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1/72 F-100A Short Tail Kit Bash or something...


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We;;, here I go again.  I usually don't have much luck on these Group Builds, as something always seems to come up to get in the way.  However, this time, it's one of those that I've been wanting in the collection, so we'll see.  I seem to recall that Linbergh or someone had done one of these in a larger scale, back in the late 50's, but I'm not certain.

 

I was originally intending to build a YF-100, but then I ran into JohnR's beautiful build HERE

 

and I was a little bit intimidated.  So, I decided instead to build another seldom-seen model, the short-tailed version of the first few F-100A's.  The YF-100 had a taller tail, but when the F-100A went into production, they thought that shortening the height of the tail would enable it to go faster.  Don't know how that worked out, but they created deadly handling problems!  Eventually, the tall tail was brought back, and one foot of extra length was added to each wing tip.  This solved the handling problem, and became standard on the later "A" models, as well as the rest of the later F-100's.

 

As usual, I decided to use the Trumpeter kit, in this case the "C" model.  Accompanying the kit will be a Rob Taurus F-100D canopy, intended for the Italieri kit, plus an Aires F-100D cockpit set:

 

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As with my other F-100 builds, there will be a lot of kit carving and grinding, so here goes!

 

First up, the proverbial incorrect nose.  Laying the model atop the drawing in the "F-100 Super Sabre In Detail and Scale Part 1", by Bert Kinzey, I determined where to cut the kit so that adding my resin copy of the Esci F-100 nose would end up leaving the model at the correct length. I then made the cut(s):

 

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First the nose, then the tail:

 

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*** EDIT ***  Further down this build article, I discovered that I cut off the top of the tail on my model, way too much.  The correct dimension should be measured along  rear edge of the rudder/vertical stabilizer, and should be 28mm overall.  You can see where I added the length back with plastic card:

 

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Remember, it should be 28mm ALONG the read edge, NOT vertically as shown here. (Couldn't figure out how to get Photoshop to dimension along the angled line!)  Therefore, the next several pictures that show the tail end will feature the incorrect, way-to-short vertical stab.  They will be corrected later in the article. *** END EDIT ***

 

Don't get relaxed yet folks -- the carnage is far from over!  Next up, a few more things on the fuselage:

 

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The "L" depicts a piece of lead added to the nose, perhaps a quarter ounce. Next, the arrow on the left shows the area on the cockpit side that has to be thinned, to get the Aires cockpit to tuck in under the sill.  The next arrow, simply reminds one to select the air brake innards with the narrower gap.  The one in the kit with the wider opening was used on later variants, when they added a center-line bomb rack. The arrow at the back end shows where I removed the rearmost molded ring, designed to hold the jet exhaust assembly into place, but removing this ring now allows the entire assembly to be added later, a great boon to painting!

 

Now, I'll separate the Rob Taurus canopy from it's backing, using a scriber first, then a few thin cuts with a number #11 X-Acto blade.  I find the PE parts scissors very useful on canopies sometimes, because the blades are thicker and don't deflect as much.  The very thin razor saw also make life easier:

 

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The sides are best scored and the flexed back and forth to remove, while the waste between the front windscreen and the rear canopy is best sawn apart.  This canopy was designed to be built opened, so you don't have much choice!

 

Next, the sanding block is carefully removed from the Aires cockpit tub, after which the tub  is assembled, up through adding the instrument panel back piece, and the cockpit sides.  The "X"'s show where the cockpit tub has to be sanded to fit the fuselage, as well as slide under the canopy sills:

 

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Care must be taken not to over-sand here however, as the ultimate goal is to precisely make the taped-together fuselage halves the exact same width as the Rob Taurus windscreen (windscreen show here slightly askew for the purpose of illustration). The arrow (above right), shows where the cockpit tub fits under the cockpit sill.  The width at the rear of the cockpit will be address later.

 

Also note, above left, the the instrument panel back piece sits BEHIND the vertical wall edges on the tub, and atop the center console.  The instructions are not real clear here.

 

Well, that's enough for a start.  More mayhem to follow, anon...

