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hendie

Wessex HC2 - A Dauphin's Stablemate: 520 days later.... IT'S FINISHED ! (why, yes it is indeed)

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I must be completely doolally. No sooner have I just finished a 7 month build than I start another, that within an hour looks like it will compete with the previous build in taking longer / driving me nuts / being expensive / show my complete ignorance in many areas, and more than likely will sap my will to live at some point.

Yup, I am doing a Wessex. An HC 2 to be exact, and an HC2 from Italeri's 1/48 recent kit. No sooner had I started looking at it seriously than I noticed a whole boatload of stuff that I think will need to change. Having recently completed the RHKAAF Dauphin & Islander, I wanted a 28 Sqn stablemate to keep them company. I really hadn't planned on starting this kit so soon after the Dauphin, it just kind of happened. The original plan was to start the rail carriage which I had promised Nigel, George & Co.

Over the last few months I have been addicted to Martin H's build and with the detail he is putting into his SH-34. I am in awe of the accuracy and neatness of Martin's work. I do not, in any stretch of the imagination think that I can match Martins' skill, but his thread has inspired me to try and stretch myself and try things I would not normally have attempted.

I pushed the boundaries of my skill set during the Dauphin build, and I think I am going to end up pushing them further with this little adventure.

Those of you who have followed any of my builds so far will no doubt have noticed that I am hopeless in trying to follow a standard build format. I envy those who can start with the flight deck, move on to wings etc. and deal with portions of the build in a structured and logical manner. - I start on one thing, get halfway through, move onto something completely unrelated and at some point later on, return to complete some half finished portion of the build.

So, without further ado.... here comes a Wessex.... slowly.

I had over the last year amassed this little collection.

S5002428.JPG

First impressions of the Italeri kit were not great. They had some nice detail in areas, however the general finish of the kit was pretty random. For example, some of the fuselage is almost polished in finish, while other parts appear as if the mold has been blasted. Some of the detail is accurate and some is just plain crazy stupid.

I wasn't very impressed with the decals either....

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One thing that became apparent as I mulled over this kit was although I worked on these, squirted oil, grease and PX28 all over them - I never really looked at them! (so I will no doubt need some help at various stages through this build).

So let's begin......

The observant among us will have noticed in the photo up top that I have purchased the resin HC2 conversion kit. When I examined it closely, I was a bit disappointed to be honest. I thought the detail was a little soft, and it was missing a hinge at the back end. I looked at the kit part, and was happier with the definition of the detail..... Accurate resin, soft detail / Inaccurate kit part, nicer detail...... what to do !

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So after splashing out mucho dollars to get the resin conversion, I decided to convert the kit part instead. Dumb huh ?

Did I mention that this build is not going to be fast by anyone's standards?

The first glaringly obvious difference from the kit was the oval opening on the underside. Thankfully I had some brass templates and found a match to the resin part.

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The template was then attached to the kit part....

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... and I cut out the offending plastic.

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Next up were these two features. Nope, I have no idea what they are.

Styrene strips were glued to a flat card to replicate the features.

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Then when dry, the parts were cut down to match what I saw on the resin part. I used a 3-square file with the V down to make the strips appear thinner. These were then attached to the kit underside. I have also replicated the end of some kind of trunking, and removed some no longer required plastic features.

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Now I needed to block the opening off. Using the oval templates again, I created this flange.

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Which I capped with a scrap piece of styrene sheet.

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That was glued onto the underside and set aside to dry.

I did some dry fitting to see what lay in store for me. The fit of the nose was pretty bad, if not downright awful.

S5002439.JPG

Luckily, I have a wicked and cunning plan. It's called plan B. Actually plan B should have been plan A, but I thought of plan A first even although I preferred plan B.

The fit of the nose to the airframe was bad, unfortunately, so is the fit of the panels inside the nose. Despite filing and shaping, I couldn't get a decent fit and resorted to wads of blue tak to hold things in place while the glue cured.

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and here's where I get stupid ! Most people would have stuck the nose on the airframe and filled and sanded to make it look good. But me ??? Nope. Let's add another week to the build and we haven't even got started yet.

