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6 Details make a striking Lightning
Getting the most of Trumpeters
1/32 scale P-38L

16 Kitbashing an early Cougar

Crossbreed Grumman cats for the
hybrid F9F-6

22 Pounce on a Panther
Details for a late-production
PzKpfw V Ausf D

32 Strike against the Missouri

Some fought to live, some fought to die

36 Polishing a little gem 16

Key additions make a 1/144 scale
E-2C Hawkeye sparkle

40 Show Gallery
High-flying detail

48 How to Build a BARV

Scratchbuilding makes a D-Day Sherman
conversion in 1/35 scale

56 D-Day, Juno Beach

Tag-team allies model a diorama in
1/35 scale

64 Show Gallery
Powered-up armor 48
70 Rev up a Grand Prix racer
Superdetailing a 1/20 scale multimedia kit

78 Tiger Meet JAS 39C

Converting, detailing this Gripen
is a roarin good time

82 Scratchbuilding tips and tricks

A master modeler shares the secrets
to shipshape modeling

89 Built for the Borg

Photo-etching and foraging, cubed

94 Show Gallery
But wait, theres more! 78
By Mark Savage EXPERTS GUIDE TO 2016
Getting better and better! Editor Mark Savage
Art Director Tom Ford

Senior Editor Aaron Skinner
Associate Editor Mark Hembree

T he better models get, the better

modelers get.
The inverse is true, too: The better
the worlds best modelers have gone
the extra mile and a quarter (2km) to
create stunningly realistic and exciting
Assistant Editor Elizabeth Nash
Editorial Associate Monica Freitag

Illustrator Kellie Jaeger
Photographer William Zuback
modelers get, the better their models models or vignettes. Production Coordinator Cindy Barder
get. There are ideas and tips galore in CONTRIBUTING MODELERS
It seems simple and we see it at our 11 all-new how-to stories, culled Paul Boyer, Federico Collada, Andy Cooper,
Ral Corral, Frank Cuden, Phillip Gore, James Green,
shows all the time. A modeler from the bulging FSM story files. Joe Hudson, Rick Lawler, Karl Logan, Harvey Low,
Rato Marczak, Chris Mrosko, Bill Plunk, Darren Roberts,
approaches our photo booth But weve also gone Chuck Sawyer, Cookie Sewell, Bob Steinbrunn,
Cristbal Vergara, Jim Wechsler, Adam Wilder
and lays on the praise of our that extra little bit by
magazine and all it has taught The goal, assembling three photo Senior V.P., Sales & Marketing Daniel R. Lance
Vice President, Content Stephen C. George
him over the years. of course, galleries from the biggest Vice President, Consumer Marketing Nicole McGuire
General Manager Brian J. Schmidt
Were not alone though. is to modeling shows that we Advertising Director Scott Bong
Corporate Art Director Maureen M. Schimmel
The modeler usually is full improve, attended this past year. Art and Production Manager Michael Soliday
Circulation Manager Cathy Daniels
of thanks for his fellow club to get We selected the most Single Copy Specialist Kim Redmond
members tips, advice he better and detailed builds to focus our ADVERTISING DEPARTMENT
got from folks met at better at spotlight on so you can see Advertising Sales Representative
shows and contests, plus modeling. what fellow modelers are Todd Schwartz, Ext. 539
Advertising Services Representative
ideas shared with model- doing to raise the bar. ads@FineScale.com

ers worldwide via our We hope you enjoy this RETAIL, TRADE ORDERS, AND INQUIRIES
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4 Experts Guide to Superdetailing


Theres rarely a shortage of superdetailed aircraf
shot at the 2016 Squadron EagleQuest and the IP

Level! .

Modelers are always looking

40 Experts Guide to Superdetailing
for new ways to take their

builds to the next level,

whatever that means
specifically to them. With kit
quality constantly improving,
creating a highly detailed
model now means more than
just painting and weathering,
although thats still a big part.

The following pages will explain and show you how!

www.FineScale.com 5
Details make a striking
LIGHTNINGGetting the most of Trumpeters 1/32 scale P-38L

have always wanted to build a These challenges are met in modeling
fork-tailed devil, the twin-boom Maj. Richard Bongs P-38 Marge as it
Lockheed P-38 Lightning. I prefer appears at the EAA AirVenture Museum
1/32 scale, which meant the choice of a in Oshkosh, Wis. This particular
Revell or Trumpeter kit. I chose Lightning, No. 44-53087, is a later P-38L,
Trumpeter (No. 02227). Its a good although it has the markings of a P-38J
model, but it still has several challenges Bong flew during the war,
to overcome. No. 42-103993. The nose art was an
An additional challenge was my goal image of Marge Vattendahl, the future
of building a restored bird with clean, Mrs. Bong.
bare metal because a metal finish So I had my plane, my paint finish,
hides nothing! As a matter of fact, every and a specific subject. Aftermarket
tiny flaw is magnified. Extra care must products kicked the project up a notch,
be given to both construction and either correcting or enhancing many of
surface preparation. the models details.

6 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

1 2 3
I thought Scale Aircraft Conversions white- Instead, I drilled through the kits plastic gear However, the SAC scissors link looked better
metal landing gear (top) would be stronger leg and inserted a sewing pin for a strong core. than what the kit provided.
and help keep the bird on its toes, but it
needed work and the oleo was overextended.

4 5 6
Using metal files, a motor tool, and sandpaper, I opened the attachment points on the plastic I replaced the nose-gear scissor link with
I polished the scissor links, drilled holes in the gear legs, leaving a C-shaped mount for the Eduard photo-etched (PE) brass and used bits
hinge and leg attachments, and inserted pins. scissor links. of wire, styrene rod, and brass for hydraulic

7 8 9
In the main gear wells, I painted a coolant pipe Brake lines are black electrical wire with strips The lower engine intake doesnt fit in the
and made a connector of electrical tape and of electrical tape as clamps. boom, producing a gap on the underside.
metal strips. Hydraulic lines are 28-gauge
electronic wire, super glued with brass bands.

10 11 12
Deepening the grooves in the bottom of the The gear wells have fit issues, too, forcing the Trimming or sanding locators improves the fit.
intake assembly and widening the locator hole booms to bow out.
for the pin on the boom wall improves the fit.

www.FineScale.com 7
13 14 15
Getting better! Glue applied to well walls from The propeller shaft mounts too low, so the To raise the prop spindles mount, I created
behind closed the remaining gaps. spinner falls short of the nacelles top. pins cut from drill bits, cut the plastic pins from
the bottom of the engine, then drilled holes to
accept the new pins.

16 17 18
With the new pins, I can correct the engines Now the spinner can be adjusted to the right Still, the prop shafts fit is sloppy. So, I centered
height and angle as needed. height and angle before super gluing the pins. it and glued it in place. The props can still spin
on the shaft, though less freely.

19 20 21
The spinners are too wide for the nacelles. I The kits thick side vent doors were cut off and Every panel line was rescribed, every rivet
sanded them down and used a pin vise to replaced by Eduard PE. Circular vents on the mark repunched with a needle in a pin vise,
make new rivets. sides were replaced with brass tubing. and the larger Dzus fasteners were repunched
with a Mega Tool punch set.

22 23 24
Tamiya black Panel Line Accent Color P-38s had an inboard mirror on the side of Before mounting the engines, I glued lead
(essentially, a premixed wash) brings out each boom so the pilot could verify gear inside them for additional ballast.
surface details (left). down. The kit provides clear parts; I covered
them in Bare-Metal Foil after painting.

8 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

25 26 27
P-38s have large radiator assemblies outboard I painted the interior of each radiator housing I filled fastener depressions at the front of the
on each boom. The kit parts are fairly basic. and the booms with Alclad II aluminum, then supercharger intakes and added raised rivets
added Eduard PE vent doors and surface detail using Archer resin fastener heads. More vents
to replace kit parts. were created with brass tubing.

28 29 30
I filled the lower seam on the front of the The door for the underside vent also is Eduard Check your references: Some seam lines
boom with super glue and sanded it smooth; PE, painted with Alclad II aluminum. To prevent should be filled; others really are panel lines.
Eduard PE screen went in the lower vent. breakage, I didnt add it until the end.

31 32 33
So far so good! There should be rows of raised rivets just A Cutting Edge cockpit set provided a subpar
before the tail. After filling the recessed rivets resin instrument panel. I used the kits clear
with super glue and sanding them smooth, I plastic, even though it had nine ejector-pin
applied Archer resin fastener heads. marks all on the front!

34 35 36
Super glue filled the pin marks, and a coat of I used HGW Models fabric seat belts and PE I primed the cockpit with black; parts that
black lacquer covered them. I glued the film cinches made for a P-51D; they are almost would remain black were covered with Tamiya
instruments behind and used small instrument identical to those of a P-38. masking tape and Micromask fluid. The rest
decals from Airscale according to references. was airbrushed interior green.

www.FineScale.com 9
37 38
I airbrushed the interior color from the sides and above, leaving areas A drop of super glue created knobs at the tops of control levers.
under overhangs shadowy. Other parts are painted Alclad II aluminum.

39 40
The cockpit is glued to the top of the nose-gear well. But do not glue This bird needed a better gunsight. I used a K14 left over from a Tamiya
the nose gear in yet! P-51D, comprising five plastic (three clear) pieces plus a PE part.

41 42
Before the superchargers were glued into place, I painted their recesses I used Master Details resin superchargers. Wartime superchargers look
black to cover bare plastic inside. rough and rusty, but new ones are almost entirely clean. I glued them in
from behind to prevent exterior glue marks.

10 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

43 44
The wings droop; there are gaps to contend with, too. To eliminate droop and add strength, I glued a plastic chopstick inside
each wing using household rubber cement, which remains flexible.

45 46 47
P-38Ls have a landing light on the port wing. I cut off the tab on the top of the clear part, I scribed a new frame around the lens; now its
In this kit, the frame around the lens is then dry-fitted it in the wing and sanded both flush. After polishing the lens, I used Pledge
inaccurate, the fit is poor, and the mounts parts to smooth out the imperfection. FloorCare Multi-Surface Finish (PFM) to attach
show inside the light. a landing light from my spares.

48 49 50
A boarding ladder on the bottom half and the I applied super glue from behind the cockpit The supercharger and ends of the very thin
ladder handle on the top wing dont fit at all; I walls to attach it. (Note the cardboard and and fragile wing tabs were also covered for
reshaped their grooves with a motor tool. masking tape protecting details.) protection.

51 52
A large gap between boom and wing is best filled with strip styrene. Its The nose gear was a little skewed. I drilled a hole above the left pin that
strong, easy to sand, and it wont crack like putty can. holds the gear leg in place and, in spite of the glue, I was able to adjust
and straighten it.
www.FineScale.com 11
In the nose, the portal for the cannon is overscale. I filled it with liquid sprue and let it dry for a few days. Then I sanded it smooth and opened a
smaller hole with a drill bit and circular files.

54 55 56
After installing the gun assembly behind, the To keep this bird on its toes, I glued more lead Stripping insulation from a computer wire
barrels slip easily through the nose cone, into the nose. harness yielded ultrafine wire that I used to
which aligns them. detail the radio and other equipment behind
the pilot.

After careful polishing, the canopy parts were dipped in PFM, which adds clarity and smooths fine scuffs or scratches. I wanted the side windows to
be down, so I cut them off and left just the top portion of each window. StencilPal provides vinyl masks for the canopy, inside and out. Before gluing
the windscreen and rear canopy, I painted the inside interior green and the outside Alclad II aluminum.

58 59 60
For the canopy top lid, I installed a metal On the side windows, I darkened the join on Eduard PE enhances the landing-gear doors.
rearview mirror (spare from a Tamiya P-51D) the bottom with a black Sharpie. When Tamiya Hinges inside the doors are best left off until
and made a triangular locking mechanism out Extra Thin Cement combined with the black the end of the build. Here is one of the doors,
of brass scraps. ink, it further darkened the join. dry-fitted.

12 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

Number of Japanese aircraft shot
down by Richard Bong, all while
flying a Lockheed P-38 Lightning.

61 62
After sanding (starting with 1500 grit), I airbrushed Tamiya gloss black For bright metallic finishes, the surface must be perfectly smooth.
lacquer (TS-14) decanted from a spray can and thinned about 40%.

63 64
After repairing the inevitable flaws revealed by primer, I sanded with I removed sanding dust with a tack cloth and compressed air, then
ultrafine (6000-8000 grit) GSI Creos Mr. Laplos polishing cloths. airbrushed a little more of the black lacquer.

65 66
The kits props (left) just wouldnt do. I replaced them with resin parts I painted the spinner with Tamiya Italian red gloss lacquer, using the kits
from Grey Matter Figures (right). prop blades for holders.

www.FineScale.com 13
67 68
After several days of drying the primer was masked for painting. Masks Smaller strips on the edges guard better against paint bleed. Then
can lift the alcohol-based Alclad II chrome, so I sprayed that last. larger areas are filled in with bigger pieces of tape.

69 70
First the aluminum then Tamiya olive drab (TS-28) and Italian red (TS-8) decanted from
spray cans. A kitchen waste bag protects the rest of the plane.

71 72
Several thin, misty coats of Alclad II chrome produced a stunning shine! Alclad II chrome must be sealed with a clear coat so it wont lift, peel, or
Go light or the Alclad paint might craze the primer. be clouded by decal solutions. However, a clear coat can dull a high
gloss. I tried several, and Tamiya clear acrylic (X-22) cut with Tamiya
lacquer thinner worked best. FSM
14 Experts Guide to Superdetailing
Resin fastener heads, Archer Fine Transfers, Exterior and undercarriage photo-etch, Eduard (32126 and
www.archertransfer.com 32134), www.eduard.com
Fabric seat belts, HGW Models (No. 132032), Brass gun set, ProfiModeller (32138), www.profimodeller.com
www.hgwmodels.cz Marge decals, Pyn-up (PYN32001), The Fine Art of Decals,
Metal landing gear (scissor links only), Scale Aircraft www.fineartofdecals.com
Conversions (32004), www.scaleaircraftconversions.com Vinyl canopy paint masks, StencilPal (SP 32031),
Resin superchargers, Master Details (32037), www.stencilpal.com
www.masterdetails.com Instrument panel decals, Airscale, www.airscale.co.uk
Resin props, Grey Matter Figures (GMAJR3217), Automotive hose clamps, Model Car Garage,
www.greymatterfigures.com www.modelcargarage.com
Resin wheels and vinyl masks, Aires (2105), Punch set and Mega Tool, Unique Master Models,
www.aires.cz www.umm-usa.com

If you didnt want to fly

down Market Street,
I wouldnt have you in
my air force. But you
are not to do it anymore,
and I mean what I say.
Gen. George C. Kenney, Fourth Air
Force, reprimanding Lt. Bong for
buzzing San Francisco in June 1942

www.FineScale.com 15
Kitbashing an early
Crossbreed Grumman cats for the hybrid F9F-6 /// BY DARREN ROBERTS

ike many, I credit my dad with getting me hooked on airplanes
and building models of them. He took me to air shows and the
local hobby store, where I would gaze in awe at shelves full of
kits. He let me look through the aviation books he had purchased over
the years, giving me ideas for my next project.
In the Army in the 1950s, dad had the opportunity to travel to bases
of other branches of the military. One of those was Naval Air Station
Pensacola, where he photographed a brand-new F9F-6 Cougar. That
picture hangs in my modeling room, a permanent reminder of how
influential my dad was to me.
The F9F-6 is essentially an F9F-5 Panther with swept wings. When
Kitty Hawk released its 1/48 scale F9F-8 (No. KH80127), I decided to
convert it to an F9F-6 with an assist from Monograms F9F-5 Panther.

16 Experts Guide to Superdetailing


I cut the nose off the Monogram kits fuselage halves just forward of the nose-wheel well (left). The Kitty Hawk nose parts, accurate for the Cougar,
replaced them (right). The fit was almost perfect; if not for an errant cut on my part, it would have needed little filler.

The nose of the -6 didnt have the refueling probe featured in the Kitty Hawk kit, and there is no provision to model the nose without it. So, I cut a
piece from the kits probe (left), glued it into the opening at the tip of the nose, and sanded it to shape (right).


Lower rudder
3 4
The tail of the Monogram fuselage needed a couple of changes. First, I I cut the horizontal stabilizer fairing from the Kitty Hawk tail to use on
sanded off the lights and associated fairing. To make way for the the Monogram fuselage so I could attach the swept tail planes from the
Cougars larger lower rudder, I scored the outline with a scriber until the Cougar.
plastic was thin enough to cut it away with a hobby knife.

www.FineScale.com 17
5 6
Careful sanding refined the fit of the Kitty Hawk fairing and the I separated the center section of the Monogram kits one-piece lower
Monogram tail. I sealed gaps with Mr. Surfacer 500. Working on the wing with a razor saw along the wing-fold lines. The intake lip was
halves before gluing the fuselage together allowed me to lay them flat removed also. I assembled the fuselage, including the cockpit, and
on the workbench, making the work easier. added the landing gear.

The fillet behind the wings differs between the -8, which extends to the exhaust, and the -6, which ends halfway back, the same as the Panther. I cut
away the top half of the fillet from the wings of the Monogram kit, stopping at the rear wing-fold hinge (left) and glued it to the lower half (right).

8 9
Attaching the Kitty Hawk Cougar lower rudder and horizontal stabilizers I then cut away the forward part of the intakes from the lower fuselage
finished the tail. of the Kitty Hawk kit.

18 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

10 11
I cut the pieces longer than required; the extra plastic will make refining Testing and trimming fit the piece onto the lower intake area; the front
the fit easy. I removed the intake lip and the step that meets the lower should stop at the middle of the Monogram speed-brake well. Apoxie
fuselage. Sculpt smoothed the transition between the different kit parts.


12 13
To finish the upper part of the intake section, I removed the wheel-bay Then, I sawed off the intake lip along the molded line.
supports from the underside of the Kitty Hawk upper intakes.


Location slots

14 15
Using a razor saw, I cut the intake pieces to the inside of rivets between For the final step, I removed the tab with the locating slots from the
the second and third location slots from the front. intake parts.

www.FineScale.com 19
16 17
I glued the parts onto the other wing-root sections and filled gaps with The chord of the -6 was shorter than the -8. An extension of the leading
Apoxie Sculpt. edge creates a dogtooth at the wing fence that needs to be removed.
But pay attention, because its not a parallel cut. Instead, it tapers from
the fence to the wingtip. I used tape as a guide.

18 19
I thinned the plastic along the tape with a scribing tool, then cut With a knife, I cut away a third of the area from the trailing edge to the
through it with a knife. A coarse sanding stick rounded the leading edge recess for the spoileron.
and restored the airfoil shape.

20 21
I temporarily attached the wing and separate flap marking the line for On the final leg now, I installed a set of Steel Beach resin intake lips
the trailing edge and making sure it aligned with the Monogram wing (No. SBA48138) and filled the landing-light opening in the starboard
fillet. After cutting along the line, I attached the wing and flap and wings leading edge with 2-part epoxy putty. The Cougar had a light in
sanded the trailing edge to shape. the port wing only.

20 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

Using styrene rod and sheet, I filled the locating holes for the wing pylons (left) and the locating slot for folded wings (right).

