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Wolfpack Phantom - 8th TFW F-4C


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Just a very quick update.   Not much progress, just tweaking some of the paintwork.   I think the nozzles are pretty much done, with the exception of a black Flory wash to add some additional oily grunge to them.





Toned down the "rib effect" on the forward section horizontal stabs. On some jets, these ribs were very prominent, on others, not very much at all.  I'm going the latter effect.  Last step will be to do the same to the middle, darker panel. 



Aft faces of the might J-79's are completed.  How much of this will be visible on the finished model?  Probably not much at all!  I tried to recreate the chalky burned appearance of these parts. 



Horrible lighting, so the colors are off but it shows the really nice detail of the GT exhausts.   Just wish these guys did a better job on the ease of assembly.   The actual colors are much more blended and darker. 



The undersides of the horizontal stabs.   This area is very much a work in progress.   The few pics of seen of early vintage F-4's show this area to be heavily sooted up. 



So that's it for now.  No idea what I'll work on next.  To be honest, I thought I'd have had the Quinta cockpit set by now but according to Quinta, this set now will not be released until late this month or early Feb.   Hopefully sooner, rather than later, I really want to dive into the cockpit area. 


Thanks for checking in, all comments / suggestions / critiques are much appreciated. 







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  • 3 weeks later...

I've finally made a bit of progress worth sharing.   While waiting for the Quinta cockpit set, I decided to start painting.  As I mentioned, I've always been a bit intimidated by hard edge paint schemes.   This time around, I decided to take some advice from a few folks on LSP and instead or masking the edges, I went with using Blue Tack putty.    Just made a narrow "worm" of this stuff, placed it on the model as required and masked the rest with paper towels.  It's actually much easier than I thought and depending on the angle you spray your paint at, you can get a very nice slightly feathered look to your edges.    Given the size of this beast, I figured I could get a few sections painted prior to final assembly.   


First off, a few notes.   My subject has a very heavily weathered paint job.   Apparently, the Wolfpack maintenance folks didn't worry about matching colors when they over painted older markings, squadron codes, etc and did corrosion touchups.  They used whatever they had.  Also, the early paints used on these first SEA aircraft faded quite easily, especially the dark tan.   Here's a shot of my subject, note the various shades of tan and off-spec green / brown used for touchups. 



And the side views from the Fundekals instructions:



Bottom line is that none of the colors in this scheme are going to be uniform.  I've been mixing some custom blends of paint to get as close as possible to the shades above. Here is my test sheet:


From left to right, we have Model Master Medium Green, Dark Green, Dark Tan, SAC Tan, SAC Green and Mr Paint Dark Green and Dark Tan.  To these base shades, I've added some other colors for some of the smaller areas.     Still very much a work in progress.   I'd also like to take a second and say THANK YOU to LSP's "Dragon" for sending me the SAC Tan and SAC Green paints.    These are next to impossible to find anymore.  Greatly appreciate it Mike! 



I'm pretty happy with results so far.    No pictures have been found of 589's upper wings / fuselage so I'm on my own as far as the amount of weathering to apply.   This is still very much a work in progress, got some touchups and more weathering to add once all the bits are assembled.   



Also started on the fuselage.   I've added some underlying black / tan mottling.   The tan on mid/aft fuselage is that weird shade you can see in the pictures.   I added some white and MM Sand to the Dark Tan until I got to a shade I felt was close.    





Here are some of the painted bits in direct sunlight.   Like I said, I still need to do some touchup work.  I'll be toning down some of the splotches, while adding others.   All paintwork is very much still in progress:



Lastly, much to my surprise, 2 weeks after placing the order, this arrived via the Russian postal service yesterday:


I had expected this order to take 1-2 months, didn't want to pay big money for DHL expedited shipping from Russia.  Very happy with the service from Quintas.


Anyway, that's it for now.   I'm going to put the painting on hold for a bit and dive into the cockpit next.


Thanks for looking! 

Edited by John1
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Starting a bit of detailing on the cockpits.   This is challenging but unlike the camo / exhaust painting, I'm in my comfort zone and find this phase to be quite enjoyable.    Still looking for some references that show the aft bulkhead areas for both the pilot and WSO's cockpits.    Didn't have much for the area behind the WSO's instrument panel but then I was pointed over to FB and found these very helpful pictures:








So I've got my work cut out for me.    Hopefully I'll make some progress this week and have a real update to share with you guys. 

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Super work and updates with detailed photographs  to work from.



I am, just like Tom, looking forward to your cockpit too.

Your build is excellently detailed   and I know your cockpit will get the same treatment :excl:


Good job.


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Slowly making progress on the cockpits.    I'm still amazed at how complex both cockpits are.   I've got a lot of work to do.   Before I go on - my philosophy on detailing parts like this is to avoid slavishly replicating every nut, bolt and wire.   The less a particular fitting is visible on the finished kit, the less I invest in scratch building it.   I do my best to keep things as accurate as possible, but my goal is a give a good general representation, not to make something that is 100% accurate (if that makes sense).


Here is where I started - Just the basic tub with the side consoles sanded down for the Quinta replacements and a rough coat of primer.   I also started to add some of the items that Tamiya left out, including avionics boxes and a map holder in the WSO's cockpit.  I also added more of the fabric soundproofing material that's present (and cut away the areas forward of the pilot's footwell, per the real thing).   The color for this material is a bit bright.   I'm going to see how it looks when I dry fit this into the fuselage and if necessary, I'll tone them down, followed by a dark wash.  Note that they are pretty crude but from the limited viewing angles, they will work just fine (see approach to super-detailing above).  



I also cut away a portion of the WSO's right side console, per the real deal. It's a rough cut but it will be cleaned up and pretty much hidden once I install some scratch built avionics boxes. 



