A layer too far

Short blog because I’m tired and I really have to pick myself up after this..

Unfortunately I didn’t take enough care this afternoon, and I guess in hindsight I picked the wrong moment to try to fix yesterdays mistakes. As far as I’ve been able to tell, most of them are now fixed, but the underside and port side now have some details gone thanks to another ocean of primer applied, and there is some ugly surface because of trying to correct in a hurry.

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I sanded down the scratches first.
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Sh*t result. Uneven, scratches and in some places too thick.

I’m still finishing this thing.. first need to let it dry and find motivation again. I tried to rush it before an appointment this afternoon and I was, again, too tired to think straight. I just have the tendency to just keep going even though I know it’s not necessarily the best thing.

Next time:

  • Take my time
  • Work in daylight
  • Don’t use a dusty dark shed
  • Don’t do it before an appointment so you can’t properly clean a bad result.

I’m not thinking about buying a new kit this time.. I not only have plenty of them lying around now but I also want to try other stuff on this one, like the camo and weathering.

But chances are that some day when I feel more confident I will have to re-buy the A8 or the F8 to get it right!!

-Dan

Update:

Scratches are gone, sanded it down to the bare minimum to get rid of the uneven parts and very lightly applied primer again. The detail is still gone, by I used my heavy duty knife to give an indication of where some of the lines are. Of course I had to take my attempt to far so I might have to do this again, but it is what it is.

If I can get the proper stuff (some of that Label Writer tape?) I can hopefully get some of the details back..

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I did this last part in the man-cave just like I thought I wouldn’t do anymore.. but I think a very controlled environment is essential to do this, and the outside/dirty shed route with the poor lighting might not work for me.
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Prime-time

I’m sure those word jokes will get old once I’ve done a few kits!

I applied a layer of primer on the FW-190! And I don’t feel the model is wrecked, but there definitely will be some work coming out of it and I am curious what you guys think about what to do now.

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I got some sticky tack this morning and I was curious to see if there would be any effect on the model after a few hours. So I started off with this test today.
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I did some work on the B747-8F today while waiting for to see if there would be any reaction to the tack. The cockpit is done and the brownish color is sprayed inside the fuselage.

I also did some work on the front gear. I have to say so far I am really happy with my decision to take on a secondary project to keep things interesting! More photo’s coming as soon as there is more interesting stuff to show than 2 tiny parts!

The tack looked fine, both on coated and uncoated surface. Time to get this show on the road! Or, in a box is probably more accurate.

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I love those engine cowlings! Even though they are attached with tack here I am actually happy to know my end result will not be perfect. I don’t necessarily want a warplane to look perfectly neat, so we can make that work!
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Masking is about ready here.
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After cleaning the entire thing I moved it outside.. Time to make a plan!

To be able to move the thing around while spraying I used an old brush with some tack on it (yes, tack has become an instant favorite) and planned on using that and the propeller shaft as a way to control the body without placing any fingerprints on it.

Primetime! Looking like an idiot?

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Check!

Obviously I was a bit too busy with a good result to make photos while applying the primer but what happened while spraying: I got a big blob at some point and had to wipe it off with a tissue.. I then resprayed it and of course the result was visibly uneven.

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Time to watch Game of Thrones while waiting for this to dry a bit!

The results..

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OK that’s a problem.. after I came back I noticed the temporary canopy had shifted.. Hopefully that won’t be too hard to fix.. the area behind the cockpit was already damaged so I had to fix it anyway. The particles you see on the star board side of the body is the result of the blob action I had to take.
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Port side, one of the panels shows scratches.
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Star board side, the panel to the right of this picture still seems a bit too thickly applied. This is were the blob happened.
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I think I hit a shelve in the shed I was working in while turning it around.. this is port side, under the wing.

I definitely need a better place.. after my testing a few days ago I went outside but decided to go back into the shed at the last minute. That is just a bit too dirty and dark to be ideal..

