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John Everett

Cessna 172, Nichimo, 1/20

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A little less than a year ago I built Nichimo’s 1/20 Cessna Skyhawk. A modeling friend saw the finished kit and asked me to build the one which had been in his stash for several years.


completed model here: 



The problem was that his kit was missing its engine. (The original owner had mysteriously absconded with both the engine and nose gear strut.) But guess who had made rubber molds of that engine during construction of that first airplane? As it happened, I had enough spare resin castings to cobble together a Lycoming O-320 to replace the missing components.



Not as as good as the original metal components, but more than adequate. 




Patching holes in the floor plate. The original model dates to the early 1980’s and has a lot of weird “features”. 




We’ll be going with the dark blue interior on this one.



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Nice!!! I'll be following your build seeing I'm going to be starting my own 1/20 scale 172 soon. How did you reshape the landing gear wheel pants to look more updated?



Edited by Hawkwrench

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A unique subject for sure, takes me back to the early 80s when I took some flying lessons.  

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17 hours ago, Hawkwrench said:

Gotcha, thanks for the tip! What epoxy putty did you use?



I'm not sure, exactly. It was Aves. But any putty which hardens to an easily sandable consistency would work just as well. The real trick is to wet-sand down to at least 2000 grit and then prime it with a filler primer like Mr. Surfacer cut about 50/50 with Mr. Leveling Thinner.

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I was at home most of the day and was able to spend much of the time with airbrush in hand. The interior is about 70% done t this point.



The kit is based on the 1973 model of the C-172. The airplane we're duplicating (to the degree possible) is a 1977 version.

Cessna factory propaganda from 1973:



A similar propaganda picture from the later, 1977 model:




This is a photo of the revised, 1977 instrument panel. The kit part isn't perfect. But it's pretty close.



I've used clear, sticky disks cut from laminating sheet as instrument glass.






I know from experience that this model has a very bad problem with "tail-sitting". One needs almost a quarter pound (120g) of weight in the front to keep it on the nose wheel. Fishing weights and lead shot do the trick here. This will be about half the required mass.


For as much as the intense blue of this interior might bother me, 1977 did offer the buyer "other options".


The two halve may be enclosed by the end of tomorrow. If so, we can expect the exterior painting to require a couple of weeks.











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Wow nice John. I've never seen one of these built up til now.

A friend of my Dad had a Skyhawk when I was a kid. We used

to go "bore holes in the sky" as he used to say.  :speak_cool: :popcorn:


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