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Builds F-16CJ 1/32 Viper

PFGEN

GCM
In 2016 I started work on the Tamiya 1/32nd scale Viper. The project stalled for a variety of reasons, mainly issues with the kit itself and the building of the Corsair from the same range. For various reasons I haven't been at the bench since before the summer last year. Finally I decided to pick this one up again.

Rather than bang my head of the issue around the whole cockpit, engine, undercarriage assembly I decided to start on something a little easier. Dug out the bits and decided to start on the load out. The results so far:

xsIMG_1863.jpg


I want to kit mine out for the SEAD role, two underwing tanks, two sidewinders, 2 HARMS and 2 AMRAAMS, HTS and sniper pod. The kit comes with the AN/ALQ-184 ECM pod but that needs to be changed to the ALQ-131. Unfortunately it requires a completely different central (station 5) pylon for mounting. I'll need to try and bodge one up at some point.
 

PFGEN

GCM
Some small measure of progress here. Added brass to the winders and rails. Filed away seams on all missiles after several applications of Mr Surfacer 500, primer, more sanding, wash, rinse, repeat. The seams on the 370 gal tanks don't mater so much as the tanks generally take a beating and seams are often visible.

IMG_2274.jpeg


Bit of primer and paint on these and I can apply the decals....or I could if I hadn't lost them. Had some from Twobob but they're only for practice rounds. Should maybe have spent Fourbob. Oh well, paint and some home made stuff.

The 20 mil M61A1 isn't great. It wasn't even straight so I ended up cutting off the end and lined things up. There's a chunk of detail missing but as I don't want to display the internals it won't matter. I did however drill out the barrels.

IMG_2276.jpeg


I took a look at the pit and the mess I made of biting bits out of the surrounding fuselage. I've been trying to put this off for as long as possible but I'll have to tackle it sometime.

IMG_2279D.jpeg


I've decided to overfill the gaps with layers of plastic and cement and then cut things to shape. Just hope I don't make a further mess of it. Can't be much worse than it already is.....I hope.
 
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Some small measure of progress here. Added brass to the winders and rails. Filed away seams on all missiles after several applications of Mr Surfacer 500, primer, more sanding, wash, rinse, repeat. The seams on the 370 gal tanks don't mater so much as the tanks generally take a beating and seams are often visible.

View attachment 455094

Bit of prime and paint on these and I can apply the decals....or I could if I hadn't lost them. Had some from Twobob but they're only for practice rounds. Should maybe have spent Fourbob. Oh well, paint and some home made stuff.

The 20 mil M61A1 isn't great. It wasn't even straight so I needed up cutting off the end and lined things up. There's a chunk of detail missing but as I don't want to display the internals it won't matter. I did however drill out the barrels.

View attachment 455095

I took a look at the pit and the mess I made of biting bits out of the surrounding fuselage. I've been trying to put this off for as long as possible but I'll have to tackle it sometime.

View attachment 455096

I've decided to overfill the gaps with layers of plastic and cement and then cut things to shape. Just hope I don't make a further mess of it. Can't be much worse than it already is.....I hope.
Christ that isn’t a bad fit, it’s a abortion! It’s almost like the kit was designed by a 6 year old.
 

PFGEN

GCM
Christ that isn’t a bad fit, it’s a abortion! It’s almost like the kit was designed by a 6 year old.

Sadly I'm the 6 year old back street abortionist. The pit is aftermarket and is the second version. I cut most of the fuselage for the first version before discovering that it wasn't to scale as it wasn't matching up with the rest. Bought number 2 and had to hack a bit more but then discovered that I'd hacked away way too much up front. Compounded that error by cutting the floor a bit too thinly but that will be hidden by the seat.
 

PFGEN

GCM
Wokka style progress, some bits looking more like an aircraft. Basically trying to avoid the elephant in the room and knock up the other subassemblies. Clamps needed for most surfaces but the fit is pretty good if care is taken. Normal Tamiya liquid glue is too thick so moved to the thin stuff. This means large areas that need to be cemented take a lot longer,

.
IMG_2456D.jpeg
 

PFGEN

GCM
Most of the subassemblies for the control surfaces have been completed. Tail fin needed a bit of work to cover up some moulding faults. Then it was back to the missile rails. I just can't seem to get rid of the ridge in between the two halves. Numerous attempts with Mr Surfacer and sanding. I see from the photo that my last attempt was half-arrsed. Finally managed to sand the joins away in the missiles but after this afternoon have decided that its the belt sander for the rails.

IMG_2673.jpeg
 

Daz

LE
Most of the subassemblies for the control surfaces have been completed. Tail fin needed a bit of work to cover up some moulding faults. Then it was back to the missile rails. I just can't seem to get rid of the ridge in between the two halves. Numerous attempts with Mr Surfacer and sanding. I see from the photo that my last attempt was half-arrsed. Finally managed to sand the joins away in the missiles but after this afternoon have decided that its the belt sander for the rails.

View attachment 460985
Knocking one of these up?? There's dedication
 

PFGEN

GCM
The pace on this is nothing short of glacial. I made the mistake of thinking that during lockdown I'd have a load of extra time on my hands. Dumb assumption.

