While not a perfect match, I was able to score three of these Futura Choco Eggs Grumman F3Fs for some Banana Wars or Yangtze gaming. While the F3F was indeed an operational aircraft for the United States Navy and Marine Corps, it really appeared a bit too late for historical small wars actions pre-World War II, but the price for these Futura models was right, the paint scheme attractive, and the options for other more suitable aircraft to match my 15mm gunboat, Eureka Marines, and Khurasan Chaco War do not exist. Ideally I would like to find a 1/144th or 1/100th scale Vought O2U Corsair, but as far as I know they are not being made in those scales.
Back to the F3F. The scale of this model shakes out to be 1/125th, based on a wingspan of thirty-two feet. The model's wingspan is just the slightest hair above 3", so we are right in the middle of my 1/100th to 1/144th scale need. Perfect!
|F-Toys 1/144th Albatros D.III and Futura 1/125th Grumman F3F|
The F3F carried one .30 and one .50 caliber gun, and could also act in a bomber role with a pair of 116 pound bombs. Range was nearly one thousand miles, and top speed was 264 miles per hour.
The "kit" comes in several parts, but putting it together is a breeze. If you are just wanting a display model then you probably need not worry about gluing the parts together, but as I plan to use at least one of these for gaming, gluing is a must as the upper wings like to pop off with mild handling. You have a choice of landing gear in a retracted or extended position. The plane is done up in USMC colors (VMF-2 piloted by Bob Galer, a double ace at Guadalcanal and a Medal of Honor and Distinguished Flying Cross winner).
So, while the Grumman might not be the perfect aircraft for the Yangtze or the Caribbean, in this case she'll have to do!