Jump to content

Backyard patrol - 1/48 Su-17 (sans suffixe) Fitter-C


Recommended Posts

Hello everybody,

 

as I'm quite new here I decided to finally contribute something meaningful and treat you all with a build of mine. Since I'm working from home at the moment I figured this to be the perfect time to start one of my long-term projects, a Sukhoi Su-17 (Fitter-C) in 1/48.

 

 

The Real thing

The Su-17 started life as a project at Sukhoi to improve the low-speed and take-off/landing performance of the basic Su-7 design. Liftjets proved to be a not feasible as they were dead weight most of the time and occupied much needed space in the airframe. Variable-geometry wings on the other hand seemed to offer a perfect solution to this problem. The outer part of the Su-7 wing was redesigned to be moveable and a demonstrator, based on the Su-7BM, was built and proved successful during tests.

 

The first Su-17 variant (Nato Code: Fitter-C) that went into production was basically an Su-7BKL with Variable-geometry wings, a dorsal spine holding additional avionics, a clamshell canopy instead of a sliding one and a hydraulic drive system for the moveable wings.

Still, the performance left something to be desired compared to the Su-7. While low-speed and take-off/landing performance improved markedly, range and payload did not. This was largely because the Su-17 retained the old AL-7F engine while overall weight increased.

 

Only with the introduction of a new engine, the AL-21F, all performance data finally improved significantly. This variant went into production as the Su-17M ("M" for "modernized").

 

 

The References

The subject of my build will be “Red 16”, a Su-17 assigned to the 217th Fighter-Bomber Air regiment based at Kyzyl-Arvat (todays Serdar, Turkmenistan), patrolling the Iranian border in the early 80s.

They received second-hand Fitters in 1979 to replace their old MiG-21PFMs used as fighter-bombers until then.

 

Inspiration came from these articles from the site “easternorbat.com” (fantastic site for all Soviet aviation aficionados):

http://www.easternorbat.com/html/217th_reg_su-17_bb_eng.html

http://www.easternorbat.com/html/217th_regiment_80s_eng.html

 

I have a soft spot for Soviet equipment stationed at the remote parts of the Soviet Union and in recent years, many photographs from private collections emerged, showing daily life on some of these remote spots at the edge of the red empire. Often these places lacked even basic commodities like running water:

https://ok.ru/kizylarvat/album/51975801143379?st._aid=Groups_Photo_Album_List_openAlbum

 

Then I've collected some walkarounds for detailing the kit:

https://www.scalenews.de/suchoi-su-7-fitter-walkaround-46/

http://walkarounds.scalemodels.ru/v/walkarounds/avia/after_1950/su-17_omsk/

https://www.scalenews.de/ngg_tag/suchoi-su-17-walkaround-39/

http://litnik.in.ua/walkaround/reaktivnye-samolety/walkaround-su-17m-ot-peps-chast-2 

 

 

The Kits

Till now, there are no kits available in 1/48 to build the earlier marks of the Su-17. Therefore, the only possibility to portray one of these variants is to combine several existing kits. In this case it will be:

 

The Kopro Su-7, which will be used mainly for its fuselage:

su-17_01b2jox.jpg

 

The Hobby Boss Su-17, which will provide its wings, landing gear, weapons and various detail parts:

su-17_02sskc0.jpg

 

Of course, some aftermarket help is thrown into the mix too, namely:

 

  • Eduard Brassin Su-7 ejection seat
  • Eduard photoetch Su-7 cockpit
  • Quickboost Su-7 air
  • Master Su-7 pitot and gun barrels
  • Wolfpack Su-7 exhaust
  • Reskit Su-17 wheels
  • Master Su-17 pitot and gun barrels

su-17_03p0kwd.jpg

 

Although quite a complete package, some scratch building will be required too.

 

 

Thanks for reading and hope to see you along my journey!

 

Cheers

Markus

Edited by Shorty84
  • Like 8
Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow!!

You are up to something here!

