Jump to content

Magna Models Martin MB3, 1/72nd scale, Finished


Recommended Posts

My first build for this GB is going to be the Magna 1/72nd scale Martin-Baker MB3 Fighter. The small Martin-Baker company had created some impression with their striking MB2 fighter, which although not selected for production had impressed those who tested it by its simplicity and how easy it was to maintain. When possible Spitfire  Hurricane successors were being considered Specification F18/39 was issued to Martin-Baker for a new design that built on the experience of the MB2 but was to be more powerful. This was to be the MB3, originally to be powered by the Rolls-Royce Griffon, but this was changed to the Napier Sabre when it became obvious that the Griffon was not going to be available, although it is not entirely clear who instigated the change (Bill Gunston in an article in Wings of Fame states it was MAP, but Tony Buttler comments that it is currently impossible to know)

Construction of the first MB3, and only completed airframe, was slow owing to the small size of the firm and full order books and delays in delivery of components from outside companies. Eventually MB3 R2492 was completed and first flew on 31st August 1942. Its life was brief, crashing on 12th September 1942 in attempting a landing after engine failure and claiming the life of its pilot, Valentine Baker. The partly completed second prototype was rebuilt as the sole MB5, an outstanding aircraft, but at the time of first flight in May 1944, it had no chance of production with the Hawker Fury in view and the first jet fighters already flying.

The kit is a typical Magna product in cream resin with a chunky look to them but reasonable surface detail. There are a few air bubbles on the wings near the undercarriage bays. Most parts are attached to resin pour stubs that will need removing  The parts count is low and a resin airframe is supplemented by white metal details such as propeller blades and undercarriage legs. These are going to require a lot of cleaning up as most are well-endowed with flash and some pitting on the surface of the propeller blades

The resin parts have no locating points and so will need some brass rod to help keep the wings and tail in place. The canopies are vacforms. Four are provided, two with a fuselage spine and two bubble canopies that were schemed but were apparently never fitted, the photo showing the MB3 with a bubble canopy being a 1940s equivalent of photoshopping. One irritating aspect of the kit is that the propeller spinner has holes for four blades, whereas quite clearly the MB3 was fitted with a three bladed propeller. Decals for the yellow P in a circle are present, but no other decals.

51063285567_8e32a24fcd_c_d.jpg

51063285762_82b52d35e5_c_d.jpg

The First job will be removal and cleaning up with adequate protection against resin dust.

Edited by Mr T
  • Like 8
Link to post
Share on other sites

Great choice, I built the Magna Henley a while ago and it turned out really well.  

Good luck with this one 

Cheers Pat 

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

that's an interesting looking plane and model.

 

I have heard of this manufacturer and generally they're not a bad model to build.......unlike the crispy critter Pat's trying to build.

 

Which version are you going to build, the Bubble canopy one does look nice even if it never made it from the drawing board.

 

Good luck with the build, I look forward to seeing this one built.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Jockney and trickyrich. This is my eighth Magna kit, and so I am getting the hang of them now. I will be doing the version as flown. There are a lot of photos of the aircraft that look to be taken at the same time,  presumably around the time of the first flight. I also have some photos I found on the internet that look if they had  come out an album showing the aircraft and being built with one labelled as being taken prior to the last flight. Quite sad as it includes Captain Baker.

Progress made on the model includes everything cleaned up and holes drilled to accept a brass rod to locate and strengthen wing and tail joints. The interior gubbings have been painted and the fuselage cleaned up to get some sort of reasonable fit. The propeller spinner has had three holes for the blades filled and two new ones drilled to turn it into a three bladed prop.

All being well the fuselage will be joined tonight.

I am currently on standby to get my second jab if there is any spare this afternoon (a few people are not showing up). I will have to be there pretty quick after the phone call.  My plan is to wait on the lawn for the phone call. My son who isn't working today is going to stand by the car with the door open. When the call comes he is going to start the engine and play the CD of a Merlin start and taxi while I get my shoes on  and run to the car. He will help me put my seat belt on and then wave me off with the cat sat at his side looking after me wondering if I will make it back (The last part being, of course, total fantasy, if the cat will be wondering anything, it will centre around me being around to feed him.). When the fuselage is sorted I am going to look at the cockpit and fairing behind the fuselage. It looks too high to me and i would rather sort it before the wings and tail goes on.

51016813580_032538dea7_c_d.jpg

51082542533_72290ba5e5_c_d.jpg

51001072014_2d937b9482_c_d.jpg

Till the next time

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Some more progress, the photos show the fuselage together with the fuselage spine plus canopy cut out and ready to be attached. The fuselage was not a brilliant fit on my sample hence the application of Miliput. The canopy bit was not too bad a job, the plastic was of variable thickness which was not helpful. The major problem is that if used as indicated by the vague cut line, it will sit too high on the fuselage.