Can you see where I am going with this?

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My hokey way of ensuring that I get the depth of the panel correct....

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Starting to take shape. That part was reasonably straight forward.

I still have the bottom section to do - it's slightly recessed and has two apertures which fit nicely over the engines.

Engines ! wait... crap.... does that mean I have to scratch a couple of engines now? Who could ever be so daft???

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Then I spotted two large sink marks in the base of the nose.

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It's anyone's guess where it goes from here. The one thing I can promise is that this will not be a quick build. I want to do this a/c as much justice as I did the Dauphin so it's going to be a long haul.

And lastly..... Nigel - I have actually started the train - well, I have laid some brass bits and bobs on top of the drawing and cleared a work space for it.

I am waiting on a soldering iron being delivered and then I can start a new thread.

Edited by hendie

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Looking good Hendie. If everything went together well out of the box it would just be too easy. At least that's what I tell myself. I like how you converted the kit part to match the resin. I've got some similar surgery in store when I convert my it italeri kit to a RAN mk 31.

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Just ordered a hundredweight of popcorn from Amazon :popcorn:

Those thin strips on the bottom should be louvres & a lot smaller.

The box behind the load hole should be connected to the trunking above it (in the pic).

And I thought that trunking ended about there too.

(I have ancient SAMI line drawings which must be almost right) (July 2001)

The triangular panel above the RH exhaust where the electrics lived?

The large hole seems too large.

And of course the transmission platform edges are still totally wrong as is the structure

above the main gearbox and I think, the panels behind the tranny platforms are too small.

You're right. We worked on them but didn't really 'Look' at them.

Though way back I did convert a FROG kit to HC2 so took lots of detail

sketches which I still have somewhere.

Hang in there, the load pole is live and armed, ready for Gnome failure!

Pete

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Hi Hendie. Sorry to hear the ROTORCraft parts weren't up to your liking. The nose is a fiddle to fit but there is an easy(?) fix, the lip at the top is not pronunced enought, so need another .8m adding to it on top of the part you've marked REAR. once your added that cut a rounded piece of of PC to fit inside the nose opening to give some strength and a flat top glue the nose to. I see you've purchased the Wessex bible form 4+ most everything you'll need is in there or on the BM Walkrounds pages. The two upwards opening access doors on the nose have double engraved panel lines, you can fill the inner onse, they don't exisit. There are lots of external differences as you will finnd as you progress. For the decals, get the Xrtadecals sheet, well worth it the kit one is kak!

You'll might also want to fill all the engraved lines in the main rotorblades there is actually a little overplap in the ali plate. Some stretched sprue will do nicely.

I've seen another build somewhere round here the guy is using PE detail parts, they look very clumsy/overscale and spoil the look.

Colin the Wessex.

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Great start Hendie, you may not be that impressed with the Italeri kit, but if you think that's bad, see if you can get hold of one of the old Revell offerings and you'll see just how much things have come on...

Here's a link to a load of Wessex photo's I have taken over the years, the first 6 are HC.2s the remainder are HU.5s but a lot of detail is common to both, might be of use...!

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Great pics, Ozh, but what on earth is going on with that HAS 3 painted yellow? Surely only 737NAS operated the HAS3, and when I last looked they were a Fleet Air Arm outfit.

It's like painting "Royal Air Force" on the side of a Sea Vixen (or Royal Navy on the tail of a Lightning, if you like); it just looks plain wrong!

Delighted you've moved on to a Wessie, Hendie. I bought an Italieri Mark 3 at Telford, so it's in my future somewhere, too.

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I have spare Revell Wezzy decals should you need them

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I dont think there is anything that can describe a standard build schedule...looking great by the way..

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Great pics, Ozh, but what on earth is going on with that HAS 3 painted yellow? Surely only 737NAS operated the HAS3, and when I last looked they were a Fleet Air Arm outfit.

It's like painting "Royal Air Force" on the side of a Sea Vixen (or Royal Navy on the tail of a Lightning, if you like); it just looks plain wrong!

Delighted you've moved on to a Wessie, Hendie. I bought an Italieri Mark 3 at Telford, so it's in my future somewhere, too.

