Hawker/Armstrong Whitworth Sea Hawk FGA.6, 806 Sqn HMS ALBION, 1960 / RN Historic Flight, RNAS Yeovilton 2008 -
Airfix, with scratch modifications and decals Out the box.
One final Sea Hawk before I give it a rest (although there are another 3 lined up and ready to go in due course). This one shows the final style of low demarcation grey/white colour scheme, which really changes the apparent shape of the aircraft.
With each of the builds I have tried to add something additional in terms of corrections or additions to the basic kit, be it painting/markings, or other modifications. For this build I have added flaps (slightly lowered) and had a go at reprofiling the wing to fuselage join, which is far smoother and more blended in reality than the kit would suggest. I am quite pleased with the end result, although it was a real pain to get the thick layered Tippex to smooth down without cracks and bubbles.
I have, of course, also added the scratch built cockpit side panels/front panel/ejector seat/nav lights, and various antenna/appendages that you can see on my other Sea Hawks. Wings and fuselage panel lines were rescribed and the ailerons separated and deflected. The nose is also filled with lead shot, captured by a new bulkhead in front of the instrument panel.
Now.... All was going extremely well until I applied the Airfix decals. How often have you heard that?
I was going to say what a marvellous sheet this was, entirely in register, intricately and accurately printed. However....... the white is almost completely transparent; you would think that I might have anticipated this, but I didn't. After application, the fuselage roundels and Ace of Diamonds markings were both disasters, with the white/grey demarcation line showing straight through them. As a result I have had to add some aftermarket roundels and use the card motif from another Seahawk kit (which is entirely opaque), even though it is intended for the earlier scheme and not exactly the same style as the current RNHF marking. Disappointing, but situation recovered.
A sanity restoring build? - Hmmmmm. The PM Horten is less than half the price of the Revell kit of the same aircraft. There is a reason for this - something like 160 parts, versus 16 parts. However, simplicity aside, PM's kit is not all bad, and it does come in several versions, including this 2-seater night fighter. This aircraft is so radical that it just has to be built; and unlike most Luft 46 subjects, this one actually flew, although not the 2-seater version.
It has taken me all of about 30 minutes to build, including a very simple scratch built cockpit (side panels & back bulkhead - the kit comes with only 2 basic seats). Undercarriage is a bit fiddly and fragile, but otherwise..... Its main faults, apart from accuracy and lack of any detail (but its a Whif so you can't really complain) are the intakes and jet pipes, which have horrendously blunt lips (I had a similar problem with the PM Dagger). This is a pity as it is quite difficult to resolve.
Sunday night update: Both kits making progress: Seahawk post shaded and drying, Horten assembled with undersides and cockpit painted.
SeaHawk nearly finished , with only the final details to complete. The Horten is beginning to look the Biz !
And here she is completed. Against all odds, Sanity is Restored!
Its the only time I get to see all my models out the box! I took about 75 this time, which made the table a little less crowded than before. Mrs T had her craft stand as usual and did surprisingly well, and youngest daughter entered the kids modelling competition with her build of the freebie Airifx Spitifire she got for entering in the Feb competition.
To my surprise, since I've shown it many times before, the Sea Lightning caused quite a stir amongst the FAA community. I really enjoy the Yeovilton show, not only because you sit in amongst the subjects that I enjoy modelling (we were in fornt of the T8M Hunter this time,) but because most of the people who walk around are not modellers, but aviation enthusiasts, including a high proportion of current and past RN aviators who have some amazing stories to tell, once they realise that there is an appreciative ear listening! This time I was besieged by a number of ex 849Sqn Gannet aircrew, led by an ex-boss of mine.
Anyway, my 3 tables for the February show (Sat 14 Feb 09) are already booked and paid for - if you have seen this site and spot me there, do say hello !