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  1. Good morning, a few weeks ago, I started my biggest modeling effort so far: the well-known and praised USS Nimitz from Trumpeter. A fine kit, and to make it even better, I got the Eduard set, the Starfighter decal set and some more airplanes. After all, it should look rather busy. My idea is to have the carrier look like this: http://www.thunderstreaks.com/spotting/carrier-visit-uss-nimitz-august-16-17-1976/#prettyPhoto , with some minor changes on the aircraft layout. Let's start with the aircrafts: first problem, the trumpeter ones have folded-out wings, but on the original, almost all wings are folded. So, fist step, is to cut the outer wings, are reglue them straight up. That's however nor possible for the intruder/prowler/skywarrior, since the wings overlap. Corsair and phantoms are easier, they point straigt up, thus painting and decalling should still be possible. After glueing, they receive a small blob of maskol, and a black priming. You see the difference later. That's some 60 aircrafts, of many different types and colours. And that's why I build the old one, still with the phantoms. After the black priming, I airbrushed the white, and then brush painted the light gull grey. The decals are the ones provided with the trumpeter kit, only 6 corsairs of the "sidewinder"-squadron. And you can see, the cockpit without the black priming is far too bright. And that's a corsair with black priming and the starfighter decals. They are nice to handle, but still can drive you crazy. All decals are separate, where they could have been grouped together. In the front fuselage, there are some 6 decals on each side, which could have beed grouped easily together. Oh, another nice point of the black priming: the intake looks rather realistic. If you don't spray the white head-on, it looks like the real thing, as it is dark grey. With some more 60 aircrafts to go, don't expect an update too soon... it took me 90 minutes for one aircraft, but the others have a bit less decals than the corsairs. Alex
  2. Questo é il mio ultimo progetto, il trattore da rimorchio dell’US NAVY e MARINES in scala 1/48 e 1/35. Lo utilizzerò per i miei modelli di F-18 F Hasegawa, F-35B (in attesa dell’uscita della versione Italeri) MV 22 Osprey Hobby Boss, AH-1Z e UH-1Y Kitty Hawk, per la scala 1/35 per il AH-1Z Academy e MH-60R/S.
  3. Here is my completed USS Gearing, built from the Dragon 1/350 kit, out of the box apart from railings and some home made improvisations. Little did I know that, when I was gifted this kit by some friends at work (my birthday, 2019) this was going to become my most ambitious project yet. Pretty much from day 1 you have to deal with sub-millimetre pieces (each Oerlikon has to be put together from 9 parts, including a mixture of polystyrene and photoetch). My learning curve became very, very steep (this is only my third ship). The rigging is largely human hair, although for some thicker and thinner parts I used surgical silk and Caenis thread, respectively. I also substituted the jackstaff and the aerials sticking out of the aft stack with metal (hypodermic needle and tungsten wire), since the parts provided in the kit looked unnaturally thick, and kept breaking during the build anyway. There were some problems with the instructions. I have compiled a list of tips to avoid getting into trouble in my web site (address in my signature panel below). Feel free to email me for any questions. I am sorry for the quality of my photos, particularly in comparison with some of the stunning stuff I have seen in this web site. I only have my iPhone for this.
  4. High Vis vs. Low Vis When did the change in the painting occur? What was the reason of it? I wonder about the reason for painting the aircraft so nice and wonderful and the opposite. Is it just visibility? Since on radar it makes no difference at all? Was there any other reason behind I have no clue at all? Who knows? Thank you in forward.
  5. Hallo Here I have a general question, which accompanies me since the start of modelling. On sever a/c this question arouses again. Here now: How does an a/c exactly look like, if it is parked or ready to go? My present day issue is the SBD Dauntless on the carrier. Before take off. Armed, no crew in the a/c, so not manned. · Flaps up · Dive breaks closed · The rear gun is stowed. (How?) · Rear gunner seat in forward direction · Pilots navigation board out · Already bombed up · Canopy open all section glasses in center position Anything else? The same situation I had on my Barracudas. I did lots of them wrong. Helldiver also. Looking forward your ideas! Happy modelling
  6. Here is my model of USS Lassen in 1:700 scale from the Hobby Boss kit. I started this on 23rd Dec and with some fits and starts finished it yesterday. It was an easy kit to build, however, I rather bodged the paintjob as I painted the deck first, then the superstructures and when time came to attach them found some gaps needed filling, resulting in too many layers caused by masking and re-masking using Liquid Mask. As a result the sharp details have become rather lost and the decals exhibit quite a bit of silvering despite liberal application of Daco decal solvent. it was also my first time doing PE railings so they are bit wonky (I used transparent canopy glue & C.A. to fix them). The halyards are a combination of Uschi van der Rosten rigging and stretched sprue affixed with C.A. For the base, after building a frame using 20mm pine coaming from the local DIY shop the sea effect was created using stryofoam board, watercolour paper, then airbrushed Vallejo Dark Sea Blue, Pastel Green and Off White with the green & white closer to the vessel. I drew around the shape of the hull form using the bottom half of the waterline kit part and then gouged a seat for the ship. I created the waves using AK Interactive Sea Effect for the overall sea texture and then cotton wool soaked in the same for the churn, finished with AK Interactive Foam. I probably spent more time thinking and preparing the base than the model itself. Putting such effort on the sea taught me a vital lesson that despite the (perceived) shortcomings of my work on the model (paint job), once viewed as a whole, these somehow become less apparent.
