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  1. Well, back again for another round! As stated at the end of my last build, I decided to dig out a decades old Shelf Queen. This was started with the old Paragon? 1/72 resin XB-40 conversion set and the old Hasegawa B-17F kit for "Hell's Angels": I had started this kit years ago, and had gotten this far: As you can see in the photo, there were a few problems with this kit. First off, it had the wrong windows set-up in the nose compared to the XB-40, which was based on a very early B-17F-1-BO. Also, the windows didn't fit very well, and while I had been able in years before this to glue in clear windows with CA and then sand and then polish them, it didn't work out very well this time around, particularly where the gun holes were already in the clear parts; they also turned out pretty hazy, rather than clear. The next photo shows the nose gun conversion, which later became standard on the B-17G: In the picture above, right, I even re-located the waist gun on that side forward, as the few pictures around at that time indicated. The waist gun windows were masked over from the inside using Scotch tape, which I figured could be fished out after painting -- a good idea at the time, not as good after the tape sat for more than 20 years! At this point, I become frustrated with the windows problem, and she became an official Shelf Queen, but I looked at her every few years, but didn't come up with a solution. Fast forward to this week, and seeking a project that for once had no natural metal, I decided to drag the old girl out for yet another look, having gleaned a few more photos on-line over the passing years. And that's when I realized.....I'd screwed up, as the following picture shows: The waist gun on the right side of the first XB-40, 41-24341, had NOT been moved forward! All my work moving it was a wasted effort. To be sure the gun position HAD been moved forward on the "Y"B-40, but not on the "X"! After pondering whether I could cut open the fuse and redo the waist gun, I decided to take a look the the Academy B-17E kit I had in the stash, awaiting birth as a Midway B-17; since the B-17E and B-17F are said to mostly be the same externally, except for the nose glazing, it seemed worth a shot: The very first thing I checked was the fit of the clear windows -- how much filling would be required. The two small ones I took off the trees and fit to the model fit perfectly. Also, they were almost entirely correct for the XB-40! So far, so good. Next, I noticed that the Academy B-17E kit had provisions for you to cut out the right side waist gun position that you preferred: So, I cut out the rear-most or non-staggered position. Again, so far, so good. Next thing was to make the cutouts for the rear top turret part of the conversion: The conversion part turned out to be 38 or 39mm in length after I used debonder to remove the part from the Hasegawa kit. It turned out to be 20-21 mm in width, which fortuitously happened to correspond to existing kit lines of the Academy B-17E kit. So, as is my custom these days, I used Dymo tape and a scriber to scribe very fine, precise lines to guide a very fine-bladed razor saw for the cut-ous: This method provides a very precise cut-out, as can be seen below: At this point, there was a very slight difference in height between the Academy kit and the resin part: This is taken care of by two strips of 40 thou card glued from the inside with liquid glue, and aligned carefully with the outside of the fuse, to reduce later sanding and filling: Above right, the bomb bay door were glued in place. Since this was a bomber escort, it's carrying capacity was for ammo, not bombs, so there wouldn't be much to see if the bay was left open. Contrary to remarks of another builder on-line, I found the doors to fit very well. I re-enforced them with small strips of card on the inside of the ends, and set the whole shebang aside to dry. Well, looks like I'm off to a good start -- praying for smooth sailing... See you soon, Ed
  2. You may all know what a Zen koan is: a seemingly irresolvable, seemingly illogical proposition. One of the most known is "What is the sound of one hand clapping?" Well, my dear friend and modeling arch-enemy Sönke Schulz from Volkania, has regaled me in the past many times with such propositions, but in modeling form, in the guise of semi-built, chopped up, miscellaneous remains of kits (BOXES of them, actually). Many of these modeling koans have been, as you know, solved (that is: built), the last one being a kit he sent of the RWD-8 that I just posted. The koan that occupies us (or at least me) today is Airfix's Avro Anson, which Sönke kindly half-built already, leaving to me tasks such as inserting a part of the landing gear after the wing halves have been firmly glued together, and not, as the plan wisely advises since it is the only way to do it, before. But yet again, I have solved more arcane modelling riddles in the past. Sönke again very kindly started a merciless chopping of the roof, since my cuppa -and his'- are peaceful, lovely, charming, uplifting, colorful civil machines, and the aft position has to be deleted. He also chopped the area immediately in front of the windshield, since his intentions apparently were to depict the slightly different windshield arrangement that the civil, passenger carrying, Avro 652 had (two prototypical machines: Avalon and Avatar). But hear hear, that involves quite a number of changes, while just modeling an after the war civil conversion is -in a few cases- a very straightforward matter of just adding civil regs, slight changes on the nacelles, and of course the already mentioned deletion of the aft position. Hum...what to do, what to do.... I know, I am not particularly fond of adopting "rescued mistreated models with behavioral issues", but this poor kit had such a hard start of life in Volkania...I mean, it breaks your heart. I have gathered quite a number of images of candidates, again, pretty straightforward, even the same clunky landing gear and window arrangement, and in a couple cases no need to touch the nacelles. I'll see where the vapors of modeling liquid cement take me to.... Here are the images of what I got already done in the package, praise Styrene, muse of the scratchbuilders: To be continued?....
