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Trumpeter English Electric Lightning corrections

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Hi folks,

I appear to be making some progress now on a series of replacement parts to correct the obvious flaws in the Trumpeter Lightning kits.

There has been a thread over on Britmodeller - linky - with conversation to date - but thought you guys would like to see what's happening.

Initial thought was that I want to build a few (have two F Mk 1A/F Mk 3 kits and two F Mk 2A/F Mk 6 kits in the pile so far) so quicker to make patterns/cast than 'fix' each one individually - if that makes sense. There seems to be interest in these parts - so I'm thinking of making them commercially available.

New canopy shape nearly there and working on belly tanks.




Canopy on right is the Trumpeter one - spot any difference? wink.gif


Plan is to further shape/polish the master - then engrave. I prefer completely smooth - with no raised lines - but with clear lines marked. The thickness of final paint on a model is thick enough - even in 1:32.

Dunno how it will end up - but really inspired by the quality of Zactomodels canopies - so aiming for that quality. We have the same vac material and vac machine - but it will mean I need to make some female moulds.

On a learning curve - we'll see where it ends up - but it may just be the start of something I've been thinking about for years - Chocks-Away models!

Any and all feedback welcomed - I want these to be right - the Lightning is one of my all time favourite aeroplanes - especially the early marks.


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In more news tonight I've mostly been working on the early belly tank.


Conclusions are that in side elevation it's pretty good - but too wide (bloated) in cross section.


So - am probably going a different route to the F2A/F6 tank in that I'm going to join these as moulded - after filling the 'cheeks' with resin.


This will then give solid areas to cut back into on the sides in order to get the correct shape.














More news when I have it - but have a feeling I may have to get the bench sander out! :)



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Here's the prep for the tanks - F Mk 2A/F Mk 6 top, early versions bottom:




F Mk 6 belly removed:




F Mk 6 - Ready to make width former from 60 thou plastic sheet - to hold it all in check width-wise...




F Mk 1A/F Mk 3:




And another gotcha - Trumpeter have got differing wing root thicknesses on the two kits - they should be the same! At the moment I'm leaning towards the thinner of the two...


F Mk 1A/F Mk 3 - 12.5mm root thickness:




F Mk 2A/F Mk 6 9.5mm root thickness:





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Thanks folks - will keep you all posted...


Aim is to have patterns done by the IPMS show in Telford - November - with a 'prototype' model on display.


Agreed - canopy was first thing that struck me - followed by belly tanks.


So - my list, in order of priority, is:




Sill area (new canopy won't fit existing fuselage)


Belly Tank - Early


Belly Tank - Late


Tail/Jetpipe area


Fuselage Plug


Nose ring


Wing root thickness - early. Possible inserts to replace moulded root edges on wings that you sandwich between upper and lower and bond - to pull the top and bottom closer together. This will need some experimentation I think...


Large gear doors


Refuelling Probe


Vent set (F3)


Cable Duct Extension (F3)


Overwing Tanks (if there's interest...)


Jury still out for me on fins...



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Oh dear, that poor thing is slowly more than doubling its price...


...A new canopy is certainly on the list, sill area I have to see, then I am still not sure if I should hack up the fuselage to add a stretch, which would need a new nose ring. The one or other item on the list looks interesting, too, but I'd have to see them first to decide if they are worth my nonexistent money...


...then I want the Aires nozzles, Mastercasters wheels and Xtradecals stencils...


...cockpit and wheel bays are already there, as well as as the decals. And the base kit. But it's most likely still going to hurt a lot... :DodgeBall:

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Oh dear, that poor thing is slowly more than doubling its price...


Considering that in some shops this kit is already clearance-priced at half-off or better, it's conceivable that one could buy quite a few goodies for it and still be around the original asking price. For instance the F1A/F3 kit is only $87.99 now at Sprue Brothers with a SRP of $180.00.

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Mastercasters wheels look great - and fix the overly large diameter wheels in the Trumpeter kits.


The Aires nozzles may not work with a re-worked back-end. Still to really study that area (and measure full size) - but I strongly suspect the jet pipe diameters in the Trumpeter models are too small. I may be wrong, but as the Aires sets are designed to be a direct replacement for the kit pipes I suspect they wouldn't work.


The problem isn't just the well documented over done side troughs in the fuselage, the jetpipe surround is too thick - as well as being mis-shapen. I'll be looking into this further over the w/e and will post pix and findings.


I fully understand cost of kit + correction equation - which is why I'll be doing parts individually - so the modeller can decide just how far they want to go. I may also do version specific 'packs' - so an F Mk 3 correction set for instance.


My prime driver is to produce parts for my own use - if I sell any - that's a bonus! :thumbsup:


Have fun!



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Considering that in some shops this kit is already clearance-priced at half-off or better, it's conceivable that one could buy quite a few goodies for it and still be around the original asking price. For instance the F1A/F3 kit is only $87.99 now at Sprue Brothers with a SRP of $180.00.


Yeah, but I bought the kit one year ago for a little less than normal price (I think 85 instead of 95 €) and to my calculation, my planned aftermarket for the kit is yet in the region of some 80 €... ;)


And as usual, I am only going for faults that really disturb me or are fixed with reasonable effort. The canopy for example is one thing I would change, as it is to noticable when compared to the reshaped one. But then, the belly tank does not do it for me. Same with the exhaust nozzles, I can live with the exhaust area, but not with the nozzles. So I prefer the offer of individual parts, where I can decide how much I want to hack up, and it allows me to spread the purchases a little. As I am far from mounting the wheels or decorating the plane with stencils, those investments can wait a few days... :thumbsup:



A little off topic, how's the Warning Star doing, Iain? ;)

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Nice work there Iain. I've just got my sticky mitts on a reasonable priced F2a F6 kit for my 11 sqdn project.


I will definitely be in the market for some if not all of the correction bits, purely dependant on what I can get away with for my "not too picky" eye. On that note, have you considered marketing these as the individual parts, as you have suggested, and in addition putting out a comprehensive "one stop shop" kit which includes the whole shooting match, at a price less that the retail sum total of the individual parts? Gives potential punters even more choice.


One other thought. The Zacto canopies (Corsair and Flanker) include a separate resin canopy frame and fittings. would the replacement include one?


I look forward to having a good butchers at your work at Telford. Keep it up!

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Ian thanks for the update


i bought one of the earlies and then flogged it back out when i realised a ) i was skint and b ) there were some serious errors in the kit with no aftermarket corrections either out or on the horizon


it looks like i am going to have to buy one back again


it is indeed true that the kit is available pretty cheaply now - Far East only if you live in Europe i reckon as trans atlantic shipping is crushing


as to the canopy, i personally would not consider an update in this area unless it fit the original kit OR you supply the sill as well; since by definition a correct canopy CANNOT fit the original kit, it has to be the latter option


i know you said you were thinking of doing this in your plans anyway, but i want to emphasize that for the "average" modeller it would be unlikely they would shell out for a canopy and then risk stuffing it up matching it to the kit


this is only my humble opinion of course, and meant as friendly advice, as i want you to sell as many copies as possible!


all the very best



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