Photograph Copyright © Collin Riley 2005-2013
Supermarine Spitfire Mk. IX (EN520) No 81 Squadron RAF, Squadron
Leader Colin Falkland Grey: Tunisia 1943
well done Spitfire, from GeminiAce's generally excellent mold. The
paint is colorful and mostly well applied, if a bit on the thin
side (see where the paint has rubbed off the top-side roundels).
The mold is superior in many ways to other 1/72 scale Spitfires.
The prop seems to be made of metal, the gear concept is good (even
if manufacturing carry-through lacks), the canopy is well formed
and commendably thin, and each exhaust stack has a nice little flare
at the end.
At first, I hadn't intended to take pictures of this model because
the gear wouldn't fit in the slot provided in the fuselage, and
because the prop wouldn't turn. However, I was able to get the prop
to turn (but only at flat-out speed) by wedging it from the mount
with an X-acto knife and running it for several minutes under the
blast from a hair drier. The landing gear finally fit after much
Despite all the good design work done, this mold has two conceptual
problems that, ultimately, make it somewhat of a failure. One problem
is the moveable ailerons, which have the habit of sagging (as demonstrated
on all my copies -- and
on this copy I added daubs of tacky clay keep the ailerons in place).
To allow animation of the ailerons, separate tips were added to
the end of each wing. These tips allow the aileron hinges to be
inserted in the wings, and about half the time they don't fit properly,
resulting in an ugly warped appearance. A second problem with the
mold is the moveable rudder. To enable a side-to-side movement,
two hinges were added, one near the top of the fin and one near
the bottom. Needless to say, these hinges weren't part of the original
1:1 version of the Spitfire, and on this or any diecast they are
most definitely out of place.
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