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Serkan Sen

Legendary Blackbird - Part 1: A-12 Oxcart (Italeri Conversion)

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During Ced's recent MD-21 build I have decided to build some Blackbird versions using the kits in my stash. But I was not aware that all available models have major issues to be corrected to build a real Blackbird (whatever the version is).

 

After spending couple of weeks for searching the reference materials (pictures and drawings) I have decided to go with my own drawings based on available pictures and my engineering judgements.

 

Here I would like to share my findings as well as the pictures of my drawings and comparison results.

 

Of course all feedback and comments are very  important to build each of these legendary aircrafts as accurate as possible.

 

20d86f70-9a76-48ee-a5c8-877f62fc52df.jpe

 

Serkan

 

Edited by Serkan Sen

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Good idea Serkan :)  

 

Although I don't intend to build another Blackbird (it's not really in my usual 'theme') experience during my recent build showed that there's a great deal of interest in the type and that the kit manufacturers, sadly, have not done the research you have!

 

I'm sure this thread will be well attended.

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7 hours ago, CedB said:

Good idea Serkan :)  

 

Although I don't intend to build another Blackbird (it's not really in my usual 'theme') experience during my recent build showed that there's a great deal of interest in the type and that the kit manufacturers, sadly, have not done the research you have!

 

I'm sure this thread will be well attended.

Thanks Ced,

It won't be easy to reach the attendance level what your MD-21 WIP had. But I will do my best. 🙂

Serkan

 

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The Blackbird versions I am planning to build are:

  • 60-6924: First A-12 in NMF (Natural Metal Finish)
  • 60-6927: A-12B nicknamed "Titanium Goose"
  • 60-6935: YF-12A "The Thing" in Black-Metallic paint
  • 60-6940: MD-21 (M-21 Mothership with D-21 Drone) in Black-metallic paint
  • 61-7972: SR-71A
  • 61-7959: SR-71A "Big Tail"
  • 61-7956: SR-71B used by NASA (in 1:48 scale)
  • 61-7981: SR-71C "The B*stard" made from parts of the static test model SR-71 and the aft section of YF-12A 60-6934 to replace SR-71B 61-7957 loss.

I know this is a long but I will build at least half of them 🙂

 

Here is the list of modifications to be done for A-12 build:

  • Nose chine shape
  • Blended nose cone shape
  • Position of cockpit
  • Position of in flight refueling port
  • Tail cone shape
  • Nose gear well position and details
  • Camera bay (Q-Bay) positions
  • Straighten the wing leading and trailing edges.
  • Remove the expansion grooves on first flight aircraft 60-6924 (thanks to Neil for this very important detail)

Please let me know if I missed anything else to be modified/corrected which is not listed above.

 

Serkan

 

Edited by Serkan Sen

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Crikey Serkan, this is going to be a marathon! :) 

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1 minute ago, CedB said:

Crikey Serkan, this is going to be a marathon! :) 

This is not a problem Ced. I am a long distance runner. I am working on six Flanker projects in parallel (all of them are heavily modified including self made resin casted parts) 😁

 

Serkan

 

 

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I hope the YF-12A is one of the first you do. It’s in my stash and nearing the top of my build list. It’ll be easier for me if you do all the research :rofl:

 

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Hot damn! Made it on page 1! I will be following your efforts with great interest, especially where the YF-12A and SR71 are  concerned! Next to the Vulcan, the Blackbird was without a doubt the noisiest jet I have ever heard. Got to see an SR-71  beat the place up at one of our Randolph AB air shows back in the day. Slightly off-topic, but a few observations on that event: The aircraft came direct to San Antonio, TX from Beale AB in California in less than 45 minutes (Distance being 1,700 miles between the two bases!)- they piped the pilot's radio transmissions into the air show sound system from the time he left Beale until arrival. As soon as it shut down, there were big cooling fans placed in front of the tires on the  main gear; the aircraft was roped off until the skin had cooled enough for people to touch; when it was cooled, fuel was dripping like crazy from the underside wing skin joints (The SR-71 gave new meaning to the term  "wet wing!") When the aircraft was fired up for departure, two big air start units powered by 455 cubic-inch Buick V-8's were used! When the airplane departed on Sunday after the air show, he really beat the place up- all of the flight line crews were lined up on the ramps to watch the festivities! An incredible aircraft! Sorry for the sideslip, but Ced's build reminded me of that day!

Mike

Edited by 72modeler

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Would love to have seen that!  Have to satisfy myself with having seen the Blackbird at Duxford.

 

AW

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Danimalmagic did the same series here on Britmodeller back in 2015.

 

A simple way the get the short tail for the A-12 is to use the back end of an Italeri YF-12 if you can find one. That will work well if you go for the NMF finish.

