Jump to content

Opinions on Academy 1/48 Spitfire mk14. And kitbashing a mk14 from Airfix kits


Recommended Posts

Hi Guys.  I want to know your opinions and experiences with the Academy 1/48 Spitfire mk14...

 

I have heard about inaccuracies.  I see there is a resin upper cowl and prop and spinner for it.  Does this fix the inaccuracies?  This is my favorite mark and i want to build one...

 

Thanks

Edited by Tokyo Raider
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Tokyo Raider, there will no doubt be a few more BMers along in a minute but I will relate my experiences with this kit, Pretty much as soon as it was released the kit fuselage was criticised for being too deep, the radiators are too small, the spinner was too big and the props were the wrong shape and not long enough. Daco Products released a resin kit set which included a new nose, spinner, props, radiators and rudders as well as some smaller details. I bought two sets, one each for the Mk XIV C and XIV E that I had in the stash but I didn't proceed with the builds due to the fuselage depth issue. The fuselage is 2mm too deep at the cockpit. Time moved on and in a quiet moment I thought what the heck, Airfix is going to release a Mk XIV I might as well have a go and if it doesn't work out they go in the bin. I took a razor saw to each fuselage half and took out a tapered piece of plastic, starting at 2mm at the cockpit area down to nothing at the rudder post, and glued them back together. This worked out well except that the Daco nose was now too deep and needed to be filed off to match the new fuselage. Once that was done it started to look like a reasonable facsimile of a Spitfire XIV. I don't know if the Daco set is still available but the moral of the story is unless you're a masochist buy the Airfix kit.

TRF

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello Bob,

 

there is also a very prominent problem with the wing: it is too thick especially at the root. Therefore the dihedral doesn't look right.

 

I would build the Airfix kit or combine the Airfix Mk.XIV and PR.XIX.

 

Cheers,

Antti

Link to post
Share on other sites

One other thing that I forgot is that the wing is too far back by about 2mm which is a similar problem to the 1/48 SH Spitfire kits.

TRF

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello Tokyo Raider,

to my eye Academy is not the best in terms of shape. Buying many £ of aftermarket to try and correct a flawed shape is not a good idea if another way exists.

Take a look at

https://modelingmadness.com/review/allies/cleaver/gb/spit/tc14e.htm

for a rather simple way to get a correct Mk XIV highback using Airfix bubbletop as a basis.

Hope it helps,

Edited by steh2o
Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for that suggestion.  I did not know airfix made a new tool mk14.  I have a photo recon low back late mark kit, bit its not a 14.

 

I am not familliar with all the airfix kits, and sometimes run across old tooling in the new red boxes.

 

Can someone post the kit number of the new airfix 1/48 mk14 kit?  I did not follow their newer 1/48 kits as I was a '1/72 only' guy up until my eyes and age forced me up to 1/48 about a year ago...

 

Thanks guys!

Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, Tokyo Raider said:

Thanks for that suggestion.  I did not know airfix made a new tool mk14.  I have a photo recon low back late mark kit, bit its not a 14.

 

I am not familliar with all the airfix kits, and sometimes run across old tooling in the new red boxes.

 

Can someone post the kit number of the new airfix 1/48 mk14 kit?  I did not follow their newer 1/48 kits as I was a '1/72 only' guy up until my eyes and age forced me up to 1/48 about a year ago...

 

Thanks guys!

Ok...  i checked my stash...  i have the newer airfix photo recon mk14 kit, that is a bubbletop.  I thought this was a later mark!  

 

So how long until airfix makes a proper mk14 spit 14 with a high top standard fuselage?  Is that in their plan or any announcements?  I am not good enough modeller to cut apart fuselages and cobble a turtleback on this kit.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Airfix do not make a habit of introducing variants of their kits: I'm reasonably certain that they do not have a high-back Mk.I4 in mind.

 

A couple of points: the Mk.14 came with an FR (fighter recce) version not a PR, which in RAF terminology is a more dedicated variant.  You may be able to find a 1/48 scale kit of a PR Mk.19 which has a high back, that you could cross-kit: sorry, not my scale.

 

I can see why you are reluctant to try chopping fuselages for a conversion, but no-one is born with the talent.  Everyone has to do it for a first time.  You may find it easier to use Milliput (other fillers are available) to build up the rear fuselage rather than cross-kitting.

