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Airfix 1/48 Blenheim - A Fighter fit for a Millionaire?


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No. 601 (County of London) Squadron was formed in 1925 at a Gentlemen's club in London's West End when a group of wealthy aristocratic young men formed a Reserve Squadron of the Royal Air Force. 

 

Service as a light bomber squadron began at Northolt in May 1926 with Avro 504Ks and DH9As.  In January 1927 the squadron moved to Hendon, and from November 1929 received its first Westland Wapitis to supercede the 504s and DH9As. In turn Hawker Harts replaced the Wapitis in June 1933 and in July 1934 the squadron was redesignated as a fighter squadron. Hawker Demons replaced the Harts in August 1937 and then in November 1938 were themselves replaced with Gloster Gauntlets.  

 

From January 1939 the squadron began to receive its complement of Bristol Blenheims.  601 was in action with its Blenheims from the day war was declared until March 1940 when the squadron exchanged them for Hurricanes.  The squadron went on to aquit itself honourably in the forthcoming Battle of Britain but at a huge cost to the squadron's aristocratic pre-war pilots.

 

Having bought myself the Airfix 1/48 Blenheim for Christmas (and passing it to son #1 to wrap and give me as my present!) I really had to clear the workbench and start cutting plastic as soon as possible.

 

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The plan is to complete it using Eagle Strike 48015 - Bristol Blenheim, Part 2 decals as a 601 (City of London) Squadron machine, coded YN-B, based at RAF Hendon at the outbreak of WWII.

 

Now I have searched and searched the net for images of this craft, but the closest I can find is a decent print of YN-A at this link.  https://www.krulantiquarianbooks.nl/catalogs/bristol.blenheim.if.l6680-yn-a.jpg

 

If anyone has any pointers towards any publications with photos of YN-B please point me in the right direction.

 

Let's start where we all start, the box shots:

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I have to say how impressed I am with this kit and if it builds as well as it looks from the off then it's going to be a stunner.

 

There are plenty of sub-assemblies to keep me out of mischief.  Unsurprisingly I started with the cockpit and centre section/wing spars.

 

DSC_0495

 

Then I couldn't resist the turret assembly.  Airfix have included a natty little jig to help the assemble the 11 wonderfully detailed parts that comprise the turret - what a great idea and I have to applaud them for that OOB thinking. 

 

DSC_0498

 

Next to go together were the undercarriage units that have to be constructed and inserted at quite an early stage of the construction.  Usually this would fill me with dread, especially as I have twanged a tendon in my left forearm at football this week so my clumsiness has rocketed to the top of the FatCawthorne Scale (the officially world-recognised measurement for clumsiness and stupidity!), but these sub-assemblies are so well designed that they are immensely strong and may even withstand my best efforts to snap them off.

 

After that the nacelles had some internal framing added and the wings had their rear spars glued into place.  Lastly the Bristol Mercury engines were constructed in 2 parts to allow one to receive an initial aluminium coat and the other gloss black without any horrific masking. 

 

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The cockpit/centre sections have had a coat of Halfords primer.  A few more bits to add, some ejection marks to clean up with PPP and then an initial coat of interior grey/green can be shot.

 

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This kit is CatNip for plane nerds, I just can't put it down!

 

Next is to add some details to the fuselage sides and to fill some prominent ejector marks and then prime some more sub-assemblies.

 

Until next time, "Keep 'em Peeled!"

 

Chris

Edited by Fatcawthorne
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Nice start and a good tip abot the engines. I would have blundered blithely on and then spent days trying to figure out how to paint them.

 

Martian 👽

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On 1/11/2019 at 11:09 AM, Martian Hale said:

Nice start and a good tip abot the engines. I would have blundered blithely on and then spent days trying to figure out how to paint them.

 

Martian 👽

Thank you Martian, It was only after doing a Google search for Blenheim engines that I spotted the colour breakdowns and was overjoyed that they matched the parts breakdown exactly.  I was more overjoyed that I had not actually glued the two sub-assemblies together when I spotted it - perhaps my luck is changing!

 

Now we had a bit more Halfords Primer flying around the man-cave, and took the oppotunity to drill out the exhausts that little dit deeper, together with drilling out the "engine trumpets" (go on someone put me out of my misery and give me the proper term, are they carburettor intakes?) to give them some depth.

