Jump to content

Airfix “New Tool” Bristol Beaufort A04021 (1st WIP)


Recommended Posts

39 minutes ago, Dave Swindell said:

See any Vulcans??? :wicked:

On the container ship behind this one. 

/runs

  • Haha 8
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Rabbit Leader said:

Photos online and within this thread show that the Beauforts two internal bomb bay doors were hinged to the outer two bomb doors, so in the open position the outer faces of both doors are visible. To replicate this, I cut and glued a suitable piece (25mm x 5mm) of thick-ish plastic card to the inside face of the outer bomb bay doors.

Having received my first one yesterday morning (pre-ordered 2 but @TIGER HOBBIESLIMITED had to ration them as they only received a part order) and spending the rest of the day fondling it and checking references, my impression is that the main bomb door mouldings in the Airfix kit are supposed to represent the inner doors folded up inside the outer doors. There is some outer door internal reinforcing rib detail moulding at the top which is covered further down by the smooth outer face of the inner door.

 

1 hour ago, Rabbit Leader said:

Now for my final choice of scheme, I’ve decided to settle on the 9th production machine L4449. This aircraft initially served with with No.22 Squadron in early 1940 as OA:H before moving on to 217, 86, the Torpedo Training Unit, 5 OTU, 2 TTU, 2 OTU and being finally struck off charge on 19 June 1945... not a bad service record! 

You don't say which period you intend to model L4449, but there are some photo's of her in 22 sqn service on the IWM site, of which this is one:-

mid_CH_000644_1.jpg

© IWM (CH 644)

https://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/205126765

 

I was going to ask a few questions about this photo in a new thread, but seeing as you've brought this particular aircraft up I hope you won't mind my thoughts and observations here David.

My intention is to build Kenneth Campbell's OA*X, which I don't think has been photographed, but is assumed to be finished as per these machines and others photographed at the same time

 

The handholds on top of the starboard side of the fuselage above the porthole don't appear on any Beaufort photo I've looked and, these should be filled.

 

The stbd side beam gun doors just in front of the turret (shown possibly rather more recessed than they should be in the kit) weren't present when these photo's were taken, they were introduced on the production line at some time later, and were possibly retrofitted as a mod for early aircraft at some time later. For this time period these doors should be filled. Whether these were fitted before Kenneth Campbell's VC action in April 1941 I don't know.

 

Some Beauforts (but not all by looking at photo's) had a porthole in the lower stbd fuselage below the wing - visible in the above photo immediately below the fuel dump pipe on OA*H but not on the other 2 airframes in the background. Some photo's of other Beauforts taken from below show a porthole on the stbd side in the underside in line with this underwing porthole. I'm guessing by their position these were for oblique and vertical cameras for the reconnaissance role, but why on some airframes and not others, did airframes with the side porthole have the underside porthole as well, or was it one or the other?

 

Also visible in this photo is a bracket on the side of the nose below the navigators glazing, this is often seen in early Beaufort photo's, and some later closeup photo's show 4 boltholes in this position but no bracket. The only photo's I've seen with anything mounted on the bracket are of one of the prototypes when being inspected by the king and Queen, and whatever it is that's mounted there has a protective canvas cover over it, there's a substantial wire or small pipe coming out of the bottom of it at the back which is fed through a hole into the fuselage. The best I can think of for this is some sort of cine camera arrangement for practice/dummy torpedo training runs, but it seems a bit big for this, and why mount it outside in the elements when it could be protected behind the bomb aiming windows?

 

At least the far aircraft in the lineup L4461 OA*J was fitted with what appears to be a squadron trial for a beam gun in the entrance hatch, so Beauforts of this period and earlier wouldn't have been fitted with the beam gun as supplied in the Airfix kit.

 

I'm well impressed with the kit and your build so far. As for a later release of a Mk 1A there appear to be a few little bits missing, notably the ASV radar aerials, but also twin brownings for the other turret, and the option for nose guns in the navigators position - will we see a small extra sprue? I'd like to think so but I suspect not.

 

  • Like 6
Link to post
Share on other sites

She's coming on very well now, Dave.  I've been applying the masks to the glazed parts incrementally.  I think if I'd tried to do it all in one go I'd have lost the will to live by now.

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have come upon this photo that shows all the torpedo doors either open or removed.

 

51068922137_a2ab6a5e91_b.jpg

 

 

 

Chris

  • Like 6
Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been doing a trawl through the Interweb, looking for Beaufort torpedo loading instruction, hoping to find a diagram.

