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ghodges

SHhhh....secret project!

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You can look, but don't tell anyone! :smiley2:

Started this last week....we'll see if it gets done by the Nats! :smiley29:

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Questions and comments welcome, but lets keep this here among ourselves..... :smiley9:

 

By the way....it's the 1/48 vacuform of the C-119 Flying Boxcar; which will be built as a Korean War C-119C (not a "G" nor gunship). Cheers! :D

 

GIL :smiley16:

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I'm not aware of an injection/resin 1/48 C-119, so does this mean one will get released later this year? :)

 

--David

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If it wasn't on Trumpeter's to-do list, it probably is now! But, they (or whoever) will do a "G" or Gunship when they do get around to it, so this one will still be different.

 

GIL :smiley16:

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Another "small" aircraft I see. That is looking good so far. Are you going with the white top and day glow wing tips? I was just wondering, since the 104 had colors like that and you have the paint open and such.

 

I continue to marvel at your torrid pace on these vacuform kits and the fantastic results always.

 

Watching with admiration.

 

Bill

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No white top on this one...it'll be NMF with the red "arctic" markings on the wings and tail, as well as some other colorful squadron trim. As for the torrid pace, we'll see.... but so far so good!

 

GIL :smiley16:

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Got a lot of "grunt work" done today.......

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This represents most of the work; building/boxing in the gear bays, assembling the wing sections, and adding the intakes with screening. The only true trick here was being sure none of the gear walls interfered with the wing spar passing through the wing.

 

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Rear booms have been rough sanded. The fit was rough too, and some of the seams are quite thin in spots, meaning I'll have to be careful with future sanding.

 

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Also got the outer wing sections assembled and their intakes and screening added.

 

The next big job is to vac a new canopy, as the kit one was too sloped at the windshield. The last coat of gloss was applied to the new master today, so I'll try that tomorrow evening. If it goes well, I'll be able to mark off and remove the cockpit area on the fuselage and build up the cockpit and nose wheel well; which in turn will allow me to make progress towards getting the fuselage closed up! More pics after most of that is done!

 

GIL :smiley16:

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The new canopy is made!

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The kit canopy is on the right. You can see how very sloped the windshield is (TOO sloped!). So, I dammed it up with sheet plastic and poured plaster of Paris into it to make a new mold, which was then reshaped to make the mold in the pic, with much less slope in the windshield and proper corner windows. It also allowed me erase the bad framing from the kit part so I can put much more scale framing in place when it's painted.

 

This ended up being a much tougher job than I'd hoped originally! I originally had the observers dome attached to the mold (where the white circular area is). However, "stretch forming" wouldn't allow me to get a good, sharp pull with it there. So, I removed it and things went smoother after that.....well, except for the pins coming loose while heating the plastic over the stove, or using too small a piece of clear sheet around the opening (which then "short shot" over the mold when pulled), or a wrinkle draped in place when I pulled it over the mold... :smiley7: ..It took no less than 6-7 attempts to get this one good canopy! I'll still need to vac the observers dome, but I can do that easily on my old Mattel vac machine and add it later in the build.

 

In any case, This has allowed me to mark off the fuselage and cut open the cockpit area. Now I can start building the interior! :smiley20:

 

Questions and comments are welcome. Cheers!

 

GIL :smiley16:

Edited by ghodges

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Look on the bright side--you didn't drop it onto the stove burner, start a fire, and burn down the house. :)

 

Seeing an old vac come to life almost makes me want to drag out the ones I have in storage. Almost.

 

--David

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More grunt work, though a bit more "interesting" and on the fun side.....

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Made two bulkheads, one for each fuselage half. They serve two purposes: First and foremost, they buttress and support the flimsy top and bottom. Second, since there's no interior detail, their black facings block off the view through the side windows and provide an even, dark background. Also, in the front of the right fuselage half you can see the nose gear bay boxed in.

 

By the way, the plastic pieces were cut from a large "for sale" sign. If you're going to build vacs or do a lot of scratch building I suggest buying several of them in varying thicknesses. They're a good source of large pieces of sheet plastic for much less cost than you'd pay at a plastic supplier or hobby shop!

 

Next, on the fun side...

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I got the cockpit floor built. The cutout in the bottom right is the entrance from the rear of the aircraft. You can see the radio/navigation table in place. The square pieces of plastic that hang down on each side are the parts of the cockpit siding that hang down behind the forward fuselage side windows.

 

I've started gathering spare parts that I can use in the cockpit, which will help me determine what parts have to be scratched; which is the next job to be done! Cheers!

 

GIL :smiley16:

Edited by ghodges

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Moving right along.....

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The cockpit sides needed some "structure"; not just for detailing, but also to blend and hide the clear plastic window supports. I also added a few consoles on each side for detailing purposes.

