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Everything posted by Glaaar

  1. I don't like 72nd scale jet bombers. They are still 2ft long (vs. 3 for the 1/48 Revell B-1B) and, if the new B-2 spirit is anything to go by, you're looking at 150-170 bucks which is simply not affordable for most. You have to over engineer them or they get floppity and that often leads to massive shape errors (Monogram B-1'B'). For the B-1 there at additional hassles in that it is rare to see the jets on the ground without wings forward and surfaces deployed as well as the inlet doors open. So if you want an accurate, interesting looking, model which attracts the eye, you have to think about extra parts that drives price and increases complexity. Conversely, traditional 'airliner scales', like 1/144 and 1/200, lead to bluff, toylike, features on such things as landing gear tires and weapons and for the size (under 1ft), often seem outrageously expensive as with the Dragon/Panda B-1B at 44 bucks and the Trumpeter Tu-95 at 37. However; 1/100, as exemplified by the Tamiya B-52D/F, might be an affordable alternative. It's half of 1/48 (which is the American Scale) and it's still going to result in a 16-17" model which is displayable without a ceiling hook while giving you a decent impression of a big jet. Think about it. The scale is virtually unpopulated, you could get a B-2, B-1A, B-1B, B-21, B-52G/H, KC-135, KC-46, C-17, RB-70, SR-71, R1 Sentinel, R.99 Aerieye, U-2R/S, RQ/MQ-4, XB-35/49 etc. And at 50-60 bucks each, they are still easy ways to recover tooling investment at a relatively low total run size.
  2. A-129 Mangusta CBT / A129 ATAK. M197 nose cannon, new engines, new primary FLIR turret, 5 blade main rotors and Hellfire or UMTAS missiles. The Italeri kit is a beautiful model but is the 1980s configuration with TOW. Everything you might want to know about the A-129 upgrade... https://thaimilitaryandasianregion.wordpress.com/2016/02/10/t129-attack-helicopter-turkey/
  3. Looks like simple Gunmetal to me. Either the Vallejo Gunmetal- https://goo.gl/StwvPx Or the Magnesium- https://goo.gl/yX5XbY And you're good. The problem is that the F-16 cannot have the same type of RAM 'Top Coat' as the F-35 because it's RAM is not baked into the skins. The difference in appearance is pretty obvious- https://goo.gl/8Bb2UE The way we approach the F-22 and F-35 is what is wrong because it is basically applying a candy coat metal flake atop a solid color which is the exact opposite what it intuitive to the above photo. The mirror finish is the underlying color and something is applied onto it which makes it look dim and/or flat. Indeed, I would go with the idea that what happens on a stealth fighter is actually something like this- Whereby you have a 'unification coat' that takes material differences in electrical impedance values and puts them under a metallic base that acts to make the entire airframe behave like a single resistance circuit pathway. And then overtop this is put a _tinted_ topcoat which may have RAM (though it's not metallic because it doesn't oxidize) but whose purpose is actually akin to car wax in preserving the underlying metallic coat. Stealth does not work the way people think it does. The Mission Data Files are programming keys for specific chassis-numbered radar system performance variables (Doppler, Phase Coherence, Scan/Antenna emission lobe structures) that an active, onboard, cancellation system then generates an opposed load to nullify on the jet. See: Teal Parrot and 'Fuzzy Balls'. This is what is important about having the 'Stealth Baked Right In'. Because it's not a coating or a passive absorber, it's a radiofrequency grid that responds to the waveform as it impinges on the airframe, foot by inch, to cancel it. You bake in passive RAM, especially metallics based, and you have no way to update or change it and a good chance that it will form a Galvanic cell which corrodes the underlying aluminum in the composite stack besides. It would be a step _backwards_. Within a more advanced schema, the ONLY thing that the surface treatments need to do is minimize the 'fuzz' of residual current values what can backscatter from surface discontinuities as creaping/surface waves. From a modeling standpoint, we should be doing what the LM and Northrop people do: Base Coat with a Bronzed or German silver like this- https://goo.gl/aDXrCP https://goo.gl/QofEUL And then teach modelers to use a three phase system: 1. Prime And Mask. With Aggressor or Sea Grey RAM color. 2. Base Coat. With metallics. 3. Top Coat. With Dark Gull Grey in a Clear Dope, similar to a filtering tint or ink on figures and armor. You want the metal color to be flattened and dimmed but not overcoated or turned into a candy or opalescent color because that is not what it looks like, on the jet. All the Color Systems that I have seen make the mistake of treating the colors as a high reflectance opaque solid in which the pigments are somehow supposed to be metal flakes. Anyone who has seen Have Glass in person knows that this is bogus. It is very rough. Almost like an antislip coating run amok. You don't get mirror reflectance from that. Mirrors are smooth. One last thing: Having built the Kittyhawk F-35 in the dim and distant past and seen the Meng, I can tell you that the rough surface finish of the plastic is likely derived from spark removal of metal from the tool and an unpolished final state that the tool is left in, to preserve the grossly inaccurate RAM detail. This means injected plastic comes out of the tool with a pebbly/orangepeel, surface texture which is NOT what you want to be applying metallic colors to. And it is hard to sand smooth, so long as you have to preserve the RAM tape. We need a model manufacturer to take the CAD base for either of these two kits and re-tweak it, without the 4" scale thickness RAM strips, to release a followon with recessed lines, like the Hasegawa 1/72nd model has. Then we could rub down the fuselage to properly prep the model for a metallic finish without losing the mask lines needed to tape off the RAM. Paint the RAM first, then mask with precut tape segments around the recessed lines, then paint the base and top coats before removing the tape and satin coating the lot is the key to getting a really accurate finish on these new stealth jets.
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