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  1. Hi Friends, I know the subject is hackneyed, as this is another Spitfire, but I hope at least some of you can waste few minutes, and let me know what you think. It is OOB build of the Revell 1:32 kit. Spitfire Mk. IXc. Keep safe!! Greetings from Poland!
  2. 1 Man Army Paint Masks 1:32 Spitfire Mk.I/II RAF Cat. N. 32DET013 Price tag: €23,38 plus shipping Available at Ak-interactive store, here I has surfing in the net, and I came across this name: 1 Man Army and I went to their website – www.1manarmy.be. As you can see, all their catalog are in 1:32 and they are expending their references with more and more masks. I became quite curious because I really don’t like the looks of decals in 1:32 scale and 1ManArmy mask are mainly stencils, for what I could see I haven`t heard anything from this brand before, so I couldn`t resist in get one of their mask. I chose the Spitfire because it can be use for the Revell Mk II and for the future Kotare Models Mk. I. Let`s see what you can get with this set mask. You get two mask sheets, similar wit Tamiya tape, but its not really the same as the color is darker and the tape itself is thinner. I unglue part of it from the paper and its very malleable with good glue.. I detached several times and the glue was still in very good shape. These two sheets give the modeler a full set of British roundels (for wings undersurface, wing upper surface and fuselage both sides) and all the stencils, all the little ones. So goodbye silvering and tiny little decals.!! Of course that all the places to put the stencilas are very well indicated for all sides of the aircraft. Also you get the markings set for two Spitfire Mk.II: - “RN N” from Squadron n.º 72 1941; - Douglas Bader Tangmere 1941; To handle the best way possible, a user manual is given and its very comprehensive. It’s a really nice touch from 1ManArmy. CONCLUSION: I love this mask set. I really do because in 1:32, the decals tend to be very big (roundels) and all the stencils are present with small decals, that could ruin your work with the silvering or not settle well into the part. So with this mask set, beside a full set of stencils mask, two markings sets, one especially for Douglas Bader Spitfire. Its cheap? well no, but you can use it several times and I know that I will use it at least two times so putting that way, its not expensive. Very highly recommended Fran Our thanks to my bank account for this product. You can get this set and all 1ManArmy catalogue at Ak-Interactive store
  3. 1:32 Supermarine Spitfire Mk.XVIe (E-wing) Weapon bays (TAMIYA) Kopecky Scale Models Catalogue # 32015 Available from Kopecky Scale Models for $28.00 Kopecky Scale Models are a very new name to our hobby, and from the Czech Republic, and you may not even have heard of them unless you frequent Facebook etc. Jan Kopecky is the very genial guy who runs this new enterprise, and his work so far has been nothing short of superb. KSM caught my eye a few months ago when they were offering a gun bay set for Tamiya's Spitfire Mk.IXc with the 'C-Wing'. As I was planning to crack open my Mk.XVI with an 'E-Wing', I contacted Jan and asked if this was in his plans. Luckily for all us late Spit fans, he planned to release it within months. First of all, here's a couple of extra promo photos from KSM. Last week, the latest fruits of his labours dropped through my letterbox, and here it is! For me, the Tamiya XVIe has always been in need of this addition to perk it up a little, and I don't think anyone will be disappointed by what is supplied here. Kopecky's new Spitfire Mk.XVIe gun bay set is packaged into a series of ziplock wallets, and then stapled as shown. Inside the packaging is a folded A4 sheet of instructions. There will be some very minor modification to the host kit, and certainly nothing that a total beginner to aftermarket, couldn't handle very easily. That will include cutting away the outboard panel of the main gun bay. Of course, this set does supply two new panels for each side, with detail both inside and out. The bare gun bays themselves are cast in single pieces with a beautiful level of detail inside. Here you can see the inboard wing rib and the river detail, plus ribbing and plating on the floor under where the guns will sit. In the narrow forward area, more plate and rivet detail. The casting blocks on these are quite minimal, but you will need to carefully grind these away from the main part to avoid any damage. Here you see then guns themselves and the level of detail this set provides. These are cast in the same dark grey resin, on traditional casting blocks with parts numbers in place. Here you also see the feed chutes, Hispano gun feed belt units, and the fillet that sits between the guns at the front of the bay. Casting blocks will be very easy to remove here as the connecting webs are reasonably thin. Two different type of gun requires two different ammunition belts, and here they are. The larger rounds are the 20mm Hispano cannon ones, and the smaller are the 0.50' Browning (1.27cm). All are cast in stackable rows, complete with their clips. Here you see the gun bay doors with the blister shapes which look correct, and also internal detail, fasteners etc. Kopecky have even included the hinges as separate parts, and these are cast in a different resin, presumably with more strength to prevent any accidental breakage. The hinge detail is clearly seen in the above photo. Instructions are simple yet clear, with all parts easily identified. There is no mention of the kit modification needed, but for this, it's very easy to see what's needed to fit this detail set. Conclusion I have to say I'm massively impressed with this set and also with Kopecky Scale Models themselves. The detail in this set really does mirror the guys who've been doing this for years, including the quality of the castings. A very easy set to fit that will massively enhance one of Tamiya's finest 1:32 kits. There's everything to like about this set, and the price is very reasonable too. My sincere thanks to Kopecky Scale Models for the set you see reviewed here. To purchase directly, click the link at the top of the article.
  4. So here it is as of 2010 before it was rescued from "The Shelf of Dooooooommmm!" What it started as.... WIP here - http://forum.largescalemodeller.com/topic/810-rescued-from-the-shelf-of-dooooomm-tamiya-mkviii-spit/ And finished as Lt. Bill Skinner's Lonesome Polecat of the 308th Fighter Squadron, 31st Fighter Group, Castel Volturno, Italy, April 1944. Quickboost exhausts, Barracuda Resin Wheels and Mk.VIII decals were used for the National Markings and some stencils that were applied. Tamiya Decals used for the Nose art, kill markers and Squadron Codes. Weathered using AK Interactive and some of the Tamiya Weathering Master set.
  5. Rather than clutter up JohnB's build thread, here's my Spitfire XIV and XVI builds from a few years ago. The XIV is a Tamiya VIII kit with Raduis XIV conversion set. That was designed for the older PCM IX kit so needed a bit more work to make it fit the Tamiya kit. This was the first Tamiya Spitfire I built. Nothing like jumping into the deep end. Next up is my XVI also using the Tamiya kit. I was able to get advice on it from someone who worked on the real aircraft back in the day. The cowl panels are still removable. Nothing like a red Merlin with chrome heads. I mentioned earlier that you don't see too many bubbletop Spitfires. Hopefully Iconicair comes out with their XIV conversion soon so I can build a low back XIV. Lastly, here's my Revell Spitfire 24. Most folks know this as the old Matchbox kit and the challenges that it brings.
