crackerjazz Posted January 3, 2020 Share Posted January 3, 2020 (edited) What better time to start a build than the beginning of a new year (and decade)! And what better way to start the year than to build! : ) I actually have a flaps-down 747 project as well to get back to. I'll try to juggle between the two so I can utilize wait times. During the holidays I watched Top Gun again in anticipation of the one that's coming up and I sure miss those weather-beaten Tomcats. Taking advantage of the holiday season to get away with some purchases, I treated myself to aftermarket F-14 cockpits --- and a couple kits to build around them : ) I’m building these really to find out how easy it would be to close up the Tamiya gear doors and to see what else needs fixing on my Hasegawa build. After examining the parts, though, I’m sold on these Tamiya Tomcats and may not go back : ) I would like to compare the forward fuselages, though, with the Hasegawa Tomcats once built. Photo of two Tomcat kits thirsty for some loving care: And a photo I snapped of another thirsty Tomcat, visibly guilty after getting caught lapping up aquarium water: I've yet to find a way to keep him away from it -- and the guppies. I worked on the more difficult tasks first to get them over with. I just knew I’d have trouble cutting off the resin blocks under the ejection seats, so I started with those. To shape the lower edges I used a cutting wheel to remove material right behind where I wanted to score the outline then broke off the excess. More on the cockpit later. Turned my attention to the gear doors. At first I thought all you need to do is cut off the hinges and the gear doors close up magically. Maybe I expected too much. On the main wheel opening there is a lip that will not mesh with the door. I could either remove the lip or create a stepped edge on the door – chose the latter. Made a scraper from a cutter blade with the tip broken off glued onto a piece of styrene to provide a “stop”. Next came these smaller doors. The hinges had to be removed and the sides cut off. And the depressions will need filling. Not too clean -- should do a better job on the next set. Also the lips won’t mesh without some scraping: So I had another go with the scraping tool. Just had to be careful about how much material is removed. At some point I had to follow through with some sanding. The leg doors were the easiest to work on as there weren't any lips to fix but I made a mistake and cut off the hinges entirely, creating small openings that will need puttying. Should’ve just cut them off to a certain length and sanded to shape -- will make sure I do it right on the next set of doors. Photos show visible hinges on the closed leg doors: Also, I was wondering about that gap between the wheel door and the smaller door. When I checked some photos there really is a gap! : ) More on gear doors later. Assembled the wing sweep mechanism and made a major booboo. I skimmed through the instructions and had it all down pat, or so I thought. I didn’t realize the little cone-shaped part for the wing pivot had a notch. And I missed the fact that the screws weren’t all the same size. With the little cone askew, I screwed down the wing pivot with an 8mm where I should have used a 6mm. First screw of the build and first screw-up. I tightened it with as much force as I use on RC cars. The molded-on screw tube broke off from the root (!) and I managed to push out a little material from the good side of the hull : ( I missed taking a photo out of panic but here’s one after fixing. Had to glue on the cylinder and cone permanently. Carefully attached the other screws: Worked on the intakes. Not sure if the ejector pin marks will be visible but patched them up with some Apoxie Sculpt anyway. Fashioned a long putty knife from a razor blade and styrene rod to reach them easily. Puttied and sanded the ones on the intake ramps as well: Slit the ends of the actuators for more believable hinges. And that's where I'm at so far. Edited January 11, 2020 by crackerjazz Quote Link to post Share on other sites
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