More details. Superstructure built up more. Ventral panels added. Hull halves joined!
A wee bit more work done last night. Mostly super-structure but this is where it really starts to take shape anyway :) Also started adding the smaller/shorter raised hull sections and added the reactor dome.
This was a super quick build for me. 1 hour 20 minutes. Not including the base or finished photos (see next post). This was more or less a ‘scouting’ build to see what I can do for the next ones. There is definitely potential for lighting, the eyes are clear and there is plenty of room for an LED. Maybe someone will make a set of photo etch parts for the eyes…they’re pretty small and it’s probably the ONLY piece of photo etch that the kit would require so it’s unlikely. I can see many variant builds coming down the line for me:
Chewie’s back disassembled
Then of course there are the others in the 3PO series,
Anyway, enough speculation. Onto the build!! Super quick outta the box. All the parts are SOOOO SHINY!!!!!!!! So much so that I used rubber gloves throughout the whole build as to not get my grubby prints all over it.
The build happened so fast I could barely document it!!! Like I said, super shiny parts! Some notes:
1) Follow the instructions. The parts are labeled for a reason. I got mixed up with the arm parts and had to swap.
2) Be careful with trimming off the sprues. You don’t want to chip the plating.
3) The stickers are AWESOME. Never mind the raised detail on the parts, apply some pressure and they’ll stick really well. (I opted for some silver dry brushing on the waist instead of the sticker)
4) Go with the arms in locked position pieces. The plated arm actuators are way cooler than the soft plastic ones.
5) There will be leftover pieces to experiment with finishes on.
He finishes up really well! Can’t wait to work on the next one! Stay tuned for final pics.
SHE’S DONE! OMG I finished something for the contest!! I really wasn’t expecting to as priority has definitely been on the new baby. Still, she slept well last night so I was able to get the weathering and finish accomplished! With the exception of the final studio shots which I’ll be able to get up in the next week.
So…the final steps were a bit more complex than I anticipated, but really a fun process. I began by finishing the detail painting; deck tan for the wooden parts, flat metallic gray for some other parts, silver for the periscope and antennas and brass for the prop. While I had the brushes out I figured a good healthy dose of dry brushing was in order, so using the flat metallic gray and silver I went to town…or out to sea…or whatever. I used the silver to pick out the details like the ladder rungs, railings and hatches, etc.
Second step was adding some dry transfers from the stash. I figured SOME markings would be cool and stumbled upon some nice gray skull and crossbones that I applied to the bow on either side. A registry number and some box stencils were also added.
Thirdly was the weathering process. Boy this was really fun since this is my first ever U-Boat!! I started with AK’s Kriegsmarine wash for gray ships and brushed lightly in select areas. I then used a cotton swap to ‘sweep’ the effect downwards on the hull. The same process was repeated with AK’s light rust effects (awesome stuff!) as well as engine oil effect and smoke pigments from their airplane sets.
Looking over my references I noticed that some larger scale builds featured some green glass on the sides of the conning tower, so I added the detail before applying the final clear coat of TAMIYA FLAT!!!! First time using it in a couple of years because it wasn’t available for the longest time. I forgot how much I love this flat coat…
Once it was dry I began the rigging process. At first I was going to use Uschi’s rigging wire but the spool I have is too small a gauge and wasn’t quite right. Rooting around on my desk turned up some braided picture frame wire that I separated and used. To mount it I drilled small holes at the joining points on the hull and stretched it across each contact point. To make the little insulation bubbles or whatever they are I just dabbed some gunmetal on until the size looked right.
Final touch was adding some Future to those green areas mentioned previously. But THEN I realized Future makes a great “wet effects” alternative! So I spent some time adding dripping water from various parts of the hull. The idea is that it was plucked right out of the water. :)
These should do until I get the final pics taken.
Another layer of paint! I did the quick and easy route and sprayed directly from a rattle can….shame on me :( But hey, after some weathering it’ll be just fine! The camo really works well with my cutting mat, too. :P I *MIGHT* just finish this by Sunday!
Pretty sure this won’t get done in time for the contest deadline…but I’m still going to plug along when I can.
