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1/144 NASA Lear jet IR observatory


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Amongst the 1.6 million model projects I have in my head, is a project build models of all three of NASA's airborne infra red observatories.  These started off with a Learjet 25 with a small telescope mounted where one window would usually be.  A few years later NASA modified a C-141A Starlifter into the Kuiper Airborne Observatory (KAO).  Later again came SOFIA, a modified Boeing 747SP.

My plan is to model all three in flight in 1/144 scale, starting with the Learjet.

I've bought a Starnsky Learjet 35, which is having a 84mm section cut out of the fuselage to convert it into a 25.  I'm looking for a donor cockpit to fit in it, I think I have some pilots and have a canopy mask on order.  I'm going to have to make some custom decals.

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Hello Michael,

 

If you are going to build the SOFIA, as well as the Learjet, then you may be interested to know that NASA has produced a set of 3D STL files for free download.  If you have a 3D printer, or can get access to one, then this could be useful for you.  The Boeing 747 and telescope is drawn to 1:200 scale but the files could easily be rescaled to 1:144.

 

cheers,

Mike

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2 hours ago, bootneck said:

Hello Michael,

 

If you are going to build the SOFIA, as well as the Learjet, then you may be interested to know that NASA has produced a set of 3D STL files for free download.  If you have a 3D printer, or can get access to one, then this could be useful for you.  The Boeing 747 and telescope is drawn to 1:200 scale but the files could easily be rescaled to 1:144.

 

cheers,

Mike

And if you’re going down this route, V1 Decals does decals for SOFIA. But you might want to wait as AMP has announced a SOFIA kit.

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On 02/01/2024 at 19:52, bootneck said:

Hello Michael,

 

If you are going to build the SOFIA, as well as the Learjet, then you may be interested to know that NASA has produced a set of 3D STL files for free download.  If you have a 3D printer, or can get access to one, then this could be useful for you.  The Boeing 747 and telescope is drawn to 1:200 scale but the files could easily be rescaled to 1:144.

 

cheers,

Mike

Thanks

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On 02/01/2024 at 22:11, zebra said:

And if you’re going down this route, V1 Decals does decals for SOFIA. But you might want to wait as AMP has announced a SOFIA kit.

I already have the V1 decal set.  I also have an Eastern Express 747SP, but I'll hold off and see if the AMP model is actually produced.

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On 1/2/2024 at 5:23 PM, Michael Morris said:

Amongst the 1.6 million model projects I have in my head, is a project build models of all three of NASA's airborne infra red observatories.

I've bought a Starnsky Learjet 35, which is having a 84mm section cut out of the fuselage to convert it into a 25.  I'm looking for a donor cockpit to fit in it, I think I have some pilots and have a canopy mask on order.  I'm going to have to make some custom decals.

An interesting project and I look forward to it coming to life. Is that 84mm shortening right? It seems a lot for 1/144 🤔

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2 hours ago, SleeperService said:

An interesting project and I look forward to it coming to life. Is that 84mm shortening right? It seems a lot for 1/144 🤔

Should read 8.4mm, not 84mm!

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