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My next build is Airfix's 1:72 Grumman f4f-4 wildcat. I'm really looking forward to building this kit, it looks great, it's a pretty little aircraft, and I'm imagining the Sto-wing will be a challenge. 

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The kit contains a detailed instruction booklet with a choice of two colour schemes, and a small decal sheet.

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There are four grey sprues and a smaller clear sprue, all are very detailed with no visible flash, it looks like it will be a superb kit to put together. I plan my build to be finished in the scheme of Wildcat VF-6 United States Navy, flown from USS Enterprise (CV-6) 1945, with landing gear down and wings folded in the Sto-wing position. It will be a right out of the box build, using Vallejo acrylics, I will aim to find the correct equivalents to the suggested Humbrol colours. Time to get underway, the sprues have had a wash and coat of Vallejo primer.

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It’s a lovely kit, only thing I would say is watch the paint on the mating surfaces, especially the landing gear.

 

Rob

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With the undercoat dry I have airbrushed some colour onto the interior parts of the build. Using Vallejo interior green, and my Gull grey equivalent, Vallejo Light grey I have airbrushed the parts ready for assembly once dry.

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So I have been building the cockpit interior of the Wildcat, I have painted some of the instruments into the panel and used parts of the decals. I have to say the cockpit is well designed and the locating pins for the seat, control column etc are great.

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Therefore, this part of the build went together smoothly. According to the instructions, you need to build the landing gear and install it to the fuselage before joining the halves. Now, my normal way to work is attach the gear after I have airbrushed the fuselage, mostly because it means I have less to break whilst I man handle it in the spray booth. However, on close inspection, I can't do this here. So I carefully built all the pieces to make the wheel struts and undercarriage.

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I have to admit, having several pieces to put together seems to make the landing gear appear more sturdy..........I may regret saying that as I am sure I will break it in the paint shop!!!!!!

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With the undercarriage built, the time came to secure it in place before joining the fuselage halves. A blob of glue on the locating pins and I pushed the structure in the nose to rest against the engine side of the instrument panel. I then went to attach the small clear Windows near the wheel wells, only to find one was really poorly moulded. With a lot of fiddling around I got it in place without a gap, the other luckily was fine. Then I gave the halves a dry fit, to say it's a squeeze would be an understatement! The undercarriage structure adds to the amount of pieces to cram inside, with the halves glued I squeezed them together with ally might and wrapped it in tape. 

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Once the glue was dry I started sanding. Luckily the seam wasn't too bad, and using Mr.Surfacer has worked a treat.

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Looking great so far. I have this kit and the Martlet in the stash, so I'll be watching this build, too.

 

 

Chris.

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Posted (edited)

I just finished this exact same kit (but build the other version). Loved it!

 

I used the Vallejo Light gull grey (71.121) and Vallejo Ocean gray (71.273). Here are two pictures to give you an idea on how the colors work out. 

 

https://imgur.com/gallery/7VUn5Vk

 

Good luck with your build!

 

Edited by DutchXActo

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7 hours ago, DutchXActo said:

I just finished this exact same kit (but build the other version). Loved it!

 

I used the Vallejo Light gull grey (71.121) and Vallejo Ocean gray (71.273). Here are two pictures to give you an idea on how the colors work out. 

 

https://imgur.com/gallery/7VUn5Vk

 

Good luck with your build!

 

Looks great! 

Thanks, 

Michelle

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Having constructed the wings, yesterday I carefully secured the wing roots into place onto the fuselage. There is a huge locating pin from the cockpit which acts perfectly to ensure you are in the right place, it does however need a good push and a lot of pressure to get it flush with the fuselage. 

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I have also painted and fixed the radial engine in place. The instructions would have you paint it black and leave it at that. I have added a little silver and grey to give it a more realistic look.

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Cowling to attach next and then it's time to move onto some colour.

