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The Operation “Judgement” FAA Avenger is +++FINISHED with RFI Added+++


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One of my projects for the website this year is a piece focused on the events of a single day, the 4th May 1945.  This was the date of the last offensive operation mounted by the FAA against the Germans, and on the other side of the planet, the RN was also mounting carrier operations, also with Avengers, against the Japanese. 
 

I’ll be building two Avengers for this piece, one Hobby Boss and the other Italeri, ex Accurate Miniatures.  The first of these builds is the Operation Judgement Avenger using the Hobby Boss kit.

 

My reference photo is this one;

 

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There are a series of impressive photos of this operation, of which this is one of the more well known.

 

Some of you may remember that during an intermission in another build last year I actually started this kit.  I had just smash moulded the round windows when it became apparent that I’d removed too much internal structure in the fuselage so the first order of business was to replace it.

 

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It’s a little on the crude side but will suffice considering the extremely limited view afforded of it once the fuselage is closed.

 

Next I repainted the cockpit assemblies the correct interior green colours, I.e. I’ve now painted the bronze green as well as the interior green.  I’d previously built the observer’s cockpit, and now that it’s base painted I’ll get on and detail that area.

 

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I also worked on the instrument panels.  The pilot’s one is from references, the observer’s one from my imagination.  I may or may not use it.  I simply paired it black, dry brushed and then scratched lines in the gauges before filling them with Klear/Future. I picked out some of the details with paints and Calle sit done.  Those who have followed my previous builds know I have little patience for cockpits!

 

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So that’s the state of play for now.  I’m not going to build the two Avengers in parallel, the second will be later this year.

 

I’m travelling a bit for work this week but hope that by the weekend I’ll have, or at least be close to having the fuselage closed up.

 

Cheers.

Edited by mark.au
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I'm in! I finished the Hobby Boss kit last year as JZ257 of 849 Sqn, and although it took a bit of work I was quite pleased with the result. Love the Observer's position - is that a PE seat?

 

Cheers,

 

Roger

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18 hours ago, Dunny said:

I'm in! I finished the Hobby Boss kit last year as JZ257 of 849 Sqn, and although it took a bit of work I was quite pleased with the result. Love the Observer's position - is that a PE seat?

 

Cheers,

 

Roger


You didn’t finish it out in the WIP though…?  Please share a pic of it finished here, it will give me some inspiration and something to aspire to.

 

Yes, the seat is a PE one from the spares box.

 

Edited by mark.au
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Hi Mark,

 

Rather confusingly I combined my Tarpon WIP into a Hellcat WIP! Here it is:

And here's the RFI

 

Hope this helps - best of luck with the build!

 

Cheers,

 

Roger

 

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Thanks for those @Dunny Roger, they will be a big help and not a little inspiration.  

 

Over the last few days I've been plodding along on the cockpit and interior, as well as the engine. I'm satisfied with the interior and how it will look once the fuselage is all closed up.  I will close the bomb bay, so no need for anything in there and the canopy, while open will still prevent much detailed view of the interior.  I will likely leave the crew entry door open, but again, nothing much visible through it anyway.

 

I followed my usual process, including not taking in-progress photos (of what, though?).  After the assembly I gave it all a quick blast of clear gloss then applied a dark wash.  Next a dry brush of various complementary shades and then a little bit of chipping, mostly with dry brushing rather than a silver pencil.    So here's what the front office ended up like...

 

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I used some PE seatbelts from the spares box, I think these were from the Huey - don't tell anyone - but they seemed to satisfy the general layout per the references I could find.  Looking at the pics I'm not sure about that seam in the bulkhead between pilot and observer...  I'll have to go check some references to see if that's something I need to fix...

 

Here's the whole thing, almost ready to close up.  I've started work on the current as I will install it prior to closing up the fuselage and subsequent painting.  Actually following the instructions... how about that?

 

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I think I've got something nicely representative here, even if not a replication.  

 

I've also worked on the engine, though practically everything seen below won't be visible once it's installed.  It was a good experiment though; I used some brown artist paint mixed with Vallejo Burnt Iron to get the exhaust colour and I think it came out quite well.  There's potential in that, so will play with that for future effects.

 

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As mentioned, I've begun work on the turret which should be done by end of the weekend.  After that, It's time to close up the fuselage and begin the airframe construction.  I'm thinking I'll have this one displayed with one wing folded and one extended.  Some scratch building may be in my future as the detail looks pretty sparse in the kit parts.

 

Cheers;

M.

 

 

Edited by mark.au
Edited because I tend to proof read after hitting "Post Reply"
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Looking good Mark! I do like your treatment of the engine. The turret is a bit of a kit in itself, but does build up nicely - I hope you have a set of masks?!

 

Cheers,

 

Roger

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6 minutes ago, Dunny said:

Looking good Mark! I do like your treatment of the engine. The turret is a bit of a kit in itself, but does build up nicely - I hope you have a set of masks?!

 

Cheers,

 

Roger

 

Thanks mate.  Yes, I have masks, a bit of kit I make sure to have for everything I build these days!

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On 2/14/2022 at 4:21 AM, stevehnz said:

Nice looking interior Mark, I'll tag along for a bit. :)

Steve.

 

You're most welcome Steve, glad t have you along.

 

On 2/13/2022 at 10:28 AM, shortCummins said:

I like the exhaust colour, that might be useful for a Beaufighter or Swordfish engine cowls

 

That's an excellent point John.  I've played with it a bit more and by varying the amount of Future/Pledge and/or clear flat I can make the finish appropriate for those components.  I also tried it with a slightly darker mix and that worked well too.

