F-47D Thunderbolt Korea 1951

Started by NARSES2, September 25, 2020, 07:47:57 AM

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F.47 Thunderbolt Korea 1951.

When the Korean War broke out the U.S.A.F. soon found that it was ill equipped to support the ground troops in their increasingly desperate attempts to hold back the North Korean forces advance. Luckily the change of fortunes brought about by the Inchon landings gave them some breathing space and they started to look for at least an interim solution to the problem until a longer term one could be found. Their eyes were soon drawn to the hundreds of F.51 Mustangs currently sitting in Japan awaiting scrapping and very quickly a number were pressed back into service in the ground support role. This move soon proved to be a successful one and gradually more aircraft were retrieved from storage, refurbished and put into active service. The only problem with using the Mustang in this role was that its liquid cooled engine was very prone to damage from ground fire and the force was soon taking quite heavy losses. (the Mustang ended up having the highest loss ratio of any allied type used in Korea with 194 being lost in the three years. Of these only 10 were downed in air to air combat). It was at this point that Maj. Gen. William Kepner (retired) appeared upon the scene.

Maj. Gen. Kepner* had commanded the 495th FTG in Europe during the Second World War flying P.47D Thunderbolts and after his retirement had continued to fly them with the Air National Guard. He very quickly volunteered along with the ANG units under his command for active duty and after some initial knockbacks his proposals were accepted. Thus, the Thunderbolt returned to active duty again in the ground pounding role, a mission it was probably better suited to then its sexier looking companion in these endeavours. the Mustang. Unfortunately the one flaw in this arrangement was the simple fact that there were far more Mustangs readily available than there were Thunderbolts and thus after a 9 month spell on active duty where they were remarkably successful the remaining aircraft were withdrawn through lack of replacements and returned to the U.S. where they took part in many fund raising campaigns.

* Please note Maj. Gen. William Kepner had a much more successful and diverse career than I have given here, look him up on the Net, I simply had some personal markings for one of his aircraft.

The model is the Tamiya 1/72 kit and it builds as you would expect without any issues whatsoever. I've used a multitude of different paint brands, but in the main they are from the Xtracrylic, Hataka and Humbrol ranges. The natural metal finish has been done using at least 6 different shades of paint, although you can only really distinguish 3 at the best. Transfers are from the Tamiya kit for the personal markings and stencils etc, whilst the national and unit markings come from the Tamiya kit of the F.51 in Korean War service.
All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable build and one that has helped me get back into the swing of things after I had a bit of a health issue halfway through the build and it stalled for a while. It's also helped me start to come to grips with the way I'm going to have to work for the foreseeable future as well.

So here we have a F-47D Thunderbolt of the 18th Fighter Bomber Group, Korea, 1951, flown by Maj. Gen. William Kepner.

Decals my @r$e!

Old Wombat

Nice one, Chris! Your work-around on the health issues seems to be successful. :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
Has a life outside of What-If & wishes it would stop interfering!

"The purpose of all War is Peace" - St. Augustine

veritas ad mortus veritas est

comrade harps

Such a good idea and nicely executed  :thumbsup:


Like it. Always thought it better suited for the role than the Mustang. Pity never enough of them.


Nice build!
One day I'm going to build a P/F-47 zwilling so I could say half the airframes got used up so not enough left for Korea.
" Somewhere, between half true, and completely crazy, is a rainbow of nice colours "
Tophe the Wise


That looks very good, very good indeed! Great job, Chris! :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
"Sticks and stones may break some bones but a 3.57's gonna blow your damn head off!!"


Hell yeah, that is righteous! I love a good jug and this one is really good!
-Sprues McDuck-



- 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..


Looks good.

I had a similar thought several years ago but went with South Korean markings.

Phil Peterson

Vote for the Whiffies

Leading Observer


Observation is the most enduring of lifes pleasures


Your back story has me thinking about a dedicated strike development of the Jug - bigger wings with lots of hardpoints, stretched fuselage...
Something between a Jug and a Spad.

- 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..



I don't think it's nice, you laughin'. You see, my mule don't like people laughin'. He gets the crazy idea you're laughin' at him. Now if you apologize, like I know you're going to, I might convince him that you really didn't mean it.


Thanks gents, much appreciated.

I do like your Korean one Phil  :thumbsup:
Decals my @r$e!


Gorgeous, Chris.
I just wish there was a decent P/F-47N so that you could sneek in an extra hard point under each wing.
Then you could realy be "loaded up and huntin' for bear".
Alle kunst ist umsunst wenn ein engel auf das zundloch brunzt!!

Sic biscuitus disintegratum!

Cats are not real. 
They are just physical manifestations of collisions between enigma & conundrum particles.

Any aircraft can be improved by giving it a SHARKMOUTH!