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Airfix 1/48th Curtiss Tomahawk Mk.II (14 posts)

  • Hello gentlemen,
    This will be my first Work in Progress on iModeler. I plan to make the Airfix 1/48th Curtiss Tomahawk Mk.II, which I was lucky enough to win the kit in the October random award. Apart from the seat harnesses, I normally build my kits straight out of the box.
    I’m not a stickler to accuracy, and near enough is good enough when it comes to making models. I don’t want to be miles off, but I want to enjoy modelling without getting bogged down by to much detail.
    I quite often build out of sequence, sometimes finishing the wings before I’ve even started the cockpit. I build as much as I can in sub assemblies. This can include the painting, and the decals being applied before gluing all the parts together.
    I try to be subtle when weathering my models. With this approach, I think my models can look a bit to clean sometimes.
    One last thing, progress can be very slow with me, so I apologise in advance.

    The box art of the Airfix Tomahawk.

    The model comes with 2 colour options.
    No. 26 Squadron. Royal Air Force Army Cooperation Command. Gatwick, England. 1941
    No. 112 Squadron. Royal Air Force. Libya, 1941.

    I’m not sure which option I will go for yet, but I’m leaning towards No. 26 Squadron.

    Thanks for looking, Julian.

    Tags: 1/48th scale, Airfix, Curtiss, RAF, Tomahawk

  • Will be nice to watch progress – love P-40’s!

  • I’m with Greg and anything related to P-40’s………………. I have two going on right now in the Kasserine Pass GB. One is a short tailed “F” version, and the other is a long tail “L”.

    I have built the earlier Airfix release of the P-40 Pearl Harbor version and it goes together very nicely. Here’s a link to the built plane:

    New 1/48 Airfix P-40 B Warhawk 2nd Lt. George Welch at Pearl Harbor

    Earlier today I was looking at the 1/48 Airfix Defiant kit I won earlier this year that was kindly provided by Martin and his staff. I need to get cracking on it soon. I mentioned doing a kit review first and then starting the build.

    First I need to finish up the others I have started at the moment…………….

    Thanks for starting this build log……… I’ll be looking forward to your updates my friend. I’ll be watching this one for sure. (The Airfix kit is spot on despite what some have said on other websites.)

    I have a lot of P-40 reference pictures that I took of an actual Pearl Harbor surviving plane. If I can be of assistance please let me know my friend.

  • Thank you Greg, it’s a great aircraft for sure.

    Hi Louis, thank you for your offer. I’ve seen your Airfix P-40, and very nice it is too, with some excellent reference material.

  • Hello Gentlemen,
    Firstly, I’m sorry for the long delay since my last post.
    I’ve started to make some progress. I cut the parts from the sprue and put them in the relevant bags so I could organise them for gluing, and painting.

    I glued as many parts together as I could before painting. I’ve had a look at the instructions, to see what I could build out of sequence. I started by gluing in the two parts on the nose (C04 & C05). Next I attached the wing roots sections (C03 & C02) in place.

    After gluing on the fuselage parts, I applied a primer coat from a Tamiya rattle can.

    When it came to the wings, the instructions suggest gluing on the bottom section of the main wing to the completed fuselage, then glue on the top two halves of the wings in place. If possible, I wanted to glue all the wing sections together before attaching it to the fuselage. I taped the parts together, including the fuselage, and found they could be fitted after being glued together.

    Top view

    Bottom view.

    I’m going to paint the wings next before I make a start on the cockpit.
    I will also see if the cockpit tub can be put in place after the fuselage has been glued together, and not glued into place before the two halves are joined, as indicated by the instructions.

    Thanks for looking, Julian.

  • That looks good, Julian. Do you have a specific reason you build out of sequence? When I’ve done it, the reason was because some parts seem to go logically together. You’re putting the wings together makes sense to me, & I’d probably do the same. I’m just curious as to your reasons, since you seem to prefer working out of order. I do it when it seems logical. Seems to me that if you’re having fun, it’s OK however you choose!

    Have fun!

  • Hello Jeff, thank you. The main reason is time. Like most modellers, I never seem to have enough of it! I find gluing sections together requires less setting up time unlike painting. I feel as if I’ve made some progress if I can see sections glued together. I also like painting the subassemblies separately. I find this cuts down on masking, and helps me get a better paint finish.

    Below is an example of a model I built a couple of years ago.

    What-if Royal Navy Skyraider

  • Looks like a workable technique, I’ve done that with some parts on builds. I remember seeing pictures of an aircraft factory doing the same thing. I’ve yet to do a new Airfix build, they seem like nice kits.

  • Hello Robert, I’ve built my models like this for a while now. It works just fine on kits that go together well. I’m not so sure it would work on some of the golden oldies that are still available today.

  • My wing roots never seem to line up perfectly without a seam so I tend to glue wings and ailerons before painting. I wish I could do it your way. Perhaps these airfix models will allow me to try your technique.

  • Hi Mark, it all depends on the kit you are making. I’ve used this idea on Tamiya, Hasegawa, FineMolds, and the new Airfix kits. The first kit I tried it on was a Tamiya Skyraider. I wanted to spray the exhaust stain along the fuselage, but knew the wing would be in the way. I left the wing off so I could spray the stain. When that worked for me, I started to make more and more sections in subassemblies before gluing them all together. This also gave me a better paint finish, and made weathering a lot more easy. I’m sure with the right kit, you would have no trouble building it in sections.

  • I’ve photocopied the camouflage sheet, and increased the size by 177%. This gave me a 1/48th scale plan, from which I can cut out templates of the camouflage patterns.

    I will overlay them on a sheet of self adhesive masking material to produce the camouflage shapes. I will also mark a couple of panel line positions in pen as reference points, to help me lay the masking in the correct position.

    Thanks for looking. Julian.

  • The wing fit was excellent on my Airfix P-40 build. I don’t think you will have a problem building the kit in this manner. If memory serves me, Airfix has added a wing fillet filler piece that hides the typical problem area where gaps occur.

    That is an excellent idea with the masks………….. sort of how Curtiss did it………….

  • Thank you Louis, what a great photo. That’s very interesting, thanks for that.