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Solo

F/A-18A+ Hornet // Academy // 1:72

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This time I am coming back to 1/72 scale and for the first time in my life, I am going to build model of Hornet.

I have bought Academy kit with USMC Hornet with realy nice painting (red tail...) and I am going to build it without any speciall aftermarkets or something.

But, of course I decided to add something, just a little:

- Eduard's BIGED, for F/A-18A, I hope it will be proper for A+

- Aires exhausts (for C)

- weapon: I am going to choose from the following: AGM-65 Mavericks from North Star Modelels, Eduard's GBU-49, Eduards AIM-9 Sidewinder and Arma Hobby CBU-38. For now I am thinking about Mavericks, GBU and Sidewinders.

This must be very simple Hornet. :)

And that is all.

I hope to finish this model during one month (ha, ha, ha - but I still believe) without any stress or troubles. :)

Ok, so let's start the work.

This is the model - very nice Academy kit,good quality and really nice detailing.

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This is kit's cockpit, very nice but not so rich with details.

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So I have added some PE parts.

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I added more PE parts and made some things from scratch, like throttle, oxygen tube etc.

And the cockpit is ready now:

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Next there was forward wheel bay.

All wheel bays of this model are rather poor: very shallow and lack of details.

So I added some Eduard's part and also added some wires etc.

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Next step there is nose part of fuselage.

I glued together cockpit, above mentioned wheel bay and side walls..

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And then, the main fuselage:

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Up to now I have got prepared:

- airbrake bay and air intakes, ready to assemble:

017.jpg

018.jpg

- main wheels bays:

019.jpg

I hope to glue the whole fuselage soon.

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What a great start.

Looks really good and great improvements to the Academy kit

Enjoying this one already!

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This is looking brilliant so far. I've a feeling that I'm going to enjoy following this one :)

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Very very nice start!! Look forward for the progress of the model!! :)

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The plane is practically assembled.

First - the wings and part of fuselage plus nose part of plane.

As you can see I added some details to opening canopy mechanism and few wires.

021.jpg

023.jpg

Here you can see all wheel bays:

022.jpg

And the plane is ready.

I have glued vertical fins, air intakes, all antennas and PE parts.

I think it looks not so bad.

024.jpg

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Now I need to rescribe not so many panel lines, polish few places and I think Hornet will be ready for surfacer.

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I am close to the time of painting.

This time I have made few details.

It is really difficult to assemble HUD with Eduard's PE's.

028.jpg

Undercarriage.

The nose gear: I added some wires and small plastic parts, because Academy's undercarriage is rather poor.

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The same situation is about main landing gears:

033.jpg

Next there was airbrake:

032.jpg

And the almost ready jet on her legs:

031.jpg

I have also removed seam from the canopy, and polished it.

035.jpg

And engines ready to painting, of course I will use Aires' nozzles.

036.jpg

Here you can see some small mechanism inside the canopy. I added some things to make it a little more realistic.

[img/https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-db90B4aCMBw/VZaSC8VJ1NI/AAAAAAAAEWs/3bHNOXCb0pE/w1024-h675-no/038.jpg

I have used surfacer, this time Tamiya's product, but I do believe I should return to Gunze Surfacer.

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I have also prepared all pylons for all Hornet's stations.

My plan is:

- station 1: AIM-9L/M (Eduard's)

- station 2: AGM-65 Maverick (North Star Models)

- station 3: fuel tank

- station 4: AN/AAS-38 FLIR pod

- station 5: fuel tank

- station 6: AN/ASQ-173 LDT pod

- station 7: GBU-49 (Eduard's), one or two, I am not sure if two of those bombs on one pylon are suitable for Hornet

- station 8: AGM-65 Maverick (North Star Models)

- station 9: AIM-9L/M (Eduard's).

Edited by Solo

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this is seriously impressive and i'm not a big fan of jets!

keep up the amazing work

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Thank you guys!

This is a time for choice of weapon.

I decided to arm my Hornet (according to station numbers):

1 - AIM-9M Sidewinder

2- AGM-65E Maverick

3 - fuel tank

4 - AAS-38 TFLIR pod

5 - fuel tank

6 - ASQ-173 LST pod

7 - GBU-49

8 - AGM-65E Maverick

9 - AIM-9M Sidewinder

Here they are ready for painting:

046.jpg

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Also you can see very nice detailing of AGM-65 Maverick from North Star Models:

048.jpg

I could use CBU-38 from Arma Hobby instead of Eduard's GBU-49, but I think GBU is best choice.

