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Ran

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About Ran

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  1. With the Covid-19 Work-from-home winding down - I have less time building and even less time writing. The VAL is DONE!! - bees so for more than a week but only know I think I may have the time and willing to update. In my last report - the kit was just pre-shaded (heavily) and the prop axis was re-fabricated. These are the tales of the VAL as it progressed to the shelf: Painting started with the red tail (Tamiya X-7) - what a lovely start. Interesting point - the panel lines at the base of the vertical stabilizer are not identical on both sides. Next came the upper green. The pre-wash was way too heavy so it produced a very weary yet clean effect. I though about it for a while and decided to let it go. Then came the gray under side: I hate this gray as it covers sooo badly. It did create a worn out effect which I was half happy with. Last but not least - the black front. I cut out a mask using a scaled print out of the instructions: The paint was Tamiya Semi Gloss Black X-18 with a bit of Metali Blue - X-13. This does really come out in the picture but is a nice tonal break on the kit itself. After some touch ups: This was followed by Alclad Aqua Gloss Clear and some washes: This worked relatively fine on the gray but I decided to waive it on the red tail. These a/c were kept quite clean - so I'm told. I then tried some dark and white washes on the top side: Decided to skip panel washes on the wings and keep in on the engine coaling. I has some thoughts about pin washes - these big steppes of green just call for one. After looking up some ref - it looked like the too-heavy pre-wash is enough. Next came the decals - which performed very good. The yellow stripes with the blue ribbon - another example of great engineering. It took a lot of MicroSet for the decals to conform - by they did at the end. Only at this stage I noticed I'm missing a yellow stripe. Fast-Backwards to the original images: Yup - yellow strips ARE missing. No alternative but paint them: Paint matching was a problem but I gambled on Tamiya Lemon Yellow X-8: Looks good apart from the wiffle up on the right side when removing the masking too early in fear of leakages: This will require some white touch up later on The decals of the wheel pods just suck. They are wrong in size. Luckily I read somewhere that this is a problem and tackled this by putting the decals as good as I could and after setting - added the missing parts not covered by the decals in the front of the pod - with paint. I used MM 4714. For the first time I tried a technique for the wing tip lights: Installing the gunner chair was a big headache. Its amazing how Hasegawa put some very smart engineering on some parts and questionable at best in others. The canopy turned, well - passable: The underbelly bomb is also a nice example of smart engineering - with the holes in the fuselage for the support legs provide firm location and angle: Kit prop was attached with just a drop of CA to the fab-ed axle. Well - this is it - a couple of shots before the format Ready-for-Inspection: So, what did we have here: 1. Fastest kit to day - just under 5 weeks. 2. First time doing wing tip lights 3. Lots of masking 4. Fixing the snapped wing 5. First IJN a/c 6. Re-fab of the kit's prop axle 7. Not getting into AMS Not bad for a could of $ kit off eBay. Comments are welcomed as always. Ran
  2. The VAL is done ! Scanning the stash for the next build is either a quick process - in case you have an idea in mind OR a long one - if you don't I did not - so picking this one took time and I'm not sure why I did or how it connects with the previous builds. The Covid-19 WFH period is nearing its end - so I hope I can still make progress with this build. It's a big one - I may need to re-order my shelves.
  3. I have to say the engineering of putting the cockpit tub and closing the fuselage proved to be excellent. The cockpit sticks in with positive feedback and serve as a huge locator plug for the fuselage Painting and closing up the cockpit was just fun. detail picking done with white and silver pencils and red/yellow paint. Heavy brown/black wash was also applied. Seat belts were also added - an Eduard one for the front seat and an self-made one for the gunner. Then the fuselage halves where glues together, followed by the lower wing and then each upper wing in its turn. This was done to limit the gap at the wing root. I did forgot to drill out the holes for the bomb racks. The cockpit is a pretty darn small space: Canopy masking followed - but I want to forget these hours Then the model was primed, checked, filled, sanded, re-primed with Mr. Surfacer 1500, checked, sanded, re-primed - the whole fun cycle This time I remembered to pre-shade Before walking a way from the bench I had to repair a small mistake I did. I glues the engine without the piece that should hold the spinner axis. I could have opted to just glue the propeller - but AMS kicked in (almost for the first time in this kit). I drilled the engine block through and then improvised an axle That's it Comments are welcomed Ran
  4. This is a BIG kit - even at 1/144. Even the box is something else: Plastic is soft. Gates are horribly close to the parts. Engineering is a mixed bag - as the fit is mostly good. Started with some small parts - painting and gluing and some seam filling and polishing. Then some more parts Then the more tricky ones Note zero locating pins on that one I'm getting closed to painting. I would like to do the Soviet version but I'm looking for good reference on the paint scheme. That's it for tonight. Ran
  5. With the RUFE done and humming with its motor driven propeller its time for the next time. I had a chance to drive to the storage and pick a couple of kits. The A-90 was not on my list but did catch my eyes when looking for something that can be built quick but also can be complicated/AMS'd to a diorama. I don't have any water/gel materials - this will have to wait till they lift the lock-down and the financial situation will be a bit more clear (no shopping as of now) - so it will be a kit only venture at this stage.
