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trickyrich

Arado Ar-234 P5 Swept Winged TurboProp Nightfighter - Finished

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Ok I’m the first to admit I am totally mad and this build will prove it! :wall:

My work pattern has changed so I will have more time for models!!! So rather than signing up for more GB’s…or actually completing the ones I’ve signed up for on time I decided I needed a new long-term project. The Heinkel He-177Z was a long term project which I loved so instead of building the bigger one I have gone for this project which I had mentioned a few times.

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I love the look and it’s super cool, plus a nightfighter as well! I had received all the bits sometime ago but after a quick look at them I got very scared!! The reason for this is the add on bits from Unicraft!!! The parts may be a little bit basic which is to say they are basically lumps of resin and not much else!

So the basis for the build will be Hasegawa’s 1/48th Arado Ar-234C-3 which will provide the body, interior and undercarriage, though it will probably end up providing a of other bits as well!

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The wings from Antares are nice and need little work to fit my build.

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The engines or turbo-props are barely recognisable as engine parts and as can be seen I have had to add sheet plastic to help build them up so they at least may be round in shape! They even come with an internal engine sections if I wanted to leave the engine covers open…or should I say a blob to match the rest of the engine blob!

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The new nose is….well more or less useless, as can be seen from the photo is much smaller than the canopy section.

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The mod kit is for the Hobby Craft Arado Ar-234 which is completely the wrong in the nose section compared to the Hasegawa model, it’s way too narrow! So I can either modify the clear section which is pretty well impossible or completely build a new nose section! Plus all the other bits in this mod kit are pretty well useless as well, I will have to use most of the kit parts for this build! I will either have to modify the resin bits I have or make a completely nose section, which at the moment looks to be the easiest path!

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So I have pretty well given myself a not so easy task for this build. Whether I complete this build or if it is destine for the box of doom is something to be decided as the build progresses.

For a start I need to get these engines at least round in profile, hence the addition of card to the engine bodies and spinners. If I can get these sorted there may be a possibility this project will get going. Once the main bodies are round in profile I can work on the nose cones and props. Once these are done I can then start to work on how they will mount to the swept back wings, custom mounts will be needed for this.

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So this is going to be a crazily big project, nothing that will be completed in a couple of months for sure! Again I must be completely crazy to attempt this build, I had planned it for the WhatIf III GB, but given the work required it’s not possible in the time given. So this Christmas or next I’m not sure when it will be finished so welcome aboard on this crazy adventure.

So welcome along for the ride, it will be bumpy and the driver will curse at regular intervals....oh and regular updates are not included!

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I like it! ^_^ I'm a big fan of the 234 as evidenced by my stash of four of the blighters :blush: I'd never heard of that resin though, and TBH, I'm kind of glad about it really. Maybe you should whip them into shape and then release them as new sets? They'll be more than 15% different, that's fo shizzle! :wicked:

I could quite go for some projected conversions for the Blitz if they didn't look like rough-hewn foam :S


Oh, and in answer you your implied question in the title. Yes... you're mad, but you're harmless ;)

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What a super project to get your teeth into . Lots Of problems to be solved but my guess is thats one of the things you like about your hobby . Looks like a few quids worth of resin too.

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I'm keen to see this one go!

(Furthermore, please, let's not bash Unicraft.... Igor is a very nice fellow, and where else can you get such conversion parts??)

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I'm keen to see this one go!

(Furthermore, please, let's not bash Unicraft.... Igor is a very nice fellow, and where else can you get such conversion parts??)

I was talking to Igor when I bought these conversion kits and he did warn me that the moulds were quite old and the kits were a little rough! Compared to some of the other Unicraft stuff I have they are poor...but it's a starting point!! But you are right there a very few others who make conversion kits for the Ar-234's.

I am a big fan of the Ar-234 as well, have two more Hasegawa B2 Nightfighters in the stash, one of which has an obscene amount of AM extras to go with it and a Gomex one which is wrong in shape...not to sure what I'll do with that one.

