Jump to content

1/32 Kitty Hawk F-5E Kicked Up A Notch. Oct 3/19. Finished!


Recommended Posts

2 hours ago, Brett M said:

Super finish on this one. From your examples, you could even go glossier and it'd be a perfect match to the real thing. Nice work! 


(Random side question, no longer posting updates on ARC?)


The answer is yes, I have given up posting on ARC.  I tried to post my latest updates there a few times recently and for some reason it blocked me from doing so, which I suspect might be due to their limit of 10 pics per post?  Who knows, but it wasn't worth fighting it and if people want to see the rest of this thread, they can view it here.  I will try to let them know now and thanks for reminding me.




Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/22/2019 at 7:15 AM, chuck540z3 said:



You are probably right Matt, but I didn’t for two reasons:


1). Unlike a car finish, where a deep shine is the goal, I don’t want this finish to look too “thick”, if that makes any sense.  I also think it’s shiny enough and although not perfectly uniform, either is the the gloss finish on the real deal.


2). Fear of the unknown.  I have no idea how that urethane will react with my lacquer paint and X-22.  It will probably be just fine, but taking chances at this late point in the build is likely not a good idea.


I will have one more update before I finish this beast, because I want to show off some final details before completion.  Stay tuned and thanks for your continued interest in this thread.






Good reasons.  The urethane clears have been safe so far in all of my uses of them over lacquers and X-22.  All depends on getting a tack coat down first.



Still think it looks great. Maybe even a little ceramic compound over the top to make sure it stays glossy forever?




Link to comment
Share on other sites

September 24/19



This build is on the home stretch near completion!  Whenever I get to this stage, I’m torn between leaving the build I’ve worked so long on (8 mths. and counting) and just getting it over with.  Based upon experience, I now take my time with the ending, because that’s when mistakes are made that can deteriorate the overall project.  The final details can make or break any model, so here’s some details that I’ve been working on in the background.



The canopy and the overall canopy mechanism are by far the most complicated I have ever seen or worked on, but it’s also one of the most interesting due to its myriad of linked parts.  Here it is from the outside, which shows the characteristic sealant used on the glass to frame boundary, much like the F-4 Phantom.  To replicate this look, I used thin strips of vinyl tape on the inside.






While the kit does supply the brass frame at the front that has the rear view mirrors attached to it, there is nothing to attach it to, other than the clear plastic which is a very risky proposition that will leave glue marks.  I added a thin strip of styrene to the front which replicates the real deal, then glued the brass to it.






The side rails are from the Black Box (BB) resin cockpit set, which are more detailed than the kit parts.  However, I did use the kit vent instead on the right, since the BB vent was too small and poorly cast.  This is attached on the real deal to the forward vent housing with a rubberized vent collar that is usually red, which I created with red decal film and thin strips of self-adhesive aluminum.






The landing gear is nicely detailed and while I have traditionally added hydraulic lines and other detail to gear, I have now decided the following on all current and future models:  If you can see it without flipping the model over, detail it.  If you can’t, don’t bother!  With the landing gear doors on the outside of the gear, you can hardly see it at all, again much like the F-4, so I’m not going to waste my time.  My focus from now on is on what you can readily see, like the cockpit, and not some wiring in a gear bay I will never see again.



The wheels and tires are ProfiModeler resin which look much better than the kit wheels, but I found that the spindle hole for the axle was much wider than the kit parts, since these wheels are really made for the Hasegawa kit instead.  Thankfully I found some clear tubing that filled the hole perfectly as an axle spacer.  With the kit axle slightly shortened, it fits perfectly within this spacer.






The center line fuel tank was finished off as well, with a modified rear fin and two fuel filler caps.






The launch rails were painted, with a navigation light at the rear.  Thanks to Paulo’s (tchwrma) dual build of this kit, he has pointed out that the launch rail light is green and not blue like the rest of the navigation lights.  I checked a number of F-5’s and sure enough, he’s right.






The arresting hook appears to always be striped black and white, including my subject.






ProfiModeler also makes a nice brass pitot tube which is hollowed out at the front.






Now some improvements that I’m really happy with.  Recall that the starboard side of the fuselage has a number of errors, especially that oval panel at the bottom that should be at the top.






That oval panel houses the AOA vane, which is completely missing from this kit.  After moving the oval panel to the top and the square access door to the bottom, I used an AOA vane from the Hasegawa kit.  Note that it should be placed slightly aft of center.






Also missing from this kit is a boarding ladder, which is also in the Hasegawa kit.  While this ladder was a real pain to create due to multiple seam lines and pin marks, it is fairly accurate and fits the KH model perfectly with the sloped cockpit sill.  Note that it is beat up and worn, as they usually are.  The top of the ladder has curved rubberized tubes which are often black, but they can also be yellow, so I painted this one accordingly.






Based upon a suggestion earlier, I added some fabric seat belts to the top of the seat, which attach to the main belts along the seat back.  They are often flipped over the top of the seat as shown and were made of HGW P-51D seatbelts that I painted.  Normally the top of the seat is grey like the rest of the cockpit, but I did find a good photo of it painted black with the red Soviet star, which I sourced from Mig kill emblems on an F-4 decal sheet.





And last the part of this model that is the most unique, due to all the raised rivet detail I installed earlier, which goes from this:






To this.  While it pained me to do so, I knocked down the shine of the metal a bit to replicate the real deal better, since these titanium parts are usually quite dull.  In the pics above of my subject, however, they are shinier than most, so I suspect ground crew polished them now and then to match the glossy finish on the rest of the jet.











My next update will likely be the finished model, which won’t be for a week or two as I finish this project and go out of town for a few days.  Stay tuned.






Edited by chuck540z3
Link to comment
Share on other sites



I have posted pics of the finished model in the Ready For Inspection Forum here:


1/32 Kitty Hawk F-5E/N: "Kicked Up a Notch"


Thank you everyone for your continued interest in this build.   I really appreciate your comments and feedback over the past 9 months.













Edited by chuck540z3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...