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Royal Navy F6F Hellcat Mk 1 – Attack the Tirpitz!

Here’s my latest completion, Otaki’s aging F6F Hellcat kit in1/48. The subject is one of the first Hellcats that went to 800 Sqn FAA, HMS Emperor, and participated in the Royal Navy strikes against the Tirpitz, while she was anchored in Norway. This Hellcat accounted for 3 FW-190’s.

The Otaki kits were great in their day, and still serve as a good basis for detailing and scratchbuilding.

– Detailed gunsight, True details cockpit, scratchbuilt rear bulkhead and armour plate based on photos, replaced machinegun barrels, and exhaust with aluminum and brass tubing.
– Canopy is Squadron vacuform with internal structure from plastic strip.
– Removed and scratch built wheel wells from photos and plans, scratch built arrester hook and holdback, detailed landing gear, and thinned and corrected gear doors and actuators.
– Rebuilt and corrected droptank as per photos.
– Detailed engine and wired, added cowl inner structure and details, deepened intakes and added screen.
– Added formation, ID, landing and nav lights with acrylic rod.
– Painted with Tamiya acrylics, weathered (hairspray technique) with stiff brush and sharpened toothpicks, pastels and enamel paint.
– Decals from Techmod, spares, and custom made.

27 additional images. Click to enlarge.


23 responses to Royal Navy F6F Hellcat Mk 1 – Attack the Tirpitz!

  1. Excellent work on this build, Colin….very impressive.

  2. indeed impressive…

  3. Very impressive effort. That old Otaki kit still responds to a bit of care and effort. And the surface detail is still competitive 45 years later.

  4. Colin, Really excellent work !

  5. Collin, if you had not added the pics of your stunning scratch works, I would have had a difficult time believing that the kit in the opening photo is the Otaki mould. I could swore it looks much more a much more recent kit (Eduard or Has gata with a few added details). That said I have to say this is by far one of the best Hellcat in FAA colours I’ve seen. Congratulations!

  6. *ell of a Hellcat! Looks great. Often wondered about how the F6F fared against German aircraft.

  7. Real beauty Colin. Just splendid.

  8. Really impressive build. All that extra work really paid off.

  9. Otaki kits are still great to build. Your build shows that you can get a great model out of an older kit if you are willing to give it a little TLC. Great job. Paint looks awesome.

  10. 🙂 … Greetings … 🙂 :
    Lovely work on that old OTAKI kit, it still looks at par with what is offered today.
    Nice job all around, thanks for sharing the pictures.

  11. Very nice build, the engine is a marvel of a kit-in-a-kit with this wiring added! Well done!

  12. Beautiful all the way around! Great detail work and the paint job looks spot-on!

  13. I echo these comments. You took an older kit, added some very impressive scratch built details to it, and ended up with a show stopper !!!! You typically don’t see too many F6F’s in these colors.

    Well done my friend, very well done.

    “liked”

  14. Nothing wrong with an “aging” kit, I thought maybe it was the Eduard one! Excellent job!

  15. Wonderful work.

    I think thos old Otakii kits are little jems. Generally inexpensive (I’ve gotten them for less than $10.00, US, including shipping) and can be made into great displays.

    I think the FAA color schemes are the most attractive looking F6Fs.

  16. Amazing what you can do with a “ClassIc” in the modern era of “Digital” reality. A very strong solid build that is worthy of being in the “Model of the Month” category. You have my vote Colin. Definitely, a build that is easy on the eyes,captures the look ,feel and caricature of the HellCat. A build that would be in the Oscar category if it where a film.

    Looking forward to seeing more of your future eye candy too.

    Two thumbs up Colin.

  17. Congratulations, Colin!
    As all say, it is a very impressive finish. From your photos, I learn much about how “old” kits are finished as a top-notch.
    Thank you for sharing.

  18. Beautifully built and finished, Colin!

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