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About KelT

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    New Member

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  • Location
    Tasmania, Australia
  • Interests
    Fleet Air Arm aircraft 1939-1945.

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84 profile views
  1. All I use is one like this from Ebay. I bought it for the magnifier but to be honest I use the light far more, it's always there when you need it and remarkably it actually stays put after you move it about (to be honest at the price I paid I thought it would require some remodeling before it did that) so you get the light right where you need it. It has a fluorescent tube which could be brighter but is adequate in the daytime (we're in the depths of winter down here) but at night it's great. There is a diffuser over the lamp which I have considered removing to see if it brightens it any but haven't got around to doing it yet. I have no idea how easy it is to get the tubes or if it would take a higher wattage without turning into a blob but I shall look into that one day perhaps. The magnifier is one of those things that is extremely useful for those odd occasions you need it like drilling out the barrels on the Spitfire guns and such but it's not the most user friendly thing in the world. Anywhere but center of the glass is out of focus and it seems to work better with a larger distance between your eye and the glass with the piece held closer to it. It's certainly not something you'd use all the time as it'd drive you nuts but when you do need it then it does the job very well. Each arm section is eighteen inches long so it has quite a lot of reach and I drag it all over the place but have never had to un-clamp it from the desk to reach anywhere yet. There's no doubt about it the thing is cheap and certainly not commercial quality but I wouldn't be without it and if it broke beyond repair I'd definitely be looking to get another one like it.
  2. That's a big model, I'm glad I didn't have to paint it, I'd have run away and hid. You're doing an incredible job on it too, I just read the entire thread to catch up, those decals are great, decals are my next panic attack waiting to happen I hope I can do half as well. Aren't photographs a pain in the rear? I sit with my reading glasses in front of the window with a magnifying lamp and more lights than Blackpool Illuminations yet every time I take a photo I sit and think WTH how did I miss that!? I'm a little late to the party here but I will certainly be following along from here on.
  3. Well between tipping barrow fulls of soil into my greenhouse I just couldn't wait any longer, I had to get that masking tape off and discover the judgement. To my delight it was perfect, well perhaps not perfect by some of the standards on here but for me, I'll take it. I didn't even need to clean up any edges, I'm amazed. I did have to use Model Master paint since that was what I had from buying paints from various companies to test, I thought it was a little too thin and didn't cover very well, in all it took five coats where I probably could have done it with three using Vallejo. The result was a bit of an edge where it met the tape, a slight lip but hey I can live with that, stupid maintenance men to blame again . I wouldn't like to brush paint a large area using the Model Master, out of the pot it's already too thin to consider thinning for my personal preference, especially with how poorly it covered, and I think I'd need a retarder since it dries very quickly causing lumpy bits in the paintwork if not very careful. I couldn't justify buying two new pots of Vallejo to the wife though just for these tiny parts. Sorry for so many photos of such a boring subject but I am just too excited to pick from the ones I took. I did get a couple of paint chips on the port wing tip, one little pinhead chip on the starboard engine cover just behind the exhaust and a couple of marks on the starboard wing tip, but I reckon I can touch those up before I lather this thing in Future. Well maybe not lather but a couple of coats at least to protect this Vallejo paint, it is still very soft and delicate, the underside which has had a coat of Future is pretty sturdy but the top is nerve wreckingly fragile.
  4. @Corsairfoxfouruncle That's amazingly simple and makes me feel incredibly stupid. You guys are great and I thank you in buckets for your advice and help, I sat and thought about how to better mask, considered a coat of Future over the tape to seal it but worried the Future might lift the paint on removal, I didn't consider dry brushing it. Unfortunately too late for this time but one I will definitely remember, hopefully for later rather than sooner. It's only the kind people of BM I have to worry about with the ailerons, in real life I could probably have glued them either side of the cockpit and nobody would have noticed. Rather than maintenance I was thinking it could perhaps be a full committal Kamikaze or dive bomber. First pointing it in the direction you required on the airfield it could take off, gain height very quickly, level out and once over the target it'd dive with passion, no turning back with this one. Assuming no side winds of course, they could be a bit of a flaw to the plan.
  5. I just read a little on ungluing parts. They are very well glued and using Tamiya extra thin so melted and welded styrene, I just tested the joint but it is solid. I think I've done enough repainting for one model so I will live with the inaccuracy and learn from it. I really should have known better but wood and trees is a good idiom. I'll only do it once though right . I just started painting the yellow leading edges, I really do hate that my fate is in the hands of a little bit of masking tape and I won't know the outcome until it's removed.
  6. Ah, thanks amblypygid. That's the disadvantage of only having one photograph and taken from one side. Is it worth trying to move the starboard side aileron up or is that likely to do more damage than good?
  7. I managed to get the topside painted, it still needs the sky band and the yellow leading edges - if they are appropriate I need to look that up, hopefully not. I'm quite pleased with the finish, it seemed a little insane removing an almost good enough Tamiya paint job but I am glad I took the time to do it. I didn't bother to mask as the paint was quite manageable, in fact I pretty much did it exactly as PlaStix does and I am very grateful for his advice and video. I was worried about those leading edges without masking but they were a doddle, thanks Stix.
  8. KelT

