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Author Topic: Aleutian Tigers  (Read 16927 times)
Derek B
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« on: February 06, 2013, 01:32:51 AM »

I have looked at photographs of various P-40s with the winterised exhaust kit and it seems that the Aleutain Tigers wre the main (and maybe only) unit that appeared to use them to any great extent. I see that the Hasegawa kit only partially gets this correct. I would have to obtain a set of exhausts and the relevent shroud from a Hasegawa P-40 kit and make a master pattern that will be a drop-in item for the kit (i.e. A one-piece cowl exhaust shroud complete with recessed exhaust pipes and small forward intake).

 

I had no idea the there were smooth, simple opening ports - I just assumed that all P-40s had those three bulged protrusions on all of the muzzles. It is clearly obvious that there is a short muzzle version as well which I was not aware of. Does anyone have more information on this? (Which P-40 variant did they appear on and why?, are there any good photographs of them, etc). Looking a little more at the Aleutian Tiger P-40 photographs again, I can see that some aircraft (probably most) had what I shall describe as the smooth wing leading edge gun muzzle ports, whilst other had the better known bulged gun muzzle ports - so Hasegawa could be correct in this sense? (compare the second and third aircraft wing leading edge gun ports in the photograph below);

 

What I could do (if I can get the parts) is maybe produce an accurate set of winterised exhausts and (again parts and reference permitting) new wing leading edge inserts with accurate smooth bore muzzle ports as an Aleutian Tigers specific detail set? (and just to complete the icing on the cake, I may also consider including a special set of paint masks for the Aleutian Tiger colur schemes?) - what do you think?
 
Cheers

Derek

(PS I am making a new set of tyres with the same tread pattern as the aircraft in the top photograph Smiley).



« Last Edit: February 06, 2013, 01:50:13 AM by Derek B » Logged

Derek Bradshaw
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« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2013, 06:32:38 AM »

Hello Derek,

At least in your first photograph, it appears that the ejection ports for the spent casings under the wing have been taped over.  I'm guessing that the machine guns have simply been removed from the wings for some reason, thus the appearance of the gun ports on the leading edge.  If this is the case (and hopefully someone can answer definitely) I don't know if that might affect your desire to produce an aftermarket replacement.

I'm assuming you need the exhausts and shroud from a 32nd scale kit.  Unfortunately I don't have the "E" in that scale otherwise I would be happy to supply them to you. 

I do like the idea of the paint masks.  Roy Sutherland of Barracudacals makes a nice looking Aleutian Tiger decal in 32nd scale, but I find any large decal over a convex or concave surface comes sometimes be difficult to apply.

HTH,

Mark
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Derek B
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« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2013, 08:09:20 AM »

Hello Derek,

At least in your first photograph, it appears that the ejection ports for the spent casings under the wing have been taped over.  I'm guessing that the machine guns have simply been removed from the wings for some reason, thus the appearance of the gun ports on the leading edge.  If this is the case (and hopefully someone can answer definitely) I don't know if that might affect your desire to produce an aftermarket replacement.

I'm assuming you need the exhausts and shroud from a 32nd scale kit.  Unfortunately I don't have the "E" in that scale otherwise I would be happy to supply them to you. 

I do like the idea of the paint masks.  Roy Sutherland of Barracudacals makes a nice looking Aleutian Tiger decal in 32nd scale, but I find any large decal over a convex or concave surface comes sometimes be difficult to apply.

HTH,

Mark

Thanks Mark. I could do with some better photographs and a definitive answer from those that might be in the know? Glad that you like the paint mask idea. In the meantime, tell me what you think of these pictures on the subject? (towards the bottom of page 3): http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/14319-curtiss-p-40-warhawk/page__st__40

Cheers

Derek
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Derek Bradshaw
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« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2013, 01:32:48 PM »

Report From The Aleutians (1942)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ocvtzhv54M
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Derek B
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« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2013, 05:57:19 PM »

Report From The Aleutians (1942)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ocvtzhv54M

Excellent footage Mark - Conditions out there were certainly primitive to say the least!

I could not really tell from the footage whether the guns were simply removed or not, so the jury is still out on this one for me until I can see some definitive evidence one way or another>

If the guns were simply removed, then it happened to quite a few P-40s. The wing leading edge gun muzzle ports and (as you quite rightly pointed out) the underwing spent cartridge chutes appear to have been taped over. Given the harsh conditions encounted in the Aleutians, this action is understandable. Unless these aircraft were only used in a training, bombing or reconnaissence role, then I would be surprised if they were not armed for operational sorties!

Thanks

Derek
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Derek Bradshaw
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« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2013, 07:28:36 AM »

I'm Brad Smiley
 
Yeah, the Aleutian Islands was a really desolate place to fight a war, very little information on it, but it's my favorite theater.
 
There is a great book a bulk the war in that theater called 1000 Mile War, I don't think it's currently available, but it's on eBay.  Definitely worth reading if you're interested in that theater.  They would get winds so strong that B-17's without their engines running would go taxiing by!
 
I'm sure they taped over the shell ejection ports and pretty much anything else to keep any mud from being splashed and especially in the winter, I read that no matter how much they covered it up, snow still managed to get packed in pretty much everywhere.
 
Not sure why the guns/gun bumps would have been removed?  In photos, you might think it might have been censors?  I will have to watch the video again, don't know if it was like that on the video.  Very interesting and I never noticed that before and don't remember seeing that in any other theater.
 
Masks would be really nice as that way you could also alter the color of the tiger head, would be nice if some of the black markings on the tiger head could be just a little different so you could choose as no two were the same.  I think it was in this video, maybe it was in a photo I recently saw where it showed the white stripe on the fuselage, instead of being a nice crisp line, it was very ragged and you could see over spray, very crude looking and you could tell that it was applied in the field.  Something I'm sure modelers would question, but would definitely add realism as it seems whenever stuff was sprayed in the field, there was always over spray.
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Derek B
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« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2013, 05:30:40 PM »

Sorry about that Brad  Embarrassed (That's what happens when you are switching between posts too quickly!).

Sorry for asking all of this detailed information, but I do like to get things right, and, like the Spitfire, I find that I am constantly learning new things everytime I look at any new aspect of the P-40, so thank you for your help.

I am beginning to like the idea of paint masks more and more because of the flexibility they offer to the modeller. I think that I now need to start collecting as many photographs and profile drawings of Aleutian aircraft Tiger head nose artwork as possible to see what other people have already done and try to get it correct - I think that I may have thought of a suitable method of varying the Tiger head art design whith paint masks Wink

Regards

Derek
« Last Edit: February 07, 2013, 05:38:45 PM by Derek B » Logged

Derek Bradshaw
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« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2013, 07:23:51 AM »

No problem  Smiley

Even with all the books I've read on this aircraft, I'm still always learning something new and sometimes someone will ask what seems like the most basic question and it can be the hardest to find out.  It's baffling how so much is known about aircraft like the 109 while this one remains so elusive?

I was doing a profile of one of these aircraft, drawing the tiger head was a bit of a challenge, but there would definitely be ways of making it so there would be numerous choices to make them unique.
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Mark Joyce
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« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2013, 12:19:29 PM »

Thanks for the link, Derek!  Some nice P-40 photos there.
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