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A trio of Vulcans; XM594 - Waddington, 1981. XL426 - Scampton, 1981. XL317 - Scampton, 1963 (Airfix 1/72 New-Tool)


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 A cold, crisp February morning in 1983. The clear out at Waddington is in full swing. A lone Vulcan on dispersal awaits her last flight. 

 

Her crew reviews the weather reports. A snow storm is moving in but they are confident they can make the short trip before it hits. 

 

This particular Vulcan is XM594, the penultimate Blue Steel fitted airframe and one that is about to attempt the second most insane landing in V-bomber history - The top spot is taken by XA908 which performed a GRASS landing at RAF Newton on retirement. Anyway, 594 is the only Vulcan to have done a short field tarmac landing. In a snow storm. On an airfield that only ever usually saw gliders and single engine aircraft.

 

So, my first (eek!) build of the new Airfix kit will be XM594 towards the end of her service. I'm going to be requiring the assistance of @Adam Poultney on this one and why would I build her battered and worn? Well because when I build XM655 in the same colour scheme it's going to be all shiny. 

 

For all your rivet counting needs please see Adam's thread, but for now here is my progress on '594

 

 

PXL_20210706_160112324

 

 

PXL_20210706_160219471

 

 

PXL_20210706_160121084

 

 

PXL_20210706_152607181

 

 

PXL_20210706_152558291

 

 

The cockpit is about 80% assembled with the seats dry fitted, the main structural core of the aircraft is complete, ordnance has been dry-fitted and the Blue Steel has been built up for a bit of fun.

 

I'm loving this kit so far and have another two on the way - at least one of which will be loaded up ready to head to the range.

 

Cheers,

  WV908

 

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A little amendment - I've decided to build XM594 'bombed up' on dispersal at Waddington. She visited Offut in 1982 so was still fitted with a refuelling probe up until that point. Hence I will be switching my time period to 1981.

 

Cheers,

  WV908

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Posted (edited)

Good start, can't wait to see more! Great idea to do a weary and worn XM594 as she appears now. Vulcans in museums weather in the most interesting ways, so it sounds really fun to model. And that way you have a lot of reference material to work from (I photographed XM594 last summer, I might need to visit again just to rephotograph a few bits I missed). More than happy to share any of my photos if they are needed.

 

On 06/07/2021 at 18:02, WV908 said:

The top spot is taken by XA908 which performed a GRASS landing at RAF Newton on retirement.

I don't think XA908's last landing was that impressive, it was a hard landing in a field. A very hard landing, and it wasn't an airfield. Sadly not a landing the crew got to walk away from as was so often the case with the V Bombers; 50 out of the 328 Vulcans, Victors and Valiants built were written off. Of those, there were 17 crashes with at least one survivor (so the crew had at least a chance to get out, not like XH477 or XH536 which were victims of CFIT), only 5 had the full crew survive (XA891, XA909, XM600, XM610 and XH613, note that four are Vulcans, one is a Victor and no full crews escaped a Valiant, although the first Valiant's crew nearly all made it, it was only bad luck that meant the copilot did not).

https://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/55326

The one at RAF Newton was XA905.

Electrical failures brought down a few Vulcan B1s and were a major concern for XA903 which was the last one flying and the only vulcan to be fully rewired which was done in 1977. There were only 4 Mk1s in existence at that point (B1as XH483 and XH500 and B1s XA900 and of course XA903) and by the time 903 last flew on 22 February 1979 there were only 2 B1s in existence (XA900 and XA903). RAFM should have cut up XA900 in 1979 and taken on XA903 instead since XA900 was already in a right state when it was given to the museum. 

Oops that's quite a tangent but you start a Vulcan thread, expect me to ramble 😂

 

Edited by Adam Poultney
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  • WV908 changed the title to Avro Vulcan B.2 XM594 - Waddington, 1981 (Airfix 1/72 New-Tool)

Thanks Adam - so yes although I have picked 1981 she will not be too far different from her appearance over the last decade or so - except with tags and green blowy-uppy things. 

 

Don't worry about the ramble haha - I always find it amazing just how quickly the early Vulcans were disposed of.

 

You can rest your mind though with my builds as I have decided not to build XL444 - My wraparound Vulcan will likely be XM648 instead.

