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Smeg's Hawker Hurricane Mk I

Posted: Wed Nov 25, 2015 14:08
by smeg1959
OK, so I finished the 88, am well on the way with the 109 and … eh … chickened out with the Battle. Well, I do want to add a third item to the Black/Night GB list and that item is Ian “Widge” Gleed’s all-black Hurricane Mk I, serial P2798. In the close-up, you can see his personal emblem, a cartoon cat named Figaro ripping a back-to-front swastika to shreds.

Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF.jpg
Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed Figaro.jpg

The decision to build this was made easier by having two pairs of Sweet Hurricanes in the stash, a kit that our highly respected forum member and master modeller Roberto Masukawa once described as “… the best 1/144 kit on the market”. Not sure whether that's quite the case, but it's pretty damned good and so, following the trials of dealing with Minicraft and Zvezda, you can see why I've headed this way, can’t you? ;)

One of my Sweet boxings contained two kits of the Mk I with decals for several Hurricane aces, including Gleed.

Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF GB-01.jpg
Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF GB-02.jpg
Sweet Hurricane Mk I Aces (1of2).pdf
(3 MiB) Downloaded 251 times
Sweet Hurricane Mk I Aces (2of2).pdf
(3.17 MiB) Downloaded 253 times

In keeping with early Sweet releases, one kit is moulded in a pale grey plastic, the other in clear plastic. Not quite sure why, as I've never seen someone do a "see-through" completion of one of these kits, though I'm sure some whiz will be tempted. Interestingly, there are two canopies and four clear landing light covers on the clear sprue and, predictably, the same are replicated on the grey sprue, too. I have seen the latter with windows painted black on completions used for wargaming ... seems a waste to me but each to their own.

As you can see on page 2 of the Destructions, all of the paint schemes in the kit follow the standard RAF Dark Earth/Dark Green/Sky Type S combination. However, following the Battle of Britain, Gleed's 87 Squadron was for a time assigned to nightfighter duties. In line with common RAF practice, this necessitated repainting the aircraft night black, often accompanied by a dull red or blue spinner. Serial letters initially remained sky; it wasn't until later that most aircraft deployed in after dark roles got their characteristic dull red serials. As Squadron Leader, Gleed got to add a little extra to his Hurricane in the way of additional dull red patterning on the engine cowling itself.

Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF Profile.jpg

Note the rudder, clearly a replacement from a day fighter with its Dark Earth/Dark Green camo still in place. Later profiles of the same aircraft show the rudder in black, complete with large Wing Commander stripes, the rank Gleed was promoted to in November 1941. Gleed shot down 20 enemy aircraft. He was killed in action on 16 April 1943, aged just 26. A restored Hurricane that used to fly at airshows in the UK was painted thus. Sadly, at the Shoreham Airshow in 2007, the aircraft crashed, killing the pilot. I suspect this video depicts the said Hurricane prior to the accident. In a terrible coincidence, another Hawker aircraft, a restored Hunter T7 flying at the same event earlier this year crashed onto the nearby A27, killing 11 people.

A close inspection of the Sweet decal sheet showed that, with the exception of the WingCo's stripes (which I'm sure I can create if I so choose to model the later scheme), all other markings were present and correct, including little Figaro. Oddly enough, whilst the decal sheet has all of the various personal emblems of the five aces represented, the instruction sheet only shows positioning for two, one on Clowes aircraft, the other on Stanford-Tucks' plane. With all in place, my build commenced and I can concur with others who've raved about Sweet kits ... the surface detailing is beautiful and the fit of parts an absolute delight.

Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF GB-04.jpg

Filler? What's that? Oh, I know ... it's the stuff you use bucketloads of for kits from Minicraft, Amodel, etc. Now I will need to create a cockpit floor and control column; early Sweet kits only included the seat moulded integrally into each fuselage half. Easy enough.

Just before I bid all adieu (it's after 1am and I've got a job to go to in the morning), some clued-up members might recall that F-Toys did an all-black Hurricane with the serial LK-A in its Wing Kit Collection 9 ...

