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Army_Air_Force

"Snoopy verses the Red Baron" 3D Picture - FINISHED & FRAMED

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Hot on the heels of her Spitfire PR.1G diorama, completed in January 2017, my daughter started her new project in early February. This was going to be her third build, but having done such a good job of her Spitfire and her first model, a Red Arrows Hawk, I had confidence she would manage. This project was going to be a wall hanging picture / diorama of "Snoopy verses the Red Baron" using a 1/72 Revell kit and a scratch built Snoopy and kennel. Framing the picture allows it to be hung on the wall where it won't be damaged and also it will keep the dust off the models.

 

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Edited by Army_Air_Force
Title Update

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Across the time on the project, we've listened to the Royal Guardsmen singing the Snoopy verses the Red Baron, and the Christmas version of the song, I don't know how many times! With that as inspiration, I got the paint and brushes out and set her off painting small and interior parts.

 

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The fuselage side walls, seat, floor, engine, tyres, guns and a spare pilot from the bits box all had a coat of paint. The precision of her painting has always impressed me, right from her first build. Of course her young eyes can see the small parts much better than mine! 

 

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After getting home from school, she had a quick a snack, got changed into the modelling clothes and managed 90 minutes of work before wifey came home and it was time to eat. In February, she was almost seven and a half years old, and at that age, her attention span was much better, allowing much longer build sessions than before.

So while there was no actualy construction during the initial session, a number of parts were painted giving them time to harden off before being handled next time.

 

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It was one of the most fun projects I've done, and I wasn't doing most of the work!

The after school life of a seven year old can be very busy. If you think working for a living leaves you with little time to model, try being seven!! Dancing class was on Monday, Tuesday was free, Wednesday was Brownies, Thursday was our modelling night, Friday was swimming and other stuff at weekends. Later, swimming swapped to Thursday and there was lots of homework coming home that day too, so modelling was swapped to Tuesday.

 

The last session was all painting. A week later, we got to do some gluing. We started out gluing the control column to the floor, and seat and fuselage former together, then setting those aside to dry while we cut out and sanded the fuselage halves.

 

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The cockpit floor was a fiddly little component, so we softened the locating brackets with some solvent glue which made the area sticky enough to position the floor without it flopping all over until we were sure on the position. I'm glad my daughter has tiny fingers, as I was struggling picking it up with my sausage fingers! The whole kit is in fact tiny.

 

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"It was a dark and stormy night"...

Sorry, wrong Snoopy story :D

Wonderful modelling as usual.

The Student has become the Master.

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While the floor had a little time to harden up, I set my daughter on to finishing painting the Red Baron, painting his boots first, followed by his face. Her eyes are probably good enough to manage without magnification, but I gave her a magnifying glass to aid careful painting of his face without getting flesh tones on the rest of his leather clothing. I love watching her concentration doing small jobs like this.

 

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His seat went in next, and after the seat joint and floor were reinforced with a couple of drops of cyano, the Baron took the controls for the first time.

 

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I seem to remember building a Tripehound way back in the days when it wasn't that far out of date... It's about half the size of a dragonfly.  Even my teenage eyes at the time had trouble resolving the parts!  Hats off to the wee lass, a fine job indeed.  

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With the Baron comfortably seated, we joined the fuselage halves, and set that aside to dry.

 

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Step 4 in the instructions was working on the centre wing and gun mount. The wing was cut free from the sprue along with the gun breech holding piece that was painted in the previous session. She was becoming more confident with the scalpel, although still needed additional pressure from a daddy hand to cut through some of the thicker sprue joints.

 

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I made a mini file card from some 1.5mm styrene and sandpaper that is a good size for little fingers so she could sand the sprue cuts from the wing tips. We had to do this properly. Part of the reason for teaching her modelmaking is also to teach her patience. The sanding was repeated for the breech part which she then glued to the wing.

 

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With that done, we began to get a feel for the size of the model. All of the construction pictures so far had only been a single two hour building session, probably our longest session to date, so decided we'd done enough for one day. It was a huge improvement in concentration since the 20 to 30 minutes on her Hawk when she was 4!. It doesn't seem much progress for a couple of hours work, but it takes so much longer describing how to do a job before actually doing it, but it's all part of the learning process.

 

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Happy with the progress for the day, the builder shows off her work.

 

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Looks great!  One has to remember that the full-scale Dr.1 was quiet small next to it's Albatros and Fokker sisters...about the same size of the SPAD VII.  Small, compact and very powerful.  I am looking forward to Snoopy's mount!

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This is coming along very nicely, certainly a lot better than any of my efforts at 7, or even 10!

 

Ian

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The parts were then left to fully cure, but not before one close up of the Baron in his cockpit! I think he needs a little silver on his goggles. Perhaps a job for a silver gel pen rather than a brush.

 

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We forgot to paint the control column, but once the centre wing is in place with the gun breaches, it can't be seen anyway. The final mounting of the model in the picture frame will also restrict the angles the model can be viewed from.

 

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It was late February 2017, during the half term holiday, when we next got some work done. The next steps were to sand the fuselage joints and the wing seat area in order to attach the centre wing.

 

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The wing was clamped in place, checked for squareness and a little liquid solvent run into the joints. It was left to dry while we pondered the next stage and what should be painted when to make life easier for ourselves.

 

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After a little while for the wing attachment to dry, all three wings and the fuselage around the wing attachment locations were painted. Once the wings were on this tiny model, it was going to limit access with a brush. There was likely to be some touching up afterwards, but felt this approach would be easier in the long run. 

 

The lower wing was cut free from the sprue, and held with a clamp on the small spar. The upper wing was painted on the sprue.

 

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The centre wing and fuselage were last and then it was all set aside until later in the day.

 

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The enamels took a while to harden up, but a break for a concentration recharge was no bad thing.

 

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The tiny machine guns were tricky to fit and align, and we resorted to blu-tac to hold them in place while a drop of cyano applied with a watchmakers screwdriver attached them. A little while later, the croc clip pinged off the front, catching the Blu-tac, and pulling off one of the miroscopic barrels which extends from the cooling jacket. I haven't decided whether to try drilling the jacket end for some brass wire.

 

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To help my daughter attach the lower wing, I had some 9mm thick MDF off-cuts which were just right for spacers to hold the wings parallel from the front. I told her she would also have to pay attention to having the incidence parallel and also parallel in plan view.

 

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A bit of trial fitting helped her understand the lining up process.

 

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The wing was fitted in its final place one last time before solvent glue was run into the joints on the bottom of the fuselage. The whole thing was then left to dry until the next session.

 

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