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Everything posted by Ex-FAAWAFU

  1. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Probably not oil dotting, I think; these aircraft weren't in service for long enough to get seriously faded (not least because they didn't go to sea). I might do a little, but having seen @woody37's fabulous results with pastels on his Lincoln, I think I'm going to do any further weathering that way - after all, one of the points of this build was to try new techniques (actually I have used pastels a bit, so it wouldn't be completely new to me). Thanks for the compliment; I try to build something that looks at least plausible - wartime aircraft certainly got into a right state at times, but this is 4 years later on an RNVR Squadron which only flew at weekends, so they FR46s weren't thrashed to death. Less is more! Anyway, the transfers / stickers / decals are all on: The only margins now missing are the yellow cut marks around the canopy (which will have to await unmasking, obviously), plus the side numbers (the yellow 104 marks). The side numbers are going to be sprayed through Montex masks, just like the under wing serials - I have left them until now because I thought it was going to be tough to line them up with nothing else around. The undercarriage also awaits - it's ready, but won't be going on until all painting & weathering is complete. I am away all day tomorrow, but reckon we're pretty close to RFI now. Crisp
  2. Those of you who have been following my Sea King build will know that it has already lasted more than a year. This is entirely my own fault, since I'm the one who chose to detail it to such a degree (not to mention adding the odd rivet or three). I have, however, got a bit bogged down of late, and since the Sea King is a subject very dear to my heart, I've decided to take a break from it before it turns into a chore and I start to make mistakes. It will return, I promise. I expect many of you will have guessed from the title - not to mention the near certainty that that it will be a Fleet Air Arm aircraft, in 1/48. But here is the start point. You ought to be able to work that out easily enough... I acquired this kit for £5 at a show. As you can see, it has been started (though the previous owner didn't get much further than a dash or two of interior green, an opened camera port and a glued contra-prop). The kit has a good reputation, but I have ordered a couple of bits of after-market to address known flaws (to be precise: a vac-form canopy, seamless chin intake, better shaped cowling "bulges", and a new airscrew or two). It's the original boxing, too, so I might have to get in some replacement transfers - the originals look decidedly yellow, so I'll see how they look after a bit of sunshine. There is a strong argument to say that this (with its F22/24 cousins) was the ultimate version of probably the most famous aircraft of all time. There is an even stronger argument that Supermarine's subsequent offerings were either never adopted (Spiteful, Seafang) or not in the same league (Swift, Scimitar...)... so that this represents the best aircraft ever produced by that most august of British companies. So, ladeezanngennnellmeeeen… I present to you a Seafire FR46 (the clue is in the fact that I didn't show the sprue with folding wings), using Airfix's original FR46/47 boxing. To be built essentially OOB (other than the after-market stuff already mentioned, to correct known issues with the kit). One of the reasons I've chosen the FR46 rather than the 47 (wing fold apart) is the fact that I far prefer the look of the low demarcation between colours (though eventually I will probably also build an FR47 with folded wings [Edit; especially since I've now found a photo of a folded, embarked FR47 with low demarcation line!]). And yes, I know there is disagreement about whether 46s were pure-EDSG or Temperate Sea Scheme on top - but I am taking Winkle's word for it and painting TSS (and there are at least some photos where there are definitely two colours on the upper surfaces of an FR46). I am in no way a Spitfire / Seafire expert, and this is meant to be a quickish build to restore my mojo. I don't think there are any howlers in the kit, and if there are then this model will be built with howlers. I do, however, have one question for any late-mark Spit-/Sea-fire experts out there; cockpit. Black or interior green? The FAA Museum's Mk XVII suggests that it was black top half and IG lower, so if in doubt I'll go for that. Can't find any photos, though. The game's afoot!
  3. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Georgio - I often do paint markings (indeed I painted the underwing serials on this very model, and the yellow 104 side numbers will be masked shortly), but I am trying to keep this build as simple as possible in order to get it done in a suitably quick and mojo-restoring way (hence no mega-detailing, closed cockpit, only after market being straight swaps like Master turned brass cannon). These are pretty decent - better than I thought they might be, actually originally I wasn't going to use a decal for the CH Culham mark on the tail, but it has worked well.
