With both the Airfix 1/48 Spitfire XIV and Arma Hobby 1/72 Nakajima Ki-84 done and off the bench, work continues of the two Eduard 1/48 Fw190s.
You might recall an earlier post I made regarding the craters in the trailing edges of the Fw190D-9 wings caused by too much glue on thin plastic. These showed up really badly after the paint went on and in the last post about I was thinking how to fill them without destroying the finish. I ended up using this stuff;
The craters were filled, left to set for a day or so then gently sanded down. I’m pleased to say it worked very well and the craters disappeared under a coat of paint;
Mr. White Putty really is a good filler as I generally use it for seams and wipe off the excess with IPA (IsoPropyl Alcohol) as this avoids losing any surface detail, but now I’ve found out it can be sanded as well it gives me more options with filling defects on models after paint has been applied.
After respraying the wings the Fw190D-9 has been put to one side for the moment as although both models share RLM76 undersides and RLM75 as one of the top colours, the paint scheme chosen is pretty complicated so instead I’ve been concentrating on the Fw190A-8;
The preshade was sprayed using Tamiya LP-27 German Grey then lightly oversprayed with Mr. Hobby Aqueous H69 RLM75. Next the second camo shade was sprayed (Mr. Hobby Aqueous H68 RLM74), preshaded again with German Grey and lightly oversprayed with RLM74. The mottling on the fuselage sides and fin was done using thinned mixes of the two camo colours then the model was gloss varnished with Tamiya X-22 to prepare it for the decals and weathering washes;
The model will now be left for a couple of days to let the varnish harden up as I know from bitter experience that it is not wise to handle the model straight after spraying varnish.
Well that’s another one finished, I’m on a roll this week! To be honest after the gloss coat went on originally I thought it looked horrible but today after spraying the model with VMS semi-gloss varnish, it took on a different look and I knew I could work with it again.
After having issues spraying a mix of Humbrol enamel for the exhaust staining, this time I made up a mix of Tamiya LP-3 Flat Black and Mr Hobby Aqueous H47 Red Brown and thinned it quite substantially with Mr Hobby Self Levelling Thinners. This time it went through the airbrush nicely so I finally have a decent exhaust colour rather than use Tamiya Smoke which dries glossy. Paint chips were done with a silver pencil and oil stains around the cowling were painted on using thinned sepia oil paint.
I can’t say this was an enjoyable build compared to the Arma Hobby Wildcat I built in 2022 but now its done it looks OK from a distance and at least it’s another rescued model from the box of shame. I probably could have done more with the weathering and trying to lighten up the green with oil paint but I got to a point where I just wanted it finished so there you have it.
Seeing that the Airfix Spitfire XIV is finished I thought it was about time to get this one done as well;
This one stalled as I wasn’t particularly enjoying the build plus two of the national insignia reacted badly with the enamel wash that I had used so it was shelved earlier this year.
A few weeks ago looking through the box of shame for something else I saw this and decided to finish it as it was so close to being completed. I contacted Arma Hobby about buying a replacement decal sheet seeing that it was totally my fault but they very kindly sent one for free. It arrived a few days ago so after getting the ruined decals off, the model was resprayed with Tamiya X-22 and the new decals applied today so this is where the model is up to so far. Hopefully I can get this one finished by next week (or tonight seeing that I’m having a late night) as there isn’t really that much left to do to the model. I’ve been lucky so far finding the bits that fell off but unless I can find the pitot tube and wing mounted cannon barrels I may have to make new ones from scratch.
It’s finally finished! YAY! It was one of those times when you get determined to finish a project that has been dragging on, in this case some five months. Weathering comprised various dots of green, yellow and grey oil paint dabbed on the model then blended into the camouflage colours, thinned sepia oil paint was then washed into the engine cowling panels and streaked underneath the fuselage and down the fuselage sides for some extra grime. For some of the panel lines on the fuselage I went ‘old school’ and used pastel chalks where the various washes didn’t stay on the decals. Paint chipping was done with a silver pencil.
