H.S. Andover E3, 115 Sqn RAF, 1/72nd scale.

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Benevolens Magister
Aug 24, 2008
Cheshire, UK
H.S. Andover E3 (calibration aircraft), 115 Sqn., RAF.

This is the second model for Gp.Cpt. Dougie Barr, again using the S&M Models resin kit, but to be converted to the E.3 from the C .1.
The subject aircraft is the same one as previously built (as a C1), serial number XS603 which, upon retirement from 46 Sqn, was converted into E3 specification as a calibration aircraft, used for checking and calibrating ILS, radar, and other ground aids at RAF airfields. (not to be confused with the E3A, which was a V.I.P transport version).
The aircraft was fitted with a number of instrumentation stations internally, which necessitated the "blanking off" of three of the ten cabin windows on the starboard side, and the addition of various external antennae, sensors and lights, all of which will need to be scratch-built for this model.

I'm not sure, at this stage, if the model will be completed with undercart lowered, or, as before, posed "in flight" on a display stand - I'm awaiting Dougie's decision on choice.
However, work has begun, with clean-up of the resin fuselage halves completed, and a start made on some of the numerous modifications and corrections required, explained below.

Pic 1. The previous model of XS603, in 46 Sqn colours.
Pic 2. How the aircraft looked in the calibration role. Note the "blanked" cabin windows, lamp under the nose, and some of the various antennae. (photo sent to me, original source unknown).
Pics 3 & 4. The relevant windows were covered internally, using scraps of plastic card attached using CA.
Pic 5. The window apertures were then filled with "Milliput" and smoothed using a wet finger tip. Once fully hardened, they will be lightly sanded flush and polished.
Pic 6. The kit portrays the rear, starboard door full size, as on the port side. This should be smaller, presumably a "left over" from the civilian Avro / HS 748 airliner's galley loading door, and serving as an emergency exit on the Andover.
Pic 7. The door has been engraved to represent the smaller example, with the original engraved lines enhanced, and a depression made for the door release handle, which will be made and fitted later, together with hinges made from plastic strip. The remains of the original engraving will be filled with CA and sanded flush.

Next step is to enhance the engraving on both port side doors, and then commence work on the cockpit. Once I know which configuration Dougie prefers, I can then start on assembling the fuselage, adding nose weight if gear down (omitting this if on a stand), or preparing a mounting slot for a display stand if to be posed "in flight".
I'll also probably start work on the wings and engine nacelles whilst awaiting Dougie's reply.
Back when there's more to show ................

Andover build No.1 058.JPG
Andover pic forum.jpg
Andover build 115 Sqn 001.JPG
Andover build 115 Sqn 002.JPG
Andover build 115 Sqn 007.JPG
Andover build 115 Sqn 004.JPG
Andover build 115 Sqn 005.JPG
I'd considered that, but decided I'd getter a better external finish doing it this way. Fitting the kit windows would only provide a very shallow area for the "Milliput" to key to, and past experience filling similar windows has shown that, although they may look smooth and flush if filled over the clear part, a "ghost" outline, or tiny depression, can sometimes be seen once the area is painted.
The resin on the fuselage walls is quite thick, around 2 mm, so with the plastic card on the inside, this gives plenty of depth for a good layer of the putty, allowing more accurate smoothing and sanding, and avoiding the possibility of the putty surface "flaking" due to being too thin.
Thanks Vic.

The engraving and sanding is complete, and about to start on the cockpit. Might have some pics later today.
Thanks Andy.

I've just heard from Dougie, and he would like the model displayed "in flight", same as the 46 Sqn version.
This means a little extra work, as the kit is designed to be built with gear down, but nothing major, given I can get a good fit on the white metal nose gear doors, and cut a slot on the underside to fit a suitable stand (on order).
The kit provides resin parts for the cockpit, with the main floor/bulkhead "tub", seats and instrument panel, and two, white metal control columns (not shown below).
These are fairly accurate, although none of the electrical panels and equipment behind the seats are included, as seen in the photos of the Cosford Andover, looking forward from the Navigator's station.
That said, only the seats and the tops of the control column yokes can be seen through the cockpit windows once assembled, so more than adequate.

Clean-up of parts has now been done, ready. for painting and assembly. I'll post pics of the completed cockpit some time tomorrow.

Andover build 115 Sqn 009.JPG
Andover build 115 Sqn 011.JPG
Andover build 115 Sqn 012.JPG
Andover build cpit 1.jpg
Andover build cpit 2.jpg
Thanks chaps.

Made some good progress over around six hours, getting the fiddly bits done.
Cabin windows are Installed ( a fiddly job that took over an hour), and the flight deck has been painted and assembled, and now installed in the starboard fuselage half.
It's not perfect, being a bit rough in parts, but as 90% of sod all will be seen through the windows, it should be passable.
Next step is the slow and awkward job of joining the fuselage halves.

Pics below show the progress to date.

Andover build 115 Sqn 021.JPG
Andover build 115 Sqn 015.JPG
Andover build 115 Sqn 017.JPG
Andover build 115 Sqn 018.JPG
Andover build 115 Sqn 025.JPG

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