  7. Hello all; After the odyssey that was the Lou IV project, and a false start with a biplane, I've taken a couple of weeks to get some mojo back and now settled on an F6F-3 Hellcat project for my next one. Specifically; Now, in trawling around the interwebs this appears, again, to be a popular subject for modellers (of course it is, loo at the markings!) but there is an absolute dearth of information about the pilots, their unit and what what they actually did. Eduard has this aircraft as a VF-34 Hellcat, but most of the images on the internet show it as a VF-38 Hellcat. there’s not much info on either unit. For example, here's the Wikipedia entry for VF-38; The markings should be fun to do, and it's a Hellcat, which makes it a meaty topic anyway, but this one will be my attempt to try and put a bit more info into the world on what this squadron did -whichever it was - and the campaign they fought in. I'll be starting into the cockpit tonight. Cheers; Mark.
  8. Fellow modelers, The USN operated in the late fifty's a number of "cold weather" Sikorsky LH-34D in the harsh climate of Antarctica.. On searching on the web, pictures concerning these operations are very limited. Finding one, equipped with skis has been impossible so far. Is there any UH-34 specialist, who have some pictures concerning Sikorsky LH-34D equipped with these skis, and what were in general the modifications to make them "Arctic Proof". Looking forward to your information. This is the site, were I got my information. www.vaqH-34.com/vxe6/h-34.htm Regards, Orion, The Netherlands.
  9. Dear All i wish you a happy new year here are my last two kits Hasegawa PhantomII and Fujimi Skyhawk Add on are: buddy tank for A-4 Skyhawk (attack squadron resin) -Sidewinder & sparrow missiles from hasegawa missile set -fujimi deck tow -figures from fujimi & revell -superscale decals for the F-4 phantom models are painted with gunze and vallejo metal color
  10. Hello guys, it's been a while since I posted in the forum. Here's a photo of my latest model, Trumpeter's F9F-2 Panther in Argentinian colours. I used an Aerocalcas set, 48005, to get these markings
  11. Grumman F6F-5 Hellcat (A19004) 1:24 Airfix The Hellcat was a tough flying barrel of a 'plane, used extensively in the Pacific Theatre during WWII by the US Navy, as well as the British Fleet Air Arm. It was propelled (excuse pun) by the powerful 2,000hp Pratt & Whitney R-2800 Double-Wasp, the same as used by its faster stablemate the Chance Vought Corsair. It was a rugged aircraft that could absorb substantial damage, more so than the faster Corsair, so it was well-used and well-liked by the pilots. It was faster than the Zero, which was of a much lighter construction and couldn't absorb the punishment a Hellcat could. It came into service in 1943 and there were over 12,000 built before the end of the war, with it playing a substantial role in giving the Allies air superiority toward the end of the conflict. It was the replacement for the Wildcat, although it bears a very strong family resemblance that makes differentiation tricky for the uninitiated. The pilot was well protected by armour around the cockpit, and the fuel tanks were self-sealing, something that wasn't present on the Zero that led to some fiery shoot-downs, some of which were captured on gun-cameras and are occasionally shown on documentaries. By the time the -5 came into service, the 18-cylinder P&W radial engine was more powerful, the airframe tougher, and the forward visibility improved by the addition of a flat, armoured windscreen panel. There were Nightfighter variants throughout the production run, which were the last of the type to be withdrawn from service in the 50s, but the day fighter -6 was the direct replacement of the -5, with an even more powerful engine with water injection and supercharging driving a four-bladed prop. In British service is was initially named the Gannet Mk.I, which is heresy as there's only one Gannet and that's from Fairey The name was soon changed to Hellcat for simplicity's sake, with the Nightfighter named the Mk.II. The Bearcat was the final replacement of the Hellcat, keeping the cat naming theme that continued until the F-14 entered the Danger Zone. The Kit The initial reaction to the announcement of this kit at Telford probably wasn't everything Airfix could have hoped, but since then the level of excitement has risen, helped by its inclusion in the recent James May documentary about Airfix and Hornby, which also featured one of our very own members who was responsible for building the pre-production sample with that information helping design the instructions. It is the third of Airfix's reawakened interest in Superkits that restarted with the 1:24 Mosquito, and has continued with 2014's Typhoon, a reboxing of which we reviewed this week here. We've seen a few builds already thanks to the documentary and a few examples that have gone out early due to what seems to have been a bit of an early dart by one of Airfix's stockists. Our sample has arrived and it's another large box that is well-filled with sprues, many of which are the full size of the interior due to the fact that they have been moulded in pairs with a central "spine" holding them together. We've had to remove those and split the sprues up to be able to get them into the photobooth, so we end up with fifteen sprues in grey styrene, one in clear, a large decal sheet and a thick instruction booklet that will keep you busy for quite a while. The painting and marking guide is provided on two sheets of glossy A3 paper on both sides with another containing stencilling instructions printed on one side. First impressions are excellent, as the surface detail that was first seen on the Typhoon has been replicated on this kit, with oil-canning, riveting and a few lapped panels visible on the main parts, which will give the finished model additional realism once painted. The detail is continued into the inside with a fully detailed cockpit and engine compartment plus further fuselage