Academy P-38E,1/48, 343rd FG,54th FS, Aleutian island (65 posts)

  • This is tentative, as I have a feeling I may have to cobble these markings, but I really love to be able to build this amazing scheme.

    1 attached image.

  • Chuck, masks for the numbers, with the stencil breaks left in. Once I saw a brass template someplace for armor with insignia and the basic numbers. Fantasy print shop for the numbers? I’m guessing the numbers are yellow? Custom decal maker? Montex?
    The sharkmouths, looking like doing what they did and handpainting them. Whos to say, unless they used a mask- given the venue, I doubt it- each is gonna be different.

  • The numbers are yellow, as well as the serials. The nose and prop nose cone are yellow. Standard OD over Neutral grey. It will be a fun project. As I read about the harsh environment these aircraft operated out of. Reading a note here that losses due to weather was more than in actual combat.

  • Outstanding choice Chuck !!!! I’m sure that your Lightning will turn out great. You may be able to cut out the fuselage numbers from frisket film and spray them on your plane. As far as the actual radio call sign numbers on the fin, there is a decal sheet available that offers the numbers in yellow, starting with number one and goes all the way through the number zero. I can get you the part number from the package if you need it.

    From what I have read about this theater of operations the weather produced more fatalities and accidents than actual combat actions with the enemy did.

    Thanks for joining our ever growing group. Welcome aboard my friend. If there’s anything I can help you with please let me know.

    Thanks again for your support and assistance with getting the Midway Group build off the ground.


    PS: That is a very cool picture!!!!!!!!

  • Hey Chuck. I knew I had a color photo of “Itsy Bitsy” somewhere. It was taken by Life Magazine during the War. It’s the second plane, number #80.

    Hope this helps…………….

    1 attached image.

  • What a great photo! Looks like some repainting on the some of the leading edges, and supercharger stains on the vertical tail(s and booms.

  • Thanks Greg, in fact I have this pic, when I was doing a quick research I found it and saved it over the weekend. The Academy kit also has the decal set for an Aleutian Lightning. No where on the instruction sheet identifies the squadron or fighter group the decals represent. But it’s a start. Still searching for more info.

  • A preview of the Academy P-38E. Building the Night Lightning a few years ago, I know what to expect from this kit. I have never cracked the box of a Hasegawa kit so I cannot say or compare it to Academy’s. I have read the Academy is slightly less labor intensive, regardless it can be a little challenging, but it builds to a nice model when finished. Hasegawa does not offer an “E” variant unless you backdate an “F”. The decals in the kit is for an Aleutian P-38. The plane I wanted to model with the shark mouth may not be suitable for the GB as I have seen the image on some sites dated 1943. So I may seek an alternative. I got the kit on Ebay a few years ago, it included a resin detail set from Medallion models, which is for the Hasegawa P-38 kit.. In the meantime I have ordered a Eduards cockpit set for it. More to follow.

    7 attached images. Click to enlarge

  • Chuck I think I would trash the rubber wheels and go with some Ultracast after market ones.

  • I think I would follow Tom’s advice. I had a bad experience with rubber wheels on an AMT kit. While it was stored in a box, the rubber sort of ate away into the plastic that was resting against the rubber parts.

    This looks like a fun kit to build. Thanks for the updates.

  • Chuck this is going to be awesome to follow your Forked Tail Devil build 🙂

  • After looking at the night fighter build you completed many years ago, this Lightning should be over the top.

    I didn’t know there was a different vinyl type material used by Academy on the tires that were provided in the kit. I thought they were all rubber, as my AMT kit suffered because of this. I guess you learn something new each day……….. Thanks for the info !!!

    I think I can safely say we are all looking forward to updates on your build. Thanks my friend.

  • Since airbrushing some components black today, I also went ahead and painted the blades and cowling on the P-38. No building as yet, as some goodies for this and the Devastator should be in the mail some time this week.

    2 attached images. Click to enlarge

  • Finally received my detail set for the Lightning and Devastator. I will start on the Lightning first as there are already a couple of Devastator’s in progress. So let gets this started. With the interior already pre painted prior to assembly, will start with the seat. Adding a back plate on the upper seat back, then the seat brace next. Put that aside and let set and started working on the RH side panel next. After some detail removal to add the PE bits. Added a couple of items, put that aside and back to the seat. My first ooops. When trying to apply one of the belts it flew off to the wild blue yonder to who knows where. After searching about 30 minutes, well let say on with out the belts for now. So I added the seat cushion and for now the seat is done. Getting back to the RH side console added the rest of the bits to the panel. And then worked on the LH side. Not as much needed to be done other than painting the various control boxes Flat Black. With the side interior panels done, it was time to work on the cockpit floor before installing the seat, the rear and side interior panels. First was to remove the molded rudder pedals and then installed much better looking PE ones. Then to paint the floor consoles black with silver details. Then next install the side panels, seat, and control yoke.
    Next is to set and test fit the cockpit floor to the lower wing and then place the upper half to make sure it will fit ok and aligned correctly before assembly. At this time I will drill out the hole for the landing lamp. After installing the cockpit into the lower wing. Now time to install the front instrument lower panel adding the PE bits and painting it black after installation. Last item before calling it a day for the Lightning is the avionics shelf is installed behind the seat. Again placing the upper half and taping it together for now, fit is still good. And with that phase one is done for the day. Next to build the instrument panel and the tail booms.

    24 attached images. Click to enlarge

  • Looking good Chuck