Recent Work

Airfix 1/48 Hawker Hurricane Mk1

After 18 months of on and off again progress on these Airfix Hurricane’s, the 249 Squadron build is finally completed. Info on the pilots below:
F/O Percival Ross-Frames “Percy” Burton
6 June 1917- 27 September 1940
Pilot Battle of Britain. Service number 74348. 1 Confirmed air victory
249 Squadron Church Fenton 1940
Hawker Hurricane MK1 V6683 (GN-H)
On the morning of September 27th 1940 the squadron engaged a formation of Me110’s of V/LG1. The Hurricanes broke the Germans’ two defensive circles and the enemy aircraft went south at low level, heading for the Channel. Burton
pursued one of the 110’s for about forty miles, often at little more than treetop height, but the German pilot, the Gruppe Kommandeur of V/LGI, Hauptmann Horst Liensberger, was unable to shake him off.
Just north of Hailsham, Burton’s guns stopped firing (presumably due to being out of ammunition) and the two aircraft skimmed over the rooftops. The Hurricane, V6883, was above and behind the Me110. Burton suddenly banked and made what
appeared to be an attack. Both machines lurched and an object spun away. The tail unit of the110 dropped into a field, followed by the rest of the aircraft. The falling object was the wingtip of Burton’s Hurricane. His aircraft crashed into a huge oak tree on New Barn Farm, throwing its dead pilot clear and burning itself out in a field.
The German crew were buried in Hailsham Cemetery but were exhumed after the war and buried elsewhere. Burton is buried in St Andrew’s churchyard, Tangmere.
Eye-witness reports indicate strongly that he deliberately rammed the Me110. A letter from Fighter Command to the Hailsham ARP Chief said that Burton was to be recommended for a posthumous gallantry award. This could only have been the VC but in fact he only received a Mention in Despatches due to a VC being awarded to the squadron a few weeks earlier.
He was promoted from Pilot Officer to Flying Officer 26/9/40. In 1980 a road on a housing estate near to the site of the crash site was named ‘Burton Walk’ in his memory.
P/O James Reginald Bryan Meaker DFC
19 January 1919- 27 September 1940
Pilot Battle of Britain. Service number 42514. 7 Confirmed air victories
46 Squadron Digby & 249 Squadron Church Fenton 1940
Hawker Hurricane MK1 P5206 (GN-L)
On 24th February 1940 Meaker was posted to 12 Group Pool Aston Down, to convert to Hurricanes. It was around this time he was involved in a mid air collision with another squadron member though both pilots baled out successfully. He joined 46 Squadron at Digby on 31st March. After a short spell on flying duties at 27 MU, Meaker was posted to 263 Squadron at Scapa Flow on 4th May. The squadron’s Gladiators were loaded on to HMS Furious, which sailed for Norway on 14th May. They were unloaded on the 21st and began standing patrols. The squadron was withdrawn on 7th June and Meaker returned to Britain by sea.
Meaker joined 249 Squadron at Leconfield in late June. On 15th August Meaker claimed a Me110 destroyed, on the 24th a Me109, on 2nd September he destroyed a Me110, shared a Do17 and damaged another, on the 6th destroyed two Me109’s and on the 15th he destroyed two Do17’s, shared a probable Do17 and damaged a Me109.
On the morning of 27th September 1940, J.R.B Meaker shared in the destruction of a Me110 in the same engagement that led to the demise of his squadron mate P.R.F Burton. Later that afternoon in a separate engagement while
attacking a group of five JU-88’s on his own, his plane was hit by defensive fire and upon bailing out, his head struck the tail section of his Hurricane P3834 and he fell dead with an unopened parachute.
Meaker is buried in West Dean Cemetery, Sussex. He was awarded the DFC (gazetted 8th October 1940). In 1990 a memorial was placed near the spot where he was killed.

Airfix 1/48 Hawker Hurricane Mk1

Grumman Avenger

Italeri (Accurate Minitures) 1/48 Grumman TBM-1 Avenger Royal New Zealand Air Force, Whenuapai 1944

This is the former Accurate Miniatures mold and was reboxed by Italeri. In terms of detail, it was amazing considering the age of the molding. The detail was well impressive, and Italeri had released it with some RNZAF markings which is extremely rare for a mainstream kit.

Whilst the kit was overall a nice build, there were issues (seems to be the way with me & aircraft builds in recent years). The main floor of the interior was warped. Don’t know if that was sitting in my stash for the last 13 years or for another reason, but as a result there were some significant fit issues with the interior which required some shaping and altering in order to get it to fit.

The instructions were the Accurate Miniatures ones, and sadly it was lacking a lot of detail & explanation in a couple of areas. Namely the installation of the bathtub gun assembly & the torpedo doors. Aside from that, it was pretty straight forward.


Italeri 1/48 Grumman TBM-1 Avenger Royal New Zealand Air Force, Whenuapai, 1944

Bear & Bella (Portrait Commission IV)

Bear & Bella (Portrait Commission IV)

Oil on Canvas 450mm x 600mm


SOLD

Oil on Canvas 450mm x 600mm

HMS Nelson

Trumpeter 1/200 HMS Nelson

Pontos 1/200 HMS Nelson aftermarket set

North Star Models 1/200 figures (A & B)

Brass pedestals & teak base.

Colourcoats enamels

Time spent- July 2019 – November 2020

This kit was a massive project. Over 1,700 parts, the addition of the aftermarket PE set and the camouflage paint job ensured this project would span well over a year to complete.

Quick summary; A challenging build, but a satisfactory one. Plenty of hurdles to overcome, but once you make inroads, it became easier as time progressed.

