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Giorgio N

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Everything posted by Giorgio N

  1. Of course each of us will have different interests, but a 1/72 AMX and a 1/32 MC.202 are far from dull and unimaginative choices. The AMX in particular has never been made in plastic in this scale while the MC.202 will be the first mainstream, "normal" kit of the type in 1/32. The 1/48 F-35B is also something that many will find interesting, afterall it's one of the very few new real aircraft to fly in the last 10 years or so...
  2. I did consider this possibility, afterall the original camouflage scheme for Italian bombers consisted of bands of various colours. However the style of the bands in those pictures is not really consistent with the one generally used on Italian aircraft. Then I checked the history of the Hungarian order and these were delivered to the Malert airline, so the camouflage was applied later when the 5 aircraft were militarised
  3. A very interesting announcement and a kit that I may buy when it's finally issued. Hope Italeri will do their homework, none of the existing mainstream kits got the shapes of the Folgore correctly so they have a chance to finally give modellers an accurate model. Fingers crossed.... In the meantime I'll have another look at my 21st Century 205... I really should start this at some point, I even went as far as buying resin wheels and exhausts...
  4. I am of course glad to see the announcement, although I'll be really happy when I see the kit on the shelves... I've heard some rumours but I do not know how much truth is in them, in any case the rumours seem to be positive... for what they are worth. I'll not sell my Cunardmodel resin kit yet though !
  5. I have used Vallejo Model Air metallics and they are actually very good ! I still use them for details and in all those cases where I have to paint an aircraft that was painted in a metallic colour (like RAF aircraft in silver). They are not as good as the Metal Color to represent proper natural metal finishes but they can look the part well enough if seen by themselves. Being cheaper than otn oer solutions, they may be an option for modellers on a budget
  6. We have to be careful here: yes interior green started as a mixture of a number of elements and different companies had different recipes, however this was true in WW2. Before the end of the war a "proper" colour with the same properties had been introduced as ANA 611 and manufacturers were supposed to use this colour.. where I say "supposed to use" because we know that companies took their time to adopt the colour and may well be that some didn't bother too much. By the time the Voodoo was in production however there had been a codified colour for over 10 years, so I doubt that paint companies had to resort to mixing "by eye", by that time they most likely had developed the process to make an Interior Green matching the standard within the allowed tolerances. It may well be that no two batches were identical, but the differences would have remained within the tolerance accepted by the standard and within the typical variations of the specific process used. What then happens after a part is painted is a whole different story of course, and there's also the matter of how the paint is applied and many other variables. As said before, I'm also not sure if the green used was to ANA or FS standard or what.. I do not have any document stating exactly what standard applied in this case. In the 1986 TO 1-1-4 there was a list for each aircraft that included details of things like wheel wells and stated the colours in the then "new system" against the ones in the old system. For the Voodoo the new system requests white FS 17875 but for the old systems states silver FS 17178.. meaning that at some point the USAF requested this colour to be applied in the wheel wells (that it was rarely done may depend on many things, the USAF TO 1-1-4 itself states that any repainting has to occur during scheduled maintenance and a repainting only to bring the aircraft to a new standard is not allowed). How many Voodoos got white wheel wells is debatable since the type was being retired at that point. It's also worth mentioning that the document states not only the colour but also the type of paint to use.. the silver paint mentioned for the wheel wells is a gloss lacquer to standard MIL-L-19537... but the document for this standard does not include FS 17178 in the list of colours for which the paint should be supplied. The same document however mentions the use of clear lacquer and aluminum paste to prepare a protecttive coating for metal surfaces. I suggest looking for this standard online, reading it shows a few things about what specifications for a paint are like.... Interestingly, for other types the colour in the wheel wells in the old system was stated as... yellow ! This includes types like the F-102 and 106 that we know had green wheel wells. Yellow may be a mistake or may be that they meant "yellow green"... so much for finding accurate information in official documents ! This yellow paint was to standard MIL-P-8585, that covered zinc based protective paints, so at least we know that it was one such paint. One last small detail: in the "old system", the relief tube areas on the Voodoo are in grey to standard EC-1335 !!!! Yes, in the previous system the areas related to the relief tube used a different paint as the type used for the rest of the airframe could be damaged by urine. The paint in the new system is specifically stated as urine resistant, so in the new system the paint used for the relief tube areas could be the same as used for other areas. Oh
  7. The Shafrir 2 was introduced together with the Mirages so this was the missile that armed the 50s before the upgrade. The Python 3 was only introduced after the Pantera program.
