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Monogram A-6E TRAM 1/48


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On 4/21/2020 at 4:27 PM, wardog said:

Thanks to all for the encouraging comments; you guys have been sticking with this build for a long time so your continued support is much appreciated.

 

The Underdog, thank you as well for looking and It's never too late to join the party. Seems like you're a new member so make sure you take a look at all the other great work being done by ARC members.

 

-Elmo

 

Elmo,

You are correct, its been 2 months since I became a member here. And, I've been like

a "kid in a candy store." So many talented modelers on the ARC Forum, their projects

and models are a true testament to the skills learned and perfected. Most every-time

I open and visit a thread, I'm amazed at the photos and narrative accompanying them.

When I think it can't get any better, another modeler seizes the moment and raises the

bar once again. Wishing you continued success with this build... thanks for your kind

welcome!

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Superior craftsmanship each step of the way.  This has been one of the best demonstrations of what can be accomplished by very few of us, but it serves as an inspiration every time I get a notification you have posted new content.  Always look forward to learning how a master overcomes a challenge.

 

BW

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Thanks again for the comments gentlemen. If my work serves as inspiration to some then that's definitely something I can be proud of.

 

coneheadff, been a while since we've chatted; I work in the aerospace industry as well so definitely hard times for us as it is for the majority of us. Hope you are well.

 

Going forward I foresee having more bench time available so It shouldn't be 8 months before the next update. I'm hoping maybe weekly at this point.

 

Before I start applying paint to the model, which is the other part of the build I'm dreading as I've only painted two models in the past twenty years, I decided to tackle the canopy. This needs to be done so I can paint it at the same time as the rest of the model. It's at the beginning stages right now but nonetheless, It's progress. I plan on fully building up the interior so it will take a bit of time. Luckily, it won't be anywhere as difficult as the windscreen.

 

I decided to build up most of the details on the canopy structure because the piece I have from the Blackbox kit was riddled with tiny air pockets and has a rough surface texture. Here are the boxes that are placed on the rear shelf of the canopy. I should have a lot more to show by next week.

 

Note: I edited the pic link out of this update as I couldn't get it to load.

 

 

 

If the pics I upload from this point forward aren't visible as standalone, they'll all be in the album link I provided in one of my previous posts. I also included a pic of the car I bought 8 months ago which was the reason for my modeling hiatus. This is my second 240z I've owned and the other hobby that takes up some of my time.

 

Thanks again gentlemen,

-Elmo

Edited by wardog
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  • 4 months later...

Elmo, I just found this build link and your work is nothing short of incredible.  I went thru all 27 pages and your build got more interesting with every click.  Well done and thanks for posting for so long. 

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Hello Sodasorb,

First off I apologize for the late reply; I didn't receive an alert that an update had been made and just happened to notice your update this morning while catching up on other builds. I appreciate you taking the time to review all the pages and for leaving the positive feedback.

 

Although updates are far and few between, this build is still ongoing.......even if at a snails pace. I recently finished detailing the canopy and will show some pics soon. I would probably do a better job of making frequent updates except for the fact that lately I've been experiencing issues with the pics being viewable. It's been more than discouraging as I spend a good amount of time going through the upload process and then not be able to view the pics.

 

If I get some time later today I'll try an upload some new pics.

 

Thanks again for looking.

 

-Elmo

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Gonna try to attempt to load some pics of my latest work. This time around I focused on the canopy. At this point It's about 90% complete, minus a few detail pieces that I'll add after I paint the outside frame in the fuselage color. I've had a lot of issues in the recent past with the pics I load being viewable, even though they're being pulled from a shared folder in Google Pics. I'll also add a link to the album just in case the pics aren't viewable.

 

As usual, a lot of work was required to add all the bits and pieces required to create what's shown. There's a lot of scratch built items along with some bits sourced from the Black Box resin set that make up what's along the center frame on the canopy inside. Just like the windscreen, the canopy also had to get widened by repeated dipping in boiling water. This caused a lot of imperfections which had to be removed by careful sanding/polishing. Unfortunately, It's impossible to remove all of the imperfections but enough were removed to end up with an acceptable finish.

