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Mark's Workbench: Heller 1/72 Liore et Olivier LeO451


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Hi all,

 

welcome to my new build thread! Anyone who has seen any of my other threads will know that my rate of progress is slower than the average glacier pre-global warming. So anyone who's along for this ride had better be prepared for even fewer updates! 

 

The Liore et Olivier LeO451 is one of the most elegant aeroplanes ever designed. Fact, not my opinion! That its one of my favourites, too, is in no doubt. Even though I struggle to pronounce "Liore" rather than "Loire"!!! I've somehow ended up with three of these kits in my stash, but bizarrely one of them, although sealed, is lacking its transparency sprue and early-type fin/rudder sprue!

 

There have been several build threads here on BM that have been inspirational, including these:

https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235096395-smer-172-leo-451-finished/

https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235080963-leo-451/

https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235080963-leo-451/

https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235080306-172-captured-luftwaffe-lioré-et-olivier-leo-451t-heller-retired-hurt/

https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235085547-172-captured-luftwaffe-lioré-et-olivier-léo-451t-heller-take-two-15321-its-got-me-beat/

https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235080757-l391-search-and-rescue-leo-453s-update-15mar21-flory-wash-windows-hand-rail-etc/

 

But these on www.https://heller-forever.forumactif.com/ have inspired me to have a go with this vintage kit:

https://heller-forever.forumactif.com/t10553-liore-olivier-leo-451-gb-i-25-tunis-el-aouina-printemps-1943-ref-80389

https://heller-forever.forumactif.com/t8135-leo-451-flottille-4f-1942-ref-80389

and most especially

https://heller-forever.forumactif.com/t13482-liore-et-olivier-leo-451-ref-389

which is the acme that I'm aspiring to emulate :rofl2:

 

So, the usual kit photos.

the box top:

http://IMG-3804.jpg

the back of the box:

http://IMG-3805.jpg

typical Heller instructions:

http://IMG-3813.jpg

the colour schemes (the Aeronautique Navale de Vichy is The One):

http://IMG-3815.jpg

the decals - Heller's current decals are really rather splendid:

http://IMG-3810.jpg

the sprues:

http://IMG-3818.jpg

note, bottom right, some flash indluded with the kit, free, gratis and for nothing!

the other sprues:

http://IMG-3822.jpg

and, unfortunately, some ejector pin marks:

http://IMG-3819.jpg

 

So far, I've applied some Mr Dissolved Putty to the ejector pin marks. As I said, it'll be a slow build, but I'm looking forward to it nonetheless, and in the meantime, please have a look at Cracoucass' build on Heller Forever. Its astounding!


Cheers,

Mark

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Of course, Alistair! Glad to have you along! It'll be a long haul..... Do have a look at the threads on Heller Forever, they are a-may-zing :D 

 

The kit itself is quite basic as you can see, but then it was tooled in 1966, so three years older than me! Very little flash, which is pretty amazing. Gotta love the Heller instructions (I've got a couple of simpler kits of theirs I want to do as well, ones I built as a sprog, to practise on). The detail is raised, not surprisingly, but I'm thinking I'll employ @opus999's pencil line panel line method on this one.

 

I understand that a lot of these aircraft were quite badly chipped - the camo colours were apparently painted with the wrong sort of paint and peeled off the aluminium skinning quite badly, However, apparently the Aeronavale machines were less badly affected. Don't know why!

 

Anyway, I'm hoping it'll turn out alright!

 

Cheers,

Mark

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Mark, I fear you are taking on a task which would reduce most men, even a mere stripling such as yourself, to a state of gibbering incoherence, left cowering in the corner of your modelling room trying to stick a couple of Lego blocks together and muttering something about raised panel lines and mismatched wing halves. Being partial to a bit of the old schadenfreude myself, I shall of course be following along. Might I suggest that you start a couple of Tamiya kits at the same time as a buffer for your sanity?