 

 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

It's possible to make a XIVc from the Airfix PR XIX and the non folding wing from their Seafire XVII kit which I did here a while ago.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello Bob-Tokyo Raider,

I fear Graham is right and there is scarce possibility that Airfix ever produces an high-back Mk.XIV.

Some chopping is required (even with a PR Mk.XIX fuselage-the windscreen being quite different) so why not try? The way proposed by TC seems to me the easiest one, requiring another high-back fuselage+ canopy as a donor. With other minor mods you have a most accurate Mk.XIVe.

I'm currently working on something similar in 1/72 and had much more chopping to do!

Good luck!

Stefano

Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Tokyo Raider said:

I have heard about inaccuracies.  I see there is a resin upper cowl and prop and spinner for it.  Does this fix the inaccuracies? 

No. As John Adams said, the only accurate bit is the tail. 

 

the other problems pointed out are all correct as well,  though I'd not agree on the fixes.

The Daco set is not really useful, as it  does not correct the nose depth problem, and also then requires blending in, and the one I have has no real panel detail.  You can do the Daco nose by cutting the kit nose.

 

10 hours ago, fastterry said:

The fuselage is 2mm too deep at the cockpit.

 

It's too deep down the entire fuselage.   The depth issues does not require a slice down it, the depth problem at the cockpit is solved by thinning the wing and moving it forward, and then backing the spine and  belly with plastic strip , then sanding them down.  

 

The only bit of AM you NEED to correct the kit is a new spinner,  maybe some new cylinder head covers,  as all the main problems are of the nature of being oversize, the rest can be done by surgery, but there is A LOT needed,  but none of it is actually hard, and most of the panel lines are in the right place and are petite.  

 

Fun fact, the Airfix Spitfire XII and Seafire XVII have almost ALL the same shape faults as the Academy XIV kit, except for the oversize nose ring, which is really glaring as the spinner is then too big,   but never got the same hammering. 

 

this is the nose fix, slices in the nose ring, and slice out the side, the left is unmodified, note how the wing is still too thick, and how the under nose line is brought up

48952682391_05e14f53e7_c.jpgSpit academy nose mod DSCF0709_zpssziaklh8 by losethekibble, on Flickr

 

side on, the part behind is unmodified,   I added some orange pen,  you can see the shape change, note the exhaust are too low, the white is some plastic strip, hnce my comment about the rocker covers needing work. You will need to rescribe some panel lines and redo the fastener detail with a beading tool or metal tube of right size. 

48963837748_d518a64e17_h.jpg50620907 by losethekibble, on Flickr

 

laid out on a cutting mat, note the lines,  the lower left is unmodified Academy, the pale grey is an Aeroclub XIV,  the upper righ is the modified Academy, this shows the cylinder bulge needs wor, maybe replacement (Barracudacals do some) 

48964569707_d0a39cd168_h.jpg50620904 by losethekibble, on Flickr

 

this shows the wing being moved forward,  the nose/wing join needs work, maybe just filler.  The wing fillet needs trimming, as there is a step here.  see vague pencil line, which is where the seat bulkhead is in the fuselage, and a former attaches for the wing fillet parts to attach too.  This part of fillet is too far back because the wing is, but the main part is in the right place.   

48963842493_bcc41fb8ef_h.jpg50620908 by losethekibble, on Flickr

 

the wing has the 'Tamiya' fault, being too broad in centre chord, the white is an ICM wing, remove ailerons, reshape, rescribe flap line. The ailerons are OK

48965058131_48ace6d94d_h.jpg50620909 by losethekibble, on Flickr

remove ailerons, reshape, rescribe flap line.

 

left wing unmodified, right wing reshaped,  note wheel well need work

48965237742_61ee808b80_h.jpg50620911 by losethekibble, on Flickr

 

And that's as far as I have got with the project, but shows the fundamental shape problems fixed.   

 

The spinner I tried doing, easier to just get an accurate one, note, the Airfix XIX nose ring (and spinner, and the Barracudacals replacement) has slightly too small nosering.   not noticeable, but means the replacement spinner is the Barracudecals for the Spitfire 22/24 kit.   Or, if you did the Seafire 47 with the contraprops, use the leftover spinner from the base 22/24 kit.

The Seafire 46/47 kit uses the Spitfire 22/24 as a base kit, and adds a new tree for the Seafire bits.

