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Okey-dokey...Here's a doozy...Merlin Models Tommy, 1/72nd scale, with all the warts these kits had...chunky plastic, poorly molded white metal...an old bag of stuff to boot.  The decals are yellowed and, yes, the kit I bought on Ebay seems to be missing some parts--rudder and tail feathers.  I'll be scratching those out of plastic card.  I will also be digging through the spares box for better wheels, guns, motor, decals, anything...It's going to be some work, so I might as well share the pain and joy with you all!  I would like to make it as one of the movie planes from 'Dawn Patrol', but I do not have the 'wasp' insignia...I might do it up as Cole Palen's aircraft...maybe.  If anyone has an ALPS printer out there and is willing to print me a couple of insects in 1/72nd, I would be eternally grateful.

 

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--John

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I am not sure that not having the fin and tailplanes will prove to be that much of a loss, given the moulding standards of a lot of Merlin kits. TBH that looks like one of their better efforts. Best of luck with it,  cannot remember who said that there is no such thing as an unbuildable kit, but I think Merlin can push the envelope! 

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I Agree...it'll take some work and some TLC but I am confident that it'll come together.  Have good spare parts, sharp tools, the Datafile...It'll be a sweet little craft, on par with the Bristol Scout, I think.

 

I may end up making it a "what if' craft with some French roundels...

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Excellent!

I built one a few years back and haven't seen another one done, so I'll definitely be watching this one!

 

Ian

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50 minutes ago, limeypilot said:

Excellent!

I built one a few years back and haven't seen another one done, so I'll definitely be watching this one!

 

Ian

And look what it did to Ian! :frantic:

 

Martian

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I hope it's ok to take a seat? 

My secret fondness for WWI subjects is becoming ever more evident here on BM.

 

I also have a few Merlin kits in the stash, so I'm fascinated to see how others tackle them. It does seem to be 'tackle' in the rugby sense, you have my every respect :worthy: .  

 

Metlin model sets often seem to be more of a 'suggestion' on how to make the subject on the box, than an actual kit to build. A set of hints. I have an interwar Merlin Potez 25. Replete with three banana shaped blobs for the top wing. I could give he master modeller a few hints :winkgrin:.

 

Looking forward to this, good luck, a great looking little aircraft :)

Best regards 

TonyT

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I haven't done a lot of scratch building, but I think I can handle this.  I concur, TonyT...It seems to be more of a guide than an actual kit.  I also have a Merlin Pfalz Dr.1 that seems to be of a better quality moulding, etc, than the Tommy.  I guess the idea was that, at the time, Merlin was offering aircraft that were not being made by the mainstream companies, not unlike Pegasus.  With the rise of the Ukrainian and Russian companies, with better injections, the Merlin products became obsolete.  

 

I may put off the building until next week.  We are expecting 40C+ all weekend (it is already 30C this morning at 07:30) and I have a Dremel in the mail that will be here Monday, I hope.  The Dremel will be a good tool for this model.

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Great to see one of the lesser known WW1 types as a subject, even if the starting point may leave a little to be desired. Will be following with interest.

 

P

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If you haven't started yet you might want to search around for the T. C. Berg resin version. It looks really nice with white metal and some PE. Mine says "Thomas Morse S-4C Fabric Time Specials No. 04 T. C. Berg Ltd Japan" 

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Thanks HSR...That's  apace-form kit that is probably more work than the Merlin. I have also committed myself emotionally to this one.  

 

Regarding Phoenix' comment...something to be desired is still something desirable--I hope.  It'll come together, I am sure.

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Ok...siga-siga as we say here in Greece...slowly, slowly.  Sp far I have cleaned up the wings the best that I can; I have scoured my parts box for an new motor, new prop, wheels, axle, seat, control panel...struts too.  I have found them all.  I have marked and drilled holes for the struts in the wings and also made a brass rod post to seat the lower wings properly on the fuselage and be able to create the correct dihedral.  