detail behind the pilot and inside the wing in the shape of wheel and gun bays. Add to this the foldable wings, optional raised or lowered flaps, landing gear and a choice of weapons, and we have a literal super kit. The detail and engineering has to be seen to be believed and the 310 construction steps gives a clue to how much has gone into this kit. If you're going to break down the cost between the hours of entertainment you'll get building it, it will be extremely good value. If you're going to break the price down on part count you'll get similarly good value, and if you look at the sprues it's a similarly good ratio of smiles per pound. Each sprue has been protected by its own bag, and the clear parts have been cocooned in paper towel, then a bubble-wrap bag, and finally a similar style bag as the rest of the sprues, which indicates that Airfix are taking no risks when it comes to clear parts on their more recent kits. Construction begins with the option of building the kit with the wheels up and in flight, wheels down and wings unfolded, or wheels down and wings folded for storage. This will impact your choices later, so choose now, walk through the instructions looking at the silhouettes at the top of the pages making notes and you'll have less chance of getting confused later. The steps are in the new 3D style with the previous step's parts highlighted in red, and where necessary there are captions that will assist us with our builds, some of which will have been added due to experiences during the pre-production builds mentioned earlier. You also have the option to leave many of the panels open or off completely, so you'll still have some choices to make throughout the build. The final one of the initial options is to add an electric micro-motor to the heart of the radial engine to give your model an attractive spinning prop. There are even custom parts to allow you to do this, and the routing of the wire is mapped out for you. After drooling over the sprues and the decision making, the build begins in earnest with some actual plastic that makes up the cockpit floor, which has a number of ribs added along with the control column and its linkages. The aft bulkhead is detailed with fire extinguisher and headrest, then fitted to the rear along with the H-shaped foot rest for the pilot's feet when they're not pushing on the rudder pedals, which are fitted to the shorter front bulkhead. Details such as instrument panels with decals and extra parts, the crew seat with seat cushion, lap belts and the shoulder belts, as well as other mechanical parts fitted to the cockpit tub, while ribbing, and more controls/instruments are installed in the sides of the fuselage halves, which prevents sink marks associated with moulded-in parts, then the cockpit is positioned in the port half for further construction. Another bulkhead with tanks is fitted behind the cockpit and the arrestor hook is applied to its bay with two small frames fitted forward of it, a scrap diagram showing the completed position of all the parts. The radio gear is built up and placed on three palettes suspended in the aft fuselage, and the instrument panel with either moulded-in dial fronts or flat fronts in clear parts and a styrene front panel installed over the top. There are also decals at the bottom of the sheet, with their location called out on the back page of the instructions booklet. Before you close up the fuselage, you may need to open up two holes in the bottom centreline to accept the external fuel tank later. A choice of retracted or deployed tail wheels are the final dceision before closing up the fuselage, after which a central panel on the underside and the lower half of a fuselage frame aft of the landing gear are added. The wings are next to be built up into a full-width assembly that will be installed later in a similar style to the real thing. It starts with the centre lower section with stiffeners added around the landing gear bays, a short length of spar that will be visible if you're lowering the gear, and you'll also need to drill some holes if you are planning on fitting the bombs. The retracted gear is fitted along with its wheels, which are made up from two parts tyres, and three layers that make up the hub, and are used in all three options. Another spar part and ribs are added to the inside of the lower skin, and this is then made up with the upper wing halves. The gear down option differs by adding more internal detail and leaves off the gear legs for now, then the outer wing's lower interior is made up with masses of ribs inside to stiffen things up and add the compartments for the three wing-mounted .50cal machine guns. These parts are common to all versions, and the machine guns have separate hollow tips for more realism, plus ammo cans feeding them. The aileron hinges and hinge-point for the wing fold is glued to the inner edge, then the whole process is repeated on the other side, save for the wing light that is only fitted in the leading edge of the port wing. The gear-down inner wing is then added to the wing uppers, and if you're fitting the wings unfolded, the joints between inner and lower outer wings are inserted, sanding to width if necessary, and then added to the inner by sliding in the tab first and then gluing the assembly in place from below. A small panel is slid into place next to the open gear bays, and the open or closed gun bay doors are added to the upper wing, then the fuselage is dropped in place on top, with the clear wingtip light covering the lights with bulbs inside that you should paint green and red. The folded wing version has short sections of the upper wing added to the top of the lower mid-section, and the wings are made up separately with more detail in the joins, plus cranked joining tabs fitted to the outer wings for later insertion. Meanwhile the ailerons with their separate trim tabs, the flaps and inserts are fitted along with the gun bay covers, which are more than likely fitted closed when the wings are