Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Air Modeller Issue 49

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!

Flying Scale Models 03/2012

Modellers the world over love the hunky good looks of the B.Ae. Hawk. There is something appealing and workmanlike about its chunky but capable shape. The Hawk is current military equipment in air forces worldwide, but it takes a really outstanding aircraft to break into the 'preferences' (we'll put it no strongly than that!) of the U.S. military purchasing agencies. But the US Navy did like what was on offer when they decided to upgrade the original design for aircraft carrier trainer operations, with arrestor hook, to became the T-45 Goshawk tailored to the Navy's requirements by McDonnell Douglas. That name has now been absorbed into the giant Boeing organization, so it's a good question as whether the type is now the Boeing T-45 Goshawk. It's all a bit like the incident when green-behind-the ears-no-sense-of-heritage morons in the British Aerospace public relations 'organisation', referred (in a publicity hand out) to the De Havilland Mosquito, as the British Aerospace Mosquito!

Flying Scale Models 02/2012

After a bit, you begin to think that you know the classics, but every now and then, a model comes along that confounds and perplexes. Bert van Eijk's beautiful Bowers Fly Baby Biplane is just such a model. After all, the Bowers Fly Baby is an in-line-engined slab-sider monoplane; yes? Well, the answer is, in Holland, they may not be. Roland Haarlem is a Dutch full-size pilot who wanted to build a unique example of the mega-famous Fly Baby home-built marque. However, he decided to add a US Le Blond radial engine, and to fair out the original flat fuselage lines with curved stringers. As you can see, the result is adorable. It updates the lines of Pete Bowers' 1960 original in a completely new direction. Noted Dutch scale modeller Bert van Eijk saw the full-size design, and reached for his building board. In fact, Bert's model is based on Roland's original drawings, so it is very accurate indeed.

Flying Scale Models 01/2012

The engine cowl was added next. Three pre-cut pieces of soft balsa are provided to shape the front of the cowl and two pieces of light-ply are used for the sides. I joined the sides to the front by using some scrap balsa as bracing. The top pieces will be cut, shaped and glued on later. The cowl needs to be recessed into the top of the nose sections. The actual position in the real plane is offset to the left from the pilot's perspective (facing forward). The holes in the front of the cowl have been offset and these should line up over the centreline of the plane. I positioned the cowl and traced an outline on the plane to mark where I would need to cut. Make sure you leave adequate room for the forward machine-gun, which needs to be positioned on the right side of the cowl. I cut through and did some test fittings to ensure the placement was good and the fit was snug. The gun trough was cut next and sheeted with 1/16" balsa. I cut the slot right down to the brass tube on F2. The exhaust stack is a prominent feature of this plane and there are several styles you can go with. I drew up a design in a graphics program, using a scan of the plan as a reference for positioning the exhaust and for size.

Airfix Model World 04/2012

This interesting, limited edition offering contains 107 parts on two sprues, is moulded in soft Grey plastic, and glazing in a much more brittle styrene. A 12-page instruction sheet comes with a full-colour painting/ decal guide but no sprue plan. Lastly, Airfix includes a well-printed decal sheet with markings for Bf 109E-3, AE479 (formerly Wk Nr 1304, Feldwebel Karl Heir, l./JG 76), evaluated at the Aeroplane and Armament Experimental Establishment (A&AEE) Boscombe Down in 1940. Also provided is a Bf 109E-7, evaluated by the Imperial Japanese Army Air Force in 1941. The 'British' aircraft wears RAF day fighter Dark Earth and Dark Green over Trainer Yellow, while the other machine sports standard Luftwaffe colours but with Japanese markings. On November 22,1939, after experiencing engine problems, Feldwebel Karl Heir of l/JG 76 belly-landed his Bf109E-3 (marked White 1) near Wcerth, Elzas Bas-Rhin in France. It was captured, taken to Bricy near Orleans, and was extensively tested by the French who, on May 2,1940 handed it to the RAF, and it arrived at Boscombe Down the following day.

Airfix Model World 03/2012

I've heard that Airfix produced more than a million examples of its first Lightning model. That's a lot of plastic, and the company surely did as much as anyone to create the legend that was English Electric's finest. In 1960 I was one-year-old and my father, George Black, had just been posted to join the famous 74 Squadron, which then flew the English Electric Lightning F.I. Having then thrilled the crowds with his Lightning display at Farnborough, he was promoted and took command of 111(F) Squadron in 1964. When aged five, my memory can just about recall the rows of Black and Yellow  Lightnings, whose markings were actually based on those which — adorned an Airfix model painted by one of the pilots. As my father continued his career with the Lightning, I continued to spend my pocket money on model kits...hoping that one day I might get to fly the real thing. As the saying goes, dreams do turn to reality and my wish was granted with a 30 minute flight in 1979, as a guest of the Lightning Training Right (LTF).

Airfix Model World 02/2012

In the mid-1960s, Revell's 1/72 Focke-Wulf Fw 200 introduced many modellers to the graceful lines of an aircraft Winston Churchill branded "the Scourge of the Atlantic". Four decades later, the same firm has blessed Condor fans with an all-new 1/72 Fw 200 C-5/C-8, followed by the C-4 variant, the subject of this article. In the box are seven large sprues, six light grey and one clear. Markings for a pair of KG 40 aircraft are provided, including one bearing the famous 'Ringed Globe'. Due to the kit's complexity and numerous options, a thorough pre-build study of the instructions' 59 stages is well advised.  The project began with the well-detailed cockpit, radio area and mid-fuselage sections. A razor saw was used to separate more delicate parts as the sprue gates were rather thick. Prior to painting, mould seams and minor examples of flash were neatened, followed by the filling of ejector pin marks in the fuselage interior.

Airfix Model World 01/2012

In the nuclear role, the | Canberra served as the last  line of defence or, indeed, m final retaliation; ready to launch at any time in the face of a Warsaw Pact first strike against the West. Like the UK-based V-Bombers and other nuclear-armed NATO forces around Europe, Royal Air Force Germany Canberras stood guard armed with some of the most devastating, American-built weaponry known to man clutched beneath. In the same way that UK air defence incorporates Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) platforms today, so RAF forces in Germany were organised on a similar basis throughout the Cold War. The crucial difference is that in contemporary times, QRA assets are tasked purely on a defensive footing, whereas the nature of Cold War QRA was significantly different. The offensive strike force offered by nuclear-armed Canberras was that difference.