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Messages - Domi

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Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Junkers Ju-52 'Tante Ju'
« on: October 24, 2013, 12:06:29 PM »
Finally, the roof could be added...  The fit is rather poor but there are ways to make this look better...

Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Junkers Ju-52 'Tante Ju'
« on: October 24, 2013, 12:04:32 PM »
One of my main 'gripe' with this kit is the thickness of the side windows...  Although Eduard's plastic is very clear, the clear plastic strip are a good 1mm thick and in places, shown imperfections.  Little can be seen once the roof is on, but all the same, I thought this needed improving.  I therefore set about to create from scratch the not-transparent parts of the fuselage strips with thin plastic strips.  Clearfix or a similar product will be used later to add the 'glass' windows.

The Eduard PE interior set include some of the fuselage (in)side framing.  Beware that the PE set instruction sheet shows how to place those properly, while the Eduard advertising at the back of the plastic kit's instruction sheet has them placed the wrong way.  However, the framing must partly cover the windows as seen on this advertising, while the PE instruction sheet has them, wrongly, fitting around the windows openings...  I also had to trim the PE where it meets the cabin floor...  There is simply not enough place there to put it all!  I also found it strange that the framing does not extend to the front cargo hold bulkhead...

I added the inside details for the access doors and then the (military) seats (which will cover up the trimmed down framing at the junction between floor and side fuselage).  I'd recommend starting from the edges of the cargo door, moving towards the front.  I started at the front and found my last 'bench' coming in the way of the cargo door...  Each 'bench' comes with 4 separate PE seatbelts.  32 in total...  I'm not fond of PE belts, they are all the same, and their rigidness is annoying and un-natural at best.  I normally do mine in Milliput or masking tape, but I was not crazy enough to add 32 parts that no-one would ever seen once the roof was in place...  In fact, I'd recommend only using the PE parts for the cockpit proper, and the inside framing, part of which should be visible behind the windows, but unless you open up the fuselage access doors (and even so!!), the rest is a total waste of time and resources..

A coat of grey was airbrushed inside the fuselage;  once dry, a dark wash, then a light drybrushing completed the operation:


Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Junkers Ju-52 'Tante Ju'
« on: October 24, 2013, 11:36:42 AM »
Here are now those nasty joints filled in with Milliput...

The BrenGun replacement engines bring problems of their own.  The central cowling has no attachment points on the fuselage itself and I was required to install this resin/PE engine first in order to add the cowling.  The later had previously been hollowed out and thinned a little, just so that the PE part would just fit inside the ring.  Each Brengun engine is made up of four parts, three resin and a PE parts.  I assume the smaller resin part is part of the axle behind the engine, though as there are no instructions, I can not confirm it.  Nevertheless, this smaller resin part is, in my eyes, totally redundant, as it could not be seen inside the larger wing engine cowlings, nor fit anywhere on or in the nose of the aircraft for the third engine...  The resin engine, I mean the ring of pistons, must fit flush against the front bulkhead of the fuselage, and it is thus necessary to cut off Eduard's rectangular 'plug' before positioning the engine.  The PE ring fits nicely around the hub of the engine and the thinned down cowling comes next.  I noticed that the exhaust pipes do not match properly the locations of the pistons, but this can not be seen under the cowling, so it does not really is a big issue.  The following photo only shows a single exhaust pipe, the other one needing repairing, as I managed to break it in two while removing it from the sprue.  The end of the exhaust pipes can be drilled out for a better effect.

Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Junkers Ju-52 'Tante Ju'
« on: September 25, 2013, 10:32:41 AM »
Well, it has taken a while, but I'm back 'at work' on this kit..!  I first had to get the BrenGun resin/PE engines to replace the relatively poor plastic Eduard items (it's all very relative given the scale!), then it took a lot longer to find a decoration I wanted to model..  Eduard's options are mightily fine, if you like black crosses, but if I can I try to be a touch more exotic.  Exotic would have been fairly easy with the civilian version of the kit, but I have the military version and the 'military' PE set from Eduard for the inside of the fuselage..

So, after much pondering, I've settled on an Austrian air force aircraft, in 1937-38, camouflaged, but with bright red and white national markings.