23 24
Thats what an early Cougar looks like! I added photo-etched fences and After base-coating the model with Alclad II gray primer, I sprayed Alclad
spoilers to the wings before painting. II dark aluminum on the leading edges and masked it off with Tamiya
tape. Then, I sprayed the model glossy sea blue. A combination of kit
and Furball Aero-Design decals mark it as a VF-91 fighter.

Cougar nose without

refueling probe Steel Beach

wing roots

lower rudder
Kit and
Furball decals

The canopy and fiddly bits finished the Grumman Cougar.

Metallic leading edge Now, I have a wonderful reminder of the man who got me
Modified Kitty Hawk wing started building models. Thanks, Dad! FSM

www.FineScale.com 21
Pounce on a Panther Details make a late-production PzKpfw V Ausf D /// BY BILL MORIN

s a modeling subject, the made it a formidable fighting vehicle. already had this kit. I added Ataks resin
German Panzerkampfwagen V My model represents one of the last of appliqu Zimmerit (No. 35038). It was
Panther may well be overdone Ausf D, produced in September 1943. actually the arrival of this set in the mail
thousands have been built which prompted my wifes suggestion.
for every vehicle that actually existed. Whats in the cupboard?
But any armor model collection without While I was planning this project, my wife A word about glue
a Panther would be like a banana split said, Why not use that Panther stuff you For joining plastic to plastic, I use Testors
without the banana and since I hadnt already have instead of buying more? liquid plastic cement, Tenax-7R, or a com-
modeled a Panther since high school (the Shaken from my modeling bliss by the real- bination of the two. I attached the resin
old Tamiya Panther Ausf A), my collection ization that she knows the contents of my Zimmerit with Devcon 2 Ton liquid epoxy;
was deficient! stash and what a Panther is, I agreed. I in addition to strength, its 30-minute
The first Panthers rolled off the line in already had a lot on hand. working time allows for adjustment as well
January 1943. Production designations were My base is the Dragon 1/35 scale as easy removal of excess at the edges.
an alphabet soup: the first Ausfhrung Panther A Early Type, Italy 1943/44 Smaller Zimmerit panels and other resin,
(model or mark) was Ausf D, followed by (No. 6160). The A designation is supported metal, and photo-etched (PE) parts were
Ausf A and Ausf G. Many of the Panthers by some references, while others call it a attached with Devcon 5-minute liquid
wore Zimmerit, a nonmetallic paste applied late D. Its a transitional vehicle combining epoxy. I know conventional wisdom indi-
to thwart magnetic mines or sticky bombs. D components with some A features (nota- cates super glue for such materials but
The PzKpfw V was expensive, compli- bly, the newer, cast commanders cupola). I some of you have yet to discover that
cated, and temperamental, but its 75mm thought it was easier to backdate the early advancing age brings ham-fistedness! Five
gun, sloped armor, and excellent mobility A than update one of the D kits. And I minutes allows for alignment, and I dont

22 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

1 2
Building from the bottom up: This is the right road wheel for the period Tiger Model Designs resin replacements for the idler wheels needed
this tank model depicts. drilling and aluminum tubing for axles for a sturdy mount.

3 4
Resin Zimmerit on the lower hull has irregular edges, as the real vehicle A tank wouldnt look right without mud. Heres the first layer.
would. This was a good spot to try my first panel.

risk the damage or destruction of having to their backs; I drilled these out with a 18" bit left it all to dry overnight. I followed the
redo super glue. (I still use super glue where in a motor tool. I wasnt worried about pre- same sequence with the rest of the
placement is less critical.) cision; some wiggle room allowed for Zimmerit. It already looks cool, even before
adjustments. I applied a dab of epoxy to the painting, 3.
The wheels go round end of each tube section before aligning the Now it was time for mud. Overly
I chose this particular kit for its wheels. wheels and letting the glue set, 2. I filled smooth concoctions look like chocolate
Most Panther D models have the original around the axles with super glue. frosting; instead, I mixed Celluclay with
16-bolt rims; mine has the later 24-bolt water and white glue in a resealable plastic
wheels, more likely for a tank wearing Plaster and mud container and added varying amounts of
Zimmerit, 1. Since this was my first work with resin kitty litter and Woodland Scenics fine bal-
Nothing would be more annoying than Zimmerit panels, I practiced on the lower last, fine-blended turf, static grass, and
having drive sprockets or idler wheels snap hull sides, which would be behind the chopped-up field grass. I colored the glop
off. I glued the kits sprockets to the flat schrzen (skirt armor). I test-fitted and with brown acrylic craft store paint and
tops of the final-drive housings for a solid trimmed the panels, then held them in mixed it well to eliminate white specks.
mount and replaced the hubcaps with spare place and traced their outlines onto the hull I applied this mud to the lower hull,
parts of an earlier design. in pencil. Then, using a motor tool with a road wheels, sprockets, and idlers, 4, work-
The molded-on idler arms provide a round burr, I roughed plastic within the ing it with a short, stiff brush. Build it up
robust mount for metal tracks. The same outlines for better glue adhesion. I also gradually: You can always apply more, but
cannot be said of the idler wheels. lightly sanded the backs of the panels with removing excess can be a problem.
Designed for use with the kits plastic medium-grit sandpaper. After pairing up the road wheels, I test-
tracks, they attach with minimal contact. I After applying light coats of epoxy to fitted suspension components and glued
used Tiger Model Designs resin idlers and the hull, making sure to stay within the the road wheels to their axles. I had to add
made replacement axles for them using 316" marked outlines, I positioned and clamped a link to one track run and file down the
aluminum tubing. the panels in place, whisked away any inner guide horn on several links on both
The resin idlers have starter holes on errant epoxy with a clean microbrush, and runs to fit them around the idler wheels.

www.FineScale.com 23
5 6
Resin, PE, white metal, and plastic mingle on the rear plate, nearly These little storage bins are big on detail, with resin Zimmerit and PE
complete here. heat deflectors.

7 8
Pre-painting grates on the engine deck: Later, thin paint and chipping With the resin Zimmerit panels glued on, the hull sides are ready to
would randomly reveal this red primer. receive details.

The drive sprockets are super glued to sheet styrene using my Historex punch- Hull
the final-drive housings. I used thick super and-die set. I assembled the brackets from Work on the upper hull began with paint-
glue and accelerator to attach the tracks the Dragon PE set and attached them to ing the engine-deck grates. Since I would
around the sprockets, then to the bottoms the hangers; I also used Dragon PE for the be using radiator inserts, I wanted a light
of the road wheels. Final joins are at the bracket that secures the tops of the exhaust coat and no overspray. I brush-painted the
rear. The tracks are not glued to the idler pipes to the rear hull. After installing the grates inner surfaces with flat black enamel
wheels; any slack needed to join the ends is Zimmerit and exhaust system, I assembled followed by Vallejo burnt cadmium red
pulled down around the idlers, tightening the jack and put it in its brackets. I used an acrylic (70.814) on the grates, 7. The main
the top run. Aber PE part for the tiny round reflector in paint coats can later be sprayed from a shal-
the lower left corner. low angle to avoid spraying through the
Panthers tail The Atak set includes one-piece resin grates. Any missed spots will look like red
I used Moskit metal exhaust pipes (now out replacements for the rear stowage bins. On oxide primer.
of production), but they were too wide to fit early tanks, metal heat deflectors were I installed the glacis plates Zimmerit
inside the tops of the resin exhaust hous- attached to the bins inner faces; I added panel before gluing the glacis to the hull.
ings; I inserted short lengths of brass rod these using Aber PE, 6. A convoy light was Since this panel mates with the lower hull
into the tops of the housings, extending mounted on a bracket bolted to the bottom panel and both upper hull side panels, I
them into the hollow pipes, gluing every- of the left bin. I replaced the kit part with took my time to make sure it was right.
thing together, and aligning the pipes while Abers PE assembly, adding a bit of 116" alu- While I retained kit parts for the front
the epoxy set. minum tube for the bulb, a piece of wire for brackets on each side, using a hobby knife
The jack was stowed horizontally below the electrical conduit, and more of my .005" and pin vise to make adjustments, all other
the exhausts in hanging brackets bolted to punched bolts for the bracket. The com- brackets were replaced with a combination
the housings, 5. I shaved the appropriate pleted bins were left off to ease installation of Aber and Dragon PE. Working from
bolts from each housing, attached the PE of the upper hull. Then I glued the rear hull front to back, the Zimmerit panels and the
hangers from the Aber set, then added plate to the lower hull; I reinforced inner brackets were installed sequentially and
replacement hex bolts punched from .005" joints with thick super glue. clamped to the sides, 8.

24 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

9 10
These beautiful Modeling Artisan Mori resin radiator inserts are ready Under the sponsons, PE sleeves add realism to the kit-supplied schrzen
for installation. hangers.

11 12
A punch and die produced styrene bolt heads to further detail the More PE, more punched bolts, more detail on the rear deck.

Then I installed the resin radiator lines and thin them before gluing them to While adding the remaining details to
inserts, 9, flowing thin super glue along the sponsons. The actual hangers slid into the upper hull sides, I could not help think-
their edges. sleeves welded to the sponson bottoms; I ing the Panther was designed by people
Mounting the periscopes, I masked the added these from the Aber PE set, detail- with a penchant for fiddly things. In addi-
lenses with small pieces of Tamiya tape ing them with Grandt Line 1" hex nuts tion to other latches and fasteners, this tank
before hand-brushing them with Testors and bolts (No. 15). I punched more hex has about two dozen retaining pins, each of
Model Master field green enamel (1712). bolt heads out of .010" styrene at the outer which has a retaining chain, and each of
This was followed by hand-brushing flat tops of the hangers, 11. those is attached to the vehicle with a bolt.
black enamel after they had been installed I joined the hull halves with liquid sty- Unless you ignore these details, a combina-
in the upper hull. rene cement, epoxy, and super glue, then tion of PE and scratchbuilding is required.
The front fenders are molded onto the added the rear stowage bins. On the hull Attempting to make latches, brackets,
sponson floor plates. I thinned the fenders roof, I replaced the gun-barrel travel locks and holders workable to allow insertion of
edges by scraping them with securing chain with components after painting and finishing is
a hobby knife before a multipiece assem- a great way to mar finishes and ruin com-
slightly bending them with
my fingers and gluing the
floor plates to the upper
6 : 49 : 57 bly from the
Dragon PE set,
which also provided
pleted work. Instead, I assembled the tools
and PE items before attaching them to the
model as subassemblies.
hull, reinforcing inner the screens covering After installing PE and scratchbuilt wire
joints with super glue. In round numbers, the engine deck grates retaining pins, I used Grandt Line .032"
The schrzen hangers thousands of and air intakes. The round head rivets (No. 153) with their
attach to the sponson PzKpfw V Panther, corners of the screens, shanks intact to attach the retaining pins
bottoms, 10. I scraped as well as the spare- chains to the vehicle. I drilled tiny holes
the kit-supplied hang-
M4 Sherman, and track mounts, were with a pin vise at the attachment points,
ers with a hobby knife T-34 Soviet tanks detailed with more then passed the shanks through the ends of
to remove their mold produced in WWII punched bolt heads, 12. the chains before pushing them into the

www.FineScale.com 25
13 14
Clasps, retainer pins, and chains are PE additions that look more to scale Styrene tubing replaced the barrel-cleaning rods with their stowage on
than what comes with the kit. the hulls port side.

15 16
Art imitates life the Germans also had to improvise the attachment of Bits of PE detail the schrzens upper attachments.
the tow cable aft.

holes. Thick super glue was applied before I mistake, but photos indicate that the used was the prominent bottom cupola
seated the rivets in their holes. Technically, Germans had the same trouble. Some ring. The anti-aircraft machine gun ring
these chains should have been secured with showed the posts not being used at all. I mount was glued to the outside; I left the
hex bolts. But my method provided easier depicted the rear tow-cable ends roped to hatch loose to facilitate painting. I salvaged
and more-secure attachments, 13. the spare tracks with nylon string, 15. a PE blade sight from my spares and
I replaced the kits barrel-cleaning rod I attached the schrzen with thick super attached it to the turret top just forward of
with 316" styrene tube, to which the kits glue and added rectangular PE plates with the 12 oclock vision block, 17.
modified end caps were glued. After adding bolt heads from my spares box to represent I used my remaining metal track links to
Aber PE latches and retaining chains, I the retaining plates just below each of the up-armor the turret sides. Unlike the hull
glued the tube to the left side of the hull upper hanger hooks, 16. brackets, those used to hang track sections
and secured it with Dragon PE straps, 14. on Panther turrets were field modifications
I hung leftover track links on the upper Turret that varied widely in uniformity and quality.
rear hull. Tops of the uppermost links need Compared to the hull, building the turret After gluing the tracks to the turret, I made
to either have track pins added or the cast- was a breeze. After installing the main rough hangers from .010" x .060" styrene
in track-pin ends removed; I opted for the Zimmerit panels, I removed the opening strips, 18.
former, adding pins made from .020" brass for the loaders roof periscope, since this I assembled the main gun barrel, replac-
rod. Then I installed the spare tracks retain- was a later-A feature. I filled the hole with ing a tiny PE retaining bolt for the muzzle
ing pins and attached their chains. thick styrene strip and applied a thin layer brake with a punched .005" styrene bolt
The tow cables are braided copper wire of super glue before smoothing the area head. After mating the barrel with the
inserted into resin ends. I hung the front with progressively finer sanding sticks. mantlet, I mounted the gun, 19.
ends on the forward tool brackets and I installed a few kit parts on the turret
installed retaining pins and chains. I had roof, then mounted the resin commanders Paint
trouble hanging the rear ends on the rear cupola. The clear vision blocks inner lenses I used to paint wheels, tracks, schrzen, and
hull posts, however, due to the spare-track were masked with Tamiya tape prior to tools separately, as many modelers do. Now,
sections. At first I thought this was my installation; the only other interior part except for interiors or open-topped vehi-

26 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

17 18
A resin commanders cupola and PE blade sight on the turret roof add Spare track adds a little protection to the turret. Styrene hangers make
detail topside. them look more at home.

19 20
Finally, with the gun mounted, I am ready to paint. After priming with spray-can paint, Im ready to airbrush a coat of
dunkelgelb (dark yellow).

cles, I paint everything in situ: Planning My model depicts a vehicle on which two shades of craft store brown.
and preparation times are reduced, and the spare tracks on the turret were overpainted Wooden tool handles were first painted
finish seems more integrated, rather than with dark yellow, after which the tactical with the darker of the two craft browns,
the model looking like it was cobbled numbers were applied, 22. I brushed then with Tamiya clear orange (X-26) for a
together. Also, the risk of damaging previ- Pledge FloorCare Multi-Surface Finish varnish finish. Metal tools were painted
ously painted parts is lessened. (PFM) onto areas to receive markings, for with several Vallejo colors: black gray
I dont worry about exact paint ratios. which I used Cartograf decals from a (70.862), gray green (70.866), dark bluegray
Vehicle painting during World War II was Dragon Tiger kit. Copious applications of (70.867), dark gray (70.994), and London
an imprecise art, with endless variations in Microscale Micro Set, careful cutting with gray (70.836), 23. The dark bluegray was
colors, patterns, application, and quality a brand-new hobby knife blade, and also used for periscope frames inside the
even before the effects of weathering. repeated tamping with paper towel on the commanders cupola, locking mechanisms
After priming with Testors Model tip of my finger settled the decals into on crew hatches, and as the initial coat on
Master light earth enamel (1954) from a irregular surfaces. I sealed the decals with a the convoy lights bulb, which was then
spray can, 20, I airbrushed a base coat of hand-brushed coat of PFM. coated with Tamiya clear blue (X-23).
Tamiya dark yellow (XF-60) lightened with I painted the tracks outer surfaces The interior of the hatches and cupola
Tamiya flat white (XF-2) and thinned with (along with a few of the schrzen plates) were finished in Vallejo ivory (70.918);
91% rubbing alcohol, covering everything with Polly Scale panzer dark yellow head pads on the hatches are Vallejo leather
except the bottom. Next came patches of (505111). This paint is slightly darker than brown (70.871). The spare tracks pins,
Tamiya NATO brown (XF-68) lightened the base coat, providing variety. Painting coaxial machine gun muzzle, and the travel
with flat white and thinned as before, 21. the tow-cable ends with Vallejo Model Air locks chain were picked out with Tamiya
Now it was time for some old-fashioned dark yellow (71.025) provided yet another metallic gray (XF-56).
hand-painting; all paints are acrylic except variation on dark yellow. While I painted
as noted. I outlined the brown patches with one set of spare track with Testors Model Washes and filters
Polly Scale panzer olive green (505113) to Master gunmetal enamel (1795) to depict I airbrushed the wheels, tracks, and lower
complete the camouflage. newer items, the rest were picked out with hull with Tamiya flat earth (XF-52) light-

www.FineScale.com 27
21 22
The yellow is followed by airbrushed splotches of rotbrun (red brown). After applying tactical markings, it was camo the old-fashioned way:
I used Tamiya NATO brown. I outlined the blotches with hand-brushed Polly Scale olive green.

23 24
A variety of Vallejo acrylics lent diversity to the stowed tools and I swept away some of the weathering so the camouflage shows
equipment. Tamiya clear orange gives wood handles a convincing finish. through.

ened with Tamiya flat white and alcohol, away the oil paints with a brush damp with the metal portions of tools.
carrying the color up to the schrzen and mineral spirits. Areas to which mud had been applied
fenders. I then moistened a brush with Dots of lemon yellow and crimson were (lower hull, road wheels, and ground-con-
acrylic brush cleaner and swept some of applied to all areas, but the yellow turned tact track surfaces) were treated to a series
this coat from the camouflaged road wheels, out to be a little too garish (the effect of heavy filters using Model Master enam-
24. should be subtle). To rectify this, I applied a els in the following order: armor sand
Dark washes deepen recesses and create thin filter of cerulean blue. This must be (1704), dark tan (1742), wood (1735), sand
artificial shadows; filters shift the shades of done sparingly to avoid turning the tank (1706), and radome tan (1709). These filters
paint to which theyre applied. I sought to indelibly blue I used only about 20-25% were also randomly applied to the insides of
achieve both of these effects simultaneously as much of this color as the others but it some track links (for variation) and spat-
by mixing a medium gray wash/filter with worked like a charm, toning down the yel- tered along the bottoms of the schrzen.
Humbrol matt tank gray (67) and Testors low and creating subtle, irregular dark And, no, I didnt forget the wheels!
Model Master flat white (1768) enamels patches. Where visible, tires received several layers
with odorless mineral spirits (also used for Metal surfaces now appeared lighter of a very heavy wash of dark gray enamel
all subsequent washes and filters). This was than the Zimmerit, 25. followed by a coat of dark gray acrylic.
applied to all surfaces of the turret, upper Next, I applied a thin Testors flat brown Capillary action draws the wash into details
hull and schrzen, and repeated on the enamel (1166, which actually has an orange on the wheels.
Zimmerit. This mix enhances Zimmerit hue) to the tracks. Several applications built I painted worn areas of the tracks, drive
detail without overpowering it. up the color until it was distinguishable sprockets, idlers, and the wide rims on the
Next came dot filtering on non-Zim- from lower hull components. I also used the center sets of road wheels with Tamiya
merit areas of the turret and upper hull. wash to lighten the two darker spare-track metallic gray, which looks like bared metal
Using Art Advantage artists oils and work- sets on the hull. without being too bright, 26.
ing small areas at a time, I applied dots of I followed with filters of Testors Model Using a No. 2 pencil, I outlined engine
orange yellow and emerald green to the Master raw umber enamel (2006) on other deck panels, the transmission access panel
brown camouflage patches, then whisked spare tracks, tow cables, exhaust pipes, and at the front of the hull roof, and bolt heads

28 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

25 26
Surfaces without Zimmerit should appear lighter, as they do in wartime Capillary action draws a dark wash into and around details on the road
photos. wheels.

