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  1. Giorgio, great work--given all you coaxing with filling issues around the nose/engine, I am really looking forward to how you will sort out the finish--looking strong! Best, Erwin
  2. @The Spadgent--Johnny great point above and thank you for the compliments. I think I need to try the wash after decals for my Kate--I think it snuck by on the F4F-4 given the desire to re-create a relatively new subject. The Midway B5N2 will be well worn, but not trashed. Beyond the accuracy point, your outcomes are always fabulous with Flory's washes, so I have great examples Question for you and the forum--where can I get Flory Wash here in the States, or is there a good substitute folks recommend. Best, Erwin
  3. Finally got a few minutes to catch up the blog. As expected, Airfix's decals went on with no issues. Just a few quick research items to cover. (1) Airfix stated this aircraft flew from USS Yorktown (CV-10) at Midway--it did not, it actually flew from USS Yorktown CV-5 before it was sunk--this oversight made me question the decal placement guide & here is what I learned from my research for my interpretation. (2) The under wing stars are not directly under the top side stars--I used @Dana Bell's book as a reference (used for both wings and fuselage) along with some of the photos below (one of the photos which shows this to great effect are CV-6 Wildcats during the Doolittle Raid--while these had the "meat balls", all one needs for evidence for overpainting/star placement is the Wildcat found near the USS Hornet wreck.) (3) This Wildcat likely did not have Hamilton Standard propellors--but Airfix provided decals for them (fortunately the stencils at the base of the propellor are good representations of the technical data on what I believe is a Curtiss Electric Constant speed propellor--as an aside, I do not think there were Curtiss Electric seals on the props during this timeframe) (4) I used the photo of Ensign Bass's Wildcat from VF-3 during the battle of Midway to assist with placing the squadron insignia--I am not sure the Squadron insignia's were on this aircraft given my period photo which is very grainy. Nearly all other VF-3 F4F-4s appear to have the squadron markings on the Hawaii photos taken just before the Battle of Midway While I am pointing out a lot of where I think Airfix missed the mark, I think it is important to stress the above concerns are relatively minor details--I learn from lots of folks like @Jackson Duvalier who share their research. To my eye, all the colors are on point & the decal sizes/number/letter fonts look spot on. I really only bought up my propellor concern as it is easily corrected with what Airfix provided. I also agree with Johnny @The Spadgent that the clear parts on these kits are amazing--especially for the price point. Once I settled the decals down with Microscale decal solutions, I applied a Mission Models Flat Clear coat that went on without issue & de-masked--I am now officially a fan. I always get concerned when I apply a new brand of Flat Clear coat given an outcome on one of @billn53's build (I think it was either an F-105 or F-4). Following the Flat Clear coat, I applied minor weathering and am getting excited to attach the gear. It should really compliment the model's engine work--I was really nervous about attempting the Wildcat's very open (in my opinion) engine/well well area, but really think this is working out well. While I look at @giemme's and other super detailed builds, I do not think 1/72 lends itself to making further details of engine/well area worthwhile given how little light penetrates this area. Thank you all for your thoughts and ideas on how to improve or issues with my research. Best, Erwin Enterprise Wildcats during Doolittle Raid Ens Bass from VF-3 (USS Yorktown CV-5) landing on USS Hornet during Battle of Midway USS Hornet CV-5 wreck Wildcat Late 1942/early 1943 F4F-4--not blue wheel hubs VF-3 F4F-4s May 1942 in Hawaii Now on to the model Overview of a decaled/gloss coated F4F-4 Flat coat, de-masked, decaled/ flat coated prop mounter prop--really glad I spent the effort on the engine The inter coolers made it through masking and painting in the forward wheel wells along with the engine's rear internals Best build photo showing Grumman Grey/Cammo Grey contrast
  4. Honored to have been asked, but my knowledge of the F-84 program is limited--but, in addition to @72modeler & @RidgeRunner, I find @Sabrejet is always a cash money start for USAF aircraft of this era--I will probably be begging him for F-86 advice soon --Best, Erwin
  5. Johnny, great work--I never thought of using paper towels for masking--now I can credit you for another technique in my builds--best, Erwin
  6. Amazing work G--reference @Gene K fuel tank comparison--while I understand there are quite a few updates are required of Monogram's venerable 1/48 & 1/72 F-4C/D kit to match today's standards, it is remarkable to me how much they did get correct in that molding--regardless, this is outstanding--particularly enjoyed the cockpit update--best, Erwin
  7. G @giemme— thank you. @Jackson Duvalier—great question, I used 3 sources to place the light 1) line drawing in the book “WW2 in Review”(sized to Airfix dimensions on .ppt) 2) Arma Hobby F4F-4 spruce line drawings & 3) the Midway photo above. I then carefully took a small drill bit that matched the line drawings—with 3 turns I had a well placed/sized light—goal was an indentation not a hole—this was followed by Tamiya silver. I will create the lens with Microscale’s Krystal Klear when I reinstall the lights after the decals and follow on clear coats—thanks for the question—best, Erwin
