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Showing content with the highest reputation on 29/12/17 in all areas

  1. 23 points
    Hello all, I’ve built this Wildcat and base as this year saw the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Coral Sea (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_the_Coral_Sea), and a tribute to the USS Lexington (CV-2) and her crew. Apologies if the post is a bit text– and photo-heavy… there are a few images of modifications/progress at the end of the post. Although there has been subsequent debate on how much the fate of Australia depended upon the outcome of this battle, it stopped the Japanese from trying to take Port Moresby, New Guinea, by sea (they then attempted to take it from an overland route). It is also considered a strategic defeat for Imperial Japan that affected the outcome of the Battle of Midway one month later. During the battle, the USS Lexington (CV-2), A.K.A. Lady Lex, was lost along with 216 of her crewmen. In May this year, my family attended a commemoration on the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Coral Sea held in Brisbane. We were very lucky to meet, Cecil Wiswell, 92 years of age (and his son), who had served on the ill-fated Lexington. They had travelled to Australia for commemorations held in a number of cities for the battle. For those interested, here is a snippet featuring Mr Wiswell at the Townsville commemoration: http://www.cairnspost.com.au/news/cairns/honour-for-our-heroes/news-story/fcfc6657b1aeb3725e627227bd77b957 Anyway, I wanted to do a model that in a small way commemorated the battle, particularly those who perished aboard the Lexington. The model represents the aircraft of John Thach (as this was the only option for a Lexington-embarked plane). He did not take part in the Battle of the Coral Sea, but this plane is reported to have been lost with the Lexington in the battle: The decals were from a Wildcat/Martlet aces set from Printscale, with the exception of the wing insignia (pilfered from the Airfix kit as they were a better size. They also behaved much better). Paints: Vallejo Modelair, followed by gloss coat and oil washes. Modifications: Riveting added; Intercooler air intakes inside the cowl were scratch-built from PE; Wiring added to the engine; Scratch-built gunsight and painted decal strips for the canopy framing; Hollowed-out sprue for exhausts to replace the kit’s (left), and drilled out holes in the fuselage for them: The kit tailwheel was pretty ordinary, so I modified one from another kit, and drilled out a hole for it. The navigation and formation lights were coloured, transparent plastic that was glued into place and sanded to shape: The carrier deck was painted with a mix of royal blue and some RLM?? grey to represent USN deck blue 20-B, and Vallejo primer for the light blue-grey flight deck markings. This was the scheme the Lexington received in Hawaii in April 1942, the month before the Battle of the Coral Sea. USN WWII tiedowns were PE from Tom’s Modelworks. Cockpit and landing gear bay details: FWIW, I had tried pre-shading for the first time, but I don’t think it made any difference: And in its new home: There, a third model finished for 2017. Happy New Year to all BMers! Comments and criticism welcome, and thanks for looking. Regards, David
  2. 17 points
    Hi all! As a break from cramming detail into Matchbox biplanes, I embarked on one of my Telford buys, the AZ Chipmunk - on the suggestion that I needed a bit of a rest and a mojo restorer! It's quite a nice kit, with very delicate surface detail and a well-detailed interior. It's rather lacking in some of the finer details however- I added tie-down rings, actuator jacks for the flaps, pitot probe, catches for the sliding portion of the canopy, two blade aerials, a scoop on the cowling, the little strakes on the wing leading edges, brake lines, etc, plus drilling out the exhaust and all the scoops. Fit is questionable - it's been a while since I built a "proper" short-run kit and it was a bit of a shock! There's thick flash, the wing-fuselage joint needs a shim, and the cockpit won't close up unless you shave off some of the sidewall detail to admit the sides of the seats. You need to shave a goodly amount off the fuselage decking sections under the canopy Also, the tailplanes fit much better the wrong way up - I thought this was the correct way of fitting them until I noticed that the elevator trim tab was on the wrong side! Nothing a bit of filler and a rescribe couldn't fix... Decals are a right mix, on account of the kit schemes being a bit uninspiring and quite a few of the stencils being inaccurate. I raided the spares bank for an old Airfix kit sheet, which provided most of the stencils and the wing walkways (AZ provide these but they're the wrong shape and don't follow the panel lines). The markings for WP901/B of 6 Air Experience Flight (based at Abingdon in the 1970s-1980s) came from the excellent S&M "Post War Piston Trainers" sheet - although they're super thin and settle down like a dream I had to double up all the roundels in order to get them remotely opaque! The most outlandish decal source is the red First Aid cross - which is part of a 41sq insignia from the Italeri Jaguar! So a bit of a mixed bag - Not as easy to build as the Airfix, and like that kit is a bit of a blank canvas for added external details - but if you've got the skills to make it fit, it's a considerably more refined starting point, and you don't have to attack it with sandpaper to get rid of hundreds of scale fist-sized rivets!
