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Wolfpack Phantom - 8th TFW F-4C


John1

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Thanks for all the info on the bombs, much appreciate.   In the interim I've been doing some touch up work on the paint.   Part of it is to repair areas impacted by gluing the wings together and onto the fuselage.   Part of it is touching up some scuffs and overspray and part of it is improving the scheme to be closer to the real thing.   As I stared at the picture of 589 posted a couple of days ago, I noted some weathering and paintwork that wasn't captured in the Fundekals profiles.   I made those updates, still have a few more but I'm getting every closer to the final finish.   Some pictures (note - the vertical stab is just pressed in place):

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Some of the colors still seem a bit stark but I'm confident the weathering process will tone them down a bit. 

 

Speaking of bombs above, one of my joys is weathering these weapons.   Nothing irks me more than seeing immaculate bombs hanging off a perfectly done model.   For any aircraft from WW2 through the end of the cold war, the vast majority of bombs were in very poor shape  (except of course the tail fin assembly, which was kept protected, for obvious reasons).   Here's a nice picture of some suitably grubby M117's. 

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That's it for now, thanks for looking. 

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Even missiles got dirty as they were loaded and unloaded many times, even after they go back to the missile shop sometimes new sections and old sections were mixed together like this pic showing a grungy rocket motor while the rest of the missile is relatively clean:

 

DSC03202.jpg

 

and this one showing how the radomes got a bit man-handled, photo #4:

 

https://us-mil-thai.tripod.com/id14.html

 

 

even if the missiles were clean, the wings and fins were added on once the missile was loaded so they had lots of hand prints on them:

 

http://www.preservingourhistory.com/udorn011.jpg

 

Jari

 

 

 

 

Edited by Finn
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7 hours ago, Finn said:

Even missiles got dirty as they were loaded and unloaded many times, even after they go back to the missile shop sometimes new sections and old sections were mixed together like this pic showing a grungy rocket motor while the rest of the missile is relatively clean:

 

DSC03202.jpg

 

and this one showing how the radomes got a bit man-handled, photo #4:

 

https://us-mil-thai.tripod.com/id14.html

 

 

even if the missiles were clean, the wings and fins were added on once the missile was loaded so they had lots of hand prints on them:

 

http://www.preservingourhistory.com/udorn011.jpg

 

Jari

 

 

 

 

Thanks Finn.   Did some "right click - save" on those pictures.  They will be useful for when I start to paint my Sparrows.   I'm a bit apprehensive about how to weather these beasts, they definitely have an unusual "patina". 

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Thanks for the pictures Finn, they will be quite useful when I get to that point of the build.   

 

For now, I've still been making some small adjustments to the paint scheme.   I also added the grayish-metal "Corruguard" coating to the edges of the intakes.   This was a hold-over from the USN-style paint scheme these jets originally had.  Some jets had this, some didn't.   The ones that did eventually had it painted over.   In the case of 589, the picture I've got of the starboard side of the jet shows Corruguard.  The picture of the port side shows it painted over.   I flipped a coin and went for the Corruguard.   If nothing else, it adds a bit of visual interest.   One other atypical addition was the thin red stripe right behind the radome.   This was present on many of the early F-4C's.  There was a reason for it but when I went to look up the information, I found that an ex-member had decided to "take his ball and go home", so many of the threads that people had contributed to and where (IMO) invaluable sources of information are now lost.   The decal set I'm using had this stripe included but I think it looks better painted on.   

 

Last up - I painted the radome.    The early coatings used on these units were not very durable and many weathered to a darkish gray or even revealed the underlying brown fiberglass color.   Right now, my radome is just overall flat black but I'll be adding some variations to break up the overall color.   With the nose cone on, she's finally starting to look like a real Phantom! 

 

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MPsZFsO.jpg?1

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On 6/12/2022 at 1:19 PM, Timmy! said:

Must have the oleos pumped up to a billion!

 

Also digging’ the model!

Thanks Timmy!  Those M117's really put some stress on the landing gear.   I just found an awesome book "Ghosts of Atonement" that takes a deep dive into Israeli F-4 operations during the 1973 war.   Some of those jets were absolutely max'd out with M117's (which seemed to be the weapon of choice for IAF Phantom units), a few of the jets look like they are nearly close to riding on their rims, due to all the weight on those tires. 

 

Back to 589 - I figured once I start adding landing gear, pylons, weapons, etc it's going to be tough to decal the underside.   So I gave the bottom a few coats of Tamiya gloss  (this stuff is amazing, I'm never going back to Future) to prep it for decals.   Lots of decals.   

 

If you were paying attention to my previous ramblings, you would remember that these jets were originally delivered in the US Navy scheme of Gull Grey over Gloss White.    The upper surfaces were field camouflaged but for whatever reason, the USAF didn't bother spraying the specified off white lower color.   Instead, these early F-4C's retained their gloss white lower surface, along with about 200 servicing markings.   The only thing the USAF did was to overspray the large national insignia and "USAF".   

 

On many of the jets, it looks like they didn't worry about quality paintwork, you can still make out these markings under a coat of white.   I did my best to replicate this pretty cool feature.   I've got a very, very long way to go before all the decals are in place.    Fundekals provides a very comprehensive set of instructions and every single decal that was present on the real thing (including panel numbers), so I've got a few nights of decaling ahead of me.   One note on Fundekals - these decals are impressively thin and really settle down tight on the model, with a bit of help from Micro Set / Sol.   Quality stuff for sure. 

 

So here's where I'm at.  Got the large stars and bars and USAF overpainted and I've applied a few of the larger servicing decals.   I've got to do some touchups on some of the paintwork but I'll wait until I'm 100% done with decals and then go back and do the clean-ups.  Once I'm done with all of that, I'll add more weathering to tone down all those shiny clean decals.   I also added the fiberglass brown antenna panel forward of the nose landing gear well.   Not sure when this panel was painted over but according to the instructions, for these early jets, it was unfinished. 

 

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As always, thanks for looking! 

 

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Hi John

Not a big thing. I should have noticed it earlier but I don't think Vietnam era Phantoms had the Radar Warning Antenna on the wing tips as depicted in the Tamiya kit.

I think is should be an easy fix even at this stage of the build.

Cheers

Nick.

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46 minutes ago, Cheetah11 said:

Hi John

Not a big thing. I should have noticed it earlier but I don't think Vietnam era Phantoms had the Radar Warning Antenna on the wing tips as depicted in the Tamiya kit.

I think is should be an easy fix even at this stage of the build.

Cheers

Nick.

Hmm...  Not sure if I follow.   I thought the later wingtip RHAW sensors had a "button" antenna that protruded out of the wingtip?   I'm not seeing anything like that on the kit bits.

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