A bit more progress.  Added avionics boxes in the opening I cut in the console, topped them off with some Airscale placards (these things are indispensable IMO).  There will be much more added (wiring, more fittings, etc) in this area, so please take all of this as a starting point, not the end result.    I also added the prominent vent cover on the WSO's side panel.   Still need to add some bolts and a dark wash to highlight the openings.    Lastly, I couldn't help myself and had to try a few of the Quinta decals.  They are beyond simple to install.   Soak for 30 seconds, while soaking, coat the plastic area with diluted PVA glue (or Future or whatever floats your boat), slide on decal and you are done.   If necessary, once dry, go back and let a small bit of thin superglue flow underneath.  





Close up of the detail on these Quinta bits.   Not apparent here is the glossy, glass-like finish on the gauges.   Very impressive stuff.   I still plan on toning down some of these bits with a dark wash and/or pastels, especially the grey portions which aren't really a perfect match for Dark Gull Grey.



Dry fit of the ejection seats.   I'll also be adding some of the Quinta bits to the seats.   



That's it for now.   Got much, much more to do in this area. 


Thanks for looking. 


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On 2/8/2022 at 4:25 PM, John1 said:

Starting a bit of detailing on the cockpits.   This is challenging but unlike the camo / exhaust painting, I'm in my comfort zone and find this phase to be quite enjoyable.    Still looking for some references that show the aft bulkhead areas for both the pilot and WSO's cockpits.    Didn't have much for the area behind the WSO's instrument panel but then I was pointed over to FB and found these very helpful pictures:








So I've got my work cut out for me.    Hopefully I'll make some progress this week and have a real update to share with you guys. 

Scott Wilson, a Phantom maintainer and modeler, has this walkaround spread over on the ARC website. It features several pictures of both crew stations with seats removed. I believe the subject is the F-4E, but most of the bulkhead details differ little between variants.

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Plugging away on the cockpit.  Added additional Quinta decals for the pilot's and WSO's instrument panel.   Also touched up the paintwork (I decided the colors on the side soundproofing blankets were too green) and added some weathering.   For scratch-built additions, not much (yet).   Just a couple of wires added and the small "gates" that were on the pilot's throttles.  These were moved upwards to allow the throttles to go into afterburner.    Lastly, I added some weathering.   A bit of grime on some of the side consoles to tone down their brightness, plus additional scratches on the sides and floorboards. 






I need to touch up the metal "snaps" on the fabric side panels.  





And a few shots with the seats in place.







So that's it for now.   The weathering is still very much a work in progress.   Some effects need to be toned down a bit.   Thanks very much for looking!





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On 12/24/2021 at 11:16 AM, John1 said:

Thanks guys!   


Not much of an update for today, unlike the later Tamiya kits, this one is making me work!  First off - I had to sand off those triangular reinforcing plates on the upper surfaces of the horizontal stabs and re-rivet and re-scribe .   The early F-4C's didn't have these.   Not hard but time consuming nonetheless.   I shot the area with some Mr Surfacer 1000.  It tends to smooth the scribing a bit, plus it highlights any areas that need repairs. 




Next up is the aft exhaust area.   Got some additional detailing and PE to add but the first order of business was to sand off the prominent seam that runs the length of the part and to carefully open up those "slit" exhausts on either side.  


As always, pictures tend to highlight details I missed.   I'll be cleaning up the edges of the upper exhaust opening.   The seam towards the top will be covered by the tailhook so I didn't waste any time on it. 


Next up are the exhausts themselves.   As the kit parts are significantly undersized, I opted to go with the GT resin corrected nozzles.   Very nice resin, you get the early version short nozzles, the exhaust itself (nicely cast as a single piece so you have no interior seam to deal with) and the aft turbine face.   

Here's the nozzle.  Much superior to the Tamiya part in detail:



Turbine exhaust face.   Nice looking resin but it really won't be very visible once installed in the fuselage.



Exhaust nozzle with the greenish interior.  I used multiple shades of paint, followed by drybrushing, followed by Flory wash to bring out all those smaller details

.   JIEr2Ak.jpg

My plan is to go back and do some addition light-ish tan drybrushing on the interior.  Also, in looking at the picture I posted at the bottom, of the real thing, the ring at the very end of the tube should actually be a burnt metallic color, not the greenish tan of the rest of the interior.   I'll fix that as well. 


My only issue with the GT bits is figuring out how these things go together and how they install in the fuselage.   The nozzles don't fit very well on the ends of the exhaust tubes and there are no positive connections provided (the nozzle interiors came with locator tabs on the inside but there is nothing on the end of the tubes for them to slot into and besides, the instructions tell you to remove those tabs.   At first I thought the nozzles slipped over the exhaust tubes back to the prominent collar on the outside of the tubes but they don't.  If you push them that far on (after removing a great deal of resin), the aft end of the exhaust tube will be way too far into the nozzle itself.  Regardless, it's a very poor fit.


Here is what I'm dealing with. 


It's not a question of just trimming a bit of resin off the tube, the two parts really don't match up at all.   I'm guessing I'll just get the nozzle aligned and superglue the heck out of it.    Afterwards, it appears that I just insert the assembly into the openings in the fuselage and hope for the best since these parts aren't joined together and provided with screw holes like the Tamiya bits are.


Here is what I'm trying to get close to:

See the source image

Note the differences in color between the two engines. 


Anyway, that's it for now.  Thanks for checking in and Merry Christmas to all! 




heads up n the tailplanes for the Tamiya kit, they're small.  If you can get your hands on a set from a Revell RF-4 they are the correct size.  Tamiya's E model tailplanes are correct but not the C/D ones.  I have access to an F-4 here at the Robins Museum of Aviation and have measured actual ones.  Your build is looking good.



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