  6. This one's for Martin! This is my current Tamiya Spitfire build. The plan is to do it as JE-J jr with her infamous ModXXX beer barrels. Profimideller make a conversion set for this but they make you assemble the barrels from individual staves. Not being a cooper, i couldn't make that work for me so I found some wood barrels in a suitable size: Much easier. JE-J Jr is a IXe so I had to modify the wing armament to match. AML make a suitable conversion set so I used that. Cannon barrels are from Master. The engine all assembled and ready for her cradle. Now to start on the cockpit. Carl
  7. 1/48 Spitfire HF Mk.VIII ProfiPACK Eduard Catalogue # 8287 Available from Eduard for €37.45 The Supermarine Spitfire is a British single-seat fighter aircraft used by the Royal Air Force and other Allied countries before, during and after World War II. Many variants of the Spitfire were built, using several wing configurations, and it was produced in greater numbers than any other British aircraft. It was also the only British fighter produced continuously throughout the war. The Spitfire was designed as a short-range, high-performance interceptor aircraft by R. J. Mitchell, chief designer at Supermarine Aviation Works. Mitchell pushed the Spitfire's distinctive elliptical wing, designed by Beverley Shenstone, to have the thinnest possible cross-section, helping give the aircraft a higher top speed than several contemporary fighters, including the Hawker Hurricane. Mitchell continued to refine the design until his death in 1937, whereupon his colleague Joseph Smith took over as chief designer, overseeing the Spitfire's development through its multitude of variants. In September 1941, a hitherto unknown German radial engine fighter appeared in the west European sky. The new airplane was superior to British fighters, most distressingly to the Spitfire Mk.V. The German design was soon recognized as the Focke-Wulf Fw 190A. The first response to the new German weapon was the Spitfire Mk.VIII, but the design changes were so complex that initiating timely production was not possible. The only British fighter aircraft deemed suitable to oppose the Fw 190A were the Spitfire Mk. VII and VIII powered by the Merlin 61 engine. The Mk VIII was an adaptation of the Mk VII without the pressurised cabin and was intended to become the main production model of the Spitfire. When the "interim" Mk IX proved itself to be adequate for the RAF it was decided to use the shadow factory at Castle Bromwich to produce that version only. Apart from the lack of pressurisation, the Mk VIII differed little from the Mk VII. Some early production models had extended wingtips but the majority were fitted with the standard version. There were three sub-variants for low altitude (LF Mk VIII), medium altitude (F Mk VIII) and high altitude (HF Mk VIII) which were powered respectively by the Merlin 66, Merlin 63 and Merlin 70 engines. The kit This release is packaged into the standard size box that we see for many of Eduard’s 1/48 aircraft and has the familiar orange ProfiPACK band along the top edge. Eduard’s artworks seem to get better and better, with this having an image of the high-altitude Spit in overall grey, chasing a wounded Ju 188 above the clouds. The edges of the box show profiles for the FIVE schemes that are supplied with this release, and varied they are too. I know that whilst Supermarine test pilot Jeffrey Quill didn’t like the extended wing-tip version because it screwed with aileron performance, there is actually something quite alluring to the eye with this version, so I was pleased to be able to get my hands on this review copy. Inside this box we have four medium-grey sprues packed into two re-sealable clear sleeves, and a single clear sprue that resides within its own zip-lock wallet to protect it from scratches etc. Being a ProfiPACK release, we also have a fret of colour-printed PE, plus a small sheet of masks. To complete the contents, a 20-page A4 manual is included. No resin is included in this release. Sprue A Sprue F Sprue G Sprue H Sprue I Photo Etch Masks Decals Instructions Despite my kit being properly packed, it didn’t stop the clear hood becoming detached in the clear sleeve. No problem though as the delicate part was thankfully undamaged. I quite like the way that Eduard arrange these parts on the circular sprue. Clarity is superb, and the mouldings are realistically thin. As it comes, the model is designed to have the canopy posed in the open position, and separate parts are included to do that, but it you want to close up the office, then a part is supplied which has the hood and rear canopy moulded as one. To fit this, you will also have to undertake a very small amount of simple surgery to the fuselage halves. Nothing too difficult though. Unlike Eduard’s Bf 109 series where the cockpit wall detail is moulded in situ, the Spitfire kits have a separate cockpit tub that fits into the fuselage after paint and assembly, although I do tend to add the side walls into the fuselage first. This design allows the modeller to use the resin Brassin cockpit release as a drop-in item. If you don’t wish to go down that route, then the plastic kit parts are very, very presentable and offer the modeller an above standard level of detail right out of the box. As well as the detailed side walls that have superbly rendered airframe constructional details as well as separate detail elements such as undercarriage selector, throttle quadrant, trim wheels, oxygen tanks etc. Instead of looking directly into the bottom of the cockpit and seeing the inside wing plastic, this model of course has a fully detailed area which includes the actuators that the rudder pedals attach to, plus a myriad of other small details that mean this area is as busy as anywhere else in the pilot’s office. A seat with moulded rear cushion is supplies as a three-part assembly, and of course, colour-printed PE seatbelts are included with this release, as are numerous other cockpit parts, including armoured plates for the rear seat and head rest, spade grip trigger, etc. When it comes to the instrument panel, this ProfiPACK release has a layered, multi-part PE option that is colour-printed. These actually look very nice when installed, and an improvement on the already nice plastic parts. Should you want to use the plastic option, then a decal is supplied for this too, in case you didn’t want to paint the small details. Of course, some decal setting solution is recommended! If you’ve never seen an Eduard Spitfire kit, then you are missing out. Those who have will agree when I say that the external details are exquisite, with delicately rendered panel line, port and rivet details. Note the breakdown of the fuselage too, allowing Eduard to tool different versions. The lower engine cowl is separate and supplied as halves, as it the upper. It’s actually here that causes the modeller a little bit of grief as removing the upper cowl seam is troublesome with the surrounding moulded details. Due to the undercuts though, this was a necessary evil. Thankfully, Eduard also sell a resin alternative, cast as a single piece and exhibiting the same finesse of detail. Sticking with the engine, a beautiful set of fishtail exhausts are to be used with this kit, with their stubs only slightly hollow. Again, resin alternatives are available separately, should you want to go the extra mile. More PE parts are included for the lower cowl intake. The fuselage rudder and wing fairing leading edges are separate parts to allow for different versions to be built, and if you look at the interior of the fuselage, you’ll note the radio/battery compartment door is moulded so it can be easily cut away to accommodate extra detail sets. Of course, it’s the Spitfire’s wing which is the real star of the show. An almost full span lower part and upper panels make up the bulk of this wing. Not quite full span as you have to fit the wingtips as separate parts, again helping Eduard to tool different versions of this aircraft. As this is the HF Mk.VIII, this time we get to use the extended, slightly pointy wingtips which give the aircraft the feeling of a little awkward grace, with the beautiful, elliptical lines slightly disturbed. I quite like this look and was hooked on it from the 1/32 Hasegawa Spitfire Mk.VI that I built as a kid. Ailerons are also separate, but landing flaps are integral and moulded closed. The design of this model again allows for Eduard’s own aftermarket sets to be added with minimal surgery. As with the fuselage, the surface details are first rate, with fine panel lines and rivets. Cannon stubs are moulded separately, as as the underwing radiators. The latter are made up from six parts each, and the wing has the correct intake and exit ramps moulded in situ. To ensure the wing maintains the correct dihedral and has some rigidity, a wing spar is included. The remaining control and flying surfaces are nicely recreated, with the ailerons having an accurate metal skin and rivet finish, and the rudder and full-span elevator being of fabric and tape appearance. When it comes to the main gear wells, the liners have been split into three parts in very much the same way that Tamiya moulded their 1/32 kit. The reason for this is because the walls aren’t vertical, and the alignment of the liner is skewed. The solution works very well, and the remainder of the detail in this area is moulded onto the lower side of the upper wing panels. Eduard do sell the bronze gear struts, and they are excellent, but the kit parts certainly do come up to muster. Both plastic and PE oleo scissors are supplied, and the wheels are moulded as halves, with separate hubs. Unfortunately, these aren’t weighted either, so you may opt for the resin alternative that is separately available. That powerful Merlin engine also demanded a four-blade prop, and this is moulded as a single piece, with a two-part spinner. A single colour PE fret is included and is nicely printed. Part connection tabs are thin and will be easy to cut through. Other parts on here include the inside handle for the sliding hood, numerous cockpit detail parts including the door release mechanism, and of course, the colour seatbelts. A set of wheel hub plates are included, but not for use with this release. Masks are included for the canopy, wingtip lights, and the various underside wing and fuse lights. Kabuki is Eduard’s material of choice and the set is finely cut and you can guarantee it will be a precise fit. Two decal sheets are included. The first one contains the numerous stencils that are dotted around the airframe. Both sheets are printed in-house by Eduard and are superbly thin, with minimal carrier film and perfect registration. The second sheet contains the various national markings, serials and codes etc. No, that orange in the roundel etc. is correct. Those are the SAAF markings! There are FIVE schemes possible with this release, and they are: JF364, No. 32 Squadron, Foggia, Italy, early 1944 JF476, No. 92 Squadron, Triolo, Sicily, November 1943 JF519, No. 1 Squadron SAAF, Trigno, Italy, February 1944 JF630, flown by F/O L. Cronin, No. 81 Squadron, Palel, India, March 1944 308th Fighter Squadron, 31st Fighter Group, Castel Volturno, Italy, 1944 Instructions are supplied as a 20p-age, glossy A4 publication, with a parts map and the construction broken down into easy to follow line drawings with selective use of colour to highlight parts installation etc. Paint references are also supplied throughout, in both Gunze Aqueous and Mr Colour reference codes. The last pages are taken over with the five schemes, all printed in colour, and including a stencil map. Indications for scheme parts options are easy to see throughout the build. Conclusion This far, there have been almost 20 various releases of Eduard’s Spitfire family in the last 5yrs, and they show no signs of slowing down. It’s hardly surprising when you consider that this must be the best, most accurate and most catered-for 1/48 Spitfire kits on the market. Having built a couple in the past, I can say that these are amongst some of the most fun and satisfying model kits to have hit the market in recent years. This long-wing version really is a beauty and one that I’ve been personally wanting to see for a while. As I write, I have a box of resin and brass goodies coming, and you will see this in a forthcoming issue of Military Illustrated Modeller. Highly recommended My sincere thanks to Eduard for the review sample seen here. To purchase this directly, click THIS link.
