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82Whitey51

1/48 N2S-2 USN Stearman

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I’d been wanting to build the Revell Stearman for a while but kept putting it off because I knew I wanted to do an earlier Navy N2S-2. With no proper Lycoming R680 (with front exhaust collector) out there I waited…until finally picking up an “Engines & Things” R680 and robbing an exhaust collector from one of their other 9-cylinder engines;

 

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I also did some modification to the seats, rounding the backs and removing the molded in belts. With an open cockpit, these are pretty prominent, so I used some HGW fabric belts to dress them up. Tedious (X2!) but they look great.

 

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The remainder of the build goes together very nicely, great fit, no filler and very little sanding.

 

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I decanted Tamiya “Camel Yellow” for the overall paint, and used Tamiya’s vinyl “tape for curves” to mask off the red bands (Instrument training aircraft had the wide bands painted on them). With the paint dry and decals (Caracal Models, great sheet!) on I weathered it lightly with an oil wash. Then it was on to rigging. I typically am not a biplane builder because the rigging puts me off but after hearing about “Wonder Wire” I thought I’d try it out. Fantastic stuff! Makes rigging a breeze as long as you are careful about drilling your holes in the proper place, and at an angle close enough to the wire angle.

 

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One item that had me perplexed, was the “Spreader Tube” This is a component on biplanes that sits at the intersection of the wing rigging wires to keep them from beating against each other.  The wires run through the tube. I thought about how I could drill holes through such a tiny piece of rod, so precisely that all SIX wires would run through at a perfect angle…yeah, not gonna happen!

Instead, I did what most biplane builders likely do, and laid the spreader tube across the wires. It looks convincing enough in this scale.

 

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I added fuel lines and the clear sight gage to the underside of the upper wing tank.

 

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Next will be a coat of clear to seal everything up, and then wheels and engine installed.

 

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Edited by 82Whitey51

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Love it. Mine has been stalled for a while because I just can’t get the windshields masked and painted. Total psychological block.

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3 minutes ago, andrew.deboer said:

Love it. Mine has been stalled for a while because I just can’t get the windshields masked and painted. Total psychological block.

 

I broke down and just bought the Eduard masks for the windshields...worth every buck! The windshields are nicely molded and fit perfectly, but the areas to be masked off are small. Once I saw there was a masking set, I grabbed one.

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26 minutes ago, eraucubsfan said:

awesome job Whitey

 

Thanks dude! Hope everything's going good with you, man.

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Great job, the one thing I'm not even good at, rigging.

I've seen tons of these at airshows over the years, and

I even knew it was gonna be yellow before I got past the first

post! LOL. Great job, maybe someday I'll attempt this rigging.---John

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Wow, how did I miss this? Great work on the engine, which is a key issue for an N2S. What was the donor for the exhaust ring? I've looked around and figured I'd have scratch the whole thing!

 

Also, fabulous job on the rigging. 

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1 hour ago, crackerjazz said:

This is so fun to watch, as I can't imagine ever being able to do any rigging myself.    Beautiful work!

 

Hey, thanks for the compliments!

 

I tell you what, with this Wonder Wire stuff, it's not so hard. It's a ceramic wire (yup...glass basically), that can be cut using a rounded Xacto blade against a hard surface, sort of press and roll the blade across it and it'll snap. It is bone straight, with a little bit of flex in it. But once in place it will not sag or droop or be affected by humidity.

 

From there, as long as you have your lengths measured using a set of dividers,  holes drilled where you want it, or even just gluing it to the surface  ( ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ), you just glue it in place. I'm using a white glue myself and the Revell kit has the points where the holes should be drill marked on the kit pretty much...and the instruction sheet even gives you the length of each wire!

 

It doesn't come on a spool, that's what I thought initially when I heard "wire", but in 10 foot lengths sort of coiled in a zip lock bag:

 

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Here's where you can get it:

 

Precision Enterprises;

802-885-3094

PO Box 97F

Springfield, VT 05156

 

Size 6 Mil (0.006).

 

Order over phone w/ CC, no web site.

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3 hours ago, dnl42 said:

Wow, how did I miss this? Great work on the engine, which is a key issue for an N2S. What was the donor for the exhaust ring? I've looked around and figured I'd have scratch the whole thing!

 

Also, fabulous job on the rigging. 

 

I took the exhaust ring from their Wright R975 engine (48097), and modified it with the exhaust pipe out of the side as well as the center ring and support...I used some spare parts photo etch to do that with.

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Wow, so that's the secret to building taught rigging.  Thanks so much for that info!  How'd you do the turnbuckles?  Looking at the photos I kind of squint a little to see if my eyes are making things up but they do seem to be there.

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2 hours ago, crackerjazz said:

Wow, so that's the secret to building taught rigging.  Thanks so much for that info!  How'd you do the turnbuckles?  Looking at the photos I kind of squint a little to see if my eyes are making things up but they do seem to be there.

 

No turnbuckles. The turnbuckles on the Stearman are pretty small, or the rigging extends through holes and on under the skin or fabric. Using the white glue to set them in place, I rolled the ends in a pool of the glue to get a little "build up in the end. That secures the wire, and also creates a bit of a "fatter" end that give the appearance of a turnbuckle or "lollipop" fitting on the end.

"Gaspatch" models does make 1/48 scale turn buckles if you want to go that route, but not sure how well they would work with this wire. They are probably beeter suited for use with EZ Line or the Uschi rigging thread.

Edited by 82Whitey51

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I also use Wonder Wire for rigging. You cannot use the various rigging eyelets or turnbuckles from Gas Patch or Rabub with Wonder Wire because it's so rigid. You can make turnbuckles with appropriately sized tubing that you pass the Wonder Wire through.

 

Ideally you drill holes at the proper angles, pop the Wonder Wire in, and secure it in place using PVA. It's really hard to use if you don't have at hole at one end or another; in that instance you have cut it to the exact length. Also make sure the hole is large enough to forgive any misalignment. If too small, your hole may force a bend in the Wonder Wire.

 

One of the local club members has been getting great results on 1/48 models using EZ Line and Radub's 1/32 PE turnbuckles. He threads the line through the turnbuckle--so he can slide it along the line--and then secures the line ends as needed. He can then position the turnbuckle at the correct locations.

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