George Benjamin Thompson 1921-2009
Not an RC Model but it certainly fall's under the any other odds & ends. This is my first attempt at a plastic 1/72 Airfix type model since I was about twelve.
Continuing the Martin Baker theme, this is a model of WL419 one of their pair of test aircraft. a Gloster Meteor T7 Special, affectionately know as a Mk T7 1/2. Basically it's a T7 two seat trainer, fitted with the high speed tail from the Mk F8 fighter variant. This improves the directional stability of the aircraft and gives more directional control under asymmetric power in the case of engine failure.
The rear cockpit is also modified, all the controls are removed & the bulkheads and floor are strengthened to take loads form firing the ejection seat. The front cockpit also gets a make over with a special made to measure blown perspex canopy and a the fitting of an Mk12L ejection seat for the pilot.
So how to recreate this in miniature then. Well I think Im safe in saying that there are no bespoke plastic kits out there for this aircraft. So the only option is to construct one along the same lines as the original. To this end two kits were purchased an Xtrakit 1/72 Gloster Meteor T Mk7 XK72005 and a Xtrakit 1/72 Gloster Meteor F Mk8 XK72001. Added to this was a Blue Rider BR308 decal sheet for Wl419 & two Aires AIRE7064 resin ejection seats.
The fist job then was to take the four fuselage sides (Two for the T7 & two for the F8) and cut the tails off with a raiser saw following the panel line just in front of the fin. The tail pieces from the F8 were then joined together and the bonded to one side of the T7 fuselage.
The canopy's from the two kits were then cut down using the raiser saw and a miniature cutting disk. The back haft from the T7 being used to make the surround for the rear test cockpit, & the F8 for the front cockpit. A small piece of plaster card was then used to make the bulkhead between the two.
The rest of the model was built very much as per-plan with the addition of the ejection seats and the omission of instrument panels and control in the rear cockpit. The only over small addition after that is the telemetry aerial made from plaster card.
The detail of the colour scheme and decals on this aircraft change from day to day, but in general she's natural aluminium with high vis panels in Fluorescent Red, with test symbols in black & white. Not forgetting the Asterix below the canopy on the port side.