Next Up… Ta-152

I may have mentioned it before, but aircraft has never been my forte. The last time I built an aircraft kit was in ’95 or so, and it was a Revellogram B-17. It wasn’t really that bad of a model, and I may attempt one again in the future. But, before that, the last plane I built was in the mid-’70s.

The thing I have always disliked about aircraft kits, are the fit problems often associated with curved parts: fuselage halves; wings; canopies. It always seemed back then that seams were always an issue. I didn’t have access to seam filling materials, and when I finally got some, it never really seemed to work out. Raised panel lines (so prevalent back then) don’t lend themselves that well to sanding.

Because of this, I really gravitated to armor models. Usually, if there are curves on an armor kit, they are usually representing a cast component, which generally comes in one piece. Or, if it is a curved portion of the vehicle that is comprised of multiple parts, it is much easier to deal with. Real armor parts are often rough due to casting and it is much easier to fill seams on an armor kit and duplicate a rough texture than the smooth, flowing lines of an aircraft subject.

But, now it has changed. Model kits are engineered much better and fit issues aren’t quite as bad. Plus, with the wealth of information on the interwebs, one can really do some research and find out which kits score, and which kits choke. Which brings me to this post.

I went to the local hobby shop to find a new kit. I wanted another airplane and spotted the Hobby Boss 1/48 scale Ta-152 C-1/R14. The box looked promising, so I got out the trusty smart phone and looked up some reviews on it. Every review I found was very favorable (except one, and boy was that dude wrong!) so I picked it up for about $24.00

I won’t get into the particulars of the real aircraft this is based on other than it is a further advancement of the FW-190 series with the primary intention of high altitude combat.

Here is a photo of the kit box.

Here are the contents.

Next time… the beginning of construction.

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Proof! I Have Built Something.

Even though I have neglected this here blog for quite a while, I have been somewhat productive in getting some models built. Two to be exact. And I completed both of these just this last week.

The first kit I finished is a kit that I have actually owned since the late ’90s. It is the Promodeler P-51 B/C in 1/48th scale.

I originally bought it with the intention of modeling it as a Red Tail of the all black 332nd fighter group. Since that particular scheme called for a bare metal finish, I thought better of it. Since I have never painted an aircraft model in bare metal, I figured I would continue to re-hone my modeling skills with paint and save the bare metal for later.

I am a coward, I admit it.

I wanted to build this one primarily out of the box, but thought I would at least model the flaps in a down position. Since the flaps on this kit are molded fully up on this kit, I would have to cut them out and reposition them the way I wanted. This almost proved to be more than I was willing to handle at this juncture of my return to model kit building, but with some patience and perseverance, I overcame, and succeeded.

This was also my first time using Vallejo paints. There are two lines that I see myself using from Vallejo: Model Colors for brush painting; and Model Air for airbrushing. The Model Color line can be thinned for use in an airbrush, so that’s what I did until I build of a supply of the Model Air paint.

I have to say, after using this brand of paint, and with a little practice, I was able to get a good finish. Good enough that I will probably use Vallejo pretty exclusively. Great colors. Goes on smooth with brush or airbrush. Easy cleanup. And best of all… no fumes, so I can spray them inside without worrying about stinking the place up.

The only real snag, other than the near-disaster with the flaps, was with the decals. The decals were so old, they pretty much crumbled when I tried to use them. So, I tried the aftermarket route. When I searched for the particular scheme I wanted, “Hell-Er-Bust,” I discovered that no one makes it anymore. I ended up buying a set of basic P-51 markings which would be the same on any P-51 with camouflage paint, and then got a set with letters, tail numbers and kill markings so I could mark the plane with the “Hell-Er-Bust” ID and serial numbers. The only decal not on the plane is the actual “Hell-Er-Bust” lettering. When I find letters the correct size I will take care of that.

Here are a few pics.

The box

Contents

Various stages of construction

Wings before cutting out the flaps

After

Prior to paint

Upper camo paint

Ready for clearcoat

And a few of the completed kit

So, that’s it for now. Next up…

My completed Bronco Staghound in 1/35.