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Bandsaw Steve

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Everything posted by Bandsaw Steve

  1. Happy Birthday Royal Air Force Today is the 100th Anniversary of the formation of the Royal Air Force. If you did not know that already you are probably on the wrong website. Some time ago I decided that I wanted to mark this occasion by starting a new project on this date and have of late spent much time thinking about what the subject should be. Naturally enough, Spitfires, Hurricanes, Lancasters and myriad of famous post-war types all came to mind, but these are well-covered subjects and so I dwelled on the matter a bit deeper... What about something that was in service on the day the RAF formed? What about something that had served in both the RFC and the RNAS prior to the formation of the RAF? What about something that was crucially important both to the newly formed air force and essentially all of the commonwealth air arms that were to follow? What about the Avro 504! To me, the Avro 504, more than any other single type, captures the spirit and the essence of the nascent Royal Air Force. This type had seen service as a fighter, a bomber and reconnaissance aircraft prior to being 'relegated' to the training duties at which it excelled. By 1918 this was the most numerous aircraft in the RAF (and probably in the world) with more than 7000 being built during World War One alone. In the new air force almost all aircrew had been trained on this type and I should think most of the ground crew as well. It was the foundation of the skills and professionalism that have been the hallmark of the service ever since. So, foolishly, I'm going to have a crack at building one in 1/32 scale. Here are the plans I will be using...provided most efficiently by Len Whalley at 'aeroplans.co.uk’ (Great service thanks Len). As you can see this is a screen-shot of my electronic copy because my friendly computer draftsman at work is on extended Easter holidays. He'll be back soon! In the meantime I'm going to use these plans as a starting point, they are fine for the general layout and dimensions. And here we go... Start with a good straight, clean bit of wood. In this case I'm using Jarrah - just like I did in my Mig 15 build here... www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235012524-mig-15-scratchbuild I'm using Jarrah mostly because it's the strongest wood I can get hold of. Having studied the plans I can see that there are going to be some challenges with maintaining the structural integrity of this model, especially once the extensive cockpit has been hollowed out - hence structural strength is going to be a major consideration. It's a beautiful bit of wood this - straight close grain almost flawless. The oval below marks the only knot in the entire plank, it's tiny and is fortunately positioned so it can be easily excluded from the fuselage cut-out. Here I'm marking off the first cut for the fuselage. I'm cutting it much longer than it needs to be for reasons you will see later on. And here it is - the first cut - made on 01 April 2018! Hooray... Two lengths have been cut for the fuselage so that I can work to the natural centre-line thus formed... The wings are being cut from some thin slices of sapelli. Another high-quality hard-wood. I've chosen this because I do not want the wings to sag and think that sapelli will be rigid enough to hold it's shape over time. And here's the rough cut-out of the tailplanes. I think that the tail is going to be the only easy part of the build. And so -after 20 minutes of work I have the very, very rough outline of a biplane... No - this is not an April Fools joke, this really is the start of my model! I don't know how long this is going to take but given the slow pace of my previous (still uncompleted) project that you can see here: www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235021633-hmasm-ae2-scratchbuild I would say this will take at least a year and possibly much longer. I've never built a biplane before. Wish me luck... Best Regards, Bandsaw Steve (ex-Reconcilor)
  2. Bandsaw Steve

    Avro 504K, 1/32, Scratchbuild

    Glued to top side of the wing? yep! Otherwise each wing would have three degrees of anhedral. Didn’t fall into that trap this time. Not this time! As for the slots on the bottom of the fuselage, all they are are the remnants of the ‘spalling cuts’ that I made way back when I was preparing to cut out the fuselage. Obviously I’ve cut them a bit too deep. Once the two halves of the fuselage are joined I’ll just fill them with automotive bog filler or maybe a suitable wood filler. They should be completely invisible on the final model.
  3. Bandsaw Steve

