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Spiros Pendedekas
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Glencoe 1/59 de Havilland Venom FB.4, Fuerza Aérea Venezolana

Hi everyone!

This is the FB.4, finished as Fuerza Aérea Venezolana bird. It was build as part of the great "" Group Build here.

The de Havilland DH 112 Venom is a British post-war single-engined jet aircraft developed and manufactured by the de Havilland Aircraft Company. Much of its design was derived from the de Havilland Vampire, the firm's first jet-powered combat aircraft.

The Venom entered service with the Royal Air Force (RAF), where it was used as a single-seat fighter-bomber and two-seat night fighter. A dedicated model for aerial reconnaissance was also operated by the Swiss Air Force.

The Venom functioned as an interim stage between the first generation of British jet fighters – straight-wing aircraft powered by centrifugal flow engines such as the Gloster Meteor and the Vampire – and later swept wing, axial flow-engined combat aircraft, such as the Hawker Hunter and de Havilland Sea Vixen.

Accordingly, the type had a relatively short service life in the RAF, being withdrawn from frontline operations by the service in 1962 as a result of the introduction of more capable designs. However, it was used in combat during the Suez Crisis, the Malayan Emergency, and the Aden Emergency.

The Venom proved to be popular on the export market, being sold in substantial numbers to Iraq, New Zealand, Sweden, Switzerland and Venezuela.

The Swiss Air Force was the last active military operator of the Venom, retiring their last examples during 1983. Large numbers of ex-military Venoms have since been acquired by private entities and several have continued to fly, performing aerial displays at various air shows, while many examples have been preserved in static display conditions in museums and as gate guardians.

A specialized derivative, the Sea Venom, was produced as a navalised version of the aircraft suitable for carrier operations.

Venezuela acquired 22 Venoms in 1955, remaining in service until the early 1970s.

The Glencoe kit, dating back in the ’80s, is a totally “basic”kit. In fact, it cannot get more basic, but I have a strange affection on putting together old and deficient kits.
Our friend Tom Hering @TomHering provided valuable info about the history of the kit. Though Glencoe label it as "1/48", it is the 1/59 old Lincoln kit, so I edited the article to account for this correction. The finished model looked so petite, to be honest, for 1/48, and I hadn't put it beside my 1/48 Hobbycraft Vampire, so the difference in scales would be apparent. I thus changed the 1/48 to 1/59 everywhere. Thanks Tom!
To point out the main (whatever that means...) issues:

  • There’s absolutely no cockpit (just a hole), so I scratchbuilt a complete one, including the Martin Baker
  • No wheel wells (just a shallow plug), scratchbuilt also
  • No engine exhaust (a blank hole only), I used a suitable diameter straw of my sons' supplies.
  • The characteristic intakes are a solid joke, I carved them open
  • The canopy has its rear part missing and molded as a fuselage part (!), nothing I could do here, other than fair/smooth things
  • The fuselage has a thoughtless big step increase in diameter, from the mid backwards. I sanded it smooth, which was painful.
  • The wheels are a joke, especially the front one (so characteristic of the Vampirenom family). I drilled the main ones circumferentially to add some interest, and flattened them a tad.
  • Many other secondary issues I dealt with one way or another.

    Painted with Humbrol 11, decalled with the kit provided excellent Lloyd Jones' Scalemaster decals (a much missed and beloved guy), lightly weathered here and there

    As usual, I will not tire you more with build details; however, should you be interested, you can read the build thread here:
    Even better, you may wish to have a look at the complete build review, posted in my beloved site Modelingmadness:

    Some in-progress shots are attached below.
    I would like to express my sincere thanks to all friends here that followed my build. Their presence and comments boosted my motivation, making the build a wonderful experience.

    Special thanks to our Admin and friend Erik @airbum, not only for the conception and running of this GB, but also for his restless interest and following-along.

    Happy modeling!

11 additional images. Click to enlarge.