Alas, I didn't find a drawing, but I did find these instructions here: https://ww2aircraft.net/forum/threads/australian-beaufort-manuals.21513/

 

51069197387_e43af7d2f4_o.jpg

 

 

 

On this site: https://acesflyinghighthesurvivors.wordpress.com/2019/01/23/the-survivors-restoring-a-raaf-dap-bristol-beaufort-torpedo-bomber/

 

I found this photo:

 

50999929970_15f7a7e9f0_b.jpg

 

 

 

 

Chris

  • Like 5
  • Thanks 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, PeterB said:

Looking very good Dave.

 

Mine arrived today but is seems I am not allowed to have it as my other half decided she will pay for it as a birthday pressie. That means Ihave to wait another month but at least I have persuaded her to check all the ruddy parts are there! As I am currently building for 3 GB and there are 7 potential ones I might join in this year (some only 1 build though) I guess I will just have to be patient😧.

 

Pete

 

Glad you’ve got one of these Beaufort kits Pete, the wait will certainly be worth it. You’ll do a cracking job of it and hopefully this thread will be helpful when you eventually start to assemble yours. 

Cheers.. Dave 

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

@Dave Swindell, @dogsbody

Many thanks for your excellent posts. I’ve got a filled early morning today, so am unfortunately unable to respond as well as I’d like to at this time. I will get back with a more detailed response later on. There are some great points raised in Dave’s post and all need to be addressed.

 

To clarify a few points -

- My Beaufort will ‘hopefully’ represent L4449 as she looked in early 1940 with Type A fuselage roundels and OA:H codes. 

- The lack of starboard side upper hand holds were mentioned earlier in this thread and I have since filled mine with filler. 

- If Airfix’s outer bomb doors are right, the inner doors seem to fold in and slide up partially to still expose some internal detail. I’ve not come across photos of this arrangement as yet. 

- Chris’ photo above confirms the hinging arrangement - great photo mate! 

 

I’d best go get ready... many thanks again.. Dave 

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Rabbit Leader said:

To clarify a few points -

- My Beaufort will ‘hopefully’ represent L4449 as she looked in early 1940 with Type A fuselage roundels and OA:H codes. 

- The lack of starboard side upper hand holds were mentioned earlier in this thread and I have since filled mine with filler. 

- If Airfix’s outer bomb doors are right, the inner doors seem to fold in and slide up partially to still expose some internal detail. I’ve not come across photos of this arrangement as yet. 

- Chris’ photo above confirms the hinging arrangement - great photo mate! 

FYI, the photo's on the IWM site of L4449 as per the one I posted above were taken in July 1940 at North Coates

The bomb doors as per Chris's photo above shows them open for normal operation - ie how they'd look if opened from the cockpit from a fully closed position as Airfix part C17

The instructions Chris posted above for loading the torpedo para ii describes folding the inner door back against the outer door as per Airfix parts B11 & 12. There's photo's and a diagram showing this arrangement on pages 2 & 3 of this thread, including this one, again posted by Chris

51036879437_8af2fe66d2_o.jpg

 

As per discussion on this thread I very much doubt Beauforts were fitted with beam gun positions (either side) as per the AIrfix kit before mid - late summer 1940.

 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the post @Dave Swindell, I’m starting to get this a little. On closer inspection I think Airfix’s open outer bomb bay doors are quite usable as supplied. Now having just said that, I’m still relatively happy with the way I have portrayed mine as (In my opinion) they look closer to the photographs shown in various places within this thread.

 

On closer inspection, I also think what confuses matters further is Airfix suggest to paint the inner surfaces of these outer doors (E11 & E12) Humbrol 78, rather than the underside colour the modeller wishes to choose. 
 

Now I am yet to fully read the Beaufort turrets thread, however in summary do you think I should keep the port beam hatch closed for a early 1940, 22 Squadron Beaufort? 
 

Cheers and regards.. Dave 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Rabbit Leader said:

On closer inspection, I also think what confuses matters further is Airfix suggest to paint the inner surfaces of these outer doors (E11 & E12) Humbrol 78, rather than the underside colour the modeller wishes to choose. 

I hadn't got as far as checking colour call outs, but now you point it out my opinion is that is an error and the flat part of the door inside should be underside colour as I think it's actually the outside folded up. Your call though, it's your model.

 

2 hours ago, Rabbit Leader said:

Now I am yet to fully read the Beaufort turrets thread, however in summary do you think I should keep the port beam hatch closed for a early 1940, 22 Squadron Beaufort? 

