Douglas XB-42 "Mixmaster"


XB-42 model in 1/72 scale : kit review & modelling report
 
real mixmaster
The Douglas Mixmaster was a project started in 1944 to provide the USAAF with a fast, medium bomber. The aircraft has two counter rotating props at the tail with a sleek wing resulting in a very clean design. The aerodynamics were superior, enabling the XB-42 to attain 450 mph. The first flight was in 1944. The project was terminated in 1948 as engine problems could not be solved, although a XB-42 was flown with a jet engine in 1948.
 

The kit is a vacu-form model in 1/72 from "The Eagles Talon". It is an excellent kit although only comprising the basic airframe in plastic. Gear and details were made from rod and cart.

The kit's instructions are excellent and an example on how it should be: clear, good drawings, interesting information and history details.
The cockpit area is well visible under the large and very clear canopy so details were added. The area was also painted as it could not be reached later on..

The wheel wells were opened and boxed in, the doors being kept for later on.

The canopy with framing added from painted decals! The strips cut-out provide a clean result and fixation was done with varnish.



The nose area with bomber-aimer position. The crew got access through a ladder in the nose gear, the hatch on the right side being used to bail out in emergencies.
 
The XB-42 has a high gear as the propellers required clearance from the ground. The model as made represented the later type with a single canopy. The first prototype had two canopies.



The propeller configuration at the tail. The two counter rotating propellers gave the XB-42 a good performance but the engines caused vibration and troubled the excellent design. The props were made from spare ones as the kit provides only some "plastic shapes"..

The model was airbrushed in plain silver paint as no high gloss metal was obvious from photo's. Some details were highlighted with different paint and the markings came from the spare box. How good it is to keep everything you have from old kits!

 

xb-42 rear 

side

up

.... at Muroc test base

xb-42 at muroc

 
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Created November 26, 2000