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Three 'Hang-Fires' Lurking Round The Edges Of The Bench


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These are three builds I began over the last couple of years, all of which halted at that stage in a build I like to call 'putting off dealing with the @%&##*% clear bits', which is something I really do not much like to do. They are beginning to stare at me accusingly, and I really ought to bite the bullet and at least proceed with the canopies, especially since I have the write-ups done for two of them....

 

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This is an old Matchbox Wellesley, one of the first second-hand kits I bought (from Mr. Garrity at Rare Plane Detective). It is marked as an early service machine of 76 Sqdn. Being red with a yellow pinstripe surround, the '76' doesn't show up well in the picture. I was intending a 'nostalgia build' of three types that were part of the original RAF expansion scheme for bombers using only vintage kits, with but one or two small corrections allowed, and with crew figures. In this case the correction is the deck and headrest behind the pilot. The kit leaves a big gap instead.

 

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This is a Mohawk IV (Cyclone powered Hawk 75), as employed by 155 Sqdn in late 1943 on the Burma front. I attribute powers of witchery to the wife, because I dropped the instrument panel, with glue on, into the fuselage maw, and some weeks later, when she had just come into the room, I had the thing in my hand, gave it an idle shake, and damn if the panel did not fall right out the cockpit opening. The model also managed some airborne time (not a toss, something got moved under it quite carelessly) at the end of which it shed tailplanes, and took a few scrapes and dents. There has been considerable tromp l'oeil  correction to get the cowling to at least appear correct. I am a little proud of the yellow and Sky identity markings. They are not masked, but done free-hand, with the aid of a lightly scribed line, which stops the flow of paint, and fills as it does.

 

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This is an old Heller Spitfire V, laid in for possible use of its nose in converting an old-tool Airfix Defiant. That kit got built OOB, and afterwards I was struck by some pictures of bare metal Spitfire Vs in Australia. This one is from a training unit, and has a quite odd back-story, regarding both its origins and its eventual fate.. Not my best foiling effort, but the camera is kind, and it's certainly a novel finish for an early-ish Spitfire. I took it up after doing an old-tool Airfix Spitfire I, in a 'let's play two!' spirit. I still have a new-tool Airfix Spitfire I on the shelves.

As you can see, these all need a canopy, and I really ought to take a session and get that done for all three of these, then see what's what once they're over that hump.

Not to be viewed as lapsing from 'El Sonora', mind. That still continues, and there ought to be something fresh up on it next week....

Edited by Old Man
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I shall be pleased to see write ups on all of these come the day. I do like the look of the Mohawk. Maybe get is because it is the best photo of the three but maybe too, having one of these in stock, & knowing it's reputation, I can appreciate the skill invested in it. 

Steve.

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5 hours ago, stevehnz said:

I shall be pleased to see write ups on all of these come the day. I do like the look of the Mohawk. Maybe get is because it is the best photo of the three but maybe too, having one of these in stock, & knowing it's reputation, I can appreciate the skill invested in it. 

Steve.

 

Thanks, Steve.

 

I am partial to that one as well. As indicated, it's already led a hard life.

 

I didn't have much trouble putting the Mohawk together. I got the cowling 'throat' looking good by trims and shims, but it's still too small. There's enough plastic to get the shape flaring out a little better while you re-scribe for the short Cyclone cowling. Despite the nice nine-cylinder motor, and the name on the box, this is really still a kit of an earlier Twin Wasp model....

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These look very nice, I find it is amazing tgat when you pick up a stalled project , how quickly it then progresses,  I have been having a stint since April time building stalled projects and have cleared 6 of 12 so far .

The  Mohawk does look good and will be interested in seeing the Spitfire progress.  What foil did you use?  

Chris

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7 hours ago, bigbadbadge said:

These look very nice, I find it is amazing tgat when you pick up a stalled project , how quickly it then progresses,  I have been having a stint since April time building stalled projects and have cleared 6 of 12 so far .

The  Mohawk does look good and will be interested in seeing the Spitfire progress.  What foil did you use?  

Chris

 

Hope you're right, Sir. It's true not much is left on these items.

 

I use kitchen foil, boiled in water egg-shells have been boiled in to take down the shine, and use MicroScale foil adhesive to stick it on.

 

I am off now to clear the bench for clear bits work, at any rate, so let's hope for the best....

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15 hours ago, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

I have the Wellesley slated for a soonish start so going to take a few notes. 

 Are you doing the old Matchbox or the new Valom, Sir?

 

I don't recall any particular fit issues with the Maychbox, and except for behing the pilot, made no attempts at improvement. I recall I did use some white glue for filler at the tailplanes, and at the upper wing roots.

 

Clear bits are another matter....

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7 minutes ago, Old Man said:

Are you doing the old Matchbox or the new Valom, Sir?

