Profile Photo
Tom Bebout
142 articles

1/48 Monogram / Mattel P-51B Mustang

February 11, 2017 · in Aviation · · 24 · 6.7K

I've actually considered not going to model shows because it seems I'm a s****r for picking up very old kits. This P-51B is a show purchase that I've just completed as a fun weekend project. It was fun to build,however, it took me longer than the weekend. The instructions have a 1966 Copyright printed on it and for being that old it was in pretty good shape but was missing a tail wheel and antenna. The decals were shot but I had an Accurate Miniature set for the Chicago Gun Moll. What's really cool was the instructions stated you could also purchase the Skystick Flight Simulator for controlling the model in dives,banks, and climbs. Now what kid wouldn't want that to take home.

She's done OOB with exception of the missing parts. I did add antenna wire using nylon thread and the paints were Tamiya AS-6 and AS-7 from rattle cans. Model Master paints were brushed on for the interior, wheels etc. The instrument panel is the original decal that comes with the kit. Only one that worked.

Lt. Robert Brown flew this bird while assigned to the 326th FS of the 357FG. The 357FG were known for their red and yellow checker board nose art. Was fully prepared to add that decal to it's nose but it disintegrated when it made contact with water. However, I found a photo of Chicago Gun Mull prior to the checker board addition and it was white, hence the white nose on this one.

Lt. Brown would sustain heavy damage to his white escorting bombers on a raid over Germany and nursed her over Switzerland where he bail out. The plane went straight in and was a total loss. Lt Brown sustained a broken leg and remained interned in Switzerland for the remainder of the war.

Reader reactions:
11  Awesome

10 additional images. Click to enlarge.

24 responses

  1. A nice blast from the past ! It looks great.

  2. Ahhh ... Tom, this transported me back in time! Back around 1966 or 7 this was the 1st model I chose to do in 1/48 scale. Back then, at the places I bought models, Monogram & Airfix were about the only game in town. If you wanted details, get the Monogram kits. Airfix had a great selection of planes (my ONLY modeling interest at that time) but their quality was generally faaaaar below that of Monogram. I never got the Skystick.

    Anyway, great job on a TRUE "oldie but goldie!"

  3. Love the old kits, and what's not to love about the P-51B. This one looks really nice.

  4. A real rave from the grave, thanks for sharing it with us.

  5. Tom, good looking build on this old relic kit from the pass. To be honest with you, I almost bought that exact kit at a recent show, as I remember building it as a kid and proudly hanging it from the ceiling.
    A word of wisdom: if you don't go to shows, you might miss something, kind of like women and shoes !

  6. Nice work on an old release, sir...truth be known, I don't remember Mattel being associated with Monogram (nor do I recall that joystick thing).

    • Mattel bought Monogram in the 70s and nearly killed it. The moron who ran Mattel dropped the P-51B from the stock list because "A Mustang's a Mustang and we only need one." The people who understood the company and the hobby tried to explain and were let go, and then the guy was amazed to discover that sales of the P-51D didn't go up.

      Further proof of proof was necessary that nuking American B-schools on every campus and terminating all MBA's with "extreme prejudice" would be the way to MAGA.

      • Tom, suspicions confirmed. Another bean counter MBA from (probably) "the toy industry". If it ain't broke, don't fix it, versus Hey, look at me, I'll change everything just because I can, and it'll look like I know what I'm doing. Then, on to the next disaster.
        Thanks for shedding more light in the plastic gloom.

  7. Craig, Mattel bought Monogram, forget how long that went on, but IMHO it wasn't a happy marraige (almost suspect a shotgun was involved) Lots of Snoopy and his whatever. Give me a break! Tomcat! Real basic!
    I remember thinking they'd lost their way.
    At some point, things improved, thank God!
    That's my thumbnail history of Monogram. Others may know more.

  8. Tom, this is the only one that Monogram revamped, changed over to recessed panel lines, more cockpit detail (bye cut out decal instrument panel you glue on) Better seated pilot figure. Probably one of the big three 48th P-51Bs, Tamiya, Accurate Miniature (on hiatus) and this 'un. You pays your money, and takes your choice.

    Hey, I like Monogram. It must be genetic, or solvent effect from my yuth.

    BTW, I don't have the Accurate Miniature P-51B/C, so I dunno how that fits in the sweepstakes. One of it had the fin strake, Intriquing, never pulled the trigger.

  9. Bernard I have a AM P-51 B/C in the stash, hope to build it soon as the A-36 and their P-51A were nice builds. Very nice details.

    • Tom, I'll be interested to see how it stacks up agin the other 2. I'm wondering where the molds for it are, suspect Italeri, as a major suspect. They've got the Dauntless and Avenger as rereleases, as I recall?
      Razorbacks always struck me as racier looking, versus bubbletops.

  10. This is very cool Tom ! I never heard of the "sky stick" before. I'll bet they were the hot ticket back then...

    I remember building this one back in the early 1970's. (If I remember correctly it had "Ding Hao" on the nose markings. I think it was flown by Howard when he earned his Medal of Honor...)

    You did a fine job on this one ! I like it.

  11. Looks great ! Some of the old kits were very build-able and I've managed to procure a few, LS kits come to mind.

  12. P-51B - Great choice Tom - looks superb!

  13. 🙂 ... Greetings ... 🙂 :
    Nice build Tom, those MONOGRAM kits still hold up on their own, I love them still at these times of superior grade kits, nice memories in them.
    Who can forget the CENTURY SERIES ?

Leave a Reply