Sunday, 9 January 2022

Airfix video announcement of forthcoming Spit IX 'super-kit' in 1:24th scale


Airfix video announcement of forthcoming Spit IX in 1:24th scale.

FB discussion following the Airfix 2022 product range announcements - including new tool Anson and Meteor in 72nd along with a new-tool Buccaneer in 48th scale - with Jonathan Mock, spencer Pollard and Drewe Manton - well worth a watch. A single click to view here 

Sunday, 26 December 2021

IBG Models PZL P.11 b (Romanian service) in 72nd


Ahead of the arrival of their new Fw 190 Dora kits, here are a few more pics of my recently completed PZL P.11 from IBG. IBG's family of PZL P.11 models in 72nd scale are very nicely detailed kits, well-engineered and superbly molded. For around £12 you get a huge box, three decal choices, a detailed IAR 9K engine and a photoetched fret with some tiny details such as throttle lever, seat harness, rudder pedals, gun-sight, undercarriage strengthening wires and the windscreen frame. Much of the sheet in fact is not required for this kit. Inevitably perhaps - for those of us with 'fatter' fingers and poorer eyesight - not every etch part will be used. Not every plastic part either - I have still the fit the two venturi tubes either side of the cockpit. Elsewhere the control surfaces - elevators, rudder and ailerons- are all separate parts. Fit is very good - as it has to be with so many small parts. Decals are by Techmod with options for three Romanian machines. 

I can recommend the IBG PZL P.11 fighters.  Although I haven't seen it, the Arma Hobby kit is perhaps an easier build. Just add the Karaś from Heller, P-7a from MasterCraft and PZL P-37 Łoś from Plastyk (or MasterCraft) to complete a set of Polish combat aircraft from the German attack on Poland - "September 1939".

Thursday, 9 December 2021

new Revell SR-71 Blackbird in 48th


 ..super new Revell kit of the SR-71 just arrived. No I can't see myself building it to be honest but I'm collecting a few images for reference and such like and re-posting them here so that I can find them easily when required. 

Alan P build thread on BM here

At the 1974 Farnborough air show after its record-breaking New York to London flight. Posted by Mike 'Michou' 

Mildenhall, 11 September 1974 - the same aircraft being prepared for an attempt on a record east to west flight. The flight was aborted because of some problem and the record London to LA flight was made on 13 September.

"...Whenever we took an SR to an airshow (I went with a U-2 once, but we had an SR with us) they always told the local maintenance and fire dept people that if the aircraft is NOT leaking fuel, then we have a problem. Sometimes they would also throw lit matches into a puddle of fuel to show that JP-8 would just put the fire out. It is actually a chemical reaction that is used to light the fuel for engine start...Tri Eythel Bromide IIRC. Not sure on all of the spellings, but yeah, that is what got ignition going. They had a built-in starter system in the barns at Beale, but they were broke most of the time I was there, so it was mostly the Buicks to get the engines up to speed for ignition. Very distinctive sound when the Buicks started up.."    Dave

Wednesday, 8 December 2021

LIDARing the Supermarine Scimitar - new kit due in October 2023


Will Packard discusses the Scimitar for a FB video filmed during the scanning of the rare Solent Sky museum example of the type at its 'secret' location in Hampshire ahead of a new kit release planned for late 2023!  

From Steve Bond's " Fleet Air Arm Boys " (Grub Street)

"..the Scimitar was a real 'hot rod' for its day ..but was quite heavy and had only small wings. It was big; the biggest single-seat aircraft operating from a carrier at that time and the last FAA machine with guns, four 30 mm cannon. It could carry four 1000 lb bombs and had a nuclear capability. Its two engines produced 23 000 Ibs of thrust which made for a very spritely acceleration....of the two types I was flying at the time, the Scimitar had the power whereas the Hunter had the manoeuvrability. But if the Scimitar was getting into trouble he could just open the throttles and disappear... we intercepted an American task force about 400 miles east of Iceland. An F-4 attempted to interfere with us, but it was no contest. Then an F-8 tried his luck but the US military was not trained in air combat manoeuvring while we were very aggressive..."

