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Old 06-06-2018, 05:27 PM   #1
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Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

Hi guys,

I´m starting a new thread because all the pictures in my old thread cannot be displayed anymore because of the change to https protocol here.

I have ported all my older threads to my personal website, so if anyone is interested to read the texts and see the images again, please check here: CONVENTI

New updates will follow here. Thanks guys.
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Old 06-06-2018, 05:31 PM   #2
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

Another relatively unknown design –but not unpopular as a modeling subject - is the PZL 23 Karas, a Polish light bomber and reconnaissance aircraft designed in the early 1930s.

Polish Air Doctrine at the time had a strong preference for multi-role and armed reconnaissance aircraft, and the Karas was able to fullfill this role quite succesfull. First flown in 1934, the Karas was a relatively modern aircraft for its time, with a full-metal design, a crew of three, 700kg of bomb payload and three machine guns, one in the nose, one in the rear upper station and one underbelly. The first production version however, the PZL 23A , was deemed unsatisfactory because of its unreliable and weak engine (a license-build British Bristol Pegasus engine) and was soon relegated to secondary service and Air Force flying schools. The B-Version was introduced later and 210 models were build (compared to 40 aircraft of the A-Version)

But as it was at the time, aircraft technology was moving fast and the Karas was obsolete at the outbreak of WWII, and was an easy prey for the invading Luftwaffe. Losses were heavy but one single Karas attacked a factory in Germany on September 2th 1939, making this the first bombing raid over German soil in WWII. A few Karas were evacuated to Romania where they were integrated into the Romanian Air Force; an export version, the PZL 43, was delivered to the Bulgarian Air Force. No aircraft has survived to this day.

This PZL 23A Nr. 8 was flown by the Polish Air Force College in Deblin, September 1939.

There a quite a few kits of this aircraft. A very old and crude one from the Eastern Bloc dating to the 1950s, and a mould from Heller released in the 1970s, and this brand new one by IBG Models of Poland, first offered in 2017. I was quite surprised by it, and it is not a short run kit ! Details are extremely well, the aircraft has a fully detailed interior, and everything fits almost perfectly. This is up to Tamiya quality and despite the small little details (and PE parts) it builds up well. Very recommended. IBG has primarly done kits of military trucks in 1/72, if they continue this quality with their aircraft kits they could make an impression for sure.










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Old 06-26-2018, 11:04 AM   #3
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

I'm sorry I missed this one Michael.

That is an interesting, if ungainly, looking bird.
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Old 07-22-2018, 05:23 AM   #4
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

For quite some time the Tupolev SB was known as the world´s fastest bomber aircraft – so fast it could outrun all the fighter aircraft of the time. One of the most important Soviet aircraft designs of the 1930s, the SB (Skorostnoi Bombardirovschik, High Speed Bomber)played an important role well into WWII.

First flown in 1934, the SB was a significant step for the Russian aviation industry, and -along with the Polikarpov I-16 fighter- was one of the most advanced aircraft of it´s time. Featuring an all-metal construction with retractable gears, stressed skin construction and smooth, flush rivet surfaces, the SB was aerodynamically efficent and could reach top speeds up to 280mph, very fast for the mid-1930s. However, Russian productions plants were slow to adapt the new manufacturing techniques needed for this modern design, and the so-called “Stalin purges” beginning in 1935 brought aircraft design almost to a standstill, and robbed the Soviet aircraft industry of important manpower and resources.

Nevertheless, the first operational missions of the SB in the Spanish civil war were quite successful. Flying for the pro-socialist Republican government forces and manned by Russian crews, the SB (nicknamed the “Katyusha” in Spain)was almost unstoppable at first, as it was too fast for the fighter airplanes of the time, which were still mostly biplanes. This changed when the Messerschmitt Bf 109 was introduced by the Legion Condor in 1937, and SB losses were quite high after that. Now design flaws became more evident, as a lack of armor and crew protection.

