If Three is a Crowd, What Does Four Make?

The decals are on the Intruder and I gave it a good coat of clear matte. While I am in the dormant stages of the final building, I am working on my new builds. I previously started the Tempest and Warhawk on my camping trip. They are getting pretty far along with both kits getting their wings on last night. They have been great builds so far. It’s nice to burn up my down time from other builds on kits like these.
The third kit in this set is Hasegawa’s 1/72 F-14D “Vandy 1”. Who doesn’t like the black Tomcat? It looks great and I am excited to get deep into this one. Open the box and you will find a quality kit. Included with the model are photo etched parts. I don’t tend to do well with them but I am going to give it a try. The only thing I have done to this kit was open the box up and inspect it. I have quite a ways to go.
I have decided to step up my building quota and add a fourth. I could’t decide between the F-14 and Airfix’s MiG-15. To solve the dilemma, I figured why not build both? So the MiG-15 is my fourth build. I know that I am anti-Airfix but I have built this kit before and I don’t recall it being bad. The cockpit parts are painted and are just waiting to be assembled. My hope is to get that done this evening.

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Starting Fresh

In an effort to give myself some new choices in what I build, I rotated my inventory. Usually the space above my laundry room cabinets has been for overflow kits that I purchase then end up building. It’s a lazy way of choosing without having to dig through hundreds of kits. I finally grew tired of picking through the same kits every few weeks so I decided to put them all in storage and start anew.
There are eight full containers plus some other hiding places that I had to rifle through to pick and choose. This task was a little time consuming, yet absolutely entertaining. I found a plethora of kits to keep my attention for a long time to come. I easily substituted the old kits where I took the new kits from. I was amazingly able to check some kits off my “want list” due to me forgetting that I owned them already. This project was long overdue. I tried to pick a diverse spectrum of kits and I believe I accomplished that goal. There will be some interesting picks to come.

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Super Etenard

Talk about a pleasurable build. Even though the cockpit detail was limited, I had a blast scratch building what it lacked. After a little research, I added ejection handles to the top and bottom of the seat along with seat belts. The rest of the kit was superb. Great fitting parts and wonderful decals from Cartograph.
I started this build from an impulse and ended up flying through it. The only setback was not having the correct paint color. I used Model Masters Medium Gray and Gunship Gray. If you are looking for a smooth build with great results, the Super Etenard is it. Academy put another great kit out on the market.

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It’s All in the Details

When it comes to detail, I try to put as much as I can to pull off an “as real as possible” appearance. I am thrilled to report that all three of my kits are ready for the spray booth. Now is the time when I finish all the last minute touches to really bring my planes to life.
Simple things like the Super Etenard’s speed brakes are great parts to show some detail. All I used was a pin vice with a small drill bit to bore out the holes. Smooth out the edges and you have a whole new look. It may not be much, but it looks great when finished.
I also added some detail to the A-10’s rear landing gear struts. I took some wire that I bought from Menard’s and made the brake lines. I plan on adding some more to it but you get the point. It doesn’t take much to really make your planes stand out.

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In Over My Head

In the wake of finishing my AT-28 Trojan and Mosquito builds, I started three new ones. Yep, three. It originally started out as two but I couldn’t resist the urge for the third, so I accepted the challenge.
The first kit is Tamiya’s F-4S Phantom. So far so good with this kit. It has an adequate amount of detail to work with along with well fitting parts. I plan on using the gull gray and white scheme with VF-111 markings from Eagle Strike Decals. As it sits, I’m pretty close to completion. I managed to find a good groove and get quite a bit done. A little more sanding and this will be the first to get some paint.
The second kit I’ve chosen is Hasegawa’s A-10A Thunderbolt II. Can you ever build enough of your favorite aircraft? I say no. This is my fourth A-10 build in three years. I’ve held off long enough and I’m excited for this one. I’ve decided to take on the tedious J.A.W.S.(joint attack weapons system) paint scheme. I haven’t really accomplished too much on this one due to the ease of the F-4 build. I have the fuselage together with a little more filling and sanding to go.
The third, and the one I had to add to the mix, is Academy’s Super Etenard. I was looking through all my kits and this one stuck out so much that I had to start it. I don’t have a great tendency of building foreign planes so I am happy for this one to go up on the shelf soon. After I pre-painted most of the parts, it sat dormant for a few days until I was able to make some time. Academy didn’t put too much detail into this kit. The cockpit is bare at best. I had to scratch build the ejection handles on the ejection seat. I also added the usual seat belts. This one has been fun to put together. Today was the first day that I spent any quality build time on it. The fuselage is about done and ready for the wings to be attached. I don’t foresee a whole lot of filler on this kit, although I have been severely wrong before. It shouldn’t be long before this one is completed also.

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Complete

After a full head of steam through my F-16CJ build, I was unlucky enough to get the terrible flu that has been circulating the Chicagoland area.
I am glad to say that I am better and finished with the build. Everything about this build was a joy. It did have some challenges, but not too difficult of ones. Academy really put a great kit on the market. The molds were superb. There was no flashing and minimal filling. This kit has the most complex landing gear I have ever put together. Finely detailed, I recommend to all that this kit will not disappoint.

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Almost There.

With Christmas here, I thought I would be finished with my F-16C and have a decent start to my B-57 Canberra. Even with time delays, this has been a pleasurable build.

With painting complete except for some odds and ends, I am focusing on weathering and details next. I used Dutch Boy Semi-Gloss White latex paint for the wheel bays and the inside of the air intake. I plan on using pastels to dirty it up a bit. If the detailing goes as well as the build, I’ll be in good shape.

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