Here's the story so far. I decided to start at the end of the instructions with the armaments thinking that would help rekindle skills after almost a year away from the bench. Its been a lot of work up till now. There's a bit less tolerance in the end look of a missile than say an iron bomb.

IMG_3012.jpeg
 

PFGEN

GCM
Pushed the post button too early.

Paint wise recreating the colours and details on the winders took a bit of doing. The front end generally has a sort of green metallic sheen. Solved that with one of Vallejo's meal series paints and then a thin coat of transparent green.

On the 370 gal tank I wanted to try lining the panels without it looking too extreme. I used a pencil before airbrushing the top coat. I lost some of the detail but I plan to lightly spray a lighter coat in places to obtain a slight mottled effect. I didn't completely flatten the seems on the tanks as its often possible to see the welds.

On the Harm I've added my own decals (lost the set from the kit) which has been a bit of a steep learning curve. The red panel for "no hold" should have been further back. There should also be some light panel lines on the missile with light being the key.
 
Pushed the post button too early.

Paint wise recreating the colours and details on the winders took a bit of doing. The front end generally has a sort of green metallic sheen. Solved that with one of Vallejo's meal series paints and then a thin coat of transparent green.

On the 370 gal tank I wanted to try lining the panels without it looking too extreme. I used a pencil before airbrushing the top coat. I lost some of the detail but I plan to lightly spray a lighter coat in places to obtain a slight mottled effect. I didn't completely flatten the seems on the tanks as its often possible to see the welds.

On the Harm I've added my own decals (lost the set from the kit) which has been a bit of a steep learning curve. The red panel for "no hold" should have been further back. There should also be some light panel lines on the missile with light being the key.

Really nice bit of workmanship.
 

Daz

LE
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It is, any a lot better use of the airbrush then me

It would be good of @PFGEN to give some feedback on assembly. My drunken ramblings are 'seams are shyte' then you see the work to get it up to scratch. If the Tamiya air is as good as the armour, I'm guessing the build feedback will be 'that assembly was piece of piss - look no miliput and mr surfacer...'
 

PFGEN

GCM
Seams are indeed shyte. The Tamiya stuff does go together reasonably well. I had wondered why they don't just make the missiles out of a single part but then they wouldn't be able to get them out the mould without a seam from the moulds. Nothing for it but to get out the sandpaper and rub away. It takes a fair amount of work to remove the seam to the point that it's no longer visible under a thin layer of paint. Too much paint and it no longer looks like a missile.

Worst offenders for seams were the rails for the outer positions (1, 2, 8 and 9). There are no seams on the full size version.

Fuel tank this evening. Good thing from Tamiya is that they included the modern pylons for the tanks.
 
Seams are indeed shyte. The Tamiya stuff does go together reasonably well. I had wondered why they don't just make the missiles out of a single part but then they wouldn't be able to get them out the mould without a seam from the moulds. Nothing for it but to get out the sandpaper and rub away. It takes a fair amount of work to remove the seam to the point that it's no longer visible under a thin layer of paint. Too much paint and it no longer looks like a missile.

Worst offenders for seams were the rails for the outer positions (1, 2, 8 and 9). There are no seams on the full size version.

Fuel tank this evening. Good thing from Tamiya is that they included the modern pylons for the tanks.

I’m glad it’s not just me. I’m still waiting to find the perfect kit
 
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Daz

LE
I’m glad it’s not just me. I’m still waiting to find the perfect kit
No such thing...... especially if I get my hands on it :)
 

PFGEN

GCM
My plan for the fuel tanks had to be revised. First plan was primer, pencil for lining followed by ghost grey and then a light get over the top to give a mottled effect. Update; that didn't work. Went back and put on the light grey first and then followed it up with the darker ghost grey.

IMG_3058.jpeg
IMG_3059.jpeg


I think I got it right with the right with the upper of the two tanks. The lower one needs a little more of the darker grey. Unfortunately I lost the panel lines I'd added. I'll try something else for that but don't want them to be too prominent.

Back to making decals.
 

PFGEN

GCM
Finally finished the missile load and 370 gallon tanks. After trying an enamel panel liner and oils I went back to a simple wash and an available digit to rub it in. I'm happy with the results.

IMG_3578D.jpeg


IMG_3579D.jpeg


What I'm not so happy about is the reflection from the decal paper. I've tried a few different types and this was the best of the rest. Even after matt varnish it's still visible. Any suggestions?
 
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What I'm not so happy about is the reflection from the decal paper. I've tried a few different types and this was the best of the rest. Even after matt varnish it's still visible. Any suggestions?

Apologies if this is incredibly obvious, or teaching you to suck eggs... and I only say this because it looks like it's the underside of the decal that is reflecting...

...but did you put a gloss varnish under where the decal was going, so that it's a perfect contact underneath, then apply the decal, and then put the matt varnish on top?
 

Daz

LE
Finally finished the missile load and 370 gallon tanks. After trying an enamel panel liner and oils I went back to a simple wash and an available digit to rub it in. I'm happy with the results.

View attachment 481782

View attachment 481783

What I'm not so happy about is the reflection from the decal paper. I've tried a few different types and this was the best of the rest. Even after matt varnish it's still visible. Any suggestions?
Since you've already varnished then, I think it's too late now - some sort of decal fix prior to varnishing is normally the way forward
 

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