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Flankerman

M-55 Geophysica from Modelsvit

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Just arrived - the latest kit from the Ukrainian enterprise of Modelsvit... the Myasischev M-55 'Geophysica' high-altitude observation aircraft.

 

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With each new release, Modelsvit are raising the bar for moulding quality - the crispness and engraved surface detail is simply stunning.

 

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Page 3 of the 12-page instruction booklet - note the 22-part K-36 ejection seat construction.

 

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Page 10 showing the painting and decal-placement guide.

 

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The superbly printed decal sheet - those sponsors logos are all perfectly readable!

 

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The parts are crisly moulded in light grey plastic - with stunning engraved surface detail.

 

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Modelsvit have captured the shape of the double-curvature laminar-flow long-span wing superbly.

 

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Open or closed canopy options are included - note the parts for the K-36 ejection seat.

 

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Self-adhesive masks for the canopy and wheel hubs are provided - as is this etched-brass sheet of parts.

 

More photos of the rest of the sprues are here:- http://www.flankers-site.co.uk/model_m-55_modelsvit.html

 

This close-up photo shows off the delicate engraved panel detail perfectly...

 

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Finally, to whet your appetite, here's the real thing I photographed at MAKS 2012....

 

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I can't wait to get started on this kit - it will make an interesting companion to Modelsvit's previously released M-17 'Stratosphera'...

 

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Ken

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Looking forward to seeing how this goes together, Modelsvit are bringing out some awesome kits!

 

I should get back to this one:

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A bit of progress....

 

The cockpit tub is made up from a floor, two side consoles plus front and rear bulkheads.
A control column and even the rudder pedals are included.

Decals are provided for the instrument panels - perfectly adequate in this scale - IMHO...

 

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Cockpit and nosewheel bay (made up from a 'roof', two side and two end parts) sub assemblies fitted inside the starboard front fuselage.
Modelsvit recommend 18 grams of nose weight - my bit of lead flashing weighs 22 grams....

 

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Cockpit, wheel bay and lead weight...

 

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Forward fuselage all buttoned up...

 

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The multi-part K-36 ejection seat will be added at the end of the build...

 

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Ken

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The twin jetpipes are each made up from two halves - with an internal nozzle...

 

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Full length intake trunking is provided - each intake made up from two halves...

 

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Bulkheads provide the compressor faces (top} and turbines....

 

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Intakes and jetpipes in place inside the centre-fuselage 'bathtub'.....

 

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The 'bathtub' is constructed from a lower fuselage section - plus two side panels.....

 

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Lower fuselage - with side panels and two-part tai;cone attached... Lots of joints!

 

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Top view of the centre-fuselage sub-assembly.

 

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Ken

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Eagerly watching this one! M-17 is still waiting for me in box but i have no place to put the finished build anyway as of now... Nice job on the cockpit, their K-36 seats must be one of the best ones OOB in any scale?

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I showed my wife the box art - she made a face like she ate a lemon and said "Well, you can tell it's Russian!" I, on the other hand, am enjoying the build and will follow progress with interest. I really enjoy your builds, Ken.

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More progress ......

 

The forward fuselage fits into the rear fuselage between the engine intakes - but there isn't much of a mating surface, resulting in a potentially weak joint......

 

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So to try to improve the joint, I added small blocks of plasticard to give the forward fuselage something to butt up against....

 

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The front fuselage (which is quite heavy due to the lead weights) now has a 'ledge' to attach to....

 

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Closer view of the plastic card additions....

 

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It would have been easier to make the 'ledge' before fitting the intakes in place... but I hadn't discovered the problem until too late.

 

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The M-55 has a box-like structure at the rear - between the exhaust nozzles - this is provided by Modelsvit with two halves into which are inserted two etched-brass vanes.... which must be bent to shape - all very fiddly...

 

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It took a lot of head-scratching to try and work out how the box fitted between the jetpipes....

 

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....but I got there in the end......

 

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....... aided by this photo that I took at MAKS 2013....

 

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Ken

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More....

 

A bit of fettling sees the upper wing centre-section added - with joints to fill around the intakes...

 

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.... and at the rear end....

 

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Underside view.....

 

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The ultra long-span wings are made up from a full-length lower section and a shorter upper section.......

 

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Ken

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Great stuff, keep going Ken!

 

You are doing a great job finding all the pitfalls for the rest of us,

 

cheers,

 

Pappy

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A little more progress....

 

The lower wing root is quite flexible - so I've added supports made from square-section plastic.....

