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3 Hasegawa F6F Hellcats, #1 Daytona Beach NAS 1944-45, #2 Blue Angels Bird, #3 Target Tow or Drone (45 posts)

  • I figured it was time to crank up the Gardner Iron Works assembly line again. These are coming down the line very soon. As soon as I finish the Ki-27 “Nate’s” and 1/35 Tamiya Panther D from Kursk.

    Here’s the first one, and how it will be finished in overall Glossy Sea Blue. I haven’t decided yet on number 33 or 24. I know for a fact that #33 crashed on take off from the Daytona Beach NAS when it lost engine power and became a glider. I’ll probably go with this one………………………..

    It’s actually a F6F-3 that was overhauled probably at Jacksonville NAS (Naval Air Station), just before being flown down to Daytona Beach NAS, which was my home for many years. I grew up there and never knew the history behind the local “International Airport”.
    This is the Hasegawa kit I’m starting out with.

    The next F6F is a dash 5 version and was used by the Blue Angels as their first team demonstration planes. I’ll be starting out with this kit shown below.

    and be using these decals:

    Finally will be a target tow or a drone plane.
    For starters, this is the kit I will be using.

    and the decal sheet which offers a ton of choices…………………

    So please follow along and as always, comments are encouraged.
    Take care.

    Tags: 1/48, F6F, Hasegawa, Hellcat

  • I didn’t have the proper numbers for the Daytona Beach F6F’s. So after some online research I found these decals. They are in various sizes. I figured it would really be nice to have some extras for other future projects so I ordered two sets of the larger numbers.

    Here’s a picture of the smaller numbers also.

    Now I can get busy …………..

  • Awesome, Lou! I’m a fan of Hellcats so I will follow eagerly!

  • Louis, nice group of Hellcats. I like the two tone target tow (say that three times, really fast) in particular.

  • Thanks guys for the encouragement.

    I picked up another 1/48 Hasegawa F6F the day after the decals arrived, so I might throw it in the build as well, making it a total of 4 Hellcats in this build. I’m thinking of marking the last one as a James Flatley CAG bird, or a very early “Blue Gray” over Light Gray” plane.

  • Nice color-full cats Louis, even the decals fit the theme !

  • Nice selection Louis but a warning about the Alley Cat decals. The only one on the sheet that is a -5K drone is the one in the top left of your photo above and the one that I posted in the section of my built kits. I was greatly disappointed as I have 2 more -5s that I wanted to build as drones. Also, check your Hasegawa to see if the tail wheel has been lengthened, a feature on most Hellcat drones. The extra length made it impossible to retract as seen in the pics below.

    2 attached images. Click to enlarge

  • I LIKE those drones! The 2-tone red appeals to me.

    George, do you mean that in the picture of the 6 drones, the ONLY one that was actually used was the top left one?

    Louis, your work is cut out for you! LOTS of choices, with 4 on the build bench. So many ‘Cats – so little glue. Or something like that!

  • Actually, the others were used as drones during the Bikini Atomic test. Each had a different color tail, they were flown thru the cloud and so on. I suspect the two tone one on the sheet could be flown either remotely or with an actual pilot, every now and then. Some had that capacity.

  • Sorry for the confusion Jeffry, Bernard has the answer. The decal sheet and several sites say they are all -5Ks but if you look at many of the photos on the web or in books you can see a window cut-out behind the cockpit indicating a -3K version. Below is a pic of #11, one of the aircraft on the decal sheet, clearly a -3K. Also, a pic of the drone antenna arrangement.

    2 attached images. Click to enlarge

  • George & Bernie, thanks for the quick clarification. I wondered about the 5K vs. 3K thing. I’m not nearly as knowledgeable as you guys on the different models, but thanks to Tom Bebout, I’m doing a Hellcat for the group build. It’s the Academy kit & it can be made as a 3 or 5 model. I chose the 3 because I like the window. LoL!

    Thanks, fellers!

  • Jeff, I’m virtual cesspool of otherwise useless knowledge. I remembered you had a Hellcat in the pending pile. Someplace (as an example) when the the airframe is being controlled remotely, they called it “NOLO”- no live operator. I was thinking of doing one, with a scale robot leaning against the side. Anybody know of any 48th 40s-50s robot figures? I’m also looking for a 1/48th circus ringmaster figure, for my flying circus project.

  • I wish I could help, Bernie.

  • Interesting site here Bernard…
    https://www.shapeways.com/product/8UTPDERMG/1-48-o-scale-robot-2-3-leg
    ….sorry to hijack your thread Louis….back to you

  • Louis, you definitely got your own Iron works going, can’t wait for the builds!