New Project: Gulayev’s P-39N

That’s right… I’ve started another one–a P-39N in 1/72 scale. This is the HobbyBoss offering, which is pretty interesting. The kit is only $8.99 at the local hobby store, but I won mine in a raffle drawing. At that price, you don’t expect a lot, and this one… Well… It’s interesting. The fuselage is basically one piece–something I’m not used to seeing in aircraft kits, but it sure simplifies things for seam lines. Construction is really straightforward and simple, and the quality of the model seems to be better than what I’d expect at that price. In short, I’ve been impressed with this thing. I do, however, need to figure out how to get some weight into the nose, as the P-39 is ass-heavy and tends to tip that way.
 
Rather than go with the included markings and painting instructions, I’m opting to utilize a set of Eduard markings that I’ve had lying around forever. As such, I’m decorating the plane after Nikolai Gulayev’s P-39N. He was a Soviet pilot who made 57 air victories ("kills") by the end of the war. One of the highest tallies of the Soviet pilots–or any pilot, for that matter. Although the P-39 was not a popular plane with the western allies (slow climb rate, sometimes quirky handling, due to its center of gravity), the Soviets put this American-built plane to great use, under the Lend-Lease Program.
 
There’s enough of a history. My big stumbling block right now is trying to figure out how to get some extra weight in the nose so it doesn’t fall back on two wheels, with the tail sitting on the ground. Once I figure that out, I’ll get on to applying the markings and washes, hopefully in the next couple of days.
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