  3. 13 points
    Hi all, this kit was kindly donated to my stash by Kayell, my fourth completed armour build(usually shiny four wheeled things}. Hope I've done it justice mate. Kit is straight from the box with a few bits and piece's of stowage added. Base is cast from plaster using different bits I have until I got the shape and size I required. 'Weathering' is different dust coats made from dried clay and ink pigments. The crew is various parts bent,chopped,glued and sworn at until I got them to sit how i wanted to the best of my ability. As always comments,tips and advice welcome. Cheers Dave.
  4. 10 points
    Finally finished it! Quite an awful kit which requires lots of extra work and some aftermarket goodies - Eduard PE's and Matra Magic II missiles, Master pitot tube, L'Arsenal resin Raphael SLAR pod and Colorado decals. But in the end it's a great looking jet Best regards from Czech and happy New Year to everyone. Andrew
  5. 10 points
    Thanks Giorgio, Johnny, Bill and Cookie Some masking mojo tonight that has to be taken advantage of. You remember we discussed masking props and whether to do the yellow first? You remember I recently had trouble with 'overspray' well outside the masked area? I'm taking no chances: Yellow first is easier, methinks, unless you're very sure you won't get overspray (which I'm not). LE masked with tape for curves: Sorry about the blurry shot. Then overspray protection applied: No airbrushing mojo tonight. Hopefully tomorrow. I have started hanging the Supermarines: One down... by Ced Bufton, on Flickr Ten to go by Ced Bufton, on Flickr Another job I've been putting off.
  6. 9 points
    Hi, here’s my recently completed Zvezda 109F-2. Nice kit with plenty of details but a bit of a bugger to complete if wanting the cowling closed! Special thanks to Modelling Minion for the gratis Aeromaster decals, cheers mate. Anyway don’t overlook this kit now Eduard have theirs available as it can be built in to something much nicer than what I present below!
  7. 8 points
    Hi All, this is my last off the bench for 2017; Heller's 1/72 Me-163 Komet with Scheuch-Schlepper. The Komet seat is a resin addition originally for an Fw-190 and the pitot is Albion Alloys tube. In other respects it is as Heller intended. Paints are Lifecolor finished with Xtracrylix satin varnish and the decals are the kit's own, with the exception of the swastikas. Happy modelling.
  8. 8 points
    Thanks John On with the white primer and then yellow: Yellow by Ced Bufton, on Flickr
  9. 8 points
    Here we go - time for the big reveal.... After about an hour I decided it was time to pull the brass out of the etchant. The fret on the right had been out of the solution for a while and the blue photo resist started peeling back by itself. Both frets were then dunked in an acetone bath until the blue areas weren't blue any longer Which left me with these... Okay, so they're not perfect, but they are probably a heck of a lot better than if I'd tried to hack these shapes out of brass sheet by myself. There would have been absolutely no way that I could have carved/hacked/filed those 4 cut outs (on the right hand side) so close together without seriously damaging the surrounding areas. They are a bit bland i.e. no rivet patterns, but the basic shapes are there and for a first attempt(s), I'm going to call this a win. Also note that my trademark labeling did not really etch at all, whereas it etched perfectly on my very first attempt (way up top of page). I found that there is a critical relationship between how long the fret is exposed under the UV lamp, and how long it is dunked in the developer solution. Since I followed the 5% solution for the Sodium Hydroxide developer and found that a 5 second dunk was about right, I'm going to add some more water to dilute it down to a 2% - 3% solution to allow me more time/control when in the developer. My first attempts took me almost a full day from start to finish and as with most things I found that after I had repeated the exercise a few times, I became a lot more efficient with the process, particularly applying the photo resist film. - I just ran another fret this morning and it took me about half an hour from cleaning the brass to dunking the fret into the etchant. This mornings attempt also had an additional 2 seconds in the developer and was cleaned off with a stiff brush in the hope that I got the developer out of the rivet patterns. That fret should be ready in about an hour from now. For those of you that are so far gone on glue fumes that you are seriously considering joining the ranks of the BM Alchemist Society (I'm sure another 'S' could be added there), I'll recap the main points of my last few days adventures Design artwork. Ink should be in the areas you want to remove ! 