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My "Last Legs Ponies" project is modeling American fighters on their last legs in the Caribbean (started with Mustangs, hence the "ponies"), with an entry for each country.

 

For Nicaragua I am modeling a P-38, and she will be my entry for this GB. Kit will be Hobby Boss . . .

 

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. . . with decals from Aztec.

 

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Excited to get going! My biggest fears are a) getting the nose weight right and b) finding air intakes which for some reason Hobby Boss has failed to include.

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welcome along with a very interesting choice!

 

I have seen these models build up and they turn out quite nice. But it's the scheme that rally gets me, I just love to see these lesser known ones and this fits that category nicely. Those decals do look nice.

 

Well good luck with the build, I hope you enjoy it and I look forward to seeing her in the gallery

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Starting in on the kit today, first step per the instructions is assembly of the fuel tanks. I have removed the camera from the starboard pylon. 

 

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But, now I'm realizing that I don't believe the tanks are on the a/c in the reference photo (hard to say for sure). My preference is to have them on the model, but not sure if there's a good argument one way or the other as to whether or not my a/c would have used external fuel tanks?

 

Here is the reference again:

 

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I reckon there's an arguement to be made that any P-38 could have had tanks fitted or not fitted at various points, so I'd go with whichever option makes you happy :)

 

James

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On 9/12/2022 at 6:47 AM, 81-er said:

I reckon there's an arguement to be made that any P-38 could have had tanks fitted or not fitted at various points, so I'd go with whichever option makes you happy :)

 

James

Then tanks it shall have, thanks, James!

 

I have most pieces off the sprue now, and these were cleaned up in preparation for a spray of Tamiya rattle can semi-gloss black. A few of these have subassembly complete or started, such as the superchargers, whose air outlets are separate pieces. I'm impressed with how well everything goes together on this kit.

 

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Here they are after blast number one:

 

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Edited by ModelingEdmontonian
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By the way the radar and mount on the P-38M came from the USN AN/APS-4 series of radar’s used on the TBM’s and Helldivers. So if you have a spare on of those you can get the mount from that and fair it into the nose. If looking from underneath it should have a teardrop shape. 

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On 9/15/2022 at 6:42 PM, opus999 said:

I'm happy to see the props look OK.  Many of the Hobby Boss kits I've done have terrible looking props!

Yes, quite pleased with these P-38 props! I've swapped out mine on the Hobby Boss P-39 kit... But these are looking good in black, along with the tanks:

 

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On 9/15/2022 at 6:47 PM, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

By the way the radar and mount on the P-38M came from the USN AN/APS-4 series of radar’s used on the TBM’s and Helldivers. So if you have a spare on of those you can get the mount from that and fair it into the nose. If looking from underneath it should have a teardrop shape. 

Thanks... to be honest, I just ordered the Hobby 2000 (originally Dragon?) 1/72 P-38M kit to raid for some extra pieces, including the radar fairing. Do you think there's any chance this bird actually carried the radar? Or it just a case that the fairing is leftover and they didn't bother removing it?

 

Not perfectly sure how to paint up the superchargers... after the base black, I've applied some bronze, and then intend to finish off with a coat of gunmetal. I think this will give an effect that will work for my purposes...

 

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Meanwhile the office is together, nothing fancy here:

 

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Front land gear attaches to the bottom of the cockpit piece, then it all pops into the lower fuselage half. You can see here too that I stuck a couple of smaller bits into the main wheel wells as well.

 

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Hobby Boss doesn't include anything in terms of a radio box, etc. so I took the fins of a P-51 bomb and stuck it in the rear cockpit. Just something to make it easily look busy under the canopy, obviously not pursuing accuracy with this modification.

 

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Almost ready to put the fuselage halves together now.

Edited by ModelingEdmontonian
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26 minutes ago, ModelingEdmontonian said:

Do you think there's any chance this bird actually carried the radar? Or it just a case that the fairing is leftover and they didn't bother removing it?

 

My best guess is the fairing was just left on. It would require time and effort to one remove, two create a new piece, and three to fair it in. I suppose its possible they had a Radar unit, but without photo its anyones guess. Of course lack of photo’s means it would be hard to say your decision either way is right or wrong ? Unless someone that actually worked with these in Nicaragua is alive and can say one way or the other ultimately its up to you, 

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On 9/18/2022 at 4:07 PM, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

My best guess is the fairing was just left on. It would require time and effort to one remove, two create a new piece, and three to fair it in. I suppose its possible they had a Radar unit, but without photo its anyones guess. Of course lack of photo’s means it would be hard to say your decision either way is right or wrong ? Unless someone that actually worked with these in Nicaragua is alive and can say one way or the other ultimately its up to you, 

Alright, thanks for helping me think it through.. we'll see once I have the parts how I want to proceed. The radar pod adds interest, but clearly is not there in the photo, so might just add the fairing.

On 9/19/2022 at 3:32 AM, 81-er said:

Shaping up nicely :) 

 

James

Thanks, she's going together quickly!

 

Fuselage is now together and the stabilizers are added. Packed up now because headed out of town for a few days...

 

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Edited by ModelingEdmontonian
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The notes say the M was converted back to L standard which I assume means removing the radar and the operator seat/canopy.

I could see leaving the mount but if they were already removing the second seat they probably would remove the mount.