All in all I am not unhappy with the result. But I need to decide what to do with the areas I showed in this blog, so any advice is incredibly appreciated as always!

One of those days

When I woke up I had this wild plan to take the Zero and see how far I could get with it in one day. That’s my life at the moment: when I still have energy I have great plans, but after breakfast I realize it isn’t going to happen. Which is fine in itself as there has been a long time I didn’t have that sort of inspiration at all.

Yesterday I did some experimentation with the Spitfire piece as I had planned, but I probably shouldn’t have touched the FW-190 once it became clear I wasn’t thinking at 100% capacity..

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I love seeing that big pile of boxes!
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I am OK with my end of the decal placing which went fine, but the jury is still out on the end result. I used Revell Decal Soft and of course the rivet detail coming through is excellent. I did my best to remove the bubbles that appeared after a while but as you can see the result is just not 100% perfect. Could it be because I didn’t clean the part after letting the clear gloss dry?

The most important picture of my wash experiments is way too dark unfortunately:

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Still you can probably see that while cleaning the wash off, I actually rubbed off the paint!! To be honest I probably used way too much thinner and applied way, way too much pressure. I hope that’s the only reason and not some reaction by the wash itself.

One of my experiments was trying something with an enamel color which I still had lying around. Seeing the mess I made with it I quickly decided this is absolutely not the way I want to take this hobby. I think probably one of the reasons I am back doing this is how much more accessible things became with acrylic paint and the strong smell and hard work to clean up from a couple of minutes work is just not a fun prospect.. besides:

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This is just the Lavado wash I have also used for the engine, but I waited a bit longer and then very lightly removed it with a cotton pad with a tiny bit of thinner on it. So yeah, that’s basically your standard practice with thinners isn’t it? Apply and gently rub it off after 20 minutes.. that’s the winner.

Still glad I tried this stuff on this piece instead of wrecking 4 or 5 sets. I still might do that, but I have a little more experience now!

Speaking of wrecking..

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Idiot.. why on earth did I think it was a good idea to glue on the fragile fuel tank rack? Apparently this is a Dutch proverb: a donkey never hits his head on the same stone twice. Well, it wasn’t the landing gear that broke off so I guess it’s just the same group of stones!
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While I tried to sand some of the side panel sticking out I broke off the front engine cowling. It wasn’t glued on properly anyway and it looks much better now so I guess I’ve actually didn’t break anything here.

Finally I also applied some filler to the upper part of the wings, and sanded the front a bit more. I am not sure about the filler because I might have destroyed a bit of detail. I am not too  downhearted by this.. typical second kit mistake I would say. I bombed it the first time, and now I did a better job but it’s still not perfect. That’s learning and I accept that.

 

Tiny changes

I still can’t believe how much this blog is offering me. It is not only that I enjoy writing about something I love doing, but the support and help I get is fantastic. Shout out to everyone helping me. Especially atcDave and Brett G continue to help and share their knowledge, but of course I am grateful for all the feedback I get!

About those tiny changes:

  • WW2 is my main interest and so are planes, but I want to do a second build that is a different subject. Considering starting on the Spit this week made me realize I am ready to do something else to keep things interesting. So, my primary build will be a WW2 plane, and my secondary build could be something else entirely.
  • Next Wednesday I will finally be building up my work hours again. Even though I am still tired very quickly (recovering from a burn out) I look forward to things getting back to normal and hopefully my fitness will improve soon enough. Of course this development will mean for modelling and blogging that I will do both a lot less, but I look forward to seeing how modeling works as a way to settle down after an intense day!
  • The last tiny change has to do with my workplace. After working this way for a while it’s natural that things come up that are less than ideal. I was already considering changing my workspace after completing the FW-190, but buying a second kit and possibly the blog of Spencer Pollard of this afternoon made me speed things up a bit. If I want to build more than one kit at a time I need a table that is basically as empty as possible all the time, and the essential stuff within reach.
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Another two shelves emptied for modelling.. and it is still not enough really because I would like to stash those boxes somewhere too! Don’t worry about the Play Dough by the way, I bought it this morning but after reading some horror stories I got rid of it.

