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Olde Monogram SE.5a, 1/48 ........

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So I've been poking at this 1/48 WW1 subject for several months now over on the "WW1 Forum". As a child, I had all the old Aurora, SMER, etc. kits spinning from my ceiling. These were some of my first models I built as a child and I've wanted to revisit those for years with my Adult Modeling Skills (AMS). Adult Modeling Skills should not be confused with the much more serious underlying condition of Advanced Modelers Syndrome.


Since I haven't done anything like a serious build on a biplane in 50 or so years, I thought it would be best to dip my toes in with something not-to-expensive that I would regret screwing up.


To that end, a small pile of cheap, old WW1 kits has been amassed, many the same ones that were hanging from my ceiling. I built the old Monogram DVII on a lark as Stachel's aircraft in the book. This is the build that's pushed me down this present  rabbit hole.




This looked like the best candidate to figure out and learn painting ribs, rigging, weathering and such to look like the real thing.










The decals look like toast, a shame as I like the blue they used. A friend is sending me some extra Roden decals but after reading about them, I'm not sure if he's really doing me a favor.




Armed with this Squadron Signal I jumped in and noticed the dihedral was a bit shallow. I made some cuts on the bottom at the wing joint and fixed it to match the drawings.






While all this cutting and bending was going on I couldn't put my finger on what was wrong with the bottom and then realized a large vent was missing so out came the grinder. About now I'm going from Adult Modeling Skills to Advanced Modelers Syndrome as I could have just painted the hole black.






The struts are the biggest eye sore, I found some replacement candidates in an old SMER DH.2. I will scratch the cabane struts. While there, I pinched some Lewis drums for the coming scratch cockpit. I filled the slots with kit parts and cut flush.






I busied up the top wing to look more like the real deal by sanding away the molded detail and replaced with my "go-to" furnace tape and wire to get some interest going on.








I will scratch a cockpit together and hopefully stop trying to turn this into a 1/48 scale WnW's kit and get onto some painting.

Edited by Allan31
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Very neat! The SE5 always seemed to be the cleanest WWI design, along with the Fokker D.VII.


Those WNW instructions are seductive aren’t they? I’ve spent far too long detailing 1/72 kits because of them…




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Monogram gave me a seat and joy stick. Out comes the sheet styrene.




Looking at the WnW's instruction pics online I cobbled together the seat, floor and instrument panel.






I'm still experimenting with the Vallejo paints and they still haven't disappointed.
I scratched numbers on the dials and coated with Future, belts from yogurt cup lid.






The Lewis drums I pinched from an old SMER DHII worked perfect.
I again used the WnW directions and painted the interior sides of the fuselage.








All closed up, I can do some more detailing around the engine covers and panels. Probably more furnace tape.








I am so, so GLAD I got those rudder pedals in there......

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29 minutes ago, Allan31 said:

I am so, so GLAD I got those rudder pedals in there......

Another moment brought to you courtesy of WNW instructions. I hope you got the stencilling on the Vickers magazine feed box the right way up? :)

The bits we CAN see look smashing…




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Looks like quite a kit, but not the right way. Lovely work so far.


On the decal front I’d recommend two possible courses of action.


If you have access to an inkjet printer/copier photocopy them on to some inkjet decal paper (usually about a tenner on evilbay)


Or leave them in the sun to bleach the white back a bit then give them a coat of microscale liquid decals.


Roden decals, hmm my experience is they look nice but invariably disintegrate on contact with water, so I’d probably try the liquid decal route with these too.

Edited by Marklo
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6 hours ago, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

As a Huge Monogram fan (Grew up just 25 miles from the headquarters). Ive never seen or heard of these kits before. So for this alone I will follow along if I may ? 

This boxing was done by Revell Germany in the early 1990s, when they had a reissue program of Monogram kits with European connections for the European market. The kit itself is the old Aurora tooling which Monogram bought in the late 1970s, and did a bit of retooling on before issuing it themselves in 1978 or 1979.

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  • 1 month later...

Sorry it's been so long, build pace is picking up now that I'm home.

The "average truth" for a good "Natural Linen" color on the .www seems to be FS33695. I started with that in the Vallejo line and added some white for the ribs and started playing.




I sprayed the beige/white as a base, masked the ribs then shot straight beige.






PC10. Here we go. I know there are two very passionate groups out there in the world. The GreenPC10's and the BrownPC10's. I'm a brown. 
With all the colors that Vallejo offers, I'm sure there is a perfect match right out of the bottle but this is the recipe I came up with using Vallejo paints.

71.029-Dark Earth-----10 drops
71.036-Mahogany ------5 drops
71.294-US forest Grn---3 drops

See what I did there? I added green....This is close, I think I want to add more mahogany for the next build. I took this, added white and masked the ribs then shot full PC10 over that.





A little too much contrast so I will soften the ribs with a misting of straight PC10.

Decals and weathering next. Hopefully I can post more than once every 2 months.....

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I softened the rib contrast with some PC10 misted over.






I was pleased someone in Germany sent me some original Revell decals for this kit and as luck would have it they are for Mannocks a/c, the one I was kinda thinking about doing but these decals made up my mind.


I made new cabane struts from strip styrene and attached the upper wing.




I used some brown oils mixed to match my version of PC10 and weathered back the markings.






I weathered the bottom to show the usual grime from incontinent engines. I mixed up some mud color and blew it on the bottom as well from muddy airfields.




This the first real serious attempt at rigging I've ever done. My baby steps on the tail using EZ-line.




I'm glad I cut the rudder decal apart, it never would have fit folded around as Revell intended.


Wing struts and more rigging then all the little fiddly bits.

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On 6/3/2022 at 11:57 PM, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

As a Huge Monogram fan (Grew up just 25 miles from the headquarters). Ive never seen or heard of these kits before. So for this alone I will follow along if I may ? 


I've never lived near Morton Grove, but I was a fairly well-informed Monogram fan as a kid, and I don't recall any of their WWI offerings either.  Richard Humm's comment reminded me Monogram acquired Aurora moulds but I was only aware of the movie monsters.


Your model is looking gorgeous, Allan.  Can't wait to see her done!

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On 6/2/2022 at 2:49 PM, Allan31 said:

A friend is sending me some extra Roden decals but after reading about them, I'm not sure if he's really doing me a favor.

I’ve had trouble with them in the past but on my current Roden Fokker DVII I found that soaking them in warm water with washing up liquid  makes them work fine.


The build is looking really good. Makes me want to pull out the SE5a I have lurking in the stash. Might have a go once my GB commits roll off a bit.

Edited by Marklo
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Very, very nice! These older kits can build up well, given a bit of love and attention (I built Lindberg’s Jenny recently, and am very happy with how it turned out). Your SE.5 looks great and I’m sorely tempted to get one for myself!

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