Jump to content

As a result of the close-down of the UK by the British Government last night, we have made all the Buy/Sell areas read-only until we open back up again, so please have a look at the announcement linked here.

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. :)

TheRealMrEd

1/72 Academy F-8C Conversion by Muroc Models

Recommended Posts

Hello,

 

While waiting for the seemingly endless work in the paint shop on my 1/72 P=58 Chain Lightning, I decided to start on another model.  This time the Muroc Models 1/72 scale F-8C conversion of the Academy F-8E kit.  They look like this:

 

spacer.png

 

Instead of jumping straight into the conversion, I thought I'd start with converting the model -- which features dropped leading edge slats, but no dropped flaps -- by dropping the kits flaps (and ailerons).  I began with the bottom center section of the wing from the Academy kit.  Before cutting, I like to scribe the lines with a sharp #11 blade for a couple of passes, followed up by a few passes with the Trumpeter (etc.) scribing tool.  The saw shown is mostly for cutting the tiny little 45-degree cuts:

 

spacer.png

 

as shown in the next photo:

 

spacer.png

 

In this case, I simply used multiple passes from the razor knife to separate the parts, rather than sawing anything but the angle cuts as shown above.

 

Next some stretched sprue is glued to the top front edge of the aileron/flap pieces, to allow rounding over at the top, and sanding to the correct angle for attachment at the front edge:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Next the resin fuselage top part is glued to the wing assembly, to replace the Bullpup missile guidance hump on the F-8E kit:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Above right, all the parts are glued to the wing assembly.  Note that the flaps have been separated from the ailerons. On the F-8, the flaps and ailerons can either work in conjunction or separately.  However, as the next photo shows, there is a small, UN-noticed problem in the kit:

 

spacer.png

 

The kit's molded flap line (from "A" to the arrow, needs to be about 1.5 - 2.0 mm outboard of it's molded position.  Whether this is due to the aileron/flap being molded too long, or the fuselage too wide, I can;t say.  I just know that the flaps are not able to be lowered all the way as the kit lines are scribed.  If they were moved outboard a hair, all would be well!

 

Well, next round, on to the fuselage...

 

Later,

 

Ed

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Brilliant, I've got this conversion too & to have  show & tell on the flap dropping thing as well is a welcome bonus. I'll be watching. :)

Steve.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Steve, and you're welcome!

 

Today, I'll move along on the actual fuselage conversion.  I'll begin by doing a little work that needs to be done, before closing the fuselage halves.  First, I removed the sensor ("A") from the tail, as it was not yet in use.  Next, I made certain to open up the holes started on the inside of the fuselage for the rear afterburner cooling scoops and the ventral fins, which first appeared on the F-8C.  Also, if you're going to depict the missile rails mounted to the aircraft, open those holes as well.  I forgot to do this on my F-8A build, and it was a real PITA to do it after the fuse halves were assembled:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Above right, I also deepened the nose gun holes, as they seemed a bit shallow.  Next I add the remaining major parts to the inside of the fuselage:

 

spacer.png

 

They are (above) "A" the intake assembly, "B" the air brake well, "C" the main gear well, "D" the arrester hook well and "E" the under-wing bay (not shown installed yet here).  It should be noted that the kit instructions call for adding some of the gear leg parts at this stage, BUT DON'T DO IT!  I did that on my F-8A build and broke them off several times, finally loosing one piece altogether.  The arrow pointing to the air brake will be addressed below.  Also note that the cockpit assembly and the aft cockpit bulkhead are not yet installed.

