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F-4EJ Kai Phantom - The Last of it's Kind ZM 1/48


DocRob
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14 hours ago, GazzaS said:

Cockpit looks brilliant, Rob.  I'm surprised that ZM didn't supply belts.

Thank you Gaz, I was surprised too, when I remember it correctly the ZM TA-152 had two seats included, one with and one without belts and they were nicely molded. I decided to leave it at my fantasy seat belt arrangement. Under the closed canopy it will not be so obvious and in natura the pit looks better than on my pics.
Yesterday, I masked everything for the black fuselage parts and wings. Never used that much masking material on one plane before.
Unfortunately, there will be no progress the next days, as we have a sandstorm going until Tuesday :wtf:, so no airbrushing, except maybe some anti slip surfaces for IDF tanks, without the need to add grain :D. Wasn't there a Merkava IV in my stash...

Cheers Rob

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Thanks Phil, fingers crossed about the masking. I have some extra days for checking :D. I hope my masking will be ok, as I really want to continue with the build and reach the decaling stage.

Cheers Rob

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Rob

Nice work on all the front office corrections and canopy masking - so glad you have nerves of steel.

One detail part that doesn't work well with the Quinta Detail Set is the ejection pull-rings for the top of the seats; they won't hold shape and no matter what I did, just go back to the original flat shape. What I think I'm going to try when I can get back to modeling again is to try and glue a small piece of bent wire under the pull rings to hold the desired shape. Always seems to be something

Keep 'em comin

Peter 

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16 hours ago, Peterpools said:

Nice work on all the front office corrections and canopy masking - so glad you have nerves of steel.

One detail part that doesn't work well with the Quinta Detail Set is the ejection pull-rings for the top of the seats; they won't hold shape and no matter what I did, just go back to the original flat shape. What I think I'm going to try when I can get back to modeling again is to try and glue a small piece of bent wire under the pull rings to hold the desired shape. Always seems to be something

Thank you Peter, same with Kits World, where the pull rings curl up, when contacted with CA. To apply them correctly is nearly impossible then. I may try a very fast curing CA next time. I went back to the kit plastic with the rings. These looked not too shabby either.
My limited experiences with 3D decals are, they work great, when applied to flat surfaces, but are difficult to handle, when the 3D decal is protruding, with only small  contact areas.

Cheers Rob

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Finally, there is rain after the sandstorms of the last days, so time to set up the airbrush and hit the Phantom with some pure black, but first there was an extended masking session due. I have to confess, I'm a masking coward and tend to mask as much as possible. Specially with the desired gloss black finish, which I normally spray with a bit more of distance to the model and use heavily thinned color, I can't be cautious enough.

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I used Tamiya's lacquer gloss black, thinned with Mr. Leveling thinner, which sprays so fine and smooth, that I regret not to have gloss coated the grey fuselage and underside of the Phantom before masking, as there is no need for any gloss coat on the wings prior to decaling. Now it's drying time and this is how it looks (even smoother in reality :lol:)

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Cheers Rob

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Phew, de-masking showed only a few places with the need for correction. Before I tore the kabuki off, I masked the cannon fairing under the nose and sprayed it flat black, where the rest of the black surfaces will be left glossy. The two parallelograms on the wings had some faults, but that was corrected after taking the pics.

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The external tanks were sprayed with Tamiya's sparkling silver from the LP range. I have to try to replicate the glitter blue metallic tone of the decals as good as possible. The sparkling silver has a slightly grainy appearance and might work as the desired glitter effect under some transparent blue, let's see...

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One oddity, I found was, that the Tamiya kabuki tape left glue residues onto the gunmetal sprayed parts, but not on to the steel colored areas directly besides. The Kabuki was only applied 24 hours before. Most of the residues could be cleaned with alcohol, but it had to be swabbed very carefully, as the alcohol affects the bordering Tamiya LP gloss black.

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Cheers rob

 

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After polishing the wings, I gloss coated the whole plane with GX-100 from Mr. Hobby as (There is a question to you)

a) base for black panel lining on the grey fuselage and underside and then apply the decals after another gloss coat.

b) decals first and then gloss coat and panel liner.

I'm not sure about, because, I don't like to loose the panel lines with more gloss coat layers above the decals. On the other hand the result will look better, when the decals settle into the panel lines and then get hit with panel liner. 

