Scale model kit FROG F203 English Electric Canberra B(I)8

FROG 323P English Electric Canberra PR.7

FROG 1962 Orange series logo

FROG F203 English Electric (BAC) Canberra B(I) Mk.8 or B(I) Mk.12, Rovex Limited 1974

English Electric Canberra B(I).8/B(I).12
F203 1973-1974 G1(O) 45000 1xRAF&1xSAAF
F203 1974-1977 H(O) 45000 1xRAF&1xSAAF

When first considered in 1967 it was to have included a Martin B-57 version as well. In 1968 it was dropped in order not to duplicate the projected Hasegawa kit, but it was later taken up again.

FROG model aircraft 1932-1976, R. Lines, L. Hellstrom

Modelling World
Another "Meatbox" from Frog

There are a number of Royal Air Force types of this era that have not been adequately covered in kits. These include the Vampire, Hornet, Javelin, and Canberra. The Javelin and Canberra have been available in early Frog kits in 1/72 scale, and the Canberra is available in a Revell kit—but not to one of the popular scales. It would be nice to have some new kits of these types.


Air Enthusiast 1972-05 vol.02 no.05
Frog line expansion

There has been a good deal of speculation concerning the future of the Frog line of kits following the financial collapse of the parent company, Lines Brothers. Recently the Rovex Triang Division of the company was acquired by Dunbee-Combex-Marx and is to continue to trade as Rovex Limited. We are assured that all current Frog kits are to remain in production, and that a considerable number of new kits are to be issued during the course of the next 12 months. These will comprise the F4U-1 Corsair, the Wildcat, the Heinkel He 162, and the Fiat G.55 in the Black Series at 21p, the Firefly I in the Blue Series at 25p, the Me 262 in the Red Series at 31p, and the Buccaneer S 2 and Canberra B(I) 8 in the Orange Series at 55p. All these are to 1/72nd scale, but the company also plans to re-issue the Hasegawa kits of the Focke-Wulf Fw 190, the Messerschmitt Bf 109E and the Mitsubishi Zero-Sen to 1/32nd scale during the course of this year.

Air Enthusiast 1972-05 vol.02 no.05

Scale Models No.42 1973 APRIL Vol.4 No.4
Kit reviews are set aside this month to cover the fantastic 1973 boom in Plastics, by R. C. Jones of I.P.M.S.

Frog's B.A.C. Canberra in B(I)8 and B12 guise, another long overdue kit subject.

Scale Models No.42 1973 APRIL Vol.4 No.4

Aircraft Illustrated 1973-04
Modelling world
S. W. Stevens-Stratten
Toy Fair report

Rovex Limited had an impressive display of its Frog range of aircraft kits and new releases for 1973 in the 1/72 scale series include a Gloster Gladiator at a price of 19p (including VAT). This is in the Black Label series while the Blue Label range will have a Sea Venom in October (price 23p). The Red Label series has a Grumman Avenger due for release in June and a Fairey Swordfish for October, both costing 28p each. Two new additions in the Green Label series (36p each) are a Martin Maryland for August and a BAC Jaguar for November. At 50p each the Orange Label series will be adding new items, including an English Electric Canberra in May, a Black Widow and a Martin Marauder in September and finally a NA Mitchell scheduled for November.


Aviation News Vol 2 Num 11 12-25 October 1973


At the time of going to press, the long awaited kit of the Canberra B(I)8 from Frog, and the first of the second series from Lesney, the Hurricane IIc, arrived for review. These will both be in the shops shortly and our reviews of both will appear in a future issue.

Aviation News Vol 2 Num 11 12-25 October 1973

Aviation News Vol 2 Num 13 9-22 November 1973
Very welcome 1:72 scale releases from Lesney and Frog

OCTOBER started the build-up of new plastic models for Christmas by the three leading UK manufacturers; following the Airfix and Lesney Hurricanes comes a Canberra from Frog and the next three from Lesney, the first of which, the P-51D, is reviewed here.

Modellers on this side of the Atlantic have awaited a Canberra kit but looking at Frog's B(I)8 makes it seem worth while. There are a few faults on the model and we feel that several of them will be cleared up once the kit gets into production. Our review sample came from the pre-production run which is often not totally representative of the production item.

The main fault we found was in the construction of the bomb bay, which is combined in the Canberra B(I)8 with a 4 x 20mm cannon pack. This latter section comes complete and we found that it was slightly too large for the fuselage slot and did not fit at all well. A lot of time had to be spent on putting this section right, but, with body putty, files and wet and dry, it was eventually done. Another slight problem was the moulding indenta tions at each wing tip. These often occur in the injection moulding process and look unsightly if left unattended, but a little body putty applied soon after the wing halves are joined overcomes the fault. Unfortunately some of the superbly fine panel line detail on the wings must be removed in rubbing down, so it is advisable to keep the operation confined to as small an area as possible.