folded, although the open option is also included for completeness. The fuselage is dropped on the short centre wing panel, and then we're back to the common parts of the fuselage. Firstly, the fuselage intake is fitted under the wing after construction with the exhaust vent closed or open 14o if not carrying a fuel tank, or 5o if the tank is present. The tail feathers with their separate elevators and rudder are next, with their posable trim tabs that take us to the other end of the airframe, then it's back to the engine, which starts with a tubular shaft that can take the motor if you can find one. Currently it's a bit rare, with only a couple on eBay for 2-3 times their RRP, and out of stock at Airfix.com. Hopefully that situation will be resolved soon, as kits of this size deserve the extra attention. There are a couple of extra parts for this option, but otherwise the engine is built the same way, with the pushrods added early on, the cylinder banks, separated by another ring from the front bank, with the motor or styrene axle added to the front and covered up by the reduction gear housing, after which the wiring loom hardness is slid over, and the fun part begins (that's semi-sarcastic if you didn't twig). Airfix have supplied a full set of diagrams from front and back as well as cross-sectional diagrams for you to add ignition leads to all your pistons using a colour coded system which designates the length of 0.7mm wire you need to use. Although this will take some time and effort, it's well worth it at this scale. The complex tangle of exhaust collector pipes are added next at the rear of the engine, done in steps to reduce confusion and at the back various ancillary parts are affixed, with magnetos and such attached to the bell housing at the front. The engine mounts and more exhaust pipes are still to add, and the exit pipes have separate tips with hollow ends for realism. This goes on for a couple of pages, taking it slow to avoid mistakes, including various tanks and the tubular mounts almost last into battle. A number of ducts are added front and rear to aid cooling, and a header tank is strung between the top two mounts, with the chin scoop trunking slung under the engine and married up with the cowling ring which has the lower section as a separate assembly to obtain the correct shapes. The front bulkhead needs detailing before the engine is installed, so a set of styrene wires and hoses are added, partly inside the leading edges of the wings, with location aided by a translucent diagram that has the parts picked out in red. Ancillary equipment, the stays for the intercooler flaps and the intake trunking are put in place before the main engine assembly is glued in place, using some sturdy-looking pegs that fit into holes in the bulkhead, and helping to line up the two lengths of intake. The cowling for the very front of the fuselage is put into position part-by-part, covering up all the engine mounts, plus a small panel in the leading edge of the wing, the intercooler flaps in open or closed positions, and the supports for the engine cowling panels, which you can either install completely, or leave off in full or in part to show off your painting of the complex engine. The cooling flaps are last, and these too can be posed open or closed. Moving onto the landing gear, which is only appropriate for the land-locked options with folded or open wings, the struts are substantial and made up from two halves, with a large mating surface in the front of the bay, the retraction jack and separate oleo-scissors. You'll need to add some brake hoses from wire before you install the captive gear doors, and the small flip-up forward doors, then the wheels you made earlier. The tail wheel can be made retracted or deployed by using a different yoke and the same two-part bay door, with the assembly fixing to the bulkhead at the front of the bay by three tabs for strength. The flying surfaces for the remainder of the options are next with the flaps spread over the wing join in two parts, and the ailerons fitting to their three hinge points which have helpful guides to set realistic deflections of both the aileron and its trim tab. Here the instructions take a break to build up the stores carried by the Hellcat, then take up the addition of the delicates such as the pitot probe, aerials, formation lights, IFF lights under the fuselage, the two part canopy, which can be posed open or closed, and the prop which has a different rear part if you are using the motor, then the prop is fitted to the front (it has a separate rear section), and the spinner is placed on the centre boss. A couple of diagrams show where the aerial wires go, but you'll have to use your own material here as none is supplied. The remaining two pages detail the final fitting of the folded wings, which begins with the little drop-down trapezoid-shaped flap at the break, then the wings themselves which slot in on their big tabs, after which you add a couple of linkages to complete the job. Let's go back to the weapons and tanks for a moment. The Hellcat was rigged to be able to carry bombs and rockets as well as additional fuel in a centreline fuel tank. All these are included in the kit, and at 1:24 scale they're quite large. There are two each of the 500lb and 1000lb bombs, which come in two separate halves, plus a separate tail section and spinner inside the tail. These then attach to the aircraft by two pins via short pylons of three parts each. There are six 5" HVAR (High Velocity Aircraft Rockets) rockets in three parts and these have moulded-in rail-less pylons and fins. These also attach to the wing via two pins that are at an angle, so that the dihedral of the wing is countered and the rockets hang vertically. The bombs fit on the inner wing, while the rockets are attached to the outer folding panel, and the 150 gallon drop-tank sits on the centreline. The tank is made up of three main parts plus two additional straps giving eight attachment points and requiring the removal of a small