This was rectified in later versions, and the SB remained the main medium bomber aircraft in the Soviet Air Force well into the outbreak of WWII. In the meantime, the SB received a few updates, first a new three-blade propeller and later, with the M-103 version, completely re-designed engine nacelles with much better aerodynamics. However, by 1941 the entire design was obsolete and an easy prey for the invading Germans. Removed from front line service in 1943, some SB´s remained in service as transport and utility aircraft. There even was a civil freight/passenger version operated by Aeroflot. Although over 6600 units were produced, only two complete aircraft are known to have survived to this day, the one shown below is displayed in the Monino aviation museum near Moscow.

This SB 2M-100A kit , “Red 10”, has three-blade propellers and an unpainted metal finish, like many SB´s before the outbreak of WWII . It was operated in the Baltic fleet around 1941.

This kit is another ancient one from Frog Models, now distributed by Ark Models. Some old Frog moulds are still acceptable and in rather good shape, but this one is not. It had a lot of flash and blemishes and required quite some work. Details are sparse but the finished model looks like a SB – the only alternative in 1/72 scale is a newer kit by ICM Models, but this was too fiddly for me – ICM kits have great details but they are way to overcomplicated. Decals are from Printscale.
I created a little airfield scene here. Figures are from Russian company Zvedza, quite detailed and the ZIS-6 fuel truck is a kit from Belarus maker PST. The ZIS-6 is a three-axle variation of the ZIS-5, one of the most popular Soviet Truck designs from the 1930s to 1950s. The airfield refueller version is called BZ-35 and was the first fuel truck to have a front-mounted exhaust system to reduce fire hazard, a new invention at the time. This little kit was quite nice for a short-run kit.










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Old 07-23-2018, 11:00 AM   #5
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

Michael,

The very thin fuselage contrasting with the proportionally large wing and tail surfaces make this an unusual looking bird and another one I wasn't familiar with.

Thanks for your posts, they are certainly an educational for me and I appreciate them.
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Old 07-23-2018, 03:09 PM   #6
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

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Michael,

The very thin fuselage contrasting with the proportionally large wing and tail surfaces make this an unusual looking bird and another one I wasn't familiar with.

Thanks for your posts, they are certainly an educational for me and I appreciate them.
Thanks, you´re welcome. To be continued...
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Old 08-15-2018, 04:56 PM   #7
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

Nicknamed the „Jug“ (as the profile was similar to a milk jug of the time), the Republic P-47 Thunderbolt was the largest and heaviest single engine fighter airplane of WWII, and also one of the fastest. Originally designed a a high-altitude interceptor, it later had a successful career as a ground attack and fighter-bomber aircraft, especially in the European theater.

The P-47 Thunderbolt was a development of the P-43 Lancer, a pre-war fighter design of Republic Aircraft. Conceived as a high performance, high altitude interceptor, the P-47 was equipped with the powerful P&W R2800 Radial engine and a GE turbosupercharger that was installed behind the cockpit; the complex piping required space, resulting in the large fuselage of the P-47. Despite it´s weight, the aircraft had excellent high altitude performance and ample speed; performance however suffered at lower altitudes, climb rate was insufficient and it was easily outturned by the earlier Bf109 and Fw190 variants of the Luftwaffe – it was way too heavy for some maneuvers. However, American pilots found out that the “Jug” was rugged and had a important life insurance – nothing could outdive a Thunderbolt, and uncontrolled dives could sometimes accelerate the aircraft near the sound barrier.

The P-47D was the main production model, and like the P-51 Mustang, the “Razorback” early version with a raised fuselage was later replaced by the “bubble” canopy version for better vision. Limited range for bomber escort missions was a problem, and the Thunderbolt was later replaced by the Mustang in this role. As a fighter-bomber, the Thunderbolt fared much better. It could carry heavy payloads (bombs, rockets, Bazookas) etc.), was rugged and reliable and offered enough performance and arnament to defend itself against fighters – it was surely the ultimative ground attack aircraft in WWII, outperforming the purpose-build Soviet Il-2. So it was no surprise the Fairchild Republic A-10 ground attack jet of the 1970s was named “Thunderbolt II”.

