Some grassroots research by Nils Mathisrud has brought us a lovely sheet of decals for two "civilian" Mosquito FB VIs used to maintain a diplomatic link between Great Britain and Sweden. The Mossie was a smart choice for these missions over hostile territory, using high speed to sprint across the North Sea and Nazi-held territory. Great Britain purchased Sweden’s entire production of ball bearings, to keep it away from the Germans rather than to fill any allied need, and the Mosquitoes served to transport them back to the U.K. The Mossies also transported single passengers, who were bundled into the cannon bays for what must have been a noisy, cold and uncomfortable trip!
British Overseas Airways Corporation acquired 10 F.B. Mk. VIs starting in Feb. 1943. The two aircraft on this sheet represent machines with different careers; G-AGGC made 114 round trips before being returned to the RAF; G-AGGF made only four trips before it crashed in Scotland on April 24, 1943.
The scheme for both planes is Dark Slate Gray and Extra Dark Sea Gray on the topsides, with G-AGGC depicted with sky lower sides and G-ACCF with "night" undersides. The camouflage pattern matches the basic RAF pattern for twin-engine aircraft rather than the factory pattern for Mosquitoes. The instructions provide information on what modifications were made to convert the planes from fighters into "airliners." There’s an "errata" sticker added that conscientiously points out the fact that the BOAC machines had narrow chord props instead of the paddle-bladed propellers the main text identifies—good for you, Liveries Unlimited!
The decals allow you to build one of the two options and are complete right down to the "British Overseas Airways Corporation" legend and Speedbird logo. There were minor registration problems with the red and white inks, but these can be trimmed away, as the decals provided are slightly oversize to allow the modeler to position the decals better. No such registration problems occur with the civilian registration numbers; these are black and two shades of gray, bordered in silver, and are lovely and large! They do a good job of breaking up the camouflage—and are a real change of pace from British roundels!
The unusual subject, detailed instructions and good print job make this a sheet to look for. Our thanks to Liveries Unlimited for our review sample.
|Next: New Releases Index |