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DeHavilland DH106 Comet - 1/72 - Finally done!


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It’s done. It took 18 months, the sniffing of copious amounts of CA glue, bankrupting myself on the bills for filler and Tamiya primer and the printing and reprinting of many, many decal sheets, but I finally have a completed 1/72 model of my favourite airplane of all time, the DeHavilland DH-106 Comet I. It is certainly not the most perfect model I have built, but I’m extremely pleased with the result, especially when I think back of all the challenges I’ve had to deal with in building it.

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I won’t repeat everything I wrote in my WiP progress thread (here), but this was one of those Murphy’s Law builds. For starters, the kit itself, made by the now defunct Fliegerhorst of Germany, is crap. I paid (or rather my parents did, as it was a birthday gift) over 100 euros for it, and there can’t be a model kit that is worse value for money than this one. The resin parts were warped, badly moulded, full of pin holes, detail was non-existent and the panel lines of inconsistent depth and crispness and completely missing in some areas.

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This is the first kit where I’ve actually broken parts on purpose to make them fit. After gluing the parts together, the misalignment between them required the use of insane amounts of CA glue and subsequently the use of a file with a coarseness only associated with crude woodworking to deal with the seams.

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But I persevered! So after covering most of the room in resin dust (I did use a mask and I wet-sanded almost everything) out came an object that did look suspiciously like a Comet. Of course, application of primer highlighted many, many imperfections and it also showed the panel lines either had not survived the onslaught, of were of such ragged and indistinct quality that they needed rescribing. I am terrible at rescribing, but I like to think that doing it on this kit (in most cases, four of five times for every panel line) has improved my skill somewhat. I think this stage took the longest to get to a level where I was satisfied.

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Painting went quite well – at least initially. I used Humbrol Polished Aluminium from a rattle can and it went on very well. I moved on with the white section for the roof, which also went on very well. However, after removing the masking tape I found out that Humbrol’s paint didn’t like masking tape, and I had to redo the silver, then cover it with a layer of future before I could move on.

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In the meantime, I had discarded the lousy decals that Fliegerhorst had included because they were the wrong color. My dad used them as a base to make new ones on the computer, and I applied these to the kit. Stupidly, I didn’t properly check the alignment of the fuselage bands and after thinking about it for a day, I decided to remove them. I hadn’t come this far to screw it up like this!

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Removal of the decals necessitated reapplying most of the paint. Naturally! In the end, a lot of trial and error to get the decals just right was required and my dad has printed probably close to 20 A4 sheets to get to where we wanted to be, with variations in color, windows painted black or grey, smaller and bigger sizes… I probably have enough left for 10 more Comets, but they’ll all be slightly different!

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Home stretch then…. I had replaced the front wheel bay and landing gear with some nice resin and metal parts intended for a Nimrod, which gave some much needed detail in these crucial areas. I also tried ordering resin wheels intended for the Nimrod but this didn’t work out so I polished up the kit wheels as best I could. I added some pitot tubes, a light wash to the moving surfaces, a few coats of future and satin finish and that was it.

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It all sounds a bit negative when I reread this, but it wasn’t like that. I did have a lot of fun building this kit and seeing it progress over time, and it’s most definitely my favourite model. Now if only I had a safe place to put it…

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A fitting tribute to Yoke Peter.

It sounds like a mammoth struggle, but the end result speaks for itself - magnificent. ( Just don't leave it out on the patio )

Cheers,

Mike

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hello,Sroubos - Well done on a great effort and result with your Comet build.I'm sure the challenges you overcame will make this beautiful model even more admired.All the best,Paul.

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That is a beautiful model of a beautiful aircraft. Very well done indeed.

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Glad you preserved and moved on with the build.

Its just marvelous.Beautiful finish and a wonderful tribute to this classic airliner.

You can be proud of it. :wow::mike:

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Stunning work and worth the effort, fantastic build and great perseverance, well done she is beautiful.

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  • 6 months later...

Great looking model, congratulations! Worth the hard work.

I had a go myself at building the Hannants Comet 4B kit over the spring, summer and autumn 2015, and I am NOT at all happy with the results. Below, you'll find a link to a blog I threw together halfway through the process, in order to document my frustration.

I have deliberately not adopted my own, home-made fixes to appallingly bad issues, like the decals for example. I have used the original ones from the kit (actually, two sets, coz the first one fairly disintegrated) so that you can see exactly how bad this is, for a kit costing, overall, 125 quid.

Now I am not an expert modeller by any means, and some of the issues are entirely my own doing and not Hannants'. I have tried to be honest with this in the blog.

I will this spring do a "partial rebuild" in which I will repair the pocked right front fuselage and reapply decals and possibly reapply some paint here and there - the masking occasionally leaked.

Here is the link to the blog (divided into part 1 and part 2) if you want a larf at my expense:

http://mycomet4disaster.blogspot.fr/2015/10/hi-there.html

Enjoy!

Mark

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