 

Ed

 

 

Edited by TheRealMrEd
corrected error, added pic
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Oh yes! Some proper modelling going on here already.

This looks like a really interesting project, one that I am very interested to see the outcome of. It certainly looks like you have everything you need to build a great looking model and you also have all the information to make it an accurate one too.

very much looking forward to this and welcome to the GB.

 

🇺🇦

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2 minutes ago, modelling minion said:

Oh yes! Some proper modelling going on here already.

it's impressive isn't it craig. whenever anybody gets a whacking great saw out and starts chopping up the model i have respect. I'd panic if i did it. 😬😁

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1 minute ago, Dansk said:

it's impressive isn't it craig. whenever anybody gets a whacking great saw out and starts chopping up the model i have respect. I'd panic if i did it. 😬😁

Certainly is impressive Paul, never had the courage (or ability) to pull off something like this.

 

🇺🇦

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21 minutes ago, modelling minion said:

Certainly is impressive Paul, never had the courage (or ability) to pull off something like this.

 

🇺🇦

that makes two of us.

i'm still Hungry after @reinis thread: cutting a piece of cheese for a sandwich is about as adventurous i'll go with chopping up stuff that i've bought.

sorry for the slight thread hijack....

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  • Mike changed the title to 1/72 F-100A Short Tail Kit Bash or something...

Thanks folks!

 

Now, laying aside the fuselage for a moment, it is time to address the needed changes to the wings.  First off, some of the kit's excess sprue is stretched over a candle flame, and then the stretched sprue is used to fill the various holes in the bottom wing, as I won't be adding any stores:

 

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These are glued into place with a hot liquid glue (in my case, Weld-On #3) and allowed to dry, after which they are nipped flush with a pair of well... flush nippers.

 

Next we look at other needed wing mods:

 

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The innermost slat arm on either side needs to be nipped off, as they weren't present on the "YF" through "C" variants.  Next the wing tips need to be shortened 1 scale foot on either end, and glue the kit flap and aileron together on both sides, as the earlier F-100's had no flaps, and indeed, landed quite "hot".

 

The wing tips are both sectioned, using first a scribed line, and then a thin razor saw for the dastardly deed.  Use the thinnest saw you have, and allow for the saw kerf, if necessary:

 

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Above right, the wing on the left side has been shortened, with the original wing tip glue back on, aligned along the front edge and centered vertically on the wing.  In this shot the wing on the right side of the photo has not yet been sectioned.  Note on the left side wing that a small gap gap at the outer trailing edge, where the old wing tip is now not long enough,.

 

A better shot of the above, and also showing the flap and aileron glued together, forming one large aileron:

 

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Above right, a couple of chunks of the removed wing section are glued  into the missing chunks with hot liquid glue, and again, allowed to dry overnight.

 

Below, one side has been sanded down, the other not yet:

 

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Above right, both wings corrected, with removed slat arms and single piece, large ailerons.  Note that the slats now extend all the way to the wing tips.

 

One last point, while we're in this area of the model.  For all who lament the "oh, so evil" fault of the kit having too thin  landing gear wells, using the image below as a guide, simply glue two 1 - 2mm thick lengths of plastic card ( or what ever other thickness you heart may desire) in the locations shown by the blue tape, between the wing halves, before gluing the top and bottom wing halves together.  Problem solved!

 

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People, may I remind you, what we do is called "modeling" -- not "gluing basic kit parts together".  Get a grip!

 

Ed

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1 minute ago, modelling minion said:

Very nice work on shortening the wings, a very professional job with great results.

And thank you for pointing out the differences and how you are dealing with them.

 

🇺🇦

Thanks MM, that's the point of most of my posts these days.  Not so much to say "oh goodie, look what I can do", but to show the next generation some ways to go about solving problems, different techniques and the like.  Almost none of these things were invented by me, but by so many who have gone before, and I'm just trying to pass it along during my "turn".

 

Mostly, however, I like to build seldom-seen models, and show others precisely at least one way to build the same model themselves, should they desire to do so.  I keep hoping that others will sometimes say, "I'm going to try one of those myself", rather than "I could never do that".  At one time, I couldn't do that either!

