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Everything posted by RichieB

  1. Thank you for the very kind words everyone.
  2. Many thanks for the kind words everyone, much appreciated.
  3. Thanks everyone, I'll sign off on this one by adding the Ready for Inspection link. Til next time...
  4. After a rather lengthy build, this one is finally over the line. I really wanted to do a large scale air superiority blue F-15 and the candy cane scheme of this B model really appealed. As ever, there was no real OOTB version so extras included an Aires early C cockpit, some additional resin parts from Bruce for the rear cockpit, new exhausts from GT Resin, Fuel tanks borrowed from the Revell F-4, modified Aires Aim-7 to get an F variant, CE Aim-9Js a fair bit of scratch built vents etc and of course some added lighting. The Revell kit is OK shape-wise but needs some real love and attention to bring it somewhere near modern standards i.e. no riveting, rather wide panel lines, soft detail etc. Suffice to say I learnt a lot, mostly that I need to be more focused on build Quality from the start rather than fixing up my errors later on! I tried Black basing on this one, but with lots of over-painting which prove more effective, so not sure I'll do it the same way again. The weapons and tanks are attached with magnets so they can be moved around or replaced. I also trialed some acrylic carving for the afterburner effect which turned out quite neat. Anyway, enough words... picture time! And yes the lights still worked (mostly!).... Thanks for looking! And for anyone interested the build thread is below:
  5. Well it took the best part of 3 years but she's done! Bit of a journey I'll have to admit and some things worked out better than others (as ever!). The Revell kit is good shape-wise but needs a lot of love to bring her to modern standards of plastic manufacturers, even then it ain't no Tamiya. My build QA requires a bit more Q I think but generally happy with the paint job and the fact the decals didn't silver. I probably made it far more work than it needed to be by introducing errors to my supposed improvements which then needed time and patience to correct. Certainly, a learning experience. However, she's a blue candy cane F-15 and looks really cool! The weapons and tanks are on magnets so are movable and for those wondering whether the lights still work....... Oh yes.... well mostly! If you stayed the course this far then you deserve a break as much as I do. However, I will be back with something that hopefully requires a little, no, a lot less work. Thanks for watching and all the feedback, greatly appreciated. I'll post some more images in the finished section at some point.
  6. Quick update as progress is quick (for a change!) I've been applying some light weathering using Oil Brushers and Streaking effects, and mixing up the colours a bit just for variety. Hopefully the effect is subtle but interesting. Rough idea is shown on these fuel tanks and pylons: Probably can't see but I've also added the screw jacks for the tank braces. Final Matt coat and we're almost there!
  7. Many thanks for the comments chaps, much appreciated. Great picture of her in the flesh Geedubelyer, look no panel lines! If only we'd had digital cameras back then. At range i.e. not camera close-up mode!, I'm hoping my efforts will blend into something that isn't monotone but isn't too stark either.
  8. Compared to the previously glacial pace of updates, this feels like warp speed! OK its only panel washes which require less accuracy than most painting, but its still a step nearer the finish line. I ended up using about 4 different panel line washes, one of which I mixed to get a shade that dulled down the contrast of Revell's somewhat heavy handed panel lines. The depth of them is probably something I should have fixed earlier but who was to know that they would stand out as much even after coats of primer and paint! I only used dark washes on the moving parts ie ailerons and rudders or where a bit of high contrast was warranted. I am also somewhat proud of the fact that I managed to mask a blue border around the insignia on the wing. It took some doing and I must admit I bottled doing all of it again on the bottom wing! Rear metal parts got a heavier wash as well but the rest of the model was a couple of lighter shades to try and avoid the 'made out of Lego' look. High contrast builds are eye-catching but they look a little too unrealistic for my taste. Each to their own though. Underside got a similar treatment but went a bit darker at the rear where I will add some additional staining to help blend it in better. You can see what would have happened if I had done the entire aircraft in a darker panel line colour. Engine nozzles were also finished with some pigments for the internal soot marks and Alclads for the petals - used a lot of masking tape on those! And finally, the live Aim-7Fs (for a what-if load out) and the inert practice Aim-9Js are nearly ready. Weathering next but I'll keep it pretty light even though the model probably needs a heavier application to blend out the panel lines further. Might need to lie down for a bit after all this progress!