 

 

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Since my last post I have fitted the engine cowling. Having painted the inside of the cowling, it was a tight squeeze, so a little sanding was required. It didn't take long however, before it was snuggly glued into place. I then fitted the front section of canopy. This was a little tricky as there are no locating lines or pins on the front of the aircraft. There are lines to butt up against where the canopy opens, which help, but it's best to take care to make sure it's central before gluing. I opted for dry fit and marking where it sits with a pencil, didn't take long to get it in the correct place. With these dry, it's time for some primer.

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Since my last post I have primed the build with Vallejo acrylic primer, and preshaded the entire build. Happy with this I began masking up the top of the aircraft, ready for the light grey underside. Yesterday I airbrushed my first light coat of grey.

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The paint went down really well, and I am happy with the progress so far, more to come.

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Having topped up the light grey underside, I sealed it in with Quick shine gloss and once again masked up the build in preparation for the grey/blue top half. Having thinned down my Vallejo medium grey I began giving the build light coats. The paint sprayed beautifully and I am really pleased with the result.

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It is now awaiting a coat of Quick shine gloss to seal it in.

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That top colour looks really nice, very smooth finish

 

Rob

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Posted (edited)

The problem with getting the fuselage to close is the undercarriage bulkhead with the spars on. If you poke at the projecting parts that connect the spars, they’ve got quite a deep draw angle, and it’s this bit that ales everything too wide. The fix is to take a really sharp blade and carefully carve the slope away until the spar is at 90 degrees to the connector. It will weaken the join, but that doesn’t matter because the spar sets the wing in place, it’s not structural. Anyway, once  the halves are together it all fits really well and is quite strong (second moment of area and all that).

Edited by Andy Robbins

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With the grey/blue sealed in with a coat of Quick shine gloss, it was time to start the decals. I read about bedding them down using the quick shine gloss, and thought I'd give it a go. Mixing up 10 drops of gloss to 3 drops water I used it to settle the decals down. I have to say it wasn't for me, it didn't bed in to the panel lines as nicely as the Micro sol I regularly use, so I reverted back to that. There are not a great quantity of decals for this little aircraft and they all settled well with no problems.

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I am really happy with the progress I have made, and really like this little aircraft.

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You are a one woman modelling machine! Great work as always 🙂

 

Iain

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Once the decals were dry and settled I gave the build a coat of Quick shine gloss varnish to seal them in. I then turned my attention to the few remaining pieces that needed airbrushing. I gave the wheels a coat of Vallejo Light grey, and once this was dry, masked up the centre and airbrushed the tyres black. Finally I worked on the propeller, firstly spraying it Aluminium, then I painted the wing tips yellow, before masking them up and spraying the blades black. 

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These are now drying, ready for final assembly.

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Over the last few nights I have been busy weathering the Wildcat. Firstly applying a dirt wash to the top and bottom, removing any access residue in the direction of airflow. Next I applied chipping to the build, for this I used a filed down cocktail stick, once happy with this mixed up some rust and applied it to the underside.IMG_20190519_195205_zpsp9ahy1k4.jpg

 

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I plan to add some smoke trails from the exhausts with my airbrush, then the final assembly can begin.

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Posted (edited)

With the weathering complete, time had come to build the wings. I attempted several dry fits of the Sto-wing, and finally went for it. The locating pins and marks are not overly apparent, and I fear my wings are slightly too far in to the fuselage, however they are on, with the struts holding them in place. I then secured the prop, and blasted some smoke trails. IMG_20190601_220605_zpsaqj2js5z.jpg

The build is now waiting for a few final bits and bobs before its final satin coat. What an aircraft it was.

Edited by Shelliecool

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Last night I gave the build several light coats of well mixed Vallejo satin varnish. I made sure to thin the varnish down well as it is rather thick when neat. It sprayed well and has settled evenly on the aircraft. Once dry I added the antenna wire, using fine fishing line, and the build was complete. I have thoroughly enjoyed this build, discovered a cracking little aircraft, and great kit. It went together really well and I look forward to building more Wildcats in the future.IMG_20190605_165727_zps3akg3u3s.jpg

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I will post more photos on my ready for inspection thread. Thanks for joining me on this build.

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