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CrowTRobot

Tamiya 1/48 A-1J Skyraider

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I just finshed the fantastic Tamyia A-1J kit, and it's easily one of the best kits I've ever built. The engineering and detail are just superb. I was inspired to build this after reading several Vietnam-era air combat diaries written by veteran jet pilots. These pilots went out of their way to praise the "Sandy" and "Jolly" crews that rescued so many downed aircrews under extremely hostile conditions. My model is finished in the markings of Capt. George Marrett who flew such missions out of Nakhon Phanom, Thailand. It's configured with a typical Sandy SAR mission loadout.

I used Model Master enamels for the SEA camo paint job and artists oils and Promodeller washes for the weathering. Those are kit decals, and although they looked thick at first they went on perfectly. I added the following enhancements to an already great kit:

  • Substituted a 150 gal. drop tank (Two Mike's resin) for the kit's 300 gal. tank mounted on the starboard stub. The 150 gal. tank was more commonly used on this station.
  • Sandy loadouts often carried M47 white phosphorus ("Willy Pete") bombs, but Tamiya didn't include any so I scratchbuilt a pair.
  • Scratchbuilt the Yankee Extractor rocket and mounted it beside the canopy actuator behind the pilot's headrest.
  • Added the VHF-FM whip antenna to the upper-left side of the fuselage.
  • Added the wire antenna using EZ-line.
  • Added static wicks to trailing edges of control surfaces.
  • Added brake lines to main gear struts.
  • Added Eduard photoetch.

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I used Model Master enamels for the SEA camo paint job and artists oils and Promodeller washes for the weathering.

While building this kit I read "Cheating Death" by George Marrett. It was the first time I ever read a book written by the pilot of the actual aircraft that I was modeling! I highly recommend it to anyone wanting to learn more about the U.S.A.F. Skyraiders and the men who flew them in Vietnam.

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"That others may live"

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Just excellent! Very nice paint job and weathering. Your realistic weathering really makes it. I like your attention to small details like the wing leading edge and the air inlet. Nice oil stains underneath and on the drop tank. :thumbsup:

Tom

Edited by Tom G

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Fantastic build! I just love everything about it. Really nice weathering without going overboard. Bravo! :thumbsup:

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That looks really great.

Can you say a few words on how you achieved the worn look on the tires, and the spill on the drop-tank?

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That looks really great.

Can you say a few words on how you achieved the worn look on the tires, and the spill on the drop-tank?

Thanks! I painted the tires Floquil Grimy Black (really a very dark grey), and when it was dry I painted the treads with very, very thin Light Ghost Gray built up in layers. The drop tank was more fun. First, I coated it with Future to protect the base coat of Camo Gray paint. Then, I took an old paint brush with short, stiff bristles and dipped it in thinned mixes of Burnt Umber and Payne's Gray artist oils. I then flicked the bristles of the brush with my finger near the surface of the tank to produce oil spatters. Some of these I'd leave alone, others I'd wipe in the direction of airflow/gravity. Still others I'd blow around using air from an empty airbrush. I'd do this repeatedly, building up the effect in layers. I also used dot filters with un-thinned oil paint, wiping most of it off and generally smearing it around as reference photos indicated. It was pretty easy because if you don't like what you've done you can always remove it with some mineral spirits and a paper towel.

I used the same technique for the stains on the belly although they're not as easy to see once the tank was attached.

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Absolutely fantastic looking Sandy!!!

The weathering and staining are perfectly balanced, and I love the load out depicted.

Did you use tape or BluTac for the masking?

Mike

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Absolutely fantastic looking Sandy!!!

The weathering and staining are perfectly balanced, and I love the load out depicted.

Did you use tape or BluTac for the masking?

Mike

Thanks! I used BluTac, and it was the first time I ever tried it. It worked very well and it was so easy.

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Simply fabulous, sooner or later I'm going to build one of these, and if it comes out half as good as yours I'll be ecstatic.

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Thanks! I painted the tires Floquil Grimy Black (really a very dark grey), and when it was dry I painted the treads with very, very thin Light Ghost Gray built up in layers. The drop tank was more fun. First, I coated it with Future to protect the base coat of Camo Gray paint. Then, I took an old paint brush with short, stiff bristles and dipped it in thinned mixes of Burnt Umber and Payne's Gray artist oils. I then flicked the bristles of the brush with my finger near the surface of the tank to produce oil spatters. Some of these I'd leave alone, others I'd wipe in the direction of airflow/gravity. Still others I'd blow around using air from an empty airbrush. I'd do this repeatedly, building up the effect in layers. I also used dot filters with un-thinned oil paint, wiping most of it off and generally smearing it around as reference photos indicated. It was pretty easy because if you don't like what you've done you can always remove it with some mineral spirits and a paper towel.

I used the same technique for the stains on the belly although they're not as easy to see once the tank was attached.

Thanks for the tips. I'm going to try these on my next build.

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Just a perfect rock solid Sandy build. Outstanding painting, decaling, and your weathering really just ties everything together. I really need to add a Sandy to my must build list.

Joel

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