The port beam hatch was always the normal aircraft entrance, so can be shown either open or closed. The doors were wooden and split horizontally along the engraved line on part D37. The upper section was hinged along it's upper edge and folded up inside the fuselage where it clipped against the roof. The lower section with the window we think had locating pegs and lifted up and was removed and stowed behind the Elsan (this appears to have been a convenient step for getting in or out - I bet the ladies loved ex Beaufort crew and thought them most considerate for leaving the loo seat down, whereas it would have been force of habit so you didn't literally put your foot in it! 

If you're modelling the hatch open pre summer 1940 I think you should omit the beam gun mounting beam part D16 in step 16, and also fill the recessed closed hatch in the outside of the fuselage opposite in the stbd fuselage half. 

The beam gun installation shown in the Turret thread is I think a trial installation, it's the far aircraft of the 2 with OA*H and both photos appear to be from a series taken at the same time at North Coates in July 1940, if this was just being trialled then other aircraft earlier would most likely not be so fitted.

 

  • Thanks 2
  • Haha 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

A couple of further points I've spotted whilst having another browse through the IWM photo's,

The turrets on 22 sqn in July 1940 appear to only have one gun fitted, the port one mounted on its side so the ammo drum is vertical 

They all appear to have a gas detection circular patch on the spine centreline aft of the turret, above the roundel, including H.

Some, including H, have the code letter repeated as a small character either side of the nose. Airfix give this as red for Campbell's X, but H appears a closer match to the roundel yellow than the red, these may have been in flight colours? F doesn't appear to have one on the stbd side, J appears very bright, could be white.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Dave Swindell said:

A couple of further points I've spotted whilst having another browse through the IWM photo's,

The turrets on 22 sqn in July 1940 appear to only have one gun fitted, the port one mounted on its side so the ammo drum is vertical 

They all appear to have a gas detection circular patch on the spine centreline aft of the turret, above the roundel, including H.

Some, including H, have the code letter repeated as a small character either side of the nose. Airfix give this as red for Campbell's X, but H appears a closer match to the roundel yellow than the red, these may have been in flight colours? F doesn't appear to have one on the stbd side, J appears very bright, could be white.

 

 

This photo?

 

51044622812_d474229fd3_b.jpg

 

 

I had posted this a while back in the Beaufort Turret topic: 

 

 

I do have a question about this turret. What would be the colour of the folding/collapsable area under the gun? A grey/tan canvas?

 

 

 

Chris

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, dogsbody said:

This photo?

That and other ones taken at the same time

 

1 hour ago, dogsbody said:

I had posted this a while back in the Beaufort Turret topic: 

Yes, I've commented on that photo in that thread, my feeling is that's the first trial installation of a beam gun in a Beaufort

 

2 hours ago, dogsbody said:

What would be the colour of the floding/collapsable area under the gun? A grey/tan canvas?

Definitely looks grey to me in the photo ,,,,,,   :whistle:

 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, dogsbody said:

 

 

This photo?

 

51044622812_d474229fd3_b.jpg

 

 

 

 

That's a great photo! There looks to be a reinforcing strip below the hatch where the gun mount is fitted. A nice touch to add to the model.  I don't think airfix have added an extended boarding ladder as well so another nice feature that could be added.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

It's also a great pic for adding wear & tear with all those scuff marks..

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/24/2021 at 11:14 PM, Dave Swindell said:

Also visible in this photo is a bracket on the side of the nose below the navigators glazing, this is often seen in early Beaufort photo's, and some later closeup photo's show 4 boltholes in this position but no bracket. The only photo's I've seen with anything mounted on the bracket are of one of the prototypes when being inspected by the king and Queen, and whatever it is that's mounted there has a protective canvas cover over it, there's a substantial wire or small pipe coming out of the bottom of it at the back which is fed through a hole into the fuselage. The best I can think of for this is some sort of cine camera arrangement for practice/dummy torpedo training runs, but it seems a bit big for this, and why mount it outside in the elements when it could be protected behind the bomb aiming windows?

 

Dave, based on the excellent information provided thus far I think I will close up the port side entry door hatch and fill in the starboard side 'rectangular' recessed window.  Both these options will serve me well as I had failed to paint the inside edge of the turret fairing and may have sanded a little too much around the edges of that rectangular window whilst blending in the turret fairing (D36).   