With it´s large cowling, the P-47 was perfect for nose art; and some of the most impressive nose art could be found on P-47s operating in Europe. Usually members of the ground staff were responsible for the paintings and they took great pride in their work. Nose art was usually related to a specific pilot, often depicting girlfriends or wifes. This P-47D Razorback “Triss” of the 56th fighter group, 62nd Fighter Sqd was based in Boxted, England in February 1944. It was flown by 1st Lt. Anthony R. Carcione. He scored 2 ˝ victories and was killed when his aircraft crashed in Germany on March 8th, 1944.

This kit is from Tamiya, and as expected it falls together almost automatically, details and tooling are perfect as it can be. This is fun scale modeling. Decals are from Kits World and they are perfect, too.









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Old 08-15-2018, 06:13 PM   #8
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

Nice looking razorback Jug Michael!

Aren't Tamiya kits wonderful? I too have remarked that taking the parts from the box and tossing them into the air will result in the parts coming together perfectly. A good break from fussing over the short run kits and kits made many years ago.
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Old 08-16-2018, 02:44 PM   #9
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

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Nice looking razorback Jug Michael!

Aren't Tamiya kits wonderful? I too have remarked that taking the parts from the box and tossing them into the air will result in the parts coming together perfectly. A good break from fussing over the short run kits and kits made many years ago.
Thanks ! Yes I think Tamiya kits are the best, although almost all Japanese kits are of good quality, but Tamiya stands out. I wish they had a larger portfolio in 1/72.

Well my next project, if I tackle it, will be the exact opposite of Tamiya quality More of that later...
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Old 09-16-2018, 12:57 PM   #10
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

A challenging build but I´m happy to have finished it, as this is hard to get kit these days: I present the Focke-Achgelis Fa 223 „Drache“ (Dragon), the first helicopter to enter series production.

During WWII, Germany and the United States were the leading countries in development of this new technology, but helicopters only saw limited use during the war, with the breakthrough coming shortly after it. In Germany, Henrich Focke of Focke-Wulf, who was ousted by the Nazis from his own company due to political reasons, teamed up with aviator Gerd Achgelis in 1936 to form a new company specialized in Helicopter development. Focke-Achgelis responded to the request for a multi-purpose helicopter by the German Air Ministry, and the first prototype took the air on August 3, 1940.

As a multi-purpose helicopter, the Fa 223 was designed for cargo/sky crane operations, personel/medical transport, and search & rescue duties. Compared to other helicopters of that time period, the “Dragon” was a large aircraft: it featured twin booms with two large counter-rotating rotors, therefore eliminating torque and the need for a tail rotor; power was provided by a 1000hp BMW radial engine positioned behind the cargo/passenger cabin, with power transmitted by drive shafts to the rotors. The twin-rotor design was chosen by Focke-Achgelis as it was felt to have easier controls and required less complicated pilot training. Ultimatively, the main rotor/tail rotor design first introduced by Sikorsky with the R-4 in 1942 became the standard design for most helicopters to this day.

Nevertheless, the performance of the “Dragon”, operated by a 2-man crew (pilot and observer/gunner) was impressive: it could reach up to 23.000 ft and carry over 1000 kg of payload at 8000 ft, this included external cargo lifted by a winch. Cars, airplane fuselages and light artillery guns could be carried this way. This made the Fa 223 ideal for mountain warfare, and during tests it proved excellent in this role. It was also the first helicopter used for search & rescue missions, and if one of the required Fa 223s had not broke down prior to the mission, would have been the aircraft carrying Benito Mussolini home after his rescue from prison in the famous Grand Sasso raid in 1943.
However, in context, the helicopter played only a very minor role in WWII. Like the USA, the German Military command could not really make their mind about this new technology; it was generally regarded as not very important and there was no priority in development. And although the Fa 223 could claim to be the first helicopter that entered series production, it was not really that much ! As the productions facilities were constantly bombed by the Allies, production plants had to move regularly within Germany and France; only 20 units were produced, and a few of them were bombed before they ever became operational. After the war, three more units were produced in France by Sud-Est and two by the former Avia plant in Czechoslovakia. No “Dragon” has survived in museums.

