May 2010

Mirage IIIO, Seafire Mk III.

Links to related pages on this Website: IndexFriend & AlliesThe Dark Side - AFVs and ShipsSeafire Pages

PoppyThis Month's significant WW2 70th Anniversaries:

3 May - Allied forces are evacuated from Central Norway. After angry scenes in the Commons, Neville Chamberlain is forced to resign and Winston Churchill is appointed as as Prime Minister.

9 May - German forces occupy Luxembourg, then overnight, Army Group B commences the invasion of neutral Belgium and The Netherlands. Key French & British forces are moved north to support the Low Countries.

13 May - German forces achieve a break through at Sedan, using overwhelming air power to smash through the French defences. French units begin to retreat, some without having fired a single shot.

14 May - Netherlands surrenders in the face of strategic defeat and overwhelming Luftwaffe air superiority.

15 May - The French Prime Minister, M. Reynaud, telephones Winston Churchill, the new British Prime Minister and tells him: "We have been defeated. We are beaten; we have lost the battle." Churchill immediately flies to Paris to see the situation on the ground and offer support.

16 May - Sensing that the cause was lost, ACM Sir Hugh Dowding urges the PM not to send any further RAF fighter aircraft to France.

23 May - Commander of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF), Lord Gort, orders a retreat from Arras to the channel ports.

24th-26th May - German forces lay siege to Boulogne and Calais to close Allied escape routes.

24th May - Operation Alphabet, the evacuation of Allied Forces from Norway is approved.

26th May - Operation Dynamo, the evacuation of the BEF from Dunkirk, begins. Hitler orders the 1st Panzer division not to attack Dunkirk.

27th May - Belgium surrenders.

28th May - Norwegian, British, French & Polish troops recapture Narvik. They begin to destroy port facilities that could be used by the Germans. HMS GLORIOUS, which has been supporting the Norwegian Campaign with strikes by her Skua and Gladiator fighters, lands addiitonal RAF Hurricane and Gladiator fighters to cover the planned evacuation of Allied troops from Norway.

Lothians & Borders War Diary

Lothoans & Borders Yeomanry

1-7 May - 1st Lothians & Borders Yeomanry remain on the Maginot line, where both sides engage in half-hearted artillery shelling.

11 May - 15 May - German forces attack the Ligne de Contact; the Regiment suffers its first losses of personnel and tanks. Sporadic action continues for several days.

15 May - The Regiment is withdrawn to the Ligne de Receuil.

20-22 May - Regiment moves to Metz as reserve. After briefly being ordered to move to the North West of Paris, it begins a move to within 15 miles of Sedan as reinforcements against the German breakthrough.

28th May - The 51st Highland Division is moved up to Normandy to counter the German breakthrough.

31st May - Lothians & Borders take over positions near Abbeville from French troops, holding the fornt line between Erondelle and Tourbaires

Government Aircraft Factories (GAF) Mirage IIIO (A), 3 Sqn RAAF, Butterworth, Malaysia, 1972.

Frog 1/72

This will be the last delta Mirage for my collection; there are a couple of F.1s to go though!

Frog Mirage IIIE / A

Frog's Mirage III was first issued in 1975 and is fairly typical; nicely engineered, thick chunky plastic and fine raised panel lines.

Frog Mirage III A - 75 Sqn RAAF Butterworth, Malaysia 1972

During their last 2 years of UK production, Frog used a heavy dark blue/grey plastic which can hide some of the nice detail on these vintage kits. I purchased this one last year, new from a shop whose owner told me he had a pile of Frogs in the store room (I have since been back for many more, although he is now asking rather a lot for them).

Frog Mirage III A - 75 Sqn RAAF Butterworth, Malaysia 1972

The kit is a simple build and fits together very well, with the exception of the long wing root, which left quite a large gap on the starboard side. Detail parts such as the weapons pylons and undercarriage are nicely done, if slightly fragile. The kit decals, which are fully up to Frog's very high standards, give options for a French Mirage IIIE of EC 1/3 Navarre, or an Australian licence built GAF Mirage IIIO (A) of 75 Sqn.

Frog Mirage III A - 75 Sqn RAAF Butterworth, Malaysia 1972

And here they all are, representing 50 years of service of the Mirage family, with, no doubt, many more to go.

Mirage Deltas

 More Mirages on the Friends & Allies pages!

Supermarine Seafire MK. III - 24th Naval Fighter Wing (887/894 Sqns), British Pacific Fleet, HMS INDEFATIGABLE, 1945

Airfix 1/72, with Freightdog decals

Time for another Seafire, methinks.

This is another model using the superb Freightdog Models "Brits at Sea Part 1" decal/transfer sheet. The base kit is the new Airfix Spitfire Mk IX, which I must say is very impressive. To convert it into a Seafire III, I will add a hook and its panel, scribe the wing fold lines, remove one of the twin radiators & replace it with an oil cooler, then add the strengthening strips (fuselage & radio hatch) and lifting hard points to the fuselage. An extended range fuel slipper tank will come from the spares box (ex-Italeri I believe).

Seafire Mk III

This particular aircraft, flown by the 24th Wing's CO, Lt Cdr "Buster" Hallet RN DSC & Bar, was one of several stripped and polished up at the end of the war. There is apparently some doubt as to whether the anti-glare panel was blue or black; I am going for blue.

Seafire Mk III

In traditional Airfix terms, this kit is a revelation; finely engraved panel lines, excellent fit (no need for filler), with superb and enticing packaging! The price (I paid £5.99) is also superb, representing astonishing value compared to current pricing from the far east & even Europe. Decals provided in the kit are excellent.

Seafire Mk III

I have seen suggestions that the nose of the kit is a millimetre or so too long, and other suggestions that it is too short, but in all honesty, if your modelling extends to this level of detail and accuracy, then you are probably capable of resolving the difference yourself.

Seafire Mk III

For my money, at the price Airfix are asking, this is a stonking little kit, easy enough for the beginner and accurate enough for most of the rest of us.

Seafire Mk III

Link to more Seafires on my Seafires Pages

Links to related pages on this Website: IndexFriend & AlliesThe Dark Side - AFVs and ShipsSeafire Pages