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Amodel 1/144 Grumman Albatross HU-16E USCG

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I started this morning on Amodel's 1/144 Grumman Albatross HU-16E in USCG markings. Looks like it will be aircraft 7246 as shown on the box cover--it's got the classic red and blue slashes :)/>



I've got the Ginter book for references along with Google-foo. Page 64 of Ginter's book has several pictures along with some text of the aircraft with the AOSS (Airborne Oil Spill Surveillence System) configuration provided in the box. I already see one simple correction to make: the kit has you attach the wing-tip floats, which were specifically not present in this configuration. In any event, I'm thinking of doing 7246 prior to the AOSS mods to keep it in SAR mode.

My Google-foo tells me that MM Chevy Engine Red and Cobalt Blue are good matches for CG Red and Blue respectively--they look good to me.


Amodel are short-run kits, and that's pretty obvious:



I black out glass on 1/144 models. Painting the inside of the clear plastic is my preferred approach, but in this case, I think I'll mask and paint instead. While it would be easier to cut simple masks with a knife, I'll likely cut masks using a Silhouette Portrait.

Edited by dnl42
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Good thing this is so small, as it's been quite a fight to this point. Got the wheel wells fitted and gaps filled as well as blanking the fuselage glass openings. Mated the fuselage halves and got a good start on smoothing the fuselage seams. Took another couple of hours of filing to get the wings together.


Next on the program is to smooth out the nacelle seams, add engines, add the nose gear bay, and balance it.

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  • 1 month later...

O.M.G. This took a lot of work to get to this point, but it's ready for masking the cockpit glass and priming.

Here's the wing-fuselage joint when I started:


And this is after a LOT of lovin':


And overall, with some re-scribing:


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  • 2 weeks later...

Not much due to work. Started masking the cockpit glass, but haven't had any building time for a couple of weeks now. But, it will let up RSN.

With that, heigh-ho, heigh-ho, it's off to work I go...

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  • 2 weeks later...

OK. Got the cockpit glass masked and airframe primed with Tamiya white primer.

I also made up masks in Inkscape for the fuselage glass, which I'll paint black.


The upper block is the starboard side while the lower block is the port side. I cut the mask onto Frisket Film with my Silhouette Portrait cutter and will spray once the airframe is fully painted.

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  • 2 months later...

No, but I'm finally ready to paint!


Assembling those MLG was quite a chore. I used Silly Putty to hold the bits in place to align it all for gluing.

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Mr. Color White #1 is on. I'm really liking Mr. Color! :thumbsup:


Ready to paint the colors (MM Chevy Engine Red and Cobalt Blue), windows (black), props (black, white, red), and tires.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Most of the decals are on. The backing film is very thin, which makes placement exciting. However, they settle down very well. As you can see, there's a notch at the top of the blue fuselage stripe, I'll touch that up with paint.



I'll wait until I have the cowlings, engines, and propellers on to mount the propeller arc warning stripe. I had meant to mask and spray the side windows, but forgot, so now I'll cut windows from black decal paper and add them after I've flat-coated the airframe.

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Hm, I first realized that the blue stripe was too close to the red. It looks like the white space should be about the same width of the blue stripe. But, then I noticed that the color was just wrong. Looks like Amodel used the same insignia blue for the stripe as the roundel. So, I pulled it off. I'll paint some white decal paper with the blue paint I bought earlier, which is Model Master Cobalt Blue.

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This was a bear to build. There parts need serious cleanup, the plastic is somewhat soft, and a fair amount of filling and re-scribing was needed, and the blue USCG racing stripe was the wrong color. Of course, I added my own problems, like losing the propeller warning stripe decals (see the earlier post about waiting to apply those :bandhead2:). On the plus side, the decals were quite thin and settled in very well, it was easy to replace the blue racing stripe, and the aircraft's large size makes this a good subject for 1/144.


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