Finished the Alamos.
Assembled the flaps, still need to trim the rods.
Started the pylon work.
Adjusted the flight stand. Will add a magnet. Polished the canopies, masked then primed.
Already moved into painting. Been a couple weeks off with the new baby but I had some paint booth time on my birthday :) Going for the razzle scheme seen on larger U-Boats.
There was a small U-Boat itch that struck in the past couple of weeks. I picked up this little Trumpeter gem for $5 during a sale at Squadron (also got a Wuhan sub for $6 and a 1/144 Revell U-Boat VII for $2!!). So yeah, the itch is being scratched. As part of this build I found there was some photo etch available, while for the ICM kit, it will work for this kit.
First thing i wanted to do was open up all these holes…so with my newly built Tamiya drill and a fresh #11 blade I went at them carefully. They’re a bit larger than the mold, but not so much to make a visual impact.
There are a few spots on the hull, too, which went together super easily.
Because all these holes are now open, too much light passes through the tower so I needed to add some light blocking pieces.
All the detail parts and photo etch make a big impact on this little boat. The first railing I added turned out to be too small and out of scale so I pulled them off after priming…
The base parts had a couple injector marks I filled easily. I’m also using a nice little block of rosewood I had leftover from a guitar I built a while back. With a little wax it looks pretty good.
And with some black primer and new railing posts, she’s ready for paint!!
Last bit of updates for today. You can see adding the lower braced wings helped a touch with the warpage, but there is still some angling issue. The wings should be perfectly horizontal. SOO using my jig and some bottles for weights, I hope that after a few days like this the proper angle will be there.
Now for the intakes…Since the wheel bays are a bit taller than the kit allows for a small bulge occurs across the length of the intakes, so some clamping and delayed glueing was in order. The ended up aligning pretty will with the lower exhaust sections, but there were a few gaps. A thin sheet of styrene helped with one side and putty overall will help with both.
Overall though, she’s looking like a Flanker. :)
Another anticipated issue with the fit of the lower fuselage is the radome. You can see there are a number of issues along the seams, the least of which is the fit of the unaltered plastic. I did some trimming and added some splints. A final layer of putty will help smooth everything together. Some lines will need to be rescribed but ce la vie. Figured I’d build the vertical stabilizers while the putty set.
Once the lower fuselage was fit, some of the other seam issues became apparent. Luckily the Aires burner cans are designed so they don’t have to be installed along with the fuselage joining. I’ll be able to cut out some open panels and detail a bit while cleaning up the tail seams. There is also some work needed along the trailing edge where the stabilizers meet.
There was still some warpage issues with the wings that was slightly mitigated by adding the braced lower wings. Again, there are some gaps at the wing root that need to be addressed.
Another round of updates from the weekend.
The pits!! Painted with Tamiya light blue with some drops of white, yellow/green ejector rail, silver and black dry brushing, flat green foot boards, added stick PE and lastly some AK engine oil/streaking for grime. Final touch was adding the instrument panels and seats.
Before adding the lower fuselage a little bit of resin trimming was needed as well. The rear edge of the front tub and the front edge of the nose gear bay get in the way of one another so I cut a piece out of the latter. The main wheel bays are also too tall to fit so I CAREFULLY used a Dremel to thin out the areas on the upper fuselage and the tops of the wheels bays. The plastic got a little too thin and warped ever so slightly. Chalk it up to a well-worn bird… Regardless, the pits look good in their place.
BIG update after the weekend! A lot of major steps were accomplished. First up, I painted and clear coated the Alamo’s. They’re ready for decals and finishing.
Bang seats. Lots of color PE work and some healthy dry brushing.
Instrument panels! Flat coated with AK matte then some Future in the dials.
Repainted the upper fuselage inside and added some tiny bits of PE that will be hidden. :P
Just a little bit of work before bed last night.
Electronics! Did some work on wiring up the base last night. Drilled the hole for the MC-30 rod, which is a 1/8″ jack on the base and a rod with 2x 1/8″ plugs at either end. Need to paint the tiles before adding the wiring, that 1/8″ jack goes in after that. The big MC-80 plug wires need to be painted black as well.
