Author Topic: 1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat", "JS-X/N2-064" of RAF No. 321 Sq., Indonesia 1945  (Read 346 times)

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Offline Dizzyfugu

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1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr



Some background:
The Grumman F6F Hellcat was a carrier-based fighter aircraft conceived to replace the earlier F4F Wildcat in United States Navy (USN) service. The Hellcat was an erstwhile rival of the faster Vought F4U Corsair for use as a carrier based fighter. However, the Corsair had significant issues with carrier landing that the Hellcat did not, allowing the Hellcat to steal a march as the Navy's dominant fighter in the second part of World War II, a position the Hellcat did not relinquish. The Corsair instead was primarily deployed to great effect in land-based use by the U.S. Marine Corps.


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


Although the F6F resembled the Wildcat in some ways, it was a completely new design, much bigger and powered by a 2,000 hp Pratt & Whitney R-2800, the same powerplant used for both the Corsair and the United States Army Air Force's (USAAF) Republic P-47 Thunderbolt fighters. Some military observers actually tagged the Hellcat as the "Wildcat's big brother".

The F6F series were designed to take damage and get the pilot safely back to base. A bullet-resistant windshield and a total of 212 lb (96 kg) of cockpit armor was fitted, along with armor around the oil tank and oil cooler. A 250 gal (946 l) self-sealing fuel tank was fitted in the fuselage. Consequently the F6F was best known for its role as a rugged, well-designed carrier fighter which was able, after its combat debut in early 1943, to counter the Mitsubishi A6M Zero and help secure air superiority over the Pacific Theater.


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


The design proved to be very balanced, even though attempts were made to improve the Hellcat's performance. Late prototypes in the F6F series included the XF6F-4 (02981, a conversion of the XF6F-1 powered by an R-2800-27 and armed with four 20mm M2 cannon) which first flew on 3 October 1942 as the prototype for the projected F6F-4. This version never entered production and 02981 was converted to an F6F-3 production aircraft.
Another experimental prototype was the XF6F-2 (66244), an F6F-3 converted to use a Wright R-2600-15, fitted with a Birman manufactured mixed-flow turbocharger, which was later replaced by a Pratt & Whitney R-2800-21, also fitted with a Birman turbocharger. The turbochargers proved to be unreliable on both engines, while performance improvements were marginal. As with the XF6F-4, 66244 was soon converted back to a standard F6F-3.

Other experiments were more successful: Two XF6F-6s (70188 and 70913) were later converted from F6F-5s and used the 18-cylinder 2,100 hp (1,567 kW) Pratt and Whitney R-2800-18W two-stage supercharged radial engine with water injection, driving a Hamilton-Standard four-bladed propeller to cope with the extra power. The XF6F-6s were the fastest version of the Hellcat series during wartime, with a top speed of 417 mph (671 km/h vs. the F6F-5's 391 mph/629 km/h). In order to ensure directional stability at high speed the F6F-6 received a slightly taller tail fin, beyond the four blade propeller another external detail that set new variant apart from its older brethren. The armament was beefed up to four 20mm M2 cannons in the wings, while the F6F-5's standard external ordnance (including unguided missiles, iron bombs and drop tanks) could be carried, too.


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr

by [url=https://www.flickr.com/photos/dizzyfugu/]dizzyfugu, on Flickr


The F6F-6 was cleared for production in September 1944 and entered service with both US Navy and Royal Navy (as F6F-6 and Hellcat F Mk.III, respectively) in early 1945. Small numbers of the “Double Six” were also delivered to New Zealand and the Netherlands. The latter were operated by former NL-KNIL units in the Pacific theatre that were at that time under Royal Air Force command. The machines arrived at the Dutch East Indies in June 1945 and carried Dutch markings (in the form of flags instead of RAF SEA roundels), serials and camouflage, but British codes. They effectively arrived too late to become involved in serious combat missions against the retreating Japanese forces. Despite their carrier capabilities the Dutch Hellcats were exclusively operated from land bases.


