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Acc. Min. Grumman F3F 1/48 equivalant main gear wheels??

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Hello All...

I have been asked to repair a few of the models that VFA-11 has on display in their ready room here at Oceana. One of the models is a Accurate Miniature 1/48 Grumman F3F. I'm in need of one or two main landing gear wheels. The spare parts forum has me coming up empty so I'm wondering is there another kit I could look at to find a similar wheel to use? Are there resin wheels simialr to what I need out there. I really don't want to buy a whole kit that I would not build just to obtain the wheels I need.

Here is a picture of the model in question. Any help or direction would help.




Edited by Rhinolover
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Yep, F4F wheels should work for you. Grumman used essentially the same landing gear on all of their fighters until the F6F.

I had a look at the 1/72 Special Hobby F3F-3 and Academy F4F-4 and the wheels are very similar, the slight differences likely being due to kit manufacturer rather than in the 1-1.

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The True Details F4F is one approach. As noted the F3F and F4F used the same landing gear. so the wheels are similar.

I compared the AM F3F-1 to a Tamiya F4F-4 (not a TD resin wheel):

  1. On the F3F, the tires are 0.545" diameter and 0.146" thick. On the F4F, the tires are 0.530" diamter and 0.157" thick.
  2. The F3F tire has embossed lettering, "Goodrich Silvertown", while the Tamiya wheel is quite smooth.
  3. Both hubs have the same diameter.
  4. The outboard F3F hub has 4 bolt locations; pictures I have confirm this. The F4F hub has 6 bolts with another feature that could be a valve.
  5. The inboard hubs are even more different.

Bottom line, you could use the F4F wheel, but some work would be needed, and you'd best replace the other one, too...

But, another approach is to get a donor AM F3F kit. Since the kit comes with both weighted and unweighted wheels, you'd be able to repair the existing model and still build the donor kit.

The latter is a win-win IMHO.

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