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Mosquito FB Mk.VI

by Stuart Hurley


de Havilland Mosquito FB Mk.VI
464 (RAAF) Squadron,
Thorney Island, November 1944


Airfix's 1/48 scale Mosquito FB Mk.VI is available online from Squadron.com




By November 1944, MM403 was a veteran of 71 successful sorties. Its ninth mission was the famed Amiens prison raid. The aircraft went on to complete 84 missions before crashing soon after take-off on 17th. January 1945.


Airfix vs. Tamiya Mosquito in 1/48

When I built this model a few years ago, the best 1/48 Mosquito was the Airfix kit. Just as I finished it, Tamiya announced the release of their lovely new tooling of the venerable Mossie. That’s life, but the Airfix kit is still a good place to start, and with a bit of work can be made to look every bit as good as the Tamiya offering.



The major shortfall of the kit is the surface detail. There are huge ‘planks’ moulded on the wing surfaces, which are fabric strips on the real thing, and raised surface detail throughout (although restrained) as one would expect of a kit of this age. All this had to go. The kit was re-scribed and practically all the surface detail replaced. Luckily, the Mosquito is fairly ‘clean’ in this respect.





The overall shape of the kit is pretty good and the wheels and undercarriage are okay. So on with the cutting. I had obtained the Paragon cannon bay, nose ammo boxes, and the flaps, so I planned to incorporate these in my model. They fitted without too much trouble and look convincing.

The cockpit was next for the treatment. I used the Eduard set here and also scratchbuilt some sidewall detail and navigation equipment. I cut out the door and made a replacement. I then decided to make things more interesting by opening up a nacelle. I did not want to destroy the lines of the aircraft too much, so only opened up the port side.

A fair bit of engineering was required as there wasn’t much left of the wing once all the panels had been removed. A two-piece hatch covered the nose ammo compartment so I opened this on the starboard side only, as the aircraft looked ugly with both sides removed. As I was detailing the cannon bay, I detailed the wheel wells while I was down there.

The engine started life as a resin Packard Merlin for a Mustang, so required modification. The engine mounts and all the other bits were scratch built, with the help of some etched brass from Eduard for the radiators and mudguards. The control surfaces were cut out and displaced slightly. MM403 was fitted with narrow chord prop blades, so these were fitted in place of the paddle type supplied in the kit.



The blades were from PD of Australia.

The model was topped off with a Falcon canopy, as the kit item was poor. I cut out the quarter windows and the escape hatch. I had a nice photo of this aircraft in flight so was able to keep the weathering faithful to the original. The decals were also from PD, and were trouble free.

The good news is that Airfix are updating this kit with new sprues for the two-stage Merlin versions of the Mossie.



Additional Images


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Model, Images and Text Copyright © 2003 by Stuart Hurley
Page Created 27 May, 2003
Last Updated 17 March, 2004

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