Classic Airframes 1/48 DH Hornet - Peter Dasso - Hong Kong

The Classic Airframes kit is a very typical limited run affair - if you've never built one before, expect a mostly accurate outline, a mostly inaccurate series of panel lines, rough plastic, no locating marks for anything, and a well detailed but ill-fitting cockpit. So, charge up your Dremel, break out the coarse-grit sandpaper and crack open a beer because you will be fitting and re-fitting every part on the kit.

As far as the Hornet kit goes, there are several major - but not deal-breaking - issues that need to be dealt with. First of all, the panel lines on the wings need to be erased as the real plane has a smooth wooden wing. For this, I slopped Mr. Surfacer 500 into the offending lines, then once dry used a cotton ball soaked in Mr. Color thinner to wipe away anything that wasn't inside the panel lines. The second issue is that the wheel wells are too long towards the front. To fix this, I cut off the front 3 mm of the gear doors and glued that bit back into the engine nacelle. Keep in mind the landing gear needs to be glued that much further back as well, and tilted forward slightly to give the appropriate stance. The third issue is that the shape of the rear of the pilot's canopy is incorrect, in reality it was squared off and angular, not rounded like the model shows. This is a bit tougher to deal with - in the end I trimmed a bit off the end and did my best to paint a better frame shape, which is not a perfect solution, but it's the best I could figure out.

The cockpit is painted in flat black, and the seat belts are strips of Tamiya tape. The bottom is painted in Humbrol 230 PRU Blue, the top camouflage is Mr. Color 330 Dark Green & Tamiya XF-54 Dark Sea Grey. The weathering is done by pre-shading with lighter versions of the camouflage color and then also rubbing Tamiya light sand weathering powder over the finished paint scheme. Panel lines and other joints were picked out with my favorite mix of oil paint thinned with lighter fluid. The Hornets of No. 80 Squadron never saw combat but photos show them to be a bit sun-bleached in later years, so I chose not to do any more significant amount of weathering. WB909, the Hornet I painted, had a replacement rudder in aluminium dope in a 1954 photo so I chose to depict this also.

The rockets are extras off an Airfix Seafire FR. 47, the gear door hinges are leftovers from the Eduard photo-etch set for the Mosquito, and the lovely wheels are from Barracudacast of course.

Barracuda products used:
BR32125 32" 4-Slot Mainwheels - Staggered Block Tread
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