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Everything posted by Mike

  1. PBY-5/5A Tail (for Monogram) 1:48 Belcher Bits The Monogram/Revell Monogram kit of the famous Catalina Flying boat has been around for a while, and it's still quite an impressive kit, especially if long wingspans are your thing. There's a bit of a misjudgement hidden within the parts though, that might not look that obvious when you first look at the kit, but once you've seen it, it is glaringly obvious. It has a fat tail! If you don't mind or care, then you might as well stop reading here, as this won't be the correction set you. If you do mind, and want to go the extra mile for accuracy however, and are prepared to do a little surgery, then read on. The kit arrives in a thick gauge ziplok bag with instructions printed on blue A4 paper. The resin included in the bag consists of the two large tail parts, separate rudder, and two tail extensions. The short one is the standard tail, and a longer one with an extension with ventral fin is the MAD Boom equipped option. There is also a small insert that you can fit to the tail to depict the de-icing intake that was fitted to some airframes. You could be forgiven for missing the small strip of rod that has been supplied in the pack to use as the rudder hinge. I missed it entirely, and found a random piece of strip on my desk, which I've since lost. Doh! Fortunately, I'm not short of Evergreen strip, so when the time comes, I'll grab a length of 1.5mm x 2.5mm rod from my supplies. The cut in the fuselage is required just forward of a panel line (conveniently), and cures the excessively bloated tail profile that you can see on the picture above, kindly supplied by forum member Mark Stanton, which can be seen in his excellent build here. Once the tail has been liberated, the new one is glued together and slid into the fuselage, fettling as you go to improve the fit. If you are using the scoop, which was a late war addition, you will need to cut a chunk out of the tail's leading edge just 1.5mm in front of a panel line. This can be done with a file or razor saw, taking care to keep the shape square and level as you do. The kit elevators can be re-used just by cutting off the tabs at their bases and trimming the root square, leaving the resulting holes as the new slot for the moulded in tabs on the new tail. The rudder hinge is cut to shape and installed at the step near the top, and the rudder itself can be added, with a little deflection either way if you desire. Clearly there will be a little clean-up and sanding needed to blend the new tail with the kit fuselage, but this also gives you the opportunity to harmonise the panel lines to the kit while the tools are out. To see exactly what's involved, check out the PDF instructions here. Conclusion A worthy upgrade for any Cat in 1:48, curing a mistake that's easily missed until you really look at the airframe. Whilst not a new update, it's worth mentioning because of the recent re-issue of the kit by Revell in Europe, and the improvement that it offers in the process. You might need to add a little extra nose weight to balance your Cat out, but it's worth the effort. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of Mike Belcher at
  2. Mike