Also did some weathering and flat coated the beast last night :)
Minor updates. Started working on the fuselage part of the cockpit. The instructions call for PE to be added as the braces, but those part numbers aren’t actually in the set so I made some vinyl strips. Before moving forward some paint needed to be added and AKAN makes a Flanker interior color. Personally, I think it’s pretty good but it doesn’t match the Eduard PE color. I’m mostly OK with that…
I also added the cannon barrel with some brass tubing.
Did some detail dry brushing, a rust wash and gathered the support ships for the dio last night.
Did a little work last night while paint was drying on the MC-80. The wheel well detail on the upper fuselage needs to be filed/sanded down to get the new wheel wells to fit. There’s also a fair bit of sanding to come along the seams. Also added the last of the AMUR vents.
Here’s what’s happening with the radome right now. I’ll need to shave some material from one side of the lower fuselage edge and add some to the opposite site. It’ll fit nicely in the end.
Did some more work on the intakes. The fans were dropped in, painted black then dry brushed silver. I’m not too concerned about the sloppy paint as you can’t tell once the intakes are in place.
Lastly, since the intakes have open tops, light bleeds through from the open wheel bays. To correct this I fitted a piece of adhesive vinyl to the top. Works as an effective light block with no impact on the fit.
Now for the base!! I had previously laid out all the tiles but this weekend I trimmed them and glued them in place. The MC-80 support rod will fit really nicely and the MC-30 rod I have something kind of ingenious planned. Right now it’s primed and ready to paint!!
Moving on through the updates! After the main painting was completed I trimmed the fiber optics and began the process of adding panel line decals from my stash. First, a nice coat of Future was applied. The decals are basically a random assortment of lines of different lengths and weights as well as square paneling of tones of gray.
Once everything was mostly buttoned up the engine nozzles were installed and all the lights were tested. It’s looking really good!!
BIG update. This past week was a big push. I’m really working towards having this thing finished by the weekend. Where do I begin??? Let’s start from where I left off: masking. So after the initial base coat was applied (Akan 73156) I applied TONS of little squares of masking tape to replicate paneling.
Next up was the first round of painting. I began with Badger’s camouflage gray with some dumps of pearlescent pigment in the mix, thinned down a little bit. The effect is nice and subtle because the shade is ever so lighter than the Akan color plus the metallic sheen. Additionally, I used a mix of AK rubber black and sea gray to add some darker gray areas as well as “highlight” the tech areas. The 3rd step during this painting process was to apply the rust colors, which is a mix of Vallejo German Orange and AK Sea Gray. I applied this last mix a little more judiciously; the last build had much larger areas of rust/red and deviated from the on-screen look a little too much. I also used some photo etch frets to get some different patterns.
There’s a whole bunch more updates so I’ll break them into new posts :) Stay tuned!
Another week has gone by with many minor updates. Finished up the lower wings…and figured I disconnect them while I was working on the wheel bays. They should be easy enough to pop back in place once she goes together. Also finished the riveting process…which wasn’t as bad as I thought it’d be. Tedious, but not bad. Worked on the canopy hinge by re-adding the PE plate to the new piece of styrene and puttied in place. Lastly, added the spacers to the radome and added to the upper fuselage. There will be a touch of putty and sanding but the shapes match, which is more important.
Every small amount of progress keeps adding up. This update shows that I added about half of the AMUR photo etch pieces so far. The front section of the cannon PE plate snapped off (and didn’t fit quite right) but otherwise I’m OK with it. I also cut out a section of the canopy hinge and added the rear pilot instrument panel hood. Also dropped in the airbrake.
Wheel bay progress. These things are a big pain, especially the main wheel bays. The nose gear bay was a breeze however…
Primed the pit, detailed the flaperons, and started adding the spacer to the radome.
Lastly, finished detailing the Alamos and primed them. I used some tubing in the nozzles for a little extra detail. The black primer is great because none of the detail is lost.