pin that hangs from the centreline. To reiterate, the intercooler flap can only be posed closed or at 5o with the tank fitted. Markings Decals are by Cartograf, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin matt carrier film cut close to the printed areas. There are four options on the sheet, with a full side of glossy A3 paper devoted to each option in full colour and all the paint codes on each sheet so you don't have to flip pages all the time. From the box you can build one of the following: F6F-5 "Paper Doll" flown by Lt. Carl A Brown Jr., VF-27, USS Princeton, Oct 1944 F6F-5 VF-12, USS Randolph (CV-15), May 1945 Mk.II "Operation Sunfish", No.808 Naval Air Squadron, Fleet Air Arm, HMS Khedive, East Indies, Mar-Apr 1945 F6F-5 Flotille 1F, Carrier Arromanches (R95), L'Aéronavale, Indochina War, 1953 The stencils are covered on another sheet of glossy A3, with quite a few dotted around the airframe. These small details make a model for me, so it's worth putting them all on the airframe, and there are even stencils included for the prop, bombs and rockets with only the drop tank escaping adornment. Conclusion Golly! What a big, detailed, impressive kit of this WWII slugger, as you can see above, straight from Airfix's build. My usual scale is 1:48, but this thing is really quite exciting from a detail point of view from the box, and will keep your average modeller busy for quite some time, especially if you're planning on putting your heart and soul into the build like it deserves. They're selling fast, so don't hesitate. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  12. USN Deck Crew Set (201748) 1:48 VideoAviation They say being a deck operator on an Aircraft Carrier is one of the most dangerous jobs in the world, which is believable, given that there are large chunks of jet and prop-powered metal weighing several tons moving around, getting flung into the air and landing back on. This set of resin figures from VideoAviation contains parts for seven of these folks plus a number of chocks and holdbacks. It arrives in one of their familiar large clamshell boxes with a layer of bubble-wrap surrounding everything but the cover card. Inside are eleven casting blocks, with one each for the figures and four for the accessories. There are a few wisps of resin here and there where the parts have come out of the mould, but these can be removed so easily it barely merits mention. The figures have heads, legs and torsos moulded as a single part, with one or both arms as separate parts where practical, and only one of the flight line crew being moulded with both arms attached held behind his back, and Shooter 1 giving the thumbs up with his other hand on his thigh. There are figures representative of Chocks, Holdbacks, Shooter 1, Shooter 2, Fly Director, and two Flight Line Crew in different poses. The instructions show the figures fully built with colour call-outs to their clothing, bone domes and equipment, plus a simple guide to assembling the Chocks from five parts, allowing you to vary the distance between the two highly textured stoppers. Very little clean-up will be needed once the parts are liberated from their casting blocks, with a few swipes of the sanding sticks to ensure the figures can stand up unaided. Even the kneeling figures have small attachment points at the knee and toes to prevent a big flat-spot or seamline down the leg, so care has been taken to make the job easier for us, which is always appreciated. Conclusion If you’re looking to populate a diorama or just have some figures next to your model, the detail is excellent, and as you get 7 crew in the pack they’re great value. Review sample courtesy of
  13. Hello! Here’s my recent project, an Eduard (Profipack) Hellcat F6F-5 Late. It means PE, canopy masks and resin wheels included, which is great. Everything went fine, this is a very good kit. Even after I dropped some varnish all over the right wing. So, ALWAYS put the airbrush cup lid ON! Lesson learned… Hope you enjoy! Cheers!
  14. The Grumman F6F Hellcat – Airframe & Miniature #15 ISBN: 9781912932115 Valiant Wings Publishing The Book The book is perfect-bound with 224 pages on glossy paper, tons of photographs, diagrams and profiles, the modern pictures being in colour, while the contemporary content is going to be black and white due to that being the predominant film format of the day. It is of course written by Richard A Franks, with profiles by Richard J Caruana, isometric drawings by Wojciech Sankowski and models by a group of fine modellers. If you're familiar with the series, you'll know that the pages are broken down into the Airframe section that deals with the 1:1 real thing, and the miniature section that covers the scale models and has a number of builds, plus a host of photographic detail that will be of great help to the modeller. The breakdown in more detail is as follows: Airframe Chapters 1. Protoypes 2. Production 3. Reconnaissance, Night-Fighters, Drones, Test Airframes & Projects 4. Camouflage & Markings and Colour Profiles Miniature Chapters 5. Hellcat Kits 6. Building a Selection 7. Building a Collection 8. In Detail: The Hellcat Engine, Cowlings & Propeller Cockpit & Canopy Mid & Aft Fuselage Tail Wings & Control Surfaces Undercarriage & Arrestor Hook Armament Electrical Equipment Appendices I. Hellcat Kits II. Hellcat Accessories III. Hellcat Decals & Masks IV. Bibliography A concertina sheets of 1:48 Scale plans captive in the rear cover (equivalent to 8 pages printed on both sides) The scale plans are nicely thought out, and fold out sideways with the left-hand edge captive to the inside cover, and the isometric drawings by Wojciech Sankowski that pick out the differences between variants and sub-variants are a dream for anyone like me that struggles to remember the details that separate the marks. As usual with the photographs in these titles, they're excellent for the most part, and as good as they can be for the occasional slightly grainy one that is all that remains of this or that variant. Afterall, there's only so much that modern photo editing software can do. The builds by Libor Jekl, John Wilkes and Steve A. Evans are all first-rate too, with two in 1:72, one in 1:48, one in 1:32 and one of the immense 1:24 Airfix kit, all of which wouldn't look out of place on competition tables at the highest level. Conclusion This book is brimming with interest and information, with something for everyone – the modeller, the aviation enthusiast or history buff. My personal favourite parts are the variant isometrics as previously mentioned, but there is so much to enjoy and it’s all good. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  15. Another kit finished that was on the shelf-of-doom. In fact it turned out better than I expected. Paints were acrylics, Humbrol Light Gull Grey and Tamiya XF-2 White finished with the kit decals and a Flory wash then sealed with a matt sheen from Vallejo. I also made some airbags for the intakes from Milliput, made a mould and cast some resin ones. Thank you for looking. Regards Robert
  16. Time to start another Navy build. I'd been planning on a Skyhawk next (I should still get to that) but somehow the inspiration to build the unique EC-24A struck me. Here's the 1/1 scale version: The EC-24A was operated by McDonnell Douglas for the Fleet Electronic Warfare Support Group as an electronic aggressor - its role was to simulate attacks on the US Navy surface fleet. It was converted from a DC-8-54CF acquired from United Airlines in 1984, supplementing two NKC-135As in the same role. I'll be using the Minicraft 1/144 DC-8 kit, which includes suitable engines for a CFM-56 powered 70-series aircraft or for a DC-8-62 or -63 with the later style of nacelle for the JT3Ds, but not the earlier JT3D nacelle of the -50 series. So I'm using resin engines from Bra.Z. The various fairings and antennae will be scratch built, including some 3D printing, and I'll print my own decals. Here are the sprue and resin engines: First job is to shorten the fuselage. Minicraft kindly give us engraved lines inside the fuselage halves to guide the necessary cuts so this was pretty straightforward: and it's gone together quite nicely, with some scrap sprue used to reinforce the joints: So, off to a good start. I'm hoping to move it along quite quickly so as to get time for that Skyhawk. cheers Julian
  17. My next lockdown model is now officially finished I used the Eduard photo-etched set, together with metal gear from Scale Aircraft Conversion [SAC-72106]. I must admit some of the parts were particularly fiddly like the arresting hook and the bits and pieces for the landing gear (as shown by the close-up shots). For the high visibility markings I used MM Semigloss Orange #1595. Overall, I am really satisfied how it turned out. Enjoy!
  18. Hello, This my recent project, OOB. A really easy kit, nice fitting and engineering. The only, and big, complain are the decals. They’re virtually useless, way too thick. So, I put it on hold and waited for a new set from ebay. Hope you enjoy! Cheers!
  19. Hello all, I am working on Tamiya's 1/350 Fletcher with Eduard's PE set. Tamiya's kit is best Fletcher in its scale but still has inaccuracies and fitting issues, also Eduard's set suffers from same problems. You have to check your references before installing nearly every piece. I am not a ship expert and sometimes my models suffer from inaccuracy and mistakes but I am trying my best to build them close to the real one as much as possible. So, let the photostream begin Update 29 November: Beside these books, Internet is always your friend Let's start then! Ugly seam lines are sanded down. I really liked that plating on the hull, nice job Tamiya! Guess what is modeled accurate in anchor deck? Nothing. So I had to scrape them all Next on the line: Propeller shafts Rudder is movable, cool I also filled the gaps for propeller guards which will be replaced with PE ones. And this is my organizer for ongoing builds. Helps me a lot to not lose their pieces. Fletcher is currently using nine rooms. And we need to get rid of that mast First step. Choose the correct diameter for mast (1.5mm) and then angle it correctly accoring to the ref pics. Ref pic With her little sister, USS Cushing from Tamiya again. It was an old, brush painted model that I will convert her to FRAM Fletcher, hopefully soon Update 16 December : Main mast nearly finished. It is made of brass rods, sheet brass and plastic rod plus Eduard's set Looks better now, huh? And now for stacks, they need love too. Exhaust drilled The pipes that carry smoke to the funnels are made of plastic rods. Grills from Ed A little comparison with standard stack. The main pieces are not glued but it still needed lots of CA and glue... Little bit more PE The only remaining thing for fore-stack is pipes going straight above through the roof near ladder you can see in the photo above Before removing doors and ladders we had to check references to be sure... Then, attack! As you can see, there is a ugly gap between guard railing with fore-deckhouse, it will be filled with CA... Update 30 December: Also everything on the bridge is sanded down. And... Also these ugly stairs are removed and replaced too... It was the hardest part of this build so far... The torpedo tubes... Mid-deckhouse, %90 completed That's all for now. As you have noticed, this has been split in three update sections because I had posted them in Hobimaket before signing up here. But from now on, the updates will be launched simultaneously. This is my first ship build with a large set of PE, so I had done lots of mistakes and still doing but hey, it is for fun and i am enjoying the process. Hope you like my works and all comments are valuable and welcomed. All hands on deck! -Eren