 

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Never been the type to spend ages coming up with an original solution when I can shamelessly rip-off someone far cleverer than me's ideas, so I pinched @Silver Fox's future-build idea of adding the fuselage glass beforejoining the fuselage halves.  

 

 

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OK almost a successful rip-off but unfortunately I also ripped off another of our luminaries trademarks after deciding that the @Procopius gluey thumbprint was just the thing that was missing from my build!!

 

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Anyways have gathered the troops to take on this Horlicks, plenty of micromesh and also a couple of 4-way buffers stolen from my beauty-therapist wife's far tidier and cleaner workspace.

 

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Once everything's dried out properly I can apply some one-handed elbow-grease; as I mentioned in my previous post I've twanged a tendon in my left forearm by being a far too old goalkeeper a couple of weeks back! Could be interesting and I'm expecting to have to use some of those goalkeeper skills at some point to catch it when it flies off in all directions! 

 

Well, I'm calling progress this far a score-draw.  Until next time, Chris

Edited by Fatcawthorne
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looking good Chris, apart from the repairable print. Glad someone tried out my hypothesis.  Gives me more confidence to try it out on my next one. I just read the bit about someone far cleverer, who was that? I reckon your the clever one letting others make the stupid mistakes.😀

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5 hours ago, Fatcawthorne said:

Once everything's dried out properly I can apply some one-handed elbow-grease; as I mentioned in my previous post I've twanged a tendon in my left forearm by being a far too old goalkeeper a couple of weeks back! Could be interesting and I'm expecting to have to use some of those goalkeeper skills at some point to catch it when it flies off in all directions! 

 

Well, I'm calling progress this far a score-draw.  Until next time, Chris

Except that you can't because you twanged that tendon in your forearm. A kind of Catch 22 methinks.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Martian 👽

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Okey-Cokey troops.

On 1/13/2019 at 4:10 PM, Procopius said:

Would it even be modelling without a thumbprint?

 

On 1/13/2019 at 8:54 PM, Martian Hale said:

Except that you can't because you twanged that tendon in your forearm. A kind of Catch 22 methinks.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Martian 👽

Even with me spasmicated arm I managed to do a reasonable job of removing the now universally obligatory Procopious PrintTM and Martian, I didn't even need to employ Catch 1, let alone Catch 22 as I managed to keep it all firmly in the grasp of my grubby little mitts whilst doing so!

 

It did however leave a tiny corner of what now looks like condensation but I think that's as good as it gets.  I put on a coat of Future, OK it's still visible after that but it's not going to be the worst thing that happens during the build - trust me!

 

DSC_0517

 

With adding the glass to the fuselage sides at this point it became clear (see what I did there!) that there was a tiny bit of the fuselage that protuded a bit further than the frames on the lower port nose window and would be visible, more so as I had glued the glass in before priming and painting the fuselage.  In the spirit of @Silver Fox's wishing your life away until the next Blenhiem,  I would thin this area down in future builds before committing to gluing.  Blenheim builders of the future, you can have that one on me!

 

Fortunately the Airfix plastic is very soft so a quick few swipes with the scalpel did a reasonable job of gouging it out, but it did leave a tiny mark on the nose glass.

 

Before:

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After:

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As you can see I have also polished out the frosted pane in the lower port nose as I believe YN-B would not have had this painted out as Airfix have only moulded this kit for it being overpainted.  Now not wishing to get into the forum fisticuffs that occurred to some other poor soul over on the manufacturer's forum I certainly won't be asking why Airfix didn't just leave this panel clear, as 90% of photos on the web do not show this pane being overpainted on either Fighter or Bomber Mk.Is.

 

As an aside I have ordered BRISTOL BLENHEIM- CAMOUFLAGE & MARKINGS, RAF Northern Europe 1936-45 from Amazon in the hope that this contains at least one of the so far elusive images of YN-B that must be out there somewhere.

 

I then sanded the frames of the glass to blend them into the fuselage sides as most photos do not show particularly heavy panel lines where the kit has its joins, a job made far easier by the glass panes being moulded much deeper than usual and a fair few thous of the frames can be sanded off without touching the actual see-through stuff.