Matchbox... Planning on an East African example in Faded Dk.Green/Earth or Dk.Green Light earth ? I want to open the waist windows and mount the beam guns. But still researching unit codes and markings. Valom are a bit hard to come by in the states, but wouldn't mind finding/building one of them. 
 

Dennis

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Well, got all the clear bits on last night. The stares are little less accusatory, and I am getting to another project today.

 

Here is the Wellesley, with  a coat of Tamiya matte, and its motor on as well...

 

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Fit on the pilot's canopy is pretty decent. I fastened down the front first, and then the rear, which needed a little push to get lined up right.

 

The rear canopy is pretty poor. It is too narrow for the opening, and on the sides some of the painted frame at the bottom disappears into the hole. I will be doing a little touching up there, but that won't be difficult.

 

This thing is a bear to photograph, by the way --- hard to get it all in focus at once....

 

 

Here is the Mohawk IV:

 

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This one needed a Falcon canopy, as the kit part had gone yellow. After putting in seat and stick, and a coat of Tamiya matte, clear bits went on. I had already made the 'rear vision' panels myself from 15 thou clear sheet, and had trimmed the canopy to fit. It went on without much drama.

 

 

Here is the 'silver Spitfire'...

 

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The Heller canopy came in three parts, all awful small. The parts fit each other quite well, but the littlest bit at the rear is a tad high. This one may need a bit of work, but nothing too extreme.

Edited by Old Man
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12 minutes ago, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

Matchbox... Planning on an East African example in Faded Dk.Green/Earth or Dk.Green Light earth ? I want to open the waist windows and mount the beam guns. But still researching unit codes and markings. Valom are a bit hard to come by in the states, but wouldn't mind finding/building one of them. 
 

Dennis

 A good subject. I have the Warpaint number on the type. By the time they were down there in action, the green had probably been replaced by something resembling Light Earth or Middle Stone, it seems.

 

Opening up the beam is a good idea. The side windows fit well enough, but I dreaded knocking one loose to rattle inside while masking and handling the beast.

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Three excellent builds, if I may say so!

 

I had the Matchbox Wellesley as a youngster, it was one of my later builds so actually wasn't too bad! 35+ years later, I think it may still be haunting my Mother's loft :D

 

I particularly like the finish on the Spit, the NMF with the white empennage looks grand!

 

Kind regards,

 

Mark

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16 minutes ago, Old Man said:

Opening up the beam is a good idea. The side windows fit well enough, but I dreaded knocking one loose to rattle inside while masking and handling the beast.

Mind if I ask a question about the windows in the beam positions ? Were they a) completely removable, b) partially or sectioned, and or c)hinged and latched internally ? Ive only seen a few photo’s and cant quite tell ? 

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Splendid stuff! Having cleared my shelf of shame earlier this year (and rapidly accumulated another) I can say that, for me at least, the action of simply resuming a build does help to rekindle the enthusiasm you had in the first place. Plus, they are half-built already so you are that much closer to the finish!

 

Interesting subjects, looking forward to seeing them all progress.

 

Regards,

Adrian

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3 hours ago, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

Mind if I ask a question about the windows in the beam positions ? Were they a) completely removable, b) partially or sectioned, and or c)hinged and latched internally ? Ive only seen a few photo’s and cant quite tell ? 

 

The 'Warpaint' is not much help on either question, I am afraid. This old thread is worth a trawl, though.

 

At least some of the ones with extra armament seem to have had an extended 'glasshouse' canopy.

Edited by Old Man
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1 hour ago, AdrianMF said:

Splendid stuff! Having cleared my shelf of shame earlier this year (and rapidly accumulated another) I can say that, for me at least, the action of simply resuming a build does help to rekindle the enthusiasm you had in the first place. Plus, they are half-built already so you are that much closer to the finish!

 

Interesting subjects, looking forward to seeing them all progress.

 

Regards,

Adrian

 

Thanks, Adrian.

 

They will go back to the side for a bit, as I have three current projects, including the Martin 'flyer' El Sonora. But I will do a bit on each of these each session at the bench. All that is really left is undercarriage and detail work....

 

Congratulations on reviving the Long Range Monoplane.

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3 hours ago, 2996 Victor said:

Three excellent builds, if I may say so!

 

I had the Matchbox Wellesley as a youngster, it was one of my later builds so actually wasn't too bad! 35+ years later, I think it may still be haunting my Mother's loft :D

 

I particularly like the finish on the Spit, the NMF with the white empennage looks grand!

 

Kind regards,

 

Mark

 

I was pleasantly surprised when I came back to the hobby and found a kit had been made of Wellesley. One of my all-time favorite oddities.

 

The white was an RAAF recognition marking, which they kept in home-based units as well, though no Japanese machine was likely to be aloft anywhere too near Australia when this Spitfire was on training duties in late 1944. It is a good look, I agree.

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