'doh! Print artwork on good quality film. This has a large effect on the quality of your final product. I used a standard Epson printer with print settings at the highest they would go ("Best Photo") and selected semi-gloss paper - this gave me good results. I used Waterproof Color Separation Film for T-Shirt printing from KimberlyUSA.com. It appears that this is designed to work with Epson inks so that was a bit of a bonus. Print color does not need to be black. I used a dark green. All that matters is that you get a good solid coverage on the sheet. Clean brass with IPA and wet and dry. I used 400 grit. Wear some kind of rubber glove to prevent handling the brass. Run it under the tap when finished to ensure all the crud is removed/washed off. Apply film resist to one side of brass. I laid the brass on a sheet of kitchen roll to help wick away excess water. (Make sure nothing is caught between the film and the brass as you are pressing it down.) When one side is covered, trim back the excess film with sharp scissors. My method was to use another (dry) piece of kitchen roll to apply light pressure to lay the film down and once I was sure I had got rid of all the bubbles, I used more and more pressure in a circular motion starting from the center and working my way out to the edges to fix the film in place. I used kitchen roll as I found that when using my finger alone, it stretched the film quite easily - dry kitchen roll slides effortlessly across the surface. Apply second layer of film on the opposite side of the fret, again laid on a piece of kitchen roll. Once the brass has photo resist on both sides, slip it inside a piece of folded paper and run it through the laminator. (I used a cheapo Amazon branded laminator set on 5 mil thickness). Run it through twice. Check the fret for any surface irregularities as these will impact your final product. Prepare the artwork ensuring it is properly aligned - take extra care at this point as any misalignment will (as always) affect the final output Once you're satisfied the fret is ready for production, sandwich it between your two pieces of artwork. When I am happy with the positioning of the fret, I secure it in place with another piece of tape - this prevents the fret moving between the two pieces of artwork when you are moving it about, or when you turn it over during exposure to the UV lamp. I ended up using a 50 seconds exposure each side Remember to remove the additional protective layer off the film at this stage, if you haven't already done so. Now it's time for the developing. As mentioned above I found that a dunk of about 5 seconds was enough in a 5% solution. Immediately after removing it from the tank I stuck the fret under a cold running tap - don't use warm/hot water as it softens the film. I quickly doused both sides of the fret and gave a quick brush just to ensure I had got rid of any excess developer. Then still under the tap I continued rubbing with a reasonably stiff brush - after a few seconds you will see bright brass appearing as the resist is removed. Remember - you can always dunk it back in the developer solution for another second or so if you have to. Once you are satisfied that all the necessary resist is removed it's time to drop it into the etchant tank. Sit back and relax - but remember to agitate the etchant tank every 15 or 20 minutes With those settings I found it took roughly an hour to etch the fret sufficiently. Don't just rely on my ramblings for this type of thing - I thoroughly recommend studying @Cheshiretaurus tutorial as well as the trials and tribulations of @Fritag starting from somewhere around here... With all that information, I'm sure you can manage to produce some quality etchwork. and special thanks to Fritag and Cheshiretaurus for goading me into the ranks of Alchemy
  10. 7 points
    Hello I decided to blow the Christmas cobwebs away with a visit to Duxford, hoping for some interesting images due to the recent snow. I'm pleased to say that the museum was reasonably busy (primarily with menfolk of different generations!) In my opinion, the shop is a shadow of its former self, with fewer aviation-related objects, and more kitchen-related items! The last time I visited, there was still a reasonable selection of Airfix and Revell model kits, but today, there was nothing more than a handful of Airfix Starter Kits. I wonder who the product buyers are, as they are not targetting the current and budding aviation enthusiasts! I generally don't pay much attention to the Duxford Aviation Society's collection of airliners, but as they are (thankfully) now the only exhibits displayed outside, I decided to take some pictures. I was pleased to see the Trislander for the first time and also some Ground Service Equipment to add some visual interest to the airframes. I hope you like the wintry images! Thanks for looking and I wish everyone a Happy New Year.