I would reconsider the Su-7 fuselage though... you actually only need the straight front section. The rear part and wing attatchment center could remain the HB parts!

Have a look at the canopy as well, the HB one does not realy look like one on the Su-17M3 upwards. So maybe it could be used as well!

 

Hope you are going to report on your progress here!

 

And stay healthy ! ;)

 

LG Werner

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Werner!

 

Regarding the fuselage, I really need the whole one for this variant. The first Su-17s still had the AL-7F engine (as the Su-7), therefore the rear fuselage remained the same in this area. The AL-21F with its redesigned rear was introduced only with the next variants (Su-17M onwards).

The wings of the HB kit actually fit the Kopro fuselage without much drama, I will show in one of the next updates.

 

The canopy of the Su-17UM/M3/M4 was markedly different to all earlier variants so I need to use the Kopro clear parts. On all older versions the canopy was still similar to the original Su-7. The windshield was the same and the clamshell canopy was based on the original sliding design.

 

For sure I will further treat you all with my efforts on this beast, no worries :P

 

Stay safe and healthy too my friend!

 

Cheers

Markus

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Great Markus, you seem to controll these variants  :)  you made your homework!

 

Me obviously not that early in the morning just out of my head! ;)

I had the  Su-20 shape in my head...

 

somewhere there is a build out there

.. ARC?

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Thank you! Keeping track of all Fitter variants is quite hard considering all the engine and fuselage combinations, especially counting the export variants which were often quite unique.

 

I guess you remember this build? A modeller in Poland did a kitbash of a KP Su-7 and Su-22 to create a Su-20: https://pwm.org.pl/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=72821

Here is his WIP (unfortunately the picture links are broken on the first 4 pages): https://www.pwm.org.pl/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=42911

 

Cheers

Markus

Edited by Shorty84
Link added.
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, Shorty84 said:

I guess you remember this build? A modeller in Poland did a kitbash of a KP Su-7 and Su-22 to create a Su-20: https://pwm.org.pl/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=72821

 

This is a great Su-20, I have seen before,

But no, I mean some early Su-17, probably even prototype... I gess it was silver and red...

 

 

 

Great liks above by the way!

 

Edit, found it!

http://www.arcair.com/Gal10/9001-9100/gal9032-Su-7-Knes/00.shtm

 

I even know the builder personally  :)

 

Edited by exdraken
  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, exdraken said:

But no, I mean some early Su-17, probably even prototype... I gess it was silver and red...

Ah, I guess you mean the Sukhoi S-22I (erroneously often called Su-7IG). This was a modified Su-7, fitted with variable-geometry wings to prove their feasibility (it was actually the first Soviet aircraft to fly with VG wings).

 

Here is the article on ARC: https://www.aircraftresourcecenter.com/Gal10/9001-9100/gal9032-Su-7-Knes/00.shtm

 

I've actually thought about doing this conversion too. Guess I need another Su-7 and Su-17 then 🤔

 

Cheers

Markus

Edited by Shorty84
  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, Shorty84 said:

 

The canopy of the Su-17UM/M3/M4 was markedly different to all earlier variants so I need to use the Kopro clear parts. On all older versions the canopy was still similar to the original Su-7. The windshield was the same and the clamshell canopy was based on the original sliding design.

 

 

hmm I just checked the Fitter bible... and yes the canopy is very different....  and terminates in a spine... hmmm 

do you think a MiG-21 canopy could fit or way to small? the Eduard MiG series  comes with a plethora of slightly different ones... I robbed a windscreen once to improve the ESCI Flogger.... nobody complained ;) 

 

no idea how you gonna do that one!

 

and I just read as well, that Egypt bought about 16 Su-17Ks as well.... makes your build even more interesting to me!

 

cheers, 

Werner

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Werner,

 

the MiG-21 canopy is unfortunately far off the shape I would need. I have a plan to modify the Su-7 clear parts, you'll see in a future update. If that fails, Plan B is vacuforming a new one.