  8. Hi all, After acquiring available drawings and asking a few here and there, I began a looong Spitfire simulator project using basic aircraft fabrication techniques (sheetmetal, riveting, welding, casting). I'll have to make a few concessions, given that it will be a simulator, but will try to keep it as faithful to the original as I can. Some of you might spot something that I did upside down (easy fix ). Here's some photos of my progress (2 years now)... Frame #8 buildup along with intercostal below rudders. Trim Gauge and Gear Indicator Youtube video showing trim gauge at work (on a Beaufighter 1c): Upside down, but an easy fix. Machined on a Sherline Mill & Lathe and etched. Will hope to get into casting next year, but until then, I couldn't wait to get started with the grip and weld some. If I can get it close enough, I might cast it in aluminum later. Regards, Zeb
  9. Haven't posted any progress on this to date but have been beavering away for the last few weeks. The kit, which I'm sure all are familiar with. Goes together like a dream with very little problem and very little seam work. This is the current state of play. Cockpit done and installed but didn't manage to get any pictures at that stage. Used the HGW seatbelts and painted and weathered everything using Ammo's RAF cockpit set. First time I've used the HGW belts and although fiddly they weren't too difficult. I followed the tip I've seen mentioned on a few forums to leave the buckles on the sprue until you've threaded the belts and it certainly helps. Primed with Mr Surfacer 1500, then Vallejo Metal Color pale burnt metal on the leading edges and wing roots. Applied frisket with a toothpick and sponge to try and replicate chipping and foot traffic. Never tried this before, so will be intrigued to see how it turns out after painting. Leading edges painted and masked off - not really visible here as the Tamiya tape and Gunze yellow appear almost identical! Next step is the paint job for which I have Ammo's late RAF colour set. Hope to get started on that this weekend.
  10. Hello all ! First WIP for me here on LSM, very happy to start this build with you. I choose the well know Tamiya Spitfire IXc . I will do this scheme. See you soon for the first step. Clostermann
  11. So I was clearing out some rubbish from the Garage and I found a Mk.VIII Spitfire that I started back in 2010 when the kit was first released by Tamiya... Looking at its current state, I cocked up the paint masks... thinking back this was probably the first time I tried to use a multi part mask. Its nearly finished and it won't require much work to get it back to workable state to complete it! Looking into the pit area... I have used the kit parts and added my own wiring, placards, Eduard Harness and Master barrels.. So it will be a shame for it to sit and rot away
  12. 1/32 Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXc Revell Kit No. 03927 The Supermarine Spitfire is a British single-seat fighter aircraft that was used by the Royal Air Force and many other Allied countries before, during and after World War II. The Spitfire was built in many variants, using several wing configurations, and was produced in greater numbers than any other British aircraft. It was also the only British fighter to be in continuous production throughout the war. The Spitfire was designed as a short-range, high-performance interceptor aircraft by R. J. Mitchell, chief designer at Supermarine Aviation Works. Mitchell pushed the Spitfire's distinctive elliptical wing to have the thinnest possible cross-section, helping give the aircraft a higher top speed than several contemporary fighters. Mitchell continued to refine the design until his death in 1937, whereupon his colleague Joseph Smith took over as chief designer, overseeing the development of the Spitfire through its multitude of variants. The Spitfire saw action in the European, Mediterranean, Pacific, and South-East Asian theatres. Much loved by its pilots, the Spitfire served in several roles, including interceptor, photo-reconnaissance, fighter-bomber and trainer, and it continued to serve in these roles until the 1950s. Although the original airframe was designed to be powered by a Rolls-Royce Merlin engine producing 1,030hp (768 kW), it was strong enough and adaptable enough to use increasingly powerful Merlins and, in later marks, Rolls-Royce Griffon engines producing up to 2,340hp (1,745 kW). As a consequence of this, the Spitfire's performance and capabilities improved over the course of its service life. The kit It’s been around three years now since Revell released their new-tool Spitfire Mk.IIa, and I’m quite surprised that they’ve left it this long to bring subsequent versions to market. That surprise is even more manifest when you take a close look at the new sprues in this release. All of them carry the year ‘2014’ on them, so this model has been in gestation for quite a while now. In fact, the Mk.IIa itself, released in 2014, also carries that date. Between these kits, there are only three common sprues, with the main components etc. obviously being new to this specific Mk.IXc kit. Styling of the new parts is the same as the earlier kit, such as riveting etc, so I imagine both kits were in development in tandem. Revell’s website gives the kits specifics as: Detailed Mk.IXc wings with guns Detailed cockpit and instrument panel Detailed radiator Rotating 4 blade propeller Alternative bomb load Detailed undercarriage Revell’s new-look box is used here, but to the same flimsy design we’ve all come to know and love, and the sprues within are packaged as multiples within clear bags. This isn’t something I like, as it risks the damage of parts. Looking around the fuselage exterior, Revell’s maniacal riveter has pretty much done the same job he/she did on the earlier Mk.IIa release, albeit this time, the Mk.IX did mainly have flushed rivets, dependent on where the machine was built. If domed rivets were used, this was generally on the aft fuselage, towards the rear of the cockpit area. You will of course need to check your references, as the old caveat goes. Either way, I do feel that what is given does need to be dialled back a little, perhaps with an airbrushing of Mr Surfacer and then the exterior being sanded back to plastic. Your mileage may vary and you may not be too bothered. I don’t have the Mk.IIa kit to hand any longer, but I think this aspect of the model may not be quite as extreme as the earlier release. If you want to add raised rivets, then this is very easy with a product such as Archer raised rivet decals. This is the same course of action I took for my Mk.IIa when I wrote the ADH/Doolittle title on building that kit. Of course, the fuselage halves are newly tooled as you would expect for a Mk.IX, and the rest of the exterior looks very nice indeed, with delicate panel lines, cowling fasteners and general outline. I have to say that it does look like a Mk.IX. Where I think things fall down a little is around the wingroot, where it doesn’t really have that deep, scalloped shape that I associate with this area, and against the light, it looks a little bumpy when looking from the rear, towards the front. I also note a few sink marks here and there, but they should be easy to fettle. Internal fuselage wall detail is simple, with most detail being separate parts. A couple of ejector pin marks reside in the rear cockpit area, and you will need to eradicate these. Again, the wings are newly-tooled as befits the changes to this later variant. Externally, detail really is very nice, with more fine panel lining, access ports etc. and the various bumps associated with the weapons bays and undercarriage seem to be on the mark. Rivet detail does seem to be finer than that of the fuselage, and I am more than happy with this. I can’t see any moulding defects here, although there is a little light flash that will need to be removed. I would have liked to have seen the small undercarriage position indicator panels as separates as these should be open when in the down position. Also, the moulded detail in the ceiling of the wheel wells is a little simplistic. The same can be said for the liners, as these are devoid of detail. Eduard released a nice fix for this in their earlier Mk.IIa sets, and I expect they’ll do the same here. Flap detail is moulded here (cue the many