I am happy to report that the P-40, Tempest, and MiG-15 are all completely painted. Both yesterday and today were spent diligently at the airbrush. Now that they are painted, it’s time to focus on the P-40’s nose art.
It’s been over two years since my last post on producing your own nose art. It’s been even longer since I have actually done it. This time around, I took a more mechanical, mixed with some freehand, approach to it.
As I have said before, the nose decals for the P-40 are awful. My previous build of this plane was disappointing when I applied the decals. So this time was going to be different.
First, I carefully cut the pair of decals out. I cut around the mouth/teeth and set that aside to use later. Once I had the decals cut out, I traced them onto some 2″ yellow frog tape. I marked where the exhaust cutout was to align the mask when I needed to apply it.
Installing a fresh Xacto blade in my hobby knife, I cut the tiger head out. Using the alignment marks, I applied both masks cautiously. When I was satisfied with the placement, I then proceeded to mask the rest of the nose off to avoid yellow overspray.
I let it dry for another four hours and then I started the detailing. I used flat black to hand paint all the details. The eye and the mouth are cut out from the original decal. There is a little touching up to do, but I think it looks better than the decal. It was an easy, yet time consuming, task to accomplish. It beats fighting with a decal that won’t conform to multiple curves. With this option in my bag of tricks, I am more than happy to use it some more.