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Viking

Lockheed Super Constellation - Trans Canada Airlines. 1:144. (Small update)

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Lockheed Super Constellation Trans Canada Airlines.

1:144 Minicraft

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Surely the most graceful of airliners, the Lockheed Constellation is in my top 3 all time favourites.It wore many and varied schemes over its long service, but the TCA one is just about the most attractive. I have a family connection also, as my father flew these in his first airline job after leaving the RCAF.

The kit is from Minicraft, and is a trouble free, if a little fiddly, build. The decals are from CanMilAir printed in 2 little sets. I was slightly wary of the 3 part cheatline, but it all worked beautifully and I was suitably impressed. The only thing I altered was the silver cabin (passenger) windows, which I overlayed with some clear decal sheet sprayed with Tamiya 'Smoke' to darken them a little.

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And a slightly unusual 'with something else' - An actual TCA Miniature of Canadian Club whiskey liberated from the galley of a TCA Connie all those years ago, still with us and holding its contents! Family heirloom I call it :winkgrin:

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Thanks for looking,

John

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That's not a model but a work of art. Excellent!

Mike

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Dear Lord - that is magnificent. All those black leading edges are a challenge in themselves ( especially the tail section - talk about fiddly ), and the weathering on the wings is superb. Beautifully done.

Am interested in the technique of darkening the passenger windows. Definitely sounds above my skill level currently, but, how do you make a template of the windows on a clear decal sheet - never mind the skill of cutting out, smoothly, the small window apertures?

(Who's in charge of dusting the bar? )

Cheers,

Mike

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That really is impressive John, even by your usual standards of excellence. :goodjob:

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Thanks chaps and chapesses for the kind comments.

Dear Lord - that is magnificent. All those black leading edges are a challenge in themselves ( especially the tail section - talk about fiddly ), and the weathering on the wings is superb. Beautifully done.

Am interested in the technique of darkening the passenger windows. Definitely sounds above my skill level currently, but, how do you make a template of the windows on a clear decal sheet - never mind the skill of cutting out, smoothly, the small window apertures?

(Who's in charge of dusting the bar? )

Cheers,

Mike

Mike, I found some more photos of work in progress. I've been working on this off and on for about 18 months. I went away for several weeks, and when I came back, left it at the back of the workbench and didn't pick it up again until recently. As you spotted, doing all those de-icing boots by masking & spraying was terminally boring, especially the tail. One thing I can add is how I masked off the white. I was worried that the laser decals would show the white/silver demarcation, as laser decs tend to be thin and a bit transparent. So I photocopied all 3 cheatline sections, stuck them on card as full cheatlines, and cut the card to make a template. I then laid the template over masking tape and made a mask to put on the white, Alclad was the sprayed, giving me this. (I need not have worried the decals seemed to have white backing to prevent and see through. Nice one CanMilAir!)

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As for the windows, it is a matter of personal preference, but this was the initial 'look' with the decals;

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I prefer them darker. For comparison I have started at the back and am working my way forwards with the 'smoke' sprayed overlays on the rear 6;

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They were quite easy to do. I cut a strip of the smoke sprayed decal sheet, to the height of the oblong windows. Then cut them off into the required width by making a little bit of tape to the correct size of 1 of the windows. Stuck the tape window to my cutting mat, and sliced lots of windows off the strip by placing it under the tape and cutting to the same size. Simple, lots of little oblong 'smoke' windows. Then I nipped a tiny, tiny bit of the corners of each with a new blade to give a slight 'round to each corner. Wet them and apply!

Out of interest while looking for the above WIP photos, I found some of my 1:72 Heller Constealtion with Whiskey Jack decals from about 12 years ago. These pictures were taken at the time, somewhere I still have Dads uniform badge from his TCA days, Can't find it now, but it is around somewhere!

This is the 1:72 version. It's a big old model;

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I remember those props, they are the correct TCA square tipped ones from aeroclub. They are white metal and I spent ages polishing them up. Proper natural metal props!

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As for the dusty whiskey bottle, I thought the dust adds a certain ambiance! Its been about 55 years since it was removed from inside the real TCA Connie, and has lived in various cupboards and latterly on top of a wardrobe for the last 15 of those.

Thanks again for the interest,

John

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No doubt about it, the Constellation is the most beautiful airliner ever!!! (IMHO - just love everything about it)

That's a sweet colour scheme and one I've got to do some time soon.

I like the subtle weathering and the darkened windows are so much better - silver windows? Really?!

Jeff

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Very nicely done! Beautiful Connie.

Jim

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I agree with you about the windows, that 'smoke overlay decal' really makes all the difference. I often wonder where some decal producers get their inspiration for their window effects?

Nice level of weathering and I love the aerials too, really brings it to life. What gauge wire did you use?

Thanks for showing us!

Ian

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Hi John,

A truly marvellous model in the best scale! The Connie is a beautiful aircraft and your model more than does it justice!

Superb, cheers,

Viv

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Nice one John.

I'm very lucky in that I get to see these lovely models in the flesh. Each and every one is a little gem, but the Connie is a cut above

Thanks for posting.

Chris

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That's another absolute stunner John, beautiful model!

I wish I'd thought about that smoke window decal technique when I built my Aer Lingus one a few years back (26 used light grey, iirc, for the windows) as it sounds much easier & undoubtebly neater than my 'handpaint them all black with a very fine brush & shaky hand' method!

Keith

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Gorgeous Connie!

I have just about completed another Minicraft propliner......a DC-4 also in a Canadian airline long in the past. Hopefully pics up here on RFI Sunday evening.

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Very nice build of a classic plane - the queen of the skies.

Cheers,

Michael

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Superb Constellation, looks bigger that 144th, great job

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Thanks so much for that "darkening of windows" explanation. This is the build I have been unhappy with for years. Yes, the windows do have subtle grey shadings etc, but every time I look at it, I see something unfinished. When I started reading this post and your work on the windows, it was an "AHA" moment. I need this.

OK, it is going to take some work, but at least I do now know what the answer is. Huge thanks John.

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