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109 fan

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109 fan last won the day on October 12 2017

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  1. Thanks for the kind words! Armoredsprue, next up is a Fly Models Bf 108.
  2. This is the new Tamiya Gustav. I've described the build and some comparisons with the Fine Molds kit here: https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/72nd_aircraft/tamiya-bf-109-g-finally-t10800.html When all is said and done, I like this kit very much. Both it and the FM offering have their advantages, but this model is a generation newer and it shows. The new Exito Decals performed very well and they are to be commended for releasing this esoteric subject. IMG_7311 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7313 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7314 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7316 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7327 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7329 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7330 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7332 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7333 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr
  3. They are in the planning stages, next, but the release date and even the precise variant are yet to be determined. The last I heard, they are considering the later versions, such as the G-6/AS, for their first offering.
  4. Finally, it's done. In general, I'm very pleased with the Tamiya kit. The surface detail is world class. The fineness of the panel lines makes the effect of an oil wash more subtle than the Fine Molds kit. The keyed landing gear makes their alignment a snap and practically idiot-proof. The keyed wheels take away all of the good feelings just mentioned. As I've recounted, flattening them is a hassle. I don't like the tabs on the opening section of the canopy. For novices it is a nice feature. For an accurate replica, these things must be cut off and the notches on the cockpit sidewall filled. Since I used a vac canopy replacement, I didn't have to deal with this. The Tamiya kit is a generation removed from the Fine Molds effort, and it shows in things like cockpit detail. Does it make me want to sell all of my Fine Molds 109 G-6s? Not on your life. Will I build another? Absolutely. I'll post a few Tamiya/Fine Molds comparison photos here, then add some glamor shots in the Completed Models section. IMG_7311 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7304 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7303 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7302 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7292 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7293 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr You'll notice some definite differences in the beefiness of the nose section and angles of the nose and rear fuselage. Which one do you prefer? I'd say we have an embarrassment of riches with small scale 109 G's at the moment!
  5. OK, now for a ridiculous, stupid, aggravating issue. The Tamiya kit has generally excellent fit including the wheels, which are keyed into the landing gear. I mean really keyed. This is a tapered cone/notch affair that sets the precise angle. Is this better than just a rod and hole scenario? Probably a bit, but I am reminded of the rule of diminishing returns, where adding complexity gives incrementally smaller results. Here was the problem. There is no reliable way to flatten the tires before they are attached to the gear. I thought I had a brilliant solution. I began by rubbing some pencil graphite on paper, then rubbing the wheels in this. Obviously you end up with some marks precisely where the wheel touches the ground. Simple matter to hold the wheel on sandpaper using the graphite spot as a reference, and viola, perfectly aligned flat spot. Right? IMG_7256 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr Except that it failed miserably and was 30 degrees off on both wheels. Again, no problem. Just take out the Moto-Tool, chuck in a dental drill and grind out the key on the wheel. After three attempts I broke completely through a wheel. OK, take a set of wheels from another kit. SAME THING! So I ended up doing what I really didn't want to do; sticking the wheels on with a dot of white glue, grabbed each wheel with tweezers, then while applying downward pressure, pull a strip of 320 grit sandpaper under each wheel. This worked, but was way too risky. Is there an aftermarket resin manufacturer willing to take this on??? Anyway, I've added most of the remaining doodads, including the Rob Taurus vac canopy. This has some added details including some riveted .005" strips and a canopy locking handle. IMG_7257 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7260 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr More soon; thanks for watching.
  6. Thanks Ruudster! ArmoredSprue, the Erla Haube is simply the one piece clear vision canopy, often mistakenly called the "Galland Hood". It was fitted to virtually all late model 109s, not just those produced by the Erla factory. There were also two distinct types of these canopies. I believe there is a very good discussion of the differences on this site. Try searching in the general discussion area.
  7. A bit more progress on this one. The landing gear has been attached, and I have to say, it is idiot-proof. Initially I wondered about the necessity of the hockey stick engineering of the gear; it seemed a bit over complicated. However, I am now sold. The gear clicked in place and instead of considerable adjusting of height and angles as I would normally do with a Fine Molds kit, I just waited a few minutes for the glue to set a bit, then confirmed that the angles were correct. And they were! Wow. I've also sprayed on the exhaust stains and added the shoulder straps from an Eduard steel prepainted set. Note to self; install these before the final phase of the build. I was concerned about masking the cockpit and in the process pulling off the shoulder belts. But that could have been handled more easily than bending steel straps that actually become more like springs when shoehorning them into the completed cockpit. They will twang out of the cockpit with the least provocation. Lots of smaller details have also been done, including the canopy retention mechanism (a pole with a base and mounting brackets). The canopy, a Rob Taurus vac of the Erla Haube, is also taking shape. The more I work on this kit the more I like it. Anyway, here's the current batch of photos. Thanks for looking. IMG_7253 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7254 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7255 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr
