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greggles.w

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  1. Sincere thanks both @Malc2 & @ianwau for engaging in such detail and with such specifically targeted advice. I'm not unfamiliar with ‘the banyans’, with my last (first!) effort at vacforming engine cowling components resulting in this likeness to Angkor Wat!! .. all that to create these .. .. from this buck .. .. which after much trial and error was supported on this for the definitive draws .. Now I do not post the above to assert expertise! That was grossly inefficient & a new approach was clearly needed. Gents, I do like your examples & advice that ‘parts’ can be drawn from a whole buck. I had the mental block that a half-output required a half-buck, this gives me more options to consider … thanks again!
  2. I’ve been diverted, but back at it … I’ve carefully sanded back all faces of the cowl wood buck, all quite unscientific.. trial & error with option to vary plastic sheet thickness? I’ve also had a go at this distinctive J5P Gipsy Major 10 cowl detail, starboard side, lower panel, an oil cooler scoop I believe.. I found nice fine diameter timber dowel sold for a pittance at a sewing & crafts store, from which I shaped the projecting portion, then I carved out the concave inverse … (the oblique lighting shows the general recessing of timber relative to adjacent plastic. The yellow tape marks the removable cowl side panel-lines for reference) I’m planning to stand the buck up like so for vacform draw.. When the glue is cured tomorrow I’m thinking I’ll drill a hole vertically down into that circular oil-cooler face, right through to the base to try to draw the vacform plastic into the scalloped recess. Though it looks otherwise in that image above, the projecting bit is not actually ‘undercut’, instead it’s true vertical, while the cowl tapers in from it. As shown here from plan view … So I think it should vac OK (?!). We shall see …
  3. Yes, rest assured, will do & in any case Ian, know I will not hold you to blame for any error on my part!
  4. Oh! Didn’t think of that .. d’you mean make some sort of casting of this bit of wood, then vac down into that cavity?
  5. .. whittling, so satisfying! Lovely wood to work with this basswood .. And then filing & coarse sand … Now I ‘just’ need shave off an allowance all-round for the vac-form plastic thickness. For some reason this has me quite nervous .. how much, & how to judge an even reduction? Need ‘just’ give it a go I guess …
  6. I see in my last post I was promising filler next .. but I’ve found something to procrastinate on instead. The cowling. Once again the kit MkIII part is quite different from the later Autocar. In part this is associated with that bulkhead change, but also engine mount changes to maintain centre of gravity concurrent with all the other variant airframe changes, and not least a change from cowl sides lapped & venting to cowl sides flush with fuselage and venting out bottom only. So I’m preparing a block of basswood to shape into a buck for vacforming a new cowl. This part will extend from bulkhead out to meet the kit cowl face (which happily looks the part) … .. it’s not so clear to see in that image, but there’s been quite a bit of geometric gymnastics to get this far. That block in profile is actually a backwards reclining parallelogram. I found it useful to draft various lines and angles on blue painters masking tape laid out on cutting mat, which were then transferred across to guide trimming the block faces. From here it gets a bit more free form trimming, whittling & sanding ..
  7. So fabulously flamboyant! Looking good.. Re the leading edges, well I’m with @Malc2 .. best leave alone, & stop telling people! I’m afraid - like you - that the risk far outweighs the possible gain. The only option I could think of which might minimise risk would be to make use of that scan you took of the decals, & have a duplicate set printed. You could then harvest little off-cut strips, without needing to meddle with your fuselage decals, all the while knowing that decal error is much easier to fix than touch-up paint gone awry. .. & if it goes real bad you can print a 3rd set!! The unknowable in the above flimsy plan is the colour-match of the printing …
  8. Sublime! I’m not sure how I missed this earlier .. thanks Matt! That patina is gorgeous. Reminds me, when I was working on the Knight Twister & posted a WIP update of it largely test-assembled but unpainted, someone suggested then that I ought leave it as polished white-metal. I seriously considered it. But these raw brass masters have a higher level, fine-art authority to them! Not for me to tell you what to do, but were you to bring these all along to a show (Telford your local??) then you might be pleasantly surprised by the level of interest & appreciation they provoke ..