Frog's Canberra turned out to be a 'tail-sitter'. In spite of loading the nose with lead and plasticine before joining the fuselage halves it was necessary to add more when the undercarriage was completed and the model stood on a flat surface. Luckily the construction of the nose wheel area leaves a small gap, allowing the insertion of additional weight into the fuselage but this can be a difficult job.

Having mentioned the faults on this model we must emphasise its qualities, which are worthy of high praise. Great attention has been paid to the undercarriage detail and when compared with Frog 's almost unmentionable Canberra B.2 of the early 60s you realise how far the mould-making art has come since those almost forgotten days. Similarly, the surface and panel detail is extraordinarily fine. Frog have been a little heavy-handed in recent models but their approach in this direction has been improved tremendously with the Canberra. The general fit of the parts, the excellent cockpit canopy (not easy to mould accurately on a B(I)8) and the superb decals make this kit one of the best issued this year.

As usual, two sets of markings and indeed alternate parts for a B(I)8 of No 88 Sqdn RAF at Wildenrath and for a B(I)12 of No 12 Sqdn South African Air Force are provided in the kit. Very rarely can we say that with large water-slide numeral decals such as the underwing serials on the RAF version lay down well without the 'carrier' snowing against the paintwork, but in this case there was absolutely nothing visible when the decal was dried off with a cloth. This phenomenon is most unusual, certainly in a litho printed decal sheet and add greatly to the excellent surface finish possible on this model.

At a retail price of 55 p the Frog Canberra is first rate. Let us hope that the Airfix B.6 , due shortly, will be its equal.

Aviation News Vol 2 Num 13 9-22 November 1973

Air Enthusiast 1974-01 vol.06 no.01
A new Canberra ... at last

When it comes to longevity no jet combat aircraft can seriously compete with the Canberra yet few would allege that this important warplane has received a fair crack of the whip from the model kit manufacturers. Many years ago, Frog produced a 1/72nd scale kit which was acceptable in its time but crude by today's standards, and somewhat later Revell offered a Canberra kit to the odd scale of 1/85th which is still available, this being intended primarily to represent the Martin B-57 version of the aircraft. The only other kit of English Electric's bomber has been a rather simple offering to 1/98th scale from Lincoln. However, the paucity of Canberra kits is coming to an end, for both Frog and Airfix include 1/72nd scale kits of variants of this aircraft in their latest catalogues, and the first of these, from the former, has now come to hand.

Frog's kit, which may be finished either as a B(I) Mk 8 of the RAF or a B(I) Mk 12 of the SAAF, is typical of this company's products, being both neat and accurate without any pretentions to the outstanding category. By no means super-detailed, it nevertheless provides all that the enthusiastic modeller needs to produce a really fine miniature replica of the Canberra. Surface detail consists of very fine raised panel lines only; the wing trailing edges are quite sharp but the leading edge of the fin is far too broad and calls for reshaping, while the landing gear doors must be thinned down and the wheel wells will benefit from being boxed in. These are all minor points which may be easily overcome and the end product is most pleasing.

The kit includes alternative bomb doors, one plain set and the other incorporating the bulged gun pack. The decal sheet is really outstanding and among the many small markings are unit badges for No 88 Sqdn, RAF, at Wildenrath, Germany, in 1960, and for No 12 Sqdn, SAAF, based at Water-kloof in 1969. The price of this kit in Frog's orange series is a modest 55p in the UK.

Air Enthusiast 1974-01 vol.06 no.01

Scale Models 1974 January Vol.5 No.1

THE FIRST of the two Canberra kits should now be available as this review is read, and FROG's kit of the B(I)MK8 or MK12 is happily a good one.

Comparison with our scale drawings shows the FROG kit to be accurate and the fine panel line detailing is among the best they have done. The kit is easy to assemble, there being relatively few parts, because of this cockpit detail is spartan and could do with a floor and consoles added from plastic card.

Interior colour of the Canberra cockpit was usually non-reflective matt black. Parts which , ought to be replaced are under-carriage doors which are far too thick, again plastic card comes into its own for scale appearance, interior of doors and wheel wells, was usually aluminium/natural metal. Trailing edges on all surfaces need thinning down and only the rudder gives up its fine engraved detail to the craft knife and 'sand' paper. Alternative under belly sections are provided, one complete with cannon pack. Sides of the pack should 'nip in' but the model has these vertical, a tooling difficulty no doubt. The version we chose was the MK8 and we found a considerable amount of filling and trimming was required to get a smooth finish to this part of the model. Wing joints similarly are poor and the need for filler comes to the fore once again.

