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Issue 49 cover_Layout 1 11/07/2013 10:08 Page 1
SHOWCASING THE VERY BEST IN SCALE AIRCRAFT MODELLING
August / September 2013
August / Sept 2013 £6.50 UK $14.95 www.airmodeller.com
ROYAL AIR FORCE WESTLAND ALBERT TURECZEK BUILDS ITALERI’S NEW WESSEX HU-5
RAF Westland Wessex HU-5 Albert Tureczek builds Italeri’s new 1:48 chopper.
‘Super Hornet’ VFA-102 Diamondbacks F/A-18F Florent Welter builds Hasegawa’s 1:48 US Navy Super Hornet.
Messerschmitt ME410 Meng Model’s first 1:48 scale aircraft kit modelled by Paulo Portuesi
Condor FW-200 C-4 ‘Scourge of the Atlantic’ Tomas de la Fuente gets to grip with the 1:48 Trumpeter kit.
US Navy Aircraft: Their Liveries and Markings - Part Four Hugh W. Cowin concludes his study of US Navy markings and camouflage
Air Born New releases.
Grumman J2F-J ‘Sitting Duck’ 1:48 super detailed seaplane by Maciek Zywczyk
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Westland Wessex:Layout 1 05/07/2013 13:23 Page 1
R OYA L A I R F O R C E
WESSEX The Westland Wessex is a British turbine powered version of the American Sikorsky S-58. In 1956 Westland Helicopters received a HSS-1 as a pattern for license manufacturing the helicopter for the Royal Navy as a submarine hunter. The helicopters entered service in 1958 and were designated HAS 1 and HAS 3. The Royal Air Force showed interest as well and took delivery of their version, the HC-2 in early 1962. Later followed the versions HCC 4 and HU Mk 5. The British helicopters were powered by a Rolls Royce Gnome turbine and had a long and distinguished service career. They even saw combat action in the South Atlantic. In all 378 aircraft were built. Australia was the sole export customer to the type. The last one was retired in 2003. Italeri released the kit late in 2012. There are not an awful lot of models around from this remarkable helicopter and the news of a quaterscale release of this kit even added to the excitement. It quickly became the talk of the ‘town’ We decided to take a closer look! You get a box filled with light grey plastic. Even though the model has relatively large proportions, there is not a frightening amount of sprues to meet the eye on opening the box. Surface detail is good, the fit we will have to talk about. There is a large, colourful, well-printed and comprehensive decal sheet, a little etched fret and some netting. It is only possible to build one version in one configuration. Markings are provided for three Royal Navy helos and for one Royal Air Force machine.
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A L B E R T T U R E C Z E K M O D E L S I TA L E R I ’ S 1 : 4 8 T H W E S S E X .
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CONSTRUCTION Building sequence starts with the cabin, which is combined with the upstairs flight deck and the main rotor gearbox. The flight deck on the Wessex is situated high and accessible either through the cabin roof or from the outside via steps in the airframe The whole section builds into a nice box, which can be built right into the two fuselage halves upon completion, without fitting problems. The pilot seats are fitted with belts from the etched fret, but there are no belts for the nicely moulded benches in the cabin. The cabin inside is very visible through the large side door. Therefore I decided to add seat belts and a cargo net there. You have a choice between a decal for the instrument panel and a special decal, depicting only the instrument roundels to go with a photo etch frame on top of it. That’s the option I chose. Even though the black and white instrument dials are printed a little off centre it works great with the photo etch part, which adds a nice depth into this important feature.
The bulged side windows present a problem if you want to display them closed as they do not fit the frame and will have to be reshaped to fit from round to square There is quite some details on the inside of the gearbox, but once the hull is closed and the photo etched grill is in place, very little of it will be revealed to the eye. After closing the two fuselage halves the nose will have to be assembled.
The nose part is made up of two assemblies combined with the characteristic droopy Wessex nose and the large exhausts of the Rolls Royce Gnome engine on both sides. The fit of this entire sub-assembly is not breathtaking and you will face a lot of gaps and unaligned surfaces and edges. Quite a bit of filler and some extensive sanding will have to be put on the working schedule here. Not exactly the thing you would expect from a modern, brand new kit. The bit of mesh provided with the kit 4
goes here as a filter for the air intakes of the Turbines.
Westland Wessex:Layout 1 05/07/2013 13:24 Page 4
For the installation of the nose and especially for the installation of the Window parts I used my Touch-n-flow liquid glue set. It comes from Flex-I-file and is distributed from Albion Alloys. I owe one since my last visit to Telford and it comes in very handy if you have to restrain the application of glue to a minimum area to avoid damage to crispy surface details, but still need a firm and stable connection.
The exhausts are made up from two halves, which have to be glued together and that spells trouble. The fit is not good and the three raised lines on the outside of the exhausts will almost certainly be damaged when you have to sand them to shape. This is such an important feature on the helicopter and will present a focal point on the model. I decided for a different approach all together. The parts are too bulgy, too thick and the fit is poor. I glued them solidly together and sanded them down. This resulted in a total loss of the raised lines, which I recreated with thin stretched sprue. Thereafter I added two different shades of bare metal foil to the outside and thinned the inside ultra thin towards the edges. After that they were ready to be installed with a little piece of tissue glued to the base of the exhausts and painted black. If you do not carry out this operation you just might see through the inside of the exhausts and all the way through to the other side, not what you want!
Westland Wessex:Layout 1 05/07/2013 13:24 Page 5
The landing gear, or the legs are a
That is not really that bad as the legs can
prominent feature to the Wessex as well.
do with a bit of extra detailing anyway.
They make the machine appear like a giant insect. The kit part fit extremely well into
I added pressure lines and cables here for
the fuselage holes, which makes dry fit and
the flotation devices and oxygen bottles,
handling through the painting session a
which I chose for my version. The Fuel
whole lot easier. The problem with the parts
dump pipes are situated on the belly and I
is that they are too fragile. That in
used Albion’s Slide to fit tubing here. 1mm
combination with the use of a soft plastic,
aluminium tubing could be cut to the right
typical for Italeri, makes them very
length and shape and is a real
vulnerable. Mine broke several times and
improvement on the kit part.
they had to be re-enforced.
PA I N T I N G
Painting was straightforward and I used Testors middle blue and 117 US Light green from Humbrol for my camo pattern with a black bottom. Weathering commenced in a traditional way with oils and pastels.
Westland Wessex:Layout 1 05/07/2013 13:24 Page 6
Decaling was without challenges except if you choose the version I did you will have to seriously resize the light blue tail band, typical for the Cyprus based machines, as it does not fit the fuselage at all. The main rotor blades come with sag, which works well and adds to the overall nice appearance of the model.
For the correct stencilling you will have to check references as I noted several divergences between my references and the suggested options by Italeri.
Westland Wessex:Layout 1 05/07/2013 13:24 Page 7
CONCLUSION The Wessex HU 5 from Italeri is a good kit and will be welcomed by many. It does however not come without its troubles, the soft plastic and the poor fit for a modern kit, especially around the nose, are the main pitfalls. There are many exciting and colourful paint schemes for this odd looking machine, and by now the aftermarket will presumably be buzzing with additions and alternatives for the suggested version from Italeri.
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I have always been fascinated by the Westland Wessex’s very special appearance and I always wanted one. This was made possible through the new Italeri kit, which deserves commendation even though they got the name on the box wrong. It is not a UH- 5 but a HU-5.
HORNET:Layout 1 05/07/2013 15:52 Page 1
The Kit The 2005 Hasegawa kit is unquestionably the best on the market at present in this scale, the moulding is very fine with clean engraving over the light grey plastic. Hasegawa released another version of the plane, the "E", the single-seater which is also magnificent and also the Growler. It is a model which can very easily be built ‘out of the box’ if you choose a closed cockpit but I added some resin additions to boost the levels of details.