  11. 7 points
    My latest effort and one that has been in the loft for a year or two. Not the easiest kit but goes together fairly quickly. Some of the instructions were a bit vague and sometimes plain wrong and the kit decals are pretty poor. The model is finished as XV233 of 42Sqn as it appeared in 1998. Painted with Xtracrylix Hemp and Light Aircraft Grey and Model Alliance decals Part III. 20171226_143033_edit by dereknferguson, on Flickr 20171226_143024_edit by dereknferguson, on Flickr 20171226_143004_edit by dereknferguson, on Flickr 20171226_143000_edit by dereknferguson, on Flickr 20171226_142951_edit by dereknferguson, on Flickr
  12. 7 points
    My 2017 has seen an increase of one model on my measly total of three each for 2015 and 2016! Much of the year has been spent on the Matchbox Stranraer and Heyford, but those are mammoth builds that will stretch well into next year. As usual all of these are 1/72 and largely brush-painted. From January to March I built the Revell Hunter (while at work in Borneo!) in the colours of the little-seen 63 Squadron RAF. From April to June (and at least partly in Borneo) I built the Airfix Swift, with lots of extra Eduard PE. On return from the Orient, and after finishing the Swift I attended to some unfinished business from 2016: the restoration of an old MPM Defiant I'd built back in 2008 - using lots of Airfix kit parts and a fair amount of scratcbuilding and modifications to make it look a bit more like an actual Defiant. Then it was on with the big Matchbox projects, but I paused in November-December to tackle the AZ Chipmunk, one of those "two weeks-maximum" builds that turned out to be less simple than I thought! That's it, and thanks for looking! As usual, I intend to built more next year. As usual, I shall probably fail!
  13. 7 points
    Hiya Folks, A bit o an update; I started to add the Dark Green camouflage pattern today; DSCF2228_NEW by Tony OToole, on Flickr And since then have `hopefully' finished after 3 thin coats,.... and attached the canopy into place tonight, Cheers Tony
  14. 6 points
    Hi. It's time for me to sum up 2017. I managed to complete seven kits, and that's the same as 2016. The German Eurofighter was the first one out. (Please excuse the dusty shelves. ) 2017-01 by Bosse Persson, on Flickr The I completed three leftovers from 2016, Sabre Mk6, Sabre Dog and Su-22m4 all in German liveries. 2017-02 by Bosse Persson, on Flickr 2017-03 by Bosse Persson, on Flickr After that is was the East German MiG-21 SPS/K that I hadn't planed to build. It should have been an Egyptian PFM, but I discovered during my ongoing Six Days War build that Egypt had the FL version at that time. So I hade to re-educate the PFM to an DDR LSK/NVA SPS/K instead. 2017-04 by Bosse Persson, on Flickr And with that said, I did build an Egpytian MiG-21FL. I cross kitted Eduards PF and PFM boxes to make the FL. 2017-05 by Bosse Persson, on Flickr Last out is my Finnish MiG-21 bis. It's isn't exactly finished yet as I havn't glued the pitot tube in place yet, but that will be done by New Years Eve. 2017-06 by Bosse Persson, on Flickr And that was all seven of my completed builds for 2017. Left on my worktable I have the following to occupy me during the winter. Mirage III B Alouette Super Mystere Fouga Magister MiG-17 And I've also just started on AMK's fantastic MiG-31. Planned for next year is a bunch of new MiG-21's starting with the LanceR C and two R-versions. But I'm sure there will be somwthing else of Russian origin in some Middle Eastern livery. Thanks for looking and a Happy New Year to you All. /Bosse
  15. 6 points
    Hi Folks, here's what I managed to finish this year: All the best for 2018! Nick
  16. 6 points
    Ask Martian for a link, Its great! Christian exiled to africa
  17. 6 points
    Nice one Simon - thanks for the heads-up! It's a nice feeling to get this part rolling Giorgio - the paint stage always gives me a certain level of anxiety, partly I suspect because of the rapidity/immediacy of the process. More on the way hendie - thanks for that. One of my main concerns at present is making it through the painting stage without snapping anything off of the gun mountings... Thanks for that Keith. The forum has been rather temperamental of late hasn't it? I'm regularly finding it close to unusable on a tablet at times, whereas on a desktop it's nowhere near as bad. You'll excuse I hope the fact that I didn't do the hinges Ced- even for me there's a level of door furniture I will not countenance! Thanks for that Bill. It was almost proceeding to good to be true. In fact it was too good to be true! (see below) Recoverable