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Scratchbuilt 1/72 Short Gurnard amphibian


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Hi folks,

Here is my rendition of one of the most ungainly prototypes of the British interwar period, the Short Gurnard amphibian:

 

20201102_101313

The Short Gurnard (a small and aesthetically challenged fish) was one of four types constructed in response to a 1926 Air Ministry requirement for a multi-role naval two-seater. Intended as a 'Jack-of-all-trades' the result was unfortunately a master of none, and the contract was eventually awarded to Hawker for what became the Osprey (navalised Hart).

 

The Gurnard was built in two versions. The Gurnard I, N228, was fitted with the radial Bristol Jupiter engine and was initially built as a landplane, but was later changed to a floatplane format on two floats:

 

Short Gurnard 1

 

The Gurnard II, N229, was constructed with the inline Rolls Royce Falcon engine. Initially appearing as a twin-float floatplane, it was subsequently converted to a landplane:

 

Short Gurnard 2

 

Both aircraft exhibited significant shortcomings that were never fully resolved but, in 1931, the Gurnard II N229 was fitted with the Short 'patented amphibian undercarriage'. This layout comprised a single large central float with smaller underwing floats, plus sprung wheels either side of the main float which could be raised and lowered by means of a geared handwheel in the cockpit. This allowed the aircraft to operate from both land and water. The machine appeared at Hendon in this form in June 1931 before serving as a testbed for engine and cooling systems;

 

Short Gurnard amphibian

 

I had been wondering which aircraft to model for my next scratchbuilding project when I found an old magazine article on the subject of the Short Gurnard. The final small photo in the article showed the amphibian Gurnard II taxying at Hendon; it looked so unlikely that I immediately knew that I had found my subject.

 

This has been by far the most ambitious of my small number of scratchbuilding subjects and necessitated the learning of many new techniques, especially making my own vacformed parts (upper wing, fuselage and floats).  The WiP thread is here:

 

 

The result is far from perfect, but I don't mind admitting that I'm quite pleased with it...and relieved to have finished it!  Here are the photos:

 

20201102_101600 20201102_101541 20201102_101522 20201102_101506 20201102_101444 20201102_101351 20201102_101654 20201102_101631

I've just noticed that the port outer wheel leg has come adrift above the shock absorber - grrr! For what it's worth, the undercarriage does move up and down!

 

Thanks for taking the time to look, and thanks especially to those fellow BM'ers who offered encouragement and advice. My next scratchbuild may have to wait for a while as I'm likely to be quite busy over the next few months (and I have a nice little vacform to complete - cheers, Ian!), but I have a definite candidate in mind from the long list of British interwar prototypes.

 

Stay safe,

Jon

Edited by Jonners
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Beautiful model of (in my view) a very shapely airplane. This level of detail and accuracy in 1/72 is breath-taking.

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So, the unloved Gurnard has at last received its due memorial and a real beauty of a scratchbuild it is! I suspect it is a safe bet that it's not the next injection moulded kit on Airfix' list of 2021 releases.

 

When googling 'Gurnard', most of the hits on the first page were recipies on how to cook a gurnard…

 

Superb modelling! Can't wait for the next one!

 

Kind regards,

 

Joachim

 

 

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A very well done scratch build project! Had you not said it was, I'd have assumed it was a kit build and a very well done build at that. You're to be commended for excellent work and for selecting a plane very rarely (if ever) modeled in any form. My sincerest congratulations!

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Superb modelling skills, Jon 

 

I always really admire scratch builders such as yourself - true modelling resulting in a wonderful build of an unusual subject.

 

Regards

 

Dave

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16 hours ago, TonyOD said:

That's a jawdropper for sure. Beautifully done.

Cheers Tony, that's very generous.

 

16 hours ago, Vinnie said:

That is a stunner. Well done

Thanks Vinnie, glad you like it.

 

15 hours ago, Wulfman said:

Great Gurnard , brilliant scratch build , excellent modelling !

Appreciated, Wulfman. 

 

15 hours ago, Toryu said:

This level of detail and accuracy in 1/72 is breath-taking.

Wow, that's a very generous comment, Toryu. Don't look too closely, though, or you may have to revise the 'accuracy' bit!

 

15 hours ago, Spitfire31 said:

I suspect it is a safe bet that it's not the next injection moulded kit on Airfix' list of 2021 releases.

Hah! Fair point, Joachim! Don't forget, though, that the probability of a new kit being produced is directly proportional to the effort someone puts into scratchbuilding that aircraft type!

 

13 hours ago, SAT69 said:

Had you not said it was, I'd have assumed it was a kit build and a very well done build at that.

!!! I'm not sure I deserve it, but that's a great compliment - thanks.

And there I was, thinking about the rough paint spots, the glue bumps and the not-quite-there shapes (I'm not saying which ones...). 

 

13 hours ago, Lightningboy2000 said:

Fantastic work! Very impressive build & looks very tidy.

Thanks, Martin. 

 

13 hours ago, Epeeman said:

I always really admire scratch builders such as yourself - true modelling resulting in a wonderful build of an unusual subject.

Thank you, Dave. I used to think the same, which eventually inspired me to try it myself. Actually, I probably admire the work of other (and usually better) scratchbuilders even more now!

 

12 hours ago, bigbadbadge said:

What a cracking model Jon  you have done an excellent job, truly great work fella.  What an inspired choice of aircraft to model.  

Chris

Cheers Chris, I'm pleased you like the end result. Thanks for the WiP encouragement. 

 

11 hours ago, mahavelona said:

Never seen this lovely aircraft before, tha KS for bringing it to light!

The British interwar period was an astonishing one for the sheer variety of military prototypes, most of which never reached production. It's a fascinating subject, and the best guide to it has to be this:

20181209_103801

 

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You`ve done a superb job there Jon,....... what a nice little model. I have to say,.... I`m glad the Osprey won the competition though,....... it was a design that was far more easy on the eye! 

Cheers

          Tony

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I'm a bit late to the party Jon, but I am pleased to have found this. An excellent build thread and a super finished model - certainly one to be proud of in every way. I also like these unknown subjects - they are just so appealing as subjects for scratch building.

 

P

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3 hours ago, JWM said:

Very nice indeed. I never heard on this type before...

Regards

J-W

 

What!?!?😱

 

You’ve never heard of the famous Shorts Gurnard Amphibious catapult biplane Twin-seat ship-borne interceptor fighter reconnaissance scout anti-ship anti-submarine attack in-line radial engined inter-war bomber failed prototype!?!?

 

For shame @JMW!


Call yourself a Britmodeller?!?! 😤 

 

I think you need to go and have a long hard look at yourself! 🤔 

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3 hours ago, Bandsaw Steve said:

What!?!?😱

 

You’ve never heard of the famous Shorts Gurnard Amphibious catapult biplane Twin-seat ship-borne interceptor fighter reconnaissance scout anti-ship anti-submarine attack in-line radial engined inter-war bomber failed prototype!?!?

 

For shame @JMW!


Call yourself a Britmodeller?!?! 😤 

 

I think you need to go and have a long hard look at yourself! 🤔 

The one I knew looked differently ;) 

wrapping-the-gurnard-in-dough.jpg

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