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About Phantome

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    Obsessed Member

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    Isle of Dawgs
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    Planes. Ale.

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  1. I'm really looking forward to this. Detailing looks amazing, Cartograph details, full weapons load. The units in the decal sheet are a bit meh in my opinion but thankfully there's no shortage of aftermarket options. Hopefully the price range will be acceptable, if it's priced similarly to their recent F-15E should be around £25. The obscene cost of the GWH and Fine Molds kits (the latter without weapons no less) is a huge turn off (although GWH's latest F-14A boxing with Wolfpak markings looks a-m-a-z-i-n-g).
  2. Hello, Does anyone have an idea what the color were Tomahawk cockpits behind the rear windows? It is my impression that US aircraft tended to use the fuselage color rather than the interior color, but most desert Tomahawk pictures show a darker shade. Were they perhaps left in Olive Drab from the factory? Sadly I could only find one color pic but it's inconclusive. Thanks!
  3. As for aftermarket, I think there has been a missed opportunity to expand the possibilities from the Tamiya kit which is limited to the Block 50 by design: the beer cans are fixed to the wings, the wing pylons are also fixed which means you can't add an older style AIM-9-only pylon. I do not think Tamiya is going to bother with a Block 40/42/42 or early C blocks anytime soon as they would have done so already. And so you would have expected the aftermarket community to step in to the rescue at an opportunity like this... and as usual, they haven't. Nobody has bothered to make narrow intakes, or holographic HUDs, or older style wheel covers and landing lights to be able to do earlier versions. But hooray, we have 3 different resin wheels! That'll surely bring in the £££ millions... Honestly, a lot of these aftermarket companies couldn't see a business opportunity if it bit them... you get the picture.
  4. There's really only 3 kits to consider right now for F-16: Academy, Revell, and Tamiya. The Hasegawa is moot because for any version you want to build, there is a better option. Here's a breakdown of the variants and which kit is best and why: F-16A (All blocks) - Revell. You have a choice of vertical stabilizers including the older type with the straight trailing edge. ALL Revell boxings can be made into an F-16A and gives you Dutch and Belgian options for the fins. F-16AM MLu - Revell. Same as above, it is essentially the A kit with AMRAAMs and pylons, different cockpit, and a just a few other MLu tidbits. All new pieces are in an extension to one of the existing sprues. F-16C Blocks 25/30/32 - Revell. All C boxings will allow you to build any of the early C blocks. They also allow you to build all A and AM versions too (all C-specific bits are in a new sprue). F-16C Block 40/42 - Academy. It's the only kit which has holographic HUDs. However, the nose and intakes are very inaccurate and the wheel covers aren't bulged. F-16C Block 50 - Tamiya. No brainer. One of the best 1/72 kits ever made, just make sure you get the one with weapons. F-16C Block 52 - Academy or Revell. Neither has the bulged wheel covers but Revell doesn't include the new landing gear, only the new wheels. If you have an extra HUD from the Academy kit, you could also turn the Tamiya into a Block 40. It's the only major difference aside from the reinforcement plates which neither kit comes with but you can get as aftermarket. If you got the Academy KF-16 kit you'd also get early LANTIRN pods so you could make an 1990s-era aircraft with it (these are not included in the USAF kits) and also easily surgically replace the wingtip pylons for the older type. I'm planning to do this at some point to make a Gulf War Block 40. I have built all three kits at least twice and I would rank them as follows: Accuracy: 1) Tamiya 2) Revell 3) Academy (the nose issue IS very noticeable at some angles, the wide intake is awful and the narrow one slightly more bearable but still off) Surface detail 1) Tamiya 2) Academy 3 ) Revell (no rivets, very far behind the other two but still decent) Cockpit detail 1) Revell (one of the best cockpits in 1/72 scale and seat is superb) 2) Tamiya (awful seat! but otherwise is excellent) 3) Academy (arguably better than Tamiya but one major problem... canopy is not designed to be open! You can still manage to do so, but annoying that they didn't offer this option from the start) * All three have excellent wheel well detail and not worth ranking them Fit 1) Tamiya (Unbelievable) 2) Academy (Exceptional too) 3) Revell (mostly good but some parts are a pain, and like many Revell kits has molding quality issues) Things under wings: 1) Academy (ALQ-184, JDAMs, HARMs... LANTIRNs in KF-16 boxing) 2) Revell (ALQ-131, Paveways, HARMs... but no air-to-ground stuff at all on their A or AM boxings) 3) Tamiya (ALQ-184, HARMs) *All have the standard set of Sidewinders and AMRAAMs
  5. I bought the .44 bullets at a fishing/hunting store ages ago and they're too big for most 1/72 radomes. The Su-27 is the only one that they fit neatly. Otherwise, yeah, you'll need a lot of lead weights to fill that nose up but I don't think it needs that much weight to be honest.
  6. I can't speak for the Su-33 but I added a .44 pierced bullet (3-4g?) and a smaller weight (1g or so) to the Zvezda Su-27SM and all good.