I started with the wings.  The underside is in one piece, guaranteeing the proper angle in relation to the fuselage.  The plasic is soft, and easily damaged, and the fit is..  OK.  Not brilliant as on their later MiG-21s and Spits, but OK.  I've seen a lot worse.  The cockpit and cabin plastic details are minimalistic (though I've seen far worse, even from Eduard much more recently!), and the Eduard PE set brings in a lot of 'life' in there.  Having said this, little can be seen once everything is closed so unless you open up all side doors (and even if you do!), it is still debatable whether the PE set is truly needed.  Adding to this 'problem', you see, is that the side wiondow strips provided in clear plastic by Eduard is thick, a good 1mm, and at this scale, this is QUITE thick!  My idea here is to carefuly remove the window panes and add thinner window at a much later stage, with a transparent glue gel.  I am a bit confused by the PE parts representing the internal side framing of the fuselage.  On both sides, the PE parts are clearly too short and the first bay, just behind the partition between cockpit and cabin, is therefore 'frameless'.  The framing in itself is nice and will add a lot of details inside the cabin, but I think may become a problem once I add the windows later...  Difficult choice: all the details and thick windows, or less details and thinner windows..!??!  Given that some plastic windows are obviously not totally flat as they should be, I think I will go for the second option...  Most of the PE details meant for the cockpit and cabin can come in once the fuselage halves have been put together, courtesy of the separate roof.  Handy!

I have therefore moved on with the building and added the fuselage to the wings.  The crucial joints between corrugated metal panels is pretty good.  I must however mention that the fit between the front of the fuselage and the wings is a lot less appealing, but I am glad that I assembled those two sub-units around the same time, as it allowed me to prise open the underside of the front of the fuselage so that the side of the fuselage actually offered an almost perfect fit with the wings.  Had the glue set on the fuselage first, I would have had a nasty joint to fill in where it meets the wings, at the top.

Aircraft Modeling / Re: Egg-F16 (Belgian Air Force, of course!!!)
« on: April 15, 2013, 08:57:19 AM »
Go, go, go, Daniel!

Warplane Art / Re: Douglas A-4 Skyhawk
« on: March 29, 2013, 11:29:18 PM »
Can't wait!!!!

Aircraft Modeling / Eduard 1/144 Junkers Ju-52 'Tante Ju'
« on: March 21, 2013, 12:08:57 PM »
Eduard released a number of 1/144 Ju-52s a while back, possibly their first 1/144 effort (or was that their Ju-87??) in that scale.  The kits became instant hits but they subsequently disappeared for several years...  Lately, along with a number of brand new 1/144 kits, such as the MiG-21s and the Spit IXs, Eduard has re-released the Ju-52s and we can only commend them for such an initiative!

So far 'only' the military transport and airliner boxings of the kit have been re-released.  At one time, the kit was also available as a mine-sweeping variant and there was a ski-equipped Ju-52 boxing too.  Un-surprisingly, Eduard also offer photo-etched sets for those kits..

This build will be a little different from my earlier ones on the 1/144 Eduard Fishbed and Spitfire, in the sense that I will be using the PE sets Eduard designed for the kit and that I am not that interested in German aircraft in German WWII markings...  Obviously, with this particular boxing, the civilian options are probably very limited, but I will be doing some research and hopefully find a military JU-52 that is a little more original...  More on this soon...

In the meantime, let me introduce you to the kit; here are a few pictures of the sprues and other features included in the military transport variant kit (ref.4424):

The way the bottom of the rear fuselage is included with the underside of the wings is interesting and should facilitate building.

The top of the fuselage of this boxing includes the machine gun emplacement, which makes this part different from that of the airliner boxing.  Several parts shown here below are in fact not suitable for this particular boxing of the kit, but all this is indicated in the instructions.

Here is a close-up view of the fuselage skinning, really well done, in my opinion:

The sprue containing the top halves of the wings, also including a couple of parts that will not be required here:

A close-up shot of one of the engines and cowling, possibly the weakest part of the whole kit...:

The clear parts sprue, including an extra window strip for the airliner variant.  All is very clear and commendably thin!

Here are the PE sets for the military variant(s); the smaller PE fret is common to the other kit, I believe, but the larger one is different, mostly in account of the different seating of the military and civilian aircraft:

The top of the instruction booklet for the kit (right) and the instruction sheet for the PE set (left):

The instruction booklet is well designed and includes full colour info for the 4 options offered by the kit and decal sheet:

The decal sheet itself, plus the masks included in the kit.  Note that the svastikas are included.

