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Showing content with the highest reputation since 10/21/2019 in all areas

  1. 2 points
    Here is the Kiowa Warrior from MRC. Great build. Very wordy directions, but comprehensive. I also used the Zactomodels exterior details. I added some seat belts, a CAR-15 on the IP.
  2. 2 points
    Here are some more photos of the build. The model was pretty easy to paint; overall MM Acryl Army Helo Green (FS 34031) on the outside and on the inside I used Tamiya NATO Black. Other shades were also used to break up the overall colors. The inside of the engine area was MM Yellow Zinc Chromate with a mist coat of fluorescent green from the square bottle in the transmission area. Adding the Zactomodels exterior set really helped the kit also. So, here they are... I used Lite Bright pegs for the screens on the IP. I wired up the Disco Ball and the tail area. On the rotor, I placed dots of red, blue, green and yellow with a toothpick for the maintenance indicators. I also made umbilicals from the fuselage to the weapon stations. After everything was together I gave it a dry brushing with Tamiya weathering powders.
  3. 2 points
    Dang Nick....learn the difference between a VALID question and a complaint.....All of us know how well our volunteers do. Gil
  4. 2 points
    I thought long before writing what I am about to write, but finally decided that I would do so even if I take flak for it, or risk crossing a line. I do not understand why this question was started here on the IPMS/USA website, or what it has to do with GENERAL MODELLING, All About Building Models. How does asking this question relate to building models? We are not supposed to bring politics into discussions on this site, but that is where this thread appears to be headed where people state their personal biases on what they do, or do not build and then make comparisons to current politics as justification. I do not believe that anyone has deliberately tried to be insulting, but I have read comments that I believe are biased and if I were thinned skinned could cause insult, and for that, and the above reason, I do not think that these types of discussions belong here on a modelling site such as this one. I feel that this discussion should be shut down before it goes any further, if for no other reason that it has nothing to do with modelling. Thanks for reading, John
  5. 2 points
    1/48 Accurate Miniatures Wright Patterson AFB P-51 NA prototype 1/48 Ta 1831/48 prewar Tamiya Zeke
  6. 1 point
    With the table cleared it was time to dive into the pile again for some new kits to work on. This time I pulled out two, both from Gillman Productions. The first is Pepper from the series American Horror Story, and the Freakshow story. We find the kit is similar to Twisty from the same show with a sort of carnival base. The kit comes in only 3 parts - the head, bust, and base. Every so often you'll get a cool illustration from Mark Van Tine, the sculptor! Base colors added. except for the ice cream (at the time I was still researching that). ;) (EDIT: chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla) ;) First highlight added, and epoxied the bust to the base. Starting with the face this session, I gave the usual black eyes to start and also some Beige Red for a base to the skin. Some Reikland Fleshshade was added as the shadows and then some more speckled around the face. Then some Beige Red was speckled on top. A mix of that paint with some of Vs Basic Skin tone followed, and then a final of just the Basic Skin tone. Having a look the actress' blue eyes were left and I used Azure for the base color of the irises. With that I was done. Thanks for looking.
  7. 1 point
    Its Testors Aluminum. Just shows what lighting can do to color in a photo. I screwed up the footstep decals that came with the kit, so I customized ones from an old Matchbox Wellesley kit to at least look the part.
  8. 1 point
    Don't know if you have much experience with Valom kits, but they are about two steps above a limited release injection molded kit. Parts look good, but fit is iffy. Clear parts well done, but seldom fit. Much PE included that is small, fiddly and can't be seen. However, they make kits of subjects no one else does, Enter the Bristol Bombay. First flown in1935, it was designed as what was then known as a bomber/transport. It could do either but neither really well. It did serve as a bomber in the near east and Ethiopia and as a transport all over Europe. It was similar in capacity and performance to a Ju-52, which was also designed to be a a bomber/transport. Its greatest claim to fame was that this aircraft type changed the course of the war in North Africa. When Auchileck was sacked, Gott was named his successor and immediately flew to the front in a Bombay,, which was subsequently shot down, killing Gott and leading to the appointment of Montgomery and we all know the story from there. The kit is done OOTB and I even left out much of the interior as it just couldn't be seen. The clear parts for the windows were omitted as fit was problematic and I did them with Krystal Kleer with a coat of Johnson's Klear. Weathering, shading was done with pastels. Looks like a Bombay, but will never win any contests.