In this little diorama scene, one of the prototypes is inspected by high-ranking army officials. They sit in a Mercedes-Benz G4/W31. The G4/W31 was a heavy three-axle offroad staff/command car manufactured for the German Military. As it was too expensive for general army use, only 57 units were produced. A luxury vehicle, the G4 was often used for parades and inspections and was one of Hitler´s favourite cars. He regulary used an armored version for public parades. Three original cars survive to this day, with one located in Hollywood, used as a prop for TV and movie productions.

The Fa 223 kit is from the now defunct short run kit maker Huma from Germany. As the mould & company is gone, it is harder to get these days. A challenging build, it is not as fizzly as some of the Czech Short run kits, because all parts are plastic and not PE – even the more delicate ones like the rigging. The quality is quite outstanding, I have never seen to finely produced tiny plastic parts. I put some weight in it but as expected it was not enough, so I glued this “tailsitter” to a diorama plate…the Mercedes-Benz G4/W31 and the figures are from Hasegawa. Nice little car.
















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Old 09-17-2018, 04:22 AM   #11
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

Quote:
Originally Posted by Conventi View Post
A challenging build but I´m happy to have finished it, as this is hard to get kit these days: I present the Focke-Achgelis Fa 223 „Drache“ (Dragon), the first helicopter to enter series production.

During WWII, Germany and the United States were the leading countries in development of this new technology, but helicopters only saw limited use during the war, with the breakthrough coming shortly after it. In Germany, Henrich Focke of Focke-Wulf, who was ousted by the Nazis from his own company due to political reasons, teamed up with aviator Gerd Achgelis in 1936 to form a new company specialized in Helicopter development. Focke-Achgelis responded to the request for a multi-purpose helicopter by the German Air Ministry, and the first prototype took the air on August 3, 1940.

As a multi-purpose helicopter, the Fa 223 was designed for cargo/sky crane operations, personel/medical transport, and search & rescue duties. Compared to other helicopters of that time period, the “Dragon” was a large aircraft: it featured twin booms with two large counter-rotating rotors, therefore eliminating torque and the need for a tail rotor; power was provided by a 1000hp BMW radial engine positioned behind the cargo/passenger cabin, with power transmitted by drive shafts to the rotors. The twin-rotor design was chosen by Focke-Achgelis as it was felt to have easier controls and required less complicated pilot training. Ultimatively, the main rotor/tail rotor design first introduced by Sikorsky with the R-4 in 1942 became the standard design for most helicopters to this day.

Nevertheless, the performance of the “Dragon”, operated by a 2-man crew (pilot and observer/gunner) was impressive: it could reach up to 23.000 ft and carry over 1000 kg of payload at 8000 ft, this included external cargo lifted by a winch. Cars, airplane fuselages and light artillery guns could be carried this way. This made the Fa 223 ideal for mountain warfare, and during tests it proved excellent in this role. It was also the first helicopter used for search & rescue missions, and if one of the required Fa 223s had not broke down prior to the mission, would have been the aircraft carrying Benito Mussolini home after his rescue from prison in the famous Grand Sasso raid in 1943.
However, in context, the helicopter played only a very minor role in WWII. Like the USA, the German Military command could not really make their mind about this new technology; it was generally regarded as not very important and there was no priority in development. And although the Fa 223 could claim to be the first helicopter that entered series production, it was not really that much ! As the productions facilities were constantly bombed by the Allies, production plants had to move regularly within Germany and France; only 20 units were produced, and a few of them were bombed before they ever became operational. After the war, three more units were produced in France by Sud-Est and two by the former Avia plant in Czechoslovakia. No “Dragon” has survived in museums.