  3. Well, as promised over on the YRF-84F Build Thread here are the finished pics: Again, thanks to fellow modeler Bill Dye, who inspired this build. As usual, it's not perfect, but it's better than the one I had before... Ed
  4. Hello mountain top masters and conversion guru's! I have a unique and likely simple problem. Last year I bought a very aged F-15A from Manila, Ph. I live in Cebu, Philippines. Anyway, when I opened the kit, all was there and seemingly on perfect order, save for one thing, the decals are the color of some smokers teeth, a very nasty yellow! Anyway, I tried the "leave it in the window, sun bleeching" technique. To my surprise, this actually worked pretty good, but fell short of where it needs to be, and still are unsuited for use with the kit. Next, I contacted the seller, who told me to contact Tamiya about the problem. For the longest time, I was unable to find a distributor to help me with the problem, but recently I finally found the right people to help out. So here is where we are at. Apparently the kit is no longer in production, and I realized that the C is a more interesting kit for me anyway. So, is a conversion possible, or should I just look for aftermarket A decals, and save me the trouble? On a side note, I also have the F-15E demonstrator, that is really a D aircraft dressed up as an E. This was not known to me when I bought that kit from the same store. Anyway, I would prefer to make a proper D out of that kit, anyone know what needs to be done to accomplish this conversion? I would prefer to buy a new E kit that is accurate, than make the demonstrator version. Thanks in advance, Anthony Convert to C or buy A decals? Here is the Hasegawa fake F-15E demonstrator. Can it be built as is, as a D, or do I have to change part to convert it properly, besides the decals?
  5. Hi everyone, my name's James and I'm relatively new to model making but I've learned so much from this forum that I wanted to give something back to the community. I made this conversion chart out of frustration at trying to convert a paint colour only to find that either an equivalent paint wasn't listed - or that my local model shop was out of stock. www.modelshade.com will fall back to using the CIE94 colour matching algorithm and show you a bunch of other possible matches, based on swatches I scraped from manufacturers websites. Each match is rated out of five stars, matches that are on an actual conversion chart will be first - try it out and let me know your feedback It works on mobile too and if you select "add to homescreen" you'll be able to use it offline just like any other app. Email feedback/criticism to the address I set up just for this modelshademail@gmail.com or message me on BritModeller (it's also worth pointing out I don't plan to make any money from this so be kind) www.modelshade.com Also for you Brit Modellers I added a language switcher in the top left to spell "colour" correctly. That took me hours to code so I hope you appreciate it
  6. Hi folks, Not one to rest on past laurels -- or pratfalls -- as I was nearing the end of my 1/72 Hasegawa F-110A Spectre model just finished, and, as is my custom, when nearing then end of such builds, I immediately began work on another model, a 1/72 Revell F-101B, to add to my collection of U.S. "Voodoo" named aircraft. But, after some major painting, and while removing the masks, I found a major problem! I had been having problems with an airbrush, and having shot Alclad II grey primer all over, I discovered that I had not gotten the primer over all areas of the model. The primer and model's plastic are nearly the same color, and my aging eyes failed to detect the missing spots. Then of course, I sprayed the model overall grey, masked it, then began painting the bare metal rear end parts and the darker areas on the nose. Anyway, the paint started lifting here and there with removal of the masks and, long story short -- I decided to strip all the paint from the whole model and start over. For what it's worth, Testor's ELO stripper ALSO removes Perfect Plastic Putty!! Anyway, that project has been moved to the back shelf for now. Maybe one day, I'll mention it again. So, that left me with a conundrum on what to do next. I've had several ideas in mind, but with troubles on my last two modeling attempts -- both of which were more or less OOB. I decided to fight back! If I was going to have major aggravation with more or less easy builds, this time, I decided to do a real barn burner, and REALLY challenge the modeling gods by building a YF-105A prototype, from before the time when the F-105 became "wasp-waisted"... Now many of us builders of U.S. aircraft, or builders of prototypes have long wanted a model to play with. No such luck. Even our friends at Anigrand or the many great vacuform makers of yesteryear ever saw fit to grace us with this beauty -- or at least none of which I'M aware! As with my P2V-3 Neptune of a couple of years ago, I waited and waited, and then finally had to do it myself.; In this case however, the driving force was a great Japanese modeler over on a site called "X-Plane Model Museum" out of Japan, I found where a Japanese modeler had done a YF-105A, in 1/48" scale -- which of course is an abomination to all that's Holy and Right.... Anyway, for those interested, here's a picture of his final result (grabbed from the website): and here's a link to his building thread, which of course is all in Japanese: Corrected 1/48 YF-105A Link Now if you go there, you will find that the build consists of 29 articles, each with 4 - 12 pictures, and each with it's own Japanese language commentary. Over 100 pictures in all, and most are very informative. I used Google Translate to translate each one of those articles to English, which as is prone to happen, was in some cases, not very meaningful. Sometimes, things really are lost in the translation! One of those thing that I could never figure out was the modeler's name. I think he just used a 'nym of just letters and numbers. I tried to contact him to say great job, but I found out you had to join the blog to get even close to a member's list or e-mail, and I did not relish the idea of translating everything I might encounter there. Anyway for the purposes of my build, I shall refer to the original modeler as TGO (the Great One) from now on. If anyone reading this knows him (or her) please pass along my appreciation for his efforts. After poring over what I found in his build thread, I began to examine ways that I could repeat his success, albeit with perhaps just a hair less work -- as I am actually quite lazy. He did a lot of stuff that I won't do, such as dropping the flaps and the slats. Since many 'Thud drivers state that they never left the flaps and slats open on the ground, and this will not be a "maintenance scene" type build, I won't be going there. Feel free to look and see how TGO did it, however. For my efforts, I'll use the old standard Revell F-105D, as well as the nose from a Hasegawa F-105B, taken from a Thunderbirds set I bought decades ago: It was a bagged kit, so no box art there... Having failed to find any usable 3-views, I will use TGO's