 

I will see how blended-in they actually are after priming to decide whether a sliver of PPP is the way forward. 

 

Then out with the Swann Morton, with a fresh 23 blade, and the Tamiya tape and thus the joys of a couple of hours masking up the clear parts (inside and out) could begin.  This passed by quite relaxingly as on Radio 2 this evening Jo Whiley returned to the 7-9pm slot and she soothed my frustrations away (we all get frustrated masking now don't we? I said DON'T WE?!!!!) with her eclectic mix of classic and current banging tunes (One of her guests, Mark Ronson, described his current favourite genre of music as "sad bangers", and all I could think of were depressed sausages!).

 

The masking was then sealed with another coat of Future to help keep a clean framing line and I took the opportunity to Future up the rest of the kits transparent parts.

 

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Whilst test fitting clear parts 15 and 16 to the turret (which has only been primed so far) I reckon that masking the windows in those clear parts after construction would be impossible even for the be-tentacled one, so have decided that the next job will be to mask those two bits once the Future has cured, spray some IG onto them and the turret sub-assembly and then glue and re-spray IG over any mess that the join leaves.  Well that's for tomorrow.  I'll let you know how it goes.

 

Take care all, and thanks for all the input and advices.

 

So until next time “Stay classy, San Diego.”

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On 1/14/2019 at 11:07 PM, Martian Hale said:

There are so many useful heads up on this thread that I think it should be pinned.

 

Martian 👽

Thanks Martian mate, however I would wait to see if all these non-instructions following ideas actually work before heaping any praise on them!!

On 1/15/2019 at 2:52 AM, Andwil said:

You want to be careful bringing up the subject of sausages in a BM thread.

 

AW

There were Waitrose Chipolatas on the menu for this morning's fry up, second in taste only to Aldi's far cheaper but much more num num num produce; but they don't sell Mussels in Aldi so Waitrose it was to be (sort of sublime to the rediculous in shopping terms) for yesterday's sachet around the aisles.  In fact Waitrose didn't sell Mussels either at that point as they'd all gone, so Moules Frites has been put on the back burner until next weekend.

 

Anyways up, there's room for as much sausage talk in my threads as can be stuffed in, in the same way as sawdust was alledgedly stuffed into many butchers' bangers in days gone by (I worked in a Sainsburys meat room as a student so don't ask and I won't tell!).

 

OK, so no footy this weekend due to the war-wound meant some time at the bench instead.  Passed my modelling fitness test by squeezing some PPP out of the new metal tube that it comes in, a Hurculean task second only to sucking a freshly-made McDonalds milk shake through one of their straws without passing out.  Can anyone actually get anything out of their tubes?  With the ham-fistedness I usually display and the level of brute-force used, I split the crimped end, and after re-crimping with pliers I managed to burst the middle of the tube (which I have now bandaged up with Tamiya tape), all whilst getting less than a pea's worth out of the right end!  Love PPP, but hate what it comes in (old and new versions).

 

The fuselage interior got a shot of Tamiya Japanese Cockpit green, together with the turret.  BTW the pea of PPP was used to fill the gaps between the clear and normal plastic on the turret's top ring.

 

DSC_0537

 

Have started the detail painting on the cockpit, I'm not going to go too mad as I originally intended this to be a mainly OOB build with belts and decals thrown into the mix.  OK so up on my eBay feed pops the Vector Vickers K Guns set so in a moment of weakness I won them for a paltry bid, and although they may not be exactly the version of the gun for this turret, it does make a huge improvement over the kit parts. 

 

DSC_0526

 

Back to the cockpit, I've ordered some more Tamiya paint for the pilot's seat back, XF-59 which seems to be their equivalent to Humbrol's 83, so I've still got this to paint before I can call it done and get onto some more weathering.

DSC_0532

 

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Now I've added a wash to the fuselage halves and to the wingspar assembly.  My favourite method at the moment (mainly 'cos I couldn't master the oils pin-wash method) is to use Future with a tiny amount of black in it. (Hey and when I'm feeling really funky I can also put a drop of dark brown in too but let's not push the boat out that far!)  This pools nicely into shadows on the interior frames of the fuselage.  Obviously this will make stuff shiny so a top coat of Windsor & Newton Matt Varnish seals all the gubbins in.  Before the matt coat we had a very subtle drybrushing with Tamiya Sky to pop some details.

