Jump to content
This site uses cookies! Learn More

This site uses cookies!

You can find a list of those cookies here: mysite.com/cookies

By continuing to use this site, you agree to allow us to store cookies on your computer. :)

Foxbat

Grumman F-14A Tomcat

Recommended Posts

Inspired by the brief appearance the other day of a finished model in Wolfpack markings, I grabbed a copy of this kit. There should always be room for a Tomcat on the shelf, and I currently don't have one, so time to put that right. Looking at the ATF listing, mine is a type 11c (1994 - 2003) boxing of the original 1976 kit. 

 

I've gone for after market decals because unit markings based round boars heads are another interest; VF-11, JG300, GC 3/3 and the like, because that's my clan crest.

 

Postie has been, the kit is unwrapped. Pics will follow any minute.

 

Andy

Multitasking.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good on you, Andy. I'll look forward to seeing your build. Reading up, the F-14 was a more modern development of the F-111 and I've always wanted to build one of those. Happy modelling!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice addition to the gb - i have a confession - i went to the cinema about 6 times to see top gun (in my defence i was young and impressionable 🙄) so i loves a tomcat 😁

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, Lawzer said:

Nice addition to the gb - i have a confession - i went to the cinema about 6 times to see top gun (in my defence i was young and impressionable 🙄) so i loves a tomcat 😁

Loved that film too :) Over the years various modelling themes have come and gone. One was US Navy jets and although none of the models have survived the various house moves I do still have mountains of reference material. Maybe time for a resurgence after this GB?

 

Andy

Never an ossifer and only accidentally a gentleman.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You want pictures? Hold on to your hat, I've got more pictures than you can shake an entire copse at :D 

 

First up, the rather battered box:

 

hz8e4PL.jpg

 

And the contents which are in rather better condition. The bag is still sealed so everything should be there. Decals will be mostly used for lining the budgie's cage. When I get a budgie.

 

YPIEG9F.jpg

 

These are the decals I'll be using (bottom left of sheet). Instructions say this particular Tomcat was overall gull gray which will make painting so much easier.

 

i3dWQwb.jpg

 

For background, this is the Clan Campbell crest that got me interested in units with boars head badges:

 

9lE3uns.jpg

 

Even more off topic, there's an Australian metal band called Ne Obliviscaris. They have a violinist which is a bit different, and they're bluidy good.

 

Finally for now, the VF-11 squadron badge in all its glory. From what I've gleaned the story within the unit is the boars head is taken from a Gordon's gin bottle and it's resting on a string of baloney, but it's all piggies to me :) 

 

bJ7i67i.jpg

 

Right, that's enough waffle. Let battle commence.

 

Andy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice one and can never have enough Tomcats!

 

I've built that same kit (later boxing) and I think Airfix did a good job with it. (sorry for the thread creep)

 

15879729365_ee7ed9607e_b.jpg. by Dermot Moriarty, on Flickr

 

Dermot

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Dermo245 said:

Nice one and can never have enough Tomcats!

I've built that same kit (later boxing) and I think Airfix did a good job with it. (sorry for the thread creep)

Dermot

No apologies needed. That's a fine looking model and gives me something to aim for. I like the fact that the fuselage top/bottom includes the cockpit section so there's one less seam to line up and hide.

 

Andy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Finally got this started. The cockpit has vast areas of empty space with little clumps of detail, and some odd gaps. The odd colouring was my failed attempt at a wash to bring out the detail.

 

lVW3HnF.jpg

 

Then you fit it into the top fuselage half and realise Airfix were way more clued up than you

 

K4LxUeq.jpg

 

It's just push fitted for now, but there will be glue and more progress before the day is out.

 

Andy

Flying

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That looks like more than enough detail for me Andy and I think you’re right about them knowing more than us. I reckon I would have saved a year’s worth of modelling if I’d just built OOB rather than add silly bits of detail that’ll never been seen! I reckon this should be a fun build.

 

Cheers.. Dave 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Got a bit more done today. I've fitted (and refitted about a dozen times because they are a push fit until the fuselage halves are joined) the wings and slab tailplanes. There is a wonderfully engineered swing mechanism that means the wings swing in unison and as they sweep, the forward canards deploy as shown here:

 

CpuPGdk.jpg

 

oui68tf.jpg

 

Having taken an age to get this right and working I stopped to think. And what I thought was "I don't remember those canards in photos, what's the story there?". The story is that on the real aircraft they automatically deploy at Mach 1.4 or above when the wings are swept, the idea being to provide extra lift which balances forces on the tail surfaces. When the aircraft is parked with the wings swept, as mine will be, they're invisible inside the wing glove.  Not only that, but service use proved they weren't needed so they Navy disabled them on the F-14A so they didn't have to keep them serviced and working, and removed them completely from the F-14B and D. The joys of being first to market then not updating the moulds to reflect in service updates.

 

The other problem all that gubbins creates is that it fills the already shallow main gear bays so there's no room for detail. So no peeking at the undersides when I've got it finished, OK?

 

The other other problem is that the parts are numbered in the order you use them. However, they're not on the sprues in anything like numerical order and there's no parts map. So I now have a deployed in-flight refueling probe because I couldn't find the closed door for the bay until three stages after I'd added the cockpit and blocked access to it :D 

 

Still having fun though.