 

Here is a link for those that wish to see the pics since I just confirmed the pics I tried loading aren't viewable herein........ 

 

https://photos.app.goo.gl/eKd2NggzuVaJ6ZYD7

 

-Elmo

Edited by wardog
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Elmo that’s insane!   I’ve built the Revell A-6 but no where near as detailed as yours.  Working on an EA-6B currently and I get how the canopies don’t have the detail.  I added something but not to the fine work you have on yours.  Keep the pictures coming!   Really great work. 

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Thank you Sodasorb. The Revell A-6 is a great kit but also has quite a few shortcomings. It was also the only game in town when I stated this build so I didn't have much of a choice. But even with all of Its shortcomings it can still be made into an awesome model....you'll just have your work cut out for you. The only other offering of the A-6 in 48th that I consider better is the Hobbyboss kit; however, that came out years after i started mine.

 

Good luck on your Prowler.......they can turn out quite nice too.

 

-Elmo

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Thanks to those that have looked and left comments along the way.

 

I wanted to include a few more pics of the canopy from a side angle but the clear plastic distorts the image enough to not make it worth it.

 

Rich, no problem with posting my pics; I seem to be too inept to successfully do so myself so the help is much appreciated.....thanks! And for those that have not seen Rich's work, it is beyond amazing. His modeling techniques are light years ahead of anything I've seen before........we just have to get you to finish something ;).

 

Cheers,

Elmo

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Thanks again gentlemen for all the comments. I realize I don't post very often so I really appreciate you guys keeping interest in my build. Some of you guys, you know who you are,  have been following along for years....Thank You!

 

RichB63, I apologize for the late reply to your question; I was out of town this past weekend and just got home today.

Regarding your question about using Future, no, I did not use it on either the windscreen or canopy. The nice finish you see in the pics is more of an illusion I suppose as the clear parts look much nicer in the pics than in person. As stated previously, hot water dipping to expand the windscreen/canopy left a lot of surface imperfections which required a lot of sanding/buffing to remove. Unfortunately, some of the imperfections are more deeply embedded in the plastic and simply cannot be removed. However, the many hours sanding/buffing/polishing resulted in an acceptable finish.

 

I considered using Future for the windscreen/canopy on this build as I did like the results from a test sample I did on a spare A-6 canopy. However, I felt there would be too much risk in damaging the Future finish once I started detailing/masking the insides of clear parts. Additionally, at least in the case of the windscreen, the fit was terrible and would require extensive blending/sanding where it meets the fuselage. If I inadvertently damaged the outside Future coating it would require too much re-work.

 

The results you see in the pics were achieved with cloth sandpaper of different grits (3200,4000,6000,8000) followed by use of different pastes/creams of varying abrasiveness beginning with vehicle headlight cleaner, Mothers Mag/Aluminum Polish, Tamiya polishing compounds and one other product that is more of a liquid cream made by Mr. Hobby. 

 

The above products are each applied by hand and then finished with a buffing wheel chucked in a pet nail grinder. I have one made by Oster which is has variable speed capability by use of a knob. Goes from 0-???.........can't remember the max RPM but it has very little torque which I think is perfect for polishing canopies. Paid about 20 bucks for it at a swap meet many years ago but the same model now is about $50.00 or so.

 

I'll try and attach a pic of all the products in this post but if it won't load you can see the pic in the shared album.

 

And for those interested, I also just started working on the A-6 nose gear door............and yes, the little door has turned into a model in itself.

 

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/pw/ACtC-3dTaOzWsYONvFVzlN3ZtoiJQD4IsDARKRzzE_mHqXnNiGguaf9-8Drtr1QxrmKKbtitQrbhYh7mBirz3y1fUQyNnuyBveDfvg-3x191Eg-PMm2Ef2ARhHpb_bm3K27k8ajMaZbWGPP1tKXmO2C_zgea=w1214-h910-no?authuser=0

 

Thanks for looking.

