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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.'

Saturday, 20 February 2016


... from ignominy.

Have I spelt that correctly? Which reminds me of the original bit of  Dad's Army's repartee from the very early days when the boys are joining up:

Mainwaring: 'Occupation?'
Fraser: 'I own a philatelist's shop.'
Mainwaring: 'How do you spell that?'
Fraser: 'S. H.O.P. Shop'.

Now, back to business.  Those of you who have been paying attention will know that some months ago, I began the very simple task of kit-bashing the old Airfix 'snap-together' Me Bf109 G-6. The idea being to add another aircraft to my small, late war Italian, Aeronautica Nazionale Repubblicana (ANR) collection. Surely there could be no problems for a kit basher of decades? Mmm, well, apart from the rather basic nature of the cockpit, which was remedied with one of Yahu's quite marvellous 1/72 instrument panels, it should have been a piece of carrot cake.  But.  But, I didn't wash the parts, so when it came to removing the masks, the paint came off in strips. Then I left the masks on the canopy for too long, and the tape welded itself to the 'clear' plastic. Then I broke off the tail wheel. At that point, I did something I have never done before, I gave the thing up, and left if to gather dust in the shed.

But, I just couldn't leave it. Even though I moved onto British bi-plane bombers and German jets, while waiting for lumbering Whitleys.  So, chastened, I brought the 109 in from the cold:

Above, after I'd started to rub down the damaged paint  job.

Primed, again, looking a bit better.

Basics done. I can never get the German 'graus' right, even when, supposedly, using top stuff - here, Xtracrylics. I mixed the hellgrau, but ended up with too much hell and not enough grau.

And, above, as it looks at the moment. The markings come from a 20-25 year old set ('Blue Rider' perhaps), and I've already used up all the stencils, so it's just the basics, but as they incorporate a nice combination of wing fasces, fuselage balkenkreuz, tricolour and blue chevron, it looks quite neat. All that's needed is some washes, a bit of weathering, aerial, and matt varnish.

Above is a photo of the original (including DF loop - not on my version!) from the excellent tome by Nick Beale et al.

All that has rather re-whetted my appetite for Me109s - especially as I have a very, very unusual one sitting in its box. One that does not require mottling.  But, on the other hand, there is the He floatplane waiting, all clean and ready to go; not to mention the Whitley, which could, just could, be on the way... (especially now Hornby have sacked their CEO).


  1. Replies
    1. My thanks! Actually, after the few finishing touches, it looks ok on the shelf. Glad my eyesight is poor!

  2. Very nice. (Please read that in an outrageous Italian accent, ala 'Allo 'Allo.)

    1. Hee hee. I wore my ice-creamo ear defenders to read that!

  3. Excellent recovery Stephen. Model on!

    1. Cheers! I'm going to have to pick up on the modelling front - I'm bloody ashamed at how little I get done.

  4. Well, she looks more than nice enough, perhaps the time she spent in the shed reflecting on just how unhelpful she had been did the job. Perhaps all kits should be shed bound for a while for a period of proactive reflective mindfulness before bashing commences. Tail wheels are only included in kits in order to push every basher into a negative spiral of misery, frustration and self harming despair. Have just read the build review of the Whitley in SAMI, very positive and a lovely finished model.

    1. Now, that's a thought. 'It's the shed for you, you
      unco-operative swine!'


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