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brahman104

HK's B-17F - 21/9 the photon steps up

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G'day Guys,

 

Well I'm doing something I've tried for a long time not to do; have two build logs going at once. The difference, aside from them being 2 different versions of the B-17 (I have 3 all up), is that for a while, this build will exist mainly as a virtual one. With so much discussion about the shape of the nose and what HK did or didn't get right, I've decided to embark on a quest to see if I can come up with a decent rendition that has the right "look." 

 

My aim here is NOT to produce an aftermarket correction set to go on sale to the masses, more so to investigate where the lines of the kit differ from that of the factory drawings, and mainly centred around the nose. It's my intention to produce a 3D printed replacement section that is a blend between actual dimensions and kit ones in order to make the thing work. There will be compromises; as I have said, I'm trying to recreate the "look" of the B-17. The reason I am initially keeping this as a "virtual-ish" build for now is that I want to keep progressing with the C, but this will provide the groundwork for what will eventually become an F and an E build, but with most of the hard work already done here.

 

Think of this for now as more of a study.......Hopefully you can join me on my journey!

 

Phase 1 - Establishing the reference

tjGK99F.jpg

Ok guys, no surprises here. The HK kit in all its glory. Unfortunately with the way the kit is constructed, in order to establish a proper datum point for reference, I need to do some dissection. Think back to my early C model days, it gets gory here!

 

QLInlPE.jpg

Most discussion so far has been centred around the incorrect shape of the #3 bulkhead. Unfortunately as I have discovered, correcting the #3 is not the end of the story. I had always had suspicion that not only was the bottom nose profile off, I also suspect that the profile is wrong when viewed from above. If you study pics of a real Fort, the HK version always looks a bit too fat for my liking. To me the best place to start is the #4 bulkhead, as at least I can reference any changes to the cockpit from here too. Despite the #4 bulkhead actually being on a receding angle in the real thing, the HK part is installed at 90 degrees. I'm not going to lose sleep over that, and in any case I need the shape at the #4 as my master reference dimensions to allow the new nose to graft hopefully seamlessly onto the existing fuselage......

 

45md0gg.png

Next up I scaled and traced the outline of the E/F nose profile for comparison in Rhino.

 

zWGJOIv.png

I then traced the outline of the HK fuselage, shown here in blue. I overlayed the factory drawing and this is what I got..... As you can see, it's not only the top, but also a large portion of the bottom which is oversized (agreeing with my original suspicions). I'm not entirely sure about the overall length, as this really has to do with where you take the datum point to be on the #4 bulkhead, but in any case, it would really only be a mm or two longer at most.

 

In order to be able to match up any new sections I make with the existing fuselage, matching my work to the #4 bulkhead for size will be critical. This is where I am deviating a little from strict dimensional accuracy - remember the priority here is "the look." When I scaled up the factory drawing to the match the kit, this is what I got....

 

A4B0BQT.png

 

Looks like the kit nose cone will be about 0.8mm too tall, so I'll have that challenge to look at when I get to it, and I get the feeling it may be out on profile too, but my next update will address that.

 

I haven't had a look from the top down yet, and I suspect that similar to what I saw with the underside profile, the kit will be too fat. I get the feeling that the nose of the real thing tapers a lot further back than the #3 where HK have it, but we'll soon see.....

 

Anyway this has been a lot of fun so far, and something I've been going to do for ages. I certainly hope this answers some questions for a lot of you out there.....

 

Cheers!

 

Craig

 

 

Edited by brahman104

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Simply amazing work so far and well explained. Good luck to get it settled. Poor modellers who didn't care so far. LoL

 

I would be pleased to get the same corrections on WNW models by other maniacs. 

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Well, this is going to be interesting and I suspect will cause a certain amount of discussion.

 

I have no interest in building this kit, but your approach and conclusions will be good to follow. Have you considered lining up the #4 bulkhead along the centreline datum rather than at the bottom of the fuselage? That might make a difference to how much you decide to alter, perhaps.

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Craig

 

Your work here may lead me to buying the HK 17. I don't have the time or energy for the research you're doing- it's really the heavy lifting. When you come up with the fixes, I'll be there waiting and thanking you for doing this labor of love. It's really a great public service to the B-17 community.

 

Many, many thanks!

 

D.B.

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23 hours ago, DonH said:

Well, this is going to be interesting and I suspect will cause a certain amount of discussion.

 

I have no interest in building this kit, but your approach and conclusions will be good to follow. Have you considered lining up the #4 bulkhead along the centreline datum rather than at the bottom of the fuselage? That might make a difference to how much you decide to alter, perhaps.

 

What about seeing how things compare if you make sure the very front vertical lines associated with where the clear plexiglass nose attaches are parallel?

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On 6/5/2019 at 8:14 PM, overcast said:

Simply amazing work so far and well explained. Good luck to get it settled. Poor modellers who didn't care so far. LoL

 

I would be pleased to get the same corrections on WNW models by other maniacs. 

