Monday, 22 August 2016

Dambuster Vulcan

Well, this is the little project I am doing for the Driffield Show in two weeks time. I had always had the urge to build a Vulcan either landing or taking off. But doing this in 1/72nd scale was going to be a problem, so the plan was to get hold of either a 1/144th or 1/200th scale Vulcan kit. Now earlier this year, I finally got hold of one, the Dragon 1/200th scale kit with Blue Steel missile.

Construction was straight forward, just a little filling in some gaps between the upper and lower fuselage halves. A basic kit in all, but it does come with the ladder if you want the access door open to the cockpit. 

I used a short length of acrylic rod to mount the model on, shaping it to fix into a opening in the rear section of the fuselage. At the present time, the rod is a bit longer than required. Once the base is made, it will be cut down to the required size for it to hold the model just above the base. All of the undercarriage gear has been assembled ready for painting, but they are held on in place in these photos with blutac just for the photos. 

Now jump a little and the Vulcan has been airbrushed with Mr Hobby gloss white followed with a couple of coats of Alclad Aqua Gloss clear. The kit has two options of marking for this kit, XM 595 of the Scampton Wing, RAF Scampton in 1970. This is with camouflage upper surface and white on the lower surface. I chose to go with the other option, anti-flash white in the marking of XL 321, No.617 "Dambusters" Squadron, RAF Scampton in 1962. The reason I went with the Dambuster aircraft is so it can be displayed with my Dambuster Lancaster and Tornado with the anniversary markings on (once they are built!).  

Even in this scale, Dragon have supplied a pilot and co-pilot figures. I am not sure if they will be seen through the windows, but I have painted and glued them in place just in case.

Decals all finished, cockpit canopy glued in place, paint touched up and model cleared.

Detail painting and final assembly all finished, and yes, it is tail heavy. But this is okay as any extra weigh in the nose would effect the model standing on the acrylic rod in the base.

The final piece of the model to be fitted. The instruction said to paint the missile with Mr Hobby's smoke blue. This is a translucent paint and I was not sure it this was right. All of the Blue Steel missiles that I have seen in person were white, so after some searching around on the net, I found some photos of some 617 Sqdn Vulcans, from this period with missiles painted blue. So the smoke blue was airbrushed in light coats over gloss white, and believe it or not, the shade is very close to the blue that the missiles were painted back then. In the various photos I found, some missile had markings on them and some did not. These marking also varied to, so using the decals left on the sheet, I added the small roundals and a couple of warning marking to the missile to finish it off before gluing it to the model.

The last stage of this project is the base to mount the Vulcan on. I did not want to make the normal shaped base for this project, but one in a similar shape to the Vulcan. So I cut out a silhouette shape of the model in paper and used it to come up with a shape for the base. After some measuring and playing with shapes, I came up with this offset diamond shaped base. Once it was cut out, I routered the edges and then sealed the MDF to ready it for painting.  

The next post (hopefully in a couple of days) will be of the model fixed to the finished base.

Saturday, 20 August 2016

EE Lightning F1 Finished

The Lightning is finished and I am happy, well, very pleased with the final result. There was a few little hiccups along the way with her, of which a couple of the corrections have effected the end look. But this was only built for fun and not for entering into competitions.

The model has had some light weathering done to her including a dirt wash using Promodeller/Flory Models dark dirt wash. Once the final assembly was done, I finished off with a dusting of my grime mix through the airbrush along the leading edges, etc.

Would I build another Lightning in this scale? I don't know yet. The main problem is the size of her in 1/48th, which is also making me think about the four Canberra's I also have in this scale. If I did do another, then I might try one of the trainers that Sword Models do. I already have both the T.4 and T.5 from them in 1/72nd scale, so one of their 1/48th scale Lightnings might have to slip its way in.

Thought I  would also show how the resin ejector seat looked like before I fitted it in place. It was given an initial coat of Tamiya semi-gloss black first, then finished off using Vallejo paints. The decals which went on the kit seat were used on the resin seat to finish it off.

Any comment or questions about this model will be welcomed.

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

McLaren F1 WIP #1

I needed something to do during my down time at work again, so I dug out this Aoshima McLaren F1 kit. It was not a fresh start, I had already begun drilling out the holes in the disc brakes (a laborious task!) using a pin vise. So this process was finished off before proceeding with the rest of the model. 

The chassis had the suspension assembled and fixed to it and checked for alignment. The bodyshell now had any mould lines removed and blemished dealt with. Aoshima had managed to keep most of the mould lines along the edges and only a few crossing the exposed areas of panels. 

The doors were also cleaned up and the model was test assembled to see it there was any issues to be dealt with. The first thing that I did not really like was the tyres on the model. The rear ones especially look a bit too large profile compared to the real car, so I will be changing this with some resin aftermarket wheels. I also noticed a couple of sink marks on the door upper surfaces, these will need filling. This kit has the option of having the doors open or closed, so I need to decide if I have one, both or none open on the model.

Now jump a week or so, the bodyshell has been sorted out and doors had the sink marks filled and sanded. A decision on the doors was also made and I opted to open just the right hand door and fitted the mounting points to enable this to happen. The final bits and pieces were sorted out to bring the model up to the stage of painting. So at this point, I will have to put the project on pause until the Lightning is done and another little project is finished for an upcoming show. Now, what colour do I paint this? This is the next decision to make on the McLaren!

EE Lightning F1 WIP #2

I did not realise that it had been this long since I last updated on the Lightning project. But as you can see from the following photos, work has progressed a fair bit since the GT-R was finished. As I was doing the Lightning in one of the metal finish options, Alclad is going to be the main product used to paint her. 

The process started by using their grey micro primer followed by a few coats of gloss black primer. To help with the finish, a couple of coats of honey primer over the black improved the gloss finish of the black. 

First I sprayed the inlet ring, exhaust and two panels on the fuselage with Alclad chrome, then sealed with some Alclad aqua gloss clear to protect the finish. Then the exhaust outlets were hand painted afterwards.

After the chrome panels situated on the fuselage just under the wings were sprayed and masked off, the rest of the fuselage was sprayed with Alclad Airframe Aluminium and seal with some clear. I next picked out a few panels in different shade of aluminium like you will find on the real aircraft then sealed again with some more clear.

After the fuselage had dried overnight, it was masked off to spray the spine and tail with gloss black. I first went over the area with some black primer then the topcoat was done with Mr Hobby gloss black followed by some clear. 

I am still trying to find a masking tape which does not mark the Alclad when it is used on it. The tape that I use is meant to be low tack, but it still marks the finish of the Alclad. This needed to be touched up afterwards.

The Lightning is looking really nice at this stage giving me a boost for finishing the model.

Now it is time to start on the decals on the model. I started with laying down the roundals and general aircraft markings first on the model. Then the process of all of the aircraft stencilling decals started, which some lay over some of the roundals and marking.

Once all of the decals were done and sealed, I temporary stick the undercarriage on with blutac to see how she was sitting. No evidence of her trying to be a tailsitter, I had got the nose weigh just right on her.

The kit supplied ejector seat was not very good. In fact, the general detail of the cockpit interior and undercarriage bays are not up to the new kits from Airfix. For this project, I ordered a resin seat from Quickboost. Even though it was a seat for a Lightning, I needed to cut away small sections from the bottom edges to get it to fit into the space in the tub. This has made a vast improvement to the cockpit as it is the seat that you will mainly see looking in. 

These photos are about a week or so old now as we have had a little emergency at home. This post was meant to be finished and uploaded last week but I was unable to finish this post and another project post. The next post of the Lightning project will be of the finished model.