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Nic C.D.

F-16 Dark Falcon

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Some of you might remember that last year I posted some photos of the Belgian Air Force's F-16 demo jet and the painting process that was necessary to get to the Dark Falcon. Here's a photo of how it looked last year:

 

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For the coming season, we have designed a new tail to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the F-16 in service with the Belgian Air Force. The design that was made was a lot more complex than the previous one, which meant we needed 16 masks for each side of the vertical tail. Here are some of the masks:

 

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And here we have put the mask for the light grey parts on the vertical tail. As you can see; not just a lot of masking with the laser cut films, but also with paper. Not always easy to place at 4 meter of height (and the aft fuselage can be slippery, I almost slid off...).

 

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After a couple of days in the paintshop, this was the result:

 

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The menacing look of the falcon and the detail looked even better on the real jet than on the computer screen. This is modelling in scale 1:1 ! So much fun !

Although the real fun was for Vador, the pilot of the Dark Falcon. While we were painting, he was practicing his new display:

 

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I just wanted to share these photos with you and hope you enjoy them. My friend François and I are building a model of the jet now in 1/48 and later also in 1/32. I'll post photos of that project when we have made some progress.

 

Nic

 

 

 

 

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Wow that looks soooo perfect!! Worth the time. I for one like it even better than last years. How painful was it though to cover up your original work?

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When we started on the Dark Falcon project, it was agreed that each year the design of the vertical tail would change. The reactions on last year's tail were really great, so the 2019 design had to be something eye-catching. So far, the first reactions are good, I hope it'll stay that way. 

 

We had to repaint it anyway, after maintenance the paint was damaged. But still it was strange, seeing the first design getting sanded off...

 

Thanks for you feedback!

 

Nic 

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Hi Nic, being an automotive spraypainter I was wondering what sort of paint do you use, automotive or something more specific.?

 

Fabulous job I love it! You must feel very proud of it I know I would.

 

Cheers Bevan 

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Thanks gents! About the paint used; the entire aircraft is painted with the same paint that is used on the operational F-16, provided by Akzo Nobel. The vertical tail is done with waterbed paint, simply because it dries much faster. With regards to decals: Syhart Decals provides decals in 1/72 and 1/48, but not (yet) in 1/32. When I asked him about 'our' scale, he told me it was quite an investment and would consider production the moment he had 100 sets in pre-order. I don't know if he has pre-orders yet and at what cost, but I can ask him if you like. 

 

I don't know what it would cost to get some masks made in 1/32. The masks in the photos in my first post are those for the actual aircraft, so in scale 1/1. In a few weeks a limited edition book on the Dark Falcon will be released that shows every detail of the jet. And for next year: the design of the 2020 tail has already started!

 

Nic

 

 

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2 hours ago, Nic C.D. said:

In a few weeks a limited edition book on the Dark Falcon will be released that shows every detail of the jet. And for next year: the design of the 2020 tail has already started!

 

Nic

 

That should prove to be a very interesting volume, Nic. I'll be curious to see how you top this tail design, as it's truly excellent.

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