Florent Welter models a US Navy ‘VFA-102 Diamondbacks F/A-18F using Hasegawa’s 1:48 kit.
Entering service with the US Navy in 1999
In September, 2010, the American orders
The cockpit was partially modified. In the
to replace the venerable F-14 Tomcat,
for Super Hornet totalled about 700 aircraft.
block 2 production the US Navy planned a
Super Hornet is one of the rare armament
A specialized electronic warfare version,
complete revision of the cockpit and the
programs to have met its planned
the EA-18G Growler, entered service in
avionics of the Super Hornet, as the radar
deadlines and budgets. McDonnell Douglas
2009; replacing the EA-6B Prowler.
(APG-73) which, although modernized, is
reworked the Hornet design to produce a
Renamed F/A-18E/F Boeing Super Hornet
now twenty years old. Super Hornet has
completely new aircraft.
(F/A-18F for the two-seater version), the
begun to be fitted with a new APG-79 radar
• An enlarged airframe.
prototype of this version flew for the first
with active antenna since 2007, and F/A-18
• Strengthened landing gear to allow for
time in November, 1995. Easily
E and F delivered after 2004 will be
increases in weight during take-off and in
recognizable with its rectangular air inlets
retrofitted with it.
and not rounded off as on the first
• Two new General Electric F414 engines
generation Hornet. The avionics are 90%
offering 20% more power.
common to those of the F/A-18C Hornet.
HORNET:Layout 1 05/07/2013 15:52 Page 2
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01 The Cockpit I used for my build a new Black Box resin
The book ‘Detail & Scale n°69’ possesses
cockpit reference CS48007, intended for
all the required reference to bring all the
the Revell kit. The cockpit only requires a
details to life with excellent colour photos
little surgery to settle down correctly, and
of the real cockpit and the ejector seats.
it fits remarkably well in the Hasegawa
The resin seats come with moulded seat
fuselage, only part C14 has to be slightly
belts so some delicate painting is all that
thinned, and a small area had to be
is required here.
deleted on part A23. I retained both the kit instrument panel covers which assembled with the new resin instrument panels without any problems. The cockpit tub was finished in the classic modern jet colours with overall ghost grey and black side consoles. A wash was then applied across all the details and the raised details are dry brushed. White is used to pick out the details and dials and the same technique is then used to finish the instrument panels and their digital screens. A touch of gloss varnish was used to complete the digital displays.
01 Contrary to what is recommended in the instructions of the model, I did not insert the cockpit between parts C12 and C5 at stage 2. Instead I glued it directly to part A3, which allowed the filling of any gaps as well as any engraving to be redone on the front of the fuselage. 02 The cushion is painted in olive green, harnesses in light grey; and the rest is in black matt. A fine brush was used to pick out all the smaller details amongst which are the ejection handles finished in yellow. I added the black stripes using a Rotring 0.1mm drawing pen.
HORNET:Layout 1 05/07/2013 15:52 Page 4
At this stage, the parts forming the air
The rest of the assembly is almost routine,
surrounds with matt black. The canopy parts
intakes are to be assembled, and it is a
everything assembles very well, wings are on
were all carefully polished to remove any
rather delicate stage of the build.
the other parts to be fitted before the
flaws and seam lines. I used several
Hasegawa supplies 2 part air intakes for
assembly of both parts of the fuselage, and
sandpapers of various grades from 1600 to
the engines parts A18, A1). This is not
care needs to be taken to make certain that
12000, taking care not to remove the frame
ideal as a single piece would be more
you have obtained the correct wing dihedral.
details. To finish them, I polished using
suitable without ejector pins marks and
On fitting the nose I noticed a gap to be about
‘Tamiya Compound’ for a crystal clear result.
seam lines to clean up. Instead I opted
filled of about 1mm which I filled with an
for the superb replacement intakes in
appropriate thickness of plastic card. To
I decided not to cut the wings to have them
resin from Two Mikes Resin.
ensure a smooth flawless joint around the
folded, but the Hasegawa kit provides for this
windscreen I used some Mr Surfacer 1000.
option, and instead I opted for dropped slats
The set includes 4 parts, 2 intakes in
The other problem area is situated between
and flaps, this configuration is often seen on
white coloured resin, very fine and
the two air intakes and so difficult to acess. I
planes on the ground.
without bubbles and 2 turbines blades.
manage to fill and clean it up before
Having deleted delicately carrots,
re-engraving the lost panel lines.
During the assembly of the main flaps, part B7 and B18, I noticed some sink marks which
conduits are painted in white Matt and a slightly darkened aspect is realized at
To protect the cockpit and to help when
were corrected with putty and new plastic
the level of the turbine with some
handling the model I temporarily fitted the
canopies having pre-painted the cockpit
03 I used some Mr Surfacer 500 to improve the joint between the fuselage and the windscreen. Delicate sanding was required to avoid damaging the clear parts which were protected with masking tape.
04 To mask the windows I used a guide to cut the perfect curvature available at www.jammydog.com
HORNET:Layout 1 05/07/2013 15:52 Page 5
Landing Gear The kit landing gear is well detailed, only some brake hoses are added using brass wire. The wheels were replaced with a superb set from Royal Resin, these are magnificent as expected from this brand. They were cleaned first with soapy water before the wheel rims were painted in white and the rubber in a slightly faded black. To age slightly the wheel rims, I used the washes of CITADEL paints intended for their figurines ranges. I made a mix of 50% ‘Badab Black’ and 50% of ‘Ogryn Flesh’. A dark black wash from MIG productions is selectively applied and after
drying, they will be wiped over with a cotton bud soaked with white spirit, the landing gear of Super Hornet not being old enough to be too heavily weathered, so a subtle finish is more realistic and appropriate.
05 All the small indication plaque decals are affixed, even 3 small lights and a coat of matt varnish is applied.
As regards to the armament of my
is a white and fins in gull grey darkened,
‘Super Hornet’, I was surprised to find
the decals are from the kit and are
that Hasegawa has included some
sealed with matt varnish they make a
missiles in the box. This is not common
beautiful reproduction of this new
for them and normally we have to look
modern missile. I cut away the tip of the
around for alternative weapons. The
missile to add a resin protective cover
plane is supplied with 2 AIM-9X
from Airwaves. this was finished in bright
Sidewinder and 2 AIM-120 Amraam. So
yellow and an Eduard pre-painted
the plane will be in classic configuration,
‘Remove Before Flight’ tag was added to
3 fuel tanks of 480 gallons each and 2
finish it off.
AIM-9X, I left two empty pylons and chose not to add the ASQ-228 Atflir Pod, As I did not want to break up the lines of the plane. The Sidewinder is very well detailed for an injection moulded example, and only 14
the fins had to be very slightly thinned at their extremities. The body of the missile
HORNET:Layout 1 05/07/2013 15:52 Page 6
Painting & Decoration I chose a particular highly coloured livery used in celebration of 50 years of VFA-102 Diamondbacks based at Atsugi in Japan. Created in 1955, VF-102 first flew with the F2H Banshee, then F4D Skyray, F-4 Phantom and F-14 Tomcat in 1981 transferring to the Super Hornet. This particular scheme has been replicated with decals by TwoBobs ref. 48-105, but we shall see as I progressed that it had only limited use.