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This looks like it may be good to follow. Bon Chance!

Looking at the photos you seem well along with solutions. Could you widen the Unicraft windscreen forward section to fit the Hasegawa fuselage then make a new windscreen? Apologies for making suggestions to the What-If? Meister you are if you're way ahead of me....Overall this looks as challenging as my Obsolete Kit GB Hobbycraft Vampire currently lurking on the Shelf of Doom :weep:

Edited by Mike
Removing large photo-quote.

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This looks like it may be good to follow. Bon Chance!

Looking at the photos you seem well along with solutions. Could you widen the Unicraft windscreen forward section to fit the Hasegawa fuselage then make a new windscreen? Apologies for making suggestions to the What-If? Meister you are if you're way ahead of me....Overall this looks as challenging as my Obsolete Kit GB Hobbycraft Vampire currently lurking on the Shelf of Doom :weep:

I'm always open to suggestions and ideas. You've right on the money as to how I'm going to fix the nose issue! :thumbsup: There is too much work and damage to perfectly good parts trying to use the Unicraft nose and getting the model bits to fit! So I will be using there entire kit nose, plus I have some nice PE bit to go along, and cut about 1cm off it. I will use the resin radome as it's the size I want and custom build a new nose section. The front windscreen is flat so that will make the job easier. The process sounds easy but will require quite a bit of work.

I played around with the engines today and am really happy with the results...they're round again! :yahoo: Plus I cut the resin blocks off the wings and found out I need to cut sections out of the fuselage for them to fit!! :doh:

An update and photos will be posted a bit later.

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This looks very interesting. I never knew the Germans contemplated turbo props.

BTW utterly bonkers ;)

Trevor

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Another great project which I will follow with interest.

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Ok time for an update…hmmm I do seem to be rushing with this build!!

Well the good news is the engine are very much save-able and now actually round!

The spacers I added have done the trick and allowed me to move on.

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The prop cones needed an extra spacer to make them sort of round, this gave me the chance them to work on them. For this I cut out some disks from plastic card which were to be the reference guide for the shaping.

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A micro Dremel to act as a sort of lathe. This setup worked perfectly and in a short while I had two very workable prop hubs.

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The main engine pod also had a plastic disk added, though this was slightly smaller, the prob hubs will be temporary glued to the pods for final shaping.

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I am really happy with how this turned out as it is or will be the hardest part of the project. There is a lot more work required for the completed Turbo Props but good progress has been made.

As for the cockpit, as has been mentioned I will use most of the kits original cockpit assembly and custom make a new front section to fit the radome. I was thinking I’ll need to cut about 1cm from the Hasegawa nose but I think I will use it as a foundation for the new nose.

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Progress is almost too quick with this one, may have to slow down else I will finish it before Xmas!!!

​Oh and for some bizarre reason I have started another project as well!!!!

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That is a daring conversion, but I like it. The only thing that I find strange with the Unicraft conversion is why do you need two sets of heavy radar equipment?! one is for an AWACS and the other for a night fighter. I would leave on of them of, so you can use it in a other project.

I wish I have the unicraft conversion. The wings is what I already have. I am planning on a sweptwing 234 with the fighter nose on it from Antares. With maybee a nose job as well.

Cheers,

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Nice work Rich

I haven't got my refs straight to hand but wasn't this version a two seater? I'm not totally sure, but some of these were designed to have pilot and radar operator. Arnie's right as well, you wouldn't see the long range radar and the AI on same machine - too much electronics to fit... of course as a whiffer you can do as you wish.. :)

Interested to see how she turns out... looks pretty mean with the turbo props.

Matt

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Nice work Rich

I haven't got my refs straight to hand but wasn't this version a two seater? I'm not totally sure, but some of these were designed to have pilot and radar operator. Arnie's right as well, you wouldn't see the long range radar and the AI on same machine - too much electronics to fit... of course as a whiffer you can do as you wish.. :)

Interested to see how she turns out... looks pretty mean with the turbo props.

