Although I started this kit a little over 3 months ago, I have been working on this Accurate Miniatures TBF-1 Avenger model on a fairly regular basis only recently. I finished building my three F4U-1 Corsair models in December and January, and the SB2C-4 Curtiss Helldiver build was also finished in January. These 4 other planes were taking up all of my model building time.
This will be my second entry to our Midway Group build. It will be easier for me to keep track of them this way, and probably much easier for you to follow along with the build as well.
I am planning on building this plane as it was delivered in Norfolk, with red and white rudder stripes and red centers to the US National insignias, or possibly as it was when it was crash landed after it’s “Baptism of fire” at the Battle of Midway.
The Avenger made it’s combat debut at Midway. There were 6 planes on a mission. 5 of them were shot down by Japanese Zeros. The 6th one returned shot full of holes, with one dead crew member and the other two men were wounded. This last remaining Avenger from this group of six, crash landed on a beach since it had the elevator control cables shot away. The pilot although injured, was able to barely fly the plane by adjusting the elevator trim tabs……………… but it got the men home.
The Grumman TBF Avenger was not off to a good start………… but this gives you some indication as to why the company became known as the “Iron Works”.
I simply haven’t decided which scheme to go with just yet………………..
I have been very fortunate to have had access to several real TBF Avengers in person. One is just like my model, an early dash 1 that was recovered in Lake Michigan, and is now being restored to a static display. The other was a later dash 3E that was having it’s annual inspection and maintenance performed.
These planes are HUGE in real life. It makes one wonder how they operated them off the smaller escort carriers……………
My kit started out as a TBF-1C, which had several changes built into it, which were not present on the initial “Early” TBF-1 model. The most notable differences that are visible are quite numerous. They involved filling in side windows on the fuselage, cutting a gun trough in the cowling above and on the Starboard side of the engine, removing the wing mounted machine gun breach bulges and filling in the ammo tray doors, filling in the empty shell casing and link ejection holes under the wing, and so on…………..
I have started a build thread that you can see by using this link.
There are quite a few pictures over there, and a good description as to what all has been done to the model so far.
Meanwhile, here are some pictures to get you a little more familiar with the build.
24 attached images. Click to enlarge