A Year In the Making

Greetings one and all.

As I was checking out my oft neglected blog here, I discovered that exactly one year ago, I announced an upcoming project: The Revell 1/32 FW190 F-8.

https://groganbrett.wordpress.com/2017/05/

Just this last week, I finished it!

So, here is a little background on the project for those who don’t wish to go back through the archives: My son bought this model a couple of years ago and decided he didn’t want to build it (at least any time soon), so he gave it to me. I had looked at some possible schemes to do when I eventually decided to buy the kit myself, and setteld on Black 3 from Eaglecals, set EC#166.

Eaglecals FW190

I chose this particular scheme for a couple of reasons.

First, the color scheme is unusual for a WWII Luftwaffe aircraft, in that the lower wing and fuselage and fuselage sides are bare metal with a light mottling on the sides and tail, as well as tail control surfaces retaining a red-oxide primer finish.

Second, the backstory about this plane and pilot is fascinating. On May 8th, 1945, the pilot, Fw Eugen Lörcher, decided it was best to head west to avoid the advancing Russian forces. So, he grabbed his fiance, stuffed her into the fuselage via the radio compartment door, and made good his escape.

After I decided what I wanted to do with this model, I started. Assembly was pretty straightforward and went well. By the time I was ready for paint, I had to decide what I wanted to do as far as what brand of paint I wanted to use, as well as overcome the fear of finally tackling a bare metal finish aircraft. After a bit of research I decided on Vallejo Metal Color.

By the time I decided on what to use, hot weather was here and I didn’t want to risk messing up the paint job, so I decided to put painting off until cooler weather.

In the meantime, I got bogged down with too many projects going at the same time, and enthusiasm waned on modeling in general. Once I realized what was bogging me down, I girded up my loins and knocked each kit out, one at a time, saving the Fw190 for last.

After a bit of work, I finally completed it… almost exactly a year after starting.

So, without further adieu, here a are a few photos.

And with the completion of this kit, I can start afresh (on ONE kit) and get the groove going again.

Until next time…

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Academy M4A3 w/T-34 Calliope Update

Wow.

I had good intentions with this kit and writing a build log. Really, I did. But, I just counted the photos and realized that over 100 photos with commentary is a bit much, so I will give a few comments and then post pics of the finished model.

First of all, I want to mention that this is my second Academy kit. The kit overall is pretty nice. There are a few detail things that are not to my liking, but easily fixed. Engine hatch grab handles come to mind. The ones on the kit are the solid, molded on type, and those were easily shaved off and replaced with some of the extra handles that come with the kit.

Fit is generally good with some not-too-difficult modifications to the rocket tubes to get everything to come together smoothly.

I built the kit mostly from the box, but added wiring to the rocket launcher assembly, and reworked the springs on the rocket launcher mounts to look a little better.

I also replaced the kit tracks. The ones in the kit are the rubber chevron type with extended end connectors, usually referred to as duckbill end connectors. The vehicle I was building had the steel chevron tracks, so I opted to go after market. The brand I chose was Kaizen.

I have messed with Kaizen tracks once before and really liked them, so I thought I would give them a try again. They are much cheaper than the metal tracks that are available and seem to be better quality than some of the other brands.

The one snag I ran into was that the drive sprockets were too narrow for the tracks. So, I had to cut the sprocket apart and add a spacer to make it wider.

Here is a photo of the tank I was recreating

m4_sherman_t34_calliope-1

And here is my version

And a few more.

And that, is that.

For my next review, I will cut back on the photos and be a little more general, with emphasis on modifications or fit issues.

A Quick Update

Hi-de-ho, volks. 

Just wanted to drop a quick post to let you know that I am not MIA, or off on safari. I have been working on my latest project, the Academy M4A3 Sherman with T-34 Calliope, in 1/35 scale. I am foregoing my usual multi-part build format on this one and am going to do one, big whopping post on the whole thing and see how it works. 

Here’s the kit.

I am going to try this format for builds so I can do some blogs about other stuff as well: other military related stuff that ties in with modeling; previews of upcoming reviews and builds; techniques and products…. kind of what I intended for this blog from the start.

Stay tuned for more upcoming stuff, and let me know what you think of the new plan in the comment section.

The Blog

Well, as you, my faithful followers know, I posted last time on my intent to let my blog fade into obscurity. I have, however, had a change of heart.

After I made my last post, I received three responses. These responses were positive ones that made me feel pretty good about what I have been doing here. If there are even a few people that are interested, I think it is worth it. So, I have decided to change things up… hopefully for the better.

Since I don’t really participate in forums that much any more, I think I will focus my writing skills (or lack thereof!) on my blog. My format will be this: I will do reviews followed by build reports on kits that I get; I will do updates pertaining to new items I get that may be of interest; I may, from time to time, blab about my past modeling endeavors and whatever topics that may be interesting; and, I will post a link to my YouTube channel where pertinent. I will be doing my blog posts and YouTube updates on stuff simultaneously. The best of both worlds, if you will! I will also make a concerted effort to be more timely and regular on my posts.

So, again, thanks to you that took time to post comments, and please stay tuned for more content. And comment if you like.

One Year Anniversary

Yesterday, June 6, 2016, marks exactly one year since I started my YouTube channel.

As I mentioned somewhere long ago, I hate to type. I like doing a blog, but the typing part gets me down and I lose interest pretty quick. So, being a more visually oriented person, I thought to myself, “Self, why not do a vlog instead of a blog?” So, I gave it a shot.

It has been pretty successful in my eyes with 143 subscribers to date (compared to 14 followers here).

So, without further adieu, here is a quick video. Thanks for following this blog and if you are following my YouTube channel, thanks for that too.

See you next time.