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    Building and re-building 1/72 scale. Classic Mini.

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  1. Dave - the Mini fanatic has lent us one of his minis - a reshelled mk1. That’s got 10” wheels and 7.5” servo assisted brakes up front. They certainly need stamping on when somebody decides to pull out in front of us without looking when driving down the road. Fortunately, our one has 13” wheels and 8.4” servo assisted brakes which are a lot better. The roads must have been better in the heyday of the Mini. It certainly bounces about a bit while my Renault Scenic just soaks up the bumps. When driving it’s a wonder I don’t get stopped for drink driving while I’m playing dodge the pot hole or poor road repair! With the Dettol, I use it neat. Once it’s done it’s job (usually overnight), I use coffee filters and a funnel to put it back into its bottle for re-use.
  2. It’s is just a quick post to say the Mini is commandeering most of the time at the moment, so work on the Sea Fury has stalled temporarily. But a major step has taken place on the Mini - it’s got green paint!
  3. The Mini is progressing well with a positive suggestion it could get it’s colour coat tomorrow afternoon. The Sea Fury is also progressing. The main gear was adjusted by .5mm to reduce the height, but something was still off somewhere. The gaps between the wheel bay doors and the bottom of the wing were different. It then dawned on me that the doors were glued on incorrectly. They were centred on the wrong part of the landing gear and as such sit too far forward at the top. The bottom is correctly positioned laterally but the port side is also lower than the starboard side. Unfortunately there’s too much blue applied to adjust them. On the positive side though, the fuel tanks will sit directly alongside, so they will hide the error to some extent. The wing tip lights were both filed and sanded back to a shine - which took me the best part of an hour as the acrylic was quite tough but they look good now. The pilot seat was 3D printed, cleaned up and fitted. Nothing spectacular- just a copy of the T-20 seats. Something is off somewhere when I go to print seats. The printer puts a step in about half way up for some reason which needs trimming back - so that will have to be investigated when I have more time. It’s odd as it’s only seats that are affected - all other prints are fine. More Mr Surfacer was added to the seams and dips in other areas. That can dry so it can be sanded back again tomorrow- I’ve had enough of sanding for one day - Mini’s are bigger than you think when you have to sand the primer ready for the colour coat.
  4. Anyway back to the Sea Fury…. I sanded back the filler around the improved air intakes and also some filler around the wing/fuselage joint under the wings. Looking at the small tray of removed parts, I got the two broken off propeller blades and rightly or wrongly, refitted them (who’s betting at least one gets knocked off again?). One is still black and the other still has a yellow tip so I know which two are the most vulnerable blades. The horizontal stabilisers were refitted with sprue goo - which I must make some more of as it’s getting a bit thick as it gets older. They set pretty quickly and the excess which oozed out was trimmed off before it set fully. I then looked at the main gear and offered them back to their respective positions. Unfortunately, they both snapped off rather than pull out cleanly when I used the Mr Cement S to try to soften the glue. So I decided to use short lengths of a metal pin to reinforce the joint. A little while ago, I was in the middle of Lidl and saw some precision drill bits for £4.99, so I bought a set even though I had a pin vice drill set from Aldi. the Aldi one is good -apart from the smaller of the two bosses which has the quartered section (to grip the drill bit) cut off centre which is a slight issue when I need to drill small holes. I have a cheap pin vice off EBay which I have to use instead. I found the Lidl bits are sharper than the Aldi offering and they fit inside the cheap pin vice as well. The main gear legs were drilled to 0.6mm with the help of the magnifying headset as there’s no way my current eyesight would have let me see it sharply enough to drill them centrally. The broken off parts still in the wings were also drilled and a short length of stolen steel pin from SWMBO’s sewing box (Ha-ha revenge is sweet!), was inserted and the main gear test fitted back into position. They seemed a bit gangly for some reason event though they were pushed fully on. I got the two Tempests out of the cabinet to see how the three compared. The gear appears to be the same height as the Revell Tempest but longer than the Matchbox Tempest. I might just trim half a mm off to see what that does. I added a small triangle of styrene card to fill the area behind the cockpit armoured bulkhead behind the (to be 3D printed) pilot’s seat. Once it’s set, some filler should help the appearance. I also made the wing tip lights by using 0.8mm drill bit to make holes in some clear Perspex and then fill them with red and green paint. They were then glued into position and will be left to dry before I sand them back to shape.
