The British Commonwealth provided the first Mustang orders to North American, and they continued to use the type to the end of the war. But we normally see the late model Mustangs in US Markings.
After the jump, a brief look at a late model Commonwealth Mustang.
No. 3 Squadron of the Royal Australian Air Force spent the war attached to the Desert Air Force. That means they started in Egypt, flying Gloster Gladiators; they re-equipped with Curtiss Tomahawks, then Kittyhawks as they moved in to Libya, Algeria then Italy. And finally equipped with Mustangs in late 1944. That’s a lot of combat. And with 217 air-to-air kills they were the most effective Australian Squadron of the war.
In the US Army Air Force, the only difference between a P-51D and P-51K Mustang was a Hamilton Standard propeller as opposed to an Aeroproducts propeller.* In Commonwealth service both were classified as Mustang Mk. IV. There were over 800 Mustang Mk. IVs, a majority with the Aeroproducts propeller which the Army Air Force apparently disfavored.
This subject is from the Hasegawa kit, with Red Roo decals. The plane was flown by Squadron Leader P.M. Nash. He is credited with adding the Southern Cross to the rudder of squadron aircraft, which was carried for the last six months of the war.
* – Some sources claim the difference was if the plane was built in Burbank or Dallas; but this is not true. P-51Ds were built at both plants. But only Dallas took delivery of 1500 Aeroproducts propellers, and those are the Mustangs that were classified as “K” models by the USAAF.
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