though.... You have my word sir. You have inflatable socks?! Them's posh in that Midlands. Something very apposite about the intended use of sea salt in the process later. It's a moot point isn't it Jaime. Certainly the '18s seem to have had a lot of people clambering over them as much as if they were ships with decks as much as being aircraft, but I haven't seen as many shots of crew swarming over 24s to the same extent. There'd better be Cc or else I'll be drummed out of the GB for operating under a false flag! Nothing went as anticipated today. Not in a bad way, just one of those occasional days where you seem to be out of sync with the cosmos. Idling on the old palliasse with a rum-dark brew of oolong this morning I'd mentally worked out a painting plan for the day ahead before Mrs. B reminded me that we were heading out to meet some old and dear friends for lunch. That was that plan gone then. The lunch was great, the conversation good, and after a walk beneath the ghost-sun I promptly fell asleep for a few hours when we got home. Conked out completely. I'm not a natural evening-worker but decided to salvage some of the day at least, as the beast had the masking finished the previous evening: On with the homebrew RLM 72 (Tamiya XF 17 & 61): Quite pleased with the closeness of the colour I'd managed to achieve, pulled of all the masking to reveal: That looks...wrong. Colour me nonplussed but without a Jeeves to lean over the shoulder and point out the source of wrongliness, my first thought was 'Flipping drat* - I've got RLM72 & 73 round the wrong way in my masking layout.' No. Not the order. I'm guessing what happened was that despite using low-tack tape (the blue stuff you saw in the masked shot above), it seems to have lifted much of the RLM 73 I sprayed previously. If I pop up a shot of the paint when it was fresh on: ..and you compare it to how that looks tonight: One of these things is not like the other one... That grey isn't quite as light as it appears in the photos here, but it's still not green-dark enough. RLM 73 & 73 are both a species of green quite similar to each other tonally, which makes them very difficult to distinguish between where in many contemporary black and white photographs. A b/w version of the above shot shows the problem in my work at the moment: Far too much difference between the two in tonality. Maybe I kinda shoulda only used paint thinned with water on the small hairsprayed regions, rather than all over. Maybe. Looks like I'll be getting more painting practice in tomorrow then. I do however like the 'shabby' effect I've been getting: ...and want to retain that variation. Which leads me to wonder whether to repaint that pale grey with an opaque RLM 73 mixture? Or to modulate it with a translucent dark green filter layer? I'm veering to the latter, it's something I've not tried before to change a colour in that way and new territory is always appealing - especially when it carries the extra frisson of failure as a possible outcome. Better seal what's there first to stop lifting what's already painted-on or it'll get a bit: Ourobouros-like. Not going to rush any decisions tonight though. I found a packet of Cornish fudge just now and am going to go eat the whole packet to make myself feel better. More tomorrow. Tony *Not entirely verbatim
  18. 6 points
    Back in the late '60's early '70's I used to drive semi trailers (articulated Lorries), through western Queensland from Townsville to Mt Isa (900kms) and sometimes on to Darwin, (2500kms) There is a legend here in Australia called the Min Min light, first noted in this area of Western Queensland way back, close to the town of Min Min which is near where I was driving. Ahyhoo, I was driving along in Winter, temp was a balmy 3C, the humidity was about 5% tops, the road was black soil unsealed, mostly flat slightly undulating country, with straight roads except for the potholes, over a 100kms or more between towns with practically nothing in between except turn off to somewhere else, so quite remote. I then noticed a light following me on my left, slowed down and it slowed as well, the cold really made my hair stand on end, and covered in goosebumps, bloody hell I thought what is that? there was absolutely no other traffic and hadn't been for an hour or more, so stopped and it stopped and just stayed motionless, got out of the cab and could still see it, so thought I would get a bit closer, but not too close mind. turned out to be a reflection of the moon on the shiny side of the rail line that runs beside the road. So no aliens were encountered and no anal probing took place thank heavens.
