Dicta Ira

Sopwith Camel
Belgian 11th Fighter Squadron

By: Marc Flake

The Aviation Militarie Belge received 54 Sopwith Camels. The first 36 aircraft were numbered Sc1 through Sc36. The numbering of the last 18 is not known, although there were an Sk1 and and Sk7. The 11th Fighter Squadron (Paper Bird or Cocotte insignia) had six Camels on May 1, 1918, and 11 on Sept. 25.

I chose to model SK 4, mainly because I wanted to build an aircraft that wasn't flown by one of the more famous aces. As such it is rather non-discrept when compared to Olieslagers and Copens' mounts. It is loosely based on Jean vand er Voordt's aircraft.

The kit is from Revell. For the interior I used Roseparts' brass, which bent up perfectly and fit nicely without any adjustments. I removed the molded-in engine and replaced it with the Aeroclub Clerget with the photoetched pushrods. I also used the Aeroclub prop. I filled the trenches in the wings and used Contrail struts.

The hardest part of the build was removing the step (much bigger than a seam) that runs the length of the fuselage both on top and bottom, although the bottom was worse. Even grinding out the cowl to accept the Aeroclub engine was easier.

The rigging is .005 steel wire. Upper surfaces are painted in Xtracolor RFC Green, while the undersides of the wings were Humbrol Cream (#103).

The Paper Bird insignia was made by using some white Superscale decal stripes. I cut two trapezoids and one triangle for each side. The rondells were from Americal-Gryphon, while the tail feathers were painted. The SK 4 was taken from an "N" scale railroad letter decal sheet from Microscale.