 

The same applies to the highback Academy XIV.  And apart from the nose ring, these are the fixes for  Airfix XII and Seafire XVII, (too deep, wing in wrong place, too broad in chord, the Airfix XII fin and rudder are also too high) 

 

Adding a new spine to the Airfix lo-back XIV maybe easier ?    Airfix have been dumb for not setting up their lo-back XIV to do a high back, all it needed was to do the fuselage and inner bulkheads as a separate tree, and have the rest as common.  

 

Any questions/clarifications, ask away.   

 

PS AFAIK, these problems, and fixes, should also apply to the 72nd Academy kit, which again, AFAIK, is based one the same drawings. 

 

Also, I have not addressed the radiators,  IIRC these are fixable, but need chopping up and rearranging, but it's been a while since I checked.  

I have also not had a good comparative examine of the Airfix lo-back XIV, which has really done a good job in shape and proportion., so some of the above may need revsion, but this was done referring to the Peter Cooke plans, and various other kits, eg the Aeroclub, as reference. 

 

Again, the new Airfix kit has made the above all a bit obsolete, but if you already have one of these in the stash, and like a bit of a challenge and using some old fashioned modelling skills,  it would be a satisfying project, perhaps @Alex Gordon  may like to take up :whistle:   

Alex has done some excellent build on 'now obsolete' kits recently.   

 

Often, the 'hard' part is working out the fixes, I enjoy the challenge,  and then lose motivation after solving the puzzle. 

Edited by Troy Smith
added a PS
  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Tokyo Raider changed the title to Opinions on Academy 1/48 Spitfire mk14. And kitbashing a mk14 from Airfix kits

Hey guys, i changed title to ask a question...  i am not a SPITFIRE guy (yet) so dont laugh at me!

 

But can one use the griffon fuselage in the airfix 1/48 mk12 kit with props and bits in the mk14 recce to get a mk14?  I bet there is something obvious that i am not aware that also needs to change.  I would not be adverse to bashing 3 kits to get the mk14 I want!!!

 

I saw that the mk12 kit has a griffon, but is an earlier fuselage.  What more needs to change?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Not really.  First of all, the Airfix XII is a bit deep (similar to Academy's XIV).  I suppose you could steal just the top, but I thought you wanted to avoid that sort of surgery.  The XII used a single-stage Griffon, so the cowling is shorter than a XIV's.

 

If you want a 'c armament' XIV, you could put the XIV nose and tail (and radiators) on an Eduard VIII.

If you want a high-back XIVe, then you either need to add the high-back, or change the whole (central) fuselage, keeping everything else from the Airfix kit.

You could, of course, also turn a blind eye to the Academy kit's faults- it builds well enough as a kit, just looks a bit like a Spitfire that's been eating too much.

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, Tokyo Raider said:

Hey guys, i changed title to ask a question...  i am not a SPITFIRE guy (yet) so dont laugh at me!

 

But can one use the griffon fuselage in the airfix 1/48 mk12 kit with props and bits in the mk14 recce to get a mk14?  I bet there is something obvious that i am not aware that also needs to change.  I would not be adverse to bashing 3 kits to get the mk14 I want!!!

 

I saw that the mk12 kit has a griffon, but is an earlier fuselage.  What more needs to change?

NO.

Apart from the fact the Mk.XII has the same faults as the Academy,  (as stated above) the mk.XII has a shorter cowling, as it has a single stage Griffon.

 

Your Mk.XIV will depend on exactly what XIV you want, the Airfix kit has a E wing, early XIV have a C wing.

 

If you want accuracy and finest detail. 

 

XIV e - Airfix XIV, graft on new spine, add new canopy.

 

XIVc - Nose , tail, rads Airfix XIV, rest, Eduard Spitfire VIII 

 

You'll get a lot of leftover bits.   

 

Note, a pragmatic way, try converting the Airfix spine,  you don't even need another kit,  you can scratch build it,  another part done project I got an Airifx 22/24 fuselage and just bent the spine up with round nose pliers, making a triangle gap at the top.  Worked OK, put off cockpit detailing and it went into the project box.    Can't remember how thick the new tool fuselage is, so may not work, but, folk seem to forget it's plastic, unless it is a really brittle type, and the new Airifx plastic is soft, you can bend and shape it,  so you just bend the spine up, and the fill the gap at the top.  

