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Xtrakit Supermarine Swift FR Mk5.***FINISHED***


PeterB
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A few years ago I decided to make a start on a batch of Xtrakits I had previously bought - Scimitar, Swift and Vampire FB5. I got as far as painting up the interior parts but then had to go into hospital for a knee replacement operation and so the kits were put back in their boxes, where they have remained until this KUTA started.

 

The Scimitar is now complete and went together better than expected so I thought I might have a go at finishing the others, starting with the Swift, so here it is.

DSC02280-crop

 There are not as many parts as in the Scimitar and they look slightly better finished, although both were apparently made for Hannants by Sword. The Scimitar has a few accuracy problems but I have no idea how the Swift rates in that respect as most of the reviews I have seen so far are for the later Airfix release, and the one or two about this kit make no mention of any problems except with the fit of the lower wing and perhaps the decals, though they are contradictory on that. This should be an OOB build except for the belly tank, which is not provided, so I have bought a resin Freightdog one intended to correct the Airfix kit part - hopefully it should fit.

 

I first came across the Swift when I received the diecast Dinky one, together with their Hunter as Christmas pressies many years ago. As most of you will know the Swift was designed at the same time as the Hunter and they were to be the RAF's first swept wing fighters - some books say the Swift was intended as a back up for the Hunter in the same way that the Russians tended to build two different makes for each spec in case one was a failure. I am not sure that is correct and in any case it was the Swift that was not up to scratch, at least initially, and so saw little service in its intended role - more on that later.

 

As WWII drew to a close, Supermarine designed and built their first operational jet - the Attacker, which was basically the laminar flow wings of the Spiteful mated with a new fuselage containing a Nene jet engine. It was actually not a bad plane, but was soon outdated by American machines such as the Sabre with swept wings, so Supermarine were asked to develop a swept wing version - Hawker had a similar request which resulted in the P.1052, a swept wing version of their Sea Hawk (P.1040 built mostly by Armstrong Whitworth), which via the P.1081 with a jetpipe in the tail, became the Hunter. The Supermarine effort was the Type 510 which had swept wings and tail surfaces but retained many features of the Attacker including the tail wheel undercarriage.

510-crop

Although a considerable improvement on the Attacker, it still left something to be desired, so after experiments with a tail end and jet pipe that could be moved up and down in flight were abandoned, the Type 535 arrived, with a longer nose and nosewheel u/c.

535-crop

This was then developed into the Type 541 Swift with the new RR Avon engine which required a fatter fuselage, partly in anticipation of an afterburner being fitted it seems.

 

The F1 with 2x30mm cannon under the nose entered limited service with 56 Squadron but had problems with the engine and general handling, and the replacement F2 with an extra pair of cannon and modified wing roots for ammunition storage (I think) was even worse so both were quickly withdrawn. The F3 with reheat never entered service, and the first true fighter (and last) was the F4 with reheat, an all moving tail and 4 cannon under the nose. Whilst it handled somewhat better there were problems with the afterburner at altitude and as the Hunter had by them got over its development problems, only 9 were built. The kit represents the main production version, the FR5 which was essentially an F4 with only 2 cannon and cameras in the nose. As it flew at low level the problem with the afterburner became irrelevant and it was actually considered a pretty good machine as its fatter fuselage held more fuel than the Hunter giving it a better range - supposedly 630 miles clean compared with 350 for the Hunter F6, and with a similar speed of around 715 mph at sea level.

