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1/32 YF-23 Black Widow II

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Edit: This project is on hold!

Please don't ask about the status.

I will be continuing the project in the future!

There is still a whole bunch of work required to bring this to kit form.

I really wish that I could work on it full time, but for now I have to keep producing other smaller products to survive as a business.

I will post new updates and let you all know as soon as I am working on it again.

Price will be determined when it is close to being finished.

The Northrop YF-23 Black Widow II Advanced Tactical Fighter.


Such a beautiful airplane that I just had to have one…In 1/32 of course!


This is a project that I began about 10 years ago and put on hold when life got in the way…

About three years ago I dug it up and started working on it again with plans to start Zactomodels once it was finished. Then Trumpeter went and released one of my other favorites, the Su-27. I set the YF-23 aside planning to do a nice OOB Flanker… :D (Trumpeter 1/32 Su-27 ..., How long have we wait...)

The Flanker parts are done, Zactomodels exists and I just had to get back to the YF-23. Unfortunately I didn’t end up with a nice finished Flanker sitting next to my Mig-29. Maybe some day…

I want to thank Bela. He not only graciously set his YF-23 aside and agreed to work on one his other projects, but also exchanged YF-23 references with me as well.

Cheers my friend! I look forward to seeing your birds! ;)

Any other references, especially the cockpit, weapons-bay and exhausts would be greatly appreciated

Unfortunately I don’t have pics of the early stages of the build.

I hand carved it from blocks of 12lb. sign foam that were pinned together. Spackled, primed, puttied, primed, puttied, primed, puttied, primed, puttied, primed, puttied, primed, puttied, primed, puttied and primed until I was happy with it.

I then mounted the fuselage halves, boxed them and poured a mold. Next I removed the pattern from the mold and added a wall thickness using sheet wax and clay. I then poured the second half, the inner core of the molds.


Next I casted a copy which I am now detailing to use as the master pattern for the finished model.


Edited by Zactoman
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The wings and stabilators are held in place with metal rod. The fuselage halves have locator pins like a traditional injection-molded kit.



The intakes were made by carving a foam pattern of the inside shape then vacuumforming over this pattern. The parts were trimmed and fit then I added interlocking ribbing to each half along the joints. The separate flat insert will have a fine mesh pattern added.


The landing gear wells have been roughed out…


The step for the landing gear doors was created by scraping away material, using aluminum tape as a guide and a piece of hack-saw blade as a scraper.



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The roof of the nose-gear well is the bottom of the cockpit floor.


The cockpit, like the gear wells is just roughly boxed at this time…




The canopy is made from vacuumformed acrylic. It will be detailed and included as a clear-cast part. I’m debating whether to include a vacuumformed canopy (in PETG, not acrylic) as well as the cast one. I guess I’ll wait and see how good the clear castings turn out.


Edited by Zactoman
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Scribing…I am varying the size of the panel lines and fasteners. Much of the smaller stuff is barely visible on the actual aircraft.



And that’s where I’m at on the project now.

I have more scribing to do, mostly on the bottom of the wings and fuselage. Lots of other little details on the body to contend with, cockpit, gear wells, landing gear (which will be cast in metal), weapons-bay (? Anybody have any references on this ?), tail-cones, separate control surfaces, etc…Not to mention a decal sheet, photo-etch details, instruction sheets and proper packaging (box-art).

It’s a big project…It will require lots of beer!


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wow im the 2nd person to reply :rolleyes: I se this as being viewed by a few thousand and another few hundred posts if it was like the last one. Looking good chris.


Awaome! How much are they going to cost each?

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Phenomenol attention to detail and masterly scribing Chris - bravo!

Some day soon - maybe not today maybe not tomorrow, but soon

and for the rest of our lives all kits will be like this.

Well we can dream, can't we?

Now if it was 1/72 scale I'd be seriously impressed :rolleyes:

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Any plans to market these beautys? Excellent work. Much nicer than the one from that "other" company.

Yes I plan to market them (otherwise I wouldn't bother with instructions and box art... :cheers: ).


No estimated price.

No comment about the "other" YF-23... B)


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You never cease to amaze me! This is going to be a good thread to keep an eye on :crying:

PS: Can you contact me via PM, need to discuss some Su27 stuff :lol:



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Outstanding progress Chris!!! the shaping of the interior intake ducting was one of my sticking points... actually on the raptor they are similar, so your technigue is helpful there as well. your widow is looking very scary already!!!

things have been very busy, and it looks like im relocationg to okinawa now, hopefully i can get something posted soon....... if i can tear myself away from your progress!

Edited by Zactoman
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Okay Zacto- When, when you release this I will certainly buy one. Your work is simply stunning. No kiddin, pal. Thanks for showing us these pictures- now I just have to figure out how to pass the time until this lovely bird comes out. Tonight I will drink several beers and celebrate your creativity!

Cheers pal,


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