SAVRO SHACKLETON MR.2 - Interior Revealed


91 posts

This was the biggest and probably the most complicated build I have undertaken for a few years and it did push my skills a little. I had been thinking about completing the Big Shackleton for a while, since it was first released but was concerned that all the extra detail inside the fuselage would be hidden once the two halves are glued together.

So I decided I would try and reveal a small cross section of the interior similar to the CAD images on the box sides. So the kit was purchased from Airfix just after Christmas 2016. But before I reveal all I will deal with a few boring bits of the build first.

I started with the interior, cockpit and radar compartment (the most important part of this build) which took me more than a week, doing 3 - 4 hours a day. I had also now planned the cut away section I was going to do and started on the crew for the various positions.


Once all the interior components were completed they were cemented into the port half whilst I hacked away at the starboard half. The two halfs were then glued together with little drama although the rear floor around the crew hatch/door required a little trimming to get the fuselage to close correctly. At this stage I also fitted the nose cannon assembly, and considering so much detail is included elsewhere, there was no internal breech assembly, only the 'barrels' protuding from the nose. This was remedied with two Hasegawa .50 cal MGs from the spares box and removing the barrels before fitting to the assembly. Not 100% accurate but from what can be seen it does add some definition.


Another week working at least 3 hours every night saw attention to the wings, under-carriage and engines. The main under-carriage wheel bays are full of detail.

Thats all the main assembly done together with most of the painting (done by hand brushing and using Humbrol Enamels - Yes I know I should try new methods). Another 10 days or so was spent doing all the finishing touches such as decals, panel wash (err failed) which turned out to be reasonable weathering, crew and finally a varish of Vallejo Matt. During this stage I also completed the mid-upper turret but found the bottom of it sat on the end of my radar desk so this required some last minute adjustment.

I had the bomb doors fitted in the closed position as I wanted the cleaner lines plus some added strength as I had removed part of the port fuselage. I liked the torpedo's though so borrowed the idea of fitting them to a bomb trolley from another post on this forum. Two trolleys not previously assembled from my Stirling build were pulled from the deep spares box and slightly modified.

Now to see what it all looks like! The cross section can be removed (the wing spars are a neat fit so don't need to be glued) when required to reveal the detail, or kept in place to prevent the ingress of household dust! 


For the first time I used a diorama dispaly base but sadly my shelf wasn't bigger enough for the 'cold war' offering I wanted so have used the smaller WW2 Bomber dispersal area which I think still looks pretty good. Crew were provided from a set of Modern NATO Pilots & Ground Crew (from a competitor firm so come on Airfix you need to catch up!) They might be slightly modern for a very late 1960's Shackleton but I decided they were better than the alternative 1940's offerings.

One of my final touches again came from the spares box, which was to sand down some superstructure cushion pads from the RAF Air Sea Rescue Launch and once painted they were added to the sides if the interior wing spars as cushioned areas.  

This build took about 5 weeks averaging about 3 to 4 hours a day/night but overall was a joy to complete as it is a very good kit, and with revealing the interior pushed my skills to new levels (I think). I also spent more time and money on the extra's than usual as I wanted to try and bring the diorama to 'life'.

I am pleased how it has turned out and would welcome your comments?


352 posts

Like lots, particularly since I've got something similar in mind.

Also, FWIW, there are still some WW2 built airfields in use that have the WW2 dispersals extant, so this may have happened at least occasionally.

Though I fly through the shadow of the valley of death, I shall fear no evil, for I am at 65_000 feet and climbing.


1355 posts

Community Moderator

 Very clever, and a lovely finish too.

Owner of the Airfix Tribute Forum


46 posts

Thats a smashing build and the brushed finish looks great. I've used milliput in the past to do cushions/head rests-saves the spares box!


497 posts

Community Moderator

Great build, really nice.


191 posts

Amazing work, the wooden table-top effect worked incredibly well!


Patrick Camilleri

114 posts

Community Moderator

Lovely model.  The removable panel is very ingenious.  I didn't notice it in your first photo and had to go back to look again.

I especially like the finish - colour me green! 

You see ....I usually build ships but I recently started building old Hercules that I had started some 35 years ago but never finshed.  I realised that up to now I had never built any aircraft larger than a Wellington.  The Herk is telling me that perhaps I should stick to ships....... I found it very difficult to get a presentable finish on the wide expanse of wings and fuselage. 

John Symmons

464 posts

Hi T2B

Now thar's a superb build and and a great write-up, loved reading it. Those photos brought back memories of my flight in the mark 2 when i was in the ATC. A camp up in Kinross we were offered an all night traning flight Wish we had some of your cushions with us then ( 1963?) that wing spar is really uncomfortable. Can't remember much about the interior it was too dark, but it wasn't as luxuriours as yours. Back then it was a six or seven hour vibro massarge on our rear ends.Your interior looks much more inviting. Again great build. and looking forwards to seeing more.

Remember we do this for fun                     John the Pom. 


91 posts


Thank you all for your wonderful comments, its certainly 'High Praise' indeed as I have seen the build posts that some of you have submitted. And if anyone wants more details about any aspect of the build I would be glad to help with follow-up posts  - cheers


91 posts

@paws4thot - You said you had something similar in mind, are you going to share it with us?

@John the Pom - Whilst preparing for the build I did some 'google' research and it stated early version interiors were predominantly black and very dark, and this was found to be demoralising for crews on long 12 hour sorties so later MR2's had light grey interior fuselage walls/bulkheads and cream panelling for the radar desks, so Airfix's painting guide was very accurate. Images I located showed the wing spars completely covered in dark brown leather cushioning but Airfix's mould of the spars was very flat and solid so I decided to paint them in the metal cockpit green finish and add the occasional cushion as added extras.

From your description it would seem you were in an early version, but recalling  your vibro-massage in a Shackleton reminded me of an 8 hour flight I took when in the SAS (Saturdays & Sundays/TA) from Edinburgh to Gibraltar in a C130 Hercules back in 1990, with only red nylon nets for seating, or lying on the cargo deck. I think the return 2 weeks later was even worse because by then we knew what to expect !!!

Please create an account or login to reply.

Forum Rules

  • The Airfix Forum is intended for discussion of plastic scale modelling. Primarily a place for newcomers to ask questions and seek assistance from like-minded individuals, the Airfix Forum offers users the chance to join an active and friendly community.
  • Discussion of other plastic model kit manufacturers is allowed, however, active promotion or advertising of our competitors is not permitted.
  • Please keep in mind that the Airfix Forum is a publicly viewable space and you should never post personal information (including email addresses).
  • While every effort is made to contact you before any censorship, we reserve the right to amend or remove any content without explanation.
  • All customer service enquiries should be directed to Airfix Customer Services.

Useful Links

Forum Guidelines


Membership Restricted Product