Saturday, December 8, 2018

North American P-51B Mustang, Tamiya Kit 61042, 1/48 scale

The Kit & Build
 This venerable kit was released in 1995.  Since then it has been released in a number of guises. 

There were no fit issues aside from a minor gap between the top wing panel and the fuselage, which I took care of with Perfect Putty.  And, that fit issue may have been something I created myself.  (See photos below.)

The model is nicely detailed, but you are on your own with seatbelts.

I did not happen to have any pre-made masks available for this kit, so I went with Bare Metal self-adhesive foil.  The foil got the job done, but not as neatly as kabuki tape masks would have.  In the near future, I am going to try Tamiya tape as a mask trimming the tape on the canopy just as one does with Bare Metal foil.

The basic paints used are pictured below.

The kit decals included Captain Don Gentile’s famous “Shangri-La”;  however, I opted for Lifelike Decals “North American P-51 Mustang Pt. 4”, sheet no. 48-048.  They were thinner and more crisply printed than the kit decals.
The gap described above can be seen here.

Working with the Bare Metal foil.

The model has been primed with Tamiya "rattle can" grey surface primer.

The basic paints used.

Historical Information

The Shangri-La post-crash. (Public Domain photo)

Capt. Gentile with the Shagri-Ka.  Notice the yellow tape over the gun ports.  (Public Domain photo)

Shangri-La preparing for a flight.  (Public Domain photo)

The story of Capt. Gentile is fairly well-known.  He flew in the RAF Eagle Squadrons before the United States entered the European war and transferred to the U. S. Army Air Forces when it did.  He had two aerial victories with the RAF, and ran up a total of 19.83 aerial victories with the U. S. Army.  After his last mission, he buzzed the airfield for the benefit of the assembled press people and ended up totaling the “Shangri-La”.  A lesser pilot would have faced a court martial.  Gentile went home and sold war bonds, which was a wiser use of this fine pilot.  Tragically, Capt. Gentile died on January 28, 1951 when he crashed in a P-80 Shooting Star on a routine flight.  He was only 30 years old.  (This information is from Wikipedia.)

 As always, thank you for visiting my blog.  Comments are always welcome.

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