 

Regards Toby

 

 

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4 hours ago, 72modeler said:

Hot damn! Made it on page 1! I will be following your efforts with great interest, especially where the YF-12A and SR71 are  concerned!

Move over Mike... heres the 🍿by the way. 

Edited by Corsairfoxfouruncle

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I believe 60-6924 the first A12 was smoth skinned and did not have the expansion grooves machined into its skin. This was done to the later aircraft to solve the heat expansion issue.

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5 hours ago, billn53 said:

I hope the YF-12A is one of the first you do. It’s in my stash and nearing the top of my build list. It’ll be easier for me if you do all the research :rofl:

 

Most probably it will be the third one as I need this kit to clone its parts (especially the tail cone to build A-12 and M-21). I have 3 Italeri and 2 Revell SR-71 kits in my stash but only single YF-12. Therefore I have to take extra care of her 🙂

 

Serkan

 

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53 minutes ago, Planebuilder62 said:

Danimalmagic did the same series here on Britmodeller back in 2015.

 

A simple way the get the short tail for the A-12 is to use the back end of an Italeri YF-12 if you can find one. That will work well if you go for the NMF finish.

 

Regards Toby

 

 

Thanks Toby,

This is also my plan. I will clone the necessary parts for my other projects rather than sacrificing a whole kit.

By the was this your build?

http://hsfeatures.com/features04/a12blackbirdtb_1.htm

a12blackbirdtn_17.jpg

 

Serkan

 

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1 hour ago, neil5208 said:

I believe 60-6924 the first A12 was smoth skinned and did not have the expansion grooves machined into its skin. This was done to the later aircraft to solve the heat expansion issue.

I think you are right. Although the picture is not very clear it seems that the grooves are not there.

landis-A-12_924.jpg

 

Serkan

 

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Hi Serkan! Great project! Let me offer up some pics I collected while doing the Academy SR-71A.

 

23590117648_5d443cd21c_b.jpg 

 

37411092712_e90185a4d1_b.jpg 

 

36848434724_22a60594c0_c.jpg   36888866213_c43681c527_c.jpg 

 

37316342220_411e53b760_o.jpg   37316340890_f7189a4b25_o.jpg 

 

37553495312_26408a1fbf_o.jpg 

 

37553496882_0e34f75af3_o.jpg 

 

37020792263_f2075b6ae1_o.jpg 

 

23949077098_6704fd672a_c.jpg 

 

37924467806_9943c65812_o.jpg 

 

38171963631_7d0a5265e5_o.jpg 

 

38348788562_dac598dff9_o.jpg 

 

48730709943_a898e4e24f_o.jpg 

 

38903123022_bba68a36b9_b.jpg 

 

Oops! That last one's mine :penguin:

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BTW, there's an A-12 (S/N 06930) on display just a few miles from my house, in case you need photos of exterior details. I can't promise anything, I know it's been repainted a few times with just lip-service to authenticity.

 

http://www.waymarking.com/gallery/default.aspx?f=1&guid=b0cd941f-54cf-4999-89e6-37ee2d4493a7&gid=2

 

-Bill

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On 9/22/2019 at 8:16 AM, neil5208 said:

I believe 60-6924 the first A12 was smoth skinned and did not have the expansion grooves machined into its skin. This was done to the later aircraft to solve the heat expansion issue.

After searching a bit more I have found the following pictures

1055.jpg

 

The expansion grooves were added later on this aircraft:

ED96-43470-1-l.jpg

 

Thanks for pointing out this very important detail.

 

Serkan

 

Edited by Serkan Sen

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4 hours ago, billn53 said:

Hi Serkan! Great project! Let me offer up some pics I collected while doing the Academy SR-71A.

Hi Bill,

 

Thanks for all these pictures you have shared with us especially the last one. At first glance I thought this was a real bird (till I have seen your last  sentence) 🙂

This is an excellent finish!..

 

4 hours ago, billn53 said:

BTW, there's an A-12 (S/N 06930) on display just a few miles from my house, in case you need photos of exterior details. I can't promise anything, I know it's been repainted a few times with just lip-service to authenticity.

I definitely accept your kind offer regarding to have some detailed pictures of A-12. I haven't found any picture that shows Q-Bay positions on real aircraft except these sketches:

1056.jpg

1058.jpg

 

It would be great if I could get some pictures of exact position of camera windows. I think it should not be matter how many times she has been repainted as long as the windows are still there 🙂

 

Serkan

 

 

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Looking forward to this Serkan as l was looking for a companion to my U2 l did recently. No mention of the Hasegawa/Academy SR-71 is there a problem with it ?

 

Regards

Robert

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