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John Aero

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John Aero last won the day on January 5 2015

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About John Aero

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  1. 1/18 Fairey Firefly VX376

    I've found the Target winch drawing (ML Aviation 1947). However it's faded and large and so to reduce it to a point where I can scan it I'm having to ink in some of the dimensions and radii. There are 20 sections in something a little over 7' long. I've found some of my winch photos and some are eluding me. This is the Mosquito fit which is the very similar to the Firefly fit. I notice that you are filling in with loads of thick strips of plastic and Lego. My suggestion would be to cut strips of thin card (20 thou) to the width between the former's and of a suitable length to allow them to be curved into an arch of a rough shape to mimic the former shape but be just shy of the edge of the former's to allow for the P.38 skin. Once glued into place they would form an inner carapace which would be enormously strong yet light. I'll sketch it if my words don't paint the picture correctly. John
  2. 1/18 Fairey Firefly VX376

    I have a dimensioned works drawing (with sections) for the ML Type G winch. John
  3. Just thought that this might be of interest as the nose shape came up in a telecon a week ago and I found this in a book on my shelves. John
  4. You have picked a fairly difficult subject, mainly because it is sucked over a male plug mould, unlike the Dynavector's which are sucked into a detailed (female) mould. Which means the trailing edges of the flying surfaces tend to round off, especially the tail planes. However don't be put off by the nay sayer's. You will be a far better modeller for having a go. Trepidation is understandable, but never attempting something it is not. Believe me it's very difficult to mess up completely. Mark around each part accurately with the finest permanent marker pen or a 2 B or B pencil. Do not cut or abrade this line away, you work up to the line. Practice on the wast plastic with curving scores and see how with a little bending pressure the part just breaks out. Make sure you use a straight new blade and score with reasonable pressure.It's best to separate the main parts from the sheet with scissors (or a knife) before you start the individual marking process, this just makes the separation easier. You are not trying to cut through in one go, but if scored properly the part will break out with a little bending pressure. If you over score into the part, simply run a drop of superglue into the score and sand it down. Make lots of cuts from the part to the edge of the waste surrounding the part. Breaking out a small piece at a time around each part will make life easier and prevent mistakes. Any difficult corners can be dealt with by making lots of angled cuts and break out bits using small pliers. I use sharpened pincers to nibble some areas. When abrading the parts, don't use the old sandpaper on a flat surface method. Use double sided tape to stick sandpaper to small blocks of wood, plastic or T section aluminium. A simple source of self adhesive abrading paper is to purchase some stick on sanding discs for bench sanders. Cut these into strips on the reverse side using a straight edge and your old discarded model blades, which will still be sharp enough to cut through the sand paper. Use heavy duty sharp knife blades to scrape around the edges. You'll be surprised how material you can remove this way. John
  5. A Stampe SV-4 A Heller'uv a kit....

    These are the old fashioned draftsman's ruling pens. The one with the brass handle is another modification. I've shortened and sharpened one leg and so becomes a miniature marking gauge. It's ideal for scribing a line to put the brass leading edge down a prop blade or a border around an open panel. The drawing pencil I prefer (with a B lead) and I know my methods are old fashioned but the glue's crap. John
  6. A Stampe SV-4 A Heller'uv a kit....

    Just a wee bit more done on the wings as I got sidetracked when messing about with those Tutor wings I realised that a thicker plastic vac, Tutor fuselage, contained an embryonic Avro Cadet Mk.II fuselage using a reverse technique to the Stampe . Two of my Hawker Demon lower wings have been refashioned into the Cadet wings. So the next project is already under way... The rib tapes have been put on with Silver paint using the spring bow pen. The masking tape is along the ply wing leading edges and also helps to hold them down. With this method, if you make a mistake you just wipe it off and do it again The Silver paint is a tin of Wilko's Coverplus which I found in the garage and I must have bought in nineteen canteen. However IMO it gives the best Silver fabric finish I know when brush painted with a flat sable water colour brush. The rib tapes when dry (in minutes) stand proud by a few thou and when combined with my sag method can be felt by stroking along the wing with a finger tip. John
  7. A Stampe SV-4 A Heller'uv a kit....

