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About titan

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    Tenax Sniffer (Open a window!)
  1. I may have missed something, what's wrong with the Revell nose? For improvements: Engraved panel lines Separate the sparrow from the shoulder pylons New missiles and rails all around Accurate B/D engine fairing New seats and instrument panels
  2. I compared the Aires, Black Box (True Details) and Verlinden cockpits side by side some years ago. In my opinion the Verlinden cockpit was the best. It was the most detailed, and I believe the most accurate. It also had the most parts. Black Box was second. I'd definitely recommend the Verlinden. They can sometimes be hit and miss but their F4U-1 cockpit is one of their best. The one thing I'd suggest for any of these cockpits is looking at adding either separate instrument decals or an Eduard PE instrument panel.
  3. has really got to stop. It's absurd how many posts are dedicated to bemoaning that fact that someone didn't get the kit they wanted during a sale because it was out of stock or someone has a lower price on something and therefore Squadron is terrible or whatever. I'd suggest that the fact that they hold sales at all should be seen as a good thing. But the amount of complaining about how the kit you wanted wasn't on sale or the overall selection or depth of discount wasn't what you wanted has been pretty bad. The first Squadron Black Friday sale was among the best sales I've ever seen. But it seems like we now expect the same magnitude of opportunity. We take it for granted that we'll get offered whatever we want for half off. But when I'm disappointed because all the YF-23s sold out at full retail before they could go on sale (yeah, I wanted one of those and waited too long for it) I don't think I have the right to complain about the retailer for not offering me a good enough deal. And yes, prices will vary between retailers. Squadron has quite a few kits cheaper than Sprue and Sprue has many cheaper than Squadron. And LuckyModel often beats them both. Doesn't mean that any of them are bad retailers. The sense of entitlement here lately is astonishing. If we don't find a particular deal satisfactory we are of course not obligated to buy. Consider though that many might find it nice that the deals are offered at all. Matt (who notes that a 1/32 Revell Lynx could be had for $12 this year which is pretty spectactular.)
  4. http://www.ebay.com/itm/148-CollectAire-North-American-AJ1-AJ2-AJ2P-Savage-resin-kit-Ultra-Rare-/190945580701 Also have an Fonderie Miniature Do-24T up for auction as well. Thanks for looking!
  5. titan

    1/32 Gripen

    Made some progress over the last little while. A coat of primer makes everything look quite a bit smoother (and reveals some additional flaws). I built this piece a while ago. It's the shroud/bulkhead at the rear of the cockpit. Details are mostly plastic and guitar string. The fit of this piece to the fuselage is not so great though. It looks okay, but still needs some work. I roughed out the cockpit tub a while ago as well. It's not detailed yet but the shapes are pretty good. It fits into the fuselage just fine, but I still need to add tabs or something to the fuselage piece to help fix it in place during assembly. Overall though, I'm very happy with the positioning and shapes. Still need to tweak a few things with the fit but I hope to start detailing this portion soon.
  6. titan

