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Cold War (1950-1974)
Discuss the aircraft modeling subjects during the Cold War period.
Hosted by Tim Hatton
Best Starfighter Ever?
Cosimodo
#335
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Auckland, New Zealand
Joined: September 03, 2013
KitMaker: 1,808 posts
AeroScale: 195 posts
Posted: Thursday, March 19, 2020 - 11:36 AM UTC
Hi Steve,
Glad to see you have finally made it to the external painting stage. The sub-assemblies look great they way they were laid out and you attention to the detail has paid off spectacularly.
Even on our little dot in the South Pacific I am at home. No forced quarantine but most businesses have already made that decision.

Stay safe one and all!

cheers
Michael
AussieReg
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
AUTOMODELER
#007
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Victoria, Australia
Joined: June 09, 2009
KitMaker: 8,156 posts
AeroScale: 3,756 posts
Posted: Thursday, March 19, 2020 - 02:17 PM UTC
Great to see this beast at paint stage Steve!

I'm still at work, but things are very quiet and half of the office staff are working from home on alternating days. I am on the road usually, but most clients are bunkered down now with no outside visitors if possible. I think it is just a matter of time before I am spending a bit of time at home as well. Luckily a lot of my background work is web searches, phone calls and emails before I head out to meet clients.

Working in water treatment, we provide regular maintenance to critical equipment for essential services, so we have not slowed down in our regular workload.

Best wishes to everybody, stay safe and take care of those close to you.

Cheers, D
GazzaS
#424
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Queensland, Australia
Joined: April 23, 2015
KitMaker: 4,648 posts
AeroScale: 1,938 posts
Posted: Thursday, March 19, 2020 - 06:13 PM UTC
Steve,
glad to see you've gotten so far in such splendid fashion.

Gaz
SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Thursday, March 19, 2020 - 07:51 PM UTC
Hi guys,

Good morning from Switzerland. There's some big inspiration for post apocalyptic sci-fi builds outside; its eerily quiet. Last night I went for a walk around the normally bustling streets of the town I live in (Nyon if you want to Google it), and even the roads were empty of vehicles. At one point a guy on a skateboard sailed past me in the middle of the road. He was complete with a face mask and surgical gloves, and untroubled by any traffic. He was the only person I saw or heard for a good ten minutes.

These times make me wonder how my grandparents got through six years of uncertainty and rationing during the Second World War. I guess every generation is tested in some way.

But life goes on. It's a sunny day and a weekend is ahead. And, the Starfighter is calling me. I can hear it. And no, I'm perfectly well adjusted to the new reality. My models always talk to me. Don't yours?? :-)

Have a great day and I hope you stay healthy in mind and body,

Steve.



RussellE
#306
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Victoria, Australia
Joined: June 27, 2010
KitMaker: 3,959 posts
AeroScale: 598 posts
Posted: Thursday, March 19, 2020 - 09:57 PM UTC
very nice work on what is a very detailed model, Steve!

Best health to everyone!
SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Sunday, March 22, 2020 - 09:57 AM UTC
Hi Russell,
Thanks very much. There was more progress over the weekend. Photos soon.
Bye for now,
Steve.
Joel_W
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
AUTOMODELER
_VISITCOMMUNITY
New York, United States
Joined: December 04, 2010
KitMaker: 11,666 posts
AeroScale: 7,410 posts
Posted: Monday, March 23, 2020 - 02:13 AM UTC
Steve,
Over the last 3 years I've followed your build with great interest, as just your dedication and focus for that long of a period of time is something I couldn't do. The level of your detailing is amazing. What's more I really enjoy your writing style.

I'm looking forward to your painting processes, as I'm sure it's going to be textbook material.

Like both you and Nick, I'm stuck indoors as I live just east of NYC on Long Island the worst hit virus area in the USA. And unfortunately, it's made it way out here as well in force.

Only things open are pharmacies and food stores, and the shelves are literally bare of everything. Just never thought we would experience anything like this with the Western World's medical research capabilities. I'm in one of the higher risks groups, so who really knows how this will turn out.