 

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You have to look closely, but this view shows the rudder pedals, foot channels made from "U" channel strip stock (which serve both to align the cockpit seats and detail the floor), the radio detailing added to the rear bulkhead from spare parts, as well as the pedestal mount for the navigator's seat.

 

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The cockpit components. The main panel started with a B-17 bulkhead, which rests upon a scratched center console. The pilot and copilot's seats are sheet plastic with channel stock arm rests. The control yokes are spare parts, while their columns were made by smashing the top of plastic tubing with a pair of pliers to flatten it (and then sanding them to shape) in order to mount the yokes.

 

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These two pics show the relative position of all of the cockpit parts.

 

I've actually started painting the interior! It'll take a couple of days to get that done before I can post the final pics before I button her up. Keep in mind, this is all only "sort of" accurate...the main components are all there, but are not representative of the seat shapes, or instrument layout on the main panel, etc.. But, it''l look "authentic" when peeking through the cockpit windows, which is all I need for my purposes!

 

The other major job done today was the boxing in of the landing lights in the wings.

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Each one has a sheet metal glare guard beside it. The simplest way to make something like this (or a wing fence, for example) is to razor saw a slit in the wing and then cut sheet stock to shape and stick it in the slit. This way, you don't have to worry about matching the curvature of the wing edge and can leave them off until very late in the building process.

 

By the way, the work you see above represents about 10hrs at the bench over the last 2 days, but that's what vacations are for! :D

 

GIL :smiley16:

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Each one has a sheet metal glare guard beside it. The simplest way to make something like this (or a wing fence, for example) is to razor saw a slit in the wing and then cut sheet stock to shape and stick it in the slit. This way, you don't have to worry about matching the curvature of the wing edge and can leave them off until very late in the building process.

 

 

GIL :smiley16:

 

Gil, that's brilliant! Won't help the vacuform FJ-3 Fury sitting in my display case, but it will definitely get filed away for future projects.

 

Thanks!

Mike

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So.... this means it'll be ready for Columbia, right?

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I'm not worthy...

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Ready for Columbia? Working on it! I actually have the interior entirely painted and ready to assemble the fuselage in the next day or so! :smiley4: I'm really pleased with my progress so far, and will probably regret typing that! :smiley6: But, I'm still withing the projected timeline that will allow me to get it done......... :smiley20:

 

GIL :smiley16:

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The cockpit is painted and "done"! :smiley4:

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The components are just sitting in there for these pics and will be glued in after the airframe has been assembled and just before the canopy goes on. The extra highlighting and extra splashes of color are just to make things a little more distinctive when peering in the windows (hopefully).

 

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The fuselage is finally together. Sanding will start tomorrow after this initial application of putty has dried. And yes, there's just as much on the bottom too! :smiley6:

 

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Scribed the elevator into the horizontal tail plane and glued it to the booms. I taped them on the top view of the plans in order to be sure they were straight and used a triangle to be sure the seams were exactly vertical.

 

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This pic shows how the engines and their cowlings will be fit and mounted to the nacelles. I used two sizes of brass tubing sleeved together; the larger in the rear to mount the entire assemble to the nacelle; and the smaller in the front, passing through a bulkhead sized to space the engine properly in the front cowl halves. The engines and the front cowlings will have to be painted before assembling them to the rears with the cowl flaps. However, this also allows me to add them at the very end as separate assemblies.

 

Lots' of grunt work will be the order for the next couple of days with a lot of sanding, filling, and more sanding; but making good progress!

 

GIL :smiley16:

Edited by ghodges
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Maybe its just the perspective/shadow in the picture, but the the engine/boom nacelle at the wing sure does look oddly waspy-shaped. I went looking for pictures and got distracted by this:

 

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--David

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After perusing pictures, I think the shape should be round and not flat-sided (if actual matches your picture.) In any event, if you drop the model and accidentally step on it you can rebuild it like this:

 

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I love old airplanes...

 

--David

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Thanks David, but I'm not even trying to build an "accurate" model. I'm sure there'll be plenty of shape problems, from wings that are a little on the thick side to mis-shaped nacelles. I decided to correct only two things; the windshield and the rear exit doors. The windshield was simply too grossly mis-shaped to ignore and relatively easy to improve. The exit doors were too thin and needed 2 windows instead of one; again, a very easy fix by scribing.

 

The interior I've built is basically correct, but only just barely, and certainly not as far as the "details" are concerned. But, you won't see too much through all of the windows so I don't care AND it's saved me a lot of time not trying to adhere to being exactly accurate.

 

The goal here is simply to build a 1/48 C-119 that looks decent enough for my shelf. With a little luck and elbow grease it might even make it to Columbia. Anything past that will be gravy! Cheers!

