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World War II: USA
Aircraft of the United States in WWII.
Hosted by Rowan Baylis
Academy's 1/72nd B-29A Build review.
BigfootV
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Colorado, United States
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Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2016 - 11:05 PM UTC
Hey Gang,

I meant to post this here yesterday, instead it was post in the Modeling in Gen. forums. Doh!

This bad boy came in the mail yesterday via Jim. Thanks Jim!



The plan: Doing history research today, build starting tomorrow. This will be nothing like Gary's 1/48th build as far as interior details goes, my eyes can't handle it.
I'm going to attempt to foil cover or plate the aircraft, which is something total new to me. I'll run some test to see if it's possible on the parts not needed for the build.

I'll be building "Bockscar", the second and last bomber to drop the Atom bomb on Japan, Aug. 9, 1945.

The Academy kit is 1/72nd scale and has parts for 4 different aircraft, The Enola Gay, Bockscar, KB-29 Tanker, and B-50. However, for the B-50 you'll have to get aftermarket or donor gun turrets since this Academy kit doesn't have them. I'll cover this when I get going on the build with sprue photos.

Stay tuned...........

See ya in the funnies...........
BigfootV
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Colorado, United States
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Posted: Friday, October 14, 2016 - 09:08 PM UTC
Hello everyone,

So it would seem I made a judgement error in making the statement that you'll need aftermarket or donor turrets to make the B-50 out of this kit were incorrect. After going over the sprues, the parts are there. Reviewer error. My apologize.


Brief History of aircraft: Bockscar: B-29A-40-MO Superfortress, Serial #44-27297, Victor #77. Builder: Glenn L. Martin Company, Omaha, NE.
One of the "silverplated" B-29A's assigned to the 393th BS, 509th Composite Group. "Silver plate project" was the U.S.A.A.F code for the Manhattan Project which was shortened to just "Silverplate."

See link here for further details: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silverplate

These B-29A were ordered without armor plating and weapons so they could carry more fuel and the massive weight of the Atom bomb, "Fat Man", which was a version of the "Pumpkin bomb."
See link here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pumpkin_bomb

Here's the sprue shots:











Note the boom for the KB-29 Tanker, lower left.

Close up of boom.



Props, 2 types







Exhaust ports:



Yes, that is a turret, lower left on sprue.

Cowling close up.



Glass:







When I cracked this open on Thursday, I'd forgotten how massive a 4 engine 1/72nd scale bomber was! Holy Crap!











Here's a shot of my attempt at the foil process. The wing is a donor from an old 1/32nd Fw-190 I had laying around. I put Tamiya cement over the wing, then laid down a sheet of household aluminum foil. Result: Well.....



Plan B: Smaller silver sheets from craft store.

See ya in the funnies..............

P.S. Gary, I'd like to rack your brain on how to apply the foil. P.M. me if you are following this. Thanks.


Joel_W
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
AUTOMODELER
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New York, United States
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Posted: Friday, October 14, 2016 - 11:06 PM UTC
Brian,
I'll be pulling up my chair and following your build blog with great interest.
Joel
Kevlar06
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Washington, United States
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Posted: Friday, October 14, 2016 - 11:51 PM UTC
Brian,
Recommend you drop the solvent glues and use either Micro-scale brand foil adhesive, or find some 3M spray adhesive to use for foiling. I've been foiling for years, and use both methods-- with the Micro scale method you coat both the foil and the plastic with the adhesive, let them dry to a tacky state and then buff the foil down. Small sections work better than large sheets, especially over compound curves and surfaces. With 3M spray adhesive, you cut the aluminum to size first,spray the back of the sheet and wait until it's tacky, then apply. The 3M method is less forgiving than the Micro-scale method, and a little more exacting, but once it's down, it's down for good. As I said, I use a combination when I foil a model.
I've seen modelers use Elmers glue too, spread thin and stuck down when tacky, and Eileen's Tacky glue too, I have a friend who's begun to experiment with "Gator Glue". But for my money, Micro-Scale and the 3M spray adhesive work best. You should also make some foiling aids if you have not already done so-- various sizes of wooden dowels flattened or rounded on the ends are a great help-- a common glass marble is great for use on compound curves, and I have a variety of plastiic swizzle sticks and knitting needles with rounded tips and ends that I use. An extremely sharp Xacto tip is necessary for cutting, and if you can get one a Swan-Morton knife with various blades comes in handy. Finally-- a word about foil-- I use several varieties of common kitchen foils-- if you look closely they can come in various thicknesses-- the thicker the foil the harder it is to form, I find the cheaper foils are thinner, and therefore they are easier to use, I do use a variety of other foils though-- I especially like the foil found around Nestle Crunch candy bars. One last note-- kitchen foils can be heated in a small pan with either olive oil or vinegar to "tint" the foil for heat effects. I seal my foils with either Testors Metalizer sealer or Alclad Gloss Coat. You can use oooo steel wool for "graining" the foil. Good luck- once you get the hang of it you may never go back to paint!
VR Russ
BigfootV
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Posted: Friday, October 14, 2016 - 11:56 PM UTC
Hello Joel,

Welcome to another let's see how he can screw this one up build.
I must admit, I'm out of my comfort zone if I'm going to foil cover this beast.
I hope it turns out.
Thanks for stopping in.

