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Airacobra (One previous owner !)

May 17, 2022 · in Aviation · · 12 · 1.2K

Not sure if this has happened to anyone else, but I genuinely forgot that I had this kit until it 'appeared' during a stash tidying session... happy, happy modeller !

Everything you see here comes from the Profipack box with the exception of a couple of decals. The build was so straightforward - not one to rush, you need to really think it through and read-ahead - but virtually problem free until you get to the wings which are realistically thick on the leading edge but unrealistically thick on the trailing edge. It's a known issue with the kit and easily solved with the robust application of 'some modelling skills'.

After the usual primer-coat, I decided to try to achieve a heat-faded / bleached effect for the paint using the usual pre & post shading techniques and lightening the OD & NG tones (both Tamiya). I read that many of the French P-39Q's were taken from stockpiles that had been in North Africa for a few months in open storage so this is what I've tried to replicate. Weathering & leaks etc are mainly achieved with W & N oils and some MIG washes, the exhaust plume is Tamiya 'Buff', 'Red Brown' and dry-brushed oil-paint and I'm really pleased with how it came out.. would have you build the French 'option' as a late P-39Q-25 with a four-blade prop but by changing to a three-blade Q-20 and altering the side number I've employed a little artistic license (also explains the painted-over Stars'n Bars).. It may upset a purist or two, but I can live with that.

Please feel free to ask any questions, make any comments or criticisms. All the best from an Autumnal NZ.

Reader reactions:
15  Awesome

13 additional images. Click to enlarge.

12 responses

  1. Very nice indeed Ian! And beautifully weathered too! Well done for sure. ?

  2. Great looking 39! Love the contrasts and the "history" of the aircraft that the paint job holds. Always kept the Airacobra close since I built Airfix´ model many decades ago.

    • Stellan, I was only thinking about that kit yesterday as I was finishing-off this one. I remember it in the original poly-bag in my local newsagents for 0.16p in 1972'ish - I was about nine and even then just knew I'd never be able to get the nose wheel to 'sit down' !

      1 attached image. Click to enlarge.

  3. Nice work, Ian. I’m always amazed what I find in the deepest parts of the stash.

  4. Beautiful P-39 and the finish captures the 'slightly used' visual quality that could be expected for Tunisia, Algeria and Sardinia climate. Awesome work.

  5. That is razor-sharp. Very good color modulation.

  6. Excellenr model, Ian, amazing weathering!

  7. Echoing all the previous comments, Ian @ij001
    Great in every detail.

  8. Yeah, joining all the others with an echo. Very nice work and a great result. I've just had a similar experience (different kit). It's amazing what you find down on the third sub-basement level of the stash.

  9. Excellent weathering job!

  10. "Purists? We don't need no stinkin' purists!" A beautiful project - love the overpainted stars & bars, and the overall paint and weathering work looks great! Well done. (and stay true to your own modeling itches!)

  11. Thanks all for the comments, really appreciated. Already on with the next build (A Romanian 'Emil'). Once again - good to be back here on iModeler.

    1 attached image. Click to enlarge.

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