 

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This technique was also shamelessly ripped-off, this time from Roy Sutherland, and for those who have not come across this technique before here are a coule of links that will explain it far better than I ever could!

 

http://barracudacals.blogspot.com/

https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/hyperscale/roy-sutherland-s-johnson-klear-wash-t239748.html

 

Once the W&N has dried hard I will start removing the interior canopy frames, which hopefully will be razor-sharp but that's a job for tomorrow. 

 

Now I mentioned belts earlier.  Eduard does a set FE936, but they seem to be sold out in the UK.  Does anyone know of any stores with any lying around that they wouldn't mind me relieving them of, without having to pay rediculous postage from Eduard themselves of some other European retailer?

 

If I buy direct from Eduard I will probably justify/mitigate the postage by buying loads more stuff, but as Tempest overtrees aren't on sale yet I'm not that enthused by this idea yet. 

 

Might have to resort to another overseas seller if nothing turns up as I can't get the fuselage together with the method I've used untill the belts are added.  

 

The engine fronts also got a similar wash after having the cylinder cooling gills painted in gunmetal over the initial coat of flat aluminium.

 

Also sprayed the yellow tips of the props and masked them off to spray a coat of Flat Black.  The hubs will get a coat of semi-gloss black when that arrives.  

 

DSC_0535


All this non-footballing nonsence has worn me out so I think an early night is on the cards, and when Bagpuss goes to sleep.....   

 

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

 

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Not a huge amount to update tonight, but it is slowly slowly catchee monkey in this game.

 

Anyways these arrived.

 

DSC_0558

 

None of them have any reference shots of pre-war 601 Sqn Blenheims though.   Eagle Strike's five recommended references include two of these (the Haynes Manual is much too recent), and the other 3 are the Warpaint Series and the Valiant Wings publications, that I have in my eBay/Amazon baskets, and the Bombing Colours section of the Airfix Magazine from 1971 which I haven't found yet.  Hopefully the two I can get my hands on will come up trumps with some piccys. 

 

I unmasked the inner fuselage and the framing looks pretty sharp, lets hope the exterior comes out just as nice.

 

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I finished the painting of the cockpit and gave it a Future Wash, just need to flatten it downafter I add the belts.

 

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Ah the belts, I succumbed to paying Eduard's extortionate postage, but added six other PE frets for some forthcoming builds so that my inner miser doesn't feel too hard done to.  I had tried some German suppliers who whilst showing reasonable postage rates while the item was in the basket but that shot up on checkout.  I felt quite cheated especially after one increased by over a tenner after I'd put my PayPal details in (and yes I had already put postage to the UK into the equation).

 

I have started assembling the exhausts and nacelles and I'm struggling as my dexterity, whilst wearing some very tight compression bandages on my arm, hasn't been up to much.  To be honest I think I'm making a pigs ear of it and the lovely sharp demarcations between the nacelles and the exhausts may have to be comprimised on as the build progresses.  I caught the other nacelle up to the same point as the more complete one after taking the photos and added yet another PCTM thumbprint to the build - doh!

 

DSC_0549

 

Again construction is not as per the book but I'm trying to keep a sharp demarcation for the join between the camouflaged cowling and the burnt metal collector ring.

 

Not too much more I can do until the belts arrive as far as the fuselage is concerned.  Now I have added the shelf of electronics behind the turret (very securely!), but now having read some of my references I fear that this may only have applied to the AI equipped Blenheims.  My build doesn't have any of the associated AI aerials and antennae so I'm guessing it shouldn't have these what I suspect are radar sets either.  No mention of this in the Airfix destructions though or am I barking up completely the wrong tree?

 

I think I will start on the wings and undercarriage next, so will update you on that progress as I can be bothered to make some.

 

Off to catch up with Paras: Men of War on the iPlayer thingy now (I know plenty of folk in 2nd and 3rd Battalion, so want to see if any have got their ugly mugs on the gogglebox!).

 

Until the next time.