 

May I remind all that at one time, none of us could (A) eat solid food, (B) get dressed by ourselves (C) tie our shoes... you get the drift.  You only learn how by beginning somewhere.  As my sainted granny used to tell me "Can't never could do nothing"!!!

 

Ed

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Well Ed I for one am very grateful that you have chosen to build us an early A and show us how to achieve it. I too like more unusual versions or schemes on models and an F-100A fits that bill quite nicely and now I know that it definitely possible.

 

Craig.

 

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Back to the fuselage for more fun and games, but first an interesting photo, of an F-100A test aircraft that was run into a hanger wall by Scott Crossfield, after the Hun refused to stop after a hot landing and three brakes applications boiled away the brake fluid.  I use it here to illustrate some of the necessary modifications for the "A":

 

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"F" above points out that the ailerons on the F-100A's originally extended nearly to the wing tips, while  figure "A" above shows the one piece large ailerons and no flaps.  Figure "R" shows that the rudder lacked the "ribs" of the F-100C and later variants.

 

On another note, if anyone has a larger or higher resolution image of the following page that I found on-line, I would appreciate a copy, or a tip as to what publication had this original illustration.  I would dearly love to model the top aircraft of the page, but I need the artwork illustration clear enough to work some magic...

 

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Now, back to modeling.  At this point I glued the aircraft fuselage halves together, along with the cockpit, but only glued the entire bottom seam, and the tail area, and just the tip end of the upper nose seam, leaving the remainder of the upper seam(s) to be adjusted later:

 

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At this point, the Aires front cockpit "dashboard" is glued into place, behind the instrument panel.  Even though it's a bit narrow when fitting the front of the cockpit to the Rob Taurus canopy, after being painted black, that won't be noticed (A), above right.  Also above right, figure (C) shows where pieces of plastic card have been added to shim the width of the rear cockpit to approximately the width of the back end of the Rob Taurus canopy (B).  Close here is good enough, as I will probably be posing the canopy open, and slight variations in fit won't be apparent.  If I were modeling it closed, the the area near (B) would need to be filled up with filler, to match the rear of the canopy precisely.

 

Below left, a piece of this plastic card is cut to fill the recess behind the cockpit, as it is now wider:

 

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Above right, the Aires rear "package tray" has been added to the rear cockpit.  Also, some shims have been added to the front of the intake duct, (A) to hold the desired vertical height, and two smaller slivers of card (B) are used to fill the new gaps in the sides of the intake tube.  All this was sized after temporarily holding in place the resin copy of an Esci F-100D nose, which I have used in all my conversions of the Trumpeter F-100C, F-100D and F-100F, although the "F" requires even more work.  This whole process was first mentioned, and more information is available, in my F-100C build Laven's F-100C

 

Next the upper fuselage seam and the rudder "ribs" are filled with 3M Bondo spot filler putty:

 

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Above right, the front intake plastic shims are cut down to size (the "A" one, shown earlier, is removed completely), but not yet sanded or filled.  This will be done after the ESCI nose is added permanently.

 

Next, the lower fuselage gets some love:

 

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The little "guard" at the rear needs removing, as it was not present on the "A" models, and is on the wrong side for any variant of the aircraft.  Of course, the "barrier" hook was not present either.

 

Below, she's starting to look more like an early "A", after adding the ESCI nose:

 

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Above right, the intake will need a little filler.

 

Well, that's a good spot to end today's edition.  See all y'all  later!

 

Ed

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The fuselage is really taking shape now Ed.

Great job fairing in the cloned ESCI nose and your adjustments to the tail look spot on to me.

Great photo at the top of the page, highlights the area of the different metallic finish on the rear fuselage very clearly which is very useful to me as I'm about to start masking that area on my build.

I think the page with the colour profiles on it come from a Squadron book by the look of it, but which one I don't know.