    Fairey Swordfish underwing racks

    I haven't been able to find any image of a parachute flare unfortunately, perhaps someone else will have more luck. I did zoom in and play with the levels on the image above though and came up with this: Not much to look at I know but this is another image from the Ark Royal of aircraft 2F. I don't have a date for this one and doubt it was anything to do with same attacks on the Bismark as the one above. Again I played with levels and cropped the image to show the under-wing better. These do look very much like the Smoke Bombs (Tamiya parts E22/E23) and are clearly loaded with a torpedo. Whether they are the same item as the blurry grey blobs in the image above is anybody's guess but if it were me I'd say yes and build it that way. They're certainly nothing like the two in the IWM image though which look more like small bombs. Small bombs were carried on the outer wing later on as these images from HMS Tracker in 1943 show. The main pylons held some kind of rocket which were censored in the photos at the time but the outer pylons and small bomb looking items scattered around the deck were not.
  9. KelT

    Fairey Swordfish underwing racks

    During my research one thing I have come to learn is that there is often no definitive answer. For example I looked at the instructions for your Tamiya Swordfish and it has the aircraft flown by A.W. Beale during the Bismark attacks, marked as "2P" with serial number V4372. According to Ray Sturtivants Fleet Air Arm Aircraft 1939-1945 all he has entered for V4372 is: Deld. Lee SS 2.4.41 In his book "The Swordfish Story" he has the following: AIRCRAFT INVOLVED IN BISMARCK ATTACK, 26 MAY 1941 No 2 Sub-Flight '2P' / L2826? Sub-Lt(A) A. W. D. Beale RN, Sub-Lt(A) C. Friend RN, L/ A K. Pimlott So even with his thorough research he was not certain of the Aircraft flown by A.W.D. Beale. Although he does have the following which identifies L2826 as "2P": L2826 Deld 4 ASU Ternhill 1.12.37; FAA Pool Gosport 28.11.38; AMDP; FAA Pool Gosport: 820 Sqn Ark Royal ('A4L'), crashed on landing Ark Royal 26.6.39; 810 Sqn Ark Royal ('A2P'; '2P') 3.40-3.41. However on 5.4.42 A.W.D Beale was flying V4371: 788 Sqn China Bay. Shot down by A6Ms [possibly the a/c shot down by A6Ms from Hiryu while in line astern passing along balloon corridor N of Colombo, crashed into sea, in which S/L A. W. D. Beale & LA F. H.Edwards both killed]. I guess what I am trying to show is that often absolute accuracy is not possible since many stories differ and references often contradict each other. From the images above, which are the closest I could find to the actual event you are trying to model, the Light outer racks appear to be carrying some small rounded arms. Quite what they are I've not been able to determine but they don't appear to be included in your Tamiya kit whatever they are. I did identify the source of the images as being from Lt. Cdr M. B. W. Howell and in fact there is another image - almost as though the original had been cut in two - of the deck to the left of the one I posted above. Unfortunately it doesn't help clarify matters any. The most important lesson I've learned so far is to do your research by all means but at the end of the day just make the model in a way that makes you feel happy, you're likely to be as right as the next man. EDIT: I forgot to add. Theses were the loads carried during the raid on Taranto according to Sturtivant's Swordfish Story: The relevant loads were: (I) 1 x 18in Mk XII torpedo (setting 27kts, 33ft); 1 x parachute flare (setting 7). (2) 4 x 250lb SAP bombs; 8 x parachute flares (setting 7); 8 x parachute flares (setting16) (3) 6 x 250lb SAP bombs; 1 x parachute flare (setting 7). (4) 2 x 250lb SAP bombs; 8 x parachute flares (setting 7); 8 x parachute flares (setting 16). So a torpedo/flare configuration was used in other situations and there was certainly means to carry 8 parachute flares so perhaps these are indeed what were on the outer wings?
  10. KelT

