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Scooters! (Minivan Edition)

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I'm going to have a go at the 1/48 Classic Airframes and Hasegawa TA-4J Skyhawk kits.




One of them will be this:



I haven't committed to a scheme yet for the other. But possibly the box art scheme from the CA kit.

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Fuselage halves: Hasegawa on top, CA below. CA left off the quilted cockpit sides so I did a very rudimentary job etching these details with a scriber. I plan to model the CA jet with crew as if it were taxiing off the runway. So the canopy will be cracked open and the flaps will be clamshelled open.




Some people are really good at painting instrument panels. I'm not one of them. I'm open to suggestions on how to up my game here. CA parts on the left. Hasegawa wins this round.




Cockpit tubs...CA up front. Both sets have pretty decent details. Tie.



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Nose gear Wells with CA on the left. They furnish a resin main well with a separate forward bulkhead and styrene aft well. Hasegawa's part is a single piece. The detail in the two main Wells is nearly identical--in fact, CA likely just made a mold of the Hasegawa part because ejector pin marks are cast in the identical locations to the Hasegawa part. Slight edge to CA for the additional detail on the forward bulkhead.




Engine faces. Hasegawa on top. Oddly, CA has you mount this assembly with the flat part up top whereas Hasegawa has the assembly flipped the other way so as to resemble a heart. Points to CA for including the turbine face as a separate part, making it easier to paint. Hasegawa's turbine face is molded into the intake trunk.




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Nice start and nice running commentary.   


Instrument panels are tough. If I do not have a decal or a color PE replacement I have to take my chances, It requires a fine brush which come sto a point, and thinning the paint just enough so there is not surface tension on the details. I am not sure quite how else to describe it, it is as though right out of the bottle many paints seem to form a blob when trying to paint something tiny.  A brush which has stray hairs or seems to come to a split point just will not do. 


I look forward to further installments

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Wings: the leading edge slat Bay has a smooth transition to the upper wing surface.

There shouldn't be a step.




ClassicAirframes got this right; Hasegawa did not.




I added a thin strip of styrene and some Perfect Plastic Putty to smooth things out.







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Do the intake parts on the T bird not fit like they do on the single seater? I've always found them to narrow to correctly mate with the fuselage halves. I solve this by cutting the finished intake piece with generator/CSD fitted  down the middle as you can't see all the way down there anyway 


As for Instrument panels and sidewalls. The Hasegawa decals fit great and look as good as anything else. 

Edited by a4s4eva
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Update: I busied up the area behind the rear seat of the Hasegawa kit with some wire and styrene strips. The kit part is just a plain piece of plastic. Classic Airframes provides a resin part that served as the basis for my scratch work here.


Here's the CA part:



CA provides resin main gear bays, but they really aren't that much more detailed than the Hasegawa parts.



The intakes of both kits install and fit in a very similar manner. But the CA kit has these pour stubs to deal with. Luckily the plastic is soft and the stubs are easily dealt with.



Here's where we stand now...the CA kit will get aircrew. Because it's a tight fit in the office, I'll have to install the seats and crew before I close up the fuselage halves and they're primed up but not yet painted.




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Nice work. The ejector pin marks in the intakes on the CA kit are nasty. So to be sure I understand, you need to install the pilots in the CA kit since it would be difficult to squeeze them in afterwards? If that is the case, good thing you checked first. 



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On 4/23/2020 at 12:50 AM, Kurt H. said:

Nice work. The ejector pin marks in the intakes on the CA kit are nasty. So to be sure I understand, you need to install the pilots in the CA kit since it would be difficult to squeeze them in afterwards? If that is the case, good thing you checked first. 



Kurt, the pilots definitely need to go in before you close up the fuselage on a Hasegawa or Classic Airframes Skyhawk. It's a really tight fit in the cockpit, as it was on the real deal. 


The ejector pins actually weren't that bad. They came off with Sprue cutters and the plastic is really soft on this kit, so it didn't take long to sand everything down and make it smooth.

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Ok... so here's the CA Scooter all buttoned up. I had to position the right arms of each crew member in a raised position to leave enough room. The crew are a pair of Hasegawa figures leftover from the spares box. I wanted to position the canopy in the pop-up position but it may not work with these figures.


Here's the Hasegawa cockpit all buttoned up. I'll be using Phase Hangar resin seats (sans crew) for this one.


Intake lips are painted and installed on both and spot priming done on the he Hasegawa kit. 



Hasegawa has pulled way ahead by this point. The fuselage fit and the wing to fuselage fit on the CA kit are not good.




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  • 1 month later...

I got sidetracked by a couple other builds I wanted to finish up but I'm back to the Skyhawks. The Classic Airframes kit is wearing camo while the Hasegawa kit is standing by in primer.



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Thanks guys!


I've got decals on now. The CA kit comes with a very nice set of Cartograf decals with four adversary options: two from VF-126, one from VA-127, and one from VC-8. There are enough decals on the sheet to do every option, so I'll have several future adversary Scooter builds! I opted for the VA-127 markings from the box art. Afterburner did this particular aircraft back in the day as well and they called for FS36320 as the grey; CA calls for FS36307. Looking at pictures of the real thing, I opted to use the latter color.


The Hasegawa kit comes with a beautiful 75th Anniversary decal sheet but I was able to get ahold of Fightertown Decals' VA-127 Cylons Adversary Scooters sheet with "The MiG", which is a scheme I've wanted to do for a long time.

CA (foreground) and Hasegawa:


Hasegawa kit decals:



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On ‎6‎/‎27‎/‎2020 at 11:58 AM, Kurt H. said:

Cool choice with "the Mig" .. and it looks like you were fortunate you did not have to apply the national insignia to the vortex generators.

Way back in the early-'90s, a guy brought a 1/32 TA-4J in this scheme to a club meeting. I've wanted to build one ever since. I'm glad I finally got around to it.

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"The MiG" is up on its landing gear awaiting clear coat and weathering. 


Meanwhile, the Classic Airframes TA-4J's array of fiddly bits are prepped for paint. The kit comes with nice resin wheels, but I seem to have misplaced one of the MLG wheels so I pilfered a set from another Hasegawa Skyhawk in my stash that will be built in-flight.


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