Pacific Coast Models 1/32 British Tempest Series II, Mk. Vc
By Thierry Laurent
- TYPE: Tempest Mk. V Series 2
- SCALE: 1/32
- COMPANY: Pacific Coast Models
- KIT Number: 32016
- KIT RELEASE DATE: 2013
KIT DATABASE ENTRY:
TWEAK LIST VERSION 1.2 (publication date: August 2016)
The following list is intended to help modelers in improving scale accuracy of an airplane model replica. In no way is it intended to support or be offensive towards a scale model company. As such, it is only the result of a progressive process and is in no way intended to be absolute or even comprehensive. Hence, it is intended to focus on commonly admitted discrepancies and will probably not cover some errors. It is up to the modeler to decide whether correcting the listed issues is worth the time and money he will have to invest in the quest for accuracy process.
No aftermarket correction or detail set is mentioned in this document as the availability of such items may be very variable. Hence, refer to other LSP sections to find relevant information. Moreover, aftermarket sets do not necessarily correct all listed issues. Please refer accordingly to relevant documentation.
- Kit is made of 4 sprues of blue-grey plastic parts, one sprue of clear parts, 8 resin parts and two photoetched frets including a colored one (mainly for the radiator and cockpit parts).
- The surface of all major parts is free of flaws, blemishes or molding sink marks. However, there is a lot of flash seam to remove on the parts.
- Surface detail is limited. Panel lines are correctly depicted but only the Dzus fasteners have been reproduced (as round depressions).
- Fit is reasonably good for a short-run kit. However, there is no alignment pin and most internal components cannot be correctly assembled without part modifications (cockpit structure, radiator and landing gear bays/fuselage). Occasionally, some ejection pins should be removed as they prevent correct assembly (e.g. in the tail or propeller boss).
- Regarding accuracy, the shapes are correct. The only glaring inaccurate parts are the wheels.
- The optional parts are limited to the drop tanks and the spinners.
- The control surfaces, except the rudder, are not separate parts.
NOTICEABLE FUSELAGE ISSUES (from front to rear)
- The spinner base (14) and De Havilland spinner front part (15) are difficult to assemble without modifying the parts. Take your time, dry fit regularly and progressively sand the mating surfaces to get a correct result. Oddly, the optional Rotol spinner (24) has less problems of assembly. However, this one was used on the last production batches and on reconstructed Mk V. airframes (such as the ones changed into target tugs). So, this type is probably more relevant for most of the late schemes included. Note the kit one looks rather like the Rotol one used on the Mk. VI as it had a thicker back plate required by the longer reduction gear housing of the Sabre V engine. Possibly add some screw heads at the base of the spinner with a beading tool. Take care aligning correctly the parts 21-22 assembly on the spinner base (part 14). The easiest approach asks for using slow setting glue and doing a dry assembly of the full assembly with the blades to get the correct position. Last, closely check the angles of the propeller blades as there is no key to give them a symmetric position.
- The front air intake of the radiator (D13) is too thick and the chosen assembly results in a seam difficult to hide. Take you time to thin the part or adopt the easy solution: cut the tube-shaped section from the part B21 and add a resin aftermarket replacement part.
- There should be four round vent holes in the ceiling of the chin air intake: two larger close to the front chin edge and two smaller ones close to the mesh in the underside of part 17.
- The radiator parts are made of a combination of plastic and photo-etched flat parts. This asks for adding some +/- 9mm long sprue sections between C1 and B21 to get a strong assembly. This combination would be a nice idea if fit was acceptable. Unfortunately, this is not the case. To avoid damaging the nice photo-etched meshes it is recommended to modify the fuselage sides. Dry fit the assembly, do marks with a pencil to locate the front and rear borders of the hollow trench to create in the fuselage sides to fit correctly the full radiator assembly. Work progressively to avoid scraping too much plastic knowing that a maximum of half-a-millimeter per side is possible. The task is time-consuming but this is the best way to get a good result. Finally, glue the radiator assembly on B17 and add everything between the fuselage halves.
- The radiator rear flap is not a separate part and its actuator is missing. If you want to open it to get a more dynamic look, remove the two halves molded with the fuselage parts and recreate a new one with a sheet of plastic or aluminum. If you want to keep it closed, scribe deeper the seam between the flap and fuselage sides, thin the edge and add the actuator between the flap and a hole to be drilled in the rear section of B17 (the cover of the conduit linking the radiator to the engine).
- Last, six small round and riveted panels shall be added on the underside of the rear section of B17.
- Sand the center of the lower edge of the wing fairing to decrease the risk of assembly problems with the landing gear bay/wings assembly.
- Some details are missing on the belly and fuselage edge close to the wing trailing edge such as the retractable step on the port side or the relief tube drain.
- Paint the rear of the central light CP5 with clear amber color. If the part is not correctly molded, remove the flange and glue the part upside down.
- Some planes had an oval-shaped plate on the port fuselage side (under the rear edge of the canopy).