who say they weren’t dropped on the ground, and the £5 fine etc. etc.), but it is simplistic. The same is to be said of the flap parts themselves. Cockpit detail is very good, especially for a kit of this price point, and the instrument panel, whilst the same as for the Mk.IIa kit, does seem to generally hold very close to that of the Mk.IX. I’m sure there were differences somewhere, but I’m certainly not educated enough to notice what they are. Revell did miss out some interior detail on the original kit, and I’m sure there should be more internal sidewall detail than is supplied, such as various boxes and panels that sit in between formers, with those raised, elongated details etc. I can’t be any more descriptive than that. The missing details from the original kit were soon picked up by Eduard, who released some rather nice sets for that kit, and I have no reason to presume they won’t do the same for this, although it would’ve been nice to have had a properly appointed office to start with. Unlike the earlier kit, at least with this one you can guarantee that the metal ailerons are suited to the Mk.IX, and these are moulded onto one of the sprues that are common to both kits. Here is included a good amount of detail for the cockpit, as well as one of the underwing radiators, instrument panel and rear pilot main former, complete with lightening holes that don’t need to be drilled out. A little flash can be seen here and there on some small parts, and on the radiator, but this is easy to remove. Another common sprue contains the wingtips, stabilisers, elevators, cockpit sidewalls and a former and bulkhead. The stabs and elevators are designed to be applicable to all Spitfire releases, meaning that on this kit, you will need to cut away a little of the stabilisers to allow the correct elevator setup to be used. In this case, as they are supplied, with the outer edge running front to back, and not angled as per the Mk.IIa kit. Surface detail of flying/control surface parts is excellent, with subtle riveting on the upper sides of the stabs, but strangely enough, more pronounced on the underside. A lot of the new Mk.IX-specific parts are to be found on another new-tool sprue. Revell has included options for both early and late exhausts, a new spinner/back-plate ensemble, wide-chord rudder, second radiator to match the original part, two-piece lower engine cowl with integral intake, new undercarriage struts and gear doors, and parts for a centreline bomb and carrier. As with the earlier release, I do feel that the undercarriage struts are perhaps just a tad too simplistic, but certainly not a deal-breaker. Seams do exist on these parts, and they will need particular attention before assembly. A small clear sleeve contains the last six small sprues. Two of these pertain to the wheels/tyres. These are moulded with integral four-spoke hubs, and for my, the hub detail doesn’t look right when I compare them with the photos in my Monforton Spitfire book. The tyres also don’t carry any Dunlop writing, or size etc. They also aren’t weighted. I’m none too impressed with these, and I would seem some aftermarket parts. Two more sprues hold the parts for the underwing bombs and carriers, plus the new propeller blades for this release. Shape-wise, they do look ok, but the tips seem to be clipped. A couple of swipes with a sanding stick along the trailing edge should correct that though. The last grey sprues contain the radiator interior grilles and the rudder pedals. Now, when we complain of multiple sprues being packed into a single bag, it’s said for a reason. All three clear sprues suffer this, and in mine, some parts had come adrift, including the main hood. Some very light scuff marks will need to be removed from this before assembly. Out of the three clear sprues, two of these are new to this release. These include a revised windscreen and hood, clear wingtips for the clipped-wing version, and two gunsights, of which only one is slated for use in this release. The clear parts themselves are superbly clear and also quite thin. Unfortunately, the hood on my sample is a short-short and will need to be replaced. A single decal sheet, printed by Cartograf, is included here. Being Revell, their remit seems to be for the decals to have a matt finish. I admit to preferring glossy decals, but we can’t have it all ways. Printing is nice and solid, with authentic colour and minimal carrier film. Registration is also perfect. As well as the serials, codes and national markings, stencils are also included, as is a two-part instrument panel decal, but unless you have gallons of Solvaset or Mr Mark Setter, I would ignore this, or at the very least punch the instruments from the main decal, or use Airscale for the instrument panel. The TWO schemes included are: Mk.IXc, DN-T, MJ832, No.416 Sqn, Royal Canadian Air Force, Tangmere, England, May 1944 Mk.IXc, UF-Q, MJ250, No.601 Sqn, Royal Air Force, Fano, Italy, November 1944 Instructions An A4 colour manual shows assembly over 73 easy-to-understand stages, with clear annotation and references made to Revell paints. I much prefer this new format of instructions over the ones Revell used to supply. The last pages clearly show each scheme and the colours used, plus decal placement. Conclusion I could moan about this and that, and indeed I have listed the things I don’t particularly like, or those that could have been better. I’ve also tempered that were possible with notes to say how whatever issue could be overcome. As a reviewer, I feel that it the best approach. However, I must remember the price point of this release. It’s roughly a third that of Tamiya’s Mk.IX kit. Of course, costs increase if you start to add any subsequent detail sets. A minimum of new wheels, interior set and wheel bay set will add around another £35 to that cost. It’s a juggling act, but if you are happy to do some of the extra work yourself, or you simply want a nice looking Mk.IX out of box, then this kit will more that suffice whilst providing some nice detail and what appears to be a model with accurate lines. If you’d like to see how I tackled the Mk.IIa, with tips that are pertinent to this release, then check out the ‘How to Build’ book from Doolittle Media. Recommended My thanks to Revell and Doolittle Media for this review sample.
  13. Merry Christmas Everyone. I went for a ride to Shuttleworth (Old Warden airfield), my favourite place on the planet yesterday. I love this place, really old school place and so many vintage aircraft you turn round so fast your head almost comes off. Im lucky enough to know a few of the engineers here and some of the volunteers as I fly in here quite a lot in my little toy airplane (they're nice to me even though its not vintage). So whilst walking around I took a few photographs in the Engineering shed of the Lysander, Brisfit and a Chipmunk thats being renovated. AR501 the Spitfire is getting there too and looking great. Peter Vacher's old Hurricane (R4118 the only flying Hurricane that actually fought in the Battle of Britain). Pete just sold her and she is going to live at Shuttleworth for now and may be a permanent fixture with Shuttleworths own Sea Hurricane. The Gloster Gladiator was out doing a few engine runs and I took some of the lovely Ryan thats in one of the hangars too. I took tonnes of photo's and this isnt the whole set so can upload more if people ask for them. Shuttleworth really is a living museum and all the better for it. If you havent been do, its beats Duxford hands down in my book and is full of vintage aircraft, some of them the only flying examples in the world. Great place. Full details at: http://www.shuttleworth.org/ Shuttleworth Lysander. Shuttleworth Brisfit Shuttleworth Spitfire AR501. Hurricane R4118 Others RCAF Chipmunk, Shuttleworth Gloster Gladiator and Ryan and Moth.
  14. So after a bit of hassle with the wheel covers and alignment(still don't think it's 100%, but not much scope for adjustment)I'm calling this one finished. It's built OOB apart from Eduard belts, acetate gunsight and Techmod decals. Not a bad kit considering its age, but there were some issues with the canopy framing being poorly defined, particularly the rear section which is pretty much DIY. Anyway, here are some pics: Supermarine Spitfire Mk. IXc, 306 (Polish) Squadron, F/Lt Jozef Zulikowski, RAF Northolt 1942.
