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Posted (edited)

@Viking is correct the ultimate Comet kit is yet to be produced.

 

@skippiebg is correct too, in that AA have taken it literally that the Comet nose was used unaltered on Caravelle and they have transposed the nose from their Caravelle kit onto their Comet, which is such a shame.

 

Tommo.

Edited by The Tomohawk Kid
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A spiffy addition to the topic, that, what!? I like whoever-made-it's sense of humour. I take it the mysterious "upper-surface air-scoops" are none other than the fixed slots on the inboard side of the pinion tanks. (I'll take especial care to cavort about the room while I bask in my accomplishment!)

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Posted (edited)

I have the 'spiffy' decal sheet that accompanied that fictitious conversion, which for the time was not too bad - but, 20 years on they look underscale.

 

414443561.jpg

 

Tommo.

 

Edited by The Tomohawk Kid
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3 hours ago, The Tomohawk Kid said:

but, 20 years on they look underscale.

Tommo.

 

Like Wagon Wheels.

 

Chris.

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Hi everyone,

I'm thoroughly enjoying this thread which really seems to have taken off in such a big way!

I too am an AA Comet and Caravelle owner and have always thought the noses on both kits were too elongated and pointy. I feel like a heretic criticising Kurt's work!

I'm happier about the Caravelle nose now though, but since reviewing the image in Tommo's @The Tomohawk Kid post and the link Peter @skippiebg added am in agreement with Chris @stringbag about the Airfix nose being the better shape and am now considering casting one, or 3!, to replace the AA noses. I've not looked into it properly but I'm thinking it only needs to be from the panel line behind the cockpit windows and in front of the nose gear well. I'll do some measurements later. If successful I can knock up some more noses for anyone who wants them. All my Comets are painted and just about ready for decalling so I'm a bit reluctant for such a big backward step at this stage. I was hoping the nose shape wouldn't be so noticeable once a livery was applied but I'm not so sure.

Also would the AA cockpit window decals fit a different nose? It might need a little tinkering with but I don't think it'll be too difficult.

Cheers,

Ian

 

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Tommo, that nose comparison is brilliant, it shows just perfectly how it should be, and Skippiebgs link to the drawing is also very revealing. I'm in agreement with Chris Stringbag and Ian Turbofan that teh Airfix nose is the best of the lot.

 

Now, what to do with my odd looking Comet?

I decided that the extended wing just looked wrong and I couldn't leave it like that. So I cut the extensions down. It is as if I needn't have bothered now!

I'm toying with the idea of cutting the wings off inboard of the tanks, and inserting extensions there. I don't really want to do it, but neither do I want to carry on building it. The wing does look to short now, and undernourished in chord.

But hey, I like model making, and a challenge. I think I might find a use for my razor saw this afternoon, If I can summon up the courage!

c18.jpg

 

John

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This really has to be one of the best and most interesting civil threads in a long while. Big thanks to everybody who has contributed so much useful information.

 

It isn't every day that a 59 year old Airfix kit is found to be more accurate (in one respect) than Authentic Airliners. I'm beginning to wonder if we have gone full circle and the best way, certainly for a 4B, might be to mate the Amodel wings and Airfix fuselage after all. I've got some other stuff to finish first but once that is out of the way I'll do some measuring and serious thinking.

 

Dave G

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5 hours ago, Turbofan said:

...

Also would the AA cockpit window decals fit a different nose? It might need a little tinkering with but I don't think it'll be too difficult.

Cheers,

Ian

 

Ian, if it's any help the AA Comet and Caravelle cockpit windscreens appear to be identical.

 

I had no problem at all fitting the Caravelle windscreen to the Airfix kit when I built my Alitalia VI-N. It was just a straight fit without any tinkering. I suspect a little trimming might be needed for the Comet but as you say it shouldn't be too difficult

 

Dave G

 

50026073182_a1ed72cf1b_z.jpg

 

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On window decals, it's worth noting the Caravelle had the Comet 1/2/3 windcreen. Comet 4 was as close as damn it identical to that (front four panes were flat, but that was all). Comets 4B and 4C, though, had slight height increases to the forward four panes, as shown in the Guy Montagu-Pollock illustrations. Though minor, this really shows in real life. All this, time, the Caravelle stayed with the Comet 1/2/3 arrangement until the VI-N inclusive, going for an altogether different layout from the VI-R.