The Hornet itself carries a classic
Navy 3 grey camouflage with FS 36320 for the top area, FS36375 for the bottom and FS35237 for trailing edges. Having cleaned the model with a little cotton and surgical spirit, I first used some matt black to check for any visible
07 Once completely dry and checked of joints, I airbrushed a layer of matt white on the wells, over a base of black. The wheel wells were then masked before moving on with the rest of the painting.
joints after sanding and to undercoat the glazing frames. The
08 I then attacked the painting has itself of the plane, 2 tones of grey, typical has the U.S Navy, in the first one I treated the bottom of the plane in FS 36375, using Prince August Air P050 to cover completely the bottom of the plane including the nose. The FS 36320 grey was then sprayed on the top surfaces taking care to mask the nose.
wheel bays were also pre-shaded with the black before the top coat of white was sprayed.
For this special VFA-102 diamondbacks scheme, the aircraft carries wide strips of red and diamonds in white on wings and elevators. Red diamonds on white strips wrap around the cockpit and fuel tanks. I had initially planned to use the sheet of decals by TwoBobs ref 48-105, but felt that they were quite thick and instead I decided to paint the main elements of the scheme myself.
For wings and tail I used the decals as a
masked, I airbrushed a layer of matt white paint
template, which was a delicate stage because I
to ensure a really bright red when this was
had of course moved all the control surfaces on
sprayed on top. The paint was sprayed at a low
my model so there were multiple elements to
pressure to avoid the paint crackling or peeling
be masked. Once the aircraft was correctly
when the masks were removed.
09 It was important to find a good tone of red, the Gunze H327 was used. It works well to match the partially used elements from the decal sheet. I first masked the big dorsal zone completely with different sizes of masking tape.
10 I then copied the size of the diamonds for the spine using the decals supplied as a size guide paying attention to the alignment and the spaces between each.
HORNET:Layout 1 05/07/2013 15:52 Page 7
Then I applied the red Gunze, one coat
and the wings with the same grey, but
is enough thanks to the white applied
diluted by 50% with white in order to
beforehand and once the paint is dry I
create a faded effect, although a
had the pleasure of removing the
modern aircraft, the Super Hornet is
exposed to the sea air on its paint, and any small retouches would have been
I let the model dry for 48 hours for extra
applied during routine maintenance.
safety before applying a first coat of
These effects are kept quite subtle
Tamiya satin varnish TS 79. I then
however as this it is not another Tomcat.
airbrushed certain areas of the fuselage
11 The masking is removed to reveal pleasingly crisp paintwork.
12 The small ‘50’ logo is supplied with the decals.
13 The nose strip had to be blended with the sprayed red areas.
HORNET:Layout 1 05/07/2013 15:52 Page 8
I then applied the decals. I used the
After allowing 24 hours of drying time for
bare minimum from the decal sheet, the
the model, I began the weathering phase
American stars were not retained.
to dirty the model, bearing in mind that
Fortunately Hasegawa decal sheet
this is a special scheme so will not have
provided these along with some other
the normal operational appearance, with
elements. I had considerable problems
the newly painted markings remaining
with 2 big snake logos which despite
relatively clean. I used MIG Productions
considerable applications of decal
‘Dark Wash’ to pick out all the panel lines
solution crinkled and blistered and after
and rivet detail. The excess was then
drying I had to touch in some of the
wiped away with a soft cloth dampened
details with a fine brush, Fortunately
with white spirits working in the direction
once they were varnished they looked fine. After the boring placement of the
of the airflow. The effect is immediate and The white strip with the registration ‘102’ will also have gives the plane a patina which I quite like to undergo numerous painting retouches.
decals I applied 2 coats of Tamiya matt
although you can always apply another
coat of varnish for a more uniform finish. You can also enhance selected areas by working over it again with another coat of wash.
The MIG Productions Dark Wash being applied to the panel lines.
We are finally going to be able to remove strips mask of the window and admire the result!
The engine nozzles could have been replaced with resin versions but painting the kit parts with Alclad Jet exhaust and an application of " Rub & Buff " shows that it is not necessary.
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Conclusion Fans of the Hornet will find much to admire in the Super Hornet too and for me it offers much more appeal than the F-35, which will replace it. Hasegawa handle modern jets with considerable skill and the kit is superb and when teamed with this high impact scheme it makes for a thoroughly rewarding project.
ME410:Layout 1 05/07/2013 11:46 Page 1
Paolo Portuesi test flies
ME410 This is Meng’s first 1:48 scale release
The Me 410 was a German airplane used by
and they are to be commended for their
the Luftwaffe during the Second World War.
choice of subject. Not an easy subject
This aircraft was first planned as a possible
and that complex canopy could be make
heir to the Bf 110, but the aircraft showed
or break so we asked Paolo to see just
marked instability in flight, and attempts to
how it all preformed.
remedy this resulted in a very long development process and a large number of
The instruction booklet is very impressive, very
changes to the original design. Powered by the
well done. The instructions are one of the
DB 603A and known as the Hornisse, the 410
strengths of this kit. Painting guidelines are
entered production late in 1942. By 1944 a
very well done, but they are given only for the
total of one thousand one hundred and sixty
Gunze Colours. Decals are provided by
had been manufactured. A number of
Cartograf. Thin and in perfect register, they are
sub-types were produced, with equipment or
as good as any aftermarket decal sheet. Seat
armament differences. The Me 410 was used
belts, and some other details, are offered in a
as a fighter, bomber destroyer and
small photo etched sheet. The breakdown of
reconnaissance. The Me 410 B-2/U4 was
the parts looks very logical and there’s options
equipped with a powerful 50 mm cannon, and
abound. Meng’s Me 410 allows the modeller
it was optimized to fight against the Allied
to build the B-2/U4 version right from the kit.
ME410:Layout 1 05/07/2013 11:46 Page 2
1:48 Scale Meng Models
At first glance the kit seems somewhat over-engineered, but that is not really the case. Parts for two pretty well done engines are included, and that is very good because usually you get only one. Detail goes as far as moulding technology can go in this scale. As a result, there is almost no room for further improvement. A multi-part very thin canopy gives plenty of possibilities to show an impressive cockpit. Again, there is no reason for any etched or resin cockpit replacement. In addition to the two engines, five well engineered and detailed machine guns and cannons are screaming for open access panels. All movable surfaces can be positioned. Panel lines are restrained. Overall accuracy is good but tail, engine oil coolers, propellers and spinners are perhaps problematic.
ME410:Layout 1 05/07/2013 11:46 Page 3
I began construction from the cockpit. The cockpit was assembled pretty much stock, including kit’s photo etch belts. The entire fuselage interior was painted in RLM 66, given a dark oil wash and dry brushed. Hard to believe this is a standard kit cockpit!
ME410:Layout 1 05/07/2013 11:46 Page 4
The cockpit is adequately detailed, with raised detail which makes dry brushing very effective. Good painting and some washes make every tiny detail stand out, but much of it is invisible after joining together the two fuselages halves.
Cannons were painted acrylic Black, and then dry brushed with an enamel Aluminium. Unless you leave the bay open, almost nothing is visible once the model is finished, but if you want to take things further this is an excellent start.
While I decided to leave all the weapon access panels closed, I wanted to build my kit leaving an engine visible. The only change that I feel compelled to do was thinning the edges of the wing. 23
ME410:Layout 1 05/07/2013 11:46 Page 5
The entire aircraft receives a coat of grey primer before the main painting stages begin.
Painting I painted the model as per the instructions, using Gunze Mr. Aqueous colours. I started with the underside. For once, there were no gaps at the wing root, so no filler is really needed when building this kit. I then mixed the underside colour with some white and a larger amount of thinner and sprayed many different lighter shades of this mix in the center of some panels. Once all this was dry, the entire kit was airbrushed several times with layers of heavily thinned base colour, because I do not like pre-shading.
