Growing up, my dad would always say “that’s the ticket” when he achieved an excited approval. This mornings efforts at the workbench, I feel, warrant that exclamation. And then some. I was pretty active with all five helicopters receiving some due attention.
The Cobra kicked off the day with some small gains. The NTS was assembled and installed with ease while the main rotor shaft, gun barrels, and gun housing have begun preliminary painting. The helicopter itself travelled out to the garage for a coat of primer. I’m thinking some filler will be required around the canopy tomorrow. Either way, I’m thrilled that this kit is inching along.
As for the rest… they finally made their way back inside to the workbench. The Eurocopter looks great with only minor gaps that needed filled. The Huey needed filler along the length of its belly and just a tiny bit around the windscreen. The Hind looks pretty decent considering what it looked like in the beginning. It needed a little more sanding but I think I’m good to move on. The Blackhawk needs some love for sure. Some gap issues and a broken door are in store for the next few sit downs. Not huge issues but they are worth noting.
Little time has been spent at the workbench this week. The Huey, Blackhawk, Eurocopter, and Hind still haven’t made it out of my new spray booth. The Cobra however, made a little progress. All initial sanding is complete and now it’s time for primer to check my work. The nose and engine housing have been attached and I will be installing the canopy later on today. After that I will head out to spray some primer.
A quick update for today on the status of the Cobra. It seemed, at times, that I would never get this kit moving along. I have been on midnights this week and feeling quite zombie-ish the last few days so I didn’t quite feel up to a hefty dose of sanding or anything real complicated today. That’s why having multiple builds in various stages pays off sometimes.
The Cobra was really at the very beginning of the build. Nothing had been assembled prior to today. That all changed. I didn’t spend a whole lot of time with the Cobra today, but it looks like I made some nice progress. As you can see, the fuselage and engine compartment halves were mated and I have clippped the armament to start painting them. The cockpit is empty for now. I will detail it later on after I get the sanding under control. Having said that, it doesn’t look bad at all. I think this build will catch up rather quickly.
My path took a different direction when I arrived home from vacation. Instead of resuming the helicopters, I got to thinking about my second workbench. My main workbench where all the building goes on has been finalized since my move last year. Where I paint my models has not. It’s been a makeshift spot on a countertop in my garage. Functional, yes. Super efficient and professional, no. So that has been my project this week.
So how to build it? Well, it was all sort of there already. I rearranged some shelves and created a decent spray booth out of it. The walls were installed this afternoon and all that is left to do is finalize the exhaust fan. I need to figure out how I want to “capture” the excess paint and fumes. I’m not too keen on cutting a hole in my house so I may figure out something internal with some filters. Another addition will be a clear cover that will drop down to keep the kits safe from any mishap as they dry. Maybe a small shelf too.
As you can see, the helicopters are “testing” it out. I took my first good look at them since I primed them and I’m surprised how well they look. The Hind has some headway but the Huey, Blackhawk, and Eurocopter will move rather quickly once I resume building.
Same story, different post. I am making progress so it’s not all rain clouds at the workbench. I am actually very pleased with my efforts after a good sanding session earlier this evening. The Hind was my main concern and I will admit that the shortcomings of this kit have been haunting me and keeping me from getting going on it. Sucking it up finally, I dove in tonight and gave it a good sanding. The nose needed re-glued for the second time so that was addressed as well. My feelings are much lighter now that I have taken the first steps. I think it will be better than I had originally thought. The nose will need to be sanded a bit and then I will get some primer applied to see where we stand.
The Blackhawk has been the other major player lately. The wind screen was installed earlier this week and you can see in the picture that the top of the door is missing. Well, it was a delicate fit that didn’t go so delicately. The instructions did direct me to install the wind screen before the door so it’s my fault. Not the best of scenarios but it looks like it should be a quick fix. So after that, the seams were filled on the top and bottom. I sanded them tonight and I think I have just a little more to go. After the door gets fixed, I will prime it and go from there.
The Eurocopter had a little work done with its belly seam getting fixed. Not totally, but we’re getting there. I think I will need at least one more round of filler to be satisfied. The paint scheme is still undecided on this build and I need to hurry it up. I will, of course, need some after market decals so I need to locate those as well. All in all a great build so far.
Establishing a comfortable groove is becoming extremely rare for me over the past year. What used to come extremely easy to me has now become very difficult. Multiple builds were my strength in the past and I am now finding it smarter to work on fewer at a time. I am hoping the phase is cyclical and I will find a smooth gear to transition into. Either way, the workbench remains active with a wide range of results.
So basically I am still hovering around the same state that I was after my last post. The Huey and Blackhawk received more masking and will soon get an application of primer to see where I really stand with them both. I am optimistic that the work that has been completed will be a solid start to both helicopters.
The Eurocopter has advanced a little farther with some more basic construction. The engine/exhaust compartments have been assembled and will need some sanding and preliminary painting before I can attach them to the fuselage. The canopy is all ready to install as well. This has been a nice build so far.
Th Hind is limping along fairly well. The intake section and bay doors were installed and upon doing that, I noticed that the fuselage was broken just behind the cockpit. Of course I can’t find the broken piece so I will have to manufacture one. It doesn’t look major so I am not super concerned. Aside from that, the sanding will be the major player at the workbench. A few good sit-downs and I should be all set.
The Cobra is in motion in one way or another. The lost seat has been resurrected into a somewhat acceptable clone. The cockpit will be closed so the illusion of a seat should suffice. At least I hope it will. That’s about as far as I am on this build. I will need to detail the seat and everything will resume as normal with the cockpit assembly and so on. Not super awesome strides taking place, but work is getting done. Par for the course.