  9. 1 point
    Here is my latest progress done at Hobby Day and a few days before and after. I was very happy with how much I got done. I'll start with my aircraft; or in this case, helicopters. I finished painting the interior for the HUP-2, so once I get the windows in the fuselage, I'll be able to close this little bird up: I also got the interior painted on the Huey Hog. This one will be able to be closed up after I apply the instrument panel decals and then install the windows as well: Now here is the work I did on the Gotha I bought from my friend. He had already assembled the booms and the wings, so I started with the cockpit... such as it is: This model gives the option of making this plane a glider or a powered transport aircraft. I decided that since I haven't got this in powered form yet, I'll build it with engines: As those were drying, I then added the engine nacelle parts to the wings that will hold those engines and the booms: That's as far as I got on that. After all that I moved on to my armor. The first thing I did was to paint the base tan color on the deck of my railroad flatcar. Later I'll try to make this look more like wood: Next I decided to move forward on more of the Aerosans for the Treasure Train game that I'd been "threatening" to put on for a year now. I had one already half built so I assembled the engine and added it to the body to finish it up and have it ready for paint: After that, I started the last one I have in my stash. I do need to buy a few more.... Anyway, I got that one half done before I realized I left all the engine parts at home. Still, it is started at least, and the engine will be easy to get finished and mounted on this. Here is the last one next to the finished on I just did: Moving on from there, I next decided that the T-15 Armata was calling my name too loudly so I got started on that one. First thing I did was to build the turret. That went fast: Next I added the detail parts to the upper hull. There wasn't too much to add, so this went fast as well: After that I assembled the lower hull. I'm really thrilled at how well this model fits together: Finally, I test fit everything together sans turret. This is one big beastie! Check this out: I did stop there but I was having so much fun with this Zvezda kit that I pulled out the Terminator to finish up a bit more. The first thing I did was to assemble the rocket tubes and mount them on the turret: They are pretty fiddly and will make turning that turret a bit hard. Moving on, I finished up adding the bogies and roadwheels to the lower hull: I also added the side skirts and other detail parts to the upper hull as well: Putting the upper and power hull together looks great, this vehicle is now ready for paint: After that, I moved on to the final steps I needed to do to finish my Nagmachon. All the photo etch radar antennae, stowage fences, fenders and anti-RPG bar armor was installed: After some touch up to the paint and adjustment to some of the photo-etch screens, I can declare this thing done. Pics of that are forthcoming later.... After that, I just wanted to build and/or paint. Since I wanted to move forward on some of my eight-wheeled trucks, I pulled them out and chose the AA-60 fire truck first. While cleaning the seam on the end of the tank, I ended up cutting a big hole in the end of it! Out came the sheet styrene and some squares were cut. The first one went on the holed end: To make this look better, I added the other square to the opposite end: I then trimmed the excess off with a pair of scissors: ...and some careful sanding later, I have a smooth finish on each end: Next, because the end plates on the main body were not fashioned properly to fit without major gaps; I used more of that sheet styrene to plug the ends: After some additional assembly, I then cemented the lower body and the forward engine cabin to the chassis. I then snapped the tank in for now. Here's how it looks so far: Well, that was enough of fighting that. I then pulled out one of the KZKT truck cabs and started to assemble the interior: Next I added the axles to the chassis: Additional detail parts went on, such as the fuel tanks on the side. I also checked to be sure the wheels all line up and sit properly: I then painted the interior of the cab: Here's how the cab looks all assembled. I only snapped the outer cab on the interior: Now that was for the KZKT Heavy Truck. I also worked on the MAZ heavy Truck, starting with the axles and fuel tanks on that chassis: The MAZ has that split cab and so I assembled and painted the interiors for both sides: And that is where I had to stop due to Hobby Day being over and all the work I've been doing this past week. Hopefully I'll have more to show soon. Thanks all for looking in, comments are always welcome.
  10. 1 point
    Well, I'm about a week or so late but I haven't had time to log in and post these earlier. These are my latest acquisitions from about a week or two ago. First off are a bunch of paints, thinner and filler I got. There was a sale, and I did need a lot of green for my latest eight-wheeled Russian trucks: Next are two models that I had on my list to get. First was Zvezda's T-15 Armata, the APC version of the T-14 Armata tank: Once that is built; I'll have both Armatas in my Russian Army. Next is a T-55 from Revell; this one with the cheek armor. I want to research this to see if these tanks were still in service in the East German Army during the reunification. If so, I want to make it with west German markings. Otherwise, it'll be Russian: Finally this last one was bought from a friend. No, it is not in my preferred scale, but I got it to build for my SoCal AMPS club's Patton Group Build. Everyone is building Pattons for the next west coast Nationals and since the M-48 is my favorite tank, I'm gonna join the group build with this model: Oh, I also got a Gotha Go-242 transport from another friend who was selling it but I didn't shoot any pic of it. Maybe I'll post that one later. Thanks for looking in, I've been pretty busy in the Hobby Room so feel free to check out my Maddog Manufacturing.