 

20 F1, 16 F2 and 25 F3 were built, together with another 89 FR5 (plus several conversions from the 9 F4). The modified recce F6 was never built and a further 14 F7 were built to test air to air missiles such as the Fireflash and Firestreak. The F1 entered service in February 1954, and the FR5 in January 1956, but they were retired after only 5 years or so. During its short life the Swift held the World Speed Record for few weeks before losing it to the Douglas Skyray and appeared as the ill fated "star" of the David Lean film "The Sound Barrier" (it crashed killing the pilot). Although not mentioned anywhere I also seem to recall seeing it in a "childrens" film about kids trying to stop the RAF using a local island as a bombing range - something to do with Roman children's graves,  and a colony of birds which they claim are the ghosts of the Roman kids I think. In the climactic scene a bird flies "deliberately" into the intake of a silver Swift, causing the first bombing run to be cancelled. and the site is deemed unsafe due to the risk of bird strikes! Anybody else remember that film - can't remember its title? Probably connected with 56 Squadron being based at Waterbeach in the Cambridge fens which have Roman connections.

 

I doubt I will get much done for a few days as a result of the Christmas festivities, but we will see.

 

Here we go again.

 

Pete

Edited by PeterB
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Hi Pete,

 

thanks for this interesting background data on the Swift. I know close to nothing on that plane, although I like the look of it and because of that  have been ogling the Airfix kit shamelessly. I did not even know Xtrakit had committed a Swift!

I will definitely follow your build, although I will go for the Airfix offering if I weaken past the point of no return! 

 

Have fun!

JR

 

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22 hours ago, jean said:

Hi Pete,

 

thanks for this interesting background data on the Swift. I know close to nothing on that plane, although I like the look of it and because of that  have been ogling the Airfix kit shamelessly. I did not even know Xtrakit had committed a Swift!

I will definitely follow your build, although I will go for the Airfix offering if I weaken past the point of no return! 

 

Have fun!

JR

 

Hi Jean,

 

Actually, until I read the book "Attacker, Swift and Scimitar" for this KUTA my own knowledge was rather limited too. I am tempted to build my part finished Attacker in parallel with the Swift as the one was a development of the other. Together with the Scimitar they are part of a batch of kits I started work on a few years back then had to break off, and they will form a nice "family group" of the last 3 planes to bear the Supermarine name, though I still have a Spitfire 22 and a Seafire 47 in my stash - might do those for the upcoming Spitfire/Seafire GB which starts I think in February 2020. The Airfix Swift is said to be pretty good - a few minor fit problems and the belly tank is said to be not quite right, hence the Freightdog Resin "correction" set.

 

Cheers

 

Pete

Edited by PeterB
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Whilst waiting for the glue to dry on the fuselage of my Attacker, I have made a start on the Swift. First I removed the various ejection pin towers, which was as ever a pain. Then I assembled and fitted the 2 piece air intake trunks, and also assembled the 3 piece jetpipe. Lastly I fitted the nose gear bay and did a dry fit to check everything aligns properly. Not taken any pics yet as there is very little to see at the moment. Tomorrow I should get the inside painted and the cockpit tub and Instrument panel in, together with some weight, and might even get the fuselage closed up. As there is a ruddy big hole in the bottom of the fuselage for the lower wing, it is a sod to line up so I will probably add a couple of tabs to help.

 

More soon.

 

Pete

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On 12/22/2019 at 8:39 PM, PeterB said:

same way that the Russians tended to build two different makes for each spec in case one was a failure.

The myth of the inefficiency of the Soviet planned economy and the lack of competition among Soviet design bureaus is somewhat exaggerated!

In Soviet economic realities survived

only one.

This will be confirmed to you by the MiG-15 defeating La-168,

MiG-17 defeating La-176 & Yak-50, Su-9/11 defeating Ye-150 family and of course  MiG-21

defeating Yak-140!

😉

On 12/22/2019 at 8:39 PM, PeterB said:

The kit represents the main production version, the FR5 which was essentially an F4 with only 2 cannon and cameras in the nose.

You don't believe, but FR.5 & F.4 (and other clear gun fighter) have a different nose cone! Fighter nose cone was a circle, Fighter Recognized was ovals nose cone.

I always suspected this, but now I have evidence in the form of a photo!