This Wessex is in the Bournemouth museum, I believe that it was passed between the FAA and RAF and was used for various test and experimental "stuff", hence the RAF markings, I also think that the interior and external configuration is unique to this airframe because of the various test fits it has had over time.

Go on, do a Vixen in crab markings... I dare you!!

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OzH, Those pictures take me back.

38 years to be precise. Wow!

A shiny new LAC working at Odiham.

Didn't the Vixen have some RAF

connection at the design stage?

Must be on here somewhere, But I swear

I saw pics of the underside of a HC 2 on it's side.

Some time ago now. Maybe Manston?

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This Wessex is in the Bournemouth museum, I believe that it was passed between the FAA and RAF and was used for various test and experimental "stuff", hence the RAF markings, I also think that the interior and external configuration is unique to this airframe because of the various test fits it has had over time. Go on, do a Vixen in crab markings... I dare you!!

Far more likely to do some Crabair machine in the One True Colour scheme. Perhaps a Jaguar M (cos there was a least one of those!), to wind up Fritag. EDSG over white, obviously!

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Here's a link to a load of Wessex photo's I have taken over the years, the first 6 are HC.2s the remainder are HU.5s but a lot of detail is common to both, might be of use...!

Bookmarked.

I have spare Revell Wezzy decals should you need them

Thanks for the offer. It wasn't such an issue for me as I had planned on doing custom decals anyway, but as luck would have it, I found a company in Taiwan producing the decals I need.

Wow, I'm not used to so much interest and so many replies to my builds.... it's a bit disconcerting being under all this scrutiny. I'd better be on my best behavior then.

Thanks for all the comments guys!

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This Wessex is in the Bournemouth museum, I believe that it was passed between the FAA and RAF and was used for various test and experimental "stuff", hence the RAF markings, I also think that the interior and external configuration is unique to this airframe because of the various test fits it has had over time. Go on, do a Vixen in crab markings... I dare you!!

You live and learn; you intrigued me, so I've been doing some digging. It (XT257) was a pre-production HAS3, apparently, which never went into RN service (the only HAS3 that didn't). It spent most of its flying life with Boscombe testing the AFCS and various radio fits, before being used as an instructional airframe at Cosford. It was painted yellow there; it never actually flew as an RAF rescue cab. So I was half-right. Til now I'd always thought Wessex 1 = RN, 2 = RAF, 3 = RN, 4 = RAF, 5 = RN.

It's easy to forget what a leap forward the Wessie 3 was when it first came out - the AFCS was basically the same as the one in the Sea King. Crude by modern standards (gyroscopes, springs and "stable tables") but it bloody worked - kept me alive in getting me in and out of the dip on some pitch black, filthy nights, for a start!

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Pics of a Wessex on it's side at Manston in the walkaround section.

But no belly shots.

What we need is a Wessex parked on a huge mirror!

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You live and learn; you intrigued me, so I've been doing some digging. It (XT257) was a pre-production HAS3, apparently, which never went into RN service (the only HAS3 that didn't). It spent most of its flying life with Boscombe testing the AFCS and various radio fits, before being used as an instructional airframe at Cosford. It was painted yellow there; it never actually flew as an RAF rescue cab. So I was half-right. Til now I'd always thought Wessex 1 = RN, 2 = RAF, 3 = RN, 4 = RAF, 5 = RN.

Ditto the live and learn thing!! I had always assumed it had made it to the FAA....

The numbering goes for the Whirlwind as well I think... 1 = RN, 2 = RAF etc...

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Pics of a Wessex on it's side at Manston in the walkaround section.

But no belly shots.

What we need is a Wessex parked on a huge mirror!

I dont suppose you know that XR525 is sat atop a huge trellis at Cosford so that we can all walk under her with our cameras do you?

