Friday, 29 April 2016

Revell Leopard I update

Now that the build review has been sent off to be published I went back to this model as I had a few little bits still to do to improve it. One of the best improvements came from Leopard Club and that's for the four sealing plugs that are always missed on Leopards. To be fair Revell DID mould two of them onto the upper hull (along with moulded on chain) but you still need two for the gun mantlet;

Also there are two bars on the rear turret basket that need to be added and this was done with 0.75mm Evergreen styrene rod;

 The biggest problem is with the tracks due to the mould-pin marks and I WAS going to throw them away and replace them with resin ones, however having had another look I decided to see if I could do anything with the tracks.
One problem is that they are slightly too long so I chopped out two links and rejoined them with staples (just like the old days of modeling) and this improved the track tension no end. The pin marks and staples were then filled in with superglue and when set sanded down and to me they look much better, especially as the weathering will cover a multitude of sins;

I do have another update set from Leopard Club for this kit but I'll use that for a future Leopard build plus the set of mantlet plugs I have here too.

Sunday, 17 April 2016

Fokker E.V/ D.VIII

Today I started the cockpit as the Dragon one is far too simplified. Using 0.50mm Evergreen styrene rod I've begun the construction of the fuselage framing which will be verrrry delicate, I'll have to strengthen the joints with superglue otherwise this will be 'fun' to handle during painting.
The plan is to use Aviattic lozenge decals for the interior fuselage sides and Uschi Van Der Rosten woodgrain decal for the triangular plywood fuselage pieces. The tubular steel fuselage frame was painted an olive green but strips of lozenger fabric were wrapped around some of them so it will be interesting to try and do this in 1/48 on styrene rod that is half a millimeter in diameter, the things you do for laughs.....
(The coin is a UK 10 pence piece used for scale)

Saturday, 16 April 2016

Dragon Fokker E.V./D.VIII

Having looked at my references I've completely erased any detail that was on the fuselage interior and will scratchbuild the framing instead. The side walls where the forward fuselage part sits on had the solid lump of plastic removed as this would have been visible through the cockpit opening.

All I have to do now is make some fuselage framing. Easy! :o)

Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Dragon Fokker E.V/D.VIII continued

I still have'nt stuck any parts together as I wanted to get the struts right as if I could'nt then it would be another project shelved, luckily I managed to get them looking much better. I was going to use aerofoil section styrene strip but after looking at the results from my first attempt it was much too thick so I stripped the plastic off the etch and tried again with Evergreen flat styrene strip;
It was superglued to the etch then sanded to try and get an aerofoil section and although you can't really tell in this next picture it has worked out better;
Now that I've done this bit I can actually start the model properly but only when the Uschi Van Der Rosten wood grain decal sheet turns up as this will be needed for the cockpit interior. I've decided on the final colour scheme and it's this one;
This machine was flown by Offz. Stv (Offizierstellvertreter) Friedrich Altemeier (1886-1968) of Jasta 24 as I quite like the black and white circles and white trim. I was scratching my head about how to do those circles on the fuselage and the Fokker serial number and letters but luckily I have found an out-of-print decal sheet by Aeromaster so that's on the way from Canada. One thing about this Dragon kit is that there are NO serials or lettering on the decal sheet however it is likely to be unusable anyway due to the length of time I've had it in the stash and it's showing signs of splitting.

Saturday, 9 April 2016

Dragon Fokker E.V/D.VIII

With the Leopard built I want to have (yet) another go at finishing a model aircraft as previous attempts have ended up as failures for one reason or another (Airfix C-47, Eduard Albatros DIII, Hasegawa Mustang blah blah blah the list is long).
I've always had an interest in WW1 aircraft ever since my parents bought me a book about them when I was a kid, the colour schemes are fantastic and the aircraft themselves have a lot of character. I've dabbled with building them over the years, the latest attempt being the above-mentioned Eduard Albatros.
I've had the Dragon Fokker E.V/ D.VIII in the stash for years as the look of it appealed to me but the main problem at the time was the struts as Dragon supplied them as etch for strength (styrene struts would just not work), the problem with etch is that it is flat and struts have an aerofoil section. I've pondered over the years different ways of improving the etch but never really came up with a solution up until a few days ago (yes it's obviously been at the back of my mind for this long).
What I'm planning to do is use styrene aerofoil section but flattened on one side and then superglued to the etch like this;

So far it looks promising! Here's the kit box;
Now in the years between buying the kit and today there has been new research into the finish of the aircraft. Originally art work in books and the kit suggested that the wing was a solid green and that the lozenge camouflage was made up of five colours, however new research points to the lozenge being four colour on the fuselage with possibly a five colour used on the tailplane. Also the biggest thing is that the wing colour was actually a streaky green and brown on the top surfaces with the underside a streaky azure blue and violet (ugh! I preferred the original green).
In a way I am glad that I did'nt build the kit all those years ago as (A) I probably would have buggered it up in the first place and (B) the new research means if I finish it the model will be more accurate. I recently got some lozenge decals from Aviattic that are VERY nice so this should be a giggle. More later....

Revell Leopard built

I finally finished the build of the model and I have to say generally it is a good kit. Simplified in places and a bit of a mix and match between early production batches but I enjoyed it. I'm not going to say too much about the build as it will be featured in a future issue of Model Military International but it makes an excellent base for further detailing;

I used the tracks for the article with a view to changing them later but looking at them now they are'nt THAT bad although the pin marks still need filling. One piece of advice is to cut two links off either side as it improves the track tension.
I have some resin goodies on the way from Leopard Workshop that I'll add later now that the pictures are done so until then it's on hold paint-wise and time to start something else.