    Avro 504K, 1/32, Scratchbuild

    Things going right! Have a look at the photo directly below and you will see that the rebate that I've cut for the wing to sit in is now a nice clean rectangular cut . It's actually a fairly good bit of woodwork, at least compared to most of my rough-as-guts work. The only problem now is that the rebate bears no relationship whatsoever to the top of the wing that must fit into it. So, short of bodging this gap with a tonne of filler, and in doing so risking a very weak connection between wing and fuselage, let's make a block that will both span the gap and fix the wing at the correct angle of incidence. 'Angle of incidence' technical talk that! Did you notice??? Here is a nice looking bit of wood that just so happens be the right thickness to fill the gap. The wood is bass-wood and I bought it at a local hobby shop. It's expensive but it also has the reputation of being some of the very best carving wood in the world. So lets give it a try. Cut it to fit into the rebate. Mark up the top surface of the aerofoil. Start carving. Wow! Go Basswood! Fantastic stuff. I believe that this is a favourite of American woodworkers and I can see why - it's just beautiful to carve. I have to admit that this just might be the best species of wood I've ever carved although - for patriotic reasons - I might have to claim that New Zealand white pine is its equal. Getting there. Note how the front (left of picture) of the basswood is now thinner than the rear. This change in thickness will set the wing at the correct angle of incidence. (Note the technical stuff again!) After a bit of smoothing and sanding I ended up with this. Which makes for a pretty tidy bit of gap filling I reckon. Glue it onto the top of the wing with a bit of PVA. Clamp it down and let it sit for 24 hours. And look! There it goes - gap gone, wing set at the correct angle and I'm as happy as Larry with this - assuming Larry is happy. Somehow, just for once in my life this project is actually tracking along really smoothly. Things just seem to have been working out OK ever since the dihedral was sorted. Something must be about to go wrong, but I'm not complaining. It's unusual to have things going right so I might as well enjoy it while I can. Thanks for following along. Bandsaw Steve.
  4. Bandsaw Steve

    Avro 504K, 1/32, Scratchbuild

    Hello Redshift That’s great news! Am really looking forward to seeing your project. My first scratchbuilt aeroplane was a Spitfire MkXIV. I’ll stick some photos of it on here soon.
  5. Wow! That must have required some serious dedication to have built that! Great result.
  6. Bandsaw Steve

    Avro 504K, 1/32, Scratchbuild

    Fuselage The astute among you may have noticed that this model already has a fuselage, so what gives with this post? Well the current fuselage is a fairly basic affair mostly comprising of 90 degree angles and flat surfaces. By contrast the real aircraft's fuselage has quite a few subtle geometrical complexities for example a 'turtleback' shaped deck over the rear fuselage. Better get on with it then... If you have been following these builds you know my modus operandi by now so I won't need to write much. I've said it before; building stuff this way involves learning a few simple techniques, getting passably OK at them and then just repeating them over and over again. Matt_ I hope your 'young un' is listening to my wise words on this - if he keeps at it, by the time he's in high-school he'll be better at this than I am! From what I've seen he's made a good start already. Anyhow...cut out the bit of paper... Find a good bit of wood and stick it on - in this case the wood is 'bass-wood' from the local hobby shop and it's magnificent to work with. Look at this,, this carving business is just like peeling an apple - only easier. Sand to shape when you get too lazy to use the chisel. Use this fabulous fret saw to cut out the cockpit opening. My dad uses an electric scroll-saw quite a bit for this kind of work but I don't have one. Must get one sometime. This is where the pilot's head and shoulders will stick out. At least it would be if I was giving this one a pilot. I'm thinking it's going to be on the ground with some crew beside it - perhaps doing the paperwork before the next flight. And no Hendie - I'm not carving the b#$%&&y pilot... that would require skills far beyond my ability. Now turn the job through 90 degrees and make the decking taper to a very thin wafer towards the rear of the aircraft. Something like this... There was still a bit more to come off when I took this photo but you get the idea. Now carve out the 3d turtleback shape. Again, basswood - just beautiful to work. Naturally a bit of sanding followed soon after this shot, but I doubt you want to see yet another photo of something being sanded! Leaving this. The overhanging section of deck is arranged like this so that the fuselage behind the pilot will appear hollow. Now thin down the big thick block directly behind the cockpit to enhance the appearance of 'thin-ness' and 'hollowness' There was probably a bit of 'skill' used here but not as much as you might think. The sharp chisel and the beautiful wood made this relatively easy. Just take your time, keep checking the effect, and do this cut-by-cut, slice by slice. See what I mean. Now to the casual observer looking through the cockpit the fuselage will appear hollow and the top deck will appear thin. The main fuselage was still a bit over-width, but a couple of minutes with the belt-sander fixed that. OK - fuselage rear upper deck is under control. Now let's have a look at the wing roots. The first shape I cut out a month or so ago is not really satisfactory. I'm going to revisit this - now I have a more cunning plan. Mark out the revised shape - note that the floor under the cockpit really is getting thin. Cut, saw, sand etc until you get a rectangular rebate in the base of the aircraft. The wing sits completely in that rebate now - it did not fit before. From here I'm going to cut a block of wood that fits into the rebate. Fit the wings at the correct angle onto that block of wood and then fix the block into the rebate. Told you I was making this up as I went along. I feel like I'm making good progress at the moment and am really enjoying this project. Hope all you people in internet world are as well! Best Regards, Bandsaw Steve.
  7. Bandsaw Steve

    Avro 504K, 1/32, Scratchbuild

    OK Hendie - the fuselage it is. Watch for an update later tonight!
  8. Bandsaw Steve