 

Cheers,

  WV908

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All these new Vulcan builds make me want to get one for myself and place it next to my Argentinian aircraft.

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So I've made a final decision about the airframes I'm building - I had decided on XM648 for my wraparound Vulcan, but then I realised she is 301 powered. So!

 

XM594 - Standard camo, 44sqn, Waddington 1981

 

XL426 - Wraparound camo, 617sqn, Scampton 1981

 

XL317 - Anti-Flash White, 617sqn, Scampton 1963 

 

Anything I should be wary of with these choices @Adam Poultney?

 

Cheers,

 WV908

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Another Vulcan thread.... and no doubt we will see plenty more. Its so obvious this new tool kit has been eagerly sort after for many years, so its great to see so many WIP threads happening here. 

Lovely progress so far, the photo's are excellent. 

Cheers and best of luck.. Dave 

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Looks rather spectacular for an Airfix kit - WOW!

 

My Grandfather worked on Blue Steel during the development phase (no idea what he did, as he never said)

 

AJ

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I can't imagine what it would have been like to work on 'standard' nuclear ordnance, never mind those horrid things. The one I'll be fitting to XL317 will be an inert training round.

 

The kit is honestly fantastic. There are issues with the fuselage join along the top, but it's pretty much just mould seams that are the problem. A bit of material will need to be shaved off the tabs in the bomb bay roof but it's nothing serious. 

 

Apart from this though, the fit is more than good enough so far. Just be aware of very tight tolerances with the nose and as Adam pointed out, the attachment tabs for the bang seats need cutting down.

 

Cheers,

  WV908

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1 hour ago, WV908 said:

XL317 - Anti-Flash White, 617sqn, Scampton 1963 

Vulcan 617 BS.

This is XL317 (tail number visible on another photo)  It's the aircraft I have decided to build.  What I have found out so far:

1st airframe ordered as a B2.

First flew July 1961.

Fitted with Olympus 200 series engines (So no de-icing vents on underside)

No Sky Bolt blisters.

Flew from RAF Scampton with 617 Sqn from June 1962 in Blue Steel role.

Scrapped 1986.

Posting on Adams @Adam Poultney thread I have also found out from Andy @general melchettthat some AM Olympus 200 series engines will be on the market in the not to distant future, the kit uses Olympus 300 series engines (Different compressor faces and shorter tail pipes).  I also surmised about why the Blue Steel on the photo is blue.

Gives me chance to finish some of my other builds while waiting for the correct AM engines and Fundekal decals to come along. 

Bob

 

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2 hours ago, WV908 said:

So I've made a final decision about the airframes I'm building - I had decided on XM648 for my wraparound Vulcan, but then I realised she is 301 powered. So!

 

XM594 - Standard camo, 44sqn, Waddington 1981

 

XL426 - Wraparound camo, 617sqn, Waddington 1981

 

XL317 - Anti-Flash White, 617sqn, Scampton 1963 

 

Anything I should be wary of with these choices @Adam Poultney?

 

Cheers,

 WV908

Configurations for all Vulcan B.2s

 

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ljleemPGEVyH360F-DqwZqu5iB3LrcqL/view?usp=sharing

 

To clarify with XL317, the second ECM plate was installed after losing the white scheme and the nose was smooth until after receiving camo.

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Thanks both :)

 

So that's two of us building 317 then - I will wait for the appropriate aftermarket parts to appear for the exhausts and potentially the fan faces for both that and 426.

 

I really am hoping someone does a little pack of central wipers - they are going to be a right pain to sort otherwise. 

 

Cheers,

  WV908

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Posted (edited)

 

Quote

 I also surmised about why the Blue Steel on the photo is blue.

 

Just to clarify Bob, it was one of 16 training rounds (initially painted BS381C 112  Arctic blue), given to the BS stations for handling/loading purposes. A few aircraft carried them at various events, such as XL427 photographed here at the Biggin Hill Air Show in 1969.

 

https://en.missilery.info/missile/blue-steel

 

And XL387 at Sculthorpe.

 

https://nl.pinterest.com/pin/499829258641411056/

 

 

 

Quote

I really am hoping someone does a little pack of central wipers - they are going to be a right pain to sort otherwise. 

