Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by ericg

  1. It’s best that you approach GT resin himself, directly. He gets mighty unhappy if others offer advice about his product.
  2. Some more work. I scratch built the small D shaped lump on the inside of each tank pylon. The pylon was sprayed with the light grey cam and then the dark green was applied approx. halfway along its length. I discovered that they were painted this way through viewing many photos. I have been experimenting with oil paints to add extra effects to the paint work. I added some blue spots to the uppermost panels of the burnt section, to simulate the reflection of the blue sky. This was blended in with a soft brush. It’s a very subtle effect but it’s there.
  3. Thanks for a link to your build Barry, much appreciated. I will check it out for inspiration. Thanks also to everyone else for the comments. Some more work. The Zacto intake and nose correction was next. The aftermarket correction features a small part which blends the kit intake into the new intake lip. This required removal of a small amount of material from the front of the intake. I used Tamiya white tape as a guide to cut it off. The Zacto resin requires the kit intake to be bent to meet it. You can see the difference here before it has been modified. The new intake correction fits inside the fuselage nicely, but needs the sides of the intake squeezed together to modify the shape ready fo the new intake lip. The kit nose was sawed off, being careful to keep the panel around the refuelling probe intact. Here is the kit intake lip compared to the resin correction. The difference is quite noticeable and I think is a necessary addition to the kit. All fitted. Some filler will be required. The resin parts fit very well.
  4. Looking good mate. I like the archer details on the drop tanks. keep it up! Eric.
  5. Hi Jari, I have seen that pic before and I would have loved to do that scheme as it has a Boomerang on the tail, a traditional aboriginal weapon well known by us Aussies. You do raise an interesting point about the weapons load though. I am still undecided about what will occupy the wing hard points. It will have to be an authentic load and one which Tom actually flew with. I have already asked him in a previous email and this was his reply. ‘ One of my most significant sorties was when I attacked and completely destroyed a large multi-story transshipment warehouse in near Vinh, North Vietnam. I hit it on two separate runs with large (1800#/810KG) Bullpup missiles (AGM-12B). It had a 1000#(440KG) warhead and flies at Mach 1.8 while you try to aim it with a small joystick on the left/forward console.’ We will work together to find a load out that both tells a story and showcases the load carrying ability of the aeroplane. Some more work. The E model has a large lump under the fuselage, which was not present on the A or B (I hope!) I removed it with a razor saw, very carefully in case I made a mistake and had to replace it! I glued some plastic card on the inside of the hole to act as a support and attached the part to the fuselage. Once it was set, I used some paper and sketched over the hole with a lead pencil, which left heavier deposits on the corners of the hole. I then glued the paper to some thick plastic card, and then cut out the shape, refining it with a sanding stick until it fit into the hole perfectly. This was then sanded smooth, ready for rescribing. Anyway, enough about the model, here are some more pics from Tom! Tom is the handsome guy in the middle, about to fly at an air show at Cecil field, Jacksonville Florida in 1968. Tom is the slot aircraft in this diamond formation. Tom taxiing in after the display. He told me his vertical stab charred was when he was flying in the slot in that diamond formation and got too close and too high, and burned the tail. But, the formation looked great! .
  6. Hi Jari, Thanks for the info. I will be going over the model with a fine toothed comb and re scribing the different panel lines. I notice that there are a few vents that will need to be constructed as well. I will verify each new panel line with photos of multiple aircraft.
  7. Thanks for the comments guys. yes Ben, I have done the intake and nose cone already and have the canopy correction pending.