 

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Here you go Ed, does this help ? F-100A 53-1555
 

https://www.f-100.org/images/f-100a_31555-1.jpg

 

https://www.f-100.org/hun098.shtml

 

I believe this to be the unit the 4525th Fighter weapons wing that operated the aircraft. 
 

https://units.supersabresociety.com/emblems/usaf-fws/

Edited by Corsairfoxfouruncle
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4 hours ago, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

Here you go Ed, does this help ? F-100A 53-1555
 

https://www.f-100.org/images/f-100a_31555-1.jpg

 

https://www.f-100.org/hun098.shtml

 

I believe this to be the unit the 4525th Fighter weapons wing that operated the aircraft. 
 

https://units.supersabresociety.com/emblems/usaf-fws/

Thanks Corsairfoxfouruncle,  I had that photo, but yours is a slightly better copy.  What I really need is a better shot of the emblem or unit badge on the tail:

 

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Kooks like a torch with wings, perhaps protruding from a 5-pointed star.  I've seen this before, but can't remember where.  For some reason Luke AFB comes to mind....

Would like to know the details of the badge, and would love to know wgat it says above the "RESEARCH" banner.

 

Ed

 

 

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If I'm not mistaken that badge can be seen on the Thunderbirds F-84Gs because they were originally based at Luke  AFB.

Edited by Whirly
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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Whirly said:

If I'm not mistaken that badge can be seen on the Thunderbirds F-84Gs because they were originally based at Luke  AFB.

Whirley, you da man!

 

That's exactly where I found it, on the right side of an old Thunderbirds F-84G that I had built decades ago.  Hopefully, I can take a good picture and work from that!

 

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Thanks,

 

Ed

Edited by TheRealMrEd
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Now that we've got THAT part out of the way, back to the model.  Next up, more work on the canopy area.  First up, I cut a piece of .005" plastic card just a hair more narrow than the width of the rear of the canopy:

 

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Above right, The kit part of the rear canopy area is glued to the new plastic card bit, centered laterally, and positioned to end at the rear of the canopy, which for now is just setting there, NOT glued into place.

Part "B" is the Trumpeter kit rear canopy piece.

 

Next, an  oversize piece of the same thickness card ("C" below) is glued, for now, only to the back of the kit rear canopy part  "B" (the "package tray"?), but NOT to the canopy yet:

 

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Above right, after removing the Rob Taurus canopy, the front part of the kit "package tray" (I never knew what this area was actually called, the part behind the ejection seat, that actually moves up and down with the canopy -- not the fixed part underneath this -- which I also don't the name of...) is sawed off.  While I don't have a clear view of what is actually back there on the "A" variant, it is not the same as this kit's F-100C part (which actually looks more like an F-100D part anyway).  Anyway, this was necessary to clear the ejection seat rails, if I were to choose to model the canopy closed.  The rest of the area was now rather crudely painted flat black.

 

Next up, the aft part of the Rob Taurus canopy is prepped by masking and painting the INSIDE walls of the canopy FS #36321 Dark Gull Gray, which has been the USAF standard color since 1953.  I was surprised to find that this area was not the expected flat black, but I've got a photo that shows a lighter color, either this or bare metal, which is even less likely:

 

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Above center, the Rob Taurus rear canopy is now glued to the previously-described assembly (carefully centered), using G-S watch cement, in case I have to remove it later (if all this part doesn't work out!).  And, above right, the excess part "C" is trimmed and sanded to shape, with the very edge of the white plastic being beveled a bit, to make it look as thin as possible from outside.  The back and bottom of the white card bits will eventually be painted flat black, before assembly.

 

All this was harder to describe than to actually do, as is frequently the case!

 

More next time,

 

Ed

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28 minutes ago, Whirly said:

Glad to be of help! Please note your old model may not have the correct colors for the badge, see here two examples:

 

https://www.flickr.com/photos/61980076@N02/52162610032/in/dateposted-public/

https://www.super-hobby.it/zdjecia/8/2/3/1727_1_tam61077_1.jpg

 

 

Solved that small piece of the puzzle -- just ordered a Hobby Boss F-84G from HLJ for $8.00 and cheap  shipping -- it has the early T-bird markings, from which I can scan or scarf the Luke emblems!

 

Thanks again,

 

Ed

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