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Grumman Martlet Mk.II

by Ken Bowes


Grumman Martlet Mk.II


Tamiya's 1/48 scale F4F-4 Wildcat is available online from Squadron.com




Here is my Grumman Martlet II, serial number AJ115, "D" from 881 Sqn FAA aboard HMS Illustrious during Operation Ironclad, May 1942.

Operation Ironclad was the invasion of Vichy French Madagascar to prevent the island being used as a forward base for Japanese submarine operations in the Indian Ocean. As AJ115 is from a later production batch of Martlet IIs it has the shorter underfuselage fairing and small pitot tube on the wingtip of the F4F-4 Wildcat, making an easier conversion from the Tamiya 1/48 kit.


Modifications to the Tamiya 1/48 F4F-4 Wildcat kit include:

  • Longer pointed Curtis-Electric spinner peculiar to Martlet IIs (from a P-47 kit)

  • Smaller hard rubber tailwheel fitted to early Martlets and Wildcats before the larger pneumatic tail wheel in the kit (Aeroclub)

  • Aires Wildcat wingfold set

  • Reheat etched brass Sutton harness

  • Scratchbuilt single large cooling gills on cowl

  • Decals from Modeldecal, Hasegawa, Ventura, Almark and Aeromaster

The camoflauge scheme was based on Air Ministry drawings provided by Paul Fontenoy. I used Aeromaster acrylic paints.



Additional Images


Click on the thumbnails below to view larger images:

Text and Model Copyright 2003 by FLT LT Ken Bowes
Images Copyright 2003 by Brett Green
Page Created 9 July, 2003
Last Updated 25 March, 2004

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