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Found 5 results

  1. This is my Modelcollect 1/72 B-52H Buff build. The only build review I have seen of this kit was Paul Boyer's review in FSM and the subsequent article in the new Kalmbach "Modeling Aircraft". The review was one of the more negative ones I have seen in FSM and I have to verify and agree with everything he said. There are some shape errors that I made no attempt to correct, the fit is mostly OK, just OK, I found the panel lines way to big and deep, and most of all the instructions are awful and the decals useless. One warning about the instructions that Mr. Boyer did not mention is; they have you make 2 main gear assemblies that they both call "Q", not Q1 and Q2, just Q. The same is true for the gear bay roofs which they call G. They then say to install one Q and G in the front gear bay and the others in the rear. What they do not say is that the 2 Qs and Gs are slightly different sizes with the front slightly larger than the rear. I can guarantee you that if you get either or both of them reversed the fuselage halves will not close. I got both reversed before I realized they were different. Maybe this is a rookie mistake but it took a day to realize and correct. The kit comes with 18 AGM-129s for the wing pylons, 12 with the wings folded and 6 with them extended. However the photo etched fins provided were for the AGM-86. Given this and that the AGM-129s were retired in 2012 I decided to buy their Aircraft Weapons Set 1. Each of these contained 3 AGM-86s with folded wings and intakes and one 1 with wings and intake extended. No decals. I got 3 sets. and was able to modify the 3 missiles with the extended wings and intakes to a reasonable proximity of the folded ones. These sets are way overpriced and have pretty bad fit. The decals are well printed but the colors on some are wrong and the marking are over sized. I bought the Caracal B-52H sheet 72058. This sheet is really for the AMT/Italeri kit sone the panel lines on the horizontal stabilized don't quite line up the the walkway marking but I made do. The decals were a pleasure to install but did have some silvering that needed work. One final note; I apologize for the quality of the pictures but it is a dark and dreary winter day here and couldn't get enough light on it to keep the whole thing in focus and avoid graininess. Enough whining on my part and on to the pictures. And here it is in its place of honor Next up is a bit of an experiment for me. I will be trying a 3d printed QH-50C ASW drone from Shapeways. Enjoy
  2. This is another of my older builds. It is the Monogram B-52D Stratofortress. Affectionately know to its crews as the BUFF for Big Ugly Fat ah... Fellow. I used the Almark decal set which I was not altogether happy with. They tended to curl around the edges and silvered. Other then that it is pretty much OOB. I apologize for the quality of the pictures, it is a dark dreary day in the NE US and the model is very big and dark so it is hard to get pictures with the whole model in focus and light hence the graininess of the pictures. Early next year I will be building the Modelcollect B-52H Enjoy
  3. Well, it's 1/48 B-52 season... I'll try and finish this one (then I'll finish my Shackleton, and my Stratojet). The H version will wait, I'll start with my D. My inspiration is of course Tom Probert's build (which will be a masterpiece, as always). And a Japanese build of ID Model's BUFF: http://fg786.blog87.fc2.com/category178-63.html Check it, it redefines awesomeness. And while you're at it, check the 1/48 XB-70. And weep. So, back to my Stratofortress. My new friends are there: I'll start with building bulkheads. The fuselage halves aren't quite symmetrical, so I'll build halves that I'll glue later on. How? First, I copy the fuselage interior shape: Then I draw the contour on cardboard. That way, I'll be able to reuse the bits on my next B-52('s ?go figure). The cardboard bit is cut and adjusted to the fuselage quarter (yes, I know). The cardboard is copied on plastic card, which is cut and finely tuned with a heavy duty file. A bit bored with the blukheads, I assembled a fuselage half. I've seen cleaner assemblies... No doubt Milliput will help. I discovered something quite annoying for those who want to build their BUFF with the gear out. Gear doors are staggered, and end or start with a rectangle. The rectangle s the place where the gear leg will protrude from the fuselage. The rectangles have to be exactly symmetrical (lengthwise) for the gear legs to be aligned. Well, guess again... Feces happen, but fixing that will be entertaining. Instead of sulking, I decided to proceed with the cockpit floor. Two halves, a plastic strip to stregthen the assembly, all this glued to the first bulkhead: Fitted to the right front fuselage quarter: The B-52 flight manual will be invaluable (and for 10 bucks, it's a bargain). Here is a page of said manual with the front structure assembly: And the front structure assembly fitted to the fuselage: More fun to come, swear words to be said, plastic bits to be stomped again and again. I'm glad I bought a dozen 20"x24" 1mm plastic sheets. To be continued. I promise. Cheers, S.