  4. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    The only ship build on BM is my conversion of the Airfix 1/350 Illustrious into Ark Royal; still a long way from finished, even after over a year of work. My builds tend to be like that - which is exactly why I set out on this Seafire, as an antidote! I will return to Ark in due course, but thus far only the flight deck is painted. You'll find it if you dig deep enough on here! Crisp
  5. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    The chipping fluid is effectively just a layer of (very watery) paint. I think you'd probably need to spray it, because it does turn slightly sticky pretty fast after application, so if you were putting in on with a hairy stick I can see that you might run into issues with un-even-ness (though that could easily be because I am rubbish with a hairy stick). But assuming you put it on in a thin sprayed layer, no it's not visible beneath the top coat. But no, you definitely DON'T put a varnish onto the top coat before you do the water & scrub thing. Yes, you are trying to dissolve the chipping fluid, but you have to reactivate it with the water through the top coat - it soaks through gradually - and the entire point of it is to take some of the top coat away with it as you scrub (though the word "scrub" makes it sound more vigorous than it really is), thus exposing the sub-coat of metal (or whatever). You add the protective layer of varnish only once you're happy with the paint finish. You can then weather the chipped area further with pastels, oils etc., post-varnish. I haven't tried it, but my guess is that varnish before chipping would probably make the chipping fluid fail to work (because it would seal the water outside and thus never re-activate it). Like all techniques, the best thing to do is to practice on your paint mule of choice - my trusty Fulmar wing is Sir John Fairey's gift that keeps on giving. I reckon this technique is easier than most; the challenge lies in becoming good at it so it looks really subtle. I am getting there, but some of the stuff I have seen is mind-blowing, so I know I have a way to go. I have to get on with some work (yet more job applications) - but before I go here is a teaser shot taken at the end of my break for lunch... Usual scary wrinkling on the wing roundel after application of MicroSol - it's always an act of faith to LEAVE IT ALONE! Yum yum. Crisp
  6. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    I used AK Interactive Worn Effects chipping fluid. It is essentially the same idea as the "hair-spray" method; you spray a base coat of metal colour (in this case Vallejo Metal Color Duraluminium), and when it is dry you spray a coat of the chipping fluid on top. When you are certain it's totally dry, then add the top EDSG coat (2 coats, in this case). The chirping fluid dissolves in water, so once the paint is dry, take a stiff-ish brush (I have an old paint brush which I have trimmed to the bristles are only about 1mm long), put a layer of water onto the appropriate area, wait for a few minutes to let the water soak a little, then scrub with the brush. Gradually it removes bits of the paint - you can also encourage it a bit more with a toothpick if it is stubborn. It works really well and gives a pretty convincing effect - there is one place where a bit too much has come off, but it is easy enough to fix. The beauty of this stuff is that you can be as complex as you like; on ships I sometimes paint a black base layer - chipping fluid & chip - then hull red - chipping fluid & chip - assorted rust layers - chipping fluid & chip, and so on. This leaves you with a really subtle appearance of staining, chips, rust, flaking paint, right through the bare still, and everything in between. AFV modellers use it loads.
  7. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Counter-rotating, too; it’d be like something out of Indiana Jones.
  8. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Uhhh. How did my thread about a Seafire degenerate into a discussion about wooden fences?
  9. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Having got to a pristine finish, now it's time to start messing it up! A little weathering around the cockpit entry door, on the wing root and on top of the cowling - all visible in assorted photos, even of these well-maintained machines that didn't go to sea. And around the cannon magazines - no photographic evidence of this on this mark of Seafire, but it certainly happened on other versions.