 

Andy

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fuselage halves are together - they fought me all the way but I kind of got there. Wrestled the intakes on too - there's engine faces that go at the far end, but after doing the first one I found it was invisible so I ignored the second one. I defy anyone to tell which is which. This is where she sits this afternoon. I Must get on - back to work any moment which will seriously impact on my bench time and I have three builds to complete by 7th October :o 

 

IWEB6c3.jpg

 

You can see there what I meant about the wing fold mechanism filling the wheel well. Never mind, the front 'well' is just as bare.

 

Andy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looks like a classic Airfix jet kit to me. I wonder if they had their own design team for modern jets because they feel so different in character from the WWII stuff. The design of the wing sweep mechanism has moved on A LOT from the F-111. It looks like it works!

 

You seem to have two slightly different colours of plastic - a "frankenkit"? I've had a couple like that off a well-known online auction site where the seller or previous owner has mixed and matched between a number of different kits. I don't mind if I'm just buying a kit to build but I imagine it could be annoying to a collector.

 

Regards,

Adrian

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, AdrianMF said:

You seem to have two slightly different colours of plastic - a "frankenkit"? I've had a couple like that off a well-known online auction site where the seller or previous owner has mixed and matched between a number of different kits. I don't mind if I'm just buying a kit to build but I imagine it could be annoying to a collector.

 

Regards,

Adrian

Definitely two different colours, but all the bags were sealed so I assume it's either a Friday kit with sprues from two different runs, or maybe something in some of the plastic has discoloured as it aged. I honestly don't know, I just hope it disappears under paint.

 

Andy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I remember being extremely impressed with this kit when it came out, it was expensive but it had loads of options including the working glove vanes. 

It was also originally moulded in white, which meant that if you were careful you didn't have to paint the bottom... 

 

John 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
55 minutes ago, John said:

I remember being extremely impressed with this kit when it came out, it was expensive but it had loads of options including the working glove vanes. 

It was also originally moulded in white, which meant that if you were careful you didn't have to paint the bottom... 

 

John 

I'm still impressed with it now. There's some lovely detail and really clever engineering. My first Tomcat was the Italeri one done in the grey and white scheme, but in a lot of ways this is still better not least because the front half of the fuselage isn't separate, with a whole extra set of seams to deal with.

 

Going to really try and crack on with this tomorrow, I want to see it with paint on as much as everybody else does.

 

Andy 

Edited by Foxbat
Smelling korrections

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Having joined the fuselage halves, construction progressed remarkably quickly, and all of a sudden I found myself at the point where I should think about paint.

 

Having thought, I went through the draw looking for the right colour. Then I re-arranged the draw, before going through it again. No paint :o Then I spotted it on a corner of the workbench where I'd put it last week so it was easily to hand.

 

Initially, I was just going to paint the undercarriage doors so they were ready come attachment time but I had a slip decanting the paint and ended up with enough on my palette to do more than half the airframe. Taking that as a cue, I painted the whole thing - just as an undercoat to check for gaps and seams you understand. 

 

So tonight she was here. I say was because I've stuck  a second coat on between taking the pictures and updating the thread. I have to say I'm really impressed by the paint. I used Vallejo 986 Deck Tan (given as a match for FS36640 Light Grey) applied with the broad flat brush I usually reserve for dry brushing, and it went on great, self leveled, and showed no brush marks when it dried to a lovely satin finish. 

 

M9oV6h8.jpg

 

pZ95a1o.jpg

 

Tomorrow will be a day for detail painting, small parts and hopefully some decals.

 

Andy

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi,

things are looking real good! Well done!!!

From your photo, there are still a few seams that need corrective work: are you going to bother or just carry on with it?

I built this kit shortly after its release (white plastic, not good to work with...) but I had a lot of fun with it.

I did use after market decals and finished it in VF-84 markings. Did I ever mention the skull and cross bones were our crest of arm? All right, just kidding.

Since that day, I have regretted not having done the VF-1 scheme. Need another F-14A one of these days!

 

Great show!!!

JR

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 minutes ago, jean said:

Hi,

things are looking real good! Well done!!!

From your photo, there are still a few seams that need corrective work: are you going to bother or just carry on with it?

I built this kit shortly after its release (white plastic, not good to work with...) but I had a lot of fun with it.

I did use after market decals and finished it in VF-84 markings. Did I ever mention the skull and cross bones were our crest of arm? All right, just kidding.

Since that day, I have regretted not having done the VF-1 scheme. Need another F-14A one of these days!

 

Great show!!!

JR

I'll have another look in the cold light of day and see how much work is involved. It would be a shame not to at least try and fix those seams, but I can hear the clock ticking and it may just be a case of close enough is good enough. Got this and a pair of Spitfires to have pretty much done by Sunday as I'm back to work next week. One of the Spits is still in the box unstarted, so no pressure.  

 

If you can find one, go for it, you can't have too many Tomcats.

 

Andy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm trying to finish this one, I really am but the decal are fighting me all the way. I've already had a fin top flash break up and a Navy title commit suicide by origami and I've only tried doing one side of one fin :o 

 

I shall persevere but I'm no longer optimistic.

 

Andy

Looming back at looming deadlines

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good luck andy - 12 hours is a long time 😁

 

Hopefully we'll see this one in the gallery 👍

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wish I had 12 hours but I have to shop, cook Sunday lunch then go and see two bands. Closer to 4 hours really - no pressure then :D 

 

Andy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×