Modeling by Tom Cleaver

Profile Photo Tom Cleaver ( @tcinla )
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Author of “Fabled Fifteen: The Pacific War Odyssey of Carrier Air Group 15”, which you can order here:


Gavia (Eduard) 1/48 Lavochkin La-7

by Tom Cleaver on September 28, 2014 in Aviation -- 8 Comments

The Lavochkin La-7 was the ultimate wartime design of a line of fighters that began with the LaGG-3 in 1941. The LaGG-3 suffered from a heavy structure due to its designers unfamiliarity with modern aircraft design and the fact that […]


RIP: Bernie Fisher

by Tom Cleaver on September 11, 2014 in Aviation -- 16 Comments

I noted that MAJ Bernard “Bernie” Fisher, the first USAF MoH honoree in Vietnam, died this past month. Going through my photos, I found these shots of my 1/48 A-1E built back in 1998. The kit is a mishmash of […]


Zvezda 1/48 La-5

by Tom Cleaver on September 8, 2014 in Reviews -- 4 Comments

The Lavochkin La-5 was developed from the earlier LaGG-1 and LaGG-3 fighters, which had suffered from too-heavy airframes and lack of a suitably-powerful engine. They were among the least popular fighters used by the V-VS during the Great Patriotic War […]


A trip back in time: MPM 1/48 I-15 vacuform

by Tom Cleaver on September 6, 2014 in Aviation -- 11 Comments

So why is it the Czechs make such good plastic models? For those who don’t know the answer to that question, the reason why, in the past 24 years since the overthrow of communism and the end of the Cold […]


Montex 1/32 Yak-1b

by Tom Cleaver on September 4, 2014 in Aviation -- 10 Comments

Of the many types of warplanes used by the Soviet Air Forces during the Second World War, the most celebrated, successful and widely-used were the series of fighters by the design bureau led by Alexander Sergei Yakovlev. Though they lacked […]


iModeler Review: Airfix 1/48 Spitfire Vb

by Tom Cleaver on September 3, 2014 in Reviews -- 14 Comments

For look what’s inside the box – see In the development of the Spitfire, there is a recurring theme: that outside of the Mk.I, each major sub-type used was actually a “stopgap” design while the “definitive” design undertook more […]


Hasegawa 1/48 F4U-7 Corsair

by Tom Cleaver on August 25, 2014 in Aviation -- 9 Comments

The United States had the chance in 1945 to avoid 55 years of history, the deaths of over 58,000 Americans, several million Vietnamese and other Southeast Asians, and the self-confidence of America as a country. All that had to be […]


F2G “super Corsair” Race #57 – Special Hobby 1/48

by Tom Cleaver on August 20, 2014 in Aviation -- 13 Comments

While many believe that the Goodyear F2G “Super” Corsair began life as the “answer” to the threat posed by the Kamikazes beginning in November 1944, such is not the case. Had Goodyear waited till then to begin developing such an […]


August 9, 1952: Sea Fury: 1 – MiG-15: 0

by Tom Cleaver on August 8, 2014 in Aviation -- 9 Comments

Fisher Models 1/32 Sea Fury F.B.11. Done as Peter “Hoagy” Carmichael’s airplane. The Sea Fury’s introduction to combat came in the fall of 1950 when 807 Squadron, operating from HMS “Theseus,” joined Task Force 95, the Korean blockade force. Operating […]


Hasegawa F-86A Sabre

by Tom Cleaver on August 6, 2014 in Aviation -- 6 Comments

This is the 1/48 Hasegawa F-86 Sabre, using the Cutting Edge resin conversion set and Meteor Productions decals to create an F-86A Sabre. It is very likely that the world’s first supersonic aircraft was not the Bell X-1 research aircraft, […]