February 2019




This is my first real build of 2019 and I am very pleased with it. Some late Matchbox kits are real gems and this is one of them.  I picked this up for a very reasonable price at Telford in November last year and although its decals were showing their age, it has been a very satisfying build .


This is a Vickers Wellesley of 14 Sqn based at RAF Amman, Transjordan in 1938.

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December 2018


HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH First of Class Flying Trials -  FLY NAVY


One of the very few bits of good news this year has been the incredibly successful completion in November of parts 1 and 2 of First of Class F-35B Flying Trials onboard HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH, off the eastern seaboard of the United States; fixed wing fast jets have returned to the Royal Navy in spectacular style.


As well as the first ever landings on QNLZ, undertaken by Royal Navy pilot Cdr Nathan Gray and RAF pilot Sqn Ldr Andy Edgell, the trials also included for the first time ever, an automated Shipborne Rolling Vertical Landing (SRVL), this time by BAE Systems pilot Peter Wilson, a maneouvre that will be essential to allow the F-35B to return onboard with unexpended ammuniiton.


To celebrate this historic event, I have built another F-35B, using the Fujimi kit, in speculative operational RN markings (never say never) and updated my build from last year celebrating the first departure of QNLZ from Rosyth. My first model now includes the commemorative tail badge worn by the F-35B Integrated Test Force (ITF) aircraft and pilots.


….and on that deliberately upbeat note, 2018 ends for me. My best wishes to all and see you next year!  


January 2019


Happy New Year!


Christmas was somewhat shorter and busier than expected, with little time for modelling, so I start the year with two modest small builds of AFVs, using Matador resin kits purchased at Telford last year.


First up is the widely used FV721 Fox CVR(W), the British Army’s replacement for the Saladin armoured car.




Then to follow, the final mark of the long lived and successful Ferret scout car family, the large wheeled, Swingfire armed, Daimler FV712 Ferret Mk 5.

March 2019





This one is really a litle disappointing. It’s the very crude Leoman kit of a Sukhoi Su-9B  Fishpot B of the Soviet Air Defences (PVO) in the 1960s to early 1970s.


Not recommended as a kit, but it has kept me busy for a few weeks and fills a gap in the collection!

April 2019





This month I have been working on a rather longer term project; its not quite ready, but I have included a few progress photos to whet the appetite.


In the meantime , I have done a few repairs to an older build, an Italeri Chinook whose rotors were sagging and breaking under the weight of time!

May 2019





Finished at last.  This has been a little bit more difficult than anticipated, mainly because of the white paint scheme and those infuriating yellow stripes!  


This is the Matchbox HS125 converted to the Sea Harrier FA2 Blue Vixen Radar Trials aircraft .

Jun 2019





Something different  this month, arising from a visit by Mrs T and myself to a most enjoyable Star Wars event at Disneyland Paris.


So it’s a bit of a Star Wars Fest, featuring a 1/72 Bandai X-Wing Fighter!

Jul 2019





This year marks 60 years since the SikorskySea King’s first flight and 50 years since the first flight of a Westland Sea King (for the RN).  As a warm-up before I attempt  another RN variant, here is an RAF Search & Rescue HAR.3 from RAF Lossiemouth, based on the Fujimi kit. This kit had a fairly major part missing that required some innovation.

Aug 2019


Houston, this is Tranquility Base, the Eagle has landed….



It really is incredible to think that 20 July 2019 marked 50 yrs since the Apollo 11 Moon Landings, an event that I clearly remember (although I was only 7 yrs old) and which had a major influence on my life.  I bought this kit a few years back when it was released for the 2009 40th Anniversary. Now seems to be the right time to build it - the Airfix 1/72nd Lunar Module “Eagle”.   By all accounts the Airfix kit remains one of the most accurate representations of this iconic craft.

Sep 2019


Westland Sea King 50 Years



Following on from my RAF Rescue Sea King build 2 months ago,  my August build is a more representative early UK Sea King, in the form of a fully armed RN HAS.1 of 819 Sqn at RNAS Prestwick in 1977, based on the Fujimi kit.  First flying in 1969, the seven different marks of Westland Sea King in UK Service were truly iconic Cold War aircraft.

Oct 2019





One of the highlights of this year’s Yeovilton RN Air Show was the appearance of a futuristic looking Italian Navy P.180 Avanti liaison arcraft.  Looking like something from the design studios of Gerry Anderson and Thunderbirds, this is the AModel kit built as provided in the box!  

November 2019


          


Two Vietnam-era  builds this month, covering an early and a late variant of the A-4 Douglas Skyhawk, which bore the brunt of early US Navy operations in South East Asia.


First up is the Hasegawa/FROG kit (1969 mould - 1999 issue), that I have built several times before, but this time in late USN Markings of an A-4F of VA-55 Warhorses, based onboard USS HANCOCK on Yankee Station in the early 1970s.



Then an earlier “Scooter” from the same conflict, this time using the newer (2012 mould - 2019 issue) Airfix kit  for an A-4B of VA15 Valions, of USS INTREPID  in the late 1960s.  


This aircraft bears many mission markings, plus the well known “Tonkin Gulf Yacht Club” badge that was applied to 7th Fleet  aircraft. As the CAG aircraft, it bore the side number “00” instead of what should have been 300, and was known rather irreverently as the “double nuts”.