 

Chris

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AAARRRRRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHH!!!!

 

Email from Hannants today (yes the day after a £50+ order from Eduard to justify postage) Blenheim belts are back in stock - wouldn't you Adam & Eve it!

 

Anyways ordered a set from Hannants which means I will have 2 sets of belts.  Now I only have one Blenheim - for the $64,000 Question, what happens next?  Answers on a Postcard please.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hokey Dokey troops, time for an update on the old bird.

 

Have painted up the undercarriage and given it a Future wash.  This has allowed me to fit it securely enough into the nacelles so I won't snap them off.

 

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This then allows the wings and tailplanes to get glued together and then the seam lines dealt with.

 

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Then we get to the part of the build where the Muck Up Fairies make their dramatic entrance - ta dah!!!  They, and they only, are reponsible for the lack of photos in this phase!

 

As the Eduard belts arrived it was a simple task to add them to the cockpit and turret seats. No troubles yet.  Still no troubles from gluing the spar/cockpit assembly to the port fuselage, in fact I'm well chuffed with progress so far.

 

Now it's time to join the fuselage halves together.  Dry fitting shows there should be no real issues so away we went oblivious to the mayhem and stress and swearing and dog-kicking that was about to unfold.  Although the clear parts had earlier been thoroughly welded to the fuselage parts to get a better join, the mating area is very thin and as soon as a little bit of pressure is applied to keep the two halves together (esp as my port side with the cockpit attached had started to go a tiny bit warped), the port clear piece started getting looser and looser, except at one point just below the pilot's seat, and eventually cracked and snapped along a window pane line at that point.  Cue swearing!!!

 

The port front clear part was re-attached using TET and althoutgh it's now a bit enclosed in the cockpit which obscures the view, I couldn't see any terrible TET overspill or leak through which would frost the glass although there will be a tiny portion of the pilot's port window with a crack running through it. Now we just wait until the cockpit masking comes off to see how much damage has really been done.

 

Once this had all dried I sanded the join between the two clear parts.  Next the spine insert, and later the gunner's entrance hatch were added and the fuselage seams cleaned up.  This allowed another coat of cockpit green (after stuffing the cockpit full of loo roll, we have learned not to use foam anymore after all that ag with my Spitties in my 2018 yearbook) to check the joins between the clear and fuselage parts were sound. 

 

500501

 

Also the underside of the fuselage wouldn't play ball as well as I thought it might from the dry-fit, probably my ham-fistedness, although I had already clamped the join between the cockpit assembly and the fuselage floor when attaching to the port side.  The cut out between the rearmost port clear and the starboard fuselage just wouldn't sit flush.  Cue some SIHRSCTM action courtesy of the Tool TartTM@CedB himself .  This got the area flush at least and as there wasn't an actual load of surface detail in this area no real damage was done with this industrial approach.

 

The closed bomb bay door also needed plenty of fettling to get it to fit flush and the fettling led to filling (as sure as night follows day) which got sanded smooth and the obliterated panel lines on the bomb bay doors was reinstated. 

 

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The wings and tailplanes were added, and the inserts at the rear trailing edge didn't give any dramas.

 

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The flaps and ailerons were next and as I've grown out of displaying flaps down when the plane is on the ground I decided to attack the flap interiors as per the destructions and glue them in the up position.  

 

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The interior frame detail was cut off with the scalpel, the flap hinges removed using the sprue cutter and then the inside was sanded to within an inch of its life to make them thin enough not to sit proud of the wing when attached.

 

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A bit more clean up next to the wing/fuselage join, especially the rear inserts and we'll be ready to stuff the cockpit full of loo roll again and we can get some primer on this.

 

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Take care out there in the cold, 'til next time.

 

Chris

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I've just come across this build and I must say you're doing a great job. The reasoning for the radio equipment being to the rear of the turret is because, at least as I think it may be, the model was patterned after the restored Blenheim owned by Aircraft Restoration Company. This aircraft is based on a Canadian-built Bolingbroke which had interior details that differed from Bristol-built Blenheims.