Matt

The two radar "dishes" was just some thoughts, I wanted to see how the designs looked. If the P nose didn't work out my fallback plan was a turbo-prop AWACS aircraft.......but the new nose is coming along nicely!!

As far as I can find out amongst all my references is that the planned "P" series was based on the nose of the early "C" series. The design for the "C5" was the first to have a side-by-side arrangement as the cockpit area was quite a bit more rounded to fit the extra crew-man, this still would have been a bit squishy!

This looks very interesting. I never knew the Germans contemplated turbo props.

BTW utterly bonkers ;)

Trevor

They were pretty advanced with their designs, and at least two of the engine companies had working units on test rigs, I haven't found any info yet that they had a flying example. But at that stage there were too many projects and too little time or resources.

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Despite the best efforts of a cold progress has been made on this project. As the engines will be a doable project I started looking at the nose. There are two options, either try to use the Unicraft one and modify the kit cockpit and canopy to fit, or only use the Unicraft radome and custom make a new front section. The former is a bit fraught with damage is I’d have to cut up a good canopy and nose section to try and get the right profile. Plus the Hasegawa nose section is of the correct proportions where as the Hobby Craft (for which the Unicraft set is made for) nose is too narrow.

So the decision is pretty well made for me, a new custom nose, so out with the razor saw and plastic card and off we go!

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First off the kit nose section needed to cut off to match the diameter of the new radome. Using the Unicraft drawings and nose about 8mm was removed along with the lower site housing. The radome on the Unicraft nose was also cut off, there was a nice panel line to help with this.

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Next a whole lot of plastic disks were cut out to the same diameter as the radome, this was to help align everything and keep it nice and round. Plus card profiles were made of the cockpit and new windscreen section.

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I am now getting closer to the shape and profiles I am after, though the windscreen needs to be sloped more. Plus the radome appears to be just a bit too long and needs to be more rounded when compared to the P-5 drawings.

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But it is now all doable which is a big relief, so the project will continue full steam head…until I get distracted. Oh and for those interested the new nose will be made up using 5thou card, layered, this will give the new nose strength and make the profiling easier.

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Nice work. It is already looking great!!! O, you know that the What if GB is starting in about a month?!

Cheers,

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yeah but the amount of work I wasn't quite sure if I could finish it in time.

Am having a bit of a push now as I have two weeks off, but work will drop off once I have found solutions to engines/engine mounting /cockpit, then I can spend some time on the detailing.

I am surprised a bit by the progress I've made so far, but there is quite a bit to go, Tropic Moon" B-51 will be a big enough project for WhatIf. Plus I just received the other day a resin 1/48th Jaguar Nakajima J1N1 Gekko, it's sooo lovely that I may have to move that one to the top of the build pile.

Just watch out for the nose conversions for these, for some reason even the Antares one is based on the Hobby Craft model, so you'll end up with the same issues I have.

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Well back to this, been a bit distracted with other projects but this is actually quite good as it gives me a chance to see where I’m going with this.

As mentioned drawings for this planned aircraft are quite vague on nose shape and profile, plus in length as well. So I may wander off a little bit into how I think it should have looked.

Ok, the radome seems to have a bit of a hump on the top section but not all the way around??? The easiest way to do this is to add a thin strip of card around the radome around the joint. Then use some filler and shape….then after figuring it doesn’t look right after a couple of days, grind off the side and lower sections. Am happier with this look!

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After some thought on how I was going to attack the new nose section I started with the new cockpit screen and surrounding panel. This is dead flat which makes making it a bit easier (along with the screen a bit later. Sorry forgot to take photos of the next bit. A rough outline of the new windscreen panel was sketched out with its width to match the nose. From this the shape was transferred to card and templates were made which included the screen cut out. One of these templates had the windscreen opening enlarged so as the give the appearance of a frame around the windows, this is one this that is made clear on all the drawings. Next a frame was made for where the new cockpit section will meet the canopy. Both these pieces were made slightly larger to help with the profiling later.

