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'A gaping silken dragon,/Puffed by the wind, suffices us for God./We, not the City, are the Empire's soul:/A rotten tree lives only in its rind.'

Sunday, 1 February 2015



How is it possible? How can one have been sticking bits of plastic together for nigh on five decades and yet still be making basic blunders? How ?! How?!!

A while ago, I began the Vickers Wellesley by Valom, and, despite the short-run issues associated with Valom's output, I was rather looking forward to this kit bash. Partly because the Wellesley was such an unusual aircraft, partly because Air Pictorial ran a very long series, 'East Africa Air War', by Christopher Shore and Corrado Ricci, in the mid-1980s. I had greatly enjoyed Shore and Ricci's articles, which were profusely illustrated with photos of British and Italian types - such as the Wellesley, Hawker Furies, CR-32s, Vickers Vincents, Ro.37s, Ca. 133s - that saw little, or no, service elsewhere in the war. So, in my kit-bashing mind's eye, I was happily making a Wellesley from one of the three RAF squadrons based in the Sudan in 1940. Of course bits of the kit were tricky, like the etched fragments for the engine:

That's a match head on the left, for scale, and the tiny bits of photo-etch were rather annoying to fit, but I gladly went along. And, in any case, with the wings and tail on:

it was beginning to look rather good.

tragedeeee! The two bits of plastic to the right are the correct parts for an East African war cowling. Fine. Only they don't fit the fuselage. Why? Because. I. Chose. The. Wrong. Bl**dy. Fuselage!!! How!? I was aware that Valom had already produced earlier Wellesley versions, and that two fuselages were in this boxing, but I still ended up with the wrong one! The only excuse I have, and it's a thin one, is that the parts are not numbered on the sprues, and there is a lack of clarity in the instruction drawings. But, at my age? How?!

Well, I'm off to eat a pie now, so I don't care!


  1. Depending on how heavily welded together all the parts are, is it possible to transfer the innards to the correct fuselage?

    If you don't feel up to it I could have a go...

    1. Kind offer, but now you know how I welded the thing together...

  2. Mmmmm Pie!

    Good outcome then Stephen!

    1. Absolutely first rate pie, in fact. Don't know if you get the in your neck of the wods, but they are TASTY - go by the name of 'Pukka Pies'. Sound.

  3. I could say "Serves you right for building hairy planes, now be a man and BUILD SOME TANKS!!!", but that would be unkind. I do hear your pain though...

    Cheers, Dave

    1. Dave, you're probably right. That sort of thing on a tanky type kit could have been disguised by a cammo net, or a bit of stuck on bush. I'll have to look out a rattly thing, Lord knows, I've got plenty in my stash.