  8. With the work on my F-100D build coming to an end, I started my next jet project. I obtained the Trumpeter A-7E kit from a local second hand trader. The kit had a few parts removed from the sprue and some minor components had been glued together (only discovered after I had purchased it and got it home). This suited me fine however, as it fit within this years New Years resolution of only building stuff that I had already started... I have a few of these in my stash that’s for sure. I felt that with a project of this size, I would try and find a subject pilot, as this is my absolute favourite way of building a kit. There is nothing better than involving a person who once flew the aircraft that I am making a model of and trying as hard as I can to make it as authentic as I can to their memories of the aircraft. There are many stories that are untold, that sometimes a project like this can impart to many people. I am very interested in the Vietnam conflict and asked the question on one of the Facebook groups dedicated to the A-7 Corsair. I was pleased to report that one such individual answered my call and it is my pleasure to introduce him to you. I asked Tom to tell me a summary of his Naval Aviation career. I entered the navy in 1965 as a Naval Aviation Cadet (NAVCAD) and earned my Wings of Gold in 1967. I initially trained on the T-34B Mentor, T-2A Buckeye and F-9 Cougar before getting orders to one of the first A-7 squadrons in 1967. I flew 98 combat missions over North Vietnam and Laos flying off the USS America in 1968. I was flying the A-7A with VA-82 of which 49 of them were night missions. During my 31 years in the navy, the first 20 years I primarily flew the A-7A/B Corsair II, A-4L Skyhawk, and F-8L Crusader. People often ask me which one I liked best and I answer that it’s sort of like women, you like the one you are with at the time best. I never flew a navy plane that I didn’t absolutely love. I was also very interested in his aviation career after the military, being a fellow airline pilot. Here is what he had to say: After I got off active duty with the navy in 1969 and went back to college at Embry Riddle in Daytona (while flying the F-8s in Atlanta Reserve squadron, I got hired with a small commuter airline flying the Beech-99s. I then flew as a F/O on a Lear-23 before getting hired by Eastern Airlines in 1972. I was with Eastern for 18 years before moving to United Air Lines in 1990. I flew and instructed on the B-727 and B737 for United and worked in the training department as a Pilot Instructor. Eventually moving to flying the B-747-400, I stayed on the -400 for the rest of my career before retiring at age 60 as a B747 captain. I then went to work as a pilot instructor and check airman for Boeing on the B-747-400 training in Seattle and Denver and then I commuted to Seoul for 5 years teaching KAL pilots. I also taught a lot of 3rd party 737 pilots (Hong Kong Air, Mongolian International Air Transport (MIAT), Asiana. My last airline job was working for 5 years as a training check airman for Evergreen Air Lines on the Large Cargo Freighter (LCF) flying and training on the B747 LCF (Large Cargo Freighter). We transported the wings and fuselage for the B-787 inside the LCF from Italy and Japan back to the states for final assembly by Boeing. Here is a pic of Tom, on active duty in 1968 And his last aviation gig a decade or so ago: Here is an excerpt from the USS America CVN-66 1968 cruise book. Tom can be found on page 309, and his good mate Kenny Fields of ‘Sreetcar 304’ fame can be found on the previous page. https://www.navysite.de/cruisebooks/cv66-68/index_028.htm Tom has signed up as a member in this forum, (callsign BURNER) and will be contributing to this build in due course. Whilst researching the Corsairs efforts in Vietnam, I saw that the earlier versions were a little different to the E and D as offered by the Trumpeter kits. I was secretly hoping that the subject pilot would be one that flew an earlier version so that I could do a conversion and I was glad when Tom volunteered (I thought in the Navy you never volunteer for anything?) that he flew the A and B model. In fact, Tom picked up brand new A models from the Vought factory and flew them in Combat with the VA-82 Marauders during the types introduction into the war. One of the ones that Tom flew from the factory now resides at the Hickory Aviation Museum here: http://nebula.wsimg.com/3e256ab57f0d2d45d9854572ca5d2193?AccessKeyId=2158F2CB6BFA6619063B&disposition=0&alloworigin=1 Some work on the kit. I obtained a PDF copy if the A/B flight manual, which I am using as my reference for most of the changes in the cockpit. I used the Aires D model resin cockpit and as a lot of the panel will be changed, the type didn’t really matter. Here is the unmodified cockpit tub. Most of the changes in this part are restricted to the right side console. I carved out some of the panels and replaced them with plastic card. next up was the Aires main wheel bays. The fit of these is extremely poor, being far too undersized. I chose one of the sides of the bay as the reference side, glueing it into position with superglue, and then epoxying in the rest of the sides. The resulting gaps. The gaps were filled with thick plastic card which I left protruding front the sides of the fuselage and then sanded smooth. I will cover the small gap on the rear edge of the well with thin plastic card. The biggest aspect of the kit that will be changed is the removal of the single minigun port on the lower left fuselage and the addition of the cannon ports either side of the nose. The bulged fairing over the port was one of the small items glued in place by the previous owner of the kit. I removed the fairing, and then filled the inside of the oblong hole with plastic card, as well as the pilots folding ladder well. These were then sanded smooth.