Incidentally, am I to take it from your participation in the last thread you linked to that you’re fluent in French? This may well prove handy since the instructions appear to be written in that language. I was going to suggest that you should use Google translate to convert all your entries from English to French and back again to add a little ‘Ello ‘ello style Gallic atmosphere to the build but if you can actually write in French, you could miss out the first step. Anyway, I am looking forward to this very much and await reports of progress with anticipation. 
 

Craig. 

 

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10 hours ago, Dandie Dinmont said:

a state of gibbering incoherence

 

3 hours ago, AliGauld said:

Aah, welcome to my world. :drunk:

Mine, too :mental:

 

10 hours ago, Dandie Dinmont said:

Mark, I fear you are taking on a task which would reduce most men, even a mere stripling such as yourself, to a state of gibbering incoherence, left cowering in the corner of your modelling room trying to stick a couple of Lego blocks together and muttering something about raised panel lines and mismatched wing halves. Being partial to a bit of the old schadenfreude myself, I shall of course be following along. Might I suggest that you start a couple of Tamiya kits at the same time as a buffer for your sanity?

Craig, you're undoubtedly absolutely right and I suspect that this whole lunatic idea may quietly fade away into the mists of time. However, as it stands, the plan (!) is to do this on an as-and-when-I-feel-like-it basis: I think the idea of having a few shake-and-bake kits on hand to steady the fraying nerves is a brilliant suggestion and one I'll definitely be following!

 

10 hours ago, Dandie Dinmont said:

Incidentally, am I to take it from your participation in the last thread you linked to that you’re fluent in French? This may well prove handy since the instructions appear to be written in that language. I was going to suggest that you should use Google translate to convert all your entries from English to French and back again to add a little ‘Ello ‘ello style Gallic atmosphere to the build but if you can actually write in French, you could miss out the first step. Anyway, I am looking forward to this very much and await reports of progress with anticipation.

Alas, no, my schoolboy French is definitely within the realms of Officer Crabtree.....or Inspector Clouseau :D I can more-or-less read French and get the gist of what's being written, but for the threads I've been using DeepL as a translator: I'm hoping that, over time, I might be able to dispense with using that! Google translate does come up with some gems, doesn't it? Its quite tempting: "Aww-www-wwww, Rene!"

 

Cheers,

Mark

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Daring :P  I like @Richard Tucker's build, but that last one you referred to is something else :banghead:

 

Although, having done something similar on a Valom Hampden, not so sure if I'd deck out the full internals again where it's never going to be seen ;) 

Anyways, good luck with this one, in for the long haul I guess. 

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13 minutes ago, alt-92 said:

Daring :P  I like @Richard Tucker's build, but that last one you referred to is something else :banghead:

 

Although, having done something similar on a Valom Hampden, not so sure if I'd deck out the full internals again where it's never going to be seen ;) 

Anyways, good luck with this one, in for the long haul I guess. 

Thanks! Yes, its a bit daunting in many respects but I'm looking forward to it. I don't expect to go the full distance with the internals, but I'll see how I feel at the time. And then there's the length of the fuselage, too :)

 

Air International for October 1985 contains a fairly in-depth article on the LeO451 and includes a superb cut-away drawing, but I could really do with a few more references - I don't think I can run to the Meunier books, though!

 

Cheers,

Mark

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34 minutes ago, alt-92 said:

having done something similar on a Valom Hampden

Just had a look at your Hampden build - absolutely superb!

 

Cheers,

Mark

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Did someone say Heller? I'm onboard for this one.

 

Strangely, the Leo is one Heller kit missing from my stash. Probably because I got dazzled by all the other slab sided, barn door beauties in their bomber range. I'll be following the build with much interest and probably getting my wallet out (again!) at the end of it.

 

I'll even try and keep up if the thread goes all French language, although all I can remember from school is how to get my dog to the town hall to buy him a ham sandwich. Oh! And if the page count goes over 10, I'll be lost.

 

Cheers!

