Eduard Lavochkin La-7 of Major Ivan Kozhedub HSU in 1/72 Scale

Ivan Kozhedub was born in Obrazhievka, Ukraine in 1920.  At the time of the German invasion he was serving as a flight instructor.  He achieved his first aerial victory in July 1943, a Ju 87.  The Stuka was a favorite target for Kozhedub, he eventually downed 18 of the type.  He was also the first Soviet pilot credited with downing an Me 262.  He claimed to have downed two American P-51s in a friendly fire incident, although this is unconfirmed.  He retired in 1985 with the rank of Marshal of Aviation.

Kozhedub was the top scoring Soviet and Allied fighter pilot of WWII with 64 victories. The model represents the La-7 of Major Ivan Kozhedub HSU x 3, 176 GIAP, Germany, May 1945.

Luftwaffe Rescue Buoys

During the Second World War the Luftwaffe deployed a series of rescue buoys or Rettungsboje along the Continental side of the English Channel. The buoys were intended to provide shelter for downed airmen until help could arrive.
There were several similar buoy designs employed in this effort. Luftwaffe aircrew called them Udet-Boje after Ernst Udet, who directed their development. The British nicknamed them “lobster pots” due to their box-like shape and bright yellow paint schemes.
This contemporary magazine illustration shows the internal layout. The buoys were provisioned with food, dry clothing, medical supplies, and various means of signaling the need for rescue. There were also basic creature comforts such as playing cards, radio, and board games to alleviate boredom. Supplies were to be immediately replenished by rescuers to ensure the buoys were always fully equipped and ready for the next use.
The buoys were not secured in the typical manner using multiple anchor points and chains, but were moored using a single anchor line so ditching aircrew would have a visual indication of winds at the surface and could ditch their aircraft in a favorable position for the crew to reach the buoy. Consequently the buoys would occasionally part their moorings and wind up washed ashore like this example.
Retrievals were often performed by dedicated rescue aircraft of the Seenotdienst, the Luftwaffe’s rescue service. Here is a Heinkel He 59 in a high-visibility rescue scheme. These aircraft were suspected by the British of performing reconnaissance in addition to their rescue duties, and the RAF was ordered to consider them legitimate targets.
Seeing the value in the concept, the British developed their own version which was deployed along the English side of the channel. With a more boat-like hull, perhaps seakeeping was marginally improved.
Many aircrews were saved by the buoys on both sides of the Channel. For their parts, aircrew in distress took their chance for survival and used what ever rescue buoy they could reach, only the identity of their rescuers determining whether they would be held as PoWs or returned to their units.

A short but very well-done video description here:

ICM Polikarpov I-16 of Col. Ivan Romanenko HSU in 1/72 Scale

I-16 Type 18 of Col. Ivan Romanenko HSU, CO of the 61st Fighter Brigade, Soviet Navy Baltic Fleet Aviation, September 1941.  Romanenko was credited with 28 individual and 1 shared victory.  Romanenko survived the war and retired as a Lieutenant General.

This is a photo of Colonel Ivan Romanenko HSU in front of his rather uniquely camouflaged I-16. The colors used here are debated, I’m seeing five shades. Comparing the darkest color to the wheels, I went with a dark green rather than black.

Women Warriors 161

Russian Paratrooper Yulia Kharlamova
USN Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician 1st Class Petty Officer Nichole Robinette
A-10 Thunderbolt II pilot, Lt. Col. Martha McSally. She later became a US Senator.
Cpl Alexandra Roy, 430 Tactical Helicopter Squadron door gunner onboard CH-146 Griffon
West Indian Detachment ATS
Roza Shanina, Soviet Sniper with 59 kills
Soviet Po-2 pilot Natalya Meklin
US Air Force security
Canadian YPG volunteer Hanna Bohman
United Kingdom
US Navy sailor aboard USS Blue Ridge (LCC-19)
ww443_Poland_MiG29_Lt Katarzyna Tomiak-Siemieniewic
Polish MiG-29 pilot Lt. Katarzyna Tomiak-Siemieniewic
ww444_Stefania Cecylia Wojtulanis-Karpińska_Polish_ATA
Polish ATA pilot Stefania Cecylia Wojtulanis-Karpińska with Spitfire
US Coast Guard SPARs, WWII
US Army Helicopter Pilot
WASP mechanics work on a PT-22 trainer

