Jump to content

453rd BG Museum Build - P-51D Mustang - East Wretham (Green Nosed) 370th FS "CisCo" (using the Tamiya 1/48 kit)


Recommended Posts

As I am sure you are all aware, a number of the BM community members have for some time been contributing some fine model builds to the 453rd Bomb Group Museum at Old Buckenham. Some of the models are complete and live in the museum now, and a number are still under construction, as WIP's on here. The models came courtesy of the curator James Clarey.

 

The BM team as I recall it consists of @CedB@giemme, @general melchett, @Fritag, @The Spadgent, @Ex-FAAWAFU, @tomprobert, @woody37, @Tcoat, @Stew Dapple and @rob85 . Massive apologies if I have missed anyone!

I got to join the team last year courtesy Ced and Giorgio, and of course, this all started way back in 2019 (I believe) when Ced hosted our three American (but Brits at heart) colleagues @Navy Bird, @Procopius and @Cookenbacher, for Telford SMW 2019.

 

I had the chance to visit Jim last September during a short break we took in Suffolk/Norfolk. Jim's hospitality is legendary I'm sure, and on arrival we enjoyed a hearty full english breakfast. Apart from watching some light aircraft flying in the summer sun, we obvs got to see the fine museum there, but were also treated to an incredible behind the scenes view of the artefacts Jim had collected over the years representing the USAAF's time in East Anglia during WWII.

 

My wife often refers to me as a "lucky chap" and indeed on that day I came away with a couple of models to build for the museum. Jim also lent me one of his many volumes to assist in the selection of a subject for the B-17, more of which will feature in a later museum build.

 

Photo from Terry Howlett

 

IMG20220725094146

 

Much time has passed since I brought these home, and much dialogue with Jim eventually got us settled on the subject for the P-51. Jim's original spec was "A green nosed mustang from East Wretham please". As I looked into this, over time I came to realise there were many decals available for representative aircraft from all three Squadrons of the 359th Fighter Group that were based in East Wretham during the later part of WWII.

Aero Master alone have produced no less than 6 different sets, each with around 3 representative aircraft, all with the distinctive green nose. I managed to obtain these two sets, before we determined the actual aircraft for this build. Being a P-51 fan, with a few built in 1/72 and a few more in the stash, I'll likely build another Green nosed example for my own collection.

 

IMG20230511155435

 

I eventually managed to pin down an example flown from the 370th FS flown by Lt. John W. Lamont, with the help of the 359th FB page.

 

It seems that Lamont enlisted in his hometown of Seattle, WA, on 25 September 1942, and joined the 370th Fighter Squadron on 17 August 1944.  He flew 66 combat missions, completing his tour of duty with the 359th Fighter Group on 21 July 1945. 

 

A picture of the young Lamont:

 

Lt.John W Lamont

 

And the only picture I have found so far of "CisCo"

 

P-51D Green Nose Cisco 02 Lt. John W Lamont

 

So, onto the build........

 

There has been some (Cue wild laughter from the gathered masses) delay in starting this build for a number of reasons, one major modelling distraction being a commision build of a 1/35 AFV for the MOD, via the Tank Museum. This build is coming to a close over the coming week, and will indeed be handed over to the MOD at the end of May. .......... phew!

There is also some peer pressure from Steve and Giorgio ......... something to do with standing "the first few rounds" in September when some more of the other builds will be presented to Jim, at the museum.  We'll just have to see about that ........... !!!

 

So the usual pictures to get us started............

 

The kit, you all know it I'm sure, and indeed will recall the fine museum build of this very aircraft by Giorgio last year. A very fine model for it's time.

 

IMG20230503080131

 

The usual sprue shots:

 

IMG20230511155133

 

IMG20230511155153

 

IMG20230511154536

 

Some aftermarket etch in the form of Eduard's set no. 49216.

 

IMG20230511161900

 

IMG20230511161926

 

And the aftermarket decals from Aero Master, set 48-653 chosen in the end, aircraft number 3 at the bottom:

 

IMG20230511154834

 

IMG20230511154803

 

 

To offer a flavour of these 359th Fighter Group "Green nosed" Mustangs during their time at East Wretham, here are some statistics taken courtesy of the 359th Facebook page.