pictures and a side view from the book "Famous Aircraft of the World #4": This is as close to a flat view as I could get. Please note the 3 inch and 10 centimeter markings atop the page. If you copy this photo and size it where either of those lines are exactly as stated, you'll have a 1/72 scale side view without having to spend a fortune, as there is really nothing much else in the book that is helpful to this effort. Having armed myself with this wealth of material, I'll now press forward. While TGO started off with the fuselage, I will not. I will start instead, by answering a question that comes up on-line from time to time: Will the Hasegawa F-105B nose fit on the Revell - Monogram F-105D? Please understand we are not talking about the really ancient old "box scale" Monogram B model, but the newer, I guess 80's version. I began by taping the Hasegawa "B" fuselage halves together, and laying a strip of tape around the nose just behind the kit's front gear well edge: After making certain the tape was straight all around the curve of the nose, I used the X-Acto knife to scribe a line alongside the front edge of the tape. I then used that line to guide a Trumpeter panel line scriber for around three passes, to define a clear line for the razor saw to follow. Below, you'll see one side cut and one side left to do: Above right, you'll see the same procedure done to the Revell F-105D. The tape has been pushed back a little on the right side to indicate the three verticle vents, the rearward side of which I used to help line up the tape vertically for the marking, scribing and sawing procedure. I also fudges this cut a little in front of the landing gear well, to have some sanding room, if needed, As you can see below, after a little sanding the fit was pretty good: This procedure was so precise, I probably could have cut both noses exactly on the front end of the gear well and saved some sanding. This however calls attention to the fact that if I had cut the B nose further back, the fit would have been about perfect. However, previous measurement had shown that then the nose would have been too long to be as accurate, because the difference between the B and D models' length was about the same as the different nose lengths, plus removing the overly-long part of the Hasegawa front gear bay. For what it's worth, both the Hasegawa and the Revell kit were dead on for the correct lengths for their particular versions. Well, at least it's a start. Hang around if you dare for some old-school, kit-bashing conversion action... Ed
  7. I continue to find models to post from a seemingly inexhaustible modeling well. This is from six years ago and was done more or less at the same time that the 230, posted here at BM: Yet another Morane Saulnier plane used by Michel Detroyat, this time the M.S.225, modified for its use as a racer and aerobatic machine. It was painted in an attractive red/black/silver scheme, and demonstrated its capabilities –and of course those of its pilot- to a great extent. Again an old good Heller kit provides the canvas for this project, the parts being a tad chunkier than the M.S.230 just finished. Some accurizing is needed too but the basics are there. My sample was provided by the ever-smiling, spanakopita-rider, Mr Psarras of Floridian. Thanks again! As you can see in the photos, a new cowl was made, the ribbing and rivets were toned-down, the cockpit was refined and some internal structure added. The engine will need an oil radiator and a new prop, the armament needs deletion, the ailerons need to be completed –as with Heller’s M.S.230 the intrados of the wing has no aileron separation lines- and other details will have to be taken care of. As I always say: look at your reference photos. Heller kits of course are not perfect. But they do have a very logical and practical part breakdown. If you considered when were they designed -during the kit-making stone age-, your admiration may increase even more. The outer upper wing panels follow a real separation on the plane, but you will have to engrave that separation on the intrados yourself. The stabs were dynamically balanced in the original plane, the kit has them wrong, correct as per photo here.
  8. For a bit of light relief I thought I'd have a go at the 1/12 Airfix A35 Van from the Wallace & Gromit animation series. The base is the Anti-Pesto Van but it will be converted to an expedition vehicle for Wallace & Gromit to compete in the Camembert Trophy from Wensleydale to The Sahara the source of Camel's milk from which Camelbert cheese is made. The basis for the theme a LR Disco suitably equipped. The Austin A35 van will feature similar accoutrements but given the W&G treatment. A start has been made on the rear suspension to add granny's bedspring coil-over shocks made by SPANX to 'control the wobble'. The body shell has been lightly rubbed down ready for a primer coat, and the three characters in the kit have been partly assembled with joints filled as required. The prone figure is the Crash Test Bunny, used in the R&D test phase of building various contraptions.
  9. Another "cabin" conversion of a WWI plane, from 2011, 8 years ago. You may have seen before articles I posted depicting conversions that were made after 1918 to civil use of pre-existing models. It is nice to be able to have civil options for kits that are around and mostly easy to get. Dropping passengers instead of bombs fortunately became the thing to do for a number of planes that became the precursors of the airlines and airliners. The first ones were –as it is the case here- direct adaptations of pre-existing material to which a registration and -if you were lucky- an enclosed cabin were quickly slapped on. If you are interested in the prolific and romantic period known as the Golden Age of Aviation... I suggest you go the library. The venerable 1/72 Airfix Hannover CL.III kit was used as a base for the conversion. I left the kit in a drawer for some time and...there! when I opened it again the model was ready. This proves that the best way of building models is to let them build themselves. I was told about this method (unmodeling) by Christos Psarras from Florida, so all credit goes to him. If in spite of my selfless advise you still need to build the kit yourself, then you may start by toning down the ribbing mainly in the wings, and also a bit on the biplane stabs. Since you are at it, you may like to eliminate ribbing altogether in the center section of the upper wing, since it was plywood-covered, and on the fixed part of the lower stab. Both wings have ejector pin marks that you may like to fill and sand. The outer struts are joined by a “bridge” that has a carved counterpart on the underside of the upper wing. That is supposed to help with alignment, but I filled it in, since it detracts from the aspect of the finished surface and in my case only helped to annoy me anyway. Other parts like the landing gear legs were refined a tad, since they sport that kinda clunky look of the kits of another time. I cut out a section on the fuselage where the passenger cabin was supposed to be and carved a plug from basswood upon which the Psychedelic