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European RAAF Spitfires

1/48 Scale Decals

 

 

Red Roo Models

 


HyperScale is proudly supported by Squadron

 

Summary
Catalogue Number: RRD4819 - Spitfire IXc, FU - K, 453 Sqn RAAF, May 1945
RRD4820 - Spitfire XIVe, FU - D, 453 Sqn RAAF, Germany 1945
RRD4821 - Spitfire XIVe, NI - , 451 Sqn RAAF, Squadron Leader Graham Falconer, Germany 1945
RRD4821 - Spitfire XIVe, NI - M, 451 Sqn RAAF, Germany 1946
Scale: 1/48 
Contents and Media: One small decal sheet; two pages of instructions.
Price: Each AUD$8.90 each (approx. USD$4.60) from Red Roo Models
Review Type: Decal Application
Advantages: Interesting subjects; good research; excellent quality decals - perfect registration and good colour representation.
Disadvantages: Only one subject per sheet.
Recommendation: Recommended for RAF or RAAF modellers


Reviewed by Brett Green

 

Background

 

The role of the Royal Australian Air Force in the occupation of Germany is not well known. In particular, 451 Squadron RAAF's final service is often misreported or ignored.

This Squadron formed in Bankstown (a suburb of Sydney) before being deployed to Egypt in May 1941. 451 Squadron served with the Desert Air Force in an Army co-operation role. There was little opportunity for air to air combat until the unit was transferred to the United Kingdom at the end of 1944. 451 Squadron then conducted ground attack, bomber escort and fighter missions over Europe. In May 1945 the Squadron moved to Germany to support the occupation effort. 451 Squadron was eventually disbanded in Germany during January 1946.

453 Squadron also formed at Bankstown in 1941. This Squadron saw a great deal more action than 451 Sqn. 453 Squadron participated in the defence of Singapore, then moved to England in 1942 to earn an enviable reputation in fighter, ground attack, reconnaissance, anti-diver and bomber escort missions right up until its deployment on occupation duties in Germany.

 

 

FirstLook

 

Red Roo's latest 1/48 scale decals depict two subjects from each of these RAAF Squadrons.

451 Squadron is represented by two bubble-top Spitfire XIVe variants. Both Spitfires are finished in the standard late-war camouflage of Ocean Grey and Dark Green over Medium Sea Grey. The codes on both aircraft are white. Photographic evidence suggests that this is correct.

Both aircraft feature the 451 Squadron logo - a Kangaroo with a Joey combined with "RAAF" text superimposed on a pale blue circle. The instructions advise that the spinners were white, however a photograph of NI-M Squadron Spitfire XIVe (on page 16 of  "Spitfire - The ANZACS" by Malcolm Laird and Steve Mackenzie) appears to have a Sky spinner. It is slightly darker than the code letters. Of course, photo interpretation is a notoriously subjective game!

The two 453 Squadron machines are a Mk. IXc and a Mk. XIVe. The code letters of the Spitfire Mk. IXc should not be read aloud if strong language offends. This machine has Sky codes and spinner with the standard day-fighter camouflage of the period. The 453 Squadron Mk. XIVe is similar, but the spinner is Black.

Decals for a single aircraft are included with each set. The red and yellow of roundels are provided as separate decals to minimise the risk of misalignment.

Instructions are supplied on two single-sided A-4 sheets. One page provides instructions for applying the decals and history of the Squadrons, and the second page provides full colour four-view illustrations of the aircraft (click the thumbnail to the left to view a larger image of the instruction sheet).

 

Decal Application

I had the chance to use the markings for NI - ◊ for a recent modelling project. The decals are very thin but adequately opaque. The colours all look authentic.

The decals need to be handled carefully due to their thinness, but the results are very impressive. I prepared the model with a gloss coat and applied a generous quantity of MicroSet to the surface before sliding the decals in place. This allowed the delicate decals to "float" on the plastic and permitted minor adjustments. The carrier film completely disappears under a flat coat.

My 1/48 scale Academy Spitfire XIVe will be the subject of a full Construction Feature on HyperScale in the coming weeks.

Red Roo's new Spitfire decals will appeal to modellers of both RAAF and RAF subjects. The timing is good for Hasegawa's or ICM's 1/48 scale Spitfire IX kits, and Academy's Mk. XIVe is still widely available. The decals look great when applied to the model.

Recommended.

Thanks to Red Roo Models for the review sample.


Red Roo Decals are available from Red Roo Models' website


Review Copyright 2001 by Brett Green
This Page Created on 30 November, 2001
Last updated 22 July, 2003

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