27 28
A No. 2 pencil subtly replicates worn and bared metal and its quick! A coat of Testors Dullcote protects the paint and weathering and unifies
all the effects.

around each, 27, as well as the tow cables them from having to be handled. To further rubber band track sections to create ran-
and metal edges around the crew hatches. guard against damage, I ensure that all ele- dom impressions from previous traffic, I
A wide, soft brush was used with ments fit within the bases perimeter. I like attached the model directly to the base with
Tamiyas Weathering Master C set (87085) to use inexpensive pine plaques, available in Devcon 2 Ton liquid epoxy. I pushed the
to apply gunmetal to the upper metallic many shapes and sizes. groundwork up against the inner edges of
areas and small amounts of orange rust to Initial sanding was followed by spray- the tracks with a wood chopstick, then left
exhaust pipes and spare tracks. I switched cans: two coats each of Rust-Oleum gray everything alone until the epoxys handling
to Tamiyas Weathering Master B set primer and satin black (sanding between time had elapsed. I worked around the
(87080) to apply soot to the main guns coats with progressively finer grits), then model, pushing mud up to and under the
muzzle brake, the coaxial machine gun port two coats of Testors Model Master semi- outer edges of the tracks, 29. I then created
in the gun mantlet, and the open ends of gloss clear lacquer (1959). I stuck adhesive more random impressions as well as tracks
the exhaust pipes. After hatches were felt pads under the base and masked its made by this tank.
installed, the entire model edges to prepare for For the remainder, I applied the rest of
received several light coats groundwork. my mixture in random globs and sprinkled
of spray-can Testors
Dullcote flat clear lacquer,
which really unified the
10 Using my previ-
ous mud mixture, I
applied the ground-
on various colors of TechStar static grass:
winter tan (TC3010), light green
(TC3007), medium green (TC3008), and
finish, 28. Then I
Number of work in stages. A dark green (TC3009). Once the ground-
removed masks from the operational Panthers strip of dirt road work had dried, I fixed everything in place
periscopes. in the front line by under the vehicle by using a brush to drip Model Master flat
July 10, 1943, (between the inner clear lacquer (2015 ) over all the grassy
Based on what? the fifth day of the edges of the tracks) was areas. Dry-brushing the grass with yellow
I permanently mount the only portion applied artists oils turned it to autumn, 30.
my models on bases, Battle of Kursk before adding the model. After treating the roadway with several
mainly to prevent Gen. Heinz Guderian After using some old washes of Model Master raw umber enamel

www.FineScale.com 29
29 30
This is no hovertank. Tracks are sunk into the dirt and sod is pulled up Dry-brushing with yellow artists oils gives the grass an autumnal shade.
for realism.

31 32
Using the same pigments on the model and ground makes the tank Figures can be mixed, matched, and combined; the wounded soldiers
more part of the scene. head and body came from two different Verlinden figures.

(2006), it was time to apply final weather- radio operators hatch, 33, as well as both FG35045A, and Heer Shoulder Boards,
ing. I applied several Vallejo pigments with headphones and a throat microphone set on FG35051A). In addition, the bottle guy got
a wide, soft brush: light yellow ochre the commanders hatch. The map is another two PE badges from an old Verlinden set
(73.102), light sienna (73.104), natural Verlinden item. On the ground, the guy called WWII German Soldiers Gear.
sienna (73.105), burnt sienna (73.106), and hoisting a bottle has a burlap cover on his Testors Dullcote from a spray can elimi-
green earth (73.111, actually a light sand helmet that I made with tissue soaked with nated any shine.
with green tint). The last was applied to the white glue and water, 34. One last thing: Dont let the girls in
upper surfaces of the vehicle. The other four I primed the figures with Rust-Oleum your house throw out old makeup. Youd be
were applied randomly to both the lower gray. Skin is painted with Testors enamels: surprised what it can be used for! One of
surfaces of the vehicle and the roadway, flat tan (1167), a dry-brushing of light tan my wifes kits contained several shades of
blending the two, 31. (1170), and light raw umber washes. The eye shadow, including brown-violet and
eyes are thin slivers of white decal, irises blue-violet. I used the first on the darker
Figures to the fore dotted with a black permanent marker uniform items and the second on the
My figures dont win awards, but they before I applied them. Its easier than lighter ones. Applied lightly with a stiff
always add life and a sense of scale to a fin- painting them, and easier to correct. brush, these shades complement uniform
ished model. The figures are finished with Vallejo colors and add subtle highlights. ( Just make
The wounded soldier on the turret is acrylic paints except for the tank com- sure theres no glitter in the eye shadow.)
Verlindens SS Tank Officer WWII, manders cap (lightened Polly Scale panzer After removing the masking tape from
Seated (355) with a head from Verlindens olive green) and the helmet on the bottle the base and touching up the edges of the
Iraqi POWs (355), 32. (I shaved off the guy (Tamiya khaki, XF-49). All clothing groundwork, my project was complete. I
eagle insignia on his left arm.) The other was dry-brushed with lightened shades of know that my Panther is hardly perfect.
figures are from Dragons German Tank the base colors. Leather items were dry- But I have achieved a happy medium
Crew 1939-1943 (6375), but their heads brushed with Vallejo leather brown. between fun and perfection and 30 years
are old Verlinden or Jaguar spare parts. Archer Fine Transfers provided the uni- after the last Panther I built, I know this
I also placed headphones in front of the form insignia (Heer Uniform Patches, one is better! FSM

30 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

33 34
Headphones came in the same Dragon set as these two figures. I added Ein Prosit! Tissue soaked in white glue and water forms this figures
the cigarette. helmet cover.

References Sources
Germanys Panther Tank: The Quest for Combat Panther Ausf D working individual-link metal tracks (No. ATL-33), Friulmodel,
Supremacy, Thomas L. Jentz, Schiffer, www.friulmodel.hu
ISBN 978-0-88740-812-0 Aluminum and brass Panther Ausf D/A and early G gun barrel (No. 35 L-04),
PE details (No. 35029), Aber, www.aber.net.pl
The Spielberger German Armor & Military Vehicles Panther 600mm (early) idlers (No. 35-15430), Panther D armored cast exhaust
Series, Volume 1: Panther & Its Variants, Walter J. housings (No. 35-15483 ), and Ausf D cupola interior and periscopes
Spielberger, Schiffer, ISBN 978-0-88740-397-2 (No. 35-15521), Tiger Model Designs, www.newtmd.com
Radiator interior set for Panther D and A (No. MGP09), Modeling Artisan Mori,
Achtung Panzer No. 4: Panther, Jagdpanther www. artisanmori.web.fc2.com
& Brummbar, Dai Nippon Kaiga, PzKpfw V tow cables (No. TCR01), Karaya, www.karaya.pl
ISBN 978-4-499-22671-4
Resin Zimmerit for Panther Ausf D (No. 35038), Atak, www.atakmodel.istore.pl

Panzers at Saumur, Motorbooks, Kit, PE details, figures, Dragon, www.dragonmodelsusa.com

ISBN 978-4-499-20554-2 Figures and accessories for turret, Verlinden, www.verlindenonline.com

Verlinden figures An accumulation of

White- Resin mantlet
aftermarket details, basic
metal PE grilles techniques, and modeling
exhaust Dragon figures Aluminum/ fundamentals and just
brass gun
barrel plain taking the time
yield a Panther worthy of
shelf space in my collection.

metal tracks PE schrzen Resin

www.FineScale.com 31

against the Missouri
Some fought to live, some fought to die /// BY REN HIERONYMUS

apans determination to halt the Allied not be stopped. Coming in low off the to the deep. The dents from the attack
advance during World War II is vividly stern, hit repeatedly by anti-aircraft fire and remain on the Missouris hull to this day.
reflected in the term kamikaze or struggling to rise, the aircraft caught the In the planning stages, I decided to
divine wind. side of the ship with its left wing at the last build a 1/72 scale model all the way from
Originally used in reference to the instant. The Zeke swung hard against the port to starboard. I did run into some
typhoons that destroyed the invasion forces hull, sending a fiery wave of debris onto the length restrictions, however Im happily
of Kublai Khan in 1274, and again in 1281, deck. The remains of the pilot were found married and want to keep it that way. (Do I
the term was resurrected in 1944 by among the wreckage. Most likely he was have to say more?) The final dimension of
Adm. Masafumi Arima, who personally led Setsuo Ishino, who had radioed a telegraph this model, including its base, is 115cm
the first Special Attack Force (Shimp message to base at 2:39 p.m. that he had (46") long, 62cm (24") wide, and about
Tokktai) against the Allies. spotted the enemy fleet. Missouri was hit by 56cm (22") high. Total weight is 28kg, or
On April 11, 1945, during the invasion the kamikaze aircraft at 2:43 p.m. Missouris 60 pounds.
of Okinawa, a flight of 16 approaching captain, William Callaghan, ordered the
Japanese aircraft was spotted by radar. Of burial of the then-unknown Japanese pilot
those, one pilot set his sights on the the following day. A Marine honor guard
American battleship Missouri and would fired a salute and his body was committed

32 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

October 1944
and August
1945, some
sorties are
estimated to
have been

U.S. Navy
This is one hell of a photo if you think
about it. Taking a closer look, you can see
how many people were involved in this
terrifying event. Im sure each had a
thrilling story to tell afterward. Unusual
things and stories have always been most
fascinating for me as a model builder.

www.FineScale.com 33
1 2
I started with the aft turret. I realized I could do better than the details I I quickly realized just how big this model would be and how many
originally purchased and set about building my own. While the hull and details it would require. I wanted to overwhelm the onlooker by the
superstructure took only a few days, those details took months! sheer number of details, giving him innumerable situations to look at.

3 4
The inner structure of the smokestack and tower was covered with The big Mk.38 radar is so detailed it took almost 40 hours to complete.
styrene sheet and 2-part putty, then sanded smooth. After repeating
this several times, I added dozens, if not hundreds, of details.

5 6
The plywood inner structure of the hull and superstructure was covered The 16" and 5" turrets rotate and elevate. The 5" barrels, Mk.37, and
with three layers of styrene sheet. For the details I used more styrene Mk.22 radar came from Scale Warship in England. I designed more than
sheet, white metal, resin, wood, aluminum, brass you name it. 120 different photo-etched parts on five sheets.

7 8
Attempting to improve my modeling skills, I tried something new when I pre-shaded panels; others were shaded later, once again depending
painting. I added several layers of color, each one a little lighter or on where they were positioned. All the colors I used were self-mixed
darker depending on its place. This gave depth to the finished look. the only exception was the flat black.

34 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

9 10
The aircraft model is the 1/72 scale Tamiya A6M5 Zero (No. 60779), With the model finished, I tallied some of the numbers: I cut and sanded
which I think is closest to what Mr. Ishino flew. 2,400 strips for the wooden deck sections; used 3.4m (37 square feet) of
styrene sheet for the entire model

11 12
250 grams (8.8 oz.) of putty to create the shapes of the smokestack roughly 220ml of self-mixed color, five bottles of super glue, two
and the aft director tower bottles of plastic glue

13 14
25 Oerlikon 20mm guns on the model, 11 Bofors 40mm quad guns, and one roll of toilet paper to create the water surface. The total
four 5" turrets building time was 746 hours. Would I do it again? You bet! FSM

www.FineScale.com 35
Polishing a little gem
Key additions make a 1/144 scale E-2C Hawkeye sparkle /// BY FRANK CUDEN

inner tail fins, and engines, 3. Excellent fit

hat we have here is one of drilled them out and added Microscale
the nicest 1/144 scale kits made assembly easy and minimal filler was Micro Kristal Klear to create scale windows
to ever grace a modelers required. after painting.
bench. I dont often dabble Working on the engine intakes, I was From references, it appears there are
in this scale. However, after working on a unable to achieve a perfect circle inside and three tie-down rings on the lower fuselage
few other 1/144 scale models, I decided to couldnt eliminate the inner seams. So I side: two in front, one toward the back. At
see what I could do with Revells little gem covered the blemishes, 4, and also improved a model railroad shop, I found small plastic
of a Grumman E-2C Hawkeye. the inspection panels on the upper wing rings and used them here. These little
I also like the newer scimitar 8-blade and added antennas on the radome pylon details add interest to the model.
propellers from Retro Wings (No. and behind the cockpit on the fuselage. After refining the parts a bit, I glued in
Rw44001), so I added those and aftermar- The radome cradle fit well but needed a the three landing gear legs. Additional
ket markings from Starfighter Decals. couple coats of thinned white glue to blend inspection panels are visible, 5, as well as
attachment points to the fuselage. The outer the plates I added behind the engines
Refining it right away fins require careful alignment. The instruc- exhaust pipes. The plates were made from
I began by reworking the seats, adding tions head-on view helped me get it right .005" styrene sheet. I inserted styrene tube
headrests, belts, and more structure to the the first time. in the jet exhausts to match photos show-
bulkhead behind the seats, 1. Mating the I vacuum-formed a replacement canopy ing short pipes sticking out back.
one-piece wing did not present problems, and used the kits canopy as a mask, tacking Reference photos revealed an additional
2; however, filler was needed at the wing- it in place with white glue. Three crew win- plate behind the auxiliary power unit
to-fuselage joints. dows per side, located under and just aft of (APU), so more .005" sheeting was cut to
Next, I glued on the large upper intake, the wing, were raised outlines on the kit. I fit and glued in. I also drilled out the APUs

36 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

1 2
Detailing the cockpit was the first important upgrade. I added The kits one-piece wing fit well but required a bit of filler along the
headrests, belts, and more structure to the bulkhead behind the seats. wing-to-fuselage joints.

inspection panels

from solder
3 4
Next, I attached the upper intake, inner tail fins, and engines. Fit is A punch-and-die set created thin sheet-styrene discs to emphasize the
uniformly good. wings inspection panels (white discs). U-shaped antennas were added,
modeled from thin solder.

exhaust, as the hole appeared too small I masked and sprayed the vertical tails Deep holes in the spinners easily accom-
compared with the real aircraft photos. using Tamiya acrylic NATO black. modated the blades mounting pegs and
Next, I busied up the landing gear bays Although its an acrylic, I thinned it with allowed a lottle wiggle room. I could attach
with styrene sheet and small-diameter rod. lacquer thinner for a smooth finish. Then I all 16 blades and still have time to set the
Note the two small tie-downs forward and masked both the wing and tail de-icer proper pitch. I didnt want to feather them,
on either side of the nose wheel leg, 6. Two boots and hit them with a coat of Floquil thinking they looked better in a cutting-
small blade antennas were cut from styrene engine black, providing a dark contrast to the-air position. A couple sizes of circle
and attached under the fuselage near the the NATO black tail surfaces. punches and thin sheet plastic created the
tail hook. I glued the hook and ancillary A friends overhead color photo of an intake covers, which I painted red.
fairing in place; the fairing needed a little E-2C in flight showed partial white strip- I painted the turbine exhausts Testors
filler to blend with its surroundings. ing on the radar dish. I thinned a few drops Model Master steel (No. 4679). I thought
of Polly Scale white and applied them, the Starfighter Decals VAW-117 shark
Time to paint exactly as in the photo, to some of the mouths for the forward engine cowlings
I started with Testors Model Master gloss domes recessed panel lines. were a neat touch, 9.
gull gray (FS16440), 7. At this stage of its The antiglare panel in front of the cock- I sliced the upper wing/fuselage walk-
life the E-2C wore a wraparound scheme, pit was also masked and sprayed with way decal from the Revell kit into three
so one spray session covered the model. My Floquil engine black. sections. There were tricky areas around the
chosen scheme from Starfighter Decals, Worried that assembly of Retro Wings radome pylon legs that could cause prob-
(No. 144-122), the Black Tail Hawkeyes, individual scimitar prop blades would be a lems during application, but I got the three
came from VAW-117, whose E-2C aircraft bear, I put it off. However, each blade sections correctly placed.
were assigned to the USS Nimitz. attached with ease using thin super glue, 8. A friend put me onto vinyl spackle joint

www.FineScale.com 37
Blade antenna


5 6
Next, I attached the landing gear legs and added .005" sheet styrene to Further detailing included two tie-downs under the nose and two blade
create plates behind the engine exhausts and APU. antennas by the tail hook.

7 8
I masked and sprayed the vertical tails using thinned Tamiya acrylic Polly Scale white fills some of the radar units trim lines. The Retro Wings
NATO black. The deicing boots are Floquil engine black for contrast. scimitar prop blades went together well and were easily installed.

compound to fill small seams, like those board of the engines. When the wings were stripe went on well despite having to travel
around the vacuum-formed canopy and folded after an arrested carrier landing, the over the large upper fuselage intake.
landing gears, 10 and 11. A moist cotton engines continued to run as the aircraft tax- Sectioning it into three strips was a good
swab removes the excess without destroying ied to its assigned spot. Over time, the hot solution.
surrounding detail, so a couple of applica- exhuast stained the folded wing sections, The vinyl patching paste I used around
tions did the job. Removing the residue is 12. I replicated that with an airbrush. the canopy seam blended in well with its
easy, and it does not interact with paint or Afterward, I carefully glued the props in surroundings, 13. Using Tamiya clear
plastic at least not with enamel- or lac- place. The scimitar blades are delicate I orange (X-26) and thinning it with water, I
quer-based paints. I havent experimented didnt want to risk breaking one but they coated both the side and overhead cockpit
with acrylics yet. look quite massive when in place. windows.
After hand-painting a red edge on all I used Kristal Klear to fill the six fuse-
Finishing makes the model pop! gear doors, front and back, I tacked them in lage side windows, 14.
I had some frustration with fishing line place with white glue followed by a bit of Finally, I used soft artists pencils to
between the antennas. Instead, I stretched super glue to ensure a good bond. The trace the kits engraved panel lines.
sprue to the proper diameter, glued the wheels were next and fit well. Applying light pressure gave just enough of
short lengths in place, applied heat and Care was needed when attaching the a highlight so they werent overdone. A lit-
presto! they worked. I still cant figure out radome to the pylon, as just setting it in tle smudging around the flaps completed
what happened, but the wires are holding place revealed a slight tilt. After liquid glue my weathering.
their tension. was applied, I made sure the radomes final This was a fun little build that, with
I then created a dirty, brownish-black position was exactly horizontal. The fuse- some added detailing, makes a nice addi-
turbine exhaust stain under the wings out- lages circumferential propeller warning tion to any collection. FSM

38 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

9 10
This Hawkeye is starting to take shape now. I added the shark-mouth There are always a couple small seams to fill; I used vinyl spackle joint
decals to the engines and applied the American flag decal to the tail. compound around the vacuum-formed canopy.

