1/72 Matchbox Beaufighter Mk. X

Gallery Article by Mack Main on Sept 5 2017

 

      

"What-If" Beaufighter

Towards the end of the Second World War in Europe, Canada was gearing up for contributions to help finish off the Japanese. With a lack of aircraft carriers, Canada needed a long range, twin engine aircraft for the island-hopping type fighting that the Americans, Australians and New Zealanders were waging. After evaluating several American and British designs, the RCAF finally decided on the Beaufighter, more specifically the Mk. X, to lead the Canadian air arm in the Pacific. Canadian Car & Foundry won the contract and the first Canadian Beaufighter took flight in June 1945. Japan surrendered a few months later, before any of the planes had left Canada. Only 17 had been built and most were based at Pat Bay on Vancouver Island for training crews.

With the end of hostilities production ceased and the 14 planes at Pat Bay reformed as 404 Squadron, who formally flew Beaufighters in England during the war. They flew patrols all along the west coast of Canada in the late forties before the squadron stood down in 1950. The aircraft were ferried east and were scraped. 

The remaining 3 aircraft did various test work in Eastern Canada, lingering on until 1958 when the final aircraft was destroyed in a crash. None survive today.

My example is how the 404 Squadron Beaufighters looked in 1947, before the high-vis paint was applied to the outer wings and tail. 

The kit is the old Matchbox release. I built it straight out of the box and sprayed it with Testors Silver from the ol' rattle can. Decals came from the Hobbycraft Avro Arrow, if the codes haven't already given that away.

I hope you enjoyed seeing my "What-If" Beaufighter

Mack Main

Photos and text by Mack Main