Looking forward to your next up.

Joel
SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Monday, March 30, 2020 - 05:50 AM UTC
Hi Joel,

I have to say that your encouragement and interest here has been a huge motivator, as have the comments from other modellers. Maybe once this is all over it will be time for a Kit Maker convention? Maybe it's time for a virtual one now?

These are testing times, no doubt about it. Who would have believed it would come to this? No doubt one day we'll look back and wonder how it did, and recall our time in isolation. Here we are living a big historical moment.

If every cloud has a silver lining then bench time must be ours.

I hope you stay safe and well, and avoid any nasty surprises.

Take care, and bye for now. The latest update follows right after this.

With warm wishes,

Steve.
SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Monday, March 30, 2020 - 05:56 AM UTC
How you doing guys? The crazy times continue and so does the modelling, while life here on Aeroscale continues as it always has. The same is true on my workbench, although the pace of progress has accelerated. The F-104 has paint above and below the wings which includes some subtle pre-shading. In fact looking at these photos it might be too subtle. Can you actually see any? Maybe I need to add post to the pre?

Iíve also been working on washes and highlights on the interior. Now, here the opposite seems to be true - it looks a little strong in places. I think I need to tone it down. First world problems eh?

Happy modelling, and bye for now,

Steve.







And for no particular reason, hereís a love song, just because love is something that endures even as we stay indoors. My girlfriend sent me this and it melted my heart. Sheís half French and half LA. Yeah, Iím a big softie.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_mEQiVy1q78
Cosimodo
#335
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Auckland, New Zealand
Joined: September 03, 2013
KitMaker: 1,808 posts
AeroScale: 195 posts
Posted: Monday, March 30, 2020 - 01:15 PM UTC
For what it's worth I think the subtle shading on the wings looks good. I don't know how used you wanted the aircraft to be. As for the hatch covers etc I think that is also right. Items that are "in shade" should be darker to accentuate that.

cheers
Michael
SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Monday, March 30, 2020 - 06:32 PM UTC
Morning Michael,

Thanks very much for taking a look. I'm taking my cues from a photo in an old book I have but there aren't any interior shots. If it was a car it could be described as having one careful owner. So, subtle but not invisible is what I'm after. I hear what you're saying about the wings, and I think they are about right then. The interior might need work to get it closer to the same effect.

Thanks a million for dropping in and giving me some feedback. I hope you are staying well.

Bye for now,

Steve.
SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Friday, April 10, 2020 - 07:32 AM UTC
There have been times when Iíve longed for the many distractions of life to disappear so I could focus on building and painting. Now my wish has come true, and somehow it feels hollow. The empty streets and skies are unnatural. Even so, this is a great time to make progress with the F-104, and the weirdness of life aside, progress there has been.

Conventional modelling wisdom says black base before applying a natural metal finish, and so I did. Hereís the fuselage looking dark and dangerous in a coat of Ultimate Primer Gloss black.





Itís not super shiny, at least not in my hands. Iíd say more satin than gloss. But when a few low pressure coats of AK Extreme Metal Polished Aluminium are applied, the results look good. The photo below shows a few doors and other shiny things that were primed earlier.





I put the paint bottle next to this part just to give you and idea of the kind of reflection this combination gives. Itís not deep and high resolution like a car body - you can see the light being diffused. I was actually hoping for a deeper shine, but either I chose the wrong paint or.. orÖ well, one of a gazillion other things that can happen to natural metal finishes happened. Iím slightly puzzled but not disappointed. There will be weathering in this neat little partís future.

Now, hereís an audience participation question; something that bothers me every time I apply NMF. Should I gloss coat before I weather? I did on my last kit and it worked out OK but that was a much less polished look. I donít want the weathering to lift the NMF (so cheers goes up for gloss coating!) but neither do I want to change the look of the surface (put away the airbrush, rings out for the other corner). Hmm what to do? Any ideas?

