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Hawker Typhoon - Airfix 1/24 sliding hood.


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On 07/03/2021 at 07:32, (ex)Sgtrafman said:

Hey Pat

you’re doing sterling work there buddy, glad I could be of assistance re the radiator grill and I look forward to seeing it in situ.

all the best mate

Iain 

Thank you, Iain - I'm getting closer to fitting that grill. I glued the engine in place today and have started attaching the various conduits. Should be ready for the grill within a week or month!

 

On 07/03/2021 at 10:22, Alan P said:

This is pretty spectacular. It's like an engineering project 😮

I'm glad you like it Alan 🙂. This big model is a good way to get to know the ins & outs of the aircraft, although I'd much rather work on the real thing of course!

 

With the cockpit about done, now onto the engine. This was primed with black Mr Surfacer 1500. I noticed some flanges were missing on the four supercharger outlets so added these from rings cut from plastic card.....

 

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(you can also see some filler has been put over some quite deep shrinkage dimples in the carburetor).  

and then cut to shape in-situ.....

 

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Xtracrylix XA1036 RAF Dark Camouflage Grey was then applied to upward facing areas of the engine. The airbrush was held at the 10 o'clock position over the engine and the paint directed down, leaving the black primer coat visible in areas of shade. A gloss coat of Tamiya Clear X22 was next and this was followed by a pin wash of Citadel Nuln Oil shade mixed with Klear. Highlights were picked out with a medium grey oil paint diluted in odorless thinners. This was applied lightly to edges. Larger areas such as the ducts on the top of the engine and pipes had the oil paint brushed on as a line and then the edges were feathered using a clean and dry Microbrush.

 

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Various conduits have also been painted and are ready to install. I used Vallejo 71.065 Steel as the base colour. A mix of 70.939 Smoke and Klear was applied to the braided areas and various connections....

 

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The distributor cable harnesses were also given a glaze with the same mix. Medium grey was brushed onto highlighted areas of the banding around the cables. 

 

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As mentioned above, I have now started assembling the parts into the engine bay. I think I will fit all the kit parts before deciding what additional detail to add. I'm having problems figuring out what details are in the kit and those that have to be made, and making sure I don't do something that makes assembly difficult later. So I'll take the safe approach I think.

 

I still haven't decided on which aircraft to finish the model as. I've read "Hawker Typhoon - the combat history" by Richard Townshend Bickers and that has given me some ideas. Ideally, I would like to find one flown by a French pilot (as the kit was a gift from French club members) but haven't found an example yet.

 

Many thanks for stopping by to look! Any thoughts or comments would be much appreciated 😀

 

Cheers,

Pat

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  • 3 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

Hi everyone,

 

Progress has slowed since my last posting, but I have now installed the kit parts for the engine bay and started on adding some extra detail. I have also reached the point where I need to decide on the aircraft to depict and have spent some time working on this (and maybe you can help me with this? - see later).

 

The engine block needed to be massaged into position: there is a cruciform-shaped spine that runs throughout the length of the engine and supercharger, and protrudes out to locate the assembly to the fire wall. To get this into place also requires the engine mountings to be eased aside. Airfix rely on the soft and flexible plastic to get the parts to fit together - I think it would be nigh-on impossible to build this kit with the hard type of plastic we get from most other kit manufacturers! 

Having wrestled the engine into place, it had to be pulled apart sufficiently to apply glue and then pushed back and held there with lots of clamps whilst the glue set.....

 

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Here is the engine with some of the harnesses added...

 

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I have been looking forward to putting on the photoetched grille that Iain @(ex)Sgtrafman let me have, and it did not disappoint. The plastic parts of the radiator assembled together quite well, but the joints along the sides need careful filling and sanding because imperfections would show under the metallic finish. Note the fine raised edges that run around the front and rear need to be preserved: straps holding the radiator to the mountings above run between them and I used a slightly different tone to the radiator to represent them. The radiator was airbrushed Citadel Boltgun Metal over a primer of black Mr Surfacer. Aluminium was sprayed onto highlights and a darker shade, Vallejo Oily Steel on the undersides. The faces were airbrushed Vallejo Track Colour to provide a dark neutral brown backing to the pe grilles.

 

The grilles were airbrushed with Vallejo Smoke with Thinner Medium, mainly around the outside and along the braces, leaving the middle areas with very little paint. The grilles fitted really well and were secured in place with Klear as per Radu Brinzan's instructions. The Klear was applied lightly around the edges, trying to avoid it tracking through and filling the fine holes in the grid.

 

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The radiator piping looks to be a dark colour in photos, although some show them as silver. I opted for oxidised copper and undercoated the pipes with Vallejo 70.880 Khaki Grey....

 

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and then applied a glaze of Humbrol 10 dark brown mixed with Liquin Fine Detail. This glaze was removed from highlighted areas.....

