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Italeri CF-104 Starfighter "Kicked up a Notch": Feb 27/21, Decal Rivets Half Done


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15 minutes ago, Hawkwrench said:

So the blade holding the fuselage open idea. Is that so when you apply the extra thin cement and then close it up, the plastic melting from the cement fills in the seam???

Tim

 

The blade just keep the gap open so that you can get glue into it.  It's kind of an assembly line process where you put glue in the gap, move the blade away from the open gap, close the glued area together with tape, then repeat.  The glue is always wet this way and reacts with the plastic much stronger than if it was allowed to dry a bit.  We've all applied Tamiya extra thin cement to a long piece of plastic.  By the time you get glue to the end, the beginning of the join has dried quite a bit.  This method eliminates that.

 

Of course when everything is glued together, I still apply a thin coat of glue to the entire join and if there are any gaps (there always are), they suck up the glue via capillary action.  When all that has dried and has been sanded smooth, I apply a thin coat of CA glue to the join again, then sand again.  It all takes a long time, but it eliminates the flaws you often see after a coat of paint.

 

Cheers,

Chuck

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5 hours ago, Hawkwrench said:

Ok, I see. Thanks for explaining that Chuck.

1 last question, how to you tape the area you just glued without getting the tape in the cement which causes a nasty mess?

 

Tim

 

I don't, although the mess is usually minimal and since I spend a lot of time filling and repairing the seams later, any residue is soon gone.  Regular Tamiya cement would be another story and would be a big mess, so stick with the thin stuff.

 

Cheers,

Chuck

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12 hours ago, Hawkwrench said:

So the blade holding the fuselage open idea. Is that so when you apply the extra thin cement and then close it up, the plastic melting from the cement fills in the seam???

Tim

 

Cannot speak for Chuck, but that is my preferred method of gluing longer joints. I often use a toothpick for it as well as you can vary the width of the opening quickly by pushing in / pulling out the toothpick a bit, plus wood does not damage the plastic like a blade could. Works a treat on wings and fuselages.

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12 hours ago, chuck540z3 said:

 

The blade just keep the gap open so that you can get glue into it.  It's kind of an assembly line process where you put glue in the gap, move the blade away from the open gap, close the glued area together with tape, then repeat.  The glue is always wet this way and reacts with the plastic much stronger than if it was allowed to dry a bit.  We've all applied Tamiya extra thin cement to a long piece of plastic.  By the time you get glue to the end, the beginning of the join has dried quite a bit.  This method eliminates that.

 

Of course when everything is glued together, I still apply a thin coat of glue to the entire join and if there are any gaps (there always are), they suck up the glue via capillary action.  When all that has dried and has been sanded smooth, I apply a thin coat of CA glue to the join again, then sand again.  It all takes a long time, but it eliminates the flaws you often see after a coat of paint.

 

Cheers,

Chuck

Hmmm.  I need to give this a whirl.  I've always just relied on just the capillary wicking method alone, and maybe I'm not getting the optimal amount of glue into these joints.  Bottom line is that anything Chuck does, I at least need to try, because it clearly produces great results! 

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On 1/16/2021 at 7:47 AM, Anthony in NZ said:

Chuck.....one word buddy.  Stunning!

 

Now I know your secret to such progress.  I too wondered how some of you guys crank out masterpieces so quickly.

 

Life strangely here in NZ is weirdly very normal.  We are all about our daily activities like nothing is happening in the world, watching the news is surreal and my heart really goes out to what is happening, in fact it is hard to comprehend.  Having said that, complacency is our enemy!  As much as they are keeping the borders tight I fear it is only a matter of time before we are in the same boat again like last year when we went into lockdown.....

 

The positive side is that I might get to crack on with my Phantom faster if we do!

 

Keep safe Chuck and LSP family, loving see these projects move so fast, very inspiring!

 

Cheers Anthony

@chuck540z3 Stunning work Chuck!! I'm not too much of a jet fan, but the Lawn Dart has always fascinated me! Love what you're doing to it, always a great fan of your work and your methodology!!

@Anthony in NZ You and I might have a lot of home time to do some modelling soon unfortunately, I know a lot of people, and I, who feel the same regarding the complacency here. Our "pandemic manager" at work is starting to make noises again....
But either way, please keep posting as well, your work is just absolutely stellar as well!!

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Thank you Gents!

 

 

January 23/21

 

 

A short update, but I think a very important one.  The fuselage has been glued together and all gaps have been filled with CA glue and sanded smooth.  This was tricky on the dorsal area, where there are 10 small square access panels that need to be rescribed after filling.  Thankfully they line up pretty good, but that’s partly because the panel lines are so darn big!  The Eduard exterior set has these little panels in brass to cover them, but since they are so small and curved, I left them off since I think they will cause more headaches than they solve.

 

 

J5gwT5.jpg

 

 

On the underside, I left off part C-9, so that I can install the main landing gear at the end of the build.  Here it is dry fit to the rest of the fuselage, which is a bit of a mess just forward of it on the left.