  19. 5 points
    To quote an old Rap song from the early 90ies....Whoomp, there it is! After the Lancaster this is the second 4-Mot my dad built. Revell USA kit with Superscale decals and Gunze/Tamiya acrylics. Regarding that the molds are 39 years old the fit was surprisingly good, only the clear parts aren´t the best anymore. The model shows an aircraft of the 416th BS in Italy 1944. Respect for those young men who climbed into these flying coffins mission for mission.....the Luftwaffe was not that threat anymore but the Vienna area (to which they often headed) had the second dense flak defence after Berlin. After being awarded with a Distinguished Unit Citation while serving with the 12th AF for a mission during the Big Week, the 99th BG earned a second one with the 15th AF for a successful bombing mission against the Wiener Neustädter Flugzeugwerke (20km away from our hometown) on April 23 1944 without any losses. After a fellow modeller pointed out that the oil streaks in the hot air outlet area on the upper wings don´t go with the openings but the small space between the openings because the oil gets divided by the air, I did a quick fix with the help of Tamiya´s weathering sets. Does not look optimal but ok. Gotta fix this maybe someday with airbrush.
  20. 5 points
    Cheers chaps I picked up this book over the Crimbo period and its a well worth the money I would say a must if you are converting to a HU5 . A bit of a tidy up for the GPS mount. Not had much time in the workshop but hope to sort that out soon Dan
  21. 5 points
    Thank you Lloyd for your very (way too) kind comments. I actually really enjoyed the weathering on this project. I was quite concerned about doing a whitewash finish and have avoided doing any up until now on purpose. Hi Julian. Like Lloyd you are way too kind!! Okay - first couple of photos of the finished Panzer III: As usual I have taken quite a few photos over the past couple of days and now have far too many to pick from. I'll try and pick a couple to post here with the figures on and then I'll post the rest in the RFI section. Comments and suggestions welcome. Kind regards, Stix
  22. 5 points
    Hawker Tempest F.2, 33 Sqd, Butterworth, Malaya c. May/June 1951, Operation Firedog
  23. 4 points
    Oh my gosh – where is the Christmas break going – I’ve ‘wasted’ six days already, without so much as a whiff of the glue or a drop of paint on my clothes. So it’s time to rectify the situation. I have had a rummage in the cupboard… …all the ‘big stuff’ has gone in the loft – out of sight is out of mind as they say. So I’m just left with the 1/72 stuff that magically seems to keep appearing over the last 2 or 3 months. I started with a Spitfire and before that was finished I had started a halftrack and then a Sherman. The last 2 came from the PLASTIC SOLDIER COMPANY and though they are simplified ‘wargamer’ kits – they are great fun. With this in mind I have decided to give this a go – PSC 1/72 British 6pdr Anti-Tank Gun and Loyd Carrier Tow. Before pulling the box off the shelf I had never heard of the Loyd Carrier and wondered if it should in fact have 2 L’s. But more worryingly I have never attempted a piece of artillery. But hey – nothing ventured – nothing gained. You will be pleased to hear that I have spent the day on GOOGLE reading up and looking at loads of pictures – but I’ll still have a few questions I’m sure. As with all PSC kits you get more than one of each kit in the box – on this occasion it’s 2 of each. But also as usual there are no decals and instructions / colour call outs are ‘sparse’ – but you do get plenty of crew. I’ve put one set back in the box – leaving me with one carrier… …and one gun – here is the view from both sides… …as I’ve just realised there is no schematic that shows how the gun goes together. There also appears to be a ‘choice of barrels’… …and a choice of wheels… At the risk of being ‘too technical’ the box lid shows the barrel with the ‘holey’ bit on the front and the wheels that stick out a bit more in the middle… What was I saying about not too many questions??? Any ideas anyone???