-Elmo

 

 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hello all,

 

Time for a quick update. As always, thanks for the replies and for taking a look.

 

I've finally reached the point where I can paint the fuselage and wings; whew, what a journey. However, since my painting skills are beyond pathetic, especially for something like the Navy TPS scheme, I've decided to finish up some other small items while I practice the techniques to pull off an acceptable paint job. That said, I recently completed re-scribing and super detailing the nose gear door. Monogram did an exceptional job at representing the door's detail and dimensions. The only real drawback is the lack of recessed details. It was somewhat of a tough choice to re-do it all due to how nice it already was. However, considering the rest of the model was re-scribed I had almost no choice but to proceed to re-work it.

 

I'll now be using Imgur instead of Google to share pics from. The upload test I did earlier worked great so hopefully it stays that way. Before sharing though I want to thank RichB63 for providing me the guidance on how to use the app.

 

As expected, I turned the door into a model in itself. If you count every individual piece that I used to detail it there's probably close to 50. Way too many and most likely overkill but It's how I like to do it.

 

The pics. Here you can see how nice the raised detail is on the stock Monogram part.

NtYl4iD.jpg

Building up the structure on the back side.

zeWKYSp.jpg

 

These are the housings that sit behind the 3 small lights on the door's front side. Each one is made of 3 pieces, not including the wire I inserted later. The 3 small lights on the door's front side were made by punching out small disks of clear .005 plastic that had been painted with transparent colors. The clear plastic was polished on the non-painted side and the polished side was installed facing forward on the door. After installing each colored disk in Its hole, I placed a tiny metal/chrome bead that I sourced from a watch over each disk. The bead is to represent a bulb sitting behind the colored disk. To prevent the small disks from detaching, I placed a drop of Future over each bead/lens on the door's back side. Once dry I installed the light housings.

yxEDd75.jpg

 

Detail parts for the main light. I used a light from MV Lenses.......P/N 409. The back side of the MV lens has a very shallow curve, unlike the real thing on an A-6 which is more bulbous. I created a dome to place over the back of the lens out of round sprue. I began by shaping it into a dome then cut it from the rod. I then super glued the housing dome-side down onto a razor blade to facilitate hollowing out the back side to fit over the lens. Once done, I used super glue debonder to release the part from the blade followed by a bit of cleanup. 

wmGSLeK.jpg

 

Here is the light assembly just prior to installation.

L0NAzLp.jpg

A few pics of the backside and the front. Now, will just wait to install towards the end of the build.

NoSq4PG.jpg

sZHNBYT.jpg

QuupkfA.jpg

XjRLNdf.jpg

 

That's it for now.....enjoy.

-Elmo

Edited by wardog
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1 hour ago, wardog said:

Hello all,

 

Time for a quick update. As always, thanks for the replies and for taking a look.

 

I've finally reached the point where I can paint the fuselage and wings; whew, what a journey. However, since my painting skills are beyond pathetic, especially for something like the Navy TPS scheme, I've decided to finish up some other small items while I practice the techniques to pull off an acceptable paint job. That said, I recently completed re-scribing and super detailing the nose gear door. Monogram did an exceptional job at representing the door's detail and dimensions. The only real drawback is the lack of recessed details. It was somewhat of a tough choice to re-do it all due to how nice it already was. However, considering the rest of the model was re-scribed I had almost no choice but to proceed to re-work it.

 

I'll now be using Imgur instead of Google to share pics from. The upload test I did earlier worked great so hopefully it stays that way. Before sharing though I want to thank RichB63 for providing me the guidance on how to use the app.

 

As expected, I turned the door into a model in itself. If you count every individual piece that I used to detail it there's probably close to 50. Way too many and most likely overkill but It's how I like to do it.

