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TheBaron last won the day on February 24

TheBaron had the most liked content!

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About TheBaron

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    West of the Meridian
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    Oddity, perversity, disparity.

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  1. Dear all. I'd like to present my recent adventures with the character-full old Airfix kit of 'Faithful Annie'. I made a lot of changes - as you might have anticipated for a kit this old - but belly aside, I was impressed by how accurate Airfix caught the proportions and outline of both fuselage and wings. There was much scratch-building from brass & plastic, which I won't bore you by listing again as the cumulative list of tasks and rationales can be found over here: The aircraft is the one that famously discovered the Knickebein beams being used to guide the Luftwaffe to targets over Britain in 1940 - a list of historical refs. are given over on the build thread. Aside from the Hallicrafters set used to detect the beams and the need to alter the electricity supply of the aircraft in order to power it, any further detail regarding the installation of any different aerials &etc. seems now lost in historical mists. Not surprising given the jeopardy of that period in the war. I was lucky however to be in correspondence with the son of the pilot - Flight Lt. (as he then was) H. E. Bufton - who generously sent me copies of the pages from his father's log book for that night, confirming both the serial number of the aircraft and timings of the flight. Aside from log book entries, I was able to cross reference with a copy of BAT&DU (later 109 Sqn) Operations Record Book (AIR 27/852), obtained from the National Archives. I hope that Hal Bufton's son is pleased at how his father's aircraft has turned out. All camouflage and national marking are painted with Tamiya acrylics: detailed discussion over colour schemes and why there are no squadron codes on the fuselage are contained in the latter part of the WIP so I don't propose repeating these at length again here. Main technical reference for buildings and alterations (aside from contemporary IWM photographs) of the aircraft was the Anson parts & maintenance AP.1525A,D,E&F. A general walkaround first then: Some closer-ins.... The insides had a makeover too: I hope you like the results. It was a lovely kit to be working on and I was blessed - as always - with a kind and knowledgable bunch of companions on the 18 months it took. Tony
  2. Inspiring work Serkan. Always refreshing to watch somebody else's methodology and learn from their developmental processes: this is a genuinely fascinating thread. Those bleed slots are superb! I recently acquired a resin printer myself a couple of weeks back in order to 3D print the Avon engines for my Sea Vixen build. Noting your remarks about the complexity of the engines here, I'm going to have to think carefully about what to print, and what to build from brass!
  3. You'll be cutting them into little bits and turning them into one of those Kreiger Maschinen as usual then I suppose Pete...
  4. An almost overpowering level of detail now; the only word that fits is 'dazzling' Steve.
  5. I reckon Steve's going to come back with a part for a Hawk staggeringly mind-bogglingly small and perfectly formed - made entirely out of a Crunchie bar and the finger-bone of a saint.
  6. That's so elegant. I'm going to have to adopt that in future myself if you don't mind Heather?
  7. Power off again today Ced (but not for long) - the villains must have done over the sweet shop this time... Immaculate as always John - my thanks! I hope you're not of a nervous disposition Terry. Don't say I didn't warn ye! Spare the plane, spoil the child.... Stranger things Rob.... I made a mental note at the time when you mentioned that point in the preparatory thread for this build. The FAW.1 GA is indeed dead ropey but the plan view in FAW.2 manual matches the Warpaint drawing quite well (GA outline = white): (Apologies all for small size of some of these refs but I'm trying to tiptoe around publication copyright by not posting printable content) Between the outline taken from your photographs and the FAW.2 GA overhead plan view, that's now two independent votes of confidence in the Warpaint drawings - in broad outline anyway. (The side view in the GA though is not accurate in outline against your ref. photo however...) Valuable info Crisp: thanks! Those shots are amazing James - I can't thank you enough for sharing this material! So much so that I've had to add a @71chally section to the infinite Sea Vixen mosiac now.... So far anyway (and against my usual instincts for drawings in books) I've got a growing confidence in the fidelity of the Warpaint designs as a basis for getting the general outline of the aircraft as correct as possible in this build. Overlaying side and plan views of the FAW.1 from the WP volume indicates these match up in two different dimensions also: Time to check out the kit against the drawings. To avoid any lens distortion from photography in reproducing plan views of the kit fuselages, I put the kits parts on the scanner. Frog first: Aside from what we know about the front of the nose - the conjunction of drawing and kit outlines look pretty good. High Planes next: Aside from all the yucky flash, again not bad but interestingly the trailing edge of the wing seems to become increasingly too narrow towards the wing tip (in relation to the WP drawing), giving it too great an inward curve radius. It does however seem to match the wing tip shape in the GA drawing (the white outline discussed above), so I need to think some more about this issue: there's no rush on a decision yet. Comparisons on booms and tailplanes will keep for another day - that's enough for tonight. Tony