Whatever happens itís going to be a silver machine.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IfniG-AdSC4

Bye for now,

Steve.
SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Wednesday, April 15, 2020 - 06:52 PM UTC
Never judge a book by its cover. I know, youíve heard that many times before, and probably said it yourself, Well, it seems the same is true of paint. Judging the shade of AKís Extreme Metal paints by the colour in the jar didnít get me far. They dry a lot lighter than the liquid suggests. Check out the images below. The first one shows Dark Aluminium in the pot, and behind it, the shade when applied to the model. The Vulcan cannon is painted in Gunmetal, but it looks more like a mid-silver. That can be fixed with washes and a filter of course, but I thought Iíd share anyhow as a contribution to our collective modelling knowledge. Crikey, that sounds grand.





And as a quick after thought I posted this shot of the fuel tanks in Matt Aluminium; a beautiful colour that dries to a lovely smooth satin finish.

SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Tuesday, April 28, 2020 - 07:50 AM UTC
There are certain aspects of modelling that just donít work for me; things that never get a Ďwowí reaction from my inner critic. The biggest and nastiest of these self-inflicted demons is weathering natural metal finish. Iíve read the books and watched the videos. Iíve masked off panels and sprayed on post shading butÖ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R97TsVDC1BY

So, having spent two years on this kit I thought Iíd throw caution to the wind and experiment. It seemed like the right thing to do at the time. I wanted to try and produce different shades of metal with different reflective properties. If I were trying this on a regular paint job then Iíd use pre-shading like I did on the wings, soÖ why not with NMF?

No good reason it seems to me (from the point of never having it tried it). I used metallics, a bit of airbrushing and a lot of sponge technique to lay down some different shades and then went over it all with a thin coat of the base colour - polished aluminium. The sponging did lift a bit of the original base in places as the thinner reactive the paint, but after an initial worry I decided to go with it. In the worst case Iíd have to repaint, and the purpose was to let go and put my faith in the technique.

Then the real trouble started - trying to photograph the end result. The shot below is the best I could get after several attempts. I hope it shows the result. I canít say itís totally authentic but it does have a certain something that I like. I had a girlfriend with similar assets once. Have a look and see what you thinkÖ. The finish I mean, notÖ well, you get my point I hope.



Bye for now.
SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Sunday, May 24, 2020 - 10:19 PM UTC
Over the past few weeks Iíve been able to make some good progress. The gun bay has been painted and weathered. The Sidewinders have been painted and decalled. And, because I got excited and I couldnít wait, I took the masking off the wings too.

Itís interesting (at least in my opinion) that when I zoom in the gun bay looks very heavily weathered, so much so that I was tempted to go back in with thinners and reduce the effect. But, when I moved the camera back or looked with the naked eye, suddenly it seemed quite subtle. I guess this is the difference between painting for close-up and painting for the naked eye. I read or heard someone commenting about this effect (apologies, Iíve forgotten who). It was described as stage make-up, which of course is exaggerated because the viewers are a long way away. Hmmm, I wonder?

Here are some photos of the work so far.

Happy modelling. I hope you are keeping healthy in mind and body









RussellE
#306
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Victoria, Australia
Joined: June 27, 2010
KitMaker: 3,959 posts
AeroScale: 598 posts
Posted: Tuesday, May 26, 2020 - 09:31 AM UTC
Looks amazing Steve!
Joel_W
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
AUTOMODELER
_VISITCOMMUNITY
New York, United States
Joined: December 04, 2010
KitMaker: 11,666 posts
AeroScale: 7,410 posts
Posted: Tuesday, May 26, 2020 - 09:43 AM UTC
Steve,
I'll 2nd what Russell said. Your work is simply amazing.

