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Dark Blue Killer - Tamiya 1/32nd F4U-1D Corsair

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Finally completed this model, after starting it back the summer of 2018.  My first large scale Tamiya kit and I'm absolutely blown away by how good this was.  For those who have never built one of these kits, you have to treat yourself!  My subject is "My Nel III", a late war Corsair assigned to VMF-511, flying off the USS Block Island.    Decals courtesy of the truly awesome Fundekals set. 


























Here's a full list of all the corrections and updates I incorporated into my build.  Not saying it's the complete list of every modification the kit needs or that all of these are even necessary.  Some are just to update the kit to the late -1D variant I was building.  Just posting in case it helps anyone else.


  • cockpit flare gun deleted entirely
  • Delete upper wing ID light
  • Delete lower wing landing light
  • Add left side armor plate (installed to protect the pilots throttle arm) 
  • Add under seat armor plate (installed when the Corsair gradually started performing air to ground missions). 
  • Add left side windshield hand grip 
  • Add a thin metal bracket on top of seat for seatbelts
  • Fill in cockpit vent in fuselage (this mod was only seen on post-war Corsairs, with maybe a few limited exceptions). 
  • Fill in wing fuel tank fill ports (these tanks were deemed an explosion hazard and were gradually eliminated from later production runs). 
  • Drill out cockpit frame lightening holes
  • Add rudder pedal adjustment levers
  • Added multiple hydraulic lines on forward cockpit bulkhead
  • Added pins and retaining cables for pilot's back armor plate
  • Drilled out top tubes on pilot's seat mounting frame
  • Removed moulded on seat adjustment lever and replaced with scratchbuilt part. 
  • Drilled out lightening holes on footrest support frames.
  • Added multiple electrical lines underneath instrument panel and side consoles
  • Used awesome Barracudacals cockpit decals
  • Used thin acetate between kit instrument panel and decal, instead of thick kit clear part
  • Added hydraulic line to cockpit accumulator 
  • Added large heating duct to right side of cockpit
  • Added stubs of pencils sticking out of map case
  • Used pilots oxygen hose, to run from regulator 
  • Thinned levers on throttle assembly
  • Drilled out opening of pilot's relief tube and added drain hose
  • Added HGW harness instead of kit PE
  • Added bomb emergency release lever on left side of console
  • Added very basic 2D radio behind cockpit seat 
  • Added multiple electrical cables to radio and IFF control boxes on right sideway of cockpit
  • Added rocket control panel (kit part R-44 but not shown in instructions)
  • Added rocket firing handle on upper left side of cockpit
  • Added electrical lines for MG switches on glareshield
  • Sand down the fabric stitching on wings and control surfaces
  • Added Vector cowling set.  Fiddely but in my opinion, well worth it if you are leaving the cowl flaps open
  • Added cowl flap actuator rods and linkages
  • Added engine ignition lines, with clips to hold the lines together
  • Added oil drain line on bottom of crankcase
  • Added curved oil lines at top of cylinders (see my comments above)
  • Added larger diameter lines that connect cylinder tops to each other
  • Added electrical and hydraulic lines to main landing gear bays
  • Carved out openings at bottom of main landing gear retraction struts
  • Drill out lightening holes in main landing gear bays
  • Thinned kit exhaust openings
  • Opened lightening holes in sides of flap panels
  • Open up lightening holes in LG oleo scissor links
  • Added Barracuda resin wheels 
  • Added ignition "pigtail" leads to HVARs
  • Added Brassin resin 500 lb bomb in lieu of kit 1,000 lb bomb (thanks Jennings!!)
  • Added arming wires to front and rear bomb fuzes
  • Added scratchbuilt wingtip navigation lights
  • Added multiple hydraulic and electrical lines to wing-fold area
  • Added emergency release handles and linkages to interior of canopy frame.
  • Used those awesome Fundekals decals.


If anyone's interested, the full build is over on the WIP forum:

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Beautifully detailed. The engine is a killer. 👌

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She's a beauty 11bee. You're right about Tamiya's large scale aircraft (talking about the ones with propellers). I did a Mitsubishi A6M5 a number of years ago. They are a lot of work because there is so much detail, but they are not hard to build. The engine was a lot of fun and, as you found out, they turn out very impressive. I didn't add all the extra detail you did, but it still turned out nice. Your Corsair is a winner..

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Absolute stellar builds. Your attention to details is astounding. Thanks for showing 11bee

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Great job!  I love all the placard detailing in the cockpit 👍🏻👍🏻



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Falcon & Strike Eagle- thanks very much guys, greatly appreciated.   Those Barracuda cockpit decals are awesome.   They really add a great deal to a cockpit, especially in 32nd scale.   Just got a set for my next project, an F-51D.    Can’t wait to use em.  

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