    Avro 504K, 1/32, Scratchbuild

    Well done Max and Mike, Roxy Music it is. Generally a safe bet with me. I generally try to restrict myself to one mention per thread of my favourite rock band of all time but the photo was there in the background, so what was I to do? Do a Britmodeller search for ‘Roxy’ and you will see that there seems to be a small Roxy Music cult developing on this site. @71chally seem to be the ringleader but there are others - self included. 🎟
  9. Bandsaw Steve

    Avro 504K, 1/32, Scratchbuild

    Wow! That looks like very tidy work. Nice and sharp clean edges!
  10. Bandsaw Steve

    Scratchbuilt 1/144 Avro Bison 1A

    Great work here! Don’t let that 1:1 scale ‘real life’ nonsense get in the way of this much more important project!
  11. Bandsaw Steve


    Fantastic outcome Adey! And may I also compliment you on the tidiness, cleanliness and beautiful simplicity of your work area. I aspire to a workspace like that but just cannot ever manage it.
  12. Really good work here! I can see several ideas getting stolen from here and used on my Avro 504 build.
  13. Bandsaw Steve

    Avro 504K, 1/32, Scratchbuild

    Yea! My mock Shakespeare just scored its first ‘like’. Congratulations @AdrianMF I always had you pegged as a man of culture and learning amongst the less discerning masses.
  14. Bandsaw Steve

    Avro 504K, 1/32, Scratchbuild

    That’s all good! Many of us here will have started somewhere pretty similar to that. I know I did! For me it makes doing all this even more worthwhile if there’s even a chance that it will spark an interest for some ‘young-un’ somewhere.
  15. Bandsaw Steve

    Avro 504K, 1/32, Scratchbuild

    That’s just fantastic news Matt! In fact that makes my day. I am now waiting with great anticipation to see what comes of his project. If I may offer just one piece of advice it would be this - see if you can find him some good quality carving wood. It can make all the difference. When I did this as a kid I used a lot of cedar as it’s very easy to work. I would suggest avoiding the ubiquitous ‘ pinus radiata’ (white pine) as it good for building houses but discouraging to carve. Good luck!
  16. Bandsaw Steve

    Avro 504K, 1/32, Scratchbuild

    Getting on with it! Hmmmm…. The last substantive post had no commentary at all. That was the 'Modelling in Mime' post. That post scored 11 'likes' My next post after that was in my very best mock Shakespeare - it was in iambic pentameter and everything. Not that I think anyone noticed. In fact that post has got zero 'likes' so far... … zero... and a call to 'get on with it'... Oh well... genius's are rarely appreciated in their own lifetime... Seems I'd better just 'get on with it'... 'And trim't to a spar' said Mr Mock Shakespeare so those biscuits have to go folks. Leaving two sets of wings as shown. Lot's of holes and gaps and dents and things to clean up with some car body filler. And all of this scrap - kinda cool really. Looks like my hair in the morning! Use lots of filler - it's good stuff. Smells bad though. Sand, sand, sand. Start with the coarse paper and move to the smooth. You know the drill. I found that that jig that I made for plan 'B' worked really well as a support for the wings while sanding them as it's specifically made to hold them at exactly the correct dihedral. And after a good dose of sanding I've got something like this. Note the bit of damage on the trailing edge - still to work out exactly how I'm going to fix that. I decided to get rid of the 'sticky-outy' bits on the top of the lower wing. I don't think I'll use them to attach the wing to the fuselage and they were getting in the way of the sanding. All gone... Now we can see that the dihedral in both wings is almost exactly equal - that's a good result. Following my recent success using white spirts to clean up paper templates that I had stuck to the wood I used it again to clean up the sanding dust and other residue and give the wood this 'faux' polish. It's only shiny here because it's still wet. And here's where we are up to now. Not looking too bad. Not sure what I'll do next. There's plenty more to do on the wings but from here I'm confident they won't be show-stoppers for the rest of the project. I now think that the wings are under control. From here I could move onto the cockpit or the fuselage or the tailplanes or the engine cowling. Plenty of options now. Bardsaw Steve
  17. Bandsaw Steve

    New Zealand joins the P-8 club

    And a good thing too! A key capability for a nation with NZ’s geography.
  18. Looking forward to this resuming.
  19. Bandsaw Steve

    1/48 "What If?" - Stealth Viper

    Sorry but it’s got some accuracy issues. To me it looks a lot more like Harry Potter under his invisibility cloak.
  20. Bandsaw Steve

    Latest What If? RNZAF AMX A-1B Kārearea (Falcon)

    FWIW I agree. This struck me as a capable and relatively affordable Skyhawk replacement but it never stood a chance. Never got a chance I should say.
  21. Bandsaw Steve

