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swbailey

1/72 AMtech Ju-88H-4

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While I was waiting for the paint to dry on my Fw-190D-11, I couldn't resist the urge to start on one more model for the GB.  Being on this German kick, I pulled out the 1/72 scale AMTech kit of the Junkers Ju-88H-4 Fuhrungsmachine long-range maritime reconnaissance aircraft.  To me, this looked really cool with the extended fuselage, radar nose and the Fw-190A piggy-backed for protection.  Although no photos exist of these aircraft, there were others in the series such as the H-3 variant which were photographed, so this is a known aircraft and not a Luftwaffe-1946 proposed project.

 

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For the FW-190, I chose the Academy FW-190A-8 kit for this build; primarily because I already had one in the stash.  Plus, like the Ju-88H-4 kit, it had gone through the flood of Hurricane Harvey and the decals had been ruined.  Since is this is to be a somewhat generic 190, there was no need for specific markings.  First thing I did was to remove the cannons from inside the wheel wells because these interfered with closing the gear doors. While I have seen Mistels where the piggy-back aircraft had its gear down, I chose to do it up, just for something different.  As you can see in the photo, I cleared out the port gear bay and was getting ready to do the right,

 

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Next I removed the gun bulges from the MG-131s in the wings since that area would be covered by the slipper tanks that contained extra fuel for the long distance flights.  The 270 liter Doppelreiter tanks were produced by Airmodel and were purchased some time ago on eBay.  Not sure if they are still in production.  I think that Hasegawa also kitted an FW-190A-7 with the tanks as well, but I'm guessing that's now a bit hard to find as well.

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As with any Luftwaffe aircraft, the first step is to paint the cockpit(s) RLM 66 gray.

 

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Got a bit more done on the Ju-88H Fuhrungsmachine.  Assembled the main fuselage on the Ju-88 with its interesting mix of AMT parts and the new parts that are supplied in the kit.  The AMT parts are all molded in light gray and are the usual soft AMT plastic, while the AMTech parts particular to that variant are in a darker, much harder plastic, closer to what you would find in a Hasegawa kit.

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Unfortunately, there are a lot of sink marks in the fuselage, where the thickness of the interior structure causes the plastic to sink in a bit.  So... I've been busy with the Tamiya putty.  The other thing I failed to do was to put the wing cross-tab in while I was assembling the fuselage halves.  The instructions use photos to show the assembly process, and on my copy the printing was so light that the AMT part that went in there barely shows in the photo and I missed it.  I went back and took some Evergreen white styrene and made the cross piece to support the wings when they get glued on.  As several reviewers who've built the kit have noted, the fit of the engines to the nacelles is quite poor. I ground down the flanges in the nacelles and glued the engines on flush to the mating point on the wings.  As you can see with the starboard wing, that still leaves a fair spot to be filled.

 

I've also been working on the cockpit, adding painted details where possible just to liven things up.  I still have to paint the molded on seat belts, and the control yolk did a flying jump into the jaws of the carpet monster, so I am still looking for that.  But, I will find it before the cockpit is done.

 

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Finally, I've assembled the greater part of the Academy Fw-190A-8 kit for the parasite fighter.  Little bits of filler are needed here and there, but overall the fit is good.  It's a somewhat simplified kit and the cockpit is too deep but I really didn't want to spend a whole lot on the kit, so I'm okay with that.  I've sanded off all of the detail related to the outer wing machine guns, as the slipper fuel tanks will be covering that area of the wings.

 

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In between working on the decals for my FW-190D-11, I did some work on the Ju-88H-4 Fuhrungsmachine.  Got a lot of the kit together and did work with putty and sanding.  The parts of the fuselage had the most work to be done, as the three sections don't all seem to have the same cross-section and there is a little bit of sculpting where they join.  There are also a bunch of sink marks in the surface above the locator pins and sockets as you can see from the pictures.  The wing, horizontal stabilizer and vertical stabilizer fit are incredible and need no putty!  I was very impressed by the fit in those areas.  On the other hand, as other reviewers have noted, the engine to nacelle fit on the Ju-88 is terrible.  I had to sand down all the locating tabs and glue the engines directly to the nacelle.  I then inserted sheet styrene shims on the upper side of the joint to get the engines to hang at the proper angle.  Ugh!  Putty filled in the extra gaps that were left behind.  

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Still a bit of work to go.  The Fw-190 is just sitting in place for effect.  I have dipped the canopies in Future acrylic floor wax for nice sharp clear canopy glass and will be attaching them next.  The gunner's seat in the Ju-88 sits a little high and I had to sand a little off the top of the headrest to ensure the canopy will fit.  Once all the sanding is done on both aircraft, they'll get primer and the fun of looking for flaws will begin!

 

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Really looking good! Although I don´t build WW2, some of the german designs have a really nice look!

 

 

HAJO

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Thanks!  One of the appeals of this model was how neat the super-stretched Ju-88 looked.  

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Posted (edited)

Haven't done a lot of work on the Fuhrungsmachine since I was concentrating on finishing my Fw-190D-11.  However, I did start doing a little work this weekend.  Put the canopy on the Ju-88 and masked it with Bare Metal foil.  With a canopy that has so many panels, it can be a bit tedious... After masking I shot some RLM 66 Schwarzgrau to replicate the interior color of the canopy frames.  Had enough extra paint, I sprayed it as a primer over my seams.  They looked pretty good!  Only a tiny bit of clean up to do on them and I'll be ready to prime and paint the model after minimal rescribing of a few deleted panel lines.

 

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Edited by swbailey

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It's been quite a while since I've had a chance to work on my third entry to the group build, but this weekend, I got back at it.  Just before I stopped working on it in April in order to finish other models for the big Model Mania contest in Houston, I got the two aircraft masked, primed and painted on the pre-shading for the panel lines.  
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After a bit of dusting and cleaning, I went back to apply the RLM 76 Lichtblau to the undersides and sides of the two aircraft.  Used some very old Humbrol, but it was still good even after 20+ years in the can.  I was pleased with the results.  Hopefully, this week I can start on the upper side colors... 

 

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Well, it looks like three builds in the group build was a little beyond my reach, as life interfered as it has a way of doing.  Got this one to final painting over the weekend and am pleased with the results.  Both aircraft have their upper and lower paint schemes, but I have to go back and paint the dappling on the sides.  Then of course, gloss coats, decals, flat coats and final assembly, etc.  Hopefully, now that I've gotten them this far, I should be able to finish up within the next couple weeks.  

 

It's been an enjoyable group build and it pushed me to take on a couple models that might normally have sat in the stash for just a while longer!  Thanks nspreitler for hosting the build!

 

 

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Finally finished.... only 3 weeks late.  Still, I am rather pleased with the results!

 

 

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