So anyway, back to the actual modelling. As atcDave pointed out three layers of primer I did on the warped part that was in my second purchase of the Spitfire kit isn’t really needed or advisable because the details might disappear. As I told him I based myself on a demo by Humbrol, but of course they don’t mind if you throw the entire bottle on your models. That’s another good piece of information for the FW-190, but I want to try some more things before messing about with the real deal.

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In this picture I focused on the rear side of the part because I first planned on doing a small area..
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..But although I keep getting better at judging the required amount of paint and its mixture, this color is a mix between two which left me with more than enough to do the entire thing.
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I present to you: the SpitWulf! And yes, of course I sprayed a smiley face on there. The part kind of looks like Big Mouth Billy Bass on that sprue, doesn’t it?

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Some things to take into account:

  • I painted these colors on top of each other without letting them dry
  • I rushed it so some areas could have used more attention.
  • I didn’t mask anything.
  • As I said it is a pretty small area where I tried to apply the complete side of the FW-190.

It’s not perfect but I am glad I did this so hopefully the real deal will be better!

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I think I ended up applying four layers of gloss coat! I hope this dries up well, because I see quite a lot of staining.

As I understand you will either need to apply gloss to the point it is almost running, or use a very fine sandpaper to fix it up after it is dried up. If anyone has thoughts on that I am very interested! Especially for the secondary kit purchase I did this afternoon I will have to get the gloss coat area right!

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I know.. I know.. civilian airplanes don’t seem to get a lot of love in the community but this is nostalgia for me!

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I remember being amazed at the models my dad had made. One of my favorites was his British Airways 747 (no idea what exact type it was). My dad got rid of it recently because of course it did’t have a lot of detail being a 70’s or 80’s model, but hopefully this model does! Cargolux is a regular visitor to Amsterdam Schiphol Airport which really attracted me to this particular plane.

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The FW-190 still is top priority of course. I drilled the holes from the outside for the fuel tank rack like I said I would and man I am proud to get it exactly right again! I also did some work on the rear, sanding down some seams and re cutting some details.

The top priorities for the coming time:

  • Try a wash and decals on the SpitWulf part once the gloss coat has properly dried up.
  • Maybe do a second layer of olive on the inside engine panels.
  • Move my way up to the front of the FW-190 to fix seams and holes.
  • Properly mask off holes, cockpit, landing gear bay and engine.
  • Find a good method to apply primer all around the model.
  • Apply primer layer!
  • Apply primer on propeller, cap and fuel tank separately?
  • Antenna’s, landing gear and other easily breakable stuff to place on in the end, place them in the Box-Of Future-Parts.
  • Airbrushing the camo?
  • Clear coat
  • Decals
  • Start on the 747-8F when I can!

Leap of faith!

After sleeping on it and some reassuring words on my last post I decided to continue with this kit!

Not only is this just my second kit, but when I rebooted this hobby I already made the conscious decision to not go straight for the high-end and more expensive brands. I already accounted for failure by buying the cheaper Revell kits rather than a Tamiya kit for 3 or 4 times the price. The only thing is: the Spitfire just feels a lot cheaper, where as the FW-190 just seems to offer a lot more for just a couple of euro’s more. That makes it even more of a bargain though, so I just need to go for it and have faith in myself and if I should fail take good note of what went wrong and learn from it.