11 12
Similarly, I used the joint compound on the landing gear. This works Nearly finished, I finally airbrushed a dirty, brownish-black turbine
well, as you can swab off excess without hurting surrounding detail. exhaust stain under each wing.

13 14
You can see that the spackle I used to fill gaps by the canopy blended Finally, I used Microscale Micro Kristal Klear to fill in the six fuselage side
well. Adding Tamiya clear orange (X-26) to the overhead and side windows.
cockpit windows gives the model a well-used look.

www.FineScale.com 39

High-flying detail
Those magnificent modelers and their flying machines

Theres rarely a shortage of superdetailed aircraft at major model contests. Here are a few exemplary builds FSM
shot at the 2016 Squadron EagleQuest and the IPMS/USA National Convention. Each builder offers some pointers.


SAMS 1/144 SCALE MI-24PN really cant use a rotary tool of modeling clay to form a Monogram 1/48 scale Hind to
Hind started life as a Dragon any kind because the template of the interior. Once get details right.)
kit. The fuselage halves were tolerances are so close that the floor is right, everything Other areas received the
the only pieces used from the you run the risk of punching else goes quickly. The cargo same treatment: Engines,
kit, he says. Everything else is through to the outside, he area contains troop seats, intakes, exhaust shrouds, rotor
scratchbuilt, including a full says. Its a slow process, but lights, electrical conduits, a fire head, landing gear bays,
interior and cockpit made of once you have the fuselage extinguisher, and more. The landing gear, etc. were built
tiny pieces of sheet styrene, shells ready the real fun can two-place cockpit is crammed from scratch, one component
copper wire, lead wire, and then begin. with seats with belts and and one area at a time. For
stretched sprue. To fit all of it, To measure the inside of harnesses, control pedals and Sam, its about the challenge.
Sam shaved the inside of the the fuselage for bulkheads sticks, gunsights, instrument Pushing a kit outside the
body with hobby knives until and floors, Sam closed the panels, fuse panels, and envelope is where fun and
it was as thin as paper. You halves around a chunk of oxygen tanks. (He referred to a adventure lies, he says.

40 Experts Guide to Superdetailing


MATCHBOXS 30-YEAR-OLD KIT really heavy, hard, brittle panels, ribs, floors, lines, gear, resin wheels, Cobra Co. engines
remains the only injection- Matchbox plastic which turrets, and canopies. He roughed and nacelles, and Miniworld gun
molded 1/72 scale PB4Y-2. represented, in my humble out the shapes needed in barrels. The decals were created
Kendall was determined to turn it opinion, one of the most peculiar laminated styrene sheet, then by coloring black-and-white
into a detailed replica. Some of airplanes in the U.S. World War II carved and detailed the parts. photos of the nose art and
my favorite projects have been to inventory big and ugly! My Old school, he says. No home printing it on decal paper.
resurrect or salvage obscure father was an aerial photographer resin or etching. He took care to This project was one of love
subjects and kits and modify in one of these beasts in the U.S. get details correct from one of the craft of modeling and
them into something that you Navy with VD-3 squadron in compartment to the next so the scratchbuilding, says Kendall. In
wouldnt ordinarily see in a WWII. whole project would be right addition, a friend challenged me
collection, says Kendall. I call it The only kit parts in Kendalls when it came together. One must to build such a beast, as he is
styrene alchemy, or a Midas effect Privateer are the shell of the have the same degree of detail doing a PB4Y-2 in 1/48 scale. The
to transform something really bad fuselage and the flying surfaces. whether one is looking at the fun has been exchanging
into an interesting piece of art. He sanded the exterior smooth cockpit, the bomb bay, the wheel research, e-mails, photos, selfies
The Privateer is a great and ground away the interior with well, or, yes, even the crew toilet of bleeding fingers at the bench,
example of what I like to do. It is a a motor tool. Almost everything in the back, he says. The only etc. over the past two years
1980s-era tricolored chunk of else was scratchbuilt, including aftermarket parts are True Details and his is still unfinished. Ha!

www.FineScale.com 41

ANDREW WORKED ON FULL-SIZE ramp with Eduard photo-etch and

GREYHOUNDS in the U.S. Navy hydraulic actuators made from
and he drew on that knowledge steel hypodermic needles. Eduard
to deliver a detailed 1/48 scale photo-etched (PE) belts equip the
C-2A from Kinetics kit. First, he passenger accommodations,
added a few extra ribs along the where Andrew cut off the mounts
sides with strips of Evergreen and on the seats and scratchbuilt new
Plastruct styrene. I used a lot of legs for every row. I really could
little bits from my spare parts box have gotten by with just doing
to replicate things such as the the last two rows closest to the
electrical junction boxes, ramp but he says. To improve
hydraulic filters, the ramps the floor, he scribed seat tracks
hydraulic control box, the relief and floorboards. In real life, the
tube, and a fire extinguisher, he last row of seats are reserved for
says. The crew intercom boxes the naval aircrew loadmaster
were scratchbuilt with bits of and plane captain, Andrew says. I beat up pretty good and seat. I also cut open the overhead
Evergreen plastic and detailed put a crew helmet from True applied a few zaps from various escape hatches and used small
with Reheat instrument faces. He Details on one and a helmet bag decal sheets, because thats what plastic and PE parts to make the
improved the roof area with on the other. the passengers like to do, he says. handles, he says.
styrene L channel, T channel, and Surprised that Kinetic omitted Eduard PE improved the Wolfpack Designs resin wing-
strip. An M.V. Products lens loading ramps on the port cockpit with instrument panels fold set provided a little more
became the overhead light. He bulkhead, he made them from and the forward door, detail and a stronger join than the
used a spare actuator and landing styrene with scratchbuilt brackets complemented by Steel Beach kit parts. Andrew added styrene
gear parts from the spares box to made from PE fret, which he says resin seats. Scratchbuilt cockpit wing-fold lock flags to the
make the elevator actuator and is great for details. I painted and details include the aileron control nacelles. Royale Resin wheels
trim package, and dressed up the weathered the ramps they get package cover behind the pilots corrected the undercarriage.

42 Experts Guide to Superdetailing


JOHN ADDED MORE THAN 130 wire painted black. For the oblong etch scraps adorn the seats. He brakes are 1/24 scale CDs from a
scratchbuilt and salvaged parts to exhausts, Jake squeezed styrene dressed the landing gear with car detailing set. The kit had no
Rodens 1/48 scale Beech tube, then thinned the edges. springs, chrome oleo struts, and gear bay details, so he scratchbuilt
Staggerwing, detailing the Wasp Inside, the graceful biplane shocks made from pins and craft that, too. Other scratchbuilt
engine with chrome and black features a homemade instrument items. He flattened the main details include a cast-resin
pushrods made from pins, and panel and pins for throttle and wheels slightly to show weight propeller spinner, white-glue
adding a chrome ignition ring mixture levers. Tissue seat belts and contoured the hubs to a wingtip lights backed with foil,
with spark plug wires brass with buckles made from photo- correct concave shape. The disc and antennas.


AIRBUS BUILT THE BELUGA, or made in all cases it was left bay from the lower fuselage with doors ribs are 1mm rods rather
A300-600ST, to haul sections of with smooth blank walls, and in a fine saw and built it separately. than the square stock used inside.
aircraft and other oversized cargo. some cases not even painted, After gluing the upper fuselage For the crew door in the belly, he
Eugene detailed Revell Germanys Eugene says. As one can see from halves together, he lined the walls cut out the molded hatch and
1/144 scale Beluga to pictures of the actual plane, the with ribs made from 1mm square scratchbuilt stairs and a door. The
demonstrate that role and interior of the cargo bay is very styrene strip. The floor is sheet Belugas cargo is Revell Germanys
opened the large hatch as busy. styrene outlined in part with 1" x 1/144 scale A320, glued together
indicated in the instructions. Ive Deciding it would be 1" strips to replicate seats. I and sliced apart after the 13th
seen pictures of models with impossible to build and paint all added electrical and hydraulic window. He covered the rear with
open cargo-bay doors, but I did that detail with the fuselage split lines to the walls and floor, and tracing paper to model the cloth
not like how the interior was in half, he separated the cargo painted the interior, he says. The cover used by Airbus.

www.FineScale.com 43

AT THE HEART of Freddys though Freddy had to make laminated sheet styrene sanded 2.75" rocket launchers and a
detailed Bronco is Testors ancient minor adjustments to ensure the to shape. Sheet styrene wing ventral fuel tank from Hasegawas
1/48 scale kit but theres not a wing fit. But he wanted more, so spoilers finished the control A-4. He boxed in the gear bays
lot of it left. He detailed it with he cut open the canopy with a surfaces. with sheet styrene and plumbed
Paragons OV-10A resin and fine hacksaw, lightly sanded the Freddy opened the weapon the wells and brake lines to the
photo-etched set, which edges, and dipped the sections in bays to expose four detailed gear legs. The engines started
upgraded the cockpit with a one- Pledge FloorCare Multi-Surface 7.62mm machine guns, with two small blocks of plastic
piece tub complete with nicely Finish. Then he scratchbuilt scratchbuilt the doors with sheet Freddy carved, detailed with
cast ejection seats, instrument handles and actuators. After styrene, and detailed them with styrene bits, and wired. He
panels, and control sticks. He cutting the flaps from the resin styrene-rod hinges. Underwing scratchbuilt firewalls and frames
added throttles, canopy-frame wings, he replaced them with stores include four aftermarket and cut open the cowls.
support, an optical gunsight, and
wiring. Theres also a replacement
wing with correct vortex
generators, a complete horizontal
stabilizer and rudders, exhausts,
bulged tires, engine air scoops,
and upper radome. The sets
photo-etch (PE) fret includes
wheel well doors, mirrors, landing
gear torque scissors, wing and
elevator counterbalance masts,
ejection-seat activation rings,
trim-tab actuators, and
windshield wipers.
The set didnt require any
modification of the kit parts,

44 Experts Guide to Superdetailing


PHIL PULLED OUT ALL THE panels. In addition to the PE, he the fuselage and forward of the The build took about 11
STOPS to detail Trumpeters 1/32 detailed the engine, its mount, main wing spar; aft of these areas, months. The TBF-1C he modeled
scale TBF-1C. Its a very good kit and the forward bulkhead with raised fasteners were used. For No. 47763, Torpedo Squadron
with all of the features that I was styrene, copper and lead wire, foil realism, he filled the recessed 14, USS Wasp, late 1944 had
wanting: a complete engine and of varying thicknesses, and detail with paint and wet-sanded special meaning for Phil. He knew
mount, folding wings and flaps, scratchbuilt oil coolers. until it was just barely visible. For the gunner, Joseph Eugene Cross;
open bomb bay, and exposed He did similar work in the the access panels, wheel wells, he and pilot Lt. William Arthur
crew spaces, he says. cockpit, bringing the instrument cockpit, and engine compartment Davidson were captured after
The work started with all of panel to life with Eduard colored fasteners, he used Master Club being shot down in another
the photo-etched (PE) Eduard PE. Theres a ton of detail in the injection-molded rivets, available Avenger 47763 was down for
offers for the Avenger, including turret and aft crew space thats in several styles. At each location, maintenance and held at the
engine details, exterior and nearly impossible to see. The he drilled a .012" hole, inserted a same POW camp as Louie
interior sets, seat belts, bomb bay bomb bay and landing gear were rivet, and secured it with Weldon Zamperini of Unbroken fame.
details, and flaps. He took a little all enhanced, again with help No. 4 solvent. I probably used a (Radioman Walter Wygonik did
artistic license to display the from Eduard PE, lead and copper thousand of these! he says. For not escape the aircraft.)
technology of the TBF wire, and a little scratch work, he long rows of fasteners, he applied Phil is a lifelong friend of Cross
although the wings fold and says. Thankfully, all of those areas Archer Fine Transfers 3-D decals; son. I wanted to do something
unfold in unison, he built one are easily viewed. they come in several sizes with special for the family that I have
stowed to show the hinge, the The exterior got as much different spacing. They apply just been so close to over the years,
other extended so he could lower attention. I felt the recessed like any decal, and the carrier film hence the model, he says. It now
the flap and reveal the structural panel lines and rivets were a little disappears under the paint, belongs to the Cross family as a
detail. too large and threw the scale off, leaving raised fastener heads tribute to their father and his
Because the engine is a focal he says. The Avenger had flush visible like the real deal, he says. crewmates for their service and
point, Phil removed all of the cowl fasteners for the forward half of I went through several sheets. sacrifice.

www.FineScale.com 45

MATCHBOXS TIGER MOTH is not photo-etched parts for the

the best kit in the world, but it is throttle quadrant, map holder,
pretty accurate and its the flight computer, and seat belts.
only game in town in 1/32 scale, Homemade photo-etching is
according to John. quite an adventure, says John.
I have often been asked He replaced the kits simple
which of the 44 types of aircraft I instrument panels with decal dials
have flown was the best, he says. sandwiched between sheets of
My reply is always, It depends on white and clear styrene and
what you want to do with it. If you topped with styrene with holes
want to experience the joy of for the dials and painted gray.
flight with just you, five gauges, a John cut seat cushions from a
throttle, and a string-wrapped 18"-thick sheet of Apoxie Sculpt,

joystick, this is it. You land by the detailing them with pottery tools
sound of the wind in the wires, and a hobby knife. After painting
and aerobatics are a gentle joy. them with Testors gloss dark
Your head is in the wind, washed brown, he dry-brushed several
by the prop, and your nostrils are increasingly lighter shades of
assailed by the smell of exhaust brown and tan. He applied
and oil. When the flight is over, Detail-It dark brown wash,
more than any aircraft I have ever sprayed with a light coat of clear
flown, the little Tiger Moth leaves flat to maintain a leather patina,
one with a great case of Perma- then added cracks and veins with needles replicated pushrods; Model Detail braided-steel lines.
Grin. What a great aircraft and a fine brush. The cockpit doors other fittings were made from To display the power plant,
memory! Hence all the work to were thinned and fitted with wire thin solder or silver wire. Clamps John vacuum-formed a cowl
make a nice replica. latches. and end fittings are made from panel. The spinner is a piece of
Work indeed! He improved the The kit engine features a basic Bare-Metal Foil, household polished aluminum turned in a
basic cockpit with styrene- and block, sump, and cylinders. John aluminum foil, or aluminum motor tool. The hardest aspect
wood-strip structural members, separated the cylinders for more automotive tape detailed with was correcting the antispin
and pedals and other details finesse and added a heat shield paint. He detailed the firewall strakes. After vacuum-forming a
made from thin solder, stainless- made from brass sheet embossed with stainless-steel wire, thin new fillet for the rear fuselage, he
steel wire, and Slaters rod. He with a ballpoint pen. Sewing solder, stretched sprue, and made strakes from .030" styrene.

46 Experts Guide to Superdetailing


THE BASIS OF TIMS KFIR C.2 is little rough, so Tim replaced many thermoforming .020" styrene over to install, he says. I used a J79
Revells 1/32 scale Mirage V and a of the struts with tubing from a balsa wood master. The parts engine from Aires and modified
resin conversion from IsraDecal Small Parts, which has an were trimmed and joined with the fuselage so that it could be
which supplied a resin cockpit, expansive line of stainless-steel styrene-strip reinforcement. installed at the end of the build.
wheel wells and doors, weapon tubing designed to fit together. If Tim replaced the resin This too was worth it.
pylons, air scoops, and nose radar you got all the sizes, you could instrument panel with .004" The Kfirs distinctive canards
fairing as well as cast-metal gear assemble them in one continuous aluminum cut from a soda can. He required fillets that were not
legs, a turned-brass pitot, and telescoping tube, Tim says. super glued a scale copy of the included in the resin set, so Tim
photo-etched (PE) engine, Hydraulic lines made with .005" panel to the aluminum and used scratchbuilt them. Speaking
cockpit, landing gear, and cannon and .010" lead and copper wire a rat-tail file to open the holes for about the extra work, he says
details. But Tim didnt stop there, were added to the landing-gear the dials. Decal instruments and there were some parts that just
adding an Aires resin exhaust struts and wheel wells. Hose and PE bezels finished the panels, a lot would not fit. There was a lot of
nozzle and scribing all of the wire clamps made from of work, but worth it, according to sanding and fit checks going on,
panel lines in place of the 40-year- aluminum foil dressed up the Tim. he says. That was very frustrating,
old kits raised detail. The sets hydraulics. The engine provided by Isra but when you really want
cast-metal landing gear was a He made intake halves by decal was poor and complicated something, you persevere. FSM

www.FineScale.com 47
How to build a
Scratchbuilding makes a D-Day Sherman conversion in 1/35 scale /// BY ANDY COOPER

When the Allies landed Sherman tanks at Normandy, most were expected to go inland. But a few of them Beach Armoured Recovery Vehicles
(BARVs) were designed to go back into the sea and clear the way for the forces that followed.

multitude of specialized vehi- There was one highly specialized vehicle, vehicles and clear the shore for the men,
cles were employed by Allied however, that was never developed or oper- equipment, and supplies that were critical
forces in the D-Day invasion of ated by the 79th but by the Royal Electrical to the Allied armies advancing inland.
June 6, 1944. Most of them and Mechanical Engineers (REME) of the (They also pushed beached landing craft
were famously developed by Maj. Gen. British army. It was a tank without arma- back into the sea.)
Percy Hobarts 79th Armoured Division. ment, and its five-man crew included a The Sherman was modified by replacing
Known by the rank and file as Hobarts qualified diver yes, a diver. the turret with a welded, shiplike super-
Funnies, they were weird and wonderful If you have not guessed already, it was structure that enabled the vehicle to operate
contraptions designed to overcome both the Sherman-based Beach Armoured in water around 9' deep (2.7m).
natural and man-made obstacles in the Recovery Vehicle, or BARV. Its chief duty More than 50 of these vehicles were
path to Berlin. was to recover drowned and bogged-down completed and tested prior to deployment.

48 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

1 2
Showing his work: Andy redrew the templates on card first, checked the The superstructure starts to rise as Andy places some of the first vertical
fit, then transferred them to styrene plates. He reinforced construction with sprue segments.

3 4
While the glue was still drying, he added forward plates so he could With the hull sides dimensions known, it was easier for Andy to fit the
adjust the fit. But when he was satisfied, he allowed the glue plenty of bow section (G).
additional drying time before proceeding.

