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Bedders

P-51D-5 20th FG, 1/72

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Morning All,

 

After a pause for the Cenotaph this morning I'm now able to post up my first completion in a good while. One of my favourite Mustangs, again using the Airfix 1/72 kit. It's an early D-5 model from the 20th FG. The beautiful nose art and KIS(S) fuselage codes have stayed in my mind since I first saw the colour profile in my Dad's copy of "The Mighty Eighth". So when I found that PrintScale had done the decals in 1/72 I knew the time had come to build it.

 

The Airfix kit is straightforward enough but I had to remove/reshape the tail fillet and correct the hinge lines on the elevators. Then it was a question of getting the paint job right which was a bit complicated around the nose art, but worked out OK. Hope you like the results.

 

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You'll notice that the wheel well ceilings are two different colours.   This was a bit of fun: I read somewhere (on BM) that wheel well ceilings were either left natural aluminium or painted yellow zinc cromate, depending on what was in the parts bin. Ribs were usually YZC, as was the rear spar. Given that the wing skins were constructed separately before being mated with the fuselage, I thought I'd do one wheel well in each colour.

 

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With some friends:

 

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Here's the original, taken around August-September 1944, not long after 20FG converted from P-38s, using new airframes that it seems never received invasion stripes. So they just had the black theatre stripes which were overpainted on the topsides, probably with RAF dark green. This aircraft crashed in an accident in October 1944, the pilot - Lt Walter Mullins, being lost, and commemorated at the Cambridge US cemetery.

 

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And here's a good photo of a sister-ship.

 

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Finally that profile that sparked my interest years ago.

 

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Thanks for looking,

 

Justin

Edited by Bedders

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The wings do look great.  Would you share your method for filling the panel lines?  I've tried several methods on my P-51s and none are as quick and easy as I'd like.

 

Good job removing the fin fillet as well.  

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Beautifully done!

Nice idea with the wheel wells and quite plausible too, by the sound of it.

Love the subtle paint chipping.

:goodjob:

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On 11/10/2019 at 8:27 PM, Jackson Duvalier said:

The wings do look great.  Would you share your method for filling the panel lines?  I've tried several methods on my P-51s and none are as quick and easy as I'd like.

 

Good job removing the fin fillet as well.  

Thanks everyone. Jackson, for the panel lines I used normal filler this time. I've used Mr Surfacer in the past, and also Tipp-ex correction fluid. The liquids are easier to apply but harder to remove. So I'll probably stick to the filler in future, even if it takes a bit of time. Im not convinced that the panel line filling needs to be perfect. On the real aircraft the cracks began to appear naturally after a time, so an indication of what lies beneath isn't a disaster.

 

Justin 

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I love the od green p-51’s! I’m going to be building a model of “happy jacks go buggy” from 20th fg as soon as I’m done with a 110 I’m working on currently. It’ll be my first attempt at a bare metal finish, on the fuselage atleast. What type of paint did you use for your aluminum because it looks great!

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8 hours ago, Bedders said:

for the panel lines I used normal filler this time. I've used Mr Surfacer in the past, and also Tipp-ex correction fluid. The liquids are easier to apply but harder to remove. So I'll probably stick to the filler in future, even if it takes a bit of time. Im not convinced that the panel line filling needs to be perfect. On the real aircraft the cracks began to appear naturally after a time, so an indication of what lies beneath isn't a disaster.

 

I've tried Mr. Surfacer and correction fluid also, and PPP and Tamiya white putty.  The solvent-dipped cotton bud wipe down hasn't easily gotten me the desired result with the liquid fillers either.  There's always some sanding.  C'est la vie.  

 

I agree with your assessment of the ghostly cracks and imperfections, a selective adoption of the wabi-sabi concept can be helpful in preventing analysis paralysis.

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4 hours ago, RT Nevada said:

I love the od green p-51’s! I’m going to be building a model of “happy jacks go buggy” from 20th fg as soon as I’m done with a 110 I’m working on currently. It’ll be my first attempt at a bare metal finish, on the fuselage atleast. What type of paint did you use for your aluminum because it looks great!

