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Thomas Probert
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Northrop-Grumman X-47B

November 16, 2014 · in Aviation · · 14 · 2.3K

I fancied building something a little different, and with the US Navy having undertaken testing with this latest Unmanned Combat Air System, (UCAS) the Freedom Model Kits' recent release of the X-47B in 1/48th scale fitted the bill perfectly.

This really is a fantastic kit and was an absolute joy to build - it has taken three weeks from start to finish. Not a hint of filler was needed, and it went together perfectly. Decals reacted well to Humbrol's DecalFix and settled beautifully over the finely engraved surface detail. I hadn't even heard of before this build, but I'd recommend them without a second thought.

I painted the model using Xtracolour enamels, with the Ghost Grey lightened a little to replicate the subtle fading seen in pictures of the test aircraft.

I've built this model as '501' of CVW-9 as it appeared during testing on the USS George HW Bush during late 2013/early 2014. Apparently they were a resounding success and proved the concept of unmanned carrier operations without incident. A glimpse of the future perhaps?


Reader reactions:
7  Awesome

6 additional images. Click to enlarge.

14 responses

  1. I love it. I might think of building one! Nate

  2. Your talent can't help but make this shine. The underside features are very impressive.

  3. That's a very nice job, Thomas...that manufacturer's new to me as well (gonna have to check 'em out). As Al said, the belly looks just great. Just how big [or small] IS that thing anyhow...?
    Photographing it on that blue background worked well. 🙂

  4. Beautiful model of an unusual subject. Your finish and attention to detail make this a real eye catcher.

  5. A glimpse of the future indeed. Pretty soon all future pilots will sit behind control panels on the ground. It makes sense to have an unmanned drone fly into combat. You did a stellar job on this kit. Well done!

  6. Very good job, especially paint with gradients and increases light

  7. A drone with a tail-hook. Fantastic model Thomas! I also have to comment on your painting skills. Very cool!
    California Steve

  8. Nice build and really good pics !

  9. Great build and finish there Tom
    Love the paintwork.
    Well done sir.

  10. Beautiful paintwork. And a whole lot easier than all those bombers. You deserved a "vacation."

  11. nothing ordinary about that...subject or quality

  12. Lovely sharp model there Thomas. The underside is fantastic!

  13. Great modelling there, Thomas, not sure I like the look of the future though...

  14. Great work on a strange looking bird, looks like the real thing !

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