To see more Women Warriors, click on the tags below:

Hasegawa Curtiss SOC Seagull Build in 1/72 Scale Part II

Hasegawa molds the struts with a “cap” on each end which is designed to fit into slots in the wings. Unfortunately this leaves seams between the struts which are difficult to fill, because the seams are between the struts. Duh. One imperfect solution is to cut out the “cap” portion and eliminate the seams, which is what I chose to do in this case.
These are the Starfighter resin interior bits painted and ready to go. The engine has been given ignition wires. Seatbelts are masking tape, which looks good through the canopy.
Here are the major components together, joined with MEK from the hardware store. Seams were visible around the tail planes and wing to fuselage joint. These were filled with Perfect Plastic Putty.
Joints on the underside fit somewhat better. This one will be the wheeled version, so attachment points for the floats have been filled with Evergreen stock and Mr. Surfacer.
No masking set for this kit, so masking was done the old-fashioned way. The canopy needed a little PPP to fill in the gaps. Sharp-eyed readers will notice the gun trough added to the forward fuselage.
Here the center struts have been added after the seams in the wings are sanded smooth. The wing was missing the pilot’s hand-holds, so these were drilled out. Also the attachment points for the rigging have been drilled.
Hasegawa provides a display stand for the floatplane but it is not intended to represent anything prototypical. I whipped this stand up from Evergreen stock based upon one of the photographs of a cart used on a Cruiser in the Ginter SOC book.

Part III here:

Royal Air Force Air Sea Rescue Launch Color Photographs

During the Second World War the Royal Air Force operated a fleet of small boats and aircraft with the primary mission of performing search and rescue operations. They were organized as the RAF Marine Branch (much to the chagrin of the Royal Navy) with the motto of “The sea shall not have them”. The service eventually grew to over 300 High Speed Launches and 1,000 other vessels of various types.
While the RAF Marine Branch was formed with the intention of rescuing RAF airmen downed at sea, in practice they rescued airmen and sailors of any nation under the ancient seafaring tradition of coming to the aid of any person in danger at sea. By the end of WWII it was estimated that the Marine Branch had saved the lives of over 8,000 airmen and 5,000 sailors.
An unusual view of High Speed Launch 2586 on a beaching dolly provides a fine view of her hull form. This is a British Power Boat “68 footer” derived from a torpedo boat design. Armament was intended for self-defense and was contained in power-operated turrets as used on RAF bombers.
This is a series of photographs showing the acceptance inspection of HSL 2562 in February 1942. The inspection team is comprised mainly of personnel from the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force.
The launches carried high visibility markings for easy identification as rescue vessels and to help coordinate rescue efforts from the air. These photographs reveal several details of interest to modelers.
Despite their humanitarian mission, the boats were subject to attack. Visible here are splinter mats around the conning station to help protect the crew.
All photographs are from the collect of the Imperial War Museum.

ICM Polikarpov I-16 of Lt. Petr Kharitonov HSU in 1/72 Scale

I-16 Type 21 of Lt. Petr Kharitonov HSU, 158 IAP, Kresty Airfield, Pskov USSR, July 1941.  Kharitonov was credited with 14 victories, including a Ju 88 by Taran strike (ramming).  In Osprey Aircraft of the Aces 95, Mikhail Maslov attributes White 13 to Sr. Lt. Vasiliy Golubev HSU, 7th IAP, Leningrad Front USSR, Summer 1941.  Golubev was credited with 39 individual and 12 shared victories.  The notes designating White 13 as belonging to Kharitonov are from the Begimot decal sheet.