Modern variants of the BARV are still used and templates, I grabbed a Tamiya scored and bent to the roof profile.
by the amphibious forces of Britain and the Sherman from the stash and set to work. Likewise, score and bend Part M (rear of
Netherlands. Ive provided an amended copy of the the exhaust stack) along the centerline to
Though it is not strictly a Funny, this templates here (see p. 55). These can pro- match the profile of the hull stern (parts K).
unique design was reason enough for me to vide the extra plates you need, but they are I found I needed to fair this section in with
continue my quest to model these famous, still somewhat approximate. I cut template filler.
fascinating, and sometimes simply odd pieces slightly larger than indicated, then From there, measuring the model and
armored vehicles. cut or sanded the pieces to fit. Parts H and referencing photos will enable you to finish
K will need cutouts to fit the kits hull. the superstructure. I recommend interior
About the templates Parts G (the bow sections) require sanding reinforcements and letting the glue dry
In my research, I got lucky: While surfing and filling to mate them over the hatch thoroughly after each step before proceed-
the Internet, I found plans and templates fairings on the kit hull. They also need to be ing to the next.
for a Sherman BARV that I was able to slightly longer at the bottom edge, as indi-
save and rescale to 1/35. I also found excel- cated. Part I (the rear roof section) could Arriving at styrene
lent photos of a restored BARV, and I had also be cut as one part and scored to make I transferred the scale templates to some
my own photos of a preserved example at the fold; make a mirror image on the other stiff card and cut them out. Then, I tacked
the D-Day Museum in Portsmouth, side of the template and cut it out as one the pieces together with masking tape and
England. Armed with photographs, plans, piece. Part F (front roof panel) is lightly played jigsaws on the Tamiya hull until I

www.FineScale.com 49
5 6 7
The stern was a little more complicated. Andy before stopping to let the glue dry to Switching to .010" sheet styrene gave Andy
started with pieces E, then C, and added the ensure the structure was firm before more flexibility in forming parts. He scored and
two D pieces proceeding. bent this piece to the form he needed

8 9
before tacking it together on the bow. The upper bow pieces helped Andy determine the angle on the upper

knew more or less where the slabs would be made before the glue set. I added more better cut as one piece, scored then bent to
go. Where templates needed modification, I sprue and scrap braces for strength. the desired angle, 7 and 8.
redrew them. Then I transferred the tem- The rear part of the hull, with five sec- Roof sections J and I were cut out next
plates to .030" sheet styrene, 1. tions, was more complex. I modified the and cemented in place, 9. I used card scraps
It was easy enough to blank off the card templates to fit, then cut the sections to make tabs for a firmer join, 10. As
sponsons and rear hull. Then it got tricky. I from styrene sheet. The two sections labeled before, I let everything dry thoroughly
decided to start with the slab sides of the E in the photos were fixed in place first, 5, before proceeding.
superstructure, as these are essentially verti- and left to set. Section C came next, closely Now the degree of difficulty increases.
cal and align with moldings on the hull. followed by the two angled D panels, which The towers at the top of the superstructure
The rigid .030" sheet styrene would provide needed filing and sanding for proper fit. I for crew access, the engine exhaust, and
a sturdy foundation. Starting with the rear added more scrap and sprue reinforcements ventilation have to sit squarely atop the
sections, I glued these into the engine-deck before leaving everything alone for a day to sloping roof.
aperture on the hull, where the engine let the glue dry, 6. With its vertical plates, the crew hatch
cover would normally fit, 2. I added the Test-fitting and letting the glue dry at was the easiest place to start, 11. I made the
forward sections before the glue set so I each step had paid off so far. bow section from one piece, scored and
could make adjustments, 3. I braced these bent as before, then cut side pieces to fit.
sections with scrap and lengths of sprue Superstructure roof The exhaust tower did not look right, so
and let the glue set for a few days. To make life a little easier, I cut roof sec- I removed it and rebuilt it as a subassembly;
With the side uprights solidly in place, I tions from thinner .010" styrene sheet. I then I could fiddle with its alignment to
cut out the remaining templates and tai- used my card templates to cut the pieces I the hull. It turned out to be largely a matter
lored them before transferring them to needed and tacked them together with of trial and error, and the most time-con-
sheet styrene. The bow sections were fairly masking tape but they were so far off suming part of the build.
straightforward once there was a fixed ref- that I tossed the templates and measured Referring to photographs, I noticed a
erence point, so I did these next, 4. Again, I each section myself. flat section between the exhaust tower and
test-fitted everything so adjustments could I thought the front roof parts would be the crew hatch that was not apparent in the

50 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

10 11
Any which way but loose: Andy added sprue and card reinforcements to Vertical plates and clear reference photos helped Andy decide to build
shore up the superstructure. the crew hatch next.

12 13
Photos and plans were not so clear in the area near the crew hatch and Once he had established its lower plates, Andy could top off the exhaust
exhaust. Andy had to cut a lot of test pieces out of card before obtaining tower at the stern.
a good fit.

plans I had. I cut the roof to accommodate details from styrene sheet, rod, angle, and details that accumulated as I followed pho-
this, 12; a flat section of sheet styrene held strips, as well as copper wire and several lit- tos, 18.
everything nicely in place. tle bits from my spares box. Among the last construction details
I smoothed the sheet-styrene exhaust Among the details were swing-bolt fas- were the prominent weld beads around the
tower with Tamiya plastic putty. After teners around the engine cover; I made superstructure. I laid down thin strands of
everything set, I closed the top with more them from small lengths of styrene rod stretched sprue, softened them with liquid
sheet styrene, cut to shape, 13. with styrene strip on either side, 15. The styrene cement, and sculpted them to
The flat step to the rear of the crew walkways along the sides are styrene angle, model the beads, 19.
hatch is the top of a ventilation shaft. The strip, rod, and some old smoke-detector
lid could be raised or lowered to allow air mesh, 16. Splash guards atop the super- Paint and finishing
inside; I decided it looked more interesting structure are thin styrene sheet rolled I primed the BARV with Tamiya gray
raised. I built it from plastic card, 14, using around a segment of pipe, then weighted primer from a spray can, 20. Preserved
spacers to create the flanged top cover, then down and heat-formed with a hairdryer, 17; examples of the Sherman BARV look gray.
set this subassembly aside for later. the curved styrene was then cut to size and More specifically, one source stated the
attached to the hull. Copper-wire handles, Royal Navy won an argument over the
Hull details lifting lugs, rope eyes, styrene-strip steps color as the vehicle would be operating pre-
With the basic structure of the upper hull and water deflectors, punched styrene riv- dominantly in the sea, and therefore should
more or less complete, I made various ets, and rod hinges were among the many be battleship gray. (Interestingly, this army-

www.FineScale.com 51
14 15
The top of the ventilation shaft was built as a subassembly and fitted Fasteners on the engine-deck covers were a prominent detail worthy of
after the glue dried. scratchbuilding all 34 of them!

16 17
Walkways along the sides are made from found materials; Andy got the Heat-forming gave Andy the curved styrene he needed
mesh by disassembling a smoke detector.

navy conflict also played out among the white serial numbers and stars. Others also fers for the numerals. The stars came from
various Allies in many operational aspects had a circular anchor symbol on a light blue the Tamiya Sherman.
before and even during D-Day.) So gray it background, and I saw one contemporary After applying Pledge FloorCare Multi-
would be. photo with the air recognition symbol on Surface Finish (PFM) and letting it dry
I pre-shaded prominent lines and fea- the exhaust vent tower. All the period pho- thoroughly, I applied the decals. After they
tures by airbrushing GSI Creos Mr. Hobby tos I saw were different, though. Some had had dried, I sealed them with more PFM,
acrylic tire black (No. H77), 21. the flash on the superstructures side, and 24.
Next came a base coat of Tamiya dark others on the hull sides. I found no photos
sea gray (XF-54) with a little medium sea taken at the time that showed the entire Weathering
gray (XF- 53), 22. I used the darker color vehicle. So, I decided to compromise by Most photos of BARVs on Normandy
on the lower regions of the BARV. Tamiya doing as I pleased. beaches are shot from too far away to see
light sea gray (XF-25) and ocean gray (XF- Consulting my spare decals, I found I much weathering on the hull. I based my
82) provided highlights and tonal varia- had the makings of the blue, yellow, and red weathering on several factors: First, most of
tions, 23. flash. I also unearthed some black anchor the BARVs stayed on the beach to help
symbols from a 1/72 scale German marine keep supplies moving. Second, the weather
Marking the BARV helicopter; I was able to use those over cir- at the time of the invasion was unseason-
Markings were difficult to pin down. The cles I punched out of light blue decal film. I ably stormy; and, third, these vehicles spent
preserved vehicle I had photographed wore chose a serial number from one of the much of their time submerged in saltwater
a blue, yellow, and red striped flash and period photos and used Letraset dry trans- with waves breaking over them. My BARV

52 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

18 19
to make splash guards atop the hull. Wire handles and other details Stretched sprue, softened with liquid styrene cement and sculpted with
made from styrene scraps and spare parts start piling up around the a hobby knife, depicts rough weld seams.

20 21
Its amazing what a coat of primer can do to make everything look like it Andy airbrushed pre-shading with Mr. Hobby tire black.
belongs on the same vehicle!

22 23
According to one of Andys sources, as long as the vehicle was operating Andy lightened the mix to add different tones and shades to the finish.
offshore the Royal Navy felt it should be gray like boats and ships.

www.FineScale.com 53
24 25
He applied Pledge FloorCare Multi-Surface Finish (PFM) to provide a Without much overland travel, a BARVs weathering was mostly new
glossy, receptive surface for decals. rust that Andy depicted with burnt-sienna washes.

26 27
He concentrated the corrosion in places where seawater would be likely Streaks and chips are then subtly blended. Rope and cable made from
to collect and linger. White streaks depict saltwater runoff and residue. linen thread stiffened with diluted white glue are stowed aboard.

was going to be a D-Day-plus example, so cesses until I was happy with the effects, from my spares box and more made from
corrosion and wear would have accelerated. then over-coated with Testors Dullcote. copper wire finish out the hardware.
With the PFM now thoroughly dried A dusting of black and gray pastels pro-
over the decals, I applied a wash of burnt Winding it up vided exhaust stain. I applied some residual
sienna artists oils, 25. Thicker pinwashes of Among the last stowed items were tow sand created with ground-up pastels, mix-
the same color went to areas where rust cables and ropes made from linen thread ing light gray, yellow, and a little black. A
would start, 26. Drain holes around the painted with diluted white glue to stiffen final spray of Dullcote sealed the pastel
splash guards got special attention as I them and eliminate fraying. I made eye effects, leaving only the antennas and a buf-
allowed the wash to run out of the hole and ends for them with copper wire. The cables fer made from Milliput epoxy putty to
down the sides. More rust runs were ran- were stowed on the upper deck and shack- complete the build.
domly applied around the hull, using a dry led to the rear of the vehicle. I loved making this model Ive
or thinner-soaked brush for the desired Recovery vehicles always seem to wanted to do so since I was about 12! It
effect. Spots of white artists oils were acquire a collection of wooden blocks, so I looks complex, but it is not unduly difficult.
blended and finished the same to depict used wood scraps to stow some of these Styrene stock is inexpensive and easy to
saltwater runoff, 27. The tracks got black topside. I fastened a rope to the bow and work with. It only takes some understand-
and burnt sienna washes and a dry-brush- coiled the end on the top deck. A folded ing of geometry and a lot of time to build a
ing of silver. Fresh scratches were simulated crew ladder was made from styrene strip BARV a frequently overlooked vehicle
using dark gray and dark green enamels and and rod, and fixed to the rear hull; a small without which the Allied invasion may well
a small brush. I kept repeating these pro- rope tied nearby aids boarding. Shackles have foundered. FSM

54 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

Templates: 1/35 scale

Part A Sponson fillers x 2

Part D Part F
Front roof panel x 1

Part B Rear hull Score and fold

Front of Part C
panel replacement x 1 Part E along center line
exhaust Lower stern
stack section x 1 Upper stern/hull
section x 2


Part G Part H Front hull uprights x 2

Bow section x 2

Part J Center roof section x 2
Part L
Rear Front of exhaust
Part I Rear roof section x 2

Scale: 1 inch
Part K Rear hull uprights x 2
Part M
3 cm Rear of

At the point of invasion,

the French shore was
clogged with wreckage.
BARVs helped clear the
way for vital supplies to
keep the Allies moving
Tag-team allies model a
diorama in 1/35 scale

ne morning in February 2009, groundwork and the figures. had an 11" x 14" base that defined the
Jim Wechsler woke up, got a Jim suggested a Commonwealth theme, space. Jim had a British Porpoise ammuni-
cup of coffee, checked his since he had a Tamiya Centaur with a lot of tion sled for the Centaur to drag, reinforc-
e-mail, and embarked on a aftermarket items. The Centaurs were ing the D-Day theme.
modeling adventure. operated by the Royal Marines Armoured Glenn laid out the scene on a grid,
The e-mail was from Glenn Bartolotti. Support Group, a British unit put in vari- adjusting the position and angle of the
They had never met Glenn lives in ous locations on D-Day building to show off
Florida, and Jim in California but they including Juno Beach the tank and figures.
had become acquainted as modelers on the to support Canadian Ernie Kells, Queens In the layout, and in
Internet and admired each others work. forces, Jim says. Glenn Own Rifles one of the real photo, a slope
Glenn was suggesting that they collaborate would model a house five soldiers who and stone wall by the
on a diorama. Neither had ever worked made famous in photos house looked like a
with another modeler, let alone someone of the Canadian land- arrived at this house good place to pose the
more than 2,500 miles away. But somehow ing at Bernires-sur- on D-Day, now 84 tank, giving Jim a
it seemed like a good idea. Mer. years old. Sorry about chance to articulate the
They checked their collections and came The discussion throwing grenades Centaurs suspension to
up with a plan to show Canadian troops moved to position- add further movement
advancing at Juno Beach on D-Day, June 6, ing the building, into your cellar. and action.
1944. Jim would build a vehicle, Glenn tank, and figures 2009 guestbook entry at Then Glenn turned to
would scratchbuild a house and its sur- composition. La Maison des Canadiens, the house looming over the
roundings. They would collaborate on the Glenn already Bernires-sur-Mer, Normandy, 1/35 scale diorama.
56 Experts Guide to Superdetailing
1 2
After the landing, troops pose in front of a house that served as a Glenn contoured styrene foam with a knife to form a base for his part of
landmark for Canadians at Juno Beach. the groundwork. He says, The foam takes up space so the ground
Conseil Rgional de Basse-Normandie / Archives Nationales du Canada material does not have to be applied as thick.

3 4 5
Glenn roughed in masonry with Gatorfoam, then The bay window and balcony Working with the photo of the house, taken shortly
formed a wall and walkway with Magic-Sculpt two- were framed in with styrene after D-Day, Glenn used Photoshop to tint the
part epoxy clay. I used my imagination for what I sheet; the door came from courtyard wall and better envision the scene. He
couldnt see in the photos, he says. MiniArt. It is not the exact door inflicted corresponding battle damage on the house.
on the balcony, Glenn says, but I
could not see all of the door, so it
had to do.

6 7
Glenn sculpted stonework with dental tools and textured the epoxy The dormer was a lot of work, Glenn says. I made countless patterns.
clay with a toothbrush. A final once-over with the toothbrush smoothed The angles were a pain! Still, he enjoyed the challenge of re-creating it
lines and unified textures. from photos. MiniArt windows grace the dormer.

www.FineScale.com 57
8 9
Gatorfoam, similar to foam-core but more rigid, is often used for Glenn covered the Gatorfoam with Magic-Sculpt and sculpted
architectural models. Glenn used it on the house walls and as a core for fieldstone. Before the clay cured, he laid sections of sheet styrene atop
much of his masonry. the wall like capstones. He would cover them with clay, too.

10 11
The houses west wall is covered with epoxy clay, ready for Glenn to Counting the rows of brick in the photo helped scale the pattern to the
sculpt bricks. model.

12 13
A thin layer of epoxy putty, stippled with a toothbrush, replicated The chimney is made from layers of epoxy putty.
stucco on the second story. In his continuing research, Glenn would
swap this door for a French porte.

58 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

14 15 16
After the main portion cured, Glenn rolled out A balcony rail was fashioned with Meanwhile, Jim was working on the Centaur. Tamiya
thinner strips of putty and placed them a fourth of fence pieces made by MiniArt, cut seems to have anticipated that people might want to
the way from the top for a decorative midsection. to shape and glued into position. articulate the suspension, Jim says. Each pair of
The downspout is made from wheels is mounted on a simple rocker arm that
sections of sprue, bent to shape, attaches through the hull. All Tamiya adds is a small
with attachment brackets made pin on the hull; if you want to move the suspension,
from lead foil strips. just cut off the pins and the arms swing free.

17 18
Each road-wheel arm has a hole on its back side that matches a pin on To keep the tank from rolling, Jim glued the polycaps to the wheels and
the hull. Jim smoothed the arms and plugged the holes with .040" then to the arms. He glued the rear wheels in position according to the
styrene rod and putty. He says, I might have skipped this, but with the bases terrain and let them dry. Then he glued the wheels riding over
Centaur climbing that wall I thought it might be visible. the wall (third on the left and the second one on the right).

The rear wheels were easy to locate; they rode on the ground. But I had to think about the ones in front of the wall, Jim says. The tracks would
prevent them from maximum extension; about of maximum seemed about right. Then I hung the second wheel on the left between, but not
quite in a line with, the first and third wheels.

20 21
For the articulated suspension, Jim used Friulmodel white-metal, For groundwork, Jim collected dirt from his yard, sand from the beach,
workable tracks, gluing them on, then painting them. Accurate brown and black powdered paints, and Fixall, a wall-repair product, like
Armours Porpoise ammunition sled provided white-metal attachment plaster of paris, but it has much better adhesion and dries very hard. He
rods and brackets that bent too easily; Jim replaced them with styrene added water, Woodland Scenics Scenic Cement, and a shot of Elmers
rod, tube, and strips (but left the sled unattached for shipping to Glenn). white glue, then more water until it was like pudding. Sprinkling dirt on
He sawed off the back of the sled at the edge of the base. top produced the final sandy texture.

www.FineScale.com 59
22 23
With the Centaur reared back on its hind wheels, Jim worried that the Painting tracks in situ with Testors Model Master enamels, Jim led with
numerous ejector-pin marks under the fenders might be seen. So he raw sienna to represent rust and dirt. Then he airbrushed the lower hull,
filled them all a lot of puttying and sanding but now admits that road wheels, sprockets, and idlers flat black; touchup would correct
throwing some mud and sod up there would be a quicker, easier fix. overspray on the tracks. I tried to avoid the tracks, but I didnt worry
about it much, he says. He panel-faded with green drab followed by
olive drab. Dry-brushing green areas with Afrika dunkelgrau brought
out details before a heavy layer of Testors Dullcote. After touching up
the tracks, he dry-brushed them with Testors Metalizer aluminum.

24 25
To weather the lower hull, Jim dusted it with Tamiya acrylic buff thinned The upper hull really is a drop-fit, Jim says. Just a bit of glue and no
about 80%. I kept dust minimal, he says. I just wanted to integrate the filler. He added Eduard photo-etched brackets and clamps and ran the
colors a little. A wash of Winsor & Newton raw umber artists oils tow cables through the clevis on the hulls front. The instructions leave
deepened details. Jim saved the rest of the weathering for when the the cables lying on top, but that seemed odd to me, he says.
model was complete.

26 27
Aber has a nice photo-etch for this, Jim says of the wading stack. I The Aber PE included a wading shield for the turret. Piece of cake, says
painted the inside while it was still on the fret. That was a lot easier than Jim.
trying to spray in there once it was folded up.

60 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

28 29
As with the lower hull, Jim base-coated the rest of the tank flat black The turrets degree markings are from an old Bison Decals sheet. First,
and panel-faded with green drab and olive drab. He postponed dry- Jim applied a heavy coat of Testors Glosscote to prevent silvering. He
brushing until after he had applied decals. says, Having built a Centaur before, I learned that there are four eyelets
on the turret. The instructions say to add these after the decals, but the
note is easy to miss and if you glue them on first, applying the decals
is really tough. He also suggests working front to back.

