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Louis Gardner
174 articles

1/48 Airfix P-40 Pearl Harbor 75 Years ago 2nd Lt George Welch

December 7, 2016 · in Aviation · · 25 · 2.4K

Here are some pictures of the build I've been scrambling to get finished. Unfortunately it doesn't look like I'm going to make my deadline that I originally set to have the model completed by. My original plan was to have the plane built by the exact time on the 75th Anniversary of the attack.

I'm building the new . I've followed Tom Cleaver's advice and deviated a little from the instructions. Thanks Tom for the building tips in your article about how you built your plane.

I'm hoping that I can finish this one by tonight and post an article about the plane and the pilot George Welch.

Stay tuned. The paint is drying as we speak. This kit is a real gem. The fit is really good and I only needed a little filler in one spot under the radiator chin. This was my fault and not the kits. I was simply in a hurry and caused the problem myself.

If you're thinking about getting one of these, don't. Instead get two or three. They are that good !

Reader reactions:
4  Awesome

41 additional images. Click to enlarge.

25 responses

  1. Nice work, Louis...I'll be following this with anticipation of getting one myself.

  2. Louis, thanks for posting this. Santa is bringing me one for Christmas. I've been good. That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.
    I'll see if I can go with your suggestion, it does look good! A man can't have too many P-40s.

    • I agree, more IS better... and this kit rocks ! Today I had the opportunity to look at a real Pearl Harbor survivor P-40 and took a bunch of up close photos of various areas. Looks like Airfix nailed this one. It looks dead on to me as far as accuracy goes.

      Maybe I can talk Santa into another one for later down the road...

  3. Louis, Looking forward to seeing the finished product. Looks like a wonderful kit !

    • So far Terry it's been a great build. It would have been even more enjoyable if I hadn't been rushing to make the December 7th deadline. On my next one I can take my time with it.
      Thanks buddy.

  4. Looks real good. Got a George Welch coming too. The next theme...Airfix P-40's!

    • Now you're talking ! Please post some photos of yours. I've looked at some of your build and they are spectacular. I have another Airfix P-40 to build and several sets of decals have been calling my name...
      Thanks for the compliment Bill.

  5. Beautiful job so far , looks like a great kit.

  6. I'm calling it a day for now... I'm too close and afraid that if I continue on I will mess something up. So it looks like the Pear Harbor Day posting will have to wait just a little while longer. Please hang in there... I have posted some new pictures to show the latest progress.

    Since the initial post, I've added the landing gear, and started putting on the decals. There are quite a few small stencils that are really slowing me down. I had the opportunity today and stopped by to see a real P-40 that survived the attack. It was really humbling to see something that was actually there during the "Day of Infamy" exactly 75 years ago. Imagine the stories this plane could tell if only it could talk... I consider myself lucky to have had this opportunity.

    I took some reference photos and have been comparing them to the Airfix instructions. I know this "Warbird" has been restored, so therefor the "Actual" stencil locations may have varied slightly. But they are very close if not perfect so far.

    I built and completed the prop too. I had to mix up a small batch of a "Maroon" color for the back sides of the propeller as well. This is an educated guess on this color, since I don't think any original color chips have been found. The original maroon color originated in the late 1920's or early 1930's if I'm not mistaken. The color was used on the back of propellers as an anti glare treatment. During this time the P-40's had a silver / natural metal / aluminum color to them. Later on they were painted black.

    This kit is fantastic !

  7. That's great work Louis. She's gonna be a beauty man. That 'pit is a real piece of work! ­čÖé

    • Thanks Gary. I am very happy with how the interior looks, especially after a very light wash of Tamiya "smoke" (as recommended by Tom on one of my earlier build models. It also had a benefit of changing the Tamiya yellow green to more of an accurate Curtiss "Yellow Green". On the original color they added black and aluminum paste to yellow zinc chromate.

  8. Your Airfix P-40 is coming really along, Louis. As mentioned earlier here, the kit is a real must have.

    • Thanks Bernd. I have another one in the build pile. I'm even thinking about purchasing one or two more. I have a lot of aftermarket decals for the early P-40's. I've been considering building a few more of these.

  9. Coming along...waiting to see the finished bird!

  10. This new Airfix is Top kit.

  11. Nice work, Louis, glad I could help.

  12. Last night I sprayed the Neutral Gray edges again. I wasn't happy with how there were spots of Olive Drab on the gray. Before I was able to apply the remaining stencil decals I wanted to get this right. I just added a few close ups showing the areas.

  13. Well this one is all done. I just posted an article her about the man and the machine. 2nd Lt. George Welch.

  14. @lgardner looking at your build and how wet the clear coat looks how is that achieved I've just done 3 coats to a olive drab Tbolt per decals and it was pretty much still drab matt I used tamiya clear and tamiya thinners am I missing a stage what's the secret
    cheers Martin

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