Russ, just saw your post as I was posting reply. Thanks for stopping in.
I did think about the 3M spray as you stated in your reply, I'll have to pick some up and give it a test. I've got white glue and did a test with that, sadly it didn't come out, broke apart. My concern with using household foil is the seam lines when going to smaller pieces and the torn edges when cutting to size. I'll pick up some of the stuff you suggested and give it a try.
Another idea was do get some adhesive backed HVAC tape. Your thoughts on using that?

See ya in the funnies...............
Kevlar06
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Posted: Saturday, October 15, 2016 - 04:16 AM UTC
Brian,
HVAC tape may be way too thick for foiling, and is "bound" with a thick backing adhesive, which might make it difficult to bend around curves and make surface detail hard to see. Measuring is key in foiling surfaces-- you should always try and foil along panel lines if possible, as it will allow you to "blend" two or mor panel lines together-- either by buffing or slight sanding. For that reason, foiling entire wings or fuselages with a single sheet is not recommended--you'll just end up causing wrinkles or tearing the foil. Beside super sharp Xacto blades, I also use a new razor blade when cutting. For foiling, the thinner the foil the better, but this can have drawbacks too, as thinner foil I see prone to tearing especially over compound surfaces. White glue (Elmers) really doesn't have the long term surface tension to hold the foil, and dries too completely-- that's why Micro-Scale adhesive for foil works so well-- it never completely dries and remains thin and tacky-- the same with 3M spray adhesive (or other spray adhesives too-- there are several made for scrap booking and paper which also work quite well). The main drawback of 3M or other spray adhesives is the overspray, and once in position, it's difficult to remove (although laquer thinner and 90 proof alcohol seem to work- but can mess up the plastic surface). I've had some success with a Wal-Mart brand of muffler tape, which is thick but tends to burnish down fairly well-- I think because it's thin and made cheaply. But I only use this on small areas on large scale aircraft, as it's difficult to cut and blend. I only spray the foil surface when using the 3M spray adhesive, not the model-- by the way, kitchen foil has two sides-- a dull side and a shiny side-- so you can get two different looks. Burnishing or polishing will bring out different looks as well.
VR Russ
BigfootV
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Posted: Saturday, October 15, 2016 - 09:24 PM UTC
Progress photos, round three: Round three you say? Yes, I've been trying to post them and keep getting that my mainframe ISP has been block and to call this 800 number for support. Only one challenge with that, I don't use Qwest has my internet.....I smell scam.
Anyways, on the laptop now, so here we go..............

















Hindsight being 20/20, I should of primed the cockpit/gunner's area before slapping everything together. On the other hand, I has some injection mold pin to deal with on the panels and bulk heads a long with some flashing issues on the seats.
Fit wise, everything went together pretty well. The real test will be when I mate everything up with the air frame.

Russ,

Do you prime the air frame at all before applying the foil?

See ya in the funnies.................
pria2022
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Posted: Saturday, October 15, 2016 - 11:21 PM UTC
Wish they'd do the KB-50 version in 72nd!
Kevlar06
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Posted: Saturday, October 15, 2016 - 11:22 PM UTC

Quoted Text


Russ,

Do you prime the air frame at all before applying the foil?

See ya in the funnies.................



