1/72 scale ART Model Grumman Bearcat of the US NAVY made by Meindert de Vreeze
review / Building report
F8F Bearcat is an American single-engine high power propeller driven naval
fighter. In the early nineteen forties, the US Navy had a need for a very
powerful aircraft as the successor of the Grumman Hellcat. It should be
operable from aircraft carriers. Work at Grumman started in 1943 but the
prototype was not ready before 1945. The engine became the Pratt
& Whitney R-2800 engine with a large four-bladed. For large visibility,
the pilot got a large bubble type canopy. The fixed armament were four
.50 Browning machine guns.
|also see page 2 with the SWORD kit....|
Plastic models of the Bearcat were virtually non-existent or only very rough models existed. Trumpeter of China issued a good 1/32 kit in 2010.
Markings are provided for US Navy
planes including as noted in the instructions:
The cockpit is very small and not a lot details are to be added as they are not visible. The seat head rest has a strange kink and was bended straight.
The main undercarriage bay are in
resin and nicely detailed but does not fit into the two wing halves,
it is too thick. I sanded off as much material from the resin bay "roofs"
as possible, but still needed to bend the wing halves.
Clamps were used and still I had to
close gaps user filler and plastic rod.
Considerable filler was needed as
seen here to fill all tiny irregularities:
First, on the wing a mat red base coat was added with Gunze Sangyo Acryllic H13. Yes, red as it makes the yellow colour more deep for the eye.
After drying and masking, the typical US Navy colour of the period of Gloss Sea Blue was airbrushed on the fuselage using enamel very old "authentic Humbrol" HB9 sea blue gloss (or use White Ensign Models WEMCC ACUS07 FS25042).
Decals are fine of this kit and applied
as usual. Adding the decals is now easier to do than later on to avoid
damage. So the model was given a coat of Johnson
Future/Pledge to get a good even gloss coat. The decals used were many
as provided in the kit, except for the US Marking stars-and-bars which
are to bright blue. Replace these with markings from eg. Microscale/
Superscale set 72-83
Final assembly was now done. The undercarriage, propeller and tail wheel were installed. The main gear legs are difficult to align properly, and I replaced the legs with metal ones. The main gear bay colour: usually is it also very dark (sea blue), but for the aircraft with yellow markings I was unsure. I painted the bays aluminium with a paint brush.
In the cockpit the usual throttle
and some details from card were added. It was painted mainly black with
a paint brush. A small gun sight was also added. The windscreen was carefully
fitted, the gaps closed with white glue, smoothed and painted when dry.
Some weathering was applied on the moving surfaces gaps with PROMODELLER Black wash, to suggest some oil streaks. The wingtip anti-collision lights notches were cutt out at the wing tips, painted on and given a drop of Microscale Kristal Kleer.
The overall model was finally given to protect the decals an overall gloss coat with Johnson Future/Pledge. It now looks fine with an even shine.
And there she is... a Grumman Bearcat F8F-2D of US NAVY Utility squadron 4, around 1955, code "UD".......
Also check out the 1/72
scale Bearcat of SWORD.....
- Grumman F8F Bearcat , Naval Fighters Number 80, Steve Ginter, Gorby Meyer
Back to 1/72 Models.......
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|Created this page, June 16, 2012|