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Time to start my tribute build project. Corsairs definitely seem popular lately Been awhile since I've done a prop so will try to do some justice to this kit. Like so many of us I built this kit as a teenager so when I had a choice of what to pick up I decided on this one. The intent isn't to be exact, my purpose is to recreate a childhood memory. My Uncle Dennis grew up in Akron Ohio by the Goodyear Airdock. He remembers seeing the corsairs flying over all the time. When he was about 8 he used to shoot his bow and arrow at them as they flew over lol. I expect this will be just a slightly dirty bird as I understand it they leaked oil from the radials no matter what the flying conditions were. Anyone who can drop in a few pictures as the project moves forward please feel free to do so. That will really help when I go to paint her. I may have to do my own decals for the major markings. The plan is to do an AC from VF653, which was a Naval Reserve Squadron out of Akron Ohio. VF653 was aboard the USS Valley Forge (CV45) during the Korean conflict. Most likely I will do Cook Cleland's AC. He was an Ace during WWII and became a Thomson Trophy winner before Korea. In addition to all this he was from Cleveland Ohio so the whole local area theme is playing big here!
This GB is a great opportunity to restart project Thunderbird! Stopped last year while waiting on seats. Now KittyHawk has launched two new F-5’s which has given me all the parts I need to finish her up without as much scratch building so the process should move along well. I had alot of parts prepped but nothing glued together yet, sans the wings which i worked on yesterday (too antsy lol). Here’s the link to the original WIP for reference T-38A Talon I've got 3 Hasegawa kits, 2 KittyHawk kits, the Belcher Bits F-5A conversion, The Daco book, and A Pictorial History of the T-38 Talon, cockpit shots from Peter Fleischman, plus my own walkaround shots from the T-38A at the Praire Aviation Museum. I learned how to scribe during the Fall so I plan to rescribe the whole plane to be accurate.
This beautiful T-38A Thunderbird took a long time and she took a short time. I began a year ago and made good progress through learning to vacuum form a canopy. Then with the pending release of the KittyHawk F-5's I decided to wait it out and gather up some cockpit and clear parts to really make her look sharp. So a year long build timeline with about 4 months of that being actual bench time. The final model is a combination of the Hasegawa F-5E, Belcher Bits F-5A conversion, KittyHawk F-5E/F and some Bondo spot putty! The cockpit and pilot are painted with Vallejo acrylics and the helmet is handpainted. Interior details are scratch built in combination with the Hasegawa side panels and KH seats. The paint is MCW lacquer 60/40 with MrColor Leveling Thinner, 2 coats of MCW clear thinned as well, and wet-sanded to 12000 grit. She's all show AND go with BMF Chrome on the pitot, wingtips, and exhausts. Those exhaust can corrugated metal liners are birthday tiaras for a kids party lol. The decals are a combination of CamPro from the F-4 Thunderbird set and the KH kit. She is adorned with Archer rivets, doors, and hinges to show off her classic airframe! I scribed all the other elements of the fuselage and airfoil surfaces to match the Daco Book as much as possible. Lastly a big thanks goes out to the Aviation Museum of Kentucky who graciously let me take pictures all around their AT-38B Thunderbird including some great shots of the cockpit.