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Dana Bell

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About Dana Bell

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    LSP Junkie

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  1. Hi Jennings, I photographed 780 in July 1993 - the gray band and big dipper were both gone by then. (The silver fox had been added behind the canopy though.) I had the better part of two weeks with the wing, and none of the aircraft wore the markings in your photo. Just a guess, but there was a lot of restructuring going on in the Air Force back then - perhaps the markings change had something to do with Alaskan Air Command dissolving and its units being absorbed into TAC (or was it already AAC?) Cheers, Dana
  2. Beautiful job, John! Wish I had your skills! Cheers, Dana
  3. I hope they stay in business! Once they're done with WWI, they've still got the 1920s and '30s to work through. Seems they've already done the research for the F8C-4 (though they will probably need to revise the markings sheets). Cheers, Dana
  4. Time reported that the Soviets claimed they moved in because of the presence of American troops and armor in the region. Some times any excuse will do... Cheers, Dana
  5. Sorry Misha, I forgot to mention that the wider head armor was introduced in the factory on F4U-1 #668 (BuNo17415 - delivered 10 June 1943), F3A-1 #12 (BuNo 04526), and FG-1 #257 (BuNo 13248). Cheers, Dana
  6. Hi Misha, The original "pinched" armor plate was designed to allow the pilot better vision looking aft. Unfortunately, it also allowed too many bullets into the cockpit around the pilot's head. The problem was addressed beginning in late January 1943, but it took time to deliver the new replacement armor. By early March only 29 replacements had been delivered to the West Coast, and by mid-April there were urgent demands that more plate be delivered soon. The last complaints I've found were dated in May. The earliest photo I've found showing the new plate was taken in June 1943, but there are combat unit photos without the revision into November. (There are aircraft without the revision in February 1944, but those photos are training units at home.) Since you're dealing with the earlier camouflage scheme, I suspect that you can leave off the "wings" that Tamiya provides unless you have a photo that proves otherwise. As a note for anyone wishing to use the revised armor, I recommend against using the Tamiya PE add-ons. The revised plate was actually a single solid upper plate of armor, not two clip-ons on either side. The bolts were in the original position only because there was no structure to attach to outboard of the original position. Cheers, all! Dana
  7. Hi John, Sorry I missed that one! I found my notes, and the change order came on 1 June 1944. Later billing invoices show that the fairing was introduced on F4U 57866 and subsequent, and on FG 14742 and subsequent. The fairing was experimentally installed on a very early Birdcage, and was made available as a kit, so (as always) a good photo can be our best friend! Good luck with the model - I'm itching to get back to gluing those Tamiya kits one day... Cheers, Dana (Added note - I've not seen a change order for Brewster. That could be because so many Brewster documents are missing, or it could be because Brewster was about to be shut down and the fairing was never ordered installed there.)
  8. Hi again Mike, Many thanks for the kind words! I didn’t want to choose a scheme for you, so I looked around to see what decals were available. There must be some new 1/32 scale sheets, but the only one I have is the old Ventura V3261. Here are the three 25BG aircraft featured: NS594 – U in a white ring, tail still blue, full invasion stripes. Delivered to 25BG June 1944, used for transition training. Began Bluestocking light weather recon missions 20 August 1944. In August the upper invasion stripes would have been overpainted and the tail would have first been painted red. Last Bluestocking on 31 January 1944. (By that time all invasion stripes would have been gone.) (When I made my serial-vs-mission record list forty years ago, I coded each mission type with a letter, but I’ve foolishly misplaced my master code key! Anyhow, in January 1945 I have NS594 flying six missions that I’ve coded “G” – I’m pretty certain those were Graypea chaff-dispensing missions, which would require some mods to you kit.) NS569 – N on a red tail, no invasion stripes. Delivered to 25BG June 1944. The kit decals show the aircraft without invasion stripes but they must represent the aircraft later in its career. First mission was an