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On 9/19/2022 at 1:21 PM, philp said:

The notes say the M was converted back to L standard which I assume means removing the radar and the operator seat/canopy.

I could see leaving the mount but if they were already removing the second seat they probably would remove the mount.

I'm just very convinced there is something below the nose in that photo... I'll dry fit the mount once I have it and see what it looks like.

 

Back at the bench and got some gunmetal enamel on the interiors of the radiators and superchargers.

 

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And I now have all four radiators installed. Will need a bit of putty here and there, but mostly fit is good.

 

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Then finished up the supercharger painting... I think these will look ok after a matt coat and dark wash.

 

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I was intending to use liquid gravity to prevent tail sitting, but then realized these other weights I bought work great.

 

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At the moment I've comfortably packed in 14 grams in the front of each boom (28 g total), which strikes me as perhaps too much, but I don't have any idea! Any advice out there as to how much weight a 1/72 needs?

Edited by ModelingEdmontonian
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I need to double check the weights I put in mine, but I’d think 14g in total would be enough for 1/72.

 

I would recommend doing a balance check to ensure that the COG is ahead of the main wheels.

 

AW

Edited by Andwil
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This is coming along nicely!  I've been tempted recently to move mine up in the queue.  I've taken notes on the amount of weight to use... ;)

 

My dad gave me a large portion of his stash about 10 years ago and it had a Matchbox and an Airfix P-38 in there.  He got them so he could do 2 of Thomas McGuire's planes.  I don't know what state the decals are in, though.  Gee.  I could have a triple build.

 

See what you've got me thinking!  :D

 

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9 hours ago, opus999 said:

This is coming along nicely!  I've been tempted recently to move mine up in the queue.  I've taken notes on the amount of weight to use... ;)

 

My dad gave me a large portion of his stash about 10 years ago and it had a Matchbox and an Airfix P-38 in there.  He got them so he could do 2 of Thomas McGuire's planes.  I don't know what state the decals are in, though.  Gee.  I could have a triple build.

 

See what you've got me thinking!  :D

 

Too bad they're not 1/48th, Ive got one set of his in that scale. Ive got one of Bongs, and three of Macdonald’s “Putt Putt Maru” all in 1/48. Someday I will build the trio. 

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On 10/1/2022 at 3:28 AM, opus999 said:

This is coming along nicely!  I've been tempted recently to move mine up in the queue.  I've taken notes on the amount of weight to use... ;)

 

My dad gave me a large portion of his stash about 10 years ago and it had a Matchbox and an Airfix P-38 in there.  He got them so he could do 2 of Thomas McGuire's planes.  I don't know what state the decals are in, though.  Gee.  I could have a triple build.

 

See what you've got me thinking!  :D

 

...and you haven't joined in because.......  :fight:

 

 

Nice progress with the build, though as other mentioned I'd try and do some tests with those weights, they are probably a little on the too much side. Else your nose gear may start to sag.....not to mention what it'll do to your display shelf!!! :D

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  • 1 month later...

For a variety of reasons I have not updated in a long time, and I won't bother getting into all of them. Mostly I had been waiting for my Dragon kit to arrive so that I could pillage it for parts (the air intakes and radar fairing), and I had included this AM gun set in that order as well (https://www.scalemates.com/kits/master-am-72-096-p-38m-lightning-50-cal-brownings-and-20mm-cannon-tips-with-flash-hider--968748) which I thought might be a nice upgrade on the Hobby Boss one-piece nose and guns. I had ordered these in September, and was honestly losing hope they would be arriving. I still have not received a package I ordered from the UK in August, and I have pretty much given up on that one. I know Royal Mail strikes probably impacted it, but still three months later seems insane... Anyway, the good news is now Canada Post tracking shows my Dragon P-38M kit has arrived in Canada, so presumably will be in my hands soon-ish. A couple of weeks ago, however, I realized the clock is ticking on this GB so I should not delay any longer. So, I moved forward with a few steps...

 

For example, the nacelle "mirrors"--Hobby Boss has molded these incorrectly as circular clear parts, as @fox1_BE pointed out to me, instead of the oval they should be. But, I won't bother with this. I sanded them to fit and went ahead and painted them aluminum (they are just dry-fitted here).

 

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More dry fitting to determine weight required for tail-sitting prevention as recommended by @Andwil and @trickyrich above.

 

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As @Andwil guessed, it looks like 7 grams in each nacelle will be enough. With that determined and installed, I glued on the nacelles. Unlike most of the rest of the kit, the fit on these is not perfect, with several steps to sand and clean up. Unless primer reveals otherwise, I think we are in good shape in this regard now. Here she is with nacelles affixed, but nose dry fitted (you can get a sense here for how this piece is ripe for an upgrade).

 

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Despite the fact that 14 g seems adequate, I decided to try out my liquid gravity product and stick some in the nose. Here it is stick in some CA.

 

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With the liquid gravity installed, I glued the nose on. Of course, this almost certainly means the AM guns won't be used, since I don't imagine drilling into the nose will work very well now. Oh well. 

 

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Main UC legs are glued as well, now.

 

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And that is more or less it. I am out of town for a bit, but when back and assuming the package has arrived I will get those air intakes and radar fairing on and she should be ready for primer at that point. Fingers crossed, but given her all-black camo, I assume she will move quickly to the finish line once I get back to her. 

Edited by ModelingEdmontonian
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