Hellcats of the Navy!

I’m thinking of building a model of the Hellcat pictured above. This is a “factory fresh” example with red-outlined national insignia and no squadron numbers or little Japanese flags or anything else to indicate bloody action in the Pacific.

This is more like “peaceful flight over California” or something like that. Building this model will give me a chance to rant about two of my favorite subjects– U.S. Navy colors and Hobby Boss “simplified” kits. To sum up– paint faded rapidly and Hobby Boss rules.

I’ll be using my own mixes for the Navy colors and they will be intended to duplicate this “factory fresh” paint job. I’ll have to think about the semi-gloss finish. I’m all for authenticity until it becomes semi-gloss. There are a lot of other interesting things about Hellcats which is why I have three of them in my stash.

Here’s an image of the Hobby Boss kit parts just “pushed” together, sitting next to the P-47N.

It’s huge. No writer of Navy history mentioned how BIG the Hellcat was. It was almost as large as a P-47N which was crazy big for 1943. You’d think that with all that talk about the big Corsair and the big Thunderbolt, somebody would say big Hellcat. But it’s never big Hellcat. That just isn’t included in the dispatches.

So that’s why I like to build in a constant scale. There it is folks. Undeniable proof that the Hellcat was a big fighter for its time. The big Corsair. The big Thunderbolt. The big Hellcat. Three of a kind.

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