51101532473_626fd7cef8_c_d.jpg

I have cut it down, but I am still not convinced  that it is not too tall. The other issue is that I think the fairing is too wide. I have done some reshaping, and it looks a bit better.

51101792430_a475bf2a89_c_d.jpg

Wings and tailplane have gone now after rubbing down the cockpit area. I used superglue to pin the pieces together and then two part epoxy to strengthen the joint. As you can see Miliput is going to loom large in my future.

51101792315_5048ded134_c_d.jpg

51101085852_6aa2d6358b_c_d.jpg

Looking at the plan view it does have a Mustang like appearance, although in side view it has a very 1930s look to it and the canopy position must have given a poor view over the nose. Please with how it is going. I would have thought it's unlikely to be the subject of an injection moulded kit (on the grounds that A, it is not an exotic and probably impracticable invention of the dying days of the Third Reich and B,  unlike most of A, it flew, even its career was tragically  cut short. Grumble over)

 

Edited by Mr T
  • Like 6
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

After some more work filling and sanding I have finally reached the stage where some paint can go on and this morning put the final coat of Yellow on the undersides. I have used some Xtracyrlic Trainer Yellow over some Citadel Yreil Yellow, which covers sell and airbrushes with few problems. Let it harden off today before masking for the Ocean Grey on top.

51120504654_ba0f10f06e_c_d.jpg

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, Mr T said:

Citadel Yreil Yellow, which covers

I might buy some of that for my trainers, if I can remember how to spell it!

 

Looking good.

 

Regards 

Adrian 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

After the under surfaces were finished, the upper surface  Ocean Grey was sprayed on, followed by brush painted Dark Green. Then a bit of a setback occurred. I had over thinned the Ocean Grey a bit, and it must have soaked through some masking in places. Never had this happen before, but thinners and a bit of sanding was required, followed by a repaint. The resulting finish is by no means perfect, but it looks far better than it did!

Some gloss varnish painted on, and I can now proceed to the decalling.

51144566828_2d8cc347cf_c_d.jpg

51144566658_6af8ef8ac0_c_d.jpg

Hopefully this will be finished soon as we are going away for a week!

  • Like 9
Link to post
Share on other sites

That looks brilliant. This is one kit, failing a plastic one, I'd be very keen to come by, even though I do tend to feel, after seeing an earlier build of it, that it is a bit lean under the nose. It still wouldn't put me off, especially after seeing what can be done with them. :) 

Steve.

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Thanks, Steve. I think you are right about the nose and if I was building it again I would make a deeper curve on the underside of the nose. I also have my doubts about the fuselage spine. Why they had to make the fuselage of a non-existent version and then botch the real rear fuselage and canopy is beyond me. Hopefully at the end of the day it will look something like an MB3 

Edited by Mr T
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 4/7/2021 at 5:19 PM, Mr T said:

51101532473_626fd7cef8_c_d.jpg

 

 

You are doing a grand job with this. It is another aircraft I had not heard of (although I had heard of the MB5).

 

Is it just me, or does this now look like how a Defiant would have looked without the rear turret?

 

I think that combination of yellows you used has come out incredibly well.

 

Cheers, Ray

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

There are photos of the Defiant prototype with no turret and a fairing running from the pilots canopy to the tail and there is a resemblance. The MB3 was essentially a 1938-9 design that took a long time to build. The Tempest V prototype flew a month after the first flight of the MB3. The MB5 used parts from the uncompleted second MB3 (basically bits of the rear fuselage, wings and undercarriage). Martin Baker was really too small a company to build the fighters without support that they never really had. They also found they could make money from the subcontract and modification work that came in a steady stream. 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

This is looking very nice. 

On 4/18/2021 at 10:09 AM, AdrianMF said:

I might buy some of that for my trainers

Reading this first thing Saturday morning after a long week, not woken up properly yet, I thought you were planning to paint your shoes yellow.

  • Haha 4
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Mr T changed the title to Magna Models Martin MB3, 1/72nd scale, Finished

Just seen the gallery pics, what a beauty. Over and over in this GB I am stunned at the quality of the yellows that people are getting on their models and yours is brilliant

 

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have found that yellow is never easy to do. I use a white undercoat and then some Citadel Yreil Yellow and then the MAP Yellow from Xtracyrlic. Even over a white undercoat, I have found that the Yellow does not cover that well and the Citadel paint seems to cover better. 

  • 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...