1/48 Tamiya BAe Sea Harrier FRS.1 – Build Log

10th April 2014

As I left it last time, the canopy had been sanded, polished, dipped in Klear and left in the canopy incubator…

Here’s a before and after shot, the left hand side of the picture is the canopy after sanding and polishing, the right hand side is after having been dipped in Klear and left to dry for a couple of days.



So you can see the difference in the canopy, below is the original shot of the untreated canopy – there’s a big ‘cobweb’ running diagonally from top left to bottom right of the canopy…



And the same shot again but after the canopy has been polished and dipped. Sanding and polishing the inside definitely helped get rid of the distortion in the glass…




Again, here’s the original shot of the left hand side with the untreated canopy…



And the same shot again taken after sanding, polishing and dipping the canopy – a definite improvement!



Still focussing on the cockpit area, I started work on the front coaming / instrument panel / HUD. The front coaming has raised panels lines – one of those is about to be converted to a recessed panel line…



A length of Dymo tape to act as a guide, a few swipes with the scriber and the panel line is now recessed. BTW sorry for the naff photo – not sure what happened there!?



The front coaming with a coat of Tamiya Nato Black and highlights sprayed on with Tamiya German Grey. It’s also had a very light dry brushing with Tamiya Ocean Grey.



On the high spots of the coaming I buffed the flat paint with a bit of kitchen roll to create some shiny areas and add texture.



For the HUD lens a blob of PVA has been applied…



And the HUD glass masked up ready for a coat of Tamiya Nato Black on the sides…



Here’s the completed Coaming / Instrument Panel / HUD assembly…

I used the supplied decal for the instruments, this is transparent so the panel had a brushed coat of light grey first. I used a silver pencil to go around some of the edges to add a bit of wear and tear.



Time to take care of some the seams within the canopy area – good old PPP (Perfect Plastic Putty) to the rescue here…



And a good coat of neat Tamiya Medium Grey…



One of the things that was bugging me about the cockpit area was this great big bulge of plastic in front of the canopy. I hadn’t given it a lot of thought and was almost ready to attack it with a coarse sanding stick when I decided to check my reference photos… Turns out the bulge is the windscreen wiper activator housing and is supposed to be there.



The reference photos I have show the housing to be a separate part to the fuselage, so I ran a scriber around the outside of it so that it looks like a separate assembly and not just part of the fuselage…



Next up, time to tackle the intakes…

As you can see the auxiliary intakes have been represented in the kit by recessed panel lines (not that they are very well defined).

I decided to open up the auxiliary air intakes…



First of all a coarse diamond needle file is used to quickly remove most of the ‘meat’ being careful not to get closer than 1mm from the line.

On the SHAR at rest, the bottom three intakes are closed due to gravity. I marked the closed intakes with a green Sharpie to make sure I don’t get the intake upside down and remove the wrong doors.



With the hole roughed out, I switched to some miniature needle files to take the hole right up to the line and to polish the surface of the cut.




On the real SHAR it looks like there are seven auxiliary intake doors, the Tamiya SHAR has eight. I’m not going to correct that even though it means I will have to cut 2 extra holes.

The panel lines for the top two doors were very shallow, so here I’m re-scribing the lines with the aid of the trusty old Dymo tape.



Likewise, the bottom 3 doors are not very well defined so they are given a re-scribe too…



And after a clean and polish, here’s one intake done and one to go…


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Cheers - Rich

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