30 31
Next, another flat clear coat, then dry-brushing with Afrika dunkelgrau. Jim applied a wash of Winsor & Newton raw umber artists oil cut 80%
Using Testors Model Master enamels, Jim painted: tow cables with raw with Mona Lisa odorless thinner. A thinned dusting with Tamiya buff
sienna, dry-brushing with Metalizer dark anodonic gray; tools with was sufficient weathering. These tanks were straight off the landing
Metalizer gunmetal dry-brushed with Metalizer aluminum; dark tan craft, so they werent terribly dirty, Jim says. Mainly, I was just looking
wood handles; and military brown for the leather pad on the to integrate the colors and lighten the model a bit.
commanders cupola, dry-brushed with Afrika dunkelgrau.

32 33
As Jim and Glenn divvied up the figures, Jim took on the Canadians. Jim followed Dragons instructions for painting the figures, though he
From left: two figures from a Dragon set, with lead-foil equipment lightened colors slightly. Testors enamels include: Afrika khakibraun dry-
straps; the third infantryman is a combination of two Dragon figures, brushed with a lightened Afrika dunkelgrau, also used for straps and
with a resin head from a third figure; and the tank commander is from packs; green drab for helmets; French chestnut for the tank
the Tamiya kit, with wires added to the headset. commanders jacket; and wood dry-brushed with tan for the faces. He
finished the figures with a layer of Testors Dullcote and a wash of Winsor
& Newton raw umber artists oil thinned 80%.

www.FineScale.com 61
34 35
Meanwhile, Glenn was continuing work on the The house was damaged, but, considering that thousands of Canadians were beating on its door,
house. Here, its primed and ready for some it could have been worse. Glenn planted static grass in the yard, then gravel and rubble bricks
serious exterior painting. from Custom Dioramics. He broke up some of the bricks for more debris. Glenn attached
everything with white glue, then brushed on a mix of white glue and water to keep it in place.

36 37
Glenn began overall painting with a dark tan base coat. Two main layers of color served as an undercoat for the finish and

38 39
Glenn hand-painted the trim with Vallejo Model Color German black Glenn painted the stucco with a mixture of ground pastels and white
brown. He credits abstinence from coffee for a steady hand. artists oils, as if I were painting on a canvas, he says. No dry-brushing
at all! I made the shell marks lighter, as seen in photos.

62 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

40 41
I paint each brick and stone one at a time, Glenn says. Varying the No time for a break: Glenn converted two Dragon figures to show one
shades adds life to the stonework. Most modelers take the easy way out German wounded and another urging him on. A little epoxy putty on
and just dry-brush, but that ties all the items too closely. Sure, its fast, the kneeling figures shoulder filled a gap between it and the others
and it brings out texture, but you lose realism. hand, making it look more natural.

42 43
A coat of black Vallejo primer provides pre-shading. Glenn glued the He finished the figures with Vallejo paints, which offers a full line of
figures together and painted them as a pair: The hand was pressed Wehrmacht colors and excellent brush-painting characteristics.
onto the wounded figures shoulder while the Magic-Sculpt was soft. I
wanted to make sure the hand on his shoulder looked convincing.

Long-awaited, liberation comes to France and these two unfortunate German soldiers are doing their best to get out of the way. FSM

www.FineScale.com 63

Powered-up armor
Fighting vehicles locked and loaded with detail

Whether scratchbuilt or sourced from the aftermarket, theres detail inside and out in these scale replicas.
FSM shot them at the Armor Modeling and Preservation Society (AMPS) International Convention in Sumter, S.C.,
and talked to the builders about what makes their models special.


MICHAELS VIGNETTE depicts a replacement! he says. The rear kit parts left; Michael added fit the handles on the .50-cal.
British army vehicle that has body, frame, wings, seats, ignition wires before installation. The AC Models set included
blown an engine seal while on machine gun and its mount, rear The AC Models crew fit pretty some stowage. Other items came
patrol in Afghanistan and is under gear basket, sand channels, front well, but using the Accurate from Live Resin, for L82A2 rifles,
attack by Taliban fighters. GPMG mount and weapon, Armor conversion turned Mike ProArt Models for backpacks, stuff
The basis for the scene is wheels, and roll cage were all into a surgeon. The gunner was bags, and the water cooler,
HobbyBoss 1/35 scale Land Rover, replaced. Other new parts too short, he says. I cut him at Accurate Armour for jerry cans,
which Michael updated to 2008 included the armor panels and the knees and gave him a couple water bottles, ammunition boxes,
standards with Accurate Armours the basket for the camo netting of extra inches with brass wire and carbon-fiber antennas,
R-WMIK TES(T/H) conversion set. on the hood. and Green Stuff epoxy putty. His Mission Models spent casings,
The upgrade was practically a The engine was one of the few arms were altered to more closely Skif lenses, and a Tasca M2 barrel.

64 Experts Guide to Superdetailing


I AM PRIMARILY a figure painter basic dimensions but no scale

and I work almost exclusively in plans. The Mule is a fairly simple
the larger scales 120- 200mm, vehicle, though, and I decided
says Kurt. U.S. Marine Corps that, if I could get the basic cargo
subjects are favorites of mine, and platform built to the correct
I was researching the fighting in dimensions, I could then estimate
Hue City during the 1968 Tet the sizes and proportions of all of
Offensive for a Marine figure the remaining details of the
project that I had in mind. I kept vehicle, he says. In retrospect, I
running across photos of M274s am reminded of the saying fools
armed with the 106mm recoilless rush in where angels fear to tread,
rifles used by the Marines during as this became a very challenging
the urban fighting there. process.
Thinking the vehicle would be During the almost eight
a good subject for a vignette, Kurt months he spent on the project,
bought Glencoes 1/15 scale Mule including vehicle, figures, and
hoping he could detail it, but groundwork, he built and rebuilt
decided it wasnt right for the some of the Mules subassemblies
project. My only option was several times to get it right. Kurt
scratchbuilding it, he says. used sheet styrene for the basic
Fortunately, I had taken about platform and many of the sliced and used for most bolt Kurt mostly used super glue
50 photos of a Mule armed with a vehicles small details. The heads on the vehicle. on the build, but soldered the
106mm at the American Armored vehicles frame is tubular by The Glencoe Mule provided basket assembly for the foot-
Foundation Museum in Danville, design, so I used styrene tubing the engine block. Brass and pedal controls. Epoxy putty filled
Va., a few years earlier. These for this as well as the muffler, aluminum sheet, rod, and tube gaps, formed seat cushions, and
photos became a primary source recoilless rifle, .50-caliber sighting were used in place of styrene smoothed transitions on complex
of information for this build. rifle, and many engine details, he where it offered an advantage in shapes such as the breech of the
Technical manuals provided says. Hex-shaped styrene rod was strength and scale thickness. recoilless rifle.

www.FineScale.com 65

BRITISH ARMY ENGINEERS in a filled with super glue. He washed

Chieftain armored recovery and the resin parts with warm water
repair vehicle collect a busted and a few drops of dish soap,
Challenger power pack in Iraq in rinsed them in cold clear water,
Keiths 1/35 scale vignette. and set them aside to air-dry.
He converted Tamiyas He primed the multimedia
Chieftain actually just the hull model to give it a uniform surface
with an Accurate Armour resin and color, and to promote paint
and photo-etch set. After cutting adhesion. The Challenger power
the kits lower hull as indicated, he pack, also from Accurate Armour,
joined the lower nose and rear was a complicated build made
plates with Accurate Armours harder by vague instructions.
lower and upper hull. The kit Constant page-turning is needed
suspension and vinyl tracks were to see where things connect, he
then installed. says. Leave the actual gluing of
The Accurate Armour resin is the radiators until the last thing.
high quality, with very sharp, crisp Adjustments of some items will
detail, but its prone to warpage be required. The very first
and some shrinkage, Keith says. question you must ask yourself
When the items are unboxed, it is before starting is how are you
prudent to ensure every item is going to show the finished power
present and accounted for and in pack? Once you start, it will be
usable condition. Air bubbles may almost impossible to change your
be present on some of the larger mind. Weaving of cables and
items. If they are not on a visible hoses must be thought through
surface, they can be filled and before gluing larger parts to the
sanded. Minor bubbles can be pack!

66 Experts Guide to Superdetailing


GLEN SPENT SEVEN YEARS from Tamiya engine grilles, barrel is a Voyager resin and pieces of silver solder and super
building Tamiyas 1/35 scale fuel-tank straps, air-conditioner turned-aluminum combo. gluing them in place.
Leclerc as a French tank on a screen, and stowage-rack mesh Glen added nonskid texture to Other additions include: a
United Nations peacekeeping and Eduard handles, horizontal surfaces with a mix of Eureka tow cable; MV Products
operation in Lebanon in 2006. latches, tool racks, and a lot more. Pledge FloorCare Multi-Surface lenses for the headlights; DEF.
His numerous improvements Bronco individual-link tracks Finish and sand. He made Model cooler and water bottles;
include: photo-etched details replaced the kits vinyl runs. The individual tie-downs by shaping and wire antennas.


THERE ARE A FEW DRAGON Referring to drawings, he made wood came from Micro-Marks sheet. The front wheels
PARTS in Macs 1/35 scale broken- the cab from brass sheet soldered lumber yard. All the side supports modified RSO wheels cast in resin
down RSO RS1500 Waldschlepper, together for strength. The frame are from a Royal photo-etch set, and the Dragon road wheels
but most of the halftrack is of the bed was made from says Mac. I punched out all the feature scratchbuilt brake and
scratchbuilt. Evergreen styrene strips; the bolt heads from Evergreen plastic steering linkages.

www.FineScale.com 67

COUNTERWEIGHTS ADDED to reveal a scratchbuilt engine cover

early M10 turrets turned out to be inside the rear hull. Appliqu-
too heavy, so lighter blocks were armor bosses decorate the hull
added and the rear of the turret and turret.
changed to accommodate them. Inside, Konrad scratchbuilt the
Konrad built one of these later front compartment, including a
tank destroyers by kitbashing front bulkhead with access
Tamiyas 1/48 scale Achilles (a hatches, transmission, drive shaft,
British version of the M10 with a stowage tray and box, brake
17-pounder main gun) with parts beam and rods, driver control
from a Tamiya M10 and early- levers and pedals, drivers tool kit,
pattern suspension from a manual stowage basket, and SCR-
HobbyBoss Sherman. 508 radio. In the lower section of
As on the full-size vehicle, the the fighting compartment are
Tamiya road wheels were fitted scratchbuilt ammunition tubes
with cover plates to prevent and canteens.
jamming. Konrad replaced the The turret received a lot of
plastic track skids on the bogies aftermarket and scratchbuilt
with brass and turned corrected attention, starting with the Hauler
return rollers on a lathe. PE turret-ring gear, equipment
Other changes to the hull boxes, and improved seats. He detailed the gun breech Theres more soldered brass
include a mid-production Konrad made retaining straps for and direct-fire sight, and dressed stowage racks, scratchbuilt light
transmission cover, scratchbuilt the ready rounds, a late-pattern up the M2 with an RB turned- guards, working hinges on the
engine hatches underneath, and indirect-fire sight mount, and a brass barrel and hand grips, hatches, and scratchbuilt tow
sponson filler plates. Hauler spare barrel for the .50-caliber scratchbuilt trigger and mount cables and bracket all in a
photo-etched (PE) engine grilles machine gun. details, and a cast ammo box. model thats not even 6" long!

68 Experts Guide to Superdetailing


TO MODEL one of the first SU-122 toolboxes; he soldered the last scratchbuilt cleaning rods from headlight to make way for a clear
self-propelled howitzers in together for strength. The molded styrene rod to fit PE holders and plastic lens. Tamiya acrylics
combat around Leningrad in engine screens were cut from the twisted four .010" wires to form a provided the
January 1943, Ashley added a ton engine-deck hatch and PE used in cable that he attached to tow- camouflage colors;
of aftermarket and scratchbuilt their place over scratchbuilt loops from a Tamiya T-34. Ashley used AK
detail to Tamiyas 1/48 scale kit. details. Ashley replaced poorly Upfront, he added Grandt Interactive chipping
Photo-etch (PE) from Hauler molded hatch handles with steel Line bolt heads to the solutions as a release
(No. HLX48086) replaced the surgical wire; styrene brackets gun and mantlet and agent to weather the
fenders, tie-downs, saw, and support wire grab bars. He hollowed out the winter white.


ON NOV. 1, 1968, Lt. Col. Charles Medal of Honor for his actions Italeris early M109, individual-link projectile stowage rack, which I
C. Rogers rallied his troops and that day. tracks from Skybow, and a hull had to scratchbuild, says Carl. It
helped man a howitzer, Carl backdated AFV Clubs interior from KMC. The last was also had the later breech-
inoperative due to casualties, to 1/35 scale M109A2 to a Vietnam- comprehensive, but it was mounted power rammer, so he
repulse an attack on Fire Base Rita era howitzer with a resin turret designed for Italeris M109A2. It scratchbuilt a folding cab-
in Vietnam. He later received the interior from Warriors, a gun from did not have the corner-mounted mounted version. FSM

www.FineScale.com 69
Rev up a
Grand Prix racerSuperdetailing a 1/20 scale multimedia kit /// BY BOB STEINBRUNN

oaring onto the scene in 1932, Alfa The instructions are sparse, and some parts are
Romeos Monoposto Tipo B (single seat, rough or inaccurate. Whats more, though the
Type B), better known as the P3, domi- paint job looks deep and lustrous, it is so thick it
nated European competition for several years. In obscures details. Yet many parts have mold lines
1937, Englishman Kenneth Evans drove a P3 in and seams that beg to be filed off and polished.
British racing green at Brooklands motor circuit After some soul-searching, I realized I had to
in England, where he finished second in a 10-lap strip the paint, clean parts with files and sanding
Mountain Championship Scratch race. That is sticks, and repaint the British racing green.
the car I chose to model. I was surprised at the paints tenacity: primer,
About 1975, Casadio Models (now Revival color coat, clear coat, and possibly it was baked
International) introduced a series of Grand Prix on. The paint resisted immersion in both brake
racers that represented the cutting edge in multi- fluid and Blue Magic Paint Stripper for more
media models. The box contained die-cast white than a week until scraping, scrubbing with a
metal, black plastic, vinyl tires, and beautiful brass brush, and using a hobby knife gently in
wire-spoke wheels, already threaded. Some of tight areas brought out the castings details.
these kits were produced in all-plastic form Only then was I ready to correct and augment
so take care when you order. the kit to my satisfaction.
70 Experts Guide to Superdetailing
1 2
The model comes well-packed with parts in molded compartments and A Waldron punch-and-die set was indispensible in this build.
numbered bags. An extra engine is included for display. I scratchbuilt an
engine stand to show it off.

3 4
Assorted styrene nuts, bolts, and rivets from Tichy Train Group (TTG) A Flex-I-File with medium and fine grit reaches into tight, curved areas
dressed up the model inside and out. Each engine consumed several to remove mold seams essential for this exhaust manifold. You can
hundred of these. Grobet 4S fine-tip tweezers handled the tiny bits. trim the sanding film for especially tight spots.

5 6
Its more expeditious to paint interior details in one or two sessions. Vittorio Janos 2.6-liter, 8-cylinder engine had twin overhead camshafts
Some parts are held by their sprue, others by toothpicks, alligator clips, driven by a central gear train (hence the bulges for the gears on the
or a bit of steel wire stuck in styrene foam. camshaft covers). The left side had two small superchargers, each
feeding four cylinders.

www.FineScale.com 71
7 8
The exhaust manifold sweeps up and aft. Lower down are the Marelli I detailed the gearbox with a shift gate, lever, and various fittings; the
magneto, water pump, and oil filter. gas and brake pedals are made with brass strips, styrene sheet, and
plastic nuts and bolts.

9 10
The final drive ran to a differential that split the drive into two torque I scratchbuilt the engine stand from 133 pieces; the two engines have
tubes housing two propeller shafts that ran back to two gearboxes on 1,020 parts between them. Brass rod and strip, copper screen, sheet and
the rear axle. This lowered the driver and the axles. Gear ratios could be strip styrene, and hundreds of TTG nuts and bolts were added.
changed for various race courses.

11 12
I painted the engine with various shades of Alclad II, both straight from The black magnetos conduit runs up to the spark-plug wiring distribu-
the bottle and mixed. tion tube. I painted the exhaust manifold with a mixture of Alclad II
burnt iron, stainless steel, and gold titanium. The heat discoloration is a
light brushing of Alclad II hotmetal blue and a transparent, pinkish mix
of Floquil signal red and reefer white.

72 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

13 14
There are two screened intakes, carburetors, fuel filters, superchargers, Adjusting the stick in its gate: The P3 transmission had three speeds,
and intake manifolds, each feeding four of the eight cylinders. and the differential was mounted aft of the transmission.

15 16
The hand brake is on the left, as is the clutch pedal; brake and gas Conscience dictated that I strip off the models pre-painted high-gloss
pedals are on the right. paint to clean up seams and mold marks. It took 10 days of Blue Magic
to strip the tenacious, baked-on paint.

17 18
Removing paint revealed over-scale and misplaced rivets that I filed, TTGs tiny (.020") styrene rivets were tacked in place with Tamiya Extra
sanded, or ground off. I used dividers to mark out rows of rivets with Thin Cement, then secured with super glue. An inexpensive scalpel is
proper spacing, making tiny indents in the metal. great for spearing such minute parts.

www.FineScale.com 73
19 20
The molded screening on the kits radiator is over-scale; I overlaid it with The piano hinge on the hoods centerline looked too big and came with
PE screening from Plano Model Products. Its a model railroad product the hinge holes pre-drilled off-center, impeding the hood sections. I
adaptable to car models. super glued the two hood sections together, then cut them apart along
the hinge line using a miniature table saw; J-B Weld two-part epoxy
filled and smoothed the rough edges. Then, I installed PE piano hinges
from Model Car Garages Big Rig Details (No. MCG-2204).

21 22
The PE hinge improved functionality and scale fidelity. Wire was Inside the hood, I reinforced the edges with .010" x .020" styrene strip
provided for the hinge pin, but .015" steel wire worked better. I made and TTG .020" rivets. I shaped more of the styrene strip to add louvers.
latches from sheet styrene, brass rod and strip, and PE roll-cage gussets
from Detail Master.

23 24
The distinctive and highly visible suspension deserved attention. I The kits leaf springs lacked detail. Using a homemade microsaw, I
improved the adjustable friction shock absorbers on all four wheels scribed connecting links and shaped the upper- and lower-spring
with scratchbuilt elements; front shocks comprise 24 pieces cut from attachment points. This careful carving was at the end of each spring
.015" sheet styrene. I cut the rear shocks away from the leaf springs, unit, where I knew it would be seen.
which I detailed with TTG nuts, bolts, and rivets, U-bolt threaded rods,
and adjusting handles bent to shape from .010" x .020" brass strip.

