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AZ Model Curtiss Mohawk Mk.IV, Sqn. Ldr. `Porky' Jeffries, 155 Sqn, Agartala, India 1943


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Hiya Folks,

                 The Mohawk equipped two full RAF squadrons 5 and 155 Sqn`s plus partially equipped 146 Sqn, all in India and operating over the Indian/Burmese border against the Japanese between 1942-44. During this time it wore quite a few different colours and markings combinations and they have always fascinated me, and I want to model quite a few of them. The AZ Model kit of the Mohawk Mk.IVwas only recently released and I have built two of them side by side, one as a SAAF aircraft opeating against the Italian`s over East Africa which is almost finished,.... and this one which represents the personal aircraft of Sqn. Ldr. `Porky' Jeffries, the CO of 155 Sqn based at Agartala in India. It wears the early SEAC roundels where the red of the roundels and fin flash was simply overpainted using white,...... and it evenually `morphed' into the better known small two toned blue SEAC roundel as the large white areas were deemed to ruin camouflage and be too easy to see,...... unlike the RAAF who were happy to remain with the blue and white roundel!  As the Mohawk was one of the few radial engined fighters operating over the Burma front between 1942-44 it was often mistaken for a Japanese aircraft so yellow panels were added to the wing tips and under the engine cowling as i/d markings.

Here are some Mohawk pics;,

Mohawk-1.jpgMohawk-3.jpg

 New Zealander Ray McLauchlan of 5 Sqn with his Mohawk circa 1943, note the yellow wing tip markings and the light bomb racks under the wings;

mohawk-Ray-Mc-Lauchlan-RNZAF-No-5-Squadr

 

155 Sqn Mohawks at the time the standard C/C1 Type markings were converted,......;

mohawk-Curtiss-P-36-A-RAF-155-Sqn-B-BS79

 

Anyway,.... onto the model,..... it looks nice on the sprues but it isn`t the easiest to  build and the wing mating edges needed to be sanded like a vacuform,, the propeller doesn`t look very accurate but it is at least a readily available Mohawk and for that we need to be thankful! The RAF Mohawk`s did not have the full wheel door assembly so these were modified accordingly by removing the lower part.  While building the model I could only find one photo of the aircraft and this was a view of the Welsh Dragon nose art so I went along mostly with the kit decals, although I based the camouflage pattern on a few different 155 Sqn Mohawks,....and just as the model was almost finished I found a photo of the aircraft,..... sods law,..... and it had a Sqn. Ldr`s pennant on the engine cowling,....so one was added from the spares box! The kits representation of the serial number was also too small,.... so one was cobbled together from various sheets. Here is the original reference photo that I had depicting the Welsh Dragon and Jeffries kill markings against Italian and German opponents,.....he would later add a Japanese hinomaru to his tally on this aircraft;

mohawk-Curtiss-P-36-A-RAF-155-Sqn-Z-BB92

 

Here is the model;  

 

 f-NEW.jpg

 f1.jpg

f4.jpg

f5.jpg

f6-NEW.jpg

f7-NEW.jpg

f8.jpg

f9.jpg

f18-NEW.jpg

f19.jpg

 

I will be building more of these,..... and hopefully I `ll get better results!

Cheers

           Tony 

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Gorgeous result.  Thanks too for the history of its Far East use.  That was new to me.

 

David

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Looks great. Unusual scheme too. I really like the radial engined Hawks. Something pugnacious about them. Look forward to seeing the SAAF version. 

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Thanks for the comments and glad you like it,

Cheers

            Tony

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  • 8 months later...

Hi Tony,

 

Your model looks really good. I will use your post as reference for our next project. I was thinking about doing the Mohawk series after the Mustang ones.

 

Cheers

Santiago

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Lovely build Tony, I have done their MkIII and have this one yet to build. As mentioned, not the easiest but they look the the part!

 

Davey.

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Another fantastic build from your stable, Tony, and a very interesting background, too. I hadn't realised that the RAF Mohawks ever saw action, either.

 

I fear this may be another type that I need to add to my to-build list. You're a bad influence!!!

 

Kind regards,

 

Mark

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21 hours ago, diamant said:

Hi Tony,

 

Your model looks really good. I will use your post as reference for our next project. I was thinking about doing the Mohawk series after the Mustang ones.

 

Cheers

Santiago

Thanks Santiago,... there are certainly enough versions and schemes for you to have a go at!

7 hours ago, Wulfman said:

Great job on the Mohawk, and thanks for the photos !

 

Wulfman

Cheer Wulfman and no problems mate.

