Jump to content

Airfix O2 Skymaster 1/72nd scale, Fuerza Aérea Salvadoreña (FAS). Finished


Mr T
 Share

Recommended Posts

My entry to this GB is the Airfix Cessna O2. The O2 was a military version of the Cessna 337 Super Skymaster for the  USAF who used it for Forward Air Control duties in Vietnam. The O2 differed from the 337 in having more radio gear instead of rear seats and windows in the doors on the pilot's side for a better view downward. A total of 23 O2s were provided from US stocks to El Salvador commencing in 1981. Two were shot down by SA7s and one destroyed by mortar fire during the civil war. Reputedly, eight remain in service.

The Airfix kit appeared in 1968 and mine is an example from 1973 in the blister packs. On first inspection, it is not one of the finest products from Airfix The transparencies are a poor fit and in general the kit lacks finesse.

There do not appear any markings available in 1/72nd for these aircraft, and even marking details are a bit thin on the ground. There is an article in an old SAM about the FAS, but I have my doubts about the scheme shown. Spares box and home printing I think will be needed to put the markings together.

51364823601_8c41c47b77_c_d.jpg

51365046048_5b41f3cc39_c_d.jpgI have looked at

I have looked at billn53 build of the Airfix kit here,

Going to be fun I can see, and you might ask why is MrT not sticking to the red white and blue roundel?

The answer is a) a change is as good as a rest (yeah sure) and b) MrsT's grandmother was EL Salvadorean, the daughter of a vice President no less. It is a long and interesting story of how British interests spread themselves around at the end of the nineteenth century.

Edited by Mr T
  • Like 11
Link to comment
Share on other sites

There seem to be plenty of options for color schemes...

 

https://www.jetphotos.com/photo/9252828

 

https://www.jetphotos.com/photo/9273916

 

https://www.jetphotos.com/photo/6118670

 

Have you decided what you are going to use?

 

(I'm favoring the tan with black undersurfaces... And look! There's an A-37 Dragonfly in the background. You could make it a double build!)

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ah, you have found the same photos as I have. Not sure which scheme I will use  as yet. The all grey scheme looks appealing as it one colour and clean and I have more than one photo, albeit on the same side. 

The A37 is on the to do list. I have the Academy kit and some photoetch and an old Microscale decal sheet. 

Thanks for your suggestions. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

Welcome aboard Mr T nothing wrong with this choice. 

I hope I think that when building the kit. It really is poor, compared to what else  Airfix was doing at the time. The mould was not wearing well. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 minutes ago, Mr T said:

The A37 is on the to do list. I have the Academy kit and some photoetch and an old Microscale decal sheet. 

Thanks for your suggestions. 

I recently built Academy’s A-37, it is a gem of a kit. The SBS resin cockpit really makes a difference, especially if you build it “canopy open”. I can give a link to my WIP if you’re interested. 

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

Thanks, it is pretty far down the to do list at the moment, as I have committed myself to a fair few group builds, If you send me the sheet number, I can have a look on the Web. I need to inspect the Microscale sheet as some of one from the eighties and nineties could be a bit suspect instruction wise. 

Thanks again 

 

Edited by Mr T
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

The O2 has not been completely forgotten, but the Bristol Freighter has thrown up a couple of problems that I did not expect, like having to make replacement decals for the ones that curled up into a mess. However, I have done some work including a cleanup of a lot of the parts and cemented the wings together, and some work towards a home-made decal sheet. A major issue with this kit is the shape of the lower cockpit windows. As provided, that are a very poor fit and the wrong shape. To improve them, I have reshaped the opening and glued them in with a hard UV activated superglue. Once the layer of glue was set solid, i sanded and the glue and plastic flush and after a final polish it has come up reasonably well. The large window is a pretty reasonable shape, and the smaller window shape will be finalised with masking. Next up will be a new nose wheel leg, as the kit version is a bit bent and not well-defined.

51405031105_f18dab35bf_c_d.jpg

Edited by Mr T
  • Like 8
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

More work done on the Skymaster, now that the Bristol Freighter is finished. Cockpit  innards are done, with a bit of scratch building for the shelf that holds the radios instead of the rear seats. The instrument panel and control wheels were pretty decent and were just painted. The thickness of the transparencies means there is not a lot to see.

51446622076_02ac9b4cdf_c_d.jpg

The new nose gear has been built from Albion Alloys N/S tube set into the original nosewheel fork and new main wheels have come from the bits box. I think they are from a Phantom.