😉😎

On 12/22/2019 at 8:39 PM, PeterB said:

Although not mentioned anywhere I also seem to recall seeing it in a "childrens" film about kids trying to stop the RAF using a local island as a bombing range - something to do with Roman children's graves,  and a colony of birds which they claim are the ghosts of the Roman kids I think. In the climactic scene a bird flies "deliberately" into the intake of a silver Swift, causing the first bombing run to be cancelled. and the site is deemed unsafe due to the risk of bird strikes! Anybody else remember that film - can't remember its title?

Probably I see this movie and probably this movie have on YouTube, Me need see bookmarks in my playlist.

On 12/23/2019 at 8:15 PM, jean said:

I know close to nothing on that plane, although I like the look of it and because of that  have been ogling the Airfix kit shamelessly. I did not even know Xtrakit had committed a Swift!

Airfix more better than Xtrakit!

On 12/24/2019 at 2:40 AM, PeterB said:

and they will form a nice "family group" of the last 3 planes to bear the Supermarine

Jet Supermarine "family group" without type 510 & type 545 it's not true!

😉😋😁

 

B.R.

Serge

Edited by Aardvark
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Hi Serge,

 

Thanks for that. I should perhaps have said last 3 "operational" planes! Yes the various "in between" prototypes would be very interesting, as would the swept wing Hawker derivative of the Sea Hawk that eventually lead to the Hunter. Let me know if you find that film - don't think it has ever been repeated on TV over here.

 

Cheers

 

Pete

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On 12/22/2019 at 8:39 PM, PeterB said:

Although not mentioned anywhere I also seem to recall seeing it in a "childrens" film about kids trying to stop the RAF using a local island as a bombing range - something to do with Roman children's graves,  and a colony of birds which they claim are the ghosts of the Roman kids I think. In the climactic scene a bird flies "deliberately" into the intake of a silver Swift, causing the first bombing run to be cancelled. and the site is deemed unsafe due to the risk of bird strikes! Anybody else remember that film - can't remember its title? Probably connected with 56 Squadron being based at Waterbeach in the Cambridge fens which have Roman connections.

 

4 hours ago, PeterB said:

Let me know if you find that film - don't think it has ever been repeated on TV over here.

Peter, this movie:

???

4 hours ago, PeterB said:

Yes the various "in between" prototypes would be very interesting, as would the swept wing Hawker derivative of the Sea Hawk that eventually lead to the Hunter.

For better illustrations evolution aircraft need almost allintermediate links, otherwise it’s hard to explain how the MiG-15 turned out to be a MiG-21 or from Attacker - Scimitar!

😉😁😎

 

 

B.R.

Serge

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Well here it is just before I joined the fuselage halves.

DSC02314-crop

The cockpit tub is in place complete with gunsight, but the seat goes in later - by all accounts it will probably need a bit taking off the botton as it is reputed to sit too high. I had to clip a bit off the top of the backing plate for the jetpipe as it sits exactly where the holes are for the locating pins on the stabilizers! I managed to get 7g of window lead in, some on the floor under the cockpit and most on top of the nose wheel bay, and it seems about right - if not I may end up putting some in the belly tank like my Meteor F4.

 

As Serge says, the FR Mk5 had a camera nose fitted with 3 windows - one in the tip and two in the sides. A review I read says that the side windows are a pain to fit so I have left them off and was going to use Krystal Kleer. However I read that they were provided with sliding metal shutters which were only open when the cameras were in use, and pics confirm this, so I will probably fill them in and paint over them.

 

The fuselage is now glued up and whilst I was waiting for it to dry I test fitted the lower wing. The review I saw said that it was a poor fit, but with a bit of filing it seems to fit quite well so I will glue it on first and then add the upper wings - hopefully that should save on filler.

 

More in a day or two.

 

Pete

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Thanks Serge,

 

I though John Gregson might be in it! So I was a bit off - mostly Vampires but with the odd Meteor and a couple of unidentified Swifts paying a visit. If it was shot in 1954 as Wiki says, they would almost certainly be from 56 Squadron who received their first F1 in March of that year and the first of a few F2 in August.. 

