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Airfix 1/24 Spitfire Vb

Ed Darter

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Well having built up a bit of confidence doing 1/72 and 1/48 models over the last 3 years or so I finally plucked up the courage to have a go at one of the two 1/24 spitfires I have in the stash. I've got fond memories of building a couple as a young lad back in the 70s and was really looki g forward to doing a good Jo  on one now. Little did I know that the moulds are really showing their age! Some of the fit is truly shocking and it's been a real trial to get to where I am now with it. A couple of times I've left it for several months while I muster up the resolve to crack on again. It's nearly there now, and not looking too bad all things considered but I would love them to do a new tooling and do this lovely aircraft justice. 


Flashtastic... I should have smelt a rat as soon as I opened the bag! 




The cockpit actually went together OK and the instrument panel quite nice. I added a blob of pva to each instrument in an attempt to make it look like there is glass. The pilot however was a bit of a problem, quite a lot of fettling needed to smooth the seams where the arms join the body.



The pilot himself is OK, as far as my standards go anyway! 



The fuselage halves were not too bad, though a fair amount of sanding and filling in some areas. The fuel filler area being a particular problem as any issues here will be very visible! 





The wings were next, I elected to deviate from the plans a bit here and only fit the lower half of the wings. This would enable me to jiggle the fit of the top halves later to get the fit nice and the gap as small as possible to the fuselage while keeping an eye on the dihedral! 



The rear of the wings underside was a real problem, multiple sessions of filling and sanding to get to this point! 



I built the engine but when I tried fitting it... Well it just didn't fit! I needed to fit it though as it holds the prop on, so lots of hacking of the ancillary components to allow the various cowls to fit. Even then there were a number of gaps which would need to be sorted out. More filler! 



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You’re a braver man than I Ed. I have one of these and as you say, they are excellent value for money since you get twice the amount of plastic that the parts require in the box! Still, you’re doing a great job with this and I look forward to seeing the finished article. It might even tempt me to have a go at my kit. 


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Next I wanted to fit the upper wing surfaces, but the fit of the ailerons was truly horrific! I ended up fitting sheet styrene to both the ailerons themselves and the recesses in the wings. Careful sanding and filling required as the glue areas are small.





I also fitted the blisters to the upper wing surfaces, relatively straight forward after the ailerons! 



Finally, getting the wings together, aileron fit much better now, though still not perfect





I elected to have the undercarriage locked down for a couple of reasons, firstly the fit of the uc legs into their pivot points was again shocking and secondly the fit of the covers was also awful. 


An example of the flash on the undercarriage legs, the moulds really have seen better days! 




One thing that I did want to address was that the wheel wells were cometely open. I fashioned walls from thin styrene sheet50618826772_abef1168cf_b.jpg


The tail feathers were thankfully straight forward, requiring minimal work to look OK, so then it was on to pre-shading. 



Underside done ready for gloss, decals and further weathering



Top side camo going on... 



And there's where I am up to! It's been a real voyage of discovery and I will be glad to see it finished to be honest! 

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Fair play to you for persevering, I'm sure it'll be worth the effort.


I'm building an Airfix Spitfire Mk Vb in 1/48 scale and it also has poor fitting parts, including the undercarriage, and its supposedly a "modern" kit so I think you're doing a fine job with this big old bird! 

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Hi Ed.

Thanks for detailing the trials and tribulations of this old kit. It has been quite an eye opener for me. There really is alot of work to be done in order to create a reasonable model and you’re doing a fine job. 👍

Looking forward to seeing more. 


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