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Spitfire! 1/48 F Mk. 24

This is my stab at the last of the Spitfires, the mighty F Mk. 24 via the Airfix 1/48 kit. Inspired by the version at Duxford, this depicts VN318 from No. 80 Squadron based in Hong Kong, circa 1955.

1996 is the year stamped on the inside of the fuselage, but for a kit of that vintage it all went together cleanly, requiring only a small amount of putty. I drilled out the canon barrels as well as the exhaust stubs, plus added the whiplash aerial with a piece of fishing line – all ideas borrowed from other modelers. I also used some interior upgrades from Barracuda. Although the resin seat was lovely, it was just too small, so I added a lead foil harness and cushion to the seat supplied.

I encountered the same problem with this kit other builders have, in that the canopy is too narrow to sit on the fuselage properly in the open position; I used a vac-formed replacement from Squadron instead. This build really showed me the challenge of using after-market parts, breaking lots of delicate resin parts in my attempt to hack them free.

This is a late Christmas present for my brother, a Spitfire enthusiast of the first order. His attraction to the Mk. 24 got me to look beyond my resistance to the late Griffon Spits, with their low backs and extended front ends. While it doesn’t have the sheer elegance of the Mk. I or the purposeful grace of the Mk. IX, one has to admire the evolution of the design into this big silver cigar. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know this craft through this great – yet fairly simple – kit.

9 additional images. Click to enlarge.


15 responses to Spitfire! 1/48 F Mk. 24

  1. What a beauty! Nice work mate!

  2. Awesome job…..nicely done ! 🙂

  3. Wonderfully written and beautifully built, Tim.

    ‘Liked’ very much.

  4. Thanks very much, guys. A happy New Year to you all.

  5. Great looking Spitfire! I remember doing the ancient Hawk version of the Mk 24

  6. Tim, a wonderful build, I like that you were not afraid to custom make some add-ons, you never want to loose those trusty old skills, as you can’t buy everything aftermarket.
    I really like the lines of the later spitfires, I know I’m not a spitfire purist by saying I like the bubble top version, but I do. They’re kind of the sport version of an already sporty rig !
    What paint did you use ?

  7. Thanks for your comments, Terry. Yes, I’m becoming a convert to the thoroughbred look of the late spits too. As for paint, I used Tamiya throughout, including trusty AS-12 built up carefully over layers of pre- and post-shading.

  8. Tim T., your Spitfire is absolutely gorgeous. You made a real winner!

    The Spitfire started life as a beautiful racehorse and ended life as a beautiful thoroughbred!! I am one of those folks who didn’t much care for the looks of the later marks, but now I’ve embraced the whole line. Nothing worth a dam … darn stays the same forever as far as technology goes. Grow or die. The Spitfire grew and became a legend. From its initial public showing in 1938 to the last RAF operational flight in 1954 and the last non-operational RAF flight in 1957 (#1), the thoroughbred proved itself to be a winner. Thanks, Mr. Mitchell; it’s too bad you didn’t live long enough to see your excellent creation in its final form.

    #1) Dates as supplied by Wikipedia

    • By the way, the story of the Spitfire(s) vs. an English Electric Lightning testing is very interesting. Hollyweird actually got this (more-or-less) right in the movie “Top Gun.” F-14 vs. Zero – the same basic idea. Put the throttle to the wall, get behind them, them blast ’em. Don’t try to dogfight.

  9. Nice looking Spit Tim. Good job on the NMF, looks great.

  10. A beautiful Spit Tim! I like the weathering and finish work especially.

  11. Thanks for the comments, Jeff and Greg. Apparently, Tom, the Mk. 24 was finished with aluminium paint rather than polished metal. This was news to me when I started on this, and thanks for your support.

  12. Well done. You broke up the monochromatic finish very nicely

  13. That looks gorgeous!

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