- The elevators are not separate parts. This drawback is not a major problem as they were often seen in the neutral position on parked Tempests. However, the separation between them and the horizontal tail surfaces is just scribed as a panel line. Use a scriber to mark it deeper. Last, add each missing tab actuator on the undersides.
- The kits should have rear ID lights on the rear end of each horizontal stabilizer fillet (on either side of the fin). The insert parts are included on the clear sprue but not mentioned in the instructions. Drill in the middle of the parts rear side to simulate the light bulb.
- The rudder surface looks like a wood one covered with tape strips rather than a doped fabric rudder. This really spoils the look of the plane. Carefully sand the edges of each molded strip to smooth them and get a uniform look. This is time consuming but results in a far more accurate look. Last, scratch-build and add the missing rudder actuator (behind the aforementioned ID lights) as well as the missing tab on the port side. Note that the full scale plane had also a notch in the bottom of the rudder (for the lower hinge). This is missing on the kit. Add the hinges and the plates that partly cover the notches in the front of the rudder.
NOTICEABLE WING/WEAPONS ISSUES
- Dry fit to identify the point where the thick bottom of the landing gear bay prevents a fuselage/wing correct assembly. Consequently, sand as much as possible the rear edge of the reverse side of the landing gear bays resin part.
- The best wing assembly order is probably the following one: glue the belly part 1 under the assembled fuselage. Add the upper wings and glue them against the fuselage. Then, add the upper wing parts 6 and 7. Note it is required to sand beforehand the upper surface of the plastic strip located at each end of belly part 1. Otherwise, when wing parts 4 and 5 will be glued over that supporting strip, the transition between the parts will not be smooth because of the dihedral angle. Dry fit and sand until the step between 1 and 4 or 5 disappears.
- Add 1mm diameter small tubes in the wing front edge holes to simulate the Hispano cannon muzzles.
- Drill and file the cannon ammo chute holes.
- Drill a small hole in the center of the reverse side of one CP3 clear part (the one glued under the port wing) to simulate the light and paint this side with chrome paint. On the other side, add behind CP3 two small sections of stretched clear sprue painted with green for the front light and red for the rear one. Note the light windows simulated by CP3 parts were not totally rounded but correcting this is far from easy. If the parts are not correctly molded, remove the flange and glue them upside down.
- The line between the ailerons and the wing looks like a normal panel line. It should be scribed deeper to simulate a separate part. Add the aileron actuator on the underside.
- Drill in the middle of the wing tip light parts rear side to simulate the light bulb.
- The aerodynamic fairings covering the drop tank pylons were made of Plexiglas. To avoid glue marks, assemble them with thickened Future or varnish. Add the pylon fixing as well as the tank connecting tube on the rear inside each clear fairing.
NOTICEABLE COCKPIT ISSUES
- The cockpit structure has an excessive width to be correctly inserted before closing fully the fuselage halves. This particularly applies to parts B19 and D14 (at least 2mm too long). Dry fit to reduce the width before fully assembling the cockpit or it will never be possible to close the fuselage halves.
- The control stick part asks for refined detailing. Moreover, its location is incorrect. It is interfering with the compass hanging under the instrument panel whereas there should be more or less 2mm between them.
- The front IP is not totally correct. The instruction sheet shows the central panel with the same height than the side ones. Actually, the central panel is noticeably shorter and should be glued close to the IP lower edge. Some missing knobs should then be added between the photo-etched instruments and the gunsight. A more annoying problem is the lack of angle of the side panels that should not be vertical as their top should slightly tilt forward. One way to solve this is to cut the compass legs and re-glue them with a slight angle (towards the front of the plane), glue the central panel with a similar angle (the bottom against the lower edge of the plastic panel and the top slightly tilted (towards the rear, with a small strip added under the upper edge). Then, glue the assembly to have the compass legs and central IP in a vertical position. As a result, the side panels top should now be slightly tilted forward.
- The seat is correctly sized but its features and details look like the ones of a small scale kit. The quilted effect on the seat cushion is far too flat. Add details on the seat or replace it with an aftermarket one. Moreover, the back armor plate is too thick. Sand it or replace it with thinner plastic sheet.
- The photo-etched belt quick-release box and lever should not be fixed on a shoulder strap (PP2). Remove the end of that belt and swap it with the one of the left hip PP3 belt.
- Using the photo-etched side inserts is not easy as their dimensions are larger than the ones of their plastic counterparts. It is probably easier to mix the photo-etched details with the plastic parts.
- Cockpit details are correct even if a little bit basic. The kit is missing the various wires and cables running on the cockpit tubular structure.
NOTICEABLE CANOPY ISSUES
- The canopy does not have the flared rear blending the part into the fuselage sides. So, glue cautiously the part to have the smallest possible seam.
NOTICEABLE LANDING GEAR ISSUES
- The resin wheel wells are nicely detailed. Do not forget drilling the flash filling the round holes. Moreover, various hoses and pipes should be added. The missing ones to add will be particularly visible on the rear vertical side of the wells.
