The first WIP Update for the New Year.
My main goal at the minute is to finish this Thunderbolt. The progress over that last few weeks has been very pleasing and I can see the end is just around the corner for the old bird. This week saw me painting the flaps, bombs and last of the undercarriage doors. I am now having a thought about using Alclad's grey primer a lot more now, less messy then aerosol primers and a smoother finish. The only down side is the cost. Alclad, please release your primers in larger bottles! First, the items received their coats of Alclad metal finishes, followed by the remaining colours after the required masking.
This is what I love about doing bare metal finishes with Alclad on aircraft models, the various shades of Aluminium you can use. On the underside of the Thunderbolt, you can see the different shades used on this model. Here I have used Airframe Aluminium, Aluminium, Dull Aluminium, Duraluminium and Dark Aluminium. It is a lot more effective then just painting the model in Silver. Also, with working on a larger model, this is the point that you realise that you need to stock up on certain colour before starting on another bare metal finished aircraft project!
Now that the main fuselage is painted and de-masked, I could get started on laying down the decals. I started with the main aircraft markings before doing the stencils, wanted to get some extra colour on her. Below are the results of the first nights work on the decals. I got the flaps done with their "No Step" panels on them and upper wing insignia and markings on one side of the fuselage.
Onto the latest photos taken this morning. All of the main decal work is done, only the prop and two vent covers are left to be done after they are painted. There was one draw back with painting the aircraft in black, you cannot see the stencilling as that is in black to. So I decided not to add them to the upper surfaces on the aircraft. Below the model is dry assembled for the photos as there is still some detail painting and weathering to do on it. Still to be done is painting on the prop, cockpit canopy, cannons and vent covers. So, not much left to do, the plan is for her to be finished within two weeks now. By the way, you can see the closed canopy in these photos, I am using the open canopy on the finished model. I used the closed one to make the mask for painting the fuselage behind the cockpit.