You can compare two of above mentioned weapons together with GBU-12 from Academy (kit's):

049.jpg

Edited by Solo

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...and my weapons and pods are ready.

I am not so satisfied with Mavericks - they are dirty because so many times I was forced to glue the ailerons (it is so easy to break it off), after painting and decals.

Following that it was difficult to wipe the wash.

I hope the wings and other ordnance will cover those imperfections.

051.jpg

052.jpg

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Beautiful result so far!

Is the ASQ-173 LST slated for station 6 still used?

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Is the ASQ-173 LST slated for station 6 still used?

I don't have such information, but I do believe those pod was carried by Horner together with AAS-38.

That is my whole knowledge about taht. :)

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Still working.

It is time to finish the canopy, what is not so easy because of many parts included, and also some wires and stuff I want to add there.

First I had to sand the seam and polish whole canopy.

055.jpg

And the outcome of my efforts.

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Wheel bay covers: I painted it and added some chipping using just HB pencil.

I think there is to much of that, but it is too late - everything is covered with Gunze GX-100.

058.jpg

Air brake - I decided to make it opened.

As far as I know, there is not opened air brake when engines are off.

The only way for service men is to block it using such red blockade and I tried to make such thing.

https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-n7jJrsBvlMc/VarCgQYUKwI/AAAAAAAAEc0/QuJ_SSby7AM/w1024-h575-no/059.jpg

And here you can see my ordnance joined to pylons:

060.jpg

I have also finished undercarriage.

I wish main landing gear was as much detailed and beautiful as nose one.

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The arresting hook: I decided to paint it, instead of using decal.

It is always difficult for me to put it nicely on such long and thin part.

063.jpg

Engine exhaust it is always a problem for me - I just don't know how to paint it correctly, especially outside.

This time outside is - I believe - not so bad, but inside...

I have used white, black, beige and brown paint and brush, but I am not so satisfied with results.

Additionally the diameter of Aires exhaust is a little smaller than fuselage's holes.

What can I say - that is just Aires... No comments.

064.jpg

065.jpg

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Jolly good job lad!!!

Though I want to bring something to your attention. When the aircraft is parked, it's flaps/slats are in the down-position. Do you have the courage/patience to fix them or, are you going to leave them as they are right now?

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Shalako, I know about the flaps, but I do not feel my modellers skills are enough to cut it and pose in the right place.

I wish this jet had got those parts in down position, but not this time.

Ok - pre-shading.

I hope it will make my painting efforts more resultful. :)

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Looking like a great build so far

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Shalako, I know about the flaps, but I do not feel my modellers skills are enough to cut it and pose in the right place.

I wish this jet had got those parts in down position, but not this time.

I know what you mean! I have Academy's previous boxing. It is one of the best 1/72 Hornets if not the best in this scale BUT it is very disappointing to see it doesn't have the flaps/slats as separate parts.

However, it's not that difficult to cut and place them in the "down" position. I have been working for quite some time now on Hasegawa's Hornet and when I decided to cut these parts, it was honestly very easy. Perhaps the difficult part is to fix their mechanisms in the 'down' position.

Anyhow, looking forward to see the next steps of your wonderful build!!! It definitely looks like a competition winner!!!

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Painting in progress.

Lower surfaces with Gunze C308.

071.jpg

Upper surfaces with C307.

073.jpg

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And finally beautiful deep red vertical stabilisers. I do believe those elements are the main decoration of this jet.

076.jpg

I have also finished the cockpit using NATO Black and som dry brush.

079.jpg

Wheel bays are ready, painted with C316 White and awainting for detail painting.

083.jpg

Now there is a time for postshading process.

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Finally I put some base colour filters and painted some panels with Few Shadows of Grey. :)

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Now it is time for decals.

Edited by Solo

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I have put all decals.

Unfortunately I have put askew decal "300" on left wing, so I needed to correct it.

I have printed it and exchanged, but I will show it later.

089.jpg

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I have also finished wheel bays, painting all wires and piping.

093.jpg

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