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A Separate Little War - Strike Wing Mosquito FB.VI

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27 minutes ago, Anthony in NZ said:

Looking great John, usually a few red dope patches are found on these birds in the combat zone too.  Might add a little colour and interest?


Keep up the great work!

I was thinking about that.  They didn’t seem to have as much dope as the Beaufighters did but I’ll probably add a few small patches.  

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Very nice progress John.  You're nearing the finish line!


On 10/25/2020 at 5:44 PM, Anthony in NZ said:

Looking great John, usually a few red dope patches are found on these birds in the combat zone too.  Might add a little colour and interest?


Keep up the great work!


So THAT is what this stuff is!  I've been wondered for years what was on the elevator of this Mk I Spitfire.  I bet it looks similar on a Mosquito.







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On 10/29/2020 at 10:08 PM, Uncarina said:

If you’re into using Vallejo for hand painting the red dope looks like a close match for their Cavalry Brown color.


Cheers,  Tom

Thanks Tom.  I've been a slave to ModelMaster paints, so I did a mix of red and leather brown.  Seems to match the picture of the Mossie above, maybe not as pink-ish as the patches in Chuck's picture though.   


It seems that patches of red dope might have been more common on all RAF aircraft than originally thought.    I've added a few small patches here and there on my build, gotta be careful, it's easy to get carried away with stuff like this.  I would have liked to have gone heavier but it seem that Strike Wing Mossies weren't as festooned with red dope as much as their counterparts - the Beaufighter's.   On the subject of Coastal Command Beaus, they had some absolutely freak-ish combinations of paintwork and weathering.   Much more so than the Mosquitoes. 


Here's a small example courtesy of Aviaeology showing some of these funky looking schemes.


 I'd love to build a late-war Coastal Command TF.X, just need someone to step up and release a decent kit.  Tamiya-San, you listening? 

Edited by John1
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Quick update.   I've continued with the weathering on the undersides.   Not much to really share, still a work in progress.   Also waiting for my Florey Washes to arrive.   Very interested in trying this stuff out.  


In the mean time, I added those screens in front of the carburetor intakes. In the official drawings, they are refered to as "Snow Screens".  I really don't know what purpose they served except as basic FOD screens.   If they were for snow / ice protection, I figured the mesh in front would get plugged up, ice over and would actually restrict airflow to the engines.  This area is the one part of the kit that I feel Tamiya dropped the ball on.   They replicated these with a single clear part with overly thick mesh molded in.   No idea why they couldn't add these to the existing PE frets.   To fix the problem, I went with the outstanding (and very reasonably priced) RB Products PE set.   As I mentioned many pages ago, the set also provides very nice radiator grills that I feel are superior to the Tamiya PE.   After assembly, I painted them in a dark chocolate brown, to replicate the rubber coating on the real thing.   Don't mind the oily smudge on the cowling below, it will be gone once I touch up the model after weathering is complete. 



I also added the landing gear doors and the brake lines.  Still need to add the tiny bungee cords to the doors.   Also note - I drilled out the small air intake right below the aft exhaust pipe. 


Note the Norwegian flag on the nose.   These were applied to many (but not all) 333 Squadron aircraft.   None of the pictures of KK-Q show this area in detail so i went for it.   The decal sheet provides these markings in bright red and also Dark Dull Red, all the pictures of this flag are B&W and it's not possible to tell what shade is used.  Nice touch by Avieaology.   You can also see the fine PE work that RB does.   Very impressed. 


Lastly, I decided to take the masks off the canopy.   This is always a high stress moment.  Kinda like a kid opening up his big present on X-mas day.  You just never know what you are going to get.   I've had more than a few over the years come out with horrible paint stains.   In this case, things worked out "ok".  I've got some touch up to do, but nothing a sharp wooden toothpick shouldn't be able to handle and a bit of touch up on the paint.  After all that, I'll hit it with some plastic polish and I think it will look pretty decent.   Note that in these pics, the canopy is just press-fitted in place and has many smudges.  One other note - I decided to leave the framework in the original grey / green camouflage.   Given that the coastal Special Duties Scheme was often applied in a rush (hence the original camo showing through), I can't believe those hard working maintenance folks would take the time to mask off all those frames.