 

Thanks mate. Yes I'm trying to explain my thought processes along the way about where I will make concessions and why. At the end of the day, it's not the definitive approach, only my approach:punk:

 

23 hours ago, DonH said:

Well, this is going to be interesting and I suspect will cause a certain amount of discussion.

 

I have no interest in building this kit, but your approach and conclusions will be good to follow. Have you considered lining up the #4 bulkhead along the centreline datum rather than at the bottom of the fuselage? That might make a difference to how much you decide to alter, perhaps.

 

G'day Don, thanks for your interest. I hope it does, and of course there is always many more than one way to skin the proverbial cat. Thunderbolt 1988 is planning a different take than I, and I look forward to seeing his progress as much as my own.

 

Great suggestion about the #4 bulkhead. I did line it up just for a look, but the result hasn't changed too much. See below..

i7lFqCL.png

Very interesting thought though, I do welcome your comments and suggestions as go progress!

 

Cheers

 

19 hours ago, clarkis said:

Yay! A reality check for the HK B-17! Thanks for all your work!

Clark Cone

 

Thanks Clark! When are you going to plunge into one on here? :) 

 

19 hours ago, kkarlsen said:

Please don't stop, I'm ready and will follow this with interest.... :popcorn:

 

Cheers: Kent

 

 

Hi Kent! Very honoured to have such as talented modeller as yourself following on. I'll definitely be doing my best to give her the nose job she's been needing for too long!

 

17 hours ago, D.B. Andrus said:

Craig

 

Your work here may lead me to buying the HK 17. I don't have the time or energy for the research you're doing- it's really the heavy lifting. When you come up with the fixes, I'll be there waiting and thanking you for doing this labor of love. It's really a great public service to the B-17 community.

 

Many, many thanks!

 

D.B.

 

G'day D.B. Very happy to hear that! The B-17 has got to be my all time favourite, so I do want to do her justice. I'm looking forward to this evolution indeed!

 

The story continues......

 

Just a quick one for tonight. As I've said I thought the nose cone piece may also be a little off, but here's the evidence for you to ponder.....

ZATYri2.png

 

I feel like Terry (TKB) may have picked this up a while ago, but the offending shape is around the lower side profiles - somewhat ironic that I've said the kit is overly fat for most of it; that it would actually be a case of it being too skinny!!!!! :whistle:

 

Not a huge update, but I'm slowly piecing together the profiles of each bulkhead to start the 3D build. Tomorrow I'm going to investigate the nose profile when viewed from above. The general theme I'm getting so far is that HK kept the same cross section from aft forward until the #3 bulkhead, which explains the apparent "fatness." I'm tipping the result will be the same....

 

Thanks for your interest so far! Feel free to comment and I welcome any discussion that may arise!

 

Cheers,

 

Craig

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Very interesting research Craig, good to know, as far as I'm concerned, it's not too far out. Looking forward to seeing what you do.

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5 minutes ago, thunderbolt1988 said:

 

What about seeing how things compare if you make sure the very front vertical lines associated with where the clear plexiglass nose attaches are parallel?

 

G'day mate, just missed you post as I was doing mine. Don't take the non-vertical appearance of my nose line to be gospel. Quite often as you'll find in the drawings, the drawing on the page is often not quite straight. All I've simply done here is trace a line over where I believe to be the centre of the drawn line. Mostly it's parallel, sometimes it isn't. The front "should" be parallel, so I will fix that up. In any case, aligning the location of Bulkhead #1 with the HK outline (I think that's what you mean) won't really show anything different, see below.

iUkG8hi.png

 

Cheers,

 

Craig

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6 minutes ago, Kagemusha said:

Very interesting research Craig, good to know, as far as I'm concerned, it's not too far out. Looking forward to seeing what you do.

 

Absolutely mate. It isn't too far out using my very non-scientific means here. Just good food for thought. The real proof will be when the 3D printed nose is placed against the kit part. I guess that's when we all get to see if I've been wasting my time! Hahaha!

 

Craig

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Is it just me, or do the Memphis belle restoration and the sentimental journey B-17G have different windscreens? SJ’s appears a great deal larger and more square when viewed from the front?

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2 minutes ago, thunderbolt1988 said:

Is it just me, or do the Memphis belle restoration and the sentimental journey B-17G have different windscreens? SJ’s appears a great deal larger and more square when viewed from the front?

 

No - windscreens and forward windows remained unchanged throughout production. The earlier 'sharkfin' tailed models had a third side window fitted and the really early ones had no upper windows, but the windscreen itself was unaltered. The only exception was the later models, when some were fitted with the small 'ice windows' as part of the windscreen. Both Sentimental Journey and Memphis Belle would have had identical cockpit glass arrangements.

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4 hours ago, tomprobert said:

 

No - windscreens and forward windows remained unchanged throughout production. The earlier 'sharkfin' tailed models had a third side window fitted and the really early ones had no upper windows, but the windscreen itself was unaltered. The only exception was the later models, when some were fitted with the small 'ice windows' as part of the windscreen. Both Sentimental Journey and Memphis Belle would have had identical cockpit glass arrangements.

Thank you!

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