Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Airfix Grumman Martlet in 72nd scale - Operation Torch (2) No 888 Squadron Fleet Air Arm

Below; a Grumman Martlet naval fighter of No 888 Squadron Fleet Air Arm taking off from the deck of HMS Formidable in the Mediterranean during 1942. 'FN 142' - the subject of the Airfix kit - may have been a 893 Sqd machine, also on Formidable. The Imperial War museum's 'Fleet air Arm archive is here 

Another neat Airfix new-tool. Buy one..and build it! The only slightly tricky area was joining the fuselage halves. The wing fold option was a little awkward with no real positive location points. I thought it would be interesting to feature one wing fold and leave the other deployed which was possible on the Martlet and quite often seen. From the earlier Wildcat which I built at the start of the year here, Airfix have provided parts to lengthen the forward fuselage and these fitted well but a little filler was needed - I don't think there was a visible seam line here on the real aircraft. One detail I've missed is the engine crank case which must be fixed with the `attachment' facing upwards and not down as it shows in the instructions. Otherwise, having stared at pics of the real thing, I think the windscreen is a little too long and the fuselage spine behind the cockpit a little too 'fat'..but not enough to detract from the appearance of the finished model. The windscreen also needs a rear view mirror - I fabricated mine by simply leaving the plastic sprue tab attached to the part..

Note the carrier code isn't 0 (zero) or O (Latin alphabet) but Ø (Greek letter Phi) Phi is F;  F for  carrier HMS Formidable.


  1. Excelente trabajo, la opción de plegado de alas es un acierto mas de Airfix en sus nuevos moldes, debería ser tomado en cuenta este exito por todas las marcas en los aviones navales.

  2. Thanks Ricardo for your kind remarks. As you say "..the option of folding wings is a wise move by Airfix.."