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Piper PA-48 Enforcer


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This is the Piper PA-48 Enforcer I'm planning to build for the GB. Although not a true Mustang, this has been approved by Patrice @TEMPESTMK5 and will be the Halberd Models resin conversion for the Revell P-51D-15-NA kit in 1/32.

 

Here's the raw materials...

tn_Enforcer (1)

The very nice Revell 1/32 kit. This is the later edition with the fin fillet to complement the earlier -5-NA. 

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It's not as finely cast as the more expensive versions, but it goes together really well.

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Great parts breakdown, especially in the cockpit. Enables much finer detail than the traditional moulded sidewalls.

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Lots of armament options as well, with two drop tank variants, 500lb bombs, and 5in rockets.

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Three canopy options, including the required blown Dallas canopy for this aircraft.

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This is the ludicrously good Halberd Models conversion set for the kit. As @trickyrich will tell you, the quality and fit are superb for a resin/3D conversion, especially considering the size of the parts.

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As you can see this is a very extensive set - two replacement fuselage halves being the most substantial parts, plus the tip tanks, prop and spinner, cockpit floor, ejection seat and lots of pylons!

 

On with the show...

 

Cheers,

Alan 

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Good morning Alan 

 Welcome aboard with a very interesting subject ..

I hope that you will to find more time for modelling ..

Have fun withb your build 

Best regards 

 Patrice 

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On 3/6/2024 at 8:53 AM, Alan P said:

Just a placeholder for the Piper PA-48 Enforcer I'm planning to build for the GB. Although not a true Mustang, this has been approved by Patrice @TEMPESTMK5 and will be the Halberd Models resin conversion for the Revell P-51D-15-NA kit in 1/32.

 

Looking forward to starting but modelling opportunities are few and far between these days 😢

 

See you all back here at the weekend!

 

Cheers,

Alan 

 

HAH!!! This looks like a cunning plan to make me go out and buy this conversion set as well!!! :fuyou_2: ....... but my powers of self control are well known......

 

I'll have an update on mine shortly, but the Halbred conversion set is just mind blowing, just one spot that will give me (and other who build it issues), but the way the Tamiya parts meet up with the Halberd parts (or visa versa) is amazing! They match up perfectly in all the key areas.

 

 

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13 hours ago, trickyrich said:

This looks like a cunning plan to make me go out and buy this conversion set as well!!

Ha! In fact it was you and @FG2Si that put me on to these conversions, and I was relieved to find one for the Revell kit, because that Tamiya Mustang is sacred 😂

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6 hours ago, Alan P said:

Ha! In fact it was you and @FG2Si that put me on to these conversions, and I was relieved to find one for the Revell kit, because that Tamiya Mustang is sacred 😂

 

Glad to have helped out! I need to get back to mine at some point but I've got so much on the bench at the moment (Mig -31 Firefox, Cylon Raider, F-15J Kai) it may be a while. 

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8 hours ago, Alan P said:

Ha! In fact it was you and @FG2Si that put me on to these conversions, and I was relieved to find one for the Revell kit, because that Tamiya Mustang is sacred 😂

 

My Lord......I do not remember that!!  :whistle:

 

Yes, chopping up a Revell Mustang would be way less stressful than it was chopping up the Tamiya one......I've never checked and cut so carefully in my life!

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  • 4 weeks later...

Started at last! I've moved the parts intro to the opening post for continuity if you want to go back and have a look 😉

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Okay, let battle commence! First job is to turn the rubbishy end-opening box into a top-loader:

tn_Enforcer (8)

Seal the ends then cut three sides of the lid :smile:

 

Into the cockpit:

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Cut, clean and tidy up the cockpit parts from the Halberd set. The fit to the kit parts is perfect.

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Then for some reason I went on to the stabilisers and rudder. The rudder needs a bit cut off the top to accommodate the fin extension.

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Finally for today I added the kit sidewalls to the Halberd fuselage and the tail halves, which again fit perfectly :innocent: Hopefully this will be the pattern for the rest of the build. 

