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Uncle Pete

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Everything posted by Uncle Pete

  1. Nice job and, as others have pointed out, a bit on the bulky side. I realise 1/72 makes modern airliners and heavy bombers a bit on the big side but to me 1/144 never conveys the feel of "beef', no matter how well it's built. I'd get a 1/72 BUFF if the wife had a better sense of humour.
  2. 144? A WW1 bipe in 144? You should be in a home!
  3. Uncle Pete

    Aircraft Build Jigs

    I've had a look on the internet for jigs that hold planes steady during building and painting. Do any of you experienced guys use them? Are they worth getting or do they "catch more fishermen than fish"? So far I've been muddling through with blu-tak, knees, teeth and bits of bent wire.
  4. Having just beaten a confession out of a Tomcat, it's time to give it an airing. Dodgy kit, I must say. I believe I can even lay half the blame for the dodgy build on the kit. The other half, however, belongs squarely in my backyard. Upon opening the box and seeing the size of the fuze halves I had to have a look at the box top to see if I'd picked up a 1/48 by mistake. It's big, innit! Fit was dicey all over the place and the usual Academy decal headaches prevailed but I went with the OOB sheet anyway.. The kit was never going to be built well enough for aftermarket decoration. You'll notice the paint job is a bit (ahem) "non-standard" but I allowed myself a bit of artistic licence (that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it) for the squadron on the USS Uncle Pete. There were four things that looked like little pitots but were the size of a caterpillar's kneecap that never got installed... There was no way I was going to get them on cleanly at my skill level (or should that be "lack of skill level"?) The kit came with glove vanes that deploy automatically when the wings are swept back which I'd first considered gluing in place for simplicity since I gather they were eventually found to be unnecessary and discarded. I decided, though, since Academy had gone to the trouble of designing them to work it would be unsporting of me not to give it a whack. I'm happy to report they work as intended despite my "gluing" one in place when applying floor wax. A bit of gentle persuasion with the old Xacto cleared the problem and the wax scraped off without any damage. How long they'll hold up is another matter. I don't think they'll take many sweep-unsweep cycles before giving up the ghost. There was no provision for showing it with the glasshouse up so i did a bit of surgery and, somehow, after cutting the crewmen's names for the bottom frame off the decal sheet, managed to lose them so it's being flown anonymously). Can't say I like the low-viz stars and bars, though. All in all, I'm not displeased with the outcome. A bit squint here and there, some dodgy paintwork in places but I'll take it. Not good enough to warrant building a display case for it but certainly okay to put on my "Air Force Shelf" in the workshop. Now for the obligatory, "Come on, then, if ya fink yer 'ard enuff!" picture... Thanks for looking.
  5. Uncle Pete

    Academy F14A 1/72

    Cheers, mate, but I'm not convinced that's such a good idea... More pics, more flaws! It's not false modesty, just knowing my limitations but I feel funny putting pics up on here anyway when I see the stuff that all you hot doggers put out but I figure, this is the only place I can show my kits without people thinking I'm slightly, if not completely, deranged.
  6. Mine was a plastic ready-to-fly job. I built a few C/Ls and they all shared the same grim fate, never held up like the RTFs.
  7. Nice one, really clean. G-George is my favourite kite and the first one I built on returning to the hobby last year. (My George doesn't look as nice as yours though!)
  8. How about Dan Radcliffe? A bit too skinny, maybe, but the right height and age.
  9. Nice one. I've always liked the shape of the Cobras. Had an .049 control line semi-scale Airacobra when I was a kid. Sturdy little blighter, as I remember... Took a lot of "unscheduled landings" and kept coming back for more.
  10. Uncle Pete

