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JHF

Exhaust stains on aircraft

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Hi,

I'm fairly new to modelling aircraft. I'm getting on quite good with my Mosquito in 1/48 scale and as I approach finishing the build phase of the project I'm thinking ahead to how to weather the aircraft. As the Mosquito was built chiefly out of wood would it mean that it had smoother, cleaner surfaces than aircraft made of metal with all their panelling? Let me explain what I mean: I've read articles where modellers choose to pre-shade panel lines before putting on the finished coat. Would you do this with the wings and fuselage of the Mosquito?

My second question is how to put on exhaust stains on the wings that came from the engines?

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2 hours ago, JHF said:

Hi,

I'm fairly new to modelling aircraft. I'm getting on quite good with my Mosquito in 1/48 scale and as I approach finishing the build phase of the project I'm thinking ahead to how to weather the aircraft. As the Mosquito was built chiefly out of wood would it mean that it had smoother, cleaner surfaces than aircraft made of metal with all their panelling? Let me explain what I mean: I've read articles where modellers choose to pre-shade panel lines before putting on the finished coat. Would you do this with the wings and fuselage of the Mosquito?

 

In short no.

it also depends on where and when,  some combat aircraft had very short lives, and never got very weathered.

Learn to look at photos of the real thing.

14674321498_40a3579bf0_o.jpgMoquito IIF,  1943. by Etienne du Plessis, on Flickr

 

some staining, burnt of paint on exhaust shroud,. touch up paint on nose,  but overall a very smooth airframe apart from the engine nacelles.

 

One excelent resource is Etienne Du PLessis Flickr stream of WW2 colour

here's the all the rest of Mosquitos

https://www.flickr.com/search/?w=8270787%40N07&q=mosquito

 

Pay attention to the captions, as the really gungy looking one is a test aircraft

 

 

Quote

My second question is how to put on exhaust stains on the wings that came from the engines?

 

Again use the real thing

hard used Bannf strike wing, note faded paint work, on tail wioth touch ups in fresh paint,

this has unshrouded exhausts

  paint did fade, 

5521706915_ecc347739f_o.jpgLoading rockets   1945. by Etienne du Plessis, on Flickr

 

But, the exhaust deposits are cleaned off regularly on a proper airfield,  some residual stain and burnt paint on the exhaust shroud

3545139357_caa41211a0_o.jpgMosquito line-up by Etienne du Plessis, on Flickr

 

lots more photos in the link, well worth spending some time looking through these.

 

You don't say what scheme you are doing,  as you can usually find pictures of kit schemes, as they tend to be reasonably famous aircraft.

 

There is loads of info on way to do exhaust stain, I suggest trying some ideas on a scrap kit to see what works.

here's a recent discussion on this

Or have a look in the ready for inspection, or work in progress sections,  you can ask how such an effect was achieved if you wish to know more.

 

HTH

 

PS found this

34718126611_ed59602c52_s.jpg

 

you have posted very small images

34718126471_f1da3b785a_s.jpg

 

you have uploaded larger images, (I took the 's' out of the filename) 

34718126471_f1da3b785a.jpg

Looks to be post war in overall aluminium dope? 

OK, Frightdog decals, VP202 of 14 Sq

pic in link

http://www.14sqn-association.org.uk/Blue_Diamonds/Albums/Pages/Mosquito.html#10

http://www.14sqn-association.org.uk/Blue_Diamonds/Albums/Pages/Mosquito.html#12

 

These would have been kept clean and tidy, as the photos show.

one problem, your model is a B.IV, VP202 is a B.35

 

From the photos of the real thing, I'd say you model does not need any more weathering.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I agree with Troy. Weathering models is a very personal thing and really it depends whether you're trying to show off your painting skills or try to shrink down a real subject to miniature at some point in time.

 

I personally am not a fan of pre-shading and generally the results even when well executed are not to my tastes - I find it looks very artificial. I much prefer the results of spraying close in at low pressure in small loopy movements building up colour unevenly across a surface. Nothing too conspicuous. I don't believe it should be immediately obvious which technique has been used on the model.