 

Next, the fuse is closed up.  Note that it took some fiddling and juggling to get all these pieces to fit together properly, particularly the air brake well and the main gear well.  Take your time, as they WILL eventually all fit together:

 

spacer.png

 

The resin part "A" is provided in the Muroc conversion kit.  I think it is called the "launching bridle", but I'm not sure.  Anyway, the front part fits flush with the surface, while the rear ward part of it is slightly below flush.  For those of you build Muroc's F08A or F-8C conversions, I suggest that you first carefully position WITHOUT GLUING,  the main gear well doors to the model, and then carefully locate the air brake door to it's exact centered position.  I had to sand this part gently across the front edges to fill a gap, but then it fit almost perfectly.  Next, glue the air brake into the closed position (the early models were considerably different than the A/C models, so unless you want to scratch-build a whole rocket tray, etc. -- glue it closed!).   When this is done, the main gear doors can be set aside until after painting and detailing has taken place, and the launch bridle can be carefully sanded to fit, virtually perfectly!  Note that in the  arrow mentioned a couple of pictures back, the arrow indicates the area that must be sanded down for a good fit of the launching bridle.

 

Next a bit of scrap plastic is glued to the inside of the fuse, to reinforce the filler that will be needed where the little hump was removed from the fuselage, at the leading edge of the wing well.  Also the aft cockpit bulkhead is installed at this time:spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Above right, it's finally time to remove the kit nose.  As usual for me, I scribed the kit line a couple of times with a sharp #11 blade, then a couple of asses with a scriber, and finally the cut was made on both side of the fuselage.  While the saw shown cuts about the finest line possible, it does not have a deep enough blade to saw all the way through the intake trunking, so a deeper (but thicker) X-Acto saw is used to saw apart the intake trunking:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Above right, NOW is finally time to install the detailed cockpit and instrument panel.  Muroc provided decals for the IP and side consoles, and after being installed and the softened a couple of times with Walther's Solv-A-Set, they look great.  Everything else was just painted and then given a wash of flat black to pop some details.  Hard to see in this photo is the gun-sight, which is also installed to the IP.  I just slid the cockpit into place with no glue, and left out the ejection seta and the control stick until after some of the clean-up later.

 

Lastly the Muroc F-8C nose is glued into place with CA, carefully guiding the gun sight into the little slot in the cowl coaming.  As you can see, the fit is very good, with the exception of a little thickness variation between the resin and the plastic part, which will be taken care of with a little Bondo spot putty later:

 

spacer.png

 

Well, gotta go check on my XP_-58.  Back later, with more.

 

Ed

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I too have the conversion kits this will be useful when l get around to it.

 

Regards

Robert

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, the XP-58 is coming along.  Decals are drying now and I will soon post an update on that thread.  Meanwhile, I've been working on the F-8C (F8U-2E?).  I decided that I was about ready to paint, so felt it was time to finish off the cockpit area.:

 

spacer.png

 

Above, I've added the kit control stick and my version of an early Vought seat.  I won't repeat all that about the seat here. Those interested in it's construction should refer to my F-8A  thread  HERE:

 

Also, while Muroc gives you a new vacuformed  front canopy section, it is very thin, and doesn't mate with the main canopy section very well, forcing you to build the canopy open.  I wanted the canopy closed on this one (just being contrary!), so I used the original kit windscreen sanded down and the sensor holes filled with CA.  I had intended to use this as a master for a new resin canopy, but after a couple of dips in Future, I think I can get away with just using it by itself --we'll see how that works out.

 

Next the main canopy was glued into place, and both clear sections were masked with Tamiya Tape:

 

spacer.png

 

At about this time, I decided that I needed to find out why the dropped flaps wouldn't fit properly on the wing.  After comparing with drawings, it turns out that Academy molded the wing flaps -- exclusive of the ailerons -- too wide.  So, I got out the old sanding stick and narrowed the flaps from the inner end, until they were sized correctly to allow the flaps to drop down beside the fuselage:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Above left,  the arrows point to the amount of material that needed to be removed, about 7/64", half on either side (Or, just sand to fit!).  Above right, small bits of plastic card of appropriate thickness were glued onto the fuselage as shown, aligned with the BOTTOM edge of the wing stubs on the fuselage to make up for  the  material removed from the wing flaps.

 

Next, because my sanding was a bit sloppy, one part of the actual wing gap was too wide, so another, thinner piece of plastic card was added to shim that space:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

When sanded a bit, things are coming along nicely.  Or so I thought....