    Academy F14A Glove Vanes

    I'm in the process of beating the above mentioned plane into submission and have a question for anybody who might have tackled it in the past. It has these odd little "glove vanes" which I understand were eventually discovered to be as much use as a cat flap on the space station but which deploy when the wings fold back. They're mounted on studs about half the size of a flea's bedpan. My question is, since they were eventually left out on later marks, should I forget about trying to make them work? I'm usually of the opinion that if a part is designed to move, I might as well install it as such but don't want to end up with a jammed or falling-off part. Will that little stud stand up or should I just cut it down and glue it in? (I don't trust my measuring and cutting skills to replace it with a metal pin). Aside from that, the kit so far (aside from decals) has been reasonably cooperative, I've got the office installed and the nose buttoned up... even remembered to put a lead slug in there. But the decals.... The decals! I should have known before buying the kit since I built an Academy P51 a few months back. I found they have a window of about two seconds between still being stuck irrevocably to the backing sheet and floating free completely. And they're about as thick as a sheet of heavy duty MDF. I got the instrument panels on by floating them on big puddles of floor wax then hoping they didn't drift while it dried. On the good side, though, they sucked right down with a couple of shots of MicroSol and wound up looking pretty good. I'm sneaking out to the LHS before SWMBO wakes up to see if they have any Grim Reaper or Tomcats decal sheets (I wasn't crazy about the look of the decals in the box anyway), something with a bit of zazz (and a shark mouth!). (And something that won't be such a fight to lay on). (And I'll see how much self-discipline I have... A P38 and an A10 wouldn't go amiss). (Neither would a Camel and a Tripehound). (And maybe a couple of Spits and a 109). (And a Wallace and Gromit Austin A40 van).
  11. Uncle Pete

    Academy F14A Glove Vanes

    I'm not too bothered about that, the paint job is way off too! On the USS Uncle Pete there's a certain amount of "jazz" involved when it comes to accuracy! As it is, it's looking more or less like a Tomcat. If I may quote a pilot I saw on a documentary about a carrier, "It's big, it's bad, it's honkin'!"
  12. Uncle Pete

    Academy F14A Glove Vanes

    Probably but I ended up being brave (probably too brave!) and opting for the tricky route. Had I glued them closed I'd have had to cut a bit off the inside edge where the wing mechanism kicks them open. They're in and on the studs and have survived handling while I painted and applied decals. I said to the missus, "I'm going into the workshop with a sheet of Academy decals and I'm not coming out till one of us is dead." I found the decals a bit easier to handle by using very hot water (about the temp of a nice cuppa that's been standing for a couple of minutes), a long soak and floating them in on a glob of floor wax. They can be a bit squirrely for a minute till I mop up the excess but I find I get a bit more adjustment time out of the deal. They're just recovering from the first hit of Micro Sol (Sol? Set? The red one) and seem to be settling in nicely. Thanks for the input and sorry I didn't get back sooner... Didn't realise I'd got any responses.
  13. @bar side @adey m
  14. Uncle Pete

    Better Late Than Never Intro?

    Wrightstown doesn't ring any bells. Played a lot of juke joints but it was 35 years ago and I was drunk. Played Camden and a couple of places along the shore in Joisey that I remember. Even did Asbury Park... Not the Pony, though, we were a sideshow at a custom car exhibition.
  15. Uncle Pete

    Better Late Than Never Intro?

    I lived in the US from 1975 till 2009. For a while I was on a travelling R&B band out of RI shclepping up and down from DC to Maine. I used to know every rest stop on the pike.
  16. I'd dearly love to install retracts but of course the thickness of the plastic prohibits it. I don't have the skills but I can see how it wouldn't be too hard for a hot-shot (or perhaps a Swiss watchmaker) to install micro R/C kit and have features working all on their own. (Having said that, you can find a lunatic on youtube who has built a 1/96 P51, eight channels including retracts, landing lights and gun flash/noise and it flies!)
  17. Uncle Pete

    Better Late Than Never Intro?

    Joisey? What exit?
  18. Uncle Pete

    Hey all

    How dare you! I'm as brave as the next bloke (assuming the next bloke is Mr Bean).
  19. Uncle Pete

    Hello! Nice to meet you all.

