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neil5208

Bristol Beaufighter in IDF service

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First finish of 2020, Airfix's excellent Bristol Beaufighter. Lovely little kit with some very nice design elements only spoiled by my poor choices during construction. I used Eduards etch for the interior and I had the exterior and landing flap set but elected not to use on this kit. The decals are from ROP decals for foreign users and I used the AML resin flat tail plane conversion to create one of the four aircraft flown by the Israeli Air Force. These aircraft were only used for approx one year as they couldn't get spares to keep them flying. The 2 bombs came from a typhoon kit  as the Israeli used the Beaufighters as ground attack aircraft although one reportedly shot down an Egyptian Spitfire.Painted with Tamiya and Vajello acrylics, panel ine wash with dark brown oil paint. As usual all comment welcome

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Edited by neil5208

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Niiiice 

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That's a very nice Beau. Great paintwork, and nicely done with the canopy. It's extremely clear and shows the cockpit off very well.

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Gidday Neil, although a ship modeler myself I have a bit of a liking for the heavy twin-engined fighters of WW2, the Beaufighter being one of them. I've only built two - a Northrop P-61 Black Widow last year and a Lockheed P-38 about 20 years ago. I like what you've done here, so maybe a Beaufighter or perhaps a Mozzie in the near future? Regards, Jeff.

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Excellent build with a beautiful, smooth finish!

 

A slightly jarring note is provided by the ailerons – if one goes down, the other one goes up for lateral control. They're not flaps that go down together.

 

Kind regards,

 

Joachim

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1 hour ago, Vinnie said:

That's a very nice Beau. Great paintwork, and nicely done with the canopy. It's extremely clear and shows the cockpit off very well.

Best trick learn't sinve restarting modelling, always future floor polish the canopy.

 

4 minutes ago, Spitfire31 said:

Excellent build with a beautiful, smooth finish!

 

A slightly jarring note is provided by the ailerons – if one goes down, the other one goes up for lateral control. They're not flaps that go down together.

 

Kind regards,

 

Joachim

First time I have used Mr Colour leveling thinners when spraying this one, works brilliantly and I sure the instruction show to position in the same position, with check later.

 

Thanks for the comments do far

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I read a great book about the early days of the Israeli Air Force. It included the story of how they came by the Beaufighters.

Briefly (and summarising) in 1948 Israel faced an embargo on importing any military equipment, even though there were a lot of war-surplus aircraft available. The Beaus were available for a song in the UK, but not to Israel. As a result, the Israelis set up a movie production company, to make a film about the Kiwi Beaufighter pilots based out of Scotland during the war. The “film company” bought the aircraft, and spent time flying them around “for the movie” (pilot training), before they disappeared off into the distance, to appear again in Israel!

Some of the things that went on during that period beggared belief. 
cheers

Tania

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Very smart work, i didn't know the Israelis used them.

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22 hours ago, neil5208 said:

I used the AML resin flat tail plane conversion to create one of the four aircraft flown by the Israeli Air Force.

AFAIK they were all Mk.X, and had the kit tailplanes, but I think there are only 2 photos?   The Isradecal sheet has some info, but it's not to hand.

I don't recall them being fitted with rockets.   Shame there is not more info on them

Great build,  :goodjob:

1 hour ago, phildagreek said:

i didn't know the Israelis used them.

Only having 4 they didn't use them much......

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8 hours ago, F1xena said:

I read a great book about the early days of the Israeli Air Force.

You wouldn't happen to recall the title would you Tania? It sounds like something worth tracking down.

Steve.

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8 minutes ago, stevehnz said:

You wouldn't happen to recall the title would you Tania? It sounds like something worth tracking down.

Steve.

It was Angels In The Sky, by Robert Gandt. I can’t recommend it highly enough. Tells of why the Israelis ended up with Me109s (S199s) fighting the Egyptians in Spitfires, where they got their pilots (including Malta hero Screwball Buzz Beurling) and other fascinating stuff. It actually reads like a spy thriller...it’s great.

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24 minutes ago, Troy Smith said:

AFAIK they were all Mk.X, and had the kit tailplanes, but I think there are only 2 photos?   The Isradecal sheet has some info, but it's not to hand.

I don't recall them being fitted with rockets.   Shame there is not more info on them

Great build,  :goodjob:

Only having 4 they didn't use them much......

Found a israeli museum web page with a picture of 171 being loaded with rockets before I started the kit but not been able to find it since

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The Airfix instructions show you that the ailerons can be positioned either 26 degrees up, 15 degrees down or in a neutral position. It does not show both in an up or down position at the same time. 

 

This is where a basic understanding of aircraft comes in handy. If in any doubt, ask here on the forum. All basic questions on model building and any questions on subject will be answered.

 

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Chris

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Very nice looking finish. Love the story behind the aircraft. 

 

I just watched something very similar. Israeli infantry firing surplus Mauser and Pilots flying S-199 smuggled in via Surplus C-46 and B-17 that were forbidden by the U.S. State Dept. (after a mysterious about-face in policy) to go to Israel.  Sometimes History really is stranger than fiction.

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Found this with a Google search, but it may be “Beaufighter generic” as opposed to Israel specific, but says rockets too.

 

“IAF Aircraft Inventory:IAF Aircraft Inventory: Table of Contents

Known as the "Whispering Death" by the Japanese in the far east during WWII, the Bristol Beaufighter was instrumental in driving the Japanese from South East Asia and in the defeat of the Luftwaffe's night bombing offensive against Britain. 4 Beaufighters were purchased for the IAF in Britain on the pretext of being used for a film. In front of the director, the cameras and the whole filming "crew" they took off from a British air field — and never returned. By the time British authorities came to, the four bombers were somewhere over the Mediterranean, on their way to Israel. They took part in operations to drive out invading Egyptian forces on the southern front and also against the Egyptian navy during the War of Independence. On October 22, 1948, a Beaufighter on a sortie to bomb the Egyptian flagship "The Emir Farouk" encountered an Egyptian Hawker Fury. Aware that the Beaufighter stood little chance in a dogfight, the pilot put his bomber into a dive, followed by the Fury, and pulled up in time to see the fighter crash into the sea behind him. Unfortunately, the pilot of the Beaufighter was killed the next day, bombing an enemy stronghold on the southern front. The remaining aircraft were put out of service shortly after the end of the war. 

Specification: Bristol Beaufighter TF.Mk X
Type: three seat anti-shipping strike fighter.
Powerplant: 2 * Bristol Hercules XVII.
Performance: max speed — 303 mph at 13,000ft, operational range — 1,470 miles.
Weights: max takeoff weight — 11521kg.
Dimensions: span — 17.63m, length — 12.70m.
Armament: 4 * 20mm cannon and 1* 7.7mm machine gun with 2 * 113kg bombs or 8 * 41kg rockets under the wings. 

Sources:IAF Inventory”

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Very nice work indeed and an interesting back story to the aircraft as well!

👍👍

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I see the Feb 2020 edition of Scale Aircraft Modelling has an “Aircraft in Profile” article on the Israeli Beaufighters.

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4 hours ago, EwenS said:

I see the Feb 2020 edition of Scale Aircraft Modelling has an “Aircraft in Profile” article on the Israeli Beaufighters.

I'll have a look next time I'm in the news agents

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Looks very cool in that scheme.

 

Sadly this is all that is left of an Israeli Beau, seen last January at the IDF/AF Museum:

 

46224295375_2f6f464ebe_o.jpgBeaufighter remains by tony_inkster, on Flickr

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