Black primer and base coat applied! I used Mr. Surfacer black 1500 and Akan light gray 73506 (IIRC). Now I’m masking smaller areas in preparation for the rusted spot application. It’s sure shaping up! Planning on finishing this up in the next couple weeks FOR SURE.
A few minor updates from the past couple weeks. It’s been a little slow on the modeling front because I’ve been working on installing some art for a big show (see here: http://www.cosmosis.squarespace.com). BUT I was able to find 10/15 minutes here and there. The easy stuff was getting the Alamos together. The detail is just stunning on these in this scale. I really hope Eduard steps up and releases some 1/72 Brassin sets like this.
The cockpit started getting some attention as well. I almost forgot to cut out the area to accommodate the Fairy Hobby canopy when I put the Aires combing in place! Oops. I also added the photo etch pieces to the fuselage side of the canopy system. And since the cockpit pieces are pretty easy to piece together, I went ahead and did that, too
The new wheels bays from Aires are really great in terms of detail, but they are a mess and a half to get into place. The front of the wheel well section is OK, but the main channels require a LOT of cut outs and alignment. I still need to fill some gaps and add some reinforcement pieces on the inside.
Another set of steps that easy to work on separately are the intakes. Once the rivets were complete I filled the seam with some CA, to be sanded later, and added in all the photo etch from both Eduard and AMUR. The AMUR vents/intakes, etc don’t quite fit over the Academy lines so I had to fill the plastic with Tamiya putty. They will be sanded flush so the vents stick out soon.
That’s all for now! Gotta focus on 2 commissions. :) This will be worked on during the in between/drying stages of the others :P
It’s funny, I look back at this past week and think I really haven’t done much on this project, then I look at the pictures! Every little step makes a big difference and I might just be getting to the major building sooner than I realize!
First up, I started riveting! The horizontal and vertical stabilizers were first up and assembled. There were a few lines that needed to be scribed as well as small access panels.
The verticals were a little more complex so I made a new scribing template for the access panels. The lower fins also don’t come with the larger rivet markings so I used Hasegawa’s .75mm rivet punch tool. The ‘stabes are looking the part already.
Since the elevators are going to be drooped, the hinges need some extension work. It’s a little tricky trying to figure out curves and length by just dry fitting all the pieces, so an approximation took effect. Once the fins and fuselage pieces are assembled it should be easier to trim and fit the parts.
Not only are there new lines to be scribed, some need to be removed so I filled them with putty and began sanding smooth. I also started scribing the new lines on the wings. While I was at it I sanded down the ejector pin marks on the inside of the intakes.
So something funny also cropped up and it’s a bit of a hump. The wings are bent on both the top and bottom fuselage pieces. It’s probably my fault for packing the box so tight. I glued some steel rods into the bottom piece and it helped but there’s not enough room for them in the top section. I’ll have to work carefully with some heat from my desk lamp to reshape.
Lastly, Flankerman Ken over at ARC shared that the nose gear door inset shape is wrong, so I’ll be re-sculpting that. I also trimmed all the blocks off the resin pieces….still a huge pile!! That process included cutting apart the pieces I need from the kit pylons.
Closer look at the elevators and pylons. I’m dropping the flaps on this build since you can see they are all dropping on the sitting bird. Also, the pylons all appear to be painted differently.
Finally dug into the bits!!! First step was to wash all the resin to make sure the primer will stick so the parts were soaked overnight in a bowl of water with Comet then laid out to dry in the sun. There is a LOT of resin for this build. Like a LOT.
All the parts are really well detailed. The Quickboost flaperons do need rivet work done, something the kit parts actually have. I’m still going to go with the resin parts because the hinge edge has more detail. Eduard included two really well detailed pilot helmets and they’re a nice touch. I think I’ll rest them on the seats. The Aires exhaust nozzles are incredible. There are even raised rivets on the outer layer of feathers! Although comparing them to the walk around images, a couple more minor rivet lines need to be added. One thing Eduard does NOT include in the box is a resin combing, rather they rely on a poorly shaped and detailed photo etch piece. I took a good look at the Wolfpack piece from the stash and compared it to the Aires piece from the single-seater pit and the latter won out. Lastly, I found a reference of Blue 52 with a single Alamo C mounted on the intake pylon, so again Eduard’s Brassin saves the day. AMAZING detail…almost like it’s a mini kit itself…
Speaking of armament, the kit pylons are crap so not only will I be using the ones provided in the Brassin sets (I’m pulling from other Alamo and Archer sets) but I’ll have to mix and match PIECES of the kit pylons because Eduard doesn’t supply matching “pre-pylon” mounts. Regardless, I laid out all the pylon upgrades according to design along with the placement of the Alamos.
