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Peter Lloyd

AZ Model 1/72 Supermarine Attacker

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I'm going to try to get this done before the deadline, a nice partner for my Sea Hawk.

 

KXcgdQw.jpg

 

The kit is typical AZ short run.  The only difference between prototype and very early Attackers and the bulk of the production run, was a fillet in front of the vertical fin, and a minor difference in the canopies.  The kit provides both fins, so by modifying the canopy any Attacker can be made.  The kit provides prototype markings or the 'first production aircraft' without squadron markings, but in Extra Dark Sea Grey and Sky.  Colour photos appear to show this as a 'duck egg blue' hue, for what it's worth.  If anyone can help with an image of an early-style attacker in service I'd love to see it.

 

GCUpI8z.jpg

 

Resin cockpit.

 

E03vZSj.jpg

 

Nice recessed detail, soft plastic that melts readily when glue is applied. Not much flash.

 

I've enjoyed several AZ short run kits so I'm looking forward to this.

 

The Attacker was never really a successful aircraft. It was initially an attempt to mate the Supermarine Spiteful laminar flow wing to a new jet fuselage.  This never really worked because the Spiteful wing actually had a lower Mach-capability than a standard Spitfire wing, so compressibility and other aerodynamic issues that vexed the early jet designers came into play.  Given what was later known about boundary layer control, one can see the Attacker design was pretty flawed, even if Supermarine did manage to sort of get it working in the form of the Swift.

The Attacker was sold to Pakistan and is unique (?) in being a tail-dragging jet.  Built around the Rolls-Royce Nene, one can perhaps see the Attacker and the MiG-15 as the two extreme expressions of what could be done with this motor.

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Another interesting and worthwhile subject Peter. I'm looking forward to seeing what you do with this kit.

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Let's get this one in production...

 

mSvKvpa.jpg

 

ZhBYbhG.jpg

 

The intakes consist of plates to blank off the inside (no detail in there but not much can be seen), and lip fairings which are a pretty good replica of the originals, to my eye.  Eliminating the seam where the blanking panels join the fuselage is not easy (sorry, the crucial bit is just where this photo gets very dark).

 

ByuHA26.jpg

 

Here we are with Tamiya putty, Mr Surfacer, applied over the original join which utilised a lot of glue. AZ Model plastic dissolves readily when you apply Tamiya Extra Thin, so join can be 'self-filling' if you're careful.  I was not having a lot of success though, not setting things up properly.

 

Hw3BkpT.jpg

 

 

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Time to join the fuselage halves.

 

dKOtByQ.jpg

 

This was my attempt to persuade the halves to align properly.  First step was sanding on flat emery paper, and test fitting showed the fuselage needed to be thinned where the cockpit is.  And the cockpit has nothing to locate it positively, I used the step behind the pilots headrest and guesstimation to position it.  I don't seem to have taken any cockpit or instrument panel pics, probably because I was drinking. I'd like this to also serve as my excuse of the gross inaccuracy of that 'shelf' or coaming at the front of the cockpit.  The instrument panel is okay, a but 'soft' in the moulding.  The cockpit sidewalls are actually fairly plain on the Attacker.  See picture below from the website 'http://aviationdumonde.e-monsite.com'

 

attacker-cockpit.jpg

 

When it comes to joining the fuselage halves, the kit engineering is fine: when the top seam lines up, so does that underneath.  Yet, they seemed to want to twist apart.  I added sprue under the top seam for support, but don't do this.  You don't need the strength (the finished join will be plenty strong).  A few short brass or steel pins would be of benefit though, I think.  Anyway, Although I initially only glued the top seam, my little system slid apart and it dried with a step.

 

KovXiZQ.jpg

 

Which somehow became exaggerated underneath!

 

ty7M2z2.jpg

 

If I'd nailed the top seam, this step would be small and I could probably apply careful pressure to get this seam to behave. But the extra misalignment on top has become exaggerated underneath.  So, we will be using filler, and trying not to sand the cylindrical fuselage noticeably flat.

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Looks as if this one is putting up a fight Peter but I'm sure you'll tame it.

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On 2/18/2019 at 6:07 AM, Peter Lloyd said:

Time to join the fuselage halves.

 

dKOtByQ.jpg

 

This was my attempt to persuade the halves to align properly.  First step was sanding on flat emery paper, and test fitting showed the fuselage needed to be thinned where the cockpit is.  And the cockpit has nothing to locate it positively, I used the step behind the pilots headrest and guesstimation to position it.  I don't seem to have taken any cockpit or instrument panel pics, probably because I was drinking. I'd like this to also serve as my excuse of the gross inaccuracy of that 'shelf' or coaming at the front of the cockpit.  The instrument panel is okay, a but 'soft' in the moulding.  The cockpit sidewalls are actually fairly plain on the Attacker.  See picture below from the website 'http://aviationdumonde.e-monsite.com'

 

attacker-cockpit.jpg

 

When it comes to joining the fuselage halves, the kit engineering is fine: when the top seam lines up, so does that underneath.  Yet, they seemed to want to twist apart.  I added sprue under the top seam for support, but don't do this.  You don't need the strength (the finished join will be plenty strong).  A few short brass or steel pins would be of benefit though, I think.  Anyway, Although I initially only glued the top seam, my little system slid apart and it dried with a step.

 

KovXiZQ.jpg

 

Which somehow became exaggerated underneath!

 

ty7M2z2.jpg

 

If I'd nailed the top seam, this step would be small and I could probably apply careful pressure to get this seam to behave. But the extra misalignment on top has become exaggerated underneath.  So, we will be using filler, and trying not to sand the cylindrical fuselage noticeably flat.

I had similar problems Peter. I used a combination of brute force, Tamiya tape, copious amounts of cement and not a little bit of language that shouldn't be heard in polite circles. I wasn't able in the end able to fully close up the tail so you've done better than me there, and although the step I got on the bottom wasn't as big as yours, I don't think I've totally eliminated it after filling, sanding and polishing. As you'll see from my build I've now got the wings, empanage and belly tank on and it looks like an Attacker. So Nil Desperandum my friend, you'll get there. 

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On 2/13/2019 at 5:09 AM, Peter Lloyd said:

 

 

The Attacker was sold to Pakistan and is unique (?) in being a tail-dragging jet. 

There were a few others Peter, including the Yak-15 and one of the prototype Me.262s.  Nevertheless, it is very unusual and should look great on display :popcorn:

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I've had the wings on and off a couple of times.  The Attacker had very slight dihedral on the wings, but in my first attempt they came out flat.

 

1kC354J.jpg

 

An issue I didn't catch in time is the wing is thicker (deeper) than the wing root moulded on the fuselage, and this was more noticeable on one side than the other.  The wheel well wall is too generous. I sliced at it from this position with a razor, and improved it somewhat.  This is not a bad kit, most of the issues I've encountered have been from not obeying the short-run mantra: test, re-shape, test again, test again... then use the glue.

Edited by Peter Lloyd
typos

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So here it is today:

 

kBWmq0j.jpg

 

There's a fair bit of Tamiya putty used to level things and to shut out the draughts.  My Surfacer 500 on top of that.  Any advice on that rear decking behind the pilot's seat is welcome, and I suppose I'll just dig out a gun sight for the forward coaming.  I have ordered some Master 20mm gun fairings, intended for a Fairey Firefly but I think they will enhance the look.

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Well done getting this one together and looking like an Attacker regardless of how much a fight the kit was putting up :thumbsup: 

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