    Fairey Swordfish underwing racks

    My next build is a Swordfish so I've been doing a lot of research but not specific to the Bismark I'm afraid. Going through my information this was the best I could find: The image is from "Swordfish The Fleet Air Arms Versatile, Long Serving, Legendary "Stringbag" Pg. 41" but can also be found in "Squadron Signal - Aviation - In Action - 1175 - Fairey Swordfish Pg.19". I have been unable to find the image source for a clearer view I'm afraid. Hope it helps. EDIT: The text accompanying the image in the second reference states that this launch was to target the Bismark and that it was during this sortie that the 15 swordfish mistook the HMS Sheffield for the Bismark. The second strike that night found the Bismark. There is another image which may be helpful here which was taken in April 1941 aboard the Ark Royal.
  11. KelT

    Airfix Spitfire Mk1a 1/72

    Great build and video. Both were extremely well made, easy to watch and informative. Thanks.
  12. @Anthony Kesterton Hi Anthony. My problem with bubbles is a thing of the past now that I am using Future and in fact the distilled water fixed them prior to that. For mixing I was putting a drop of paint on a ceramic plate then placing a small pool of water nearby from a pipette. Using my brush I would mix the paint to the consistency I needed. I firmly believe that the bubbles were coming from my tap water since, unlike you guys in the UK where the mains is fed right to the door, ours feeds into a large tank in the garden and supplements the rainwater collected. From the tank it is pumped via a small (about the size of breeze block) pump to the house and I suspect that it was this pump that was adding the air which the mixing with paint caused to separate out. At the time of the bubbles I tried not shaking the paint but rather opening the bottle and stirring but it made no difference. I also read that Vallejo suggest "rolling" the bottle but fail to see how that would adequately mix the paint inside. Now my bubble worries are over I mix like so; if the paint has been standing for a few days I remove the top and stir otherwise I shake like mad with a stainless nut (from a nut and bolt) inside and then stand the bottle upside down for a minute so that any bubbles can rise upwards before I squeeze out the paint. In my research of the problems I did read that Vallejo was notorious for being soft and rubbing off but believe me I tried everything I could to try and prevent it. I even had pieces which I'd painted and left for two weeks, even after that amount of drying time I could take a damp cotton bud and pretty much roll it across the surface to have the paint come off. Not all in one go of course but enough nasty scratches to make the piece unusable. I also read that applying a clear coat to protect it fixed the problem but since adding the Australian (with ammonia) version of Future actually caused further issues I couldn't do that - without buying an alternative more expensive clear coat of course. Of course the caveat to my problems is that all my paint so far has come from the one bottle, perhaps it's a bad bottle? Today I will paint from a different bottle but I shall continue to thin with Future since it works so well and is just as easy as using distilled water. In fact yesterday I painted a practice piece with two coats leaving only ten minutes between them and I left it to dry for ten minutes before applying a piece of "cheap" everyday masking tape. I rubbed down the tape to get a good edge and left it for a further ten minutes before removing it without effecting the underlying paint in any way. After all I have tried in order to facilitate using the Vallejo paint I like so much I just sat and grinned at the sight. I keep coming up with these stupid experiments in order to restore my confidence with Vallejo but after that one I think I'm pretty happy. Yesterday I had to handle my painted under-wings a great deal (wearing latex gloves) in order to fit the two intakes, plenty of rubbing, accidental knocking etc but not a single unwanted scratch in the new paint (it was left for twenty four hours to dry). I couldn't be happier and thinned with the Future it brushes on just as well as when thinned with distilled water. I even made an error on the smaller intake and left the glued seam which I didn't notice until after I'd painted it - when I started this modelling I naively thought that a coat or two of paint would hide minor errors, I now know that they instead shine a great spotlight on them all - so in another experiment I sanded only the seam and then repainted to see if the new coat would blend with the previous coats on the rest of the piece. It worked a treat although I'd not like to try it on a large flat surface area. So now hopefully all my paint worries are over (did I just risk saying that?) and I am glad that I can use Vallejo since its beautiful paint and is a dream to hand brush. I'm mixing it at approximately 60/40 (Future/Paint) although I don't worry about being exact but rather look for the consistency I like. On my 1/48 it dries slowly enough to allow plenty of time for brush painting and even as I finish a coat I can still make corrections over the point of my very first brush stroke so long as I wet the brush with more paint first. I've had none of the streaking I experienced previously and a little paint goes a long way, two drops from the bottle paints the entire underside of my Spitfire, three or four thin coats to get a good finish. Apologies for the long winded reply, I searched all over for a resolution to my problems and found scattered bits of information at best, I figured I'd put everything here in one post in case someone else is ever searching for the same thing.