The fuselage is together and is an indifferent fit. What the kit completely omits are any provision for the engine exhausts, presumably Airfix thought the exhaust gases would build up in the fuselage and either a) the aircraft blows up or b) the pilot is overcome with carbon monoxide poisoning and the plane crashes. To rectify this, after looking at a lot of photos, I have drilled some holes to take some brass tubes to act as exhaust pipes. My chosen airframe is to be 608 and recent  photos show this in very good condition with landing lights mounted in the nose rather than the wings and with no pylons and a different aerial fit. The next job I am in the middle of is getting the windscreen to fit the fuselage,

51446621296_2b8aaee2a7_c_d.jpg
 51446860733_23bf04f24f_c_d.jpg
 I actually feel I am getting somewhere with this kit, although not relishing sorting the tail booms out.

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Good progress so far. Your shelf for the radios looks much better than mine! I'm interested to see how you will go about fitting the transparences in the roof, I recall them being very problematic.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The upper window in the roof is already in. I added it before the fuselage halves went together. The fit wasn't good, not helped by on the frames having broken off. I reckon the mould for this kit must gave worn quickly or had filling problems as I noticed on your build that you had problem areas that I didn't and vice versa. For an Airfix kit of the era it is bad. The windscreen is in place now. Like you I cut it down the central frame and then sanded the halves to 'fit'. The general fit around the edges is not stunning and after filling with some Glue and Glaze, I am using some water based putty (Perfect Plastic Putty) to fill the gaps. Still got the props to finish. Started to thin them down on the runner and then they will be painted. Dry fitted the wings and not impressed. Still, it is the only game in town in 1/72nd scale until the day after I finish it and a new one is announced. Thanks for your comments and the really useful WIP you did. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

More work on the Skymaster. The wings have been added, and some attempt made to fill the rather obvious joint line. When people write about 'neatening' seams, they are obviously not building kits like this (When neatening seams the terms is in articles, which appears to be an 'in' phrase at the moment, I always think of something of the 'Sewing Bee') To fit the booms and tailplane on, I did the following.

The fit of the booms to the wing was virtually non-existent on one side, and a fairly large gap was filled with plastic card shims. The best fitting, a relative term, boom was attached to the wing and any packing was added. The boom was then left to set thoroughly in a makeshift jig.

51486629373_c0d8f6b014_c_d.jpg

The remaining boom and tailplane was set up on the model in the jig made from Lego (other plastic bricks are available, apparently the original patent has expired) and glued together with Tamiya Extra Thin Quick Setting. Any slight adjustments needed were held in place with Blu Tac. The model was left to set hard, and then the joints had a bit more cement to ensure there were no weak points. The fuselage nose was not added until I had tested the model on its undercarriage to ensure the nose was sufficiently weighted. After everything has been cleaned up, the next step will be a coat of primer.

51487337480_208d9a1afa_c_d.jpg

 

 

  • Like 12
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It wasn't easy, like everything else on this kit. They look square and level, but I have not taken a ruler to them. Sometimes best to kid yourself it is alright!

This kit has been more of a challenge than I thought it would be, but that is what modelling is all about. I think I am in for a prime, fill, sand, repeat session next. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Back from hols this afternoon and possibly a bit more done tonight. Got back to find heating not coming on, it looks to be a pump issue. Hopefully can get out usual plumber on Monday. 

  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, got the paintwork on and intending today to gloss varnish the airframe and get the decals printed out. 

However, virtually all day was spent at the LGI whilst having a nose bleed sorted out. I never realised how rubbish daytime TV is. Glad I had a couple of books on my phone. Off to bed for an early night.

  • Sad 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, Mr T said:

Well, got the paintwork on and intending today to gloss varnish the airframe and get the decals printed out. 

However, virtually all day was spent at the LGI whilst having a nose bleed sorted out. I never realised how rubbish daytime TV is. Glad I had a couple of books on my phone. Off to bed for an early night.

 

Sorry to hear about the nose bleed Mr T.   I used to suffer a lot and the big ones can be quite dramatic (and distressing)!  I hope you're sorted now.

 

Cheers

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks everyone, after a reasonable night's sleep, woke up at six am with a bleeding nose again! It wouldn't stop and so at sevenish off to the LGI again. I got back at nine pm after waiting to be seen. Not helped apparently by a shooting. Now sat in bed after the best corned beef sandwich ever and some ice cream with a pack up one nostril that will dissolve of its own accord. Not a good day, but have been told to relax with no strenuous exercise and no heavy lifting for a few days. Now how to fill my time🤔🛩️🖌️

  • Like 1
  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Mr T changed the title to Airfix O2 Skymaster 1/72nd scale, Fuerza Aérea Salvadoreña (FAS). Finished

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
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...