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Tom Cleaver
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Tamiya 1/48 F4U-1A Corsair – Ike Kepford

January 31, 2013 · in Aviation · · 8 · 2.1K

The kit itself is built OOB other than seat belts. The decals came from Cutting Edge and Aeromaster. I always find it suprising that airplanes as well-documented as VF-17's leading ace Ike Kepford's is keep turning up done wrong. Examining the decals, I realized it was the instructions from the (alleged) "experts." Note how the victory stickers are applied here: aligned with the tape on the fuel tank, not the panel lines no one paid attention to. Clearly visible in the photos. Also the fact that the national insignia was originally red-surround, overpainted with blue (which I did myself so it wouldn't be nice and even as it wasn't in reality). Again clearly visible if you actually take the time to look and see what is there in front of you. Also the worn-off paint on the prop, from throwing all that coral dust on takeoff from Piva Yoke on Bougainville.

The photos referred to were taken in late February 1944, after Kepford's final score, and just before they realized the Japanese had evacuated all surviving aircraft from Rabaul after the 90-day aerial campaign that began November 3 with the strikes by USS Saratoga and USS Princeton.

More U-birds to come.

Reader reactions:
3  Awesome

14 additional images. Click to enlarge.

8 responses

  1. Do you still have all these models in your possession or are these OLD photos? Some of the builds I posted early on a couple months back are long gone - 🙁

    • Many, like this, are still here, but will eventually go to Planes of Fame, as has been done with the majority of the models I have posted here. This one dates from the spring of 2003, ten years ago. If you go look it up at Modeling Madness, you will see the article is titled "Corsair 101," and is designed to give any modeler the basic information they should have at hand to build an accurate Corsair with the Tamiya kit..

  2. Really very nice, subtle softening and weathering of the finish. Always interesting write up as well.

  3. Very nice and great attention to detail/research.

  4. said on May 18, 2013

    I doubt IF many KNOW the reason the white tape is on the forward nose part ! I was to keep the oil from fouling the windshield .. GOOD JOB in
    including detail part of history !

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