  5. Another day of fun yesterday prepping the last few bits before the Mini’s primer application put paid to the evening’s modelling (I got home later than planned and SWMBO wasn’t impressed!). On the bright side though, the Mini is in primer and had a guide coat sprayed on. This was the state of play yesterday on the Mini. Today saw my son and I ‘blocking’ the Mini to get the primer smooth and flat. The state we were in by the time we finished. But the Mini is ready for its second coat of primer, which hopefully will be the last before the colour coat goes on. The friend spraying it was impressed with the smoothness of the filler that I applied and he also thought it would need just one more coat primer and flatting back in preparation for the Racing Green paint (The Mini is actually a Racing Green in model name - launched alongside the Flame Red and Checkmate Mini’s) The Mini in my rented garage just after it looked like rain so it was pushed inside - at which point the sun came out again
  6. Thanks Chris. New parts are arriving all the time. No doubt there’s going to be something I’ve forgotten. Fortunately the friend is a Mini fanatic and has been stripping and rebuilding them since he was a teenager, so he’s amassed a lot of spare parts should they be needed.
  7. As an afterthought this morning while reading @Johnson’s post, a thought popped in saying it would be better to show the before, during and after photos of the surgery carried out on the wings. So…….
  8. Sorry about the big delay in updates on the Sea Furies. I’ve been all in each day in an attempt to get the Classic Mini ready for the Beaulieu Mini Day on the 12th of next month. As a result, of all of the work on it which now is rubbing down in preparation for new paint, I’ve been exhausted. Hopefully, my friend can get some primer on it this weekend. It’s kind of a full size model - it a bit too much for my airbrush to handle. After a few more tweaks to the Mini today and my friend having a plumbing emergency at home, meant no paint today which also means that I could do some modelling today. So, work recommenced on the Sea Fury. I’d already reattached the detached port wing during the week, to a better angle which improved the look immediately. At least the time since re-fitting the wing meant it’s now fully cured. I decided to do something about the port and starboard air intakes on the leading edges of the wings on either side of the fuselage. I found a very good video on YouTube where the presenter gives a guided tour of a Sea Fury in a working restoration hangar. This inspired me to make an intake on the starboard side instead of the small projection that Frog gave the kit. First I cut the projection down the middle and then across the wing to have essentially a 1/4’d section. I kept this piece safe in case I wanted it later on. The initial plan was to build form the opening and build the fairing up with sprue goo. Small lengths of T-shape styrene extrusion were used to frame the opening. These were allowed to overhang the top and bottom so they could be sanded back flush. Another section was added to the outer edge to form the vertical part of the opening. This in turn gave me the ideal part to refit the 1/4 section back to the wing. Some filler around the area and all should be fine. The port opening was just a rectangular recess in a fairing which the top and bottom edges were too thick. So, they were sanded down so a better looking shape. Also, the opening itself seemed a too wide so I figured it would be a simple case of adding another section of T extrusion vertically to depict a separate carburettor intake and oil cooler intake in the same housing. I should really have trimmed one side of the T off, but painted flat black, it should hide it little. While I had the T-extrusion out, I decided to add some detail to the wheel bays by fitting strips across the opening(s). Each were measured with my callipers and cut to size. They were then fitted in position to form some internal framework - maybe not !00% perfect or correct, but definitely better than a plain blank wheel bay. Vallejo plastic putty was added to areas where needed and left to dry for my next modelling session where it can be sanded back.
  9. That’s quite alright Charlie. I was having the same thoughts myself - hence the over-eagerness which actually turned out quite well in the end. Another quick look at it showed I should probably get away with just sprue goo to fill and fix it into its correct position in one
  10. Well that’s torn it! I came down this morning and while waiting for the kettle to boil for a cuppa, I had a quick look at the Sea Fury. While looking, I was flexing the wings down to see how far and where the remedial work would be needed to straighten the dihedral. I heard a snap on the starboard side where the upper wing glue cracked a bit. Only a small crack in the glue where the wing joins the fuselage. I thought, ‘Oh good, I could probably get the other side to do the same and insert a piece of card in to push the port wing down’ . The starboard wing is more or less where it’s supposed to be. Pretty much all of the excess dihedral is in the port wing fitment. So I bent down on the port wing. Oops! Fortunately, it’s a more or less clean break which means at least now I can fit it back into place with the angle of fitment better than before.
