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viking73

1/72 Monogram B-52 Build

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Posted (edited)

Hello All,

 

Here's another in-progress thread I'm starting for a sort of stalled build.  This was a request a couple of you posted in my 1/144 C-133 thread.  This is the classic 1/72 Monogram B-52 kit.  This kit is one of the first models I remember building as a kid.  I was probably around 12 and I'm pretty sure I had the 1977 boxing.  That model is long gone, the only thing left are the memories 🙂

 

Anyway, a few months ago I saw one for sale on Craigslist for $20.  I couldn't pass it up as these kits seem to sell for a lot on eBay.  It was still sealed but really beat up:

 

CBIUzbb.jpg

 

When I got it and opened it, the kit had suffered some water damage.  Also, the box had been bounced around so much that the clear gunner's canopy was missing.  Drat.  I had to invest in a set of Squadron vac canopies so that was a lifesaver.  The decals were pretty shot but I wasn't planning on using them anyway except for the instrument panel decals.  Luckily, some Microscale Liquid Decal Film saved the day:

 

5iaD10b.jpg

 

 

My plan is to build this kit gear up and hanging over my work bench.  Or I may hang it up in my "war room".  I also wanted to do something a bit different.  I wanted to do the seldom seen SAC silver and white scheme.  I knew that Wolfpak had done some SAC B-52E decals in the past.  That sheet is sold out, but leave up to ARCs own DrifterDon to come to the rescue!  Thank you again kind sir!!

 

I thought it would be cool to build this B-52 with the bomb bay open and have two nukes in the belly.  I looked around and saw some resin B53 nukes which looked nice but were pretty pricey.  I found some 3D printed ones on the Shapeways website and decided to give them a try.  Perhaps I'm getting a bit ahead of myself though.  Before I ordered them, I went to work on the cockpit and gunners station.

 

The first thing I did was open up the windows above the pilots with a drill bit, needle files, and some sanding sticks.  Here are the results:

 

 

xtUzRPL.jpg

 

 

I also wanted some pilots in the cockpit.  The kit pilots are okay but are in the same pose.  I wanted something else.  My spares box wasn't any help, but then I found some PJ Products 1950s NATO pilots.  The fit the bill quite nicely.  Here they are with one of the kit supplied pilots.  

 

 

9bXdnnz.jpg

 

 

The kit pilots are a bit bigger but I decided to demote one of them to tail gunner (my kits tail gunner figure was also MIA).  I don't think anyone would notice the difference there in the back by himself.  After some careful painting, they were ready to mount up:

 

 

FBxJNHj.jpg

 

u2lt3Nv.jpg

 

 

Those of you that have build this kit know that the pilots ejection seats are part of the figures.  That wasn't going to fly with me.  I found some old seats in the spares box from a scrapped Hasegawa T-33 kit.  With some modifications, they were installed and the cockpit painted.  I also found seat for the gunner.  I'm thinking it was an Airfix F2H-2 Banshee seat.  I filed the crease in the middle of the headrest to match what the real seat looked like.  I have a 1:1 scale B-52 ejection seat for reference but that's another story 🙂

 

 

XggXI7Z.jpg

 

 

Then it was decaled and flat coated.

 

 

fcmoqzx.jpg

 

 

Here are the pilots glued to their seats:

 

 

yGK8W60.jpg

 

 

Here's another shot with the tail gunner strapped into his non-ejection seat (the tail gunner did NOT have an ejection seat like the rest of the crew in the front of the airplane.  He was supposed to jettison the turret in an emergency and jump for it!  I have a 1:1 tail gunners seat in addition to my B-52 co-pilots seat).

 

 

wZPpSpU.jpg

 

 

Once everything was dry, I installed the crew and cockpit into the fuselage:

 

 

8dCb73B.jpg

 

BrxVgLk.jpg

 

 

I also added a partial floor and some other bits and pieces to the tail gunners compartment.

 

I'll take a break from all this typing now.  I'll add more later.  The next part will cover the scratch built bomb bay and B53 nukes.  Here's a preview, a shot of the 3D printed B53s as I got them:

 

 

pPr7GQw.jpg

 

 

Thanks for looking, I'll add more soon!

 

-Derek

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by viking73

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Nice start Derek, I have a couple of these in the stash, I will be following along. :popcorn:

 

I had planned to also do one as a silver/white E model. For the other I have a X/YB-52 conversion for which I may or may not use.