For the exhaust staining I was going to use a mix of Humbrol (Matt 33 and Matt 70) as in the past I used to get some very fine lines with enamels, however this stuff just would not go through the airbrush even after being heavily thinned so I went back to a mix of acrylic black/ red brown. I did attempt to spray a Tamiya light grey over the top but that wouldn’t play ball either so I re-sprayed the exhaust colour and left it as is. For the red doped patches on the leading edges of the wings, I originally used a cut up decal from an old Mitsubishi Zero decal sheet but I wasn’t that happy with it so I reworked them with strips of ‘Rizla’ cigarette paper cut into 8mm x 2mm strips after experimenting on the trashed wings from the first Eduard Fw190 that I binned. The strips were bedded down with Johnsons Kleer and when dry painted with Vallejo Cavalry Red/ Brown and I have to say they look far better that they originally did.
This has been a testing project all the way through from initially chopping up the fuselages from the Airfix Spitfire Vb and XIVe, fighting with the fit of the lower wings (which was due to the thickness of the plastic and consequentally interfering with the cockpit), thick trailing edges and generally areas of poor engineering with the kit which led to a few head-scratching moments. After all that though I’ve ended up with a fairly decent-looking 1/48 Spitfire XIVc ‘high-back’ and an aircraft I have been wanting to build for many years as 610 sqn RAuxAF was one of the first suadrons to get the new version in 1944. 610 was originally based at RAF Hooton Park during the 1930s which was an airfield near to me so I’ve always had an interest in a ‘local’ squadron although I’ve only ever built one model from 610 and that was a conversion of the dreadful 1/72 Matchbox Meteor NF.14 a long time ago.
Here it is then, Supermarine Spitfire Mk. XIVc RB159 DW-D as flown by the officer commanding 610, Squadron Leader R.A. Newbury when the squadron was based at Friston, Sussex. The model will defintely not win any awards and is probably best viewed from four feet or more but it will do me.
The model is close to being finished (hopefully tonight) but one thing I wasn’t happy with were the red doped patches for the wing mounted machine guns as they looked too small and the wrong red. Having been reading online for tips about them and one suggestion was to use Rizla cigarette papers cut into 2mm wide by 8mm strips then paint them;
Rather than mess up the Spitfire wings, I’ll experiment with the ones from the trashed Eduard Fw190 that I saved from the bin as I need to see which glue will hold the cigarette paper in place. Stay tuned as this will be finished very soon.
I was having a look in the various boxes I have with different builds in at different stages (there are quite a few…oops) and found the Tamiya 1/35 Leopard 2A6 I started last year or 2021. The model was up to the painting stage as it was actually built but I must have got bored with it and put it away;
Anyway seeing that the three aircraft builds are waiting for something or other I decided to spray the Leopard with black primer with a view to getting it finished at some point soon.
Originally I wanted to put foliage and Barracuda camo nets on it and so I’ll have a play with the stuff I have for the branches to see how they look.
Painfully slow progress on all three of these models, the Spitfire received a coat of VMS semi-matt varnish which promptly showed up ‘silvering’ (air getting trapped underneath decals) on the stencils so these were attended to then the model was resprayed with the varnish. It was a bit annoying as I thought the gloss varnish applied before the decals went on was pretty good….obviously not!
Yes I managed to break off the cannon barrel again.
Anyway the model just needs some final weathering and I’ll call it done. The two Fw190s got the first of the top coat colours sprayed (Mr.Hobby Aqueous H69 RLM 75), preshaded with Tamiya LP27 German Grey before overspraying again to tone down the preshade. The Fw190A-8 is looking OK so far but unfortunately the trailing edges of the Fw190D-9 wings had developed sink marks;
Rather annoying and I need to figure a way of filling them without destroying the rest of the paintwork. The cause of it I think was too much glue being used to get the wings together as they kept springing apart.
That’s pretty much it so far;
The 190A-8 scheme is a pretty straightforward one of RLM 74, 75 and 76 however the 190D-9 is a bit trickier so it’s going to take a bit longer, especially with filling in the craters along the wing trailing edges but no doubt I’ll think of something.
