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Lancaster B.lll Special, Op Chastise 1943. Finished 21/05


DaveJL
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Hello all,

 

Here is my entry for the group build - Airfix's recent tooling of the Lancaster B.lll Special of 617 Squadron, flown by Wing Commander Guy Gibson VC, DSO & bar, DFC & bar, on the night of 16/17th May 1943 - Operation Chastise. It's been done plenty of times before but it's a first ever Lancaster for me (the shame!)

 

Kit:

 

49588283058_916699b2a8_b.jpg

49588774386_e82dee2e84_b.jpg

 

Will be mainly OOB other than some Eduard etch for the cockpit and some masks:

 

49588282593_b6535da3b8_b.jpg

 

Scheme:

 

49588282338_0b94db382a_b.jpg

 

Will be a few weeks before I make a start due to another group build commitment but looking forward to it.

 

Dave

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It's always good to get off the mark Dave. I haven't built a Lanc since I bashed together the old Matchbox kit back when I was about 13 (naturally I chose the RAAF scheme!). The new Airfix job is a popular choice for all the right reasons, so I wish you all the best getting this one done. 

 

Cheers.. Dave 

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Hi,

 

As I just posted in @Harry_the_Spider's thread, some sources say that the "Specials" used in the dams raid had a single 0.303mg in the belly behind the bomb bay - did Airfix include this? Mind you I am not sure it is correct anyway.

 

Cheers

 

Pete

Edited by PeterB
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Thanks chaps.

2 hours ago, PeterB said:

Hi,

 

As I just posted in @Harry_the_Spider's thread, some sources say that the "Specials" used in the dams raid had a single 0.303mg in the belly behind the bomb bay - did Airfix include this? Mind you I am not sure it is correct anyway.

 

Cheers

 

Pete

I don't believe it's in the Airfix kit and I haven't seen any pictures of it fitted. I've also just finished 'Enemy Coast Ahead' by W/C Gibson and he makes no reference to it either.

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2 hours ago, PeterB said:

Hi,

 

As I just posted in @Harry_the_Spider's thread, some sources say that the "Specials" used in the dams raid had a single 0.303mg in the belly behind the bomb bay - did Airfix include this? Mind you I am not sure it is correct anyway.

 

Cheers

 

Pete

Yes the Airfix kit has the parts for the underfuselage gun mounting (G24) and the gun itself (a VGO) (G11). All the Dambuster lancs were fitted with the hatch and mount, whether any carried the gun on the raid isn't known. The Airfix standard boxing shows the parts being used for McCarthy's AJ*T, but not for Barlow's AJ*E, the gift set boxing with Gibson's decals shows (incorrectly, I think) a plain blanking plate fitted. There are a few photo's of Dams Lancs where the gun mount is visible, but not the gun. It is also thought the height setting rear spotlight was mounted in the gun mount position, which would preclude the fitting of the gun.

There's an interesting Wingleader magazine on the Dambusters available for free here underfuselage gun is page 27, spotlight page 41. The gun mount can be seen in photos on pp 21, 23, 28, & 42.

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Hi Dave,

 

On the instructions for the A09007 boxing it is shown as an option - not sure is that is the 2nd or 3rd moulding. Most of the books I have read do not mention it as part of the mods for "Chastise" but at least one shows a side profile with the gun on Gibson's plane. However, I have no idea how accurate that is, and whether or not any of the planes involved actually bothered to fit it. I dare say somebody on the forum will know more about it than I do.

 

Pete

 

In fact whilst I was writing this and brewing a cup of tea, Dave S has replied as above.

Edited by PeterB
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48 minutes ago, Dave Swindell said:

Yes the Airfix kit has the parts for the underfuselage gun mounting (G24) and the gun itself (a VGO) (G11). All the Dambuster lancs were fitted with the hatch and mount, whether any carried the gun on the raid isn't known. The Airfix standard boxing shows the parts being used for McCarthy's AJ*T, but not for Barlow's AJ*E, the gift set boxing with Gibson's decals shows (incorrectly, I think) a plain blanking plate fitted. There are a few photo's of Dams Lancs where the gun mount is visible, but not the gun. It is also thought the height setting rear spotlight was mounted in the gun mount position, which would preclude the fitting of the gun.

There's an interesting Wingleader magazine on the Dambusters available for free here underfuselage gun is page 27, spotlight page 41. The gun mount can be seen in photos on pp 21, 23, 28, & 42.

Thanks for the link mate, very useful!

 

I've never built a Lanc, so I'll be asking plenty of questions!

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  • 5 weeks later...

A small bit done, but a start none the less. Interior parts built up and prepped, ready for paint and Eduard etch:

 

49727459306_efea452fb7_b.jpg

49726911773_d07dedc266_b.jpg

 

Upkeep assembled:

 

49727458971_0253bee9c0_b.jpg

 

Just need to tidy up those seam lines. Does anyone know what colour WC Gibson's Upkeep was?

 

Like I say, at least it's a start! :lol:

 

Dave

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1 hour ago, Ozzy said:

not sure if the colour is entirely accurate, taken outside the 617 hanger at RAF Scampton.

 

image.jpg

Thanks mate. Black it would appear then! Airfix suggest dark green...

1 hour ago, CliffB said:

It's nice to see this one started Dave.  Enjoy the build!

 

Cheers

Cheers Cliff.

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In the Haynes manual covering the Dam Busters there is a translated copy of the drawings produced by the German bomb disposal section stating the mine was a ‘dark red oxide’.

