Part IV – Finished! No - that’s finished…No NOW that’s finished…. The reluctant Butcherbird.When building a large scale kit like this the details all matter and cannot be ignored, and it is this final part of the construction and detailing which is often the hardest. Getting all of your ideas together to make something you are proud of and can show off – well it’s not something most modellers take easily.
Sometimes a kit “resists” your attempts to finish it – and this was one of those times – I had several full stops on this kit – where I attempted to sabotage my own work it seems – but it came out pretty nice in the end – read on to see what happened and where I ended up in this four part just under 2 month "on and off" build…
Subject: Focke Wulf Fw 19A0/1/2/3
Kit Type: Sprues: 4 grey + 1 clear Styrene + Grey Resin parts + Photo Etch multimedia kit
Decal choices: 8!!! 5 aircraft spanning the A1 + A-2 and A3
Where I got mine: Modelwholesale.co.uk for £59.69
Hey model building folk - if you have read the story so far you will be familliar with what is going on - if not links are above for the review and build up to now - if you are up to speed read on!
...Well I got to the part in the third entry of the build review where the paint was on - the decals were ready – the plane had a coat of weathering – well I thought so anyway. Several difficulties arose due to the “softness of the Vallejo paint with the addition of future and the over-zealous nature of Tamiya tape. While un-masking several areas again became “natural plastic” again and I had to re-mask and re-paint. And sometimes I had to do it three times. This led to a kit which lost a lot of the subtle shading I had on the dark olivegrun surfaces atop and the RLM 65 variations on the underside – I made more patch ups to the paintwork and then a coat of future again. I wanted to get this finished…
Before I could though I noticed the right tail had snapped off because of by clumsy hands – and gluing it back on was a job I overdid! Too much superglue scarred the paint – I thought to leave it but it was noticeable and I had an Idea…
I had some small thin sanding sticks from Master Details – called Alpha Abrasives sanding needles and files they have a large range on their website and I had used some others in my Fw 189 build – so I grabbed them and took a chance. The Flexifiles are very long and bend easily – they are like the smallest sanding sticks you could use with a curved nose and one blunt side so they are perfect for sanding a seam of the tail like this. Well ten minutes later after using all three grades the tail was on a not scarred by glue anymore and was totally flat, and I was happy! – Then I went on to paint the tail again in RLM02.
The finished articleThe decals – they are without question the best part of this kit – not only are they diverse in choice covering different versions and Marques – but the quality is top notch – ill talk about the application in a second – first the theory
The machine I was going to do was “Black 13” of 8/JG 2 flown by an unknown pilot in France during 1942 – the aircraft was lost near Vannes in France in late spring 1942. This aircraft and indeed all of the planes research here was done by Jerry Crandall and the profiles illustrated by Richard Caruana. Some time and money was spent on them. So I decided to go with them to the letter (almost - I took in the info from these pictures as well) I went with the prescribed RLM 02/71/65 scheme which had been laid out – some say this aircraft was RLM 74/75/76…… but I was not going to argue with someone who was immensely more skilled and no doubt better researched than I was – I went with the colours called.
The second picture of this aircraft and the only two I could findI had done some research on this aircraft on the net – it seems its everyone’s favourite early Luftwaffe Fw-190 as there are several completed builds to glean things from, I found many good – some of and some not as ok as others, some with the colours reversed and different colours – I went with what I had and I am very happy with the result.
The decals held to the light so you can see the thinness - thin but very strong (like quan sheet? )
I had an experience with the white “no tread” lines on the wings which I had never used before in just straight line form – uncut and unmeasured. I was counting them to see if I had enough, and if you get this kit I can say DON’T BOTHER – you have more than enough to make the demarcated area and have a few strips left over – whew! Here is the aircraft nice and shiny with decals..
You need to cut out the engine bay slits – then just add micro sol + set – a top result with decals sticking like paint!!
Shiney! - Needs…..more….detailNext for a quick wash - I was sensing the end of this build and so first I whacked two layers of future floor polish on the surface to save the plastic. I gave the panels some dark wash from MIG pigments and let it dry for a few hours before removing in the way of the airflow with tissue and some light thinners so as not to eat into the precious paint job I had done many times.
The canopy is an odd bird on this plane - it sits on rollers with two points at the front and one singular point at the rear – these slides back and looks quite cool. To glue this takes some considerable time and some patience – also some not very hot glue! I used watchmaker’s clear glue to make the initial attachment and then with the help of a vice I got from my local “kettle and toaster” hardware Robert Dyas. This held the delicate canopy by the three parts and I quickly whacked on some Tamiya thin cement sparingly to secure it.
Be careful when attaching the front canopy – the closed in nose of the cockpit does not give much room to breathe for the glue and if it is hot lie the stuff I initially used it scorched your lovely painted front panel! I cried nearly when I took off the mask when I was ready to unveil it all – HOWEVER – I was able to steal a canopy from my Hasegawa FW 190 A kit from Hasegawa which fit perfectly – a quick re-mask – luckily I hadn’t thrown them – and a paint and all done.
