Tuesday, 7 May 2019

Airfix Sea Fury FB. 11 - HMS Glory Korean War scheme, Sea Fury reference walkaround action shots Flying Legends -build review part 3

..painting the new-tool 48th Airfix Sea Fury ..and some stills from archive footage taken on board HMS Glory off Korea. This post is completed with some nice reference'action' shots from a Flying Legends air display back in 2006, especially useful for the oil streaking on the lower surfaces..

This British Pathe newsreel looks to be taken from the same Korean War cruise as per the kit decals HMS Glory Korean War scheme as shown on the box top. A single click to view here. Now the kit instructions have the spinner in black - the more I look at this footage the 'less' black it appears...


Flying Legends 2006 - click on the images to view large..

Saturday, 27 April 2019

Revell corsair F4U-1B 1846 NAS Fleet Air Arm, HMS Colossus, July 1945

Revell's 'Royal Navy' boxing of their 72nd F4U Corsair - 'difficulty level' 4 out of 5 for a 72nd scale fighter?  Well, that would be the nine-part wing and  the five-part cowl I guess. Difficult to get everything lined up neatly but with a bit of care it all goes together well enough. And at least the horrible white plastic of the first release has gone..

Love this machine and it looks great in 'Navy' roundels..and after all the Royal Navy was flying them off carriers first ..

The kit markings are an interesting choice on Revell’s part. They were presumably accurate at one point but despite the Zero falling away in flames on the box art, HMS Colossus never saw combat with the  British Pacific Fleet.. Those standard European theatre markings were on the ships aircraft when she left Glasgow , bound for Ceylon and ultimately Australia. BPF markings were applied either en route or in Australia. By the time Colossus left Australia on her first war cruise, hostilities had ended.

Below; a few views of Corsair KD 431 in the Fleet Air Arm museum, Yeovilton in its original glossy midnight blue albeit very scratched finish..see " Corsair KD 431 - the time capsule fighter " by David Morris for the story of this machine's restoration.

The subject of the Revell kit is KD 344, one of the final batch of 857 Goodyear built Corsairs, called the FG-1 Corsair IV in Fleet Air Arm use. It was delivered to the Fleet Air Arm and was embarked on board HMS Colossus after she completed her sea trials and sailed for Ceylon (Sri Lanka) on 12 March 1945.

 On 8th July 1945 KD 344 is reported as ending up in the barriers with Sub-Lt J.D. Garden RNVR flying when the hook jumped the arrestor wire. The Corsairs and Barracudas were offloaded on 17th January 1946 to Royal Naval Air Station Wingfield near Capetown, they were re-embarked in April. In July of the same year the Colossus was transferred on a 5 year loan to the French Navy as the Arromanches, which later became a permanent transfer.

 Senior Pilot of 1846 Sqn. was Lt. Henry Adlam. His memoir is entitled 'On and Off the Flight Deck'  and it is a fascinating insight into the life of a naval fighter pilot. Adlam takes part in many campaigns including Salerno, Escort carrier flying and the attacks on Palembang as a Hellcat pilot. Later he becomes a batsman and joins 1846 Sqn., based aboard HMS Colossus from 1945-1946. In June 1945 1846 Sqn joined the 14th Carrier Air Group to continue the fight against Japan. The Sqn. went to Australia but the war ended before the carrier and it's air group could take part in any operations. The Sqn. Corsairs were subsequently dumped at sea somewhere near Sydney. After ferrying many serviceman that had been POWs the carrier sailed for South Africa where the aircraft were temporarily based at Wingfield. It is here that many of 1846 Sqn's well known photos were taken.

Monday, 22 April 2019

Airfix Sea Fury FB.11- build review (2)

 Difficult to believe that this build has been on-going for one whole year!

That's one year during which I've done little or nothing...
but with temperatures hitting a record 26C for an Easter weekend here we are out in the garden again ...

Lovely kit, just a couple of 'tricky' seams. The most ‘difficult’ part of this build would appear to be the multi-part cowling; some modellers have had trouble lining up all the parts and a resin replacement at nearly £5 is/was available! I hate to think what the price of the Barracuda resin cowl part might be in £££. Another 'issue' perhaps is the lack of gun sight in the kit. However the Eduard Mk VIII, IX and XVI kits all have two gun sights and these are apparently correct for the Sea Fury. I've now got to the painting stage - apart from making my own shade of that curious 'Hawker primer' colour for gear legs and wheel wells painting should be straight forward but I'm just a little disappointed that you can't do a 'striped' example from the kit directly..

Part 1 of this build on this blog here

Thursday, 7 March 2019

James May - 'Big Trouble in model Britain' -building the 24th scale Airfix Hellcat

" ...Two-part documentary, introduced and narrated by model train enthusiast James May, that follows a year inside Hornby Hobbies - an iconic British toymaker on the brink of collapse. But this is no ordinary business series - this is a series about model train and plane obsessives, both inside and outside the company, all of whom desperately need the company to survive.

A new boss, Lyndon Davies, has been appointed to turn the company’s dismal fortunes around and he has brought back some company veterans to help in the fight for survival.

Simon Kohler, known affectionately as ‘Mr Hornby’ has been brought back after a four-year absence. He assesses the decline of his beloved company and attempts to reconnect with Hornby’s dissatisfied customer base and retailers.

Meanwhile, in a bid to revitalise Airfix, Lyndon tasks a master amateur model builder, Jim Bren, with the biggest build of his model-making life – the largest reconstruction of the Hellcat plane ever attempted by the company..."