:thumbsup:

Hendie I'm glad you are getting into the one and only Wessex, I think though that there are "issues" with the upper transmission access panels cutaway for the winch clearance

http://www.airliners.net/photo/UK---Air/Westland-Wessex-HC2/0312816/M/

this shows the panel in use, I hope it works

It seems to me that the panel is marked perfectly in SHAPE but too far forward on the upper panel, it ought to be pretty well central between the drivers windoor and the bend down of the upper panel line

If I have got this wrong, fortunately BM is heaving with Wessex experts who can alter my perceptions :)

I have seen one HC2 model lately that also leaves the external (Royal Navy HU5) piping along the outside of the upper structure, which HC2s didn't seem to have either

When you do the smaller windows that needs addressing too

Edited by perdu

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A couple of shots of XR525 now

VulcandayCosford072_zps4fd863d1.jpg

The access panel shows very clearly but the undersides don't

so this one is a tad clearer

Hope you don't mind Hendie

VulcandayCosford071_zpsf162bfff.jpg

Yes you CAN walk under her and take pictures, I'd finished my model of 525 when the museum stuck her back in the sky so I didn't take many of the undersides

Bill

.

Edited by perdu

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thanks perdu. I know there are issues with panel lines around the Wessex, I am aware of some, and I am sure there are others that I am completely unaware of. The trans deck winch panel was one of the ones that I was aware of thanks to several posts here at bm.

Feel free to post as many photo's as you like - I have a bunch of reference photo's but a few more couldn't hurt.

Just a small update today. Progress was made albeit slowly.

I continued with the nose today and spent quite a bit of time shaping the styrene to get as close a fit as I could get inside the nose. It was a bit of a pig because the wall thickness of the nose is all over the place. I finally got one shaped that I was happy with, and when I went to punch the holes for the intakes, I didn't align them properly. Onto panel number 2 - got the holes aligned, then decided I wanted larger intakes with wider spacing.

This is panel number 3, or was it 4?. - By this time I could knock one out in a few minutes.

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I was concentrating so much on the fit and shaping that I forgot to take any more photo's. - Sorry!

Here's the main parts dry fitted.

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And another shot of the same. Some glue and a little bit of pressure should see those gaps close up.

There's still some structure to be added to the panel, but the hard work is done and adding the structure stuff should be easy ('ish!)

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Looking around at other jobs to do..... I came across these two. I have to say.... I can't stand the gearbox. It's just awful.

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Well, there's nothing for it but to start hacking the offending articles off

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until I get something a little better.

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I am considering whether to remove the gearbox entirely, but I don't know how easy it would be to get the location and angles correct if I scratch built something, and I don't think I have anything suitable at hand.

I'll sleep on that one.

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I would keep the main body as you have here, the angles for the rotor blades are critical and here you have them already set

I put the front of an Airfix Sea King's engines, to replicate the Gnomes inside my HC2 in 72 scale but it was a waste of time after I moulded a filter cover and popped it on

Might as well have modelled Madonna posing in a pointy bra, nothing was visible behind the mesh surface :)

I'm glad you knew the pitfalls but now I'm glad I mentioned them :)

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I think that's what I'll end up doing. Hopefully, I can make the trans deck area busy enough that no-one will notice that it's shaped like a Heinz bean can.

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Hendie,

Nice work In the nose.

There are some good pics of a gearbox & head

on page 2 of the Wessex walkaround thread here.

I'd forgotten how crowded it was in there.

Scratching the legs etc wouldn't be easy,

And I doubt you can see in there anyway.

Unless you plan to drop the platforms? :banghead:

Good luck with the rest of the build.

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This is a stunning looking project, mind if I tag along?

Roger

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Unless you plan to drop the platforms? :banghead:

Good luck with the rest of the build.

aha, you nailed it!

My plan at this stage, and I stress at this stage is to prop the nose open, have at least one trans deck open, and I am undecided about the tail being open or not.

I also have a houchin to build, and I think I also want to scratch build a safety raiser/platform thingy. - They were called safety raisers weren't they ? It's been so long my mind is going blank on a lot of stuff.

I looked around for an after market safety raiser, and all I could find was a US Air Force version, Aircraft in Miniature mentioned creating one over a year ago ( http://www.arcforums.com/forums/air/index.php?showtopic=269043 ) but there has been no mention since, so I can only assume the project got dropped.

So if anyone knows of an aftermarket piece or even decent photo's or drawings, that would be very useful - thanks

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