 

Well, an Egyptian Su-20 could be done almost the same way by using the HB aft end and tail surfaces. Checking the Kopro Su-7 fuselage diameter, it is a bit larger than the Kitty Hawk or HB parts. So fitting the AL-21F aft end is not completely straight forward.

 

Cheers

Markus

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi all,

 

finally I've cut some plastic :)

 

For a change I will not start with the cockpit. The first course of action was the improvement of the ventilation louvres on the fuselage sides. This is what they should look like: https://www.scalenews.de/wp-content/gallery/su-7-walkaround-46/kampfflugzeug-suchoi-su-7-fitter-walkaround-detailbilder-46-bild-0017.jpg

 

As provided, the louvres are way too thick. While Quickboost offers resin replacements I decided to improve them myself. Using a razor saw I first removed the louvres from the frame.

su-17_0576jcx.jpg

 

Next step was to rework the shape of the rear-facing wall. When compared with the original you can see that the corner radii should be much bigger than on the front edge. The louvres were done from thin (0,3mm) plastic card and were fixed with a tiny amount of superglue into the frame.

su-17_0616joj.jpg

 

I have to say that I'm not really happy with my photos. It is clearly evident that I'm lacking good lighting equipment (light tent) and feel they are not up to standard :(

 

Feedback and questions are always welcome!

 

 

Cheers

Markus

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

i look forward to this fitter lesson markus, i guess all three kits have some short comings, which one of hobby boss or kitty hawks  various versions would you choose to build oob (with the least modifications) i only have the kittyhawk version but as I've found with the  etendard ivp I'm building I'm no big fan of  kittyhawks multi part fuselages, 

Glynn 

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Glynn,

 

thanks for your interest.

 

Regarding which Su-17 to build OOB, depends on what you mean with least modification (accuracy or details)? My personal choice would be the Kitty Hawk kit. Here's a more detailed reasoning:

 

Hobby Boss:

Seems to be based on the 4+ plans which are unfortunatey inaccurate (the old KP kit was based on the same plans and shares the same issues). The fuselage cross section is not completely round as it should be but "bulges" at the top. The windshield is way too narrow which destroys the "face" of the aircraft. Compared to the KH kit the level of detail in the cockpit, wheel wells, engine is simplyfied. The whole kit is 8mm shorter than the KH kit (don't know which is correct) and when built it looks "chubby" in comparison.

 

On the plus side, the HB kit is engineered much simpler and goes together quite well. You are given the option of 2 types of wings (swept aft or forward).

 

Kitty Hawk:

Typical for KH, the kit is a bit overengineered, each fuselage half is made of 3 segments which only have small glueing surfaces. The biggest offender is the curved belly which should be straight (resin replacements are available from CWS and Amur Reaver), the intake bullet is much too simplified (Amur Reaver, HAD, KASL and CWS provide resin replacements).

 

As often with KH, there are many small accuracy issues but most are not visible if you are not an expert on Fitters.

 

On the plus side, the fit of other parts (e.g. wings) is excellent and the level of detail (cockpit, wheel wells, ...) is great. The clear parts are correctly shaped and the finished kit looks accurate shapewise (my opinion).

 

So the final verdict from my side:

  • For accuracy and details -> Kitty Hawk
  • For ease of build ->Hobby Boss

 

Just one last comment. If you want to correct the curved belly on the KH kit you can do that without buying resin. I managed to correct the shape by inserting a "bulkhead" into the fuselage which forces the belly in shape. As an additional advantage, it strenghtens the whole fuselage which otherwise is quite flimsy due to its breakdown.

dsc05205r1jim.jpg

dsc05202i4j00.jpg

 

Cheers

Markus

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice start, and louvres!

And an interesting solution to the bananabelly ;)

 

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Shorty84 said:

On the plus side, the fit of other parts (e.g. wings) is excellent and the level of detail (cockpit, wheel wells, ...) is great. The clear parts are correctly shaped and the finished kit looks accurate shapewise (my opinion).