All markings are for German aircraft, flown in 1940-43 in North Africa, Crete, Southern Italy and France.

Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Spitfire Mk.IXe
« on: March 21, 2013, 10:00:15 AM »
All right!  Those little Spits were actually completed a few days ago, but things got in the way, and I was not able to complete this thread until now...  Sorry about this!

The kits were exhibited at a show in England over the past week end, so in the end, lacking the time, I decided to temporarily forget about adding details in the Belgian Spit.  Indeed, I see now I took the 'final' pictures without adding the antenna wire on the Israeli aircraft and the whip antenna on the Belgian one.  Apologies for this.  Oh, I forgot to say that I did not use the masks provided for the painting of the canopy, finding this way too complicated to bother with...

So in conclusion, I totally recommend this kit.  Easy build, lots of possible colour schemes, relatively easy to find references, small price, two kits in a box,..  This kit has it all, or almost all.  Yes, it IS a pity Eduard did not include a plastic cockpit in the form of a seat, floor, instrument panel and control column...  The inside of the fuselage halves could have taken a bit of detailling too to complete this cockpit.  As mentionned earlier, I have some reservations about some of the decals, in particular the deep shade of blue of the French markings, but on the plus side, the quality of those decals is really, really good.  The instruction booklet is minimalistic when it comes to the actual assembly (but really, there's not that much to assemble!), but is superb when it comes to the colour schemes, with all 5 choices fully illustrated.  I also think the choice of this particular variant (Mk.IXe) was a bit 'strange' for this first Spitfire kit in 1/144 from Eduard, but then the aircraft was used by the Czechoslovak Air Force.  We've seen strangest choices of kits in the past from many other manufacturers..  Lastly, it is maybe also a bit regretable that Eduard did not offer separate alternative rudders, as many a Mk.IXe had the rounded one.  

Let me remind you that Eduard do offer a pre-painted photo-etched fret to completely furnish the cockpit, and that the Mk.IXc variant is now also available, with a choice of 4 colour schemes.  This Mk.IXc kit is a double kit too, and both fuselages feature the rounded off rudder (the ribbing of which is not totally accurate, if you are a rivet counter..).

Of interest is that the Mk.IXe was first released during e-Day 2012 without a box and with striking markings for a single Czecholsovak aircraft (different from the one featuring in the cardboard box release).  

Finaly, if those markings provided by Eduard do not satisfy you, keep in mind that some manufacturers have released markings for some Mk.IX Spitfires.  KitWorld, in the UK, have a sheet featuring a British Mk.IXc aircraft graced with a beautiful, barely-clad lady...  JBr Decals from the Czech Republic offer two sheets, one for Israelis Mk.IXs and one for British, Dutch, Danish, Belgian, Soviet, Czechoslovak and Turkish Mk.IX c/e (some of them civilian aircraft). More will no doubt be released elsewhere in the coming months.

Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Spitfire Mk.IXe
« on: March 12, 2013, 12:31:23 PM »
Thanks, Tweety!

Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Spitfire Mk.IXe
« on: March 07, 2013, 05:45:57 PM »
Totally of your opinion, Draken..!

Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Spitfire Mk.IXe
« on: March 07, 2013, 05:15:57 PM »
So, a thin coat of Klear (Future) was airbrushed early this morning on both models.  After a couple of hours of drying time, I gave both models a dark wash, my usual mix of artist's watercolours, Sepia and Black, with water, vinegar and washing-up liquid.  Another hour drying time, and damp Q-tips are then used to remove the excess watercolour paint all over the models. 

During those pauses required by the painting process, I keep busy cleaning up, priming and painting all the other little parts that will complete the kits: propellers, landing gear,..

My second weatrhering step is done with Artist's Oils, this time Titanium White, drybrushed all over the airframe (and smaller bits).  I like the way this white paint dulls the silver paint and subsequent coat of Klear.  This is a 'light' process, not to be overdone.  An extra 'pass' is however given all over the edges, particularly all around the wings, rudder and tailplanes (including trailing edges!).  This in my eyes makes the model stand out from any background.

Most pictures I've seen of the underside of any Spitfires show a positively filthy aircraft.  Using photographic references, and Artist's Oil Black paint, I created long, short, thin and thick 'dirt' runs between the main landing gear, from the big intake just under the engine to the very end of the fuselage.  More stains run from the back end of the wing radiators and in the case of the Israeli aircraft, more subtle stains strea out from the ammunition chutes.  The staining of the Belgian aircraft is a little less 'obvious': those seem to have been well maintained machines.