  6. Well - it's done ! Final touches included finishing up the antenna mast repair: Building up the diorama base was next: Finishing up touches - spinner, some paint and up it goes ! Then connect all the wires Then some pictures (full pack in 'Ready-for-inspection'): And some videos: Startup - see these wings move ! That was a fun build that also went fast - another pilot, motorized spinner, nice shade of green and a yellow stripe. Probably my fastest build to date. Too bad my airbrush broke down during the build. Comments are welcomed. Ran
  7. As the Covid-19 situation continues - so it the chance to spend time at the bench and the builds progresses so I have little time to update the build log. With the build going so fast - I noticed I take less pictures as well. Following the primer I did the following: 1. Painting the bottom parts with Tamiya XF-12 J.N. Gray. It was so fun - no photos taken. 2. Painted and masked the leading edge yellow strips. 3. You did notice I forgot to pre-shade - so I did that after the Gray. 4. Tons of masking 5. Top cover with Tamiya XF-11 J.N. Green. Lot's fun as well. I did manage to get some different coverage effects with the green. After removing the masks I shop Alclad Klear Cote and then added some washes. The white ones look a bit too pronounced but should look nice. This is especially true for the black coaling. Then it was time for decaling, which went down quite smoothly. Not too many decals. Of course I managed to break the aerial. As the cross section of the part is so small, and the radio antenna IS tied to that part - I devised a way to re-reinforce the mast. First clue: That's all for tonight. Comments are welcomed BR Ran
  8. The envelope from @72modeler arrived today so now I have a pair of wheels (actually two pairs) Thank you very much @72modeler The Rufe and VAL are now on the bench - but the X-1 roll out is getting nearer. Ran
  9. Could not resist Started to paint small parts, build some sub-assemblies, group parts that need the same paint - the usual stuff Some of the engineering is ... well - questionable. Tiny parts with microscopic location pins and no structural support whats so ever. The gunners seat contraption requires you to balance 4 parts in a close formation in 3D space - and then glue them ALL TOGETHER at the same time That's it for today Ran
  10. With all this WFH the Rufe is speeding to its finish and it's time to pick the next one. I was looking at the boxes on the upper shelves trying to notice a rise in the Mojo level. Then I noticed a bag of nylon with parts in it. It turns out it is a kit I picked off eBay and it came in a bag. With some parts off the spruces, some decals missing and the lower wing broken. A kind of a mule bought cheap to hone it my skills. I looked inside and saw its the perfect next build after the Stuka and the Rufe - an IJN dive bomber with fixed landing gear !!!! As it turns out - its also a more complicated kit compared to the last couple of ones so its a good choice. With a bunch of small parts and a total count of 119 parts - its a more challenging kit. The plastic itself is dark green and quite brittle - these will add to the challenge. (I got this off the web ) I started with trying to fix the lower wing: That's it for today Ran
  11. With all this Work-From-Home period - building is proving to be a nice and convenient 'time-out' activity. It also means builds go faster - with less time to sit down and update. The Rufe started with making the basis for the diorama and the part that will allow the model to sit on the little rod provided. Nice engineering by Tamiya - especially the instructions how to make the hole in the fuselage in such a way as to allow for diagonal fitting (its not circular). As this will be part of a diorama (comes with the kit) I decided to model the pilot in seat and use the closed canopy. I also vowed to keep AMS to zero. So - here is the brave pilot - I'm getting to enjoy this but I really need/would like to learn how to make the cloth appear more realistic. Cockpit was painted Metalic Blue - Tamiya X13 - a nice change from the usual greens. knobs and lever where picked with silver/white/red and yellow pencils. Canopy fit was a bit poor - had to shim a bit: I was really controlling my AMS feets until I saw this image of a Hassegawa build by Chip Jean: I just had to add these re-cocking lever of the guns: Engine was painted - and AMS resisted God bless/curse these greenhouse canopies: Used the X-13 as a base for the internal color of the canopy ribs: Next was primer - I do not know why I get these poor results: So - that's it up to know. Comments are welcomed Best Ran
  12. Final touches and I'm done. Smaller bits are always a question of trade-off - install them before painting and take the risk of loosing them along the way OR wait and attach them after painting and risk loosing them or leaving glue marks all over. This kit has it own fair share of small bits an pieces - anyone seen these darn counter balances weights anywhere? The last phase involved adding the support beams, foot rests, bombs, canons, pitot and these darn weights. Also added back the rear facing machine gun and last but not least - the aerial. Some chipping with a brush and silver ink pad followed - first time and I do need to tone this down a bit. Alclad Clear Kote was sprayed to seal it all. Time to remove the canopy mask - a fearful moment in any build. Could have done it better. Then came the weathering brush - to add some some touch up - and we are official done. Here's a peek preview - CU at 'ready for inspection' This was a fun build although the kit is old and very basic. First time in this build: - Painting pilot figures - Pin wash technique - 1/48 70/71 scheme Comments are welcomed Best Ran
