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RNZAF F4U-1A Corsair


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After getting the Mirage to the weathering stage I took a full day to decide what to build next. I had already decided it wasn't going to be a jet.


The big Tamiya Corsair was first choice but Spitfire IX, Thunderbolt, F1 RB6, Peashooter, P-39 and Mosquito were considered but in the end I thought that it was about time to build something Kiwi.


I've been here for over 3 years and haven't build a Kiwi aircraft yet.


So out of the box and bags came my Corsair. I picked it up in Sydney two years ago and it is now underway.




Got some aftermarket for it. Barracuda cockpit decals were used on my Mk VIII Spitfire and P-51D and they really add another dimension to the model so I had to get some for this Kiwi "Bent-wing-Bird". I will order some HGW seat belts today.


The book is a valuable reference with each iteration of the Kiwi's ever changing paint schemes covered fully.


Here is Theirry Dekker's print of the scheme that I will base the model on.




Day 1 progress:  interior sidewalls painted and glossed with a bit of a Flory black wash for highlights. Still to do the cockpit and tail-wheel area components. Nothing special yet. The seat is silver but will be chromate green with significant wear back to the silver. 


Chromate Green is my own mix. Tamiya XF- 4, Yellow Green with some black added.




Visible parts of the engine will get the works. Apart from that and the wheels, the kit is so good the rest will be OOTB.


Day 2 commences in about 3 hours after taking the wife shopping. Should get a fair bit done tomorrow too but my son and his wife arrive on Wednesday and we are off to Queenstown for a week on Saturday so not much going to happen on the Corsair until we get back.


Oh, and I have to practice my golf too. Seeded second after qualifying for the club champs so need to do a good short game tune up over the next 2 weeks before it starts in earnest.

Edited by Whitey
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Not much to add after half a day on the bench.


Engine has ignition wires made from thin lead "wire" - really thin solder. MM Stainless Steel for the cylinders and Tamiya XF-66 for the rest. Valve covers MM Chrome Silver. Flory balck wash for the highlights. The gear box housing is not glued in. Still some detailing to do on it.


Seat looks like it has been sat in for a while - waiting on HGW seat belts to arrive.


Tail wheel bay a bit dirty but as it operated from Pacific islands I think it needs a bit of "coral" dust and scratching as well. Any ideas?




My son and his lovely wife arrived yesterday so I'm right into holiday mode. We are off to Queenstown on Saturday so the bench will be vacant until early October.


Happy modelling all.

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Wow, you are going to knock this out of the park as always!!


Have a wonderful time with your family and if you are passing by my neck of the woods and have time for a cuppa then PM me and we can have a quick catch up?


Cheers and happy travels


Thanks mate, would love to but flying from/to  Wellington this time. I'll take a rain check for my next visit to CHCH though. And you are always welcome at our place too. Cheers.

Edited by Whitey
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Guest Peterpools


Terrific start of the Kiwi Big Bent Wing Bird. Great choice for sure and looking forward to following your progress.

Enjoy your vacation with your family

Keep 'em coming


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  • 4 weeks later...

A lot of work done on the Corsair but still not much construction shows yet.


Dry fitted most of the airframe and it starts to look like Whistling Death. The fit is superb.




The wing centre section is complete and I could add the outer wings but I am thinking that I will wait until I have painted the underside colours - it might save some masking.


My plan is to fit the lower outer wing panels and ensure that they line up nicely before fitting the upper halves. Might save some sanding. Dry fit is really good.


I had to shave the outer wing spar a little bit to get it to slide nicely into the sheath on the outer wing lower parts. Not too much but some is required. Someone else on LSP put me on to that so thanks and passing it on.




Flaps will be in the down position for interest and detail. I have bent the big tab that the rudder fits into the fin with in order to get a little bit of offset.




And just to prove that it is still in bits.




Barracuda cockpit stencils add to the interest in the cockpit but cannot be used properly as an afterthought. A fair bit of pre-planning is required and some of the Tamiya details need to be removed before they are put in place, especially the big decal with all the stencilling for the right hand side panel, which I didn't use.










The kit supplied instrument panel decal is a pain in the backside and probably needs to be cut into a couple of pieces to sit over the attachment pins on the clear dial part. I destroyed my decal trying to get it to settle and move, fatal error, so used Airscale instrument decals applied backwards on the clear part and sealed on with X-22. The dials then got a drop of white behind each one and then an overcoat of black. It has come up ok but it was bloody fiddly.


I'm just working up the guts to sit down for a few hours to do the HGW seat belts and then I should be pretty close to putting the fuselage together.


Flaps and ailerons are constructed and can be attached after the rest of the model is complete and probably painted.


I haven't started work on the undercarriage legs yet, plus I still have some work to do in the u/c bays.  According to my main reference, the Kiwi Corsairs had ZC green wheel bays but underside colour wheel bay doors, inside and out. 


Off the internet and on to the bench. Might have more pics later today.

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Oops I left out the picture of the wing centre section.




There are about 30 parts in here. An amazing piece of engineering by Tamiya and it all fits superbly.


I plan to use the closed undercarriage bay doors to mask off the bays when I paint the undersides.

Edited by Whitey
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I haven't started work on the undercarriage legs yet, plus I still have some work to do in the u/c bays.  According to my main reference, the Kiwi Corsairs had ZC green wheel bays but underside colour wheel bay doors, inside and out. 


Off the internet and on to the bench. Might have more pics later today.


Hi Whitey


Sorry to say, RNZAF F4U-1A's had their wheel wells/doors painted the same as the undersides - White. see attached photo for proof



(post on WIX used for illustration purposes only)


Have read through you post and good to see an RNZAF Corsair.


Couple of comments; just bear in mind that if using that side profile as a base, the RNZAF Pacific Roundel colour is wrong- they were never that colour or faded to that colour in the operational areas,  immaterial to what anyone else says.

Certainly the Dark Blue faded and on occasion when they were not touched up by the RNZAF SU (Serving Unit) personel, the US Star would show through as in this photo from my collection



Check out these Ventura Decals for the correct colour




Are you planning on using the Montex mask as they come? If so bear also in mind that the "Supposed ships/kills" etc behind Donals Duck, didn't actually exist ( I have the same masks for a couple of RNZAF F4U-1A's I have underway including NZ5277 in the mask set ) see attached photo (apologise for poor photo)



As an FYI read Pete Mossong's comments on NZ5277 Kill markings on RNZAF Proboards ( I consider Pete to be the leader in RNZAF Corsair research- incidently Pete aslo worked with Ventura for the correct Roundel colours above in link)




Look forward to the rest of your build.





Edited by LDSmodeller
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