New Zealand manufacturer Kiwi Models has announced the development of a 1/72 kit of the Lockheed A-12 Oxcart, the predecessor to the famous SR-71 Blackbird.

The Oxcart was developed under a program that commenced in 1957 “to create a craft that could avoid Soviet air defense through high-altitude supersonic flight”. Requirements included the use of special materials, including titanium to endure top speed temperatures of 550 degrees Fahrenheit. As titanium was exceedingly difficult to work with at the time, the machine had to be built by hand.

Extensive test flights and improvements were implemented prior to its first active deployment in Vietnam in 1967. A year later, the A-12 was retired in favor of the SR-71, having pioneered advanced supersonic flight and improved pilot safety, design, aerodynamics and manufacturing.

Details on Kiwi’s upcoming kit are limited, but it will reportedly include injection molded plastic parts, Falcon canopies and decal options for three versions. A final release date has not been announced.

(Kiwi Models via Scalemates)

A nearly complete example of the famous Consolidated PBY Catalina has hit the market.

Details are relatively scarce, but is has been reported that the machine is currently not airworthy and is lacking some of its instruments. It is also said to be free from salt water landings.

The Catalina is currently being offered for $500,000. Click here to check out the complete listing.

As part of his “Kermie Cam” series, Fantasy of Flight owner Kermit Weeks filmed his first trip back to his Polk City, Florida museum after Hurricane Irma caused widespread devastation across the state this past week.

As the video reveals, the buildings did see some water intrusion, but the aircraft remained mostly untouched – a far cry from the heavy damage the collection saw following Hurricane Andrew in 1992.

Click below to check it out. Apart from surveying the damage, the video also serves as a brief tour, allowing viewers to catch some quick glimpses of current projects, including their Hawker Tempest and Sopwith Pup.

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Flight simulation developer Aeroplane Heaven has announced the development of an all new Spitfire Mk.1A for Microsoft Flight Simulator X and Prepar3D.

The model is touted as their “most faithfully authentic rendition of a Spitfire” and is said to include “enormous amounts of minute detail, meticulously researched and accurate features” as well as beautiful rendering “using all the latest 3D modeling and graphics techniques, including PBR workflow for incredibly realistic textures.”

The newly released screenshots (additional examples of which can be seen below) present the model in the colors of P9374, a Mk.1A that was fully restored in the 1980s after being recovered from a beach in Calais, France, where it landed after being shot down by a bomber on May 24 1940 – its pilot, Flying Officer Peter Cazenove, spending the rest of WW2 as a POW.

A final release date for the new Spitfire has not yet been announced.

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Wingnut Wings has released the first build images of their upcoming 1/32 model kit of the 1914 Jeannin Stahltaube (Steel Dove), a copy of the Etrich Taube employing a steel tube fuselage.

As previously reported, the kit will reportedly boast 165 high quality injection moulded plastic parts, 21 photo-etched metal detail parts and a number of build options, including 100 hp Daimler-Mercedes D.1 and 120 hp Argus AS.II engines and injection moulded or photo-etched wire wheels. Builders can also choose from optional propellers, exhaust manifolds, gravity fuel tanks, pistol armament and hand dropped bombs.

Cartograf decals will feature markings for 5 aircraft, including 172/14 (Lt. Fritzlohn), 180/14 (Deutches Technikmuseum Berlin), 271/14 (Emil Wendler), 283/14 (Adlershof-Johannisthal) and 319/14 (Armee-Flug-Park 9b).

The kit is currently slated for release in October and will reportedly sell for US$119. Click below to check out additional photos of the assembed kit, built by Slovak Republic modeller Zdenko Bugan.

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With support from John de Havilland, descendant of Geoffrey de Havilland and Philip Birtles, President of the de Havilland Aircraft Museum, the newly established Mosquito Pathfinder Trust has made it their mission to restore a de Havilland Mosquito and return it to the skies over the UK.

The Somerset-based organization’s selected aircraft is a Mosquito Mk.IV built by de Havilland at Hatfield and delivered to the RAF in early 1944. It served with 618 Squadron at various locations and was later modified to a Highball configuration in order to test mini bouncing bombs. Following the end of WW2, the machine was relocated to Australia and based at RAAF Narrowmine, eventually being acquired by a restorer from New Zealand. [click to continue…]

Airfix has released their new tool 1/72 model kit of the Messerschmitt Me262 A-1a Schwalbe.

As previously reported, Airfix previously released a 1/72 Me 262 in 1960, although this new release is an entirely new version that benefits from the latest manufacturing technologies available to the Airfix team, including the use of CAD software for maximum accuracy and detail. It reportedly includes 65 parts and marking options for two aircraft, including a 9./Kampfgeschwader[J] 54 machine and “Green 4” WNr.111002 flown by Geschwaderkommodore Theodor Weissenberger of Stab II./Jagdgeschwader 7.

Product Page: (£12.95 or about $17.07)

North American F-6 (P-51D) S/N 44-73822 “Lil Margaret” has hit the market.

The machine, an Oshkosh Grand Champion in 1993, was reportedly the recipient of a painstaking 12-year restoration that saw it completely disassembled, inspected and rebuilt to award winning standards. Touted as “one of the top Mustang restorations in the world” and “the aircraft that set the standard for Mustang restoration,” the machine saw complete rewiring to factory drawings, the installation of new cables, and overhauls for all systems as needed.

The F-6 wears the colors of “Lil Margaret” flown by WW2 ace Capt. Clyde East, and has reportedly amassed 1,800 hours total time since new and 230 hours since restoration. It is equipped with a Packard V-1650-7 engine with 230 hours since overhaul.

The F-6 is located in Danville, Illinois and is currently being offered for $2,300,000. Click here to check out the complete listing.

(Additional Information via Mustangs Mustangs)

Eduard has released the first test build images of its upcoming new tool Focke Wulf Fw190A-4 in 1/48 scale.

As previously reported, the kit will be offered as a ProfiPACK edition complete with plastic parts, pre-colored photo etched details, paint masks and decals for five aircraft. The company also plans to release a series of additional photo-etched details and accessories for the kit in their Brassin range.

The new 1/48 Fw190A-4 is currently slated for release in October and will reportedly premiere at this year’s E-day on September 23.

Click below to check out additional photos.

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The remains of a P-47D Thunderbolt that crashed off the Dorset coast in 1944 have been captured in a newly released interactive 3D model that details the remnants of the machine complete with GPS data.

The Thunderbolt crashed in Weymouth Bay at 12:25pm on May 7, 1944, the pilot reportedly bailing out prior to impact. Additional details remain unclear, although the USAF has confirmed that no associated paperwork exists, suggesting that the incident was not an accident and the pilot was soon back at base.

The site was discovered by Grahame Knott of Deeper Dorset a few years back resting in 25.2m of water. After two dives on the site and 1,126 images, the photogrammetry experts at Deep3D produced a scaled plan of the known site which was then converted into a 3D model. [click to continue…]