  4. B-52G Bomb Bay & Undercarriage Update Sets (for ModelCollect) 1:72 Eduard We reviewed the new kit from ModelCollect here, and although it has a few faults (don't all kits?), it's still an impressive chunk of plastic. Eduard have leapt on it and already produced a bunch of sets, which we had a look at here, and now they're filling the gaps with another two, and they're both LARGE. As usual with Eduard's larger Photo-Etch (PE) sets, they arrive in a flat A5 Ziplok bag, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. B-52G Bomb Bay (72682) The weight of the bag is due to there being three sheets of PE, as the B-52's bomb bay is hardly small. There are two options provided in the set, depending on whether you have the landing flaps deployed or not. If the flaps are deployed, the inner bay doors only are opened, and you leave the fuselage around the bay intact. If you're not deploying the flaps, the bay can be posed entirely open, with the outer edge of the bay also folded out so that the bay doors extend out and up for better visibility and easier access to the bay. This isn't abundantly clear in the instructions if you didn't already know this already, but the pictures of the set installed on their site soon clear that up, one of which you can see below. Construction for the flaps-down option begins with removing the detail on the insides of the fuselage and replacing it with a more detailed skin with lots of additional braces and stringers added. The retraction mechanism and short bulkheads are installed within, and the roof "tray" has its moulded-in detail removed and replaced by more detail that improves the look substantially. The bulkheads are also cut back and replaced by more detailed skins, plus a set of "ears" that the inner bay doors later attach to, hanging almost vertically down. For the flaps-up option, the moulded-in outer doors are removed, and a new bay door panel is fabricated from a number of PE parts, with a little careful bending required to mimic the shape of the removed section. These are then attached to the bay sides in a deployed position, and the inner doors are made up (also curved to shape) and fixed to their outer edge. There is a scrap diagram showing the correct angle for this option, but not for the other option, which would have been useful under the circumstances. Check your references and the picture from the Eduard site below if you're unsure. Either way, the improvement in this important area is well worth the effort. B-52G Undercarriage (72683) The smaller of the two sets, with only one large sheet in the bag, it nonetheless improves the detail of an important and open area by adding ribbed sidewalls, stringers and equipment boxes to all four wheel bays, with only the moulded-in bases of the kit boxes needing removing from the insides of the fuselage, and the meagre moulded-in detail on the bulkheads, which again is replaced by a more realistic ribbed internal skin. Having put my head inside one or two full-sized wheel bays a while back, they will look much better with some more detail in there, and installation should be pretty straight forward. Review sample courtesy of
  5. Boeing B-52G Stratofortress (UA72202) 1:72 ModelCollect The original contract for this long-lived strategic bomber was issued only a year after WWII, and went through some fundamental changes due to the speed at which aviation technology was advancing, initially having a greenhouse type cockpit akin to the B-36 Peacemaker, but eventually ending up with a more traditional cockpit, swept wings and turbo-jet engines, much of which has stayed the same in name at least since the design settled down from a rather WWII era first draft with straight wings and a prop. A B-52 prototype took to the sky in the early 50s, that would be just about recognisable as the B-52 we know now, but at this stage it still had the weird cockpit that was dropped just in time for series production. The A variant was used as a test bed, and as such only three were made, skipping quickly to the B that was the first in-service airframe, after which constant revisions walked the type through the alphabet to the G, which was the most major redesign up to that point, giving it new flying surfaces, an integral "wet wing" for the major fuel stores, the rear gunner became remote and carried out his job from the cockpit, avionics and radar were upgraded, and some rather thirsty J75 engines were used, later to be swapped out in the H for more fuel economy. The G was the most common variant with almost 200 made, and it went on to serve with the USAF until the last one was drawn down and dismantled in 2013. It could carry conventional or nuclear weapons, and for a period was tasked with carrying stand-off nuclear missiles while the older aircraft were used in Vietnam. After that conflict, the systems were updated to improve offensive and defensive capabilities, and many Gs were involved in Operation Desert Storm, flying from Saudi and RAF Fairford amongst others. After a friendly-fire incident with a HARM missile damaging the tail of one B-52 after locking onto the fire-control radar, the aft turrets were deactivated and a crew-member removed from the roster. The G left service in the 90s, and many were stored at the bone-yard before they were destroyed due to the needs of the START treaty. Only its successor the B-52H remains in service today, and is scheduled to do so for a ridiculously long time yet, allowing several generations of fliers to crew the same basic airframe. The Kit The B-52 has been not so much overlooked in 1:72, as stuck in limbo with only one kit in the scale that originated a long time ago and has been found in the boxes of several manufacturers over the years. ModelCollect have now broken that kit's stranglehold on the subject and scale, with this 100% new tool of this monster of a bomber. We have