be so much less work than making a decent model out of the Airfix Seafire III....

 

FWIW, this is how 'short' the Special Hobby kit is,  the top image has the splices needed to make it match the new tool Airfix Vb (which is correct) 

AF_vs_SH_align_on_mat_IMG_0451.jpg&key=c

 

from

which might be of use.

 

HTH

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Many thanks - I think that I will take the Airfix Vb with Alley Cat 'c' wing conversion route - I have many, many Vbs :)

I will scratch the arrester - unless you know of an existing after market one?

 

Regards.

 

Neil

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24 minutes ago, Neil Whiteley-Bolton said:

Many thanks - I think that I will take the Airfix Vb with Alley Cat 'c' wing conversion route - I have many, many Vbs :)

 

 if you can do the Seafire conversion, you can can covert a B to a C wing,  remove B bulges, fill and rescribe new panel lines. Tip, new c wing blisters can be got from ICM spares,  but cut them down out of the door,  as  the added door thickness then makes them the right depth, they are too shallow as they are.

It's not difficult to do, and, think pragmatically, try the conversion, if it works, great, if not, then you just get the conversion, as it will replace the bits that got messed up.

Plus there is the satisfaction of actually doing the conversion yourself, and not needing an AM fix

 

 

Also, the Alleycat wing does not convert B to C undercarriage,  the C is swept forward.   obviously doing the conversion doesn't either,  but correct new bits can be got from the spares in the Eduard kit ;) 

 

On 5/9/2014 at 14:36, Troy Smith said:

the C wing introduced a 2 degree [iirc] forward rake to UC geometry.

VB

supermarine-spitfire-vb.jpg

VC

03-UPA1.jpg

Foward rake is obvious.

I can't recall the exact reasons, bob will though ;)

Tony, if this clutters your thread will happily edit out.

HTH

T

 

see here

 

Given the cheapness now of the ICM Spit IX, that maybe cheaper than the conversion set,  

Note, if you have any Eduard Spit VIII/IX/XVI they come with multiple leftover bits, including UC doors which are the bulged C wing ones..
i would still be cheaper to just buy the Special Hobby specific kits, as they are actually Seafires, and have all the right bits in the box! 

This is especially true of the Seafire III

see here for details of the kit, which not has the right wing, but also the 4 blade prop, 6 stub exhausts, arrestor parts, and vinyl die for the fuselage strengthening strips, as well as some useful PE parts

 

Remember also the Airfix Seafire XVII has two wings, a folded and unfolded set, which are basically the same as the Seafire III wing, useful if you want folded wings.

the wing needs adjusting, as it has the Tamiya over broad centre chord, easy enough to fix, and the separate flaps make this easier, as you can just trim the flap openings.

 

 

24 minutes ago, Neil Whiteley-Bolton said:

I will scratch the arrester - unless you know of an existing after market one?

 

Regards.

 

Neil

 

There probably is one,   but, why bother, just get a dedicated Seafire kit, unless you like chopping and changing for the sake of it.

There is also the arrester bits in Airfix Seafire III kit.

 

your models, your choice, of course Neil,   but bear in mind while I don't get to  do much modelling, I have done an awful lot of research, and own nearly all the kits, and have cross referenced what has what, what the faults are, and done the corrections if nothing else, as I have read an immense amount of tosh online about the Special Hobby kits faults.

For what you want, they are a one stop solution.

9 hours ago, Neil Whiteley-Bolton said:

I have the Xtradecal sheet

worth checking this carefully, some of Xtradecals research can be pretty poor, H6-Z on this for example

https://www.hannants.co.uk/product/X48094

 

HTH

 

 

 

 

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Hi Troy,

 

Yes some good points - I do have a number of ICM kits that I might sacrifice for the wings. The thing putting me off the Special Hobby Seafire kits is having to lengthen the fuselage. I believe that I can obtain a good result with kit builds in general - but I have never tried (and don't really rate my chances) chopping up a fuselage and putting it back together to a very high standard.

 

Thanks

 

Neil

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21 minutes ago, Neil Whiteley-Bolton said:

but I have never tried (and don't really rate my chances) chopping up a fuselage and putting it back together to a very high standard.

its easy Neil

what will help is getting some Evergreen plastic strips of the right width, I got a load when Modelzone closed down

anyway, this is me bullying the Tamiya kit into shape, but the nose splice on the SH kit is done in the same way,  note the use of the Evergreen strip to fill the gap, as it square cut it will butt up against the straight cut in the fuselage

Quote

the missing length is in the panel between door and fuel tank cover, adding a splice here though causes problems with the wing fillet, adding the cokpit parts etc, so I added a 1.68 mm strip [0.66 inch, a stock Evergreen strip size, near enough, the razor saw cut is 0.14mm ] just behind the fuel filler, and would rescribe the back line of the fuel tank.

You method of adding bars of plastic strip worked very well, and I used a piece of Evergreen that is 1.09 x 1.68mm (0.043 x 0.066 inch, 4x 6 inch in HO scale, being for railway use, I bought some packs of strip when a a chain of model shops closed down and it was a a pound a pack  )

The the 1.09mmm is a tiny amount thicker than the thickness as the fuselage moulding, which was serendipitous!

the addition needs to be in the right place, or near the right place. This splice brings the length up to the right length, and the all the rest of the fuselage is a very good match, which is why I started at the rudder post.