Brian,
Short answer is no-- I don't prime the airframe before foiling, I do ensure that it is clean by giving it a bath in warm water with a couple of drops of liquid dishwashing detergent, then I let it dry for several days on a towel, covered with an inverted plastic box. If I'm foiling over a putied seam, I ensure the surface is smoothly filled and polished into the surrounding surface with 12 thou sanding paper for a perfectly blended surface. I prefer a "slick" blemish free surface for both the Micro-scale adhesive and the 3M spray adhesive. The reason for this is I've had some experiences in the past where foil adhesion has been affected by the primer underneath. However, I have a friend who primes with Alclad gray primer, as he feels this gives the adhesive some "tooth" to grab onto. My feeling about this is mixed, as I'm looking for a polished surface when I use foil, and any surface blemish underneath can effect the final appearance of the overlying foil "skin". Painting it with primers just increases the possibility of introducing a rougher surface or blemishes. However, I sometimes do prime under painted surfaces such as anti-glare panels or de-icing boots, which I like to paint before I apply foil. One other note-- you must use low-tack masking if you intend to paint over the foil-- I prefer Micro-Mask liquid mask when masking, or low tack kabuki tape (found in craft stores-- or silly putty or 3M brand sticky notes. Tamiya tape comes close if you dab it on a surface a few times before application). Also, if you mask, never pull the masking material straight up when unmasking-- pull slowly at an angle to the surface of the foil, this prevents the tape from tearing a chunk of foil away. Foiling is an art in itself, but not a difficult one if you take your time and think about what you are doing-- it's not as quick or easy as just shooting on some paint, but the results are stunningly realistic as what you are doing is applying a "skin" to an airframe, just like the real thing. there are some pretty useful tutorials on line if you want to see it being done.
VR, Russ
Kevlar06
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Posted: Saturday, October 15, 2016 - 11:51 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Wish they'd do the KB-50 version in 72nd!



Neil, I believe they did a KB 50 version, they do make a KB 29 and a B50 version anyway, so it may be possible to combine those kits, but I think they made a KB-50 kit as well. Academy basically had the 1/72 market cornered for Boieng aircraft a few years ago, as well as Consolidated aircraft with just about every version of the B-17, B-24,B-29, and PBY ever made-- and they teamed with Minicraft and Hobbycraft too to release other variations. I used to work in a local Hobby Shop that specialized in Academy kits. Few realize that when Hornby bought Airfix, they released a "Hornby Airfix" B-17G to replace the aging Airfix kit, but it was really an Academy B-17G in the Hornby/Airfix box. I was commissioned by a Hornby representative to build it for thier USA office. You might check EBay for a KB-50 or a KB-29 kit. They also made the C-97, KC-97 and Boeing 377 kits-- all of which used components of the B-29 and B-50 kits, so with a bit of converting/scratchbuilding you could probably come up with a KB-50.
VR, Russ
Jessie_C
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British Columbia, Canada
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Posted: Sunday, October 16, 2016 - 12:00 AM UTC
There is a truly excellent thread about how to apply metal to a model running on another forum. Of course the builder's techniques make we mere mortals cringe and cry that we're not worthy, so be prepared. He's also doing a Grumman Tigercat using the same techniques.
BigfootV
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Colorado, United States
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Posted: Sunday, October 16, 2016 - 01:17 AM UTC
Neil,

You can do a B-50 out of this kit, but a KB-50 you'd have to do some mod's and get some aftermarket to do it. Maybe even some scratch building to get it done.

Russ,
Thanks for reply. You've been a well of info. since this is my first attempt at this. Now, if the wallet would just stop smokin'.

Jessica,
Thanks for the link, I'll check it out. Any info. I can get is a big help.

See ya in the funnies...............
Kevlar06
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Posted: Sunday, October 16, 2016 - 04:54 AM UTC
Brian,
Not sure how you feel about Fine Scale Modeler, but they did a foiling feature several years back using a 1/48 P-38. That article is a great place to start if you can find it. I usually save helpful articles in a binder, so I'll look for it-- but I can't guarantee I saved it, I think you could go to the Website though and find it-- I'm currently recovering from a knee replacement, so I can't get downstairs to look for it right now. I think it was in 2004 or 2005.
VR Russ
BigfootV
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Posted: Sunday, October 16, 2016 - 06:27 AM UTC
Hello Russ,

Thanks, Fine Scale Modeler is a good source. I've not seen any on the local racks lately. I'll check it out.
Hope the knee heals up soon.

pria2022
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United States
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Posted: Sunday, October 16, 2016 - 08:17 AM UTC
Thanks Russ. I did some checking and I don't believe they ever did the KB-50. You are correct that they did the KB-29 a number of years back. I was just at Macdill AFB in Tampa a few days ago and saw the KB-50 on display-it looked quite impressive. I'm surprised this version was never done by Academy. It doesn't seem to me that it would have been much for them to add those parts needed.
Kevlar06
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Posted: Sunday, October 16, 2016 - 09:51 PM UTC
Neil,
You are correct about the KB50, but it wouldn't be to difficult to adapt the KB29 and KC 97 parts to build a KB50, a bit expensive for two kits though. I'm impressed with Academy for bringing this series of aircraft out. Unfortuantely they seem to have discontinued production for some of them and are now releasing special editions.
VR Russ
Kevlar06
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Posted: Sunday, October 16, 2016 - 09:53 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Hello Russ,

Thanks, Fine Scale Modeler is a good source. I've not seen any on the local racks lately. I'll check it out.
Hope the knee heals up soon.




