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picknpluck

RVHP RF-8G Conversion

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Posted (edited)

I'm tackling RVHP's resin conversion kit for the RF-8G Crusader. This is pretty much the only game in town if you want a 1/48 RF-8. Kiwi models did a vac kit a few years ago, but I don't see it readily available anywhere.

 

This kit, which is designed to be used with the Hasegawa kit, consists of two fuselage halves minus the vertical tail, two camera fairings for under the fuselage, reshaped nose gear doors, and two radomes. There's also a decal set depicting a VFP-63 aircraft from the Midway. The blues on that decal sheet look too light--especially the national insignia. I'll be using custom decals which I had drawn up and Furball's F-8 data set. I'll also be using Wolfpack's folded wing set, ejection seat, and air brake set.

 

Here are the RVHP and Hasegawa fuselage halves.

2STnF6I.jpg

 

RVHP's fuselage is short at the tail and at the nose.

 

7vjRc2j.jpg

 

O4p6LEq.jpg

 

I decided to cut the fuselage halves at the forward edge of the main gear bays and splice the RF-8 front end to the Hasegawa rear end. The under-wing bay provides good stabilization for this. I started with the left side...under-wing bay, main gear bay, air brake well, and tail hook well. I also glued on the second half of the Hasegawa rear fuselage.

 

BFOgzGJ.jpg

 

Edited by picknpluck

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Continuing on...I cut out the air brake area to make room for the Wolfpack air brake bay and had to grind away a bunch of resin from inside the fuselage because it is thick in there.

ST4bsAn.jpg

 

I also started on the wings...I forgot to mention above, the kit comes with a wing center section to represent the revised shape used on the RF-8. I had to cut the Hasegawa center section away from the upper wing, but this was pretty easy since the cut lines follow panel lines. You then place the remaining outer wing sections from Hasegawa over the top. I only needed to file the tabs of the resin center section a little bit in order to get everything to fit. Not bad so far...

 

69Ygq7I.jpg

 

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The cockpit tub and control stick come from the Hasegawa kit. They're adequately detailed but the control stick is a dual stick, which is correct for the F-8E, which is what Hasegawa kitted. I cut off the radar control stick (the forward portion of the control stick) to replicate that which is found in the RF-8. RVHP included a resin instrument panel with the camera scope prominently displayed at the top. The other details look correct too when comparing with reference photos and the level of detail on the panel is on par with the Hasegawa panel.

 

The Hasegawa intake parts are used. RVHP included in their fuselage halves the mounting points for affixing the intake. The nose gear bay is integral to the intake and everything lined up nicely. I just had to fill some ejector pin marks inside the intake and, of course, the seams. 

 

Now it's time to glue the other half of the RVHP fuselage. This is where things got nasty. The instrument coaming didn't join and there was a crevasse-like seam on top of the forward fuselage. The radome is even worse. A portion of the Hasegawa intake extends forward and acts as a mating surface for the radome. It was too long so I had to cut off about 1/8 ". Even then, the radome fit was atrocious and the part is shaped wrong. It has a round profile like an F-8E/J radome but it needs an ovalesque profile akin to the early Crusader variants. Luckily it's solid resin, so time to bust out the sanding sticks.

 

GeUS8KA.jpg

 

EqGsp6V.jpg

 

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One thing missing is the detail on the front bulkhead of the center wing section. I decided to model the wings in the down position.

 

O3Qjcsz.jpg

 

I also added the camera fairings to the belly along with some scratch built ECM gear on the belly and vertical tail. I'm modelling and aircraft as it appeared towards the end of the RF-8's operational service so it'll have the latest ECM suite.

 

2AS1iFl.jpg

 

ntItVd3.jpg

 

R3BT54K.jpg

 

I spent a fair amount of time sanding and shaping the nose profile and I'm satisfied with how it looks.

 

fM6RZ8N.jpg

 

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Cool project.  Looks like it is coming along very well.  These kind of kit bashing projects always help to push my creativity and skill levels and helps later when I do the simple OOB kits.  Keep up the good work.

 

Geoff M

 

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For the life of me, I can't understand how there's an RF-4 but not an RF-8 in sprue form...

 

Regardless, my finger has hovered over the RVHP buy it now button that many times, I'm glad I didn't get it. It's so expensive, and I'd inevitably write off a good Hase F-8.

