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Jay Chladek

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About Jay Chladek

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  • Birthday 11/18/1970

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    Omaha, NE

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  1. Looking for the "Celestial Eagle" decals for the F-15A ASAT as seen on the Wolfpak 72-067 decal sheet. Near as I can tell, this was the only source for those markings as the ESCI AMT kits only had intended operational squadron markings, nothing for the flown test.
  2. The main advantage of the LANTIRN equipped F-14s for close air support was a system called ROVER III, which allowed for a properly equipped FAC on the ground with the proper equipment to see what the Tomcat RIO could see in his PTIDS display. That helped with pinpoint targeting during Iraqi Freedom and after. The Air Force fast jets didn't have that capability, so the ground would direct targets to the F-14s, who in turn would direct the Air Force jets with their strike package as to what targets to focus on. Ironically, the Air Force first utilized the system as ROVER I in Afghani
  3. I discovered an error on the kit during construction of the tails. There is some excess plastic on the bottom of the right inner tail that should not be there. The problem isn't present on the left tail and if left there, you end up with a big gap visible on the right outer tail where it slots into the engine pod. These pictures illustrate the problem. First we have the left tail: And then we have the stock right tail (both viewed from the inside) I have accented the spot with a black wash after scribing in where I needed to scribe
  4. Now we move to the nose. The Revell kit includes options to do the jet with a CAPRE nose or an ASARS one. They give you two nose tops, but only a common CAPRE nose bottom. Using a diagram I found in the Jim Goodall Aerofax book, I opted to modify the nose bottom to give my model a proper ASARS nose. It was used from about 1984 onwards and has a distinct shape difference on top from the earlier style noses. Since I was representing 979 at the end of its operational life, it likely carried the nose on at least some missions. To date, only the jet on display at Duxford in the UK has an ASARS nose
  5. It has been awhile. The Blackbird has been "done" since IPMS Nationals, although I may do some tweaks to it. I did shoot some in progress pics though for a few steps, so here is the next update. Let's start with the cockpit: I modified the aft instrument panel slightly to move the MFD box further back into the cockpit. It took some precision work, but I was happy with the results. I applied the stock decals to both the front and rear panels and they worked as advertised, going on with minimum fuss and snuggling down with an application of Micro Sol. Because of my parts
  6. I understand Hobby Lobby is close to doing a revamp of their modeling sections and clearing out older product to make way for new stuff. Will that include the Revell USA Blackbird? Unknown. But, they did get in a reboxing of the Monogram 1/48 F-84F with an excellent Cartograf printed decal sheet for the USAF Thunderbirds. While HL no longer does the 40% off coupon, they do seem to run a 40% off "boxed model kits" sale about once every other week. Will that continue once they get more new stock in, I have no idea. I'm finishing up a project for a car model contest this weekend
  7. The Academy kit is... Okay. But it is a recessed panel line copy of the Hasegawa kit and as such, has some shape issues. Frankly though, what 1/72 doesn't have shape issues. Model Collect is doing a 1/72 A-12 as they announced it quite a while ago and I have seen the box artwork. But I have no idea when we will see it. I'll be adding another build update to my WIP thread soon. My gear bays are done and I have been concentrating on the cockpit this weekend. If all goes well, I hope to have the center fuselage together by tomorrow and on to assembly of the body pieces thi
  8. Well, I like things that go really fast and get crappy gas mileage (even if the 71 had better mpg the faster it flew). 😁
  9. Okay, I have just posted a new update on my build over in the work in progress forum. While working on it, I made an interesting discovery. It looks like Revell has designed this kit in such a way that an SR-71B variant is planned for the future. In the upper fuselage part, there is a plug where the RSO sits. It is very easy to spot on the inside of the part and the plugged area is just long enough to incorporate the elevated rear cockpit of the B model. The bottoms of the engine nacelles have thick flashed over guide holes that correspond to locator holes for the ventr
  10. Work continues to progress, albeit slowly. Not due to any fault in the kit, just my speed is all as I want to get this done right. In any event I have the engine nacelles built and primered. Before adding the exhausts to the nacelles, I gave them a shot of black primer outside in case they were visible inside the open bypass doors. I also did the same with the insides of the bypass door rings to make sure no bare plastic would be visible inside the back end either. Before installation I did shoot the outside with black primer to make sure my fi
  11. I masked and painted. But next time I will likely just mask and paint the lengthwise strips, then the crosswise strips on a second pass because it was tedious to do. I also had to do a bit of toothpick scraping to get black off some areas I didn't want it.
  12. Given that every flight was to gather experiment data, there is a reason for that. All things considered though, most of the X-Planes have been covered in kit form from the smaller run companies such as Special Hobby and the like. If only Dragon would repop the ones they did in 1/144, including kit versions of models they ONLY offered as pre-builds, such as the X-1A, X-1E and a couple of the X-15 variants.
  13. Posting another one I did very early in 2021 as one of my Covid lockdown builds. This is the 2006 Revell issue of the Monogram 1/72 X-15A-2, done up as the aircraft appeared for its last flight when Pete Knight set a speed record with it. The aircraft was covered with an ablative heat shield coating. It was pink in color, tended to come off in slivers and had an annoying habit of getting saturated with LOX, which could have "explosive" results. So the coating was covered in a flat white binder layer. The plane itself was a rebuild of X-15 ship #2, which was rebuilt following a bad crash on Mud
  14. I'm like Ambassador Kosh... "I have ALWAYS been here/" 😉
  15. This is my most recent build. I finished it up last month. This is the Revell 1/32 Bell X-1. The kit I used is mostly the old 1980s Revell kit molded in bright orange plastic. But, I messed up the wings when I was building it, so I replaced those with a set from the Revell of Germany kit that just got issued. I was also able to benefit from the new decal sheet RoG did for the re-release as it contains more accurate markings for 6062 than what the original sheet had. The build is pretty much out of the box with nose weight added to keep it from being a tail sitter. I put the pilot f
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