Saturday, July 23

Build review Pt.II: Bronco OV-10A in 48th scale from ICM Models

We have been waiting patiently for this one to come to fruition. Andy King's second part of his build of ICM's OV-1A Bronco in 48th scale is now fit to print. We see how Andy paints, weathers & finishes this kit to such a great standard in today's conclusion... 

Build review Pt. II: Bronco OV-1A
From ICM Models
Kit Number: #48300
1:48th scale
Price:$45 USD from Hobbylink Japan
Previous part of this story:

Today: PT II: On to the paint & Weathering...
With the kit built, it was time to start the painting and weathering process and to kick it off the undercarriage and gear bays were sprayed white then masked off before spraying the model overall with a black automotive primer from a rattle can
The cockpit glazing had been masked during the build as I thought it would be easier but more on this later.

Marking Choice used in this kit:
OV-10A 155416. Marine Observation Squadron 2 (VMO-2), Da Nang, 1969.
Aircraft history:
- New at the factory on May 22, 1968
- HML 267 - Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, California - May 24, 1968
- VMO-6 - Quang Tri, Vietnam - January 1, 1969
- Assigned to VMO-2 at Danang Air Base, Vietnam - May 20, 1970 thru June 12, 1971

Let's colour this pony...
Using Mr Hobby Aqueous paints entirely, the undersides were sprayed first, using a base coat of H332 Light Aircraft Grey. Instead of a solid coat of paint, it was done in a patchy finish with a follow up coat of H311 FS36622 Grey sprayed in the same way to give some tonal difference. The lighter grey was then lightened again with H11 White and this mixture was applied in between the panel lines.
The darker grey H332 applied. Ignore the fuel tank as this was sprayed with Tamiya TS-12 later. H331 Grey F36622 was sprayed next, then lightened further with H11 White. I said - ignore the fuel tank!
With the undersides done the model was masked off prior to spraying the upper surface colour and H405 Olive Green applied, again in a random patchy manner. The same was done with the top coat (H340 Field Green FS3097) and further lightened with H10 White;

H405 Olive Green was sprayed first.
H340 was next and further lightened with H10 for the final coat.
The version I was doing required a section of the main and rear upper wing painting in white so these were masked off and as per the other colours sprayed in a random blotchy pattern starting with a light grey and finishing off with H10 White.
...and unmasked!
This particular colour scheme also had a red nose, so this was masked and sprayed at this point. With the final colours on, the model was given an overall coat of Tamiya X-22 Clear and by working in sections and misting on Mr Hobby Self Levelling Thinners straight after spraying the Tamiya Clear, a good shiny finish was achieved.
This is probably 'old school' to some modellers, but the method works for me when applying decals and weathering fluids. With that,and after letting the varnish cure for a day, I began applying the decals.
With previous experience of ICM's decals, I expected these to cause me some grief but bar a couple of decals that curled up on them selves, for the most part they went on very well. They still had a tendency to grab onto the surface, so accurate placement is a necessity, as they don't like moving around at all. I found that putting the backing sheet on the model helped a lot too, although the decals still wanted to curl around the edge of the paper.
Keeping the decal on the backing sheet, especially a large one like this helped a lot with locating them in place.

The decals bedded down very well especially with the help of a decal setting solution;
Any air bubbles were popped with a pin and decal solution re-applied until they disappeared. After letting the decals settle down for a day or so, the model was sprayed with X-22 Clear to seal them in, then the weathering could start.

The first job was to emphasize the flying surfaces, so a mix of Mig Productions Dark brown wash and Lamp Black oil paint was brushed into the joints.
Any excess was wiped away with a flat brush dipped in white spirit (enamel thinners). The panel lines got a similar treatment but with Paynes Grey oil paint brushed into them, the excess being wiped away using kitchen towel.
Various other stains were added using different shades of oil paint then the model was set aside for a couple days before it received a final coat of Tamiya LP-24 Semi Gloss Clear. While it was drying, I painted and gloss varnished the propellers as I was curious to see how the red and white propeller tip warning decals would work so I applied a set to one of the blades.
Not bad, but as I suspected some touching up would be required on the propeller edges so the decals were removed. Instead, I masked off the propellers and sprayed the tips white then masked them off using thin strips of tape (possibly 2mm wide), after which the red was applied.

Much better!
The final pieces such as the centreline fuel tank and rocket pods were painted (the fuel tank was painted aluminium eventually) but before attaching them to the model, I took the masking tape off the canopy and this is where the model nearly ended up in landfill. As mentioned at the start I had masked the canopy prior to gluing it all together to make life 'easier', unfortunately because I had used liquid glue to assemble the canopy the glue had found its way under the tape and damaged the clear portion in two places.
To say the air turned blue was an understatement as to all intents and purposes the model was completely ruined. One solution was to ask ICM for a new canopy but that would have taken a couple of weeks to arrive, so I masked off the canopy framing around the affected areas and began a clean up/rescue operation.
The canopy glazing was very gently sanded using various fine grades of 'wet and dry' paper before being polished with a compound used for car headlights, after which Johnsons Klear was brushed on.
Not perfect by any means but an improvement, so guess which way the model is being displayed in the cabinet? It is a disappointment after all the work that went into the model, but I consider it a lesson learned.

Now all the final pieces could be glued into place with black heat-stretched sprue used for the whip aerials on the booms and EZ Line for the aerial wire that stretches from the tail plane to the top of the fuselage. The centreline fuel tank was sprayed with Tamiya TS-12 along with the exhausts, the exhausts were then brushed with various rusty shades of pastel chalks. The rocket pods were sprayed with Tamiya LP-29 Olive Drab 2 with the tips of the rockets rubbed with a silver pencil, the cannon barrels were painted a very dark grey then rubbed with graphite powder while the wing tip navigation lights were first painted white then when dry, painted with Tamiya Clear Green and Red (for port and starboard), after which a drop of the dark brown wash used for the flying surfaces was run around them and the undercarriage, gear bays and doors.

The propeller tips were dry-brushed with Vallejo Sea Grey Medium, then chipped and rubbed with a silver pencil to simulate wear and that pretty much wrapped up the build and finish.
The finished article...
That was an enjoyable project and great to finally have a decent 1/48 OV-10 after all this time. Things I would do differently on the next one (and yes there will be another) would be to glue the canopy together first THEN mask it off. I would have flattened the tyres a bit but due to the soft plastic I would have ended up destroying the undercarriage so the next one will see the kit supplied gear legs replaced with metal after-market items.
Other than that it is a great kit, very nicely detailed with generally a good fit of parts, so go and buy one, you won't regret it!
Many many thanks to ICM for supplying the kit for me to build.

Andy King.

If you want to know more about this kit, check out the ICM Models Website for their distributors worldwide. 

We found this kit for $45 USD from Hobbylink Japan
You can see more of Andy's work at his web page: Andy King's Model Blog