 

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I think the idea was right, but I should have used less brown paint in the glaze as it has come out far too dark. Burnt umber oil paint would probably have been a better choice of paint as well. The finish is too shiny and so I'll cut it back with some satin varnish later on.

 

The glycol coolant ring header tank has a flexible hose that I represented with some turns of 0.5mm string....

 

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This was coated with black Mr Surfacer. Metal connections top and bottom were added from 0.6mm lead wire.....

 

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The circular front plate behind the spinner should have holes for cowling fasteners and some notches cut in. Also, it benefited from thinning around the edge that lies against the header tank. The hole positions were marked onto Tamiya tape using the cowling panels as guides. Photos were used for placing the notches....

 

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I painted the front plate with Vallejo Grey-Green, followed by a coat of Klear and then a pin wash of Vallejo Smoke + Klear.

 

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I also used this paint mix for the underpan. As I intend to display the model with the cowling panels removed, I decided to thin down the edges and add some internal stiffener detail (not that I could find a photo of it) using Tamiya flexible masking tape....

 

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The carburettor intake was painted in Tamiya Medium Sea Grey with Vallejo black-grey for the flow splitter. A jubilee clip was represented by a strip of metal foil that was glazed with some Smoke + Klear.....

 

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I noticed a cross brace was missing from the frame above the radiator. This was added from plastic rod but, quite honestly, little of it could be seen once the radiator was installed....

 

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Here is the model assembled with the kit parts before I add any further detail into the engine bay... 

 

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The first items of detail I added were a couple of triangular brackets from plastic card. These attach to the front of the radiator mounting. Typically for me when making items from sheet (whether plastic or metal) is to do internal cutouts first.....

 

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And then score for folds and cut the parts from the sheet....

 

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Doing it in this order reduces the risk of the sheet splitting or twisting.

Some extra-thin Tamiya glue was run along the folds and the parts set to dry square.....

 

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They were then glued in place....

 

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Don't worry - I'll not bore you with every detail I add. I thought it might be useful for some who are starting out with adding their own details as to how I found it best to do mine. 

 

*************

 

The next stage after completing the engine bay is the wing. Various holes need to be opened up in the lower wing depending upon which aircraft the builder selects. So now having reached the point where I need to decide on which aircraft to build, I am thinking of straying from the kit options after having heard a presentation by the Jet Age Museum on 183 Sqdn pilot FO Robert David Acker RAFVR who died when his Typhoon was hit by flak in an armed recce attack on 18 August 1944 in the Falaise area. I would like to depict my model as the one in which he was flying when he was hit, however there seems to be some uncertainty as to which of the squadron's aircraft it was.

There are differing accounts as to how he was killed and in which aircraft he was flying. The presenter said that JR128 HF-L was most likely, and indeed "Hawker Typhoon, The Combat History" by Richard Townshend Bickers does list this aircraft as being brought down by flak near Livarot on that day. A second option was MN595 HF-D which the reference also lists as lost on that day, but this time as being brought down by a Bf109.

In checking through my books and searching on-line, I discovered that I could download (for a small fee) squadron records from the National Archives. I found those for 183 squadron for the month of August 1944, but rather than add certainty it confused the matter.

It also made sobering reading.

I read there were nine aircraft on that mission and that David was flying JR431 for the second time that day. So why am I confused? - well JR431 was also listed in a later mission so could not have been shot down - and all the other aircraft on the same mission were also used on later ones.

JR128 was not mentioned at all in the record for that month (so therefore no mention of its loss). MN595 was in action up until 15/8 but no mention is made of its fate on 18/8.

The record says attacks were made by rockets and cannon, so I will install rocket rails on my model rather than bomb racks.

 

In the absence of confirmation that David was flying JR128 when he died, my first alternative is JR431, but I do not know the squadron code for that aircraft. My next alternative will be JR390 HF-U which David flew on missions twice the day before he died. Looking through the invaluable information in the AMW Hawker Typhoon supplement by @Chris Thomas, all of these have the smaller tailplane so I can get on with building the model while I finalise my choice. MN595, on the other hand, has the larger tailplane, so I'll avoid that option unless something convincing turns up before I commit glue to that part!

 

If anyone has any information or opinions on the above I would love to hear them! 

 

Thank you for stopping by to read 😀

 

Cheers,

Pat

Edited by patmaquette
JR128 crash site changed from Evreux to Livarot.
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It would be a terrible pity to cover this incredible work with a fuselage and wings!

 

 

:gobsmacked:

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Sorry Pat but Flg Off Ackers was indeed shot down in MN595 HF-D as confirmed in MoD casualty records.  JR128, although it had (famously) been HF-L, was lost on the same day, 18 August 1944, but by that time was flying with 181 sqn (code EL-). Whatever, it will be a terrific model.