  20. US Navy Aero 12c Cart "Explosive Ordnance Container" (198132) 1:32 VideoAviation.com The Aero12 cart is often seen on US Navy carrier decks to move bombs about, this new dual set from VideoAviation has two of these carts fitted with "Explosive Ordnance" containers. It arrives in a clear plastic bubble box, and inside there are a substantial bundle of resin parts, all in bags and protected by their safety. There are two carts and the boxes to fit onto them. The small decal sheet is crisply printed, and contains sufficient markings to complete the task in hand. Conclusion If you're placing any of your models on a base, adding ancillary equipment is a great way of enhancing realism.. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  21. Hi all, A post this evening on using foam with large vac models has prompted the thought that I should post work to date here so that: a. It's more accessible b: I might actually extract a digit and crack on as she has become a bit of a running joke (well - the lack of progress anyway!) Early foto's quite poor I'm afraid - only digital camera I had to hand at the time - but you should get the gist... So - going back to Jan 2000 - in a Galaxy far, far away... Let me introduce you all to Connie - an elegant lady that I'm sure I'll be spending quite some time with ) Connie is the ID Models 1:32nd scale Lockheed EC121 Constellation kit (kit used in the loosest of senses - more a case of a set of reasonably accurate (so it would seem so far!) basic airframe shapes). This aeroplane is one of my all time favourites and when I came across the kit I had to have it. Needless to say, my fiancé Anne and myself are now house hunting - we need more space!! When finished she'll be resplendent in US Navy blue and white colours as an EC121K Warning Star. The moldings are reasonably cleanly formed on two huge sheets of polystyrene, roughly 60 thou thick. The box of Milliput placed next to the lower port mainplane should give you all a sense of size. This is the second of the two sheets. The first step is to fill the larger of the shapes with Polyurethane Foam, on order to provide some strength and rigidity, both during construction and once completed. Here's John Wilkes helping out by mixing up some foam - only use the two pack stuff, as the air drying type can continue expanding for a long period, causing real problems later! This was a big job and it's at times like these you need your friends (not just for the extra pair of hands, but also for the moral support and encouragement you need when starting a project this BIG!) First pour - port fuselage half. Don't use too much, this stuff expands like crazy! Starboard fuselage half - with foam in the process of expanding. All of this was done outside in sub-zero temperatures which slowed the process down and, we think, led to a denser foam. All the major components - fuselage halves, tip tanks, nose and radomes filled and curing. More foam was needed later! Port fuselage half and other bits removed from the backing sheet. Photo taken on my kitchen worktop on Sunday 9th Jan 2000 - UK readers will be able to compare Connie's size with the plug socket on the wall. Iain
  22. I've long wanted an F-111B for my US Navy collection, and pretty much the only way to get one is a conversion of either the F-111C or F-111G (FB-111A) kit. As I work in the only scale that matters, it's a Hasegawa kit that will do the honours. Luckily, Britmodeller scheduled a Group Build for the F-111, and this provided the KUTA needed for me to start work on this project. Unfortunately, life intervened (again!) and I will not be able to finish the build in time. Therefore, I will continue it here. But first, you simply must read what was accomplished during the F-111 Group Build. Why? Because I'm not going to repeat it all here, and I think a lot of the research information is especially interesting. There are a huge number of detail differences between the different F-111B prototypes and pre-production ships. So here is Part 1 of my build. Go ahead and read it, taking your time to learn as much as you can about this oft-maligned bird. I'll wait until you've finished. Back so soon? My, you're quite the speed reader. Well then, let's carry on! F-111B 151972, the subject of my build, had what is known as a "translating cowl" intake. Rather than have suck-in doors that are either manually operated or powered, the front portion of the cowling slid forward to open up a "slot" that provided the same benefit. This photo shows the intake cowling closed: And this shows the cowling after translating forward: The eagle-eyed among you will notice some detail differences in those last two shots with respect to the vents under the wing glove. More on that later! The Hasegawa F-111C kit that I'm using for this conversion has a slightly different intake configuration that what was used on 151972, so I've made some changes to it. Of course, you know all about that because you read Part 1 over in the Group Build section. One additional change needs to be made now, and it concerns the area above the translating cowl. The kit intake has a gap in this area, which is shown well in this photo (I'm not sure which aircraft this is from - EF-111A perhaps?): On 151972, there was no gap here, as can be seen two photos ago. In my collection of F-111B photos, specifically those of 151972, the translating cowl is almost always open when on the ground. So that's the way we'll model her. I added some card stock to create a "lip" under the rear edge of the translating cowl, and also to fill in the gap. The shock cones will be added later, as I think it will be easier to paint them prior to assembly. The intake ramps were made from card stock, since those on 151972 were a different shape than those on the F-111C, and didn't have the kink when viewed from the front. Anyway, here is what I came up with - I think it will work. Hopefully, I've got the angle of the landing gear correct as well. Both the main gear and the nose strut angle forward. Next up I think I'll add the vertical fin, as it just doesn't quite look like an F-111 without one. (Sorry, I can't call it an Aardvark etc. - I never fancied those unofficial nicknames. If the B had gone into production, I wonder what the Navy might have called it. Surely with Grumman's involvement it would have been some kind of cat...) Cheers, Bill