The Eduard cockpit parts and Aires nose wheel bay have these blocks on them that need to be cut off. Normally I wouldn’t worry about it but even with the barest of dry fitting it’s apparent space is needed. Radome wise, the shape of the resin part is spot on but alignment with the kit parts is off. Some fix its will need to happen there for sure. As a tool use note, I’ve been using the really thin photo etch saws to cut the resin off the pour stubs, but it’s a bit flimsy so I slid the saw into the blade handle with an old blade as support.
Lastly, I took a good look at all the main plastic parts and examined where new panel lines need to be scribed or old ones filled, where I need to make cuts to fit the resin parts and piled up all the parts that need rivets. I measured the distance on the kit rivets and while they may not be scale accurate, I figured I’d at least match as best I could with the new lines. This is where the trusty RB Productions Rivet-R tool comes in handy, specifically the 1mm rivet wheel set (one for long lines, one for corners). The last couple pics here are the awesome Master metal pitot and the AMUR photo etch grills.
It’s amazing what a half hour or so of time can yield when focus is present. I brought the kit into the paint booth with some Akan light gray from the Flanker paint set for the base color and a mix of Vallejo German Orange and Tamiya XF-64 for the ‘rust’ spots. I also used a post-it note to spot mask for some of the paneling. The last night I took a few minutes to detail with Tamiya gunmetal, chrome silver with some dry brushing of white and silver. The final step of the evening was a clear coat so it was ready for the MiG neutral wash this morning.
A bit more of an update on this guy as well. Once it was closed up the drilled out nozzles were added and some putty was put in place. Turns out there was a lot of light bleed so I decided some white glue would close some of the holes and dampen the bleed a bit. I also put a few drops over the LEDs themselves to diffuse the light a bit more. Also, before priming, I decided to add a bunch more details all around the hull, things like antennas, piping, blisters, etc. A good dose of black primer did a pretty good job of managing the light leak but I still had to spot paint. Shaping up!!
BIG update. Lots of work has been done since I last posted this guy. Firstly, everything was wired up and I finished detailing the hangar. Once it was closed up I added all the Shapeways blisters and extended bridges. A few drop tank halves made their way onto the hull as well. Right now she sits with drying putty on the seams.
Fibers and LEDs connected and she’s buttoned up! Some putty was added to fill in the tail LED channel and I still have to drill out the nozzles. SOOOO close to primer!!!
All the detail paint was added, she was clear coated, a few long sessions of decal application, another clear coat, some washes with MiG Productions White and Neutral Gray, then some pastel weathering and chipping, a flat coat, some mask removal and part assembly and she’s done! The last pics are just a teaser until I finish up the base and get it into the photo studio.
Fibers are now completely threaded, trimmed and joined to the LEDs!! Still need to drill out a little more of the area on the engine back plate to insert the flickering LEDs but oh man it’s close to being buttoned up! Other than that the hangar detail needs to be filled out a little more and the main plug wiring needs to be done. There’s a little bit of soldering in my future :) ALSO the frame for the display base should is being made and should be en route soon! I know the deadline for this has passed but as I stated in my resolutions, taking it slow/not rushing produces better results so I’m trying to be careful as I go and do it right.
Major painting complete! A couple rounds of masking and airbrushing and it’s looking the part. The green and brown were straight from the bottle, both Badger colors and the orange was Vallejo bright orange, thinned down a bit. The tape pulled off a couple panels and the static discharge vanes so there is a little bit of fixing. Overall I’m pretty happy with the result and with the right amount of weathering this will be a nice display piece! Next up detail painting and sub-assemblies!
