Airfix 1/72 Mosquito NF.XIX/J.30






Three aircraft


Chuck August




  History:  The De Havilland Mosquito was the most versatile aircraft in the WW2 Allied inventory.  Bomber, recce, fighter, strike, pathfinder, high speed transport, you name it, the Mosquito did it.  One of the many tasks assigned to Mosquito squadrons was that of counter-air support for the RAF bomber offensive.  Certain squadrons were forwarded to 100 Group, Bomber Command’s electronic warfare organization, for “Special Duties” in night radar tactics and interceptions.  According to Martin Streetly’s “The Aircraft of 100 Group”, while not hugely successful in overall kill numbers, Special Duties Mosquitoes caused fear and uncertainty among the German night fighter crews, where every crash or missing plane became a Mosquito victim.


  The NF XIX/NF 30 were late war Mosquito fighter developments.  Special Duties squadrons of 100 Group flew this type from 1944 on.  My local hobby shop had a bunch of 1/72 scale Airfix kits at competitive prices, so I bought some aircraft that 100 Group flew.  I wasn’t expecting much for a kit that cost about a third of a Hasegawa/Tamiya but was pleasantly surprised.  The kit comes in an end opening box (sigh) and is molded in light gray hard plastic.  The extra bits to make a NF30 or Swedish J.30 are done is a softer white plastic.  The engraving is very fine, appropriately raised detail is also petite, and ought to look good under a layer of paint.  I was particularly impressed with the “Serrate” antenna and the .303 cal guns.  They are extremely finely molded with no flash or mold lines.  The radiators are molded into the wing slots and fit well in initial dryfitting.  They too feature fine detail that drybrushing ought to bring out nicely.   The Mosquito’s intricate undercarriage is also well done.

 The kit can be used to build a number of Mosquito variants.  The kit’s nose, with the Serrate antenna and four .303s, will make a NF Mk II, or the nose can be removed and replaced by the “bull nose” of the NF XIX/30. You can do a FB Mk IV with under wing ordnance.  Narrow chord and paddle bladed props are included, and a white plastic sprue has the four bladed props of the post-war Swedish J.30 on the box cover.  Shielded and unshielded exhausts are provided, plus slipper tanks, eight 60 LB rockets, and two 500 LB bombs.  Basically you can build any non-bomber Mosquito you want.

 The down side?  Well, the cockpit is rather basic, a floor, bulkhead, seats and stick.  The instrument panel has fine lines depicting bezels and such, and a decal depicts the instruments.  The seats are generic, and there is a “box” to represent radio equipment behind the wireless operator’s seat.  The green house is a bit thick, I don’t know if I will get a Falcon vacuform replacement or not.  Pilot and wireless operator figures are included with the kit.  (Your editor would like to point out that Paragon also makes a number of Mossie specific bits in 1/72, including a variety of vac canopies)

 Decals and Markings:  The kit decals depict three aircraft.  Two represent post-war J.30s flown by Sweden.  The third option (my choice) is a Special Duties Mosquito flown by No. 157 Squadron during summer 1944.  I have not built an Airfix kit in many, many years so I have no idea of the decal quality.  The dull red does look too brown to me though.  Invasion stripes are included as decals.  I hope those are thick and opaque so I can be lazy with my painting.



  Overall, this is a really neat kit.  There is a nice choice of variants that can be built, detail is excellent good and the price is right!  I look forward to building it

 Kit courtesy of my wallet and me.


 “The Aircraft of 100 Group”, Martin Streetly, Robert Hale Limited, 1984  “The Mosquito Page”

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