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Louis Gardner
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1/48 Monogram P-51D Mustang, “Petie 2nd” Lt. Colonel John Meyer, 352nd Fighter Group, Bodney England 1944

August 30, 2017 · in Aviation · · 27 Comments

Here's a short article about a build that I did a long, long time ago...

This one was special to me, since it was my very first attempt at using Bare Metal Foil if memory serves me correctly. It's the old kit that was re-boxed by Revell / Monogram later. It's nothing fancy and was built straight out of the box, mistakes and all.

I didn't have internet access back then and strictly relied on my book collection and kit instructions. Now I know about several glaring errors, the most obvious to me is the bare metal wings. If I'm not mistaken, the "D" model had the seams and rivets filled in on the wings to preserve the "laminar flow" surfaces... There are other mistakes, too...

It has held up rather well in the display case. But if you look close, you can see that there were some ugly seams that I did nothing with, and in a few small spots, the foil has started to loosen (probably due to an application error on my part...).

But hey, it's a Mustang !

Such is the evolution of building models... We strive to get better with each new build.

I plan on building another Mustang with these markings soon. Sort of like a comparison of sorts... but this time it will be the Tamiya offering of this kit, using the supplied decals... (as soon as I get the Werner Voss 1/28 Tri-plane completed). I plan on writing an article about the man and machine when I post up the Tamiya builds.

Here's a link to the build log:

If you see this, I will still have a few sets of Tamiya decals left over, and I'll send you the best of the lot.

Here's a link to the work

26 additional images. Click to enlarge.

27 responses

  1. Just look at the Bare Metal...niiiiiice...

  2. Not bad for the first time. I have never tried this method. Though I may only have built two NMF in my lifetime using Alclad and Model Master metal finishes. With a Mustang on the bench which will be my 3rd attempt and will again try the Vallejo metallics and see how it works. Thanks for sharing, looks swell.

    • Thanks for the compliments Chuck. Your Mustang on the work bench is what inspired me to give my Tamiya kits a try... Model Master "Metalizer" have worked well for me in the past, but they lose part of their luster once clear coated.

  3. Still looks pretty good from here, Louis...even got the varying shades of finish (and what seams?). I'll wager the "real" NMF didn't hold up all that well, either. I've got a DVD about the "Blue Nose Bastards of Bodney" (haven't watched that in ages...but I got it!). I'll be curious to see the 'then & now" Mustangs when you get that other one done. Later, pal.

    • Hey Craig ! Thanks for the kind words on my early build. You're absolutely right about how the NMF held up in the field. Sounds like a cool DVD ! Thanks for liking the article too buddy...

  4. louis That is one awesome looking Blue Noser Stang my friend . My favorite WWII FG 🙂

  5. 🙂 ... Greetings ... 🙂 :
    So true about the MONOGRAM P-51 ... but still ... it builds to a pretty good looking model. And proof of this is right there on our screen. Good modeling Louis, still looks sharp.

  6. Louis, ahhhh the good old and reliable Monogram Mustang, you did a nice job on her even if it was in your infancy model days. I think we all have few oldies that may not be our best but are just good friends we can't part with. I look forward to see what you do with the Tamiya kit.

    • Hopefully Terry we will not have to wait too long for these Tamiya kits in my upcoming assembly line... As soon as I get the Tri-plane done, I'll get cracking on these. I will have 3 or 4 of them going together at the same time.

      The older Monogram kits are still among my favorites too. I still have two Monogram Mustangs left in the stash. One is another D model, in the latest edition of "Big Beautiful Doll", while the second is the earlier B version from the "Ghost Squadron" release...

      Thanks again my friend.

  7. STUNNING! I have the Dragon 1/32 scale Mustang in Meyer's markings. Think you have inspired me to get that one out of the stash! Well done Louis!

    • Outstanding Morne... After seeing your scratch building skills on your Beaufighter, and more recently the Tigercat, I'll bet the big Dragon kit will really be sharp. There's just something about the "Blue Nosed Bastards of Bodney" that inspires you to model them. Maybe it's the blue color, or the history behind the unit and the men who flew the planes...

      Thanks again !

      • John Meyer is such a legend! Seeing that we share the same surname necessitate a build of his aircraft. 🙂 The Beaufighter and Tigercat is currently at a standstill. Had to move from one house to another. Still unpacking and work keeping me busy.

        • I have had life get in the way of my hobby recently too, so I completely understand. Hopefully soon you can get back to business as usual. I don't blame you for wanting to build a "Meyer" Mustang, especially since you share the same name. I have been leaning towards building another P-51 with a yellow nose named "LOU IV" for the same reasons... Take care

  8. Louis, my friend - you need NOT make any "excuses" for perceived mistakes; this is a beautiful Blue-Nosed Mustang! To me, the only thing that tops a blue-nosed P-51 is a yellow-nosed one like "Lou IV" which has become so famous thanks to a great in-flight photo.