  8. A couple of comments on second hand kits and their costs: I totally agree with the OP view that the cost of these kits have increased considerably over the last few years, particularly on Ebay. Yes, bargains can still be found (like that £12 Stirling) but it's getting harder and harder every day. I can see a couple of reasons for that...one is the increased interest toward older kits. When I started there were already some OOP kits that were very sought after, for example some Frog kits of '50s British aircraft. Modellers wanted them because they represented subjects that were otherwise unavailable and once other kits of the same subjects appeared, their value dropped (Later many of them reappeared under several brands and today most are easily available, often for little money). There were of course already some "holy grails", those kits that were so rare that some modellers wanted them just for this reason. They were however generally exceptions. Today it's different, today there are more people who are looking specifically at older kits, be it for collecting or because they want to relive the "good old days". This clearly pushes prices up as even if most of these kits were made in the thousands, the supply is in any case limited. The second reason is that the internet today allows everybody to know what the value of something could be. Today many see that there is interest in old kits, they can see websites dedicated to collecting them, they can see specialised shops selling these same kits... in this way many people who used to sell these kits as old stuff have realised how they can sell them at much higher prices. This is something that does not only appkly to ebay, it also applies to model shows and even flea markets, there are more and more dealers who increase their prices on the basis of the collectability of a kit and its perceived value. Even if sometimes this collectability is only in the mind of the dealer... Separate from the problem of prices but an element that makes older kits less convenient is the matter of postage, particularly international. One of my mantras with old kits has always been that the same subject that is very sought after in a country may well be worth nothing in a different country. I well remember how when Classic Airframes stopped production their Hornet in the UK fetched crazy prices while in those same times shops here in Italy were trying to flog them to whoever would take them. I remember buying one for £20 here when £80 was considered a bargain in the UK. In the same way I managed to buy some rare Italian subjects in the UK for prices that I could not hope to find here. Unfortunately now international postage rates make all of this very complicated, particularly after Brexit. That old Airfix kit may still be cheaper in say Germany or italy, however having it delivered often means that any saving is lost. Now is there something we can do ? Not easy really, we can't hope to change the minds of those who absolutely want that Matchbox kit because they built it when 11 and they would spend £30 for a kit that used to retail for £1.50 40 years earlier. And of course we can't hope to change international postage rates as these will only go up for various reasons already discussed. Best we can do is keep our fingers crossed and keep hunting for bargains. Of course bargains can still be found even on Ebay, personally I also think it's worth expanding the search to other potential sources. Some large shops sometime have good sales, may be worth checking them. In some countries there are also other sites dedicated to the sale of second hand goods, it may be easier to find bargains on these sites. Then there are places like flea markets and charity shops... I love flea markets and I've actually found a lot of good bargains there. Now today even at flea markets there are dealers who know well the collectability of certain kits and will try and ask pretty steep prices however at the same time there are many who will not. Often kits sold at flea markets will have beaten boxes and this alone is a good point to raise if the dealer is asking too high a price. Of course there is the risk of having missing parts, so a good check of what's in the box is always good practice ! Charity shops are similar and generally they can be even cheaper. Again boxes may be worn and the content should always be checked. Of course this is only possible a flea market or a charity shop is available in the area. I have the "luck" of living in the suburbs of a large city so public transport will be sufficient to reach a number of such places. I also live close to where one of the largest flea market of the region used to be located and this made it easier for me, others may not be in the same situation. If you have something like that available, do not underestimate what can be found at a flea market ! Yes, most times it will be old Airfix and Revell small kits, often there will be no kit at all, but other times it's possible to find some gems ! Among the kits I've seen (and sometimes bought...) at flea markets are things like Special Hobby kits, the Amodel La.250 or even a 1/48 Hasegawa Sea King... this one for £12 ! Not always guaranteed to find something but worth a try
  9. Yes, they are different colours. Canadian F-101s were painted in a grey made to local specifications coded AA92-A-312, close to FS 16515. Previously the Canadian Voodoos were in natural metal and then in aluminum paint.