Thanks RT. The aluminium is Alclad II. I don't have huge amounts of time available for airbrushing so my standard, reasonably quick method at the moment is to prime the model with Mr Surfacer 1200 out of the rattle can, and sand it nice and smooth. Then a coat of Alclad Alumininium over the whole airframe which represents the painted areas of the wings and serves as a base for other shades elsewhere. The wings then got masked off and the natural metal areas left exposed for a coat of Alclad polished aluminium. The stainless steel areas around fhe exhaust are Duraluminium. Then a brushed on coat of Aqua gloss to protect it all, before other colours go on. Here's a photo of the model after I'd done the metallics and black areas, and before the OD went onto the nose, and RAF dark green onto the wings. I found the decal for the 55FS tail triangle a bit small, so I painted that and then cut out the S to add later. Must say I liked the look of the black stripes on the wings, and it slightly pained me to paint them over with green. So I'll just have to build another Mustang now!

 

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Justin

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10 hours ago, Bedders said:

Thanks RT. The aluminium is Alclad II. I don't have huge amounts of time available for airbrushing so my standard, reasonably quick method at the moment is to prime the model with Mr Surfacer 1200 out of the rattle can, and sand it nice and smooth. Then a coat of Alclad Alumininium over the whole airframe which represents the painted areas of the wings and serves as a base for other shades elsewhere. The wings then got masked off and the natural metal areas left exposed for a coat of Alclad polished aluminium. The stainless steel areas around fhe exhaust are Duraluminium. Then a brushed on coat of Aqua gloss to protect it all, before other colours go on. Here's a photo of the model after I'd done the metallics and black areas, and before the OD went onto the nose, and RAF dark green onto the wings. I found the decal for the 55FS tail triangle a bit small, so I painted that and then cut out the S to add later. Must say I liked the look of the black stripes on the wings, and it slightly pained me to paint them over with green. So I'll just have to build another Mustang now!

 

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Justin

Thanks for the detailed explanation! That will be my first attempt with alclad so that will definitely help me in my process. I’m gonna try it out on a test bed tho first haha. What grit sandpaper do you use to sand the mr surfacer?

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Justin,

 

Awesome 20th FG Mustang! I like the asymmetrical finish in the wheel bays, which was often seen on bare metal P-51D's- nice little detail. One observation- hard tp see on your photos, but did you leave a "ghost image" of the black identity wing and stabilizer bands that were overpainted with OD? That would be the only thing I could think of to take this outstanding build up another notch. Like the partially bled down fairing doors, you have portrayed some little details that make this a replica, not just a model. I am also planning to do Happy Jack's Go Buggy, of which a beautifully restored example is based here where I live- I get to see and hear her fly over my house all the time! (See the link below for restoration photos which also illustrate the same wheel bay treatment as your model!) Well done!

Mike

 

http://midwestaero.com/site/Photo_Gallery/Pages/Happy_Jacks_Go_Buggy.html

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30 minutes ago, 72modeler said:

Justin,

 

Awesome 20th FG Mustang! I like the asymmetrical finish in the wheel bays, which was often seen on bare metal P-51D's- nice little detail. One observation- hard tp see on your photos, but did you leave a "ghost image" of the black identity wing and stabilizer bands that were overpainted with OD? That would be the only thing I could think of to take this outstanding build up another notch. Like the partially bled down fairing doors, you have portrayed some little details that make this a replica, not just a model. I am also planning to do Happy Jack's Go Buggy, of which a beautifully restored example is based here where I live- I get to see and hear her fly over my house all the time! (See the link below for restoration photos which also illustrate the same wheel bay treatment as your model!) Well done!

Mike

 

http://midwestaero.com/site/Photo_Gallery/Pages/Happy_Jacks_Go_Buggy.html

Thanks folks. Mike, there is a slight ghost of the black stripes on the top surfaces, but less visible than I would have liked. This is because the dark green is a handmade mix of Tamiya paints to match xtracrylix RAF dark green. I mixed it myself as I find Tamiya easier to brush-paint and needed to do that around the nose artwork.  The problem was that the first mix I made came out wrong and I had to correct it and spray again. So the ghost stripes unfortunately got two coats of paint rather than the intended one!

 

HJGB is another 20th FG beauty. I much prefer the earlier black-white nose-band to the later piano keys. Interesting that Ilfrey's machine did get invasion stripes, at least underneath. Good luck with the build.

 

Justin

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Cracking job, looks awesome

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That’s a great build and finish, I did the same scheme on my ancient Heller kit, many years ago.

(This came with no fin fillet).

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