Mattelation process was bestowed. Playing music from the sixties will help giving the Mattel vacuforming psychedelic machine operation some appropriate context. The vacuformed part was made of clear plastic; the windows were masked later on before painting. The very Spartan kit interior (flat slab seat and Airfix mummies) was replaced with adequate bits: a Victrola, bar, cigar lounge, chaise longue, draperies, decorated vases, post-classical statues, Wedgwood ware, the works (not really). The HaWa F.3 had room for two passengers, seating facing each other in true early aviation limo style (that is, imitating a coach) so they could discuss Kant and Schopenhauer comfortably. The Hannover CL.III used an Opel Argus of 180hp, but the conversion HaWa F.3 used a Mercedes D.III of 160 hp. The Airfix kit comes of course with an Argus (or some of it, anyway) but fortunately I had a full Mercedes in the spares’ bin. A suitable exhaust was scratched for it. The stabs (upper and lower) are not connected in the HaWa F.3 by the bars that come with kit, so those were omitted. The kit, on the other hand, does not have the struts that connect the upper wing with the landing gear foremost strut. As modelers know, to determine the exact colors of these machines is a challenging enterprise, so informed/educated guesses have some times to be made. So far I saw images of two machines, one with the number 81 on it and one with only the manufacturer’s designation on the fuselage side. I went for the latter which also had a two-tone passengers’ cabin door. In the original some areas of the wings and tail were plywood-covered, and the lozenge was painted on instead of the pre-printed fabric used for the rest. Accordingly, those areas were painted wood color too and later lozenge decals were applied on, showing the effect of the darker areas visible in the original. There are number of converted limousines of this type that can be modeled using existing kits with little modifications. I hope this article inspires you to attempt this line of research and building. I would like to thank Soenke S., master of the Evil Galactic Empire. From his secret volcano lair he sent useful suggestions and data that were instrumental in the making of the model. Same thanks also go to Tracy Hancock. If you are a learned WWI lozenge expert, prone to lengthy discussions and much pondering about the hues and shapes an number of lozenges, as we endlessly see in the pertinent forums and websites, I invite you to remain silent, which is always healthy (especially for me in this case). Without much further ado, here is the cabined HaWa:
  10. A build from 2010, nine years ago. It is fortunate be able to find a good livery for a plane that you like but don’t want to model as it is conventionally represented. The Cant Z.501 is one of such planes, in the form of the record-braking prototype, I-AGIL. Cant stands fro Cantieri Rinuiti dell’ Adriatico, Z stands for Zappata, its designer, “500 series” because it was a seaplane, opposite to the “1000 series” which were land planes. With help from Fabrizio D’Isanto (a very knowledgeable fellow enthusiast) I was able to round-up some missing data and could proceed with the project.. Paolo Miana, the aviation writer that published a book on the Savoia S.64 also helped. To get the Italeri Cant Z.501 old kit wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be; the few I found were running for pretty stiff prices. Finally fellow modeler Christos Psarras from Florida helped me to get a kit at a fair price. My thanks go to all these friends. I-AGIL was powered by an Isotta Fraschini ASSO 750 with an almost circular radiator front. It established two straight distance non-stop records, once flying from Monfalcone to Massawa and later from Monfalcone to Berbera. Some differences in appearance can be spotted along its life in the available photos. The Italeri kit would need some adaptations; the most conspicuous differences being the canopy and front engine areas. The fore and aft openings on the hull and engine gondola were apparently faired over for the first record flight but the aft fuselage position can be seen open and with a windscreen for the second flight. Italeri’s model has fine raised panel lines, few of them because the plane was made of wood. They were sanded and replaced by engraved lines. The “fabric” detail in the control surfaces definitely needs to be toned down. The general feeling, being this a very old mold, is on the slightly chunky side, but is a nice base upon which the modeler can exercise some...well....modeling. Some struts were supplemented or replaced by Contrail and Strutz streamlined stock. The front of the engine gondola was replaced by scratched parts. The record version had a different instrument panel and control wheel arrangement which I made and substituted for the kit parts. Regarding the canopy, Italeri offers a transparency that bridges a large gap of the fuselage and gives support to some of the wing struts. I-AGIL had two side-by-side independent canopies. That area therefore was re-constructed with styrene sheet and a master was created to vacuform the separate canopies. The interior was kept simple since almost nothing can be seen –as it is often the case- through the exiguous canopy openings. Parts 50/51 are depicted in the instructions without a pair of knobs that are supposedly used to hold parts 52/53. The latter will only mess the assembly, since they are bigger than they should and will open the struts’ angle too much, preventing them to rest in their marked position on the fuselage. Radio masts should go, not needed for I-AGIL. The hatches are not a good fit, so be warned. Struts 38 and 39 need their “handles” removed, but there was a probe on the original on the left side strut (as the pilot seats). There was a navigation light at the tip of the fin. The ailerons in the kit have a line that divides them in two surfaces. Those dividing lines were filled and control horns were glued there and to the rudder. A wind-driven generator was fashioned and glued to the fuselage spine. Painting ensued and the sub-assemblies were kept separate to facilitate this stage and later decaling. Once the main components were ready the wing struts were glued to the fuselage. Beware that those struts are sided, and that there is one (slightly shorter) that goes forward. Floats were then added to provide rigidity and the right geometry. After decaling the vertical stabilizer the horizontal stabilizer halves were glued, and then their supports. I opted to glue real short tubes to the upper exhaust rows and to drill the ones one the sides of the engine gondola. Parts (2) 32 are diagonal strut cross members -kind of hidden in the instructions- and they are absent in most of the models I have seen. The wing was then glued to the fuselage and struts, and I have to say that it was a good fit. Minor details, about thirty lengths of rigging wire and decals were added and the record-braking plane was ready to cruise on the skies. With a little work you can convert your “all-look-the-same-to-me” model into something different and more stimulating meaning-wise. Give it a try.