 

"During its 17 months of operation, members of the 359th Fighter Group, comprised of the 368th Fighter Squadron, the 369th Fighter Squadron, and the 370th Fighter Squadron, excelled at escort missions and at the very hazardous jobs of “killing” trains and destroying aircraft on the ground.

There were 13,455 sorties flown by the pilots of the 359th. In addition to guarding the “heavies” they shot down 241 enemy aircraft, with an additional 33 probables and 69 damaged. Another 122 were destroyed on the ground plus 107 damaged. Almost 500 locomotives and 1,400 railway cars were destroyed or damaged. Other ground attacks supported troop movements and targeted infrastructure. To do all of this 1,000,000 rounds of .50 calibre ammunition was expended along with nearly 900 bombs of varying poundage.

The Fighter Group lost 121 pilots."

 

So this will be my tribute to those 121 lost airmen, and to all those who served during those challenging times.

 

I hope to start construction in the next week or so and I may look into additional aftermarket detail sets in the meantime. If anyone has any recommendations for further detail sets, speak up chaps!

 

Lastly, thanks for following.

 

Terry

 

 

  • Like 24
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Excellent! 

 

Who doesn’t love a build with a back story :D

 

Oh, and you’ve got a week to catch up, Terry; I‘m off for a week walking and cycling in the Highlands next week ;)

 

  • Haha 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Watching! Who doesn't like a green nose Mustang?    :)

 

Cheers,

Bill

 

PS. Actually, my Mustang is red. But then it's not an aeroplane.

  • Haha 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, Fritag said:

Oh, and you’ve got a week to catch up, Terry; I‘m off for a week walking and cycling in the Highlands next week ;)

 

I'm shocked, shocked do you hear me, to find...

 

Way to go Terry 👍

  • Haha 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm in, of course, and thirsty..... :devil:  :rofl2:  :beer:

 

The only recommendation I have is about the wing panel lines, most of which on the real airplane were puttied and sanded (almost) flush, to attain the famous laminar flow. I think I posted references in my thread, back then, but if you need any refs just shout :winkgrin:

 

Did I mention :beer: ?

 

Ciao

  • Haha 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi I've another reason to be engaged with your builds guys, by the way.

 

In 1940 my dad, who might have been a tad unruly in service it seems,😉 was dispatched with some fellow airmen to commission the new airfield just north of the Thetford Chase, of East Wretham.

 

So a link is born.

 

 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

No constructive update at the moment of course (I did say I have stuff going on) but I do feel compelled to respond to those who have so far indicated some interest.........

 

23 hours ago, Fritag said:

Excellent! 

 

Who doesn’t love a build with a back story :D

 

Oh, and you’ve got a week to catch up, Terry; I‘m off for a week walking and cycling in the Highlands next week ;)

 

 

Well, I'm honoured to have you as my first responder Steve, although no emergency action is required at the moment, other than to keep an eye out for anyone in the audience who may show signs of fainting as a result of me actually getting some modelling done and in 1/48 scale!

Glad you like the back story, as you say it's always good to have one ....... it can help mask incompetence on the modelling front 🤫

So......... I have a week to catch up on two guys who have been at it for months ....... doesn't sound fair, but I'll go with that 😬

And to top it all, you are "en vacance" again I see .... 🙄 .......  oh well, nowt new there really. I'm squeezing a visit to France in shortly myself, so does that add positively to my handicap?

 

23 hours ago, bigbadbadge said:

Nice Terry, great back story too and for a good cause, like it.

 

Thanks Chris, quite honoured to have on board too. I shan't be brush painting this one, so it may not turn out as good as yours do!

 

23 hours ago, Navy Bird said:

Watching! Who doesn't like a green nose Mustang?    :)

 

Cheers,

Bill

 

PS. Actually, my Mustang is red. But then it's not an aeroplane.

 

So glad to have you along Bill. You should know that years ago I had a desire to own a Mustang (of the Ford variety). One of my all time favourite cars. It hasn't happened yet, so now perhaps you can understand why I'm building a "green nosed" one .................. ENVY at you having a red one!