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I quite agree, this is one of the best civil threads going, and all about the Comet! - fantastic!. It’s great to see all your posts of measurements, thoughts and comparisons. You have all given me the impetus to get stuck in again.

I did some measuring of Airfix, Amodel and an AA 4C kit that I bought at Telford last year. The Amodel one went into the “I’ll think about that another day” pile, but having seen some of the excellent work posted here I might bring it back nearer the front of the bench!.

The thing that I always felt was the most difficult part to get right on the Airfix kit is the intakes area. Looking at pictures of the full size shows a lot of subtle details in this area that would be good to replicate at least in part.

I also did some measuring and comparing with a RugRat resin 1/1A kit, but in reality, the early Comets were very different to the 3/4 series in full size and that’s apparent in the kits too.

 

Andy

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57 minutes ago, Andy Young said:

The thing that I always felt was the most difficult part to get right on the Airfix kit is the intakes area. Looking at pictures of the full size shows a lot of subtle details in this area that would be good to replicate

I feel that's the reason Amodel keeps popping up amid all the criticism. Its intake and centre section area, while not perfect, are really rather decent! The Comet is a huge sculpture all over, really...

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11 hours ago, Turbofan said:

Hi everyone,

 

I too am an AA Comet and Caravelle owner and have always thought the noses on both kits were too elongated and pointy. I feel like a heretic criticising Kurt's work!

 

Ian

 

Yes, I feel the same, but at the end of the day its not quite right.

 

Tommo.

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More good info, Rays pic of the Amodel nose shows that it looks a lot better under primer. I'll be tempted to leave mine alone.

 

I have done some more on mine, I've cut the wings off! It's getting dangerously close to creating a WIP thread in here, and I don't want to fall foul of the moderators, so have broken it out to a separate Work in Progress thread.

 

I'll just put summary photos here, and show the detail of what I am doing in the WIP thread.

 

Yikes! I'm committed now.

c19.jpg

 

And have arrived here:

c25.jpg

 

Happily, moving the outer wing further out meant that the trailing edge of the inner section needed widening in chord, allowing me to improve that area at the same time. It needs to settle, and then I can start milliputting and blending/shaping it all in. But I think it looks 10 times better now.

 

Maybe I wouldn't have started if I had known what this was going to involve!

 

John

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Andy Young said:

The thing that I always felt was the most difficult part to get right on the Airfix kit is the intakes area. Looking at pictures of the full size shows a lot of subtle details in this area that would be good to replicate at least in part.

Andy

This is one of the reasons I first floated the notion of cross kitting the Amodel and Airfix kit, using the Amodel wings and centre section and the Airfix fuselage. But, unfortunately a Dalek with a very powerful plunger attacked the Amodel kit. As @skippiebg says that is the strong point of the Amodel kit sans the rather large sink mark of course.

 

Tommo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

I tinkered with my 4B today flitting between the other half dozen projects on the go. I finished off the rescribing and attended to some blemishes. It just needs a final rub down with 2000 grit w&d an then a final coat of primer, then I can hit it with a gloss white coat.

 

One point I have noted is the @26decals Olympic fin decal from my Mk1 eyeball may be a tad small in chord for the Welsh kit - just in case I need to spray the leading edge of the fin midnight blue. To do this I have to await the arrival of the spiffy Tamiya bendy masking tape for curves.

 

Tommo.

Edited by The Tomohawk Kid
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Posted (edited)

I have been pootling on with my Olympic 4B, I'm far from happy with  it. The Tamiya bare metal went on a bit dry and hence is a tad grainy - I'm hoping that when I apply the clear satin coat that will address this. I agave the the flying surfaces and leading edges with a light dust of chrome to give some contrast, but that didn't work entirely how I wanted.