  11. Well, found more old parerga and paralipomena, a few builds of "normal kits", no frills: Will try to post some today. Here is this Nieuport 28 from two years ago, a simple exercise in not worrying at all between other major projects. The kit was gifted by Sönke Schulz of Marzipanland, and the decals were commissioned from Mika Jernfors at Arctic Decals. This is a simple, straightforward, fun conversion of an inexpensive kit that renders a cute and different model, if with the limitations of the original kit. Another colorful civil addition to the Heavens. Note: just a few photos of the original plane exist, mainly in the Flikr photostream of the SDASM. The cowl has the wrong shape, needs to be rounded: Cut outs are done in the proper places: This area needs removal as marked (it's already removed in the image): Filling the struts "bridge" receptacles: New aftermarket seat: Some other P.E. details: Metal horns for the control surfaces: Hand carved real wood prop: Modified landing gear: The decals as commissioned:
  12. Kabine conversion, anyone? I am always on the lookout for mainstream or arcane models that can be converted to civil variants. The combination of historical significance and aesthetics provides already a field: the post WWI conversions of machines by demilitarization and some simple adjustments or addenda for the new role, sometimes in the guise of "put on" passenger cabins. Considering what I sometimes embark on, this kit is a true delight: It is not a matter of slapping a cabin on, you have to do your homework to pick up other details that usually change, and then work on the alternate decoration. To me, there is a lot of satisfaction involved in changing a machine to more civilized roles, like passenger transport and such. The new KP kit looks certainly good, like the recently built Avia B.H.11. The detail is good, the instructions are good, the molding is clean and the subject has potential for many civil post-war conversions. Plus the price is fair. No photo-etched pars are included but some alternate parts are included (for the spares bin Dear friend, modeler and patterner extraordinaire Matías Hagen from Argentina, made this resin Benz IV, which is a beautiful, accurate and clean cast. The kit's engine is quite OK, but this is certainly better in my eyes, and what I will be using: The other side: The kit's engine, again, pretty fair, and Matias': The other side:
  13. Some times the modeling stars align and you get a very nice kit that you can convert into one of your dream projects without struggling, and, furthermore, completely enjoying the build. I added as you know a Matías Hagen resin engine and commissioned decals, masks and "metal" window frames from Arctic Decals. The WiP is here: The output of attractive, significant, colorful and uplifting civil kits from many manufacturers has fortunately increased lately, however I am always searching for potential conversions of military kits into much more civilized, smart and appealing civil counterparts. That's how I discovered the KP LVG C.VI kit, acquired for a very reasonable price (two more since then, by the way, I liked it so much). The quality of this little kit is superb in any regard and again, how pleasurable to build, a welcome change of scenery from my usual Frankenkit endeavors. Still, there is the matter of the kit's Achilles' heel: the cabanne struts have no locating devices or marks where they meet the fuselage, making gluing and aligning (in the 3 axis) at the same time the upper wing an event to remember, and you will, believe me. You can easily convert one of these kits to a civil post-war variant without even the need of adding a canopy or modifying the rudder as I did, by only removing the armament, filling the machine gun depression (pun intended) on the fuselage right side with Milliput or similar, and getting new decals. Many C.VIs flew carrying mail and/or passenger in the aft position with only the addition of a proper seat: "Express II", "Meteor I" (D-181), D-473 (for Baumer Aero), the ones that flew for DLR, (D-70, D-76), etc., are just some examples of C.VI in civilized use. But if you like "limousine" canopies, as I do, you have at least three more planes that had them, all with different canopies and finishes (one was D-1216, the drawing at the beginning of the construction post). The machine presented here had at some point the outline edges of the wings painted, as well as "L.V.G." under each lower wing, a scheme I may build in the future since I now have the decals too, plus the master to mold the canopy, problem is: (And I will repost here what I post on the WIP): I RUN OUT OF CLEAR MATERIAL TO VACFORM CANOPIES!! I have plenty of colored sheets for the Mattel vacuform machine, but no clear plastic sheets. I already tried those two or three types offered on the Net, with unpleasant results, and nothing compares to the original ones that came long ago with the Mattel machine, and I just run out of my supply from Mike Damen, who used to produce good substitutes (he does not fabricate them anymore). Sigh...
  14. The fifth of 2019 and a swansong to my Airfix Therapy Build thread: Their F-4F-4 done as an early F-4F-3 . Some liberties were taken as usual and the WIP is here: Paints are Alclad and Mr Color lacquer and the chevrons, cowl and fuselage bands were painted so as to match the new spinner Also a test run of my Amazon freebie review flashheads, which seem much better behaved than my el cheapo ebay continuous lights. Thank ye, one and all fer tuning in, have a fab weekend and eat more fruit! Anil
  15. I got this 1/72 Airfix (E-3) B707 kit a couple of years ago from PacificMustang (Bruce) part started, well actualy almost finished as he did not want to finish it up. As I had already built a good old RAAF Seven Oh I pondered what I would use it for. Along came the Recce GB over on ARC and I decided I would use the Flightpath JSTARS conversion to bring it back to life. Wolfpak decals released a sheet with markings for 93-0597 which was originally delivered to QANTAS as a B707-338 VH-EBU. Double win! 72_AF_E-8C_03 by Ray Seppala, on Flickr Unfortunately, the aircraft suffered major damage during mid air refueling when a tank in the wing over pressurised and ruptured (due to a test plug being left in the fuel vent system after maintenance) back in 2009. In 2012 the aircraft was reported to have broken up and parted out in Al Udeid, Qatar. So I started on the E-8C today. Mostly scribing and drilling out cabin windows and doors. The engines needed some disassembly so I could fill the huge holes where the turbo compressor are attached on 3 of the engines. The Flightpath conversion comes with a number of scribing templates. I had to carve out some of the fuselage for a missing cabin door Also had to fill some poorly rescribed panel lines and fill some for the new rear cabin doors at the trailing edge of the wing root. Finally I glued the missing etch door to the fuselage. That's it for now
