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RAAF A3-40 Mirage IIIO - Kinetic 1/48 - *** COMPLETE ***


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Well all is ready for the starting gun.

 

Kinetic's 1/48 Mirage III is in hand.

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 1

 

A box full to the brim with sprues. Still in the bags!

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 2

 

A nice selection of aftermarket.

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 3

 

And Caracal Decals "Mirage III Over Australia Part 2".

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 5

 

There are a lot of wonderful options for the Mirage III in Australian service from NMF, camouflage disruptor schemes, test aircraft, multiple specials and the low vis options under consideration with the, then, just about to be introduced F/A-18. I opted for the scheme that, for me anyway, has the most nostalgia and that was what was typical in the late 70's and early 80's. So it will be A3-40 in this scheme.

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 4

 

It was very tempting to do A3-40 after its transfer to 2OCU with the Tiger tail. However, photographs of the aircraft in its guise as the Williamtown Base Commander's aircraft, show it nicely maintained and this will make a pleasant change from my current heavily weathered MiG-21bis project and a fitting tribute to one of my favourite aircraft.

 

Sadly this aircraft had an unhappy ending as detailed at the ADF serials site and I quote:

 

Delivered 15/06/66.
Served with 76 Sqn Williamtown, NSW.
On 15/07/67, with 19 other aircraft departed on first leg to Butterworth, Malaysia.
This aircraft failed to start and delayed departure from Williamtown, an hour later all departed ok.
Served with 75 Sqn Butterworth, Malaysia.
The first OC Williamtown's a/c was A3-40 with the red/pale blue dart and falcon in circle 1976, in 1977 it returned to 2OCU colours.
Served with 77 Sqn Williamtown, NSW.
Crashed 02/05/86, off Williamtown, NSW. Aircraft impacted water during air to air gunnery mission.
Pilot PLTOFF C.D.Macklemann, killed.

 

Another GB 🥳🥳. Looking forward to the start.

 

Ray

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Ooooh Thats one that I really really want to do ! I want the same Australian set from Caracal. I hope you don't mind but Id like to follow this one. 

Edited by Corsairfoxfouruncle
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1 minute ago, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

Ooooh Thats one that I really really want to do ! I want the Second Australian set from Caracal though. I hope you don't mind but Id like to follow this one. 

 

Hi Dennis,

Do so!!  Great options on the Caracal sheets. I could only source Part 2 in time for this GB. I would of been tempted to do 75 Squadron magpie tail scheme if available. This sheet has it in low vis only. 

Ray

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21 minutes ago, Ray_W said:

 

Hi Dennis,

Do so!!  Great options on the Caracal sheets. I could only source Part 2 in time for this GB. I would of been tempted to do 75 Squadron magpie tail scheme if available. This sheet has it in low vis only. 

Ray

Funny thing is its the low-viz ones I want to do. I can get both sheets from an online hobby shop here in the states. Next time I put an order in, I can see what the postage to Europe would be if you're interested ? Maybe we can work a deal out. 

Edited by Corsairfoxfouruncle
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8 minutes ago, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

I can get both sheets from an online hobby shop here in the states.

 

Dennis,

Thanks for the nice offer and I'll keep it in mind. I see Caracal Models are in Austin Texas so not surprised you have no trouble. In this case, it was just timing. I sourced Part 2 without problem through the48ers.com. 

Ray

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5 minutes ago, CaracalModels said:

Great! I will be watching this thread with interest.

 

Welcome aboard. I hope I do the decals justice.

 

Ray

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Seeing how much I am really enjoying your Mig-21 and that I really like the Mirage III/V family I shall have to follow this one too Ray.

The green and grey scheme is the one I associate with Aussie Mirages and the one I am most interested in when I eventually get around to building one of my own, I also fancy doing a few Middle East schemes too.

Looking forward to this one.

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9 hours ago, modelling minion said:

The green and grey scheme is the one I associate with Aussie Mirages

 

Looking forward to this one very much. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Time to get into this one.

 

First step was some judicious dry-fitting to find any pitfalls and correct before glue comes anywhere near this. As usual, trying to achieve a build with the zero need for fillers.

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 6

 

A lot of people have sung the praise of this kit, but few have discussed the issue of fit, Did I get a poor moulding? This kit needs some work otherwise you can quickly and easily slip into a difficult and painful build. Let's call that "Beast" mode and it's not an F-35.

