Sword 1/72nd Spitfire VC (Trop)
Picked this model up from the show at Yeovilton on Feb 19th 2011. The VC hasn't been well served in. . well, any scale really! Airfix did a couple of execrably poor retools of the existing VB models in 72nd and 48th a few years ago, but they were frankly apalling. . with the leading and trailing edges of the new wings on the 72nd being the same thickness as I remember. So here we are with a new one in 72nd. Let's have a quick peek at the main sprue:-
As you can see it's a pretty nice "limited run" affair. Detail is nicely engraved, sprue attachments are small and it's fairly sharp overall. Of note is the very sensible way that Sword have tackled that most prickly of subjects for the VC. . the different cannon bulges. They have opted to mould them seperately, but not with the main cannon bay doors. This gives a smooth wing which the desired bulges are glued to. Very sensible, and far better than the excrcuiatingly poorly rendered bulges-and-doors in the Airfix obscenity (are my feeling for the Airfix kit clear enough?!?), which aren't even curved to match the wing!
Kit includes two styles of wheel, two styles of prop/spinner, two styles of exhaust (the six stack for a Seafire maybe?) and alternate wingtips for clipping if necessary with a little surgery. This boxing only contains the Vokes filter, for a non-filter aircraft Sword have done a seperate boxing. So overall a pretty nice job. Lets get building! Cannon barrels (and blanks) are resin on a small pour stub.
I decided to start with the wings, Spitfires from limited run makers usually need a little finessing, and a test fit showed this was no exception. In fairness, this was fairly minor on this model, and mainly concerned the starboard wing, where some trimming down of the interior of the radiator housing was needed, and a little scraping of the trailing edge joints. Upper wing surfaces were hit with a coarse sanding stick at te trailing edge flap recess. This was a quick job, and after maybe ten minutes of scraping and sanding the wings fitted pretty well. I added the undercarriage leg walls and allowed hem to dry thoroughly before again checking fit and sanding lightly where needed, then the wings could be joined.
The Vokes filter was also assembled, and when dry the join lines were dealt with, and then a couple pieces of plastic card were cut to shape and glued inside to prevent a see-through look on the finished model
Although this pic is from a little further on in the construction, it's intended to show how I've aded more plastic sheet inside the front fuselage to provide a mounting point for the exhausts later.
Here we've ;eapt on. . the interior is pretty nice anc goes together well, and most inportantly FITS! So with that painted and in place, the fuselage was joined and then the assembled wings offered up to the fusealge. The fit is okay but the join lines lack sharpness. On ther underside you can see here the substantial amount of filler applied to blend it in. .there is also a shim of plastic card at the rear of that joint to bridge a gap. Not a difficult job, but an important one.
In the next two pictutes you can see the amount of filler applied to the leading edges and wing roots of this kit. This was done really to enable me to blend the wing roots in and scribe some sharper panel detail in later rather than any indicator of poor fit per se. The angled wing root join so noticeable on the Spitfire is more curved on this model - as a result of tooling limitations rather than design, but I wanted to correct it, so this is how I'm approaching it.
©2010 Drewe Manton.