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Happy new year, everyone. I'm ringing in 2018 by wrapping up a build that's been on my bench since September. If you've followed my slow build thread, "Messerschmitts of North Africa," you have followed the progress of this slow, but steady Bf-110E-2 build and, its desert companion, the Bf-109F-4. This is Cyber Hobby's kit 3209 and represents a -110 of 7./ZG26 in Italy. Yep, I know I said it was Messerschmitts of North Africa. I was planning on doing a different paint scheme for a North African bird, but my kiddo liked the yellow cowls of the Italian theater, so I figured I'd do it up for him. All told it is a really nice kit. The molding details are phenomenal and the fit is pretty good. The nacelles and cowls are finicky and the instructions downright suck, but if you've done a few Dragon/CH kits, you're well accustomed to their instructional tomfoolery. For those of you considering it, I would recommend replacement exhausts (quickboost makes some nice resin ones) and maybe an updated seatbelt set. I used an HGW set. Go slow, take your time, and dry fit everything. As an aside... we've all had those kits that just fought us every step of the way, right? This one wasn't one of those. In fact, fortune smiled upon me several times throughout the course of this build. It was almost eerie. For this and the aforementioned 109, I kept a tally of all the hours spent on this aircraft. Here are the stats: Started: 9/16/2017 Finished: 1/1/2018 Days on bench: 107 Total materials cost: $83.47 Planning and preparation time (including seam cleanup): 20.8 hrs Build time: 26.75 hrs Painting time: 26.26 hrs Weathering time: 6.9 hrs Total Time: 87.2 hrs Number of sessions at the bench: 48 Average time per session: 1.82 hrs Average time per day: .81 hrs Okay, this one was a bit of a hail mary. The small clear piece that's supposed to serve as the "glass" for the engine gauges fell inside the cowling as I was trying to remove the liquid mask from it. So, to fashion a replacement, I put a dollop of regular white PVA glue on an index card, let it dry slightly for 5 minutes, then got a blob on the end of a toothpick. Fishing that blob into the holes, I was able to get the glue to fill them in via surface tension. Once it dried clear, I put a little future on it to gloss it up a bit and, in a pinch, it makes a pretty decent stand-in for the missing plastic. Perfect? No, but a damn sight better than an empty hole.
Hi, everyone. If you've followed my ridiculously slow "Messerschmitts of North Africa" WIP thread, you already know that my Bf-109 was getting close to done. Today, I was able to put the finishing touches on it and call it complete. I'm happy with the way it turned out for sure. It's not perfect, but it's probably the best 1/32 aircraft I've ever done - out of a total of like 4. Definitely learned a lot along the way as this was my first attempt at masking and painting the inside of a canopy. Turned out pretty well, I think. This is Hasegawa kit 08881/ST31, Bf-109F-4 Trop and was finished out of the box with the exception of some HGW seatbelts. Paints were a mix of Mr. Paint, Mr. Color, Tamiya, Vallejo, and a partridge in a pear tree. Weathered with oils and pastels. If you followed my thread at all, you'll know that I'm a bit of a numbers geek, and so I've kept a fairly detailed build log of both this and the Bf-110 I've been working on in parallel. Here are the final statistics: Started: 11/10/2017 Finished: 12/28/2017 Days on bench: 48 Total materials cost: $60.66 Planning and preparation time: 7.6 hrs Build time: 13.35 hrs Painting time: 11.9 hrs Weathering time: 5.3 hrs Number of sessions at the bench: 26 Average time per session: 1.47 hrs Average time per day: .79 hrs Number of favorite sweatshirts ruined: 1