    The above jig is my device for marking out and putting on wing ribs. It's basically a length of 2" aluminium square tube with an inverted hacksaw blade (variable in height) each side to act as stops and a steel rod on which the holding lock tool and the variable tools lift and slide. You can perhaps see why I keep the wings in one piece. The wing can be held in place with small pieces of double sided tape on a long job or it can be held quite firmly by a couple of fingers on one hand whilst the right hand (in my case) draws the rib lines or as I do, draw the rib tapes on with an old draftsman's Spring Bow pen using a viscous but flowing quick drying paint.
  8. A Stampe SV-4 A Heller'uv a kit....

    The next stage in fabricating the wings is to put on some fabric 'sag'. Not a good word as on a properly doped wing, sag is slight to almost nothing. To best represent this, I like to use a draughtsman's fibreglass eraser. Be careful as if any microscopic shards from the tip get into the skin they are painful and very hard to get out. I try to wear medical gloves and I have a hand held vacuum cleaner with which I clean regularly over the work area. I mount the wing on another of my home made devices as in the picture. I use the eraser to carefully abrade the area between the penciled wing ribs and this is better controlled than sandpaper wrapped around dowels etc. A straight edge placed on the wing surface with some light behind it will show how much plastic you're removing. The variable angle arm has two brass wires soldered along the under side slightly inset and the edge has a bevel so that no paint will flow underneath from the spring bow pen when adding the rib tapes. I only use Draftsman's pencils in which the lead is held inside a long tubular point as this will stay parallel to the drawing edge.
  9. A Stampe SV-4 A Heller'uv a kit....

    In reply to Ian, The advantage is as you say, time. I read your post and thought "I've been looking at a civil Tutor" so I grabbed a couple of my wing blanks and apart from band sawing a bit off each and I haven't rounded off the tips, top and bottom, I made a set of wings for my 1/48 vac Tutor in 23 minutes. I now only have to scribe the ailerons and some detail. My wing ribs technique I will be showing shortly in this main thread. John
  10. A Stampe SV-4 A Heller'uv a kit....

    As you will recall that the wings were under size for even 1/50 scale so when compared with a 1/48th plan it's going to be a case of scratch building. Well, some time ago I had a cunning plan. I injection moulded some 30 mm x 220 mm pre sectioned wing blanks. The dimensions were chosen so that I could use these to pattern a one piece tip to tip wing for many of the average 'up to 33' wingspan and 4'6" parallel chord Clark 'Y' and RAF 15 sectioned wings to be found on 30's light aeroplanes. Being pre sectioned saves a lot of time preparing a wing blank and the blanks can be narrowed with minimal re-sectioning or widened by inserting a strip of same thickness plastic around the max depth. As the Stampe has sweep back on the wings I find it best to shape up the wing as a constant chord unit and sweep the wing panels later. This also allows for easier wing rib detail to be incorporated in my specially made wing rib jig. I usually import my plan into my drawing program to check it for errors and balance so that I can now print out the wing plan form on to large (A 4) self adhesive labels in my A 3 copier printer. The shapes are cut to profile and stuck onto the wing blanks. To remove them later I just use a little lighter fluid which soaks through the paper and zaps the glue. Unlike the Heller interpretation the upper and lower wing panels are virtually identical, apart from a clipped inboard trailing edge on the top wing and the lower wing in the same place has a slight upwards washout. The top centre section tank makes up the differences in span. Profile shaping is completed, the wing rib positions are lightly scored through or spot pointed with a scriber and the paper removed.
  11. A Stampe SV-4 A Heller'uv a kit....

    Slaters Plasikard, the rod is available. https://slatersplastikard.com/plastikard/plasticRod.php John
  12. A Stampe SV-4 A Heller'uv a kit....