 

 

Chris

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On 2/2/2019 at 2:03 AM, dogsbody said:

I've just come across this build and I must say you're doing a great job. The reasoning for the radio equipment being to the rear of the turret is because, at least as I think it may be, the model was patterned after the restored Blenheim owned by Aircraft Restoration Company. This aircraft is based on a Canadian-built Bolingbroke which had interior details that differed from Bristol-built Blenheims.

 

 

Chris

Thanks Chris for the kind words, any shortcomings I'm sure are down to me and my trying to prove @Silver Fox right in his idea of adding the clear parts at a place and time of our own choice instead of following that well worn path that is the instructions!

 

Despite having 5 or 6 books to hand I couldn't find a definitive answer to the radio equipment in the Mk.I so you may be on to something.  As Airfix got the nacelle shape right with this version then that's good enough for me this time around as although I am an "I know it's there" type modeller, very very little will be seen once the turret is in, esp if I make a horlicks of the clear parts!!!!  That's my excuse and I will stick to it like 💩 to a blanket!

 

I've applied a coat of Halfords primer to the airframe.  Before doing that I cleaned up the seams on the wing clear parts (and put some matt aluminium on the clear frames to show through on the interior) and also rescribed some of the lost panel line detail.  Usually my Squadron Scriber is quite restrained but the rescribing on the wing/fuselage joint is a bit heavy but I'm not re-filling at this stage and will hope it calms down under a coat of top colour.  I keep dropping and breaking the tips on my absolute favourite scriber, the DreamModel DM No.5 (which I have had 2 of as I can't seem to find a supplier of their tips only), so is out of action again and I think I may ask the hive mind a question in the tools part of the forum once I've got Sunday rost cooked to see if anyone can help track down the manufacturer.

 

Here's where we are as of now.

DSC_0608DSC_0604DSC_0603DSC_0602DSC_0601DSC_0600DSC_0598

 

Now I don't know if I just have wonky eyes but the last two head-on photos do seem to emphasise the slight warp to the left that my front fuselage has developed.

 

Still as I mentioned in a previous post I now have an extra set of Blenheim belts but no Blenheim to stick them to, so I think another one of these is in my future (yes even with a stash approaching 400!) just to see if following the destructions will actually work.

 

Sorry to those who hate the technique but I get on better with pre-shading than black-basing so next up is lots of thin black lines!

 

Be good out there (or just don't get caught)!

 

Chris

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First off I should say that I read through this yesterday, with pleasure and an increased "need" to get one of these.  (Of which more in a moment.)

 

7 minutes ago, Fatcawthorne said:

Now I don't know if I just have wonky eyes but the last two head-on photos do seem to emphasise the slight warp to the left that my front fuselage has developed.

Going back and giving those photos a careful squint, I think I see what you're talking about.  I have a feeling that once the nose is de-masked, it'll be busy enough to hide any alignment giveaway, assuming that there IS in fact such.  Further busyness of engines and (strategically placed?) props will help that much more.

 

11 minutes ago, Fatcawthorne said:

Sorry to those who hate the technique but I get on better with pre-shading than black-basing so next up is lots of thin black lines!

 

Thanks for the warning!  I don't so much hate the technique, though, as think it of questionable value.  I will attempt to hold on to that prejudice, because I'm also lazy, and have no desire to spend a bunch of time carefully [sic] painting squiggles only to paint over them again.  If I want to cover the surface with little lines all over the place I'll do a Macchi or perhaps a German night fighter!

 

Now, about my feelings about this kit.  Having gradually tracked down a number of Classic Airframes Blenheims, I'm slightly brassed off [I think that's the expression].  On the other hand, this one looks like a very different sort of kit.  I'm also already speculating about whether a Classic Airframes Mk.IV nose could be introduced to an Airfix Mk.I body! 

 

On with the show...

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On 2/3/2019 at 2:15 PM, Silver Fox said:

Chris,

 

 I am really enjoying you proving my theory. She looks pretty darn good to me and like you I foresee anther one sooner rather than later.

There's been a few added to my eBay watchlist in the last couple of days, just need an eBay 15% off day to come around again and they'll make the jump into my basket.

 

On 2/3/2019 at 2:21 PM, gingerbob said:

First off I should say that I read through this yesterday, with pleasure and an increased "need" to get one of these.  (Of which more in a moment.)

