HighPlanes Seafire IIC converted to Vc
Those of you who are fans of the Spitfire
family or the Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm will already be aware
that the Seafire IIC was a straightforward conversion of
the Spitfire VC for carrier use. Seeing service during
Torch” invasion of North Africa, the IIC filled a gap
until the entry of the purpose built Seafire III and lend-lease
types such as the Hellcat and Corsair. To the best of my
knowledge, this is the first time this particular mark has
Popping open the box shows the usual pale
blue plastic mouldings and vac form canopies, some resin
goodies, brief assembly instructions and pages of paint schemes
in colour. The
bits that are required for a Seafire (catapult spools and
the rear fuselage stiffeners) are there along with various
bits that look like they’re intended for the Seafire
III – spinner and four bladed prop, late style vokes
filter and injection moulded tailplanes.
First impressions are good with nice fine recessed surface
detail. There are some bulges on the upper surfaces
of the wings above the wheel wells that need sanding off,
and everything needs a good cleanup before starting assembly.
The cockpit sidewalls are devoid of detail, so stretched
sprue and a Red Roo PE set came to the rescue. Seat
harness came from the same set, and I robbed a gun sight
from a Heller kit.
The rest of the kit went together with the usual dry fitting,
sanding and filling. Naturally some of that nice detail
was lost in the process but in 1/72 it’s not something
I weep buckets of tears over. Just about every grounded
Spitfire/Seafire seems to have drooped elevators, so I cut
these away from their resin tailplanes (beware they’re
fragile!). Holes need to be drilled in the wing leading
edges for the lovely cannon barrel fairings and stubs as
well as the machine guns. While the drill was out I
opened up somewhere to glue the tail wheel.
I wanted to have the canopy open, so I cut out the entry
door in the fuselage side and used an Extratech PE door. Undercarriage
doors came from the same set. Cutting the vac form
canopy apart was a bit challenging made harder by frames
that could’ve been moulded a bit more crisply. Ah
well, Highplanes do provide 2 canopies. No mirror provided
but a few minutes’ work with card and sprue had one
From here on I was a bit of a bad boy. As popular
as the RN FAA is, it’s not on my modelling agenda so
I figured this kit would make a nice Spitfire VC. This
was simple enough; sand off the fuselage stiffeners, add
a Vokes filter, prop and spinner from the Heller VB kit.
With a coat of primer and the inevitable corrective work
done, time to choose a colour scheme. Kristen Alexander’s
book inspired me to tackle one of Clive Caldwell’s
mounts and a wealth of information from Peter Malone let
me finalise the details. One problem – no Sky
Blue codes in a small enough font so I had to settle for
white. I did think of over painting them but I regained
my sanity fairly quickly.
I’m reasonably happy with the finished model, and
it’s certainly the nicest Spitfire in my collection. There
are easier routes to a 1/72 Spitfire VC, and my use of this
kit is a bit of a waste. If you’re building a
collection of the Spitfire family or FAA types, then you
really need this one. The extra effort required compared
to “mainstream” kits is more than outweighed
by having pretty much all you need in one box.
Many thanks indeed to Steve from Highplanes
for the review kit!