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Michael Turner
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Tamiya 1/48 Supermarine Spitfire Mk.Vb trop

November 10, 2015 · in Aviation · · 8 · 2.2K

G'day from Australia.

I've been visiting this sight fore a while and decided to post these pictures.

Thanks for looking.

I finished this kit in 2007.

The subject this model represents is the 92 Sqn. aircraft flown by Flight Lieutenant John Lloyd Waddy in November 1942. An Australian, Waddy joined the RAAF in 1940, underwent flying training in Rhodesia and was posted to the Western Desert and 250 Sqn. RAF flying Tomahawks and, later, Kittyhawks. He also served with 260 Sqn. RAF and 4 Sqn. SAAF, again flying Kittyhawks.

He was posted home to Australia in February 1943 in order to command the new equipped OTU at Mildura, Victoria. As an acting Wing Commander he led 80 Sqn. RAAF flying Kittyhawks in the South Pacific against the Japanese in 1944-45. Due in part to the scarcity of Japanese aircraft at this stage of the war, he failed to increase upon his western Desert score. He was one of the eight senior officer pilots who resigned their commission in the infamous "Morotai Mutiny" in which eight senior pilots of the RAAF First TAF threatened to resign their commissions in protest to senior officers having let the RAAF be regulated by their US ally to the mopping up operations in the now backwaters of New Guinea, the Solomon Islands and Borneo rather than participate in the operations against the Philippines and Japan proper.

"The 'Morotai Mutiny' by fighter pilots is the best-known incident of the RAAF voicing the frustration it felt at being assigned to what seemed to be strategically irrelevant operations. In 1944, while the Americans had taken the war north to the Philippines, the First TAF, based on Morotai Island was employed in the 'bypassed' Borneo-Celebes region. Many in the force considered that the operations were unjustifiably wasteful of resources and manpower. In April 1945, discontent and frustration led a group of eight fighter leaders to resign their commissions.

On the recommendation of the Chief of the Air Staff, Air Vice-Marshal Jones, the Minister for Air, Arther Drakeford, called for an inquiry into the issues affecting First TAF. A commission headed by John Barry KC, found that the complaints were justified and the officers who had resigned were exonerated and reinstated. The Air Officer Commanding First TAF, Air Commodore Coby, and two other senior staff were relieved of their appointments. These events demonstrated both the problems of working under MacArthur's command and the inherent weakness in the higher command of the RAAF." (The Australian Experience of Air Power, AAP 1000-H, Air Power Development Centre, 2007)

The "VE" under the scoreboard on this aircraft refers to his wife Vera, who was otherwise known as Ve, and both scoreboard and name latter transferred to his 80 Sqn. Kittyhawk. His final kill, a Bf 109F on 29th of October 1943 over Alamein, was whilst flying (probably) this aircraft with 92 Sqn. to bring his official total to 15 and 1 shared destroyed, 7 probables and 6 damaged making Waddy the fourth highest scoring Australian fighter ace of World War II. Unofficially, his score may have been as high as 19.5.

This aircraft survived the war and was struck off charge on 28th April 1945.

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Reader reactions:
4  Awesome

5 additional images. Click to enlarge.

8 responses

  1. Nice Waddy Spiti Vb im like .
    Decals? Victory?

    • Decals are from PD Decals, 48-015 Spitfire Mk I./Mk V.
      The individual aircraft letter Q was in two parts (white letter and black shadow) and the white port one shattered and had to be reconstructed.

  2. Michael, good looking Spit, and interesting story, to boot. Our Marines were in a similar situation until they went aboard carriers. "Neutralizing" bypassed Japanese garrisons. Not much air opposition, but real accurate flak. And you didn't want to be shot down and made a prisoner.

  3. Nicely done, sir...pretty hard to not like anything from Tamiya.

  4. Michael, You can't miss with a Tamiya spit. Nice build. Very interesting story, thanks.

  5. Nice looking Spit!

  6. Very nice build, well done. And thanks for the history; you've helped me to reach my goal of learning something new every day.

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