That’s the number of kits I have on the model shelves.

I needed to condense the models on the shelves so that I could get more on them.  They were also sharing the space with a lot of cat fur and dust so I decided to take the slew of them down, clean them and the shelves, and put them back on the shelves.

I took these photos of the lot parked on the dining room table, cleaned waiting for clean shelves.  I was happy didn’t need to toss any of them.

I built these over about 12 years.  I have one in here that is about 25 years old and a complete set of Monogram 1/48 Century Series fighters.

P-61 is complete – first kit of 2015


Actually this should have been the last kit of 2014.  I’ve been working on this kit since August of last year with a long period over the late summer and early fall where it sat idle.

I bought this kit on eBay many moons ago and I found a couple of parts missing.  I’m not saying the seller lost them as this kit has been rattling around in my stash in a rough box without plastic bags for years.  But I had to fabricate one of the small flaps from scratch.

On this kit I used or tried the following (* = first time);

  • *All black camo (I think I painted a P-38 all black in my youth)
  • *Using salt to create paint chipping
  • *Loan Star Models resin cockpit
  • True details wheels
  • *Scalecoat and True-color paints
  • Rescribed the whole thing (resribeaholic)
  • *Kitsworld decals

I can’t believe how big this thing is on my shelf, and putting it next to the Bf-109e I am building really shows it’s size.  It would barely fit in my paint booth.

I wanted to have a Black Widow since I first saw one as a kid.  Great modeling experience – I am satisfied with the result.

IMG_1364  IMG_1365  IMG_1366  IMG_1367


P-61 up on it’s legs

Greetings!  Getting close to finishing a model this year – early!

The P-61 is decaled, up on it’s legs, and the props are on.  Looking like a P-61!

I used a set of True Detail wheels and they look pretty good.  I got to use my drill press to make sure the holes were straight for the axles.

I also used Kitsworld decals, the “Night Takeoff” is only on this sheet and I have a F-84 to build next with the same “Night Takeoff” pin-up.  My only issue is the decals come with nose art and serial numbers only.  Of course the decals that came with this kit of yesteryear cracked up the minute they released from the paper.  It would have been nice to have a whole set of insignia on the sheet for the cost.  Since the national insignia is non-standard small for this aircraft I wound up using a set from a 1/72 F6F in the spares box.

01b187f7f8a5f78df09209b4c14433879b30fb2502 015b10c4f53a5e2d27717e545c83a8da798a1cc9a1 015d3f3c5363b0c845a1064fbe81716ca74081516d


Using salt for the paint chipping didn’t come out too bad, although next time I think I will be a bit more conscious about where I put it.  I got the random effect I was looking for and the props look great but is seemed like a bit too much.  And maybe I’ll use a shinier silver paint as the aluminium I used looks almost white in some spots.

Next up, exhaust stains then an overall coat of Testors Dullcoat, then put the rest of the parts on and it’s off to decal the Bf-109e I am building concurrently.

P-61 covered in future and ready for decals

A couple of coats of Future are upon the black beauty and I will start decaling tomorrow.  I bought a set of Kit’s World Decals to try, going for the “Night Take-off” pin-up on the nose.  The Kit’s World Decals did not come with any national insignia or stencils so we are going to see how well these old Monogram decals do.

After decaling and another shot of future we are going to apply some filter washes (I want to see how well they work on black) and then the standard burnt umber weather wash.  After that a couple of exhaust streaks and we should be ready to put the remaining parts on and take off the canopy mask.  Looking forward to getting this huge kit done.



P-61 ready for finishing

The black is on and it turned out pretty good.  The first few salt chips that came off made the chips look more white rather than silver and that had me worried but once I got it all off I’m pretty pleased with a first attempt at salt chipping.  The thing I was most worried about, it would look overdone, didn’t happen.

The process I used to paint it were;

  • I used the Tru-color black as my base coat (see previous post).  It seemed the blackest
  • Sprayed random patches of Scalecoat engine black.  This color was slightly less black and added some differentiation
  • Highlighted the panel lines with Scalecoat loco black (darkest black)
  • Sprayed random swipes of Floquil grimy black along the airflow to breakup the black and provide weathering

Next I am going to future, decal, and touch up some of the non-black areas that may have been oversprayed.

Here are some shots;


P-61 turned to the dark side

I got the first coat of black on the P-61.

I’ve been playing around with my black paint stocks to try and determine what color of black to use on the model and I’ll probably use all five of these in some fashion.  I really miss my floquil engine and weathered black but these substitutes look promising.

I have a bunch of other models in the queue that will be black as well so this is worth a shot at understanding black.  Here they are;BlacksThe photo is a bit fuzzy, hard to focus the camera on an all black subject!

I’m going to use the tru-color black for the base coat then use the next three for highlights and breaking up the solid black color.  At the end, I’ll streak the model with grimy black to give it a true weathered look.

Here are a couple of shots.  That aircraft is really black!

IMG_1344   IMG_1342

Note that the salt chipping discussed in a previous post is starting to come off.  I’m not sure I like the results yet but I’ll wait until all of the black is on the clean it off and see what it looks like.  Doesn’t look shiny silver enough!


Happy New Year!

Salted P-61

I spent some time today adding salt to a P-61.  It really turned out quite easy to add the salt.  I even skipped the task of applying future first so we will see how this goes.

I made a bowl of water with a one drop of dish detergent.  With a soft brush I applied a bit of water to the model in a number of spots in one area then sprinkled Kosher salt onto area and it stuck to the water.  The dish detergent helped as the water didn’t beadup but went nicely where the brush was.

I then shook off the rest of the salt and here are the results;

IMG_1336    IMG_1339

IMG_1340    IMG_1341

Before I start spraying the black camouflage I’ll take a brush and pop some of the heaver salt applications off.

Stay tuned

P-61 is underway

The Monogram P-61 is underway.  I’m using the Lone Star Model cockpit set and have most of it cut out and I am test fitting.  So far so good, things look like they fit pretty well.

I had to take a bow out of the kit floor using boiling water and clamping it to a solid flat piece.

I realized tonight I don’t have any interior green so it’s off to the hobby shop tomorrow night.


P-61 started P-61 cockpit 1

Next up – Back in black (and a little desert)

Now that I’ve parked the Constitution for a few weeks..

Inspired by a fellow blogger, who builds multiple kits at the same time, sometimes in the middle of a move, I’ve decided to build at the same time a couple of kits I’ve wanted to build for a while; the Monogram P-61 and a 1/48 Hasegawa Bf-109e in desert markings.


I’ve had the P-61 next to forever.  So long in fact the parts are dusty in the box (how do model parts get dusty in a box?)  I will use the Lone Star Model P-61 cockpit kit with this.  I have wanted a P-61 in the collection for awhile and I have a lot of things to try on this kit; salt weathering, faded black painting, oil dot filter wash on black, etc.

The Bf-109e is a Hasegawa builder I bought off of eBay along with a Verlinden set that was missing the photo etch when I purchased it.  I’m going to challenge myself to make up for the lack of photo etch and do some modeling using the resin parts.

P-61 1  Bf-109e 1

‘Happy building!