 

I used a PE spare from a Flightpath set but it wouldn't be that difficult to make up from stretched styrene to be honest.  

 

 

 

 

Edited by general melchett
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11 hours ago, Adam Poultney said:

To clarify with XL317, the second ECM plate was installed after losing the white scheme and the nose was smooth until after receiving camo.

OOPs, I was forgetting that when XL317 was white it only had the starboard ECM plate fitted and as can be seen in the photo, it had a refuelling probe.

 

11 hours ago, WV908 said:

I really am hoping someone does a little pack of central wipers - they are going to be a right pain to sort otherwise.

The fun part will be removing the two moulded on wipers first,  I do have a set from a Wolfpack upgrade for the old Vulcan kit, but I'm sure Eduard will seize the opportunity to make some money with a p/e set.

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There's a few in-flight photos of XL317 that show off her underside details quite well - but I still can't figure out what colour that ECM plate is.

 

I'm gonna leave the moulded wipers on and try to copy them for the third.

 

Cheers,

  WV908

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9 hours ago, WV908 said:

I'm gonna leave the moulded wipers on and try to copy them for the third.

Slight problem with leaving the moulded wipers on, Airfix have put them on the wrong side of the glass panels, Andy @general melchett posted a photo on Adams "rivet counting thread" of the Newark Vulcan showing the correct position and the broken arm of the missing centre wiper.

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Quote

 but I still can't figure out what colour that ECM plate is.

 

On all-white Vulcans the forward 1/4 of the ECM plates were white the rest a dark aluminium colour. (I used AKs Xtreme Metal Dark Aluminium which matched photographs well).

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Posted (edited)
Quote

Slight problem with leaving the moulded wipers on, Airfix have put them on the wrong side of the glass panels, Andy @general melchett posted a photo on Adams "rivet counting thread" of the Newark Vulcan showing the correct position and the broken arm of the missing centre wiper.

 

Actually, they are in the right place Bob, museum aircraft are sometimes seen with the wipers parked in different positions so look slightly different. I'd been surprised if they were wrong as the data is taken from the LIDAR scan of the subject as is on the day, hence the missing central wiper (doesn't account for the missing upper red anti-collision light though!) with parts not being available to be replaced or off the aircraft for restoration. 

 

 

1-EF4-I1011.jpg

 

 

1-AGD-0125.jpg

 

 

Edited by general melchett
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Another Vulcan build, Quelle Surprise!

Only joking, the more there are the more tips for me when I get to build one. I’ve gathered quite a few already including the one above from the General about all white Vulcan ECM plates.

Watching closely.

 

John

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2 hours ago, Retired Bob said:

Slight problem with leaving the moulded wipers on, Airfix have put them on the wrong side of the glass panels, Andy @general melchett posted a photo on Adams "rivet counting thread" of the Newark Vulcan showing the correct position and the broken arm of the missing centre wiper.

 

Hi Bob, even if they were wrong, I'm not of the persuasion to remove them :)

 

2 hours ago, general melchett said:

 

On all-white Vulcans the forward 1/4 of the ECM plates were white the rest a dark aluminium colour. (I used AKs Xtreme Metal Dark Aluminium which matched photographs well).

 

Thanks General, that's brilliant :)

 

2 hours ago, Biggles87 said:

Another Vulcan build, Quelle Surprise!

Only joking, the more there are the more tips for me when I get to build one. I’ve gathered quite a few already including the one above from the General about all white Vulcan ECM plates.

Watching closely.

 

John

 

Hi John,

  I'm very quickly learning what is worth fettling and what isn't haha. I spent ages prepping the bits for the 'core' of the jet and subsequently realised it would have gone together fine straight from the box :)

 

Cheers,

WV908

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Wow I can't wait to get one of these! I made the old Airfix kit when I was a kid and this looks to be quite substantial in engineering and parts I saw on Flory Models on YouTube they're doing a build, and two on here, I can't wait to see these finished! How's the fit so far? I've the Hellcat and the kit looks awesome the new Airfix stuff seems to be top of the line from what I can see.

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  • WV908 changed the title to A trio of Vulcans; XM594 - Waddington, 1981. XL426 - Scampton, 1981. XL317 - Scampton, 1963 (Airfix 1/72 New-Tool)

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