Finished the first kit of 2019, an Italeri H-21. I’m glad this came out in 1/48 scale as it, with the H-13, were helicopters of my youth.
At the start of the year, I had some lofty goal to build two per month. What was I thinking?! Going to have to play catch-up now!
The kit overall will take some work to turn it into an AMS masterpiece. There were a number of fit problems all around; the canopy to the fuselage, the cockpit in the fuselage, and the engine and bulkheads. Other than sanding the fuselage seams I didn’t put too much work into the fit. The place the rear rotor attaches also looks like it had something wrong with the molding.
After assembling the kit it was sprayed with my favorite lacquer primer from the can which produces a dark grey finish. To try something different I then took some thinned Vallejo white primer and pre-highlighted sections of the kit. I then sprayed the kit Vallejo Russian Green (it looked the best to me for a 50’s Army color) and you can see the results of the pre-shading worked pretty well.
The decals went on great over a coat of Future and settled down very well to Solvaset. I put most of the stencils on as the yellow just looked right on Olive Drab. I had to cut the main stars and bars as I put the rear landing gear on first to paint them with the kit but the S&B go on under the rear gear mounts. Oops!
A raw umber overall wash and when dried a coat of Testors Dullcoat to finish her off!
One other warning. I broke four of the six rotors. They are very fragile. Managed to drill them out and add brass tubing to support but handle with care.
Fun to finally add a 1/48 chopper to my collection, one that I used to see at the airshows at Lowery AFB in Denver growing up!
Happy Old Year!
I finished the two desert aircraft just under the 2018 clock. This makes only five models for me this year, off my normal of about 7 – 8.
The Hasegawa Cardoor Typhoon was finished in a rare desert scheme which required I paint a Skyblue “Y” and find other decals. The serial number isn’t correct for this Typhoon and I was too cheap to go buy the decals needed to just have the serial number. I think the British desert scheme turned out very nicely. Vallejo paints with a final overcoat of Testors Dull coat after oil dot weathering and pastels.
The A-20 is the AMT kit built as a “-C”. The markings are based on those found in an A-20 book I have and finally replicated by FCM in their new decal sheet. Paints are all Model Master with the exception of a jar of Floquil Military Colors (Desert Sand) I have had on the shelf for 10+ years waiting to do this scheme.
Here are the photos of the Typhoon and A-20.
What I learned in these builds….
- the Blu-tack I use to help with the camouflage demarcation reacts and leaves a residue with Vallejo paints. It can be removed carefully with mineral spirits. The mineral spirit wash also lightens the Vallejo – might be a good weathering tool in the future.
- I probably should have penciled in the desert sand over splotches on the A-20 as this would have kept them tighter and more like the original.
- Primer straight from the can is best instead of trying to decant it to the airbrush.
Finally, here is the other part of the 2018 set of completions. See you next year;
In conjunction with the Typhoon (previous post), I have been working on painting a desert A-20 Havoc.
The camouflage and markings are what I once heard called reverse lend-lease. When the US got into the war we took back a few of the A-20s we gave to the British.
The camo starts with the standard British Euro bomber colors. This is in contrast to the normal British desert colors used on the Typhoon in the previous post. Instead of Middle Stone / Dark Earth / Azure used on the desert aircraft, the initial colors are Dark Green / Dark Earth / Medium Sea Gray.
When the US took back the A-20s for use in the desert they quickly applied their markings and did a hurry-up camo job to get it desert ready.
The decals from FCM (48051) represent the British marking with US stars and serial numbers painted over the British roundels. The US then oversprayed the whole aircraft with desert sand including parts of the roundels. The markings represent the markings on the old Revell 1/72 A-20 and I have been waiting to do this in 1/48 for a long time. I’m glad FCM created the decals as I was prepared to roll my own and I have even had a jar of desert pink on hand that was never opened until now.
I spent a couple of hours this afternoon overspraying the A-20. After it dries we will be onto a coat of future and weathering.
I finished painting the Typhoon. I’ve been trying to push the end of the year builds so anything that might show up under the tree can be fair game to get started.