 

The only slight disappointment is the type represented and the decals are for the original Piper 1971 proposal, rather than the more interesting 1983-4 evaluation versions which failed to secure a USAF production contract at the time. I'm not sure how many differences there were - I can see some different blade antennae either side of the fin, plus a large pitot/instrumentation probe out of the left tip tank. If I can be bothered I might investigate that further.

 

Seems to be a promising start, let's see how it turns out!

 

Alan 

 

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On 06/04/2024 at 05:18, Alan P said:

tn_Enforcer (8)

Seal the ends then cut three sides of the lid :smile:

 

Pro level moves!

 

Great to see you’ve started Alan, this should be fun to watch! 🍿

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  • 5 weeks later...

Been cracking away at this, it's going really well!

tn_Enforcer (12)

Painted the main cockpit parts with MRP Neutral Gray 36270. It wasn't a proper USAF FS number but painted by Piper/Cavalier.

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The original 1971 version was a straightforward rebuild of a P-51H, so I used the most appropriate interpretation of the wheelwells.

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The fit of the Revell main parts and the Halberd replacements is excellent. With a bit of TLC there are hardly any gaps at all, never mind major ones.

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So far, so good! lots of work left to do with the cockpit, so let's have at it!

 

Alan

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Meanwhile in the driver's compartment:

tn_Enforcer (16)

This is just the kit parts with some Revell decals, some Airscale placards and some Anyz decals thrown in. I find this therapeutic :lol:

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The Halberd ejector seat painted up.

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Finished off with a light wash of black and dark grey.

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I forgot how good the Revell kit is straight from the box. If you want to build a fleet of 1/32 Mustangs for display, the value offered by these kits is phenomenal. The decals are also excellent quality. (This boxing cost £32, my last one was £28)

 

Anyway, lots of good stuff here, the Halberd parts are also excellent quality and fit perfectly to the base kit.

 

Alan

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The kit correctly portrays the cockpit 'floor' as the top of the fuel tanks, and the control column sits on top. There's a cutout in the wooden floor for it.

tn_Enforcer (20)

 

Continuing in the cockpit next....

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Instrument panel:

tn_Enforcer (30)

Not a lot to go on regarding references, so I just replaced all the engine instrument gauges with turboprop-specific ones from Airscale! Tacho/RPM, EGT and EPR.

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Seat with wash applied and added cables attaching the rocket to the seat. It was a pretty primitive setup!

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Halberd produce the turbine exhaust in two parts:

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I even remembered to mount the turbine before closing up the fuselage 🤯 most unlike me :lol:

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So really happy to hit one of the milestones in any aircraft build today - getting the fuselage together:

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With careful supergluing this fits together almost perfectly.

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The tabs in the 3D-printed fuselage sides fit exactly in the kit cockpit recesses:

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Happy with that!

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So I got a rush of blood to the head and just cracked on with the major assembly!

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Really happy with my bank holiday progress :smile:

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Believe it or not, that's not all...!

tn_Enforcer (26)

The wing root joins needed a bit of encouragement but the finished joint is just superb. The Halberd conversion is really top drawer design.

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Unfortunately some of my extra thin CA dribbled down the edge of the wing root despite my efforts to use a tiny pipette, so that needed chipping off and sanding back. But it's an easy fix on the 3D-printed surface.

 

So I went a bit mad and stuck on all the other bits - nose cap, fin extension, ailerons and flaps!

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I admit it looks like a Mustang, but the missing radiator scoop is a bit of a glaring difference!

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I'm really impressed how all the major assembly parts fit together, this is just easy!

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Such a cool shape - mustn't mess this up!

 

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Looking good so far, still have the rest of this week off too :yahoo:

 

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Well that escalated quickly! 🤣 That’s taken shape beautifully. The cockpit detail and the turbine specific instrumentation in specific are particularly effective and thoughtful. Can’t wait to see what the rest of the week brings!

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Really lovely work Alan, she's looking awesome!  :thumbsup:

 

I should ban myself or refuse to be drawn in to this build thread!!!!!!