Gimmicks are restricted to revolving wheels and steerable nose wheel which is free to travel in a 360° arc!

The wheels themselves are quite well detailed but lack any form of tread pattern.

The model needs a considerable amount of nose weight to lift the tail and as the model sits low anyway, a sprue support in the rear fuselage may be advised.

Decal sheet of course is excellent though a little translucent and gives the colourful markings of a No. 88 squadron Mk8 machine of RAF Wildenrath, and a rather plain Mk12 of 12 squadron SAAF. Much stencilling is provided and the sheet is matt printed which is rather odd as both aircraft are gloss finished.

The FROG kit is rather 'plain' for those used to a box-full of detailed parts, like the new Airfix Marauder or the Italaerei range of kits but is a reflection on the simplicity of the shapes which are accurate and that is of paramount importance. The enthusiast can pile in the detail to make this kit outstanding.

Price of the Canberra in the Orange Series is 55p and represents fair value for money. Box top is not very inspiring but the colour art work at rear depicting the two aircraft schemes is, as ever, excellent.

MAP Plan pack 2704 is recommended for more data, it is available from editorial offices at 44p including VAT and postage. The drawings are to 1/72nd and 1/48th scale.

Happily the Canberra kits will not be duplicated, Airfix's is a Mark B(I)6 with the smaller 'bubble' canopy, this should be released in the next few months.

We stress that our review model was a pre-production kit, so some of our comments may not apply to distributed versions.

Scale Models 1974 January Vol.5 No.1

Aircraft Illustrated 1974-02
Modelling world
James Goulding
Assessing models
Frog's Canberra

For many years the Canberra has been one of the most important aeroplanes among many air forces throughout the world, but the kit manufacturers for some reason have not considered the aircraft of the post-war period, especially British types, to be saleable until comparatively recently. But the signs are that things are changing. Frog in particular is certainly increasing its interest in this period. It is true that two previous Canberra models have been available—one in an obscure scale from Revell and a crude, but accurate in outline, Mk 7 from Frog (now no longer available). Happily now, Frog has released a new kit, of the B(l)8/B(l)1 2, and Airfix is shortly to market a B2/B6 Both are in 1/72 scale.

Frog's new Canberra is a splendid model, with accurate contours and well-moulded. The kit provides parts for either a B(l)8 of the RAF or a B(l)12 of the South African Air Force. These versions of the English Electric jet bomber have the fighter-type canopy, which radically alters the entire appearance of the aircraft. To me, the Canberra is always associated with the original hemispherical cockpit canopy, and the new offset fighter-type cockpit made it look like a new aircraft. But all Canberras look fine, for it is one of the most beautifully-proportioned aeroplanes ever built. It is pleasing to note that Frog and Airfix have not clashed on their choice of Canberra types—because the Airfix model will have the original canopy type.

External detail on Frog's model is very delicate, in fact, almost too light. Some of the panel lines are liable to disappear through painting. This model is quite simple to construct, but because of the forward-positioned main undercarriage on the wing it does require a large amount of weight in the nose to balance on the nosewheel correctly. The bomb bay is provided with two alternate forms of doors : the standard type and the shortened version with rear gun pack. My only criticism here is that the doors should surely have a central dividing line, because they open in two halves. The doors forward of the gun pack have separation lines around the gun pack, but these are not shown on the model.

A very comprehensive transfer sheet is supplied, with markings for а В(I)8 of 88 Squadron based at Wildenrath, Germany, and а В(I) 1 2 of 1 2 Squadron of the South African Air Force, based at Water-kloof. As always, the transfer sheet in this Frog kit is superb. Transfer sheets have for many years been Frog's strong point, and they usually far surpass those found in any other kits.

This is a very beautiful model and it costs 55p. I hope that Frog has more kits of this era in the pipeline.


NOVO logo

NOVO 78090 English Electric Canberra B(I)8, NOVO Toys Ltd, 1980

DFI logo

Укрпромигрушка ДФИ, ДЗИ 1Р020580088

Eastern Express logo

EE 72265

ark-models logo

Ark 72023

  • 15.04.2023

  • Airfix 1971 logo

    Airfix 05012-8 BAC Canberra, Airfix Products Ltd. 1974

    Верх коробки с боксартом Роя Кросса, Airfix 05012-8 BAC Canberra , Airfix, 1974
    Scale Models No.47 1973 SEPTEMBER Vol.4 No.9

    At the recent Airfix Press Show, held on July 10th we saw some made up samples of the new kits for later this year. The Marauder and Canberra look very good, and the Matilda tank and giant 1/24 Hurricane, equally impressive. But the 'winner' as far as we were concerned was the 1/600 scale HMS Belfast which surely must be the best ship kit from Airfix to date. Also, look out for the new look Series 1 aircraft and tanks which are now packed in bubble packs on strong cards (like Frog) complete with colour scheme on the back, (in colour) and punch out complaints card, much better presentation, and the parts are safer thus packed.