  8. I did! In one gorgeous two month binge several years back I got through the whole series. You're right about their brilliance Crisp - I was completely transported into that floating world he evoked and bereft when it was over. I may have to join you quite soon on that voyage Paul...
  9. Now, how often have we all inwardly thought the very same thing at some critical juncture of a build!
  10. Something extraordinarily beautiful has been happening with the float shadows in your last couple of updates Ced. Have you got some kind of fancy quantum lighting system installed over the bench to produce those striated interference patterns around them? Or have you gone and ruptured the spacetime continuum with that bloody big wing?
  11. Weather absolutely rotten after work and as dusk fell, we were treated to another power cut. Out with the candles and some contemplative reading: Second power cut this month. The last one was a bunch of villains knocking over the cashpoint inside the local Tesco - to make sure no alarms would go off they took out the local power grid down one of the manholes. Anyway, this one didn't last two long which was just as well as I've been hankering to start putting background research for here on a firm footing. As curtain-raiser for this I took all years of concert tickets and holiday stuff that had been accumulating on the noticeboard in the studio and began putting up the first visual references for the build: The large cutaway of a FAW.1 is a period reproduction from Flight magazine of 1960 which is a handy and concise breakdown of the main structural features: this will be a useful guide to establishing what viable level of detail needs building at this scale and in which region of the aircraft. Flight did two excellent articles on the Sea Vixen in the early days; one article on the early development and testing of the aircraft in 1957, and the 1960 article, upon it entering service. Both contain a lot of highly valuable background on both structure and the various mechanisms involved in operating it in flight. When it comes to actually organizing some of the several hundred reference photographs and maintenance drawings I'm calling upon here, I've begun using a handy little piece of software called 'Pureref': The software lets you build an infinitely scalable image plane in which you can create mosaics of images (here organized thematically); these you can click to make individual images fullscreen and then click again to return to the overall map. This screen of image mosaics can be scrolled vertically and horizontally and zoomed in and out of so makes for a far more intuitive and friendly way of sifting through and comparing multiple views, following lines of enquiry &etc. than say Lightroom. They're asking €5 for it which I had no hesitation paying here. (Usual disclaimer that I've no financial interest in the company!) Ced - you might recognize the radar shots? (Thanks ) Anyhow; tonight I thought it time to start working out some datum points to establish any likely modifications to the two kits concerned, so taped the fuselages together for a comparison: Both of these display the characteristic bulge under the nose for the Microcell rocket packs ( I think in the case of the FAW.2, that Microcell shape was retained faired in without the actual rocket launchers - open to correction on this of course....) These will only be present on XN708, XJ481 - being an early production model - didn't have them. All very well just looking at these two side by side but what about beginning to establish some kind of accurate baseline? I was lucky in discussions many moons ago in the initial Cold War thread that started all this up that our dear friend @71chally shared some latterday shots of XJ481 at Yeovilton, including a nice side on view of the nose from starboard, from which I was able to make an outline drawing: First thing I wanted to check this against was the accuracy of the GA drawings in the FAW.1 maintenance manual (which @canberra kid kindly shared in that other thread, in order to see if those could provide a decent reference for plan and side views &etc: Kind of....at least pretty good in terms of fuselage height, but canopy position and nose shape of the GA drawing give concern in placement and proportion. A check of drawing against the Frog offering immediately displays the well-known nose issue: Fuselage from canopy back not looking too bad in height, though check the difference in size and placement of air intakes on the kit. Same procedure applied to the High Planes offering: Again, fuselage shape not too bad at all from canopy backwards, intakes much better positioned than Frog, but definitely makes the case for both aircraft to be getting new hooters! This latter point not an issue anyway due to XJ481 needing a Martel trials nose from scratch, and XN708 having a radar reveal. Finally, in order to see if the drawings in the Warpaint volume on this aircraft can be trusted, another overlay: I would have to call that a pretty damn good match in general terms! It would be really helpful if the overhead view in the Warpaint volume could be trusted regarding wings shaped &etc. Lacking any direct underneath or overhead photographs to knock up drawings from I'm going to have to spend some time staring at the closest photos I've got to such views and then comparing these with Warpaint, the kits, and GA drawings from the manuals to work out 'most likely to meet the approval of Britmodellees' candidate outlines for those parts of the aircraft. Thanks for looking in. Tony
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