    Pegasus Nautilus 1/144

    That’s it! I’m never going scuba diving again!
  22. Kick-off Hello, I have spent the last 6 months working on a scratchbuilt Mig 15 and that project is now drawing to a close. http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235012524-mig-15-scratchbuild/& Consequently, I've been thinking a lot about my next project and after much deliberation, including considering a very, very wide range of possible subjects, I have decided to try something completely different to my usual aviation related fare. I am going to try to build His Majesty's Australian Submarine AE2. This is a project that I has been in the back of my mind for over a decade now and when a fellow modeller offered to lend the following set of plans to me, all thoughts of other projects evaporated. In my view Allied submarines in WW1 are under represented in the modelling world, so I'm going to try to do my little bit to correct this. AE2 was an early E-Class submarine operated by the Royal Australian Navy. On the evening of 25 April 1915 (while the Gallipoli landings were underway) she successfully penetrated the extremely formidable Turkish defences in the Dardenelles Straight and proceeded to 'run amok' in the sea of Marmara. During a short-lived but very intensive period of raiding she caused considerable disruption to Turkish attempts to reinforce and supply their defences on the Gallipoli peninsula. On the 30th of April AE2 was damaged by the Turkish torpedo boat Sultanhisar and, unable to dive to safety, her captain decided to scuttle her. All hands survived the scuttling and spent the rest of the war as P.O.W's in Turkey where they suffered terribly. Four of the vessel's compliment of 32 died during their incarceration. In 1998 the wreck of the AE2 was located and found to be in remarkably good condition, mostly due to it's partial immersion in anoxic mud. A thorough campaign to preserve the wreck in-situ continues to this day. The possibility of recovering the wreck has been discussed at length, and although probably technically feasible would be a very high risk and highly expensive project. So - in the meantime a model will have to do! I have not yet started any physical construction - so there's not a lot to see yet but, most unlike me, I have been conducting some additional research. And just as well too because it turns out that the drawings above are for a mid-war configuration E-class submarine which in some significant regards was different to the early war AE2. For example, the mid war submarine had a gun mounted ahead of the conning tower and had two forward torpedo tubes instead of AE2's single tube. There are other differences also. Suffice to say that this set of plans from the RAN's historical page on their website will help me nail down the correct configuration. The model itself will be: 1 / 100 scale Waterline - surface trim Scratchbuilt - although I might resort to some aftermarket details here and there. It will not be a cutaway (despite various people suggesting the idea) Predominantly made from wood, but expect to see some brass and plastic sheeting and a few other bits and pieces as well. I am hoping to have physical construction under-way this week and am aiming to have it finished by the end of 2017 but really don't have any idea how long this will take as I'm completely new to this maritime modelling lark. My plan for this job is basically to 'muddle through' so any encouragement and expert advice from the sidelines will be most appreciated! Best Regards, Reconcilor
  23. Bandsaw Steve

    HMAS/m AE2, Scratchbuild

    The Last Post! Well this is it, the last step in this project which will involve, of all things figure painting! A field about which I have practically no experience and expertise at all. Truth be told, finding appropriate figures was damned tricky. I'm building at 1/100 scale and figures at that scale are relatively rare. As luck would have it though, there's a specialist wargaming shop here in Perth and they had a small set of 1/100 scale Afrika Korps officers that I thought with a bit of panel beating might fit the bill. And here they are set up as a dry run. One of the guys was just the right height to rest his hand on the dodging screen which looked great. I was especially pleased with the guy with the binoculars, he looked like he was alert and interested in where the boat was going but still relaxed. I thought he was a natural fit for this environment. So I decided these would be my crew. The only alteration I made to the these German gentlemen was to file down the crown of their desert caps and stick some discs of plastic sheeting on top. This gave them all SD caps. I probably could have done a bit more with these figures, but they are pretty small and fairly well hidden in amongst all of that stuff on the top of the bridge. So I just left them like this... undercoated them... and brush painted white shirts and black uniforms. I gave each of them a black tie, since they were all officers. It was just as well too, because this hid the fact that one was wearing an iron cross around his neck. I mixed up some flesh coloured oil paints, and slapped it on the fleshy bits. Give each officer some gold braid - a bit rough and probably a bit too 'yellow' but there you go. Some two-part epoxy saw these chaps stuck in place. And that's it folks - this WIP thread finally complete! Those of you have been following along will know that this model was actually finished in April 2018 and that these final threads have just been here to complete the story. If this project is new to you please feel free to use this link to have a look at the RFI thread. And now it remains only to thank everyone who offered advice, encouragement and interest in this project. The fact that so many people have viewed, 'liked' and commented on this project has offered me a lot of encouragement throughout. I really am not sure that I would have reached the end without the input and support that the Britmodeller community has provided. Thanks again. Bandsaw Steve.
  24. Exceptional work Mindmax. Have just read the whole thread and am very impressed.
  25. Bandsaw Steve

    Cessna 150 - Revell 1/48

    That was fun. Thanks for posting it. I liked seeing the LEGO being used as a jig. I’ve long advocated that to the dismay of some of my model-building mates who want nothing to do with the ‘L’ word.