 

I also happen to be in possession of a good article in Air International November 1978 titled 'Bristol's first Beau. I'll quote a section of text that relates to that nose bracket and cameras. 

"The G.22 or G.42B camera gun carried externally on the starboard side of the front fuselage on early Beauforts was replaced by a G.45 in the port outer wing"

"when the torpedo was carried, an F.46 camera was fitted in the nose to photograph through the bomber's window and an F.24 could be mounted in the fuselage opposite the entrance door for oblique or vertical photography."

 

Cheers and I hope this helps.. Dave 

  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/25/2021 at 12:14 AM, Dave Swindell said:

a bracket on the side of the nose below the navigators glazing

as per @dogsbody ' s post above, various types of Wiliamson Camera Guns could be fitted here.

  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

O/T: one has to feel sorry for those trying to make a go of print magazines when such skillful modelling, learned contributions and excellent reference are available in a thread like this.  Thank you, everyone.

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Rabbit Leader said:

Dave, based on the excellent information provided thus far I think I will close up the port side entry door hatch and fill in the starboard side 'rectangular' recessed window.  Both these options will serve me well as I had failed to paint the inside edge of the turret fairing and may have sanded a little too much around the edges of that rectangular window whilst blending in the turret fairing (D36).   

That sounds a sensible approach given the circumstances David

 

6 hours ago, Rabbit Leader said:

I also happen to be in possession of a good article in Air International November 1978 titled 'Bristol's first Beau.

Thanks for the pointer, just dug my copy out

6 hours ago, Rabbit Leader said:

"The G.22 or G.42B camera gun carried externally on the starboard side of the front fuselage on early Beauforts was replaced by a G.45 in the port outer wing"

I think this statement is misleading in a few ways. From the manual extract posted by @dogsbody (thanks Chris) and the comment from @Ed Russell this bracket was used as I surmised for a camera mount, but facility to mount a bracket and camera here was retained late into production in both the UK and Australia, if not on all Beauforts. The mounting position and holes for the associated pipework are clearly visible in photos, and on the Moorabin cockpit restoration. As far as I'm aware there was no gun camera mount in the port wing, it was mounted just inboard of the stbd wing oil cooler, and is neatly moulded in the Airfix kit protruding slightly from the leading edge with a hole in the front. The implication of this statement for your model David is that this wouldn't be present on early Beauforts and should be removed, however it was fitted on 22 sqn aircraft by July 1940

6 hours ago, Rabbit Leader said:

an F.24 could be mounted in the fuselage opposite the entrance door for oblique or vertical photography."

This is almost certainly connected to the porthole window under the Stbd wing  in the photo of OA*H and others and confirms it's use, but doesn't answer the question of why some airframes have the oblique window and some don't, and which airframes had the under fuselage window. It would seem logical to manufacture all airframes with the windows and mounts for commonality but it appears this wasn't the case.

 

The article also notes later aircraft had an m/g in the stbd wing as per the mount in the port wing depicted in the Airfix kit, and both wing guns were not carried if twin nose guns were carried. (MK II onwards???)

It also states the rear firing under nose gun was discontinued when beam guns were introduced, I think this is a bit of a generalisation as the under fuselage gun continued to be fitted on some aircraft well after the beam gun mount was introduced.

 

Whilst 22 sqn trained for torpedo dropping, most of it's early missions during the phoney war were gardening sorties ie dropping 1500lb sea mines. The early photo's of torpedoes prior to loading to Beauforts don't show the air tail, either this was fitted after loading or  it wasn't yet introduced in service, need to research this a bit more.

  • Like 5
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/26/2021 at 10:02 AM, Dave Swindell said: The early photo's of torpedoes prior to loading to Beauforts don't show the air tail, either this was fitted after loading or  it wasn't yet introduced in service, need to research this a bit more.

Or was it security?  I understood that the air tail was considered a bit sensitive so efforts may have been made to ensure it didn’t appear in photos intended for public consumption.

 

PS I hope people haven’t forgotten the old Ian Allen book Beaufort Special. I’m sure there’ll be loads of useful photos and info in there.  (I’d check if I wasn’t marooned 200 miles away from my books.)

Link to post
Share on other sites
17 minutes ago, Seahawk said:

PS I hope people haven’t forgotten the old Ian Allen book Beaufort Special. I’m sure there’ll be loads of useful photos and info in there.  (I’d check if I wasn’t marooned 200 miles away from my books.)

 

 

This one?

 

51075628863_d737d44e56_c.jpg

 

 

 

 

Chris

  • Like 1
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...