Done (I think)

I think this will be the final version of the XB-51 for now.  Time to move on to the next project.

XB-51
XB-51 (© John Matthews)

I’ve extended the camouflage paint over the entire tail now.  I also decided to use nose art from actual 13th Bomb Squadron aircraft, replacing the “Betty’s Ready” nose art I made earlier in an attempt to make it a bit more authentic.  I toned-down the panel lines, rivets, and grunge a bit on the fuselage for this image.  Probably too much, though, since they’re barely visible.  I began work on other grunge on the plane (stains from leaks, chipped paint, etc.), but I really want to start moving forward with the next project.  For the last image here, I made a rendering of a two ship formation…

XB-51
XB-51 (© John Matthews)

This is “Sylvia and The Wench”.  Originally, both names had been applied to Douglas A-26 Invaders that were flown by the 13th Bomb Squadron in Korea.  I thought the nose art (sadly missing from most modern USAF planes) would add a bit of color to the planes, and help make them look a bit more authentic.  I’m uncertain as to who the actual pilots were who would have flown those two planes.  When I visited the 13th Bomb Squadron Association I wasn’t able to find their names.  The pages dedicated to their planes’ nose art stated they were generic paintings.  The web page is definitely worth a visit and makes for very interesting reading.  There’s also another website devoted to the 13th Bomb Squadron, here.  The Grim Reapers are now assigned to the 509th Operations Group, flying B-2 bombers out of Whiteman AFB, here in my home state of Missouri.

Well, I guess that’s it for the XB-51.  For no anyway.  Hope a few people found it interesting.  If anyone wants to commission a print of this plane (featuring three-view projections, or something else in a specific paint/insignia scheme), please let me know.  Until then, I’ll be thinking of the next project.  Could be the Bell D-188/XF-109, The Convair Model 200, or something equally interesting (I hope).

Until then, thanks for stopping by!  See you soon!

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