below; Supermarine Scimitar - XD 236 seen during early June 1968. This machine was lost the same month on June 26, 1968 flying into high ground in cloud on St Catherines Down, Isle of Wight killing the pilot, Naval Airman 1st class Tony Patton. Patton's radio altimeter failed in bad weather. He was flying a sortie as a target for HMS Corrunna. Adrian Balch photo

Also on this blog; 

Tuesday, 9 November 2021

Building the Airfix 72nd Swordfish with NO filler ! - finished


"some modelling skills required.."    This kit is not an especially difficult build but it does require care and patience - in fact it is a kit that once finished you can take a certain amount of pride in. I think it looks every inch a Swordfish and its pretty nicely detailed too. But I also know better modellers than me that have not managed to complete it - a bit tricky, too fiddly, impossibly large sprue gates making removal of the smallest parts rather awkward and short-shot stuts for the wing centre section around which the entire wing assembly hinges. Plus not reading stage 44 of the instructions correctly - gear leg assembly!  Probably not a good idea either to do what I did and start rigging before having completed the assembly - tends to pull the wings out of alignment. And careful not to apply too much pressure on the wings during assembly otherwise you'll snap the struts!

Wednesday, 3 November 2021

Building ( & rigging) the Airfix Swordfish in 72nd scale (3)


..several disasters along the way - including snapping the outboard struts when cementing the wings as I squeezed them together. At that point the model nearly ended up in the bin. Too distraught to take a pic. But with a touch of super glue, repairs were quickly made. And so the Swordfish is nearly finished. 


I'm gradually getting the hang of this in 72nd scale - my third rigged biplane on this blog (in 11 years of posting) so I'm now feeling confident enough to provide a quick guide;

- drill locating holes with pin drill or similar in the wings/cowl/tailplane pre-assembly

- using a pin (drill) or similar apply viscous super glue to the hole and using pointed tweezers hold a length of nylon thread until the glue 'grabs' it.  Apply 'accelerator' with a thin brush to the area to speed up this part of the process. Ideally the model should be held in a clamp or similar, but I've always managed without one of these.

- if there's one tip to pass on here, it is always glue 'down'  - inverting the model for the top wings, or better, 'rigging' the lower half of the top wing during construction. The thread then hangs down towards the lower wing, so you are not competing with 'gravity' when glueing. Similarly, don't cut the thread too short - too much 'tension' and the thread won't grip as easily of course....

Tuesday, 2 November 2021

Building the Airfix Swordfish in 72nd scale with NO filler - build review (2)


Moving quickly along. The characteristic large bracing struts have gone in and the fit here is very good, they just click into place. The cowling assembles easily enough too and the engine fits neatly inside it and pushes into the front of the fuselage. 

But just when you think the build is going swimmingly you hit the landing gear struts. The pins on these appear not to fit all the way into the locating holes in the wing stubs. This may be intentional as they represent the undercarriage bars which are covered in a fairing, the fairing is not flush with the fuselage and the round bars are visible. Also at first sight they appear to be the only support for the lower wings so getting this bit right is going to be important. Note too that the frame part of the inner struts locates into the wing stub parts - when and if you've drilled/cut out the slot! 

Here I've drilled out those locating holes and inserted the leg strut which locates very poorly into the twin strut supporting the wheel and left everything to dry. 

Things are starting to go awry! I know I've located the strut incorrectly because I can no longer fit the inner strut frame into the wing stub! I tried to pull it out - but of course I'd used superglue. In the end I've cut through the bottom of the strut frame. And probably got a better supporting join for the lower wing outer section. Here's hoping!

As for the rigging, Airfix give no information which is a shame. A kind soul over on the BM  forum posted the rigging diagram provided by SBS in their etch rigging set - or some of it at least. Could be useful..