At this point, the upper surfaces were sprayed in with the two camouflage colours. The splinter was done freehand. I like to get a soft edge between colours. I mark the camouflage pattern with a pencil and then to fill all up spraying from a very close distance. After a long painting session, weathering was done with artist's 24
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Above The main gear legs were detailed with some thin lead cable. Below Kit propellers and spinners were replaced with the more accurate resin ones released by Vector.
An invisible thread antenna aerial was added and insulators were made from small drops of white glue. Mating the canopy with the fuselage was one of my concerns, but it proved to be problem free with all the parts fitting well! 26
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There were no problems during the construction of this kit. I had a lot of fun and almost no problems in building the Me 410. Honestly, the most difficult part in this project was writing this article, because I had very little to say as it all performed so well. My only advice would be to leave aside the massive cannon barrel until the very end of the build.
CONDOR:Layout 1 05/07/2013 14:00 Page 1
One of the more significant aircraft manufactured during the Second World War by the Germans, the FW-200 Condor is a really elegant beauty.
I must admit I've always been fascinated by
- Absence of the
this four-engined former passenger aircraft
fabric wing surfaces
adapted to become a bomber and long
of the original
range maritime patrol aircraft for the
Luftwaffe. It proved a success in the
- Wheels Wells
maritime patrol role and Winston Churchill
without any details.
dubbed them “the scourge of the Atlantic”,
- Surface detail on the movable
serving as the eyes of the German
control surfaces, totally out of scale.
submarine fleet, relaying of the positions of
- Flaps very simple had to be replaced by
the allied convoys.
The ‘pros’ of the model are:
I remember that for many years, modellers
- It is the only affordable1:48 version.
were hoping for a modern replacement for the old and outdated 1:72 Revell model
Did I say that I really wanted to do a Condor 1:48?.
and the complicated and expensive Costner 1:48 vacform model. It was
I could see that I would have a lot of
Trumpeter who undertook this task in 1:48,
homework to do and above all I would need
although from my point of view, not entirely
very good references, and although the
successfully, since the model has many
web has many photos, they did no give me
deficiencies, and inaccuracies so I had to
everything I needed so I bought several
work hard to reach an acceptable
dedicated books on the subject, and also I
had the invaluable collaboration of my friend Juan Carlos Salgado, author of two
The ‘cons’ that I found were:
volumes devoted to the Condor (Editorial
- Soft Plastic and very low density (a classic
Alcañiz Fresno), and a magnificent book
Trumpeter). - Total lack of internal structure in the fuselage (Ribs and frames). - Gaps around the internal bulkheads. - Gun turret simplified and totally incorrect and the simple engines were replaced with Vector aftermarket parts. 28
(The Airliner That Went to War). Armed with this I began to work on the model.
CONDOR:Layout 1 05/07/2013 14:00 Page 2
1943 BORDEAUX 8/KG-40 by
TOMAS DE LA FUENTE
CONDOR:Layout 1 05/07/2013 14:00 Page 3
Assembly As usual I started to work on the interior, first placing the bulkheads separating the aircrafts different compartments, I found these did not fit flush to the insides of the fuselage, so I had to make filler pieces to bridge the gaps. I also had to rebuild all the ribs that appear on the bulkheads as well as opening some areas of the rear bulkhead and adding the supports for the ammo/weapons. Based on photos of the interior, I began to add all the interior ribbing and frames, using several types of Evergreen profile. This task was especially tedious but the end result is a real improvement and has radically changed the look of the interior. Then I started to list all the items inside the fuselage, starting with a fuel transfer pump, which was a parallelepiped with actuators on top. This was made from telephone wire with the sheath peeled away on one side, and a stretched piece of clear plastic. This was painted yellow, and I added a reduced copy of the original plan of the fuel system.
Above The rounded oil tanks also needed work, to reproduce the fastening straps, which I did again with Evergreen strips.
Left The fuselage fuel tanks also required some work. They were secured by webbing with a metal clasp at the top and all the top of the tank was covered by a blanket of a fabric that looked like rubber or something similar, so using pieces of Evergreen, copper wire and paint, I reproduced these parts.
Right In the rear of the fuselage is the octagonal-shaped platform on which the dorsal gunner stands, but fitted incorrectly, so I removed the top section and filled the hole, I flipped the removed section and I added a grab bar as on the real aircraft.
CONDOR:Layout 1 05/07/2013 14:00 Page 4
I proceeded to paint the entire interior with the standard colour of the Luftwaffe, RLM 02 (Gunze H-70), using highlights where necessary, of the base colour mixed with some white (Gunze H -11). I dry brushed with Tamiya Gun Metal (X-10), on the floor in the walkways of the crew, to imitate worn areas of continual use. This was then followed by some dust and dirt accumulated by the crew. I then applied scratches and chipped paint on all areas inside the fuselage that would have been worn by the actions of the crew, this I did with a brush using 995 of Vallejo German Grey. Next, I placed the various etched details including the instrument panels, seat belts, radio plates, as well as some scratchbuilt curtains made with tin foil for each window. This completes the assembly phase of the fuselage and the two halves can be joined.
31 Above I also scratchbuilt the radio operator's seat because the model does not supply it.
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Above/Below To continue with the assembly, I purchased a set by Nautilus Models (ref 48-082), the set is nothing more than a reinforcing wooden spar so that the wings do not over stress the fuselage joints.
Above I was also doing the assembly of several things in parallel, side flaps, which took me two evenings, but the effort is worthwhile.
As to the moving surfaces are a
The interiors of the wheel wells are
disaster, had to fill in the sunken
very sparse, so I detailed them using
gaps in the surfaces with putty and
Evergreen, and although it is a great
then reproduce these effects with
temptation to close the front
paint. On the wings I had to remove
bulkhead of the wells, I did not,
the rivets which I did with superglue
because that is where the wheels sit
and sanding, and I had to rescribe
many panel lines and rivets on the wings and fuselage, since most were lost during the sanding.
Below As I said earlier, the gun turret is very simplified and inaccurate, so I made a new one from scratch and with spare parts.
Far Right The engines supplied with the kit are very simple, so I replaced it with Vector ones in resin, the result is magnificent, although it was rather laborious process of making four. Once assembled I proceeded to put the push rods with Evergreen rod, and spark plug wires with copper wire. The engines are painted with various metallic colours from Alclad. Then I applied a wash over them with Dark Wash from MIG Productions, to enhance all the details.
Right I had to move several teardrop shaped lumps that were misplaced, so I made a simple mould to copy them in resin.
CONDOR:Layout 1 05/07/2013 14:00 Page 6
Above To mask the clear parts I used a combination of Montex masks, along with Eduard.