  15. I never learn. Building two kits at once takes at least three times as long as building them one at a time, but whatever; the Mosquito is more of an experiment, right? I wanted a grey/green Spitfire to go with my Mk.1, and since I've been a bit Beaufighter curious for a while, when I saw this I thought it would be rude not to get it: I believe the Spitfire dates from the '90's, and comprised relatively few parts, and pretty sparse interior detail. This won't be much of a problem with a closed canopy though: With the exception of some seatbelts, this will be OOB (really this time), although I'd like to finish it without invasion stripes, so I've got some alternative decals in the pipeline. An hour of cleaning up the parts allowed pretty much the whole model to be assembled with Tamiya tape, with very little evidence of any significant gaps or fit issues. One of the cannon fairings had got broken in the box, but a bit of work with a drill and brass pin will soon fix that: A decent 1:72 Spitfire is always a good model to build...
  16. Spitfire LF. Mk.XVI engine & armament photos. Last Sunday on the way back from Flying Legends at Duxford I visited the Spitfire Memorial at Manston. They have a Spitfire LF. Mk. XVI on display, complete with 250LBS & 500LBS bombs plus wing hardpoints. The remarkable thing about this Spitfire is that it's fitted with the "e"-wing but it's quite clear that it's in fact a modified "c"-wing, since it has the .303 gun apertures in the wing leading edge and the cartridge/link ejector chutes underneath the wings. Also remarkable are the deflectors underneath the wings to guide the cartridges/links clear of the bombs. I have no idea if this was a post-war mod or already in use during the war. The 500-pounder: The 250-pounder: The Hispano 20mm gun: The armored windscreen of a Spitfire Mk.V: This back-amour was retro-fitted to a Spitfire Mk.I. When the airframe was completely restored to original Mk.I fit, the armour was removed from the cockpit and ended up in the museum. The "e"-wing armament of this Mk.XVI. The rounded "later" cannon-tubes can be clearly seen, but also the taped .303 gun openings. Underneath the wing the shell ejector chutes for the .303's may also be observed: The afore mentioned deflectors: Wooden prop blade of the Rotol airscrew. The leading edge was strengthened with copper strip. I made these photos with my iPhone, so quality lacks a little. However, I hope these photos may be of some use to you. Cheers, Erik.
  17. 1:32 Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IX MH434 in Civil Service RAM Decals Catalogue # RAM32-002 Available from RAM Models for £9.99 If you’ve ever tired of seeing endless lines of Spitfire Mk.IX models that have been finished in standard camo schemes, and long for something very different for your project, then you could do far worse than model MH434. This particular Spit has been in many films etc. wearing various paint schemes, including a brown and green BoB scheme. However, if you want a total break from the norm, then this is a sheet which I’m sure will hold appeal. How about a Spit in a civilian scheme? Yes, MH434 in one of its more beautiful paint jobs. RAM Models/Decals are possibly a name you haven’t yet heard of. Being a regular online model shop for a period, they now aim to produce their own extensive range of decal sheets, and it looks like they aim to cover those schemes which are a little more leftfield than those which are released by their contemporaries. This specific release is a perfect example of how to grab a modeller’s attention in a single release! Packed into an A5 zip-lock bag, this set focuses on MH434 when it carried the civilian code G-ASJV. A folded A4 sheet shows this scheme, on the front, in both port and starboard profile. Open it up and the profiles are supplied again, but along with both upper and lower plans. What makes this scheme so beautiful are the colours used, and their breakdown. All wings, tail-plane and lower fuselage are shown as silver. From this, I presume this would be what is known as ‘High Speed Silver. The upper fuselage is painted white. Breaking up the border between the silver and white, are tapering blue flashes, flanked by a narrow black trim line on either side. Wingtips are also blue, with a narrow white and black band on the inboard face. A single decal sheet is supplied with this set, and the biggest hitters on here are the tapering blue strips for the fuselage. These run full length from the forward cowl, to the rudder post. A separate length extends over the rudder. Now, I am a little concerned here, as the compound curves of the cowl must be negotiated. It all depends on how well the decals mould to the shapes. I think it would have been useful to have had a little extra material for this area, in case things don’t close up. Looking at the plans and the wing tips, I am assuming that the clear strip running between the blue and the black, will need to show the white paintwork. If this is the case, and I’m sure it is, you will need to carefully mark the lower silver fuselage within 1mm of accuracy, along the full length of the fuse. Not impossible of course, but will perhaps mean that you should carefully replicate the curve along some card and use this as your masking and painting guide. Of course, there are the civilian codes to apply to both the stripe and to the wings, and also a rather neat flag onto the fin. This comes with a separate red section to make up the Union Flag. Be careful with the wingtip decal application, as you want to ensure that you get this to touch all the way around the tip diameter. The instructions do give paint references codes for numerous manufacturers, but I can’t vouch for the blue exactly matching the decal. After all, manufacturers have their own interpretations of specific colours too. What isn’t mentioned in the instructions are any modifications to the airframe, from its military format. Of course, the gun ports would be faired over….but was this with individual plates, or a new leading edge? Check your references. This applies to the shell ejection chutes too. Presumably, there were a number of cockpit differences too. Again, try to get a little extra information. The decal sheet is printed by Fantasy Printshop, and really is excellent. Colour definition is great, and everything is solid. Carrier film is minimal, and registration is perfect. Conclusion As I have said, you will need to reference some areas of this aircraft before you can proceed. This goes for both airframe and scheme, but, should you do that successfully, and apply that stripe, then you will have one amazingly beautiful Spitfire for your display. RAM are to be applauded for tacking this subject. If of course, the stripe frightens you a little, then dare I say it, you could use it as a basis to mask that part of the model, and of course use the remainder of the decals as standard. The options are there, and hopefully I provided a few ideas for you to pursue, should you purchase this very nice decal release. Highly recommended My sincere thanks to RAM Models for this review sample. To purchase directly, click THIS link. James H
  18. 1:32 Spitfire Mk.II instrument panel Yahu Cataloge # YMA3201 Available from StoryModels for £5.19 I remember having real fun when I built the test shot of the Revell 1:32 Spitfire Mk.IIa last year. The kit isn't perfect, by any means, but one quirk I had to deal with at the time was the rebuilding of the instrument panel which was reversed. Revell actually fixed this and made quite a nice job of it, but if painting and super-detailing instrument panels isn't one of your preferred tasks, then Yahu have come up with a solution. This, with some minor plastic surgery, will give you the very ultimate in cockpit focal points. Yahu's new instrument panel replacement is packed into a small zip-lock wallet, with a cardboard product holder stapled to it. My only gripe here is that the inserted card instructions are very thin, and don't provide much protection from the packet being bent. The front of the card is illustrated with a colour image of the parts contained, whilst the rear pf the wallet contains the loose instrument panel, and several small PE parts in another, smaller sleeve. I have to say that this product is nothing short of entirely amazing, and has to be seen to be believed. I don't know the process of how the parts are painted/inked, but the finish is remarkable, with totally solid, sharp colour, and details which are so fine that I have nothing like this before, except for perhaps in decal form from Airscale. The rear of the panel has a couple of small paint parts, showing the colour application doesn't appear to be digitally printed. The panel itself is finished in a colour which I would describe as about 95% black, for extra realism, and the finish is also matt, except for the recessed instrument faces which are glossy, to represent the glass faces. There is actually another glossy area here, and that is the central panel area. This is because a separate panel fits atop this, and of course, adhesive will stick better to a glossy finish. Smart thinking! Scuffs and scratches are entirely intentional! Again, instrument and panel detail is the very best I have seen, with various fasteners, placard etc. been so clearly replicated. Where instruments have a coloured bezel, these are sharply created, and of course, that bezel detail is beautifully raised and defined. There is also an extra part which is attached to the IP via a small tag, and that is to replace the kit's compass face. This is as superbly printed as the remainder of the parts in this release. The 'UP' and 'DOWN' text on the levers is readable, but only in macro view!! Note more intentional weathering on the panel. The small wallet inside this packet, apart from containing the central, raised basic instruments panel, complete with silver fasteners, also holds a tiny mini-fret, holding three further parts which form various toggle switches. Be careful with these, as no spares are included. For attaching the various parts, I would use Klear which of course won't give the fogging that many CA adhesives create. There are also no instructions which show that you need to actually remove the moulded plastic detail from the kit instrument panel, allowing this unit to sit flush to the bare plastic. I think that's so obvious that you really don't need to be told that you have to do this. Conclusion There are a number of upgrade sets for the new Revell Spitfire Mk.IIa, and this is probably one of the very best that you can buy. A good number of large scale guys probably like to make the most of the cockpit area, and this will go a long way to creating that level of attainment that you strive for. Assembly is so simple, and the result is a panel which is nigh on photo-realistic. For a single instrument pane, you might baulk at spending over £5, but please check this out, and you'll see that it's worth every penny. Very highly recommended (just stunning!) My sincere thanks to StoryModels for the review sample seen here. To purchase this directly, click THIS link. James H
