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    Guildford UK
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    1/48th military aviation

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  1. So close now... 20220730_161728 by Ghostbase, on Flickr Just awaiting a pair of AIM-9B Sidewinders on wingtip rail / launchers, both have been painted but awaiting decals, also... ...red turbine warning stripe on the rear fuselage and air brakes. Then that's it Sadly another 10 day gap before I can return to my man cave. Michael
  2. Back in the 'mancave' for a couple of days, have started putting the sub-assemblies together. Cockpit: ejection seat installed, joystick, instrument coaming, canopy cemented closed (the only option) Undercarriage: wheels attached, all gear doors cemented on. Exterior: refuelling probe attached, gun bay access door attached. 'Tail' section: horizontal stabiliser attached, jet exhaust inserted into rear fuselage (not in this photo). 20220729_214743 by Ghostbase, on Flickr See how tomorrow goes... Michael
  3. Thanks I do have a 1/48 Hobby Boss F-14A in the stash and that would make a good autumn project, in light gull grey over white, with a full load of AIM-54 / AIM-7 / AIM-9 missiles. Maybe one from the 'Final Countdown' film. Michael.
  4. My finally completed build of the Hobby Boss 1/48th scale Grumman F-14B Tomcat marked as BuNo 163225 as 'AB-102' operated by VF-102 'Diamondbacks' in Operation Enduring Freedom between October 2001 and March 2002. The loadout is 2 x GBU-12, 2 x Mk83, 1 x AIM-7, 2 x AIM-9 and the AN/AAQ-25 LANTIRN target pod. Decals by Fightertown Decals. Paints Vallejo Air War acrylic color series. Easily the most complex kit that I have ever made, I started it in autumn 2019. Still needs a coat of satin varnish maybe some weathering but, yes, done! 20220728_165235 by Ghostbase, on Flickr I decided to build her with the M61A1 20 mm 'Gatling Gun' bays open which adds more complexity to an already complex model (to me anyway). 20220728_165128 by Ghostbase, on Flickr This angle shows how wide the wings are when fully extended and I decided to build her with dropped slats and flaps too. 20220728_165012 by Ghostbase, on Flickr The reason this build has taken so long (apart from two lockdowns, three holidays, catching Covid and severe mojo-loss) is because I failed to plan the build. I really rushed into it with lots of enthusiasm and built far too much without really thinking about painting and weathering. Effectively I stitched myself up! So it has spent a lot of time on the shelf-of-shame while I wondered how to put it right. 20220728_165102 by Ghostbase, on Flickr A rear view showing the 'turkey feathers' of the General Electric F110-GE-400 turbofans. The TR code on the inside of the vertical fin is for the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt. 20220728_165252 by Ghostbase, on Flickr This is probably the most detailed cockpit that I have ever put together. I still forgot to paint the backs of the ejection seats! 20220728_165433 by Ghostbase, on Flickr This top view shows the size of the mighty Tomcat, a significant proportion of the lift is provided by the 'pancake' body shape. 20220728_165523 by Ghostbase, on Flickr The Tomcat in 1/48th scale is an impressive sized kit! I think I need to start another of these as a winter project and build upon the learning I have had from this project. Michael Edit: I forgot to add the 'slime lights'!!
  5. I like the Eagle in early colour schemes. This is the Monogram 1/48th F-15A in Air Superiority Blue. 20200819_141334 by Ghostbase, on Flickr And the ancient Revell 1/48th F-15A as one of the full scale development Eagles. 20201018_125406 (2) by Ghostbase, on Flickr
  6. The 1982 kit was issued under 'The History Makers' label, have always wanted to build that one so will be watching yours with interest Michael
  7. A most productive day today. I always leave masking canopies to a late stage in a build however with some time and patience the one-piece ESCI canopy is relatively straightforward to mask. I can understand why pre-cut masks are so popular! 20220714_134546 by Ghostbase, on Flickr Today's painting was matt black and olive drab acrylics. I have added the majority of the decals to the F-104C and, as Dansk says, the Zipper does look very cool indeed. All these decals are from either the original kit or from the spares box; I am keeping the Caracal decals for a more modern kit in the future. All I really have left to do is assemble all the parts visible here:- 20220714_161456 by Ghostbase, on Flickr Still outstanding, a pair of wingtip mounted AIM-9B missiles on launchers. The missiles will be sourced from the Hasegawa 'Aircraft Weapons C' series. Sadly, there might be a gap of a few weeks now before I can complete this build. It has certainly been rewarding to this point and thanks for the support. Michael
  8. Thank you I started applying the decals in a very 'gung ho' manner and was quickly reminded to slow down and take my time! Michael
  9. Today's update, have done some remedial work on the nose cone and the jet air intake joins. I had applied ADC Grey too far back on the nose cone so I have had to re-mask this area and respray with aluminium. I was not happy with the joins on the jet air intake parts and I have made a second application of Perfect Putty and carefully sanded it down. Its still isn't perfect but it looks a lot better! 20220713_191655 by Ghostbase, on Flickr Bit of a low mojo day today so decided to start adding some of the main decals. I am trying not to use the Caracal decals on this basic old kit, rather do a mix-and-match with the original decal sheet and some that I have in the spares box. I found some USAF titles and Stars-and-Bars in an old Experts-Choice F-4C Michigan ANG set, these appeared to be very close to the correct size so I popped them into tepid water and this was the result:- 20220713_194308 by Ghostbase, on Flickr 20220713_194729 by Ghostbase, on Flickr I had forgotten how fine and delicate these decals are and the care that is needed to apply them! Still, I persisted and managed to apply a few today. This is the end of the day result:- 20220713_215236 by Ghostbase, on Flickr Slowly getting there Michael