  8. I'll be using a Rob Taurus vac canopy. Since the Erla Haube was very thin, the vac canopy is the only way to go.
  9. Tonight I applied the flat coat, in this case Mr. Paint Matt. This is the second time I've used this product and I'm liking it. It does smell though! Some detail painting was also done (cowl guns, scoops and wingtip lights. Weathering also continued with more oil paints and water color pencils, both done before the flat was added. IMG_7239 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7243 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7246 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr
  10. I say finally because I approached this project with some trepidation. Why? Normally a new 109 model in my chosen scale of 1/72 would be a cause for rejoicing. And one from Tamiya...euphoria. Well, here's why the muted response: IMG_7176 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr There are 22 Fine Molds 109 G-6's in the photo, and more elsewhere. I was a perfectly happy guy. The FM kit was simple but mostly accurate and moreover, when built it just looked RIGHT! Well of course I had to get one. The promo photos from the Shizuoka show looked very promising. A detailed review by Brett Green on Hyperscale furthered that perception. Then he built one in about 25 minutes and raved about it. At the prodding of some good friends in Canada, I was directed to Wheels and Wings hobby shop in Toronto, who got them in before anyone else. (Their service was excellent and the staff was great. They also very helpfully explained the conversion rate from US dollars into "Knuckistan pesos"). Anyway, the thing looked excellent in the box. The scribing is superb. Parts breakdown...well somewhat unusual. I'll explain as well go with some Fine Molds comparisons along the way. I decided not to knock myself out with this build, just some basics to see how it looked when done. The cockpit is superb, with very little extra required unless you're being fastidious. The only additions I made were a set of Eduard pre-painted seat belts and a Yahu instrument panel. IMG_7163 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7166 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7173 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr The engineering, for Tamiya, seems a little wonky. IMG_7192 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr The joint of the lower wing/fuselage would have have been more natural if it were moved forward to the next panel line; some filling required here. But then the under fuselage access panel would not have been molded as crisply. Also the cowl is in three parts (sorry, no photo) instead of the two prototypical halves as seen on the FM kit. I'm still not crazy about this one, but Tamiya does represent the upper cowl piano hinge very nicely. You can also see the slots for the hockey-stick like landing gear. Another nice touch are the open inspection slots in the wheel wells. In the photo you can see that I've painted the surrounding area RLM 76 already. The inside of the upper wing will be painted black behind the slots to set them off. You can also see the representation of the leather liner which will be hand painted with acrylic brown before the wings are joined. These areas are significantly better than the FM effort. Here the pre-painted wheel well area has been masked off, then the undersides finished off. IMG_7181 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr As you can gather from the pervious photo, the wing radiators are separate pieces, They do not close completely and gaps are visible on both sides and the rear. The sides are not that troubling, but the trailing edges are rounded internally. On the 109 G these flaps should close completely, unlike the F model, which had a slot when closed. I compromised and filed the rear the to represent a proper slot. Another quirk is the attachment of the wheels. They are keyed, which seems to be unnecessary. I always flatten the bottom of the tires before attaching them. I'm not sure whether to grind out the key or try to sand them after they are in place. The detail is very nicely defined. IMG_7188 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr Minor niggles aside, the assembly was rather trouble free. Here the airframe is painted in RLM 76. IMG_7194 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr In preparation for camo painting, I built another jig; this one to hold the fuselage at a good angle for mottling. It actually turned out to be of limited use. IMG_7197 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7195 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr Camouflage painting: This particular aircraft had some distinctive mottling. IMG_7208 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7210 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7209 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7219 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr I am using the excellent new decal sheet from Exito Decals. This one will be the personal aircraft of Constantin Cantacuzino after the flight when he flew the ranking USAAF POW to the American lines in the rear fuselage. The purpose was the repatriation of American POWs after Romania quit the Axis and joined the Allied war effort. American markings were very hastily applied to the plane, which took off before the paint had dried. This is evidenced by the white paint on the stars in the flag running in the direction of the slipstream, a feature faithfully captured by Exito. The decals were painted by Cartograf and went on nicely. IMG_7221 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr The next step was the usual oil paint wash which I have described before, and will not bore you with again. IMG_7233 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7230 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7235 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr The entire airframe was riveted using a "Risie the Riveter" tool from UMM Models. As I've said before, once you start riveting you will never go back. Well that's were she stands at the moment. I must say I am being won over by this kit but will save final impressions for later. Hope you enjoyed the ride so far.
  11. Well, she's done. Or rather, I decided to quit working on her which is the same thing. There are always touch-ups to be done and things to improve or add. But I have to get her boxed up tomorrow and ready for the Three Rivers IPMS show the next day. After buying an extremely large plastic box (too small) and emptying a storage box of kits (also too small), I'll spend tomorrow constructing a transportation box from thick foam core. So...no time for vanity photos now; these will have to suffice. IMG_7152 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7153 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr After our show I'll clean up the workbench and take some better photos. In the meantime, thanks for following along during this six year journey. And thanks also for your encouragement and kind words along the way. There are much appreciated.
  12. Thanks, gents; I appreciate the kind words. Greg, I've also picked up the Pit Road 1/144 Me 323, which appears to be a great model. I only wish the Italeri kit had that level of sophistication. The Gigant continues to inch toward to the finish line. Tonight I added the remaining flaps and ailerons. The main wing struts were a challenge, being fragile and ill-fitting. Eventually I found that white glue worked best.The gaps were filled in with repeated applications of diluted white glue and a bit of Vallejo plastic putty. Finally the joints were airbrushed with RLM 65 to blend in the gaps. Here the props are just pushed in place for some photos. Not much left to do, but there will be touchups. IMG_7142 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7141 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7139 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr IMG_7137 by Barry Numerick, on Flickr
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