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Late to the party, but let's see what I can do. I'll be building the Tamiya 1/48 P-38G Lightning in the kit markings for Miss Virginia, the aircraft flown by Lt. Rex Barber when he shot down the G4M1 carrying Adm. Isoroku Yamomoto on 18 April, 1943. Here are my start photos:

 

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I've been planning on making doing this aircraft for years (and the G4M1) and have had the Mustang International decal sheet. But along comes Tamiya and I think their decals are actually more accurate. So the only thing I plan to add to this build is a set of Eduard seat belts. We'll see how it goes!

 

Michael

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Cracking subject choice Michael and what a kit to cover it with! :thumbsup:

Edited by Col.
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  • 2 weeks later...

OK, so progress. Pre-painting done and construction has begun. It starts (shockingly) with the cockpit:

 

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Sorry about this one, too dark

 

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So far it's going together like, well, Tamiya!

 

Michael

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Thanks, Greg!

 

So, that hole in the floor of the cockpit is supposed to be filled by a hump on top of the nose gear roof.

 

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With any other kit manufacturer, that would worry me. But hey, this is Tamiya!

 

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You want a P-38? You can't go wrong here!

 

Michael

 

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Impressive work by both you and Tamiya there Michael.

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Thanks, Col!

 

At the end of the weekend, here's where I am:

 

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I finally found something about the kit I don't like:

 

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Given the level of detail and how the real airplane works, I'm not sure they could have done this differently, but it's asking for trouble down the line. Oh well, guess we'll see how it goes.

 

Michael

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On 1/20/2021 at 1:35 AM, MichaelSatin said:

Given the level of detail and how the real airplane works, I'm not sure they could have done this differently, but it's asking for trouble down the line. Oh well, guess we'll see how it goes.

This seems to becoming a more prevalent feature on the latest kits and isn't really an improvement in my opinion. Perhaps you can tape some thick cardboard around the area to provide a measure of protection to the legs?

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5 hours ago, Col. said:

This seems to becoming a more prevalent feature on the latest kits and isn't really an improvement in my opinion. Perhaps you can tape some thick cardboard around the area to provide a measure of protection to the legs?

I was thinking along these lines as well, Col, especially as I have to mask off the wheel wells anyway.

 

Michael

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Almost ready for paint!

 

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Michael

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Everything is looking smooth and glad to see those undercarriage legs are surviving. Which paint brand are you using Michael?

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5 hours ago, Col. said:

Everything is looking smooth and glad to see those undercarriage legs are surviving. Which paint brand are you using Michael?

Sticking with Tamiya at this point. I'm used to it and it works well for me. I know there's some question about whether the exact shade of OD is correct, but I'm not going to sweat it.

 

Michael

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Quite right. The debate over OD will never end and since you can't keep everyone happy the best course is to keep yourself happy :) 

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Progress continues. Main colors on. Now to work on that crazy sealant pattern on Miss Virginia.

 

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Michael

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Ready to do that funky paint job on the nose.

 

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My assumption is that the panels that were regularly opened were sealed while the airplane was shipped down to the South Pacific. It looks to me like they taped over them and then brushed a sealing compound over the tape. When the tape was removed, the residue was left. That's what I'm thinking, anyway, so I'm going for it.

 

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I figured that what applied to the gun bay in the nose would probably apply to the engine cowlings too. My plan is to brush paint some Tamiya Smoke over the tape and see how that turns out.

 

I'll let you know.

 

Michael

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Sounds interesting. Looking forward to seeing the effect it creates.

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Oops. Shoulda thinned the Smoke a bit:

 

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Problem solved:

 

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I used a thinned out brown/OD mix to tone things down and weather a bit. I like the look of it better now, around the panels and on the whole airplane. Looks like a clear coat and then decals next!

 

Michael 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Progress continues. Decals on both sides and bottom of the aircraft. Only the top left:

 

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I can get it done in time, I can!

 

Michael

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We've still a full two weeks and some days remaining Michael so don't rush as it really is looking great.

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Well, Col, you were right. I did have time! Here she is, the Tamiya 1/48 P-38G done as Miss Virginia, the regular mount of Lt. Bob Petit (who later flew a P-51A named Mrs. Virginia with the 1st Air Commando). On April 18, 1943, Miss Virginia was flown by Lt. Rex Barber (whose own plane was undergoing repairs after he rammed a Japanese ship with it) on the mission to shoot down Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto. History records that the wildly unlikely mission was flown perfectly due to the planning and leadership of Maj. John Mitchell and that, almost certainly, Yamamoto's aircraft was destroyed by Barber in Miss Virginia.

 

Aside from a set of Eduard USAAF seatbelts, this kit is built out of the box using even Tamiya cement and paint and including the decals. What everyone says about it is quite true, it's a truly excellent kit.

 

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It's glossier that I wanted, my dullcoat must be wearing out, but I'm OK with that. A couple of things I discovered: the front main gear door retraction arms are very prone to damage as they are installed quite early in the game. I lost one of the four. The gear doors, a perpetual issue with P-38 kits, are simply a breeze to install due to Tamiya's clever engineering. As for the decals, there are a lot more stencils than you would expect with a WWII fighter. And, while Tamiya includes chrome decals for several areas, they are very fragile, so watch out.

 

All in all, I'm glad I have another one of these (so I can do an F) and an H kit in the stash. Bring on the later versions!

 

Thanks for the group build, Col, it was a lot of fun!

 

Michael

 

 

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Even the best kits require craftsmanship and skill to make into great models Michael and that's what you've done here. :goodjob: Glad you enjoyed it.

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Thanks, Col! I'm glad I found this group build and took part in it. Felt good to get something done!

 

Michael

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On 2/22/2021 at 1:35 PM, MichaelSatin said:

Thanks, Col! I'm glad I found this group build and took part in it. Felt good to get something done!

Michael

Glad to hear you enjoyed it Michael. What's your next planned project?

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19 hours ago, Col. said:

Glad to hear you enjoyed it Michael. What's your next planned project?

Getting paint on a 1/32 ICM Gladiator II and a 1/48 Z-M F-4E. Both also very good kits. Plenty to do!

 

Michael

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