  10. Oh yes! The 479th TFW at George AFB in 1959, the most colourful Starfighters ever in USAF service (Probably) Michael
  11. Thanks, serve me right for purchasing cheap primer! This gave me two choices: use some of my precious Fairy Power Spray and strip off all the paint and primer and start again, or, continue as planned and be more careful with masking using de-tacked tape. I went for the second option then realised I didn't know how to "de-tack" tape In the end I cut several lengths of tape and stuck them on to my cutting mat then pulled them off, repeat several times so they became more pre-used. I also applied the masking tape more lightly than before and when I removed it made sure that the tape was very slowly pulled back at as near 180 degrees as possible. It worked! I masked the rear fuselage and airbrushed Lifecolor UA793 White Aluminium and this was the result:- 20220711_152152 by Ghostbase, on Flickr I am happy with the result and the degrees of contrast between the ADC Grey on the tail fin and the two metallic acrylic paints on the fuselage. I did think about applying a coat of varnish over the metallic paint however in my experience this changes the lustre of the metallc area so I decided not to do that. The next step was to airbrush the forward fuselage in silver. I applied masking tape as outlined above and this was the view prior to applying the paint. 20220711_152102 by Ghostbase, on Flickr Well, I bottled it! I was going to airbrush Lifecolor UA792 Polished Aluminium and I had the kitchen all set up for action but at the last moment I decided to apply Halfords Aluminium spray paint out of a 'rattlecan'. The result was as follows:- 20220711_160808 by Ghostbase, on Flickr The masking advice really helped, I have just a couple of small areas where the ADC Grey has lifted off but they can be easily remedied using a brush. No biggie. The Halfords Appliance White on the wing upper surfaces did not lift anywhere. I am very pleased with how the Halfords Aluminium paint has taken to the Starfighter and she is going to look like a very sleek silver bird when finished. Critique? The joins between the jet air intakes and the mid fuselage are quite poor, I think I should have made a second application of Perfect Putty. Am happy with the progress made so far, one more photo showing the underside. Michael. 20220711_160912 by Ghostbase, on Flickr
  12. I would really like to take part in this GB and I am thinking of exhuming this oldie from the stash. 20220710_212516 by Ghostbase, on Flickr It was in the sale section of a Local Hobby Store in the USA many years ago when the US Dollar was at around 1.8 to the British Pound - happy days! I think this is referred to as a 'mixed media' kit in that many of the parts are cast in resin. My limited experience with resin to date has not been happy however it would be good to try again and I do like the hi-vis decal option that comes with this kit (there are other options too). Not going to commit yet, there are too many group builds that appeal to me at the moment, but this Classic Airframes F-5B kit feels like it would be worth a try. Michael
  13. "There may be trouble ahead But while there's moonlight And music, and love, and romance Let's face the music and dance." Which might be a realistic solution to a small problem which has cropped up! I decided to mask the rear fuselage and tail fin in order to apply Lifecolor UA794 Dark Aluminium with my airbrush. The acrylic paint went on well however when I peeled the masking tape off it also pulled off the primer leaving patches of the original shiny plastic. I am going to airbrush UA793 White Aluminium next, masking the areas that I have painted today and hope that the masking tape does not remove today's paint. Fingers crossed! I have never had this problem before and there could be two explanations: 1) I didn't wash the kit pieces in soapy water first. 2) I used a cheap primer which didn't seem to go on too well. TBH I think it is the primer. I normally use Halfords automotive Grey Primer and have never had a problem with it. Oh well, back to Irving Berlin... Michael 20220708_175412 by Ghostbase, on Flickr
  14. Thanks. In fact the ADC grey was airbrushed, the appliance white was from an aerosol can. I wish I could manually brush to that standard! The white upper wings are interesting. I always thought that the Starfighter had gloss white upper wings and the instructions that I have for the Hasegawa TF-104G quote FS17875. However the Caracal instructions quote FS37875 which is flat white. The original ESCI instructions just say to paint everything silver Michael
  15. Back at the mancave and resumed this build today. Good progress, have sanded down all the joins and where I applied filler and am reasonably happy with the results. Then air brushed Hataka Blue Line Air Defence Grey and that went on very well indeed - underside of the wings, nose cone, tail fin and jet air intakes. This was mixed as 12 drops acrylic paint, 1 of medium retarder, 1 of flow improver and 9 of acrylic thinner. Then Halfords Appliance Gloss White on the top surface of the wings. I have sorted most of the kit parts into two trays, those to be used and those which are not needed. I am intending to build her with AIM-9B Sidewinders mounted on wingtip launchers and external fuel tanks under the wings IF I can find any! Michael 20220706_162510 by Ghostbase, on Flickr 20220706_165159 by Ghostbase, on Flickr
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