There is an attached antenna that goes from the crown of the back section of the canopy to the tail. This remains taught when retracted and not floppy on these earlier like it does on the D-9 style “blown” version. I had never done this very well – EZ line was something I did not have – and wire was too thin or too thick and bumpy. A friend told me to stretch sprue and attach it to the points – a little slack you say? Well I did - but the genius is that all you have to do is hold a hot knife or soldering iron NEAR but not too near the attached line and bingo it just pulls tight!! Amazing.
Adding some superglue on the rear of the antenna and some silver to detail them and one more down. The first time I did this though the canopy was not held on hard enough and the tightening of the plastic antenna retracted it! He He - you have to laugh sometimes – it was the second attempt which got it done for me.
You cannot see me “packing it” in the background as I applied the “heat” to this antenna – I certainly was a little nervous – scroll down for “action shots” - first the materials -
The closer to the canopy the more I was freaking out
Success!! "Tight like a tiger" springs to mind..The guns were the next bit I had to face on this kit. I had long given up using the kits guns – they are OK but not the standard I wanted. I got some brass MG FF autocannon, two MG 17 machine guns for the nose and a pair of lovely MG 151 20mm cannon sent in the post toot sweet and I can say I cannot believe the quality. Not that the kit is that bad – it just leaves no comparison the Master products are so much better.
I had to drill two small pilot holes for the large cannon but that was as hard as it got. (Ohh and I did loose permanently one of my MG 17’s into the body of the inside of the engine – lucky I had 1 spare) - As you do.
A quick email to the man in charge at Master and he gave me the dope on making these brass barrels turn into steel replicas – here are the steps to creating them.
Coat with some Mr Metal primer (or the like)
Then with some thin black airbrush the barrels – I would use thin enamel next time but I used Vallejo and it was ok.
Dry brush with some metalizer paints – a bit thick here I toned them down later
A good result should ensue – thanks to Piotr for that tip – before this I still was fumbling around losing paint from the metal too often. This made a real improvement to the kit – again the kit’s guns are OK – but the metal thinness and the craftsmanship here is obvious to see.The propeller was sprayed a black green and went together very easily – also there is no danger of putting it on back the front with the notches supplied. Black/green from Vallejo air paint and then paint chips from a pencil to pick up the detail made this an easy part of the construction.
The wheels sit at an unmistakably canted inwards angle on this aircraft –you must cut the axles and I did mine with a sharp scissor sprue cutter to get the right angle to help with the adhesion of the resin to the plastic with super glue – there is some fiddling with the undercarriage , but the result is worth the hassle and the long stints of holding onto the gear and not moving (while probably resembling a mad man in the corner) the cant of the gear worked out nicely and the gear is plenty strong enough. I told myself I would include some gear lines – but that is on the later pile (Much later more like.)
To create the dark stain from the use of synthetic fuels the Fw 190s used increasingly more and more as the war developed I tried my hand with Tamiya smoke diluted in small streaks – well tried is one word – it was taking FAR too long, so I mixed some nice and thin black and brown with white for a smoky black/grey flat colour that you cannot really see from these pictures but it does look different to the black motif on the exhaust. Very subtle was the key – as this as an early war example and from the only two pictures I can this exhaust stain was not too pronounced. It dirtied the fuselage suitably.
The home straight beckons – but first – why not prolong this build with making a base!?? It certainly does make the difference between nothing and something special - and creates some extra interest and contrast with the kit.
To add interest to your model kit you can do many things – you can make a base from scratch to your own dimensions and specs – or you can buy ready-made. I decided partly ready-made and went for a Diorama from Marc 58. These can be detailed up pretty quickly with the right paint and flock. Being a French strip I wanted dark damp wood and lots of grass – I luckily had it all on hand in readyment for this build.
I started with undercoat from a Vallejo rattle can in black which gives a good base
Then Tamiya red/brown with a light coat – plus some brown Vallejo water based paint – you can see the lighter half with the different brownThen the darkest of Vallejo Water based paints dry brushing the brown into the lower planks which – I have to admit for all of the thinking I could do this base myself Mark knows what he is doing! The planks are lower and higher – and while in line give a real 3 dimension to a flat base – it is top quality and I wish I had one for each aircraft I made.
Darker brown here making the planks come to life
Here are the planks – they need some dark wash again in the gaps to take out some of the reddish colour. Mig Pigments dark wash. Here are the paints I used and then the result so far
Then the aircraft on the base looked like it’s on a base on Mars with that red dirt – time for some grass?
To make the flock stick I used a very thin mixture of white PVA glue and water and some brown thin Vallejo air paint – recreating the soil colour under the grass.
The bottom layer of darker grass goes down – then hairspray (yes hairspray) holds it down – don’t turn it on too hard though as all of your grass scatters!Then the lighter grass and hairspray and Kev’s your uncle!! (Well he is mine anyway)
The aircraft is now complete – I have some figures for a later diorama I will include plus a power cart from Verlinden – but that is for laterHere it is on the base – about a thousand pictures I think I took – I am very proud of the outcome – I hope you like it too. I have to say the initial struggle with this kit is definitely worth it. Take in some patience and some more patience and you will turn out probably a better kit than this. The additions in Resin like the undercarriage and the excellent internal instrument bezels and the top decals make this a kit worth more than just a regular Hasegawa kit is worth. I recommend it
I got mine from Model Wholesale UK and thanks to the guys there for all of their support.
The small size compared with american fighters shows here
The small size compared with american fighters shows here