 

13 hours ago, perdu said:

I'm shocked, shocked do you hear me, to find...

 

We are all bit nonplussed that young Steve is off again Bill, but what can we do ........... it's what lawyers seem so able to do?

 

13 hours ago, Hamden said:

Room for one more Terry?

Looking forward to watching this one come together 

 

 

Always room for you Roger, a dedicated fan of my builds (I have no idea why though!)

 

13 hours ago, Watto said:

Fine tribute... 🍻

 

Thank you sir, I hope it will become that. Welcome aboard.

 

6 hours ago, giemme said:

I'm in, of course, and thirsty..... :devil:  :rofl2:  :beer:

 

The only recommendation I have is about the wing panel lines, most of which on the real airplane were puttied and sanded (almost) flush, to attain the famous laminar flow. I think I posted references in my thread, back then, but if you need any refs just shout :winkgrin:

 

Did I mention :beer: ?

 

Ciao

 

Honoured also to have you in Giorgio, and the recommendation is well received. I've been studying your build a lot lately and will learn much I know.

 

Yes, you did mention beer, and that's what has focused my mind. 😬

 

1 hour ago, perdu said:

Hi I've another reason to be engaged with your builds guys, by the way.

 

In 1940 my dad, who might have been a tad unruly in service it seems,😉 was dispatched with some fellow airmen to commission the new airfield just north of the Thetford Chase, of East Wretham.

 

So a link is born.

 

 

 

What a wonderful link that gives you to this build Bill, welcome aboard. BTW you already had one anyway cos you are who you are!.

 

Thanks all, I will endeavour to do this build justice, not only for Lt. John W. Lamont and his countrymen, but also for you lot!

 

More on the build soon, I promise.

 

Terry

 

 

 

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 5/11/2023 at 11:17 AM, Terry1954 said:

our three American (but Brits at heart) colleagues

Well that may be the nicest thing anyone has ever said about me.

 

Just punched the "Follow Thread" button on this one Terry!

  • Haha 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

And we are off .................

 

Well, sort of, but first a quick couple of replies

 

On 5/12/2023 at 10:33 PM, Brandy said:

Watching from the bar with a new tube of unopened CA  just in case you don't need it.

 

Ian

 

Good to have you in on this one Ian. Why do memories of CA and Telford make my hands shake .......🤔

 

On 5/14/2023 at 11:44 PM, Cookenbacher said:

Well that may be the nicest thing anyone has ever said about me.

 

Just punched the "Follow Thread" button on this one Terry!

 

Glad also to have you on board Cookie, and I'm sure there have been far nicer things said about you!

 

Nothing has happened for over a month for all kinds of reasons......

 

Firstly I did manage to squeeze in another holiday in, this time to France. You see Steve @Fritag, we can all play that game 🤭.

 

Then there was the commission build (for the MOD no less) of a Russian (am I allowed to say that these days?) 1/35 T-55, which is done and dusted and delivered to a happy client.

I must say MiniArt, a Ukrainian company, have provided one of the finest 1/35 kits I have ever built, but ....... extremely complex to build IMHO. For example over 190 track links with around 380 individual track pins to create fully working tracks - and they really do work!

Anyone more than remotely interested in that can see the build pics in the link below. Double clicking will take you to the full album.

 

MiniArt 1/35 T-55

 

A slightly unusual build for me as the customer required it to be finished in one colour all over (olive green) with tracks and tyres black, no decals or weathering at all, as the end model will be part of a collection of Identification models for training purposes.

 

Moving on, I've also been very busy with family, having my son from Canada staying with us for the last few months, and that meant lots of visits to his siblings, and his nieces and nephews.

Many gatherings took place of multiple offspring, partners, wives and grand offspring, this being just one. Unfortunately in this picture, George (my second to youngest son) and his wife, were absent due to having to work that day, one grandson went AWOL, and my eldest Granddaughter was in Bali.

I forgot to smile of course!

 

P6181438 copy

 

But you haven't looked in for Tanks and snap shots, you want to see progress on the P-51......

