1/48 Otaki/Arii/AMT Ertl/Airfix Spitfire Mk VIII

Gallery Article by Greg Wise

 

INTRODUCTION; 
I bought this kit around eight or nine years ago under the AMT Ertl label, I didn't know it at the time that it was a reboxed Otaka kit and so it sat in closet all those years.  When the ICM spit was still a rumour a lightbulb went off in my head *I HAVE A Mk VIII* I moved out a six foot stack of model kits and there it was.

BACKGROUND; 
The history of this airplane isn't that remarkable but, the NMF on a Mk VIII is!  And I owe the credit of this mystery to my very best mate Buz, from Oz.  And after several emails and scans Here's the Low Down; RAF Serial # A58-394 , TS-G , 548 Squadron, Darwin AU, mid July 44 . The gospel according to Peter Malone; A58-394 started as JG373 built at Chattis Hill after passing tru 6MU and 215MU was then shipped to Oz on the SS Perth Dec 14 1943 / Arrived in Oz on Feb 3 1944 and received at 1AD, Laverton on April 7 1944 ,then received by the 548 Squadron on April 11 1944.  As fate would have it on July 31 1944 at Livingstone this beautiful aircraft crashed on take off and was used for parts.  

 

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CONSTRUCTION;
Kit fit wasn't that good but went pretty much straight forward. I dropped the elevators, readjusted the rudder, added brakelines, etc.
Kit Extras were True Details wheels. For the cockpit I used a combo of True Details and Eduard Brass as well as scratch building the cockpit door. Eduard brass Radiator and main strut bits. I also opted for an Aero Club gullwing insert. I had a choice between the Falcon or the Aero Club....I choose the lesser of the two evils. The exhaust stacks were out of the partsbox. The canopy came from Squadron.

PAINTING & MARKINGS; 
SNJ and Testors Metalizers other colors are Testors Model Masters, with a wash of umber oils. The roundel decals are from the kit the TS-G are home made decals. The pictures of this bird shows no stenciling. Also.... some believe that the rudder was painted white, but the photographs do not support this.

CONCLUSION; 
Special Thanks to C Busby(Buz) from Oz and his large collection of Mk VIII Spittys,also Ian Baker's cam and marking series.

Greg Wise

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Photos and text by Greg Wise