2020 – Models for August

This month has been a less productive one than most. This is because I decided to make a change and make some smaller models which, I thought, would take less time to make. I was wrong, the smaller models took more work than usual and hence more time. The first example is this tiny Stransky 1/144 Learjet 35. I thought that putting it together would take no time at all, but it turned out that getting the fit right took almost as much time as it would on a larger kit. Then there was the masking and painting which was extremely fiddly and quite stressful. The result was that this model spent a lot of time sitting on the shelf while I worked up the nerve to get back to it. If I was going to do this again I’d find a 1/72 kit which might require a bit more work but would not be quite so much of a challenge. On the other hand, this kit comes with this lovely Wards Express livery which I haven’t seen in the larger scale.
French modeller Adrien Roy has sent me three of his newly created kits of French aeroplanes from the interwar period and, of course, I could not resist starting one immediately. This 1/72 Bernard 20 is a beautiful little resin creation, finely crafted and moulded and is a real joy to put together. If I had to make a list of my favourite kits of 2020 this would definitely be towards the top of the list. If you’re looking for something a little out of the ordinary, but very pretty, I’d recommend you get this, but only if you know what you’re doing with resin. The thing that took me so long with this kit is that I worked at it very slowly for fear of making a mess of such a lovely kit. I’m a little suspicious of the colour, Roy’s model is a lot more subdued in tone than mine but, as he says, we don’t have any colour photographs of this aeroplane so I’m as likely to be right as he about the exact colour.
This new KP MiG-19S is a kit that I’ve been waiting years for. I think the MiG-19 is one of the most elegant looking of the 1950s jets and this new kit certainly portrays that look. The kit itself if fairly simple to put together and the fit part is very nice. One of the main reasons that it took me so long to complete this is that I was unsure of the way that the finished model should look and took a lot of time cruising the interweb trying to find some guidance. However, there were so many MiG-19s made and they stayed in service so long that there is a photo of this fighter in almost every finish and condition that you can imagine. This is another kit I would recommend and, unlike the Bernard 20, it was an important aeroplane historically and now that KP have released this new kit there is no excuse for you not to add one to your collection.
Here are some I made earlier. This MiG-15 is the much older KP kit that has been around for many years and had been well and truly superceded by the newer Airfix kit. As you can see from the look of this model, I was experimenting with bare metal finishes and this highly polished one didn’t turn out so well. I made this one about twelve years ago and since then I’ve settled on the range of Tamiya lacquer metalic finished that stand up to the wear and tear of modelling a lot better than this one did.
One of the reasons I like making models in constant scale is because it allows me to see the relative differences and changes that took place in aeronautical production over time. By coincidence I pulled out the KP MiG-15 just as I completed the MiG-19 and it is interesting to put them together. It would be interesting to put the MiG-17 in as well to see the progression between the earlier and the later design but I think that these couple of photos shows the similarity between the two MiGs and the advanced that took place in aeronautical design in only a few years.
It is interesting to see the BAC Lightning in comparison with the MiG-19 and see the comparisons, although the contemporary of the Lightning is really the MiG-21. This is the 1/72 Trumpeter Lightning F.6 of No 11 Squadron RAF, right at the end of its service life in 1987.
This little Dujin 1/72 SAN Jodel 140 is an example of why I am such a fan of Dujin kits. They are quite rare these days and fetch good prices on ebay but some are being re-released by a consortium under the FGMmasterdujin label. However, both those and the original Dujin kits are hard to find these days. Fortunately I have quite a few stored up for my eventual retirement.