Saturday, August 13, 2016

Spacecraft vol.7: IRBM PGM-17 Thor

IRBM Thor Missile in White Sands
Glencoe models
US$24,00 plus shipping
Injected plastic model with  waterslide decals.
This is a new release from Glencoe models that did not receive much attention from the modelling community. It is the Thor missile with a launch pad. The original molds are from Adams Models and were released in 1958. Considering the age, they look nice inside the box. The scale is 1/87 (HO scale for the train modelers) witch is probably why most people did not get interested in the kit. A launch pad is provided and it is basically the same you will see on the Vanguard kit. The box art is the same as the Adams original release. New decals were added with more detail then modelers got in 1958.
My sample came with injection problems on the fins and on one side of the fuselage (pictures). These problems were not too hard to solve and i will give a go to this one very soon.
The missile is very easy to assemble. With less then 10 parts, the major problem was the small fault on the injection process. The base is more complex but fit is very good considering the fact that the molds are now almost sixty years old. Everything was painted with tamiya acrylics. The decals were wel printed but did not perform very well, I used future floor polisher to get them to stick to the model. Overall, this is a nice kit with impressive size and good detail. 

Friday, August 12, 2016

Aircraft walkaround vol.69: Martin B26 Marauder

Subject: Martin B-26 Marauder
Location: Dreams of Flight museum, Orlando, EUA, 2013; USAF Museum, Dayton, Ohio, USA, 2014.
Comments:The Martin B-26 Marauder was a World War II twin-engined medium bomber built by the Glenn L. Martin Company from 1941 to 1945. First used in the Pacific Theater in early 1942, it was also used in the Mediterranean Theater and in Western EuropeAfter entering service with the US Army, the aircraft received the reputation of a "Widowmaker" due to the early models' high accident rate during takeoffs and landings. The Marauder had to be flown at exact airspeeds, particularly on final runway approach and when one engine was out. The 150 mph (241 km/h) speed on short final runway approach was intimidating to pilots who were used to much slower speeds, and whenever they slowed down to speeds below what the manual stated, the aircraft would stall and crash. The B-26 became a safer aircraft once crews were re-trained, and after aerodynamics modifications (an increase of wingspan and wing angle-of-incidence to give better takeoff performance, and a larger vertical stabilizer and rudder). After aerodynamic and design changes, the aircraft distinguished itself as "the chief bombardment weapon on the Western Front" according to a United States Army Air Forces dispatch from 1946. The Marauder ended World War II with the lowest loss rate of any USAAF bomber. A total of 5,288 were produced between February 1941 and March 1945; 522 of these were flown by the Royal Air Force and the South African Air Force. By the time the United States Air Force was created as an independent service separate from the Army in 1947, all Martin B-26s had been retired from US service. TheDouglas A-26 Invader then assumed the B-26 designation — before officially returning to the earlier "A for Attack" designation in May 1966. (source: Wikipedia)

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Cockpit Walkaround vol.4: Boeing B-17G Flying Fortress

Subject: Boeing B-17G Flying Fortress
Location: Dreams of Flight, Orlando (Florida) 2013
Comments: This B17G was on display at Dreams of Flight Museum, near Orlando with a nice tour inside the cockpit, bomb bay and tail area. Although mot entirely accurate, the pictures show some interesting  interior details that complement the B-17 walkaround published before.


Saturday, August 6, 2016

Aircraft Walkaround vol.42: Boeing B17G Flying Fortress (UPDATED)

Subject:  Boeing B17G Flying Fortress
Location: RAF Museum, Hendon, London, UK, 2013; Dreams of flight museum, Orlando, USA, 2013; and USAF Museum, Dayton, Ohio, USA, 2014.
Comments: The B17 was nicknamed the "Flying Fortress" because it was heavily armed and could survive, and inflict, heavy damage. This aircraft was the primary bomber of the U.S. Eighth Air Force in the last years of World War Two. Formations of over 850 US bombers flew over Europe in the daytime, while RAF Bomber Command carried on the night offensive. The B17, together with the B24 Liberator, bore the brunt of American daylight strategic bombing in the European theatre during World War Two. In 1934 the United States Army Air Corps outlined its requirements for an off-shore anti-shipping bomber. A year later the prototype took to the air. In 1940, twenty early production B17s were released to the RAF. This enabled them to be evaluated under operational conditions, but this early introduction into service was not a success. Following an extensive redesign, to increase armour and armament, new versions were introduced and were widely used by the Americans, both in Europe and the Pacific. A further modification program, this time to improve the bomber's ability to repel air attacks from the front, produced the B17G with its twin-gun 'chin' turret. At the height of production, Boeing's Seattle plant alone produced a completed aircraft every ninety minutes. A total of 12731 Fortresses were manufactured of which just over two-hundred were supplied to the RAF.The USAF Museum B-17G was assigned to the 91st Bomb Group -- "The Ragged Irregulars" -- and based at Bassingbourn, England. There its crew named it Shoo Shoo Shoo Baby, after a popular song. It flew 24 combat missions in WWII, receiving flak damage seven times. Its first mission (Frankfurt, Germany) was on March 24, 1944, and last mission (Posen, Poland) on May 29, 1944, when engine problems forced a landing in neutral Sweden where the airplane and crew were interned.  In 1968 Shoo Shoo Shoo Baby was found abandoned in France, and the French government presented the airplane to the U.S. Air Force. In July 1978 the 512th Military Airlift Wing moved it to Dover Air Force Base, Del., for restoration by the volunteers of the 512th Antique Restoration Group. After a massive 10-year job of restoration to flying condition, the aircraft was flown to the museum in October 1988.The RAF Museum B17G finished its flying career as a fire-fighting water bomber in California and flew across the Atlantic to the Museum in 1983. (ref RAF Museum and USAF Museum websites).