  16. For some reason I forgot to upload this one, built about 2 years ago. It is related (a post war cabin modification of an existing type) to my current build of the LVG C.VI in passenger carrying guise too, posted as a WiP here at BM. In this small way, I would like to honor Edmund Rumpler, the creator of the plane. His contributions to aviation were vast and significant, and he also created a car that is a delight to contemplate, the Rumpler tropfenwagen. Because Rumpler was Jewish, he was later imprisoned by the despicable and moronic nazis, who destroyed his life and tried to ruin his legacy. This little and attractive bird was the cause of an enormous (and unexpected) amount of research. I am deeply thankful for the help received from Mr. Günter Frost and colleagues at the ADL site (Association of German Aviation History): http://www.adl-luftfahrthistorik.de/deutsch/adl_start.htm Their input was invaluable. Needless to say, any rights are theirs, and if any wrong was included, it's only mine. Their site has a plethora of interesting articles on Golden Era civil planes, mixed up with other subjects. My gratitude also goes to Sönke Schulz and Alain Bourret, indefatigable Ornithopters. Needless to say without the wonderful set from Mika Jernfors of Artic Decals there would have been no model. The Rumpler C.I (or 5A2) was converted to a limousine by the simple procedure of adding a cabin where the second position was, like putting a hat on, if you will. It was used by a short-lived German passenger airline know as Rumpler-Luftverkehr, or "that airline" for us not ready to venture into German pronunciation. My above-mentioned dear friend from Marzipanland, a province of Volkania, Sönke Schulz, and your humble have been interested in this machine for some time. Beware that at some point in the 30s a spurious hybrid (also named D290) was concocted for Lufthansa propaganda purposes and exhibited at a German museum, easy to tell apart from the original for many details, the most obvious perhaps a strange vertical stabilizer that has nothing to do with the Rumpler C.I, and wings that belonged to a C.IV. Painful and slow research provided now with data enough to build a model of the original. Many of you know my love for vacuum-formed kits. I got a quite nice Joystick Models (England) Rumpler C.I The kit is interesting, and as vacs go quite good. There are a couple things, though: the plan included in the instructions doesn't match the kit parts (or vice-versa), sometimes for more than a 1/4 inch. Those instructions do not have an exploded view or any indication as to where things go, but it's easy enough to guess. How the aileron works, different from the usual horn and cable or linkage: I carved a real laminated wood prop, only to realize that no photos showed a laminated prop (the laminations were not visible and the color was uniform): The decal sheet from Arctic Decals (I commissioned two subjects):
  17. VIRGIN ATLANTIC 1/144 Airbus a340-600 Braz Conversion G-VRED 'Scarlet Lady' Kit: Revell a340-300 Conversion set: Braz Decals: 1. Pas Decals (787-9) - Virgin titles, nose logo (Scarlet Lady) and tail logo. 2. 26 Decals (A340-300/A330-300) Winglet logos, AOA probes, Static Ports and various registrations 3. Draw Decal (A340-600 OLD LIVERY) Landing lights, 'Scarlet Lady' titles and wing reg. 4. Authentic Airliners (A340-600) 3D cockpit windows, passenger windows and doors. Colours: 1. Fuselage - 75% Revell gloss white + 25% Revell 371 satin light grey. AND Xtracolor MICA 2. Tail and Engines - decanted Tamiya TS18 Metallic Red 3 Wings - Revell 371 satin light grey. Coroguard is 95% Revell 371 satin light grey + 5% humbrol matt black work in progress thread Thanks for looking! Phil
  18. Hello Phantom Phans. This WIP is for the forthcoming Brigade Models conversion set for Academys F-4B into the prototype F4H-1. I have obtained from Kevin a pre production test shot of the mouldings as seen at SMW this year. This does not include canopies or decals as they are not ready yet. Availability of the set should be March next year. Kevin has agreed to add a second seat so later small radome aircraft can be built. Any changes for this will be up to the modeller, as the main purpose here is for a first flight aircraft. Also, there are no instructions (I suspect I may be writing them now). Onto what you will get. This first picture shows what you get. This first pic shows the parts, except for canopy, decals, and the pitot probe, which I do have. This pic shows where to cut on the wings (for the perforated airbrakes) and the fuselage. Close up of the wing where the airbrake goes. Note that either the wing can be cut, or alternatively, the resin part could be used as a master to drill your own holes in the wing. Here is a close up of the fuselage cut point. And the cut made. Another part that needs cutting is the forward under fuselage (part F40) The resin intakes and the kit trunking is being joined. Some fettling may be required for a perfect fit. Airbrakes being sorted. Airbrakes fitted. Note that the gap is my fault, not the kits (my cutting skills still need work). First look at the front fuselage. The black parts are kit parts. They mate to the resin perfectly. That is all for this introductory part. Ted
  19. Hi Guys, I will make a conversion of the Tamiya 1/48 Gloster meteor F3 into a F4 with the Heritage aviation conversion set. It will get decals from Dutch decals for a Dutch Meteor from 323 squadron that was based at Leeuwarden afb in 1952/53. Here are some pictures. the box the content the conversion some extras I might be using?! And the scheme I use for it. That is it for now. Cheers,
  20. Morning All, Since returning to the hobby a couple of years ago I now find it hard not to have a Spitifre of some kind on the go. Following on from my Seafire 47 which I enjoyed immensely, I've decided to do another Spitfire variant which hitherto has eluded me due to lack of talent and time - the Mark 21. It's an interesting variant, being the last with the original style fuselage and the first with the new wing, and so it was something of an interim model of which only 120 were built. It was also a tricky model to get to fly straight, with all sorts of longitudinal stability problems which took time to iron out. But, as test pilot Jeffrey Quill writes, they got it right in the end, and the high-performance Mark 21 had a relatively long career, starting in the final weeks of World War 2 and continuing in the Auxiliary squadrons, with a 1950s swansong doing anti-aircraft co-operation work outsourced to the private sector. I think the 21 is pretty, and as a boy remember seeing LA226 displayed in the atrium of Vickers' HQ at Millbank, central London, in the 1970s. With a number of production 21s having contra-rotating propellers and even bigger rudders than normal, there's also a good deal of variation available to choose from for a subject. For the base kit I'm using the Airfix Spitfire 22 (because I like it), with the spine and tail of the Airfix XIX. My XIX fuselage was spare as I built a Mark XI by combining the XIX wing with the IX fuselage, modified appropriately. I had planned to use the Freightdog XI conversion set on the XIX fuselage but in the end decided against it, because whilst the Freightdog set is very nice and accurate, the XIX fuselage that it should be bolted onto is not, and the combination looked all wrong to me. So I've still got the Freightdog set and the XIX fuselage minus its nose. The other awkwardness is that the XIX tail is now in two pieces, with a horizontal separation just above the elevators, which I made to accommodate the Freightdog XI fin. What this amounts to is that the fuselage halves below are made up of four pieces each, all stitched back together and with a first application of filler: I'm also going to push ahead with my Spitfire I, which is a refugee from the Battle of Britain Group build. Unfortunately my plans to make R6915 as it currently appears in the the Imperial war Museum (in a late-war paint scheme) render the model ineligible for the Group Build. No problem: I'll push on with it here. Here's the original: R6915 is a real Battle of Britain veteran, with a number of victories to its name. Later on it went to the OTUs and received some modifications: over-wing strengthening ribs, fishtail exhausts, and later-style canopy all added. I'll try to model all these if poss. So here is how far I've got: I've added the wing strengthening ribs and also the vents for the gun heating at the wingtips. After doing the latter, I went over to IWM Lambeth to have a look at the original, and found I'd been too clever: the vents had been removed from the wing undersides, so my plasticard representations will also have to come off. The ejector slots for the empty .303 cases were also doped over on R6915, so I'll have to fill and sand these too. Justin
