Quick update – 1/72nd Airfix builds

Sorry, not been posting for a while, been busy with other projects that had to take priority over my model making.

Amyway, just have 2 aviation related model projects on the go. The Airfix 1/72nd Folland Gnat which will be finished as a Yellow Jacks aircraft (slowly building up my RAF aerobatic collection). The other is a non-Cold War aircraft, and it is the Airfix 1/72nd Supermarine Spitfire Mk1a, I quite like taking a dip out off the Cold War builds as a break.

Surprising how small the Folland Gnat is compared to the Spitfire.

Anyway, will post some updates when I get the opportunity, still have lots of non model maing projects to work on.

So a week or so later and I’ve managed to move on with both builds. With the Gnat, I have used Vallejo 71.408 PRU pink as a 2nd undercoat (over Vallejo Grey Primer) and then spraying the yellow, in this case Tamiya XF-3 Flat Yellow.

The reason I did this, is that yellow can be a pain to paint, as it is very transparent, so the pink gives it a better base coat. As you can see from the photos, did the job quite well.

As for the Spifire, that build is going really well. I have now airbrushed the model, very happy with the finish of the paint, but ohh that camouflage scheme, not right. As this is my third attempt at airbrushing a camouflage scheme, I’m going to take it.

The method I used was to use blue-tak snakes to mark out the edges of the camo scheme, and then in fill with masking tape. Much harder than it looks to get those snakes to curve and stay in place.

Airfix 1/72 Spitfire PR.XIX (A02017A) finished as a Swedish S.31 Spitfire

Spitfire S.31, 3 Division Flottilj 11, Flygvapnet, Nyköping, Sweden, 1949

Not sure when I picked this kit up, but it’s been sat in my stash, and I obvioulsy got it because it fits in the Cold War period.

Built straight out of the box, only addition was some masking tape cut to represent seat belts in the cockpit. At this scale and size of model, adding detail to the cockpit seemed a bit irrelevant.

Step 1 prime the insode areas, such as the cockpit, wheel wells etc., and then give them a coat of Hataka A025 Interior Grey-Green. I hand painted the cockpit details with various paints to hand.
Gluing the main components together, including the transparent areas where the cameras would be located in the real aircraft. Usual use of tape and pegs to hold the parts together while the glue sets.
Seam line and gaps filled and sanded. Small areas I use Vallejo Plastic Putty, which is ideal as it can be smoothed as soon asit is applied. For larger gaps, such as the wing roots, I use standard yellow-grey milliput. Once sanding and filling is completed, a black paint is applied to see if further work is required.
Canopy masked using Tamiya masking tapes and attached to the kit with PVA glue.
Kit primed with Halfords grey metal primer paint. I was too keen to get the primer on, that I had forgotten to mask the side camera window. I then attempted to remove the primer, but pushed the window into the body of the fuselage. I did mask the two underside transparencies, I used Vallejo Liquid Mask.
With this kit, I decided to have a go at pre-shading. Lucky for me,, pre-shading does not have to be very accurate, as my airbrush skills are not up to precise work as yet.
The underside pre-shaded.
As this is a photo reconnaissance aircraft, it has a nice simple paint scheme. The paint used is Vallejo 71.109 Faded P>R>U> Blue. The pre-shading adds a nice subtle effect.
The underneath, wheel wells masked with blue-tak.
Jumping ahead, model given a coat of gloss varnish then decals applied. I used Micro Sol to set the decals, but I really need to use uch more than I do, as they don’t always settle in to the panel lines. A second coat of varnish is applied to seal the decals. I also did a very subtle exhaust stain using some pastel chalk from a cheap set of artist pastels.

The finished kit


During this build I used a number of products, that you also may find useful. To start with, fillers are something every model maker requires, and the 2 that I find the best are Vallejo Plastic Putty and Standard Milliput Yellow-Grey.

For masking I use Tamiya 10mm tape and Tamiya 3mm tape plus when reuired standard decorating tape. I always, well nearly always, take some of the stickiness from the tape by sticking it to my trousers before applying to the models painted surface. Another masking product that I used on this kit was the Vallejo Liquid Mask, which worked very well.

The P.R.U. Blue was Vallejo 71.109 Faded P.R.U. Blue, which sprayed quite well. The interior green was from the Hataka RAF in Africa acrylic paint set (AS08). I’ve had mixed results when spraying Hataka paints, but that may be more down to my ineperience.