Supermarine Spitfire Mk I A


Model review

This Spitfire Mk IA model in 1/72 scale is old Frog's production. It is built in the seventies straight from the box without any chances. The shape of the plane is quite good, only the wings are a little thin and the spinner is a little big. The decals were good at the time. Based in new sources and photos I found the wing roundels too big. Today it is much easier to get information about WW 2 planes than 20-30 years ago. The painting sceme seems to be ok. The colors used were Humbrol Dark Earth H29, Dark Green H30 and in the undersurfase H 23. Those were the days : )

History

The Supermarine Spitfire is probably the most famous and possibly the most beautiful fighter ever built. The prototype first flew in 1936 and with the same airframe the Spitfire remained in production throughout the WW 2 being the only Allied fighter to do so. When the engines become more powerfull and heavier, almost the same airframe with minor changes could accommodate the increased power and size of them.

The main designer was Reginald Mitchell. The new Rolls-Royce PV.12 engine, which was later named Merlin, was used in the prototype. The Spitfire was the first streched-skin all metal fighter in Britain. With its different versions it was the main fighter of the Fighter Command during the WW 2. The Spitfire is always remembered as the plane that won the Battle of Britain, even though the Hawker Hurricane carried the major load.

The Spitfire Mk I was in service at the opening stage of the WW 2. It was little slower than its main opponent the Me 109 E, but it could turn tighter. During Battle of Britain, its main task was to intercept the escort fighters meanwhile the Hurricanes attacked the bombers.

The QV-K, P9386 belonged to No. 19 Sqdn. at Fowlmere in September 1940 and was flown by Sqnd Ldr Brian "Sandy" Lane and Flt Lt Walter Lawson. Exceptionally it had yellow spinner because it had been in OTU ( Operational Training Unit ) service before it was taken to No. 19 Sqnd. This plane had several kills during the Battle of Britain.

Spitfire Mk I A technical data

Engine 1030 hp Rolls-Royce Merlin II, V12 liquid-cooled
Dimensions Span 11,23 m; length 9,12 m
Weights Empty weight 2049 kg; normal loaded 2812 kg
Performance Max. speed 563 km/h; ceiling 9700 m; range 635 km
Armament 8 x 0.303 Browning MG ( Mk IA )
Production 1566 ( Mk I )

Sources
Squadron/Signal, Spitfire in action; John Rawlings, Fighter Squadrons of the RAF and their aircrafts; Osprey, Spitfire Mk I and II aces; Internet

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