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Mike J. Idacavage

1/72 Hasegawa F/A-18C Swiss Tiger

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Hi everyone! I have been looking forward to this build, so I thought that I should get off my butt and start some work on my end. I love colorful aircraft so Tiger schemes are a perfect fit. Although I have a pile of Tiger Meet decals in my stash, I had not actually built a model in a Tiger scheme. This GB was perfect motivation to break some of those decals out of my stash and get them on a model. I thought I would chalk up two personal modeling firsts for me with this build - my first Tiger Meet scheme and my first F/A-18 Hornet build. I will be modeling a Swiss F/A-18C Hornet in the 2007 Tiger Meet scheme. I will be using a 1/72 Hasegawa kit along with some Eduard PE and mask set. Here's how it looks at the start:

F18CSwissTiger_001_MJI12282014Large.jpg

To go along with the bits and pieces, here's the real thing that I am hoping to model:

hornet_parsys_15173_Image.jpg

I came across this photo in a search a few years ago but unfortunately I did not record where it came from.

I have a few other GBs that I am trying to finish up so the progress might not be light speed on this one. I DO plan on making the deadline, though!

Have fun modeling

Mike

:cheers:/>/>

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You've picked the same subject as I did, Mike. I have shot this Hornet (and others of course) at Axalp and decided to build one. I'll be using Academy kit.

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Hi Sebastijan! I think it is great that you will also be doing the Swiss Hornet with the Tiger Meet markings. Having actually seen that Hornet at Axalp, I can very easily understand why you would want to build the Hornet in these markings. I think it is cool that you are using the Academy kit as this will be an interesting comparison between the two different kit moldings but in the exact same markings.

I have started work on both the cockpit and the rather horrible sides to the Hasegawa fuselage. Until I get something that is worth photographing, here is a first shot of my epoxied nose weight right in front of where the cockpit will sit.

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_005_MJI01062015%20Large.jpg

I have not seen any mention that the Hasegawa Hornets need nose weight but I decided to not take the chance. Not much, but it is a definite start!:rofl:/>/>

Next set of photos should cover the scratch built searchlight that the Swiss Hornets have.

Have fun modeling!

Mike

:cheers:/>/>

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Got a little more progress to report and this is a bit more interesting than my start above! One of the distinguishing features of a Swiss Hornet is the searchlight mounted on the front of the fuselage below the cockpit. The Hasegawa kit was developed with the Navy/Marine configuration in mind and does not have any indication of the searchlight. Rather than find a black decal circle, I added a searchlight to the fuselage. In this photo you can see the location with the light eventually going where the two pencil lines cross. At this point I was planning on using a piece cut off the airliner window sprue in the photo.

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_010_MJI01222015%20Large.jpg

As I started to drill the hole, I realized that the clear windows I was planning on using were too large. It was back to my parts boxes and I found the perfect solution. I have a small clear part that was to be a dome on some long forgotten kit. However, the clear cylindrical attachment piece was perfect for the light. So I drilled the hole to fit the diameter of the dome base and then inserted this piece from the inside out. This put the dome on the inside and a nice round clear piece coming through the fuselage sides.

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_014_MJI01222015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_017_MJI01222015%20Large.jpg

I then epoxied the clear part from the inside. Next step is to cut the clear part flush on the outside, sand and polish and voila! A clear searchlight.

Have fun modeling

Mike

:cheers:/>/>

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.....and here is an update on the searchlight after the clear plastic is cut and polished.

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_020_MJI01252015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_022_MJI01252015%20Large.jpg

I actually have some more progress to report, but I need to take some photos!

Have fun modeling!

Mike

:cheers:/>/>

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I am now getting a little momentum in my build. One of the most challenging parts of working with the Hasegawa 1/72 legacy Hornets is assembling the fuselage due to the way the parts come together. I started on the fuselage sides and intakes and added them with a lot of fitting to the bottom of the fuselage half. Here's how it looks at this stage:

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_033_MJI02012015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_037_MJI02012015%20Large.jpg

I had already puttied and sanded the joints where these parts come together in the photos. I was concerned that the sides would not match up with the top of the fuselage (as seen by a test fit), so I added a spacer bar to the bottom which looks like it will be a big help when I putty and sand this area.

