Tamiya P-38F MTO, USAAF 1/48th Tunisia 1943
To say that the Tamiya P-38 was a joy to build is an understatement. Having built the Academy and Hasegawa Lightning's which are good models of the P-38, just that Tamiya had really taken a rather complicated twin boom air frame and made it as simple to build as their other kits to date.
I was intending to build either the Bat out of Hell or Texas Terror schemes, but there are few of these around already so I decided to something a bit more simpler and seldom built scheme of a P-38F, The Tangerine flown by Lt Ervin C. Ethell in the winter time frame in Tunisia, 1943. The 14th Fighter Group, 48th Fighter Squadron, tasked to escort B-25;s and B-24's, close support, anti shipping missions through the Med theater of Operations. This is the first Tangerine, however it was lost as his wingman used it on a mission that he did not return from. There is a P-38J in Oregon on display with the Tangerine markings though Ethell was assigned a new P-38, and he had that aircraft decorated as well as Tangerine II.
The kit as stated was a great joy to build, as others have already built it has stated it is so true. Everything just clicks in place from cockpit to the final details. Tamiya provides some extras as well. The cockpit from the kit is excellent but I did use for the first time the Quinta Studios cockpit set and it is so easy to use and apply and really enhances an already well detailed cockpit. The decal sheet also supplies nice stenciling and details to add to the airframe as well. The scheme is Mission Models Olive Drab, Gunze Neutral Grey lower surfaces. Interior is a mix of Interior Green and Yellow Zinc Chromate. Though Dull Dark Green would've been ok to use as well. The Od top surfaces have a mix of different shades of OD to show wear and repaints of panels, a wash to show leaks and fuel stains, Deck Tan was used for the distinctive exhaust stains along the top of the tail booms that extended far into vertical tails. One little note is that somehow the LH side scoop must have fallen off the boom over the main gear. This the first of many P-38's, so far having 4 built, 2 Academy's one Hase and this one Tam P-38, I have the H kit and the soon the Tamiya P-38J/L kit. A recommend this kit for all age groups it is a great kit to build for all skill levels.
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