Above I started to improve the ventral gondola, adding partitions flooring from scratch and I also added a 20mm cannon and ammunition feed chute.
them and this effect was accentuated with operational
After checking all the literature at my disposal, as well as
wear, meaning that in some period photos look like the
numerous photos on the internet I realized that for the
aircraft were painted in one colour.
model C-4, potential paint schemes were limited exclusively to the typical splinter scheme for naval aircraft
The next point to address was what type of paint to use.
of the Luftwaffe, consisting of RLM 72 and 73, and the
From my personal experience, I knew that Xtracolor
lower surfaces in RLM 65. I actually found a striking
enamel offers a good colour match but did not want to
pattern in a photograph of where the fuselage was
work with enamels. I was reluctant to use the Xtracrylix
mottled in RLM 65, but it proved to be a C-8, with
acrylic alternatives as I had experienced problems with
considerable differences with my model C-4. My friend
them peeling off when masks were removed. The
Juan Carlos confirmed that I should stick to the
alternative of mixing my own shades from Tamiya colours
aforementioned splinter camouflage as there was no
did not appeal either so in the end I reverted to the
evidence that there had been any other scheme for this
Xtracrylix acrylic colours to spray the top surface splinter
version. Furthermore, this scheme had the handicap that
the colours were very dark with low contrast between
CONDOR:Layout 1 05/07/2013 14:00 Page 7
For painting I divided the work into two
propeller blades by rubbing graphite on
parts, top and bottom and I decided to
them, to give a sense of use, but not too
start with the bottom, which received a
extreme as I do not like the propellers too
blue uniform coat of RLM 65 Gunze H-67,
worn. I primed the flaps, with Mr Base
with the same colour lightened with some
White 1000, to be sure that the paint takes
white was used to paint those areas that
hold correctly. The elevators were given the
were fabric-covered on the wings. The
same treatment as fabric-covered surfaces
same tone, but very diluted to 10% was
of the wings, except that in the end I
airbrushed over the lines of rivets to define
applied a filter with the original colour very
them. I also painted at this time the
dissolved, so I managed to unify them and
crosses and the code letters for the
eliminate any excessive contrast.
aircraft, using Montex masks. I also applied masks to create the areas of ribbing below
The internal areas of the flaps which were
the fabric areas, using thin strips of
then fixed to the wing were painted RLM 02
masking tape, before airbrushing a layer of
Gunze H-70, and received a wash with the
the previously airbrushed colour slightly
MIG Productions Dark Wash, to help define
darkened with a drop of XF-1 black (very
all the rib details. This completed the work
diluted) to slightly shade between the ribs. I
on the undersides.
also painted the propellers, in RLM 70, Gunze H-65, and in particular I reproduced the bright green tip to the propeller hub with Gunze H-26. I added some wear to the
CONDOR:Layout 1 05/07/2013 14:00 Page 8
With respect to the top, I must say I started in the fabric areas and moving surfaces. These I painted in RLM 72 and 73, Xtracrylix XA1222 and XA1223 respectively. Then as with the undersides i masked the rib details with strips of tape again. A darker tone was used to shade the recesses leaving the raised ribs in the original colours. Removing the strips of tape gave me the same problems again with the paint lifting off. I had no choice but to repeat the whole process. Eventually I got a good result but not without much cursing.
For the rest of the scheme I used low tack paper to mask and I avoided any problems with lifting paint. I used lighter tones again to highlight the panels but kept this quite restrained to avoid anything too contrasty. Then I painted the crosses and other markings using Montex masks. I also painted the bombs in matt black shaded with XF-1 and worn effects made with MIG pigments.
CONDOR:Layout 1 05/07/2013 14:00 Page 9
Once I was satisfied that the model
XF-10, XF-52 and XF-49, again this
was entirely dry I proceeded to
was applied very diluted in several
airbrush along the panels lines
layers. I also added various chips
running streaks of dirt in the
and scratches in the painting, using
direction of the airflow. I did this by
a brush to add touches here and
covering the edges of the panel lines
there with of Vallejo German Grey.
and airbrushing with very diluted
matt brown Tamiya XF -10. Having
After all this I airbrushed several
done all this I proceeded to paint
coats of Future before enhancing
stains from engine exhausts and for
paneling and rivets, using MIG
this first painted a very diluted light
Productions Dark Wash, letting it
grey Tamiya XF-80. Once completely
penetrate along all the panel lines
dry I painted the center of the
and rivets, and let it dry very well.
exhaust stains in matt black XF -1,
After that I cleaned away any excess
also very diluted and applied in
using a dry, clean cloth with thinners
successive thin layers in order to
and always working in the direction
have more control over the final
of the air flow. As the surface was
effect obtained. I also added dirt
very smooth and shiny, thanks to the
trails, flowing from the oil radiators
Future, the oil wash was easily
under the engine done by
wiped away leaving the panel lines
airbrushing a mixture made of,
and rivet detail nicely defined.
In parallel I worked on the
02 Gunze H-70, with silver
turrets with the rear dorsal
accents on the hydraulic
turret I had to completely
cylinders. Then I glued all the
scratchbuild, with pieces from
remaining loose pieces and
here and there, to get a
added the rigging, so
satisfactory result. The landing
completing the assembly of the
gear actuators had added
FW-200 Condor, after a little
wiring and hydraulic braking
over two years working on it
and as usual were painted RLM
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Dedication I would like to dedicate this aircraft to people who have helped me. These individuals were: Alex Sanchez, Daniel Zamarbide, Jose Luís Fauste, Jose Antonio Granado and Juan Carlos Salgado and of course my wife and my children, for always being there.
AIR 49 US NAVY (Q8):AFV/26 Jan/Feb 06 05/07/2013 16:52 Page 1
A promising Navy fighter whose early years were blighted by its infamous J40 engine was the McDonnell F3H Demon first flown on 7 August 1951. Subject to a Navy imposed mission-shift and a less than optimum engine replacement, the first production F3H-2s entered service with VF14 on 7 March 1956. 519 Demons were produced, including prototypes, although only 461 entered service. Always underpowered, the Demon was withdrawn from service in August 1964. (McDonnell)
US Navy Aircraft, their Liveries and Markings
Part Four From Korea and Vietnam to the Cost-Above-All Years, June 1952 – March 1985
BY HUGH W. COWIN additional funds. A political reaction was
could afford to buy the planned numbers
inevitable, soon to be driven by one
of expensive F-14 Tomcats and F-15
particularly intrusive politician. This man
Eagles, so the shortfall in quality would be
was Robert McNamara, Secretary for
made up by procuring a proportionally
The Navy probably benefitted more from
Defense for most of the 1960s, whose
greater quantity of cheaper, less capable
their part in the Korean conflict than did
bean-counting stamp was to be felt by
the Air Force. Carrier-borne air power
both Navy and Air Force throughout the
Thus, during the 1970s, both the Navy and
proved more resilient than their land-based
next decade. McNamara, former head of
Air Force found themselves operating just
colleagues in conditions where vast tracts
the World Bank, strove to instill the virtues
such mixed fighter fleets, comprised of
of territory changed hands with astonishing
of commonality and mission multiplicity on
Navy F-14s and F/A-18s, along with the Air
all within his broad domain. His earliest
Force’s F-14s and F-16s.
Thus, in the early 1950s, funding fortunes
influence was felt over the Navy’s F4H-1
The big event as far as Navy and Marine
started to swing the Navy’s way, perhaps
Phantom II, first flown in May 1958. At his
aircraft markings and finish were
best seen in the go-ahead to build the
insistence, the F4H was to be adopted by
concerned occurred in March 1955, when
new, big 59,000 ton carrier, USS Forrestal.
the Air Force, whether they liked it or not.
the use of overall midnight blue finish for all
This was also the time of innovative aircraft
As the Phantom II largely lived up to its
front-line aircraft was to be dropped in
design thinking. Contracts went out to
early promises few outside the Air Force
favour of light grey upper and anti-radiation
industry for a raft of prototypes, ranging
‘Top Brass’ complained. Not so with
white applied to all lower surfaces.
from the Convair and Lockheed ‘Pogo-
McNamara’s later demand that the Navy
One other marking innovation to come
planes’ turboprop take-off and landing
adopt the Air Force’s swing-wing General
about in this period was the introduction of
fighters, to Martin and their near Mach One
Dynamics F-111. This led to the aborted
the Modex Number. This system applies
at low-level Seamaster.