 

So, to this update... I completed the the turret this evening.  Here's what it looks like...

 

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Goodness me, it looks rough at around 400% life size but it will do nicely for 1/48 scale behind some clear plastic!  The assembly was a little tricky, but once done I mixed up some Bronze Green and painted it up.  Following a clear coat I slapped on some goop for a wash and then a dry brush with a lighter shade of green.  A bit of detail painting and a flat coat et voi la! 

 

The turret's gunsight was a shocking moulding which (starting top left) I took through a couple of sanding steps before a nice coat of Future (bottom right) to make it look passable.

 

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That'll also look nice behind another piece of thick clear plastic!  

 

I've masked up the turret but didn't take a pic, you've all seen masked clear plastic before... 😉   I used Eduard masks.  While I was applying them I cast my mind back to the early 2000's when I built an Acc Min Avenger and had to mask the old fashioned way.  I really don't think I could do that now.

 

Anyway, that's it for now.  Hopefully I will close up the fuselage in the next couple of days and work through the airframe assembly.  

 

Cheers;

M.

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There's something very transitional about closing the fuselage.  For me it's the beginning of building an aeroplane.  Here's the beginning of my aeroplane...

 

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Fit has been excellent to the point where I've offered up the wing [stubs] and tail and simply run some Tamiya Extra Thin along the join and left it to set.  There are zero gaps to fill and a swipe or two of a sanding stick with have everything ready for paint.

 

I plan to display this one with the port wing folded so I added some random detail to somewhere that won't actually be seen once the wing is on.

 

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I did clean it up after taking the photo.  Honestly.

 

If I'm really productive in the next couple of days I may even get some paint splashed on this thing over the weekend.  Probably not though, there's some gubbins to be scratch built in the wing fold.

 

Cheers;

Mark.

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Mark,

 

I’m just building the same model myself but way behind your progress.  I have checked images of the structure behind the pilot and I cannot see a seam line on it..

 

 

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On 2/18/2022 at 4:59 AM, Anthony in NZ said:

Lovely work Mark and great save on the 'glass'  Love the TBF, have the 32nd one to build as an RNFAF T Tug someday. Great inspiration and progress.  Nice to see you put the seat in the back too

 

Cheers Anthony

 

Thanks Anthony, much appreciated.  You building an Avenger is something I'll very much look forward to following along with.  I have three more Avengers in the stash with a plan for each.

 

On 2/18/2022 at 12:05 AM, Grey Beema said:

Mark,

 

I’m just building the same model myself but way behind your progress.  I have checked images of the structure behind the pilot and I cannot see a seam line on it..

 

 

 

Hi Grey, thanks.  I found the pic below of a restored Avenger and there is a seam of sorts there so I shall leave it as it is.  My seam is definitely over-scale but behind the glazing it will look representative.

 

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I didn't get as much done as I would have thought or liked this weekend.  I've begun the masking and will soon have the main airframe ready for painting.  

 

Question; to those knowledgeable; as this is an FAA Avenger from May 1945 it would carry the TSS scheme over white, correct?  It would also sport a black anti-glare on the nose?

 

I briefly lost my nerve for the wing fold but after giving myself a stern talking to, I wrenched out the extended wing insert and installed the folding wing insert.

 

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My major effort this weekend was re-stashing my stash - they were in the spare room closet and needed to move so I put up a couple of shelves and while I was at it, did a bench tidy-up too.

 

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There will be a prize for anyone that correctly guesses the next project - the kit is up there...  🙂

 

Cheers;

M

 

Edited by mark.au
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On 2/18/2022 at 1:36 AM, bigbadbadge said:

Oh wow this looks great with the fuselage buttoned up and the inner wing section on , great to know the fit is great too.

Cracking job Mark

Chris

 

Thanks Chris, much appreciated as always.  

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Hi Mark,

 

Coming along nicely! Not sure about the colour scheme - I would have said TSS over Sky with no anti-glare, but I'm sure someone will correct me! Is it wrong to envy another man's stash? So nicely stashed too! 🤣

 

Cheers,

 

Roger

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I have to give myself a stern talking too now and again too.  The Avengers do look awesome with the wing folded from a side on view.

I would agree with Roger with the Sky undersides with the TSS.

Nice Tidy work area and neat stash too, after the other Avenger you said  you're going to do , would the next project be the Wessex?

The 32nd SE5a looks a nice kit:wicked:

Chris

 

 

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53 minutes ago, Dunny said:

Coming along nicely! Not sure about the colour scheme - I would have said TSS over Sky with no anti-glare, but I'm sure someone will correct me! Is it wrong to envy another man's stash? So nicely stashed too! 🤣

 

It's perfectly permissible to envy another man's stash, this is a no-judgement zone...   😄

 

19 minutes ago, bigbadbadge said:

I would agree with Roger with the Sky undersides with the TSS.

Nice Tidy work area and neat stash too, after the other Avenger you said  you're going to do , would the next project be the Wessex?

The 32nd SE5a looks a nice kit:wicked:

 

It is indeed the Wessex, I may have spilled the beans on that before...  It's going to be built for the Falklands War anniversary.

 

That's two votes for Sky undersides but I'm sure I remember reading something here about white being the underside colour from 1944 onwards...  To the search function...

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  • mark.au changed the title to The Operation “Judgement” FAA Avenger is +++FINISHED with RFI Added+++

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