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About ESzczesniak

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    Step away from the computer!
  • Birthday 10/01/1983

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    Chicago, IL
  • Interests
    Military Modeling (primarily USA)

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  1. The HUD is relatively simple to deal with. As desinged, the kit PE is a bit wider than the box in the instrument shroud for the HUD and sits across the top. With a burr and knife, I widened this area by I estimate 0.5 mm on each side. The HUD PE assembly then sits at a shallower angle and at the base of this box. This helps the frame sit lower and clear the front windscreen. After some touchup painting on the shroud, will come the final HUD assembly, and then getting the front windscreen fixed in place.
  2. The start of the canopy, perhaps the most tedious of the build. Well ok, there are other tedious parts too. But work with clear parts and filling seems is never fun. Here's the root of the problem. One of the leaders of Kinetic posted on the forum at one point that the mold maker "added 0.5 mm", which caused the problem. I wasn't very clear on what had an extra 0.5 mm, but I believe it's the thickness. The windscreen won't sit down fully over the instrument shroud, and therefore sits proud in front as shown here: To fix this, I started by aggressively thinning the shroud and the glue surfaces to sink the forward portion lower under the windscreen. I used a simple sanding stick for this. The areas I attacked are marked with red: And the shroud in place after all of this work. It doesn't look much different, but makes a huge difference. On the windscreen itself, there seem to be three issues. 1) The front right corner, is very thick and doesn't sit in it's mounting channel. 2) The overall thickness along the mating surfaces catches up. And 3) the angle from the flat mating surface aft and the curve around the front needs to be shallower. Using a sanding stick, and carbide burr in a Dremel, and lots of test fitting, I dealt with these areas. Again, red marks the areas focused on: The shroud was then glued in place with a clamp making sure it was held firmly seated... And with a little coaxing, the fit along the front is much better... Each canopy piece has a pretty stout mold line that needs to be addressed. I start this with a triple grit polishing stick. For most of my sanding, I do wet sanding. On canopies, this is critical to avoid deep scratches that will be hard to get out later. Then I go through a full set of polishing clothes up to 12,000 grit. I take care to rinse after each step to keep particles from the prior step messing this all up. The final step is polishing compound. I use Novus 3 step compouond (only 2 real polishing compounds). I've had good luck with Tamiya polishing compounds in the past too, but find they don't come in a very large quantity for the price. I think some car modelers get good results by hand with a hand cloth, but I've never been able to beat a rag wheel in a dremel at low speed (about 10k RPM). I use a different wheel for each compound. Make sure the wheel is turning away from the edge. If it is turning towards it, it will catch and rip the part out of your hand. And wash thoroughly between each compound. Car modelers will top this all with a "wax", but given future painting, I stop here. The result is rather good, and if necessary, a wax can be added after painting. This is only about half the work on the canopy. The HUD is also too tall to mount under the canopy, and will begin addressing these issues in the next update.
  3. Some more progress and headway! All the control surfaces have been added. All the antennas, lumps, bumps, etc are glued on. And all the airframe PE has been added (which is basically all the PE in this case). Some of the pylons, tanks, and doors have been cleaned up getting ready for pain. And I've started dealing with the front windscreen, which is less than fun. There's not a huge amount to say for these final airframe construction tips. The only real point I can note is the locating pegs on the flap actuators are too long for the corresponding holes in the flaps. These are easily trimmed down all fits well. The leading edge slats for a parked aircraft should be slightly drooped. At this stage, there's enough delicate stuff hanging off the aircraft that I also break out a stand to start to hold the aircraft for assembly. The underside of the completed airframe... A close up of all the PE in the nose bay... And the top side... And this is the batch of all the hanging things that needed seams filled. The panel lines on these parts are "softer" and pass over more curved surfaces. So I used a little different approach. This curved photoetch piece is a part from a Hasegawa scribing set that is like a micro saw. It works well over the curves. I think I use a squadron scriber to widen these areas to match the surrounding panel lines. I'm maybe halfway through the canopy debacle, but will start that in a new post. It's a bit tedious and long winded.