 

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Whilst waiting for the wings to set, I constructed the two underwing sampling pods - each made up from six parts...

 

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Each pod has two tiny hinge-like antenna at the rear - provided as teeny-weeny etched brass parts - almost at the limit of my eyesight.... :analintruder:

 

The starboard pod also has a flate-plate structure - again included on the etched-brass fret - here it is on the real thing...

 

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More later...

 

Ken

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This looks so cool Ken. It must be pretty big in 1/72nd so I may be interested in getting  this kit even though I normally build 1./48. But I can probably live with it as it will be big.

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On 11/18/2019 at 10:08 PM, skyhawk174 said:

It must be pretty big in 1/72nd

 

Wingspan is 520mm (approx 20.5 inches)

 

Some more progress.....

 

The main wheel bays form the front end of the tail booms - and are assembled from an outer 'canoe' and an inner bay.

 

The bay is made up from a flat part that you have to fold up to form the roof and sides - a neat idea that saves having to line up separate parts

 

A separate part is inserted for rear bulkhead...

 

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The tailbooms/fins are each made up from two halves (bottom) ....

 

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The completed starboard boom is at the top.

 

 

 

Ken

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It's starting to come together now.....

 

The front sections of the tailbooms containing the maingear bays are glued in place on the underside of the wings....

 

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The mating surface - where the tailbooms attach - isn't very substantial - so I fashioned a plug made from plastic tubing wrapped with plastic card to strengthen the joint.....

 

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The model is getting difficult to handle with its long-span wings :analintruder: .........and attaching the tailbooms really needs three hands :wall:

 

The booms have a 'key' to aid in lining them up - but the fit is a bit 'slack' - allowing the booms to sag or rotate slightly.......

 

I tackled it by first glueing the port tailboom into place - lining things up by eye to make sure the fin was vertical and correctly aligned in side view.

 

After allowing the glue to set - but not too hard - I then attached the starboard boom and, with the model inverted and supported horizontally on the workbench, the horizontal stabiliser was glued in place and used to line everything up - it seems to have worked.....

 

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Underside view - the joints need to be filled and eliminated - difficult when you are handling what feels like a balalaika !!!!

 

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It's all downhill from here........ :whistle:

 

Ken

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On 11/3/2019 at 4:22 AM, Flankerman said:

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Top view of the centre-fuselage sub-assembly.

 

Even though a bit different that assembly sure brings to mind the shape of F7U Cutlass. 🙂


On the overall these are interesting models of two very interesting airplanes that I didn't know about until 5 minutes ago.

 

A 22 part ejection seat in 1/72 scale? How do you even DO that!? 😄 

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Man, that is a monster!  Superb model making.  I love to see masters at work who show the skill of making a short run kit work.  Hell, I can build Tamiya kit, but these Eastern European kits take real He-Man model making expertise.  Well done.    

Edited by AD-4N

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With all the major components in place, it's time for a coat of grey primer.......

 

Top View....

 

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.... and the undersides...

 

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It is getting hard to handle now - it's just so BIG..... trying to hold it without knocking the wings.....:analintruder:

 

Ken

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58 minutes ago, Flankerman said:

 

It is getting hard to handle now - it's just so BIG..... trying to hold it without knocking the wings.....:analintruder:

 

 I can imagine that!

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Seasons Greetings.......

 

Some slow progress.......

 

The K-36 ejection seat is made up from 22 Parts......  :analintruder:

 

This isn't so much modelling as micro-surgery - especially at my age with failing eyesight !

 

It isn't helped by the fact the some of the mm-sized parts have flash to be cleaned off - anyway here's the result...

 

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Here's my ham-fisted attemp - there is an etched-brass harness still to be added !!!

 

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Meanwhile, the airframe has had a couple of coats of Halfords White Plastic Primer (from a rattle can) - followed by a misted top coat of Halfords Appliance White (rattle can).....

 

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The lower fuselage now has to be masked off for a coat of Light Aircraft Grey (I'm using Halfords Ford Polar Grey - which is a good match)...

 

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Then it's more masking for the blue wing and tailplane leading edges plus the canopy surround, followed by the red wing and taiplane tips.

 

Have a Great Christmas....

 

Ken

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G'day Ken,

 

Stellar work!

Does the M-55s  variant of the K-36 differ much from other fighter versions (K-36DM?), because the sides of the headbox look to extend forwards a little more than is typical for a K-36?

I have this kit coming from Crimbo (that is the rumor anyways) and I think I will swap the kit seat out for an aftermarket item unless it is 'unique'

 

cheers,

 

Pappy

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