  8. G, you nailed the area I thought looked unique—agree that eliminating a top seam concern is a good thing—cheers Erwin
  9. Thanks @billn53, Johnny @The Spadgent & G @giemme--really appreciate the support and your inputs The top coat painting will go fast, although I think the hard work really was the research surrounding the correct Grey Blue (Mr Hobby) & the underside grey (AK Real color) based off of Color Coates interpretations which I think set the industry standard for WW2 paint chip matches. With that said, I am excited that I now have their thinner on order, so I can try Color Coats on my Kate or future Hellcat builds. I also need to thank the gents above along with quite a few others who helped me get to the point where I view the base coat with the same importance as the top coats. Beyond color selection, the key to the outcomes below were thinning the paint and low air brush pressure (about 12 -15 PSI with a 75% thinner mix). I painted the underside AK's grey first (2 coats followed by touch ups), masked and then touched up the topside pre shade. The top side was then painted Mr Color Blue Grey (about 12 -15 PSI with a 75% thinner mix)--similar to the grey I did 2 coats. Based on my conversations on this thread with @Jackson Duvalier, I was tempted to change gears and do a USMC Guadalcanal F4F-4 to show off the weathering with a single touched up thin Blue Grey coat, but I decided to stay the course for a newer Midway USN carrier based aircraft. As many have reported, I was very pleased with how AK's/Mr Color's paint preformed and will use them again. I apologize that I forgot to take a picture of the grey underside only, so the photos below pick up with top side painting. I then used Mission Models Gloss Clear Coat--I was super impressed! It went on oder less and is very durable--it stood up to Tamiya's panel line accents very well (Actually better than the Testors stuff, is thinner and doesnt smell up the place). About the only thing I want to try that I havent attempted yet is Flory's Model Wash (I believe it is water based--Johnny has got spectacular results in other builds). My washes and pencil work concentrated on the wing fold area, control surfaces and the engine area with the Tamiya products/pencils I had on hand. The aircraft is now ready for decals--very happy with how this is turning out compared to period references. Once thing I noticed is that this model's paint scheme captures how hard the Blue-Grey color is to nail down given various light sources--on the real Wildcat this was also magnified by operational use. Up next are the decals Thank you all for your thoughts, best Erwin Mission Models Gloss Coat Tamiya Panel lines/initial dry brushing/pencil work complete--amazing color difference between flash/no flash which seems to correspond to period color photo color differentials Denote the newly added under wing light Airfix omitted--this was a feature of F4F-4 Wildcats--period photo below from Midway showing this is not a late model add and model's gloss coated/minimally weathered underside
  10. Johnny, Johnny, I have no doubt that it will be an eye watering result, and I just revealed I am hobbyist and not a curator when it comes to following paint schemes--your reflector gunsight is far from a "hobby" outcome--very convincing result! Best, Erwin
  11. G, echo everyone else's comments--fantastic work But that is the standard you set. Your build inspired me to purchase the Fine Molds early USAF F-4E (eventually I will leave 1/72 prop fighters ). I am really interested in how you will sort out (as I know you will) the top part of the nose--this element of Fine Mold's F-4E seemed unique (not wrong, just different) to me. In the meantime, well done! Best, Erwin
  12. Hello everyone, moving on to a really exciting part of the build--painting! Pictured below is the cleanly primed aircraft and my pre shade effort. The primer is Tamiya Grey primer and the pre-shade black is 75% thinned Tamiya flat black sprayed at about 12 PSI from my Badger Patriot (basically the lowest pressure where I got consistent flow). I went a little heavier around the wing fold, control surfaces and frequently opened engine areas. My objective is to create a base barely breaking up a relatively new aircraft. When I made P-40E representing a fresh made aircraft, I did not pre-shade, nor did I apply really thin top coats. G @giemme, Johnny @The Spadgent, & Bill @billn53 pointed out that a well controlled pre-shade/thin top coat could enhance model representing a freshly made machine and reduce the "toy"like feel. I felt I used this advice to great affect on my Typhoon MK1B/Fw-190 A-8 builds, but these aircraft had significantly more complex schemes than the F4F-4 Wildcat. Looking forward to how this technique will turn out on the blue top/grey bottom scheme. Looking forward to applying a thinned out airbrush scheme to this primed/pre-shaded aircraft. Thank you all for looking--best, Erwin
  13. @The Spadgent you are too kind--I was looking at yours and thinking the wings would look different and interesting folded--your F4F-4 came out smashing --G, @giemme--its no longer a bug, its a disease--thanks to you guys I now look at a Fine Molds Phantom price as an investment--too think it all started years ago with you, Johnny & Martin @RidgeRunner advising me to "thin my paint" on those F-105s--best, Erwin
  14. Bill, well done--I almost want to put it up against a VTANG EB-57 or F-4D or a Maine ANG F-101--its a great replica of that time period/era. Cant wait for the A-10 -- best, Erwin
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