  7. Thanks to everyone who has commented or liked the Tonka As further proof that this particular model is cursed, I accidentally dropped a pair of boxer shorts on it, snapping off one of the landing gear and engine exhausts. Fortunately they were clean breaks, and were easily re-attached. Still. I think I will need to encase it in a titanium box stuffed with cotton balls so that it survives more than a month or two.
  8. And here is a Flanker I pulled off in a week and a day. It is actually the first Flanker I do with the standard 3-tone scheme (I built a previous SM with the bright blue two-tone). I cut some corners with weathering and pre-paint rituals to get it done so quickly as I saw this as a test build for further Flankers. As usual, I offer the pros and cons of this kit, the reboxed Revell version of the Zvezda kit: Pros: - The fit, the fit, the fit. This is Tamigawa fit all the way. An absolute delight to build, everything locks on perfectly, most astoundingly the intakes. The words "three-piece intakes" should strike fear into the hearts of any modeler and yet Zvezda pulled this off so brilliantly. I don't think I've ever built a kit this big with such good fit. - Accuracy. Looks like a Flanker. Comments by our resident Flanker expert (Flankerman) say this is the most accurate Flanker in 1/72 scale and I'll take his word. - Good assortment of weapons. Lots of R-27s (including both IR and radar versions), R-77s, and two nice Kryptons. - Very good quality of some parts like the landing gear. Cons: - Surface detail. Zvezda seems to be allergic to rivets, and for a plane of this size, it makes the surface looks rather plain. Additionally, the panel lines are too small and in many parts, could not get a wash to stick to them. - Interior detail. The instrument panel decals are great, but would have been better to have raised detail. Wheel wells are absurdly plain. Not even the remotest attempt to reproduce any detail at all. - Ejection seat. Same as the MiG-29 kits, it's just... oddly engineered. - I'm on the record on a number of threads here on BM saying the Revell kit has superior decals as the original Zvezda because, oddly, the Zvezda has no missile decals at all whereas Revell does. However, now that I have built the Revell, I have realized that many of the decals are oversized and some of the stencils do not match the real thing. Zvezda's cockpit details are also better. I suggest getting the Zvezda and sourcing missile decals from another kit. Painting was done with AKAN paints from their original Su-27 set. I have issues spraying their acrylics and they have an annoying knack of rubbing off sharper edges like wing roots and leading edges, when handled. I also noticed the light gray did not contrast enough with the pale blue, so I used Tamiya XF-19 instead. I think it's a bit too dark, as early Flankers effectively did not show that big a contrast between the two. Metallics were Vallejo Metal Color, steel for the darker tone and dark aluminum for the contrast as well as the gun panels. The cockpit was painted Vallejo dark blue gray (70.904) which is virtually identical to the Sukhoi color. Overall, I'm still quite pleased. I then randomly sprayed a bit of Gunze smoke to add some irregularity. Panel wash was done with Humbrol. Thanks for reading, and enjoy the pics!
  9. Have been on a bit of a Corsair spree this year, building all three of Tamiya's stupendous 1/72 kits (and one FAA one too). This is my first attempt at a Birdcage, my least favorite aesthetically wise but I actually loved how this model came out, more than the others. The aircraft represents Gus's Gopher, flown by 1st Lt Wilbur J Thomas of VMF-213 at Guadalcanal. I used AK Real Colors for the M-485 blue' gray and M-495 light gray paints of early war USN aircraft. I think M-485 is too light, looks great for a faded aircraft though and since most aircraft faded considerably in the Pacific sun, I think it is spot on, but you probably will want to darken it up for a newly painted bird or for repainted patches. M-495 looks accurate too although this one is clearly unfaded. Decals are from a Skymodels decal set, with stencils from the kit's decals. No issues whatsoever with the kit, it is a joy to build. Weathering included a Humbrol panel wash, some oil streaking, pastels for exhaust stains, and some other oil paint for dirtying as well as the cowling oil stains. Thanks for looking!
  10. 1979 - Luftwaffe Tornado IDS, Holloman AFB 1/72 Revell kit, entirely OOB. Paints: Gunze.
  11. Decals nearly done... had another mild catastrophe: lazy me decided to use the gray decals for the swing area of the wings. And when the wings were eventually swung back (accidentally), the decals tore completely and it was a P.I.T.A. to remove. Thankfully, it was ultimately sorted, not without 1-2 hours lost correcting the error.
  12. I was ill last week and swamped with work but managed to advance on the 3rd attempt... nothing broken so far! Paints were Gunze H405 Olive Green for RAL 6003, H309 Forest Green for FS 34079, and H401 Dark Gray for RAL 7021, the three main colors of the beautiful Norm 83 scheme. I found H405 and H309 to be a bit too close to each other and as I understand it, RAL 6003 has changed post-war (H405 is a WW2 color). Still, the results were good enough
  13. Lovely work on a lovely kit! May I ask which paints you used?
  14. They are definitely related. From what I read the basic model (perhaps the 3D models) was used for the later SH kits. Shame that they didn't correct the wings in that case but if the small parts have better fit, the decals and extras will have made it worthwhile IMHO.
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