 

GIL :smiley16:

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I may not count rivets or know/care how many antennas/windows/wheel-spokes a Mark-whatever is supposed to have, but odd shapes draw me like a moth to flame. :) Ultimately though its our model, our shelf, and our time...

 

Alas I won't make it to Columbia this year...but my wife is already trying to make reservations for 2017 so I might actually get something finished by then. Maybe.

 

--David

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Grinding on.......

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Check fitting the sit of the gear after getting the nose gear bracket built and added to the nose well. All of the gear still need all of their support structures built up, but at least I know I can glue it in when ready and have it work. And yes, I added even more nose weight today and double checked it with the tail booms in place. It WILL sit properly on its gear! :smiley20: This also shows one of the major differences between the earlier "C" I'm building and the later models; the single nose tire as opposed to the twin nose tires used on the "G" and later models.

 

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This shows the process used to make the window masks. First, the white strips were added so as to mark the framing. Next, pieces of Tamiya tape were placed over each window and outlined in pencil. Then the tape was removed and each frame was cut out on my glass work top. Then each one was added back onto the canopy. When all of them were made, the white taping was removed leaving all of the windows masked off.

 

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These 3 pics show that the canopy has been painted the interior color and added. They also reveal a common "poor" vac problem: a major contour problem! While the left upper half of the fuselage was ok, the right upper half behind the canopy was very shallow and sloped off too much as it came up behind the canopy. This has forced me to use both epoxy putty (under the putty) and copious amounts of putty to begin correcting and evening out the contours. This would have been needed even if the contour wasn't so bad simply because it didn't mate up to the rear of the canopy at all. Lots of extra sanding to follow! :smiley7:

 

Well it is a COMBAT vac after all; properly named! :smiley2:

With a little luck, and a lot of elbow grease, I'll have this completely assembled by tomorrow night's model meeting!

 

GIL :smiley16:

Edited by ghodges
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3 major accomplishments today!

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First, the nose well structures were added, the nose gear itself finished, and the nose gear doors with their actuators built up. Although not shown here, the forward nose gear door ( that only opens when the nose gear cycles) has also been scribed into place.

 

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Second: these 2 pics show the main gear well structures and how the main landing gear were "tricked out". The gear and their wells still need some hydraulic lines added, but that will be done later. The main gear well doors still need to be built also....

 

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Third: The tail is on! The very dark gray under the white putty is plumbers epoxy putty, which was crammed into the huge crevices left after supergluing the tail in place. It was smoothed out with a finger dipped into alcohol before adding the 3M Acryl White on top of it. It'll be ready to sand tomorrow, after which the wings can be glued in place.

 

It's doubtful this will make the Nats, since it would need to be done by Wednesday morning, but I'm going to see what tricks I can pull to get as close as I can. By the way, the work pictured here represents about 10-11hrs work at the bench today split into 3 sessions. This would not be possible without being on vacation!

 

GIL :smiley16:

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Looking at it now it's hard to believe that it will be able to accept a natural metal finish. You must have to use all sorts of different grits of sandpaper to get it smooth enough. With all that putty, do you have to put any kind of 'sealer' on it or does the primer take care of that?

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Excellent work Gil! That is really coming together well. Even if you don't finish it, you should bring it in to place in the display tables so people who aren't on these boards can see what masterful work you do. In a way, I'm kinda glad it won't be done for these Nationals. That way I have a chance to see it in Omaha next year if I get enough money to go.

 

Keep plugging Gil!

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Incredible work in a short time. Sorry it will not be on the table at the Nationals. Are you bringing other vacformed models?

See you there!

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Tamiya primers seem to help a lot, though I have some fast drying Rustoleum to use also. I won't know how well it "accepts" an aluminum finish til I give it a try.....it may need a LOT more work, or the primers may be forgiving enough to give ME an decent NMF.

 

The wings were put on an hour ago, and I'm taking a break for a couple of hours. Then I'll be back at the bench working on the little stuff (props, main gear doors, tires, etc.). I figure the epoxy putty and putty on the wing joints should be ready for some sanding around 8-9pm, and I'll tackle those later tonight. The goal is to have it completely primed in gray by quitting time tonight, and then "smoothing" that tomorrow to try the first coats of silver. That will largely determine how things go from there.

 

As to what else I might bring to the Nats, that will largely depend on whether this one gets done, as the car can only hold one BIG box in the trunk!

 

By the way, as an interesting aside, after having to buy a lot more Gorilla gel superglue and more coarse sanding sticks, I'm guessing this model has cost me an extra $25 JUST in supplies to build and finish it!

 

Thanks for the very kind comments!

 

GIL :smiley16:

Edited by ghodges

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