  9. Such a dazzling scheme, a good start. Glad you wisely scanned the decals earlier, should give you some comfort as you proceed …
  10. Welcome & thanks Colin! Pleased you approve of the ribbing .. although we're only halfway through the process, let's see how they perform when the filler goes on. That said, I am pleased to report they are now complete, with the underside finished. The MkIII Auster (top in image below) had a discernibly 'concave' under-side profile - correctly replicated in the Sword kit - while the Autocar (bottom in image below) had the reverse, with a notably 'convex' belly.. As can be seen with the dashed innards on the drawing, I don't believe this actually delivered any additional useful internal space. It seems the form was bulked-out for a general impression of roominess when viewed externally. The floor still sits at the bottom steel frame longeron, with a timber frame & stringers below as shown here in this helpful diagram from the manual ... ... which allowed me to dutifully replicate in brass packed up on styrene bits'n'pieces ... And here's the comparison: belly concave / belly convex .. (... and engine bulkhead vertical / sloping again) So I'm going to let all that chemical fully cure. I've bought my tin of car 'bog' as suggested, ready for the next step!
  11. Another image-less post .. I raised a query re undercarriage length on an Auster enthusiast F’Book page, and amongst the responses was a Richard Rudd - since confirmed to be THE Richard Rudd, pilot of this machine on this epic flight! What a happy coincidence!! Now in conversation, already yielding a surprise - the tail colour was apparently a dark Matt green, not grey as I thought.
  12. Not a model update tonight, just an extract from a newly uncovered account of this machine’s epic flight. Uncovered in February 2021 Air Pilot, an account of the 1969 BP Air Race by the pilot of another Auster - 1944 J1N G-ARGT - which was an offical entrant (“the slowest aircraft in the race”). Along the way they kept company with Richard as he shadowed the participants. Amongst the various anecdotes was this amazing one about our machine & pilot Richard Rudd: “… Some considerable time after his fuel would have run out our man appeared looking a little disheveled. He had landed in the desert [the Rann of Kutch, straddling the disputed Pakistan - India border] after the cable controlling his left aileron had come off a pulley just above his head.The immediate effect was to cause the aircraft to roll to one side which must have given him quite a fright. Somehow he managed to land the aircraft operating the loose cable with one hand and moving the other aileron with the joystick. At any rate he was safe and sound and we would meet again en route.” !!!
  13. Great find! Congratulations, one could almost believe it found you!! Great aircraft, next please!
  14. Many thanks Ian for the targeted vacform advice, very much appreciated! Not to be immediately drawn upon, but bookmarked for the hopefully not-too-distant future! The next step in that direction: engine bulkhead. Yet another variation to the kit required! The J5 series - including the subject J5P - introduced a sloping engine bulkhead, in contrast to the earlier vertical arrangement. This pair of Austers make the contrast, foreground being the vertical as per the kit, background being the reclining to be replicated.. After examination of references it seems it’s not that the whole plane was reclined, so much as the ‘chin’ juts forwards. This arising from the geometry of the spaceframe within, presumably to give increased foot-room while avoiding any reconfiguring of the upper windshield & instrument area. This Autocar image shows it clearest. The top 1/4 is vertical, down to the cowl panel joint, then the lower part slopes away forwards .. .. well that’s my best surmise! So a wedged piece of thick styrene sandwiched between thin & slapped on the front face like so .. .. the vertical jig ‘A’ was pulled off & repurposed as a shelf of sorts .. the flexibility of cardboard jigs .. After that thin sheets laminated to both ‘cheeks’ & sanded back to resolve the form .. And with that diversion done, I dutifully returned to finish off the long brass stringers down the flanks .. 24x of them, top & sides .. one of those tasks I’ve learnt are best counted after rather than before! Only 3x remain along the belly .. actually .. then it’ll be ready to ‘bog-up’!
  15. .. inching along this week. A little effort to prepare for stringers down the flanks. First gouging out trenches into which the end of the brass rod can disappear.. Then some linking projecting webs. All getting quite small & fiddly, so these went on overly tall & then were sanded down, with much squinting to sight down the sides with a scrap length of brass in place…
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