 

Pete

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13 minutes ago, PeterB said:

As Serge says, the FR Mk5 had a camera nose fitted with 3 windows - one in the tip and two in the sides. 

I didn’t mean it at all!

Nose cone Swift Fighter:

Screenshot-20191229-025638.jpg

Screenshot-20191229-025845.jpg

Section red cone fighter it's circle!!!

 

Nose cone Swift Fighter Recognized:

swift-03.jpg

Section black cone fighter

recognized

it's oval!!

 

Understand now differences in geometry nose cone?

13 minutes ago, PeterB said:

A review I read says that the side windows are a pain to fit so I have left them off and was going to use Krystal Kleer. However I read that they were provided with sliding metal shutters which were only open when the cameras were in use, and pics confirm this, so I will probably fill them in and paint over them.

It remains only to complain that there is no direct mail, because after my F. 7 there was a nose Airfix FR. 5 and clear window  for cameras to him.  

I also did not use ejection seat from Airfix because I use Quickboost ejection seat.

With all these details, I could absolutely safely part, but ....

18 minutes ago, PeterB said:

I though John Gregson might be in it!

In reality I don't bookmarks in my playlist on YouTube....but I remembered what I took screenshots, some interesting details aircraft from movie. For lucky, when I founded this screenshot I see watermark owners this YouTube channel, then everything was simple.

 

B.R.

Serge

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Thanks Serge,

 

Actually it is one of the few films to show RAF fighters in the post war "High Speed Silver" finish that I have come across, and quite useful, particularly as next in my build queue is a Vampire FB5 Looks like the nose window may also have had a shutter but I will go with clear I think. There is supposed to be a Lincoln somewhere in the film which would also be useful for a future build.

 

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4 minutes ago, PeterB said:

Thanks Serge,

 

Actually it is one of the few films to show RAF fighters in the post war "High Speed Silver" finish that I have come across, and quite useful, particularly as next in my build queue is a Vampire FB5 Looks like the nose window may also have had a shutter but I will go with clear I think. There is supposed to be a Lincoln somewhere in the film which would also be useful for a future build.

 

That is, is this the same movie, Peter?  Right?

 

B.R.

Serge

 

P.S.

How about this point of view:

???

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Yes Serge,

 

Same film. I was thinking about you when I saw reports of the "Peace conference" in Paris a few weeks back. Not optimistic but I hope it helps.

 

Pete

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1 hour ago, PeterB said:

I was thinking about you when I saw reports of the "Peace conference" in Paris a few weeks back. Not optimistic but I hope it helps.

Thanks Peter!  

 

But no, that will not help.There is no compromise solution to this local conflict, because it is part of a global world conflict. And the most interesting thing is that all the participants in the Paris Summit (all, without exception!) are not the subjects of this conflict, they are objects, objects that do not solve anything. Everything is now decided by two players who are subjects and not objects, but they were not at the Paris Summit.  So what can puppets agree without owners?  About some minor concessions, but about nothing global. In addition, this local conflict brings big money to "big bosses" on both front lines, so why should they rob themselves of big money?

Therefore, there is no hope, but life goes on,  need to prepare for the New Year celebration. 

In this connection, this gentleman:

20191229-220617.jpg

decided to share the celebration of the New Year with us!

True, he had to be taken apart on a fillet and marinated in saline with spices, he promised to be ready in three hours, so I have time to talk about Swift on BM!

B.w. about my unfinished Swift, I’m increasingly visited by the idea of not simulating wires in main wheel bay and finished my Swift F.7 as it is. I struggle with this thought, but it conquers me!

😁😁😁

 

B.R.

Serge

 

 

 

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Hi Serge,

 

Pity about that. I was wondering what happend to your F7. I have got the wings and tail on my FR5 now.