  19. 1:32 and 1:48 Wet Transfer Stencils (Various) HGW Catalogue # see article for code and price Available from HGW This, of course, isn't the first time we've looked at the new series of Wet Transfer from HGW, but this series is now expanding quite rapidly. We have been sent the latest releases in 1:48 and 1:32, so we'll take a look at each set independently, and what they offer the modeller, over the standard, traditional decal. 'But surely, these are decals', I can hear you say. Technically, yes they are, but that's where the comparison ends. These are like a halfway house between the regular decal and the dry-rub down decals that have made appearances over the years. Where these differ is that you get all the benefits of a carrier-filmless decal (as per the rub down stencils), but with all the convenience of the traditional decal that you apply with water and setting solution. Of course, masks are always another option for regular decals, but certainly not for stencils. That solution is totally unworkable. Adding regular stencil decals to a model, means you will always have that excess carrier film present, that you so desperately try to hide with setting solutions, gloss varnish etc. If you use masks for the remainder of your model, then this compromise in realism is something you've had to live with. Well, no longer! When these decals are added, there is NO carrier film whatsoever. All you are left with is the stencil....... The sets we have in 1:32 are: 232001, Spitfire Mk.IX Stencils, 159 Kč 232006, Messerschmitt Bf 109E Stencils, 295 Kč 232008, P-51D,J,K Mustang Stencils, 295 Kč Those in 1:48 248001, Spitfire Mk.IX Stencils, 159 Kč 248008, P-51D,J,K Stencils, 159 Kč 248009, Messerschmitt Bf 109F,G,K, 159 Kč 232001, Spitfire Mk.IX Stencils This set is presented in a slim, re-sealable wallet, with a tough card stiffener to stop it getting bent, and damaging the contents. Like all sets, the basic instructions are shown on the cover. These are: Cut out the required decal Soak in hot water (tepid!!) and wait until the decal loses its base paper Apply as a regular decal Push the water from below the decal Leave to dry for 3 to 4 hours Remove the transfer foil and remove any glue residue with water You will note I inserted the word 'tepid' into there. I would never advise you use hot water for decals, and as I've previously used the rivet decals, which work on the same principle, I know you can use tepid water. Also not mentioned here is the use of a decal setting solution. With the rivets, I do use this, but I don't know what the result would be here. You're best testing a spare decal first. This particular set contains a complete set of stencil decals, including the narrow wing walkway lines. Being fastened to the carrier whilst you apply them does mean that decals such as these are far easier to apply than regular decals. HGW has produced a very comprehensive stencil set here that could completely remove the need to use those in the Tamiya or PCM kits etc, and the result is that when they are applied, they will literally look like they have been painted onto the model. What's more, these decals are so fine and sharp that you can read the test on just about every single one! A decal placement guide is obviously included, and this shows in detail where everything needs to be applied, using a regular numbering system. All very self-explanatory. 232006, Messerschmitt Bf 109E Stencils Now, here we see something very different. First of all, this sleeve is much larger than the Spitfire stencil set, and secondly is that this is far MORE than a stencil set. Yes, the stencils are included here in their entirety, including fuel tank decals and wing walk decals in both black and red, but here we see a radical departure from the 'stencil only' set. The same small, narrow sheet also contains kill tally markings and other items such as the Mickey Mouse that adorned Adolf Galland's JG26 machine. I'm presuming the other markings here are for the same. They certainly look like it to me. Now, there is a second, LARGER sheet. In fact, it's twice the size of the first, and this contains no stencils whatsoever. What it does contain are many common markings and unit emblems. All of these are in the same format as the stencils, meaning the decal should look like the next best thing to applying masks. This is quite an extraordinary set which will no doubt satisfy the requirements of many Luftwaffe builders. There are also kill tallies etc. As with the Spitfire set, drawings are given for the location of the stencils, but NOT for the aircraft markings. You'll have to check your references before you use those, as they are simply designed to replace what you may be using for your scheme anyway. You still won't get away from using regular kit decals for the national markings, but in this case, I would suggest you go for masks for those. 232008, P-51D,J,K Mustang Stencils One thing you can say about the P-51, it was FULL of stencil data! Again, this set comes in the larger size wallet because it also includes more than simple stencils, although only one sheet is used here. About half of the sheet is taken over to stencils (and there appear to be hundreds of them), and there are a few decals that are optional, depending on which variant of Mustang you are building. The remainder of the sheet is taken over again with personal markings and emblems/codes for actual schemes. In this case, I can identify these aircraft: P-51D, 473305, 4th FG, 334th FG, 'Blondie', flown by Lt. Marvin W. Arthur, February 1945 P-51D, 411622, G4-C 'Nooky Booky IV', 362nd FS, 357th FG, Major 'Kit' Carson', Suffolk, England P-51D, HO-M, "Petie 2nd" As with the Me 109E set, you will need to source your own information for the placement of these non-stencil decals. I will only briefly summarise the 1:48 sets, as most has been covered above. All sets are packaged into the narrow wallet, and the Mustang set appears to be identical to the 1:32 version, with everything simply scaled down. What is remarkable is that I can STILL read the stencils, at 1:48 scale!! All the same stencils are included, as well as the scheme markings. As per the 1:32 version, the 1:48 Spitfire set contains stencils only, while the Bf 109F,G,K set contains both Balkenkreuz and specific machine markings, to compliment the comprehensive stencils set. I'd go as far as to say that there are enough stencils for two models here also. Conclusion I very much like the concept of stencils with zero carrier film. I've not actually used any of these in anger yet, but intend to on future builds. What's really pushed these for me is the inclusion of scheme markings too. Perhaps we'll see scheme sets released by HGW in future? I'd like to think so. By themselves, the stencils make a great addition to your Spitfire/Bf 109E and Mustang builds, and I hope HGW extend this to include the Fw 190, and also generic stencils to cater to those kits which simply don't supply them in regular form. Highly recommended My sincere thanks to HGW for these review samples. To purchase directly, click the links in the review. James H
