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Posts posted by TallBlondJohn

  1. Painting props: I apply an orangey-beigey base like Humbrol 63. When that's totally - several days - dry I take a hard brush with large stiff bristles - you get them from artshops, they are good for cleaning, weathering tanks, annoying the cat - and apply Humbrol 62, a red leather colour (other brands are available). The secret is, don't mix the paint. Just gather up a blob of pigment and a dose of the solvent and smear it along the prop. The thick bristles and uneven pigment distribution give a neat wood grain effect and it can be shifted about if necessary with more solvent from the tin. Leave to dry - it takes a while longer because you didn't mix the paint. Apply a gloss coat to seal, perhaps with a drop of orange in it. For larger scale props the same technique works, but I use a second darker colour, usually Xtracolor Signalbraun (RAL8002) for extra depth. Works for me!

  2. Where these decals for a recent issue? I recently built a 1997 Airfix Hunter and the decals were pretty bad - thick and prone to folding up at the first opportunity, then reluctant to respond to Microsol and Microset. Didn't silver though - I was applying onto a Xtracyclics gloss finish. A recent issue (red box) DH88's decals were Ok though - I made a fixable mess of the huge underwing serial but that was my fault.

    • Like 1
  3. There's an Airwaves PE set that helps with the guns and cable vanes. The cockpit is easy to improve too - if you leave the pilot out its very visible (unlike most RFC where its under the wing). The Revell decals are great to use - not like the Roden beasties. And it looks like you got the fuselage crosses on right - I instinctively put the small one on the tail, then varnished before I noticed. The Albatross is very easy to rig too, good for beginners.

    • Like 1
  4. Me again. I've been on holiday (the Isle of Mull and it was hotter than the south of France B) ) and working on 1:1 scale bedroom, but the Clipper is making slow progress. Its been primed with spray can Mr Surfacer Primer 1000 - marvellous stuff, beautiful finish - and then much sanding and filling with Mr Surfacer 500 - another debut product for me and very impressive.

    Since then there has been much sanding and then more sanding, and the raised panel lines have suffered accordingly. No way am I scribing this thing - I don't think the scale suits scribed lines anyway - so I'll try restoring the raised lines with fine masking and more primer, which has worked in my tests. It will be a long and slow task so bear with me.



    Funny how one can see things in the photo invisible to the eye - excuse me I can feel some more sanding coming on. After that we need to decide on a metallic finish - I'm going to go with the Pan Am scheme. I was going to try Citadel acrylics, but am now tempted by the AK Xtreme Metals enamels in the Italeri B-58 Hustler WIP thread. Can anybody recommend a friendly online supplier? I don't think Hannants carry them.

    • Like 6
  5. Great Looking Valkyrie in SEA Camo!

    I'm also having two in the stash, waiting for some whiffery...

    Your wish shall become true ;-)

    General Melchetts excellent B-70


    Knew I'd seen one somewhere, what a beauty. Still like to see a Thunderbirds B-70 though... I did start the Academy 1/300 XB-70 kit to whif it but its a dog. If only the 1/200 Cyber-Hobby would get a move on.

  6. Thanks for the pics! Meanwhile, I've been travelling on business and working on 1:1 bedroom but I have got the main bits together. The fit is pretty good, with care and fettling it can be made almost exact on dry fitting, though the fit around the nacelles isn't great. Of course when the glue came out the carefully honed fit magically vanished and brute force was necessary, and I made a bit of a mess of it all so more sanding than I would have liked was necessary. . A few sinkholes in the fuselage as well.



    Perfect Putty to the rescue, now all I have to do is figure out how to restore/extend the raised panel lines (there are a few spots where they aren't on the mould, like the tailplane roots). I plan to use the fine lines of carefully masked paint method, it has worked on some test scraps. Primer first - I'm thinking of a first go with MR Surface 1000 - will it be fine enough for NMF?

    Off on a holiday now, will be back in a week or so



    • Like 7
  7. Nice idea - I was reading the story of Pacific Clipper's journey last night online and thinking there's a movie in this.