  9. Thanks for the comments guys. Two things that I am not overly keen on doing with models are seat belts and brake lines. For some reason I find this stage of the build to be a bit of a pain! Needless to say, they both need to be done. First up, the brake lines on the undercarriage. The kit has some reasonably nice lines already there but they are moulded integrally with the leg and are a little to 2D for my liking. I sanded them off. I used .4mm lead wire and .4mm copper wire to depict the two lines that run up each leg. I used thin aluminium foil to replicate the brackets that hold each line in place. A very thin strip of it was passed behind the lines and then folded back up itself. I used the excellent RP Tools ring maker to fabricate some tie down rings. These replaced the kit tie down points which are just lumps of plastic as can be seen by the unmodified one on the left. Done. I hate using photo etch seatbelts, so I used the Aires photo etch and resin buckles and made my own belts from thin aluminium foil. The shoulder straps were next, I used a small section of copper wire at one end to allow me to roll the end over and form the attachment loop. as can be seen on the top strap. Looking at my reference pics, I noticed that on some of them, the pilots shoulder straps were hung over the side as can be seen in the following pics. An excellent pic (not Ron) of a pilot about to go flying. His helmet is on the windshield and the shoulder straps are just visible, hung over the side. Another pic of a maintenance scene. Same deal with the shoulder straps. I thought that this would be a great feature to incorporate, it would really give the model a human touch. I got in touch with Ron and asked him about what the protocol was when the pilots were about to go on a sortie. Here is his response: Typically, when we went out to the aircraft for a mission, we would mount the ladder and deposit our parachute into the cockpit and place our helmet on the top of the front windscreen. We would then dismount and conduct our preflight inspection of the aircraft. Upon completion of the preflight, we would go up the ladder and get into the cockpit. The crew chief would come up the ladder to help us strap in and it was typical for them to leave the straps hanging over the cockpit rail so that this would be easier to do. So -- short answers to your questions are - helmets were placed on the front windscreen until we put them on, and the safety straps were left hanging over the canopy rail until the chief helped us put them on. The photos you sent were authentic. Hope this helps you. Ron Based upon the pics, and Ron's great reply, I got to work and made it happen. I made a copy of the Aerobonus F-100 pilots head with helmet and carved out the head. This will be painted as per the pics that Ron supplied earlier in the thread with his name and checkers on it..... if I can paint them that small! The objective will be to draw the viewers eyes into the cockpit. Just need to work out the parachute pack.
  10. Thanks guys. Yes, it saved around half the weight. I figured that the model has to lug them around for a long time so I may as well have made them lighter. Some more work. I added the Aires photo etch rivet detail to the inside front frame of the canopy, and used lead wire to simulate the round tubing which is attached to it. I really wanted to simulate the weld beads all over the tanks. I filled all engraved panel lines except for the major joins, and then taped up each bead. Using a paint brush, I dabbed Mr surfacer brown over each line. I repositioned the front filler caps onto the left side of each tank. A hole was drilled, then a circle scribed around each one, before a disk of plastic card was inserted into each one to depict the filler cap. The rear fins were modified from the kit ones by sanding them so they were much more swept back. I also added the rear filler caps using the same process as above. The two finished tanks. Much work has gone into these! Under a coat of paint, the welded seams look good. The front of each of the tank pylons should be curved inward. To accomplish this, I made a few small cuts. I used chipping fluid to apply a bit of weathering to the front of each tank. Still not sold on the idea. Visible in the pic is some modification happening to the inner pylons, with new sway braces. Ore on that later. Where the jet sits at the moment. Lots to do but getting there.