    Scale Models No.47 1973 SEPTEMBER Vol.4 No.9

    FROG English Electric Canberra B910 Mk8 or Mkl2. Orange Series U.K. Price 55p.

    Though there have been Canberra Kits in the past the next Frog release, due early October will be much appreciated as it represents the later marks with a 'fighter' type bubble canopy. Our kit sample, kindly provided by Rovex, was a pre-production unit and we are advised that the toll still requires some minor work to be done. Even so parts are a good fit and cleanly moulded in dark grey plastic. Panel lines are neat and well done. Our sample had one or two mould sinks, but these could well be removed on production kits. Cockpit transparencies are only fair.. still too thick. The 'Frog Trademark' of thick trailing edges to the wings is not as pronounced as usual but there is still some room for improvement.

    Decals are very good indeed and are for a Mk8 of 88 Sqdn. RAF. Wildenrath in 1960 and a Mkl2 of 12 Sqdn. South African A.F. Waterkloof 1969. Both aircraft are gloss finish but the decals are matt... so will have to be varnished. At 55p very good value.

    The IPMS magazine, september 1973

    Scale Models 1974 FEBRUARY Vol.5 No.2
    NEW TO YOU ?

    Other new releases scheduled from Airfix is the B.A.C. Canberra B (I) 6

    Scale Models 1974 FEBRUARY Vol.5 No.2

    Aircraft Illustrated 1974-04
    Modelling world
    S. W. Stevens-Stratten

    One new addition to the Series 5 (75p) will be а ВАС Canberra. All the above are, of course to 1/72 scale.


    Aircraft Illustrated 1974-08
    Modelling world
    James Goulding
    Frog's new Hunter

    There are signs that other manufacturers are warming to the idea of producing kits of this period. Airfix's Canberra will be available soon, and perhaps one day we will have a Sea Vixen, Vulcan or Victor.


    Aviation News Vol 3 Num 5 9 August-22 August 1974

    AFTER having waited for what seems an age, the Airfix Canberra has at last been released. We received our review model this week and consequently expect the shops to have it in stock within the month. At the same time several other new kits have arrived including the Jet Provost T.5/ Strikemaster and the USAAF HO/00 figures. We also hear that the 1: 24th scale Harrier is about to be released and a copy arrived just before closing for Press on this issue. It will be reviewed in the near future.

    But to return to the Canberra that everybody has been expecting ... its a good one, that goes without saying and Airfix have spent their time wisely in getting it correct before making the release. We understand that the production has not been without its problems and therefore have a lot of sympathy with the manufacturers as supplies are short and plastic seems to rise in price every time one looks at the market.

    Assembly of the model is straightforward but there are one or two snags which need looking at. This is one of those models that needs more lead in the nose than one would expect but Airfix have jumped one stage ahead here and provided the modeller with a small tail stand on which the aircraft can rest if, like us, you did not get enough lead in the nose. In fact it's quite a job to fill the nose with any weight as there is no room to spare unless one sacrifices the navigator's compartment. Cockpit detail is good and decals are provided for the instrument panels in both pilot and navigator stations.

    One particularly good point is the complete absence of rivets (apart from a few on the drop tanks).

    The decal sheet is very good though printed matt whereas the Canberra itself has a semi-matt finish. Two sets of decals are provided, one for aircraft WT307 of No. 213 Sqdn. and the other for A84-233 of No. 2 Sqdn. RAAF. Our pictures on this page give some indication of the markings and where they were placed on similar Canberras.

    The Airfix Canberra is a very good model and one which, with its Frog counterpart, provides us with many variations for conversion subjects. Maybe we'll have time to get around to them one day! The price off the kit is 75p.

    Aviation News Vol 3 Num 5 9 August-22 August 1974

    Scale Models, NOVEMBER 1974 VOL 5 NO. 62

    THE long awaited BAC Canberra kit from Airfix is now on general release, and is certainly one of the best kits that Airfix have released of late. This highly adaptable aircraft is represented in the usual 1.72 scale and contains a wealth of detailed parts, both internal and external.

    Cockpit detail is complete with accurately moulded seats and crew figures, instrument panels, together with decals for latter, and navigational equipment in nose. In fact the detail extends to rear of pilot providing navigators, panels, seats, etc., all well moulded but regrettably hidden after assembly!

    Full detailing on bomb bay is provided, including pipes and ribbing and of course the bombs themselves, as well as drop tanks and pylons. Basic overall panelling is of high standard, and in particular the undercarriage sections where hydraulic lines and pipes are moulded to the inside if u/c doors.

