avatar_AeroplaneDriver

Royal Navy Hornet FA.1-completed

Started by AeroplaneDriver, November 29, 2021, 07:24:18 PM

Previous topic - Next topic

AeroplaneDriver

Kinetic 1/48 F/A-18 two seater.  I started this kit twice and twice sent it back to the box on the shelf of doom because the nose and canopy area were a nightmare.  I don't know if it's the kit or my ham-fists but it was terrible. 

This week I decided it was not going to get the better of me and dragged it out along with my trust Dremel and made some progress. 

So here you have a two-seater Hornet in Medium Sea Grey.  Who would operate such a thing? You ask? 

Perhaps a nation building a super carrier but faffing about as to the launch method say circa 2012?  And after deciding on Cats & Traps vs STOVL said nation purchases some surplus naval fighters from an allied nation to regain lost skills while waiting for F-35C deliveries...maybe a nation like that?

So I got that going for me...which is nice....

Devilfish

Nice idea. I went a bit earlier with mine....

DSC_0930 by Paul Carter, on Flickr

DSC_1047 by Paul Carter, on Flickr

AeroplaneDriver

Love those.  I almost went with an EDSG over White for this one but wanted to make it more recent and a whif based on a real option. This is my second RN Hornet. I did a Monogram one about 10 years ago as a late 80s A aboard CVA-01 towards the end of her life. 

Love the Hornet and for a brief time about 10 years ago it looked like a realistic option for the RN.
So I got that going for me...which is nice....

AeroplaneDriver

Tonight's progress.  Pretty happy considering 30 hours ago it was a fuselage with a manky nose and a windshield that sat about 1mm too high.

Decaling about 2/3 done. Thinking the two Brassin Storm Shadows in the stash might look nice on this 899 Sqn beauty.  Or maybe just a CAP bird with a lot of AIM-120s and ASRAAMs. Time will tell.

So I got that going for me...which is nice....

kitbasher

#4
Hornets whif up rather nicely in RAF/FAA colours.  Did my own 9 Sqn machine a few years ago (https://www.aircraftresourcecenter.com/Gal7/6401-6500/gal6489-Hornet-Drake/00.shtm - I can assure you it's 1/72 not 1/48!).
What If? & Secret Project SIG member.
On the go: Beaumaris/Battle/Bronco/Barracuda/Corsair GA.1/Flatning/Hellcat IV/Hunter PR11/Hurricane IIb/Ice Cream Tank/JP T4/Jumo MiG-15/P1103 (early)/P1154-ish/Phantom FG1/I-153/Sea Hawk T7/Spitfire XII/Spitfire Tr18/Twin Otter/FrankenCOIN/Frankenfighter

Devilfish

Quote from: AeroplaneDriver on November 30, 2021, 12:11:38 AM
Love those.  I almost went with an EDSG over White for this one but wanted to make it more recent and a whif based on a real option. This is my second RN Hornet. I did a Monogram one about 10 years ago as a late 80s A aboard CVA-01 towards the end of her life. 

Love the Hornet and for a brief time about 10 years ago it looked like a realistic option for the RN.

The only reason I went ESG/White was because I did an old Italeri one in MSG a few years ago, so wanted something different...

104_1734_zps50e3624a by Paul Carter, on Flickr

buzzbomb



Firefox

 :thumbsup: :thumbsup: F/A-18 looks good on the schemes

Pellson

So many nice bugs here...  :wub:
Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition!

AeroplaneDriver

I had hoped to post finished pics today after spending yesterday afternoon painting up weapons and tackling fiddly bits.  But alas no...American Airlines has other plans for me...got called in to work this afternoon. Next day off is Wednesday so hopefully she'll be all done then.

I initially planned on arming her with the nice pair of Eduard/Brassin Storm Shadows, but now that she's almost done I think I'm going to keep it basic.  You see so many Hornets tooled up for ground attack, so I think I'm just going to have this one in a CAP load out of two AMRAAM and two ASRAAM waiting to check out nosy Bears. 
So I got that going for me...which is nice....