  11. Hi Robert, That looks like an interesting load out, a fair bit of whoop arse there!
  12. Hi John, I painted the camouflage freehand with an Iwata HP-BH Airbrush. Some more work. I received the excellent Videoaviation BLU-27 unfinned Napalm bombs. Parts: I chose to drill out the major parts to lighten the bombs a bit. I assembled the parts, no need to clean them, and assembled them with superglue. I used Tamiya extra fine primer, which adhered to the resin without any problems at all (must be good resin!). I then painted the bombs with SMS Camo Black. Painted using the black base method with a couple of different shades of Alclad, glossed with SMS clear gloss, and then decalled. These will look great as a contrast to the cam paint on the jet.
  13. Thanks for the replies guys, much appreciated. Nice pickup. Whilst researching the build, I decided to go with the green that I used based upon the photo below. As I am using a dark brown wash over the panel lines, the area that I have painted the name has become tinted and appears a bit more olive than in the harsh light that I use when the photo was taken.
  14. Excellent stuff. Coincidentally, I am in talks with a pilot who flew A-7's for VFA-82 in 1968 and have directed his attention here, as I will be building one of his jets from this squadron. Visible in these pics is `313' which is the A-7A that resides at the Hickory Aviation Museum. I have also directed their attention to this thread. Cheers, Eric.
  15. Some more pics from Ron His explanation for the first one is as below. `Carrying 2 napalm cans inboard WAS used operationally, but as I pointed out, it made the a/c very heavy and sluggish. Most often we carried MK82 500 pound bombs on the inboard TERs. I can recall a few times when the runway temperature was critical in whether or not they would let us takeoff with such a heavy load. We sometimes sat idling for 15 -20 minutes waiting for a one degree drop in the temperature so we could roll - and then, who knew if we had enough runway or not? If the afterburner blew out, it would have been all over. As you know, it was rather hot and humid in Vietnam.' Some more work. I asked Ron if he had his name on the side of the aircraft. He told me over a couple of emails the following: The color schemes varied. Sometimes dark olive background with white letters. Other times, blue background and white letters. In my memory, I believe that 197 had the solid dark olive background with white letters. The name was as follows: CAPT RON SWANSON. That would have been placed just below the front windscreen on the fuselage. It didn't have pilot on it, although some did. With regard to the issue of the name plate being on both sides of the a/c, more often the name of the crew chief appeared on the right side of the cockpit. As I recall, there was no name plate on the right side of the cockpit of 197. After a bit of research, I settled on my best guess as to what this would have looked like. There were many different variations on the name plate, both in position and size, as well as text. I had to balance these items with the limits of my mask cutter. After many attempts, this is what I came up with. The model is really starting to come together. Enjoying this build alot.
  16. I am building the D at the moment. Using the tweak list as a guide, I am fixing most of the issues with very minimal effort. Don’t people want to use model building skills anymore?
  17. Looking good mate. All the small mods make a big difference! eric.
  18. Don’t use gloss black. Use a non glossy black paint, in my case I use SMS Camo black or even Tamiya Acrylic black. This gives a nice even sheen of satin black. This will then give a base upon which to build up varying layers of metal such as Alclad to achieve a realistic bare metal finish which can then be glossed over if you which to go for a polished look. It’s all about the way the metal paint is applied. A few tightly mottled coats of the base metal to give it a grain and then lighter coats of the metal to build it up a bit.
