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BillL

Curtiss BF2C-1

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The building for my "yellow wings" customer continues !

This is Classic Airframes 1/48 Curtiss BF2C-1. This kit builds much more smoothly than the Helldiver.

The cockpit is nice. It has a resin floor, seat, instrument panel, rudder pedals, control wheel, stick, and control levers. The belts are cast with the seat. The tubular framework pieces are injection molded plastic, and needed to be reworked in order for them to fit. The rudder pedal supports were broken off in the bag (all four of them !), and were carefully pieced together (some more successfully than others).

The fin, tailplanes, and wings are all butt-joints, but they fit very well after dryfitting and sanding. The resin wheel wells needed to have a lot of material removed from their backs in order to fit in the fuselage. Because of the shape of the aircraft's belly, this kit has a very different breakdown of the fuselage parts. The left and right halves are molded without the ventral surfaces. These are two separate pieces (front and rear). There are some interesting compound curves there, and filling & sanding was needed to smooth everything.

I used Zap-A-Gap CA to fill the fuselage and wing seams, and white glue for the fin. The tailplanes needed no filler.

The interplane struts are somewhat fragile - they will bend if you're not careful. The cabane struts were too long, so I shortened them and glued them to the fuselage.

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My stock of Alcad ran too low to risk painting right now. I've ordered more, along with all the unit colors I'll need.

Edited by BillL

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Looking great, Bill. Can't wait to see those chrome yellow wings! She's going to be a beauty.

:thumbsup:

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Thank you Jamie !

Here's a little "teaser" pic of the Helldiver. I'll be painting it with Alcad (once my delivery gets here), and I use Future as a primer. It makes sense to paint the unit markings first, then Future the entire aircraft. I can then mask off the colors and spray the Alcad. I will then be all ready for the decals (always thinking !).

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By the way, the Army used Chrome Yellow on it's aircraft. The Navy used a shade that was slightly more orange. I used WEM (White Ensign Models) Japanese ID Yellow on the top of the wing.

Thanks again !

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Huh. I had no idea that they were not the same yellow. I Learn something new every day! :doh:

Looks sharp, with the yellow on.

:lol:

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Thank you Jamie and Marcin !

Jamie - you might not notice the difference unless you see color pics of them side-by-side. Most modelers seem to use the regualr "Chrome Yellow" on USN aircraft.

I finally have the painting almost finished. I had to fill, sand, and repaint in a few places, and I still have more to do (most noticibly the wheel wells). The Alcad and gloss colors show everything.

There wasn't a decal for the Lemon Yellow wing chevron, so I scanned the decal for the one for the other marking (it's red). I printed it, and used it as a template to mask and paint this one. Luckily, I noticed this before I painted the wing. The Lemon Yellow was painted first, then masked when I applied the orange-yellow to the wings. A Lemon yellow decal opaque enough to cover the underlying color probably would have been prohibitively thick.

I used Model Master enamel Willow Green on the tail, and Humbrol enamel Lemon Yellow. The fuselage and wings are Alcad Aluminum, The wheel wells are Duraluminum, the prop is Airframe Aluminum, and the engine is Stainless Steel.

The upper wing, prop, engine, and cowl are just dryfit for the pic. I still need to sand the engine cylinders more to get it to sit more forward. The cowl is paper-thin, and the seams opened countless times while test fitting the engine. The interior of the cowl will be painted with Alcad (probably Dark Aluminum).

Get out your sunglasses !

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Looking good Bill, I alway enjoy looking at your builds....especially you in-progress work.

Regards,

Robert

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Thanks Raptor Supporter and Marcin !

I got all the decals applied during a pleasant afternoon of work. There aren't many, but care was needed to keep the black stripes srtaight. And I thought it was colorful before !

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Man oh man is your build looking sweet! Looks like you almost home with it! ;)

Regards,

Robert

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That is one very pretty looking Curtiss you have there, Bill. Love the green tail. And as usual, a very clean build. Can't wait to see her finished.

B) :lol:

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Great job, Bill.

I always look forward to seeing your work. Those black decals really make the markings stand out!

Chris

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Thanks Robert, Jamie, and Chris !

It may not look it, but there's been a lot of work done on the little Hawk since my last post.

Since the engine is so visible, I decided to add a solder ignition ring and speaker wire cables. I drilled holes in the ring, and added stubs from smaller diameter solder. These were cut to length, and filed flat. Holes were drilled in these to accept the speaker wire. This was the first time I ever tried this, so it took me a couple days.

The resin exhaust stubs didn't align with the cylinders, so I cut them off and sanded the collector smooth. I cut sections of solder and glued them to the cylinders. When they were dry, I cut them to length to get the collector aligned.

The white metal landing gear took a lot of work to align and glue. After some fiddling, they sit true (what a relief !).

It took a bit of work to fit the vac windshield. I glued it in place with Zap-A-Gap CA, and filled it with Krystal Kleer. This meant that I had to touchup with Future, Alcad Aluminum, and more Future. The sliding portion was trouble-free.

I applied a dark gray wash to the aluminum surfaces, and darkened versions of the green and two yellows.

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I'm almost ready to start rigging this puppy.

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Looking beautiful, Bill! When you post more pictures, can you post pics of the rigging process with a description of how you are doing it? I would be fascinated to watch how you do it. I have a 1/48 Nieuport kit that my son wants to build with me, and I have never rigged a biplane before. I am sure your technique will prove to be a useful one. Thanks in advance! :)

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Lovely work!

There is something about pre-war US fighter aircraft that really makes them interesting, apart from the colours of course!

:)

MikeJ

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Beautiful work on that classic Curtiss. I have one in the stash and have not worked up the courage to attempt it as of yet. I found you build quite informative and inspiring, thanks.

Cheers,

Mark

PS. I'm looking forward to seeing your rigging technique. That is the one thing that I find most intimidating about modeling bi planes.

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Thanks Jamie, Marcin, Mike, and Mark !

Jamie - I'm by no means an accomplished rigger. I'm going to try drilling holes and using fishing line. If that doesn't work, I'll keep trying until I find something I like. My fingers are crossed.

Mike - I like the lines of the between-the-wars aircraft because they represent an art form in transition. You can see the influence of WW I and the precursors of WW II aircraft. One foot in each world, you might say.

Mark - if you can get one or two limited-run kits on sale, get them. The experience of needing to work over the parts will increase your confidence in your ability to do so. You need to crave, chop, fill, sand, and swear until it feels like a necessary part of the process. The rest becomes routine.

Thanks again !

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