Now the radome was glued to the nose section and card added to where the new instrument panel and cowling will go along with some bracing which will be hidden. The shape is now looking how it should be (well in my opinion) so now how to fill in the gaps??

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I wasn’t too sure how I was going to do this as I still needed to have to interior section nice and clean and shaping the inside would be a real pain and there was now way I was going to cut it apart again. So I tried something a bit different and laminated to lower walls with 10 thou card cut into strips. It took some time but I was happy with the results. The upper section was just small bits of plastic scrap.

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The results after some initial shaping were better then I hoped for!!! It just looks right so that was a great relief.

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On with the first of not doubt many coats of filler, when dried the shaping begins.

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The engines now have a new exhaust section and are now the correct length when compared to the supplied Unicraft drawings. The ends will be cut out and some engine detail will be added. The front covers on the top of the engine were added, filled and smoothed out. There is not a lot left to do the engine bodies other then completely sanding smooth and adding some panel lines. The prop cones were drilled for the props, a few of the original holes didn’t line up, so were filled. There should only be another two full days left on the engines before they are done with luck, though I will have to make the blades from scratch as the Unicraft ones are no good.

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So one of the hardest bits of the conversion is pretty well all sorted out. The only really bit of major scratch building will be the engine mounts for the wings, not sure how I will attack that one but have a few ideas. Once the cockpit is finish I can start painting and detail of the cockpits/wheel wells, then I can close her up and look at the wings!!

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That is looking great!!!! Now I want to build one as well!!!!! I wanted to build a P version for some time myself. Thanxs for all the tips.

:mike:

Just a silly question? Are you going to make a resin cast out of it?! I might be interested. Saves me a lot of time. Lol.

Cheers,

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I've actually never tried to cast anything!! No matter what Arnold you HAVE to build one, they just look so awesome!

Just a quick rubdown and a coat of Mr Surfacer to see how she looks.....plus some tape.......

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Oooo it does look so good!!!

A section of the fuselage needs to be cutout for the wings to fit, plus I think the engines need to be quite forward like this for the correct CoG.

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That looks very nice. I think you are right about the CoG. They must be in about the same place as the Original engines.

A pitty you can't cast. It would have made my modelling a lot easier. Lol

Cheers,

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Modelling isn't meant to be easy Arnold for us crazy people!

Again have been a bit distracted by other things but have made steady progress on the beast!

The nose work is pretty much all done, new gun ports have been added, these needed to be move back a wee bit. May add new bulges to the gun bay doors to account for this…will see. Just need to final spot filling and sanding down with fine grade paper…it’s amazing how all the blemishes show up in closeup photos! The internals will start once all the exterior work is completed, not sure how the instrument panel and cowling will look yet.

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The engine mounts are pretty well done now. Have tried to do them in such away that the joint to the wing will need next to no filling. The engines had to be moved further out on the wing else the prop blades would have fouled! They will be close but in a workable position, I may move them a fraction further out, but won’t worry about that until the wings are fitted.

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Sorry about the crap photo but you get the idea.

The prop cowling/intake has had an internal duct fitted and filled, so hopefully it’ll be nice and smooth when finished.

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A little bit of work has started on the RO’s position with detailing of the side walls, but I won’t do too much of the “normal” kit build until I have finished the nose and engines.

I just could help myself, here she is along side her sister…..

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Modelling isn't meant to be easy Arnold for us crazy people!

Not?!?! Hehehehehehe I can always try.

I have seen the progress and I like it!!!!!

Although I think you need to sand the top of the nose a bit. It looks like it has a zit on top.

Cheers,

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That is looking the biz!

Trevor

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