 

Turns out that when I started looking at which F-8C to paint,  the one I was going to do was not flown by the unit I was going to depict. So, when I finally picked one, it turns out that it had some nifty wingtip artwork that could only be shown with folded wings.  I think I'm a pretty fair modeler, but I'm not good enough to get bogged down in that much tiny scratch-built wing fold detail!

 

Enter Wolfpack Designs:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Above right shows the parts you actually get in the folding wing set.  However, as has been shown, most of the mods can be done on the kit itself, here's what I'm actually paying for:

 

spacer.png

 

The detail!  Interestingly, however, Wolfpack nicely asks you not to raise the wing.  Turns out that this is because they molded their parts to fit the existing kit -- as other resin aftermarket companies do, so the same mods will have to be performed on their wing, as I did to the kit's wing:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Above left, after a bit of work with a sanding stick, the Wolfpack wing fits, allowing the flaps, etc. to be dropped.  Above right, as with the kit wings, we separate the flaps and ailerons from the wings, and when done, we glue all the various bits back together with CA:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Above left, the Muroc wing top  has been glued on and slats from a dropped Crusader wing slats set that I had laying about.  I've  lost the instructions, and I forget whose...  I used them only because they were already angled for the dropped position,  With a little sanding, the Academy parts would have done as well.  However, as I have reiterated many times, I am quite lazy...

 

Above right, I took advantage of the new wing, to drop the flaps further than the ailerons, which I had desired to do all along.  So now I have raised wing, with everything dropped, plus folded wingtips.  Just what the doctor ordered.  And yes, this configuration IS possible, and I have photos to prove it!

 

Anyway, now I really think I'm ready for paint so TTFN...

 

Ed

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by TheRealMrEd

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello again!

 

Since wrapping up the P-58 Chain Lighting on the "Year You Were Born" GB, I have been working along on the F-8C mod.  Finally got her in basic paint, Gull Grey over White, with some black anti-glare panel and bare metal leading edges, along with the bare metal tail-pipe area and elevator walks:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Above right, this is the aircraft that I decided to model, hence the need for the folded wings.  The Academy kit decals had a later version of the markings for this squadron VMF-333, but of course, for the later "E" version, when they were re-designated all-weather {VMF(AW)333}.  That meant I had to come up with the wingtip markings (top and bottom) as well as the ventral fin markings (green with  --  "boomerangs"?) or whatever they're called.  Fortunately, I had two sets of the kit decals and an old green stars and solid sheet green from Stoppel decals that were a fairly close match.  As shown next, the larger, basic decals are applied:

 

spacer.png

 

The tail flash decals from the spare set were cut apart, leaving the two green strips, which were then applied to the underside of the wingtips, separated by a correctly-sized piece of white decal sheet, cut to match the removed part which  had upon it the clover symbols.  But, as you can see, those clover symbols were oriented "up and down" vs. the needed "fore and aft" required.  Parts were cut from the Stoppel sheet that matched the size of the under-wing decals, and were applied to the top of the wingtips.

 

Next the wing tip clover leaf symbols were cut apart, leaving them each on the white square of the original decal, and were applied in a fore and aft manner onto the previously installed decals:

 

spacer.png

 

The bit of touch-up on the green will be accomplished with small bits of decal trimmings, applied later.

 

Below, a few more added decals:

 

spacer.png

 

I still have to figure out how to do the white markings on the ventral fins  -- any suggestions would be helpful!

 

Next I'll work on adding the tons of tiny stencils, then work  can commence on adding the landing gear and final assembly.

 

FWIW, I have photos of this aircraft in some different stages of it's life.  It started out as an F-8C, but was later upgraded to an F-8K -- pretty much the same external shapes, etc., but as is usual in squadrons, the markings change and evolve.  I do not know whether this aircraft at this point in it's life was a "C" or a "K", as the serial numbers remained the same.

 

Stay tuned...

 

Ed

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Back again.

