DH Mosquito Build
This is my build of the Tony Nijhuis 47” De Havilland Mosquito. Here’s a link to Tony’s site where you can buy the kit or just the plan http://www.tonynijhuisdesigns.co.uk/multies.htm. It was a free plan in RCM&E in the June 2005 edition.
The real Mosquito was known as the wooden wonder and at its introduction was the fastest fighter then available. Metals were in short supply during the World War 2 and the skills to work them but there was an abundance of woodworkers and cabinet makers so the Mosquito was made mostly of wood. It was a lamination of Balsa and ply which really makes it a good choice to model. The Mosquito was an instant success and used in many roles. Photo Reconnaissance (PR) version was able to fly longer flights with a navigator to aid the pilot. PR version as all PR aircraft was unarmed to reduce weight so higher altitudes and speeds could be obtained.
I really like Tony’s kits because nearly all have been an RCM&E commissioned design so you have a good write-up and the build instructions. I’ve already built Tony’s BAE Hawk and after 9 years it still flying as good as the first day. Some video of her on this website.
I got the CNC wood pack and decided to go electric eventually, was considering the IC version but I thought the risk of one engine cutting out and trashing the model pushed me electric. I purchased the motor’s, ESC and props from 4-max http://www.4-max.co.uk/tn-multies.htm. 4-Max have recommended setups for all of Tony’s designs. Update – motors now recommended have been changed from in-runners to out runners. I’ve had issues with the original setup that’s ended in some damage see below.
Here are the fuselage build pictures.
There’s nothing to difficult just make sure when you pull the tail together it’s on the centre line of the fuselage. I used my laser to make sure.
Build pictures of Nacelles
Wing build and one almost ready
Starting to go together now
The model was covered in Solarfilm and then a coat of Prymol was applied to etch the film. I then used an airbrush to apply the paint. The paint I obtained from B&Q in the UK which are just tester pots which you can have mixed to the colour you require. These are tinned with water to the consistency of skimmed milk and then applied in several light coats.
I painted the whole model in the underside colour first and then masked off for the camouflage. Best to apply the dark colours last. The only problem with the tester pots is that the finish is matt which I have found from other models I’ve painted is OK but it tends to attract dust and it gets ingrained. So after all the colours had been applied and left for a few days to dry I air-brushed a gloss water-based varnish. This just gave a slight sheen to the finish and doesn’t look glossy at all.
Here she is finished in the markings EG-Y the only flying Mosquito in the world. Restored in New Zealand and now based in the USA.
The flight went well after a scary launch since then have had a couple more. She files really well and looks great in the air.
Brushless Motor problems
The motor installation on the in-runners isn’t ideal. I had some screws with washers going through the plywood engine ring. Well, the distance between these screws is very small and there isn’t much to bite on. After a few flights, these worked loose and I had an engine failure in flight. I managed to land safely by throttling back on the still running motor. I decided to find a better solution and built some adapters on my CNC router. These were better but I had them come loose again even with blue Loctite. 4-max is not recommending these in-runners anymore for this model are now specifying out runners with 8×4 props.The launch went wrong and with power dying on one motor resulting in some damage to the nacelles. So I’m going to repair the model and swap to brush-less 1250kv out runners on 8×4 props.
Thank you for taking the time to read the article. The Mosquito has been on my wishlist for a long time and I’m a little gutted that she’s damaged but keep watching I’ll have here repaired and flown better than ever I’m sure. I’m a bit of a warbird fan not because I like war but my Dad saw the tail end of it and told me some great stories of his days in the Army. At the age of 17 before he was called up the drove a truck with Spitfire parts on from London to Birmingham. Use to take all day in those days to do one delivery.
Repairs and Repaint
After quite a long time sat on the bench I finally made a start on the repairs in Dec 2019. The main area of damage was the nacelles with one broken off and the other becoming detached on one side.
With some PVA glue and some balsa, I was able to get the nacelles back together and attached.
I’ve also decided to modify the nose, it’s damaged anyway and repaint her as PRU (Photo Reconnaissance Unit) Mosquito in PRU Blue. These and the Spitfires were among the best aircraft for Photo Reconnaissance work during World War 2.
Just waiting for some new props to arrive and build some new motor mounts with my 3d printer.