 

6 hours ago, bigbadbadge said:

Sorry to have missed this Tony, great work as ot looks fab, the yellow wingtips adding further interest too.

Great job

Chris

 

Cheers Chris,.... yeah they are nice and colourful,... added to make them look different toJapaneseradial engined fighters.

6 hours ago, 85sqn said:

Love it! Maybe I'll get around to one, someday!

Thanks mate,..... I`ll look forward to it!

4 hours ago, DaveyGair said:

Lovely build Tony, I have done their MkIII and have this one yet to build. As mentioned, not the easiest but they look the the part!

 

Davey.

Thanks Davey,..... yeah not the easiest but the best option so far in 1/72nd.  

 

3 hours ago, 2996 Victor said:

Another fantastic build from your stable, Tony, and a very interesting background, too. I hadn't realised that the RAF Mohawks ever saw action, either.

 

I fear this may be another type that I need to add to my to-build list. You're a bad influence!!!

 

Kind regards,

 

Mark

Thanks Mark,..... yeah they saw lots of action ans served front line until 1944,..... the SAAF used them in East Africa too. 

Bad influence,.... ME,.... LOL!!

 

Thanks folks,... I hadn`t expected this one to raise its head again,

Cheers

         Tony

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2 hours ago, tonyot said:
23 hours ago, diamant said:

Hi Tony,

 

Your model looks really good. I will use your post as reference for our next project. I was thinking about doing the Mohawk series after the Mustang ones.

 

Cheers

Santiago

Thanks Santiago,... there are certainly enough versions and schemes for you to have a go at!

Hi Tony,

 

Yes but I do not have much information nor reference of this type. Unfortunately It is an obscure subject to us.

 

Cheers

Santiago

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@tonyot and @diamant

 

Hi Tony and Santiago,

 

my memory clunked into action and it occurred to me in the small hours of the night that there was a multi-part history of the Hawk 75/P-36 series in the Air Enthusiast magazine. A quick search through my venerable copies confirmed that it was a three-part article appearing in the November 1971, December 1971 and January 1972 issues, these are the covers (sorry for the poor-quality photograph):

 

http://IMG-20210127-092106969.jpg

 

An excellent two-page cutaway drawing and five colour profiles are included in the first part. These magazines do crop up on that well-known internet auction site*, so could be worth trying to track down.

 

Kind regards,

 

Mark

 

* there are several copies of each currently listed.

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                I really admired Tony’s magnificent miniature Mohawk when it was first posted. I am interested to see renewed interest in the topic.

                As far as references are concerned, back in 1985 my little publishing company, Canada’s Wings, published a book by my friend Gerry Beauchamp entitled Mohawks over Burma. It had many photos and drawings as well as a lot of details and reminiscences of its operational career. Midland Publications in the UK asked for a piece of the action so we ran off another 1000 copies under their imprimatur and I believe they did quite well with it.

                Both editions are long out of print but I am immodest enough to say that if one could be tracked down, it would be an excellent reference for the modeller.

Carl

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6 minutes ago, Carl V said:

                I really admired Tony’s magnificent miniature Mohawk when it was first posted. I am interested to see renewed interest in the topic.

                As far as references are concerned, back in 1985 my little publishing company, Canada’s Wings, published a book by my friend Gerry Beauchamp entitled Mohawks over Burma. It had many photos and drawings as well as a lot of details and reminiscences of its operational career. Midland Publications in the UK asked for a piece of the action so we ran off another 1000 copies under their imprimatur and I believe they did quite well with it.

                Both editions are long out of print but I am immodest enough to say that if one could be tracked down, it would be an excellent reference for the modeller.

Carl

Hello Carl,.... hope you are keeping well my friend and glad you like the Mohawk! I have a copy of the Mohawks Over Burma book and it is superb,..... a brilliant account of the type in RAF service with some  excellent photos and very informative and authorative artwork too ,..... I believe that they are going for quite a price these days and it is one of my more prized books too,.... as is your Liberator & Fortress book! 

Cheers

          Tony

Edited by tonyot
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50 minutes ago, Carl V said:

   I really admired Tony’s magnificent miniature Mohawk when it was first posted. I am interested to see renewed interest in the topic.

Hi,

 

Yes, our idea is to start with the Mohawk series after the Mustang one. 

 

 

We really want to make as many aircrafts as possible but sometime the references material is the limit.

 

Carl,  I have sent you a PM.

 

Cheers

Santiago

 

 

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6 hours ago, Carl V said:

if one could be tracked down, it would be an excellent reference for the modeller.