 

 

rPzTGe.jpg

 

 

This must be a well-known problem, because Eduard also has a brass plate to cover this area, so I glued it in place and then sanded it to remove any sharp edges and help the paint stick to it a bit better.  I also decided that since I will have an MN-1A bomb dispenser (modified SUU-21 dispenser) hanging from this part, I should have some extra strength here that is easy to glue to underneath, so I installed styrene strips that conform to the curvature of the part.

 

 

3MQXQ6.jpg

 

 

Part C-9 will not only be an easy drop in, but strong as well, although the arrow head should not have a panel line through it.  According to my Wingman Jari (Finn), that recess forward (left) of the brass plate should be filled.  Consider it done.

 

 

6vhOte.jpg

 

 

Thankfully the center line pylon that the bomb dispenser hangs from will cover this, so you won’t be able to see it easily.

 

 

7U3u0j.jpg

 

 

Moving forward from the center, I had a very hard time installing the front landing gear assembly, because it wouldn’t fit flush.  At first, I thought it was interfering with some of the resin assemblies I installed above it, so I spent a very long-time trimming pieces and dry fitting, but to no avail.  Finally, I shone a flash light from the back through the part C-9 opening and discovered the culprit!  The port/left side of the gear bay was rubbing up against the gun compartment, which has nothing to do with all the resin I installed.  After sanding the outside of the gear bay and the gun compartment, everything slid into place nicely, so here’s a tip for you who may have the same problem in the future.  In all my frustration with this assembly, I forgot to install the clear light F-5 from behind in that little hole on the left.  Dang!  Now I’ll have to install one from the outside the hard way.  :BANGHEAD2:

 

 

6pvZMg.jpg

 

 

Recall that I had a lot of gaps to fill and detail to add in the front cockpit area.

 

 

75xmga.jpg

 

 

All better now, but a lot of picky work to fill the gaps, and add a styrene strip behind the cockpit missing on the kit parts, without wrecking the delicate detail of the avionics bay.  This time I didn't forget to install the little light at the top of the fuel cover!

 

 

ze4Pvr.jpg

 

 

I also created a new avionics bay cover hinge out of modified styrene I-Beam, instead of the brass one I had before.  While the brass hinge would have worked, the styrene one is much more flexible and easier to work with, and allowed me to scribe hinge markings on it which you can’t really see very well in this pic.

 

 

TZsSuV.jpg

 

 

Here is the hinge from the rear, unpainted so that it will stick to the cover.  I sanded a slight groove in the sill for it to sit in, so that it will be an easy drop in at the end of the build.

 

 

niAqFs.jpg

 

 

Here is the hinge glued to the cover and dry fit with tape, which shows the hinge detail a bit better.  From reference pics this door opens about 80 degrees, while the canopy is closer to 90 degrees, so I can adjust the angle accordingly when I glue it in with Gator glue, that is flexible and easy to clean up with water.  When installed permanently, I will add additional wires that go from the cover to the bay itself.

 

 

JKsXLS.jpg

 

 

I end this post with a problem to fix.  The windscreen is too wide for the fuselage and based upon a quick review of other builds, I’m not alone.  After painting it underneath, I installed it a tiny bit rearward to help with the width, since the further you go back, the wider the cockpit sill.  I also squeezed it slightly, being careful not to overdo it and risk cracking it.  I plan on sanding the edge of the windscreen to narrow it, rather than just add filler that will look wrong.  This in turn will erode the fine fastener detail on the bottom, so I plan on redrilling some of these recesses to recover what I sand off.  For the CF-104, the front infrared sensor at the front of the windscreen was removed, which was another pain because it's hollow and needed to be filled.  When I finish that, I will add the brass side rails to cockpit sill that will eliminate the square opening in the corners.

 

 

DTzB5h.jpg

 

 

 I hate it when clear plastic parts have challenges, because the plastic is so brittle and hard to work with, but I’ve been to this movie before and maybe I will have a happy ending once again?  I also crashed and burned with my Kitty Hawk Harvard build that gave me fits with the canopy, so wish me luck!  :unsure:

 

 

Cheers,

Chuck

Edited by chuck540z3
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  • chuck540z3 changed the title to Italeri CF-104 Starfighter "Kicked up a Notch": Jan 23/21, Fuselage Fixes

Hello chuck!! Great progress as always!! I've done three of these kits, fun builds. The nose gear, i built the bottom to one side, painted weathered all parts, then assembled the other side, trapping the gear leg in between. Then i folded it up into place. At final assembly, i just fold it down, install wheel and the two braces. Done this on a few builds, the Zip and the Trumpeter P-38 come to mind. Are you going to do anything about the fuselage panel lines? Last build, i sanded/scribed/sanded/scribed/sanded/scribed Ad Nauseum til they looked acceptable. LOTS of work, but was worth it.

 

Don

 

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  • chuck540z3 changed the title to Italeri CF-104 Starfighter "Kicked up a Notch": Feb 27/21, Decal Rivets Half Done

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