Not much to report really except the Spitfire is nearing completion as the propellor has been painted and decalled, a dark brown wash applied to the flying surfaces and engine cowling plus Paynes Grey oil paint brushed into the panel lines with the excess wiped away;
The model will then get sprayed with VMS semi-matt varnish and when dry the final weathering can be done and the last bits stuck on.
The two Fw190s were sprayed with Mr Hobby Aqueous RLM76 with RLM 75 sprayed along the panel lines before lightly re-spraying with the base coat;
The scheme for the Fw190D-9 that I had chosen required bare metal wings on the underside along with RLM83 green on the front so the wing was masked off and the green section sprayed. This was then masked and Tamiya AS-12 decanted from the rattle can and sprayed using an airbrush, remembering to mask the ailerons first as these were painted with RLM76;
Both Fw190s are now ready for the upper surface colours which I will try to do on my next days off.
Tonight I decided to mask the fuselage tailband and move it back a millimeter or thereabouts so that there was a gap between the band and code letter on the starboard side;
Prior to masking
I used a combination of paper to cover the serial code, masking tape and vinyl masking material then resprayed the four colours needed;
Not bad at all! Shame about the other side though;
Dammit! There was always a chance of this happening as even on a gloss coated surface, decals can still pull up even after the sealing coat has been applied.
The next step is to just brush paint the area as I’m not taking the chance of masking it again, re-apply Tamiya X-22 to try and even it out then see what serial numbers I have in the decal stash as I’m not buying another sheet just for one number. Talk about pulling defeat from the jaws of victory…..
Edit; I had a look through the decal stash to see if there were any suitable letter ‘B’s and of course there weren’t any, so I was just about to bite the bullet and order the same decal sheet when I remembered some old rub-down lettering sheets I had;
Who’s a lucky boy then? That will do nicely as it’s more or less the same style and height and has saved me having to get another decal sheet. I’ll probably paint over the ‘B’ to re-create the stencil style that the other numbers and letters are but that’s easy enough.
Also while searching through the spare decal box I found some Japanese national markings on a sheet from a Revell 1/72 Mitsubishi Zero so I’ll cut up one of the meatballs into strips and use them to cover the holes in the leading edges of the wings for the machine guns. To keep out dust, wildlife etc on the real aircraft, fabric patches were put over the holes and doped in place so the meatballs will be ideal for the model as the red is near-as-dammit for me.
I visited my local model shop today just to get some paint (yeah that old chestnut) and ended up buying this;
To be honest I saw a lovely build and finish of this aircraft on the Airfix Farcebook page so I fancied having a go myself and for under £10 (UK) it was worth a punt.
I built the Airfix 1/72 109E many many years ago and well remember the undersize canopy and windscreen (much to my disappointment). This particular kit was tooled in 2012 and apparently is pretty good from what I have read on the internet so after seeing some really nice builds of it I thought why not.
I must admit the parts look well moulded with pretty decent detailing such as the panel lines;
The only gripe I have is that the propeller looks a bit spindly however when I build the model, the only things I will do is add seat straps from masking tape and maybe separate the leading edge slats but that’s it as the model will be an out-of-the-box (OOTB) build.
It may seem strange that I’m returning to 1/72 scale subjects, especially with my eyesight but I simply do not have the room for all the stuff I want to build. Also I quite enjoyed doing the Matchbox 1/72 Messerschmit Bf110 and Arma Hobby Wildcat plus earlier this year I got three Eduard 1/72 Bf110s and three Arma Hobby Hurricanes.
I think these days with the quality of moulding and detail on 1/72 kits you are often hard-pushed to tell the difference between that scale and 1/48 in photographs, I know I have so in effect (like a lot of things in life) I have come full circle as I started out in the smaller scale. Another thing is that these days I can’t be bothered with building stuff right down to the last detail and feel that what you get in modern kits is good enough (older kits though are a different kettle of fish). I’m quite happy with a basic etch set, exhausts and wheels for builds and generally avoid ‘going to town’ on a model as I’m fully aware that time is not on my side these days.