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


The roundabout forty, quasi-Dutch Hellcats were allocated to RAF 321 Squadron and primarily employed as escort fighters for transporters that carried out relief flights and supply drops to thousands of internees in the POW camps in the Java and Sumatra regions. Another important task were long-range air surveillance missions with occasional attacks against ground targets and shipping. Air combat did hardly occur at all so that the unit only claimed three air victories. In July 1945 the 321 Squadron air echelon moved, supplemented with B-24 Liberators, from Java to Cocos Island in preparation for the proposed invasion of Malaya, but the hostilities ended before this reprisal was carried out.

On 8 December 1945, the Dutch RAF squadrons were passed to the control of the Dutch Naval Aviation Service, while keeping the same squadron numbers. After WWII, the Hellcats were kept in service, but they were quickly phased out because the Netherlands were also operating the British Hawker Sea Fury, and in 1947 the Netherlands Royal Navy decided to keep only a single fighter aircraft type for the two of their aircraft carriers operational. Since it was common practice for Royal Netherlands Navy vessels to operate alongside Royal Navy ships, with the consequence that Dutch Sea Furies regularly operated from FAA land bases and RN carriers, the Hellcats were sorted out. Most of the Dutch F6F-6s were sold to South American operators, where they, together with surplus Hellcats from US Navy surplus stock, soldiered on until the Sixties.


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr




General characteristics:
Crew: 1
Length: 33 ft 7 in (10.24 m)
Wingspan: 42 ft 10 in (13.06 m)
Height: 13 ft 1 in (3.99 m)
Wing area: 334 ft² (31 m²)
Airfoil: NACA 23015.6 mod root; NACA 23009 tip
Empty weight: 9,238 lb (4,190 kg)
Loaded weight: 12,598 lb (5,714 kg)
Max. takeoff weight: 15,415 lb (6,990 kg)
Internal fuel capacity: 250 US gal (950 l)
Zero-lift drag coefficient: 0.0211
Drag area: 7.05 ft² (0.65 m²)
Aspect ratio: 5.5

Powerplant:
1× Pratt & Whitney R-2800-18W "Double Wasp" two-row radial engine with a two-speed two-stage supercharger, delivering 2,100 hp (1,566 kW) at 2,800 rpm at 1,000 ft (305 m) and 1,800 hp (1,342 kW) at 2,800 rpm at 25,500 ft (7,772 m), driving a Hamilton Standard four-blade propeller of 13 ft 1 in (4.0 m) diameter

Performance:
Maximum speed: 330 kn (417 mph, 671 km/h)
Stall speed: 73 kn (84 mph, 135 km/h)
Combat radius: 820 nmi (945 mi, 1.520 km)
Ferry range: 1,330 nmi (1,530 mi, 2.460 km)
Service ceiling: 39,305 ft (12.000 m)
Rate of climb: 3,800 ft/min (19,5 m/s)
Wing loading: 37.7 lb/ft² (184 kg/m²)
Time-to-altitude: 7.0 min to 20,000 ft (6,100 m)
Lift-to-drag ratio: 12.2
Takeoff roll: 799 ft (244 m)

Armament:
4× 0.79 in (20 mm) M2 cannons with 250 RPG in the outer wings
Up to 4,000 lb (1,814 kg) of external loads, including 6× 5 in (127 mm) HVARs, 2× Tiny Tim unguided rockets, 1× 2,000 lb (907 kg) bomb or 1× Mk.13-3 torpedo on the fuselage centerline rack, or 2× 1,000 lb (450 kg), 4× 500 lb (227 kg) or 8× 250 lb (110 kg) bombs on two weapon racks on either side of fuselage under the wing center-section, or up to 3× 150 US gal (570 l) external drop tanks



The kit and its assembly:
This fictional Hellcat was inspired some years ago, when I came across pictures of a Dutch F6F model at FlickR, built by a modeler called "Carl":


CARL'S "what if" PIC!: 1/72nd Academy F6F-3/5 built as a Canadian Vickers FV-1 Hellcat F Mk III with Dutch Triangle decals.
by Mundster, on Flickr


I liked the concept and it already inspired my more radical F6F-7 build (with a different engine and a bubble canopy), but the Netherlands as a potential Hellcat operator stuck to the back of my mind.
When I recently came across paint schemes for Dutch WWII aircraft I found an interesting option (see below) and eventually decided to build another Hellcat - this time an in-service F6F-6, a type that actually existed, but only as a prototype with no series production.

