1/24 Airfix Hawker Typhoon Mk1b (car door)

Gallery Article by Cyril Worley on Oct 25 2019



The subject of this build is a Hawker Typhoon Mk1b, PR-G R7752, which was the personal mount of Squadron Leader Roland Beamont of 609 squadron based at Manson UK, back in 1943. This is the early version of the Typhoon which had uncovered gun barrels, Hurricane type seat and black interior.

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The kit used for this build is the new Hawker Typhoon Mk1b Car door type, in 1/24 scale from AIRFIX, the first release of this same model is the one with the bubble canopy and no door (in real life this was the later issue of the Typhoon). It is a very good kit with high level of detail with more than 520 parts. The instructions are very good and well illustrated, but I chose not follow the assembly sequence as I had in mind to open up certain parts on the fuselage sides. A lot of research has gone into this build in order to gather enough reference for the exact reproduction where scratch building is concerned.

I started off at the cockpit by cutting open the lower panels on both sides and the radio compartment door, stiffeners were applied to the sides to hold the top in position, all the instrument decals were individually placed onto the front of the instrument cluster with a blob of gloss varnish to replicate the lenses. The lower part of the stick was altered, so were the rudder pedals, the lower part was re designed to accommodate the control bar and cables to the rudder, these were made from braided silver wire to simulate wire rope, various other cables and tubes made from copper and thin soldering wire were also added. The early version seat, (Hurricane type) also included in kit, was upgraded with a new rim and bowl, seat harness from RB Productions was also added, this is a great after market item made from paper. A radio transmitter/receiver complete with brackets and all was scratch built, this was installed on the port side behind the pilot's seat. Window wind up handles made from copper were also added to the inside of the door sides. 

The spars and all beams were fitted to the lower part of the wings, the gun bays were then assembled, detailed and weathered, minus the gun barrels as these were to be upgraded later with uncovered ones from Master, the whole cockpit frame was than attached to the underside part of the wing, the lower back part matched up and finally the fuselage sides were joined together and fitted over the completed frame.

The massive H-24-cylinder Napier Sabre engine was the next part of the build to start taking shape, many parts make up this item, quite straight forward assembly which was also upgraded with the addition of various tubing and leavers. After being painted and weathered this was fitted to the front of the frame. The radiator was replaced by a stainless steel one from RB Productions and the whole housing was fitted to the chin of the aircraft.

The completed upper parts of the wings were fitted over the lower parts to close up the gun bays and finish off the wings, but before that the wing roots had to be slightly altered to align with the open panels above. The gun bay doors were left for later, and the landing lights were replaced with more detailed ones. The canopy and front wind shield were fitted next, the former covers cables going up to the antenna, a navigation light as well as the anchorage point for the Sutton harness. These were than masked ready for painting.

The undercarriage, wheels and tyres were next assembled, painted and weathered, but not fixed in place until near completion. So were the flaps and other moving surfaces, propeller and spinner.

I next proceeded to painting the model using Humbrol enamel paints, The fuselage and upper sides of the wings were painted Ocean Grey, the camouflage pattern was pencil marked over the whole aircraft, enabling the Dark Green to be airbrushed freehand following the pencilled pattern. The underside of the aircraft was then masked using Tamiya tape and painted Medium Sea Grey. 

The invasion stripes on the undersides of the wings and undercarriage were masked and painted black and white stripes using Vallejo acrylics.

Painting done, the model was given a few coats of gloss varnish to help the decals adhere well. The kit decals are a bit on the thick side so a softening solution had to be used. 
This done a further coat of gloss varnish was applied to seal in the decals.

I used AK Interactive products for weathering and detailing the engine, undercarriage etc. Subtle weathering was applied. This done the model was given a few coats of Mr Hobby's matt clear varnish. At this stage the undercarriage, flaps, door, gun bay doors, bombs and the rest were all fitted. Three aerials made from very fine nylon thread were finally added and painted over.

The completed model was placed on a plywood base and adorned with foliage to resemble an abandoned section of an airfield.

I have enjoyed every moment of building this project, a great kit which I recommend. Hope you like it.

Cyril Worley

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Photos and text by Cyril Worley