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Challenger deploys LDEF in 1/100

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I haven't forgotten about this ... I've had to research Decal Paper / Film and bought some Papilio material. We shall see how this works out. The Expert's Choice quality is too inconsistent for me. Then ... my printer wasn't printing out the right colours, which I'll need to print out my decals. And then the Printer's printhead stopped working properly.


So I've spent the past few days trying to flush it out and release the blockage ... to no avail. So, now I have to see if I can buy a new printer which uses the same, expensive, cartridges.


I'll be back at this ASAP!  

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Were you able to get your printer issue resolved? If not, I can print them for you on my laser printer if you want. Let me know.

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I had to buy a new printer as the Printhead was done. And due to some health issues ( minor, yet aggravating ) and life in general, I haven't been back at the modelling table in 3 months or so ...   but I hope to be back real soon ... cuz I've got 3 or 4 projects that need to get completed ... including that Group Build effort!


Thanx very much Hotdog for the offer!

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So, it's now January 13, 2018 and the old photos have been replaced ( it took almost 3 hours!! ) ... and here's just a quick update ...



The LDEF has been sanded and painted ... and then sanded ... and then filled and then sanded ... and then painted ....... there were just too many flaws, and every time I re-sanded it, some flexing in the model would loosen up another panel or two ...





... and re-paint ... 





... and re-sand ...







... and I'll give it another 'once over' before I paint it again.


Meantime I designed and printed my decals ... they just need to be applied ...




... and now, we're up to date!



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Looks great! Hotdog’s decals are always fabulous. Looking forward to seeing more. I’ve started tinkering with my shuttles again. I’ve got to figure out what to do with the photo sharing issue. 



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Posted (edited)

So now ... where was I? ... oh yeah, I wanted to put decals on the LDEF ...


Using a few images of the LDEF I was able to map out all the locations of the various materials, drew up something that sort of looked right and put 'em down ...





... however, this decal material is GARBAGE!! ... and it took a lot more time to place these things than it should have. The decals didn't want to come off the backing paper even after 2 minutes in HOT water. Once I was able to force them off, they didn't adhere to the model ... I did a search for Bel Decal, Hotdog likes to use this stuff, and it looks they've gone bye-bye, no web site. And Expert's Choice is crappy too IMHO! ... damn it!





These tile decal are homemade too ... 





The tile decals applied to the tail ... bu-u-ut-t-t ...





after 4 hours of 'drying', the decal didn't adhere. My thumb is under the decal after I, quite literally, blew on it.

Such awful decal material ... it made the decalling job way-y-y  harder and way-y-y more frustrating than it needed to be.




But, I'm back on this build ... I need to get caught up on this build too, but I think it's just about down to Paint and Decals.



Edited by K2Pete

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Ah the decal dance - usually a tough step for me.  I've tried coating the area first with microsol and had some success as it seems to want to bite the decal from the get go.  I've also coated clear and then put the decal down while the clear is still wet.  I feel the pain....



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Posted (edited)

I had to strip off all the decals to a project I did a while back because the adhesive had turned amber. Bad because the model was gloss white! (1/24 scale Peterbilt Wrecker). As I removed each decal and got them off the backing paper, I had to rub off the adhesive with my fingers and a soft paint brush until the carrier film showed clear. To get the decals to stick to the model, I used Elmers glue thinned with water to a consistency of super skim milk. The model is over 20 years old now, and the decals are still on and look pristine. Placed at IPMS Nationals in Orlando to I might add.


I'm betting the tough time you had getting the decals off the paper was just that - the decals only. The adhesive never left the paper. Try the white glue solution, and use a setting solution if you feel you need it.





Edited by Vidar_710

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Thanx Ret ... Microsol has no effect on this decal film. Papilio decal material is awful!


Tracy, I shan't use white glue, instead I use Future on hard to adhere decals. But even this solution, on this material, was "hit-and-miss". And setting solutions did NOT soften this decal crap at all! I emailed the company with my complaint and received no usable response.



So I struggled with this decal film ... it came loose, or it stuck too much or it chipped or it came off the backing paper WHILE I WAS TRIMMING the decal BEFORE I PUT IN WATER!!!

But completed the LDEF. Here's an image of the real thing to give you a better idea ... those are all various material samples that were installed on this Long Duration Exposure Facility. It was placed in orbit specifically to determine how different material performed over a long period of time in the harsh environment of space.





... and mine, using decals to represent the material samples ...





I also used foils to represent some materials.





And DONE! The final pieces were the Grapple fixtures.





... and the other end.





Instead of decals for the Nose Tiles, I'm leaning toward strips of Styrene to replicate 'em. This is a pattern which I may use.





And these are patterns for the area between the windows and the nose ... 4 versions of the patterns refining the shape as I go along.





Then I decided to use First Aid tape to do the wing FRSI 'tiles' ... I photocopied a drawing, enlarged it and will use it as a guide.





I cut out squares and rectangles and stuck 'em down.





And done. I only did a partial wing because the Payload Bay doors will hide 2/3 of the wing.




Getting closer and closer. I'll paint the First Aid tape Flat White, then apply Future to 'em to give 'em a gloss coat for decalling.  Using the KIT'S decals  :thumbsup:

The OMS pods also got an application of First Aid tape.


Thanx for taking a peek!


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I made some more decals of the Flipper Doors and placed 'em on a small scrap of 0.010" styrene ... I'll cut 'em out and glue it down.

Notice the lower edge where the decal is lifting off the surface ... it's typical of the Papilio decal garbage.





While the decals were drying I decided to place the 'tiles' on the OMS pods ... I used strips of 0.010" styrene.





After the strips are glued down, I'll give 'em a little sanding to smooth the surface.





Then I cut out the Flipper Door decals on the styrene, after drying for 11 hours, and ... well ... the decal kinda surprised me ...




It ... had ... not ... adhered to the styrene ... at ... all! I had used a brand new blade and after the last cut, the decal ... just ... moved, there was no adhesive. 

Sheesh  :bandhead2:


 ... So I used a drop of Future and hopefully secured the decals onto the styrene ... but only time will tell!

Instead of making my job easier and fun, this decal material makes 4 times more 'work' ... but, on the bright side, I think I'm done with home-made decals on this model! Nothing but kit decals from now on!  :yahoo:



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