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  1. Now I've finally finished clearing the backlog, I can return to the build I put aside to clear them (I know, a lilttle irony there...!). Once I get back from Christmas hols with the family I will dig this one out and get on with it. I had been posting it on another forum, so for now, as a little teaser, I will post what I have already done..... My referances are the Ilya Muromets Special by Harry Woodman, along with Windsock International Vol 6, Number 4 and Vol 12 Number 2, which contain articles by Harry, one on the plane itself, the other on the kit and it's many faults. Unfortunately the plans are all for the blunt nose Veh and I'm building the earlier sharp nosed variant, but from Harry's comments in his articles I think I'm pretty accurate on the differances. I'm not going to beat around the bush - the kit is terrible! The parts are very thick and lumpy, but that's the least of the problems. This is what you get: As to the errors, I'll list those as I get to them, but since I've started on the fuselage here is the list: 1) The upper longeron is a straight line from nose to tail. It should be parallel to the lower for about 1/5 of the total length, then both upper and lower taper equally to the tail. The longerons should also be parallel in plan form, easily rectified with a little sanding. 2) It's just over 1mm too deep for its entire length. This is not too difficult to resolve as it's about the thickness of the plastic, (except for the nose section which requires a little more to be removed) so I just cut the fuselage bottom off from the inside, using the edge of the plastic as my guide. 3) The windows are too big. Again fairly easy to rectify with plastic card. 4) The door is too far aft. 5) The forward upper gunner's position is too far forward, and the aft one shouldn't be there at all on this early version. (It was only on the later Geh model). 6) All the internal structure and bracing wires are moulded on the OUTSIDE of the fuselage! Since they are joined by many large ejector pin marks it's a case of "get out the sanding block...." anyway! So, to the first job - correcting this big lump of plastic and making it more accurate! This first shot shows just how much I had to remove from the bottom of the fuselage to correct the depth. The cockpit section was also cut off where the parallel longerons end, and sanded on their top joint to make them parallel in plan form. The inside of the cockpit sections and the front part of the aft sections were thinned extensively to bring them to a more accurate scale thickness. A little sanding on the aft section where the cut was made brought the tail down to where it should be. A little more sanding on the stern post to square it up, and also at the sides to correct the curve of the tail in plan form. This is all after the outside of the fuselage was sanded clean to remove all the mouldings and ejector pin marks. The door is in its original (incorrect) position in this shot. The windows were then corrected with plastic card. I cut "L" shaped pieces and fitted them to bring the rear of the windows forward, and the bottoms upward. The front windows were also fitted with new bottom pieces to make them narrower top-to-bottom. The upper gunner's position was moved aft so that the front of the new opening is about where the rear of the moulded one is, by cutting out the fuselage in the correct place and filling the moulded opening with card. I also cut out the engineer's access panels in the fuselage sides - these provided a means for him to crawl out onto the wing in flight and fix the engines! One of these will be fitted open, the other closed. If anyone knows how they opened please let me know! I'm not sure if they were removable, or hinged out from the bottom.... The door was moved forward to its correct position which gave the opportunity to square it up again after the adjustment to the slope of the upper rear longeron, and the rear gunner's position closed up with plastic card. The door will be modelled open (it slid rearwards, between the canvas exterior and plywood interior panels, like a pocket door). The internal rigging has been fitted across the window and door openings by using a seam scriber and inlaying the rigging line. The joins won't show inside as the cockpit was lined with plywood and this will be fitted over the rigging. I have made these ply panels from card and will fit them soon. I have also drilled new mounting holes for the lower wings. They will be mounted on brass rod to provide some strength, and the rod will be covered with plastic rod (hollowed out to fit over it) where it's visible inside to simulate the spars running across the fuselage floor. Finally the cockpit and rear sections were rejoined, filled and sanded as necessary. The lower pic shows the "ply" panels sitting in place inside the cockpit. I'm almost to the stage where I can join the fuselage halves and start the interior detailing. One advantage of removing the floor is that I can build it up separately then just slip it in from below once the details on the sides and roof have been done. I will need to add the crossmembers on the roof, and rig them, as they are very visible through those big windows. One last question: I want to try to replicate the feeling of light coming through the rear fuselage fabric. I've thought of using flourescent or luminous paint and then a thin coat of white or CDL to tone it down a little...any thoughts? Is this type of paint even available? Thanks for checking in, on what will be a long, and hopefully fun, build! Ian