Anyway, the splice bring the firewall to rudder post to 129.5 mm as far as I can measure.

 

 

Quote

IMG_0343Tamextensioninside_zps519691f3.j

I used Jim Kiker's method, of adding plastic card rods.

I carefully drew a pencil line, razor sawed off the nose, This needs to be done very carefully! Using the point where the root has kinked in makes it a little easier, and avoids messing up the fillet.

cleaned up the cuts carefully added rod strips to rear, added the 1.09 x 1.68mm evergreen strip, tight up against the cut edge, the top left sticking up, then added the nose, I added a bit of 20 thou card, pre bent by hand, and notched around the inside filler cap moulding.

The top of the strip left sticking up was then bent over, and held down while he glue set.

I just used cheap superglue, [pound shop, 10 tubes 1 pound] a little on a plastic lid, added in tiny drops with an old screwdriver, a toothpick would work fine. I'd go over the joints with a plastic cement later, but it's stood up to plenty of handling so far.

 

it's not difficult,  also

25 minutes ago, Neil Whiteley-Bolton said:

The thing putting me off the Special Hobby Seafire kits is having to lengthen the fuselage. I believe that I can obtain a good result with kit builds in general -

Lets be honest, I like fixing things, and I like the challenge of fixing things that seem to get lost of moaning and wailing, but not a solution.

this is how "BAD" it is

AF_vs_SH_align_on_mat_IMG_0451.jpg&key=c

 

The SH kits unmodified are hardly horrors,  but they seem to be treated like lepers,  while others, like the old Tamiya I/V,  see here

 

The problem is not really that visible,   and an unmodified SH kit is going to look a lot better than than the Airfix Seafire III !   The othre options you have considered all involve far more work and expense in my opinion

 

Note, the tailsplice is really easy,  I used the Airfix Vb as a guide for aligning the tail.  You can see the plastic strip in the cut above, and the corrects half the length issue

 

Try it on a scrap kit,  the hardest bit is getting a straight cut.  After that it easy,  if you can fill a seam and eliminate it, you can do this.  

 

note in the photo below the orange bit of the raer port wing fillet is how "horribly"  out the the SH kit is....  

 

On 26/6/2015 at 23:01, Troy Smith said:

Right, quick bit of kit chopping later,

this is the Special Hobby Seafire III, dark grey, the light grey is the Airfix Vb.

There is a 1mm splice in the SH fuselage, and a block 1.68mm square rod at the leading edge, needs filing to shape, the orange at the rear of SH fuselage fillet shows where it needs trimming, the orange pencil tip show how the Airfix fuselage now lines up with the trailing edge of the SH wing, which is an excellent match for the Airfix.

Needs a little rescribing at the leading edge/cowl join.

SH_Seafire_III_adjusted_IMG_0445.jpg

There you go, wing moved, fuselage right length at front. This was just done to demonstrate the basic idea, that despite some posts to the contrary which make all sorts of wild claims about the SH kit, especially this

http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234968126-148-airfix-seafire-xv/page-3#entry1758558

and come up with some round the houses corrections, it's actually quite simple.

I need to add some other pics and more info, but this is the 'hard' part done.

this shot shows that if you can be bothered that a 1mm extension is needed in front of the rear transport joint, this being Airfix Vb against SH III again.

IMG_0313_zpse3537aab.jpg

The other red lines shows the fillet trim and nose length difference.

Most of the effect could be achieved by just moving the wing forward.

This really needs a separate post, but before commenting on this fix, read the linked threads in post #8, as they explain how this fix is worked out, the short being that the new Airfix Vb kit can be used as a 3-D guide, if matches that, it's correct.

read this post for a more detailed explanation.

http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234968126-148-airfix-seafire-xv/page-3#entry1758582

in particular the leading edge/cowl panel line joint.

 

Hopefully you can see how neat the basic joint is the first photo above,  just from careful cutting and using plastic of the right thickness.   

 

I hope this tempts you to try it on scrap,  I'll bet you'll laugh when you find out how easy it is

 

cheers

T

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15 hours ago, Troy Smith said:

My suggestion, sell the Airfix kits and get the relevant Special Hobby kits, the do specific Seafire II and III kits.  Thye also have decent decals

 

For a Seafire IB I'd convert the new Airfix Vb.  You might want to use some of the bits from one of the Airfix Seafire III kits for this

 

the reason is that the airfix Spitfire Vc/Seafire III is a dogs dinner,  being the 1978 era Spitfire Vb,  which is decent shapewise apart from a too high thrust line, easy to fix, but that makes the spinner too big, and has mostly fine raised panel lines.

the new parts are derived from the late 90's Airfix Spitfire IX, and are really clunky, the wing is thick, and really hard to scrape back, and many of the additional seafire parts are horrible, in particular the 4 blade prop and exhausts

https://modelingmadness.com/review/allies/gb/brodiespitpreview.htm

and

 

 

I love this quote from the review which Troy referred to: "Box art is good"

 

 

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Could be that you should have a look at Model Design Constructions home page: They may have what you ask for, including a separate set for the arrestor hook.

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1 hour ago, NPL said:

I love this quote from the review which Troy referred to: "Box art is good"

But I take issue with him where he says the new parts do not detract from the old kit.  They do: the rather decent old kit would die of shame to be found in such company.  Still. in those days we were grateful for even the slightest flicker of life from Airfix: how time have changed.

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