Friday, 27 December 2013

A Year Of Completed Work

The year is drawing to a close in the next few days and it is time to look back at what I have done over the last twelve months. My initial thoughts were that there was not many completed models this year, but once I started to go through them, I was surprised at what had been done. The reality was that the last year has been more productive then I had imagined. So lets go through what has been finished this year.

Republic P-47M Thunderbolt

The year started with the completion of this aircraft, Hasegawa's 1/32nd scale P-47M in the scheme of one of the US 56th Fighter Groups aircraft. The second largest aircraft I have built so far and a joy to build. I even got "Commended" in class in the IPMS(UK) Nationals this November with her which was great once you saw the other great models it was up against. 

1996 Chevrolet Blazer

This was the second one of the year completed. A project that was started well over a year before and sat on the sideline for a while until I decided to get the Blazer back out and complete it. It upset a friend of mine that I decided to cover the car with mud, but I wanted to build a 4X4 that was being used and not the usual "Chelsea Tractor" that is the normal use of them over here in the UK.

EE Canberra PR9 XH135

Not exactly a new build, but the conclusion of a long journey of XH135. This model was completed a couple of years before, but I was never happy with the finished model then, so in my eyes it was not completed to my vision of what she was meant to be. With the two sister aircraft being built, I saw how this model was meant to be and some alterations were done to her. These were to open up the canopy, add an engineer inside, add an access ladder with ground-crew standing on it, replace the aerial and ad the POV covers. Now she was truly finished!

Curtis Helldiver 

"Filler and sanding" This was the story behind this model and the reason it sat in my "On-hold" pile for eighteen months. The model was the re-released old Airfix kit from back in the late 60's from what I remember, so basic in its detail, etc. Plenty of filler was required along the fuselage and the folding wings option did not pan out as I hoped. But it was decided to get the model back out after sitting packed away for a while and get it finished off. In the end, the outcome was not too bad and resulted in a pleasing model from such an old and outdated kit.

Jaguar XJ-R8 LM

This was the Hasegawa Silk Cut kit, which was originally going to be built was as one the the Le Man cars, but the decals were very brittle and kept breaking up. So it was decided to repaint the body and finish it as a car privately owned and raced. I salvaged what I could from the two sets of Hasegawa "Silk Cut" decals sheets I had and with the addition of left-over sheets from various automotive and aircraft models to come up with this colour scheme.

2007 Nissan R35 GT-R

One of my dream cars, the Nissan R35 GT-R. I just had to get one for my model collection and this will be the first of many I think. The kit is from Aoshima and comes with the full engine in the kit. A great model to build and it sits with pride in my cabinet for everyone to see.

EE Canberra PR9 XH134 & XH131

Unfortunately, I have not taken any decent photos of these two completed models yet, that is going to happen very soon as I catch up with all of the models needing photography. So here is an photo that was taken on my phone earlier this year. The aircraft at the front is XH131  and the middle aircraft is XH134 in the retirement scheme she ended her RAF career in. XH135 can be seen in the rear of this line-up.

Iron Man War Machine

This is really not my model, it was Kyran's what he chose to buy at Duxford and handed it to me to build for him. This is not my usual area of modelling, but it was fun to do and was something different to do. This is a 1/9th scale figure from Morbeus.

1935 Mercedes Benz G4

This 1/24th scale model of the Mercedes Benz G4 from ICM was a magazine review build for Scale Military Modelling International which appeared in the November 2013 issue of SMMI. A large model once built and a pleasing result at the end.

Supermarine Spitfire FR. Mk.XIVe

This Academy 1/48th scale model of this Spitfire was a club competition project and also a means to try out a new method of masking for the camouflage for me. This is a great kit to build and I would like to get another one to build sometime. I strongly recommend anyone to buy this kit.

M561 Gama Goat

Another review build for SMMI, this time Tamiya's 1/35th scale model  of the M561 "Gama Goat" prior to the release of the kit. A strange but interesting choice of vehicle for Tamiya to release, yet it builds up as a very good model with plenty of scope to modify it into the various different versions they went through in their service. This is due to be out in the February 2014 issue of SMMI.

Monty's Humber Snipe

This is the final one of the year (unless I get the Gannet finished)and it is another review build for SMMI. This is the re-release of Airfix's 1/32nd scale kit of Monty's Humber which dates back from the 70's. In general, not a bad kit and it builds up okay, but it is the figures that come with the kit that lets it down. I hope this will be in a future issue of SMMI in the new year.

When you look back at what you have done over the last twelve months, that is when you realise that is has been a productive year on the modelling side.  There are some projects that I would have liked to have got finished this year, but this did not happen. So now is the time to start going through what on-going projects there are and make a list of what needs to be finished first!

A Happy Modelling 2014 To You All

Monday, 23 December 2013

Monty's Humber Finished

This will be the final finished project of the year I think, unless something else gets done before the month is out.

Well, this was handed to me by Andy Evans from SMMI at Telford this year to build for a magazine review. Though not my usual scale for cars, I accepted the kit and set about building it.

The tooling of this kit dates back from the 70's and is another of Airfix's recycling of their old kits. Unlike some of the other re-releases of old kits from their range, this tooling has survived pretty well and there was not much flash or any incomplete parts on the sprues. The detail of the parts are still crisp, but remember this is 1970's tooling so it is not up to the standards of more recent releases. My only grumble about this kit is the figures, the quality of them brings the kit down so I have left them out of the finished model.

In general, the building is okay, just a few little fitting problems and the steering wheel is also delicate. Unfortunately, my resident "Carpet Monster" decided to attack and walked off with the steering column for the Humber. Hence after a couple of hours searching the workshop and checking through the bins in here, I had to scratch-build a new one from a length of plastic. The model was painted mainly with Tamiya paints, but Humbrol, Mr Hobby and Revell paints were also used.

You will see a full review of this model in SMMI in the coming months. By the way, the Tamiya Gama Goat review I did a couple of months ago will be in February's issue of SMMI.

Saturday, 14 December 2013

Mick's Modelling Website Updates 14/12/13

Now that I have recently acquired my photo light cube, I now can start to catch up on taking the photos of my completed models from over the last eighteen months that I have not done. 

The first two models that have been added ti the gallery section on my website are my 2007 Nissan R35 GT-R and the Spitfire FR. Mk.XIVe models. There are about another nine models that need to have photograph taken of to bring everything up to date on the site. 

2007 Nissan R35 GT-R

Supermarine Spitfire FR.Mk.XIVe

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

An Aid For Photographs

I had been after one of these for a while, but never took a serious look thinking they were expensive to buy. But no, they're not if you look in the right places.

This is a 80cm X 80cm X 80cm light cube, fully collapse-able and comes with four coloured backdrops to go inside. Also comes with a front cover that has a hole in it to stick the lens through if needed. Cost, under £9.00 on EBay! Yes, under a tenner. If you search around, I have seen these going for up to £30 and more. 

The idea is to shine your lights onto the cubes sides and the light is diffused around the cubes interior cutting down on shadows under the item being photographed. A bit better then using a white sheet and directing the workshop lights down onto the model. Still play with it at the minute and experimenting, but I need to dig out my halogen flood lights to provide lighting from the sides. By the way, that is a 1/24th scale Nissan R35 GT-R in the cube, just shows how big this one is.

Below are a few photos I have been playing with for now.