The kit I used is Revell's F6F-5, which is actually a re-boxed Italeri kit from 2001. A nice offering, even though I find the solution with a single lower wings part, which includes a ventral fuselage section, too, a little impractical (much like the Hasegawa kit). On the plus side, the kit comes with separate flaps (even though these massive parts have small sinkholes) and fine surface and interior details.


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


My conversion measures were limited and circled around the propulsion system: I implanted a new engine block (a resin piece, left over from an Art Model F8F) and a 4-blade propeller (left over from a Hobby Boss P-47). Since I wanted some more external difference to the F6F-3/5, I decided to extend the fin at the tip. It's just a subtle change, maybe 3mm net, done with 1mm plastic sheet and PSR. But it's a good visual counterbalance to the slightly more massive propeller at the front end. The gun barrels are aftermarket brass pieces. For long-range escort missions in the PTO I gave the Hellcat a pair of cardboard drop tanks (from an Academy P-51) on the inner wing stations.


Painting and markings:
Even though the inspiring F6F in a uniform Dark Sea Blue late WWII USN livery with Dutch neutrality triangles from FlickR looked good, I found at least the triangles and other orange markings to be outdated for the era when the type would have been operated.

Therefore, I went for something completely different: The paint scheme came from Dutch Do 24 and PBY Catalina flying boats, which had been operated in South East Asia in 1942 and 1943. The camouflage consisted of a very dark blue and a dark grey on the upper sides - very similar to USN Sea Blue (FS 35042, Testors 1718) and FAA Extra Dark Sea Grey (Humbrol 123), respectively - and, in this case, British Sky (Revell 59, which is a rather greenish hue, more similar to Humbrol 23 than 90) underneath, even though some machines were AFAIK alternatively painted in light Sky Blue. A unique combination and IMHO quite effective as a sea camouflage. The camouflage pattern was adapted from a Dutch 1943 Do 24, quite different from the more even FAA pattern.


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


Being operated late in the PTO I gave the Hellcat typical ID markings - the white bands come from the OOB sheet and add some excitement to the overall rather dull aircraft. As an RAF unit, I gave the aircraft a typical three-letter code in Sky, but instead of RAF SEA roundels I rather used Dutch flags in six positions, a common practice of late NL-KNIL units until 1946.  The odd serial number was inspired by Dutch post-war P-51Ds operated in Indonesia, created with single TL Modellbau 3mm size letters.

The kit received a light black ink wash, some light post-panel-shading and weathering (leading edges, exhaust and gun smoke stains), and was finally sealed with matt acrylic varnish (Italeri).




1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


1:72 Grumman F6F-6 "Hellcat"; aircraft "JS-X/N2-064" of the Royal Air Force No. 321 (Dutch/Marine Luchtvaartdienst) Squadron; Batavia (Jakarta/Indonesia), June 1945 (Whif/Modified Revell kit)
by dizzyfugu, on Flickr


Another relatively simple project without major surgery, but I find the result quite convincing. I actually like the blue/grey camouflage a lot – it’s based on well-known colors, yet a unique combination. And together with the Dutch flags and the British tactical codes, the whif has a distinctive look to it.

Offline Scotaidh

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Very nice, Dizzy!  :)   :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
"We're all here because we're not all there."

Offline zenrat

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Fred

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

Offline NARSES2

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That's really good Dizzy  :thumbsup:

I'm a great fan of some of the more "unusual" national markings and I do like that Dutch one. I built a Spitfire Mk VIII in RAAF camoflage but using those markings a couple of years ago and they particularly suit the Hellcat. Got me thinking of a Corsair in them now.
Decals my @r$e!

Offline Old Wombat

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Offline Dizzyfugu

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Thank you all, glad you like it.  ;D

Offline TheChronicOne

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Brilliant!!!!   Great work, bud!!! 
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Offline Captain Canada

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Very nice ! Love the colours and markings on this one.

Cheers !
CANADA KICKS arse !!!!

Long Live the Commonwealth !!!
Vive les Canadiens !
Where's my beer ?