    The legs and wheels also are accurately represented but surprisingly the wheel wells adopt the usual 'open maw' appearance. All main control surfaces are operable, we went one further and drooped the flaps by carefully separating these items with a craft knife and re-cementing in desired position.

    Transparencies are very clear and show no distortion, even minute rivetting represented on the main canopy, a pity then, that their fit to fuselage left much to to be desired and use of filler is to be recommended. The kit assembles easily provided the instructions are rigidly adhered to, and only a modicum of filler was required, around wing/fuselage joints, and tailplane roots.

    The instructions are first rate, and leave little room for error, in particular we'd like to praise the colour scheme instructions and decal application guide which show exactly where everything goes instead of leaving the modeller puzzled and frustrated trying to fit all the minute stencils.

    The kit provides a choice of markings, stencilling and 'wing walks' for a B(1 )6 of 213 Sqn RAF in Germany or a B20 of 2 Sqn RAAF in Vietnam. Decals are matt and correct in colour, perfect in register and firm in adhesion. A tail support is also provided to support the model if it stands on its undercarriage, obviously any weight in the nose would be only too apparant.

    Basic overall outline looks accurate enough although several areas need sanding down, i.e., leading and trailing edges, this apart the kit is highly recommended. It cannot be built in an evening, and warrants careful modelling by the builder, at 80p in the Series 5 range, this Canberra is an essential addition to the range of post-war types. Let's have more, Airfix!

    Scale Models, NOVEMBER 1974 VOL 5 NO. 62

    Scale Models Vol6 No 65 FEBRUARY 1975
    Shooting Star

    Cockpit detail is comprehensive and accurate and, like the new Canberra kit, hopefully sets the standard for all future Airfix releases...

    Scale Models Vol6 No 65 FEBRUARY 1975

    Scale Models Vol6 No66 MARCH 1975

    Dear Sir.
    I have worked on various makes of Canberra for 14 years and would add comment to your review in November issue on the Airfix Kit for the B(I)6.

    Firstly, the ejection seats are far from accurate. In the kit they look more like winged back arm chairs. If the English Electric built the Canberra as the kit would have us believe, how did the rear crew members get in? There is no bulkhead behind the pilot, it should be open for access, except the B(I)6 and PR9.

    By going one step further and lowering the flaps you made a glaring error. The trailing edge inboard of fuselage and engine nacelles and from nacelles to the ailerons has split flaps, not plain flaps and only the lower surface lowers. Also these are either up or fully down. So it is easy to build with flaps lowered. The rolled collar effect around the cockpit is wrong.

    I have now built two of these models and found that with slight trimming of the fairing at the rear of the canopy, it fits very well and by some careful filling and painting the large nose transparency can also be made to look right. The bomb doors in the lowered position are too close to the ground and need to be lifted slightly to give the correct position.

    Why do Airfix show a pitot head on the box lid but not on the model, I see you missed it too on your model ?

    The riveting on the tip tanks is far too heavy.

    Lastly, if the pilot was not holding the control column, and if the locks were not in place the normal position for the elevators is what would be the fully nose up position, that is to say elevators 'up' not 'down'.

    For those who live near enough to the RAF MUSEUM most of these observations can be seen, even though it's a PR3 on display, it is externally similar.
    Dereham, Norfolk.
    N. J. Moore

    Scale Models Vol6 No66 MARCH 1975

    Matchbox 70 logo

    Matchbox PK-408 Canberra PR.9, 1979

    Air International 1979-09
    Chacun â son gout
    An oddly assorted trio

    Three 1/72nd scale kits from "Matchbox" provide a somewhat oddly matched trio of military jet aircraft comprising the Canberra PR Mk 9, the Saab 29F and the General Dynamics F-16. The Canberra PR Mk 9 kit builds up into a good if hardly super-detailed model of 50 component parts in green, earth, grey and clear plastic. It is accurate in outline and well proportioned, and the detail provided in both pilot's and navigator's positions is adequate for the restricted view of them possible when the model is completed, but we are not well disposed towards the open bomb-bay doors which are cast in one with the roof of the bay which reveals what we assume to be parachute flares formed in low relief — we prefer the alternative arrangement of a cover plate over the bay.

    The standard of surface detailing is rather better than with many "Matchbox" kits and the fit of the component parts is good, especially the mating of the wings with their fuselage recesses which leaves no unsightly gaps to be filled. There were some minor moulding blemishes on the cockpit canopy of the kit that we assembled, but it mated snuggly with the fuselage. The trailing edges of the wings call for thinning down and, although the undercarriage is good, its wells are too open and can be improved by boxing in. The decal sheet offers markings for three RAF aircraft from Nos 13, 39 and 58 squadrons. In the "Matchbox" Red Range, this is the best Canberra kit to date and, as yet, the only one of the PR Mk.9.

