T-33 in 1/72 scale with the Italeri (and Platz) kits
Check out my Italeri T-33 modelling video on YouTube...
... continued from page 2...
In 2021 also the same mould Platz T-33 appeared in the ITALERI range as kit #1444 (but without the engine sprue):
As in the Platz mould, the canopy+wind screen is one piece.
It is very nice as it comes with a good printed decals sheet for no less than 6 schemes:
A. USAF of the 5th FIS at North Dakota 1978 in a light aircraft grey scheme or a variation in a bare aluminium metal scheme; note: check the grey FS number if you want this scheme.
B. West German Luftwaffe, Jagdgeschwader 72 at Leck, 1960 in a bare aluminium metal scheme;
C. Italian Air Force, 36 Stormo at Gioia del Colle, 1960 in a bare aluminium metal scheme;
D. French Air Force "Armee de l 'Air", Ecole 314 at Tours , 1962 in a bare aluminium metal scheme;
E. Spanish Air Force "Ejercito de L'Aire", 41 Grupo, 1975 in a bare aluminium metal with lower blue'ish metal scheme;
F. Greek Air Force of 342 MIRA in a camouflage scheme, 1996.
The decals are really impressive with different styles of walkways and nicely printed roundels:
The decal instruction schemes have printed colour as well. The instructions of the Italeri kit show a similar build sequence as the Platz kit but with fewer details.
- the cockpit interior colours seem not to be gull grey but rather FS36473 for which Gunze Sangyo H61 can be used; same with gear bay colours though that may vary as per air force;
- the lights on the spine and lower belly are not red but look to be "clear" uncoloured;
- the anti-glare section on the insides of tip tanks may vary per air force;
- there are no instrument decals; find these in the spares box or drybrush the raised details. I did a mix of spare decal and painting;
- fuel dump pipe #C1 is provided, install for most T-33's and paint red.
|It was decided to make a few of these kits|
The first Italeri T-33 kit was made flown by the air force of Greece in a "Vietnam like" camouflage scheme.
It was decided to droop the flaps so some cutting was needed as described earlier for the Platz kit on page 2. I also would set the rear tail section on a dolly with engine shown...
The Italeri model has a separate tail section as the Platz kit but no engine parts. In the Platz kit #AC14 a separate sprue is provided for the J33 engine. I had a sprue from the this kit and it was used in this model as seen here:
I added a few air flow plates with card. Note also the curved card sections to close the "drooped flap" fuselage holes.
The fuselage interiors are unclear. The engine got a metal colour airbrushed with some black wash but was fitted later on.
The model assembly was done as earlier with the Platz kits described on page 2.
The fine decals are in the Italeri kit, scheme "F" for a T-33 still flown by Polemiki Aeroporia, no. 342 Mira at Tanagra base in 1996. The Italeri decal instructions are seen here.
The colours airbrushed were Gunze Sangyo / Mr Hobby acrylics:
- lower surfaces FS36622 with Gunze H311;
- tan FS30219 with Gunze H310;
- green FS34102 with Gunze H303;
- dark green FS34079 with Gunze H309.
Use hand held paper masks between airbrushing the colours.
The decals were applied after the model got a gloss varnish overcoat to avoid "silvering". (I airbrushed a thinned mix of Johnson Future).
To achieve a bit worn effects, some extra airbrushing was now again done: each camouflage colour was thinned with 20% H1 white and each area oversprayed in this lighter colour mix. Use a paper mask to apply the worn pattern.
Next, the smaller bits were installed like the landing gears and these are fine. The wheel tyres were hand painted dull "panzergrau" e.g. very dark grey. I painted the landing gear bays insides medium glossy grey.
The J33 engine retrieved from the Platz kit was painted and fixed to the inside frames. The prepared flaps were set and got some thinned black wash.
During its long service life, the Greek air force installed new Martin Baker Gu5 seats. It has a big head box with harness pull handles.
I however installed the old style kit seats in the cockpit.
The canopy was to be set open, this needed separating the wind screen, see page 2 how. The canopy insides were detailed.
Some recessed panels were scribed with a soft pencil for some extra weathering. The final thing done was airbrushing a semi-mat varnish with the usual technique.
Note: the rear fuselage tail carrying dolly still needs some painting. To be done later.
[ area: 132.000 sq.km | population: 10,8 million | capital: Athens | GDP 20,000 USD per capita nominal ]
Over 40 T-33 jets were operated from 1951 through the nineties including some 20 RT-33 by the Greece air force. Many were replaced by the T-2 Buckeye. For more information about the Greece air force, look at the page here...
The second Italeri kit was made in a scheme of the Nicaragua after it was ruled by the Sandinistas after 1979.
The kit was made as described earlier for the Platz kits on page 2. The flaps were again set drooped so converted.
Photos were studied on the internet and a paint scheme drawing from the 1/48 "Idea" T-33 kit #5000 (this is a Hobbycraft mould).
The camouflage colours picked were these acrylic paints:
- lower surfaces about RLM78, a mix of Gunze Sangyo H314+H324;
- green FS34097 with Gunze Sangyo H340;
- brown-red FS30108 with revell aqua acrylic 381;
- brown-sand FS30257 with Gunze H313.
Masking between colours was needed, done with hand held pieces of paper. A gloss varnish was airbrushed before decals were applied to avoid "silvering", that is spoiling the decal adherence. Decalling was done.
Also note the intake "triangles" and the red edges at the wing root hand painted. The final parts were installed. The landing gear bay colours were unclear, I settled with painted interior green as were the insides of gear doors. For the interior green I used Revell Aqua 61 green with some drops of yellow paint.
The small anti-collision lights were also painted as noted on page 1. The fuel dump pipe #C1 as per kit (but not shown by Italeri) installed and painted red.
Final coat was semi-mat varnish airbrushed with the usual technique. This gives the model a nice sheen and in scale effect.
The canopy was to be set open, see how on page 2. The frames were hand painted and locks and bits set on the frame insides. It was placed unfixed and the model was ready!
[ area: 130,375 sq.km | capital: Managua | 6,5 million inhabitants | GDP USD 2,200 per capita nominal ]
The Fuerza Aerea Nicaragua obtained an unknown number of T-33 jets from 1961 but also 4 armed AT-33A aircraft from the USA after the failed US invasion of Castro's Cuba in 1961. These jets could drop bombs and unguided rockets. The T-33's were to be retired in 1978 when a civil war led to many aircraft diverted to neighbouring countries. After the Sandinista Coupe in 1979 probably 5 were still used with "Sandinista" titles. Other left aircraft were 1 B-26, 6 T-28, 6 A-37 and several transports and helicopters. In the 1980s from Bulgaria and supported by the Soviet Union, a few Mil helicopters were obtained. After another regime change in 1990, several aircraft were sold to Peru. Currently probably only a few helicopters are operated by the Fuerza Aerea Ejercito Nicaragua.
For more information about this air force, look at the F-51 page here...
T-33 Fuerza Aerea Sandinista, "173" , 1981
... at Managua, Fuerza Aerea facilities...
Hope you like these T birds!
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Created Sept 19, 2022