by: Andy Brazier [ ]
Introduction DN Models produce a range of masks for painting the canopy, wheels and camo patterns on aircraft and armour.
Now not having a 1/48th kit of the Harrier Gr.7 and DN Models producing a set great looking Arctic winter set destined for the Eduard, Hasegawa and Revell 1/48th BAE Harrier Gr.7/9, I asked Mitko at DN if he could scale down a set too 1/72nd, which he did without any problems, but he did warn me of potential fit problems.
I will be using the 1/72nd set on an Airfix BAE Harrier Gr.7, so I was expecting the masks not too fit to well.
This set covers the camo pattern masks, canopy and wheels.
This camo scheme is one of the schemes in the recent 1/48th Eduard/Hasegawa boxing of the Harrier Gr.7/9.
Using the masks DN Models paint masks are packed into a plastic sleeve with a cardboard backing to stop them being bent and folded.
The masks themselves are made of a very thin plastic and are a translucent grey colour.
The mask set which holds the camo pattern and the canopy masks are on two sheets.
The first sheet holds the canopy, for the main canopy edges and the windscreen. The bottom camo masks are also on this sheet. Also on this sheet is the wheel masks, which cover the tires, so the hubs can be sprayed.
The second sheet holds the top, left and right side camo masks.
The masks are for covering the grey sections, so the white can be sprayed.
The masks are numbered on the instruction sheet with another page supplied for the mask placement guide.
The first stage is too weed the masks, (take out the unused parts, so you can see the masks needed a lot easier).
Application of the masks is easy and straightforward. The masks fit pretty well considering they are for a different kit and scale. The masks handle the contours well and fit round any lumps and bumps quite easily.
The fuselage masks, are split into four parts, (left, right, top and bottom) and all join up once the masks are placed onto the Harrier. A little trail and error to get them perfectly lined up is needed, but they do fit together well.
The masks are not over sticky, so they can be peeled off if you place them in the wrong position.
Some additional masking is needed in some places, such as the unit badge and serial numbers which are placed on the grey portion of the aircraft. These markings are on part or all of the white camo part, so a mask is needed to create an oblong shape for the markings to be set on.
A little touch up is needed here and there, for the main camo scheme, but nothing too troublesome.
The canopy masks on the other hand don't really fit the Airfix 1/72nd kit, with only the main canopy edge masks just about fitting, with a little coaxing into position.
The wheel masks are slightly off, but not by much, and a little tidying up is needed.
Instructions Two sheets in A4 size are supplied, both of which are only printed on one side, and are in full colour.
The first sheet has the mask placement, with the numbers for each mask and also the area it needs to go onto.
The second sheet has four full profiles of the aircraft in colour, with each mask numbered to its placement on the aircraft.
The aircraft shown in the instructions is the Harrier Gr.7 of ZD 379/27, 1(F) Squadron, Barduffoss, Norway, January 2004. Painted in the so-called 'Arctic camouflage scheme' consisting of Dark Sea Grey and Dark Camouflage grey oversprayed white colour, this Harrier took part in Snow Falcon military exercises in Norway during January 2004.
This scheme is one of the painting options in the Eduard/Hasegawa Gr.7/9 kit produced in 1/48th.
Conclusion Now not having used masks produced specifically for camo schemes before ( I normally use, blutak, and Tamiya tape), I was intrigued to see how they would turn out, especially as the donor kit is the wrong scale and manufacturer, but the masks worked extremely well.
The masks went on well, stopped pretty much all the paint seeping underneath the masks, and gave a nice hard edge camo pattern. A little touch up is needed where the masks didn't quite join up with each other on the fuselage, but nothing too terrible.
As already mentioned the canopy masks were not a great fit, and ended up being used in the most part as filler along with some masking tape.
Now having used the masks, I am pretty much converted to using them on various projects due to their relative ease and speed.
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