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ericg

USAF F-100D Captain Ronald G Swanson 1968

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Can't believe I missed this build earlier but I'll be following along for sure.     I love builds like this that have a connection to the actual pilot.   Years back, I built an AH-6C Littlebird based on a great deal of information passed on from it's actual pilot, one of the first Littlebird fliers in the 160th SOAR.  I had a blast on that project and it sounds like you are having a good time as well.

 

Keep up the good work, that cockpit looks amazing.   Great attention to all the small little details and a great job weathering it.

 

John

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On 7/11/2019 at 9:29 PM, ericg said:

 

 

Whilst stuff was drying in the cockpit I dry fitted the fuselage halves together and sawed off the really inaccurate intake from the kit. this will allow me to fit the Zactomodels correct intake, an essential upgrade to the kit.

 

IMG_8406-X5.jpg

 

 

 

 

Any chance you could post a pic from the front of the intake, looking inwards? I'd like to see how the Zactomodels intake blends in with the kit's intake trunking. 

 

Also, a pic from the top would be good ( I'm interested in how the resin & plastic join together and how seamless they are.)

 

Thank you . 

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Posted (edited)
On 8/4/2019 at 6:36 PM, blackbetty said:

if the brass tube runs through the fuselage, how are you getting the exhaust in?

 

Hi Blackbetty,

 

The exhaust almost clears the brass tube and as the resin part is quite thick, it requires a small modification to make it fit properly.

 

IMG_8850-4K.jpg

 

IMG_8849-X5.jpg

 

8 hours ago, Jackman said:

 

 

Any chance you could post a pic from the front of the intake, looking inwards? I'd like to see how the Zactomodels intake blends in with the kit's intake trunking. 

 

Also, a pic from the top would be good ( I'm interested in how the resin & plastic join together and how seamless they are.)

 

Thank you . 

 

Hi Jackman,

 

The Zacto intake is an exceptional piece of aftermarket and fits the kit nicely. Here is a pic from the front looking in. There is a small amount of sanding required to make the parts blend together, but the join is within easy reach of a sanding stick. It is hard to see where the join is as the parts fit together very well.

 

IMG_8845-X4.jpg

 

A pic looking down as requested. Once again, fit is excellent and minimal blending will be required.

 

IMG_8844-X4.jpg

 

 

Some more work.

 

The large avionics access panel forward of the windshield requires some work. I am pretty sure this has been made to be posed open as it appears Trumpeter has missed a small feature. There is a big step where it meets the windshield.

 

IMG_8735-4K.jpg

 

A straight edge confirms that they  missed the small kink upward where the trailing edge of the access panel meets the windshield area.

 

IMG_8736-X5.jpg

 

I cut a square from plastic card and superglued it in between the trailing edge and the first rivet line.

 

IMG_8737-X5.jpg

 

I then back filled the edges with my preferred mix of superglue and talcum powder. I use this mix as once set, it sands exactly like plastic and it is very easy to blend without shrinkage.

 

IMG_8738-X5.jpg

 

Sanded smooth.

 

IMG_8740-X5.jpg

 

A couple of coat of SMS primer, which is an acrylic lacquer paint with that has a fine talc additive that makes it excellent for filling blended areas such as this. Also visible in this pic are the thin panel catches made from plastic card that were not provided in the kit, and also i have deepened the small cooling vent under the avionics bay, using a microchisel. 

 

IMG_8847-X5.jpg

 

 

Edited by ericg

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Ohh I’m really into this! Will follow along for hints and tips as i have the same kit with the zacto intake to build. Have been deciding if i will do it next and i think your build will set me mind on the F-100. Lovely work so far and your attention to detail is superb. 

Can you pass on some details about how you make up that CA filler?

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2 hours ago, themongoose said:

 

Can you pass on some details about how you make up that CA filler?

It is made by scooping a small amount of talcum powder into one side of a beer bottle cap, and then pouring a small drop of superglue into the other. Mix them together in the required ratio. More superglue than talc = harder setting mix. Less superglue than talc = softer mix (easier to sand).