Joel
GazzaS
#424
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Queensland, Australia
Joined: April 23, 2015
KitMaker: 4,648 posts
AeroScale: 1,938 posts
Posted: Tuesday, May 26, 2020 - 09:50 AM UTC
Those sidewinders look great!
Cosimodo
#335
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Auckland, New Zealand
Joined: September 03, 2013
KitMaker: 1,808 posts
AeroScale: 195 posts
Posted: Tuesday, May 26, 2020 - 11:49 AM UTC
I think you've got it pretty spot on with the shading and the sidewinders do look great.
I'm also impressed about how you managed to keep your work mat so clean!

cheers
Michael
AussieReg
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
AUTOMODELER
#007
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Victoria, Australia
Joined: June 09, 2009
KitMaker: 8,156 posts
AeroScale: 3,756 posts
Posted: Tuesday, May 26, 2020 - 04:04 PM UTC
Coming together beautifully Steve, the tonal variations and weathering look great and the detail work really lifts it!

A recommendation for you to try out (on a paint mule first!) - I have found that Alclad Aqua Gloss doesn't really alter the finish of an NMF paint job, but it will keep it safe from those nasty oil and enamel washes.

Cheers, D
SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 27, 2020 - 05:23 AM UTC
Gentleman,

Thanks so much for your encouragement. I have to admit that if at the beginning I'd know this would be a three year project I might have reached for a large G&T and a much simpler build. However, here I am and determined to finish even as I go through highs and lows of satisfaction with my work.

Michael , that cutting mat is pretty new and I have an old one covered in paint and gunk that I spray on. In edition my mum trained me to be tidy. She could identify an entire day's misdemeanours from one tiny dropped crumb. It was almost psychic.

And, Damian, thanks for the tip off. I'm going to do exactly as you suggest but I might end up using a different product. Alclad is hard to come by here in Switzerland and the whole COVID thing makes delivery times from abroad an exercise in extreme patience.

Thanks again gents. More work soon.

SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Monday, June 01, 2020 - 07:57 AM UTC
From the start this kit has presented me with problems and dilemmas. It has been fun solving many of them; trying to make something out of flawed kit has been part of the challenge. One thing has worried me all the way though - the trench like panel lines on the fuselage. Jeez, they look deep enough for Luke Skywalker to fly an x-wing down. At least theyíll hold a wash well, I told myself. Well, it turns out that they hold a wash very, very well. Maybe too well in fact. Iíve been working with a dark grey oil wash on the body and a dark grey/brown on the wings. I like the wings - they have a dirty dusty look, but those panel lines on the fuselage look very solid. I keep looking at them trying to decide if I like them or not. And I canít, so Iíll sleep on it.

By the way, Iíd usually apply a panel line wash after decaling, but there are some large areas of carrier film and I thought it would be easier to get most of the weathering done first. Iíll do some work on the decals to blend them in. Now, Iím also hoping they will tone back the weathering a little.

Hereís what is making me wonder.

Happy modelling guys (and hello sweet, Cťline if you are reading this).





GazzaS
#424
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Queensland, Australia
Joined: April 23, 2015
KitMaker: 4,648 posts
AeroScale: 1,938 posts
Posted: Monday, June 01, 2020 - 05:59 PM UTC
It looks great, Steve. BTW... in the last three years have you worked on any other models?
SteveAndrews
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: August 16, 2010
KitMaker: 693 posts
AeroScale: 551 posts
Posted: Tuesday, June 02, 2020 - 07:41 AM UTC
Hey Gary,

I had to rack my brain a bit before answering. I think the answer is 'no' apart from an aborted start on GWH Shooting Star when I hit the doldrums.

Frankly, I'm constantly tempted to start new kits so I try and see one to the end before the next box is opened. I'd go to my grave with about 20 unfinished kits as my kids' inheritance if I did it any other way. I'm amazed by guys who can juggle a few projects at a time.

How about you? Are you a multi-tasker or start-to-finisher?

Have a great day,

Steve.

Joel_W
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
AUTOMODELER
_VISITCOMMUNITY
New York, United States
Joined: December 04, 2010
KitMaker: 11,666 posts
AeroScale: 7,410 posts
Posted: Tuesday, June 02, 2020 - 08:51 AM UTC
Steve,
For what it's worth. I'm just like you. start one, finish one, then open the next model box. But I do start my research way before I start the kit. These days I'm mostly a OOB type of guy, so about the only AM I regularly buy are decals.

Joel