@Carl V and @tonyot

 

Hi chaps,

 

Being an impetuous sort and keen on acquiring good reference books, I've tracked down a copy of Mohawks over Burma, and blown my grocery shopping budget for the next week in the process!

 

I found it via Abe Books, and there were several copies available if anyone else is looking, prices from £38-ish upwards.

 

Now, how do I explain to my better half that we're having beans on toast for a week?

 

Kind regards,

 

Mark

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Excellent build! This is a real beauty and a great tribute to a forgotten fighter. It would really be nice if one of the Duxford based P-36 would be displayed in the very same colors and markings as your model some day.

Edited by 112 Squadron
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11 hours ago, 2996 Victor said:

Being an impetuous sort and keen on acquiring good reference books, I've tracked down a copy of Mohawks over Burma

Another nice book about the Mohawk in British service was recently published in the Squadrons! series 😉:

 

https://www.raf-in-combat.com/downloads/squadrons-no-17-the-curtiss-mohawk/

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1 hour ago, 112 Squadron said:

Another nice book about the Mohawk in British service was recently published in the Squadrons! series 😉:

 

https://www.raf-in-combat.com/downloads/squadrons-no-17-the-curtiss-mohawk/

 

Thanks - it looks very interesting so I've contacted Phil Listemann and never mind the expense! Just baked beans for the next week, then :D  There look like a lot of other very interesting titles on Phil's page, too.

 

Cheers,

 

Mark

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Very nice work, Tony. I've never heard of them referred to as 'Mohawk' before. Had to go off to Google too find out more.

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On 1/27/2021 at 6:20 PM, Dric said:

Nice and colored !

Thanks Dric!

19 hours ago, 2996 Victor said:

@Carl V and @tonyot

 

Hi chaps,

 

Being an impetuous sort and keen on acquiring good reference books, I've tracked down a copy of Mohawks over Burma, and blown my grocery shopping budget for the next week in the process!

 

I found it via Abe Books, and there were several copies available if anyone else is looking, prices from £38-ish upwards.

 

Now, how do I explain to my better half that we're having beans on toast for a week?

 

Kind regards,

 

Mark

You will enjoy it,.... a proper old fashioned, well researched book which pleases both historian and modeller! The Phil Listermann book is good too and helped a lot for me to arrive at the final colours and markings for this model, with the Sqn Ldr pennant on the engine cowling,..... the photos of this aircraft how it in a transitionary period,.... so C1 Type roundels or modified with the red removed are both OK.

11 hours ago, 112 Squadron said:

Excellent build! This is a real beauty and a great tribute to a forgotten fighter. It would really be nice if one of the Duxford based P-36 would be displayed in the very same colors and markings as your model some day.

Thanks mate. The thing is,.... the P-36/P-36`s at Duxford is/are earlier version`s aren`t they? I know the one wearing French markings is anyway. The RAF Mohawk Mk.IV had the larger nose for a Wright Cyclone engine and the nose guns were recessed inside the cowling. 

 

5 hours ago, Vinnie said:

Very nice work, Tony. I've never heard of them referred to as 'Mohawk' before. Had to go off to Google too find out more.

Thanks mate,.... yeah Mohawk was the RAF name for the Hawk series,..... just like Tomahawk and Kittyhawk were used for later variations of the same basic design.  

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10 minutes ago, tonyot said:

You will enjoy it,.... a proper old fashioned, well researched book which pleases both historian and modeller! The Phil Listermann book is good too and helped a lot for me to arrive at the final colours and markings for this model, with the Sqn Ldr pennant on the engine cowling,..... the photos of this aircraft how it in a transitionary period,.... so C1 Type roundels or modified with the red removed are both OK.

 

Thanks, Tony, I'm looking forward to it! I find the Far East campaigns fascinating and distressing in equal measure.

 

My Grandfather was a Major serving with the Indian Army during the first half of the war in the Far East. Sadly, he had throat cancer, and passed on in 1944 when my Dad was just nine months old.

 

We have a couple of books of his, complete with his handwritten notes in the margins, dating from then. He knew Bill Slim, among others.

 

Of particular interest is O D Gallagher's Retreat in the East, which covers the fall of Rangoon amongst other Allied disasters. There is an interesting chapter relating to the RAF fighter squadron operating from Rangoon golf club, and their attempts at night-fighting in Brewster Buffaloes, together with descriptions of AVG operations.

 

Retreat in the East is well worth tracking down.

 

Kind regards,

 

Mark

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