That's it for now, thanks for looking.

Edited by John1
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Looking fantastic John, the PE screens are a definite improvement as they are in quite an obvious location. Apparently they were for snow/ice protection - they are fitted proud of the intake so even if they got plugged up air could still flow around them and into the intake, which might have resulted in some decrease in power but was better than losing the engine.

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Thanks Turbo!   So, the weathering process continues.   From the previous page, this picture shows a good example of how grubby the underside got on these birds.   Between muddy fields, engine / cannon soot and the oil leaks that Merlins were known for, the bottom of these aircraft got dirty! Note also the patches of what looks to be red dope on the port horizontal stab. 



After airbrushing the basic exhaust staining as described in my previous post, I did a bit of oil wash and then tried out Flory Washes for the first time.   Very nice stuff, I'm a big fan.   Essentially nothing more than fine pigment, water and a surfactant.   You slop it on heavy, let it dry and wipe it off with a damp paper towel until you have the effect you want. You can go lightly and end up with some moderate staining or wipe off most and you’ll get a nice panel line wash.  I used Dark Dirt and Grime tones.  Just a warning, for matt paint, they tend to adhere pretty strongly and may not come completely off no matter how much water you apply after they set up.   Need to use caution here.      Anyway, this is still a work in progress.  I add some weathering effects, then tone them down until I feel that I got it just right. 



Mud spatters coming off the tail wheel were Testor's dark tan with a dab of brown added. 



I figured the drop tanks would have just been stacked in the dirt so I added some mud stains to their undersides.    Also added a few patches of red dope to represent battle damage repairs (see previous posts for more info on this). 





That's it for now, thanks for looking! 

Edited by John1
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Hello John,


Read through the thread/WIP  twice to take it all in.

:thumbsup:  :)


What a fantastic  build thread. Your  detailing  is EXEMPLARY. 


And the build is SO  very IMMACULATE where details are concerned.   OUTSTANDING!


:wow:  :clap2:  


Just SUPERB  workmanship. 

Love the  weathering and I have enjoyed following  your build.


Keep  up the Excellent  work. 


:bow:   :bow:

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Thanks very much folks.   I'm still weathering away.   I didn't use much of the Flory washes on the upper surfaces.   As mentioned, the semi-matte finish means that they could end up leaving darker stains that I'd like.   I added some foot traffic scuffs to the wing root areas using pastels since that's how the groundcrews would have accessed the fuel ports, upper engines and the nose MG bay.  Also added some metal showing around the nose gun camera and MG ports, which was common on all FB.VI's. 


I don't want to overweather the model, which is pretty easy to do.   I think I'm going to touch up the wing roots, use some pastels on the national insignia to tone them down a bit and then call it a day on the weathering.   Speaking of national insignia, note the ones on the wings are higher visibility, late-war versions with white added.  These were introduced by the RAF after a spate of friendly fire shootdowns (primarily involving USAAF pilots).


I also secured the canopy in place.  Still need to apply a final polish to remove the finger smudges and touch up a bit of the framework, especially around the open escape hatch.




Note the red primer battle damage touch-ups above.



Note the off-white line running vertically behind the pilot's seat.   Fashioned from stretched sprue, it's a bungee cord that was used to raise / lower the pilot's seat.   Typical British approach -  lightweight, cheap and it works.   You can see it clearly in the picture below.   This pic also shows the heavy weathering around the nose section, presumably from ground crew climbing up on the nose to rearm the MG bins.  I'll be adding some of this as I move forward.

Mossie08 VWOC


That's it for now, thanks for looking!

Edited by John1
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