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FM-2 Wildcat 1/32

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Hello folks and a Happy New Year to you all.


I have been busy trying to make the Trumpeter F4-F4 into an FM-2 this also required swapping the cowling from the late F4-F3 kit giving a better starting point for correction of the cowling.


The FM-2 was fitted with a single row 9 cylinder engine made by Wright instead of the 2 row 7 cylinder engines on the other Wildcats.   

This would be the make or break part of the conversion so it made sense to start here 1st, if this worked it would be time to buy a new resin engine from Vector resin.  It did work out nicely so the engine was ordered 


Work commenced with marking the cowling with several rings which would make cut lines for removal of the front of the cowling once separated each half was sanded back a bit and then glued back together.  This process was repeated 4 times to get the desired shortening of nose.


Then given a nice coat of VMS Black super glue which could then be sanded back to give the right shape.  








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It always helps to have some reference material, as this is the second Wildcat I'm working on quite quickly the decision was made to do the cockpit almost out of the box you really don't see much at all once the fuselage halves are joined together  

A little help from a nice etched seat seat and a couple of left over bits from a resin set will always come in useful











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Hello Vince.




I am going to enjoy this build!

Clean neat start.

:thumbsup:  :clap2:


{ airscale - High Resolution Cockpit Enhancements for Model Aircraft.
https://www.airscale.co.uk/   }.

Peter is a modeller and has variety of things!!



{  Archer Fine Transfers, Decals, Surface Details and Dry Transfers for model builders
http://archertransfers.com/index.html     }.


might help in future.






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Luckily the Top Drawings Grumman F4F Wildcat book came with drawings in 1/32 scale which will help with making the tail taller.

First of all a blob of 20 thou plastic card was glued to the existing rudder with Tamiya White glue and reinforced with VMS Black supergoo.

Then it was out with the really harsh sanding sticks and slowly working back to a fine and finer grit until I was happy with the shape and finish.








The rudder looked the easiest part to convert to the taller tail until the shape was traced out and then the shape is very different from the original rudder, not wanting to make a completely new part a compromise was made here with original part being thinned in the cord as mush as possible without completely throwing out the shapes again the 20 thou stock came out and was glued to the top of the rudder after the tip had been removed lots and lots shaping later the rudder looks half descent.




Both sides well on the way to completion




The shape doesn't look too bad but there is still the need to fill the upper hinge point and then create a new one higher up, along with making a scallop shape to replicate the fabric at the rear of the rudder on the attached pieces. 




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Good evening Chaps many thanks for the nice comments and questions


As the FM-2 has a single row 9 cylinder engine the kit one will need to be replaced as that is a double row 7, as luck would have and a short search on the internet I found a nice resin engine from Vector that would fit the bill just nicely (1/32 Wright R-1820-G (late) Engine Vector Resin #32-006)


Great resin quite rather vague instructions after the cylinder heads were attached it was time for push rods which have been cut from stretched 0.5mm wire cut to length and glued in place with super goo. Ignition leads made from 0.3 tubing and 0.2mm wire also fitted with VMS super goo




Unfortunately lost a couple of work in progress pictures When the engine was completed and all the pushrods added the engine got a nice coat of Tamiya LP-1 Black to make it nice and shiny the tops of the engine heads were sprayed Tamiya LP-11 Silver and the bottom of the heads Tamiya LP-20 Light gun metal. All the pushrods painted Mig satin black followed by a Silver wiring harness with rubber black leads and brass for the ends 

Neutral grey for for the Crank case head and a couple of decals from the spares box to liven up the whole thing. 




A test fit for the engine within the cowling showed the need to sand some material from the top off the pushrod heads for the correct positioning the loss of material wont be noticed as that is a quite tight opening. 




Slight problem arose from reading the reference material in that I had basically built the a Dauntless engine this was soon corrected by moving the air intake






One air intake removed and three new ones built and ready for paint 





The almost completed engine looking much more like the one fitted to an FM-2




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