 

There is a definite step at the wing root on the starboard side. This requires the fuselage let in further adjusting the upper wing location tab and removing material off the bottom edge of the fuselage. 

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 8

 

The lower wings do not sit in without a significant step, this needs material removed from the mating surfaces. Maybe there is a scale 35 mm step on the actual Mirage - seems unlikely, even parked. 

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 7

 

Now sitting in nicely flush.

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 10

 

In some ways it felt like limited run kit in terms of part preparation. Scraping and filing is mandatory in a number of areas to get good joins and necessary clean up on all mating surfaces.

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 9

 

I am not complaining because I actually enjoy getting the fit right. It is more a warning for other intrepid modellers when they pull this one out of the stash.  

 

So more fitting and clean up before I am at a stage to start assembly.

 

Ray

 

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nice start!

 

take your time with this kit, actually parts fit quite well when cleaned up. Remove all the excess, especially injection ports etc.

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40 minutes ago, exdraken said:

take your time with this kit, actually parts fit quite well when cleaned up. Remove all the excess, especially injection ports etc.

 

Good advice! I finished cleaning up the major components and all go together nicely. The gap in the photo at the wing root will close up nicely when glued.

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 11

 

Ray

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You're treating this one to the care and attention it deserves Ray :thumbsup:

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I started by jazzing up the exhaust nozzle with some Eduard PE (48 866).

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 12

 

The result looks very nice indeed. However, as typical of my builds, I was unhappy with the result mainly due to the thickness of the exit leafing and decided to re-work the piece. Sometimes I wonder where my brain goes because I knew in advance I would not be happy, but finish it I did. So, remove the PE. 

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 13

 

The internal webbing representing the actuator arms is also not prototypical, so I removed those as well. This was the result, webs removed and nozzle thinned.

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 41

 

I then reassembled including a small styrene filler at the nozzle end sanded flush where the web was removed. To my eye the result is more pleasing and should paint up nicely. 

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 42

 

Note to self, get it right to your satisfaction first.

 

And I think that'll do ....

 

Mirage A3-40 Construction 43

 

Ray

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Ray_W
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While it may have gone along a tortuous route the end result (pun intended) is stunning Ray B) 

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5 hours ago, Col. said:

While it may have gone along a tortuous route the end result (pun intended) is stunning Ray

Thanks Col, I've painted it up and it looks cool. So glad I thinned the nozzle exit. Seems in my modelling, I am always doing practice runs with the kit-in-hand on the kit-in-hand. I think re-work is my specialty. 🙂

 

Now I wish I could work out whether Kinetic or Eduard have got the rear bulkhead detail right for a 1976 RAAF Mirage IIIO (F) and ditto for the Martin Baker Mk. IV ejection seat as fitted. Usually once I glue it together someone comes through with the correct information.  Hence, why I am good at pulling it apart. Sadly I have not got and cannot source a copy of Paul Mason's excellent title on the RAAF Mirage. I'll post something in the chat. 

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Good luck in your search Ray and hopefully someone can help you out.

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Great! This nozzle is a gem!

 

 

What  detail you need from that book? Send me a PM !

 

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13 minutes ago, exdraken said:

Send me a PM

 

Thanks for that. PM incoming.

 

Ray

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Great choice of subject and it is coming along beautifully mate.

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19 minutes ago, tonyot said:

Great choice of subject and it is coming along beautifully mate.

Thanks Tony (correct me if I am wrong),

Hopefully I'll get some work done in the cockpit over the weekend.

Ray

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Great work so far, I'll be following along for tips for my build. Won't be going quite so far on the detailing. Your PE work on the nozzle* looks fantastic - getting that kind of result with PE is a big challenge but you've done it brilliantly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

* I originally typed "your nozzle looks fantastic" but thought thought the unintentional double entendre might not belong on a nice forum like BM

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On 1/26/2021 at 11:48 AM, Ray_W said:

as usual, trying to achieve a build with the zero need for fillers.

 

I had to chuckle a little when I read this. In my book, the KIN Mirage IIIE is the putty monster of all putty monsters. I've been batteling one for a number of years now and I keep on returning it to the shelf of doom again and again. 
Having seen you approach this kit's issues, I'll follow this thread closely and try to apply whatever techniques I can lure from you. Especially looking forward to see how you´ll tackle the intakes.

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  • Ray_W changed the title to RAAF A3-40 Mirage IIIO - Kinetic 1/48 - *** COMPLETE ***

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