  13. @bigbadbadge Thanks for the kind words although I'm not sure about the use of the adjective "educational". Perhaps I could make a tutorial for a hundred and one things not to do. Actually perhaps I should consider making it a series . I got the underside sanded and painted, it took three coats and dried to a sturdy finish when mixed with the Future. I applied a coat of Future over the top once completed just to make sure I don't get a repeat of last time and it was all good. It's nowhere near as good a job as the first time I painted it but considering the amount of trauma this old girl has been through I'm quite pleased with the result. I also learned the valuable lesson of assembling the parts before painting them. It took me quite some time to get the two intakes to fit properly, they're still not perfect but I'm happy with them and that's all that counts right? Being so accustomed to stripping this model back the thought did cross my mind momentarily, but no more, this girl's due a change of occupation, no more stripping for her. Besides I have so many more areas to screw up, such as decals and clear parts. I also managed to assemble, paint and weather the undercarriage. I used water colours for the weathering and some grey and brown pastels for muddying the tyres although it doesn't really show up so well in the photos. Top side next I guess.
  14. @amblypygid Yeah it's VMC I have been using, there isn't a supplier for VMA down here. The climate here right now is probably comparable to an English spring so as you say it's unlikely the cause. I've only ever used the one bottle of VMC and it's pretty thick out of the bottle, I actually like it like that and hope they are all the same. The first four coats of Vallejo were really good it was only when I applied the coat of Future that it went astray. Although I was getting a lot of streaks which I am guessing was the wet paint reactivating the previous coat a little but I can't be certain that was the cause. Down here our version of Future is called "Long Life" and it has a slight smell of amonia and having since read that Windex with amonia in it is excellent for cleaning up paint I suspect that was the cause of the initial problems. Thinning the paint directly with the "Long Life" seems to prevent this as far as my tests on small pieces show. Hopefully that will carry through to the larger areas. Distilled water fixed the problem I was having with bubbles too although that's a moot issue now I'm thinning with Future rather than water. @Corsairfoxfouruncle I checked on Ebay and we get Mirco Mesh here too so I will look out for it. The P1200 was far better than the P120 no surprises there. I will give it a rub over once more with it wet after reading your post above. I masked the cockpit area by covering it with a piece of paper then squashing a blob of Blu-Tac over it and it seemed to work well. The paper stopped the Blu-Tac turning my Spitfire into the first model with an ejection seat. Thirty minutes with Mr Muscle (I used the Odourless, non-caustic stuff. Quite what that means I have no idea since it stank and I certainly wouldn't want to get any on me to test how caustic it is.) and my little Lady looks like this: The oven cleaner is wonderful stuff, it did an excellent job. I will leave her overnight to dry properly after her thorough wash with warm soapy water. After a rub with alcohol I'll paint her once more. I'm really quite excited to be getting on with that this time around rather than my previous nerves. I need to glue a stick of sprue or something into her nose this time so that I don't have to handle her while painting.
  15. @Corsairfoxfouruncle One of the things I've learned from all this is that there are various standards for measuring sanding paper. Down here we seem to exclusively use FEPA as all the papers are marked P### on the back, I will keep an eye out for Micro-Mesh in future. I just bought some P1200 today as it was the finest available, that's for sanding the underneath since my previous attempts with P120 left a few scars. I hadn't thought of sanding back the edge lines and I really appreciate that advice I shall bear it in mind if I get them in future. One of the reasons I perhaps hadn't considered it was fear of going near anything with my P120 but now I am better armed. I won't bother Blu-Tac masking with the Vallejo though since I find it to be much more manageable with the brush and should be easy to get good edges with. It is tempting to clean up the job I have thus far but I do think I'd be wasting an opportunity to try out Vallejo since I'd much rather paint with them than the Tamiya. I do like Tamiya and everything I used of theirs has been excellent quality but brush painting their acrylics on large areas feels like forcing them to do something they were never designed for. Again the thought of adding Future to the Tamiya never occurred since the paint does eventually dry extremely hard but if I have to strip back the next Vallejo attempt and resort to Tamiya again I will certainly try it. Thank you for the ideas and the offer of help, I'm currently feeling confident moving forward, I hope it's not misplaced. If it does all go dismally then at least we bought a new oven recently and I now have some cleaner for the old one so I'll be able to sell it.