  9. Many thanks chaps, hopefully I can get this one over the finish line soon! Plus I have an idea that might enhance the lighting - more later when I've figured it out.
  10. So with a long Bank Holiday weekend there was opportunity to progress and the incentive to finish this build is getting too much to ignore! Not because I'm running out of mojo for his one (though it's been tested at times!) but I have many others that need some plastic love. First up was a gloss coat courtesy of Tamiya X-22 which required a couple of coats to get a consistent shine and then on to the decals. Needless to say there are no specific decals for this bird in 1/32 and I don't have the skills (or hardware) to create my own. The scheme I'm doing eventually required 3 sets to get this scheme covered and even then there is not a lot of solid intel on what/where all the markings are! All the Microscale markings went down fine though I had to do some fishing to find an AAR receptacle stencil that was close enough to the Revell scribings. A couple broke up as they were so old but I managed to rescue most. I think some of the Microscale stencils are a little large but they are at least legible. Some of the positioning was contradicted by other sources so where I could I used Jake Melampy's and DACOs F-15 books to confirm but even still there is a bit of artistic license. Next step is to seal them all with a gloss coat then tone down some of the black stencils which look a little stark and then add some weathering. Definitely one small step but a giant leap in progress!
  11. Thank you Maru, it's taken a lot of patience to get this far but the end game is tantalising close!
  12. At last, the paint job is (mostly!) complete. Took a while and some extra touch ups but she's definitely looking blue with more than a hint of candy cane. I've toned down some of the pre-shading so that it's a little less obvious. Luckily with MRP paints you can control the depth of paint colour to give a nice patina effect. The metallic areas are painted using various shades of Alclads including burnt metal and aluminium. I also added some polished aluminium to the upper surface which often seems quite shiny and this is theoretically a relatively new aircraft. Next up is a bit of a polish and a gloss coat before decal time!
  13. Thanks for the comments chaps, much appreciated. I think I'll need to tone the contrast down a bit just to create a more subtle effect and remove any 'black' patches. The panel lines will have to be tackled in the weathering stage.
  14. Many thanks gents, yes will have to lesson the effect of the panel lines. I think it is because the Revell kit has quite large panel lines which are difficult to cover-up with the MRP top coat and black shows up too well against a light colour. I'll try to tone it all down a little but am conscious that the stripes and other weathering will help add to the overall effect,
  15. Happy Blue Year everyone! (see what I did there), hope 2022 is a good one for your modelling mojo, I might even finish this one this year! Finally got the main camo scheme down. Not a difficult scheme as its just Air superiority blue overall, but I love this scheme - shame they didn't keep it. I've used MRP lacquer paints which are superb and give a fair amount of control in terms of colouration. Tried to keep as much of the pre-shading visible as I could but its a fine balance between adding too much top colour (looks toy-ish) or too little (looks a boneyard wreck). Interesting how the black-basing panel lines come out quite distinctive. Might have to tone those down a bit. Finished off the airbrake and elevators while I was at it. Underneath had a darker pre-shade but judging from this photo I may need to add a little overspray of the AS Blue to blend it all in better. In other news, the AIM-7Fs have been painted up and decaled. They are the Eduard versions should come up quite nicely with a bit of weathering. Not that these birds flew with many live weapons for real but it should look cool all tooled up. Back to the spray shop for some touch-ups I guess but hopefully then onto the final stages of painting.
  16. Many thanks for the kind comments everyone. Unfortunately Stevepd, its not as quick as I'd like, the pilots and seats were actually completed 2 years ago! My how time flies.
  17. With the pre-shading done it was time to load up the cockpit. Seats and pilots went in easily though it was a bit of a fiddle to then add the Oxy and G hoses and joysticks. A few highlights were added with grey pencil and some shading with oils. The helmet markings are a bit of artistic license but based on the Sqn's tail fin markings. The HUD was part of the Aires set but quite fiddly and I ended up cutting my own HUD glass from acetate sheets. I also had to lower them a tad as the Revell front canopy is a bit 'flatter' than the Tamiya one which this set is designed for. With the crew safely in it will be time to seal it up for the final coat of Air Superiority The Canopy had some extra detail added in the form of grab handles, mirrors and a small compass. I also added a thin strip on the canopy rail to bulk up its appearance when closed. Hopefully get to spend some time on it over the Xmas period - well that's the intent at least!