  11. The past two nights’ modelling sessions saw me re-scribing and sanding away the raised panel lines from the underside of the wings. Also the rock hard excess glue was filed first and then sanded back. The divots, slips from re-scribing, seam lines and big gaps in the part fitment were painted over with Mr Surfacer 1000. Where the fuel tanks were fitted had an extra coat. The Mr Surfacer was sanded back tonight (just what I needed after an afternoon of sanding back body filler on my son’s Classic Mini). The fuselage raised panel lines were re-scribed and sanded away. I’m not going to touch the ones around the cowling as I don’t think I’ll get them straight and parallel. I decided to do something about the way Frog did the main gear wheel wells. First the tabs were removed - initially by cutting one with a saw but then I found the tab itself wasn’t that much bigger so I gripped the other one with a flat pair of pliers and gently bent it up (I did score the plastic first). Despite the score mark, it broke away further than expected so the remaining part which was going to simulate a framing structure was now no use. That meant both now had to be removed. On the plus side though it gave me a flat area to fit a piece of 1mm styrene card in to fill the void in the bottom of the cockpit/wheel well area. I found some drawings of some Sea Furies (Furys or whatever) and the end on view from the front shows the dihedral. They all seem fairly similar but whoever built this one has put way too much dihedral into it for my liking. I plan to cut the underside wing to fuselage joints to enable me to pull the wings down a bit and fill the saw gap with styrene card and sprue goo (hopefully). What could possibly go wrong?
  12. Furies or Fury’s - both are fine with me. As long as no Furries get in!
  13. I have before but I used Tamiya Extra Thin on it. Maybe the Mr Cement doesn’t work as well in that respect.
  14. Work started on the Frog/Novo Sea Fury yesterday by submerging the whole model in a square tub of Dettol and leaving it there for the day while i was doing household duties and then more to my son’s Rover Mini to get it ready for the Beaulieu Mini Day on 12th June (also my birthday). Last night, a quick check showed the decals had lifted off and the silver paint had faded but not wrinkled as expected. A test with an old skewer showed the plastic underneath, so the Sea Fury was lifted out and th excess Dettol drained off. It was then scrubbed with an old toothbrush to reveal fairly clean green cream plastic. I placed it alongside the other Hawker aircraft for a sort of Family Tree I also found the pilot and seat were missing. The plan was to show the seams where it was put together and disassemble it, but the glue used won’t release even after a spell in the freezer, so I’m just going to work on it as is. Although I did use Mr Cement S to soften the glue around the undercarriage and wing tanks/rails. The tanks and rails were a mixture of Mr Cement S and brute force to remove them. The reason - to re-scribe the raised panel lines. The tail wheel doors were removed and the tail wheel itself was actually glued to one of them (probably as it had been broken off previously - I’ll remedy that later). I tried to be extra careful to avoid knocking any more blades of the propeller as I couldn’t get the cowling to budge - but I still managed to knock one off. Using the fact two blades were now off the Sea Fury could be placed on the work mat and the re-scribing could begin - after sanding back some excess glue around the folding wing joint. I managed to get the port upper wing re-scribed as it took a lot longer to work on with the wings attached to the fuselage, but it is manageable so I’ll persevere. The wing tip front corners were remove to fit some won’t tip navigation lamps later on. There’s a lot of excess glue to be sanded back in the underside from where the tanks and rails fitted so that will get done when I get there. I read @Johnson’s build of his Sea Fury. A lot of work went into it and what a result!! I’ll link it here
  15. After the aborted attempt at the Modelcraft Whitley, something was needed to alleviate the disappointment. Now do I restore another previously loved gem from the stash or build new from the other stash? Why not do both? (He asks with a nervous laugh) So from the restoration stash (actually the display cabinet where the completed models are kept) comes a Sea Fury in Canadian markings - later found to be Frog or Novo. It was bought off EBay for around £3 and arrived fairly intact. Just one propeller blade off and the port wheel missing (exactly as the listing showed). I had a spare wheel from the Tempests restoration and build, so that was placed on to level the Sea Fury up for display purposes. And from the new build stash, a pair of PM Model Sea Fury Trainers (a T-20 and a T61 (Bagdad Fury)). First and foremost, a massive thank-you to Chris @bigbadbadge for donating the T-20 kit. The initial plan was to build the already purchased T-61 Bagdad Fury and remodel it to a T-20 in Royal Navy Markings. I was completely gobsmacked when the T-20 kit arrived as I thought he was sending me just some decals. The Bagdad Fury T-61 was another eBay purchase for £4. It arrived boxed and complete. Odd sandy colour plastic but as it’s got a desert camouflage paint scheme anyway it doesn’t really matter. The decals are slightly yellowed but they will probably clear in sunlight. I did intend to do two versions of R.N. trainers but the box art scheme is growing on me.
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