  21. A build from 5 years ago: This is the 3rd conversion posted of the S.79 (and the three postings today are entirely Martian Hale's fault!), and actually this is the first one that I did, before doing the other two racers already posted today. It has some issues, but I like it anyway, in spite that surely I would do a couple things differently today. Civilian aircraft are not particularly well catered for by mainstream manufacturers. Once in a while we see some refried beans that have re-incarnated several times and that used to be mostly it, but lately a few companies are stepping in and offering an alternative for modelers looking for a fresh approach to the world of aviation. Although conversions are sometimes available and cottage industry does produce some nice examples on the field, there are times when you have to fabricate your own bits. And that’s not that difficult after all. Here the 1/72 Italeri S.M. 79 Sparviero minus some bits plus some other bits. Retrospectively, the method I used to produce the canopy –a vacuformed “roof” and front flat panels- is something that could be better done as one whole vacuformed piece in order to facilitate matters. As references were being consulted (thanks Fabrizio D’Isanto and Fabio Beato) it was evident that a number of details had to be erased from the original kit, most noticeably the “hunch”, the lower fuselage gondola and some of the windows. Props had to be re-worked, a suitable interior scratch-built, and a few details added. The main concern were actually the decals, but, after an attempt on my part that rendered so-so results, fellow modeler Mika Jernfors came to the rescue with superb graphics. By that time I had already placed some of the so-so decals that refused to be removed, so I could use only partially his excellent images, so any less than nice things are my fault entirely. If you feel curious about the history of this S.M.79 version and the airline that operated it, you could Google their names and surely something will come up. For the base color I used Humbrol 41 Ivory, which seems a good match for the color used originally. The blue is a custom mix. It is so secret that I hid the recipe even from myself and now and can’t remember the ingredients, but it involved mixing potions under the full moon and being helped by Smurfs. Hey, why not drop for a while the camouflaged jacket and wear a nice, cool, smart suit? This plane realized transatlantic flights to Brazil, and had fuel tanks between the cockpit and the four-seat cabin. See you on the sky.
  22. A build from 4 years ago of the classic Airfix Brick: Spurred by the magnificent job being done by Martian Hale on his S.79, I felt prompted to provide another view of this strangely beautiful tri-motor, in its civil guise. I have built three conversions of the S.79, so let's start with this one which is, as was the original, just an out of the factory line machine, demilitarized, re-equipped and repainted. Here is the conversion of the venerable Airfix S.79 to the I-ROTR racer that participated in the Istres-Damascus-Paris competition. This "adaptation" (since it does not really qualify as conversion) is meant to be a much simpler build to see if more modelers can be encouraged to venture beyond the traditional constraining borders. My main reference is Paolo Miana's "Lost Archives - Pictorial history of SIAI - Chapter I - the Sorci Verdi". I may say that although the book covers magnificently the greatly modified Corsa version, not much material was found by Mr. Miana in the archives he researched about this specific "gobbo" machine which was merely a production line unit, gobba and all, hastily adapted to fill a gap. Therefore we can only see the exterior, and from there deduct a few things. This machine was pressured into the race as other Italian entries were not ready in time. The "conversion" then did not actually modify the plane as deeply as it was the case with the Corsa version (that I built from the Italeri kit), and consisted only of the removal of armament (or was it secretly kept to shut-down competitors?), deletion of the ventral position and addition of extra fuel tanks. Therefore this is an easy one that most modelers can accomplish with minimum effort and just a few modifications, since the hunch (gobba) of the fuselage does not have to be removed. Why am I using the Airfix kit instead of the immensely superior Italeri one? Well, my good friend and Evil Genius Sönke Schulz sent this model to me as a gift. Why, you may ask, again, yourself? well, since he is marzipanly malign (he lives in Lübeck), he carefully glues some parts that shouldn't be glued until a later stage. In this case the wing halves, that failed to trap the ailerons and the parts for the landing gear. He also glued the stabilizer halves, again failing to trap the elevators. On top of that he also lost many transparencies, but fortunately not the windshield. He therefore sent the kit and now seats down whilst petting Helga (don't ask) and laughs (you know the drill "mwehehehe, mwahahahahah..") whilst I struggle to deal with those issues. In a more serious note, I repeat that you can do this with the Italeri kit too, but if you happen to have an Arfix S.79, this may be your chance to play a little without the pressure of marring a good kit, and in the process learn a couple things and achieve a colorful model that will be attractive, in civil use, and unusual. Start by throwing away anything military in the kit. Then discard the "open" dorsal position that is an alternate part. Later on you will have to fill the hole underneath the fuselage by the absence of the ventral position, by the simple expedient of tracing a shape in plasticard, cut the part, glue it in place, apply putty and sand a bit. Easy enough. Finally here is one of the several Savoia Marchetti S.79 Corsa that participated in the Istres-Damascus-Paris race, I-ROTR, the only one with the hunchback, since it was mainly a production machine pressed into the race with some adaptations, whilst the other S.79 entries were purposely-modified machines. Decals and masks are home-made, and no little amount of time and effort has been spent on this one. If you have the old Airfix brick, you may like to have a go, if not, just get the Italeri kit, that even with its terrible starving appearance is far better than this oldie. My thanks to Soenke Schulz, who generously sent the kit and the Sorci Verdi (green mice) decals.