Since there is more work coming up that needs some time to properly dry up I want to at least have a very broad idea of what to do when:

  • Airbrush the inside of the engine covers and temporarily place them on.
  • Check the entire body for seams and holes that shouldn’t be there and try to get any scratches out.
  • Place fuel rack on body.
  • Fill up the landing gear bay with something to mask it (cotton pads?) and temporarily place the gear doors I am not using, for masking.
  • Mask the cockpit of with the canopy I am not using and mask off the windscreen.
  • Investigate what materials to use for temporary placement of masking parts and how to apply the primer all around the aircraft?
  • Investigate how to properly use primer?
  • Apply primer layer!
  • Apply primer on propeller, cap and fuel tank separately?
  • Antenna’s, landing gear and other easily breakable stuff to place on in the end, place them in the Box-Of Future-Parts.
  • Airbrushing the livery?
  • Clear coat?
  • Decals?

I wrote this list this morning and as much as energy allowed I started some work.

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First I painted the last of the insides of the engine panels. I have to say I have a lot less trouble with the airbrush now I use a thinner mixture, I just have to apply a second layer after half an hour.. I neglected to do that here and the paint is still slightly too thin.

I will fire up the airbrush for one final round of olive since I haven’t decided yet which panels I want opened up.. so I want them all to look good! Besides I also found I missed one part that still needs olive color..

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I see the windshield framework is also in ‘F’ (gray) just like the rest of the canopy parts. So I glued it on and ambitiously aim to properly mask it. If I fail, I will have to get a replacement from Revell I guess! Since the gun area is a glue-y mess I will likely cover that up by the way.
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The fuel tank and its mount are also assembled. I will likely assemble the mount.. there is a problem though..
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I’m afraid I misinterpreted the instruction manual when it comes to the holes that had to be drilled in the lower wing half. That means I will have to figure out from the outside where the holes are supposed to be, and drill them.

I decided I wanted to try some primer at this point before messing up the FW-190.

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Time to get out the Spit-Wreck and clean up an area.
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And then I realized I had the perfect thing to try it on! I made a scratch and sanding marks to see how they would look after primer and cleaned the part with soap.. I don’t have alcohol or anything like that. Maybe I should get some?
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The first layer.. or actually the second layer as my first was a pool of primer and I wiped it straight off to start again.

I think my first attempt was sprayed from way too close. The layer in the picture above is better, although not smoothly applied everywhere.

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After applying a second layer..
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And for the third layer I wised up and moved the operation to the shed.. looks like I’ll keep a room open in my man-cave tonight!

And the result after three layers:

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I like this! The scratch I made is clearly visible but of course I didn’t do anything to fix it between the layers. There is some imperfection near the end, I think because I removed the first splashed on layer that I sprayed on from way too close.

Very educational day in modelling world for me..

  • They are not kidding when they say you need a well ventilated room.. what they actually mean to see is: get that stuff out of any room you plan on using for things like living.
  • Don’t spray too near to the part.
  • Don’t spray too long in the same place.
  • Be fluent.

What I still have to research:

  • What to do when I find imperfections after the first layer? If I fix the imperfections I will scrape off the first layer and if I apply a second layer on top of that you will probably see a ‘crater’ on the body where the first layer used to be?
  • How to be able to turn around the whole model. I see constructions with sticks to turn the thing around, but a 1/32 FW-190 model is probably too big and heavy to do that.
  • How to temporarily fit panels, canopy and landing gear doors for the priming and air brushing?

My plan is to ready up the rest of the body tomorrow in terms of sanding and filling, and maybe also use the part I used primer on today to try a bit of the FW-190 livery on! It’s drying in the shed tonight while spreading a strong chemical smell.

Decision Time

Let me start this blog off first by telling you I am so happy to say I seem to have fixed the fitting on and around the engine!

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There is some cleaning up to do and the side panels stick out a little bit but that’s allright.
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The side panels and upper panel are glued on, the panel that will go above the guns is not. I have tried all the other panels separately and they all seem to fit pretty nicely now!
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These panels still need to get the olive colour but I am not really managing long airbrush sessions yet.. two sessions with Revell #45 were not enough to get to these things!
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Yesterday I did most of the main gear parts and handpainted the…. I am not very good in parts names.. windscreen? Anyway, since I don’t trust myself masking it I made the choice to paint it this way and it turned out pretty good.
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So this is pretty much the stage it is in now.