 

Mike

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On 03/03/2020 at 07:51, Dave Swindell said:

Yes the Airfix kit has the parts for the underfuselage gun mounting (G24) and the gun itself (a VGO) (G11). All the Dambuster lancs were fitted with the hatch and mount, whether any carried the gun on the raid isn't known. The Airfix standard boxing shows the parts being used for McCarthy's AJ*T, but not for Barlow's AJ*E, the gift set boxing with Gibson's decals shows (incorrectly, I think) a plain blanking plate fitted. There are a few photo's of Dams Lancs where the gun mount is visible, but not the gun. It is also thought the height setting rear spotlight was mounted in the gun mount position, which would preclude the fitting of the gun.

There's an interesting Wingleader magazine on the Dambusters available for free here underfuselage gun is page 27, spotlight page 41. The gun mount can be seen in photos on pp 21, 23, 28, & 42.

 

From that same issue of Wingleader, on Page 21:

 

49729108612_82a371d444_b.jpg

 

 

 

 

Chris

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12 minutes ago, mick b said:

In the Haynes manual covering the Dam Busters there is a translated copy of the drawings produced by the German bomb disposal section stating the mine was a ‘dark red oxide’.

 

Mike

Thanks Mike, red oxide would give a nice contrast against the black underside of the Lanc.

 

Am I right in saying that the Type 464s were all newly built for the operation? If so I'll know to go light on the interior weathering etc.

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Hi Dave

 

They were delivered between April 22nd - May 16th so probably fairly clean internally as the raid was May 16th. The spare airframe that arrived on the day of the raid was the one McCarthy switched to at the last minute.

 

Mike

Edited by mick b
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On 3/3/2020 at 2:51 PM, Dave Swindell said:

Yes the Airfix kit has the parts for the underfuselage gun mounting (G24) and the gun itself (a VGO) (G11). All the Dambuster lancs were fitted with the hatch and mount, whether any carried the gun on the raid isn't known. The Airfix standard boxing shows the parts being used for McCarthy's AJ*T, but not for Barlow's AJ*E, the gift set boxing with Gibson's decals shows (incorrectly, I think) a plain blanking plate fitted. There are a few photo's of Dams Lancs where the gun mount is visible, but not the gun. It is also thought the height setting rear spotlight was mounted in the gun mount position, which would preclude the fitting of the gun.

There's an interesting Wingleader magazine on the Dambusters available for free here underfuselage gun is page 27, spotlight page 41. The gun mount can be seen in photos on pp 21, 23, 28, & 42.

In the Wing Leader article Simon Parry seems to come down fairly firmly (pp.27-28) on the side of the 617 Lancs not having the actual ventral gun fitted during the raid, attributing the origins of the story to the gun's appearing in the pre-raid stock photos of ED825 (see post 15 above), the aircraft used to test the mount and the aircraft he excavated in France.  He even makes a throwaway reference to the number of model Lancasters which erroneously feature it.  The case that they had the gun mount is persuasive.

Edited by Seahawk
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11 hours ago, mick b said:

Hi Dave

 

They were delivered between April 22nd - May 16th so probably fairly clean internally as the raid was May 16th. The spare airframe that arrived on the day of the raid was the one McCarthy switched to at the last minute.

 

Mike

Great, cheers Mike. I’ll not bother with any great weathering in the interior. Not much will be seen anyway!

11 hours ago, dogsbody said:

From SAM Volume 25 Number 3:

 

65d22587-555c-4e5e-abfa-ae18760372ec.jpg

 

 

I really should re-scan that article.

 

Chris

Perfect, thanks Chris. Green it is!

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6 hours ago, mick b said:

Hi Chris , interesting, do SAM list the reference sources for the bomb colours ? 

 

Barlow’s bomb (AJ-E) was the one caught intact by the Germans.

 

Mike

 

This is what the article has to say:

 

49730955653_4bd7d4fccc_o.jpg

 

49730955678_8a3212c405_o.jpg

 

 

 

 

Chris

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More done today. Interior was painted and the Eduard etch added. I gave it a light dry brushing of silver just to liven it up a bit.

 

49743648372_99cbc903ba_b.jpg

49742777658_a101d6c86d_b.jpg

 

Some scrap etch belts added to the pilots seat and I found some 'maps' which I popped on the the navigators table:

 

49743647917_9508f69e49_b.jpg

49742777208_b6b8794eaa_b.jpg

 

A quick shot of the fuselage halves with the Hasegawa kit:

 

49742776803_d300c04cd4_b.jpg

 

I then moved on and after inserting the windows, I tried to close up the fuselage. The fit is very tight and needed quite a bit of adjusting, so much so that as I was doing it, part of the port fuselage near the rear gunners position cracked. Nothing major but was a bit of a tricky fit. I also added the bracing to the wing spars for the landing gear.

 

49743646132_f7934b40d2_b.jpg

49743325266_a0cbb0b2fd_b.jpg

49743325051_675c754a52_b.jpg

 

Some filler will be needed to tidy it all up.

 

Can anyone advise me if the ventral panel (for the area of the mythical Vickers K gun) is meant to be flush with the fuselage or 'set into' it a bit? I could not get it sitting flush after many attempts.

 

49742823153_84cd023b3e_b.jpg

 

I added a piece of masking tape over the panel so you could get an idea of the depression.

 

Side by side with the Hasegawa kit (which was much easier to close up):

 

49742774783_c67b46a6e4_b.jpg

 

More soon.

 

Dave

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