Monday 15 October 2012

Airfix North American P-51 Mustang Mk.IV Gift set - GA-S 112 Sqd - second finish of the month!

 Just finished this one which is good as I've managed to snap the nozzle in my airbrush when trying to extract it for cleaning - won't do that again in a hurry! As before, the weak point of this brilliant little kit is the sliding canopy hood as a two part assembly comprising of a `solid’ plastic framework and a clear glazing bubble. Same applies to the windscreen - because of this extreme care must be taken when removing the clear parts from the sprue as any mistakes cannot be hidden later and the joint between the parts is very toy like. 


 After two coats of Dark Green disruptive camouflage the model had a couple of coats Klear applied ready to receive the decals. Unfortunately the decals provided by Airfix for GA-S have a few errors. The roundels for the fuselage and lower wings are good and were used, along with the sharks mouth and fin stripes. The kit decals include red and blue B Type roundels for the upper wing surfaces which should in fact be the late war C Type with the narrow white ring - these were sourced from the Italeri P-51 kit. The code letters for GA-S appear to be white which is correct, but the serial number KH774 is missing from the sheet altogether. Also missing is the small crocodile insignia which was applied to the left fin area of Mustangs painted by 159 MU, but this could be sourced from the decal sheet of the old Airfix Mustang kit. Note the so-called 'firewall' paint job on this 112 Sqd Mustang. An oil wash brings out some of the nice panel line detail, especially on the resin louvred intake from Freightdog which can be seen nicely in the view below. Also worth mentioning that Freightdog do corrected decals for this machine as well now, which I should really think about investing in as I have no manufacturers decal on my resin Aeroproducts 'uncuffed' can click on the images to get in a little closer if you've a mind to..cheers, thanks for looking  and see you soon..

Wednesday 10 October 2012

Zvezda Bf 109 F-2 in 1/72 - (4)

Nearly finished the Zvezda Friedrich, here in the markings of 'weisse 12' flown by nine-victory ace Ltn. Karl Vockelmann of 7./ JG 53. I have still to add a hint of exhaust staining and some stencils. Decals were taken from a variety of spare Academy and MSAP sheets. Vockelmann was reported MIA on 19.5.43 after Luftkampf. The Zvezda Friedrich kit was a little pricey and a little short on detail options compared to, say, the recent new Airfix Emil - no poseable flaps, aileron mass balances or separate rudder for example. Fit was indifferent and the large locating lugs on the canopy spoilt the overall effect - the model looks a little toy-like I think.

Saturday 6 October 2012

Airfix North American Mustang Mk.IV Gift set (2)

My good friend Tony O'Toole's lovely RAF Mustang IV features in the latest issue of Airfix Model World. Tony kindly sent me a few pics and colour details to help me with my own build, which I've incorporated along with the Freightdog resin update set..

The pic below depicts the subject of the Airfix kit - North American Mustang Mk.IVa, KH774 coded GA-S of 112 Squadron whilst based in Italy during late 1945, showing the side profile of its uncuffed Aeroproducts propeller to advantage. The louvred breather intakes on the side of the lower cowl, common to many RAF Mustang Mk.IV`s and IVa`s, are available for the kit from the Freightdog resin update set- like the Aeroproducts propeller these are not provided in the Airfix Gift set boxing.

 Note the camouflage finish is not at all as indicated on the Airfix gift set boxing - the model (and the real aircraft) is wearing the so called `Firewall’ camouflage scheme of Ocean Grey, Dark Green and Medium Sea Grey.  On the real machine this was applied by 159 Maintenance Unit (MU) in Italy and is thought to have adorned only 20 or so late war Mustangs. `Firewall’ refers to the fact that the colour demarcation line between the green and grey on the nose runs directly in line with the engine firewall. Most of the aircraft in this scheme were delivered to 239 Wing in Italy (especially 3 Squadron RAAF and 112 Squadron RAF) and as well as having smaller 6in serials - not included in the kit - they could also be identified by a small `Crocodile’ insignia painted onto the left hand side of the fin, just above the fin flash. The spinner of this aircraft was originally red, as this was the wartime theatre marking for the Mediterranean area but following the end of hostilities this was changed to the much paler colour seen in the photo (note how much lighter it is compared to the red in the roundel and shark mouth) which is thought to be the light blue adopted by 239 Wing at this time.