 

The empennage were fun.  Notice in the first image, the difference between the Merlin diagram and the Datafile drawings...I actually made a set based on the Merlin design before I decided to check my copy of the Datafile.  Good thing I did!  Oh well...now I have a set of rear stabilizers that might go with something.  They actually look vaguely Albatros-ish.  I made the tail feathers from plastic card and the ribs from Evergreen stock, glued in place and then sanded down.  Sorry for the glare of the flash.  You all get the idea I hope.

 

Basically I am ready to begin some assembly, I think.  I will keep the cockpit simple...seat and control panel.  Not much room to see much else anyway.  Once that is done I will bring the fuselage halves together.  

 

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Note the obvious differences...

 

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I promise...from this miss-mash, this conflagration of parts, a recognizable machine will emerge!

 

--JDCM

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Those tail surfaces look fine - standard method for making them usually works well when they are painted. The most important thing is not to make the ribs too prominent - on the real thing they only just stood out.

 

P

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  • 3 weeks later...

Ok...I am not very good at this WiP stuff and to add the Merlin kit along with it, well...for about a week or so my heart has not been in it, I must say.  To refer to this kit as a sow's ear' would be to denigrate the very soul of our beloved pigs.  If I can turn it into any kind of course, well...This kit is a wad of...$^#**&$$!  I have also been distracted by binge-watching episodes of "Secret Army"...

 

Yet hunker down I did the other night... wings on, struts, landing gear...it does begin to resemble the Scout, and certainly looks like an aircraft.  I really must take my hat off to all you fellows who scratch and modify endlessly--and with great precision.  It is just not for me.  I am looking forward to finishing this, posting the pictures and moving on to a well-moulded, well designed kit that I will love to build...trust me, an old A-Model kit with tons of flash and greasy plastic is better than this thing.  And to think I have the Merlin Pfalz Dr.1 still in the stash!  Oy vey!

 

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Wing struts are from a Camel/Albatros spares pile.  Landing gear and cabanes are scratched. Axle is from a Camel, I think.  

 

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That's it so far.  I have a lot of little touch-up bits before I am done...I think I am going to mark it up as a fictional USAAC bird.  I have the stars and meatballs and I can put together some registration numbers.  I am leaving the rudder red and the cowling will be bright yellow.  That should distract the eye from my own failings and the clunkiness of the supplied plastic clumps.

--John

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Never mind the problems - you will at least have a model of an under-represented type in your collection. Making and modifying parts can get tedious sometimes as I know only too well, but then there is the satisfaction of knowing that it is your own work at the end of it all. Your additions/mods look very good indeed - something to be proud of in my estimation.

 

P

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Thanks Pheonix.  Yes...a fine addition.  It is always a relief when a pile of plastic bits begins to come together.   I just added the motor and the cowling and it looks alright.  It'll need a bit of putty.  I have cleared the rigging holes of any paint.  I'll mark it up, weather it, rig it and finish it up by Saturday.  Fingers crossed!

 

I am already eyeing the pile for "what's next?"...any suggestions from the crowd?  

 

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Well done so far. This appears to be a "grit your teeth and get on with it" kind of model. Been there, done that.

 

Just think of the silly grin you'll have on completing it ;)

 

Trevor

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She's coming on nicely! Merlin kits are certainly a big challenge, some are no more than a lump of plastic to be reshaped as required, but you end up with something very unique at the end of it all!
 

Ian

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...and I am looking forward to the end of it all!  

 

I am still taking requests for the next build!  I have a great many kits to choose from...can one ever have too many?

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Some rigging...plastic thread coloured with black marker, CA, forceps, etc...The jig has helped to no end.  I like the yellow nose, too.  

 

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These are all double flying wires, btw...that's 16 pieces.  At this point I have also added the rigging for the cabanes using stretched sprue. The rear rigging for the tailfeathers will also be stretched sprue.  For tonight I am letting this batch cure and dry before I tackle the rest, which will be lots of little fiddly bits of plastic.  Like the Jenny (Morse worked for Curtiss) it has that older style of splayed rigging along the stabs and rudder.  Fiddly bits, but it makes it look so much better.

--John

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