Lodela/Heller 1/72 T-6G Texan
about 100 Mexican Pesos
Ignacio Moreno Villa
Discontinued, manufactured in Mexico
T6G Texans served
with the French E.A.L.A. (Escadrilles d'Aviation Légères d'Appui) in North
Africa before being complemented with T-28 Fennecs and Skyraiders for COIN
missions. These veteran trainers saw intensive action in Algeria during the
independence fight that lasted from 1954 to 1962.
It comes from an old
Heller mold. Obviously, it has raised panel lines but also has good surface
details considering its age. Lacked of detail in the landing gear and cockpit,
but at least it offered more or less good engraved control panels. It is a
very basic but nice kit. I found the art of the box attractive, so I decided
to follow it as my guide.
Well, as usual, the
first step was to work on the cabin. After attaching the seats to the base, I
sprayed all in Interior Green. I painted the control panels and sticks apart
and finally, I attached the whole thing to one side before closing the
Then I went to the wings.
It required some putty and sanding at wing joints. Fuselage assembly went OK,
it fitted well but required also some putty and sanding work. Landing gear and
weapons were left to the very end, as well as the transparent single-piece
Texans that served at the
early stages of the Algeria campaign maintained the yellow trainer scheme. So
I covered it entirely with Insignia Yellow, after painting and masking the
Flat Black sections. Rudder was a problem because there was no decal provided
for it. I had to mask and apply colors one by one, starting with White, then
Blue and finally Italian Red. I had to mix Insignia Blue + White to get the
correct French tone. Spinner and motor were painted apart.
The following steps were: a
coat of Future, decals, seal with Future. An oil wash with Black and Siena for
weathering, some silver dry-brushing, some pastels and a final spray of flat
clear coat. All paints and clear coatings were Model Master acrylics (except
Future), sprayed with a Paasche H single action airbrush.
This was a OOB (Out of Box)
project, so I avoided any aftermarket item. I just made seat belts using
masking tape + Aluminum foil and also and some fine copper wire to add some
little realism to the motor.
The kit supplied a decal
sheet with two options: French E.A.L.A. or Gabonaise Presidential Guard. It
was difficult to get more references for the latter option, so I preferred the
first one. Decals proved to be very fragile and I was forced to paint the
shark mouth with a fine brush and patience!
I was satisfied with the outcome. This is a very basic but nice kit, I enjoyed
getting back to the hobby with this venerable airplane that served in so many
fronts with so many countries. It is pretty good for beginners, but I would
recommend the Academy, that had recessed panel lines and more detail. I should
warn about the Testors kit in 1/72: it looks very good and well detailed, but
it has the USAF rounded engraved in wings and fuselage!!!
Also, I’m very happy to
present my first submission to Modeling Madness.
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