Cheers Rob

Glossy bird

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Rob

Looking mighty sweet for sure. I’ve never experienced any residue from Tamiya tape, (sure hope my luck continues) even on Alclad and AK. Right now, I have the Tamiya tape on my Revell  Mustang for a good month and I’m willing to be it will be a good month more before I can remove it, as that’s about when I’ll have my model room ready for use and the major heavy work of the Reno pretty much done. Fingers surely crossed🤞
My order of work: paint / clear gloss / decals / panel line wash / oils - filters / clear gloss / final clear finish. I don’t go over board on the clear gloss layers and if I’m worried on loosing panel line details, I’ll skip the first clear gloss and polish out the paint with Micro Mesh starting around 8000 and finishing up with 12,000 wet. What is needed for decaling is a smooth surface and polishing will always yield the smoothest surface by far. 
Decaling has to be done next so the effect of the panel line wash and filters is even across the surface and decals, what ever the degree of weathering.

Keep ‘em comin

Peter

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Thanks for explaining your workflow Peter. Normally mine is more or less the same, albeit, I prefer to seal the decals before I apply washes or panel liners. In this case I'm not so sure, because of the fine panel lines and multiple clear coats before the panel liner. I will evaluate later, when the gloss is properly dried. With our reappearing sand storm, working on a model with shiny surfaces is not the best idea. 
On this plane, which is nearly completely covered with decals, I will prepare the decaling stage as best as I can, the gloss coat will be polished next. 

Concerning the AK Extreme Metal gun metal and the Tamiya kabuki residues, I really have no idea how that happened. The directly neighboring area of stainless steel is not affected at all, strange...
With the storm outside, today is a surfing day. The east coast is relatively free of strong winds and the waves are bueno, so no sandblasting of the Phantom today.

Cheers Rob

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7 hours ago, DocRob said:

Thank you John, I hope, I can keep it that way. The whole plane will be plastered with decals, sometimes in multiple layers.

Cheers Rob

I look forward to seeing the completed model. I know it will be a beauty! :)

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3 hours ago, JohnB said:

I look forward to seeing the completed model. I know it will be a beauty! :)

Thanks for your confidence in my abilities, John :D

Meanwhile, I couldn't let off the Phantom and sanded and polished the bird to high shine gloss, first with wet sanding paper of 6000 and 8000 grid, followed by the Tamiya polishing compounds from coarse to finish. I really like the glossy appearance now and guess it will be perfect for the soon to follow decaling job.

Cheers Rob

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Rob

You F4 is looking tremendous and what a smooth finish after wet sanding.

I needed to rethink a bit and while I prefer to use my panel washes before I seal the decals, I do test them to be on the safe side that the PLW will not interact with the decal inks. You're so right in that all the clear layers can fill the panel lines and cause an issue. When I'm not sure what to do, I have no hesitations about using water based washes: Flory and UMP and no worries. Of course, another great reason for using masks.

Keep 'em comin

Peter 

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9 hours ago, BlrwestSiR said:

That's a very shiny finish. Looking forward to the decals.

Thanks Carl, me too. I want the best possible preparation for the decals, as there are many from huge artwork to tiny stencils. The decals are the key to the Phantom.

Cheers Rob

9 hours ago, Peterpools said:

You F4 is looking tremendous and what a smooth finish after wet sanding.

I needed to rethink a bit and while I prefer to use my panel washes before I seal the decals, I do test them to be on the safe side that the PLW will not interact with the decal inks. You're so right in that all the clear layers can fill the panel lines and cause an issue. When I'm not sure what to do, I have no hesitations about using water based washes: Flory and UMP and no worries. Of course, another great reason for using masks.

Muchas gracias Peter, I will definitely seal te decals before applying the panel liner. Flory washes (I don't know UMP) are water based, but they contain pigments, which can cause slight abrasion, which I don't want onto the Phantom's decals.
After polishing the first coat of gloss, I found the panel lines to be pretty much intact, I hope for the best.

Cheers Rob

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Decaling time, but oh no, I cut the canopy bordering decals and saw, that I sprayed the black part too small, so back to masking and some more gloss black

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Meanwhile, I sprayed the external fuel tanks with transparent blue over the sparkling silver and came close to the glitter blue of the decals, but not close enough and I will spray another pass of blue.

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Finally, I started with a bit of delay with decaling, starting with the largest decals on the wings and fuselage and added the fist stencils. You have to be aware, that some stencils are to attach under larger decals, which the painting and decaling guide clearly indicates. The Cartograph decals worked very good, where the large ones crumpled a bit after application, but with more drying time leveled themselves beautifully. The state of the pictures shows the decals only applied with Micro Set. I decide after finishing the decal stage, if I use Micro Sol on top.

 

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Cheers Rob

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13 hours ago, GazzaS said:

Looks very Swish, Rob!

 

12 hours ago, Martinnfb said:

Very nice decal work Rob.

Muchas gracias amigos, you don't hear me say it very often, but decaling is fun this time. Cartograph made a great job producing them and ZM provided very good plans for the application. The thorough preparation of the surfaces seems to pay off and I hope, I can get away without silvering.

Cheers Rob

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