74 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

25 26
Rear axle and two gearboxes, scribed to show a central case with two The kits tiny screws are easily stripped; in some cases, it was better to
end plates: I cut off the molded bolts and replaced them with TTG bolt use Micro Fasteners tap-and-drill set and brass hex bolts, washers, and
heads. The torque tubes have end plates with bolts, as does the central nuts. Here, a rear cross member has been filed and polished and an 0-80
brake unit, which I scribed to look like a split case. Gearboxes are tap has threaded screw holes for the hardware.
detailed with filler plugs and scrap pieces depicting rubber bumpers.

27 28
The rubber-like tires have excellent tread. A molding ridge around the Underneath, brass rods are part of the mechanical brake system fore
circumference of each tire is easily removed with a sanding stick, which and aft, replacing plastic kit parts. The scratchbuilt front friction shock
also realistically scuffs the tread. Tires are stretched onto the wheels as absorbers in white show up well here, too. Black plastic bell cranks and
on a real car; I made several basswood tire irons for the job. The attachment points for the various brake rods were carved or sanded to
beautiful wire wheels are already threaded; I airbrushed them with scale. Brass 00-90 hex bolts, washers, and nuts replaced the kits screws.
Alclad II aluminum.

29 30
Kit-supplied brass torque tubes run back from the differential to the two Body panels are test-fitted prior to painting to make sure none of the
gearboxes on the rear axle. The transverse brass rod connecting the added details interferes with them. Brass tubing depicts fuel and oil
mechanical brake system with the rear wheels replaced the flimsy one lines along the floorboards.
in the kit.

www.FineScale.com 75
31 32
Ready for paint: a primer coat of Floquil reefer gray lightened with After airbrushing the inside of the frame rails with Alclad II aluminum, I
white, followed by various shades of Alclad II for the bare metal. Next applied liquid mask before airbrushing the British racing green. It was
came a British racing green I mixed with Floquil Southern green and much easier to brush these parts with two coats of liquid mask than to
dark blue. apply tape to these intricate parts.

33 34
The Cartograf decals were thick, but Solvaset settled them. I allowed Mig Productions dark wash deepened nuts, bolts, rivets, and recesses,
several days for drying, then airbrushed with Floquil Crystal-Cote. creating contrast to make these details stand out.

35 36
I airbrushed the seat and steering wheel with Floquil mud, a light tan. Streaking the steering wheel with burnt umber replicated wood grain. I
After they dried for several days, I applied Winsor & Newton burnt cut the instrument panel face from .010" sheet styrene, drilling and
umber artists oil to the seat and smoothed it with a cotton swab to filing the openings to shape. That layer is backed with clear acetate from
impart a beautiful leather-like sheen. a page protector, which looks like glass; behind that is another .010"
styrene sheet with the kits instrument decals.

76 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

Liquid masking film, Bob Dively Models,
Microfine solder, Scale Scenics, www.circuitron.com
Photo-etched piano hinges, Model Car Garage,
Photo-etched screening, Plano Model Products,
Scale hardware, Micro Fasteners, www.microfasteners.com
Scale hardware, ignition wire, Detail Master,
Styrene nuts and bolts, Tichy Train Group,
37 www.tichytraingroup.com
Fuel and oil lines are Scale Scenics Microfine Solder (.018" diameter) Waldron punch and die, from Roll Models,
along with copper strands from a lamp cord; Detail Master provided the www.rollmodels.com
engine wiring in various diameters and colors.

Oil and fuel lines run along the frame; latches in the fuel, oil, and radiator caps are made from brass strip inserted in drilled holes. You can see the
mechanical brake linkage under the car.

A cloisonn Alfa Romeo badge procured online provided a fancy

finishing touch. My log shows this model has 2,521 parts and required
252 hours spread over nine months to complete. Great fun! FSM

www.FineScale.com 77
Tiger Meet JAS 39C
Converting, detailing this Gripen is a roarin good time /// MODEL BY RICARDO DACOBA

hen you attend a
Tiger Meet, you
dont dress as a wall-
flower. You bring the aircraft
with the most ferocious paint
scheme youve got to the
annual NATO Tiger Association
meet. In 2011 the conference
was in Cambrai, France, and
featured 13 participants, one
being the 211 Squadron from
the Czech Republic. With it
came the Saab JAS 39C 1,100 people from
Gripen, with its stunning 17 countries watched
stripes and enough power to the Tiger Meet 2011
Background image: Denisismagilov | Dreamstime.com

reach a top speed of Mach 2. 50th celebration.

Inspired, Ricardo Dacoba
re-created this head-turner by
turning the 1/48 scale Italeri
JAS 39A into a JAS 39C.
1 2 3
Ricardo started by thinning the canards edges. He joined the intakes and fuselage halves then Ricardo integrated a resin APU housing and
He reinforced the connections with styrene reshaped the canard roots and moved the removed the air brake interiors to make space
pegs, smoothing with putty. mounts 2mm forward, drilling new holes. inside the engine nozzle.

Underneath, he relocated vents to correct their position, filling a void and adding new detail with more styrene.

5 6 7
Prior to rebuilding the main gear wells, Ricardo He used spare parts, styrene stock, and wire to and the nose gear wells.
cut them out with a motor tool. scratchbuild new main gear well interiors

Epoxy putty

8 9
Scratchbuilding eliminated space for the 20 grams of ballast needed to balance the plane. The Italeri interior was sparse, so Ricardo
Instead, Ricardo used the nose cone to make an epoxy putty form. He melted wax over the form decided to scratchbuild. He modified an Aires
then poured molten lead into the wax; the solidified lead then fit into the nose. To avoid being F-18 seat and loaded the rest of the space with
poisoned, always wear gloves and a respirator and ensure good ventilation when melting lead. spare parts and new fabrications.

www.FineScale.com 79
10 11 12
Paint and light dry-brushing made everything One weak point is the joining of the fuselage Ricardo also built the instrument-panel
look like it belonged. with the canopy, says Ricardo. He filled the coaming with epoxy putty.
gap forward of the instrument panel with
2mm of putty, smoothed, then shaped.

13 14
Smoothly joining the wings to the fuselage Ricardo cut up kit parts and installed Aires engine nozzles. Here you can see the difference
required hours of sanding. between the Aires nozzle (left) and the one supplied by the kit.

15 16
Topside, Ricardo airbrushed Tamiya dark sea gray (XF-54). The underside is a lighter shade of the same color.

17 18
Ricardo painted the vertical tail and canards white to make the decals Before applying the decals, a dark watercolor wash was used to
stand out. highlight the panels. He removed the excess with a cloth moistened
with water, wiping in the direction of airflow.

80 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

19 20
Ricardo formed epoxy putty around the drop tank, then sculpted a tiger He airbrushed flat black stripes on the tanks
stripe stencil.

21 22
... and overpainted with Tamiya clear yellow. With a symmetrical The nozzle was painted with Testors Model Master jet exhaust enamel
pattern, I could use the same template to paint both sides, he says. and touches of black.

23 24 25
The ejection seat was Sidewinder missiles from Revells F-15E Strike Eagle After printing decals for the tail and canards, Ricardo
completed with seat belts (85-5511) arm the fighter. painted over any visible printing issues before putting
made from aluminum foil. them on the aircraft.

26 27
He continued the tiger pattern by painting stripes down the fuselage. Lastly, Ricardo used oil paints to reproduce hydraulic fluid drippings and
Like the drop tanks, he painted flat black and airbrushed clear yellow. dirt before adding a thin coat of Testors flat clear. FSM

www.FineScale.com 81
tips and tricks
A master modeler shares the secrets to shipshape modeling /// BY DAVE STRAUB

Research and references

y model of the USS Langley, Americas first aircraft carrier, as a seaplane
tender near the end of her career represents not only years of work but also a Once Ive made up my mind what I want
lifetime of skills Ive developed. Some of the techniques, like carving and to build, I start collecting all the plans,
sanding, date back to when I started modeling with Strombecker solid wood drawings, and photos. The images include
kits. Others, such as resin-casting, and brass-bending and soldering, Ive learned through in-action and walkaround photos.
trial and error. This process takes time five years for
the Langley so I make a file folder to
Getting started the past: to build something for which keep everything together. Its divided into
There was a time when scratchbuilding was there is no kit, like the Langley, to have one subgroups marked with pieces of colored
de rigueur for modelers. Whether it was in the scale you want. The latter is true for paper, 2. Those groups include models that
replacing a simple kit cockpit with a better- the collections of 1/62 scale seaplanes and I have seen, overall pictures, and detail pho-
detailed option from styrene or building an 1/200 scale dirigibles Ive built, 1. tos of specific areas of the subject. This dos-
entire Soviet T-60 tank, most builders dab- But more than that, scratchbuilding sier makes it easy to find what I need as Im
bled in the art. gives a sense of accomplishment. I got into planning and building.
However, many would argue that today it 20 years ago, and it opened up a whole I digitize drawings and plans, reducing
is a golden age for modeling, given the new world of freedom and enjoyment for or enlarging them to the scale of the model,
range of kits available and the breadth of me. Plus, it raised my skills to a higher 3. A lot of them are old blueprints and
subject matter covered. So, why scratchbuilt level. With each model, I stretch my abili- require tedious digital cleanup, but they
at all? For many of the same reasons as in ties and do things a little bit better. provide the best starting place.

82 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

My 1/200 scale USS Shenandoah was built on an aluminum bar with foam-core frames and pine stringers.

2 3
It takes years to gather the necessary reference material for a Converting plans from blueprints (bottom) often requires digital
scratchbuilding project, so it pays to keep it organized. cleanup. Photos clarify questions and reveal upgrades and refits.

But I never rely on drawings alone; they standard cutter that I have labeled soft- most valuable tools you can have because
may have been done quickly to satisfy a point, is used only on plastic and very thin they have so many applications.
publication, or they might show the subject brass. I never use it on steel or music wire And then you should buy a series of
as planned rather than in service. Photos because they would damage the blades. files. There are sand-board files and the nail
are the best way to see how a plane or ship Instead, I have cutters with surgical, hard- files beauticians use. If you go to a beauti-
looked in service, reflecting any changes ened steel blades that will go through music cian supply house, you can buy the thinner
that may have been made. wire without injury. ones with different grits on each side. This
While were on cutting tools, lets not is much cheaper than buying them from a
Basic tools forget razor saws. Different types of teeth hobby store.
Many basic modeling tools apply to provide a variety of widths. Some are better Sandpaper should always be close at
scratchbuilding, 4. Hobby knives with a for harder materials, such as brass. I espe- hand, so I store strips of 180-, 320-, 400-,
variety of blade shapes should be on every cially like the newer Czech saws, great for and 600-grit sandpaper in cookie tins on
workbench, but I also use scalpels. They are thin cuts. my workbench. Specialized devices can
extremely sharp keener than hobby You cant have too many tweezers of dif- hold sandpaper for a multitude of tasks, but
blades and wonderful for cutting fine ferent shapes and sizes. I recommend more often than not, Ill sand an edge onto
detail. Also invaluable are single-edge razor spending a little extra money to buy well- a wooden tongue depressor or popsicle
blades. made tweezers with accurate tips. Grab a stick, then wrap sandpaper around it.
Flush cutters, sometimes called sprue block of pith wood to keep the tips clean. Sanding sticks in several grits can be found
cutters, are essential. I have two. The first, a Round-headed toothpicks are one of the at hobby and beauty stores.

www.FineScale.com 83
4 5 6
When it comes to scratchbuilding, you cant I used a punch and die to make glass for the A good selection of cutting bits will make a lot
have too many tools. Every project requires numerous portholes on the USS Langley. of jobs easier.
not only standard modeling tools but also
power saws, sanders, drills, and lathes.

7 8 9
This combination belt and disc sander works Scores of pine strips run from end to end in the Coral is not a standard color for Unimat lathes,
well for shaping wooden parts and masters. dirigibles. This miniature table saw makes but that was the color I had handy when I
quick work of all those stringers. refurbished mine. I turn wood, resin, styrene,
and brass on it.

Again, spend a little extra to get high- right then if you have identical lengths. portholes and such, I drill holes into thin
quality files, especially if you are doing a lot Precision metal squares, as well as their parts to be joined, such as wings and struts,
of shaping. A variety of sizes and shapes is plastic cousins, are essential for working to accept music-wire pins.
good; I use my collection of rifflers and rat- with drawings and producing straight lines
tail files for hard-to-reach spots and awk- on styrene and metal. To guide a straight Power tools
ward shapes. Remember to buy a cleaning cut, I use a metal plate with a knob For heavy-duty drilling, I use two drill
brush to go with the files. attached. presses: one purpose-built, the other a
You cant beat 0000 steel wool for final For really accurate measurements, I use Dremel stand that converts into a motor
smoothing before painting, but you have to calipers. I prefer the older mechanical ones, tool.
be careful with it in tight spots. but digital devices are also available and rel- Hand-held motor tools are great for
To apply glues and accelerator, I use fine atively inexpensive. shaping and sanding everything, so I also
and micro brushes. But the best thing Ive Pliers hold parts during cutting and have a large selection of cutting and grind-
found for adding a dot of super glue is a bending, so I have several, including nee- ing bits, 6. I drilled shallow holes into a
dentists micro file, used during root canals. dle- and bent-nose. I made a simple holder wooden block to store them.
They are available in different sizes; I use with three dowels and end caps to protect I often work with wood, for parts and for
the blue No. 40. the tips and keep the pliers and cutters carving masters, so I have a couple of grind-
For paint mixing and filler application, I organized. ers and a belt sander, 7. A Craftsman hand-
recommend painters palette knives or spat- Vises secure parts or the entire model held motor tool does great detail work when
ulas. Sturdy, thin, and flexible, they also are while you work or paint. I have several, carving and shaping; miniature pad and belt
easy to clean. ranging from large bench-mounted units to sanders finish the job.
some small enough to hold in your hand. I To cut brass rod and tube, I use a high-
Advanced tools have several designed for working on circuit speed cutter, essentially a small chop saw. I
Old-school drafting tools dividers, com- boards that are perfect for holding small cut long strips of wood with a miniature
passes, and squares are worth their parts. For really small, odd shapes, I use a table saw, 8.
weight in gold. tri-claw wire grasper. One of my favorite tools is my recondi-
I transfer dimensions from drawings to When I need to make holes or discs, I tioned Unimat lathe, 9. It sees constant use,
the model using dividers and compasses, turn to my large collection of punches and whether Im turning a single part or a mas-
and theyre perfect for checking symmetry. beading tools, 5. ter for a resin casting.
Mark the center and swing the dividers I use the living daylights out of my pin In addition to wood, I turn slugs of resin
from one side to the other and youll know vises and drill bits. In addition to opening on the machine. Most of the time, the most

84 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

10 11
More than 44" long, the Langleys hull was bigger than any single piece Ive made the side cuts for a wooden Boeing 314 and have taped the
of jelutong. So, I laminated three with screws and glue. excess back on in preparation for the plan view cuts.

12 13
With the rough hull of the Curtiss NC-4 secured in a vise, I refine the Easy to cut and glue, styrene is ideal for building structures, such as the
shapes with power- and hand-sanding. Langleys bridge.

14 15
Sheet styrene is consistently thick. I used it for overlapping plates on the I used long strips, rather than trying to model individual plates. Clear
carriers hull. nail polish brushed over tape masks welded them.

www.FineScale.com 85
16 17
Evergreen Scale Models styrene comes in myriad structural shapes. I Evergreen L-beam styrene forms the towers that support the Langleys
turned the crane pulleys on a lathe. flight deck. They were all different, so I built them separately.

18 19 20
Brass is best for davits because it bends Brass strength helped the safety-net supports. I joined the parts with resistance soldering. The
without breaking and holds its shape. Small containers organize parts. alligator clip serves as a heat sink.

therapeutic thing I can do is turn some- can be applied in a thin layer. spatula and let it dry. If its not right, you
thing on a lathe. For detail work where even a little excess can wipe off the spackle with a damp cloth.
An end mill is nice, too, but its defi- glue would be a problem, I use Micro-Mark I use Elmers wood filler to smooth
nitely more expensive and I dont get as Liquid PSA (pressure-sensitive adhesive). imperfections in parts and masters made of
much use out of mine as I do the lathe. About the consistency of white glue, PSA wood.
is easy to apply.
Glues For the portholes on the Langley, I Woodwork
The adhesive I use depends on the materials looped a little of the glue around the inside Whether its the master for a flying boats
being joined and the strength required. of the frame, where it dried crystal clear but hull or the Langleys hull, many of my mod-
To attach wood to itself and anything stayed tacky. It saved my bacon when I els start as a block of wood, 10. I use bass-
else, I use Elmers yellow wood glue; it dries attached the planes on the deck. I ended up wood or jelutong. Both are easy to work
strong and can be cut and sanded. White moving them, and I was able to pry them and have even density. In other woods, such
glue is great for paper, and when mixed off without damaging either the planes or as pine, the density varies between the
with water it can be used to stiffen thread the painted deck. All modelers should have rings; sanding produces undulations.
for rigging lines and tissue for tarps. this in their arsenal. I attach the three-view drawings to a
If I need time to mess with positioning block and cut around one of the outlines
and alignment, I use epoxy. The 5-minute Fillers with a band saw. To provide a flat surface
stuff works well for quicker jobs, the 15-min- Im not a fan of old-style modeling putties, for the block to sit on, I taped the just-
ute for fiddly jobs. Just make sure you mix like Squadron Green, because the stuff Ive removed chunks back onto the block and
the components equally or it wont cure. had always dries in the tube. Instead, I use cut along the next side, 11.
Super glue, sometimes called cyanoacry- auto-body putty; it will last a lifetime and is I finish the initial shaping with a belt
late adhesive (CA), is essential for joining inexpensive. For heavy-duty filling, like sander, then refine shapes with files, sand-
small things. I use the medium consistency reshaping the Langleys hull or filling large ing sticks, and sandpaper, 12.
stuff all the time with kicker or accelerator gaps, I use straight Bondo.
to speed setting. I poured resin into an old Two-part epoxy putty works for small Working with styrene
spray-can lid and held the bottle in it as the gaps, but I dont think its strong enough Evergreen Scale Models is a lifesaver, pro-
resin set so it doesnt tip over during use. I for larger jobs. ducing styrene in hundreds of shapes and
can refill that bottle, and I use the end of A filler Ive come to rely on for small sizes, including rod, tube, and sheet. I prob-
the accelerants spray-nozzle tube to apply a jobs is vinyl spackling compound. Say you ably have $1,000 worth of the stuff on hand
drop of kicker to a join. need to eliminate a minor defect in a wing and used at least that on the Langley.
For bonding large, flat surfaces, I use or a gap at the wing root. Swipe a little Styrene is easy to cut with most model-
3M Super 77 spray adhesive. Its strong and compound over the area with an artists ing tools, including hobby knives and scis-

86 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

21 22 23
The Langleys portholes had brass frames, so I If you need a lot of something, you cant beat I made a master for the Curtiss SOC Seagulls
made them with brass tube. A specially resin-casting. This is all of the Langleys on the Langley with wood for the body, wings,
shaped dowel aided installation. Consolidated P2Y-3 flying boats, out of the and float, turned resin for the cowl, and strip-
mold and ready for cleanup. styrene details.

24 25 26
I disassembled the master, suspended the Thin parts, such as ladders, struts, props, and I use a vacuum chamber to draw bubbles of
components on thin styrene strips, and placed wheels, can be cast in a shallow one-piece trapped air out of the RTV, preventing voids in
them in a foam-core flask. Next, Ill pour in RTV mold. After pouring on the resin, I level it with the mold.
rubber to make a mold. a Popsicle stick.