Aphrodite motion picture documentation mission on 7 August 1944, three Bluestockings in September, another Aphrodite on 15 October, and another on 1 January 45. In February thru 9 March 1945 there were several other missions I can’t explain without that missing code sheet, but there wouldn’t be any invasion stripes at that time, so the aircraft wouldn’t fit for your model. NS753 – Y in PRU blue circle on the tail, no invasion stripes. This aircraft wasn’t delivered until December 1944, and probably never wore invasion stripes. It started Bluestocking light weather recon in February thru May 1945. So none of these aircraft would have been equipped with cameras, though they all were probably delivered with standard PR.XVI camera ports. Two of them seem to fit your markings preferences – if you can only find the sheet. There had to be some sort of weather recon sensors on the Bluestocking aircraft, but I haven’t noticed anything out of the ordinary in any of the photos I’ve seen. Somewhere around here I thought I had a 1/32 vac canopy with the astrodome, but it’s not in my big-box-o-Mosquito goodies. It might have been from Paragon, but I really don’t remember. Anyhow, I look forward to seeing your results with the Mosquito. America’s use of the “Mozzy” was my first (and continuing) research project, and the story that pulled me out of engineering and into history writing! Cheers, Dana
  9. Hi Mike, Forty years ago I charted all of the 25th's Mosquito missions -- if you will post the serial of the aircraft that interests you, I can look up the type of mission it flew. The unit flew weather reconnaissance, night flash-bomb photography, chaff dropping missions, Loran calibration flights, and "master bomber" missions -- each mission used slightly different equipment. Cheers, Dana
  10. Jenny, JEnny, JENny, JENNy, JENNY!!!!! Too long ignored by nearly everybody, and there's so much you can do with one! Cheers, Dana
  11. Hi John, This is for F4U-1Ds only - Interior Green would be used in the cockpit only. All other primed surfaces would have one or two coats of yellow zinc chromate. (Vought had an exemption - they applied the first coat, then stamped it with a black marking if a second coat was to be applied. If there was a translucent yellow film over the stamp, inspectors knew that two coats had been applied.) Wheel wells and cowls used up leftover paint. The wells were generally Glossy Sea Blue, but some were Light Gray. The cowl could be Light Gray or Intermediate Blue camouflage paint. (Leftover N/S Sea Blue and Semi-gloss Sea Blue were used as the first coat for exterior camouflage, then oversprayed with Glossy Seea Blue. As you already know - no Indian Red/Salmon on F4U-1Ds. FG-1Ds were similar, but could have black cockpits above the side consoles... Cheers, Dana
  12. I've wanted to build that old Chris Craft ever since I was a kid - maybe now I'll get the chance (to put one in my stash). Cheers, Dana
  13. Hi Scott (and anyone else interested), I'm caught up with a writing project at the moment, but drop me a line at danabell[at]earthlink.net and net week I'll send you high-res shots of 883 and the factory-applied colors. Sorry I can't get to this sooner, but I'm having a hard time concentrating on three different projects right now. Cheers, Dana
  14. Hi Jim, I can't address the quality of Tamiya's decals for #883, but I'd caution you that the color scheme is incorrectly interpreted. When the kit was issued we all knew that Corsairs wore the 4-toned scheme with the N/S Sea Blue carried down the fuselage sides to blend into the wing. We subsequently learned that many early applications continued the Intermediate Blue camouflage over the top of the wing, from the nose back straight back to the tail. #883 was one such aircraft. The area above the wing was usually stained by spilled gasoline and other fluids, and abraded by maintenance work - do there were frequent touch ups, just to add confusion to your painting plans. Good luck with the model! Cheers, Dana
  15. Hi all, The NASM Corsair is a fairly early F4U-1D, with Dull Dark Green components in the cockpit. The bluish tone is from the lighting and film. (Hope the younger modelers have heard of film; we began using it soon after running out of clay tablets!) Note that the black upper sidewalls were introduced to -1Ds in 1945 - after Vought had switched to -4 production. Still, the black was used on many late-production FG-1Ds, if your modeling subject is well identified. And in the summer of 1945 one US field mentioned painting the sidewalls black as aircraft were refitted for training use. Cheers, Dana
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