Hawker Hurricane Mk IIc BE500.JPG
Hawker Hurricane Mk IIc BE500.JPG (8.06 KiB) Viewed 6761 times

OK, this is NOT the same plane. For starters, it is a Mk IIc and not a Mk I. Secondly, Gleed's mount was P2798 (not visible on his aircraft); the F-Toys' replica is coded BE500. Thirdly, the Mk IIc was flown by Squadron Leader Dennis Smallwood who took over command of 87 Sqn when Gleed was promoted. Smallwood's own personal emblem, a scroll with the words "United Provinces Cawnpore" (like Bombay, Cawnpore recently reverted to its Indian name of Kanpur), is replicated on the F-Toy's offering, on the port side of the aircraft under the canopy. Fourthly, and very obviously, the squadron and individual aircraft codes are swapped around (A-LK to LK-A), as per changes in RAF directives. So there! :P

Re: Smeg's Hawker Hurricane Mk I

Posted: Tue Dec 01, 2015 11:20
by smeg1959
A little delay on the modelling front thanks to external forces. In the meantime, here's a pair of Gleed Hurricanes that Mike and Miguel prepared earlier... ;)

Re: Smeg's Hawker Hurricane Mk I

Posted: Tue Dec 01, 2015 11:54
by F_IV
Free time is patchy at best this time of year. Hope you do manage to get stuck into it though. Those two Hurris you just linked to are fantastic. GZ-L in particular is fantastic. I have to resist the temptation to get out the step ladder and go rifling through the stash for my own unmade pair of trops.

I wonder, has anyone seen any online tutorials for painting and weathering a black surface? I must admit, I'm ship scared of doing that and haven't a clue how it go about it. :?

Re: Smeg's Hawker Hurricane Mk I

Posted: Wed Dec 23, 2015 12:36
by smeg1959
When I said a little delay, I meant a rather sizable one. Anyway, just a couple of pics to show that a smidgen of progress has been made, with the aircraft largely assembled and primed awaiting Johnnie's favourite shade.

Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF GB-05.jpg
Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF GB-06.jpg

What I will say is that the fit of the parts is the best I have ever encountered in any scale ... period. You could almost assemble this kit without glue or filler, in stark contrast to the Minicraft Ju88C I built and the Zvezda Fairey Battle I piked on. And, for those wanting to see the extent a manufacturer should resort to in trying to replicate panel lines in 1/144, this is subtlety at its finest.

Am I doing anything else? Well, I sat talking to visitors and sanded down the filler I used to plug the trenches on my Sea Hornet from the Shelf of Shame. Who says males can't multitask?

Re: Smeg's Hawker Hurricane Mk I

Posted: Thu Jan 07, 2016 4:27
by smeg1959
I've discovered that Group Builds aren't helped by spouses demanding renovations take centre stage during the so-called Christmas/New Year "holiday" period. Whilst most of my painting has been on 1/1 scale items like rumpus rooms, I finally got a little time in the Man Cave last week, albeit late in the pm when SWMBO had retired for the night. I started by painting the cockpit area Lifecolor UA004 Interior Green, picking out various details with other colours. The wheel wells and doors were finished in Tamiya XF-16 aluminium. Clearly a replacement on the original, the rudder was painted Dark Earth then Dark Green, both Lifecolor acrylics. The red areas (also Lifecolor) were then sprayed and the appropriate zones masked for the application of the black. Again, I used the Tamiya Matt Black rattle can. After drying, I gave the aircraft a coat of semi-gloss clear coat prior to the application of decals.

Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF GB-07.jpg
Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF GB-08.jpg

Another hiatus until last night, when finally the canopy was framed and the decals applied. In the absence of Wing Commander stripes, I left the tail as it was prior to Gleed's promotion to WC. The only change I made to the kit decals was to cut away a portion of the "A" serial on the starboard side, as shown in several photos of Gleed's night Hurricane. The Cartograf decals went on a treat, even the red strips on the leading edge of the wings. Mr Mark Setter helped bed the things down very nicely. A coat of Tamiya Matt Coat and the final member of my trio of aircraft for the GB was complete, albeit considerably later than originally intended.

Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF GB-11.jpg
Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF GB-10.jpg
Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF GB-12.jpg
Hawker Hurricane Mk I Gleed NF GB-13.jpg

And here is said trio ...

Collection Black GB.jpg

Now before I get embroiled in another GB, I'm off to the Shelf of Shame! :oops:

Re: Smeg's Hawker Hurricane Mk I

Posted: Thu Jan 07, 2016 5:06
by pbhawkin
it looks very nice. I like the nice smooth paint work... Although I think you need to dirty it up a bit and make it rather weathered to reflect the hard life these machines had!