    The Saab 29F has recently been produced in 1/72nd scale by Heller and, sadly, the "Matchbox" offering of this portly Swedish fighter simply does not compare, although, being in the Purple Range, it has a very appreciable price advantage. In its own right, it is quite a good kit of the ultimate production version of the Tunnan, moulded in 34 parts in medium grey, pale green and clear plastic and assembling well. Unfortunately, it suffers heavy surface detailing. The wheel well interiors have some detailing but the undercarriage doors are plain. The cockpit is quite good, with a one-piece floor, seat, console moulding and an embossed instrument panel. The wing trailing edges call for fining down and the pylons for the two drop tanks, being integrally moulded, have a heavy appearance. The decals provided are for a Swedish Flygvapen machine operated by Flygflottilj 6 circa 1960, and an aircraft operated in 1963 by the Jagdhombergeschwader of Austria's Heeresfliegerkrdfte.

    While many kits of the General Dynamics F-16 have been produced, only Hasegawa has previously issued one in 1/72nd scale and the "Matchbox" kit is the first to include alternative parts enabling the two-seat F-16B to be built. This is a nice kit, with finer than usual engraved surface detailing and well-fitting components. Included in the Orange Range, it possesses 84 component parts in three shades of grey and clear plastic, many of these parts being accounted for by the selection of stores, this including a half-dozen Sidewinders, 12 Mk 83 bombs on multiple racks and seven fuel tanks of various sizes, all with appropriate pylons.

    There are alternative upper forward fuselage sections and canopies for the two variants. The fuselage sections fit together very well despite some difficult joint lines. The small decal sheet offers markings for the 7th FSD aircraft for the USAF (an F-16B) and an F-16A of the Dutch Koninklijke Luchtmacht, both in three-tone grey finishes. This kit is well recommended.
    F J Henderson

    Air International 1979-09, Vol.17, No.3

    дополнительные материалы

    Scale Models 1974 MARCH Vol.5. No.3
    Post War Years
    1946~197? WITH SOME KIT NEWS

    OUR FIRST 'Post War Years', in the January issue dealt with the new Frog Canberra kit which drew the following comments from reader R. Johnstone:

    Dear Sir,

    I am writing to take issue with the author of your review of the Frog kit of the Canberra B (1) 8 in your January 1974 issue. In this review he states that both aircraft were high gloss finish. In the case of the South African aircraft this may be so, but I can assure you from time spent on 88 Squadron and its subsequent renumbering as 14 Squadron, that the only time that WT 365 or any of the other aircraft sported a gloss like that of the model in the photographs, was after heavy rain.

    The finish may have started life as a gloss but had certainly deteriorated to a semi-matt sheen due to the large amount of time these aeroplanes spent parked outside, especially on alert status.

    Also missing from your finished model is the prominent yellow lines on the main-plane upper surfaces which denoted the walkways. On the scale drawing it states 'widely spaced yellow rectangles denote safe walkways', this was so on some aircraft but on most of No. 88's aeroplanes it was a solid yellow line. The integral fuel tank in each wing was outlined with yellow dashes. The outline is shown on the scale drawing but no mention is made of the fact that they were so marked.

    Another point is that towards the end of 1964, aeroplanes coming off major servicing and refurbishing were doped aluminium underneath with black serials. I hope that these few points will help to set the record straight. West Lothian, Scotland. R. Johnstone

    Thank you, Mr. Johnstone for your most interesting remarks, regarding the gloss finish on our model, the result was more shiny than we had anticipated, agreed, but the point is open to personal judgment of the modeller, whether he wants to depict the model factory fresh, or as a used aircraft is purely a matter of choice

    The wing-walkways are not included in Frog's kit, and we should have said so although the plans were published with the intention that readers study it and add to/alter their model as applicable.

    Readers may be interested to know that the Airfix Canberra is due for release very shortly containing 111 parts, alternative pieces and decals enabling modellers to construct either a B(1)6 of 213 Squadron R.A.F. or a B.20 of 2 Squadron R.A.A.F. as used in Vietnam.

    Undercarriage and bomb doors can be modelled open or shut, and the model is well detailed throughout, and wing stencilling is supplied. Price of this series 5 kit will be 69p and a detailed review will follow.


    Airfix's Canberra B (1) 6 which should be available before very long. The Canberra is an often requested kit and now modellers will have a choice of two variants. The Airfix kit will be the basis for the aircraft in the R.A.F. Museum series. Many new kits of jet aircraft subjects are scheduled for this year.

