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F7F-3 Tigercat - BuNo 80405 - VMF 312 MCAS - El Toro, CA 1946

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                     This is going to be a long journey if I'm honest.

 

What ?     2 weeks then maybe ??

 

:popcorn:

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Thanks gents!!         The main task right now is washing things. I know its always recommended to use warm soap and water, but I have my own process I like to use. In the past I have had great luck using a product called "Bleche Wite" (yes its spelled like that :lol: ).   

It was initially produced by a company called Westleys, but since has been purchased by Black Magic.    This product is used to clean white wall tires on cars, and is quite caustic, but does a great job of removing any and ALL debris and and and ALL grease and mold release agents. 

 

The main problem is finding a vessel big enough to put the fuselage in!    HpH resin has never given me any problems with adhesion, or mold release agents, but Im not taking any chances, as I got the Bleche Wite tip from a friend who works in Hollywood in the movie prop business, and it works without fail.

 

Im soaking the parts now, but keeping track of ALL the small parts is kind of a PITA, so segmenting them all into separate compartments to keep from loosing parts is needed.

Had the GFs entire family over yesterday, so of course didnt get jack S@#* done on the Tigercat. :rolleyes:  That WILL change tonight, as Im dying to make a good start on this one!!  

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What ?     2 weeks then maybe ??

 

:popcorn:

 

 

I was thinking more like maybe 2 years!   :lol:    Honestly Im hoping I could get this one done for the US Nationals next July, but knowing my history and how fast I (dont) work, Im thinking that may be a pipe dream. 

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Being a guy who normally builds only 1 example of any 1 plane, I was in a bit of a quandary as to what scheme to use on the HpH kit. I also have a CM vac kit that I plan on doing a What-If Reno Unlimited racer, so wanted this one to be more military based, but the operational history of the Tigercat is not super long, but still wanted something at least a bit colorful, beyond the standard fare DSB scheme that came in box.

 

The schemes that came in the box are good, but didnt want to do that same thing everyone else was doing, so I went a different route, and am going to do a fully loaded training bird BuNo 80405 from VMF 312 - MCAS based in El Tory CA in 1946:

 

 

 

Some portrayals of the scheme present it as a F7F-3N with the radar operators cockpit, but it was in fact (as far as I could tell) an F7F-3P -  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I will be making my own masks out of Oramask 810 and cutting them on my Portrait cutter/plotter when I get to that step. There will also (believe it or not) be some AM involved in this build as well. The kit decals actually include the Marines symbol present on the side of the fuse of 80405, so this was the only stopping point to this scheme for me as I couldnt make that decal on my cutter, so that part worked out well.

I still have to take some pictures and do some measuring, but I have wheels and tires from Harold, as well as a seat and drop tank, although the OOB tank and Harold's tank are vastly different in size, so will do some checking on this as well.

 

 

I just last night got my modeling room thoroughly cleaned with the addition of putting away all my new MRP paints as well, so Im ready and raring to get starting on this big girl!!

 

 

Cheers, and thanks for joining me on my next adventure!   

There were two drop tanks, 150 and 300 gallon. Both looked similar.

Edited by Harold

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And? How is your rating of the odds to get your first HpH kit finished ever? :whistle:

 

 

 

  :wicked:

 

Duck and cover.

 

:DodgeBall:

 

 

 

Great project! Good luck with this one :speak_cool:

 

Regards

- dutik

 

 

 

:lol:   Ah my friend, I would say probably not very good....................IF it were any other HpH kit.  Maybe. But the Tigercat has legitimately been at the top of my all time wish list for 1/32nd since I was a kid, so in this case they are 100%.   

 

I realize this will be a long road, but Im hoping that with only a single wing to worry about, & some nice molding touches by HpH that will hopefully remedy some of the pains HpH kits caused in the past, that this will not be quite as rough a build as say my Walrus was is. 

 

 

I started off by cleaning the resin up using my normal MO.....................

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My MO is using Bleche Wite white-wall wheel cleaner (a tip from a friend in the holly-wood prob business) to soak the resin in, then wash off with some dawn dishwashing soap and a rinse in warm tap water. This method really does do a number on getting rid of mold release agents and grease.
With modern resin processes, this is not always a necessary step, but if you have ever had paint adhesion issues, you know how utterly disappointing it is to get a model painted then take off the tape, and have it pull up paint too. 
Its very disheartening at that stage, so I take no chances (especially with resin) as this stuff has yet to let me down.
 
7040512_blm_120066_alt2_pri_larg.jpg
 
 
 
 
 
The F7F is so big in 32nd, I ended up having to make up my own shallow tub to soak the parts in. Mainly this was for the fuselage halves and the wing halves. Its quite caustic actually, and gloves are a good idea, as handing this stuff repeatedly for an extended time can really dry out and damage your skin:
 
20171108_210932-XL.jpg





Next I take all the parts (all still separated out in groups like they were contained in when taken OOB so I can put them back in their original little sub-baggies as they originally came) and lay them out on a soft dish-washing towel, and I dry them by hand then put them all back in their respective baggies and/or bubble wrap:

 

20171108_210944-XL.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

I get off at 4 today, and Im going to go to an X colleagues going away party, then Im headed home to spend some time with the big twin.

Im hoping to pull a "Russ" and get the fuse and wings removed from their pour blocks so I can tape the main airframe together and see what dreams can be drempt..............

 

 

 

Cheers! 

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Not familiar with the Tigercat but these all-resin kits that you are doing are very interesting to watch since construction methods are a little bit different than with styrene.  Thank you for documenting the process so thoroughly.  It is very interesting to follow.

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Not familiar with the Tigercat but these all-resin kits that you are doing are very interesting to watch since construction methods are a little bit different than with styrene.  Thank you for documenting the process so thoroughly.  It is very interesting to follow.

 

 

Thanks John!    Got a bit of a start last night, and chopped out the fuselage, all 4 wing sections, the nacelles and cowls. I used one of Radus thin saws and it worked wonderfully, but my hand is hurting a bit ATM.

 

I forgot all the pre-work these kits took. It really does take it out of you, and I have to admit, diminishes the enjoyment a tad. But, its just the nature of the beast with a model THIS big and this complex. 

 

Ive got a touch of a cold ATM, so work is really trying today, and really looking forward to getting home and spending some time on the F7F.  Hopefully tonight I can wrangle things into a position well enough to tape the airframe together to see how it looks.

 

Cheers, 

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