 

As I know it's going to cost me........ :wall:

 

I agree110% the the quality if the conversion set is unbelievable and it shows in just how well the two different model just go together seamlessly. Halberd Model conversions and complete models in my tiny opinion has to be some of if not the best out there at the moment, have seen the 32nd Curtis SC-1 Seahawk built, what an awesome looking model that we. 

 

I am seriously thinking about doing this conversion as well.....though the 1/48th P-38 on floats has my eye along with a 1/32nd XP-72 Ultrabolt!!!

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2 hours ago, trickyrich said:

1/32nd XP-72 Ultrabolt

Ooh yes, i was looking at that too, but I don't have the donor kit. 

 

 

Yet!

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2 hours ago, Alan P said:

Ooh yes, i was looking at that too, but I don't have the donor kit. 

 

 

Yet!

 

....and the 1/32nd version has sold out!!!! :crying:

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Very cool, loving the details on this! That conversion kit sure seems awesome.

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Thanks @Wings unlevel, @trickyrich and @Rando 😄

 

 

tn_Enforcer (40)

Pylons fitted - lots of measurements and holes to drill. The pylons themselves had some substantial moulding plugs to remove, luckily still have all my fingers attached!

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Ten pylons is pretty impressive for a Mustang! With the Lycoming T-55 turbine engine (same as the Chinook helicopter) it wasn't as fast as its piston-engined predecessor but could carry a 7,000lb payload.

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Although the fit of the printed/kit parts is pretty darn good (certainly the best of any resin conversion I've ever used, and I've done LOADS) there are still seams that need filling.

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It still looks like a Mustang ❤️

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So here's the state of play before attaching the wing tanks. I've chopped off the wingtips, but unfortunately the attachment tabs on the tanks don't fit the holes left in the wing. Going to need to dig out some bigger slots :hmmm:

 

But it's looking closer to the finished product now, hopefully get a good crack at it tomorrow.

 

Cheers,

Alan

 

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I'm really liking the look pf this, I have long contemplated butchering one of my 1/72 kits into one, heck, the nose contours don't look too different. ;) How much longer are these to a P-51D, they've always looked longer in the rear fuselage to me but I've never been sure? Very much enjoying this anyway. :)

Steve.

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On 5/12/2024 at 12:19 AM, stevehnz said:

I have long contemplated butchering one of my 1/72 kits into one, heck, the nose contours don't look too different. ;) How much longer are these to a P-51D, they've always looked longer in the rear fuselage to me but I've never been sure?

Thanks Steve, the first Piper Enforcer was based on an F-51D airframe, but from what I see the nose cowl is a bit more rounded on top. The tail section looks to be a standard F-51D length, (unlike the F-82G) but the big difference (apart from the engine!) is the absence of the large radiator scoop on the underside and the tall fin. But that's just from cursory comparison to the Revell P-51D kit parts.

 

The good news is the paint is on!

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I used MRP lacquers throughout. They dry very quickly and resist blu-tac very well.

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Really pleased with the smooth finish, you'd hardly believe this was a conversion. The guys at Halberd have really set a new standard for this.

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I've ordered some weaponry from Videoaviation in Italy to go under the wings, All I had was a couple of rocket pods left over from 1/32 HueyCobra kits!

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You can see the large ventral fin at last, I'm guessing they had to add this to make up for the loss of the radiator scoop.

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The one thing I haven't fixed is the front canopy - on the original PA-48 Enforcer the front canopy was frameless. Since this isn't in the conversion, I decided not to try and replicate it, so this'll just have a standard Mustang one. I'll also take a few liberties with the armament, as this is my model and anyone who doesn't like it can do one :lol: 

 

I have left to paint is the propeller blades, which are simple black blade/yellow tips so hopefully this should be finished soon 😊

 

Cheers,

Alan

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This looks really excellent, but I'm pretty certain that there's no P-51H DNA in the Enforcer. The tail is indeed tall but it's the extended D-tail and not the H-tail. That said, the early 80s incarnation of the Enforcer had a different-shaped tail again, and I'm still trying to work out where the shape of that came from...

 

I'm also struck by the fact that the Enforcer had a bang seat. The Halberd rendition looks excellent after your handy paintwork.

 

Justin

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