  10. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Before I sprayed the EDSG (which has now had a second coat, varying the colour slightly), I spent what felt like a week masking the Sky. However hard you have work at masking, there is always a slight apprehension when it comes to removal time.. But this seems to have paid off nicely; the tricky curve under the nose (which didn't follow the panel line on this airframe, for some reason): Nose on - leading edges of wings and the cannons (which are a complete bugger to mask) looking pretty OK. [P.S. In this photo you can also see in a couple of places that I have started to erode the airscrew blade leading edges]: Blurry, but you get the gist under the port side of the tail: Other side: And finally the whole underside. There are a couple of bleeds around the starboard flaps / ailerons (though nothing too nasty) - but I am especially pleased with the empennage! Happy boy! Crisp
  11. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Baint gonna be none of that on this build; pure post-War EDSG over Sky, low demarkation (like the early Sea Furies, which were exact contemporaries)
  12. 100 Years #2 - Fairey Swordfish

    Steve - you’re making a lovely job of this (particular hat tip re rigging). A lot better than Hornby’s proof-readers; it’s quite an achievement to spell Lieutenant wrong two different ways in the same sentence...
  13. A pair of Airfix Hawks in 1/72

    100 pages, Mr. F; congrats! <raises bat; surveys field; takes fresh guard>
  14. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Base coat of EDSG is on! This is my home brew EDSG - 6 parts XF-24 Dark Grey, 2 parts XF-54 Dark Sea Grey, 1 part XF-50 Field Blue; subsequent coats will be that mix with varying degrees of lightening to break up the large expanses of the same colour. However, it's a start and I am very pleased with it: P.S. a cheeky shot with the airscrews in place (not glued) - an impression of monstrous power!
  15. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Airscrew(s) done (apart from a little weathering on the blades, plus a matt coat):
  16. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Just because I can, and while I am waiting for things to dry fully on the main airframe, we have our first transfers (stickers / decals - they'll always be transfers to me!). 12 LOCK / UNLOCK marks, plus 3 of the 6 blade marks - the other 3 blades have only just had their yellow tips painted, and anyway I thought it would probably be easier to position the LOCK / UNLOCK marks without the forward set of blades glued in place. On, on Crisp
  17. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Getting ready for EDSG. I am not going to show you the endless series of teeny bits of masking tape which now adorn the Sky parts of my Seafire. Suffice it to say she is ready for her next coat, and I am as confident as I ever am (i.e. not very) that we should avoid too many horrible grey intrusions into that pristine underside. Only time will tell; the sections at the wing root, under the tail and around the cannons are especially dogs. Anyway. EDSG. Lots and lots and lots off discussion about the "right" colour for this all over the interwebs. After a lot of experimentation, and based on the colour of the RN Historic Flight Sea Fury (which ought to be authentic, and even if it isn't, looks bloody wonderful) I have decided that the Colourcoats enamel EDSG is as close to the original as we're going to get - especially keeping in mind that my usual technique is to spray a base coat which is pretty much full-on EDSG, unfaded, no scale effect... and then play with changing it, fading it, varying it etc from there. I don't want to paint this in enamel, however, so I started doing some comparisons on my unused Mk.47 folding wing (one of which is primed in white and the other in black, so I try anything I want). OK. The aileron and flap area is the Colourcoats enamel (still drying in places). Then left to right (all Tamiya) XF-22 RLM Grey (clearly wrong, but useful to rule it out!); then XF-24 Dark Grey; then XF-54 Dark Sea Grey. The pure Dark Grey is actually very close to the naked eye, but i think I will add a few drops of XF-54 to lighten it just a tad. It won't be sprayed today, because I have just done the areas of Duraluminium which will be the basis of weathering on the wing roots etc. But it might happen tomorrow! More soon Crisp
  18. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    I have demonstrated on more than one occasion to our equivalent dump-Meisters that an Audi TT has far more room in the boot than you might think...
  19. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    When I was a boy in Nottinghamshire, my Dad had a mate who was ... shall we say “somewhat eccentric”? A lovely, kind man, but mad as a fish; it never occurred to me at the time, but I strongly suspect he’d never fully recovered from the war - he was captured at Dunkirk and spent the next 5 years as a PoW, escaping more than once but never making it home. I thought this man was pretty much the coolest thing ever, of course. [His first name was Waldo, which was more than enough to convince the 6-year-old me that he was out of the ordinary]. Anyway, Waldo had an old Moggie (Morris 1000 car, for our non-Brit readers) with a sunshine roof made of ?canvas?. He might even have modified it himself; he was that kind of bloke. Sadly, Waldo’s wife died relatively young, and the reason that I am mentioning him now is that he took her coffin to the funeral himself, with the top of it poking out of the sunshine roof. This, Bill, is the image I have of your poor over-burdened Midget (not to mention your back!) [Yes, Mojo fully functioning once more - though not fingers. I even found myself thinking about how best to do the Sea King weapon wiring yesterday...]