I used a combination of things I haven’t tried before; Blu-tack for masking the color boundaries and Vallejo Model Air paint.
The blu-tack is rolled out into long strings and flattened. It is then pressed onto the aircraft as a masking guide for the paint. As you paint along the edge of the blu-tack it forms a soft edge camo separation from the other colors. I used this very effectively on an F-21 Kfir I built a few years back. You can see the article here
This time the results were not as easy as the blu-tack and the Vallejo reacted by leaving a lot of residues which discolored the Vallejo. You can see the process and the results in these photos…
After fiddling around with it I found good old mineral spirits were able to take the residue away but also removed a small amount of paint which showed through to primer where the paint was thin.
As a good side effect (which I’ll remember) is rubbing down the Vallejo paint job with mineral spirits gave it a nice faded look. I might use this as a weathering step in the future.
The kit is now ready for a shot of future and decals.
A quick update on the Typhoon. (Lots of modeling done this weekend) This is a continuation from post https://wp.me/p3DBTC-iI
The Typhoon required very little seam sanding. I really enjoy those shake and bake kits.
I put the primer in and I have started painting (more on that in next posts).
I have been using Dupli-color automotive primer.
Normally I decant it (spray it into a cup) then use my airbrush. Sometimes this process results in the primer going on way to dry and grainy and in the last set of kits I built this required additional sanding to take out the graininess.
This time I decided what the heck I’ll just spray the primer on straight from the can and Wow! what a nice coat. Goes on thin and dries very smooth – just waiting for paint. No need for sanding this time.
Next, me, Mr. Iwata, and Mr. Vallejo get together for some color!
This is a continuation from a previous post which can be referenced here https://wp.me/p3DBTC-iP
The A-20 build continues. I am at the point where I need to fill the seams and prime. Although this kit went together well there were a few areas the needed attention
In order to get the nose section to fit the rear section, I needed to glue each respective nose piece to its side of the fuselage. This allows you to align the parts together.
The trade-off is that the nose section no longer closes completely and the transparency on the front which cements to the nose section is suddenly not wide enough. Using a medical clamp I had to squeeze the nose section just ever so slightly and then cemented the canopy on and it mostly fit.
I use Milliput medium grade putty. Mix the two pieces together, apply, take a cotton swab with water and smooth it out, and some light sanding at the end. The application with the cotton swab has made it very easy to get the putty into the places it needs to be without having to do a lot of sanding later. If you look at where the vertical joins the horizontal in this picture you can see a light bit of putty pressed in and smoothed over with a cotton swab.
Finally had to put the gear together before I could add the nacelles which will require some masking over the gear when painting. The gear is very intricate and looks nice once the nacelles are on. There isn’t much else inside the nacelles unless you want to pop for Eduards A-20 interior set.
Next lots of transparency masking.
Finally with a weekend to do some modeling I also started assembling the AMT A-20C. Not quite the shake and bake of the 1/48 Hasegawa in the previous post.
This one will need more gaps filled but overall the fuselage assembly didn’t cause me a lot of concern.
The biggest issue I need to hurdle is where the front end meets the bombardier’s glass. As you can see from the photos I have a gap to fill on top and there will be some sanding/filling required for the side joints. You can see that the glass has less width than the fuselage it will join and I will need to work out thinning the side to get it closer to the glass.
In this build, the strategy was to add the nose sections to their respective sides and then glue the fuselage together. The next time I do this (I still have an A-20J to build) the right way might be to get the glass and side aligned together then put it onto the fuselage. I would think sanding and filling the nose to fuselage joint would be easier than the glass joint.
On the bottom, the bomb-bay doors are molded as closed. You have to cut them open to display the bomb-bay door open.
There is a faux bomb-bay with partial bombs I could have used but I just want to close her up. The fit of the bomb bay doors into the fuselage required I glue a small piece of plastic onto the front of the bomb bay to hold the front of the doors, lest they have a tendency to fall into the bomb bay. I wonder if I didn’t get the nose wheel well far enough back as that may have been how the kit designers expected the front of the door to be supported on.
You can see that there will be some filling and sanding that needs to be done in the next steps.