My opinion as well, Markus.

I had been battling with the KoPro kit for so long with regard to the forward fuselage/windshield and canopy shapes that, as soon as HomeBe posted the preview pics of the proposed Kitty Hawk Fitter kit on the Rumourmonger section, I realised that the shapes on it looked spot on, just as I realised that my sheila had a juicy rump the minute I saw her hips head-on coming my way from the front. :lol: 

Too bad I finally sold the KoPro kit. I ought to have save it for the Tumansky-engined broad rear fuselage section.

But oh, well...

Cheers,

 

Unc2 

  • Haha 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Uncle,

 

thanks for stopping by.

3 hours ago, Uncle Uncool said:

I realised that the shapes on it looked spot on, just as I realised that my sheila had a juicy rump the minute I saw her hips head-on coming my way from the front. :lol: 

Well, nice shapes are universially appealing, arent they :winkgrin:

 

Cheers

Markus

Link to post
Share on other sites

I love this thread! I built the old Vac-Form version back in the day, using Kopro parts. I'm so glad that someone is doing this kit the justice it deserves. I'll be watching intently, keep up the good work!!!

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I've seen the resin belly attachments, and considered getting one ,but i like your fix, it obviously depends on getting the other half stretched out to the same size   or the sanding and filling will obliterate the details,but i guess that test fitting now you've joined the fuselage segments will get you that level of accuracy, I'm  interested to see the fuselage halves together ,thanks markus,

Glynn

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, markmcguire25 said:

I love this thread! I built the old Vac-Form version back in the day, using Kopro parts. I'm so glad that someone is doing this kit the justice it deserves. I'll be watching intently, keep up the good work!!!

Hi Mark!

Thanks a lot, no pressure then :lol: I hope you're not in a hurry as I'm not really a fast builder (working from home now gives me not much more freetime than before) but would be glad if you follow along.

 

4 hours ago, Hewy said:

I've seen the resin belly attachments, and considered getting one ,but i like your fix

Thanks Glynn.

What I forgot to mention was that you need to bend the belly in shape before you join the 3 fuselage segments. The plastic is quite thin and soft, allowing for such an treatment. The plastic card former then ensures that the belly is completely straight (hard to achieve by bending alone) and makes the fuselage more rigid as a bonus.

You can either use one bulkhead for both halves, acting as an additional glueing surface or (like me) have one bulkhead for each half. I have the kit packed away now but the two halves fit together without much gaps or rework needed.

 

Cheers

Markus

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, Shorty84 said:

Well, nice shapes are universially appealing, arent they :winkgrin:

Uh-huh... all the more so if we consider the fact that it's not in vain that nature has demostrated over and over that round shapes are the most efficient ones in the whole universe. :wink: That's prolly why boobs and buns are round. :lol:

2 hours ago, Shorty84 said:

The plastic card former then ensures that the belly is completely straight (hard to achieve by bending alone) and makes the fuselage more rigid as a bonus.

You can either use one bulkhead for both halves, acting as an additional glueing surface or (like me) have one bulkhead for each half. I have the kit packed away now but the two halves fit together without much gaps or rework needed.

Speak about round shapes, Markus; was giving it a thought yesterday night.

Wouldn't have been better to devise circular bulkheads which diameters depended on how much you needed to stretch each section of the wrong shape of the belly and fix them to the inner fuselage perpendicularly rather than longitudinally? :hmmm:

Cheers,

 

Unc2

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Uncle Uncool said:

Wouldn't have been better to devise circular bulkheads which diameters depended on how much you needed to stretch each section of the wrong shape of the belly and fix them to the inner fuselage perpendicularly rather than longitudinally?