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Posted (edited)

Thanks Trojan Thunder.

 

Here are some more photos of my progress. 

 

I wanted the bomb bay open as I mentioned and as you may or may not know, the Monogram bomb bay isn't very well detailed at all.  There is a plate with bomb shapes molded onto it.  That is it!  This was the cover for the compartment that held the noise making gadgets in the original issue.  So that had to go.  I found a few photos of the bomb bay in books and on line but the best photo I had was a 35mm print I took at Davis-Monthan AFB way back in 1988.  Back then you could get off the tour bus and walk around the place at various stops.  My teenage self was in hog heaven walking around that place (I'd been the Pima Air Museum already that trip as well!) let me tell you...  So, armed with some reference photos, a contour gauge, and some sheet stryene, I was off to the races.

 

Here is the bomb bay as I was getting it all boxed in with the basic overall shape.  I have to be careful not to interfere too much with the slots for the wings:

 

lx6psOp.jpg

 

 

Then using various sizes and shapes of Evergreen stryene, I began to add the ribs and other shapes into the bay:

 

 

XEHza0p.jpg

 

 

When the glue had dried, I added various pluming and wiring with different sizes and lead wire and wire solder:

 

 

NKs76fZ.jpg

 

 

Then I airbrushed it with Model Master Interior Green and gave it a black wash (it looks really light in these pictures for some reason).  Also note I already have the holes drilled in the ceiling of the bomb bay where the nukes will be mounted:

 

 

i0U2L4I.jpg

 

 

While that was drying, I glued the wings together.  Getting the movable flaps up and locked is a bit of a chore, and the ends are noticeably thicker than the rest of the wings.  I'm not sure what to do about this yet.  Perhaps I can sand them down a bit to match...

 

 

wmtxw3M.jpg

 

 

I also glued the vertical tail halved together.  I then added some scrap plastic inside to give it some  strength so it wouldn't flex too much and crack the glue joint(s).

 

 

Iqox9r8.jpg

 

 

That's about it for now.  Next time, I'll post some photos of the B53 nukes.  They needed some extra work as well being rough 3D printed parts...

 

Thanks again for looking, more soon.

 

-Derek

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by viking73

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Looking great Derek.  Can't wait to see more.   Don't forget to seal those really OLD decals you got from me.  And I'd recommend testing one first.  They are liable to shatter when it touches the water.

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Posted (edited)

Very nice work Derek, thanks for posting. I too first built this kit around the age of 12...fortunately I was having too much fun at that young age to even recognize the shortcomings/challenges of this kit!

 

Jonah

Edited by Gator52

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13 hours ago, Gator52 said:

Very nice work Derek, thanks for posting. I too first built this kit around the age of 12...fortunately I was having too much fun at that young age to even recognize the shortcomings/challenges of this kit!

 

Jonah

I think we ALL built this kit at about the age of 12. I still remember getting this kit, putting it together, spray bombing the entire thing forest green, and hanging it from my ceiling. We moved when I was 16, and the thing could not come with me (not to mention, I had learned SO MUCH MORE about modelling then...like actual camouflage) and so I took it outside and launched it into the bed of my truck from 15-20 feet away. The first time it hit, I think I only lost an engine. The thing was built pretty tough, just like the real thing. So, I launched it a few more times until it finally shattered. 

 

Great job on the model so far. I look forward to seeing more! 

 

Aaron  

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I was fourteen or fifteen when I built mine.  I did the SAC silver/white.  I think it was my first try at different colors of silver.  It came out alright but the fuselage seam split between the wings.  If I knew then what I know now...

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On ‎7‎/‎27‎/‎2019 at 9:31 PM, strikeeagle801 said:

…..and so I took it outside and launched it into the bed of my truck from 15-20 feet away. The first time it hit, I think I only lost an engine. The thing was built pretty tough, just like the real thing. So, I launched it a few more times until it finally shattered.  

 

I've always preferred firecrackers and/or bottle rockets....lolol....

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@pminer, Ah yes! The old firecracker/ bottle rocket trick. Performed it myself a time or two, or three, or four... You get the idea.  

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Derek Terrific work thus far, particularly the cockpit / pilots and the bomb bay. In case you're wondering, Kursad said that he will release a tall tail B-52 sheet, possibly more.  So you should have some markings to choose from before too long.  R/ Dutch 

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