Steve

 

(That LeO build on Heller Forever is stunning!)

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33 minutes ago, fightersweep said:

Did someone say Heller? I'm onboard for this one.

 

Strangely, the Leo is one Heller kit missing from my stash. Probably because I got dazzled by all the other slab sided, barn door beauties in their bomber range. I'll be following the build with much interest and probably getting my wallet out (again!) at the end of it.

 

I'll even try and keep up if the thread goes all French language, although all I can remember from school is how to get my dog to the town hall to buy him a ham sandwich. Oh! And if the page count goes over 10, I'll be lost.

 

Cheers!

Steve

 

(That LeO build on Heller Forever is stunning!)

Hi Steve,

 

welcome along! You may recall that I had a few Heller kits from you recently: although they're waiting patiently in my stash* they've kick-started my nostalgia and led me to find a few others like this beauty. I do feel an Amiot 143 coming on, though :) 

 

Don't worry - this thread will be staying resolutely en Anglais - my schoolboy French would allow me to ask if La Famille Marsaud were au supermarche pour acheter un kilo de pommes, n'est-ce pas?

 

Cheers,

Mark

 

* the Nieuport-Delage may yet be an entry in the French Fancy GB.....

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@2996 Victor

 

I do recall those Heller kits. Glad to hear you've discovered the joys of Heller nostalgia. There's a lot of gems amongst their back catalogue along with  some unusual types and some downright munters to add a touch of fugly to anyone's kit collection. The Amiot 143 is a given, and similar to the LeO in what to expect in the box. The Bloch 210 is a gem and the new boxing is well worth picking up, especially at the £14.99 I've seen it for regularly. Must admit that I hadn't realised what an impact Heller had on the impressionable young me back in the very early 80s, but I'm very glad to have re-discovered them.

 

Glad we're staying en Anglais! My repertoire of schoolboy French is equally limited and what I did learn would be utterly useless, unless I want to find the local swimming baths or declare that I'm 13 years old. Then again, perhaps I haven't actually grown up that much. I did however manage to learn all the naughty words which we often threw into the mix in French lessons for another well earned detention.

 

Steve

 

 

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2 hours ago, fightersweep said:

I do recall those Heller kits. Glad to hear you've discovered the joys of Heller nostalgia. There's a lot of gems amongst their back catalogue along with  some unusual types and some downright munters to add a touch of fugly to anyone's kit collection. The Amiot 143 is a given, and similar to the LeO in what to expect in the box. The Bloch 210 is a gem and the new boxing is well worth picking up, especially at the £14.99 I've seen it for regularly. Must admit that I hadn't realised what an impact Heller had on the impressionable young me back in the very early 80s, but I'm very glad to have re-discovered them.

Those kits are calling. I mentioned the Nieuport Delage, and I'm especially keen on building the Spitfire XVI soon. I'll have to see if I can spot the Bloch 210. I've picked up a couple of their twins, too: Potez 631, Bloch 174. Looking forward to those as well!

 

2 hours ago, fightersweep said:

Glad we're staying en Anglais! My repertoire of schoolboy French is equally limited and what I did learn would be utterly useless, unless I want to find the local swimming baths or declare that I'm 13 years old. Then again, perhaps I haven't actually grown up that much. I did however manage to learn all the naughty words which we often threw into the mix in French lessons for another well earned detention.

We didn't even get to learn the naughty words!

 

Just for laughs, I'm thinking of doing what Craig @Dandie Dinmont suggested and use Google Translate to translate my posts from English to French, and then translate it back again :)

 

Cheers,

Mark

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On 8/31/2021 at 1:59 PM, 2996 Victor said:

but I'm thinking I'll employ @opus999's pencil line panel line method on this one.

Great!  I hope it works out for you.  Practice on some scrap first.... ;) 

 

I just learned about this aircraft last year (I know I'm such an uncultured swine!) and thought it was a very elegant looking plane.  I didn't realize there was a kit of it.  I'm definitely interested in seeing how this progresses!