    Your metal foil is done beautifully! If anything is starting to pull up from time, do you think it was from where you handled it during assembly? Perhaps some light skin oil or schmutz from a fingerprint? I've never applied the foil, so I'm only speculating on a possible cause.

    That said, I sure don't see any issues with this beautiful model! Like so many other good folks here, put me in as a charter member of the "Monogram Admiration Society." They're a hard package to be - combining reasonable accuracy, ease of assembly, detail parts (maybe not as many as desired sometimes, but fine for OOB projects) and last but certainly not least - good old price! There's a lot of "bang for the buck" you can get from their kits.

    Great Mustang, Louis!

    • Wow buddy, great minds must think alike... I just read your message after I replied to Morne Meyer above... where I mentioned the yellow nosed "LOU IV"...

      Must be that tanker DNA kicking in or ESP or something... 🙂

      I have been thinking about building a "LOU IV" since we would share the same name... and it looks good with a yellow nose. This one was originally supposed to be "Detroit Miss" with a yellow nose.

      The areas where the foil has lifted very well could have been caused by handling or skin oils on the surface of the plastic. Both can cause this. I may attempt to smooth these small spots back down and see what happens with it.

      I like the Monogram kits for the same reasons you do...

      and thanks for "liking" the article as well.

      Take care my fellow DAT...

  9. You have a knack for the use of the foil! It makes into a good-looking clean aircraft. I've never tried it, and not sure I ever will, due to 1) at 1/72 scale it seems to be too glossy, especially for birds that have been in the field for a while, 2) I'm not sure how you would "dirty it up" and add some grease and grime, oil and dirt staining, etc., and 3) don't know that I have the patience! Anyway, nice Mustang! I also build Hasewaga's 1/72 Petit 2 as one of my first builds when I got back into modeling - just love the blue-nosed scheme!

    • Thanks Greg. I appreciate the compliments...

      Foil would be too overpowering in 1/72 scale I think. You're correct that it doesn't look very weather beaten, and is more for a newer A/C or well maintained build. But I do like how you can give it more grain with steel wool prior to application.

      I have two of the larger 1/32 Hasegawa cousins of this one with some neat markings ("Cripes-a-Mighty III" and "Jumpin' Jacques" with a rabbit holding a blunderbuss from the Pacific) that will look great in a NMF. Eventually I want to try them out using Bare Metal Foil.

      The blue nosed scheme is hard to beat... I have tried using Tamiya "Smoke" over the foil and it's OK as are using pastel chalks to weather this type of finish, but you have to be very careful when handling the plane afterwards...

      Application of foil isn't too hard to do once you get the hang of it. Removing it is another story... that's the current hang-up with my AMT A-20 that has been languishing for a while now. I just need to get in gear and do it...

      Thanks again my friend. This scheme and "Cripes-a-Mighty" have to be my favorites too, both are blue nosed birds.

  10. Always great to see your builds, great looking P-51.

  11. Love the Bare Metal foil look but it scares the bejaysus outta me. I'm sure all of us who started building kits in the "way back when" have a few that aren't up to today's standards of accuracy thanks to the inter-webs knowledge but like you, I keep them all

    • The foil really isn't too hard to do. I use a "Q-Tip" to press the foil into compound curved areas and it seems to work pretty good. Plus if the foil doesn't lay down just right, you can simply lift it back up and reposition it. I also use toothpicks to lightly press the foil into panel lines. I lightly take the tip of the pick and press it against the plastic, then drag it along the line. If you push the pick forward into the foil, it will make a hole. It has to be dragged away from the tip end if this makes any sense... Give it a try, you will be surprised. I also use this stuff on landing gear oleo struts and polished props... It works great for these items.

      Yes I can't toss these older builds out either... I keep them all too. 🙂 Warts and all... They remind me of the progress that we have made with our hobby and the fact that we have a virtual library available to us at our fingertips by using the internet. But on occasion I still like to go to a library and look at books. There's something nice about being able to flip a page back and forth if you want to. I guess I'm a dinosaur... Hopefully the meteor doesn't arrive too soon... 🙂

      Thanks for the compliments my friend.

  12. I always enjoy your posts, Louis, and this one has attracted some especially interesting comments. Your Mustang seems to have kept its good looks over the years, maybe I'll give the bare metal foil a try if I have something suitable in the future.

  13. Thanks George. The foil works great on automobiles too. I've used it as chrome for bumpers. I agree that it has held up fairly well over the years. Thanks again for the compliments and take care buddy.

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