Airfix Bedford Truck Builds in 1/72 Scale

This is the Airfix Bedford truck kit which is part of their WWII RAF Bomber Re-Supply Set.  You get one truck in each set but have the option of building it as either an MWC water tanker or an MWD light truck.  I purchased two sets so I’ll be building one of each.  This is the common component of both kits, the frame and the cab.
Most of the frame is molded as a single piece which helps speed construction.
Here is where most of the difference comes in, the water tank on the left and standard bed on the right.  I replaced the walkways on the tanker with PE parts from the Brengun set, those and some side mirrors were the only parts I used.  The grab handles were replaced with wire, a simple improvement which improves the appearance considerably.
Here is the bed with its canvas cover.  The canvas over the cab has a circular hump which was apparently less common than a straight canvas tarp, so I cut the hump out and filled it with stock on both kits.
The walkways and bins on the water tanker are molded on too high, lowering them a couple of millimeters makes a noticeable improvement.
Here are the major sub assemblies painted up, the water tanker in Dark Earth and scale black, the standard truck in Dark Earth with a lightened cover.
The kits were given a coat of gloss to prepare for decals and also to seal the underlying paint for washes.  The decals performed pretty well with a little coaxing.
Here are the trucks with a Tamiya black wash and a coat of flat.  The front windscreens have been replaced with acetate sheet as mine had the dreaded Airfix clear part flowlines.
These went together well and I enjoyed building them.  I have a soft spot for military softskins, these will look good in the collection.

Hasegawa Kawanishi N1K Kyōfū 強風 Strong Wind “Rex” Prototype in 1/72 Scale

After a long delay, the weather finally cooperated and I was able to take some finished pictures outdoors of recent completions from January’s batch of Japanese aircraft.

This is the design which eventually was developed into the excellent Shiden-Kai fighter by the Imperial Japanese Navy, the prototype “Rex” floatplane fighter.  I wanted to build the prototype because of the counter-rotating propellers, and the IJN overall orange finish (used on prototypes and trainers) was a bonus.  Like most everyone else at the time, the Japanese were not able to work the bugs out of the counter-rotating propellers and they reverted to a standard three-bladed prop for the production aircraft.

The Hasegawa kit is nice and goes together without any surprises.  It comes with the beaching cart and boarding ladder, along with a plastic weight for the float.  I rebuilt the cockpit and wired the engine but the rest is pretty much out of the box.

















Fine Molds Bf 109 G-6/R2 of Hermann Graf in 1/72 Scale

This is the 500th blog post on Inch High Guy!

Here is one of the aircraft flown by Major Hermann Graf while in command of JGr. 50.  The unit was set up as a specialist high-altitude interceptor group to counter the RAF Mosquito but was also tasked with intercepting American bomber formations.  The markings of this aircraft include Graf’s personal red tulip marking on the nose and the white vertical fin of a formation leader.  His scoreboard is seen on the rudder.  Graf survived the war with 212 victories.

















American Commander Audiobook Review


American Commander: Serving a Country Worth Fighting for and Training the Brave Soldiers Who Lead the Way

By Ryan Zinke and Scott McEwen, read by Daniel Butler

Audiobook, 10 hours and 39 minutes, 10 disks

Release Date November 2016

Published by Thomas Nelson


Language: English

ISBN: 9780718092887


Ryan Zenke was a Navy SEAL for twenty-three years, rising to the rank of Commander.  After leaving the service he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives as a Congressman from Montana.  He was later appointed as the Secretary of the Interior in March of 2017.

I often check out audiobooks from the local public library to have something to listen to while driving to model shows or while working at the bench.  It’s a good way to make some constructive use of the time and hopefully learn something new.  SEAL memoirs are often action packed and offer interesting insights into Special Warfare tactics and operations.  This one promised the additional perspective of how military experience could translate into a political career in Washington.

Zinke served in the SEALs from 1986 through 2008, which meant that he had fewer opportunities for combat at the operational level than SEALs who began their service fifteen years later.  Most of the book relates to training, exercises, and planning & coordination.  Still interesting, but not the firsthand combat stories which are standard fare for the majority of the Special Operations autobiographies.  The narrative also jumps around without regard to chronological order or thematic continuity which made the book unnecessarily hard to follow at times.  While Zinke does offer commentary on many political issues throughout the book (President Obama was very unpopular among most military Officers who served during his tenure) there is little offered of Zinke’s term as a Congressman nor how his military service prepared him for Washington.

Zinke relates one negative incident from his time on the SEAL Teams, he was found to have committed a small transgression regarding travel funds and was forced to make restitution.  He described this as a learning experience in the book.  Ironically, he was forced to leave his post as Secretary of the Interior in January 2019 over ethical concerns regarding his travel expenditures.

Not necessarily a bad book, but one which never really grabbed my interest.  The jumping from period to period was an unnecessary distraction and did not add to the narrative in any way.  Pick it up if you are curious about SEAL training or operational planning and haven’t already read enough accounts of that in other books.