I am getting somewhere with this build I feel. there are quite a lot of small parts left, but I can prepare those while waiting for the main body to get ready for the next stage.

This afternoon I got myself some inspiration by checking out the builds of Brett G, IBM and ScaleModelAircraft. Brett G hasn’t been able to apply primer because of the weather, but the other two show the primer stage, pre-shading and the final air brush. This has me intimidated a bit and let’s be honest: with good reason. I have never done these things before and there is nothing like screwing up on the main body!

still do to now:

  • Temporarily place landing gear covers, engine covers and mask off the cockpit.
  • Primer?
  • Propeller and nose cone, not painted yet.
  • Air brush the livery on the body.
  • Landing gear, flaps and other small parts that can’t get put on until the final phases. Some of these parts are not painted yet.
  • Apply coating.

To be completely honest with you, I am not confident right now in getting the result I want for this kit. It is not that I am comparing myself to the guys I mentioned above as they have been at it a lot longer than I have and this is only my second kit. I know I will probably not get the result they got, but I know how much I learned the last weeks while making this kit and trying new things.. but so far I am not even sure how to use primer, if I have the right color for instance. If I keep learning and getting a feeling for new techniques I am sure that soon I will feel confident enough to finish this kit.

The Spitfire is a simpler kit. It does not have an engine and the livery seems easier to me.

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Besides, I already had it at 90% finished before I decided I had ruined it enough. My original idea was to start fresh with this kit straight away, but there was something wrong with a part and I had to wait for a replacement. I started the FW-190 while waiting for it.

Something to think about tonight!

Engine Trouble

I ran into some trouble Sunday night and was about ready to give in.. I spent a good hour fiddling around trying to fit the engine and making things go from bad to worse..

At such a moment, one side of me knows I need to take a break and walk away for a moment, but there is also a big side of me that is afraid I will never pick up the model again because I feel I have ruined it. Here is what happened.

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As I wrote in a previous blog, I had glued the construction that will hold the engine in place without worrying too much about the beams that are right behind it.. as you can see they are somewhat bent by that approach and it was a sign of trouble to come.
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When I first fit the side panels that have to line up with the engine, it became clear to me that this entire construction which the engine has to be attached too was actually pointing up too much! After a struggle I was able to remove the mount the engine has to go onto.
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At least if I could attach it straight to the engine I wouldn’t have to worry about misalignment here..

Fast forward. Imagine a lot of cursing, parts coming off and gluing them back on, too thinly applied paint coming off the engine.. but after what was at least an hour..

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Crikey! After wrestling for an hour I got a less than perfect result, but the engine fit and was aligned with the side panels and at some point I had to sign at the dotted line for any result. Here it is drying up with the engine cover taped on as an attempt to keep the side panels in the right place.

It was already clear that I was not going to get a clear fit, and things went pear shaped as soon as I started I started the engine mount.. in hindsight I would have liked to get the engine and side panels aligned perfectly before gluing anything of the engine mount in place. I probably have to keep some panels on now because the result is a bit glue-y and bent! But that’s experience for you I guess.

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And it remains to be seen if I am out of the woods yet.. as you see aligning the engine with the side panel also meant I could not get the side panel to fit nicely all the way to the rest of the body. There is a pretty big gap there, and chances are this will snowball into trouble with the panels that are still coming!
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Before gluing on the front cover I at least wanted to retouch some of the engine paint that had come off during the struggle!
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I am very afraid.. because I think that cover might be a little too low.

This is a bit of a tough part of the build for me.. I seem to have messed up a while back and every panel I attach is out of whack because of that! Not giving up just yet though.. this is good experience and if this model won’t end up looking good there is always the next model!