North American P-51D Mustang “Cripes A’Mighty 3rd”
Pilot & Markings
Major George Preddy — 487th FS, 352nd FG, Bodney, England, July 1944
Scale & Kit
1/48 Scale Tamiya Model
The North American P-51 Mustang may be the greatest propeller-driven aircraft of all time. Interestingly enough, this long-range, single seat World War II fighter went from initial design to fully operational in just 117 days. The “D” variant featured in this scale model aircraft was the most widely produced Mustang. It featured an all-around clear vision cockpit canopy and three machine guns mounted into each wing.
The P-51 Mustang was used extensively by allied forces in Europe as a bomber escort for B-24 Liberators and B-17 Flying Fortresses. This well-made, fast and durable aircraft helped ensure allied air superiority over the German Luftwaffe. Among legendary P-51 pilots to achieve the “ace” status was Major George E. Preddy, who flew several aircraft during his career. His most successful Mustang was the famed P-51D “Cripes A’Mighty 3rd” (44-13321), represented in this scale model aircraft. Between June 29 and July 18 of 1944, this Mustang carried 17 white victory markings and a full set of D-Day markings. On August 6, 1944, while using this very aircraft, he scored an unprecedented six victories against Messerschmitt Bf 109 fighters. Preddy went on to become the top P-51 Mustang ace of World War II and ranks sixth on the list of all-time highest scoring American aces.
Tamiya’s 1/48 scale model aircraft was used to produce George Preddy’s P-51D Mustang “Cripes A’Mighty 3rd”. The project also includes an Ultracast conversion piece for the correct early tail without the fillet. Other customizations include; Ultracast accurate flaps and detailed exhaust pipes, Squadron vacuform canopy and the Eduard detailed photo-etch cockpit set. The paint scheme has an overall Natural Metal finish, a 352nd Medium Blue nose blaze, full invasion stripes and Black ETO ID bands on tail surfaces. The aircraft also features 17 white victory markings in a single row forward of the windscreen. The completed scale model aircraft depicts Preddy’s Mustang as it looked when coming back from his most successful mission on August 6, 1944, prior to applying six more victory markings to the nose. Enjoy the photos.
A exceptional representation of Cripes’ Almighty 3rd. I have made a number, and am making all of Captain/Major Preddy’s aircraft. My dad, Cpl. J.J. “Red” McVay started as the Assistant crew chief for Cpt Preddy’s on his 21st birthday, December 1, 1943. The original Cripes’Almighty was the P-47. I noticed a couple things about your representation that are supported by the photos I have. At least by July 19, 1944, the crew names, and Major George E. Preddy’s were displayed on the port side of the aircraft. 17 Balkan Crosses would have been displayed after 6/29. On 8/6/44 their would have been at least 24.