DSC02321-crop

Unfortunately the reviewer was right, the wing fit is not brilliant. Not only was the lower wing a bit warped, but the fuselage section of it is actually a little wide so I will have to do a bit of filling and sanding after all. The instructions do not give the angle of the stabs, but I seem to remember seeing 8 degrees dihedral mentioned, and that matches their drawing, so I have gone with that. I need to fill the wings and fuselgae and clean it ip before I think about rescribing, but it is coming along quite well so far. Dimensionally, the length is OK and the wingspan is perhaps 2mm to big, but I can live with that.

 

Enjoy your fish - looks like a salmon but I am no expert.

 

Pete

Edited by PeterB
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1 hour ago, PeterB said:

I was wondering what happend to your F7.

Nothing fatality:

20191230-034401.jpg

20191230-034418.jpg

20191230-034432.jpg

20191230-034441.jpg

20191230-034533.jpg

Just in main wheel bay need maked wires....but I unlikely maked wires.

1 hour ago, PeterB said:

Enjoy your fish - looks like a salmon but I am no expert.

Yes, it's pink salmon, who have Russian name "Gorbusha", now he looks like that:  

20191230-034052.jpg

Unfortunately

 this is a pink salmon boy, why unfortunately?  Girls pink salmon have caviar.

I upgraded the marinade a bit by adding two tablespoons of balm from a small bottle next to it.  Let's see what happens ...

 

B.R.

Serge

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Sounds like a version of Gravad-Lax pickled Salmon to me. Enjoy!

 

I have primed both the Attacker and Swift using “left over” paint – the Swift got the Tamiya “Dark Gray” I used as the US equivalent to Extra Dark Sea Grey for a recent RN F4U Corsair, and the Attacker is in Tamiya “JNA Gray/Green” I used on a “Pearl Harbor” Val and is quite close to Sky. The priming showed up a few joint problems so they were given another coat of Perfect Plastic Putty (henceforward PPP).

 

PPP is good in that it will fill small seams and can be smoothed with a damp finger so you do not sand away surface detail, but sometimes, if you are as ham fisted as me, you also take out the filler, so I have left it to dry and then sanded it at the wing/fuselage joints. They have since been re-primed and are not too bad.

DSC02325-crop

I have shown you both planes in the one photo because it not only reduces my usage of the 1000 “free” pics I am allowed on Flickr but also shows the similarity between the Swift and what is in effect its “great - grandfather”, the Attacker. As I pointed out earlier in this post, the Swift was developed from the Supermarine Type 510 swept-wing Attacker and the Type 535 which had a longer nose and a nosewheel undercarriage. Believe it or not both have the same dihedral on the stabs but a combination of camera angle and the Swift having swept staps confuses the eye.

 

Pete

 

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1 hour ago, PeterB said:

Believe it or not both have the same dihedral on the stabs but a combination of camera angle and the Swift having swept staps confuses the eye.

Interesting optical illusion!

1 hour ago, PeterB said:

also shows the similarity between the Swift and what is in effect its “great - grandfather”, the Attacker.

 

I spent a long time in the local model shop twirling in the my hands of an Attacker from AZ models, but did not dare to buy it.  His only advantage in front of CMR Attacker is that it is made from plastic and not resin. But for all Attacker need aftermarket decal from Modeldecal because their own decal from box almost no have stencil, but Attacker have many stencil down below.

1 hour ago, PeterB said:

Sounds like a version of Gravad-Lax pickled Salmon to me. Enjoy!

The family will not let my enjoy! 🤗  Out of 1 kg finished marinated fillet

of pink salmon, 0.5 kg is left by tonight! 😁 Tomorrow, or rather today, I still have to do squid and pork leg, which I want to do as a classic knuckle or what the Czechs call "the boar knee".

 

B.R.

