22nd October 2014
Has it really been more than 3 months since my last update!?
Unfortunately the Phantom took a bit of a back seat while I tried to finish the Vulcan… As it was the Vulcan didn’t get finished and then modelling as a whole took a back seat to a whole load of work commitments. Well, that and the dog ate my homework 😉
Last time I’d been battling with the resin and PE cockpit, and I’d got a base coat on some of the PE that will make up the instrument panels.
These are light grey with black instrument faces. They are way to small to mask off and paint so I thought I’d dry brush black over the PE to give a hint of black instrument bezels on a light grey background.
They turned out a bit grubby looking, but I reckon they’ll be ok when in situ…
Here’s the drivers instrument panel PVA glued in place, plenty of excess PVA can be seen squishing through the instrument holes in order to give a nice glassy effect when its dry.
And finally for this update I gave the front and rear radar screen a good glob of Tamiya Clear Green to look like, well, radar screens.
In my usual style I applied the clear green to the radar screens, packed everything up for the night and then had a flick through my reference photos to discover the radar screens were more likely to be orange not green.
Gotta remember, look at the reference photos, then do the work lol 😉
As it happens the clear green turned dried to be an opaque black, so no worries there!
These past few days I’ve managed to get a real head of steam up on the cockpit, here’s a few shots of the finished article…
On the right hand side of the navigators position, the sidewall padding material was brushed in using Tamiya Buff heavily thinned with X-20a.
Now that it’s all together I’m happy with the way the instrument panels have turned out, definitely get the effect of black bezels on a grey panel…
Good to see that the instrument transparencies ended up correctly aligned in the holes in the PE! Always feel that kind of thing is a bit of a lottery once you cover it in PVA…
The panels had the knobs touched up with Citadel white and black paints, with the occasional red one thrown in for dramatic effect… Finally the panels were washed over with Flory Grey wash to give them that second hand look.
A bit of an ink wash, then some dry brushing with Citadel (Dry) Longbeard Grey and finally a touch of Citadel (Dry) Necron Compound to bring out the highlights.
PS. If you’re not familiar with Citadel paints, they are named by beardy board gamer types so the name of the paint doesn’t necessarily bear any relationship to anything that actually exists, at least not unless you’ve been sitting at the same table for 3 days straight subsisting on nothing more than Mountain Dew, Twinkie Bars and Peanut M&Ms… Long beard Grey is actually pretty descriptive, if you imagine a long grey beard then that is what colour the paint is. However unless you’ve ever visited a Necron Compound you’re unlikely to guess that it is actually Silver.
Seriously though the Citadel Dry paints are brilliant. It’s basically dry brushing paint in a tub. It’s the consistency of chocolate mousse, you just dab your brush in it, wipe of the excess and dry brush away. Why I find it better than Tamiya is that the Citadel dry paint goes a really long way, you hardly use any at all, and more important I find the Tamiya acrylic dries so damn fast on the brush!
With the cockpit done…
Well, I say it’s done… There are still a couple of jobs to do yet.
1. The HUD. The other day I snapped off one of the HUD supports and the carpet monster instantly swallowed it. I spent 10 minutes scouring the fluffy bobbles of my carpet but it was gone for good. Then I remembered I have a complete Eduard PE kit for the Phantom which includes a complete PE cockpit. The PE I used on the cockpit was what came with the Aires set, and it turns out the Eduard PE set comes with a nice little PE HUD! Result! I’ll fit that later otherwise it’ll only get snapped off.
2. The seats. These will get done nearer the end as I’ve had it with fiddly resin for a while 😉
Moving on, time to get the tub fitted into the fuselage.
This takes a fair bit of surgery to get the resin tub to fit. Basically the Aires instructions are as much use as a handbrake on a U-boat at this point so it’s a case of searching the web for a few pointers and then leaping in with a razor saw.
Here’s the left hand side with the inside detail chiselled away and the relevant bits cut away.
The front wheel well has been fitted and you can notice a set of white plasticard shims glued towards the top of the wheel well. These are there to ensure that the top of the tub sits absolutely flush with the top of the fuselage once it’s in-situ.
Same for the right hand side. Here you can see where I had to go all the way through to remove the inner moulding from what I presume is a refuelling probe panel (or something).
Also note the pencil marks. These are handy to help work out which parts of the resin tub need to be sanded away. Rub pencil all over the inside of the fuselage, then dry fit the tub and gently rub the tub backwards and forwards – you end up with pencil marks on the tub where the high spots are. Sand off the high spots, rinse and repeat until the tub fits nicely.
Here’s the tub with the side sanded down…
And the other side, again showing where the tub was sanded down to fit the fuselage.
Fitting the resin tub requires tons of dry fitting and trial and error. At this stage I’ve got it fitting quite nicely – going to call that done and look at gluing it together…
To glue the tub I’ve used Araldite Rapid. Two reasons: 1. It is great for gap filling and will act like a liquid shim to fill in any large gaps there may be. 2. It takes 5 minutes or so to set, this gives time to manoeuvre the tub into its final position once the fuselage halves are brought together.
Also in this shot you can see how much of the bottom of the tub had to be cut away to fit over the wheel well. The bottom was cut away mainly using a razor saw and a junior hacksaw blade.
With the tub in place it’s time to bring the fuselage sides together and start gluing them up using Mr Cement S. Darned handy those F clamps!
While the fuselage is going off, time to look at the intakes. Just going with OOB here, a few ejector pin marks to deal with but nothing major…
And lastly for this session the wings are going together before being attached to the fuselage.