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Monogram Devastators.

With all of the excitement this week about the Lexington find, I was inspired to dig into my deep storage facility in search of the blue/gray VT-8 TBD you see here. I ‘ve built five of these kits since they came out in 1974. The blue one is number four and dates back to 1981, just before I got my first airbrush. I brush painted it with Humbrol enamels, used Microscale decals, and blasted it with Testors Dullcote straight from a can.

The yellow winged VT-6 TBD is the fifth and last one I built. It dates from 2011 and was actually one of the first planes I posted here on imodeler in 2012. I only posted one poor photo and thought a few better pics would help anyone building this kit. I painted it completely with Tamiya spray cans, except for the green forward part of the cowling. That is airbrushed Modelmaster Willow Green. The Tamiya colors are spot on for yellow wings schemes and they dry fast and hard being lacquers. The decals are from Yellowwings.

12 additional images. Click to enlarge.


20 responses to Monogram Devastators.

  1. They both look awesome! Go Monogram.

  2. Like Robert said, Monogram ruled back in the day (they still ain’t bad, IMO) – sure hope ya had canopy masks for those greenhouses – that’s half the build work right there. 🙁

  3. I love your builds and after following the Lexington news I too wanted to build a TBD. I have the exact Monogram model in original factory wrap with a $5.00 Kmart Sticker on it. Can u imagine back in the day coming home from department store with a great kit for $5.00 bucks. Your kits look great, one of the better looking Monogram kits I’ve seen posted. I have been concerned building the old Monogram kit b/c of the raised panel lines…it turns me off after being spoiled by modern kits. But when I look at your build it does not really distract from the quality of the build and it all just looks right. This kit has a lot going for it so I think it may be my next build. Need to get updated decals like you did. I also want a pre-war and war version like yours. Again, great kits and thanx so much for sharing these older kits.

    • The GWH kit is nicer by all accounts, but these still stand up well. Every one of them that I’ve ever built has a wingroot gap ranging from annoying to cavernous. The yellow wing kit needed a lot of filler in that area. I kind of remember the blue one being the best of the five I’ve built.

  4. Beautiful Devastators John! I think i’m getting Devastator fever!

  5. Yeah, everyone is pumped up over Paul Allen’s find of the Lady Lex. Folks think that the Devastator that is being photographed can be recovered from the site. Which is over a mile under the ocean. The cost and the technical know how need to recover such a artifact own by the Navy would be in the millions. Given the salt water environment would the a/c stay intact from its accent ? Its not like pulling out a air frame from Lake Michigan . Which has been resting in a fresh water environment several hundred feet below the surface. But, still one can dream and think about the wealth of information that is resting on the bottom of the ocean.

    What makes the Devastator interesting is that it is a Nineteen thirties design that managed to pull together all the features of a modern Naval aircraft into one design. It was under powered and the Japanese fighter pilots made short work of the type but, it still played an important role in the evolution of Navy air power.

    Can’t go wrong with the Monogram kit. It’s unfortunate that a group of engineers and designers …a group of people who set the standard for making 1/48 scale aircraft where basically out sourced for the share holders. The Devastator is a testimony to them and they did it with out the aide of computers. Slide rulers,pencil and paper were the tools of the day. Artisans they be.

  6. Beautiful work John, particularly the yellow wing – great to see.

  7. I’ve always been a fan of the yellow wing USN planes. Great work!

  8. Wonderful, nearing completion on mine, yours look great!

  9. Nice looking TBD’s John, the prewar Navy yellow wing schemes always look good to me. Well done.

  10. I have a great painting to go along with your wonderful TBD

    1 attached image. Click to enlarge.

  11. Great Devastators, John. Like many others, I like the old paint schemes of the “Yellow Wings” era, but the blue one is excellent as well. I have a couple of these old Monogram beauties in my stash. I’m not even sure when I got a second one. I can’t remember – I’ve slept since then.

  12. Outstanding work on both of your TBD’s John! The classic Monogram TBD is still great kit, as your builds prove.

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