When Accurate Miniatures arrived on the modeling scene it definitely set a high-standard, and their Mustang series is a good example of this quality. They covered the Allison engine Mustangs, in several variants, which were welcome additions to kit builders. I picked up a couple of the Mk.1A releases as similar types were flown by RCAF squadrons. Unfortunately Accurate Miniatures is no more, however their molds have resurfaced under a number of kit manufactures. (Academy got some of the AM Mustang molds for example and rereleased them as late as 2020, so they still can be had.)
Notable Kit Features:
Paint colour reference provided as Federal Standard plus 7 other paint manufactures products
Very finely scribed panel lines and surface detail, including rivets
Well detailed cockpit with separate sidewalls
Instrument panel is clear with decals provided for instruments or you can paint and dry-brush the dials
Radio and reconnaissance camera equipment included
Nice air scoops with decent recesses
Weighted and un-weighted tires with fine diamond tread supplied
Standard and Malcolm canopies provided
Nicely detailed 20mm guns (although I didn't use them in my build)
As I mentioned the RCAF flew this version of Mustang... or sort of, as the aircraft typically flown by RCAF Squadrons were the Mk.1 type. This type differed externally in its armament as it had a couple of .50 caliber Brownings in the nose as well as a mix of .50 and .30 caliber guns in the wings (as opposed to the 4 x 20 mm wing armament of the Mk.1A versions).
I sourced the 414 Squadron Mustang decals as well as the Ultracast Mk.1 conversion set and was ready to go with my build of George Burroughs, Mustang of 414 Squadron, RCAF circa June 1944.
This kit is prior to AM getting quite good at their pictorial instructions although the written instructions are still quite comprehensive.
You may want to consider the more traditional route of gluing the nose to fuselage sections together prior to joining the left and right sides of the fuselage
Kit canopy designed to be closed (After-market options are available)
Kit Additions / Modifications:
I had to do some surgery on this kit in order to get the aircraft I wanted however the Ultracast parts and instructions were top notch to get the job done without much trouble. The conversion set provides nicely cast wing guns (with a good depiction of the barrel ends) as well as the nose insert and nicely detailed gun barrels for the cheek guns. As a finishing touch, replacement Curtiss Electric propeller blades are also provided.
Arrow Graphics Mustang Mk.1 decals (D-45-48)
Ultracast Mk.1 Mustang conversion set. (https://www.ultracast.ca/product-p/ult48031.htm)
The paint scheme for this aircraft was the typical RAF scheme of Dark Green and Ocean Gray upper surfaces with Medium Sea Gray undersides. This aircraft had a RAF Sky spinner and tail band as well as D-Day stripes at this stage in the war. Photo indications were that the Dark Green on the rudder and nose were darker as a result of a more recent overpaint so I tried to replicate that detail as well (which is difficult to see in these photos).
I am pretty happy with the results of this build and have another one in the stash for a future project... a true model maker is always planning the next build... or builds... and sometimes that can even get out of hand with a bigger stash than build ratio! (Not me, I mean SOME people ;)
The After-Build Report:
This kit (or the whole Accurate Miniatures Mustang Series for that matter) is definitely recommended. There are lots of Mustang kits to select from and the Tamiya one is also a winner (if your are looking for a Merlin version) however for an Allison version this kit is hard to beat. I have often seen this model at very reasonable prices and have developed a bit of a stash of the AM Mustangs as a result. Give this one a try if you come across it and your budget allows another Mustang.
Happy D-Day to you. 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