  4. A drill in a pin vise is probably best, but a sharp 11 blade can often work well.
  5. I’m no submarine expert, but I believe those are actually docking points for a DSRV.
  6. All the slime lights are raised on this kit, and most others I see. I end up leaving them. It's not realistic or to scale, but my options are to just completely remove them or try my luck at rescribing them. And my scribing skills and patience I don't think are up to the task. The Eduard set has photoetch options that may be a bit thinner, but ultimately aren't much different. So I'm only using those to replace the ones I just couldn't save from seam filling.
  7. This is complicated. First, it is not clear to what extent you're immune once you've had the illness. Tests are remaining positive in people who appear to have recovered (i..e., the virus is still living in them). But what that means is unclear. Some speculate it means you get no immunity by having the disease and can easily get it again. That's likely not true to that extreme, but we don't know. Secondly, case fatality ratio always has a more accurate numerator (deaths) because those are obvious. The denominator is hard to know, because of lot of these people may just think they have the flu. So Germany's true case fatality ratio may appear much better than the USA because they simply know more about the real denominator. Just because we don't know about a case of coronavirus in the USA doesn't mean it doesn't exist and play in to the denominator. Where extensive and rapid (this 2 day wait for results with the CDC test is BS when others can come back in 4 hours) testing do save lives is in early isolation of infected individuals preventing further infection. But that won't reflect in the case fatality ratio.
  8. Thank you both for the comments! I'm nearing the end of the antennas, PE grills, etc. So then a couple days of cleanup on gear doors and pilons and I can start painting. I shouldn't kid myself, that'll be more than a couple days. But it's moving at least!
  9. the argument against that would be color coverage. Because of the leveling agents in gloss paints, they tend to pull away from small details like panel lines. And they tend to go on thicker. So there’s a definite argument to make some thin coats with a flat paint. Mask and spray all your colors. This would leave you with a uniform color, thin coat, smooth surface. And then put on a clear gloss that does t show if it pulls a fraction of an inch away from a panel line. This can actually lead to thinner overall paint coverage with more uniform results.
  10. The issue will be residue. A true polishing compound is just a fine abrasive. So if thoroughly washed, should be ok. The Tamiya wax is just that, and I’d expect to be a very delicate coat since the wax base layer under the chrome could just pull up. As has been said already, a plastic container will be key. Maybe not the best time to be out in the stores shopping, but large basement and garage storage container work. I found one to fit a 1/32 F-16 Thunderbird, so I k ow they’re out there. Also as has been said, try it and see. How delicate is too delicate? A test run could help you decide.
  11. I felt like I actually needed to finish something. So I broke out the Bronco 1/350 Seawolf for a breather. This is ultimately more of a painting exercise given the simplicity of a modern sub. You can't screw up a modern sub that much, but fit was not great. Some filler was needed around the conning tower and some of the fins. I chose to build this as the Connecticut, as I was able to find some drydock photos proving this was in an all black scheme. I used some reference photos of the Jimmy Carter (not quite the same boat, but close). The lower hull got a coat of Tamiya XF-69 NATO black, and then streaks of a light gray (I think it was XF-19) sprayed along the edge of a index card. Very dilute XF-69 was then sprayed back over the hull leaving this somewhat translucent to show the streaking. The hull plating/streaking isn't seen in photos around the sonar dome/panels, so these were brush painted back to straight XF-69. I normally airbrush almost everything, but the border wasn't very discrete, making masking hard. The "boot strip" was then masked to paint the upper color. This was then painted a base of Tamiya XF-85 Rubber Black, before using the "salt method" to add some variation in the color. Water was sprayed on... Salt was then loosely sprinkled and allowed to dry. Light gray was then light sprayed in a patchy manner. Some "plating effect" was also added to the conning tower at this time. The salt was rubbed off and diluted XF-85 used to lightly overcoat this now. The conning tower was overcoated with XF-69 to keep tonal variations up. The final effect of the two blacks... The front sonar dome was then masked. I find it helpful to use a circle gauge to be sure this is kept "true". And this was sprayed Tamiya XF-1 Flat Black. The screw was sprayed "brass" first, then misted with some copper to get a more realistic look... The light gray/dark gray of the scopes/antenna camouflage are supplied as decals, but these don't really fit at all. So I hand painted them. Then gloss coat and decals... And then the final flat coat. I decided to leave this as a fresh out of the dry dock build. Partly because I couldn't find good reference for how this black weathered. Partly because I was keeping this build simple. At some point with all my final builds, I'll put this in a well lit photo tent, get the camera on a tripod, and take some well exposed, balanced photos. But that day has not yet been today, so I'll leave this thread here for now.