    1/32 Gripen

    Who says I can't do that too? :D
  7. titan

    1/32 Gripen

    The plan is to create a resin kit for release. Got a ways yet though.
  8. Quite a while ago I started a 1/32 Gripen kit. As in, trying to make a kit. I got most of the basic shapes but then stalled. Recently I've picked this back up and have been working on getting it to assemble-able parts. Here are the basic fuselage pieces. As I said I'm working on getting the pieces to fit together. Top and bottom of the front fuselage are almost there.
  9. Looking for $120 plus shipping or trade for any of the below. 1/32 Tamiya F-4E or EJ 1/32 Tamiya F-16C Thunderbirds
  10. You could do that. You could also cut a section out of the Aber interior barrel so that it matches the length of the cooling jacket. I think filling and re-drilling might be a little more difficult and you also have to consider that the Master barrels are still very nice just as they are. To be honest, either barrel will look much nicer than plastic parts. Thank you for the vote of confidence. Hope I can live up to it. :)
  11. Progress! "But wait!" you say, "What about the build? The WIP?" Well that's still to come. What you see are the major outside peices with not a lot on the inside. Most of the interior parts have yet to be done. I had a deadline come up and needed to have the model available. So I assembled the major components, some very basic interior items (seats, IP), painted and decaled it and there it is. And I think it looks pretty good. But I've still got a lot to do on this one, especially on the interior. And now with the added challenge of having already assembled this thing. Should be fun. Not your typical build method anyway... On the subject of decals: I made my own using Testors decal paper. And I learned a lot while doing it. For example, make sure you read the instructions first so that you're not frantically applying a last-minute lacquer overcoat because you didn't know you were supposed to use a decal bonder that you didn't buy and you don't have time to use future. Also, just because it prints in color on clear decal paper doesn't mean the colors are gong to show up well on the model. Especially red and yellow on an olive background. That mis-calculation lead to some frantic scrounging and hand-painting to get the serial right. The A/C name. This will be re-done. It's supposed to be red but came out maroon. That's after a double application too. You can also see it's pretty thick, I believe that's due to the aforementioned lacquer. Up close it looks like the ink bled a little on the L's at the bottom too(reference the bit about decal bonder)although this isn't really that noticeable in person. And the G isn't quite right. Anyway, just a couple of the lessons learned. More to come soon.
  12. The markings will have to be custom. Fortunately it shouldn't be that difficult. The major distinguishing markings for Shanghai Lil were the aircraft name on the pilot's side of the nose, the crew names under the pilot's window, the mission markings, and the serial number. The group and squadron markings were a large yellow horizontal stripe on the vertical fin for the group and a smaller white stripe beneath it for the 379th bomb squadron. I'll mask and paint those. The serials should be fairly easy to source. The plane name, crew names, and mission markings I'm going to have to do myself. The only one that's got me a little worried is the crew names because those were in white. So I need to get hold of someone with an ALPS printer or find one myself. :blink: There's a picture of Shanghai Lil here: http://57thbombwing.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_itemId=62953 She's the olive plane in the back. Note the dark spots on the vertical fin. I believe those are battle damage repairs.
  13. Let’s look at the barrels. All the previously mentioned gun sets come with resin barrels. In my opinion brass barrels look much better in 1/32 scale. I picked up the .50 cal barrels by Master and Aber. Let’s see how they stack up. Master top, Aber bottom. They're both the same length and width. How to pick which ones to use? Well, it initially came down to bore size. (Yes, I looked at that.) Aber, Master, and the real thing. The Aber barrel is, I believe, slightly more accurate here. Unfortunately, Aber has a bit of a problem as I look closer. The circled portion should be flush with the end of the cooling jacket. Either the Aber jacket is too short or the barrel is too long. Either way, the end doesn't look like an M2. However, if we put the master jacket on the Aber barrel... The Master jacket fits perfectly and the Aber barrel is no longer sticking out the wrong way. Is it enough of an improvement to justify buying both sets of barrels to make one gun? Probably not. I'd say pick one or the other. If you wanted you could fairly easily shorten the Aber barrel part or you could just live with the oversize bore of the Master barrel (because who’s going to look at that?) But if you happen to have both then you can get a better gun with the Master jacket and the Aber barrel. You'll notice I didn't look at the Profi barrels. The reason is because they are all different lengths corresponding to the different and incorrect lengths of the kit barrels. The M2 only had one barrel length as used on the B-25. It's possible that the kit and Profi were only intending to show the portion of the barrels that are visible. For example, with the package guns, a large portion of the barrels are hidden under the package fairing so you only need to show the portion that sticks out of the fairing. For the tail guns part of the barrels may be obscured by the canvas cover. That kind of makes sense except that on the kit and Profi barrels, the hole pattern in the cooling jackets comes to an end before it should on the shorter barrels. I did get one set of the Profi "special end" barrels. The special end is an exhaust deflector (often incorrectly noted as a flash suppressor) that was sometimes fitted to the package guns and the top turret guns. Shanghai Lil did not carry the package guns but did have the exhaust deflectors fitted to the upper turret guns. So those deflectors will be cut off of the Profi parts and installed on the Master/Aber barrels for the top turret.
  14. Taking a break from the interior for a bit. So let's talk about guns. The kit guns are lacking. Very plain and in some cases even different sizes. I got guns from CMK, Aires, and Vector as potential replacements. Let's see how they compare. Right side, from top to bottom: CMK, Aires, Vector. The Aires gun has a separate top cover so it looks a little different. The real thing (sorry, not great a taking photos through glass display cases). Left side, from top to bottom: CMK, Aires, Vector. Note that the Aires gun is from the waist gun set and so has some extra detail around the area for the charging handle. The Aires wing gun sets (correctly) do not have this detail. Also, disregard the ragged edge on the bottom of the Aires part. That was operator error (my fault). The real thing (again, sorry for the poor quality) You can see that Aires matches up nearly perfectly with the details of the real gun. Vector isn't bad but Aires is better. CMK is not close. I'll definitely be using the Aires guns for this build. The waist gun set will be used for the waist and nose guns. The wing gun set will be used for the top and tail turret guns. Both types of Aires guns. Wing guns left and waist gun set right. Note the detail differences where the charging handle would be. The wing guns are ideal for turrets while the waist gun set is perfect for the flexible mounts in the waist and nose. Also the fixed nose gun because I've only got four wing guns and I need them all for the turrets. So I'll modify that one as necessary. Of course the Aires guns aren't perfect... C'mon! Oh well, nothing a fresh xacto blade won't fix.
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