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On 8/31/2021 at 9:13 PM, 2996 Victor said:

and most especially

https://heller-forever.forumactif.com/t13482-liore-et-olivier-leo-451-ref-389

which is the acme that I'm aspiring to emulate :rofl2:

That is a gorgeous build. If you can emulate that you deserve heaps of praise :)

 

Martin

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35 minutes ago, RidgeRunner said:

That is a gorgeous build. If you can emulate that you deserve heaps of praise :)

 

Martin

Hi Martin,

 

yes, it incredible, isn't it? Or perhaps incroyable, n'est-ce pas? It's a HUGE "if", though :) so we'll just have to see how it goes!

 

Cheers,

Mark

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3 hours ago, VG 33 said:

Hello

 

I have understood this build will be long and I will follow as I have bought the same box for the nice decal sheet.

 

Patrick

Hi Patrick,

 

great to have you along! Its a lovely decal sheet, isn't it? I particularly like the separate type info to go on the rudders, and the separate Aeronavale anchors. The kit itself is nicely moulded, very little flash, especially considering the tooling dates from 1966!

 

It'll be a slow build, even for me (and I'm slow!).

 

Cheers,

Mark

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6 hours ago, opus999 said:

Great!  I hope it works out for you.  Practice on some scrap first.... ;) 

 

I just learned about this aircraft last year (I know I'm such an uncultured swine!) and thought it was a very elegant looking plane.  I didn't realize there was a kit of it.  I'm definitely interested in seeing how this progresses!

Hi Opus,

 

I'm sure the pencil technique will be ideal for this, and other Heller builds I'm planning, as they've all got raised panel lines. But there'll be plenty of time to practice before this beauty needs them done! :) After some initial practicing on a mule, I suspect a Spitfire XVIe might be the first guinea pig :D

 

The Leo451 is incredibly elegant, especially when seen alongside contemoprary designs, but one has to wonder why they spoiled the lovely lines with the retractable dustbin turret. The design was intended to be an ultra-fast bomber but apparently, when lowered, the turret created so much drag it negated much of the aerodynamic advantage of the aircraft. I have to say it reminds me of the type of men's outdoor toilet :toilet: one sees in vintage photos of French provincial towns. The premise of a fast bomber forcing opposing fighters into tail-chasing was why the dorsal defence was a Hispano 404 20mm cannon, but in practice the rate of fire was too slow and the ammunition drums almost impossible to change in flight, which lead to the fitting of a supplementary pair of 7.7mm machine guns. All-in-all, though, an interesting aircraft and moderately successful in its intended role.

 

Cheers,

Mark

 

 

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17 minutes ago, 2996 Victor said:

but one has to wonder why they spoiled the lovely lines


It was the law, I think. Elegant aircraft designs were frowned upon, so something had to be included that spoiled otherwise beautiful lines. :giggle:

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1 hour ago, 2996 Victor said:

yes, it incredible, isn't it? Or perhaps incroyable, n'est-ce pas?

c'est incroyable mais pas impossible pour vous.

and that's about as far as my Higher French will let me go.

 

Cheers,

Alistair

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30 minutes ago, Heather Kay said:


It was the law, I think. Elegant aircraft designs were frowned upon, so something had to be included that spoiled otherwise beautiful lines. :giggle:

Brilliant, Heather! :rofl2: But I think you're probably absolutely right!

 

Cheers.

Mark

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17 minutes ago, AliGauld said:

c'est incroyable mais pas impossible pour vous.

and that's about as far as my Higher French will let me go.

 

Cheers,

Alistair

Merci beaucoup, Alistair! Mais je pense que tu es overestimating mes abilities :D 

 

Cheers,

Mark

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1 hour ago, AdrianMF said:

Nous avons un érection pour un LeO 451! Tant mieux!!

 

:coat:

Adrian

Erm..... c'est du bon travail j'ai le Viagra en commande ;)

 

À votre santé,

Mark

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