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About chuck540z3

  • Rank
    My OCD helps compensate for my lack of skill
  • Birthday 08/18/1954

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  • Location
    Calgary, Alberta
  • Interests
    Modeling, modeling and once in awhile, modeling.

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  1. Obituary is here: https://calgaryherald.remembering.ca/obituary/donald-mackie-1075652210 RIP Bruce Chuck
  2. Bruce Mackie has passed away.  His Obituary is here:




    RIP Bruce

  3. In a word, No. 3 things are holding me back: 1) I started the decals and realized that I didn't have any US Insignia decals in red. Nobody makes them in 1/32 scale either, so I had to order Maketar paint masks which will take a few weeks to arrive. 2) I screwed up a big decal (more on that later) so I had to order a replacement. Same delivery time as above. 3) It's finally summer, so vacation and other summer-like activities are taking up most of my time. I might have an update on the two wing-tip pods before then, so we'll see. Cheers, Chuck
  4. Thanks Yuri! It looks like some acrylic X-22 should go down first, followed by the Tamiya lacquer. Cheers, Chuck
  5. July 26/19 Inching along towards the finish line. One major addition is the big center line fuel tank, which my subject usually has strapped on. In many pics of modern F-5E/N’s, the vertical fin has been removed, leaving the base attachment, so I cut mine off. Something missing is a fuel cap, because you’ve got to get the fuel in there somehow! I used another spare PE brass disk that I also used on the top of the fuselage when I moved the fuel caps from the starboard side to the port side. Painting circular objects can be tricky, so this wire contraption worked out quite well to keep the tank suspended without touching anything. The other side. I will put a red circular decal on that fuel cap later. Now some real fun and before somebody alerts me to the fact that the titanium panels at the rear of the jet are often dull, I will be adding some semi-gloss lacquer to knock down the shine a bit later. For now, it looks pretty cool with all that raised rivet detail. Next up are likely decals and here’s my plan. As cool as the gloss black finish looks, it’s too shiny for scale and I still need something to seal the decals in so that decal film edges will be minimized. To do this, I’m going to be spraying the entire model with Tamiya Semi-Gloss Lacquer right after decals, which will also tone down the shine of the titanium panels and exhausts. Fingers crossed that don’t regret this! Cheers, Chuck
  6. Nothing special. Other than good overhead light within my paint booth, I have a couple of small desk lamps on the sides that I can move into position to allow reflections off the surface of the model I'm painting. You need reflected light to show how wet (or not) your paint is being applied. Cheers, Chuck
  7. Thanks Steve, Yes I have and have used them before as shown below, but most of the placards are way too tiny for masks. If I'm going to use some decals, I may as well use all decals, but I have a plan to make the edges of them disappear- or at least be less noticeable. Cheers, Chuck
  8. I was asked at LSP what my painting procedure is, so here it is again in sort of chronological order. As with all good paint jobs, the most important thing is to have a smooth and clean surface to begin with. You can’t spend too much time sanding and smoothing the plastic. I bet many of you guys thought I was nuts with all the fairly deep and prominent rivets that I re-punched and scribed all over the place, because it was sort of looking like an overdone Trumpeter kit. I overdid this detail on purpose, because after a few coats of paint it gets filled by at least 50%, so you need a bit of overkill to still see it after painting. I used decanted Tamiya Gloss Black Lacquer in the TS-14 rattle can line of paints. After decanting the paint and letting it sit overnight with a loose cover, I add about 40% Tamiya lacquer thinner, because I know it is very compatible. This paint sprays very smoothly and it dries to the touch very quickly. I usually use my ultra-fine Iwata airbrush with a tiny 0.18 mm needle for most of my painting of small parts or any Alclad, but for broad spraying of the entire aircraft, the more commonly used 0.3 mm needle works much better, so I use another Iwata airbrush for that. The smaller needle will work OK for a minute or two, but then it will start to sputter, while the bigger needle rarely does. Before you start to paint, remove as much dust as possible and then use compressed air from a rattle can to get the remainder off. I set the shut-in pressure on my compressor to a bit higher than normal at 23-24 psi, which sprays at about half that pressure in the 12-16 psi range. Experiment with the pressure on your setup, because a pressure too high will cause air turbulence and “dust balls”, while a pressure too low will sputter over time. This spraying pressure is also influenced by a host of other variables, like humidity, air temperature and how much the paint is thinned. Fill the paint cup of the airbrush with a pipette at all times, because you don’t want any crap from the lid to get into the cup. Have really good light and also directional light, so that you can see reflections to see if the paint is wet vs dull. After blowing a clearing shot of paint elsewhere, start spraying near your body and move away from it in one direction. Get the paint WET, but continue to move on once it is. If the paint isn’t wet enough it will orange peel and if it’s too wet it will run. You will find the sweet spot with practice. Paint in a continuous motion and always near where you just were. It might be tempting to stop and paint other areas, but if you do, you could leave ridges of dry paint behind. Paint just one horizontal surface at a time so that gravity is working for you and not against you. This allows you to get the surface nice and wet without any fear of runs. If you’re painting the top (or bottom), don’t paint the sides until the top is dry enough to handle. When doing the sides, hold the surface horizontal, or 90 degrees to normal. The first coat should be quite thin and just enough to cover the model to check for flaws. When the paint is dry for about 24 hours, fix the flaws, then re-punch rivets or re-scribe surface detail lost in sanding. Apply a second coat of paint after removing all dust, but this time thicker and wetter than the first. When dry, spot check and lightly sand out any crap that always manages to find its way onto the surface. Spot paint the repaired areas, but not the whole model, to reduce paint build-up in the details. Let dry for about 48 hours before handling it with your hands for any length of time. While seemingly dry to the touch, oil on your hands can create fingerprints that need to be sanded out and repaired. That’s about it and like all painting, practice, practice, practice to come up with a routine that works for you. HTH, Chuck