  11. 1 point
    Shiny Korean War veteran Alclad for Metal sections over Gloss Black Tamiya Decanted. Painted Yellow and Black ID Bands and nose. Older Microscale Decals used.CMK Interior was beautiful .Sorry I couldn't photo well. Airfix Kit was highly rated but my opinion is Hobbycraft and Fujimi are better F-86 kits. Airfix was missing some basics,Upper inlet,Upper fuselage panel, Side small Vents, Under-nose lights, nose radar scribing. Most of these were added but not all. Some small issues on the wings ,so 3ft is a good viewing distance. There is no dark area in front of gun panel, just a photo lighting issue. Thanks for Looking Comments always Welcome Bill D
  12. 1 point
    Great job. The eyes are perfect. Wonderful.
  13. 1 point
    WOW! another great piece, your color choice is fantastic.
  14. 1 point
    Nice work! And kids who look at it will only see a cool model of an X-Wing... About the same time Revell moved their molding to a the facility in China, their plastic also became softer--probably more vinyl and/or regrind added to the mix. That's the main reason that if I want a vintage Monogram kit, I buy the earliest issue I can find in order to get that sublime Monogram styrene...
  15. 1 point
    I see (at least on my computer) that the IPMS home page is promoting the 2019 convention - any ideas when the 2020 convention will move into such a place of prominence? Regards, David Doyle
  16. 1 point
    He does have a point though....going on 3 months after the Chattanooga show and it's still on the main page where the 2020 show should be by now....Sure there's plenty of time, but it does beg the question, especially if their website is up and running. GIL
  17. 1 point
    Since there's a new 1/48 B-17G being released, I decided I needed to build my old Monogram kit! Model was built OOTB. Decals are from PYN-UP. Kept the weathering on the lesser side since this was a low-time plane that flew only about 10 missions. This kit takes some elbow grease and planning, but still goes together well for its age. By the way, the wayward gun barrel on the top turret has been repaired! Didn't get every result I'd hoped for with this build, but I finally have this nose art I've wanted on the shelf! Comments, questions, and critiques welcome! Cheers! GIL
  18. 1 point
    Thanks Gil! It does seem to me to happen all the time, but then again, I guess I'm always focused on it. I do try to go slow enough and sit close enough to the table to keep parts from being lost. Just the other day, I did drop seven different parts but surprisingly enough was able to recover all of them. Thanks again for the great compliment!
  19. 1 point
    I don't think the Red Baron went beyond the norms of what is expected in war and what is expected of a fighter pilot, unlike, say, a Nazi soldier rounding up children to be sent to a death camp. For me, I think discussions like these are fraught with pitfalls, and I think it is important to distinguish between my own personal rules for myself, what I think contests rules should be, and what in an ideal world I think people should adopt. This is also a difficult discussion as we are in a difficult time given real world politics as over the past few years, there has been a lot of high profile neo-nazi activity and terror attacks. It's hard to discuss these sort of issues when politeness demands you don't discuss politics at the dinner table or in the scale model group. Personally, I don't do Nazi stuff, unless it is portraying a rejection of the regime such as a captured aircraft in Allied or Republican service, or a Nazi flag being run over by an Allied tank. I don't like Nazis and don't want to in any way glorify them. Certain other historical figures are also a no-no, like, say, King Leopold. There is also some anime stuff that I stay away from because some of it can get a little creepy; schoolgirls and the like. Also, I'm not really into really exploitative nude figures, though I do have one topless weird squid mermaid figure in the stash. I also don't like combat scenes that are to "real" in terms of blood, gore, etc, or are really intense combat scenes with people getting shot, preferring the sort of "slice of life" stuff like some soldiers not under fire, pausing to check their maps and maybe grab a quick bite. The exception is in fantasy stuff where it is so over the top that it doesn't have the same effect as real-life gore -- an orc getting cut in half by the chainsaw-bayonet of a dude in powered armour is just so ridiculous that it doesn't have the same impact as a bunch of young guys getting mowed down by a machine gun. Those are my rules about what I want to work on and what I want to