A quick heads-up on a BBC 4 'documentary' on the recent trials and tribulations of the Hornby Hobbies Group from the £30 million loss over the past five years and the production move to China to the relocation of the Head Offices from Margate to Sandwich and a tour around the Visitor Centre at Margate. Here's the link to part 1 of the programme, available in certain regions on the iplayer for the next month - sorry if it's not available in your region.


Amongst other things the programme features Jim 'KitKruncher' Bren building a test shot of the Airfix 1/24 Hellcat for unveiling at Telford - though Jim "whole-heartedly rejects any notion" that he is in any way a "master modeller" as the hyperbole suggests! (he's a retired local government officer as it happens..) Modelling content aside the programme is an interesting and light-hearted insight into the recent fortunes of the Hornby Group which you may feel is worth a look. The second part is on the telly next week..

Jim's  Airfix 48th scale Hunter

There is drama as the Telford deadline approaches and on day 52 of the build, Jim has fallen way behind his schedule. We see him struggling with fit problems around the Hellcat engine cowl - a test shot build remember...

James May provides a slightly sardonic commentary, whilst gently affectionate and enthusiastic throughout. The camera crew also visit Jim's model club - "for some reason our cameraman missed the other table full of young women..."

.. and there is a look a Jim's 'stash' and we learn what SABLE means.. ('Stash acquired beyond life expectancy'.. )

" Finally after more than two years of design and development, tooling that cost over £100,000 and hundreds of hours of Jim's time assembling more than 600 intricate component parts, the 24th scale F-6F Hellcat is a secret no more...the first run of 5,000 models sold out inside one month, the fastest-selling new Airfix kit in five years.."

..note the faces of the youngsters standing in the front of the crowd for the Airfix Telford unveiling were blurred out - ".. so they stand a chance of maybe getting a girlfriend later on in life.."

Elsewhere Airfix's own video presentation of their forthcoming 24th scale Hellcat is well worth watching too. At the time of writing the kit is on pre-order at £119

Monday, 25 February 2019

picking up the blog habit again..

Well 2018 was a write-off on the modeling front..but now life is more or less back to normal. Firstly I lost my modeling space to the builders when we decided to have the garage converted. Then there were some health issues - I decided to get fit, took up running and it consumed all my spare time. Last year - instead of modelling - I ran 1563 miles. Even my doctor said at my yearly health check that's too much, don't over do it.. but obviously I'm fit and healthy, blood pressure is down and pounds have been shed. So after these health issues it is time to get back on board..  nice to be back posting.

I’ve done little or no modeling since my last blog post. That changes now. I’ve continued to update my other blogs and work on various book projects I’ve been invited to participate in.

Thanks to my regular readers for continuing support and comments !  If you'd like to get in touch I'm at falkeeins at aol dot com

Over the past year I’ve noticed a few ‘fellow bloggers’ on various social media sites. I very rarely participate on FB - there are so many modelling groups, all with about 600 members each, 590 of whom never post anything - that there doesn't really seem to be any point. I much prefer a few regular forums where you kind of know who you're dealing with. Or a 'one-to-one' interaction on a sensible, intelligent blog..some of my favorites are listed on the right hand side bar of this page..

Sunday, 24 February 2019

Airport, Aerodromes and Airfields SIG display

A superb collection of airliner models in British Airways markings via the AAA SIG's Stephen Harper seen at Saturday's 'On Track' show. These are mostly Airfix, Revell and Zvesda (787 Dreamliner) with the odd Frog Viscount also in the line-up..

I was impressed with the paint job on these - no airbrush was used, although Halfords Appliance White spray cans feature heavily...otherwise the builder reported that Xtracolor don't do British Airways 'Pearl Grey' any more. Aftermarket decals via "26 Decals"

I’ve fancied doing some airliner models for a while now myself - the Zvezda kits look very nice indeed and there is of course no cockpit to worry about - but in all the years this blog has existed I’ve never gotten around to it. These are therefore the first airliners to feature here!

Saturday, 16 June 2018

new Fly Hurricane IIa in 72nd scale

New addition to the stash via Heeprutt ebay seller today. Quite into Hurricanes at the moment so will probably make a quick start. A view of the box contents, which feature the Hasegawa kit parts in the bag, a new decal sheet, resin propeller, wheels (2 x sets, one with post war block tread) and pilots seat plus a paint mask for the canopy.... not bad for £15. Box top artwork - a Malta Hurricane from the Night fighter unit - may be inaccurate in the 'desert' scheme, although the desert camo over Night looks pretty neat.

A note on Malta Hurricanes via Tony O'Toole

The Hurricane was operational during 1940-41 as the main RAF fighter across the British Empire`s oversea`s war zones,...... from Malta, N.Africa, Greece, Russia, Burma, Singapore , Java etc and the delivery scheme was Dark Earth and Dark Green,.. later with Sky or Sky Blue undersides. Although up to 1941 black and white halved undersides were specified for overseas based fighters. Those in N.Africa began to receive Mid Stone over the Dark Green areas after delivery at Egyptian MU`s during 1941 but many continued until the end of the year in the original delivery scheme until it became more common in 1942 when adequate numbers were arriving. It was not until very late 1942 and more likely 1943 that the desert scheme was applied on the production line in the UK. So those arriving in Malta from the UK also wore DE/DG uppers. However in 1940 the RAE in the UK was experimenting with a new desert scheme incorporating a new colour which eventually became Middle Stone. At least two aircraft were delivered by carrier to Malta in this scheme,....... with black and white halved undersides which were still specified for overseas`s based fighters into 1941.