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_040_MJI02012015%20Large.jpg

That's it for now!

Have fun modeling

Mike

:cheers:/>/>

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Hi Mike, you are right, slowly but steady and the test fitting is never wrong. You already adopted swiss habbits? ;-)

The idea with the spacer is good and simple. But now I think with liquid glue you will not have a big putty party later!?

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Hi tobiK! You are very correct, perhaps I am learning to be a little bit Swiss in this build! I have missed finishing my last two builds here on ARC as I rushed and ran into problems. For this build am taking the slow and steady approach so that I have a chance to have a completed Swiss Tiger by the deadline. :rolleyes:/>/> I am also spending the time as you noticed to help decrease the amount of seam filling that I will have to do as the model gets assembled. BTW I really like your good way to describe the work needed on a Hasegawa Hornet as a putty party! :thumbsup:/>/>

I do have some more work to show here on my build. The cockpit is now finished. The Eduard set really is a nice way to complete the pilot's office. Here is how it looks when complete:

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_027_MJI02012015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_031_MJI02012015%20Large.jpg

The next step is to close up the fuselage and start the putty party!

Have fun modeling

Mike

:cheers:/>/>

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Those Eduard stuff is really nice! You never can achieve that look by your own painting. And beeing not so 3-dimensional is no big deal in 72! (My 0,05$). Only Eduard often goofs the cockpit color...always not matching the painting instruction.

I don't know what putty you have on the workbench, but I take only CA glue for small gaps (and when I do not want to wait, I spray accelerator on) and 2-K putty for bigger trenches (like Magic sculp). 1-K putty likes to shrink a bit always and it handles not nice at all when repair the engravings. Hard CA feels really almost the same like the plastic.

Yep, do not rush your kit but never stop building! I would like to send you one of our prices but it is the rule that you have to have at least one finsihed model within the deadline!

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Thanks tobiK for the encouragement! A heavy work/travel schedule last month and this month will slow me down, but I do have some progress to report. I have the main fuselage assembled and am now in the middle of filling those pesky seams and correcting flaws before I had the tail fins and assorted small parts. Here's the Hornet as it looks on my bench:

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_043_MJI02152015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_044_MJI02152015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_045_MJI02152015%20Large.jpg

I have also been working on some of the other small subassemblies such as the landing gear, fuel tanks, ejection seat, etc. but they are not that interesting to look at right now!

Have fun modeling!

Mike

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Nice work. I love the Eduard PE for that scale; it even looks good in 1/32. In fact, I have to keep reminding myself that you are building this in 1/72, because you're doing such a great job... definitely the Swiss craftsmanship is oozing into this one from across the Atlantic. I also love the art on the tail.

BTW, there should never be nose weight required for an F-18 model of any kind. I've built every kit in every scale for Hornets, and never once used nose weight.

ALF

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Thanks Alf! That's a good tip about not needing nose weights in a Hornet kit. As this was my first, I was not eager to find out the hard way that a nose weight was required!

I have been able to work a little bit on my Hornet over the past month and have some photos as proof. :lol:/>/> I have the main pieces on the fuselage with several sessions of putty/sand/primer/repeat on record. Here is how it looks with just a little bit of touch up required (I hope) and some of the fiddley bits to be added before I start the final paint process.

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_049_MJI03262015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_051_MJI03262015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_052_MJI03262015%20Large.jpg

Have fun modeling!