  10. This is very true and sometime the cost of paints and tools can be higher than the cost of kits. It should be said that while we have seen a huge increase in the offer of specialised expensive tools, we have also seen the cost of many other tools massively decreasing thanks to the availability of cheap imports. Airbrushes are an example, when I started in the '80s the cheapest airbrush I could hope to find was in the £40-50 range, today I can get a Chinese copy of something for £20 including postage. Or I can get a H&S Ultra for £60, that is considering inflation more than 3 times cheaper than the '80s equivalent while being a much better airbrush. Compressors were even more expensive, today there's plenty of cheap Chinese options that still work pretty well. The same can be said for many other tools, my first set of files costed a fortune compared to the kind of stuff available today in places like what was Maplin (I've yet to come to term to the end of this chain..) and weren't any better.
  11. Thanks for posting these ! I was aware of this project but hadn't followed it in a while. I remember someone here doing something similar, that is building a 1/72 MB5 from a Matchbox P-51D kit. The reason for using this kit was that it only resembled a Mustang anyway so was perfect to build something that was not a Mustang
  12. That sounds interesting and puzzling at the same time... I can understand replacing engines (as long as the Centaurus were supercharged...), but removing the pressurisation and the remote fire control system would have meant removing some of the assets that made a B-29 a machine more modern than others. Guess that an unpressurised B-29 would still have an advantage in range over a Lancaster so would have retained a certain usefulness
  13. I would probably not obsess too much on the correct FS number for the wheel wells: the first FS catalogue was introduced in 1956 and the USAF kept using ANA colours well into the '60s together with the then new FS ones. This of course does not mean that McDonnell used "whatever green they had to hand", most pictures I've seen actually seem to show always the same colour, just that the colour used could have well been made to the ANA standard rather than the FS one. FS 34151 was supposed to replace ANA 611 but the two from what I read are not exactly the same. I have no evidence pointing one way or the other and I guess that for most the difference between these colours are small anyway, so best advice is IMHO to use a green most closely resembling the one visible in the many pictures that can be found of these aircraft, with the caveat that of course preserved aircraft will have likley suffered from wear. Regarding the presence of other colours, like the aluminum in the Coventry aircraft, this does not surprise me as wheel wells were repainted across several USAF types in the '60s. This does not seem to have been common on the F-101Bs but I'd not swear that it never happened, as that specific aircraft seem to show. In any case I'd go with green as the most likely on a model, with red inner doors surfaces and aluminum landing gear legs..unless representing that aircraft
  14. The Aerofax book on the type also mentions green for the interior of wheel wells. And green is the colour I saw on an aircraft preserved in Florida:
  15. I don't think that the Luftwaffe would have ever selected the G.56, Fiat had not only problem in producing engines but also in producing airframes, Producing the G.56 in Germany would have meant setting up production lines from scratch, something that at point of the war would have meant diverting resources that were better used in intensifying production of the existing types. Afterall while the G.56 would have have been a pretty impressive machine, the Fw.190D wasn't really much worse while requiring less resources than setting up new production lines. The same applies to a number of types in that list, introducing a new type needs time and resources, if the new type has serious advantages it may make sense but for a modest increase in capability resources are better spent in the production of what is already well proven.