- Kit wheels are the late type with the 4-holes wheel rims. However, the tire/rim dimensions look totally off and this spoils noticeably the plane look. Because of the too large rim, it will be very difficult to correct them. So, it is rather recommended to use aftermarket wheels of the correct type (early smooth or late smooth/treaded).
- Landing gear legs are correct but simplified (e.g. the articulated links should be hollow). Some details should be refined or added and the two sections should be separated (there is a lot of flash to remove). The brake hose is missing and some bolts heads are also missing here and there on the leg.
- Take care in order to get a correct leg stance and angle. Viewed from the side there should be a 112.5° angle between the leg and rear wing section whereas, from the front, there should be a 90° angle between the leg and the external wing section.
- Articulation details are missing where the gear leg is linked to its retraction arm part (D4 – D10).
- The landing gear doors are globally correct but they are plain and some details are missing or incorrect. There is no visible rivet line, not enough structural holes close to the bottom of the door and the gear leg fixtures are missing on the main ones.
- The actuator arms of landing gear doors B3, B5, B7 and B8 are missing. Scratch-build them with stretched sprue.
- The actuators of the rear landing gear doors are missing. They should be linked to the gear leg. Moreover, the doors have far too thick edges.
- Do not be fooled by the simplistic look of the tail wheel as it is actually accurate.
OTHER NOTICEABLE ISSUES & MISCELLANEOUS REMARKS
- Tempest based in bases with concrete runways and dispersal areas normally used treaded tires but practically this only applied to post-war planes.
- Note that, even if this was tested, the Mk. Vs never carried rockets.
- The landing gear wells should be silver painted. This probably also applied to the front bulkhead.
- The kit gun sight is accurately depicted without the reflecting glass. It is also correctly mounted behind the supporting bar.
- The kit may be converted into a Series 1 kit. This just asks for adding the strengthening plates between the main fuselage and tail, the fairings of the longer Hispano guns, the earlier wheels and possibly a dust filter on the radiator.
- The kit may also be converted into a later target tug plane. The modifications are also simple: fill the machine gun muzzle holes, remove the gun sight and add the towing mechanism under the plane. Note there were also other limited changes in the cockpit.
- The decal schemes look reasonably accurate. However, even if not really noticeable, the Queen crest on the 33 Squadron badge is questionable for the period.
- It is quite probable all of the Typhoons depicted on the decals sheet had the later, smaller landing gear wheels (the four-holes type). Indeed, archive pictures systematically show series 1 Tempest Mk. V with the large Typhoon-like wheels but most if not all series 2 and the later Tempest marks with the small ones.
The following sources were used to build this list.
- The main and best source is the scale plans and drawings produced by Arthur Bentley. They are directly available from him (http://www.albentley...hawker-tempest/) and were also published in Scale Models and Scale Aviation Modeler International.
- FRANKS, R. A., The Hawker Tempest, Airframe and Miniatures N°4, Valiant Wings Publishing, 2012.
- OVCACIK, M., SUSA, K, Hawker Tempest Mk. I, V, II, VI, TT Mks. 5, 6, 4+ Publication, Mark.1 Limited, 2000.
- - , Hawker Tempest/Typhoon, Famous Airplanes of the World, No. 63, Bunrin-Do 1997.
- BEAMONT, R., REED, A., Mosquito, Typhoon, Tempest at War, PRE, 1995.
- BUTLER, T., Tempest – Hawker’s outstanding piston-engined fighter, Dalrymple & Verdun publishing, 2011.
- CARUANA, Richard, Hawker Tempest Mks. II to VI, No. 55, Warpaint series, Hall Parks books, 2000.
- JONES, R.C., WARD, R.L., Hawker Tornado, Typhoon & Tempest, Camouflage & Markings N°4, Ducimus books, 1970.
- LUCA, P., RAF Fighters 1945-1950 Overseas Based, Camouflage & markings, N°5, Scale Aircraft Monographs, Guideline Publications, 2002.
- MASON, F., The Hawker Typhoon and Tempest, Aston Publications, 1988.
- THOMAS, C., SHORES, C., The Typhoon and Tempest Story, Arms & Armour press, 1988.
- THOMAS, C., SHORES, C., 2nd Tactical Air Force, Vol. 2, Classic Publications, 2005.
- THOMAS, C., SHORES, C., 2nd Tactical Air Force, Vol. 3, Classic Publications, 2006.
- THOMAS, C., SHORES, C., 2nd Tactical Air Force, Vol 4., Classic Publications, 2009.
- SCUTTS, J., Typhoon – Tempest in Action, N°102, Squadron Signal publication, 1990.
- Various web sites: www.hawkertempest.se and LSP.
- Scale Models
- Scale Aviation Modeler International
- Model Aircraft Monthly
- Model Airplane International
© Thierry Laurent 2016
This article was published on Friday, August 26 2016; Last modified on Friday, August 26 2016