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Here is a picture of Ron taking on some gas. Here is what he had to say about the pic:

 

IMG_8924-X5.jpg

 

One of the photos I sent you was of me taking fuel from a KC135 tanker.  The interesting part of air to air refueling in the F-100 was that we used the probe and drogue method.  The tanker trailed a hose in back of it which had a circular basket on it (the drogue).  The F-100 had a probe on the right wing which was essentially a fuel pipe.  The trick was to fly up behind the tanker and "stick" the probe into the drogue and then maintain that connection whilst you took on fuel.  Some "Hun" pilots were very adroit at doing this while, for others, it was a challenge.  I can only tell you that regardless of how good you were at this task, it was always gratifying to see that beautiful tanker appear in front of you.

 

One thing that has been bugging me about this kit is the incorrect way that Trumpeter and as an extension, Aires have depicted the cockpit tub. The rear bulkhead of the cockpit looks like it is halfway back into the ammunition access panels, which is very much wrong. As usual, once I see these things I can’t unsee them and it would simply annoy me every time I looked at the kit. If I had my way again, I would cut the Aires cockpit up and shorten it but  it was now to late for that so I have come up with a compromise which may be useful to those who may wish to do the same thing.

 

Aires have put a spacer between the seat and the bulkhead as a compromise to get it to sort of look right as per this pic. The seat looks as though would be against the bulkhead, denoted by the forward edge of the ammo access panel, but the rails and everything else is well behind it. As can be seen by the opened access panel, the rear of the Aires tub is well back. I forgot to take a picture of the left side of the cockpit before I started the modification so a little bit has already been done.

 

IMG_8955-4K.jpg

 

Here is the left side of the fuselage before the modification. The spacer that Aires have provided is not fitted in this photo.

 

IMG_8934-X5.jpg

 

I removed the top section of the rear bulkhead. It is this part that needed to be shifted forward to make the modification work. 

 

IMG_8936-X5.jpg

 

I would have to shift everything on the top side of the cockpit quite far forward to make it work. I decided to shift the stuff on the top a little bit and do something else to make it a two pronged attack. I reckon Trumpeter have got the ammo access panels a little bit too far forward and though there would be a small avenue there for a correction which would assist somewhat with the mod.

 

IMG_8940-X5.jpg

 

I stuck some dymo tape 2mm back from the rear edge of the ammo access panel and lightly scribed a line.

 

IMG_8941-X5.jpg

 

Using the new line as a guide, I cut a new rear edge with my JLC razor saw. If you follow the new cut line it lines up with a panel line of an access panel below.

 

IMG_8942-X5.jpg

 

I glued 2 pieces of plastic card together to make a width of 2mm. I popped this into the hole and traced around it with a pencil 

 

IMG_8943-X5.jpg

 

I used the pencil line to trim the card to size and glued it  into the forward edge of the access panel and trimmed it. The kerf of my previous saw cut will become the new panel lines of the access panel.

 

IMG_8948-X5.jpg

 

 Using the SMS primer, I sprayed the area and sanded it smooth. This stuff is excellent for refining areas that have seen a bit of work as it is a great micro filler.

 

IMG_8951-X5.jpg

 

Compared to the first pic above, this has made a reasonable amount of difference.

 

IMG_8953-X5.jpg

 

Some small amount of scribing to reinstate some panel lines which I will do later on. The modified area looks a lot better. Everything on the topside looks to be forward of the ammo access panels. 

 

IMG_8954-X5.jpg

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Ron sent me a photo and and anecdote from his time in Vietnam;

 

Ron landing after a mission. Note the empty pylons. This looks to be a RHAW equipped jet.

 

IMG_8923-X5.jpg

 

 I recall a mission in late 1968.  As we were completing the last ordnance delivery,my engine oil pressure dropped to zero.  This is not good in a single engine aircraft.  I headed to the nearest base which was Bien Hoa near Saigon.  I declared an emergency, reduced engine rpm and descended to a final approach carrying some extra airspeed in case the engine quit and I had to pull up to eject.  On final approach I was told by the tower to "go around" because a C-130 was on the runway for takeoff.  I advised the tower that I was not going to go around and needed to get the machine on the ground quickly.  The tower persisted with another "go around".  Amidst a flurry of radio chatter between myself and the tower, a cool mature voice came over the air saying "this is the C-130 on the runway and I am on the roll and will be out of your way shortly".  By this time I was on very short final approach and it didn't look like I would be able to land - but I kept coming.  The C-130 rotated suddenly and lifted off the runway in a max performance climb.  As I touched down I passed immediately beneath the C-130 which was about 100 feet above me.  All I could do was utter a heartfelt "thankyou" to the C-130 pilot who had taken charge of the situation and allowed me to get my F-100 on the ground safely.  