    Scale Models 1974 MARCH Vol.4. No.3

    Scale Models 1974 APRIL Vol.5 No.55
    Reader's Letters

    Dear Sir,
    Re Mr. Johnston from West Lothian's letter (page 157) regarding colour schemes of 14 Sqdn. (R.A.F. Wildenrath) Canberra B(I)8s. I was serving with 14 Squadron up to May 1970, this being the date when Squadron disbanded with Canberras (before re-forming at R.A.F. Bruggen with Phantoms).

    Whilst on the Squadron we had (I think), three B(l)8s in polyurethane. The underside colour was the light green (not grey? - Ed.) colour as on the undersides of the latest T-17s the serials and markings still being black. Also our B(l)8s did not usually fly with ADEN gun packs (these normally being fitted about twice a year for gunnery detachments) but with small pylons fitted just outboard of the nacelles and equipped usually with small smoke bombs, two each side of the centre line.

    Also regarding the markings of walkways and integral tank outlines - these weren't always on the aircraft, and I even remember the walkway lines in red (not yellow - Ed.) - I'm an engine fitter so I had to go on top of the wings before and after flights for refuelling and checking fuel caps and nacelle panels so I can be sure about this. Another thing I noticed from your January plans - where are the refuelling points for the integral tanks? Thought I'd ask!

    I'll try and dig out some photos of the aircraft and send them on (WT 365 in polyurethane colours included). Thanks for a great magazine.

    Fairford, Glos.

    Paul Herbert

    Thanks for the offer of photos, Mr. Herbert. As for those refuelling points, our scale drawings are constantly being updated as new data becomes available. The Canberra is nearing the top of the list. The drawings indicate positions of yellow lines for walkways, and the black underside colour which was most commonly used on the B(l)8.

    Scale Models 1974 APRIL Vol.5 No.55

    Scale Models, 1974 MAY Vol.5 No.56
    Dear Sir,

    Thanks for publishing my information regarding undersfde colouring on Canberra BI8s.

    I'm sorry I've taken so long to reply but I've done a lot of checking with crews that I was working with in RAF Germany and with 'painters and dopers' who actually sprayed our aircraft in Germany and at Aldergrove (N. Ireland) where the aircraft had major servicings also, I checked in the aircraft paint scheme Air Publication..

    As I said before - when the Canberras were finished in ordinary dope they had silver undersides with black stencilling - but when finished in polyurethane they had either of two underside colours - it seems th-e PR7s at RAF Bruggen and B18s at RAF Laarbruch had colouring called Light Aircraft Grev - a sort of bluey grey - Titanine, code DTD 5580. The PR7s and B18s at RAF Wildenrath (PR7 -17 Sari B18 - 14 Sqd.) had when oolvurethane painted, variations on PRU Blue, which is light green with a blue tinge and those colour descriptions are straight from the painter's mouth, also I'm told this PRU blue can be anything . from a true light green to a positive light blue - deoending on batches of paint, oil, discolouration, etc. So you see, I hope, that our 14 Sqd's. B18s were a light green underneath.

    No doubt there is someone who will disagree with this but I hope this will be of some help, Fairford,

    Glos. P Herbert

    Many thanks indeed for your fascinating reply. We now understand what you mean by Light Green, but our colour recognition would by no means classify PRU Blue as anything like Light Green. However, if that is what official finishers and the specifications state, then that is what the colour must be. The question then arises - why weren't the aircraft PRU Blue all over as earlier Canberras?

    Scale Models, 1974 MAY Vol.5 No.56

    Air Enthusiast 1974-05 vol.06 no.05
    The path to perdition

    One letter in this vein received recently from reader David Broomfield of Orpington, Kent, raised some interesting points: 'There can be little argument" writes Mr Broomfield, "that the manufacturers' choice of kits is inexplicable. One can understand the repetition of the WW II favourites and even sometimes welcome the new versions (eg, the Matchbox Mustang) when earlier attempts have been less than accurate. However, what is difficult to understand is the frequent appearance of the comparatively obscure aeroplane in kit form (eg, all those Airfix US Navy types, the Frog Wallace, etc) while other better-known types have remained unrepresented or have appeared only recently. I may be displaying personal bias but postwar jets have for years suffered a decidedly odd model production history. One has only to note the Canberra — over 20 years in widespread service and two kits only now appearing; the Vampire had to wait just as long and I suppose that with two Meteor kits in the form of a wartime Mk III and the not dissimilar Mk IV we have no hope of a Mk 8 or a night fighting version!