    "Lost In Space" on the Netflix

    I didn't even get through an episode, as I found it hard to suspend disbelief. The crash scene was laughable where they descended 3000m in a second but their impact barely ruffled anyone's hair apart from the mum who got a busted leg. The freezing water when they tried to get their gear from the sunken ship was totally bonkers with the water freezing from the bottom up, the complete opposite of reality. The mother appeared to be a total smart-bottom, with a major downer on her husband who we found out she had planned to leave behind on earth initially, after fudging her son's (Will) scores so that he could go along. "No need for a divorce now love, I'll just leave you on earth and take all the kids away from you". Lovely. Then we have her condescending to hubby again about leaving Will (who isn't at all bright so far, just more of a snivelling coward) who wasn't in any immediate danger to rescue their daughter who only had a few minutes to live. I turned off pretty quickly after that, as all the jeopardy was triggered by people just refusing to do as they're told by people who are supposed to know better, and no consequences seem to follow. Did they every explain why the daughter that got stuck in the ice is darker skinned than all the other pasty-white kids? previous marriage? I won't be back for another go - there's so much else out there that is at least trying to be entertaining. It takes a lot to put me off watching a show too as I'll watch any old pony, but when you've got series like The Expanse (thankfully renewed by Amazon for S4 now), The Bridge (original Swedish/Norwegian version - 4 series of) and such, I don't feel compelled to give it a chance.
  3. Well, what seemed like a long time in the future is now next week, and I'm scratching my head wondering where I'm going to find the time to build this, but also really looking forward to it. Why? Because I have a soft spot for the 262, and have almost all the 1:48 Hobby Boss kits, and a couple more besides in a larger scale that we won't mention. I've been waiting for the glass-nosed one to come out for ages now, as I once saw one with a conversion in 1:32 (damn!), and that's where this all started. I have the kit, purchased with my own hands, with a set of Eduard wheels, and I'm hoping to get a set of those amazingly realistic HGW seatbelts to add a bit of sparkle to the cockpit, as there doesn't seem to be a specific Eduard PE set for it, and I can't be bothered hunting through the rest of my kits to see if I have any PE hidden there. So - apart from wheels and belts, this is going to be as close to OOB as I get these days, and rather than post up a blank place-holder thread I've taken a snap of the box contents that proves I haven't started it Actually, I have removed one part from the sprue, so I could check the fit of the bulkhead with the metal forward bay. It was not good, because the white metal was a little bit warped, so out came the pliers That's it til Monday, honest!
  4. Heinkel He.111H-3 Upgrade & Mask Sets (for ICM ) 1:48 Eduard Promptly after completing a well-loved series of newly tooled Dornier Do.17/215 kits in this scale, ICM have now turned their attention to the Heinkel He.111. We reviewed the first of these brand new tooled boxings, the H-3 here (very) late last year, and they're every bit as good as their Flying Pencil kits. Eduard's new range of sets are here to improve on the kit detail in the usual modular manner. Get what you want for the areas you want to be more of a focal point. As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE) and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. Nose Interior (49886) Two frets are included, one nickel plated and pre-painted, the other in bare brass. A complete set of new layered instrument panels and side consoles that will be prominent within the greenhouse are the primary parts on the painted set, with new rudder pedals; seat details; canopy internal structure; additional instruments; gun sights and extra details, and even a bomb sight also supplied. Zoom! Set (FE886) This set contains a reduced subset of the interior, namely the pre-painted parts that are used to improve on the main aspects of the cockpit, as seen above. Whatever your motivations for wanting this set, it provides a welcome boost to detail, without being concerned with the structural elements. Radio Compartment (49887) Two frets are included, one small nickel plated and pre-painted, the other larger one in bare brass. It involves a heavy upgrade to the level of detail within the compartment, adding racks for ammo; stowage boxes; racking; partial bulkheads; a huge range of radio boxes and other equipment; gun sights and ammo embellishments; a framework with instruments around the top gun hatch, and a base for the nearby antenna. Bomb Bay (48948) Unlike older kits in this scale, ICM have included the four bomb bay compartments within the fuselage, which this set details with a replacement set of baffles that drop down to allow the bombs free release untroubled by the airflow; stabilising strips that link the bomb fins together; bay framework details; a full new set of bay doors with detailed hinges that require you to provide lengths of 0.6mm rod to complete; a set of towel tail antennae, and oddly, a pair of radiator skins for the engines. Undercarriage (48947) This set is provided as a single large fret of brass, and creates a new internal skin for the box-shaped bays, with additional structural details added throughout. It also extends and details the firewall behind the engine that is seen from within the bay, adds some small parts to the landing gear legs, as well as brake hoses. Seatbelts STEEL (FE887) In case you don't already know, these belts are Photo-Etch (PE) steel, and because of their strength they can be etched from thinner material, which improves realism and flexibility in one sitting. Coupled with the new painting method that adds perceived extra depth to the buckles and other furniture by shading, they are more realistic looking and will drape better than regular brass PE. As well as the pilot's four-point crew belts, you also get two sets of lap belts for the other crew, plus a set of webbing for the top gunner's position. Masks (EX580) Supplied on two sheets of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with a full set of masks for the rather pane-fully faceted canopy (see what I did there?) and other glazed parts, with compound curved handled by using frame hugging masks, while the highly curved gaps are in-filled with either liquid mask or offcuts from the background tape. In addition you get a set of hub/tyre masks for the main and tail wheels, allowing you to cut the demarcation perfectly with little effort, plus a landing light mask. Review sample courtesy of
  5. Mike

    Me.262A-2/U2 Almost OOB 1:48

    The Kfz.385 T-Stoff wagon conversion arrived from SBS Models (thanks guys!) in Hungary, and has been prepped and dumped in the ultrasonic cleaner to remove any remaining mould release and sanding dust. It seems I got the length of the roof of my effort DEAD on, but I misjudged the slant of the rear doors and my front cowling is a bit short. Not bad from a couple of pics though, and I may still use it anyway to save the SBS parts for when I build an Komet, so I can take advantage of all the internal greeblies that the conversion includes. I might just build the two up side-by-side and decide later I'll post some pics up when I've got the body parts together later. The patio outside my workshop is looking a bit Christmassy at the moment after the attack on the big moulding plug on the tanker by my Dremel. I looked like some portly snowman by the time I'd finished too, so I was glad I'd gone outside even though it was raining lightly
  6. Mike

    Grump Britain.