  12. The Eduard landing gear bay inserts were glued in place. I apply some normal CA to hold the part in position, then use a microbrush with superthin CA to fill the gap. Some light sanding matches the PE part perfectly to the contour of the fuselage surrounding the part. I haven't sanded these areas down yet in this picture to blend, but that is complete now. The molded in slime lights of the vertical stabilizers don't match with the printed location on the decals perfectly (the tail art and slime light is all one decal). So these were sanded off. There's a number of control surfaces for later positioning. The assembly is fairly straight forward, but there is some clean up and enough of them in numbers to take a bit of time. The fit of each piece is not terrible, but poor enough that I choose to glue these in place before painting to keep glue/seams tidy. Painting is a bit more challenging, but not unreasonable. And this is where she stood as of a couple nights ago. The basic airframe is done. All control surfaces are ready to be added, and slowly being glued. Then it'll be small bits, final PE, canopy, and ready for paint on the airframe. I'll likely pause before pain to work on getting a lot of the pylons and gear doors ready for paint at the same time.
  13. The major issue I've found with the nose is that it wants to taper narrower at the top. So the cross sections match well at the bottom part, but then the nose assembly where it meets the rest of the fuselage wants to have a narrower profile. This is relatively easy to combat at least. First, I glued the bulkhead to the forward nose wheel bay instead of the nose assembly. I then glued the lower panel to the side panel without the IFR probe. Some care here will make this seam easy to deal with. Kinetic didn't get the edge of these two parts quite flat. There are peaks at the tab/slots that don't look very obvious on the part alone, but once they join it's obvious. Sanding this flat will tidy this up well. I then glued this to the fuselage... I then glued the IFR box to the upper nose/fuselage and then glued the other side in place. Apparently I didn't get any pictures before glueing this side panel in place. I didn't glue the top seam until everything else was in place. This was then able to be clamped down and glued well. The seam work and rescribing was fairly light around this section, but now it's basically a complete airframe... This is getting close to catching up with wear I'm at currently. With the next update, will get basically a complete airframe ready for control surfaces and the small bits.
  14. It’s certainly far from perfect, but isn’t terrible either. My first attempt got up to the nose, then sat in a box, and was crushed in a move. The second one had landing gear, doors, etc. before the fateful dullcoat. So I have been through the windscreen once. It does take some work. I’m not sure my method and Dave’s are the same, but I’ll share mine when I get there. Overall, I think it’s the best legacy Hornet out there. It’s the only one I’ve built. But I did have a Hasegawa kit until the Kinetic was released. I feel like the construction pitfalls are very similar between the two (except the nose and windscreen) and the Kinetic is much more detailed. I’ve only read reviews of the Hobby Boss kit, but it doesn’t seem worth it.
  15. I've been through two runs. Both met the shelf of doom, although one was early in the build due to a move and fallen box. Either way, hopefully I've learned a few things and want to pass them on. It's getting easier each time. I also have two more to build at some point, a Blue Angels and the RCAF anniversery scheme. When scribing to replace lost detail, I find it is very easy to not make ends meet up with existing panel line detail. The exact panel line can be hard to see or appears to move a little bit depending on how "soft" the detail is. So to start, I apply some Tamiya black panel line wash, let it dry, and then buff the excess away with some 0000 steel wool. My tools for rescribing very by the plastic. I find needles to work better on softer plastic. The Kinetic kit is a harder plastic, and I prefer scribing tools here. I am using the Tamiya scriber with 0.1 mm tip. I do about 3-4 passes using the Dymo tape as a guide. Once I've done a few lines, I again give it all a black wash and buff down with steel wool. The steel wool does a better job of keeping dust out of the new panel lines. But beware, it will leave small particles that will rust. So this is best for prep work before paint, but not so good once you start putting color on. The rivets were replaced with an RB productions wheel. After rescribing a side, this is what it looks like (try to ignore the poor depth of field here): And both sides done ready to get the nose... I was going to include the nose with this update, but it's getting late here. I'll work to add that tomorrow.
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