 

These should be on prescription at your doctors, this kit is doing a far better job than the happy pills I'm taking!!

 

On 2/3/2019 at 2:21 PM, gingerbob said:

Going back and giving those photos a careful squint, I think I see what you're talking about.  I have a feeling that once the nose is de-masked, it'll be busy enough to hide any alignment giveaway, assuming that there IS in fact such.  Further busyness of engines and (strategically placed?) props will help that much more.

 

I think once the engines and props are on nobody will care or notice that it will just fly around in circles if left to its own devices.

 

On 2/3/2019 at 2:21 PM, gingerbob said:

  I'm also already speculating about whether a Classic Airframes Mk.IV nose could be introduced to an Airfix Mk.I body! 

Those thoughts have crossed my mind too but I'd wager Airfix will have a Mk,IV ace up their sleeve that they're giving us full poker face about at the moment.  Perhaps if I forget to take my meds for a couple of days I'll be grafting the Contrail vac Mk.IV nose from the depths of the stash on.  Note to self :- keep taking the tablets! 

 

I've cracked on with painting the underside since the last update.  I know pre-shading isn't always the flavour of the month however I find it helps me start the colour modulation that I want to achieve but have failed in with other techniques.  I have to say I do as much post shading as I do pre and sometimes it can even be noticed.

 

Now I say that because the underside (less the wing/tailplane that will be white) got a base of Rubber Black, had the panel lines and small panels highlighted with flat black and then the inner parts of the panels misted with Nato Black and German Grey (all Tamiya acrylics).   To finish it off/draw it all together a very thin coat of Rubber Black went on over the top.  Not sure much colour modulation is visible but I'd give myself 9 out of 10 for effort!

 

014

 

Cue the visit of the masking fairies which allowed me to put the first coat of Flat White on the conventionally pre-shaded starboard wing and tailplane.  The white although thinned to milk-like consistency still covers reasonably well so a few more coats down the line we should be getting to the effect I'm after.

 

012

 

I realise that I haven't show and telled the decals yet.  I'm using the Eagle Strike set pictured.  The same markings I'm using are also on the more recent Xtradecal release (which I also have) but as the Eagle Strike ones have been in the decal dungeon for a while they are getting to see the light of day this time around.

 

016

 

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Now what's that peeking out from under the decals I can hear you all shout?  Why it's the latest couple of reference books acquired that don't have a single pre-war 601 Sqn photo in them; good job we will be building more!  I now have 4 out of the 5 references mentioned on the decal sheet but still no piccys of YN-B.   Gotta love Sod's Law don't ya!

 

015

 

Well that's it for assembling stuff this evening.  I've had by head turned by the NATO v WP 50's GB going on (plus I have had the new Tamiya Spit turn up) so I'm off across the Draw-bridge, through the portcullis and down the slippery stone steps to the Decal Dungeon to look for some RAF Sabre stickers for 6-3 winged examples and to see if I have any Phoney War Spitfire Transfers lying around.

 

Mind trams.


Chris

 

 

Edited by Fatcawthorne
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On 2/6/2019 at 1:02 PM, Biggles87 said:

This is on my list of Airfix kits to buy ( along with the Hunter and Spitfire XIV ) this year. It looks like the suggestion from @Silver Fox on adding the nose transparencies to the fuselage halves first has paid off.

 

John

Thanks John, have to say that's pretty much my wishlist too.

 

A little bit more progress to report.  Gave the white another three very thin coats and am now happy with how the starboard wing looks.

 

DSC_0616DSC_0618

 

Have masked off the underside now and have put a coat of the colour underneath on the masking tape edge to stave off any bleeding under the tape.

 

DSC_0621DSC_0620DSC_0619

 

Well it's time to start putting on some of the topside camouflage and breaking out the wiggly worms - the best bit.  It's not going to happen tonight though as I'm chin-strapped and tomorrow is work then footy (and win or lose we'll be on the booze - should translate that into Latin and add it to my club's badge!) so can't see much happening until Sunday.

 

Have a great weekend all, until next time.

