Thursday 16 September 2010

Pat's Pete

Sticking with the IJN floatplanes theme here are some images of the Hasegawa 1/48th Mitsubishi F1M2 "Pete", that surprising dogfighter, kindly contributed by the builder Pat Donahue. Love those fish!

Pat's own notes on the build, entitled "Sushi Tonight", follow:-

"The model is the Hasegawa kit with the following additions and corrections: 
  • The cowl had internal structure added, the engine had the prop governor and control rod added along with spark plug wires, inner cylinder drain lines and the oil sump line. 
  • The front cockpit had seatbelts, cowl flap crank, magneto switch, air temp gauge, control rods from carb heat and oil cooler control quadrant, valves and lines on top of the oxygen bottles, seat bungee cord and pulleys, throttle, prop and mixture control rods, flap actuating rod, fuel valves, rudder trim wheel, trim cables, and wiring added. 
  • The gun sight had the auxiliary sights added. 
  • The rear cockpit had telegraph key, wiring, control cables for the camera hatch, trailing antenna cable, battery cables and battery box lock downs, and seat adjustment handle added. The rear cockpit compass had the compass rose,  prism and supports added. The chart board was added. The observation periscope was detailed up. The gun had the sights added. 
  • The main float had the retractable  mooring cleat and stiffener plates added along with the mooring rope and the outrigger floats had the drain plugs added.The aileron bell crank cables were added to the wings. The wing  tie down points were drilled out, and the control bell crank windows were added. Bulbs were added to all the nav lights. The flying wire fairleads were built out to the correct profile.

The model was painted with Xtracolor and White Ensign Model paints, kit decals were used. It represents a Pete found at the Sasebo Naval Base at the end of WW2. The right float is evidently a replacement. It appears from photos that the tail codes were lightly oversprayed to tone them down with the exception of the Kanji symbol. Photos of this aircraft seem to show that the paint demarcations were done with some type of mask or stencil - perhaps hand held. The patterns are the same but placement varies slightly in some cases. Depending how the stencil was placed and the angle of the spray gun, color demarcations went from very hard blends to somewhat softer blends sometimes even along the same color demarcation line. The flying wire fairings were camouflaged.  Seaplane cradles sometimes had thick felt or burlap placed over the cradle support blocks to protect the float bottom. These items are all duplicated on the model. Photos also show that the antenna configuration and tension on the aerials varied.  Against all odds this little airplane survived the war and was destroyed by the occupation forces in 1945.  The 1/48 scale fish were scratch built and not having any plans I cannot vouch for their accuracy or colors..... 

I would like to express my appreciation to Nick Millman and James Lansdale both of whom were very helpful in researching the colors and the aircraft. Without their help this model would not have been possible."

Image credits: All courtesy of Pat Donahue, © 2010 Pat Donahue


2 comments: said...


That's an exceptional Pete. Thanks for listing the mods. It's a great kit made better by you. The weathering is very natural looking. Not overdone, understated and subtle. The sun fade effect is very nice.

William Reece

Andrew said...

That's great Pete, very nice work on the paint.