 

Normally I would start on the cockpit, but something told me the bit I did choose to start, may not be easy, so I wanted to get that one out of the way.

The task was to install one Airies resin wheelbay.......

 

IMG20230615142550

 

Instructions show, simples................

 

IMG20230615142543

 

The main challenge was the amount of filing, trimming, dremeling and sanding needed to actually get the thing to fit.

 

Work on the starboard side to remove the moulded in parts. There was much to remove on the inside of the upper wings also, but alas I forgot to take pics of that .......

 

IMG20230615145511

 

Then sanding these as thin as I dare to within a micron of their thickness. The light shining through shows how close things got .....

 

IMG20230617161756

 

IMG20230617161827

 

Test fitting along the way....

 

IMG20230621210426

 

IMG20230621210341

 

I also have had to thin down the parts that fit into the lower wing in order to try and achieve closure (pardon the pun) and as you can see we are still not quite there....

 

IMG20230621210411

 

The wing leading edge will actually close up more than is shown here, such that the guns fit and only the inner part has a gap, so more careful work is needed. I'm confident I can get closure!

 

Before I went much further, I wanted to check wing and fuselage will come together with the resin inside, and all seems well, although a constructed cockpit will need test fitting also, but that bits not started yet!

 

The join under leading edge of wing to nose, does close up OK but here it shows a small gap.

 

IMG20230621210845

 

So more very careful refining of the bays to be done next, then I'll look at the cockpit etch from Eduard and that supplied in the kit and work out a plan.

 

More soon.

 

Terry

  • Like 20
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Coming along nicely, despite the wheel wells, and notwithstanding Eduard and Airfix, I still believe this is kit is the best 1:48 Pony on the market: simple and quick to build so you can have fun doing A nice colour scheme.

 

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/22/2023 at 6:01 AM, MikeC said:

Coming along nicely, despite the wheel wells, and notwithstanding Eduard and Airfix, I still believe this is kit is the best 1:48 Pony on the market: simple and quick to build so you can have fun doing A nice colour scheme.

 

 

Thanks Mike. From what I've seen, I'm sure the kit is one of the best and simple and quick to build .............. but this is me, and as @Courageous will testify, no such thing as a quick T build!

 

On 6/22/2023 at 7:02 AM, Hamden said:

 

Nice start Terry, looking forward to watching this one progress

 

   Stay safe          Roger

 

Thanks Roger. Progress should pick up after next week.

 

On 6/22/2023 at 7:38 AM, giemme said:

Brave man for inserting the Aires bay, Terry! :worthy:  :worthy:  :clap:

 

Ciao

 

Brave ........... ? I'm not sure about that Giorgio, more like stupid!!! 

 

No further progress just yet as I'm still busy making the most of my sons visit from Canada, but he goes back at the weekend (sadly) so things should pick up next week.

 

Thanks all for your continued interest.

 

T

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, Terry1954 said:

Brave ........... ? I'm not sure about that Giorgio, more like stupid!!! 

The line between the two is extremely thin, and it's usually the outcome that dictates which side you were on!

 

Ian

  • Haha 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sorry I’m late Terry. My excuse is ...... well, I don’t have one really except a 3 month old puppy which seems to be taking up a disproportionately large amount of my time lately.

The Tamika kit is still a nice one and with the addition of the wheel well you’ve corrected the only real problem ( apart from the wing rivets of course ).

Looking forward to more.

 

John

.

 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A little more progress today, but first.........

 

On 6/26/2023 at 2:21 PM, Brandy said:

The line between the two is extremely thin, and it's usually the outcome that dictates which side you were on!

 

It is indeed Ian. At the moment, I think I'm right on the border between the two! 

 

On 6/26/2023 at 3:25 PM, Biggles87 said:

Sorry I’m late Terry. My excuse is ...... well, I don’t have one really except a 3 month old puppy which seems to be taking up a disproportionately large amount of my time lately.

The Tamika kit is still a nice one and with the addition of the wheel well you’ve corrected the only real problem ( apart from the wing rivets of course ).

Looking forward to more.

 

John

.