 

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12 hours ago, Chris Thomas said:

Sorry Pat but Flg Off Ackers was indeed shot down in MN595 HF-D as confirmed in MoD casualty records

Chris - thank you looking into answering this question, I much appreciate it. Additionally, thank you for researching and publishing on this (and other) aircraft, it's been the go-to source for me.

 

I'm glad I didn't go for JR128, that would have been an embarrassing error!

 

Although I guess it is not an important point, but is one I'm curious about, do you know whether David Ackers was shot down by flak (squadron report) or by Bf109s (The Combat History book by Richard Townshend Bickers)?

 

Thanks sgain,

Pat

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There seems little doubt from the account in the squadron ORB that F/O Ackers was shot down by flak.  This was at the time the jaws of the Falaise gap were closing and the trapped German forces were both desperate and well-armed with an ever increasing concentration of Flak. It was the day on which most Typhoons, 17 in all, were lost to enemy action - most attributed to flak - and the unknown causes may well also have been flak.  There were no German claims for Typhoons that day.

 

R.T.Bickers seems to have compiled his Typhoon listings directly from the Air-Britain serial registers (when people copy mistakes it is a give-away!), which incorporated information from my Air-Britain Typhoon File, both of which had MN595 shot down by Bf109s.  I checked backed to my working notes for the latter and I had MN595 as shot down by flak!  So it seems there was a typo in production, which may well have come about through the fact that 183 Sqn had lost 4 Typhoons to Bf109s the previous day.

 

Incidentally, JP431 (quoted in the ORB as Acker's aircraft) was in fact the replacement HF-D.  A very common type of error in the ORBs in general.

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Very interesting information, Chris. That settles the matter perfectly. I'll also let the presenter at the Jet Age Museum know, as he had been studying the life of Robert David Ackers.

Thank you so much for giving your time and expertise to help me out, I really appreciate it.

Best regards,

Pat

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Absolutely stunning work,  love all tge extras you've added, the terminals in the cockpit, the seat cushion effects etc. Brilliant work. 

Chris

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Hi Pat,

A most amazing build, I am in awe of the details (the i/p and cockpit are superb, the engine, pipework...) and techniques you've employed. Really great work and I've enjoyed reading your thread from the beginning. I could go on but would run out of superlatives! 

The research on F/O Ackers and the Typhoon he was lost in is as fascinating as it is sad.

I look forward to following the rest of your build.

Best wishes,

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Many thanks @Murdo, @bigbadbadge and @Johnson for your kind and encouraging comments on the build so far 😀.

 

I have now completed adding further details to the engine bay. I've left most of them unpainted so they can be picked out in the photos.

 

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One item missing from the instructions is a pipe (part C14) that attaches to the Coffman engine starter at stage 64. I didn't notice this until too late and used wire for the piece of pipe, but I thought it a bit strange that Airfix had provided location holes for it!....

 

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Although I have heard of a Coffman starter and have a rough idea how they work, I've never seen one. From what I have learnt when building this model (making kits is a fun way of learning, as I have found since childhood!), the Coffman starter installed on the Typhoon's Napier Sabre engine has a carousel of five cartridges each containing a cordite charge. One is used at a time for starting the engine and the gases pass through pipe C14 and drive a piston in the cylindrical portion of the starter. The piston causes - by means of a thread - a shaft to rotate and this drives gears in the rectangular portion which connect to the upper engine crankshaft, causing it to rotate.

A diagram I have been working to shows a hand cranking mechanism on top of the rectangular portion, so this was added from square section plastic rod with some circular housings added - visible in white in the photo below....

 

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Other items added are a cartridge loading lever (and a filter housing which I guess is unrelated) on the starboard side and a firing unit on the port side.

 

In the same area is a push-rod arrangement which goes to the front end of the engine via a bell crank. It connects to a constant speed unit which I made from scraps of plastic....

 

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It has some interesting colour details that look good...

 

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On the opposite side of the constant speed unit is a vacuum pump. This looks to be made from brass or bronze. This was once again made from scraps of plastic. It was painted Sand and given a dark brown wash over a coat of Klear.

 

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A pair of pipes run across the top of the engine so are quite visible. I used tinned copper wire for these and will give them a coat of varnish to prevent them going dull.

 

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The other thing I did was to check that pipes and cables going into one side of the firewall had a continuation on the other side. Some more piping will be added later for the fuel tanks located along the leading edge of the wings.

 

I'll complete the painting of these details as I work on the next stage of the build, which is the wings.

 

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Thank you for stopping by to look!

Cheers,

Pat

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1 hour ago, patmaquette said:

Thank you for stopping by to look!

A real pleasure Pat. I also wondered how the Coffman starter worked, I now have a better idea. Thank you.

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