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Italeri F-35A in Thunderbirds Attire


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This is nearly all out of the box, a few scratch built parts to add some detail in the cockpit is all I added. I used the decals from the Tamiya F-16 Thunderbird to make up for anything I couldn't do with graphics. I used Maketar paint masks for all the scallops & curves on the bird and 3M fineline tape to connect everything together. I used MCW (Model Car Works) lacquer paints mixed to the correct FS colors for the Thunderbirds. The nozzle and cockpit is done with Vallejo paints and varnish. You can find a detailed work in progress build in Group Builds: Stars and bars. 


I decided to do tribute to the outgoing F-16 and I found the perfect art on the USAF site. This poster was created by SSgt Jon DuMond of the USAF Thunderbirds and they had a 3mb file available for free download, perfect. The key for me was the 2 F-16's outbound in the visor reflection. I used watercolors to blend the photo into the base and wrap it up into the F-35A Thunderbird. My bird is the Solo Lead with pilot and crew from the 2004 season reflected on the F-35A.















I hope you enjoy these. I keep learning from everyone elses posts so I I've tried to add detail in the WIP that may be useful to others. If you see something you'd like to know more about drop me a line. And if you know the secret to the perfect build, or even a few of my model building dilemmas as detailed here, feel free to post it up. Chris

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I really like that and I am not a fan of the F-35 at all.

I love that you painted the bird on and didn't use a decal - I can only presume you had a template to work from?

Either way, great job and a very unique way of displaying it

Thanks Madhatter! I made up paint masks based on the pics Lockheed Martin put out. I roughed out the lines by placing tracing paper over the model, doing my sketch and then transferring that to a light piece of cardboard so I'd have something stiff enough to put the knife edge to when cutting out the mask. Kind of a pain since no decals exist for this one. The scheme for the bird is totally different from the F-16 unfortunately. You can check out the full wip and the masking process here http://forum.largescaleplanes.com/index.php?showtopic=69491&p=940689

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  • 1 year later...

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