Well, there is more than one way to skin a cat they say. It would certainly be possible to do so but having a longitudinally bulkhead has several advantages:

  • you only have to create one part of constant width instead of multiple circular shapes
  • the whole belly can be glued against a staight edge, ensuring a flat shape without any rework. With circular bulkheads it would be harder to achieve a dead flat shape without rework as the thin plastic could still flex between the bulkheads
  • the longitudinal frame provides much needed additional supports to the 3 fuselage segments (the perpendicular bulkheads wouldn't achieve that, at least not without both fuselage halves glued together)

I'm sure there are even more solutions to the problem. My principle here is: minimum effort for maximum gain (like in school :winkgrin:) and KISS (Keep it simple, stupid).


Cheers

Markus

Edited by Shorty84
Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, Shorty84 said:

 

  • you only have to create one part of constant width instead of multiple circular shapes
  • the whole belly can be glued against a staight edge, ensuring a flat shape without any rework. With circular bulkheads it would be harder to achieve a dead flat shape without rework as the thin plastic could still flex between the bulkheads
  • the longitudinal frame provides much needed additional supports to the 3 fuselage segments (the perpendicular bulkheads wouldn't achieve that, at least not without both fuselage halves glued together)

 

Oh, that was thought very thoroughly, Markus. Quite smart thinking there, mate. I see that the longitudinal fix is a lot more efficient. Congrats, my mate!

Cheers,

 

Unc2

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Hi all,

 

some more progress over the last days. At the moment I try to sort out the bigger roadblocks of this conversion before commiting to the detail work.

 

So first order of the day was to mate the HB wings with the Kopro fuselage, their attachment being quite different. On the Kopro kit, part of the wing is moulded together with the fuselage while on the HB kit it is more or less a butt joint with 2 alignment pins. That meant I had to remove some material from the Su-7 fuselage. At first I determined the position for the attachment holes for the HB wing and drilled them into the fuselage. Expecting to break through the plastic when sanding down everything I backfilled the cavities with some 2K Epoxy putty.

su-17_07_01uykw1.jpg

su-17_09_01qykmw.jpg

 

For a while now I'm using this product. It is called cold metal (Kaltmetall) and originally intended for fast repairs around the house. Some modeller in Germany suggested it instead of Milliput and I've never looked back. It's main advantage is that the two components are already premixed (core/wrapping) and only need some kneading to mix and activate them. Therefore you can easily prepare even quite small amounts if needed.

su-17_08_01q5j14.jpg

 

After hardening overnight the power tool came out and some plastic was harmed :wicked: Half an hour later, this was the result.

su-17_10_018fjv1.jpg

 

The critical moment came when trying to mate the HB wings and the Kopro fuselage...SUCCESS! :yahoo:

While you still see a gap this is just because the wing is loosely attached. When applying some pressure, the gap is almost gone.

su-17_12_01pij98.jpg

su-17_11_0157k5z.jpg

 

 

So the fuselage still needs some cleanup but I'm quite satisfied with the result.

 

Critique and comments welcome :)

 

Cheers

Markus

 

 

Edited by Shorty84
  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
24 minutes ago, Shorty84 said:

For a while now I'm using this product. It is called cold metal (Kaltmetall) and originally intended for fast repairs around the house. Some modeller in Germany suggested it instead of Milliput and I've never looked back. It's main advantage is that the two components are already premixed (core/wrapping) and only need some kneading to mix and activate them. Therefore you can easily prepare even quite small amounts if needed.

Kaltmetall, yeh? :hmmm:Ya've just brought back memories of this shop owner at Kip Klebeband, a German tape manufacturer who ne'er agreed to send me some of his auto adhesive aluminium foil tape #345. Think it might get down to be the same way if I try to get one of this stuff from Toolcraft. :lol:

 

Hi Markus!

Critiques: none. Comments: thanks for letting me know about the existence of this 2K Epoxy putty! I might as well try it out.

Nice work matting the KoPro/HobbyBoss wing-root-to-fuselage joint.

Following with interest.

Cheers,

 

Unc2

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have done some old Su-7 and Su-22 and cannot understand why KP didn't think of issuing the latter with the correct fuselage.

The early swing-wings were much sexier!

Following with interest...

Bone

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...