Let The Helicopter Project Begin

With no other kits on the backlog, I can break out of my comfort zone and build a helicopter kit for the first time in half a decade. I’m pretty nervous and overwhelmed with the task but I think I will relax once I get started. Construction doesn’t scare me so much. That’s a pretty universal aspect. The painting is the major detail that I have to stay laser focused with. I will just need to pay attention and do my research.

Preliminary paint was started on Monday and I haven’t had a chance to do anything more since then. Cockpits will be the main focus for now. Rotors and landing gear will be thrown into the mix at some point just to get them finished and out of the way. There is quite a bit of work ahead of me here and I am eager to have a quality sit down to get things rolling. Sunday is my target date for that.

Mitsubishi G4M1 Type 1, Betty

Well the egg is certainly all over my face on this one. Since about the third post that included any mention of this build, I have for some reason been calling this aircraft by the name of “Peggy”. In actuality, it’s given name by the allied forces was “Betty”. I was completely dumbfounded and quite embarrassed to learn of my mistake while taking a final look through the instruction sheet. I even went back through all of my past posts to correct everything. In my defense, I did have it right the first two posts. From there…who knows?

So here we have the BETTY. I will say it again so I don’t forget, Beeeeeeetty. With typical Hasegawa quality, I think I had a decent time here. Bigger aircraft equal more seams. That was really the only challenging aspect to this build. The interior windows weren’t the greatest of fit but I’ll let that one slide. Decals were minimal and to the point which was nice. 

Weathering Japanese aircraft can go many ways. I was originally going to use the salt method to show severe paint chipping but opted to steer towards the middle of the spectrum. I used a silver Prismacolor pencil to create the chipping and weathered the panel lines like normal. I think I achieved a good balance and I’m happy with the ending. 

Ever So Close

Just a quick update on the Betty for today. I managed to steal about fifteen minutes this morning to get the engines installed and then get the nacelles wedded to the aircraft. I weathered the nacelles last night before bed so I could at least get this far. The propellers were mated to their cones and I will try to get them installed tonight or tomorrow morning. I may even get the photo shoot done tomorrow. We’ll see. 

Bristol Beaufighter Mk.VI

So finally we have the Beaufighter. The one major thing that I have learned from this build is that I absolutely love this aircraft. It was as much a joy to build as it was to learn about. To have it complete is kind of bittersweet because I have to move on now. 

Well, not much to say about the build that I haven’t already covered over the months. Hasegawa really did well. Excellent fitting parts and great decals once they finally released from the backing. Overall one of the better kits in my inventory. Once I finish up my model room and organize my shelves, it will sit next to my two Mosquitoes. 

One Inch At A Time

Workbench activity has come to a trickle over the past forty-eight hours or so. Not to worry because I am ever so close on both builds. 

The Beaufighter could have been finished yesterday but I didn’t want to rush through and risk a massive catastrophe. It’s actually all finished now with the marker lights being the last task to perform. I painted each wingtip the respective red and green so it would show through the clear part. I let that dry overnight and finished the Beaufighter off this morning. Final pictures tomorrow. 

The Betty is looking good. The engine nacelles were painted this morning and I began final assembly yesterday while I was waiting. More weathering has been added as well with the paint chips. The nacelles will get a coat of clear matte tonight and I probably won’t have a chance to do anything more until the weekend sometime. I took some rare overtime at work the next two days so the workbench will most likely be idled for a short time. I may just bring the nacelles to work and get them weathered on my downtime.  Regardless, I’m at the end and it feels good to see it all coming together. 

So Little Time…

As the title suggests, I wish that there was more time in the day to allocate to all that I want to accomplish. Back to reality and here we are almost finished with the Beaufighter. I’m back in a regular rotation at work while the steel industry figures out where its heading. Hopefully in a positive direction soon so I can get back to my cake schedule. The dreaded afternoons are my schedule this week and I’m not exactly excited about that. I try to make the most of it but having a family that I don’t see for a week is downright depressing. 

Back to the Beaufighter now. I had about an hour to spend on final assembly this morning and I spent every bit of it. The bulk of it is completed with just some minor areas to address. The landing gear and engines were the main attractions along with some touch-up painting. I’d say another hour will do it. So hopefully I can finish everything up tomorrow morning. 

Wrapping Up: Part 2

My goal to have at least one build completed this weekend fell by the wayside. However, I made great leaps towards achieving that goal. No worries at all because both builds are on the cusp of finalization.

So Friday night, I took the family up to Kalamazoo, Michigan to see a K-Wings game. Before we departed, I sprayed a coat of clear gloss on the Beaufighter to prepare for decals. Saturday started off feeling terrible with a cold. The flu has been shared throughout my household in the past week so I am feeling lucky at this point. As the day went on, I felt well enough to get some work done. I applied the decals which took a phenomenal amount of time to release from the backing. They dried overnight and I shot the aircraft with a coat of clear matte this morning. I waited until this evening to get the weathering applied. Another coat of clear matte was applied and now it’s time for final assembly.

The Betty is going very well except for the fact that I forgot to paint the engine nacelles. As you can see in the photograph, I set them on the Beaufighter’s work board and completely overlooked them. A quick session at the airbrush will correct the mistake but it is still annoying nonetheless. Other than that, the build is coming along nicely. The weathering was completed yesterday and I picked up this evening with the window frames getting painted. Some more weathering will be done tomorrow and hopefully I can get started on final assembly.