 

I'll be following this intently, as it's a damn awesome aircraft and you've made some head way with its short comings. Keep it coming and happy building mate!

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53 minutes ago, Keroburner89 said:

For the life of me, I can't understand how there's an RF-4 but not an RF-8 in sprue form...

 

Regardless, my finger has hovered over the RVHP buy it now button that many times, I'm glad I didn't get it. It's so expensive, and I'd inevitably write off a good Hase F-8.

 

I'll be following this intently, as it's a damn awesome aircraft and you've made some head way with its short comings. Keep it coming and happy building mate!

I agree on the lack of kit availability. It puzzles me too. But this isn't too bad, actually. You just have to be comfortable with a razor saw and sanding sticks. And Hasegawa Crusaders aren't that expensive compared to other 1/48 jet kits out there. The "Shin Kazana" boxing goes for @ $40 shipped on eBay. Monogram and ESCI Crusader kits aren't much less, and in some cases they're actually more expensive! Bottom line, if you REALLY want an RF-8 on your shelf, this is the way to go unless you can find the Paul Fischer set in 1/32.

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I wasn't happy with the intake ECM antenna so I tried sculpting it from Milliput. Here's where it stands as of now...I think it still needs work.

 

LKTxZvP.jpg

 

And I got the flaps and slats done... that's it for now.

 

7NxOIbF.jpg

 

2gOn4iV.jpg

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I think I read somewhere, when the slats and flaps are down the wing is up? or maybe it is the other way around, I'll have to look the up again.

 

Geoff m

 

 

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4 minutes ago, Geoff M said:

I think I read somewhere, when the slats and flaps are down the wing is up? or maybe it is the other way around, I'll have to look the up again.

 

Geoff m

 

 

If the wings are up, the flaps/slats are down. The flaps/slats do droop on occasion with the wings down. I’m basing my flap/slat positions on references.

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The Hase kit managed to get fairly cheap here in Aus at one point, especially with the re-pop but they are getting hard to come across. 

 

That front section mated to the wings looks like a nice seamless fit. Is there much decal choice in the box?

 

Re: flap/slat droop- definitely happens when aircraft's parked and the hydraulic pressure drops off.

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Very nice- thanks for sharing that.

 

I see a nice void in RF-8 decal sheets if we're ever lucky enough to see a full production kit.

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This is looking great! I really like when builders show how they tackle problems in  a build.  Helps expand my build knowledge.

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4 hours ago, dekon70 said:

This is looking great! I really like when builders show how they tackle problems in  a build.  Helps expand my build knowledge.

Glad to be of service! 😁

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So...today I rescribed the lost detail today and laid down a coat of primer to see how good a job of filling and sanding I've done up to now. As expected, not good enough. So more filling and sanding...and repairing the chip on the intake lip.

 

zy3DHwt.jpg

 

tlpB8rj.jpg

 

flxfSCD.jpg

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Note that unlike the F-8 fighter’s, the vents on the right side of the fuselage just ahead of and below the leading edge of the wing are raised on a rectangular fairing but are relatively flush to the fuselage skin.

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56 minutes ago, Tailspin Turtle said:

Note that unlike the F-8 fighter’s, the vents on the right side of the fuselage just ahead of and below the leading edge of the wing are raised on a rectangular fairing but are relatively flush to the fuselage skin.

Is it correct on the kit? It was molded just a little bit proud of the fuselage.

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12 minutes ago, Tailspin Turtle said:

There is one there but it is not as prominent as the one on the fighters. You be the judge; see https://tailspintopics.blogspot.com/2013/12/photo-gator.html

This photo shows the vent area pretty well.

BWq777T.jpg

 

 

I think the conversion kit got it right as far as how far it protrudes from the fuselage. But your blog points me to the difference in the RF-8A and RF-8G vents! The kit is configured with two cents like the RF-8A... I'll need to fill one in (the forward vent?) to get it more in line with the RF-8G. Thanks Tommy!

 

 

Edited by picknpluck

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Tommy your blog posts never cease to amaze and impress me. You don’t know me by my screen name but I was a regular at the slide shows in Jay Miller’s living room back in the 80s (before Susan put her foot down) and your later presentations to the Lone Star Aero Club. Again, thank you. 

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I fixed up the starboard vent and added the reinforcement plates at the corners of the gear bay. That's it for tonight.

 

TVlBV44.jpg

 

hTeM9U6.jpg

 

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