 

As predicted the fin decal didn't quite fit, because of the thin nature of laser decals, where I sprayed the leading is noticeable dark

 

Therefore I'm not entirely happy with it -  I often get this way with models and the cure is to put it aside for a couple of weeks so I can get my mojo back.

 

414446203.jpg

 

414446202.jpg

 

414446205.jpg

 

414446200.jpg

 

Tommo.

Edited by The Tomohawk Kid
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22 minutes ago, The Tomohawk Kid said:

I have been pootling on with my Olympic 4B, I'm far from happy with  it. The Tamiya bare metal went on a bit dry and hence is a tad grainy - I'm hoping that when I apply the clear satin coat that will address this. I agave the the flying surfaces and leading edges with a light dust of chrome to give some contrast, but that didn't work entirely how I wanted.

 

As predicted the fin decal didn't quite fit, because of the thin nature of laser decals, where I sprayed the leading is noticeable dark

 

Therefore I'm not entirely -  I often get this way with models and the cure is to put it aside for a couple of weeks so I can get my mojo back with it.

 

Tommo.

 

Hi Tommo, sorry to hear about the problems. In my experience when you are working with laser decals it's always safer to apply the decal first then do any paint touching up although I suspect you realise that now!  If it's any consolation one of my current projects is an F-RSIN Caravelle 10B3 which has been on the go for about eighteen months and has had several spells in the "pending" section of my loft. (I refuse to use the expression "shelf of doom"). It's one of these "I'll finish it or die in the attempt" models and it has definitely been helpful to put it away for a while and come back to it with a fresh eye. 

 

Returning to the original subject of this thread, I took a break from the Caravelle and assembled an Airfix Comet fuselage. I also temporarily assembled the Amodel 4B wings and I am confident to a level of about 80% that cross-kitting is feasible. Taking the engine intakes as the measuring point, the central section of the lower Amodel wing is shorter than the cutout in the Airfix fuselage by 2.5mm at the front and 3mm at the rear which leaves a nice space for packing, filling and blending. It will be necessary to create some kind of structure to support the front of the wing assembly but that won't be a problem. I will probably also try to fit the Amodel nosewheel well to the Airfix fuselage which only offers a flat blank area where the well should be.

 

I won't be starting any serious work on the hybrid Comet for a while but if things go to plan I hope it will eventually appear in Dan-Air livery.

 

Dave G

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4 minutes ago, Skodadriver said:

 

Hi Tommo, sorry to hear about the problems. In my experience when you are working with laser decals it's always safer to apply the decal first then do any paint touching up although I suspect you realise that now! 

 

Dave G

 

Its probably not as bad as I explained, but I set myself such high standards and envitably I always end up dissapointed.  Being a dark colour its not too bad, I suppose. Yes, I ended up touching up afterwards.

 

  Tommo.

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Posted (edited)

I thought it was worthwhile to summarise this thread and put the pros and cons of each 1/144 Comet together in one place. Firstly, this is not a definitive guide to Comet kits just the essential info that has been highlighted and discussed in this thread and such does not include other kits such as the Frog 1/96 one. What surprisingly has become apparent there is no definitive Comet in this scale, but a bunch of kits that are decent in varying degrees, but to achieve the de rigueur Comet kit in 144  and one will need to undertake some work on any of the below to make the ‘ultimate’ model. So here goes, with particular thanks to both @Viking and @Skippiebg as well as others that contributed.

 

Airfix: Comet 4B

 

Injection moulded.