In this little diorama scene, one of the prototypes is inspected by high-ranking army officials. They sit in a Mercedes-Benz G4/W31. The G4/W31 was a heavy three-axle offroad staff/command car manufactured for the German Military. As it was too expensive for general army use, only 57 units were produced. A luxury vehicle, the G4 was often used for parades and inspections and was one of Hitler´s favourite cars. He regulary used an armored version for public parades. Three original cars survive to this day, with one located in Hollywood, used as a prop for TV and movie productions.

The Fa 223 kit is from the now defunct short run kit maker Huma from Germany. As the mould & company is gone, it is harder to get these days. A challenging build, it is not as fizzly as some of the Czech Short run kits, because all parts are plastic and not PE – even the more delicate ones like the rigging. The quality is quite outstanding, I have never seen to finely produced tiny plastic parts. I put some weight in it but as expected it was not enough, so I glued this “tailsitter” to a diorama plate…the Mercedes-Benz G4/W31 and the figures are from Hasegawa. Nice little car.
















How many interesting news my friend! I did not know about this helicopter but i am not surprised because Germany has been able to make men go to the Moon...
I am waiting for the model of the beautiful Me-262.
Great job my friend.
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Old 09-17-2018, 04:35 PM   #12
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

Michael,

Nice work on the Fa223. Make those rotors tilt and you've got a modern MV-22 Osprey!
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Old 10-21-2018, 03:15 PM   #13
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

Together with the Mitsubishi Zero fighter and the Aichi D3A “Val” dive bomber, the Nakajima B5N “Kate” torpedo bomber was one of the three primary attack aircraft of the Imperial Japanese Navy in the early stages of the Pacific War, and was employed in large numbers in the Pearl Harbor raid.

First flown in 1937, the B5N was the contemporary Japanese counterpart to the Allied carrier-based torpedo planes of the time, namely the Douglas TBD Devastator of the US Navy and the Fairey Swordfish of the Royal Navy. But the “Kate” was the most capable of these designs as it was much faster and could carry more payload. However, by 1941 the design was becoming obsolete, but it remained in front line service for another 2-3 years. Designed as a carried-based torpedo bomber, it was also used occasionally as a land-based bomber, where a 800kg bomb replaced the Type 91 aerial torpedo. It was this torpedo type that was modified for use in shallow water, which made it possible to deploy it in Pearl Harbor. Although over 1100 “Kates” were produced (the Allies applied female code names to Japanese bombers and male to fighters) no single complete airframe is preserved. When seen flying in war movies, modified T-6 Texan trainers are used as stand-ins; the similarity is quite amazing.

This particular B5N2 “Kate” was part of the Aircraft carrier Akagi flying group and is seen here as it appeared in the spring of 1942. It was commanded by Captain Mitsuo Fuchida, one of the most prominent Japanese aviators in the early phase of the war. He was leading the first attack wave of the Pearl Harbor attack and it was him who send the famous code words “Tora ! Tora ! Tora!” (complete surprise achieved) back to the Japanese fleet, and made him a national hero back in Japan. The aircraft seen here is the same one he commanded in Pearl Harbor; however it looked badly weathered only a few months later – this is not a deliberate camouflage scheme. Japanese paint at the time was of low quality and usually peeled of in large pieces in the salt-waterly oceanic air. Fuchida was injured onboard the aircraft carrier Akagi during the Battle of Midway and worked as a non-flying staff officer until the end of the war. In the early 1950s, he moved to the USA, converted to Christianity and wrote books about his time in the Navy and traveled the USA and Europe to tell his story. He died in 1976.

This kit is from Hasegawa and it´s a very old tooling so it required quite a bit of cleaning, which is unusual for Hasegawa kits but no big hassle. Fit and details are quite good. Decals are from the kit. The paint chipping effect is achieved by applying Revell Color-Stop liquid masking tape. Looks quite OK and it is actually not overdone, the real aircraft was really that heavy weathered.









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Old 10-21-2018, 05:18 PM   #14
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

Huh. Neat. I've always thought that the Japanese aircraft were painted like that on purpose.
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Old 10-22-2018, 10:58 AM   #15
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Re: Some WWII Fighters in 1/72, Part 2

Michael,

Very nice paint peal effect!
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