 

For weathering I tend to avoid panel line washing the whole model - real aeroplanes seldom look like that - but will sometimes use it on specific areas such as engine cowlings and nacelles.

 

I'd suggest using ground up chalk pastels for your exhaust stains. A simple set of white, black and brown can be used for most things a modeller might use but others can be handy. I scrape some powder from the pastel with the edge of a knife and brush it on with an old paint brush - it works best on a matt or slightly satin surface - but gloss not so much. It's easy to work with and both progressive and forgiving. If you screw it right up you can clean it off and start again. After a while in place it's more or less permanent so I don't even bother sealing it in once applied nowadays and just avoid handling it by the exhaust stained parts!

 

20161217_111158_zpsspepx6eo.jpg

 

20160418_182250_zpsaxm8dopz.jpg

 

20170618_194031_zpsghqwuh1e.jpg

Edited by Jamie @ Sovereign Hobbies
Edited to make comment on the use of matt finishes for applying chalk pastels

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For a small aircraft such as the 1/72 Mosquito, I would use the traditional approach of dry-brushing.  If you are not familiar with this it means wiping the paint brush to remove the paint, then dabbing the tiny part that remains to the model leaving a faint smear.  You can also use an old brush cut down to a stub, or these little gadgets that appear to be a toothpick with a bit of fuzz on the end.  The effect is built up by repetition and sweeping aft, much as the original stain was created, and following the airflow - which is fairly straightforward on a Mosquito but can create dramatic curves on a single-engined fighter.  Slowly and steadily does it.  Don't forget that the tips of the tailplanes are also in this exhaust flow and will appear smeared.

 

This would be rather tedious and time-consuming for notoriously dirty aircraft such as the Lancaster and the Ju88, so I fear that I'd go to airbrushing to get the effect there, but haven't enough experience to provide hints.

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A lot of great advice here on techniques and execution to get the look. 

One piece of advice I found worth taking; "When you think it needs a bit more, stop." 

Grant

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Thank you very much to everyone who's kindly and thoughtfully replied to my query. I've only had time to quickly go through them and will return when I have time to spare. I can gauge immediately that there are brilliant hints and tips there, so I can't wait to return to read them properly. I will return soon to the work in progress section where I will try out some of the exhaust staining technique on a model.

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Dear Troy Smith

Thank you for inspecting my photos and your useful advice. You are right, post war Mosquito VP202 was a B35 and I knew I had a Mk IV model. I think one of the differences between the Mk IV and the B35 is that the latter had an enlarged bomb bay door to house a larger bomb. Unfortunately I couldn't get hold of a model of such a door. I'm unclear as to what other differences were between the two types. Was the cockpit canopy different? and aerials different as well?

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Hello JHF,

 

I use oil based crayons for exhaust stains (and dirt in general). Because they are oil based you can apply an enamel gloss/satin/matt coat with a brush without problems.

 

Here's what you need:

 

tools_zpsxqubd1i3.jpg

Crayons, cotton swabs and a piece of wet and dry paper.

tools1_zpsrobauqto.jpg

Use the wet and dry to make powder...

tools2_zpssoyigr7e.jpg

and finally apply with a cotton swab. Using this technique you can create all kind of effects on your model; like this

Lansen_zpst2vwidzu.jpg

or this...

PS852_3_zpsrvw5vuwy.jpg

Using a small brush dipped in paint thinner you "wash" away some of the stains if you want to.

 

Hope this helps you:)

 

Best Regards,

Antti

 

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12 hours ago, JHF said:

 I think one of the differences between the Mk IV and the B35 is that the latter had an enlarged bomb bay door to house a larger bomb. Unfortunately I couldn't get hold of a model of such a door. I'm unclear as to what other differences were between the two types. Was the cockpit canopy different? and aerials different as well?