40 responses

  1. Looks really nice, I like it!

  2. Excellent improvement of a low-quality kit! Glencoe rescued and reissued a lot of molds from old companies like Ideal (ITC), Strombecker, and others. I wonder who originally issued the Venom (probably in the late 1950s or early '60s)?

  3. Well done, Spiros, you got to the finish and it definitely looks like a Venom, you certainly made the most of this "basic" kit. Definitely liked.

  4. Fantastic result, Spiros @fiveten
    Nice to see a Venozolan scheme this time, not often that you see those.
    This kit definitely needed the extra details and you did an awesome job on adding all those.

  5. I cannot comment on the accuracy or not of this build, only on the standard of work you have undertaken and it is outstanding indeed.

    • Thanks Haslam @haslam55!
      Well, the shape is only a general representation of the Venom shape and I also believe is undescale.
      Regarding my add-on details, their (my) approach varies from "getting closer to reality" (Martin Baker seat), to "just busy-up" (main wheel rims).
      So, it definitely is not an accurate model, but rather a lookalike Venom model with as less plain/simplistic areas as possible.
      Thanks again for liking, my friend!

  6. Wow what a turnaround of a truly mingin (rubbish) kit well done sir it looks really good. ?

  7. Great work, Spiros. I wish we had a modern kit of this plane. I’d really like to do a Sea Venom. Pilot Replicas announced one but seems to have gone dark.

    • We used to have the Classic Airframes short run ones that, to my vague knowledge, did have their shape issues, let alone them being short run. Anyways CA are out of business.
      So, after hope#1 to finally have agood new tool kit, hope#2 might be for Special Hobby group to reissue the CA kit...possibly retool/improve it?
      Thanks for kind comments, my friend John @j-healy!

  8. Well done my friend, certainly put some life into this old basic kit. Like what you did with the scratch building as it really paid off in the end result.

  9. Judging by some of your photos Spiros, the kit is not just basic, it’s raw. Just crude shape.
    You managed to bring it to a highly attractive model, furthermore from a rarely seen AF. Two thumbs up my friend!

  10. Spiros, @fiveten
    You have worked your magic here with this one ! You took an ancient kit and made it look very presentable. Well done my friend. I pressed the "liked" button too.

  11. @fiveten You made some really nice lemonade out of that lemon, Spiros! I like bringing life to those old kits too, but what you did here would be beyond my limited talents. Nicely done.

  12. Very nice! That one qualifies for my S. American build project, so I may mirror that in 1/72 soon... Nice working adding details to bring it up to speed - well done!

  13. Yeah like everyone else said you did an impressive job of bringing this ancient kit up to date, well done.

  14. @fiveten - The way you turn sow's ears into beautiful silk purses is amazing. I watched this, starting with a belief your goal was impossible, then saw you overcome each "tank trap" it presented, with this very nice result.

    Great work as usual, my friend. "Liked"

    • As Tom Hering pointed out above, this is the ancient 1956 Lincoln International box scale (1/59) kit. It was not that apparent by searching the Glencoe kit in Scalemates, but Tom nailed it, so I gladly changed all 1/48s to 1/59s.

      The wonderful thing is that the decals were 1/59 exactly! But, what less could we expect from (Scale) Master Lloyd Jones, so much missed.

      Thanks for liking, my friend Tom @tcinla, and thanks for following along my thread.

  15. Spiros- I agree, it really is impressive how you keep on turning these styrene lumps of coal into big time diamonds like this Venom and your previous Vampire. Two great DeHavilland builds!

    Me “like” too!

  16. Neat Venom! Really liked how you addressed the cockpit. Also liked how you tackled the rear nozzle. These oddball scales makes it really interesting to create and add detail in the way you've done here.

  17. Thanks Doug @eydugstr!
    Good thing was the fun I had adding all those scratch built extras.

  18. Hi Spiros! @fiveten
    Nice job on a not-so-nice kit.
    An enjoiable article, too!

  19. I love the way you put the “love” into this build, my kind of build. Great job on it, looks great!

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