been waiting a little while now since the announcement, but it is finally here, and it is heavy. It arrives in a large box with an attractive painting on the top that appears to be from the angle of a refuelling tanker or similar, and inside there are, what can only be described as a huge number of sprues that have quite some weight to them. Just the main parts weigh a ton, and with all the interior and engine parts filling up the rest of the box, it's going to give the postman a hernia if you order more than one at a time. Our review sample took a beating during shipping from ModelCollect, but it has arrived in pretty good order, although the external carton has gone straight to recycling as it no-longer has and perpendicular sides. I have seen the Buff (Big Ugly Fat Friend, where the word "Friend" isn't what they really mean) many times at airshows and it is a substantial aircraft, but I wasn't quite prepared to see wings that were about as long as my forearm and outstretched hand. Some of the bags on my sample had split due to the rough handling this solitary model had received, but yours should fare better if it has been sent in the company of others on the slow container boat from China. This shot includes the parts knocked off the sprues in transit and the flight crew console (far left), which has been glued together. The fuselage has been moulded in sections in order to squeeze other variants from these toolings, so the box is just a bit longer than the wings, rather than having to accommodate the length of the full thing. It has a common centre section that includes the wing root, a nose section, tail section, and in this boxing, a separate tail gun, which changed throughout the development of the type, so makes sense for it to be separate. The skin has been depicted without any "oil-canning" that is seen on the real thing, which would probably have increased development costs substantially, and doubtless resulted in complaints from people that thought their model was faulty or "done wrong". If you want to portray the beast realistically, there are a number of tutorials out there that can be used to distress the metal, but check your references, as the patterns change when the aircraft is in the air, on the ground and probably also when it is loaded with fuel and weapons. Speaking of weapons, there are a large quantity included, which makes up a fair portion of the kit's weight, but by no means the majority. The nose section of the fuselage should appear to the left and right of this sprue, but these parts were knocked off during transit and are shown in an earlier photo. There are six main sprues in a mid-grey styrene, plus six fuselage and wing parts (my nose parts had fallen off the sprue), eighteen smaller sprues relating to the weapons, a clear sprue, two sheets of Photo-Etch (PE) brass, one of which is black (anodised?), a pair of decal sheets, and an A4 instruction booklet with glossy cover. It is clear that some sliding moulds have been used to obtain the detail on the fuselage parts, especially around the wing root and the sensor fairings under the nose. You will need to prepare these areas by hiding the mould lines before painting, preferably sooner than later. Once you've got past the sheer size of this model in 1:72, construction begins with the cockpit, which starts with a long floor with moulded-in aft bulkhead. Four crew seats are added, and each one is an ejection seat, with a free-standing launch-rail attached to the back, and a seam running down the centre of the cushions, which could be hidden by picking up some crew figures, seatbelts or just by adding a thin layer of pewter foil to the front. The front seats face in the direction of travel and have a control column each, and a large wrap-around console added later, while the rear seats of the Electronic Warfare officer and the gunner face backward, staring at the empty bulkhead that won't be seen anyway due to the letterbox canopy. There is a low structure fitted on one side of the space between the seats, and a stowage area on the other, plus what appears to be a jump seat just aft of that. The instrument console is built from a pair of parts split down the middle (see the fuselage picture for the parts glued together), and the black PE parts are fitted within to add the necessary instrument details to the front, and sides, with five parts in total. The console fits via a butt-joint, so placing them into their recesses on the floor is a wise move to ensure they are straight and level when the glue cures. The lower deck has a hatch in the floor from the upper, and a crew ladder allows access for the two crew there, who exit via hatches on the bottom on their compartment on their downward-firing seats that have remained unchanged through the years. There is also a large bank of equipment and instruments surrounding the lower crew on three sides, providing navigation and radar navigation services to the flight crew. This completed module glues directly to the underside of the upper floor. The B-52 is fairly unusual in having a narrow track main gear arrangement that permits steering on all main wheels, allowing it to do some fancy zig-zagging on the ground for airshow visitors. There are two bulkheads that hold the gear legs, with one pair attached to each side, which gives them a staggered appearance and four separate bay doors that can be seen straight through if you are at the correct angle. Four gear legs and eight wheels are made up and attached to the framework bulkheads, with a scrap diagram showing how the retraction jacks fit to the framework. The bomb bay also has to be made up, and this comes complete with a rotary ejector rack and eight Cruise Missiles (AGM-86) that populate it, crammed in tight to utilise all available space. Each missile is built from two halves, a separate intake trunk high and to the aft, plus