  16. Speaking of the real aircraft in the list, I have to say that these things often amuse me as aircraft with very different histories are generally thrown together, sometime with no real logic... Now I admit that I'm not really familiar with Japanese and Soviet aircraft development, but considering the others there are very few that I think may have had any sort of success ! IMHO the number 1 would be the G.56 ! That however was not a new aircraft as a G.56 is to a G.55 roughly what a Spitfire XIV is to a Spitfire VIII: in the same way as the Spit XIV improved on the already good quality of its predecessor, the G.56 offered a useful power increase to an aircraft that already had good qualities. Would have worked well for sure, although the limited production capabilities of Fiat in 1944/45 would have meant that only a small number would have been built anyway. The MB5 was likely to be the other succesful type, as every report seems to point at a very well built aircraft. Of course not having entered service it's hard to tell if the aircraft really was vice-free... Still it is understandable that this was not put into mass production, with the war already going a certain way it was clear that the massive production of other types would have been sufficient while any new development was better put into jet engined types. It may have been a pity for us enthusiasts not to see the MB5 in service but I can't blame the authorities that took these decisions
  17. I remember well that kit, it was reviewed very positvely in magazines of the era: main parts in short run plastic, all details in white metal and pre-cut vacform canopies. IIRC the Pegasus kit was issued around the same time but was more crudely moulded and less detailed. I was thinking of this kit only a few days ago while commenting on a post on the cost of today kits: in the July 1987 issue of Scale Models International this kit is listed at £ 7.40 ! To give an idea, the then brand new Fujimi Phantom FG.1 was listed at 7.99 but the other Phantoms from the same company sold for £6.99. Heller "black box" Spitfires retailed for 2.95, same as Matchbox "orange" series aircraft (purple series kits were 1.90). The magazine price was £1.25... The Pegasus kit was cheaper, at £5.20. I'd have loved a Skybird MB5 but it was way too expensive for a boy in high school, more so as I'd have had to add postage from the UK on top of that price. For some reason I've yet to buy the AZ kit though...
  18. Don't know if it's the same as your super metallic but I recently tried the Mr. Color Super Metallic 2 silver and it's sure very robust, I did mask several areas to add other metallic tones and had no problems. Regarding the use of coats over the metallic finish, generally you can apply decals over metallics without the need for a gloss coat, metallic paints are smooth and gloss enough for this. I have no direct experience with AK paints however. Final coats are a different story.. some clear paints may dull the metallic effect, however there are some that do not have this problem, like Alclad's. Choosing a gloss or semigloss coat depends on what you want to achieve, in some cases certain metallic paints may look too bright for a realistic representation of an aircraft in scale, so some may prefer to tone them down with a semigloss coat. Depends a lot on the subject, a Thunderbirds F-100 may look right in a shiny finish while a war weary P-47 may look better in a semigloss or even flat finish. Then there are those aircraft that were actually painted in aluminum and not left in natural metal, for these a flat or semigloss coat is mandatory as they would look wrong in a shiny finish. Regarding the Sabre, I don't know why they would suggest a flat aluminum instead of a standard one... flat aluminum may make sense if your subject was painted aluminum, if it was a natural metal aircraft I'd just use various metallics. It should however be said that on the Sabre certain panels were not as shiny as others and in particular the centre wing section was very flat. Best way to reproduce these correctly is to check pictures and see which panels are more or less flat. Now generally even on flat metallics it's possible to put the decals in place without a gloss coat, but again I don't know about AK's. Whatever final finish you choose, it's keeping these differences, so even the final coat would have to be sprayed using different paints over the various panels. Mind, some panels can be made flat by spraying a mix of metallic with a little grey paint, at least for those paints that can be mixed.