  23. F/A-18B/D Super Hornet Upgrade Sets (for Kinetic) 1:48 Eduard Kinetic have a new F-18, and you can build it as either the single seat B or two-seat D. It is known. Eduard's new range of sets are here to improve on the kit detail in the usual modular manner. Get what you want for the areas (and number of seats) you want to be more of a focal point. As usual with Eduard's Photo-Etch (PE) and Mask sets, they arrive in a flat resealable package, with a white backing card protecting the contents and the instructions that are sandwiched between. Interior F/A-18B (49915) Two frets are included, one nickel plated and pre-painted, the other in bare brass. A complete set of new layered instrument panels and side consoles are the primary parts on the painted set, with new rudder pedals; ejection seat details; coaming instrumentation including HUD and canopy internal structure and rear-view mirrors also supplied. F/A-18B Zoom! Set (FE915) This set contains a reduced subset of the interior, namely the pre-painted parts that are used to improve on the main aspects of the cockpit, as seen above. Whatever your motivations for wanting this set, it provides a welcome boost to detail, without being concerned with the structural elements. Interior F/A-18D (49916) Two frets are included, one nickel plated and pre-painted, the other in bare brass. A complete set of new layered instrument panels and side consoles for the two seats are again the primary parts on the painted set, with new rudder pedals; ejection seat details; coaming instrumentation and longer canopy internal structure also supplied, although the two sets are identical in all but name. F/A-18B Zoom! Set (FE916) This set contains a reduced subset of the interior, namely the pre-painted parts that are used to improve on the main aspects of the cockpit, as seen above. Whatever your motivations for wanting this set, it provides a welcome boost to detail, without being concerned with the structural elements. Am I repeating myself again, again? F/A-18B/D Exterior (48960) This larger bare brass set contains some important detail upgrades, such as numerous vents and grilles on the fuselage and around the engines; slime-lights for the tail, fuselage and wingtips; a new door and support structure for the refuelling probe; replacement crew ladder detail; intake splitter plate skins & supports; a detail update to the twin main gear bays and shoulder mounted launch rails; nose gear bay skins and detail upgrade, some of which require the simplified kit details to be removed first. F/A-18B/D Seatbelts STEEL (FE917) In case you don't already know, these belts are Photo-Etch (PE) steel, and because of their strength they can be etched from thinner material, which improves realism and flexibility in one sitting. Coupled with the new painting method that adds perceived extra depth to the buckles and other furniture by shading, they are more realistic looking and will drape better than regular brass PE. As well as the two sets of crew belts (for one D, or potentially 2 x B), you also get a set of leg restraints that pull tight on initiation and help prevent flail-injuries in case of an ejection. F/A-18B/D Masks (EX604) Supplied on a sheet of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with a full set of masks for the canopy, with compound curved handled by using frame hugging masks, while the highly curved gaps are in-filled with either liquid mask or offcuts from the background tape. F/A-18B/D Masks Tface (EX606) Supplied on a sheet of yellow kabuki tape, these pre-cut masks supply you with everything above, but also give you another set of canopy masks tailored to fit the interior of the glazing so that you can paint the interior and give your model that extra bit of realism. Review sample courtesy of
  24. Evening all. Here is my build of the Fujimi F7U-3m. This was started about 6 years ago but stalled a few times whenever I got to a tricky bit. Overall it's a really good kit which fits reasonably well. I was pleased to finish it as I haven't finished one in a year. Anyways here are some pics.
  25. hello! Model aircraft builders with a special interest for (US) navy will have concluded, just like myself, that except for a few inaccurate diorama bases in 1:72 and 1:48 scale and some figures here and there, there is not much out there to build an accurate diorama. Having read an article in the IPMS Netherlands magazine about designing your own 3D print some time ago, I though that I should give it a go and create my own parts for a nice piece of 1:144 carrier. It turns out that, having designed a highly detailed Jet Blast Deflector in scale 1:72 and 1:32 that was welcomed by many fellow model builders (build report on Large Scale Modeller site), the same print can be simply reduced to 1:144 scale without the loss of any detail. My first try started out with designing tie-down points for the deck, which I got printed at Shapeways some weeks ago: There is no way that I would be able to get these from scratch building or photo etching. Now I just need to drill holes in a base plate and glue them in. the resin is a bit brittle so you can simply snap each 2mm tie-down point off with tweezers, no clean up necessary: this is the part of the deck that I have in mind with some nice F/A-18F's parked and a Hawkeye on the catapult. I designed the deck in CAD, using many internet photo's as reference. Luckily the tie-down pattern is very regular so it is a very easy measuring aid: for anyone out there with a wish to have more navy accessories available on the market: I know how you feel. So I published my models on the shapeways site for everyone to have printed on https://www.shapeways.com/shops/klekotech. I am currently busy with flight deck crews in all scales, and much more to come after that. In the mean time I am building this project and one in 1:32 in parallel. to be continued!
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