Barracuda Decals Stencils, Cutting Edge Decals, AIRES Landing Gear
The DeHavilland Mosquito aka Mossie was one of the (to use modern military terminology) most flexible airborne weapons systems ever created. It could act as a high speed low level tactical bomber, recon, pathfinder, weather plane, night fighter, night intruder, fighter bomber and even transport. It’s design was based on the DH.88 Comet racer and the experience of building the wooden airframes from the DH Albatross airliner.
Thanks to Air Ministry intransigence, it took a while for the wooden streamlined dual engined Mosquito to be accepted into production (in 1941.) The first variant, the B Mk IV, was a high speed bomber with no defensive armament as proposed in 1938 by De Havilland. It proved to be quite the success and many variants were designed and produced including the Fighter Bomber Mk VI in 1942 which was the most produced variant. The FB Mark VI was armed with four .303 Browning machine guns in the nose and four Hispanio Suzia 20mm cannons slung just forward of the bomb bay and could carry up to eight 60lb rockets or 4000lbs of bombs.
No 418 Squadron
RCAF “The City of
From its very
inception, it was determined that 418 would be unique. As the RCAF's only
Intruder Squadron, it was formed in 1941 when
I have to admit
that I have a fondness for the Mosquito because it was probably the first ever
airplane I ever sat in.
When I was
five I went to the
Over a couple of years I purchased AIRES resin Mosquito landing gear doors, Eduard PE for the cockpit, Master brass .303 gun barrels, Barracuda Decals Mosquito Stencils and a Cutting Edge Decal Sheet for No 418 Squadron. All these would be used in the construction of this kit.
I followed the instructions on the cockpit parts except where I replaced the panels with Eduard PE and added the Eduard PE seatbelts for the seats and added various PE pieces based on the Eduard instructions. Tamiya XF-71 IJN interior green was used to paint the interior (it is pretty close to British Interior Green.)
Next up was the painting and assembly of the bomb bay and interior fuel tanks. This took a while as there were several areas than needed masking.
The interior pieces were then glued to the fuselage halves and the halves glued together. I was not all that happy with the modular construction of the model and had a bit of a rough time putting it together. I recommend that you be a bit more careful than I was assembling the fuselage.
The wings, minus the engine nacelles were glued on without much issue. I let the model sit for a month to let the glue fully cure before filling and sanding it and the engine nacelles smooth. It took a couple of filling and sanding sessions to make it smooth to my satisfaction. I added the ailerons and it was ready for painting.
The props and prop hubs were painted (I painted the tips via masking instead of using the decals) before being assembled with supplied polycaps.
Lastly I glued together the wheels and filled in the gap between them.
|COLORS & MARKINGS|
418 Squadron’s Mosquitos were a little different than the standard RAF color scheme of Ocean Grey, Medium Sea Grey and Dark Green. The color scheme just used Medium Sea Grey and Dark Green according to the decal sheet I used which was the Cutting Edge Decal Sheet 48136 Mosquito Nose Art Part 2 that contained several planes used by No 418 Squadron.
Unlike most of planes, I did not preshade the exterior of the plane before painting because from what I have read and seen in photos that Mosquitos were kept very clean and the paint well maintained due to the all wood construction. I sprayed on Tamiya Medium Sea Grey first and then masked off the various areas using a combination of cut Tamiya Tape and (cheaper) painters tape.
When the paint was dry, I sprayed on a gloss coat of Tamiya clear gloss to provide a shiny smooth surface for the decals. Once dry, I selected and used the markings for Hairless Joe, the 418 Squadron Leader’s plane as well as a combination of Barracuda Decals’ Mosquito Stencils and ones from the Tamiya Decal sheet.
The only area that I did weather were the 20mm cannons, exhaust covers which went white and corroded at the rear due to the heat and the engine nacelles (exhaust stains.) I sprayed Tamiya flat white over the rear of the covers and then used Mig Red Dirt Pigment to simulate rust. Next I used the Tamiya weathering set for gunfire stains and exhaust. After that was done, I sprayed on a final coat of Xtracrylix Satin for the final coat (again based on pictures which showed a semi-gloss coat on the Mosquitos.)
The landing gear was assembled and painted (struts, Old Silver from the spray can and tires, NATO black) then glued in place. The tail wheel, wing tip lights, entry door, crew ladder, brass .303 gun barrels (which look way better than the plastic ones), resin gear doors (prominent ejection marks on the inside of them--I kind of regretted buying them) and various PE external pieces were painted and added.
The worst part was the canopy which was masked and painted with various colors during the painting stage. Unfortunately, it did not fit as well as it should have as there was a slight gap between the canopy and the fuselage. I ended up using clear glue to “fill” it in and then paint with a brush to eliminate the gap.
Finally, I put the props on and I was finished with the Mosquito.
Overall I am happy with the Tamiya Mosquito. It is an amazing kit to build out of the box, but can be a spectacular one with some aftermarket parts (especially the Master .303 brass gun barrels.) I recommend it for a modeler of any skill level who is a fan of British aircraft or of the Mosquito.
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