    Air Enthusiast 1974-05 vol.06 no.05

    Scale Models 1974 JUNE Volume 5 No. 57
    Dear Sir,

    I would like to add some comments to the correspondence concerning the Canberra B(I)8. I served on 16 Squadron at Laarbruch from 1968 until 1971 and when I arrived on the Squadron the aircraft (Canberra B(I)8s) were camouflaged dark sea grey/dark green with aluminium under-surfaces. The line dividing the upper and lower colour schemes was approximately level with the top of the bomb doors. The colour of the undersides was gradually changed on all aircraft to light aircraft grey during 1969. Mr. Johnstone is quite correct when he says that the aircraft were weathered, they never looked new for long after a re-spray. However, in July 1970 the first of our aircraft appeared in the then new high gloss polyurethane finish and this finish kept its new look, despite the aircraft being almost permanently parked in the open air. The undersurfaces of this and subsequent polyurethane-finished aircraft was the standard light aircraft grey, as it still is on the Canberra E.15s and T.17s here at Cottesmore.

    Regarding the subject of walkways on the wings, on some aircraft these were marked by yellow lines and on others by widely-spaced yellow dashes with three red diagonal lines on the outboard side, as shown in the drawing (reproduced below - Ed.). I am fairly certain that all the polyurethane finished aircraft used these yellow dashes.

    The position for these walkway markings is represented by small raised dashes on the upper wing halves of the Frog model. The integral (wing) fuel tanks were outlined in close yellow dashes on the camouflaged areas and black dashes on the lighter-coloured undersides. The crew entrance door was similarly marked.

    Prior to the introduction of the polyurethane finish all serial numbers were in black, those on the fuselage sides being in large lettering as is common on most Canberra versions. Aircraft with the polyurethane finish; eg XM265, XH234, and WT341. had the fuselage serials in the 8 in. high lettering standard to most other R.A.F. aircraft.

    Now for a few comments on Canberra B(I)8 armament. As Mr. Herbert points out, the bomb-bay gun-pack, containing 4 20-mm. Hispanos, was only fitted once or twice a year and the normal weapons load was small practice bombs fitted on pylons outboard of the engines. There was one pylon under each wing and this carried a practice bomb carrier which could, in turn, carry two practice bombs. These practice bomb carriers are included in the Frog 'Harrier' kit but require the removal of the rectangular block on the top before they can be used for a Canberra model.

    When the aircraft were converted to the interdictor role the gun pack and a different pair of bomb doors were fitted with a cutaway rear portion to allow the gun-pack to protrude. The gun-pack and Interdictor bomb doors were never fitted when the aircraft were resprayed, the aircraft being converted back to the normal strike role before any planned servicing was carried out, and consequently the gun-pack and interdictor bomb doors were coloured aluminium or matt black from previous aircraft colour schemes. I realise someone may take me to task for saying matt black when a previous undersurface colour was gloss black, but the items had weathered to such an extent that I never saw any with even a trace of sheen. Another point about aircraft in interdictor fit was that wing tip fuel tanks were never fitted except perhaps for ferry purposes, in which case the first task on arrival at its destination was the removal of the wingtip tanks. However, wingtip fuel tanks were a normal fit on aircraft in the strike (normal bomb doors) role.

    I hope this information will be of some use to those contemplating a model Canberra B(I)8.
    J. Sobotnicki

    Scale Models 1974 JUNE Volume 5 No. 57

    Air Enthusiast 1975-06 vol.08 no.06
    The Mystery of the Missing Kits

    The number of individual aircraft kits issued over the past score or so of years is very much a matter for conjecture — we would put the figure in the 3,000 ballpark and could well be erring strongly towards the conservative. Where are they all now? An extended tour of the stockists will reveal only a minute fraction of any such figure as this. Most model kits manufacturers are not backward in putting out the re-boxed, marginally re-vamped kit when they see the opportunity to extract a little more mileage from their sets of moulds, but this accounts for a miniscule proportion of what has gone before. Are there countless numbers of moulds languishing in odd corners of factories or warehouses, neglected and forlorn? Have most of the moulds of past kits been disposed of as scrap? In view of the not inconsiderable investment in them, the latter would seem improbable, but we have had little success in determining their fate. To us it remains very much an enigma.

    The complete demise of many of these old kits is, of course, entirely justified. We have often dug out an aged kit recalled as being of a fairly satisfactory standard only to be bitterly disappointed. Standards have climbed so much in recent years that we tend to forget that they have not always been so high. A recent case in point was provided by the English Electric Canberra, one of Frog's early military jet series, and we were immediately struck by the rudimentary nature of the mouldings of the kit and the elementary standard of the de-cal sheet. In this case, as in many others of the same series, obsolescence accompanied the appearance of a more sophisticated kit, but there are some, such as the Vickers-Supermarine Scimitar and the Republic F-84G Thunderjet that have never been superseded, and if the original moulds are still around, a little work on them could produce some very acceptable re-issues.

    Air Enthusiast 1975-06 vol.08 no.06