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Navy Bird posted a topic in Work in Progress - AircraftI've long wanted an F-111B for my US Navy collection, and pretty much the only way to get one is a conversion of either the F-111C or F-111G (FB-111A) kit. As I work in the only scale that matters, it's a Hasegawa kit that will do the honours. Luckily, Britmodeller scheduled a Group Build for the F-111, and this provided the KUTA needed for me to start work on this project. Unfortunately, life intervened (again!) and I will not be able to finish the build in time. Therefore, I will continue it here. But first, you simply must read what was accomplished during the F-111 Group Build. Why? Because I'm not going to repeat it all here, and I think a lot of the research information is especially interesting. There are a huge number of detail differences between the different F-111B prototypes and pre-production ships. So here is Part 1 of my build. Go ahead and read it, taking your time to learn as much as you can about this oft-maligned bird. I'll wait until you've finished. Back so soon? My, you're quite the speed reader. Well then, let's carry on! F-111B 151972, the subject of my build, had what is known as a "translating cowl" intake. Rather than have suck-in doors that are either manually operated or powered, the front portion of the cowling slid forward to open up a "slot" that provided the same benefit. This photo shows the intake cowling closed: And this shows the cowling after translating forward: The eagle-eyed among you will notice some detail differences in those last two shots with respect to the vents under the wing glove. More on that later! The Hasegawa F-111C kit that I'm using for this conversion has a slightly different intake configuration that what was used on 151972, so I've made some changes to it. Of course, you know all about that because you read Part 1 over in the Group Build section. One additional change needs to be made now, and it concerns the area above the translating cowl. The kit intake has a gap in this area, which is shown well in this photo (I'm not sure which aircraft this is from - EF-111A perhaps?): On 151972, there was no gap here, as can be seen two photos ago. In my collection of F-111B photos, specifically those of 151972, the translating cowl is almost always open when on the ground. So that's the way we'll model her. I added some card stock to create a "lip" under the rear edge of the translating cowl, and also to fill in the gap. The shock cones will be added later, as I think it will be easier to paint them prior to assembly. The intake ramps were made from card stock, since those on 151972 were a different shape than those on the F-111C, and didn't have the kink when viewed from the front. Anyway, here is what I came up with - I think it will work. Hopefully, I've got the angle of the landing gear correct as well. Both the main gear and the nose strut angle forward. Next up I think I'll add the vertical fin, as it just doesn't quite look like an F-111 without one. (Sorry, I can't call it an Aardvark etc. - I never fancied those unofficial nicknames. If the B had gone into production, I wonder what the Navy might have called it. Surely with Grumman's involvement it would have been some kind of cat...) Cheers, Bill