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Book Review
Spitfire Mk. IX in Color
Detail & Color 2 - Spitfire Mk. IX in Color
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by: Rowan Baylis [ MERLIN ]

New from Hussar Productions comes a spectacular accompaniment for the Spitfire Mk. IX in 1:48. Undoubtedly inspired by the recent success of Eduard's definitive kits, Detail & Color 2 represents and interestingly fresh approach by falling into the middle ground between a book and standard decals release, combining a set of superbly printed decals from Techmod with top-quality 4-view full-colour artwork for each scheme in a soft-bound 24-page A4 booklet.

The volume combines the talents of Brett Green and Jacek Jackiewicz; Brett providing a useful short history of the Mk. IX along with a list of further references, while Jacek is the talented artist behind the profiles. The chosen schemes provide a rich mix of RAF and foreign Spitfires - to be honest, if you can't find something of interest in this lot, you should probably beg Mal (Holdfast) for forgiveness and admit that you just don't like Spitfires! Each scheme has a full 2-page spread devoted to it, and is accompanied by a concise description of the specific details of the aircraft and points to note in its camouflage and markings.

Inevitably, the focus for most of us will be the decals – and these really are beautifully produced. One large sheet carries national markings and personal insignia, while a smaller correction sheet with the Sky squadron codes reprinted. The schemes featured are:

1. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXc (Late), s/n MK636, 2I-E - 443 Sqn. RCAF, flown by Sq.Ldr. Wally McLeod
2. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXc (Early), s/n BS152, AE-W - 402 Sqn. RCAF, flown by Sq.Ldr. Lorne M. Cameron
3. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXc (Early), s/n EN398, AE-B - 402 Sqn. RCAF, flown by Ian Keltie
4. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXc (Late), s/n MJ897, "Curieux" - French tactical reconnaissance unit GR2/33 "Savoy"
5. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXe, s/n 2011, White 26 - 101 Sqn. IAF, 1948
6. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXc (Late), s/n ML214, 5J-K "Muscat" - 126 Sqn. RAF, flown by John Agorastos Plagis
7. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXc (Early), s/n EN446, QJ-1 - 92 Sqn. RAF, Italy 1943
8. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXc (Late), s/n MH358, YT-Jas - 65 Sqn. RAF, flown by Sq.Ldr. James Storrar
9. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXc (Early), s/n EN447, WD-L - 4FS, 52FG USAAF, flown by Lt. Victor Cabas, Italy 1943
10. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXc (Late), s/n unknown, WZ-GJ - 309FS, 31FG, flown by Mj. Garth Jared
11. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXc (Early), s/n unknown, WZ-JJ - 309FS, 31 FG, flown by 2lt. John Fawcett
12. Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXe, s/n unknown, White 78 - Soviet 26th GvIAP, Leningrad 1945

Full markings are provided for the foreign air force machines, but modellers will have to rely on the kit-supplied decals for most of the RAF national insignia as only the fin flashes are included here due to lack of space on the densely packed sheet. It is a shame because, as has been noted widely, there were a number of problems with Eduard's RAF decals, so having a full set here would have increased the value of the publication still further, making it an almost “must have” replacement for the kit decals.

Nevertheless, that small regret aside, the decals are truly excellent. The thin and glossy items are printed in perfect register, with basically no excess carrier film. The inclusion of the addendum sheet is very welcome; while many modellers would have been content let the original items pass, such extra attention to accuracy is to be applauded.

With its wide selection of interesting and varied colour schemes, Detail & Color 2 should be an eye-opener to modellers looking for a fresh take on the immortal Spitfire. It's priced a little higher than the usual "throw-away" documentation that comes with decals, but the twist here is that the book's lavish format makes it something you will want to keep as a reference after its served its purpose as a painting guide. The icing on the cake for me would have been the inclusion of period photos to back up the artwork, but the latter is of such high quality it's tempting to frame it. Recommended.

Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AEROSCALE.
Highs: Excellent decals and artwork for a dozen really interesting schemes.
Lows: You need to source your own RAF insignia.
Verdict: Depending on your viewpoint, Detail 7 Color #2 is either a book with bonus 1:48 decals, or decals with a bonus book you'll want to keep on the shelf.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:48
  Mfg. ID: HSBA002 / ISBN# 9780978109141
  Suggested Retail: $24.99 Canadian
  PUBLISHED: Mar 18, 2014
  NATIONALITY: United Kingdom

Our Thanks to AirConnection Hobby!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Rowan Baylis (Merlin)

I've been modelling for about 40 years, on and off. While I'm happy to build anything, my interests lie primarily in 1/48 scale aircraft. I mostly concentrate on WW2 subjects, although I'm also interested in WW1, Golden Age aviation and the early Jet Age - and have even been known to build the occas...

Copyright ©2021 text by Rowan Baylis [ MERLIN ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of AeroScale. All rights reserved.


Rowan, a very timely review for yours truly. Certainly a nice mix of early and late Spit IXc. Even a single Russian type e is offered. Joel
MAR 18, 2014 - 12:32 PM
Sounds like a great sheet for the Eduard Spitfires. One question though, I thought McLeod's Spitfire was an "E" variant. If it is indeed a "C", I am building that version since I own the late IX-C version.
MAR 24, 2014 - 03:39 AM

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