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City of Winnipeg: 1/48th Airfix Spitfire Mk.V (1977 Version)

Note this kit is the original 1977 release by Airfix which has since been completely replaced by their recent (2014) release. The new release benefits from advances made in injection molding and is receiving quite favourable reviews, so we won't spend too long on the details of this "Last Year's Model" version.


Notable Kit Features:


  • Good overall shape

  • Combination of engraved and raised panel lines

  • Inexpensive



Build Inspiration:


This would be an early venture into establishing a collection of aircraft flown by Canadian pilots. Typically this would mean sourcing rare Canadian after-market decals or scrounging together something to produce the necessary markings. In this case I managed to obtain third-party decals for a Spitfire flown in RCAF 402 Squadron by Geoffrey Wilson Northcott who was from Rapid City, Manitoba. He is shown in the photo below (left) with Lloyd Chadburn (one of the youngest Squadron Leaders in the RCAF at the age of 21)



Heads-Up Report:


  • Flash and sink marks were all over my example so much clean-up and repair of parts was necessary

  • Generally thick parts

  • Panel lines are heavy (where they exist)

  • Fit between fuselage and wing is problematic and will take sanding and filler especially at the underside rearward join and the wing roots

  • Cockpit glass is one piece and quite thick (distorted - best replaced)

  • Spinner is incorrect shape for type (although the general aircraft shape is good)



Kit Additions / Modifications:


  • Added seatbelts to pilot seat

  • Sanded off raised panel lines

  • Thinned trailing edges a bit

  • Thinned antenna

  • Kit markings replaced with after-market decals


End Result:


I painted this aircraft in the standard RAF finish at the time of Dark Green / Ocean Gray upper over Medium Sea Gray lower surfaces. individual paint colours were masked off and I spray painted the fuselage band as well (by this point, I had figured out that was usually best). I was still using oil based paints (probably painted using the Model Master line) and did not do any weathering as I was building "Museum" examples at this time.



The After-Build Report:


This kit is now too old to recommend as many other kits have eclipsed it by now. My "Go-To" 1/48th scale Spitfire Mk.V became the Tamiya version for its simplicity, nice details and ease of build, however other Mk.V kits have arrived since including the new Airfix kit which is getting good reviews (although some complaints of an overly complex build.) Either way you won't be building this kit if you have a choice. Did I mention Eduard..?



Completed build #61 - September 2003 using the 1/48th scale Airfix #4100 kit.


Feel free to comment or ask any questions - Keep on building, gain experience, challenge yourself if you like, but try not to stress yourself out over the build - it is suppose to be an enjoyable hobby after all - Cheers


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