This is actually my son’s third finished kit (the second one has broken to pieces before any photos have been taken) but is his first figure.
Bernard, the owner of M Workshop kindly gave my son this small set when we dropped by his shop earlier this year. The figure is painted primarily with Vallejo Game Color.
He has already started on his next kit, a 1/48 scale Bf109. Hopefully he’ll see this one through.
To address the step between the front canopy and the nose, it was a matter of putty + elbow grease with a sanding sponge. However, the way the front canopy attaches to the nose, the port side joint is only (at most) 0.5mm away from a panel line. Naturally I managed to obliterate part of the panel line so some rescribing was needed.
While the general fit of the canopies look OK, I decided to leave them open for this build. And since they are quite bare, I also decided to torture myself and add some handles and rear view mirrors. First up is masking.
The insides were also masked…
The rear view mirrors are put together from 0.2mm plastic plate and a bit of stretched sprue.
I used thin solder wire for the handles. The design and placement of these are based on photos I found online.
Looks acceptable after a spray of color. Might be a tad oversized and crude but I’m moving on.
After some more masking of the cockpit, intakes and the main landing gear, it looks like I’m finally ready for painting!
In between sessions of gap fixing, I started on the things under the wings. The kit comes with 4 gas bags but I decided to go with just the 2 outer ones. The wheels all come with the rim and tires being separate but while that makes them easy to paint, they needed trimming and a healthy dose of sanding to fit together.
I first inserted plastic plates to to fill a majority of the gap in the coaming, then the rest will be handled by filler.
I did the same for the gap on the main gear door.
The speed brakes are also usually closed when the plane is on the ground but these don’t fit well at all.
To make my life easier, I cut off the legs of the speed brakes, trimmed everything, then fit them that way. The cut marks will be tackled with more filler.
The gap fixing is taking a while…
The main issues being the intake lips to intake fit and the exhaust housings which have big steps all round the joint areas.
The canopy parts were given a dip of Future and left to dry for close to 72 hours and were test fitted onto the fuselage. The fit is decent but I think I’ll leave the canopies open, which means I’ll have to detail up the inside of the frames.
The instruction calls for a clear piece for the HUD projector (?) but I decided to replace this with G-Option’s Aurora Film. I punched out a small round piece and stuck it into the hole. Looks good!
The HUD itself is a piece of photoetch which I folded carefully. The kit parts for the glass were replaced with thinner acetate and given a brush of Future.
After masking the inside of the front canopy, I sprayed Panzer Dark Grey. Referring to photos I found online, I added ‘a round thing’ and 2 ‘side blocks’ (yes those are the technical terms) using plastic plate and stretched sprue.
The front canopy is molded with a part of the nose. But it sits just slightly proud so more elbow grease is required.
It’s been slow going, but I’m getting there!
This was unexpected but very welcome. A new Godmars model kit is coming! It looks like there will be part swapping involved depending on what mode the modeler wants to achieve. It’s simpler and probably more sturdy this way as it will feature a lot of articulation.
This is coming in August @ 7,500JPY. More pics in Hobby Search.
With everything requiring multiple dryfits, trimming and adjusting, progress is going slower than I would like. Anyway, onwards we go. First up though, is a picture of the seats by themselves which I forgot to show in my previous WIP post.
The Alpha Jet’s flaps remain raised while on the ground so while it’s nice Kinetic offers the flaps down option, it simply means more work in this case.
The flap actuators fit fine but some of the holes for the pins are too large and will require filling.
There are blocks and sockets for the wings to fit into the fuselage but the sockets are bigger than the blocks so they aren’t of much help for alignment and to get the correct anhedral of the wings. In the end, due to the loose fit, I focused on the proper alignment and fit for the leading edges and will fix the gaps on the trailing edges.
This picture also shows the big gap right behind the cockpit. Since I doubt normal putty will be able to cover this, I filled with epoxy putty from the inside, pushed it out and trimmed off the excess.
To distract myself from the monotony of getting all the parts to fit with minimal gaps, I decided to try my hand at scratchbuilding brake lines on the landing gear. On the Alpha Jet, there’s only 1 cable on each gear leg so I figure it’s the best time to practise.
I used 0.1mm copper wire and 0.4mm masking tape for the bands. I think the copper wire is too thin but it’ll have to do. The result looks good but not really noticeable.
The main landing gear needs to be attached into the fuselage before the bottom plate is installed.
I don’t like this arrangement but there’s no way around it. I reinforced the joints with diluted PVA glue and then the bottom plate then gets fitted. Luckily it went on with only a little trimming.
While the cockpit tub fit OK, there is a noticeable gap on the instrument coaming. There is also a slight short molding of the coaming on the port side which leads to a very unsightly gap.
Kinetic molds the gear bay doors in the open position but all the photos I’ve seen show that almost all of them are closed while on the ground. The attachment guides were cut off and I took a while to get them to close up.
The nose gear doors didn’t turn out that well but like a lot of the other parts so far, filler will fix it.
With the huge gap on the starboard gear door, it’s clear to me that the bay doors were never designed to be closed in the first place. Interestingly, the port side fit alright.
The good news however is that there is light at the end of the tunnel.