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Freedom's 1/35 Nike Hercules kit 15106


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My brother in law served his Dutch Air Force time with these, working in a fire-control bunker in Germany. I decided to build this for him. There are not too many previews of this kit, and I found no build reports. So here goes.

 

Impressions:

 

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Decals are very nice, and in register. The Dutch blue might be a tad too light though. Maybe I'll use masks instead.

 

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Some ejector pin markings are there, but they all seem to be in places that are invisible when assembled.

 

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Overall, the part look quite nice on the sprue. And a final photo of a real one. I will finish it like the one on the right.

 

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I was able to make a start yesterday. Construction Strat with the booster-half of the Nike. I can report the plastic is on the softer side. It reacts strongly to sandpaper, so I use finer grit and take more care than than usual for cleanup. So far part fit is so-so, but not bad. The ten-part connector ring, onto which the missile will be mounted. There are gaps that I need to address:

 

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Everything seems to be very flush with little of the panel lines visible:

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  • 5 weeks later...

A little bit of progress. For some reason, because this will be a gift, I am taking extra care. I smoothed out the seams in the boosters, they look pretty good for a first pass. Surfacer 1200 revealed a few minor spots that nee a little touch-up. Fit so far has been good.

 

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The main missile halves were quite warped, but glueing them with Tamiya extra thin one inch at a time worked out. The seam was given a bit of Surfacer 500, and it needs to dry thoroughly for a round of sanding.

 

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The top booster assembly was a many-part affair. Fit was quite good, but a few seams need more work.

 

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I am quite liking this model so far.

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After three passes of putty and sanding it now looks acceptable to me. This was after the second pass.

 

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The booster section is almost complete. Fit was quite good and I had no problems aligning the parts.

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The side-plating parts are moulded quite thinly and dry-fitted well.

 

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The main missile is complete and painted with LP4 flat white from the new Tamiya laquer paint range, which I bought out of curiosity. I would say it compares well to Xtracolor in terms of handling and feel. Still, I will repaint it with MRP white, which has a nicer tint of white.

 

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Edited by Grunticus
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Now comes the extensive and tedious task of assembling the missile erector. I say tedious because 1. There are many parts. 2. many past require cleaning up moulding seams. 3. Fit is fantastic here, not so there.

 

The two main beams need especially extensive work to make them smooth. The upper one less so than the lower one, of which the two mating surfaces do not line up. If I could start again, I would have made a few square bulkheads to fit inside and help alignment.

 

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These seams below are numerous, but are easily eliminated with by scraping and sanding with a sanding stick.

 

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The main missile is finished, bar some touch-ups to the panel line accentuation. After that it will be sealed in a coat of MRP matt varnish. The decals reacted quite well to handling, but do not react to Daco medium and strong setting solution.

 

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What remains is many sessions of filling, sanding and priming before I can start assembling the erector.

 

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