“For info, the SU-27 Ub in first photo, is not the same aircraft, after merged at Kilp-Yavr in 2001, it’s become 54 blue, your plane are ex-54 blue from Afrikanda.
Note that after 2006, the forward part of plane, until the end of the canopy, have been repainted, and the planes have received new red star, like you can see with the photo off Alexey Zemlakoff taken in 2009, before the withdrawal of regiment to Besovets AB.
Finally opened up the box! I have 2 UB kits stashed into one so I had to parse out everything. Both kits have all the requisite aftermarket, too. I’ll be utilizing the Eduard kit (the other is the Zhengdefu knock-off).
Getting into a little more detail, here are all the aftermarket components I’ll be using, including the Eduard Brassin included in the kit: Eduard Brassin cockpit and seats, Eduard Brassin wheels, Eduard interior and exterior photo etch, Eduard Brassin Archer, Aphid and Alamo missiles*, Eduard mask, Aires exhausts, Aires wheel bays, Quickboost flaperons, Quickboost antenna, Quickboost radome, Master metal pitot, RUST photo etch vents, Master brass static discharge vanes, Fairy Hobby vacuform canopy, and Begemot and Linden Hill decals.
*I’ve only seen one reference of this bird carrying armament and it was 2 Alamos on the intake pylons. It’s a unique arrangement so I’ll only need some of the Brassin sets, but all the pylons will be used.
Lastly, I like to be organized with my stash for the most part. I tend to keep a lot of decals in my file cabinet for easy reference, etc. In some instances I do put decal sheets in the kit boxes. This is one of those times. Lo and behold I discovered not only did I already have the Linden Hills sheet that I was hunting for, but 2 other sets as well. Between the kit decals, the Begemot sets and the newly discovered sets, I’ll be, well….set.
Fibers almost done! I need to cut out some areas from the wing roots and thread fibers, but it’s so close!! One more session!
Really been thinking about this build and I’ve narrowed down some choices:
1) This will be a heavily weathered bird (per this year’s theme)
2) The weathering will be winterized
3) I’ll be doing a full meal deal build, starting from Eduard’s Limited kit
4) It’ll be Blue 52 with some weathering borrowed from Blues 41 and 51.
5) I might build with a snowy base but only enter the model to keep it in the air category (unless the snowy base is permitted, no people or equipment.
6) I have to double check that I have decals to do 52, so I’ll need the numbers, a polar bear, and whatever else is bird specific…I might have to part out some sets. So if anyone has extras let me know!
***UPDATE: Turns out Linden Hill DID make decals for this family of birds!! EXCEPT THEY’VE BEEN SOLD OUT!!! And the sheet doesn’t have ’52’ on it. And the little red/white/gold emblem is slightly different. See the sheet below…
*******UPDATE: I found a friend to trade with who has the set!! I still need to make the new numbers though so I did a little work in Illustrator. See the last images.
I have plenty of reference material already gathered I think…but I can always add more!
Bases constructed for the landed Flankers! I printed the tarmacs on cardstock but in order to get them to NOT wrinkle I had to add some pressure. Like a 40lb box of books kind of pressure. A little trimming and some paint and they’re ready! Actually, I brushed white glue over the top of them and then when it was dry scored along the tile seams so when the light hits it right, you can see an indentation. I might still flat coat them though. As for the Flankers themselves they still need canopy sanding and polishing. :( I also finally started working on the display support for the in flight bird. The rod needs some reshaping but the effect is there.
Luckily, it was also warm enough this past weekend to get into the spray booth! The T-50 has been ready for paint for a while now. I used my new AKAN paints and I love em! They’re SOOO smooth!! I only used a drop or two of thinner just to make sure the preshading effect didn’t get lost. The bottom side blue is a typical Flanker color but the rhomboid top shape was a mix of black and a darker blue. After the initial shape was added I dropped some of the lighter blue in and post-shaded. Later on I hand brushed the white markings and metal for the engines. The darker tone is Tamiya gunmetal and the aluminum parts are from a Krylon silver leafing pen. Right now it’s clear coated and waiting for decals!