  23. A build from 4 years ago: The S.79 Corsa I-13 (radio call I-FILU) was flown by the team Fiori-Lucchini in the Istres-Damascus-Paris race to a second place. You may acquire Paolo Maina's book, "Lost Archives: A Pictorial History of SIAI - Chapter 1: Sorci Verdi", if you are interested in an accurate conversion and a juicy history and technical aspects, coupled with great illustrations and photos. -The Italeri kit is a pleasure to work with, the type of plastic used is among the best I ever dealt with, but the kit suffers of starvation, and the effect of the stringers and tail ribs is out of proportion. Putty and sanding will help, something you have to do anyway to hide the windows and door. Re-skinning is what I would do if I build another, much simpler and time effective. -Neither the Italian Wings nor the Pavla sets are totally accurate. They help, but unfortunately contain errors that you will have to correct (and redundancies in the case of the Pavla parts). - I chose the front/aft fuselage sub-assemblies approach to re-join the separated parts, because the more traditional approach of re-joining a whole left and right sides to be later glued together may have introduced minute differences in length that would have translated in a fore or aft mismatch, or even a banana fuselage. Aligning is critical, and much measuring and dry-fitting should be done to ensure a true fuselage. Having used the wing itself to "true" the fuselage front long "tails" (karmans) I was sure that I had a good chance of getting it right. The aft fuselage left and right halves lock themselves properly by kit's engineering default. -Whatever machine you are planning to model, study photos. Drawings, profiles, "artistic" renditions are all ok, but only an interpretation of reality. Photos instead depict a reality (although beware of wrong captions on the Internet, so abundant unfortunately). -Work carefully, patiently, joyfully. -And lastly...if you do not feel up to the challenge this time or you perceive it as too daunting...good news: you can still have your racer. There was another racer (S.79K) that participated in the Istres-Damascus-Paris raid that was a slightly modified production machine, with hunch and all (armament deleted). It requires minimum modifications, although of course still needs the proper livery. This machine was I-ROTR, flown by Rovis and Trimboli, race number I-12.
  24. A build from two years ago: (The WiP is here: Here is one of the two Westland planes that flew over Mount Everest* for the Houston Everest Expedition, G-ACAZ (The other was G-ACBR). The model is based on the very old and a bit clunky kit by Air Lines / Frog of the Westland Wallace. Some of the editions of these kits had the (poorly researched) "Everest" decals, but the fact is that that the kit needs some modifications to accurately represent one of the machines, and very involving modifications to represent the other. I built both, here is one, the other will be posted today later on. *Mount Everest, by the way, it's a name coined by the then British colonists. The mountain is locally known by two names: Sagarmāthā (forehead or head in the sky) and Chomolungma (mother of the world). My thanks to Mika Jernfors, of Arctic Decals, who designed and provided the high-quality decals I am so spoiled with. Here are some of the necessary mods for G-ACAZ: -Different landing gear -No elevator or rudder trim tabs -Fin/rudder with paint outline -No wingtip skids -Different wing tip and inset ailerons arrangement -Different dihedral -Different strut locations -An additional diagonal strut between the inner wing struts -Absence of little cutout inside the large wing cutout above the pilot's head -The lower wing cutout meets diagonally the fuselage, instead of meeting a straight short section as in G-ACBR -There were no visible "zippers" on the fuselage sides of G-ACAZ. -A small rectangular opening or window is seen low on the fuselage side aft of the lower wing -G-ACAZ has only one aileron control horn (two on the other plane) -The exit holes for the tail control surfaces are slightly different -The oil radiator is in a different position, aft and a bit lower than the one in G-ACBR -There were three diagonal louvers on the nose on each side there are other details. Look at photos of the original. Find out, don't be lazy.
  25. Hi all thought I would post my 1/48 fw 190 s-8, It was built in 2006 and is based on the tamya 1/48 fw 190 f-8, the cockpit & rear fusalarge is scratch build using 5 thou plastic card, super glue & bicarb. The vac formed conopie is by falcon with truedetails wheels. Streched sprue aerials Paints used are xtracolor rlm 74,75,76. Sprayed using a Badger 200 g Thank's for looking. comments are welcomed. Nick
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