Serge

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Hi Serge,

 

You are right about the stencils, and until such time as your postal service gets back to "normal" I guess you are stuck unfortunately. Pity, because other than the problem with the tail wheel bay it is not a bad kit, and mine might just be a bad mould. Don't know if the more recent release has more stencils, particularly the FB 2 version.

 

I hope your New Year is an improvement on the current one.

 

Cheers

 

Pete

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13 hours ago, PeterB said:

PPP is good in that it will fill small seams and can be smoothed with a damp finger so you do not sand away surface detail, but sometimes, if you are as ham fisted as me, you also take out the filler, so I have left it to dry and then sanded it at the wing/fuselage joints. They have since been re-primed and are not too bad.

Hi Peter,

A tip I picked up from BM recently was to give the PPP a coat or two of floor polish if you want it to make it more resistant to sanding - it has worked for me.

 

cheers

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Hi Jinx, 

 

Yes I have tried coating it with varnish and it does seem to help. Also before painting so it does not soak the paint in and show a different texture. Although I have been modelling for 60 years or so I still find some useful tips come up during these GB.

 

Pete

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The Swift FR Mk 5 was operated by two RAF Squadrons between 1956 and 1961, both based in Germany, and the kit provides markings for both. 2 Squadron was based at Geilenkirchen and Jever and 79 was based at Guterslöh. Both have the standard Dark Sea Grey and Dark Green uppers, and the 79 Squadron one has PRU blue unders, whilst the 2 Squadron one has High Speed Silver. In his series of articles for Airfix Mag, later turned into a book called “Fighting Colours”, MJF Bowyer notes that in 1958 he saw a 2 Squadron machine WH124 and others with silver undersides but the kit instructions state that their versions were about in 1961, somewhat later than those shown in the Airfix kit. Whether the 79 machine would still have had blue unders in 1961 is therefore open to question, but that is the one I have decided to go for. Here it is after the first coat of paint.

DSC02327

When taking the above pic I noticed that. as with the Xtrakit Meteor F8 I built recently, the pics on the back of the box do not match the schemes shown on the instruction sheet! With the Meatbox they got two of the planes mixed up, but with the Swift they show them both with blue unders and say the 2 Squadron one was as in 1958 - clearly a lack of checking at some stage, unless they decided to change to the later silver finish after the box art was printed? Also you will note that not only is the actual camo pattern different on the box to the one I am painting from the illustration on the instructions, but they also say 4/79 Squadron on the top one, and the Ian Allan "Attacker, Swift and Scimitar" book I have does say 4 Squadron had FR Mk 5 at Guterslöh in January 1961 but with no start date. I checked and it seems 4 Squadron was disbanded at Jever in late 1960, and reformed shortly afterwards from 69 Squadron, though Wiki says it was flying Hunter FR Mk10, so presumably it took over the Swifts and almost immediately retired them in favour of Hunters. The post war reduction in size of the RAF resulting in disbanding/reforming/renaming does make things a little difficult to follow at times. Actually 4 Squadron has been disbanded twice more since then - in 2010 when it became a Harrier OCU as 4(R) Squadron - R = Reserve, and again in 2011 when the Harrier was retired. It now provides tactical weapons training on Hawks at RAF Valley according to Wiki, though that may now be out of date.

 

For my Attacker build, I have just been re-reading an old article on FAA post war colour schemes in SAM from March 1982 and it has caused mixed emotions, as ever. Nostalgia when I see kits I either bought or perhaps should have bought but did not. Amusement when I see that Tamiya were introducing a new range of 56 acrylic paints which hopefully should prove useful! Frustration verging on annoyance when I see the prices (Airfix series 1 60p) – our hobby has certainly become expensive since back then, and lastly a little sadness when I see that kits I could have sworn I bought in 1978 were not in fact released until 1982 – my memory is clearly not what it used to be - I am getting old.

 

 

Pete

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  • PeterB changed the title to Xtrakit Supermarine Swift FR Mk5.***FINISHED***

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