GD-Grumman F-111B, arguably setting
specifically to aircraft maintenance and,
This period of relative prosperity was to
back the debut of Grumman’s own F-14
these days, is totally divorced from the
last through the late 1950s. It was also an
Tomcat by several years. McNamara’s last
aircraft’s BuAer No. It takes the form of a
era in which technological advances saw
legacy was to introduce the concept of
three-digit group worn on the nose and
new missions such as Airborne Early
high-low cost fighter mixes. Here, he
repeated on the fin top and outer wing
Warning (AEW) emerged –all requiring
argued, neither the Navy or the Air Force
AIR 49 US NAVY (Q8):AFV/26 Jan/Feb 06 05/07/2013 16:52 Page 2
Left In an endeavour to free themselves from vulnerable slowmoving carrier or fixed-base ground fighter control systems, both the Navy and Air Force took to the skies in the 1950s with such aircraft as the Lockheed WV-2L Warning Star seen here. Airborne Early Warning (AEW) brought another bonus by extending the radar reach. Both the WV-2 and the Air Force’s EC-121 were modified Lockheed Super Constellations. Including two earlier WV-1 Constellations, the Navy bought 152 WVs operated by nine squadrons from 1954, covering both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. The last WV unit retired at the end March 1979. (US Navy) Left Revealing something of the problems faced by the Navy in keeping up with fighter developments in the late 1940s was their need to order a navalised version of North American’s F-86 Sabre. First flown on 27 December 1951, the production machines were FJ2s, FJ-3 and FJ-4s, all named Fury, of which 1,112 were built. The FJ-3 seen here belonged to GMGRU-1, a drone-control trials unit. (US Navy) Big, ugly but powerful, McDonnell’s F-4 Phantom served with both Navy and Marine squadrons over a 32-year period, from 1960 to 1992. During this time, its multiplicity of roles, ranging from fighter, through photo-reconnaissance to bomb-hauler -carrying heavier warloads than the Consolidated PB4Y-1 Liberator of World War II. First flown on 27 May 1958, F-4 Phantom production totalled 5,195 machines, including 127 Japanese-built examples. The initial production F4H-1s, as they were then known, entered service on 30 December 1960, with VF-121. The last front-line F-4 retired in December 1989. However, one Marine reserve unit, VMFA-112 continued flying F-4s until 18 January 1992.
Also adopted by the US Air Force and later by other many nations, the type remains operational in Germany, Greece and Turkey. The F-4B seen retaining much of its original livery, belonged to the Navy Weapons Test Unit, Point Mugu, California and is seen over the Carribean in July 1999. The carrier deck image is of an F-4G ‘Wild Weasel’ with a light brown low-visibility scheme trialled over North Vietnam. (both US Navy)
AIR 49 US NAVY (Q8):AFV/26 Jan/Feb 06 05/07/2013 16:52 Page 3
Right One of the Navy’s finest air-superiority fighters of the last century, Vought’s F8U Crusader first took to the air on 25 March 1955. It entered operations exactly two years later with VF-32 and served for the next 30 years with Navy and Marine squadrons. The last Navy Crusader squadron, VFP-206 to fly the type disbanded on 29 March 1987. The pair of RF-8Gs seen here belonged to VFP-306 in 1981 (US Navy)
Below Seen here in March 1983 are a quartet from the Navy’s crack aerobatic team, the Blue Angels. The Hornet entered operational service on 7 January 1983 with VMF-314 and 1,098 had been delivered to the Navy before production switched to the FA-18E Super Hornet. (US Navy)
Above Grumman’s swing-wing F-14A Tomcat air superiority fighter first flew on 21 December 1970, with initial deliveries going to VF-1 and VF-2, both based at Mirimar, California in September 1974 seen here. The early years of the Tomcat were not the happiest, with engine-related problems leading to a number of losses. Meanwhile, associated company development costs brought bankruptcy perilously close. The engine problems were finally overcome by installing the GE F100 in the interim F-14A+ and F-14B. With the more powerful F110 fitted, the Tomcat took on the additional strike role, further enhanced with the major avionics improvements in the F-14D. Never operated by the Marines, the Navy took a total of 679 F-14s, the last of which, flown by VF-31, was retired on 4 October 2006. During 1974, Iran ordered 80 F-14s, of which 43 were delivered before the overthrow of the Shah. Because of the Iranian dimension, on its withdrawal from Navy use, most Tomcats were promptly scrapped to prevent parts falling into the wrong hands
Below and below right Designed as a 2-seat all-weather bomb-hauler from the outset, Grumman’s A2F-1, later A-6 Intruder made its maiden flight on 19 April 1960 and joined its first squadron, VA-42, just under three years later, in February 1963. Deployed over Vietnam, the A-6, of which 890 were accepted by the Navy, was to be adopted as a tanker KA-6D and the widely used high powered electronics jamming EA-6A and B Prowler. Although the last Intruder was retired on 28 February 1997, the 4-seat EA-6B Prowler remains in service, currently being replaced by Boeing’s EA-18 Growler.Seen here is a Grumman A-6E of VA-35 aboard USS Nimitz releasing its bombs, while the EA-6B Prowler of VAQ-132 ‘Scorpions’ overflies USS John F Kennedy in the Atlantic, 5 December 2004. (both US Navy)
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Left and below Known effectionately as ‘the Skyhook’ Ed Heinmann’s Douglas A4D Skyhawk remains in service in parts of the world some 58-years after its 22 June 1954 maiden flight. Designed as a carrier-going light strike aircraft, the A4D, or A-4 after late 1962, so excelled at its task that it outlived the Vought A-7 Corsair II that was built as its replacement. First operational with VA-72 on 27 September 1956, the Navy accepted 2,876 Skyhawks, of which 294 went to other users under US military aid. A veteran of the Vietnam War, the Skyhawk’s combat record covers most continents, ranging from the Middle East to the Falklands. The last Navy Skyhawk, an A-4M, was retired in March 1994. Seen here is an A-4E of VMA-33 aboard USS Independence, while the multi-service identity and ‘7V’ on this TA-4B indicates it to be a Reserve squadron aircraft based at Glendale. (Cowin Collection and US Navy)
Above Winner of the prized 1963 VAL competition, Vought’s A-7 Corsair II
Corsair II while the US Air Force flew another 459 A-7Ds. Active in the first
utilised much of the existing F-8 Crusader’s structural parts in a much abbreviated airframe, bereft of the Crusader’s variable-incidence wing. Flown for the first time on 27 September 1965, the production A-7A
Gulf War, the last of th Navy’s A-7Es retired in June 1992. Seen here is a quintet of A-7Es belonging to VA-25 attached to USS Ranger, while the other A-7E of VA-81 aboard USS Forrestal is unusual in its darker than
entered service on 13 October 1966 with VA-147. Soon to be embroiled over Vietnam, the early TF-30 powered A-7A and Bs were quickly supplemented by the TF-41 engined A-7E. In all, the Navy took 1,491
standard overall finish, necessitating the use of white lettering. (both US Navy)
Left First flown on 4 December 1952, the Navy accepted 1,120 Grumman S2F, later S-2 Trackers, the first operational examples going to VS-26 in February 1954. The last of these carrier-going ASW aircraft, an S-2E was retired in March 1984. Starting life as a Grumman S2F-1 Tracker, the aircraft seen here ended its days as a US-2C operated by Composite Squadron VC-3. The role of composite squadrons ranged from target-towing to urgent carrierboard deliveries. Note the retention of the Magnetic Anomoly Detection (MAD) stinger protruding aft of the fuselage, along with its finish of dark and light grey shades. (US Navy)
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Left Ultimately overshadowed by Vought’s superior F8U Crusader, Grumman’s F11F Tiger first flew as the F9F-8 prototype on 30 July 1954. Subsequently remodelled to incorporate transonic area-ruling as the F11F-1, the type entered service on 8 March 1975 with VA156 - later VF-111. In an effort to improve performance, the original J65 engine was replaced by the more powerful J79 in the F11F-1F. In all, 201 Tigers were delivered to the Navy, with the type being relegated to advanced training by 1958, followed by full retirement on 29 February 1964. (US Navy)