stare at in my display case. As for contests, I think we have to have rules to keep things family-friendly. These are public events where we want people to bring kids to to get them interested, not to mention that you need to respect the venue if they are uncomfortable with certain subjects. No nudes and some basic rules for keeping things in good taste, and of course if you are in a country like Germany where there are legal restrictions, you have to follow all relevant laws. Seems like a no-brainer to me, though there might be some grey areas here and there, but I think it is good to keep things a little vague and trust the judgement of the show organizers and head judge, just because there will always be instances where people think of new ways to push the envelope that the organizers didn't anticipate. Finally, in general, I think this is a hobby where a little more introspection on controversial subjects might be nice. There is the (silly, IMHO) debate over whether what we do is art, but if we want to claim to be artists, then we need to ask ourselves questions like why are we making a piece of art, what emotions do we want to convey, what story do we want to tell, etc, and those questions have to go a little deeper than "this is like a Bf.109 but smaller." I'm not saying that you shouldn't build German armour, but I feel like sometimes, attitudes towards Nazi stuff borders on an obsession that can be a little creepy. Occasionally, discussions go into some light Nazi apologia -- proclaiming the superiority of Nazi soldiers and equipment, whitewashing the crimes of the Wehrmacht, blaming everything on Versailles, pushing a false equivalence between the Nazis and Allied soldiers, etc. And there have been a couple times where I've seen people online start out saying "just because I build German armour doesn't mean I'm a Nazi" and then trail off into a bunch of racist or homophobic stuff, apparently not realizing that if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck... To be honest, as much as people complain about not having historically accurate decals, I think the Germans (outside of a resurgence in far-right ideas in some areas in recent years that needs to be kept in check) have the right idea -- take "Never Again" seriously by restricting the display and glorification of Nazi symbols, while at the same time making Holocaust education mandatory in schools. It's the same reason why I don't do Nazi stuff -- I don't avoid Nazi subjects because I want to forget the Holocaust; I don't build Nazi stuff precisely because I remember.
  20. 1 point
    For those interested, F-84F Build Thread is HERE I am posting up the pictures of the finished model, with a little embellishment to the kit: Thanks for looking in! Ed
  21. 1 point
    I love the fact you're doing a lot of this work with elbow grease! Your skills rock! GIL
  22. 1 point
    Excellent work! Wow, I never knew there were so many changes to this aircraft for the D variant
  23. 1 point
    My take: I don't care about "winning" or "losing" at a model show--I've been on both ends of the spectrum many, many times. That's not why I build models and put them on a show table--I put my models out there to show what I've been doing. I welcome questions. I value critique. That's the only way to get better at something--have another set of eyes (or two, or two thousand) have a look and tell me what they see that maybe I could have done differently. Note--this is different from merely collecting a trophy that says I'm King Styrene for a Day and assuming that I need to copy what I did on the "winning" model in order to keep raking in the tin pots. TELL me what you see. TELL me what I might do differently. DISCUS different techniques. Don't assume I will learn through osmosis. That, that right there is why I prefer an Open Judging system that offers feedback. When I put my models in an AMPS show, I value the feedback more than I value the medal that goes with the score I earned. But even more to the point, I enjoy contests that use Open Judgng because the people involved are more apt to share. I've been to IPMS shows where the people who have entered models are stand-offish and tight lipped about which models they entered and how they did things--for some odd reason, they seem to think that if they share their techniques, they'll be giving away Government Secrets. One of the Facebook posts on this subject led to a sub-thread on Wonderfest. George Seletas (Wonderfest Chairman) summed it up nicely: " The most important thing is that we are in that room for fun and brotherhood and not to bump puffed chests like it's the NFL." Its supposed to be about the models, not the medals.
