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Hi, guys...

 

This is my last kit for 2020, and it's a refurbishment of an old favourite.  I bought this kit in 1990, although I used an article in a modelling magazine from 1985 to make some basic improvements at the time.  It has been repainted twice since then, this being the third and hopefully, the last.  Perhaps the modelling gods will give us a more up to date kit in the coming years.

 

Anyway, I stripped off the old camouflage and markings, right back tothe gaudy coloured plastic which this company became renowned for.  I wanted to make the later version, the Do18G with the cannon installed in the rear fuselage turret.  Matchbox gave the option for making this variant, but the turret left an awful lot to be desired, it having been made to fit the same space as the MG position, rather than having been provided with a fairing so as to accommodate a better representation of this assembly.  I also added on various bits and pieces from the spares box and acquired a Kora beaching carriage to finish off the revamped look.

 

So, to business...

 

I had long-since filled in the trenches of the upperwing and engine cowling panels and had no intention to rescribe, either then back in the day or now, although I did leave the underside panel lines intact... no, I don't know why either.  I removed the seats in the cockpit, gave them a passing coat of paint and attached some makeshift, homemade seat belts.  I slightly and carefully widened both openings for the weapons, the nose MG position being furnished this time round with the insert from the Italeri He111 dorsal MG position, which also includes an integral seat.  The MG mount was made from fuse wire.  In the first image below, the internals of the aft turret have been removed from a Revell Fw200C-4 Condor kit, including the cannon, and the transparent turret can be seen test-fitted prior to building up the sides of the fairing. 

 

GEDC0327.jpg

 

 

So here, the fairing to the turret has been made.  This was done by using a small part of two upperwing engine nacelles - the rounded rear tip - from an Italeri Me323 kit, inserted under either side of the turret overlap, and padded out with filler, which would later be sanded smooth.  Strake lines for the upper fuselage were made from stretched sprue.  You can see that both the fuselage and to the left, the wing, have now received an undercoat of pale grey in preparation for starting the camouflage. 

 

GEDC0332.jpg

 

 

Once happy with the turret fairing, I added in two upperwing exhaust outlets for the front engine; the outlets for the rear engine had been made years back by hollowing out six circular openings either side of the rear set of cowling intakes; when using the magazine article all those years ago, it suggested the two poorly moulded intakes, sitting one in front of the other, should be removed and four put in instead, but I have since learned that not all versions had four intakes in this position, therefore later in the build, I was obliged to remove the front two as they didn't properly represent my chosed variant.  The camouflage greens are from the Humbrol Luftwaffe-specific range, although I'm not a fan of the darker shade straight out of the tin, and always mute it somewhat by mixing it with the lighter shade.  I thinned but did not replace the flap/aileron attachment pins.

 

GEDC0341.jpg

 

 

Once the paint scheme was complete, a couple of coats of floor polish as varnish were applied and once dry, the markings went on and varnish applied again before a blackwash was put on and left to dry slightly before the excess was removed.  This gives a slightly weary look which I quite like.  Again, the aft turret transparency was test-fitted and a DF loop was made from fuse wire and sometime thereafter attached between the turret and the fin leading edge.  The canopy was provided from the relevant Falcon vacuform set and any small misalignments were carefully tidied up.

 

GEDC0364.jpg

 

 

 

Some time thereafter a few coats of a homemade satin mix were applied and this give the model a lovely dull sheen; all of the small antennae were then re-attached, and the main struts supporting the wing were re-rigged using elasticated thread.  The propellor blades were also sourced from the previously-mentioned Fw200 kit as they were more slender, and a pointed spinned was fitted to the rear propellor.  The one you see will have to suffice until I can get a better offering that will cover the exposed area between the propellor backplate and the spinner.  The small rudders under the fuselage were also re-attached at this time.

GEDC0370.jpg

 

 

For a little bit of added interest, two small bombs were used from the spares box - previously part of an old Airfix Ju87 - and the RATO unitrs were taken from a Dragon Ar234 jet bomber kit.

 

GEDC0371.jpg

 

 

So, now to the beaching carriage... a nice item from Kora, made from resin, but sadly, no instructions as to where the pieces should go and only a sketch of the carriage once built, was provided.  I had to consult the internet to see how things should go together, and another modeller provided the basis of something approaching correct in his build article.

 

In real life, I imagine there was sifficient weight ahead of the centre of gravity to ensure this aircraft did not tilt backwards and off the end of the carriage, as there was no rear support for its rear fuselage; in the world of the modeller, however, the kit is too tail-heavy so I attached a small transparent support to the back of the carriage where it sits discreetly and largely unseen.  Sadly, I also have to rely on a piece of Blue Tac under the small front wheel of the carraige to ensure the model stays put on it.  If I had realised this was going to be a problem, I would have inserted some type of weight into the upper fuselage opening prior to attaching the wing and sponson, and pushing it as far forward behind the cockpit bulkhead as possible to ensure the kit was front-heavy.  Hindsight is a great thing, I suppose...

 

GEDC0374.jpg

 

 

 

And finally, two photos to finish, showing the completed model.  All markings were sourced from my spare transfers box with the exception of the unit emblem, which was printed onto white-backed transfer paper, sealed using Halford's car laquer and then water-slid into position like and other waterslide transfer.  Due to the amount of laquer I apply, the transfer is sometimes a little reluctant to move from the backing paper, so this is a delicate job and patience must take precedence.  Also remember your face and eye covers when using the laquer in a well-ventilated area. 

GEDC0377.jpg

 

GEDC0380.jpg

 

So that's us done... this was an enjoyable kit to revamp and it represents two weeks' work.    I hope you like the end result as much as I do.

 

Keep safe and here's hoping 2021 will be a better year for all.

 

Regards,

 

Paul

 

Edited by obdl3945
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  • obdl3945 changed the title to Matchbox's Dornier Do18G
  • 1 month later...

Paul..........I like it as much as you do.  Great results!!!!! :clap2:

 

MIKE

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  • 3 weeks later...

Thanks, guys, for your comments...  much appreciated :-).

 

Regards,

 

Paul

Edited by obdl3945
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Thanks again, guys... :-)

 

Paul

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks, Eamonn... much appreciated.

 

Regards,

 

Paul

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