    I'm almost as new to the game as you so I'm not much good for helpful hints but I will try to make you laugh from time to time. I would suggest, however, getting a few cheapos before hitting the hard stuff. The dirt cheap (ie, a fiver or less) 1/72 Spits, 109s and the like don't fit as well as they might so you get a bit of experience with fillers and general fiddling about to make stuff fit. After that, a quality kit is smooth sailing and if you've had to bin a P51 and a Hurri, you've only binned the cost of a pint and a gin-and-tonic.
  20. Uncle Pete

    Hey all

    You're very brave to be tackling an Eduard so early in the game! I've not tried one but I had a look at their Spit in a box at the local model shop. It had more parts than a couple of Airfix heavy bombers and an Ikea desk... Scared me to death. Not sure I'll ever be ready to take on Eduard.
  21. I caught a bit of flak from a bloke on a modelling site (don't think it was this one) over my preference for props and wheels that turn, swing wings that actually swing and various other moving parts. The bloke thought that was a bit childish but the way I look at it, getting those things to work (and work smoothly) is another engineering challenge of kitbuilding. (I don't want to brag but I managed to install moving wing glove vanes on an F14A a few days back and they still work and haven't fallen out yet. Now to see if I can get the rest of the plane assembled, painted, decalled and on the shelf before they fink out on me).
  22. Did final assembly on Airfix Spitfire 1A (55100, Starter Kit, 1/72), yesterday. I think I'm finally starting to get the hang of this lark. I'm starting to get a "feel" for the paint... Somehow it's brushing on much more easily for me. Obviously I've subconsciously figured something out but have no idea what it is or how I'm doing it. Not to worry, if it works, don't fix it. OOB except for the pilot's deck chair and painted with Humbrol enamels, 155 and 29 for the camo, 90 underneath, a mix of artist's acrylics for bits and bobs and the interior. The box called for a black and white "harlequin" underside but I personally don't really like that so I went with the "sky". It's supposed to have a sky band around the fuze just in front of the tail feathers but I tore it and had already waxed the plane so decided to go without rather than try to paint one on. Cooperated in the main but the fuze halves went together slightly skew-whiff. Don't know whether it was me or the kit but I assume when the locating pegs pop in, that's where it's gonna go. I almost (but not quite) defeated the resulting ridge with liberal application of filler and sandpaper. The wings were a bit of a game, too, but after some gentle persuasion with the sandpaper dropped in with only a slight loss of dihedral. I decided to eat the loss rather than risk making things worse by continued faffing. Didn't notice till I looked at the picture that the left U/C leg is a bit squint. Have to see If I can't straighten it out later. I like the head-on shots of warbirds... Makes 'em look proper 'ard. I should maybe touch up the raggedy leading edge colours but not sure if I trust myself to do it. The canopy frame could use a bit of tidying, too, but do I trust myself? I'd have preferred to have the glasshouse slid open but there's no way on earth I'm ever going to be capable of accurate enough surgery so I suppose I can say it's raining and put the pilot under the wing. As it is, the canopy fitted quite seamlessly after application of some good old-fashioned brute force. He still needs a couple more shots of the red stuff on the decals and a topcoat of wax (and maybe a coat of flat varnish but I'm undecided whether I like the shiny look or the "more realistic" look). I've been promising myself I'd take this one to the next level and try muckying it up a bit but have lost my nerve. Maybe I'll be braver in a couple of weeks when it's not so spanky new, complete with that "new plane smell". (And that's the main reason I've not topcoated it yet.) Thanks for looking (and not laughing!)
  23. Uncle Pete

    1/72 Airfix Shorts Tucano T.1 "twins"

    It can be a headache stuffing enough lead in to fill the space without gaps. I've had a bit of success making lead slugs that fill the available space by wrapping a couple of thicknesses of aluminium foil round the sharp end to make a conical mould, take the mould off then melt some lead into it. A bit of filing and it fits right into the nose, conforming to the shape. That way you fill the whole space with lead instead of a mixture of lead and air and, if you're lucky, it will stay put without even any glue.
  24. Me too... My relatives never had any difficulty figuring out what my Christmas pressie should be!
  25. Smashing job, by the way