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Tamiya 1/48 Mustang III

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I'm in with the Tamiya 1/48 RAF Mustang III. Among the schemes Tamiya presents, my favorite is PK-V FX985 from 315 Squadron, City of Dęblin (315 Dywizjon Myśliwski Dębliński) in NMF.

In 315 Squadron by Mutusiak, Gretzyngier, and Wiśniewski, the only two victories recorded in FX985's short career (Jun '44 to Aug 44) were by W/O Tadeusz Jankowski on Jul 30, 1944 (sadly, Jankowski was KIA during a Market Garden sortie on Sept 20, 1944 in PK-V FB367). According to 1943 USAAF Serial Numbers (43-5109 to 43-52437), FX985 was sold off charge Nov 28, 1946.

Here's my problem. 315 Squadron shows only camouflaged schemes for '44. Tamiya, Aero Masters Decals, and others show an NMF PK-V FX385, some noting it's from 1945, but that just isn't consistent with any of the information I've found. I did find a citation to Aggressive in Defence - The Aircraft of RAF Coltishall 1940 - 2006 by R.H.Vernon 2005 as a source of the NMF scheme. In any event, two other camo schemes, PK-G FB387 and PK-H FB353, are consistent, so I'll go with one of those unless I can find some primary evidence of an NMF PK-V FX985.

BTW, I notice only one national insignia has "Poland" beneath and it's for the scoreboard on PK-G FB387. All the Mustang III pictures from 315 Squadron always show "Poland" beneath the chessboard.

Mustang-III_boxed.jpg

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I'm in with the Tamiya 1/48 RAF Mustang III. Among the schemes Tamiya presents, my favorite is PK-V FX985 from 315 Squadron, City of Dęblin (315 Dywizjon Myśliwski Dębliński) in NMF.

Here's my problem. 315 Squadron shows only camouflaged schemes for '44. Tamiya, Aero Masters Decals, and others show an NMF PK-V FX385, some noting it's from 1945, but that just isn't consistent with any of the information I've found. I did find a citation to Aggressive in Defence - The Aircraft of RAF Coltishall 1940 - 2006 by R.H.Vernon 2005 as a source. In any event, two other camo schemes, PK-G FB387 and PK-H FB353, are consistent, so I'll go with one of those unless I can find some primary evidence of an NMF PK-V FX985.

Hi David,

I've seen the profiles of PK-V/FX985 too, but I haven't seen a confirming photo yet...certainly not in NMF in 1944. There are photos of FX985 in 1946 when she was with 306 Squadron as UZ-K, and in NMF. FX985 was certainly delivered in camouflage from the factory, evidence seems to point to Temperate Land Scheme which would have been overpainted on acceptance in the UK with the Day Fighter scheme. Could it have been stripped and left NMF instead? Without photos no one can say, but I'm cautious. There are several photos of NMF Mustangs in 315, but as you say they are all post-war.

If you're interested, I just got the new AJ Press book on Polish Mustangs and won't be using the 1/48 scale decals that came with it. You can have them if you like, just send me a message. Some very interesting schemes there, including one Mustang III that has nose art and was used to shoot down an Me-262. Skalski and Zumbach's aircraft are also on the sheet. Here is the link to the publisher's English page, if you use the arrows at the bottom you can look through some sample pages and a view of the decal sheet itself.

AJ Press: Polish Mustang Units

Now that they've extended this Group Build I'll likely join with another Polish Mustang too...one I was supposed to build for another forum but won't quite make their Jan.31 deadline. Work has been getting in the way.

Cheers,

Richard

Edited by anotherP51nut

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Richard,

Thanks for the offer! I'll PM you with my addr. What scale do you do? I'll send you those decals as I only do aircraft in 1:48 or 1:144.

Looking at the site, I see they have the proper chessboard. I also like the relative size of the squadron crest v. the Tamiya decals. So I can use one of the sets on my the current build.