 

Umm, do you mean apart from the longer engines with wider propellers and bigger intakes?  It wasn't just an enlarged bomb-bay door but a bulged area around the bomb bay.  I believe it also had larger elevators, but I'd also check the wheels and tyres: look for brakes on both sides of the wheel  (or not) and treaded tyres.  The canopy differed in detail, possibly a blister on the top and possibly on the sides as well.  Aerials are certain to differ in some form, but I can't help there.

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59 minutes ago, Graham Boak said:

 

Umm, do you mean apart from the longer engines with wider propellers and bigger intakes?  It wasn't just an enlarged bomb-bay door but a bulged area around the bomb bay.  I believe it also had larger elevators, but I'd also check the wheels and tyres: look for brakes on both sides of the wheel  (or not) and treaded tyres.  The canopy differed in detail, possibly a blister on the top and possibly on the sides as well.  Aerials are certain to differ in some form, but I can't help there.

 

Larger elevators were not universally used and most bombers don't have them. The two-stage Merlins definitely were and all B.35s had paddle blade propellers. All B.35s had bulged bombays too. All had the double brakes (drum each side rather than exposed spokes on one side). All pressurised Mossies (B.XVI, PR.34a and B.35 off the top of my head, but probably a few more) had blown side blisters on the canopy in lieu of the unpressurised PR and bombers' teardrop blisters. B.XVIs didn't have the "astrodome" blister on the jettisonable pane on top of the canopy but PR.34s did. Many preserved B.35s have them but I'm not sure if it was standard production or post-war preference that saw them there. :)

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My understanding  (recently obtained and therefore possibly a little fragile!) is that the larger elevators were found desirable when the 4000lb bomb was carried, and became standard on all late bombers - including the B Mk.35 but possibly not all Mk.XVIs.

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8 hours ago, Graham Boak said:

My understanding  (recently obtained and therefore possibly a little fragile!) is that the larger elevators were found desirable when the 4000lb bomb was carried, and became standard on all late bombers - including the B Mk.35 but possibly not all Mk.XVIs.

 

That's possible Graham, but if true across the board then the surviving B.35s including those later converted to TT.35s must have been retrofitted prior to the late 1960s with the original type without the oversize balance horn. None of the famous preserved B/TT.35 airframes I know of have them - e.g. RS712 (ex-Strathallan / Kermit Weeks), TA719 (IWM Duxford), TA639 (Cosford), VR796 (CF-HML - the airworthy one in Humbrol colours owned by Bob Jens), RS709, TA634 etc 

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On 19/06/2017 at 11:36 PM, JHF said:

Hi,

I'm fairly new to modelling aircraft. I'm getting on quite good with my Mosquito in 1/48 scale and as I approach finishing the build phase of the project I'm thinking ahead to how to weather the aircraft. As the Mosquito was built chiefly out of wood would it mean that it had smoother, cleaner surfaces than aircraft made of metal with all their panelling? Let me explain what I mean: I've read articles where modellers choose to pre-shade panel lines before putting on the finished coat. Would you do this with the wings and fuselage of the Mosquito?

My second question is how to put on exhaust stains on the wings that came from the engines?

 

Hi, in terms of exhaust effects I guess it depends on the effect you're after. I've practised using an airbrush with a guiding template and very thin washes. My first attempt was on a couple of Spitfire builds for both the exhaust and the gun ports. More recently I did this on the underside of my F2 Prototype using rust and black thinned washes.

 

 

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Re large elevators: the "clever" answer is that when they stopped carrying the 4000lb bomb i.e. in peacetime with lower maximum permitted take-off weights, they wouldn't need the large elevators.  Perfectly logical, but I don't see them being removing once fitted.  They might disappear with time, there being a lot more of the standard elevators in the stores.  Even so, I don't think I've quite convinced myself...  This does however return to the question of why large elevators and on which aircraft?

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On a practical note, if you do intend to use an airbrush, plan ahead.  The Mosquito is certainly one where getting suitable access to apply exhaust stains on the inboard side of the nacelles can be quite tricky to get the correct angle of flow.

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