1/48 Trimaster Ta 152c

by Martin Gastel

Photos by Steve Bamford

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Trimaster 1/48 Focke Wulf Ta 152 V7 

                Ta 152 V7 (C-0 built to C-1/R11spec) was the second Ta 152C prototype built. "CI + XM" first flew on the 8th of January 1945, but this model depicts this aircraft during flight trials which commenced at Langenhagen, Germany, on 10 March, 1945. 

Construction and Modifications:

The cockpit was detailed using Eduard’s Ta 152H set with the assorted knobs being made from blobs of white glue. The only modification required to the instrument panel was the removal of the cockpit pressurisation gauge.

The fit of the resin replacement nose to the fuselage was poor requiring a shim forward of the MG 151 gun cover. The hinges for the port side engine access cover was poorly moulded so was sanded off and replaced with hinges made from plastic rod embedded in a trough I scribed into the cowling. The resin air intake had to be hollowed out as well.

The resin wings that came with this kit fit well but had such poor panel lines (troughs, actually) that after an hour or so of restorative efforts were scrapped. Fortunately, the kit includes the original plastic Ta 152H wings and it was less work to shorten these to those required for the C model. The wingspan for the Ta 152C is slightly longer than that for the Fw-190D-9 so it is not possible to swap wings from a D-9 kit. Shortening the wings required about 50% of the upper wing and 90% of the lower wing panel lines to be filled and re-scribed. Only the wing tips were salvaged from the kit’s resin wings, the navigation lights being kit items tinted with Tamiya transparent red and green.

Finally, all control surfaces were replaced with KMC resin items, some plumbing was added to the wheel wells with copper and lead wire, the tires were bulged, and the antenna wire was added from fine copper wire.

  Colours and Markings:  

                This topic will always be a source of endless debate. The under surfaces were painted Polly Scale 76 light blue, with the exception of the aft half of the lower wings which were painted Floquil ‘Old Silver’ and lightly buffed. All of the references that I have (including the kit instructions) that discuss the colours and markings of this particular aircraft show slightly different variations of both the colours and demarcation of the upper surface camouflage.

               

This left the decision up to my own photo interpretation as no definitive information seems to exist as yet. Most sources show the upper fuselage to be painted in a combination of 81 brown violet and 83 dark green, however, my interpretation of the photos suggests only one colour was used, with apparent differences in tone caused by different angles of the different parts of the fuselage to the light source. This interpretation agrees with Robert Michulec’s book, Camouflage & Markings 4: Luftwaffe 1935 – 45 Pt. 4, published by AJ-press. This reference further states that this colour was 81 brown violet, and that the wings were most likely 82 light green and 83 dark green as per RLM directives, and not the 75/83 interim scheme as suggested by the other references in my possession. However, the tonal differences of 75 grey violet and 82 light green are very difficult to distinguish in WW II black and white photos.

                The model was painted exclusively with Polly Scale acrylics sprayed through an Aztek A470 airbrush.  

References:

  1. Focke-Wulf Ta 152 The Story of the Luftwaffe's Late-War, High-Altitude Fighter, Dietmar Harmann, Schiffer Publications Ltd., 1999.

  2. Camouflage & Markings 4: Luftwaffe 1935 – 45 Pt. 4, Robert Michulec, AJ-Press, 1998.

  3. Aircraft Monograph 6: Fw 190D & Ta 152, Marian Krzyzan, AJ-Press, 1997.

  4. Monogram Close-Up 24: Ta 152, Jeff Ethell, Monogram Aviation Publications, 1990.

  5. Model Art No. 336 Focke-Wulf Fw 190D & Ta 152, Model Art Co. Ltd., 1989.  

Martin 

Photos and text © by Martin Gastel and Steve Bamford