1/48 Seversky P-35A.
This is the recent Wolfpack re-issue of the Hobbycraft kit. While it is old, the basic plastic is pretty nice with a few accuracy issues. I remember building the HC P-35 around 1995 and enjoying it, so I thought I’d give this one a go. Wolfpack upgraded the kit by adding some very nice photo etch parts. Color for the cockpit, brass for the engine and exterior. The package also includes excellent Cartograf decals, masks, and a resin boss for the prop. I used about 90% of the photo etch and it really makes the cockpit and engine pop out at you. The resin prop boss is a big improvement over the kit part too.
The basic kit’s main accuracy issues involve the wing. It lacks the cutout for the P-35A landing light on the left wing. It also lacks the small fairings from the exhaust to the wing root. Hobbycraft used the same P-35 wing for the P-35, P-35A, and Seversky racer kits. I split the difference. I cut out the landing light, made a bulb from clear sprue, and added a scotch tape cover. I ignored the missing small wing root fairings. It’s not that noticeable and I’ll probably never turn the model upside down again. I also decided to use a spare Airfix US P-40 seat for the pilot. The PE seat just didn’t cut it and I used the kit supplied plastic seat to replicate the passenger seat these planes had in the lower fuselage, visible through the clear panel on the right side. I also added a false floor and a bit of structure in this area using sheet styrene.
P-35As were built for Sweden and seized by the US government before delivery. They were sent to the Philippines in Swedish insignia, remarked and assigned to the 17th and 34th Pursuit squadrons. Eventually they were camouflaged in olive drab over neutral gray. The camo was applied directly over polished aluminum without primer and degraded quickly. I painted this kit with Xtracolor enamel faded Olive Drab over Neutral Gray. Everything else is painted with Humbrol enamels. I replicated the chipped paint by stippling the airframe with small pieces of sponge dipped in Humbrol #11. I drilled a hole in the vertical fin to install a brass antenna post with CA. The antennas themselves are EZ line. A blast of Testors dull cote sealed it all up. Now, on to the Dora Wings P-43!
13 additional images. Click to enlarge.