  20. 1:32nd Supermarine Spitfire Mk IIa Revell Catalogue# 03986 In August 1940 611 Squadron RAF became the first unit to be equipped with the latest MkIIa Spitfire. With the Battle of Britain at its height the MkII sealed its position as part of the Battle legend. Despite early production troubles the MkII had the distinction of being the first variant to be produced at the Castle Bromwich aircraft factory, it incorporated a number of improvements over the MkI chiefly the latest Rolls Royce Merlin XII which used a Coffman cartridge starter rather than the electric start allowing the MkII to be started independently; this also gave the MkII a small blister under the exhaust which is one of the few external distinguishing features between the MkI/II. Other additions such as armour plating would increase the all up weight of the MkII meaning it actually had a slightly lower performance than the MkI although thanks largely to a decision to equip it with a Rotol Propeller the MkII had a superior rate of climb. Eventually 921 Spitfire MkII's were manufactured, and today the Battle of Britain Memorial flight still operates MkII P7370 which is the only airworthy MkII and also a BOB survivor. Due to its role in the Battle of Britain (The conflict and the Motion picture) the MKI/II is one of the most famous variants of the ubiquitous Spitfire, despite this a new kit of the early variant hasn't been produced in 1/32 since the 1980's (also by Revell ) and this was actually based on the 1970's vintage Hasegawa kit. Not a bad kit at all and thanks to its Hasegawa origins also a very accurate one, the newer parts like the wings had recessed panel lines but the more elderly Hasegawa parts such as the fuselage all had raised detail. High time we had some fresh plastic then!! Thankfully Revell have come to our rescue with an all new tool kit of the early Spitfire. Keep your eyes on the sun, here its comes!! TAKKATAKKATAKKATAKKA!! Presented in Revells characteristic blue end opening box, the artwork depicts a Spitfire of 19sqn engaging marauding HE111's and really captures the elegant lines of the Spitfire; Stunning. Inside we find 11 sprues moulded in the pale grey plastic Revell have favoured for a while now and three in clear, the main parts have a smooth surface finish and don't seem to suffer from the pebble like finish previous kits such as the HE219 had, these are bagged together in small groups which is fine for the main parts but the clear sprues are all shoehorned in to one bag and the armoured windscreen in my example had some scuffs on it unfortunately. A medium sized decal sheet is provided along with Revells typical black and white instructions. I can't really understand why Revell chose the MkIIa sub variant for this new release as it saw rather limited service and externally is little different from the MkI which surely would have been a better choice from a marketing perspective? In fact as we'll see they have missed several of the MkII's distinguishing features. Read on... Sprue A&B Revell start quite naturally with the fuselage halves, these are moulded in the traditional way divided vertically down the centre and unlike their Bf109 kits there's no modular break down to attempt to extract the maximum number of variants from common parts; although this fuselage could still yet be used for the early "baby spits" like the MkV/VI who knows. Unlike their Bf109 series Revell have chosen to fully rivet their Spitfire and the fuselage is peppered with rivets, it seems Trumpeters mad riveter has relocated to Germany! I'll reserve final judgement until I have seen them under a few coats of paint but my initial feeling is that they are a tad clumsy and overdone but nothing a heavy coat of primer or something like Mr Surfacer couldn't correct, the early Spits featured raised domed rivets on the rear fuselage but no attempt to depict these has been made; the engine panels on the nose have the correct dzus fasteners which should look great once a few layers of paint have been laid down. One feature that had me scratching my head is the small square panel on the fuel tank, this has even made it onto the box art and as far as I can see this is only a feature of a very limited number of early Spitfires such as the Photo Reconnaissance variants like the ones below, the BBMF's MkI also has this window anyone know what it's for? Revell would have you fit a small clear part into it so I'm guessing maybe some sort of visual check on fluid levels? Answers on a postcard please. No stringer or raised detail for the cockpit is really present on the inside other than on the starboard cockpit wall where some ribbing and an oxygen hose are moulded in situ, although the lower portion of the cockpit side wall is a separate part anyway. My example had some faint sink marks along the top of the front fuselage and they correspond to the alignment pegs on the inside, sink marks are also present on the outside of the starboard fuselage and correspond to the raised cockpit wall detail but they are again very slight. Sprue C Here we have the lower section of the wing which is moulded as one whole piece as is logical with Spitfire kits, I feel it captures the dainty elegant shape of the spits wing perfectly and is commendably thin (unlike Hobbyboss's spit for example) again the wings surface is fully riveted and for a reason I can't quite put my finger on looks a lot more convincing than the fuselage rivets. The ejection slots for the empty round casings are moulded open but other than the most outboard slots seem a little on the large side to me, the vents by the outboard ejection slots are solid and would also benefit from being opened up with a pin vice to add more realism. Another odd feature I can't understand is the inclusion of a raised plate in front of the two middle gun slots, this I believe is a result of measuring the MkI Spitfire R6915 that has just been moved from the Imperial War museum London which exhibits these plates; this had a busy service life so the plates are possibly some sort of strengthening due to fatigue. You'll find that the wing tips and control surfaces are moulded separately including the landing flaps (insert anecdote here about Spitfires never having their flaps down on the ground, possibly mention a fine from the CO etc). Sprue D&E These sprues deal with the upper wings, just like the lower portion they are nice and thin and again fully riveted more convincingly than the fuselage, the strengthening plates seen on the Imperial war museums example have been depicted here again but removing them shouldn't pose any problems. The bulges for the wheel wells don't look quite correct, I believe they were a little more asymmetrical and more of a kidney shape but they are barely discernable in period photos. On the underneath we find the detail for the flaps and the roof of the wheel well, the wheel well detail is rather basic and a little scratch building will liven the whole area up. Sprue F Sprue F mainly handles the interior as well as some external detail, although the Spitfire cockpit didn't exactly have a floor one is provided to represent what would be the top of the wing to which all the rudder pedals etc are fixed on the kit, the rudder pedals and their control rods are a multi part assembly and should look suitably busy once complete adding plenty of interest. The seat is also made up of multiple parts and represents the composite seat (very early spits had metal seats of a similar design) the strange depression on the back rest would benefit from some milliput or similar to add a back cushion that was a typical feature of the spitfires seat. The support structure for the seat is nicely done including the mechanism used to raise and lower the seat and the structure would just benefit from having the lightening holes drilled out. The bulkhead behind the pilot is well moulded, the lightening holes are slightly flashed over so take a couple of seconds with a pin vice to take care of that; the instrument panel I'm glad to say has been corrected from the early test shots in which it was reversed, it also looks to of been improved as well and features some excellent detail, they have resisted moulding on dial faces so all it really needs is some Airscale decals to bring the gauges to life. We also get external details such as the radiator ailerons and flaps, the ailerons are depicted as metal with rivet detail to match the wings, however while later MkII's were converted to metal ailerons BOB era MkII's left the factory with fabric ones; the kit options are both circa 1941 so they're probably correct but bare that in mind should you want to depict a BOB machine. The armoured head rest looks the part and has a separate cushion and the slot for the harness cut out already, conspicuous by its absence was the armour plate that was fitted behind the seat, this was added after early combat experience showed it was necessary and was a production feature of the MkII. The access door has the crowbar moulded in place although as the photo below shows early Spits didn't have the crowbar initially so sticklers might want to sand this area smooth. Sprue G The rest of the control surfaces make up most of this sprue, the rudder, elevators, tail plane and wingtips have raised fabric detail which looks a little square to my eye and would benefit from a light sanding to soften the edges. The elevators are separate to the tail plane so can be posed drooped as usually seen on a parked spit but strangely the rivets on the underside of the tail plane seem to of been done by the fuselage team while the upper surface seems to of been done by the wing team!! The cockpit sidewall detail is here as is the rear most bulkhead and the front firewall, the control column has a well moulded spade grip with the correct round brass fire button rather than the later rectangular rocker switch, and this is otherwise devoid of any other detail so you might like to add the cables that run down the column. The circular walls for the wheel wells are a simple way of achieving a similar effect to that seen on Tamiya's MkIX with the correct angled wall but there is no other detail inside, I believe Eduard have this covered in their update set. A couple of puzzling features are the insulator moulded onto the top of the rudder mast which is more akin to a Luftwaffe bird, and also the aerial mast itself which is poorly done looking nothing like that seen on a Spitfire and more like a cocktail stick. Sprue H Two sprue H's are provided carrying the radiator matrix and a rudder pedal each, not a lot to say here but the rudder pedals certainly look decent although consider that MkI's and early MkII's would have had the single step pedals. Sprue Q The stand out part here is the lower engine cowling which is moulded to fit all the way up to the carburettor intake and also incorporates the pointed back end of it, again it seems like the wing team have done the rivet and fastener detail here, the carb intake itself is a good replica of the real thing. The exhausts are also good with hollowed ends, Revell have taken an interesting approach to the undercarriage by moulding the legs separate to the knuckle joint used to retract them accurately depicting them which is refreshing as is