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So, I've got the front cockpit mostly done. Fixed the curved floor. Looked high and low for primary evidence on the proper harness, but I couldn't find anything. Did find some model pix with a Sutton harness, but no actual AC. As a result, I went with the Ultracast B/C seat with US harness.

Mustang-III_cockpit1.jpg

Also visible above and below is the Eduard PE. They provide both painted PE and film for the instruments; I went with the film to cut down the thickness. Finally figured out what everybody else must already know about the film--just painted the reverse silver and the dials show very nicely.

Mustang-III_cockpit2.jpg

I haven't finished the side-walls yet as I'm trying to figure out what to do about the oxygen hose. Eduard provides some flat PE for that, but that just wouldn't look right. Thinking maybe some 5 mil (0.13mm) nylon fishing line wrapped around a suitably bent wire might work.

After I sort that out, some wash and highlight and I'll be done with the office.

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Richard,

Received your package today! :yahoo:

Need to find out when the LHS will have this.

BTW, does the book mention the name of the film described in the photos on page 45?

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A progress report.

I've trimmed up the cockpit so that it fits properly within the fuselage--had to sand the Eduard instrument panel just a little. Also got the oil cooler and radiator PE and plastic painted and installed.

I've been looking at my references before I button up the fuselage and I found I had Michael O'Leary's Building the P-51 Mustang. This book is a treasure trove of contemporaneous photos on North American's production in Inglewood (about 20 miles from me) and in Dallas. Among the photos are pictures of the left and right fuselage halves of a P51-B (pg 112). Sadly, that shows that the Eduard PE instructions, which have you remove one of the fuselage formers just aft of the cockpit, is incorrect. That former is clearly there and is the demarcation between primed and unfinished metal. So, I need to reconstruct that former--should be fairly easy--and repaint per the photos. Will also add the document case that will be barely visible in the cockpit. Will likely also add the formers and oxygen cylinders that may be visible from the tail wheel well.

Also, I decided to try water colors for the wash, so I got a set of Cotman (Windsor & Newton) Water Colours at the local art shop to try this all out.

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Really need to get the Polish Mustangs book--may not be able to wait for the LHS!! In the extract that I have, I see some potential support for NMF Mustang IIIs: "There were also 35 Mustang IIIs in the SR serial range. These were built in the USAAF finish (partly in natural metal) and handed over to the British in April 1944 as a return of the batch 'borrowed' the previous December." Regardless of whether these aircraft were left NMF or repainted, they're cited as SR, not the FX series shown as NMF elsewhere.

Does anybody have the Aggressive in Defence - The Aircraft of RAF Coltishall 1940 - 2006 book that appears to be a source of the NMF FX985?

At this point, it's just an item of interest as I've decided I'm going to do this one as Horbaczewski's FB387. Hm, Tamiya claims this aircraft didn't have the antenna, yet a photo on pg 94 in 315 Squadron clearly shows it (as do the color images in Polish Mustangs). Having written that, it's clearly not the vertical mast that Tamiya includes...

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David,

Sorry been away for a bit. There are quite a few NMF Mustang IIIs..at least I know there were a few Polish ones. I'll post some info tonight when I get home.

If you want a copy of the Polish Mustangs book I have at least one I can spare, still in the wrapper. $30.00 including postage.

Cheers,

Richard

PS: The film mentioned in the book was from a newsreel that was done by the Polish Film Unit. There are a couple of clips available actually showing Horbaczewski taxiing by in his Mustang! There is another one of Jan Zumbach starting up and leading 306 Squadron Mustangs out across the grass. Go to the "Movies" page of the Polish Squadrons Remembered website and they are on the bottom row of film clips. Great website for info and photos on the Polish Air Force if you're not familiar with it.

Here is the link:

Polish Squadrons Remembered

Edited by anotherP51nut

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Richard,

Thanks for the video references! Funny thing is I knew that site, but never noticed the videos link on the front page! :doh:

The 307 squadron history helped me track down the Techmod Beaufighter VIF decals and Montex Mossie IIF masks now in my stash.