Right Largely forgotten now, is that in the late 1950s, the production version of Martin’s XP6M-1 Seamaster, seen taking-off, was capable of Mach 0.89 at lowlevel, where Boeing’s B-47 was only capable of Mach 0.55. First flown on 14 July 1955, both prototypes were to be lost before the re-engined and reengineered P6M-2 emerged. As it transpired, the production P6M-2 Seamaster, seen aloft in its midnight blue and underside white finish, was overtaken by the development of the intercontinental ballistic missile carrying nuclear submarine and cancelled on 21 August 1959. (US Navy and Martin)
Left This Lockheed S-3A Viking, seen taxying aboard USS John F Kennedy, carries the colours of VS-21. First flown on 21 January 1972, the Navy bought 187 Vikings, the first of which operated with VS-41. Designed for carrier-going ASW duties, some S-3s operated as tankers, while others served as Carrier Onboard Delivery (COD) aircraft. In terms of combat, the Viking’s honours were limited to the sinking of Saddam Hussein’s yacht during the First Gulf War. The S-3 retired from Navy service on 30 January 2009 –eight continuing to fly with NASA. (US Navy)
Right This Lockheed P-3C Orion of VP-23 basks in NAS Brunswick, Maine sunshine during the summer of 1979. A navalised version of Lockheed L.188 Electra, the prototype YP3V-1’s maiden flight took place on 19 August 1959. Initial production deliveries went to VP-8 on 22 August 1962. In all, Navy purchases totalled 610, of which 36 were for other users. Operational for more than 50 years, the P-3 is set to be replaced by another airliner derivative, Boeing P-8 Poisidon, alias 737. Note the reversal of light grey and white fuselage finish standard adopted by all patrol units. (McDonnell)
First flown on 21 October 1960 as the W2F-1, the first production E-2As went to VAW-11 in January 1964. In total, the Navy accepted 215 E-2A to E-2C Hawkeyes, including 4 for Israel by early 1994
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Going Grey in a Darkening Age, April 1985 To Date
embarked, almost universally, on a
airframes and IT enthusiast producing the
programme of defence down-scaling, both
sensors, who together provide the mass of
in size and effectiveness of the forces, to
small, less expensive Unmanned Air
The last quarter of the 20th Century, while
the point, for example, where it is difficult
Vehicles (UAVs) employed by the majority
never matching the sheer ferocity of World
to envisage Britain being able to defend
of the world’s armed forces today.
War II, certainly mirrored much of its
the Falklands, or the US be able to fight
In terms of aircraft marking, the major shift
inhumanity, albeit, through much smaller
two major campaigns at the same time, as
came about in April 1985. First felt by
conflicts. These ranged from the 1975
they have previously been capable of
North Atlantic Treaty Organisation partners,
Lebanese and 1982 Falklands conflicts to
including the US Navy, but later more
the 1990s and the First Gulf War, along
On the technology front, the pace of
generally adopted, the edict required all
with the bitter conflicts as the former
advance has been seriously limited by
combat aircraft to adopt an overall low-
Yugoslavia tore itself apart. The Second
political constraints, with one possible
visibility scheme of two-tone grey. In this,
Gulf War, 9/11 and Afghanistan all indicate
exception. This centres around the military
the basic finish would be light grey, with all
the first decade of the new century to have
and naval efforts to improve the means of
markings picked out in a darker tone.
been an equally dismal saga.
gathering and disseminating information
Interestingly, while this scheme appears to
Among all of this blood-letting, it is
on any opposition they may face. Unlikely
have been strictly adhered to in the early
interesting to note how Western
as it may seem, this breakthrough has
years, the tendancy to revert to more
politicaians reacted to the 1989-91
been brought about mainly by the efforts of
colourful expressions has surfaced in more
collapse of the Soviet economy. They
former aeromodellers, providing the
This pair of McDonnell F/A-18A Hornets belong to VF-192 operating off USS Midway in June 1989. Note the markings are an unusually dark shade of grey (US Navy)
Left Seen here is the first of the fully navalised and Americanised McDonnell T-45A Goshawk at its 16 March 1988 Roll-out. Derived from the Hawker Hawk, the first of 223 Goshawks made its maiden flight on 16 April 1988, the type entering service in 1991. The all ‘glass-cockpit’ T-45C joined the Navy in 1997 and all existing Goshawks are now modernised to that standard. (McDonnell Douglas)
This trio of Grumman F-14B Tomcats of VF-102 flying off USS George Washington on 11 February 1998 employ liberal amounts of red to brighten themselves. (US Navy)
45 About to make a short take-off from assault ship USS Bataan on8 January 2002, this fully loaded McDonnell AV-8B+ Harrier II adheres fully to the overall 2-tone grey scheme. All AV-8 Harriers are used exclusively by the Marines. (Marine Corps)
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This Grumman F-14B Tomcat twoseater of VF-103, about to launch from USS Theodore Roosevelt on 21 January 2002, fully conforms to the overall 2-tone grey finish, contrasting markedly with VF-102’s Tomcats seen earlier. (US Navy)
Below Never widely adopted, this McDonnell F/A-18C Hornet of marine Air Group 11 is seen in Iraq during April 2003 wearing an irregular patterned 2-tone blue and reddish brown
Seen aloft on 24 April 2002, this Lockheed S-3B of VS-31 is operating off USS John F Kennedy. Note the use of black for the Modex Numbers on nose and tail, plus the squadron
scheme (US Navy)
emblem on the underwing refuelling pod. (US Navy)
Left The Marine Corps has always wielded the most influence over the Bell-Boeing V-22 Osprey’s development as befits its status as the type’s far largest user. First flown on 19 March 1989, the V-22’s protracted development led to mounting concerns over both its reliability and cost. Having survived such criticism, the Marines’s VMM-263 took their first production MV-22s in December 2005. Operationally deployed in Iraq by the Marines since late 2007 and later Afghanistan, the Marines MV-22 strength had grown to 11 front-line squadrons, plus one training and one trials squadron by early 2012. The Osprey seen here belongs to VMX-22, charged with developmental testing. A small number of V-22 are also used for Special Operations duties with the US Air Force. (US Navy)
Another recent example of red alpha-numerics is visible on this Boeing EA-18 Growler of VAQ-132 arriving in Japan on 14 July 2012, for a spell of ‘Temporary Duty Yonder’. (US Navy)
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Both Bell Helicopter products, this AH-1W gunship is escorting a UH-1. Both belong to the Marines and both fully comply with the overall 2-tone grey scheme. (US Navy)
A glimpse of things to come. One of the Patuxent River-based Navy Air Test Centre Lockheed Martin F-35C Lightning IIs over Chesapeake Bay in November 2011. While the Marines received their first production F-35Bs on 15 November 2012, the delivery of production F35Cs for the Navy awaits resolution of carriercompatability problems. (US Navy)
Air 49 duck article (q8):Layout 1 05/07/2013 14:13 Page 1
Maciek Zywczyk’s 1:48th super-detailed ‘Sitting Duck’ The Grumman J2F Duck flew for the first time on 2 April 1936. It was single-engined amphibious biplane with a large central float, blended into the fuselage, which also housed the retractable landing gear. It was capable to take off and land both on conventional runways and water. It was used by the US Navy, Marines, Army Air Forces and Coast Guard, mainly for general utility and light transport duties, but also for observation, reconnaissance, anti-submarine patrol, air-sea rescue, photographic and target tug missions. It was powered by Wright R-1820 Cyclone engine. Early -1/-4 series were very similar, later -5 & -6 models had different engine cowling and revised forward fuselage. Grumman and Columbia Aircraft Corporation built 645 airplanes in total, 12 of them were delivered to the Argentine Navy. After the war, J2F saw service with independent civilian operators, as well as the armed forces of Colombia and Mexico. Several surplus Navy Ducks were converted for use by the United States Air Force in the air-sea rescue role as the OA-12 in 1948.