 

As  I had the memory card to hand....

bend up 

51006784261_2e17cd0913_b.jpg50621221 by losethekibble, on Flickr

 

bent vs unbent

51006887227_66951eb21f_b.jpg50621219 by losethekibble, on Flickr

 

the difference between them

51006889917_445a3d0d2a_b.jpg50621220 by losethekibble, on Flickr

 

It is a destination with many possible  paths...

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have several eduard mk8 kits.  Really great kit.  Hopefully they do griffon versions.

 

  I see now the shorter nose of the mk12...

 

I eat too much, so maybe a fat spitfire would fit me better!  I love 5 blade props!

  • Haha 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have several eduard mk8 kits.  Really great kit.  Hopefully they do griffon versions.

 

  I see now the shorter nose of the mk12...

 

I eat too much, so maybe a fat spitfire would fit me better!  I love 5 blade props!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow, that topic is a real can of worms and some find the kit unbuildable whilst others have no problem with it. It really all depends on how picky you are about accuracy. I have both Academy verions and the DACO, as well as KMC corrective resin kits and haven't used them yet because I am ever hopeful that Airfix will come out with the high-back version. The surgery required takes a bit of skill but its not super difficult. Overall, most who build the kit are happy with it and enjoy the easy build so it would not be a bad thing to build it. If it basically looks like a Mk XIV and you don't count rivets then just enjoy the build. Its very easy to get overly concerned with rhe accuracy which can cause what I call "builders paralysis" where many kits go unbuilt after reading the kit reviews. Avoid that or else you may lose the main emphisis for building model kits, having fun! Google 1/48 Academy Spitfire Mk XIV and read the reviews, most are pretty positive. Remember, just about all kits have warts of some kind, and even Tamiya have a few less than spectaular kits so just build away my friend.

Cheers

Link to post
Share on other sites

With the Academy Spitfire XIV it's not a matter of rivet counting, the matter is that the engine cowling in particular is so bloated that it totally ruins the elegant lines of this aircraft. It is something that gets noticed immediately, not a feature that can only be discovered when comparing to engineering drawings of the parts...

The ones of the assembled model on this page are official Academy pictures from one of the various low-back boxes;

 

https://www.super-hobby.it/products/Spitfire-FR.-MK.XIVe-SPECIAL-EDITION.html

 

Now compare with the Airfix kit as built in this article...

 

https://modelingmadness.com/review/allies/cleaver/gb/spit/tc14.htm

 

Both may look like a Spitfire but one is svelte and elegant yet aggressive, the other much less so....

 

 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Troy Smith said:

XIV e - Airfix XIV, graft on new spine, add new canopy. 

XIVc - Nose , tail, rads Airfix XIV, rest, Eduard Spitfire VIII 

I believe Paul Budzik (he of ScaleModelWorkshop) did exactly that.

https://www.paulbudzik.com/models/Airfix Spitfire FR Mk XIV/airfix-spitfire-fr-mk-xiv-review.html
https://www.paulbudzik.com/spitfire-mk-xiv-conversion/spitfire-mk-xiv-conversion.html
He certainly makes it look relatively easy :P

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, alt-92 said:

I believe Paul Budzik (he of ScaleModelWorkshop) did exactly that.

That's who I was thinking of,  I was wrapped up in the detail of my post and couldn't recall quite the source at that point.  Thanks! 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Spitfires Forever said:

Wow, that topic is a real can of worms and some find the kit unbuildable whilst others have no problem with it. It really all depends on how picky you are about accuracy. I have both Academy verions and the DACO, as well as KMC corrective resin kits and haven't used them yet because I am ever hopeful that Airfix will come out with the high-back version. The surgery required takes a bit of skill but its not super difficult. Overall, most who build the kit are happy with it and enjoy the easy build so it would not be a bad thing to build it. If it basically looks like a Mk XIV and you don't count rivets then just enjoy the build. Its very easy to get overly concerned with rhe accuracy which can cause what I call "builders paralysis" where many kits go unbuilt after reading the kit reviews. Avoid that or else you may lose the main emphisis for building model kits, having fun! Google 1/48 Academy Spitfire Mk XIV and read the reviews, most are pretty positive. Remember, just about all kits have warts of some kind, and even Tamiya have a few less than spectaular kits so just build away my friend.

Cheers

Wow...  thats great advice, i may just build one and have fun and it can be on display until a better kit from someone comes along.

 

As I get more skill, i can eventually do a kitbash or just wait until better kit ever gets done.  

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...