AeroplaneDriver

When the decision was made to build the Royal Navy's two new CVF 'supercarriers' in the STOVL configuration with a ski-ramp, the plan was to operate the STOVL version of the F-35 Lightning.  Unfortunately a series of setbacks and design flaws led to the cancellation of the STOVL "B" model of the Lightning in 2008.  Suddenly faced with the prospect of either operating near-obsolete Harriers, the UK government rapidly made the switch to CATOBAR configuration for the Queen Elizabeth Class.  Fortunately the decision was made early enough in the build process to result in minimal delays, though there was a considerable increase in cost.  This was seen as being partially offset by the forced cancellation of the UK's F-35B order (the B was to be the most expensive of the F-35 family). 

With no 'Cat & Trap" carrier operations since the retirement of HMS Ark Royal in 1978, the Royal Navy suddenly found itself needing to regenerate long-lost skills.  To prepare for operations on HMS Queen Elizabeth the UK leased 28 low time F-18D Hornets from the US in 2012.  Two squadrons were formed, 809 Squadron and 899 Squadron.  809 Squadron was to be initially based at Occeana Naval Air Station in the US to train alongside US Hornets.  899 Squadron was based at RAF Marham, which became a joint RAF/RN station, though aircraft and pilots routinely deployed to the US to train in and maintain carrier skills. 

The UK's planned purchase of 148 F-35Bs became a split buy of 52 F-35Cs for the Royal Navy and 90 F-35As for the RAF, and arrangement which had been preferred by many in Whitehall since the start of the JSF program.  To supplement the RN's 52 F-35Cs the 28 Hornets were purchased outright in 2018, along with 12 further airframes made available by the USN as the service transitioned to the Super Hornet.  With experience in Afghanistan and Iraq showing the value of a second set of eyes in the cockpit, all UK Hornets were two-seat D models.  This would give the Royal Navy of the mid 2020s a fleet of over 90 fast jet aircraft.  Its largest in many years, and most capable ever. 

This model depicts an 899 Sqn Hornet FG.1 during HMS Queen Elizabeth's first operational deployment, an ambitious 7-month cruise that saw the fleet travel over 26,000 miles and visit some 40 friendly nations in May 2022.  For this deployment HMS QE sailed with 899 Squadron's 12 Hornet FA.1s and 12 Lightning FA.1s from 892 Squadron as well as three Hawkeye AEW.1s and a full complement of Merlin helicopters.   This cruise, Carrier Strike Group 22, coincided with heightened tensions with both China and Russia, and the RN's Hornets had ample opportunity to conduct live intercept missions alongside F-35Cs.  This model shows the standard fit for an intercept mission of two AMRAAM and two ASRAAM air-to-air missiles.  In early 2023 RN Hornets received an upgrade that included the integration of the MBDA Meteor AAM.  Other weapons carried by the Royal Navy's Hornets included Paveway IV LGBs. Storm Shadow cruise missiles, and Brimstone missiles. 











Kit is the Kinetic 1/48 F/A-18A/B/C/D kit.  Decals are a mix of kit decals for stencils and mostly a She Harrier sheet.  ASRAAMs from a Revell Typhoon and Kits World 3D printed seat harnesses are the only other non-kit items used.  Paint is Hataka acrylic Medium Sea Grey, with the US colors retained on the radome. 

It's a nicely detailed kit and for the most part went together well, but I had a hell of a time getting the nose to fit.  I ended up cutting the whole thing off and reattaching.  Apparently I missed something in the instructions or screwed something up because the way I did it initially just did not work.  I'd like to try another just to see what I did wrong.  To me it looks good on the shelf but close inspection shows the issues I had.  A fun build overall, and I'm glad I finally finished it after starting it a year ago and packing it away in frustration, trying it again over the summer, only to pack it away again, and finally tacking it one last time starting last month. 
So I got that going for me...which is nice....

Old Wombat

She looks great, Nick, & the backstory works a treat! :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

Devilfish


Dizzyfugu

Pretty. Inspired me to consider a (yet) whiffy German Luftwaffe F/A-18E, which was considered recently as a replacement for the last Tornado IDS strike aircraft (as A-bomb carriers). These should IMHO look similarly.