 

Now with all the tiny decals on, looks like I'm making a little  progress.  Below, the landing gear have been added:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Above right, the folded, dropped and decal-ed wing assembly has been completed, with the clovers turned right way 'round.  Next, a couple of shots of the landing gear, which to me, is pretty hard to tell where everything goes in the Academy instructions:

 

spacer.png

 

 

spacer.png

 

Just about then, I noticed that disaster had struck. A couple of days ago, I had managed to drop the fuselage while decaling, onto a vinyl floor.  Since not many parts were yet attached, I didn't worry about it.  Only when taking these photos did I notice that a chunk of the resin intake opening was missing from the bottom of the intake:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Plan "A" is to saw off a piece of the old original kit plastic and to trim it to size, then glue the plastic part to the resin nose with CA, as shown above right.  After the CA sets up, it'll be time to try sanding to size and repainting.  Hopefully,  I'll see you on the other side, and won't have to get to plan "J", or whatever!

 

See you then...

 

Ed

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/11/2019 at 12:19 PM, TheRealMrEd said:

spacer.png

 

Above right, this is the aircraft that I decided to model, hence the need for the folded wings.  The Academy kit decals had a later version of the markings for this squadron VMF-333,

Just love the Fighting Shamrocks great choice. 👍🏻

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Regarding the 'boomerangs' could you not just cut up some white decal sheet  after you have traced them on the backside on the sheet ?

 

Regards

Robert

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

She is looking great, Ed! I love the -333 markings :)

 

Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Martin.

 

Robert, that's probably about what I'm going to have to do --- we'll see.

 

Ed

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/11/2019 at 1:19 PM, TheRealMrEd said:

I still have to figure out how to do the white markings on the ventral fins  -- any suggestions would be helpful!

Doing the "boomerangs" out of white decal sheet is probably the simplest approach. I'd suggest tracing the ventral fin part onto paper then drawing out the pattern before transferring & cutting the decals. 

 

It's probably not a better approach, but if you're concerned about opacity of the white decals on the green fins you could paint the fins solid white then cut a series of green arrow-shaped pieces that leave the white shapes between:

[ G 》w》G》w》G》w》G/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello again,

 

Well, I'm happy to report that Plan "A" worked on the broken intake lip:

 

spacer.pngspacer.png

 

Above right, never having built an F-8 Crusader with raised wing before, I didn't realize that there was some sort of "jacking" mechanism at the rear to raise the aft end of the wing assembly.  Of course, we all knew about the tiny bar or jack screw that held up the front edge when the wing was raised.

 

Next, after trying several of the suggested methods for the ventral fin "boomerangs"  (or could they be called chevrons?), I finally decided on cutting many little tiny tapered slivers of white decal sheet, and adding them one piece at a time -- a top and a bottom piece for each chevron -- and ended up with this:

 

spacer.png

 

Worked out fairly well, except for #4 back, which decided to act up after I'd sprayed the clear light sheen topcoat! Oh well, such is life.  At least it looks better than no chevrons at all, and I think they add a lot of "pop" to the model.  The overall finish is a light sheen; not too shiny, and just a hint of smudge here and there, as the Marines tend to take pretty good care of their aircraft in a peace-time, home-base setting.

 

Anyway, unless I've forgotten something, the model is now complete.  I will post up the finished pics in RFI soon.

 

Meanwhile, here's a teaser pic:

 

spacer.png

 

 

RFI link HERE>

 

Thanks for looking in.

 

Ed

 

Edited by TheRealMrEd
added link

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Impressive detailed conversion. Quite inspirational. Now I can buy those resins with confidence. 👍

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did four of these conversations so far and they are quite good. I can put a link to them a day from now. I don’t know how to do it on a phone.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234985180-172-xf8u-1-crusader-prototypes-138899-and-138900/

 

https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234993879-172-f8u-1-crusader-140444-and-140446/

here's the WIP links, there are the finished links in both. Have a few more that I want to make, just other projects got in the way for the last few years. I wanted to start off with the prototypes, test aircraft and then a few in service ones in order of how they were built. I built the SuperCrusader also but can't find the link.

Edited by busnproplinerfan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Beautiful model in the final photos!  After seeing how nice your's came out, this model is definitely on my "to do" list.  ;) 

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

×
×
  • Create New...