 

Chris

 

 

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On 23/01/2019 at 21:24, Fatcawthorne said:

Now I have added the shelf of electronics behind the turret (very securely!), but now having read some of my references I fear that this may only have applied to the AI equipped Blenheims.  My build doesn't have any of the associated AI aerials and antennae so I'm guessing it shouldn't have these what I suspect are radar sets either.  No mention of this in the Airfix destructions though or am I barking up completely the wrong tree?

 

Chris, great build you have going on here.    As for the "electronics" behind the turret, those are the wireless transmitter and receiver and their associated thingies.    And Airfix did their homework on this one as that is where these items should be in a Mk I (and Mk IV and Mk V).   In the Canadian built Bolingbroke the wireless set is located behind the rear spar with an extra seat for the operator.   The Blenheim Wop/Ag needed to operate his set from his turret seat - just imagine doing that in full flying kit!

 

Cheers,

Walter

 

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On 2/9/2019 at 12:53 PM, Walter Lindekens said:

Chris, great build you have going on here.    As for the "electronics" behind the turret, those are the wireless transmitter and receiver and their associated thingies.    And Airfix did their homework on this one as that is where these items should be in a Mk I (and Mk IV and Mk V).   In the Canadian built Bolingbroke the wireless set is located behind the rear spar with an extra seat for the operator.   The Blenheim Wop/Ag needed to operate his set from his turret seat - just imagine doing that in full flying kit!

 

Cheers,

Walter

 

Thank you Walter, It's always good to have someone who knows their onions chipping in.  Can't say that I'd really have been too happy with those seating arrangements, perhaps the RAF offered a contortionist course as part of the conversion to type!

 

Well we survived football, still a one-handed, broken-necked, far too old goalkeeping performance in that Marks Tey Vets lost 8-0 to FC Clacton, but I reckon I kept out about double the chances that actually went in, and my team was as weak as it's been all year but they showed proper heart in keeping the score down to that!  We won our first game in 6 years 2 weeks back, so the bubble has been well and truly burst!!

 

Despite the dodgy tendon in my left forearm I did get a tiny bit of bench time in today and masked the turret (a nice sharp new Swann Morton 10a blade was the order of the day here) and gave it a coat of future to help keep the edges sharp.

 

036037

 

I also put the first coat of Dark Earth (Tamiya's Flat Earth) over my pre-shading.  OK the future hadn't dried on the turret at that point so that'll have to get its first going over next time - schoolboy error.

 

035034

 

033

 

032

 

 

OK not a huge amount but progress nonetheless.

 

Hope Monday is good for you all out there, until the next one.


Chris

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Hi all, After reading Dogsbody’s post#14 on whether Airfix based the location of the radio transmitter/receiver aft of the turret on the Canadian built Bolingbroke I started looking through my references for a definite answer.

My  reference  is Graham Warner’s “The Bristol Blenheim, A Complete History”  which should be a must have for anyone with an interest in the Blenheim.  Starting on page 154 there is a photo of the R1082 Receiver and the T1083 Transmitter mounted on a shelf behind the turret which is removed in this picture. On Page 155 is a description of the installation which mentions the wooden drawers under the shelf ,complete with brass kitchen handles, were the spare coils were stored. On page 275 there is a picture looking aft from just forward of the open overhead rear entrance which shows the very crowded interior with the open entrance hatch to the right of the image, the ladder to the left, the twin Browning turret and the radio sets behind. If anyone plans on leaving the entrance hatch open this is a must see image for detailing this area. According to the narrative the R1082/T1083 were replaced by 1941 with the later T1154/R1155. Starting on p559-560 there is a lovely set of three photos showing the three crew members of an 11 Squadron MK.IV. The image on p560 shows the Wop/Ag reaching beyond the turret controls to operate the side mounted R1155.

 

Somewhere I recall reading that because of their location adjusting the T/R sets was always a bit awkward  even under the best of conditions but so far I haven’t been able to lay my hands on it. Sorry to be so long winded but hope this helps.

 

Still waiting for the kit to arrive on this side of the pond and I hope that my build is half as good as yours.

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I know that somewhere I read that the Bristol-built Blenheims and the Canadian-built Bolingbrokes and the radio equipment in different locations in the fuselage, but be danged if I can find it now. I'm not arguing with anyone who posted after I did. I would just like to find where I might have read it before.

 

 

Chris

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