  9. Thanks Guys. Well, I thought I did. Here's the fuselage join before paint. The join is behind clear CA glue, so it's very difficult to see what is totally removed and what is partially removed. Also, without making excuses, 90% of these seams would not have shown up on a regular flat finish. The gloss black magnifies everything like 5X magnifying reading glasses. Cheers, Chuck
  10. In a word, Yes! For those who might have missed it, this is the template, although nobody makes decals for this VFC-13 jet, so I'll have to compromise with a bit of a "what if" and use VFC-111 decals instead. Note how clean and shiny it is- and I don't care that it's likely that way just for the air show. If it looked that way for even 5 minutes, that's what I'm going to try and replicate. Cheers, Chuck
  11. July 20/19 When I’m in the modeling zone, I am possessed, so another quick update on painting 3 days in a row. After finishing the bottom of the jet and getting a procedure and rhythm of what I should do, I got after the upper part of the model and low and behold, that bloody fuselage seam was worse up top! Back to the drawing board all over again. And this is why. Nothing really fits front to back… So after a few hours of careful sanding this evening and re-painting, it turned out pretty good if I do say so myself. I took a little heat earlier for painting a “plain black jet”, but I think this baby will look awesome with big red Soviet stars and bright red placards and other markings. I’ll just let the pics do the talking now…. With poor fitting gun doors, this area turned out great as well…. I still have a few small flaws, but I’ll let this dry for a few days before I try to repair them and get my sticky fingerprints on the nice shiny surface. Cheers, Chuck
  12. Yup, but nothing crazy, since the gear doors are on the outside hiding most of the gear leg. Cheers, Chuck
  13. July 19/19 Well that didn’t take long. That seam flaw, among other small items was driving me crazy all day at work so as soon as I came home, I got right on it and had them fixed in about 1 ½ hours. First, here is the offending seam and why it’s such a pain to fill and create a smooth finish. This is probably the worst fit on the entire kit, and there are many! And after paint. Still there and since I’m doing surgery anyway, I may as well fix that sink mark in the LEX that I was going to leave alone since it’s on the bottom anyway. Fixing it after paint is not so easy, but after too much experience with this situation, here is what I did. First, I masked off the small detailed areas so that I could sand the seam without eroding them off. Note that the paint is attracting dust already! Since the CA glue is tough, especially after drying so long, I used fairly coarse 400# sandpaper until I had the black lines of the seam and sink hole revealed. I then added CA glue to these black marks, let it dry, then sanded it down again. I then used 1,000# sandpaper and smoothed out the sanded area and the paint on the fringe to eliminate any sharp edges. Once that was done, I masked off another area near the intakes for further repairs. This area was just sanded, along with other small flaws that I found later. Finally, everything was smoothed out with Mr. Laplos polishing cloths in 4,000# and I used compressed air to remove most of the dust. I am happy to report that the seam is now gone, along with the sink marks and other small flaws. There is still a small step at the junction of the intakes and the old seam, but that would take a huge effort that just isn’t worth it underneath a model that will never be seen. The funny thing is, almost all of this will be covered with the big fuel tank anyway, but I’m glad this annoyance is behind me. Next up when this dries, the top paint! Cheers, Chuck
  14. Yup- and a few other ones as well. One problem with this detailed photography- with a light source at an angle on this glossy finish- is that it reveals every imperfection, some of which are not noticeable with the naked eye under normal lighting. The LEX sink mark is one of them. That, and the fact that this can only be seen underneath, makes the fix not worth the hassle. Now if it was on the top, and I bet I find some more later, they will all be repaired for sure. Cheers, Chuck
  15. Thanks Collin, Good question, because I still struggle with dust all the time. After cleaning up sanding dust and other contaminants as much as possible, I always used compressed air on the surface just before I spray paint, which helps a lot. After that its many, many spot repairs of individual pieces of crap, which is seemingly never ending. Looking at my pics above, I still have that big seam line where the two fuselage halves come together, as shown below. Although some modellers leave this as a panel line, it doesn't exist on the real deal, so it must go. I found sanding CA glue at this junction very hard to do, which is why it still exists I guess. There is very fine detail like the access doors and rivets nearby which will be harmed by sanding, so I need to tread lightly while covering the detail with masking tape to protect it. With CA glue you really need to dig to remove it, so hopefully with care I can eliminate this seam while retaining this detail. Later, Chuck
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