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Supermarine Batfire Mk. I

While the whole world was embroiled in the dark days of WWII, in Gotham City a battle still raged for the soul of the Metropolis. Bruce Wayne had the resources to battle the endless parade of archvillains, but how to best use his wealth? Only the best aircraft in the world would do - the iconic , modified to his specifications. The sharklike lines of the classic fighter drew his eye immediately, and with simple scalloping of the wings and tailplanes - voila, the Batfire. Bruce Wayne had the best aeronautical engineers in Gotham, but I had to use a Dremel.

(Rivet counters will complain that the Batfire I had inboard cannons, so technically it's a Batfire 1a.)

First got the idea when I built the Italeri Spit VII, ( https://imodeler.com/2020/04/spitfire-hf-vii-by-italeri-in-1-72/ ) with the extended, pointy, high altitude wings. Thought it looked kind of...batlike. Didn't have another HF type kit I wanted to sacrifice, but the one Spit XVI I had already built ( https://imodeler.com/2020/04/magnestand/ ) came cheap from a model show with a complete second kit in the box - I had my victim for some serious modeling crime. The Heller kit has clipped wings, so I extended them with a random find of floatplane fairings from the spares box. Then it was literally just a matter of Dremelling away. Paint was some weird brand of model car paint called Boyd (that still hasn't properly dried) but it did have that suitable metallic sparkly black look. Decals were Testors print your own for the bat logos and the prop blur. I used an old Supermodel stand with a ceramic magnet on top to attached to a metal bolt inside the plane. ( https://imodeler.com/2020/04/magnestand/ ).

Don't look too close - it's a bit of a sloppy build because I rushed it a bit to get it done in time for HeritageCon last weekend. (And it is a cartoon, after all). Let's just say it wasn't meant to be a contest winner, just a light-hearted piece for the amusement of the attendees.

While the batplane idea came to me independently, based on the lines of the XVI, I googled to see if there were any other modelers with similarly deranged ideas, and sure enough, while there are actual true batplane models available, ( https://retrokitonline.net/product/batplane-1941) here's a great job someone did with a P-40: https://www.aircraftresourcecenter.com/Gal9/8301-8400/gal8321-Batplane-Alvis/00.shtm and http://ourworlds.net/gallery/index.php/Batplane-1940?page=1

Of course, 's planes have kept up with progress through the decades, including a very F-104 Starfighter-like version, if anyone wants to tackle that. You can read about Batplanes here: http://www.ourworlds.net/batman/batplane/history-batplane.html

In my "" Batplane world, the logical choice for Batman's first post war venture into the jet age? Of course, the De Havilland Vampire.

Happy modeling everybody, and keep sniffing the glue!

5 additional images. Click to enlarge.


16 responses

  1. This is a great addition to the existing equipment of Batman, Aldo @aldog
    Nice modification of the wings and stabilizers.
    Well thought what-iffer and great result.

  2. How fun! Nicely done!

  3. Love it, Aldo!
    Looks gorgeous and I am sure you had great fun building it!
    What more to ask for?

  4. Good looking Bat Plane Aldo, and appears you had some fun building her. That's what hobbies are about, fun.

  5. Thanks Tom. Now it's back to reality (although my wife doesn't view models as reality). Cheers.

  6. Looks like a fun build...Nice job!

  7. Nice to see the display, Aldo.
    Joker and Penguin will need to up their game if Batman has a Spitfire.
    That F-4 Batplane V has me thinking...

  8. Hey George:
    Sounds like the start of a group build. Which planes would work for which superhero/supervillan? I could see the Joker in a Brewster Buffalo...

  9. Holy imagination! looks great! Did you say f-4 Batplane...

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