    That's probably because they're spoofing the caller ID these days. Initially they would look like a string of random numbers, but lately they've been coming from supposedly kosher dialling codes - mostly Edinburgh for no apparent reason. If OFCOM really wanted to crack down on these morons they would do. In our digital age you're telling me they don't have access to telemetry of all the genuine overseas call centres? Thinking about it, they're probably using VOIP by now, breaking out onto the BT network wherever they fancy, so maybe it's not that easy to track them down? What I'd have liked GDPR to have brought in is a new crime of invasion of privacy by these damnable auto-diallers that cut YOU off if you don't answer the phone quickly enough (which I often don't). Imagine some little old lady rushing to the phone, stumbling and being left incapacitated as a result. Getting up to reach a phone ain't no thang to a young healthy person, but to someone infirm or with a disability can find it quite a pain (literally at times) to get there if the phone isn't handy. And for what? To be told your internet will be cut off, or you had an accident in the last 3 years, or worse, just hung up on. Scumbags.
  7. Not quite true. We advised you to stop it because it was irritating folks, and they were complaining. Any threats of exclusion would have been for incidents related to spats with other members
  8. Mike

    Me.262A-2/U2 Almost OOB 1:48

    @Mottlemaster I haven't got any spares for the BA, but I'm pondering that as I'm undecided what to do. I think I may have some more HGW belts around, but I don't know where I've installed my gunsight on the basis that A ) it would leave a hole in the top of the panel, and B ) I think it was a converted airframe and pulling out a gunsight would be a PITA unless you were desperate for that last few ounces of weight saving.
  9. Mike

    stopping Daily Notifications & Updates

    Ah, I see you like to use large fonts in your posts as well as your emails to us. As I mentioned in the email I have just sent you: It seems this post was made in between your two emails, so you really must have been desperate. First world problems, eh? Incidentally, next time you have such an urgent request, you can see who the Moderators and Admins of this forum are with a few clicks, so just PM one of us and we'll respond as soon as we can.
  10. Colonial Raptor Interior Set (04217-1/32 for Moebius) 1:32 GreenStrawberry The reboot of Battlestar Galactica in the noughgties gave us a collection of new Colonial and Cylon ships to lust after, and those kind folks over the ocean at Moebius soon acquired the rights to make models of the ships, with the Vipers and Raiders being accompanied by the Galactica and Pegasus, to name but a few. The smaller ships have been made in a consistent 1:32 scale, which has been a boon to us modellers. It has taken quite a few years for the Colonial Raptor to be kitted, and we have watched the saga unfold on Moebius' Facebook page and the forums until its recent release along with its separate weapons set, which has pleased many, including myself. The Raptor is the Colonial gunship and troop carrier, capable of fielding an arsenal of weapons as well as travelling long distance without an accompanying Battlestar. Moebius's kit was well received, but like most models it can be improved upon, and GreenStrawberry's designers must have been working from the moment the kit was released to come up with this comprehensive interior set. It arrives in standard GS packaging, with a central piece of hefty cardboard wrapped in a header card and a large Photo-Etch PE brass fret at the front, with two more separated by pieces of black paper to prevent chaffing. Inside are the instructions that gives you all the information you need to update your kit, plus a piece of acetate sheet printed with instruments, and a piece of thin paper that has the screen and instrument dials printed on it. The Raptor is well-appointed with sensors, with buttons, switches and large screens everywhere that are visible through both the fishbowl canopy and the large side door where the crew move in and out. Consequently, the sheets with the screens and such are quite large, and will make the displays come alive once installed. Construction begins with an upgrade to the pilot and co-pilot seats, which receive new side panels and a full set of crew belts that work just like the real things, with buckles that the belts feed through, so anneal the parts to save yourself some hassle when bending them. The flight crew consoles are next, with a trio of large displays and two addition screens mounted on arms over the main panel, all of which have card or acetate inserts to give them life. The side consoles are given the same treatment, and small areas of the cockpit must be stripped of detail to facilitate this. The centre console is shortened and a set of tread-plate skins are added to the floor of both the cockpit and the rear crew area, while a pair of rudder pedals are installed for the flight crew under their new consoles. The bulkheads between the cockpit and rear are skinned with new detail panels, with jump-seats added, and some minor changes to the shape of the bulkheads achieved in the process. Opposite the crew access there is a large console wall that an operator sits at for tactical, sensor and weapons work, which is strewn with screens. The kit parts must first be pared away before the new installation can be inserted after layering PE and acetate or paper screens, taking up a substantial part of the interior in the process. More screens are provided to the left, and the keyboard-centred instrument panel for the rear crew is built up and inserted later in the build once the rear bulkhead is first reduced and then rebuilt with more detail and a serious face-lift, which includes new instruments and another jump-seat, with an angled panel between the rear and side walls. The right bulkhead between the cockpit crew and the rear is then fabricated and installed between the two areas, which both sides having a loose "grapple net" hanging down. Finally, a set of roof parts are added to give more detail to that area. Conclusion When you look at the instructions it's not surprising that there are three large sheets of PE in the packet, as almost every area is treated to a highly detailed and comprehensive upgrade. Check your references for the colour scheme (any excuse to watch it again), and a superbly detailed interior can be constructed. Extremely highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  11. Mike


    aboard Nick - dive in and participate and the newness will soon wear off
  12. Mike