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Classic Airframes Kit My main interest is fighters, but also amphibious aircraft and flying boats. Classic Airframes released both versions of the Duck - early and late. The kit was rather expensive when first released, but it later became available at a more attractive price. It’s a short run with some resin details, first impressions are that the quality of parts is good. The aircraft has a simple shape, so I thought I could just build the kit and avoid major detailing and scratchbuilding. The kit was purchased and as usual after my initial enthusiasm had passed, it was put aside. I searched for information on the Duck, but not very much was available. There is a distinct lack of information and images on the interior. This worried me because a lot of it would be visible
through big windows on both sides of the fuselage. AJ Press announced a release of a monograph about the Duck, so I hoped for some images or drawings of internal structures and equipment. This is great book with many photos, profiles and scale plans, but again doesn’t contain much material on the interior. Fortunately there are some walkarounds on www.seawings.co.uk, where masses of detail photos can be found. I’ve also found a lot of different pictures on the internet, but these show the same areas in different layout without description of which version they relate to. My knowledge was incomplete, but nevertheless I decided to start the project. I thought that there were not much chance to get more information later, so delaying wouldn’t help.
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All parts of a kit were carefully examined and it became obvious to me, that all interior has to be built from scratch. Only some resin details were partially usable. Moulded in fuselage details were deleted and the plastic thinned down. The fuselage halves didn’t have any locating pins, so I decided to fabricate some. A lot of measurement and fitting was needed to build floors and frames, which created the main subassembly. I also decided to made new walls from plastic card instead of detailing the fuselage halves. Plastic strips were glued to fuselage in order to ensure correct position of all main parts relative to each other.
The main components were designed this way, so that I was able to put all or some of them together to check the fit. After the main structure was ready, the position of the main components such as instrument panel, seats and radio with support was determined. Smaller details followed. The resin seat and radio were used, all other elements were built using plastic rod and strips, copper wire and anything that was available. The fit was checked several times to see if everything could be assembled after painting. This was a long process, and it became tight in fuselage after all equipment was installed, but I made it and it was a lot of fun to do!
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The interior colour, unfortunately, despite a long search and consultation on different modelling forums I couldn’t find clear information. After some hesitation I decided the most likely paints for the late version Duck bronze green for cockpit and ‘Grumman Grey’ for fuselage interior. I covered all elements with dark paint, and then created some shading while spraying my own mix of bronze green. After masking off green areas, light grey was sprayed in the same way. Details were painted using different paints and some dark wash and drybrushing followed. Unfortunately some areas of my scratchbuilt interior became invisible after fuselage halves were joined.
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Exterior construction This supposed to be a fast project, but kit is not an easy one, so just putting it together is a task. I invested lot of work on the interior, so the project had already been extended. I couldn’t get out of my mind images of engine accessory compartment, so I decided also to open this area. There is a resin engine in the box, but it is just one piece which would look good if cowlings were closed. There is a line of superb resin engines made by Vector, they provide great amount of detail and look superb after assembly, so I decided to buy one, suitable for the Duck. Panels were cut off and fuselage walls made from plastic card. A lot of measuring and dry fitting was necessary to create an engine mount. The engine, front wall, engine mount and fuselage were equipped with pins so I was
able to accurately check their alignment. All removable panels were thinned down in order to achieve a more realistic look. Engine cowlings were created using thin plastic card and strips. Then the whole area was detailed with parts from my spares box, wire, profiles and anything that was available. Even great resin engine missed some details, perhaps because it was not specific J2F version. In the next step I started to prepare the assembly of wings, vertical and horizontal stabilizers. I decided to create attachment points with metal rods and tubes in order to maintain the correct geometry of the plane and strengthen the joints. Brass pipes were glued at correct angle of dihedral to the plastic bulkhead and fuselage halves joined. The tubes protruding from the
fuselage were cut off and I glued metal rods, that fitted over the tube, into the wings and this way I was sure that they would be correctly positioned after assembly. Stabilizers were prepared in similar way. All surface details on the fuselage were filled with super glue and the surface sanded smooth. Careful measuring was necessary to mark new panel lines before scribing. Images of original plane show, that rivets were very visible. A riveting tool was used, then all marks pushed with needle and sanded. This way a rather subtle but visible effect was achieved, not overdone in my opinion. It's rather simple job, but very time-consuming, and some areas had to be filled and corrected.
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Trailing edges of wings and stabilizers were thinned down and surface details restored. Lower wings and stabilizers were glued to the fuselage and finally whole airframe was assembled. The outer wing struts were strengthened with steel wires. A single vertical strut was glued to the fuselage and this way upper wing could be temporarily fixed with tape in correct position. This enabled me to make fuselage struts from scratch. The canopy is injection moulded but not very clear and thin, the fit is also not the best.
I also had vacformed versions from Squadron, so I decided to combine both and make them in the open position to show the interior as much as possible. The windscreen and middle section is injection moulded, the rear sliding parts were cut off from vacformed versions and trimmed to fit under middle section, some guides were glued to the fuselage. I wanted to do the same with front sliding part, but it was too small and didn’t fit over middle section so I had to make new one using the kit part as master.
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Paint and Presentation The box art is really great and I wanted to
length and inserted in earlier drilled holes,
information to confirm if it operated from a
finish my model in this variant of U.S. Navy
then secured with superglue.
ship. I asked for help on various forums and on
camouflage. It’s rather simple, but looks
great. There are decals for white/red rudder
One of the major issues in modeling project
Hyperscale I got exactly, what I was looking
stripes, but after careful masking and
is a concept of displaying model. Duck was
for. Good drawing of wooden stands for
painting the result was much better. Decals
equipped with landing gear and easiest
Widgeon, that enabled repair or
are good but due to my mistakes I had to
way would be to put it on wheels, but
maintenance of the landing gear. I suppose
correct errors with paint. Few layers of
unfortunately in this configuration plane
the Duck was serviced in a similar way, so
Gunze clear gloss were sanded in between
looks a little strange. I wanted to show it’s
some dimensions of stands were matched
and finish of airframe was smooth.
great outline with gear up. Originally I
to J2F and made from scratch. Plastic card
Weathering with artists oils gave to the
thought of putting the plane into the
was used to create an imitation of concrete
paintwork more interesting look. The upper
imitation of water in small diorama. This
and glued to base after painting. The whole
wing was painted separately.
solution has many disadvantages - the
should represent a plane undergoing some
I was not sure, how the engine accessory
aircraft would only be visible only above the
maintenance, the undercarriage is
compartment was painted, aluminium
water line and I have absolutely no
retracted, and some removable panels are
seemed to be the best choice. Camouflage
experience with model water effects. Some
put aside. It took a lot of time to finish this
was masked off and walls of fuselage
Ducks were based on ships, kept on
project, sometimes I was tired of fighting
painted and weathered, along with engine,
special stands, but I couldn’t find good
with very thick plastic, sparse amount of
engine mount, interior of removable panels
image to determine what they looked like,
information and a fair amount of tedious
and cowlings. Everything was prepared
especially deck of ship in his area. In
steps, but it’s done and I'm happy
well, so assembly went smooth. Steel wire
addition, the machine I was building was
with the end result.
was used for rigging. Wire was cut to
stationed at Norfolk, and I couldn’t find
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