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I tried the Tamiya wheel well with the Eduard PE. Got the PE in, which faces the vertical surfaces. But I just didn't like the fact that it closes in the aft part of the wheel well, when it should be open to the spar.

Mustang-III_ng-wheel-well.jpg

Gave up and ordered the Aries wheel well. I'll redo this when it arrives...

Sigh...

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Dang, that took some ser-i-ous thinning to get the Aries wheel well in, but, it fits! Now need to paint it and--finally--button the wing up...

Mustang-III_unpainted-wheel-well.jpg

To thin the plastic, I used a seam scraper, a chisel, and the edge of a knife blade (as you would a scraper). Anybody have any better suggestions?

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And here's the wheel well glued into the wing bottom.

Mustang-III_painted-wheel-well.jpg

I used water colors for the wash--getting pretty happy with it.

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Working on getting the fuselage ready for paint, as well as redoing the landing gear with the Eduard bits.

I've also been looking at landing gear doors and radiator shutters.

Even though Building the P-51 Mustang always shows the doors either fully open or fully closed, 315 Squadron clearly shows the doors drooping; looks like the droop was asymmetric. I'm going to have to shorten up the actuators as they are molded fully open.

The photos in those two books and online mostly show the radiator shutter closed when the aircraft is on the ground. I assume the interior was the underside color? Was the inside of the shutter bare aluminum, primed, or painted silver? Given the wheel wells, other than spar and longeron, were painted silver, I'm inclined to silver paint here too.

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Finally, back to modeling.

Painting is underway. I'm using this post on Britmodeller.co.uk for the colors. I'm looking at FB-387's camo schemes on pp 46-48 of Polish Mustangs. It's very near to "Pattern A" (pg 10) of same. Unfortunately, the starboard profile, "Q2" on pg 47, is inconsistent with the plan view, "Q3" on pg 48. The plan view clearly shows Dark Green on the starboard stabilizer flowing onto the fuselage right at the point where the stab's leading edge panel intersects the fuselage--resulting in Dark Green aft and forward of the Sky band. The starboard profile only shows Dark Green forward of the Sky band.

Other than one tantalizing image showing a small fragment of the starboard lower nose, I only find port-side photos of FB-387 in Polish Mustangs, The Polish Airforce at War (Vol II), and 315 Squadron. Anybody know of any starboard-side photos?

Without any further info, I'll go with the plan view, as it's closest to Pattern A.

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Hmmm... Just noticed the in-flight image on pg 45 of Polish Mustangs agrees with the plan view. Still a port-side view, but that looks like the way to go...

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Wow good wheel wells sure make a huge difference, Nice work, and great paint link.

Thanks.

They were very much worth the effort to get them in--much better than the Tamiya representation.

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Got the masks done. I photocopied pages from Polish Mustangs, printed at 1:48 (profiles were 1:40, the plan was 1:72), cut into bits. Took a little to get the profiles assembled into bands, but I'm happy with the results:

Mustang-III_masks.jpg

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OK, she's out of the paint shop.

Mustang-III_camo1.jpg

Mustang-III_camo2.jpg

Mustang-III_camo3.jpg

DANG! Forgot the Sky band :bandhead2:

Edited by David N Lombard

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I have a decal, "DTD 517", from the Polish Mustangs set that I've no idea where it belongs.

I found a reference within these forums here, but that confuses me even more. :blink:

Any clues?

Edited by David N Lombard

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Well, she's painted and decaled, with just the flat coat and final assembly to go...

Mustang-III_decal-port-quarter.jpg

Mustang-III_decal-stbd-quarter.jpg

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In honor of Squadron Leader Eugeniusz Horbaczewski, here's his final personal Mustang, FB-387.

The decals from Polish Mustangs were a massive improvement over Tamiya's...

Mustang-III_final-1.jpg

Mustang-III_final-2.jpg

Mustang-III_final-3.jpg

Mustang-III_final-4.jpg

Mustang-III_final-5.jpg

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