The kit is rapidly approaching its 60th birthday and currently not in production

 

Pros

-          Dimensionally sound

-          Shape fundamentally correct

-          Robust kit and a good basis for accurising or converting to other variants

-          Relatively easy and cheap to source secondhand

Cons

-          Underside fuselage/wing centre section wrong/none existent

-          Sparse detail

-          Wing section over scale

-          Fuselage cross section slightly under scale

-          Engine profile both in cross section and profile not correct

-      Current decal option for the BEA Airtours and Olympic liveries, the cheat line colour for both options are questionable and the 'bright work' is overscale/over accentuated

-          Chunky appearance if not corrected

 

 

Amodel: Comet 4B and 4C

Short run injection kit with resin detail parts

Newish kit and currently in production

 

Pros

-          Generally nice engraved detail throughout

-          Overall profile correct

-          Well detailed and correct underside fuselage wing centre section

-          Wing profile and dimensions correct for 4B

-          Nicely moulded resin exhaust cans.

-          Freely available and with a bit of effort can be sourced for not much more than the Airfix kit.

-          Attractive box art: Olympic 4B

 

 

Cons

-          Fuselage for both versions under length and cross section too narrow

-          4C wing too short and pinion tanks wrongly located

-          Most examples suffer from a large/significant sink  mark on the underside fuselage/wing centre section negating one of the biggest pros of the kit.

-          No tail bumper

-          No fuel dump pipes on the upper wing surfaces of the 4C.

-          Decals for the Olympic 4B livery not entirely accurate.

 

 

Authentic Airliners: Comet 4B and 4C

 

All resin kit

Currently not in production

 

Pros

-          Generally very well detailed and dimensionally accurate

-          Extremely well cast and engineered

-          Fuselage/centre wing section correct

-          Simple construction

-          Parts breakdown conducive for easy painting and finishing

 

Cons

-        Nose profile is not correct. AA appear to have grafted a Caravelle nose onto a Comet fuselage. The mistake appears to stem from Sud Aviation licensed the nose profile of Comet for the Caravelle from De Havilland - despite this the profiles differed noticeably between machines.

-          No decals included in the kit

-          Relatively expensive

-          Despite being extremely well engineered experience working with resin will be useful

-          Currently out of production.

 

Welsh Models: Comet 4B and 4C

 

Vacform and resin & all resin versions available

Currently in production

 

Pros

-          Dimensionally correct

-          Shape fundamentally correct

-          Good decal options

-          Resin well cast and detailed

-          Vacform sturdy and well made/formed and easy to work with

-          Good wing/engine detail profile

-          Simple construction

 

Cons

-          Underside wing fuselage centre section not correct (better than Airfix, but still lacking)

-          Fuselage lacks detail (not an issue in 1/144?)

-          Tail planes underscale

-          No tail bumper

-          Experience in vac and resin required, despite being well made

-          Relatively expensive

 

 

If I have missed something or got anything wrong let me know and I will add/edit accordingly.

 

Tommo.

Edited by The Tomohawk Kid
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Very useful summary Tommo, a great idea to create a one-stop reference for the few Comet kits available.

Can you add another feature that I've noticed missing from the Amodel 4C? The fuel dump pipes on the upper surface of the wing tips. Shown here.

 

I've made a bit more progress on my Amodel 4C, mainly blending in the wing extensions, and deciding that something had to be done about the nose shape, ending up with this: (more in the WIP thread here).

c28.jpg

 

Keep up the good work chaps!

 

 

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11 minutes ago, Viking said:

Very useful summary Tommo, a great idea to create a one-stop reference for the few Comet kits available.

Can you add another feature that I've noticed missing from the Amodel 4C? The fuel dump pipes on the upper surface of the wing tips. Shown here

 

 

Done.

 

Tommo.

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Posted (edited)

Out of interest I dug out my the Welsh 1/72 Comet 4B out today, as this thread had piqued my interest.  I can report:

 

- The wing/fuselage lower centre section is entirely correct and is beautifully moulded.

- The wing itself is nigh on a work of art, perfectly capturing subtle nuances of the Comet wing as well a being excellantly detailed with the right amount of finesse.

- From a cursory look the nose profile on the backing sheet looks a bit off, but once cut out and offered up against drawings it may well be right, it is difficult to tell when it is still attached to the backing sheet.

 

Tommo.

Edited by The Tomohawk Kid
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