    1/100 Me.262 V3

    C'mon Cliff - lets see some action?
  13. Mike

    Antares 1/48th Me-262 V1 (Stage I) - new update

    I think I'd have been crying in a corner by this point in the build if that were mine
  14. Mike

    Me.262A-2/U2 Almost OOB 1:48

    It's definitely the best in 1:48 in terms of variety of marques, and although I haven't built my vanilla Tamiya kit for comparison, it's damn good on fit and finish too.
  15. Mike

    Me.262A-2/U2 Almost OOB 1:48

    Now now Rich - this is one of their good kits, so we'll forgive them a few errant panel lines Fuselage is together now, and the wings are too. The airframe is sitting on my bench now, almost complete, while all the separate assemblies set up, so everything can be assured of fitting together later on.
  16. Mike

    Me.262A-2/U2 Almost OOB 1:48

    I've been mucking about with the engine nacelles for the last few hours, getting them ready to hang under the wings. During that process I've noticed a few things that HB got slightly wrong in the panel line department. Usually I don't stress too much about this sort of thing, but once I've noticed them, I have to do something about it. There are a few extraneous lines here and there, the most obvious being the additional line that runs laterally round the engine's top cowling at the front. I can see how it happened actually, as we have some pictures in our walkaround here, showing the airframe at Hendon, there is a bit of a crease exactly where the panel is, and you could be forgiven for thinking there's one there. The bottom cowling is a crescent shape in profile, wrapping round the lower part of the engine, so the seam needs to go there, as do the extended panel lines on the front and rear cowlings, plus the extension of the lower cowling join that hits the rear of the nacelle. The rear fairings need a little filled to blend them together, as the join line for the tail pipe passes through them, leaving quite a crease, but otherwise everything can be done by careful alignment and sanding. I filled the panel lines with CA and sanded them back flush immediately, and found that the intake part fits much better if you ream out the hole in the nacelle that the intake fits into. I shoved my Dremel's cutting drum into the hole and enlarged it slightly, which gave me much more leeway to move it around for best fit. It all needs tidying up and a coat of primer to check for errors, but they're looking a lot more accurate already They're also a much better shape at the front than the Dragon/Trimaster ones, which were a bit
  17. Mike

    Me.262A-2/U2 Almost OOB 1:48

    Thanks Yes, I scrunched the whole sheet up into a little ball before I started. I think the instructions used to say that.
  18. Mike

    Hello from Brisbane

    Bit late for that now
  19. Mike

    1/48 Me 262 - White 22

    Nice work Julien - still reckon you should have snapped off the gear leg though
  20. Mike

    What have you purchased / been gifted

    Closing this down due to it exceeding the "40 pages for a chat thread" rule
  21. Mike

    Me.262A-2/U2 Almost OOB 1:48

    I gave up last night and uploaded it this morning instead
  22. Mike

    Me.262A-2/U2 Almost OOB 1:48

    Sorry 'bout that - I put 23gb of files in the download queue before I realised I needed to upload the pic
  23. Mike


    aboard Jason - Gorby's right about what he says about selling your model. eBay can be a useful tool to let the kit find its natural value (sometimes this doesn't work due to lack of bidders), and the guys here tend to pay sensible money for kits, without going "red mist" like eBay encourages. Or... you could just build it?
  24. Mike

    Me.262A-2/U2 Almost OOB 1:48

    The seatbelts from HGW arrived today! Got them made up in about an hour, and they were less fiddly than I remember, but I'd definitely recommend two pairs of tweezers to accomplish the task with the least stress I glued them in place, and they are IMHO simply the best seatbelts you can buy in the modelling world today, well worth both the effort and the expense, the latter being about the same as a pair of PE belts, so it's really just more effort in the end. Here's a quick pic of the results: I've got the cockpit glued into one half of the fuselage, with the other half taped in place to make sure it stays aligned. I've also put the gunsight on the IP and touched up that missing bit of paint. The engine nacelles are underway, with some primer on the internal parts, ready for some burned up metal at the rear and RLM02 and shinies at the front Progress should be quite rapid once the fuselage is sealed up, which may happen today.