1/48 HP Halifax BIII – Fonderie Miniature
This build has been on and off (more off than on to be fair) the bench for the last 7 years! It finally crossed the finish line earlier this week and thank Christ for that!
Fonderie kits have a poor reputation but when I first bought this and fellow modellers imparted their horror stores I didn't think it could be that bad. I was wrong. It was worse. It didn't look too bad in the box to be fair - lots of flash but nothing a good clean up with a new blade and a sanding stick couldn't put right. It was when I started building the thing that the true horrors emerged. The fuselage was badly warped, the interior parts simply didn't fit, wings were different thicknesses, one stabiliser was positioned higher on the fuselage than the other, the vacformed canopy and tail turret were hopelessly inaccurate and not worth using, the rear fuselage had the turret faring missing and it was too narrow, props were completely the wrong shape, most white metal parts, including the undercarriage legs, were badly warped and mis-shaped, dropped flaps fouled the bomb bay doors and the decals, probably due to age, had yellowed and broke up when I tested them in water. In short, it was a nightmare and was a resident on the Shelf of Doom for long periods as I plucked up the courage to do some more work to it. 7 years later and it was finally done.
Work completed is summarised here:
- Interior mostly made from scratch
- Scratch-built bomb-bay and wing bomb cells
- Bomb load from the Tamiya Lancaster
- New vacformed canopy
- Rear fuselage widened and new turret fairings made
- Sanger vac rear turret transparency used
- Prop blades slimmed down and rounded (I'm still not happy with the shape!)
- 100 Group aerials added
- Xtracolor enamels
- DK decals
Anyway, it was fun I suppose and she's not come out too badly. My model represents Handley Page Halifax B Mk III MZ913, Z5-N of 462 Squadron RAAF, Foulsham (100 Group), April 1945.
All the best,