I'll need this oil paint to dry a while before doing anithing else now...

Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Spitfire Mk.IXe
« on: March 07, 2013, 08:11:07 AM »
As promised, here is a picture showing the new colour scheme for the COGEA Spit IX..  Come on, say it, it looked better in red..!  ;-)

Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Spitfire Mk.IXe
« on: March 06, 2013, 09:30:01 PM »
Well..!  As it happens, this red-topped Belgian Mk.IX was not red..!  A couple of Belgian friends were kind enough to send me a (poor quality) period colour picture of OO-ARE and the top of the fuselage is painted in some kind of darkish blue-grey.  They also sent me a couple of black & white documents showing that the aircraft also wore a code on the upper surface of the right wing, and had a black walkway on top of the left wing, just under the cockpit opening. 

So, out came the masking tape and airbrush again and the model now wears a more accurate colour scheme.  The extra code was added on the wing and things are now drying for tomorrow's big jobs, a coat of varnish to seal decals and paint job, and a dark wash as a start to the weathering process.  Pictures of the re-painted Belgian Spit tomorrow morning, promise!


Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Spitfire Mk.IXe
« on: March 06, 2013, 01:11:44 PM »
Decalling done !   The Israeli markings provided by Eduard went on just fine.  A touch of setting solution helped the decals conform to the model.  The rudder markings are best added one at a time, with a bit of drying time before adding the other side.  A bit of red paint will take care of the 'gaps' around the edge.  Note that I did not clear coat the models before decalling, and the Eduard decals still did not give a single little hint of silvering.  I'm impressed!

From the pictures I could get on the internet, I am not convinced the OO-ARE codes were red on this machine; indeed the colour profile that can be found online shows a number of little errors..  On those black & white pictures I could find, the code looks a touch darker than the top of the fuselage, so I went for black codes, far easier to find, of course!!!  Those were made from individual letters coming off a ModeArt decal sheet.  Those decals are rather thick and old and I cut real close all around the black ink (not so easy in this scale!) to minimise risks of silvering and having a visible 'step' where the transparent carrier film would have been.

I think my mind is still somewhat into the 'French Indochina' scheme as it took me a while to realise that the Belgian Spit had no antenna mast..  This came off quite easily with a sharp knife.  Fine sand paper restored the contour of the fuselage and a touch up job was made in red paint.

For the record, Oostende-based company COGEA Nouvelle operated a handful of Spits Mk.IX from 1956 until 1961, and provided target tug duties to the Belgian Air Force (and apparently other NATO air forces too).  Four of those COGEA Spits were made famous by appearing (re-painted!) in the movie 'The Longest Day'.

A coat of varnish is needed next, to seal off everything, then I will start the weathering, before adding on all little extras...

Aircraft Modeling / Re: Eduard 1/144 Spitfire Mk.IXe
« on: March 06, 2013, 08:47:40 AM »
It has to be said, patience is NOT one of my virtues.  I had to get on with this build...  Here's a picture of the state of things after yesterday late night airbrushing session:

The kit with the black anti-glare panel is the 'out of the box' build, now waiting to get its Israeli markings.  The other is to be OO-ARE.  In terms of colour scheme, that's it for OO-ARE, but I must find some tiny registration letters in red, hopefully somewhere in my stock.  Although I had realised earlier that OO-ARE had a rounded off rudder, I still managed not to modify the kit before painting, so this was done afterwards.  This means a little touch-up job for later.  Although re-shaping the rudder presents in itself no problem, the 'ribbing' of the earlier narrower-chord rounded-off rudder is quite different from the 'ribbing' of the later rudder...  Re-creating a new rudder from plastic card would not be too much of a problem either, but as most people will never notice nor realise the difference once the model is finished, I'll let it go, this time.  Still, it is a bit of a pity that Eduard created a whole new cropped wing for this Mk.IXe kit, but did not provide a separate alternative rounded-off rudder, as it looks like a lot of those Mk.IXe Spits had those fitted as standard...  Maybe some garage company out there will soon offer a replacement resin rudder??  ;-)

On OO-ARE, you will however notice that I cropped off the wings canons, though!

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