    The Stampe drawings were first published in Scale Models in Sept 1969. there were problems with the dimensions and rudder shape due to some inaccurate works info (shades of DH), so the drawings were revised in Aeromodeller. These are the ones I've used. Edit: they were completely redrawn. To show what can be done straight out of the box, this is Alan Simpson's lovely model which is clearly a Stampe.
  13. A Stampe SV-4 A Heller'uv a kit....

    Wow, thanks guys. You make it sound like 'An evening with Mary Berry'. Mention of the Rothmans team, for which we'll probably get shut down for mentioning cigarette advertising, and many of our younger members won't have heard of them. So here they are. I picked up this promo-card at Tollerton Airshow circa 1972. They flew two SV.4B's and two SV.4C's. As you can see the faceted fabric covering on wings and fuselages can be overdone and I would usually use a lighter plastic rod and just spray primer-filler on in coats which I rub down with a piece of old T shirt material soaked in lighter fluid or Iso-prop. The filler erodes but the plastic rod doesn't. I find that this gives a subtle 'sag' between the stringers. In this case I was also having to build up the surface somewhat. The result so far.
  14. As someone who hasn't made a model for pleasure for over 35 years, A few weeks ago I received a challenge from an accomplished Scottish modelling friend. He makes 1/48th dioramas of those delightful small civil lightplanes of the 1930's -40's which I love so much. The challenge was for me to dig into my loft and build something for pleasure. He had just completed an out of the box 1/50 Heller Stampe and so I've elected to do the same. Well almost! I duly dug out my Stampe box and some helpful books and I started to give it the once over. Mistake number one. My kit is moulded in red plastic which should have shouted 'Danger don't take it out of the box'. I'm a bit rigid with scales but I was prepared to accept 1/50th had it been an accurate kit but it soon was apparent to me that it wasn't. So out came the Stampe Albums... The Stampe et Vertongen SV-4 had it's distant origins in a DH licence to build Gipsy Moths in Belgium in 1930. Like other Moth Licencees (such as Caporoni) the Stampe meta-morphed into a quite different aeroplane. Though similar to the Tiger Moth, but of all wooden construction and powered by the same Gipsy Major engine (SV-4B), it had a more refined wing section and ailerons on both upper and lower wings that suited it to aerobatics, in which it excelled. Post -war the major production was in France mainly for the Armee de l' Air and Aeronavale and powered by a Renault 4P engine. (SV-4c) The Heller kit (made in France) is a SV-4c and the kit must be nearly fifty years old. So what's wrong with it? Err, OK what's right with it. Nothing! Even for 1/50th the top wing is about 3 mm too short and centre section fuel tank is missing. The lower wing is 10 mm too short and the wing tips are the wrong profile as is the rudder. The under-carriage main legs are much too short and the fuselage too narrow. The wheels have the wrong section, need I go on. So what was I going to do? Think's I'll convert it to 1/48th scale. I had already placed the fuselage over the 1/48th plan and I noted that if I inserted a longitudinal 2 mm strip of plastic into the fuselage to widen it vertically, then it was game on. I was going to use one of my Tiger Moth engine cowls, but I found in my home workshop an old vac mould for a Smer Tiger Moth nose conversion I did before the last Ice age. The fuselage also required widening and this was done by adding plastic strip around the inside of both halves. It also would require minor length mods and a prominent fuselage stringer along the sides. It also needed more stringers along the rear turtle decking. The plan was to to use Slater's hard plastic rod the form the rear stringers and clad the cockpit area in a wrap of sheet plastic. The rest of the fuselage sides would then be covered in Milliput which would be smoothed down to represent the fabric areas. Finally, after wet forming the Milliput the fuselage was coated with Halfords spray Primer -Filler. The cowl is just perched on for effect and isn't at quite the right thrust line. More anon. John
  15. Malta 1949

    Wonderful photos. Malta was always a always a fantastic place for interesting stuff. On my first visit there I climbed out of a Canberra B.6 to find we were sharing the hard standing with a French Navy Neptune and an Italian Expediter. Later I did a tour there for 3 years. I even got to chat with Sheila Scott when she was flying Myth Three. John