  24. 1 point
    The key to the GSB consistency that everyone would hope to get and IPMS would need to have is the same as it is for 1-2-3: training! GSB judging isn't really any different since judges are looking at EXACTLY the same basics as in 1-2-3. So, the judges don't need training on WHAT to look for. What they'll need is experience in changing their thought process from "elimination from competition" to "grading up or down" on what they see. Models that are easily eliminated in a 1-2-3 show will have obvious flaws that will keep them from getting a medal in GSB. Models that don't "make the cut", but take some observation and thought MIGHT get a bronze, or nothing after some debate among the team. Models that "make the cut" in 1-2-3 are almost certainly bronze/silver level models, especially in a competition as tough as the Nats. Oddly, gold medal models are the easiest, as their outstanding characteristics jump out at judges, just like any model you'd be thinking "okay, who's taking 2nd and 3rd in this category, since this is the obvious front runner"...or you'd be leaning towards nominating for a "best of" in its genre. Is GSB still subjective? Yes, no less so than 1-2-3. Judging in GSB will STILL be questioned, and the answers will STILL be the same...change the 3 judges judging and you'll likely get a somewhat different or slightly different result. BUT, the one thing that can be said about GSB is that NO ONE will "lose" to anyone else. Another plus is that no matter HOW many times you hear someone's name winning a medal, it will never keep anyone else from having their own shot to win theirs! So, that "the same guys always win" lament will fade away once everyone understands GSB judging. The things I've cited above, and the change of the thought process for the judging is why it's so important for GSB to be mastered at the Local and Regional levels first. Not only does it give those judges experience, many of them are IPMSUSA judges and thus take that experience to form a "core" that can make GSB successful at the Nats, IF that ever happens. GIL
  25. 1 point
    Nick, I'm not disagreeing with you--as I indicated, a preponderance of the votes would have to be in favor of Open Junding before anything gets done.
  26. 1 point
    All the parts have come in. The engine covers are what I'm working on now. After they were cut apart, I thinned all the panels with my Dremel tool. Just like the Mustang I built, I'm going to pose this one in a state of maintenance as well. I've purchased mechanics from Black Dog Models, and a B-25 Mitchell crew from ICM models. The engines, and all the framing will take the most time to construct. Christopher
  27. 1 point
    This tally has all the drawbacks I and others anticipated.(1) Of a 4000+ member organization, only a little over 10% even bothered to vote. (2) Of those who did vote, there was no statistical difference in the result. Given these two facts, this hardly represents a clear and unequivocal mandate for change. Were I on the National Contest Committee, I would be saying something like: ‘Yes, this is interesting, but it is not a clear demand by the majority of the membership for G,S,B at the National Contest.’ Given the logistical and cultural upheaval such a change would represent, I do not see this feeble response and ‘flip of the coin’ result as making it either desirable or necessary. After all, one way of looking at this result is that, what: 6 or 7% of the membership want this transformation and that 94 or 95 % either do not or do not care enough to even vote on the matter? The NCC and the E-Board would competently be exercising their fiduciary responsibilities as the leaders of this organization to say that the voice of members has been heard and that, practically speaking, it is “full of sound and fury, (but) signifying nothing.” Nick Filippone, Senior National Judge
  28. 1 point
    In a thread on the FineScale Models forum posted yesterday it was postulated that Rustoleum was getting rid of all Testors. Responses asked for references and was denounced as fake news (ahh, a new term in the lexicon). Aaron Skinner, editor of FSM, went direct to Rustoleum and posted that they were stopping all international distribution of paints. Yes, Canada is international to the US. Yes, the product line is smaller than it once was. I liked Floquil, PollyS, and MM but there are other good options. I am evolving to the new world (and I now airbrush indoors without the solvent smells).
  29. 1 point
    I think that particular problem has a two fold cause. First, we have all been conditioned...brainwashed...to consider ANY seam as undesirable. This, I suspect, goes back to the earlier days of injection molding when that was basically true. Second, a lack of familiarity with the subject or insufficient research as to the proper appearance of any given item, such as rubber tires.