  24. 4 points
    Evening All, This was my contribution to the Flying Boats GB which will run out on 7th January 2018: the build thread can be found there if you are interested. I am posting these photos her plus some notes on the type as it is generally little known: I did not know about this type until I came across it by chance about 15 months ago. It is completely scratch built from wood, brass rod, plastic sheet, rod and strip, and is rigged with rolled copper wire. I apologise for the backgrounds but the weather and light are very poor at the moment. I will take more pictures in better light when I have completed the base for this model: this will be my next project. Any comments would be welcome. Claudius Dornier had joined the Luftschiffbau Zeppelin (Zeppelin Airship Works) in 1910 where he worked on a number of technical problems associated with airships. He was transferred to Zeppelin’s private design bureau in Friedrichshafen to work on an 80,000 cubic metre steel airship capable of flying across the Atlantic in 1913. Following the outbreak of European war in August 1914, Zeppelin established the VGO-Staaken venture to build giant wooden bombers, but Zeppelin was convinced that the future for aircraft was in all metal construction, so Dornier was sent to an old airship shed at Seems near Friederichshafen on Lake Constance to design a giant flying boat. This became known as the Rs I and was the first all-metal aircraft to be built. It was a huge biplane with a 143 ft (43.5m) wingspan which carried out extensive taxiing trials on the lake in late 1915 but was wrecked in a storm in December of that year before it could fly. While the Rs I was undergoing trials, Dornier and his team were working on a second project which was of a totally different design. This had a very broad hull which gave it inherent stability, with a high mounted wing with a broad low aspect ratio, open tail boom and unusual biplane elevator. Small wings were fitted to the rear of the hull to support floats, but the latter were found to be unnecessary and were never fitted. It was built from duraluminium and steel and covered in sheet duraluminium on the hull and fabric on the flying surfaces. It was powered by three engines buried in the hull driving pusher propellors via drive shafts. It made its maiden flight from Lake Constance on 30 June 1916. In mid - July an accident occurred which caused the aircraft to land on the water. On attempting to take off the middle propellor transmission shaft broke which severely damaged the tail boom. It was decided to completely rebuild the aircraft and work was completed in early November 1916. The hull was redesigned with the step moved further back but more importantly a fourth engine had been added and all had been moved to a position between the hull and the wing. They were mounted uncowled in tandem pairs and drove tractor and pusher propellors - a feature which was to be used by Dornier on his flying boats until 1945. The wing was lowered and balance horns were added to the ailerons. The massive V struts which supported the wing were altered so that they now attached to the hull sides and the boom attachment to the hull was changed so that the rear propellors had clearance. The biplane elevator was retained, but the stub wings were reshaped to have rounded tips and a decreased chord. Materials shortages and poor quality fuel retarded testing, with constant problems being experienced with the engines. The engines were found to be too cold so very neat cowlings were fitted, following which the radiators were found to be too small as the engines overheated. In May 1917 during landing practice, the machine came down hard on the water and the central boom of the tail broke. The pilot did not notice and tried to take foo, with the result that the sagging tail dragged the aircraft back on to the water and the whole unit broke away and sank to the bottom of the lake. In July the machine reappeared with a new tail unit this time with a simpler pair of fins and rudders and single elevator. Flight trials resumed and it was shown that it could take off and climb on 3 engines. It was also found that the pusher engines were more efficient when working alone than were the tractor engines. It reached a level speed of 128kph over the lake. In August it was carrying out a 6 hour trial flight prior to being sent to Norderney seaplane base for trials by the Navy when number 4 engine backfired violently. No 1 propellor disintegrated as a consequence, so both engines were shut down and the aircraft was put back down on the lake. The damage was found to be extensive and is was decided that it would have been uneconomical to rebuild it as the Rs III was near completion. Instead the airframe was broken up and the parts used for further tests and experiments. Dornier and his team learned many valuable lessons from this prototype. The broad inherently stable hull, tandem mounted engines, all-metal construction, high wing with low aspect ratio, all became characteristic features of later designs, but above all reliability and flexibility were to be hallmarks of the Dornier company. Here is an Avro biplaneis next to the completed model to give an idea of size, (the biplane is scratch built too): And because you cannot see everything from a distance, here are some close ups: A happy 2018 to one and all. Thanks for looking. P
  25. 4 points
    Well, here she is. Finally done. Just some very small touch ups here and there.....but overall complete. Awaiting it's undercoat. That's when I'll see all the "issues" to fix............. I still have to add the tow cable along with a second shackle pin and chain. Looking forward to getting the undercoat on and have it all in one colour. The last thing to add will be the arial. It won't last the painting and weathering stage. Managed to drill out the pin location for the spare tracks that came with the kit. Didn't fancy using the Friuls, I'll keep the excess for later kit's if I need spares. Panzer III chassis will be common in my panzer division.........Well, hope you like it so far. Time to figure out the painting now. All the best. Simon.
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