  19. Thanks for the comments guys. some more work. I asked Ron about the configuration of the ordnance. Some photos show Napalm on the outer pylons, some show them on the inners. Likewise for the bombs. Here is what he had to say. ‘One of the photos shows a typical load, (and the one used on the mission we have spoken about) with 2 Mk82 high drag bombs on the outboard stations, and 2 Napalm cans on the inboard stations. Second photo shows me just before a combat mission in late 1968. Third photo is unusual. In late 1968 our squadron (615th TFS) was made experimental. We were to try out what was called Triple Ejector Racks (TER). Instead of a single weapon on the inboard pylons, this new rack could carry 3 bombs. Couldn't carry 3 napalm cans because that would make the aircraft too heavy and the cans were to "fat" to fit on the racks. Thought you might like to see this configuration.’ Here are the pics. And here is the excellent pic of Ron about to depart on a combat mission. As the bombs were to go on the outer pylons, my references showed that they were different to the kit pylons. There are protrusions each side of the pylon which form more beefed up sway braces, so these were scratch built from thick plastic card and sanded to shape. I then used brass rod and disks of plastic card to make up each individual brace. The bombs have had brass rod inserted into them to attach them very firmly to each pylon. Basic colours. I will weather and detail these a lot more than this. Many of my period reference pics of combat jets show them with numerous lift point symbols. These decals were not present in both the kit or the aftermarket Cam Pro stencil data sheet. I made up a mask with my mask cutter and sprayed them on. Forward fuselage. There is one on the rear of the canopy as well. Rear fuselage. I was able to find a pic with two lift point symbols on the horizontal stabilisers but was unable to find anything for the wings, if they were there. Any help would be appreciated. How the model sits on my workbench. Still lots to do but certainly getting there. Noticeable is the armament panel decal, once again not in either decal sheets. I found one in the AoA set for the Cessna O-2.
  20. Its sad that we think that kits will need correcting by aftermarket manufacturers even before they come out. It would be nice if companies could get things right in the first place!
  21. Cheers guys. Some more work. I think the model sits a little flat and needs the characteristic tail heavy look. I read on another build somewhere that they took 3mm off the top of the main gear legs. I decided to go with 2mm to begin with, and take it from the middle of each leg so that the geometry of the extension link and gear doors stayed the same. For this mod, I am using the plastic gear legs as they are very sturdy, although my process will actually add a bit more strength to them. I started by drilling a hole all the way down the leg, from the top. i used my vernier calliper to measure 2mm, and pressed the sharp edge at intervals around the circumference of the leg to give me a guide. The brass rod has been inserted after I cut the 2mm section out and has been positioned for reference. By pre drilling the hole before the cut, the alignment has been pre set. I removed the cut section and refitted the leg together after this pic was taken. I made up some masks using my mask cutter for the tail numbers and letters and the National insignias. ‘197 is alive again. The sit of the model is now a little more tail heavy which I may drop a little more once I have all the stuff hanging off the bottom of the aircraft sorted out. Some more weathering effects have been added such as the wing roots and the panel behind the cockpit. This was done with a very thin mix of Tamiya Zinc chromate paint. Further work on the back end. The VZ has been sanded down whilst the 197 has not yet been touched. As can be seen, the back end is really starting to come to life.
  22. Thanks very much for the comments guys, appreciated. The area where the fuselage meets the tail was a bit too sharp for my liking, comparing it to photos showed a more gradual bend. i squared off the area concerned Glued a lump of resin in its place The new shape. Much better. The prop was next on the radar to be fixed. Whilst resin is a great material to model in, I find that some areas will warp over time so I avoid that by stiffening them up. The prop was a bit curly, whether that was the way the master has been made or whether it is slightly warped. I bent each blade out of the way and drilled through its root, into the spinner, I then cut a trench into the back of each blade, meeting up with the hole that I had just drilled. I cut brass rod that fit into the hole and the trench, which was then superglued into place. The blades were then straightened before I filled the holes. Straight as a die. Sprayed with SMS primer filler and sanded.
  23. Thanks for the comment guys. Nice! Would be great to see a picture or two of you and an F-100. Some more work. I had a bit of a play with the tan colour as I felt it looked a bit too pink. I shaded it with a very thin mix of Model Master enamel Tan to brown it up a little. I have started post shading some lighter areas of each base colour. The scorched areas are still a work in progress.
  • Create New...