But the irony of this whole thing is that the problem was a faulty oil pressure gage - the oil pressure was fine the whole time.

 

Thank you Ron, your stories are very much appreciated.

 

Some more work.

 

The Super Sabre leading edge slats were always extended unless locked shut for maintenance. Trumpeter have the slats positionable opened or closed but there is no detail under the slats or on the leading edge of the wing, just bare plastic. Thankfully, Eduard have produced a photo etch set to remedy the problem. I normally try and avoid photo etch if I can help it, as the sets usually provide only a small gain in detail for a significant increase in work. These sets I felt were needed in this case though, so they were promptly ordered and fitted in preparation for the wings to be attached to the fuselage.

 

I haven’t invested in a roller set yet, so I pre curved the photo etch parts using a low tech piece of sanding foam and a Prismacolour silver pencil.

 

IMG_8837-X5.jpg

 

As can be seen, the leading edge of the wing is devoid of detail. The pre curved photo etch sits in front, ready to be applied.

 

IMG_8839-X5.jpg

 

The inside of the slats and leading edge of the wing with the photo etch applied. I used superglue to join the parts on. It is a one-go affair and if you mess it up then the photo etch is pretty well toast, so carefully does it. There are some minor flaws which will be sorted with some filler.

 

IMG_8852-X5.jpg

 

Trumpeter have provided repositionable control surfaces. In all of the pics of the F-100 that I have looked at they are  retracted and neutral. I am not a fan of gluing control surface halves together over wing tabs. In this pic the wing halves are joined together with Aires wheel bays and control surfaces joined together. The hinges are going to prevent the control surfaces from attaching to the wing.

 

IMG_8842-X5.jpg

 

I cut off the hinge points and left some of the tabs.

 

IMG_8843-4K.jpg

 

 The completed wing. I will refine these joints a bit later. All surfaces are now neutral.

 

IMG_8851-X5.jpg

 

Edited by ericg

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I have been reviewing the excellent tweak list as mentioned earlier. There is a mention of the mistake that Trumpeter made with the drag chute cable run panel that they doubled up on the right side of the fuselage. I filled this with a mix of superglue and talc and sanded it smooth. These ‘Trumpeterisms’ whilst slightly annoying are actually sorta fun to find and correct!

 

IMG_9655-X5.jpg

 

I then turned my attention to the tail skid area. The skid was deployed when the gear was down and needs to be boxed in.

 

IMG_9639-X4.jpg

 

I made up a small rectangle box from plastic card.

 

IMG_9640-X5.jpg

 

I then glued it into place inside the skid bay. Whilst in this area, I refined the panel lines that depict the drag chute bay doors, adding hinge lines and further rivets on the doors. I feel that this will allow an observer to see that this is an actual working area, rather than a vaguely defined area of panel lines.

 

IMG_9654-X5.jpg

 

Whilst I was doing some work to the cowling fasteners on the Bronco, I used the same tool to engrave the small circular buttons under the bottom of the cockpit on the fuselage that are there to open and close the canopy.

 

Before:

 

IMG_9043-X5.jpg

 

After:

 

IMG_9659-X4.jpg

 

I mounted some aluminium tube across the fuselage to act as a spar for the wings. There is not much plastic to attach the wings on this kit so it could do with some beefing up.

 

IMG_9066-X5.jpg

 

Once the wings were on, I wanted to check out the stance of the kit ASAP to determine if was going to have to modify it, and if so, where. I have seen a couple of these built up and to my eye they look a bit flat, lacking the characteristic tail sit of the real thing. It doesn’t look too bad but could do with a couple of mm’s taken from the length of the main undercarriage.

 

IMG_9112-X5.jpg

 

IMG_9106-X5.jpg

 

I have used the master turned aluminium pitot tube, an essential item IMO.

 

IMG_9078-X5.jpg

 

I have also used the Armory resin wheels, which also feature weighted tyres, something I am always looking for when I see whether a modeller is paying attention at the end of a build or not.

 

IMG_9069-X5.jpg

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