 

 

Welcome aboard John. I don't have a puppy as an excuse, but I still don't know where my time goes 🙄

Yes, the wheel well was a challenging decision. On the etch set, Eduard give you a lot of detail, but there is still basic work to do, so I opted for the easy choice ........ Aires resin 🤣. I think I may have nailed it though as you will see.

Wing rivets ....... ? I am ignorant of what that issue is, but I'm all ears?

 

On 6/26/2023 at 8:52 PM, bigbadbadge said:

Great start  Terry, the extra work on that bay will be worth while, it will come to life when painted.

 

Thanks Chris. Let's hope paint does the trick!

 

On 6/27/2023 at 12:02 PM, hendie said:

off to a fine start there Terry.  I've got me Irn Bru and smokey bacon at the ready

 

Thank you Alan, it's an honour to have you onboard! You may need more than Irn Bru to get through this build!

 

So the big news today is that I finally have closure on the wheel bays, having taken enough off the resin and the internal plastic to get the thing to fit.

There is very thin plastic around those bays, and in one area the resin is so thin, it has almost flaked off! But we don't let issues like that bother us do we. :worry:

 

Everything closes up neatly. The very small gaps you can see, do pinch together, trust me! A bit of TeT or maybe even cyno will do the trick when it comes to bringing the wings together.

 

Tamiya 1/48 P-51

 

What's more, fuselage to wing joins look good too. I couldn't hold the join and take the pic at the same time, but again, trust me, it all fits beautifully.

It's fortunate there is no emoji for fingers crossed behind my back! .......

 

Tamiya 1/48 P-51 Mustang

 

Very pleased to have achieved that, but my next P-51 might take a different path, maybe a modified kit bay with the etch .............

 

Meanwhile, the big decision on this one is whether to paint and detail the Aires bay before assembly. It's easier to get at all that detail now, but that's not my normal approach. But then, I don't normally build in this scale. 🤔

 

So for now I decided to go back to the cockpit, and make a start there.

Using Eduard's etch means that a some of the very nice Tamiya detail, has to be erased, so that the etch fits.

It felt very counterintuitive to take that detail away, but off I went......

 

I/P first, and this is what Tamiya give you...

 

Tamiya 1/48 P-51

 

Detail removed to enable the etch overlay. The embedded panel just sits behind the etch ......

 

Tamiya 1/48 P-51

 

And some close ups of the etch panel itself, parts 24, 25 and 26 seem to fit the bill for the main parts of the panel. Other parts are for the side walls.

 

IMG20230704214352

 

This small acetate sheet, part A of which is offered as a replacement for part 26 on the etch.

 

IMG20230704214500

 

If I use the acetate, I guess it could fit on top of part 26, with some additional white paint behind the dials on the acetate.

 

And the last bit of work tonight was some preparation for the etch to cockpit walls.

 

Tamiya's port internal fuselage as it comes .....

 

Tamiya 1/48 P-51 Mustang

 

Butchered version......

 

Tamiya 1/48 P-51

 

Tamiya's starboard side....

 

Tamiya 1/48 P-51 Mustang

 

Lovely detail removed........

 

Tamiya 1/48 P-51

 

I may yet sort out what I assume to be an oxygen hose on the left of the above picture. There is etch to replace it, but it's not convincing IMHO. Might just leave it.

 

Work will continue on the cockpit parts over the next week, so more updates to follow soon.

 

Comments welcome.

 

T

 

 

  • Like 10
Link to comment
Share on other sites

As much as I detest PE, there's nothing really to match it for instrument panels is there? 'Cept for those yahu offerings that is.

Coming along very nicely Terry

 

 

 

 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

HThe cockpit etch looks good, if a little flat for the switch panels.

Wing rivets- on the Mustang wing the panel lines and rivets were filled and sanded flush then painted to about 60% back from the leading edge, depending on which reference you use. There is a helpful three-view somewhere ( On a recent BM Mustang build I think ) which shows the various finishes.

 

John

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 hours ago, Terry1954 said:

Meanwhile, the big decision on this one is whether to paint and detail the Aires bay before assembly.

I think you should definitely paint it before assembly.

 

Top job with that and the prepping job for the PE! :clap: 

 

Ciao

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
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...