Jump to content

Spitfire Mk.Vb cannon fairings

Tea Taster

Recommended Posts

My question relates to Eduard's latest 1/48 Spitfire release, 'The Sweeps' Dual Combo.

Eduard include two different lower wings:-

L3 - Symmetrical cannon fairings and landing lamp fairings (this was the wing included in their Mk.IIb release).

M3- Asymmetric cannon fairings and landing lamps deleted.


Does anyone have any info with regards to the change in the cannon fairings?

It is a fairly small change, and not really noticeable unless you look for it. However, Eduard have gone to the trouble of producing two different wings, and it would be nice to know the why and when.


Morgan and Shacklady's 'Spitfire - The History' has a list of modifications and production info which is helpful

#749- 6/10/42 introduce cannon fairings for Hispano Mk II (retrofit) all cannon wings. (I don't know the difference in Hispano cannons, but assume this is for non machine gun, four cannon Spits?)

#623- 5/5/42 delete landing lamps.


The two marking option in the kit for the early wing are registrations  W3257 and W3320, (again referring to 'Spitfire - The History') are both Supermarine built, from the second order built between April and October 1941.

All other options use the late wing, and are both Supermarine and Castle Bromwich built, including W3518 (from the second Supermarine order, but depicted in 1943).


Deep down, I know it really doesn't matter, I can build them as I choose (even painting the crowbar red 😜), but it would be good to have a grasp of what it should be.

Eduard offer us outstanding kits, and it is not intended as criticism, there are economic constraints on what is reasonable for manufacturers to depict and include.

The archive of information and knowledge contained in the Forums here are my go-to source of reference.  I'm happy in my own mind as to whether late Spitfire Mk.Is had Engine Drive Pump undercarriage selectors for instance, thanks to the info contained here.    

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can't answer your question, but 4-cannon Spitfires were around before October 1942, being delivered to Malta in April..  They  could only be fitted to the C wing - is this possible with this Eduard kit?


The Mk.II Hispano was even earlier - this has been very recently described on this forum, and (basically) are the standard British production version of the cannon, and only a comparative handful will have had Mk.Is.


The only difference in underwing fairings I know of would be those initially fitted to the Cannon-armed Mk.I Spitfires, which gave so much trouble with the feed mechanism until replaced by the B wing.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Graham,

I raised a similar question on the Rumourmonger thread for Eduard Spitfires. I'm not sure how to link a quote from another thread, but ABeck kindly uploaded photos of the different lower wings on p.25 which shows the different shape of cannon fairing.


Eduard clearly think the difference is significant enough to retool the wing. The early wing is in their release of the Mk.IIb, The Sweeps Dual Combo, and the Mk.Vb early overtrees, and the late wing in The Sweeps and mid and late Mk.Vb overtrees.


I've several Mk.IIb s that I would like to build as early Mk.Vb s, for instance Paddy Finucane's , Stanford-Tuck's, and Johnnie Johnson's. My dilemma is which wing to use?

Eduard seem to think there was a transition, but was it due to a modification number? A Supermarine vs Castle Bromwich thing? Or a run-out of Mk.IIb airframes  built as Vb s?


Rather like the Mk.I undercarriage selector debate, Eduard have done their research and stated all Mk.I Spits had manual selectors. The knowledgeable folk on here have proved otherwise (IWM Spitfire Servicing film for example).

I'm being a pedant, but Eduard have researched the subject of the cannon fairing, and fair play to them for making their kits so accurate. I would love to know the evidence behind it. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites


    There are the notes from tbe late edgar brooks, a frequent BM'er


  there might be something in there ? 


    there was a thread that put his notes as a pdf 











  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tea Taster


Actually I don't know where the model maker found information about cannon fairings used on Mk.IIbs. The only existing Mk.IIb is in Canada and has cannon fairings same as shown in the second photo (Mk.Vb). 

The ones we can see in the first photo I only saw in the famous photos of Spitfire Mk.Vb QJ-S. And that plane was built as Mk.Ib (probably without machine guns), later upgraded to Mk.Vb. 


If someone shows me a photo of Mk.IIb with such fairings as suggested by Eduard, then I'll believe. Unfortunately, the "undercarriage pump gate" shows that they are not always right. 

So I would stick to Vb wing while building Mk.IIb.

Link to comment
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...