a set of folded wings and PE tail fins, all of which fit on the central axle of the launcher, with a pair of suspension frames at each end, allowing the rail to rotate freely. It installs in the bay roof, and is joined by the end bulkheads, at which point the fuselage can be closed up. The instructions show you building up the nose assembly with the cockpit inserted and glazed, and then mated to the central section. This can result in tricky seams between the sections if you have been a bit sloppy with the fitting, so it's worthwhile at least considering building up each fuselage half completely before adding the interior parts, but taking care to get everything lined up as you go, as each method has its own pitfalls. The centre section receives the bomb bay and landing gear, but additional equipment boxes and gear bay doors with hinges are installed first, along with the gear bay roofs, a long perforated section that parallels the edge of the bay on each side, and some partial bulkheads. The landing gear bulkheads fit in substantial grooves in the interior for strength, and a set of bracing struts are added to the sides of the fuselage before it is closed up. Much of this section will need to be painted in the interior colour before closing up, as the nature of the gear openings will ensure that any detail will be seen. The bomb bay doors are secured to the fuselage by separate hinge parts that are best left off until later, after which the attention turns to the tail section, which has a solitary equipment box added to the front interior before it is closed up. The rear "stinger" is then put together from two halves, with an additional part for the four-barrel gun mount slotted into the centre. The BUFF can carry additional weapons on two wing pylons carried between the fuselage and inner engine pod. These are included, with six more AGM-86 Cruise Missiles and six Tomahawk Cruise Missiles (TLAM) for you to use as you see fit, with different hole diagrams for each type to fit them on the launcher. The twin engine pods are split top and bottom, with intake part, internal fan and exhaust parts separate, and a two-part pylon for each one, differing depending on which station they are fitted to. The small external fuel pylons are also included for fitting near the wingtips, and once you have glued the two wing halves together, these sub-assemblies can be attached to their mounting points, with just the fuel pylon needing the flashed-over holes drilling out. The engine pylons are located via aligning them with the stub that stands proud from the leading edge, but if you anticipate handling the model after completion, it would be worthwhile adding some additional pins to the butt-joint to strengthen it. The outrigger landing gear that stops the BUFF from toppling onto its wingtip is a simple gear leg with retraction jack that deploys from a shallow bay, the roof detail of which is moulded into the inner face of the upper wing, and comes with bay doors for each one, and a two-part wheel to finish it off. The wings have a large mating surface, so should glue together well, and have been moulded with the correct anhedral, but an in-flight model would need to be jigged to reduce this, and you should take careful note of your references to obtain the right angles. The tabs and ledges that hold the wings to the fuselage could put a strain on the top fuselage joint, which may eventually separate if left stock, so it would be as well to add some strength to this area before closing the fuselage and adding the wings. However, some would be looking to make the wings removable for storage, as this is a huge model even at this scale, so whatever solution you use will have to leave those big wings loose. The flaps are separate, and have nicely detailed bays, but there isn't any reference made to being able to pose them opened, possibly because the flap tracks were never tooled, so it was abandoned as a feature. Who knows? At this stage all the assemblies are brought together, starting with the fuselage and ending with the wings, and finally the tail fin, all three parts of which fit to the aft fuselage with substantial tabs and slots that are each about the size of a 1:48 F-15 wing. Markings There is only one decal option in the box, but it's a colourful one, with a grey base and rust/sand camouflage over the upper surfaces. Only the port side of the aircraft is provided as reference to demarcation lines however, and although information is widely available online, it would have been nice to have more than just the nose of the starboard side as reference. The decals are spread over two sheets, the larger of which consists of walkways and stencils, while the smaller sheet contains the airframe specific markings. Both sheets are printed by Cartograf, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. Care will need to be taken with the walkways as a few are 15cm and longer, but if you decide to paint them instead, you can at least use the decals as a template. The colour callouts are in Mig AMMO paints, but in this internet age it wouldn't be difficult to transpose those to your own preferred paint brand if you need to. If you plan on depicting another airframe with aftermarket decals, it is important to note the under-nose EVS pods and tailgun are particular to some airframes and periods, which may place some limits on which other aircraft it can be modelled as without needing some physical changes. Conclusion Overall it's a great looking kit with just a few things that can be shrugged off as options that would have been nice to have. It's about time we had a new tooled B-52 though, and other marks are already in production, with an early and late H model and an earlier D, which should please a lot of people. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
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