The inspiration for this model came after a recent visit to the citadel of Dinant. There, under a couple of pine trees stands a – rather neglected – Gloster Meteor of the Royal Belgian Air Force.
Seeing it there, prompted me to read a little on the history of the Meteor. I then thought it would be nice to build a Belgian Meteor (after all, I live in Belgium now) and I saw that Airfix makes an excellent model of the F.8 in 1/48. I did some research on Belgian paint schemes and decals but I could not find something that I liked better than the Aifix-provided Dutch paint scheme. Oh well, I guess will need to find another Belgian subject later. It’s Dutch time now!
Regarding the Airfix kit: this has nothing to do with the Airfix kits of my youth. The surface detail is very nice. The fit is not Tamiya level but it’s mostly ok. The cockpit is detailed enough that, with a little care, can look acceptable without after-market additions. The two large access panels on both sides of the cockpit can be built open, revealing the gun breeches and the ammo belts. The control surfaces on the tail, the ailerons and speed brakes on the wings can all be set in different positions. Last bit not least, the kit includes two complete Rolls-Royce Derwent turbojet engines that can be shown through open top-wing the access panels. A stand is provided to optionally display one of the engines outside the plane.
The construction was straight forward and I mostly just followed the instructions. Besides the odd wire and stretched sprue here and there, the only after market part that I used, was a metal pitot tube by Master Model. Oh, also some photoetched seatbelts from the spares box:
The kit provides two options for the ejection seat: one with integrated, molded seatbelts and one without. At first, I thought I would just use the part with the integrated seatbelts but when I tried to paint them the result was not good. So, I used the part without seatbelts, together with some leftover photo etched seatbelts I had from the F-104. They are not 100% accurate but they are still much better than the other option.
The paint scheme is rather easy too. Apart from the tail and the engine nacelles that are red, the rest is aluminum, including the open bays and the landing gear. I used AK Extreme Metal – Dark Aluminum and Mission Models MMP-003 Red. The decals were fixed between 2 coats of Gloss Varnish and finally a little weathering was done with Tamiya Black Panel Liner.
The work in progress
Click on each photo for description.
The finished model
|Airfix Gloster Meteor F.8 Korea||1/48||A09184|
|Master Model Gloster Meteor – Pitot Tube||1/48||AM-48-152|