  30. 1 point
    Weekly update on the conversion to the E-2D is going good. The photos may be a little off. I had the memory card for the camera go bad. So I lost a bunch of photos. I was able to recover some and the areas I lost I took the "after" photos. Anyhow, this week I was able to build up the engines and main gear. Once detailed and assembled I had to scratch build the EMIRS and PTS faring that are on the bottom aft of the fuselage. I built them out of sheet styrene. For the EMIRS I layered 3 sheets then coated with a layer of putty. Once dry I sanded it to shape it. I cut a section out of the fuselage and made the EMIRS head out of some pieces out of my spare parts bin. Next I started adding details to the fuselage and installed the nose gear. I mounted the tail assembly and placed the saucer assembly on the top so to make sure the model would sit on the tricycle landing gear. I had added weight to the nose prior to putting the fuselage together but it was not enough. I added 2 more weights just behind the cockpit and it now sits normally. I masked off and painted the windscreen assembly. Found out there is another section with a huge gap. This was shimmed and then putty was applied. After more sanding and shaping I added in the panel lines. Aircraft Delta One also had a pitot tube mount near the starboard wing tip. I found a brass pin and had to add a styrene rod to make it the correct length. I have most of the aircraft base coated now. Working on the finer painted details now then will need to finish making the decals and put them on. Check out the photos and details from the start at https://davidsscalemodels.com/build-log/1-48-northrop-grumman-e-2d-conversion/
  31. 1 point
    Views about paint shades and colours can go on ad infinitum. Why? Because this is so subjective to each and every user. Methuen values ,modulation techniques, air brush mixes, it goes on and on. There has been a bit of discussion on here about using auto.motive paints and whether the shade should be lighter to be 'in scale'. Well, I have used automotive rattle fans for years, and no one has ever said to me when exhibiting my models about my plain colours being too dark! My take is who needs to mess about with an air brush to lighten a colour? Guess I am getting lazy in my old age! Metallics however can look like scaled down metal flake on a model so one needs to be aware of this. Great for customs though!
  32. 1 point
    Hello again, Similar to modeling I'm also new to forums and can't seem to figure out how to reply to individual responses to my post. After three months of surgeries and emergency room visits I finally have use of both arms and want to start on one of the models. Thanks very much to everyone for the advice. I will start with one of the planes, probably the Mustang, and will endeavor to go by the steps suggested by one of the responders. The ship does look a bit overwhelming for now so that will come later after, hopefully, gaining good experience with the planes. During my months out-of-sorts I have been trying to prepare for this and did lots of reading about aftermarket extras and unfortunately don't feel ready for that. I'm nervous enough about the photo-etched parts that came with the plane models. I will make good use of the expertise available on the appropriate forum. P-51D here we come, a plane I have loved since I can remember. Stuart
  33. 1 point
    I also find this an interesting discussion about the shade of paint. Considering that most of what we model is kept outdoors, I honestly doubt that "scale effect" is really the culprit, although I won't suggest it doesn't existence. Having spend many years on a flight line, paint fades with exposure to sun and weather. In a row of aircraft, each painted the the same FS code, you can easily spot the newer painted aircraft in any color. You could also see where repairs had been made by the splotches of dark paint. Often hatches were cannibalized from other aircraft and they would stand out as differant shades. This was especially true of the birds in Vietnam. They got pretty beaten up. The only time they looked "correct" was straight out of the paint shop and then only for a month or so, until the sun did it's work. Even the grays painted on the tankers and some of the naval aircraft had amazingly different shades.
  34. 1 point
    Contact John Heck at artdirector@ipmsusa.org. He's the guy that actually puts the mag together and I know he's always looking for material.
  35. 1 point
    My pet peeve are tanks and figures in a diorama that were apparently “beamed in”, because there are no tracks in the snow/mud to show how they got there.... or the aircraft on the grass at the edge of the taxiway - apparently not even the wheels of a 10,000 pound aircraft can flatten that tough grass!
  36. 1 point
    When painting modern US armor, I just go for "what looks right". The only time the tanks look the same is when they are fresh from the paint booth.
  37. 1 point
    Do we have any other Plasmo fans? David has a great YouTube channel, and he truly is a master in the art of modeling. I find his videos very relaxing. Any other fans?
  38. 1 point
  39. 1 point
    The interesting thing about discussing cost of military aircraft is that the development cost is always included in that discussion which really distorts the figures. When you talk about the F-35 they say it is 90 million per aircraft. The F-15 by comparison was 27 million. That was in 1972 dollars and for about 1300 aircraft. The F-35 is in current dollars and is for 1,800 aircraft. If there is a world wide demand for the aircraft that cost will go down even further. The latest contract dropped the cost by 5%. Out of 1,800 aircraft to spare 7 for the Thunderbirds hardly seems but a drop in the bucket. I can also see the Blue Angels going that route also. The last time both teams flew the same aircraft was the F-4. Also, it is not as if the aircraft are purpose built for the teams. Airframes circulate through the teams on a regular basis and are returned to full combat duty when they are done. The demonstration teams only have them on loan. Incidentally, the teams have had a requirement since they converted to the F-16 that the aircraft can be converted to combat ready within 48 hours. Google "Thunderbird F-16 Warbird" to see one actually meet that standard. Interesting story.
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