Should you attempt one? Many people have said over the course of the build they felt intimidated by the amount of parts and the complexity of them and therefore would never try it. I would honestly say, if you even were mildly interested in trying one of these one day, and had a basic knowledge of using brass & photo etch- do it. A lot of the build was much easier than it looked, and the daunting aspects of the build were not as tough as originally expected. A builder with limited experience can make this whole Pontos kit shine, and you can use as little or as much of it as you want.

If you want to build the kit only, then even basic modelling skills will make this look good. If you want to try the Pontos set on top, then it’s recommended you have at least a small amount of PE & brass experience.

The Trumpeter kit

The kit itself was typical Trumpeter. No flash, good fit on the parts with good detail, though with some of their traditional inaccuracies. Nice of them to supply some PE for it, though this is replaced with the Pontos offering.

The one piece hull design is a great idea, and the deck fit on top reasonably well.  Interestingly, the main gun barrels were much shorter than the Pontos replacements. Even without the aftermarket kit, these ships carry enough detail to warrant their big size, and make up a good looking build just on their own.

The paints

The colourcoats enamel paints came out looking great. The colours feel very accurate, and the blues & greys are subtle enough without being too bright. The paint required decanting and thinning, though the paint did not last long in the bottles before drying out- which I found odd since they were proper paint bottles. If there was a ready to airbrush version of these colours, or an acrylic range it would be much more popular, and would really cement itself as the be all and end all when it comes to Royal Navy colours.

The figures

The Northstar Models figures were highly details and carried multiple interesting poses with a good selection of different types of sailors & officers. In terms of 200 scale naval figures, these 3D printed figures are right up there.

There were two let downs with these figures. One was that they were moulded to the casting block way too close together, so cutting one off often took another off at the knees- this was especially difficult when cutting really thin parts as they are very fragile figures.

The other issue was that dealing with Northsar themselves wasn’t easy.  It took about 3 months to get the product. I was told the item had shipped and was given a tracking number which didn’t exist. Then I sent about 8 unanswered emails over a space of 6 weeks with no response. Finally I did get a response saying it was on the way, with the same tracking number- which now worked.

Pontos aftermarket set

Finally the Pontos set. Loads of PE, resin and brass. I loved this set- to a point. It amplified everything so much. 8 barrelled pom poms with 10 parts in the kit, carried over 30 in this one! The detail was amazing across the board.

Even for a newbie like me, it wasn’t difficult to use this set- challenging yes, but a set like this can be used competently by someone with intermediate skills. It’s not reserved for the exclusively advanced.

As fantastic as this aftermarket set is, it was let down greatly by one aspect, and this had a knock on effect which ultimately made this set harder than it needed to be- and that was the instructions.

The images were not clear enough- especially smaller images like the jack staffs or smaller parts.

There were no instructions on how to make many of these components- just an end picture, so I had to rebuild segments of things from time to time when it came to fitting them on the ship.

More than once it called for using the wrong part or wrong railing which was in fact a different number, there were not arrows or diagrams or a process of which parts to use first.

There are also many different parts & accessories which come in the set which are clearly meant to be used for something, but there is no reference to them anywhere in the instructions- text or images. It’s like you’re expected to know where they go, which for a ship could be anyone’s guess.

The pieces which are required to do the main battery were very hard to fit correctly. A lot more detail in the instructions were required for this part especially. This was compounded by the brass barrels which made the front of the turrets very heavy making construction harder still. The ammo boxes for the pom poms were also difficult to use so I used the kit ones instead.


Trumpeter 1/200 HMS Nelson

Flite #2

Flite #2 (Oil on Panel 300mm x 300mm)

Entered into the Art Showcase- Edmund Hillary Village November 2020


Oil on Panel 300mm x 300mm

Entered into the Art Showcase- Edmund Hillary Village November 2020

All the big Trees #3

All the big Trees #3 (Oil on Panel 406mm x 509mm)

Entered into the Art Showcase- Edmund Hillary Village November 2020


Prints available

Oil on Panel 406mm x 509mm

Entered into the Art Showcase- Edmund Hillary Village November 2020

Please contact Nyle for details on purchasing paintings and prints.

Eternal

Eternal (Oil on Canvas 500mm x 1000mm)

Entered into the Auckland Art Show (Online) September 17th-20th 2020


Prints available

Oil on Canvas 500mm x 1000mm

Entered into the Auckland Art Show (Online) September 17th-20th 2020

Please contact Nyle for details on purchasing paintings and prints.

Temeraire

Temeraire (Oil on Canvas 500mmx 1000mm)

Entered into the Auckland Art Show (Online) September 17th-20th 2020


Prints available

Oil on Canvas 500mm x 1000mm

Entered into the Auckland Art Show (Online) September 17th-20th 2020

Please contact Nyle for details on purchasing paintings and prints.

Mandarin Still Life

Mandarin Still Life (Oil on Panel 200mm Diameter)

Entered into the Auckland Art Show (Online) September 17th-20th 2020


SOLD

Prints available

Oil on Panel 200mm Diamter

Entered into the Auckland Art Show (Online) September 17th-20th 2020

Please contact Nyle for details on purchasing paintings and prints.

Lemon Still Life

Lemon Still Life (Oil on Panel 300mm x 300mm)

Entered into the Auckland Art Show (Online) September 17th-20th 2020


SOLD

Prints available

Oil on Panel 300mm x 300mm

Entered into the Auckland Art Show (Online) September 17th-20th 2020

Please contact Nyle for details on purchasing paintings and prints.