  18. Many thanks everyone. Most photos of that age are quite difficult to get in high enough quality to copy directly so I've just used a general pattern from more recent images and A LOT of artistic license!
  19. So ..... a little later than anticipated (!) we finally have some pre-shading. The journey to get here took a little (OK, a lot) longer than expected mainly due to my ineptitude. In completing the main assembly I found it difficult to get a good fit which resulted in lots (and lots) of filling, sanding, priming, checking, tutting, filling, sanding .... you get the picture. Mostly it took time to get a smooth finish. One of the fins got knocked as well which added significantly to the repair work. Finally the number of areas that needed re-doing reduced until it was time for re-riveting (if you hadn't already guessed there's a lot or re-everything to this build). Some lack of skill and over ambition on my part resulted in a selection of riveting errors which naturally provided another opportunity to practise my puttying and sanding skills again. Once the final primer update was complete it was time to add some colour! As before, I used lighter and darker shades of blue with some spot touches of brown to add enough variation that will hopefully show through the top layer coat of Air Superiority Blue. I used a mix of freehand and stencils to vary the patterns choosing lighter colours on exposed areas or particular panels, and darker tones in recesses or to add contrast. Mainly it was just artistic license to give some depth to the single tone colour scheme. It now looks very heavily weathered which I guess is sort of the point. Just hope I don't cover it up too much when I overspray!
  20. Has it really been that long! Having got to the point of painting individual parts it was time to start joining them together. I always knew this would destroy some of the paintwork but it was never the finished article so I figured that it all added to the mix & match feel of the undercoats. A number of dry fits told me that the final assemblies would not be straight forward and so it proved. On a big bird such as this one it was not going to be easy to hide imperfections in the rather large wing and fuselage joins. I had to mate the wings to the top fuselage first because of all the additional wiring in the wings. This join was helped with some additional tabs but even then there was a slight step to sand out and some gap filling to be done. I also had to re-scribe a number if the lines and sort out (as best i could) some very odd panel lines on the Revell kit. Having got both wings in place, I then had to fix the fuselage halves together. Now the kit is designed to have the wings added afterwards, that and the rather large amount of electronics filling the fuselage made this process somewhat problematic. The exhaust area needed some additional 'blending' to ensure the non-kit exhausts were a good fit. The fuselage halves didn't quite match in width which meant much fettling, filling and filing to get them to meet up in a clean manner. On the real jet the under wing join appears blended in so its probably quite a good thing that I had to do the same on this one! After the hours of endless joy of blending the fuselage joins together, the fit of the cockpit section was surprisingly straightforward. I'd left the intakes off as i knew I'd need to work on the joins and that proved a sensible choice. CA glue was used throughout this process to provide strength and for its gap filling properties. The upper surface join was made trickier by the main heat-exchanger vent that I had recreated earlier from scratch. Some extra plasticard was required to help generate the right profile where it rakes up to join the cockpit area. Finally, the tails were also fitted as I knew they would be a real PITA trying to add after final painting had occurred. There is very little visible join on the real ac so this area required much work to remove any steps. Even after this stage I added a thin strip of plasticard and sanded it right down to help remove any signs of a join. The fuselage join around the slime light was also pretty tricky to blend together because of the mis-matched fuselage widths. Probably my fault for introducing so much extra stuff and not constructing it in strict order, but wheres the fun in that! As you can see, the main parts are pretty much assembled now which just leaves a coat of primer on the worked areas, re-touch-ups, more primer etc etc. I'm pretty sure I will have put twice the amount of work I needed to on this model, if only I'd got it right the first time! You may have noticed that the fin is actually the main colour as I decided to have a go at this even though I knew I'd have to rework some of it. This was so I could add the green fin flashes before final assembly and paint areas like the fin tops which would have been a bit tricky after assembly. Whilst it looks like I've obliterated the undercoat work I added previously, it looks far plainer in the photos than for real. But before I can paint all the ac I need to finish and close off the cockpit and canopy area (once I've finished all the rework of course! ).
  21. Thanks for the great info Maru, now I've got the proper name for artistic licence, just hoping I don't manage to blend them all out with the final finish! Inspirational build Blackbetty, I do like a good candy stripe and yours is spot on. I'd have loved to have seen these for real Aircommando, grey is so .... well grey really.
  22. Thanks Neo, it’s a little bit trial and error but the thin paint works well.
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