 

The pics. Here you can see how nice the raised detail is on the stock Monogram part.

NtYl4iD.jpg

Building up the structure on the back side.

zeWKYSp.jpg

 

These are the housings that sit behind the 3 small lights on the door's front side. Each one is made of 3 pieces, not including the wire I inserted later. The 3 small lights on the door's front side were made by punching out small disks of clear .005 plastic that had been painted with transparent colors. The clear plastic was polished on the non-painted side and the polished side was installed facing forward on the door. After installing each colored disk in Its hole, I placed a tiny metal/chrome bead that I sourced from a watch over each disk. The bead is to represent a bulb sitting behind the colored disk. To prevent the small disks from detaching, I placed a drop of Future over each bead/lens on the door's back side. Once dry I installed the light housings.

yxEDd75.jpg

 

Detail parts for the main light. I used a light from MV Lenses.......P/N 409. The back side of the MV lens has a very shallow curve, unlike the real thing on an A-6 which is more bulbous. I created a dome to place over the back of the lens out of round sprue. I began by shaping it into a dome then cut it from the rod. I then super glued the housing dome-side down onto a razor blade to facilitate hollowing out the back side to fit over the lens. Once done, I used super glue debonder to release the part from the blade followed by a bit of cleanup. 

wmGSLeK.jpg

 

Here is the light assembly just prior to installation.

L0NAzLp.jpg

A few pics of the backside and the front. Now, will just wait to install towards the end of the build.

NoSq4PG.jpg

sZHNBYT.jpg

QuupkfA.jpg

XjRLNdf.jpg

 

That's it for now.....enjoy.

-Elmo

 

 

Whoa!  That is amazing!  😲

 

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Stunning work...and, in my opinion, well worth the extra effort. I don't think I've ever seen a model aircraft landing light so realistically depicted.

 

It's exciting to hear that you're fast approaching the paint and decal phase....I'm looking forward to that!

 

Congrats and thanks for the update,

 

Rich

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Thank you guys for the feedback!

 

Time for a quick update. Gonna keep with the landing gear components theme and will most likely stay on it until I complete all gear related parts,  including assembly of the gears and painting.

 

I recently focused on finishing the other two nose wheel bay doors. Each door received a bit of detailing but nothing as time consuming or as intricate as the forward nose gear door. I added only what I felt was necessary to enhance their appearance such as the hooks along the bottom edge of each door, mounts for the actuating arms, hollowing out the forward ends and a few other bits and pieces. I also decided to weather the doors a bit more than normal as the paint scheme will be that of a heavily used and battered A-6.

 

Here is the kit door; as you can see It's attached to the gear well side wall. The doors were obviously split to create individual units as shown in the following pics. I suppose Monogram did not intend for the model to be displayed as in-flight unless you modified these pieces.

vaX6Gcp.jpg

 

The doors with the forward end hollowed out and a filler piece shown.

cVGUmoj.jpg

The hooks were trimmed from a much larger piece of styrene as shown here. Luckily I only needed a total of four.

eE850lk.jpg

Here is a door with all the details added.

139WS0y.jpg

Doors painted and heavily weathered.

2VQByYO.jpg

Another view.

IBA8RA2.jpg

Here are the door actuators during the initial stage. These were rather simple to make considering how difficult some other items have been. I stretched round sprue over a flame to get a bit of a taper and flattened the tapered ends with a small plier. The ends were then shortened a bit, rounded and painted steel in color. After i finished making these I re-checked my references and noticed the real thing has an adjustment nut just above the steel colored end-piece. I thought about re-making the actuators to include this detail but felt the effort wasn't worth the reward so these are staying as-is.

2vKZofX.jpg

Completed doors minus installation and perhaps a quick gloss coat pass with a brush along the red colored door edges.

zCgajno.jpg

That's it for now. Hoping to have the gear assemblies completed in the next couple of weeks or so.

 

Cheers,

Elmo

Edited by wardog
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