  20. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    This is very frustrating. Don't panic! The Seafire is fine… However, I slipped over walking the dog a few days ago, and have trapped a nerve in my neck; either you are an old git like me, in which case you will understand, or you are a young whipper-snapper, in which case your turn will come along sooner than you think (so stop laughing!). The upshot is that I am as stiff as a very stiff thing (fnarr), but more pertinently the trapped nerve means that the thumb and index finger of my right hand are numb - and I am VERY right handed. This makes me as clumsy as a very clumsy person in Clutzville, with a particular reason to be clumsy. I am thus not doing anything even remotely complicated to the Seafire - let alone anything involving creativity, finesse or a steady hand. I am being treated by my friendly chiropractor, and it is improving, but only slowly. For the present, therefore, here is a picture of LA561 in her current state, banking gracefully away to starboard (thus defying the laws of aerodynamics, simce her ailerons are in the opposite sense!). The only things that have changed since you last saw her are the removal of the masking tape that covered up the black primer, and a clear coat sealing in the underside (especially the serials) to protect the paint. More when I can feel my bloody fingers! Crisp
  21. Martian, is that Gunze acrylic EDSG out of the bottle?
  22. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Bill / Denford - perhaps best explanation is here: http://shop.maketar.com/?page_id=87 Now that I think about it, my bespoke Sea King masks were indeed Maketar, not Montex. These Seafire masks are definitely Montex. As they say, there are plusses & minuses to Kabuki vs Vinyl (vinyl better for little detail - especially in your beloved 1/72, Bill - but not as robust or long-lasting). My experience has been equally positive with both brands, but Maketar have much more info about how it works and how to do it on their website - so much easier for you to read something by someone who knows what they’re talking about, rather than me (a simple User).
  23. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    The short answer it "it depends". Montex produce numerous sets that are designed for a specific kit / marking set - effectively they reproduce the original transfers in mask form (or at least the bigger ones: roundels, serials, etc - but not the smaller stencils in this case), along with canopy & wheel masks (though in this case the canopy masks proved to be only for the Mk47, which has a different shaped windscreen). This set popped up on Hannants when I was looking for options to replace the original Airfix transfers, which are over 20 years old and look somewhat average alongside modern equivalents (I have since seen the re-boxing of this FR46/47 kit, which has transfers for Caspar John's Lossie Station Flight Mk46, rather than the 1832 NAS aircraft I am building, and the later transfers are much sharper). VP461/178/P (the 800NAS HMS Triumph Mk47 from the original kit) is also included in the Montex set. With these sets, the serials etc are produced in a group (not digit by digit); this hasn't survived the removal process completely intact, but you get the gist: When you first get it, the mask is complete; only once it is in position do you remove the (in this case) letters and numbers, ideally in a single go using ordinary masking tape on top, as in this example: You can just about make out in that second photo that the grey things alongside are future roundels. On the other hand... you can also order bespoke sets; I did this for my Sea King HAS5. There are options for font, size etc. (from memory you provide measurements). The roundels arrive as above, but for bespoke sets the serials are applied digit by digit. It makes it slightly harder to ensure alignment - but alignment is probably the hardest bit about masks in the first place, so you have to take your time, measure etc. anyway. They work beautifully - being vinyl, I have had far fewer issues with bleed along panel lines etc with these than with "ordinary" Kabuki-type masking tape. They easily coped with the squillion lumps bumps and rivets on my Sea King! Highly recommended; after the Sea King build I am a complete convert. The yellow 104 and CH markings will also be masked in this build.
  24. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

  25. Supermarine's best? Mojo-restoration!

    Giorgio They are Montex masks, stuck onto the wing but not yet sprayed: the codes will be black