  13. In the 'old days' (before the WFH time) I used to update by WIP posts when ever I did find some time to sit near the bench but either did not have enough time or not enough mojo to actually build. These were times devoted to collecting the photos from my Dropbox to my building archive, uploading to IMGUR and getting the muse to write down an update. Since this WFG period started I have many more opportunities and much more time to build (this is the 3rd build so far), I build faster, enjoy it immensely and make progress into the infinite stash (mainly with the small part of it that in-house and not stored away). There is one drawback though - very little time to write updates. In most cases when I sit down to write an update - I end up build So - this kit is almost done (decals went up today) and the next one is also more then half way (It an A6M2-N Rufe) so here goes. This is a simple kits that builds fast, very little in the way of cockpit detail. My original goal when buying this was to practice on painting. Started with the simple things - engine radiator, IP, wheels etc' RLM2 on every surface: The cockpit presented a real dilemma - to AMS or not to AMS. It is soooo bare. I though about adding some boxes and wires but...... decided to skip it this time. Sounds easy but actually took me several rounds of stopping my self from grabbing evergeen bits and pieces. Not even harness. The cockpit was so bare I decied to use the pilot figures - which is VERT rare thing for me. Just when I started working on the pilot - I lost his arm Well - he was demoted to gunner and the gunner was prompted to pilot This is one of the first times I paint figure (and it shows). In hindsight I should have selected a different shade for the flight suit. I want to learn how to add shades and depth to figures - next time. For the spinner axis - I added some evergreen sleeve - so I won't need to attach the propeller right away: Closing the fuselage was next: The instructions calls for glueing the upper halves of the wings to the lower one and then attaching all to the fuselage. I 'smelled' this will create big gaps and opted to use an old trick - the lower part of the wings (1 piece) was glues first and then each upper part was added, while taking care for proper mating to the fuselage. This required actually holding the parts while the glue cured for a couple of minutes.: Next step involved the canopy: Masking @##@$@#$ Some Tamiya flexible tape was needed. The canopies are made from very brittle plastic with huge gates - a nightmare. Fixing the canopy to the fuselage was no walk in the part either and had to be done in several stages. Some of the parts were too wide, some has broken edges. The flame dumpers were drilled, painted black, silver and a filter of brown-red: Wheel pod glued, wheel masked and pods glued: I used Ultimate primer - which was mostly OK shooting with my new Badger Regengade Krome. Pre-shading was done with the new airbrush and it shows - I still need to master narrow lines: The RLM65 (Model Master 4778) followed. I hate this paint - it barely covers and tends to run quite easily. Wingtip were painted Yellow - this time w/o a white background - but this went OK. Only after finishing this I noticed there is a yellow band near the tail (not a decal) - so the yellow had to come out again. The lighter RLM 71 (Model Master 4781) was shot first - skipping the areas later covered with the RLM70 (Model Master 4780). Now it was time for real masking. This kit consumed a LOT of tape and the better part of an afternoon: With most of the RLM71 covered - when I started with the RLM70 I was not sure if this is the same paint or not. Somewhere between the RLM71 and the 70 something went wrong with my Badger and the airbrushing experience shifted from 'WOW I finally understand what they mean by translucent layers and building up the paint and the pre-shading effect' to 'WTF something is clogged". Just then I discovered that the black stepping strips are also NOT a decal. Here goes another masking campaign: Unmasking time !!: Following the unmasking I spent some time touching up and shot three layers of Gloss Alclad in preparation for the next steps. The paint scheme is quite monotonous and the wings are BIG. The kits as raised panels so panel washing was out. I decided to try, for the first time, a pin wash technique I learned over at a Hyperscale forum (Search "Me410: Dot Filter Fever!" by Chuck. I had it saved so I access it locally. You can also check this or this for detailed explanation and examples of this. It starts like that: and goes through several 'OMG what have I done' moments: But if you follow the instructions closely the final effect is very nice - although its hard to photo it: I spent the better part of today's afternoon decaling. The kit is old but the decal preformed superbly after giving them enough time soaking: So not the kit is drying up and the decals are brushed with MicroSol every now and then. Still a couple of small parts - antenna, guns, bombs, before final mat coat. That's it for today. Comments and suggestions are welcomed. Ran
  14. The lock down has its upside - my Ju-87D build goes really fast. It's time for the next one. As my stash is mostly stored and I can't get to it with the lock-down, I have to pick from the couple of boxes I haven't had time to put in storage. This makes selection easier. My next one will be the Tamiya 1/48 A6M2-N Type 2 Float Plane: This is gonna be my first Japanese plane and the first one with a motor driven propeller.
  15. So Its been a while since the last update so here's a quick one. Following the wings and stabilizers gluing it was time to remove the masking, add the wheels and some doors and apply the decals: Here goes: That's it for the time being - I'm waiting for the wheels to come by mail. I've lost the kit's ones and being saved by @72modeler's gracious help. The kits goes on the shelf for a while. Best Ran
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