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Eastern Front 1941 Pt.9: Red Banner Fairchild FC-1M

Started by comrade harps, January 13, 2017, 05:33:23 AM

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comrade harps

Fairchild Aviation Crimea FC-1M
a/c Yellow 24, Moscow Red Banner Militia
Moscow Front, December 1941

Closely aligned with the Socialist Union, the Jewish nation of Crimea declared its independence from Soviet Russia on 23 November, 1927, during the Second Russian Civil War/The War Against Stalinism. In return for support against Stalin, Trotsky made deals with numerous ethnic minorities enabling them to establish varying levels of autonomy from Moscow, including national sovereignty, but with strings attached such as military and economic alliances. Successful in reducing Stalin's area of control to the TransCaucases, Crimea and the Socialist Union enjoyed mutually beneficial relations in the post-civil war era. When the European Axis countries declared war on the Socialist Union and many of its aligned its neighbouring states on 22 June, 1941, Crimea was among those targeted; and Nazi Germany had a special place in Hell for the majority Jewish nation, which fought to defend itself against overwhelming odds with rarely seen, but ultimately failed, vigour.

Although Socialist and part of the Moscow Pact, Crimea had a mixed economy and had strong links with many Western nations and its defence forces operated a mix of indigenous, Red and Western equipment. In 1933 Fairchild Aircraft Ltd., the Canadian subsidiary of the American Fairchild Aircraft Corporation, sold 3 Model 22s to the privately owned Crimean Air Charter. In 1935 the company's owner, Sherman Fairchild, followed-up on more orders from Crimean operators for the Model 24 by establishing Fairchild Aviation Crimea at Sevastopol as a subsidiary of Fairchild UK. To get around American export licence restrictions the UK and Crimean companies re-designed the Model 24 to create a new type which was deigned to Moscow Pact standards (including metric measurement) and used Crimean-sourced equipment.  The resultant FC-1 (Fairchild Crimea – One) went into production as a utility and bush plane in 1936, building 213 civilian models by June, 1941. A further 327 FC-1Ms had been built for Moscow Pact para-military and military operators by the same time. Like many other aircraft factories of the Moscow Pact threatened by the Axis advance, the Fairchild Crimea factory and its workforce was transported east beyond the Urals and the FC-1 series renamed in low quantity production until 1947.

One of those Moscow Pact FC-1 operators was the Moscow Red Banner Militia. The Red Banner Militia was a paramilitary Communist Party organisation whose aviation assets performed both aviation training, civillian aide and military duties. As Hitler's armies approached Moscow the Miliatia's aircraft were comouflaged and was increasingly involved in forntline operations, taking urgent cargo to frontline troops, evacuating casualties and conducting visual recconnaisance. By November, 1941, they were using their local knowledge to perform artillery spotting and target marking for VVS attack planes around Moscow. Several aircraft types were used for these varying roles, ranging from Li-2 transports (unlicensed DC-3 copies) to Po-2 biplanes and FC-1s.

This aircraft was photographed "somewhere on the Moscow Front" in December, 1941. It carries four DAB-10-9 M-41 smoke bombs for target making and wears a roughly-applied and temporary white winter camouflage over its black-green and medium-green camouflage. The undersurface colour of this plane has been a matter of dispute among model makers and profile illustrators. Many have argued that the plane should have been painted with the standard VVS undersurafce blue, however this appears to be wrong in the light of a series of colour photographs made at the time by the Red "combat artist" Alexander Kobro. Kobro was on the scene and photographed several aviation subjects on the Moscow Front in 1941-42 that clearly show VVS planes with blue undersides and many Red Banner Militia planes (including this aircraft) with pale grey undersurfaces.

Another issue solved with the help of Kobro's photographs is the design of the aircraft's fuselage stars. According to the "blue brigade" they should be simple red stars with or without a black outline but definately not with a white outline. These were the VVS standards at the time and were stars of these kindswere applied on many Red Banner planes when they were camouflaged. However, Kobro's photographs of this FC-1 and several other Red Banner types clearly show the white outline. This was the pre-war Red Banner standard, adopted in 1935 when a red fuselage sash was applied, the red star being indicated by a white outline on the red background. This appears to have been retained on Yellow 2 when the remainder of the fuselage was camouflaged.



Cute. Matchbox Norseman skis, eh? Works very well.  :thumbsup:


Decals my @r$e!

comrade harps

Quote from: Dizzyfugu on January 13, 2017, 05:40:06 AM
Cute. Matchbox Norseman skis, eh? Works very well.  :thumbsup:

Cute, yes. Skis, obviously. Works well, thank you.

Neither Matchbox nor Norseman, though. It is indeed a Fairchild.


An Argus then?

The one that was called a Forwarder when it had an in-line engine.
Kit's Rule 1 ) Any aircraft can be improved by fitting longer wings, and/or a longer fuselage
Kit's Rule 2) The backstory can always be changed to suit the model

...and I'm not a closeted 'Take That' fan, I'm a REAL fan! :)




- Can't be bothered to do the proper research and get it right.

Another ill conceived, lazily thought out, crudely executed and badly painted piece of half arsed what-if modelling muppetry from zenrat industries.

zenrat industries:  We're everywhere...for your convenience..

comrade harps

Quote from: PR19_Kit on January 13, 2017, 02:46:38 PM
An Argus then?

The one that was called a Forwarder when it had an in-line engine.

Correct: also known as the Fairchild 24.

It's the Legato kit, plus skis from the spares box (which may well have come from a Norseman originally).