27 28 29
For hollow objects, like a dirigibles gondola, I I coax the resin into grooves and recesses with I molded some gondolas solid, then hollowed
use rotational casting. Turning the molds lets a toothpick. You have to work pretty quickly them with a cutting bit on a motor tool.
liquid resin flow into details as it sets. before the resin sets.

sors, and can be joined with most model Metal work Brass tubing is useful for exhausts. And
cements. Brass has flexibility and strength, great for in the case of the Langleys portholes, I
I used it extensively on the Langley, not thin objects such as railings. drilled holes in the hull and inserted rings
only to build the superstructure and decks, I made a form from pins to bend davits formed by cutting brass tube in the chop
13, but for strips along the hull to represent for the Langleys boats, 18. The flight deck saw. I created a special tool out of a dowel
plates, 14. Clear nail polish brushed is surrounded by safety nets supported by to install the rings, 21.
between strips of tape produced weld rods. I knew styrene would not be rigid Aluminum is more malleable than brass,
seams, 15. In addition, I used various enough, so I used brass, 19. so I used aluminum tubing for the hawse
shapes to assemble girders and cranes, 16. To ensure solid joins, I outlined the deck pipes on the Langley. Gentle pressure made
The right-angle L stock was perfect for with brass L stock and attached the 60 net the cross section oblong.
flight-deck framing and supports; they are rods with resistance soldering, 20. Instead
all different so I built them individually, 17. of an iron, an electrical current running Mastering resin
For other parts, such as window frames and through the joint generates heat. An alliga- Of all the techniques I use, resin casting
stairs, I made styrene masters to make tor clip served as a heat sink to protect pre- gets more use than most, whether its for
molds for casting resin copies. vious soldering work. airships, flying boats, or the Langley.

www.FineScale.com 87
Above and below decks, details cram the Langley. I cast the boarding In transit, the wings of the P2Ys were stowed in a rack on the stern. You
ladder in resin and detailed it with brass handrails. can also see a few of the dozen N scale figures on the model.

The bow gives away Langleys origins as a collier. Here you can see the I filled all of the brass portholes with clear styrene discs held in place
turned-brass binnacle and marker lights. with pressure-sensitive adhesive.

Working from a master, I can produce that might soften details, 25. If you have to Casting about
scores of copies of any object I need a lot of, make a two-part mold, pour the first half to Pour-casting is easy. Mix the resin dont
such as the Langleys window frames or the about halfway up the flask and let it set. whip it, just stir it steadily until the liquid is
P2Y-3s that occupy the carriers deck, 22. Then you can cut chunks out of the rubber, clear and pour it slowly into the mold.
The process starts with making a perfect coat it with mold release, and pour the next Once its had time to set, you can pop it out
master, which can be constructed from sty- layer of RTV. The cutouts will align the of the mold.
rene, carved in wood, or maybe both, 23. halves. Remember to leave channels at the Bubbles form when air is trapped in the
Spend time on this master and youll spend top and bottom of the mold: one to pour mold. Gently squeezing small molds can
a lot less time cleaning up the castings. The the resin into, the other for it to flow out of work, but I prefer to stir the resin in the
surface needs to be smooth and free of and prevent air being trapped. mold with a toothpick to dislodge air and
blemishes, because any imperfection will be For complex shapes, such as the hull of a encourage the resin to fill fine creases.
transferred to the casting. I coat masters flying boat that I made a single master of, I For some parts, I pour in a little resin
with a thick automotive body primer that will make one mold of the lower half. Then, and turn the mold around to get the resin
fills minor scratches and dimples, then I flip it over and make a mold of the upper to flow into details, 27; a toothpick can
smooth the surface with 0000 steel wool. half. In both cases, I pour the RTV past a help, 28. This kind of rotational casting
Now, Im ready to make the mold with key feature, such as a belt line, that I can produces hollow objects; otherwise, I might
room-temperature vulcanizing (RTV) rub- use to mark the join for the resin parts. have to hog them out with a motor tool.
ber or silicone, placing the object inside a If you plan to do a lot of casting, con- But it takes special care not to punch
box. Foam-core sealed with super glue sider investing in a vacuum pump and a through the skin, 29.
makes a terrific container, or flask, 24. simple bell jar, 26. Placing the mold and Spin-casting uses centrifugal force to
Whenever possible, I use a one-part freshly poured RTV in the jar and remov- push resin into the outer depths of the
mold; theres no futzing with alignment ing the air should draw out air trapped in mold as it sets. I repurposed a blood centri-
and no reason to use mold-release agents the RTV. fuge for this. FSM

88 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

Built for the Borg
Photo-etching and foraging, cubed /// BY JEFF POLLIZZOTTO

he idea for modeling the Borg Cube from would be removable; the bottom would be
Star Trek: First Contact was inspired by a part of the mount.
work assignment I had received to build a Early on, I conceded that modeling an exact
refrigerator display prototype for a major soft replica would be futile (pun intended). But I
drink company. The design incorporated a 6" thought I could achieve something evocative
Lumin Disc in the door handle. though they were similar, no two cubes
This disc immediately reminded me of the were alike. Variations also showed up between
large ones above the Borg alcoves in several actual studio models and the later computer-
Trek adventures. They are available in many col- generated versions.
ors I chose Borg green and planned to use In addition to superdetailing the surfaces of
it in a base for the model. Using the disc as a the cube, I wanted to install LEDs to produce
focal point, I decided on a 10" cube. The top the green glow that emanates from the cube.

www.FineScale.com 89
1 2
Fiber Optic Products Lumin Disc transforms electrical impulses into a Using a miniature table saw, I cut six square sides from .100" styrene
light display that responds to music, voice, or touch. sheet. I penciled in designs, including open areas.

3 4
The sides features were cut out on a milling machine. This also could be I built an 8" cube to mount inside the 10" cube to provide a place for the
done with a router or the tried-and-true hole and saw method. green LEDs and keep the interior from looking hollow.

5 6
Exterior detail was built up in layers using custom vacuum-formed Modeling a Borg Sphere began with two 2"-diameter clear acrylic
parts, plastic piping, kit parts, and many scratchbuilt items. domes. I filled them with plaster and used them as masters to vacuum-
form .020" and .040" sheet styrene.

90 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

7 8
I penciled designs on the sphere surfaces and cut openings with a drill Sphere sections were cut up for surface details; they started out in pie
and small keyhole saw, finishing with needle files. A chunk of .100" shapes but were diced further.
styrene served as a mount for four LEDs: two white, a red, and a green.

9 10
Exterior detail was added with styrene strips, pinheads, metal washers, Metal tubing served as a mount for the sphere as well as a conduit for
thin music wire, and photo-etch (PE) before gray primer. its wiring.

11 12
The docking bay for the sphere was made from 2 " ABS pipe and
14 A styrene disc served as a door for the dock. I added two square green
adorned with styrene bits and pieces, including tank kit parts. LEDs to the doors inside. The docking ring was made from .040" and
.080" styrene. Two black jewelers screws attach it to the cube.

www.FineScale.com 91
13 14
Myriad materials and a Micro-Mark MicroLux miniature table saw I had a circular vacuum-form master that I had already made up for the
helped make the cube ornate. I pulled spare parts from tank, ship, train, soft drink display (the project that started this trouble). I trimmed it to
aircraft, and sci-fi kits, and threw in pinheads, washers, rivets, and other accommodate the face of the Lumin disc and built a base that would
metal bits. I even collected donations from fellow modelers! hold the disc as well as the rest of the electronics.

15 16
I needed a strong base that would hold the cube steady and The stand was suitably rigid. Good thing the cube weighs more than
accommodate wiring. I built the stand around 38" aluminum tubing 4 pounds! The Borg-style black tubing is split loom tubing for
using 18", 14", and 38" styrene. electronics; its easy to cut and needed no painting.

17 18
I made more than 200 PE parts for the cubes exterior using Micro- Next step: Reverse the artwork and use a good inkjet printer to print
Marks Pro-Etch System. The designs are drawn on computer; its always black on the film supplied in the PE kit. This photo-resistant material has
a good idea to draw the artwork at least 50% larger than final size. to be laminated to the metal for etching. These steps should be done in
subdued light; you dont want to expose the film just yet.

92 Experts Guide to Superdetailing

19 20
You can use daylight to expose the art on the metal, but I do it indoors After exposure, the metal is placed in developer that eats away the
with a 100-watt bulb. This takes longer (10 minutes or so) but its more unhardened, photo-resistant material. Then the metal is bathed in ferric
accurate. chloride (etch). The areas hardened in the last step protect the metal
you want from etching, while the etching bath removes unprotected
metal. Voila! PE parts. (Caution: Always wear gloves and eye protection.)

21 22
I primed the model with Duro automotive primer, then used a mix of Detail was painted with flat aluminum, copper, and gold acrylics. I
Tamiya chrome silver, metallic blue, and dark gray for the cube and scraped PE parts with a knife to remove paint and give them a
spheres predominant color. distressed look. Black artists oil washes deepened shadowy areas.

Meet Jeff Pollizzotto

Jeffs father, a WWII vet, got
him into model aircraft before
he was 3. I went from wood
planes to plastic planes, tanks,
ships, cars, and everything in
between! Jeff says. Growing
up on Saturday sci-fi and fan-
tasy shows exposed me to
spaceships. Forbidden Planet,
The Day the Earth Stood Still,
and The War of the Worlds
inspired me, and Ive been a
sci-fi fan ever since. A versa-
tile modeler by day, hes been
23 building point-of-purchase
This is the most intense model Ive ever scratchbuilt by far, and the prototypes for more than 30
heaviest. It took 10 months, weighs more than 4 pounds, and, in years. Jeff and his wife, Luann
addition to the PE, it demanded more than 7,000 styrene pieces. But Rene, live in Levittown, N.Y.
resistance was futile. FSM

www.FineScale.com 93

But wait, theres more!

These models have detail by the car err, ship um, spacecraft load.

Theres no shortage of detailing on all kinds of models. FSM shot these at the IPMS/USA National Convention,
WonderFest, and EagleQuest, and talked to the builders about their work.


IF YOURE LOOKING at Jims planes, and cars. He cut and filed vehicles, so Im always playing made a wooden mock-up.
desert patrol craft and thinking RenShape styling board, then clad around with ideas, says Jim. This What advice does he give
you havent seen that before, it with sheet and strip styrene for one started with the pilot and the would-be scratchbuilders?
youd be right. the main body; brass and seat. I wanted an open cockpit Sounds simple, but just go for it,
He scratchbuilt the 1/20 scale aluminum tubing was used for really open and I wanted it to Jim says. Come up with an idea
ship around a Maschinen Krieger the guns in the front and some of look like it would be fun to fly. and give it a go. The main thing is
figure using sheet styrene and the exhaust system and muffler After picking the pilot and have a blast. Thats what its really
repurposed kit parts from tanks, on the top. I love designing sci-fi seat, he sketched the idea and all about anyway!

94 Experts Guide to Superdetailing


TO MAKE Monograms 1/24 scale joins some of the wood, but most mineral spirits and sealed with Terry is mindful of a carpenters
1926 Mack truck more authentic, of it is held together with metal Testors Model Master enamel advice: Take your time, measure
Terry scratchbuilt the bed from pins and hardware he made. clear flat. The rest of the vehicle twice, and cut once. Always keep
balsa and basswood cut with a He stained the woodwork was painted with Tamiya acrylics. scale in mind, he says. If it looks
hobby saw and knife. Super glue using oil paint thinned with When working with wood, too big, it probably is.


BORROWING IDEAS from aircraft (PE) detail set (for the Valkyrie) to ejection-seat handles, HUDs, and Modified Hasegawa deck
modelers, Anthony added a ton of add vents, grilles, antennas, and more details for the cockpit. He equipment provides service and
detail to Hasegawas 1/48 scale thrust-vectoring fins, he says. He opened the canopy and drooped power carts. He painted the ship
VF-1A Valkyrie from the anime bolstered that detail with Eduard the flaps to suggest hydraulic with Tamiya acrylics, GSI Creos
series Macross. PE for an F-15, aluminum-tube bleed while the ship is at rest on Mr. Color paints, and Alclad II
I used Hasegawas photo-etch gun barrels, and scratchbuilt the ground. metallic lacquers.

www.FineScale.com 95

DAVE THOUGHT Moebius 1/32 sheet-styrene walls and an and wire. The Hornets seat was plumbed the landing-gear with
scale Viper Mk.VII from Battlestar instrument panel fitted with also conscripted for the Colonial spare parts and wire.
Galactica deserved an upgrade. Eduard photo-etched (PE) dials Fleet, along with Eduard PE belts. Several shades of blue gray
So, he dressed up a cockpit for the space fighter; the rear deck Spare plastic and PE produced an make the Colonial fighter look
tub from a 1/32 scale F-18 with was embellished with spare parts actuator for the canopy. Dave faded and worn.


AS THE FLEDGLING U.S. missile This was an experiment to welds found on the original V-2s, were made with a circle cutter.
program progressed through the see if I could replicate the non- he says. Among the more unusual items
late 1940s, a WAC Corporal uniform surface texture, overlaps, He made new parts from resin are doll-eye bulkheads in the
sounding rocket was mounted on and oil can-like wrinkles seen on and sheet and rod styrene, with Corporal. The V-2s engine is a
a V-2 to test two-stage separation museum V-2s, he says. He brass tube for the Corporal body model unto itself, with a
at speed; the result was the removed surface detail and and Scale Detail wires for 3-D-printed bell connected to
Bumper. Davids detailed 1/35 replaced it with two layers of electrical systems. turbo pumps, pressure tanks,
scale cutaway includes a few kit Flight Metals aluminum. I used He shaped the fuel tanks by gauges, lines, exhausts, insulated
parts, notably the half of the Rosie the Riveter single and wrapping .010" styrene around a tubes, and a frame scratchbuilt
center and boat tail, and modified double-track type, both 1/32 and mandrel and dipping it in boiling from Evergreen styrene tube,
fins from Revell Germanys V-2. 1/48 scale to replicate tack water. The bulkheads in the V-2 sheet, and shapes.

96 Experts Guide to Superdetailing


THE MAJOR TASK of the World tight spaces. He filled the oversize 40mm gun barrels with stretched The aircraft, from Fujimi,
War II escort carrier USS Barnes portholes and drilled new ones, sprue. The 20mm guns comprise Hasegawa, and Tsukuda sets,
was to deliver personnel and added keels and rudders to the five pieces: the barrel made from were all modified. Sam backdated
aircraft forward in the Pacific. ships boats, and scratchbuilt stretched sprue, gun shield made P-51Ds to Bs, and all of the P-47s,
Sam built Pit-Roads 1/700 paravanes, anchor winches, gun from sheet styrene, a pedestal F4Fs, Avengers, and Dauntlesses
scale USS Bogue as Barnes looked directors, and some masts. He shaped from sprue, and a pair of received styrene nose grafts to
during one of these missions, first reshaped the anchors and curved shoulder braces made correct length. He replaced the
removing molded-on parts like replaced the molded anchor from wire. Gold Medal Models landing gear with scratchbuilt
tread plate and arrestor wires with chain with metal links. photo-etch provided railings, the legs and wheels after cutting out
hobby knives, scalpels, and Anti-aircraft armament was main-mast cage supports, and wells. Props, gear doors, pylons,
special tools he made to get into also upgraded. Sam replaced the radar dishes. and drop tanks also were added.


A FAN OF INDY ROADSTERS from was a challenging task, since this After bisecting the kit hood, scratchbuilt using aluminum
the 50s and 60s, Andy has long kit was originally created in the he joined the halves with a photo- tubes and mated to the header.
desired modern kits. Instead, he mid-60s and had lot of issues that etched piano hinge from Model Alclad II hot-metal lacquers
made do with AMTs Parnelli needed to be corrected. Car Garage. Opening it exposes discolored the pipes. Andy
Jones racer. IndyCals provided an accurate the kit engine, beefed up with replaced the plastic suspension
I tried to keep the build resin nose that Andy thinned to fit scratchbuilt timing and cam components with Albion Alloys
faithful to the way the car looked over the frame before installing covers, starter yoke, and water aluminum tubes painted with
in the 1963 Indy 500, he says. It magnets to facilitate removal. intake. The exhaust was Alclad II chrome.

www.FineScale.com 97

VLADIMIRS SCRATCHBUILT Artworx self-adhesive wooden 120mm guns from North Star subject, look in various online
Russian auxiliary cruiser Lena decking. He inserted brass rods Models Russian cruiser Novik set; libraries such as Google books or
started with a resin hull of a into a rotary tool, and, using it like and boats, 47mm guns, Archive.org, Vladimir says. Old
generic passenger steamer from a lathe, he shaped them into deflectors, anchors, and ladders books often contain very good
the late 19th century. masts; he soldered together the from several Combrig kits. photographs and line drawings.
Using plans from an 1896 segments. If you are building models Also, long-standing newspapers
engineering magazine, Vladimir Aftermarket details include: from before 1922 and there is often have photos not otherwise
reshaped the hull and installed LionRoar photo-etched railings; limited information about your available.



up Tamiyas 1/12 scale Mini
Cooper. Except for the body shell,
fenders, engine block, and
wheels, he scratchbuilt details to
create a replica of a real Sports Car
Club of America GT5 race car.
The engine has new
carburetors, an aluminum air box,
new radiators, overflow bottles,
and is fully plumbed and wired.
Washes emphasized the engine
bay detail and reflect the real cars
busy career. The same attention
carries to the suspension,
including control arms and
braces, coil overs on all four
corners, and disc-brake rotors and
Inside, the drivers seat is
shaped from aluminum,
upholstered with foam, and
draped with a cloth harness. More
aluminum, this time cut from a
baking tray, serves for inner door
panels, the rear deck, and the
floor. Joes scratchbuilt dashboard removed the fenders on either After painting the car with
includes dials and controls. The side of the separate hood to Testors Model Master spray-can
roll cage features large-gauge better access the engine. gloss black, he polished the finish
wire sheathing for padding, with Vacuum-formed flares to a high shine.
Bare-Metal Foil for clamps. complete the transformation. The The crowning touch was the
In addition to opening the tires started as wooden rings that Union Jack on the roof that Joe
race cars doors and trunk, Joe Joe coated with rubber paint. raised with decals and clear coat.

98 Experts Guide to Superdetailing



artwork of Ian McQue, Scott
scratchbuilt three 1/160 scale sky
boats in traffic.
The hulls were vacuum-
formed with styrene using
masters carved from urethane
foam. I carve the foam with just
about anything that will work,
says Scott. The foam is the
10-pound-density type hard
enough to carve and sand, yet
very workable. scratchbuilds some details, but kit
He uses clay sculpting tools parts supply many greeblies.
and hobby knives to carve, and It usually takes about a week
ballpoint pens for scoring the or two to come up with a design
surface; pretty much anything that I like and then carve the
with a hard, clean edge will work, master, he says. But depending
he says. on the level of detail and size (of
The foam withstands the heat the model) I can complete one in
of vacuum-forming and allows for about two or three weeks, start to
a variety of shapes. I can go as finish. I love sci-fi hardware in all
organic as I want, he says. He its forms! FSM


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