    For anybody interested, here is a list of all the Model 314s:

    Model 314
    NC18601 Honolulu Clipper
    NC18602 California Clipper (Temporarily renamed Pacific Clipper, see below)
    NC18603 Yankee Clipper
    NC18604 Atlantic Clipper
    NC18605 Dixie Clipper
    NC18606 American Clipper

    Model 314A
    NC18607 to BOAC and named G-AGBZ Bristol. Sold as NC18607 in 1948.
    NC18608 to BOAC and named G-AGCA Berwick. Sold as NC18608 in 1948.
    NC18609 Pacific Clipper (Temporarily named California Clipper to replace NC18602 which was being transferred to Atlantic service, reverted to Pacific Clipper in 1942)
    NC18610 to BOAC and named G-AGCB Bangor. Sold as NC18610 in 1948.
    NC18611 Anzac Clipper
    NC18612 Cape Town Clipper

    • Like 1
  8. Back from a week in Hamburg, where I was chased down the Reeperbahn by very friendly local ladies. Again. Spent the afternoon watching the Giro d'Italia and putting halves together. Fit is mostly very good given its age, engine nacelles take a bit of effort to line up (best to cut off the wing location pins) and the fuselage top takes a bit of effort. Sink holes filled with Perfect Plastic Putty.

    Wow..A big beast even in this scale!

    No kidding! These things were huge. Here it is compared to an old 1/72 Airfix Lancaster. The perspective skews it a bit but the 1/144 Clipper is 3/4 the size:


    That's not a gap, I just haven't glued the big bits together yet. Still working on the seams.

    • Like 2
  9. The fuselage windows are stepped, was the floor in the passenger cabin tiered? or was it flat and the windows at an angle?

    Can you imagine a plane nowadays with five crew on the flight deck? :yikes:

    Its not so much a flight deck, more a bridge. With room to swing a cat if necessary. The cabin(s) were stepped up back:


    Note the crew member in the nacelle, peddling furiously. It was almost as wide as a 747 but when fitted out in style only carried 25 passengers. A thought for next time you are crushed into economy:


    Sadly in 1/144 there is no point in any interior, it will be invisible. There's a 1/72 Anigrand resin but a larger scale injection would be a beautiful thing to see.

    • Like 6
  10. I remember it well. It of course a straight sci-fi remake of The Magnificent Seven, Robert Vaughn even has some of the same lines. Which is of course a remake of The Seven Samurai....

    Anyway, IIRC Roger Corman asked ILM to do the effects. They asked for a million dollars. He told them to get stuffed, set up his own effects shop to do the effects for half the price, then used them again for Space Raiders. James Horner did the score - his first feature? Corman re-used that as well in Raiders and then a third time in some fantasy movie.

    I was 11 and thought it was great. But I was just old enough to be consider Sybil Danning to be even better than the explosions. Nice to see a kit from the film - hopefully there will be others?

    • Like 1
  11. Day two, a little fiddling. Test fitted all the big bits, looks surprisingly good. I was going to glue in a dividing wall to prevent light shining through the windows, but it turns out this is what should happen:


    So I'll just put a floor in the cockpit and close it up. I'm not even going to attempt the NMF above. I'm sure the pre-war Clippers were painted.


    Update 2018: For the record, Pacific Clipper above is on builders trials at Boeing, thus the NMF. Silver was applied later before delivery to Pan-Am.




    • Like 3
  12. Hi everybody, I'm going to try a build log. It will be slow but hopefully it will get there.

    The subject is Airfix's 1/44 Boeing model 314 Clipper, a fine example from the golden age of luxurious, noisy and vibration-rich air travel.

    All detail is raised lines but in this scale I think that works better, though repairs will be tricky. I intend to omit the glass and use Krystal Klear instead to save masking. The 1989 boxing from ebay looks complete, here's the sprue shot, though actual sprues are few and far between and the breakages and escape attempts have already started.


    My first dilemma is which scheme? Airfix include NC18605 "Dixie Clipper" in pre-war silver or G-AGCA "Berwick" though both paint schemes are full of known errors (Berwick should be DSG not Dark Earth which also makes her look fat). A USN blue Dixie would (I think) be possible with the decals if I can find a profile. Opinions welcomed, I'm honestly stumped which to do.

    I've also just spent ten minutes trying to find the 'missing' central tail fin...



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