  19. I also use a laser printer today and my to-go paper is Bare Metal Expert's Choice. Used to be a bit think but the all sheets I've bought in the last few years have been very thin. Don't know what their recent sheets for inkjet are like though, haven't bought one in ages
  20. Yes, that video is one of the sources I always check when it comes to Italian Spit Vs. More pictures can be found here (together with stills from the IWM video http://www.eaf51.org/ Go to History Pages, then to History Pics Page, the link to the Spitfires page is there together with others, Then of course there is the book edited by the History Section of the Air Force, that contains several pictures, although the ones of the Vs are not all of good quality.
  21. Great pictures, thanks for sharing ! These are two museums I totally missed during my time in NSW, looks like I missed quite a lot...
  22. There is no doubt that we are unfortunately going through an era when salaries grow less than prices and this a serious problem regardless of where we stand regarding the hobby. Hard to tell when this will change! So yes, I feel that worrying about the rising cost of kits is fully justified and I do hope that the sudden price increases we're seeing all across the board are just the result of a temporary situation, with things going back to normal after the global will stabilize at the end of the covid emergency. Said that, there are good reasons to worry but some complaints are IMHO not justified: yes ZM makes expensive kits with a lot of details that can't be seen. So what? Are ZM the only company doing 1/48 kits? They are not, if they want to offer kits at the high end of the market it's their choice, if I can afford them fine, if not I buy something from someone else. We are not in the age of £20+ 1/72 single engine ww2 aircraft kits, we are in an age where some high end kits of single engine ww2 fighters cost over £20, that does not mean that every kit of these subjects cost as much. What has happened is that over the last 10/15 years we've seen a large number of new companies entering the market, several of them with very high quality, and accordingly expensive, kits. This does not nean that there aren't cheaper options around.. Last week I checked on Hannants how many 1/72 aircraft kits they had for less than £10, I got 12 pages of results at 25 per page. And Hannants isn't exactly the cheapest online shop around. Granted, a tenner will not buy a sophisticated kit or a kit of a large aircraft, but will still buy some pretty good kits. That is no different from how it was when I started, there were cheap kits and expensive ones, some were easily into pocket money range and others were out of reach for many adults. I'm looking at a 1987 magazine and there are some single engine ww2 fighters in 1/72 selling for £ 7.. not much different from the ones selling today for 20 or 25. So yes, we have all the rights to worry and complain but the hobby can still be enjoied on the cheap. Unfortunately a number of enthusiasts will struggle to buy certain kits and will have to adapt to cheaper alternatives, that is however always been the case. PS: the rise of prices for preowned kits is a different story, that may sure be worth commenting on but that may well deserve its own thread
  23. And yet there have been a number of very expensive promises that did deliver: the F-106, F-14, B-52... yes, even the B-52 that was in its day a terribly expensive program and many wondered it it was worth pursuing it. Don't think anyone today would criticize the decision to go ahead with the Buff... The programs you mention may have not been successes but all for different reasons and to different degrees: the B-58 worked fine but grew old quickly because of changes in the air defence technology. The B-70 was a very extreme aircraft, could have worked but suffered the same fate of the B-58, the RAH-66 was maybe too advanced for its days, the many VTOL types were mostly the answer to problems that very few had, the Nimrod AEW was not particularly groundbreaking but was a project badly managed from several points of view... and so on.. May be worth adding that in aviation there is no good or better, what the customers want is the best ! Where best means the solution that best suits the specifications. In the US in particular this has often meant trying to get the best aircraft possible, This may have not always been achieved but just naming types like the F-86, the F-4 and the F-15 shows that this objective was achieved more often than in any other country. Yes, they also generally had more money than any other country, this does help
  24. Not Matchbox, their Zero did not feature rivets
  25. Were the E and F with original wing actually more numerous in service than the later F-40? There were sure more built with the original wing than with the F-40 but I wonder how many earlier aircraft received the F-40 conversion, I could not find numbers for these but I'd be interested in finding out
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