Mike

:cheers:/>/>

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Nice progress Mike, Hasegawa Baby Hornet does need some putty :) Still, It's well worth the effort:)

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Hi Thadeus, well said! The Hasegawa Hornet does seem to give one some exercise with the tube /jar of putty! After I posted these photos I found a few small areas that I am not happy with, so it is back for another round of corrections before I can move on to the paint step. Fortunately, nothing major in regards to further repairs!

have fun modeling

Mike

:cheers:/>

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Sebastijan's entry reminded me that I have not posted in quite some time on my meager progress! I actually can report a small update on my Swiss Hornet. I now have all the little bits and bumps added to the Hasegawa basic F-18A molds to make it a C. I also have reached the point that I am reasonably satisfied with the various seems and defects filled and panel lines rescribed. Here is how it looks now with the basic construction completed and a final coat of primer added to blend everything together:

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_057_MJI04212015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_059_MJI04212015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_063_MJI04212015%20Large.jpg

Now it is on to the final paint steps. First thing up will be to paint the rear wells gloss white followed by the basic color coats. Stay tuned!

Have fun modeling

Mike

:cheers:/>/>

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I hope I am not too late - the bumps under the intakes should be sanded off and double flare/chaff ejectors installed.

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Sebastijan

Thanks!!!!! I had completely missed that change from a standard F-18C. :doh:/> I have been focused on work and other parts of life for the past few weeks and I unfortunately did not see your post until it was too late. I am just about finished with the color coats for the Hornet. As I am trying to finish my build before the end of this GB, I think I will press on and accept that error for this build. I have a few more Swiss Hornets in my To Do pile, so you very good advice will save them!

Hopefully, I will have a few photos of the painted Hornet to show in a few weeks.

Have fun modeling!

Mike

:cheers:/>

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Hey no sweat! I am no Hornet expert and I wouldn't have noticed it if I wouldn't be researching them for my own build. I think those bumps are A/B model specific.

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Time for another update on my Tiger build. I am happy to say that the final color coats are now on my Bug. I have completed the major paint job and the paint is properly curing. Next step is to shoot a clear glass coat (Mr Color Clear) over the model and subassemblies in preparation for the decaling stage. Here's how my Tiger Meet Hornet looks now:

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_067_MJI05122015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_071_MJI05122015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_073_MJI05122015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_074_MJI05122015%20Large.jpg

Hopefully, the next time I post an update in the GB, my Hornet will be wearing some colorful markings!

Have fun modeling

Mike

:cheers:/>/>

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This project is actually going at the speed of melted Swiss chocolate! :rofl:/>/> I resigned my old job a few weeks ago and immediately started a new job so my modeling time has been almost non-existent due to a bunch of business travel required. I have managed to wrestle the decals on to the Hornet. Here's how it looks right now:

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_082_MJI05122015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_079_MJI05122015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_078_MJI05122015%20Large.jpg

This is the first time that I have worked with Zotz decals and did manage to screw some things up. Fortunately, they are really hard to notice on the model for most observers. There are a lot of really small and almost barely visible stenciling that goes on the model. When I got to this stage, I washed of the decal solvent stains as I usually do. Unfortunately, many of the tiny stencils came right off and were lost. As most of them were not easy to see anyway, I will continue to try and make the deadline for this GB and not worry about them. Next step is to spray a clear coat followed by the matt coat.

It will be tight (more traveling next week) but I still hope to make the finish line for this Tiger build!

Have fun modeling

Mike

:cheers:/>/>

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Looks like we are side by side now :D I plan on spraying another gloss coat today and start with oil wash weathering tomorrow.

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Awesome build! I usually don't bother with most stencils, as they're often indistiguishable from the TPS camo colours :)

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Made it!! Whew, this was close but I just finished my Tiger Group build. :banana:/>/> I usually either get the model finished in plenty of time or I am completely blown away in regards to timing. Getting the model completed on the last evening of a GB is a first for me. Way too much stress! :lol:/>/>

Here's how the Hornet looks right now sitting on my bench:

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_089_MJI06302015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_094_MJI06302015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_098_MJI06302015%20Large.jpg

F18C%20Swiss%20Tiger_087_MJI06302015%20Large.jpg

After looking at the photos, I see a few small things that I would like to correct before it goes up on my shelf but all in all it has been a fun build. I'll post the same pics up in the completed build folder for the record.

Thanks to everyone who participated in this build with both models and comments. It has been a fun 6 months!

Have fun modeling

Mike

:cheers:/>/>

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