Brian, it wasn't a recent article-- they have a website so you may be able to search it for foiling articles. I'll see if I can dig out a date for the article I was thinking about.
VR, Russ
BigfootV
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Colorado, United States
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Posted: Monday, October 17, 2016 - 12:00 AM UTC
Hello Russ,

I was speaking about not seeing the Mag. on news stands as of recent. I use to run into at the local supermarket when I going shopping, but I've not seen it in about 3 months maybe longer.
I know the LHS has them, but my wife fears that she'll never see me again once I walk in. "Want" box goes off the deep-end.

Anyways, took yesterday off on the build. Planned to prime the flight deck, tunnel, gunner's compartment outside today, but wind has been howling, 25 mph gusts out of the west, dust flying around. Bad scene. That's what I get for living in an apartment complex....
Hopefully it will kick down tomorrow.

See ya in the funnies.................
Kevlar06
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Posted: Monday, October 17, 2016 - 01:02 AM UTC
Brian,
I found it! It's in the July 2002 issue of FSM in a comprehensive article by Bucky Sheftall (who was a frequent contributor to Fine Scale, and its predecessor, Scale Modeler, for many years). There's a foiled P-38 on the cover. I found this article very helpful and educational. It got me through my first three foiling jobs (two were commissions of Monogram A-26s, the other was a 1/32 Hasegawa F104 built for fun and practice that I still have). I've built about six other foiled aircraft, all for commission since. Done right, foiling is much better than paint-- although I still like the look of Alclad paints for 1/72 scale models and sometimes use them when I'm in a hurry. If you can get a copy of the July 2002 FSM, I highly recommend it. If not, I can see if I can scan and send it to you-- but it might be a while as my scanner and computer are separated by those damnable two flights of stairs and I'm still using a walker. By the way, I lived in Colorado Springs for 3 years-- as an Army Officer assigned to an Air Force post at Peterson AFB--so I know what those winds can be like. Still think of Colorado as the second best assignment I ever had, after Hawaii, of course!
VR, Russ
BigfootV
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Posted: Monday, October 17, 2016 - 08:41 AM UTC
Russ,

I've got it downloaded onto the desktop so I can read it during the build. Thanks!

I'm doing a little cheating.....

See ya in the funnies...........
BigfootV
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Posted: Monday, October 17, 2016 - 09:36 PM UTC
Hey gang,

Another delay. Dang pin mold hole.................







Photo 3 is the under side of the bomb bay. 4 on each corner.

The pin marks run the whole length of the interior of the air frame. If you plan to do any showing off of the interior, these need to be dealt with. Two are in the cockpit area, so those are getting filled/sanded.

O.k., it's paint. Foiling not any option here since I'm a noob at the whole process.





Back to my 40 sq. ft. man cave!

See ya in the funnies......................

Kevlar06
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Posted: Monday, October 17, 2016 - 10:02 PM UTC
Brian,
One of the great deals with foiling is the canopy-- cut into fine strips,foil is a lot easier to do than it is to paint the canopies (especially in 1/72 where the interior will not be seen well). As I said before, I use some cheapo Wal-mart self adhesive muffler tape-- it's really thin (hence why it's so cheap). As muffler tape goes, its probably lousy, but cut into thin strips and burnished down it does a great job for canopies and things like clamps and bands in struts and landing gear.
VR, Russ
BigfootV
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Posted: Thursday, October 20, 2016 - 08:14 PM UTC
Hey gang,

Busy, busy. I had to get creative on getting primer on the interior for painting. I had to paint in a box. We've had a cold front move through the area the last two days, no snow, yet. Not good conditions for putting primer on it takes forever to dry.

















The roller I'm hoping will come in handy, it was cheap, .97 cents. Cheap foil too.







I'll be picking up the Microscale foil adhesive on Sunday a long with Bare Metal foil sheets.

In the meantime, interior paint, proved the primer is dry, and wing assembly.

See ya in the funnies...........

BigfootV
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Posted: Sunday, October 23, 2016 - 04:38 AM UTC
Hey gang,

Picked up Micro Scale foil adhesive, 3 pack of nylon brushes, and two sheets of Bare-Metal foil. Not bad for a newbie....Lol

Here's a test shot:



In this photo of Bockscar, note the different metal on the wing:



Photo from http://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil website.

See ya in the funnies............

wing_nut
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Posted: Sunday, October 23, 2016 - 09:13 PM UTC
Looks good Brian. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with this museum photo in particular, but I am always leary about using a museum or airshow bird as a reference.