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Scratch built Westland Lysander Mk 1 1:30 Scale

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Hi to everyone

Fozzy the Newbie here!!!

I thought I'd have a go at posting on this forum a project that I started a month ago...namely the MK 1 Westland Lysander.

This is going to be a 1:30 scale project and will be totally scratch built......I have only scratch built one other aircraft in my life and that was a Sopwith F1 Camel(see my website (http://www.martinfosteraviationmodels.com) and I enjoyed it so much that I thought I'd have a go at the Lysander. I'm under no illusion that this is going to be easy,but hopefully with plenty of feedback from this forum I hope to pull it off!!

About a month ago I downloaded free scale plans from the internet ...scaled it to 1:30 scale and proceeded to construct the fuselage out of Balsa wood,starting with gluing the formers,longeron and cross bracespost-20052-1274529638.jpg.

Here is a another view post-20052-1274529949.jpg

This was a time consuming and fiddly task making sure that everything was squared up on the plans. Incidentally I am sure you all know but for those who don't - the fuselage was constructed over the plans on a cork board with pins. All very complicated but sorry I don't have a photo of this.

Just to let you know I am not at all computer literate - in fact I am struggling to understand all the bits and bobs available to me when posting on this forum - I've got information overload at the moment :speak_cool: so will get back to you with updating my Lysander project later!

Fozzy (Martin)

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Hi guys

And to continue!............Okay so all the formers are in place so the next task was to glue the stringers to the formers,making sure that they don't sit flush with the formers.I sat them protruding about 1mm.The reason for this is so you don't see the formers when the skin has been applied or so I have been told!!

here's a pic...post-20052-1274614107.jpg

As you can see in the photo I have placed the cowling nose plate on ready to receive the cowling...well when I have made it!!

The Lysander was built around a steel tube structure and being covered with sheet aluminium from the nose to just aft of the pilots seat position and the rest being fabric covered..So I had to think of how to replicate the metal skin!! I opted for the metal skin to be replicated by the use of Balsa wood.The way I do this is first after sanding the Balsa wood into the shape of the fuselage I place a few coats of PVC watered down.When this is dry I then spray on a few coats of Johnson's Klear.This seals the wood and gives a good base for when its time to paint.



So this photo shows the the front end of the aircraft with the balsa wood shaped and ready for the PVC and Klear.Note the use of card on the top of the nose,this is because it was easier to use card in this area!! PVC and Klear also goes on the card.

Tail unit was made out of shaped Balsa and you can see in the next photo the card replicating the sheet metal area at the blunt end of the Lysander!!!


I have to say that placing the card around the fuselage near the tail was a pain!! :bow: So if any of you experts out there have a different method of skinning...whether it be plastic card(difficult to bond on the Balsa frame)or what ever......I'm all ears!!!

I am off to my work shop to think about the Cowling now! so please if anyone out there has some tips on how I could have made the fuselage build easier please feel free to jump in!!! also theses photos are a bit small!!cant see much detail.Will try on the next post to enlarge them..Chau Chau


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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi guys sorry haven't posted for a week but family over from UK and everything has ground to a halt model-wise!! Looking forward to getting back to normality - that's me in my man-cave working on my Lysander!



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That's really nice work Martin, if you don't mind me asking why did you pick that scale?

Hi Tony

Obviously I like large scale and I have always found the Lysander's cockpit glass and area interesting because you can see so much.So I thought that the bigger the better!!!(not being too big to fit in the display cabinet!!!)I scratch built a 1:30 Sopwith Camel once and loved the ease in replicating parts in that scale(on website)....thanks for your interest Fozzy(Martin)

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Hi to all

My family have now departed back to UK so its back to the work bench!!!.....and the dreaded cowl!!!!!

So as you can see from the photo I started by laminating 6 pieces of 5mm balsa together with glue and left to dry overnight.With a compass I drew the front view shape of the cowl on what at the time was a block of Balsa wood.......does that make sense? Difficult to explain as I am new to this.....so apologies!

Then the shape of the cowl was sanded with fine glass paper checking all the time with the plans for the shape of the cowl.....see below


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The next stage was to drill out the centre of the cowl to house the engine eventually.An appropriate drill bit was used and then sanded down so that the engine cylinder heads will just touch the inside of the cowl.The front of the cowl was then tapered to shape.


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Oil cooler intakes were replicated by 2 pieces of stripped electrical wire and super glued into position.


The Carburettor intake was sanded to shape out of a piece block Balsa wood and the exhaust was made out of stripped electrical wire cut to shape.The cowl flaps are plastic card cut to shape and super glued into position.

When the cowl was completed it was then given the treatment of pvc glue and Johnsons Klear and then undercoated with Humbrol grey.

The next job to do is to construct the Mercury Engine......This is one of the parts of the project Im looking forward to!.I love the challenge.............when constructed will post again



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