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Airfix IL-2 "Sturmovik" - the hard way


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Hello All,

I have a shiny new red-box Airfix IL-2 Sturmovik in my stash:

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I have heard that it has "issues" - so, out with the plans and lets have a look:

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Crikey!

After the initial panic attacks had died down, I realised that we could do something here, so out with the cutting mat...

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Top halves done. 60thou/1.5mm card insert, set proud so I could sand it down nicely. I used plastic cement to hold it all together because I wanted a resilient joint - there's going to be a lot of sanding!

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Lower half is a bit more complicated because of the wheel bays.

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I kept the wheel bays (they will need to be extended later) and added a piece of 60 thou that includes the flaps. Wheel bays were boxed in using paper and some 20thou square provided some ribbing. Paint is still wet in these photos.

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So the wings are all now stuck together and drying before their next sanding session

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Tailplane next up...

Thanks for looking,

Adrian

Edited by AdrianMF
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Wonderfull work so far. Be careful though you might end up doing stuff like Nobby if you go much farther down this road. Then we might have to send for the vet! :tease:

Martin von Pot Calling The Kettle Black

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Hello again,

I've had a good run at this again today (DIY tomorrow ahem). I've moved on to the fuselage, which has the odd problem or two. I've moved the exhausts, sanded the fuselage to something closer to the proper shape, re-shaped the cockpit openings, cut away the top rear decking (too high), prepared to add a wedge to the rear fuselage join (too much taper) and started detailing the cockpit. So I am now here:

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Thanks for looking,

Adrian

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Brilliant stuff and right up my street! Martins right though....you'll probably end up going insane! :wacko:

I thought your Defiant was lovely - it nearly made me throw my MPM one away and go get the Airfix one. Nearly but not quite!!

Regards,

Adrian

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great work on fixing the wings... am sure the rest is gonna make this look brilliant

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A quick update:

We are now on profile:

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The scoop was hard. I dug it out to the right width, and it had too much of a step. So built the sides back up (you can see daylight through the superglue, pushed the two halves of the lip down and in, sanded the lip edges back and sanded down in front of the windscreen, which fortunately brought it back onto profile!

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Interior was scratched from odds and sods - I will add the stick when I've painted the instrument panel!

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Painting the cockpit next (after a fuel tank!).

Thanks for looking,

Adrian

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BTW, shouldn't the two-seater version have swept wing?

It did later, because they found out that the straight winged one wasn't too stable with the extra man with a gun! But the early ones were straight...

Regards,

Adrian

Edited by AdrianMF
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More progress today. I've painted the seat and instrument panel:

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And I made a canopy master from balsa with plastic card covering, and then vac-formed a couple in my made-in-ten-minutes vac-form machine:

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Plenty of rejects before I got there!

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Thanks for looking,

Adrian

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Plodding along here, ailerons and tail today. I put together a thick lamination of card for the tailplane, but thought better of it and modified the kit tailplane instead. That will save me a good deal of sanding!

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Thanks for looking,

Adrian

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More progress. Intake now finished. Tailplanes now made from kit parts extended rather than the scary block of card I had before. I've extended the wheel bays using filler over balsa. Rear decking is on - I've since re-jigged the rear fuselage to give a bit more taper so I have a fighting chance of blending into the tailcone.

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Thanks for looking,

Adrian

Edited by AdrianMF
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Lordy mama!! (Won't tell you what I really said...)

Would someone please contact Mr Airfix and tell him to look at what's going on here?

Very impressive Adrian. They say fortune favours the brave and you've really taken this one by the scruff of the neck.

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That's a fantastic piece of work. Looking forward to seing the finished result!

And I made a canopy master from balsa with plastic card covering, and then vac-formed a couple in my made-in-ten-minutes vac-form machine:

7c92e439.jpg

Ta for that pic. I've a biscuit tin that will be ideal for similar treatment. BTW, what plastic are you using for your canopies?

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I'm something of a Shturmovik addict (hence my avatar), but not even I would ever think about trying to make that Airifx kit into something resembling the real IL-2. I have to say that you seem to be doing just that, down to the correctly-detailed cockpit. If you can accomplish transmogrifying this misshapen kit into an accurate Shturmovik then I think you will have rivalled Nobby and his Defiant. Amazing work!

Best Regards,

Jason

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Ta for that pic. I've a biscuit tin that will be ideal for similar treatment. BTW, what plastic are you using for your canopies?

Hi, thanks for the comment!

I've been using bubble pack offcuts. Half of them seem to work, the other half go white as you heat them, so it's a bit hit and miss. I went through my entire stock of saved bubble packs getting my technique right, getting the wrong plastic and making just that one canopy!

I have been pointed at "PETG" plastic. A google search reveals lots of people who will sell 0.5mm plastic industrially in 2m by 1m sheets. On ebay (UK) I did the same search and there are a number of sellers who sell it in A4 size, so I've ordered some of those...

On the design side, it's been pointed out to me that having the fence makes things much harder. I built the fence to give me something to seal against, but it means the plastic has to stretch all the way down to the bottom before it goes over the mould, making it thin, prone to tearing and prone to not reaching the mould before it gets cold!

Apparently the accepted way is to:

1) make a raised bed (so I can put a roof on my fence and make holes in that)

2) put the master on the raised bed

3) put the plastic on a frame that is bigger (but not much bigger) than the size of the raised bed

4) put the heated plastic over the master and let the sides of the plastic touch the edges of the raised bed.

The last step provides the airtight seal using the hot plastic itself. I can understand the geometry but I've yet to try it out. I'm away next week but hopefully there will be some plastic waiting when I get back...

Regards,

Adrian

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I can't do stuff like this, I'm always impressed by modellers who chop kits up to make them accurate.

I'll be watching for simpler tips for my build though!

Si.

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