the way they've moulded the undercarriage doors and their inner detail separately which again is a new approach. Then there's the oil cooler, ahh the oil cooler! It must have been the BBMF's MkII that they measured for this kit as that has a few modern concessions to keep her flying, were they looking forward to producing a MkV? Because that's what this one's off! They've provided a circular oil cooler not the semi-circular oil cooler fitted to the MkI/II, it's a nice depiction of the MkV oil cooler though made up of 4 parts so that's sorted should they decide to produce a MkV. Sprue S Again two sprues are provided here with two halves of the wheels and two propeller blades per sprue, to my eye the prop blades start off well from their base but don't taper back to a fine enough tip giving a slight paddle blade appearance; no doubt some sanding could get them looking more convincing. Sprue T This small sprue appears to hold the MkII specific parts such as the Coffman starter bulge and various lumps and bumps along with the spinner and backplate. From looking at my reference photos most MkII's seem to have two bulges (large and small) above the exhausts the same both sides, the BBMF's MkII has a distinct scoop (like Revell supply) adapted from the larger bulge on the starboard side and next to this is a much smaller scoop as seen on wartime MkII's, Wartime aircraft would only of had the small scoop (no scoop at all in some cases) and the two bulges in the same place each side. One of the first issues apparent once preview photos of this kit began to circulate was with the spinner, based on the propeller blades supplied im assuming that it is supposed to represent the Dehavilland spinner; the main issue here is that it's too pointy and five minutes with a sanding stick should get it looking more like the Dehavilland spinner. The bigger issue is that the vast majority of MkII's were fitted with the blunt Rotol spinner with the wide wooden propeller blades, most MkII's I've found with the de Havilland spinner are from second line units such as the Air fighting development unit (AFDU) so the lack of a Rotol spinner in the kit is a bit of a stumbling block, especially since the aircraft on the decal options provided actually had the Rotol spinner (although if they'd gone for YT-W from 65 squadron instead of YT-L problem solved as that had the de Havilland!) Clear sprues (R, U, I) The clear parts are a highlight of this kit, being crisp, clear and numbering 13 parts. The armoured windscreen of the MkII is well represented and the external armour is given as a separate part that will require very careful placement when you come to glue it (Krystal Klear perhaps?). Revell also supply the rear view mirror, gun sight, navigation light and even the compass comes as a clear part which is a nice touch. Not forgetting the small square windows for the fuel tank. Just bag them separately please Revell!! Instructions Love them or hate them Revell have done their instructions this way for years, Black and white with lots of steps. I actually enjoy them and find them reminiscent of Matchbox's old instructions, they're always clear and concise and easy to follow I just wish they'd give the colour call outs by name such as Dark earth rather than in their own colour ranges codes. Colour schemes Bit of a Model T Ford situation here, any colour scheme as long as it's Dark Earth/Dark Green over Sky! To be fair the MkII really only wore Dark Earth or Ocean grey during its short career. The options provided are: YT-L 65 Squadron July 1941 QV-J 19 Squadron June 1941 Decals Not always Revell's strongest point, this sheet however appears to be different to their usual standard and has more of a glossy finish than previously seen. In the bottom right corner it says "Printed in Italy" and although it doesn't say Cartograf they are very reminiscent of their style so I wouldn't be surprised if they had some input. All the decals are in perfect register with the red centre of the roundels being separate, the font of the stencils is spot on for the period. A decent instrument panel decal is provided and they even give you a few cockpit placards for the undercarriage lever and the font on these is still readable despite being microscopic! I'm looking forward to trying these out. Conclusion I'm very aware that this review has almost amounted to a list of the errors I've found, being such a popular subject reference material on the Spitfire is in abundance and if an enthusiast such as myself can find the answers easily then why can't one of the biggest Kit manufacturers who've been in the business for 60 years? I'm certainly no rivet counter and a few mm here and there don't concern me at all, but visible errors do. That said if it looks like a Spitfire I'm happy, having seen and fondled a built up test shot of this kit it certainly captures the look of the Spitfire and builds up superbly with no fit problems. Most people won't even notice most of the issues I've raised and to be fair they won't detract from the finished kit at all, others will want to make corrections and no doubt this kit will be well served by the aftermarket with Eduard in particular being quick off the mark; the huge potential locked up in this kit will keep modellers happy for years and at the price Revell knock them out for it'll sell by the bucket load. Now where did I leave that tin of PRU Pink?! Recommended. Ben Summerfield My thanks to Revell for this review sample. Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For details visit www.revell.de/en, @RevellGermany or facebook.com/revell
  21. Whilst NOT strictly a walk-around, GUY5SY has asked that post the following YouTube clip here as there is an amazing amount of footage of the Lancaster and of the Mosquito whilst in the ground and both inside and out. Then, of course, you get to see and hear 6 aircraft powered by Merlin engines flying in formation with each other :- It's glorious!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ceuU1UQuwVU Enjoy it. Grant
  22. This was my first published article that I ever did.. It appeared in the September 2011 issue of Military Illustrated Modeller magazine... Cockpit had wiring and hydraulic lines added (this was before Barracuda's Sidewall upgrade set was on the market), Eduard's Late Mk.IX harness and some of Interior PE set was used. I also added Barracuda's fantastic Cockpit upgrade set, Padded Seat and access door and 4 slot wheels. This scheme is included in the Tamiya boxing, but its incorrect. I was lucky and was able to contact the pilot's son, and he confirmed with me with the correct serial number that I had found during my research. All the markings were painted on with custom paint masks made from Miracle Masks Hope you like!
  23. Been playing a little with my new studio lights and selected the 1/32 Spitfire built by Luuk from Dutch Decal as the victim! JPG's straight from the camera, no tweaking. I'm not completely satisfied with the results yet. But enough about photographing; on to the model:
  24. Hi guys, Does anyone know if and where I can get a loose LL-sprue from Tamiya's Spitfire Mk.XVIe? I need the cannon bulges to make a highback Spit Mk.XVIe... Cheers! erik.
  25. 1/32 Beer Kegs for Tamiya Mk.IX Spitfire Profimodeller Catalogue # 32065 Available directly from ProfiModeller for 319,00 CZK During the Second World War, brewery Henegar and Constable donated free beer to the Troops. After the D-Day landings in Normandy, supplying the war effort with critical supplies was already an issue and as you could imagine, carting liquid refreshments was pushed down the vital supply list. Some crafty soldiers were able to source the non-essential supplies from the locals or by other means. It was the RAF Spitfire pilots that ended up with a better solution. This was eventually recognised as an official modification by the RAF... It was called Modification XXX! With the new Mk.IX Spitfire variant, one of its improvements/developments were under wing pylons for external fuel tanks and bombs. But with a bit of clever ingenuity it was discovered that a pylon could be modified to carry nearly anything... including Beer Kegs! ProfiModeller have designed a neat conversion set for the modification XXX to be used on the 1/32 Tamiya Mk.IX Spitfire. Which is available directly from their website, Product # 32065 (http://www.profimodeller.com/detail/32065-beer-kegs-spitfire/) This set contains 34 resin parts for the beer kegs, 1 Photo Etch Fret, 1 plastic rod and a sheet of vinyl paint masks for two beer carrying Spitfire schemes. The resin parts are cast in a cream coloured resin, which are beautifully cast and are free of air bubbles or any imperfections. The resin staves have a wood grain cast into them, so if you are worried about wood grain finishes you will just need to paint and just add an oil wash with a darker brown to bring out the wood grain. The PE fret carries the metal hoops for each barrel and mounting plates for the pylons. The vinyl mask set includes serial numbers and squadron codes for two Spitfires, but you will have to use the kits decals or source your vinyl paint masks for the roundel and fin flash. The two Spitfires that are included – Spitfire Mk.IXc, MK823, JE-J JR, Wing Commander J.E. "Johnnie" Johnson, 144th Wing, June 1944. Spitfire Mk.IXc, MH978, M-FF, 132nd Wing RAF, June1944. So what do we think? Throughout different conflicts there have been some "interesting" items attached to aircraft, and this surely is one of them! An interesting and easy conversion set for the Tamiya Mk.IX Spitfire kit which will surely make your Spitfire pop out of out of a row of them! Highly recommended Our sincere thanks to ProfiMoldeller for the review sample used here. To purchase this directly, click THIS link.
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