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Curtiss Tomahawk Mk.II (P-40B) Airfix 1/48

Curtiss Tomahawk Mk.II (P-40B)

Here's my representation of the Airfix Tomahawk in 1/48 scale, this aircraft was flown by Sgt. William Earl Houston, No.112 Squadron at Libya in 1941.

This model was built Out of the box, I wanted to do a desert theme long ago and I found this kit to be the perfect project for it.

I've seen many people complaining about Airfix kits, but this one was a joy to build, pretty straightforward and simple, but effective engineering, Good cockpit detail OOB, there's not much I can add about the building process, I couldn't find any major issues with this kit. Also, I riveted the model to add another layer of interest.

I started the paint process using black basing to highlight some details like panels and rivets. But it wasn't after I finished all the base work to start painting the camouflage that I realized I didn't have any of the three colors needed to paint the correct scheme, so I didn't have any other option than mix my own paint.
The kit says I need Dark Earth and Mid Stoen colors for the fuselage and Azure blue for the underside, I did a few tests before getting the tone I wanted for each color, I used Tamiya paints, so I will post the ratios I used to get the desired colors.

Matt Dark Earth= XF-49 Khaki + XF-68 Nato brown in 8:2 ratio
Matt Mid Stone= XF-59 Desert Yellow + XF-4 Yellow green in 1:1 ratio
Azure Blue= XF-18 Medium Blue + XF-2 Flat White + X-14 Sky blue in 5:4:1 ratio

The decals were OK, they conform well to the panel lines, but not to the rivets, I can live with that, I was pretty skeptical about the shark mouth decals, but ended up looking and conforming surprisingly well, I used Solvaset to melt the decals onto the paint, Finished the model with a wash to pop out the details and some oil paints for the weathering. I tried to use Vallejo pigments with Matt varnish to weather the wheels...big no. At least I learned what not to do with Vallejo pigments, I made a huge mess, and was pretty hard to clean.

I know the model lacks the iron sight at the outside front of the cockpit, but I didn't know how to scratch build it without looking ugly, so I decided that my aircraft will not have any iron sight, at the end of the day is all about fun. Also, I doubt that the real aircraft at 8 thousand feet in a dive that detail will be really noticeable 😉

Hope you like it.

9 additional images. Click to enlarge.

11 responses

  1. This is an excellent Tomahawk, Rene!
    Great camo too!
    Nice results on your custom mix shades!

  2. Very sharp Tomahawk. The blackbasing really shows up well, perfectly done. Exhaust staining too.

  3. Rene, let me say that your homemade mix for the correct shades look better to my eye than some offers already bottled.
    Lovely work with the airbrush to achieve a smooth demarcation lines of the camouflage. Perhaps the chipping is a bit overdone to my taste.
    Very nice model overall, congrats

  4. A very fine looking Tomahawk, René.
    Recently finished this one myself.
    I also was skeptical about that sharkmouth decal but was surprised how well it turned out.

  5. A very nice Tomahawk! Paint work is fantastic, and since I try to use Tamiya paints whenever possible, I'll add your paint recipes to my database! (thanks for that!).

  6. Good looking Tomahawk.

  7. I'm robbing your paint mixtures.

    This is a really beautiful result. You got the absolute most from the kit, which as you said is a really nice one to start with. "Liked"

    If you want to get that last bit of decal "snuggle down," you can still do it now, if you take a #11 blade and slice the decal in several places over the area where it isn't laying down, then flood with decal solvent. It will melt down into the detail, you wash off the residue, and all is well.

  8. Very nice!
    I'm planning on building an Hurricane IIc Trop soon, so... 😉

  9. Well done, looks great!

  10. Excellent work! I just got the Airfix Spitfire XIV, and I have to say I'm impressed with their new standard. It's really close to Hasegawa quality, in my opinion. Some of the small parts have a bit of flash that needs cleaning up, and the sprue channels attached to the parts are pretty huge, but the surface detail and shape are impressive, and what test-fitting I've done looks very promising. I've been eyeing both their P-40/Tomahawk kit and their Hurricane. Seeing your build has convinced me to go order the former right now.

  11. Amazing work, looks great!

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