This profile is oddly pertinent in the current climate of social distancing, lockdowns and isolation. This is P-51D-20-NA serial number 44-63289, which belonged to the 531st Fighter Squadron, 21st Fighter Group, and was named “Is This Trip Necessary ?”. Starting in April 1945, the 21st Fighter Group was escorting B-29 Superfortresses over mainland Japan in…Continue reading Is This Trip Necessary ? – A good motto for the day and an ever better mystery
Last summer, I presented a work in progress of the SOCATA TB-30 Epsilon, but never got around to showing the finished work. I’ll correct this omission now, with a series depicting the Epsilon in French air force service. France operated 150 of these nice-looking trainers from 1983 to 2019. They were a crowd favorite at…Continue reading The TB-30 Epsilon, a little late !
This Grumman F6F-5 Hellcat was photographed as it was stopped by the USS Lexington’s crash barrier on 25 February 1945. The aircraft was substantially damaged, the photo showing the right wingtip being torn off while cables tear through the left wing and rear fuselage. I was not able to find much more information regarding this…Continue reading A hammered Hellcat
Carrier Air Group 83 (CVG-83) was assigned to the USS Essex in early 1945 and was composed of several squadrons: VF-83 (F6F-5, F6F-5N, F6F-5P), VBF-83 (F4U-1D, FG-1D), VB-83 (SB2C-4E) and VT-83 (TBM-3E). The Air Group saw action in the Pacific theatre from 10 March to 15 September 1945, participating in raids on Kyushu, supporting the…Continue reading Corsairs of VBF-83
Known as the “Blayd Zero”, this A6M2 Model 21 was built by the Blayd Corporation in the 1990s by reproducing original A6M parts purchased by Robert Diemert. The aircraft also used some original Zero parts in the landing gear, thereby earning it the status of restored rather than a replica or restoration. This of course…Continue reading The “Blayd” Zero
These profiles are part of a set created for the book Squadrons ! No.31: The Supermarine Spitfire Mk V – The New Zealanders by Phil H. Listemann.
The work on the Bristol Brigand is on halt for the time being, and I’ve moved on to another project: the classic and elegant Beechcraft Model 17 Staggerwing. Although profile views do not pay proper tribute to this superb aircraft, it was still a very interesting project to work on ! The Staggerwing made its…Continue reading Beechcraft Model 17 Staggerwing
I’m currently working on an aircraft that is more impressive than it looks : the Bristol Brigand. Designed as a replacement for the Beaufighter, some 174 were built as anti-shipping, ground attack or dive bomber aircraft and served from 1946 to 1955. Despite its size and maximum take-off weight of 39,000 lbs, it could reach…Continue reading Work in Progress – Bristol Brigand
It was with great sadness that I learned that Roy Grinnell passed away yesterday. Roy was an extraordinary aviation artist, but also much more than that. He was also very interested in American history and created many paintings related to Native Americans, the Civil War and other chapters of the United States’ history, as well…Continue reading In memory of Roy Grinnell
I recently had the privilege and pleasure to work on the various decorations sported by the Gee Bee QED (or R-6H) during the course of its largely unsuccessful racing career. Here is a timeline of these decorations, showing their evolution :