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MiniArt P-47D Thunderbolt: COMPLETED 2/13/24


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MINIART P-47D BUBBLE JUG

1/48 SCALE

While the Corsair was waiting for the paint and the clear coats to dry, I started to familiarize myself with the kit, deciding which markings I’ll be using, what paints I’ll need and cleaning up all the parts for the front office and gear bays.

Choice of marking:

MX-E, of the 82nd FS, 78th FG, 8th AF, Duxford, Summer 1944.

The 78th FG shared the airfield with RAF Fighter Squadrons and when their Jugs arrived, they were not yet camouflaged. Since the RAF Day Fighter Colors were available, close to the USAAF colors of OD and Neutral Gray, they painted their Jugs: RAF Dark Green and Sky bottoms, they were the only FG to use these colors.

Care needs to be taken with the kit’s color call outs, for the front office as Jug cockpits should be either Dark Dull Green or Bronze Green, I went with MRP Dark Dull Green: MRP-229. Some photographs I’ve now seen, do look as if Interior Green was used on some Jugs. Seems it greatly depended on who, where and when the Jugs were made and the availability of paints here in the states. 

Everything I’ve heard about MiniArt seems to be true: the kit has incredible detail and the surface molding is beautiful but the part count – pretty high for a kit of its size and scale.

Some parts are so tiny, they should have been molded in place as it was way too easy to feed them to the carpet monster.

Wheel wells were made up of 12 (I hope I remembered correctly) of very finely molded and detailed parts and I found the instructions a little confusing as to placement and orientation.

All the components and parts to this point were primed with MRP Gray Primer and the wheel wells were MRP Yellow Zinc Chromate: MRP-129.

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Basic cockpit parts: painted, and lighted weathered with Tamiya Dark Brown and Black PLW's and dry brushed. 

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Front office taped in place. IP not yet installed as well as the joystick which I managed to lose. I sent an email to MiniArt Customer Service and am waiting for a reply. 

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Kit seat with molded on seatbelts and harnesses - they do look mighty good.

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Main Gear bays assembled from a lot of fiddly parts but in the end, they do look good.  Flaps and ailerons in the' Basic Kit' are fix in place and the flaps cannot be dropped as well. 

q7T7TR.jpg

 

 

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Thanks Mike, much appreciated. Would love to see you work your magic on the Tamiya kit. I built their Bubble Jug a few years back using the kit decals; checked nose and a NMF and loved the kit. Right now, I still would vote for the Tamiya kit as the best out there taking into account ease of assembly and Tamiya's engineering up to this point. I took a look at the multi piece cowl in the Mini Art kit and it's going t be a bear as compared to Tamiya's one-piece cowling. I know the molded in detail in the MiniArt kit is better, but I would give it up for an easier and cleaner assembly - as I've read and watched a number of videos and this has been one area talked about quite a bit. See how it goes when I get there.

 

 

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Good luck with the kit Peter.  I'm sure you will get it figured out with your skilled hands!  I know what you mean by multi-piece cowlings - I haven't built many plane models, but have come across them in the past and I'm not a fan.

Nice to know the Tamiya kit goes together nicely.  I have a ton of Eduard, Quickboost and Aires aftermarket for it, so we will see what happens.  I spent many hours trying to select from the very cool pin-up schemes that are out there.  I have young girls, so I wanted to pick one that wasn't lewd like many of the ones that are out there.  I ended up going with this Kitworld decal set, and will do the Helen Jo.  Has a little bit of everything - NMF, pretty girl, checks on the cowl, and a colored tail:

image.jpeg.822e03f44482e7d9418f7298db6a6c14.jpeg

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2 hours ago, Landlubber Mike said:

Good luck with the kit Peter.  I'm sure you will get it figured out with your skilled hands!  I know what you mean by multi-piece cowlings - I haven't built many plane models, but have come across them in the past and I'm not a fan.

Nice to know the Tamiya kit goes together nicely.  I have a ton of Eduard, Quickboost and Aires aftermarket for it, so we will see what happens.  I spent many hours trying to select from the very cool pin-up schemes that are out there.  I have young girls, so I wanted to pick one that wasn't lewd like many of the ones that are out there.  I ended up going with this Kitworld decal set, and will do the Helen Jo.  Has a little bit of everything - NMF, pretty girl, checks on the cowl, and a colored tail:

image.jpeg.822e03f44482e7d9418f7298db6a6c14.jpeg

Thanks Mike, for the vote of confidence. Holy smokes, you have a boatload of AM for the kit and no question you are going to raise the bar for the Jug up to a whole new level. Awesome markings for sure and she is going to be a standout.

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50 minutes ago, GusMac said:

Looks like a great kit Peter and nice progress so far. The moulded on seatbelts look really good once painted up.

Thanks Gus, very much appreciated. Completely agree, MiniArt did a tremendous job on the seat and the belts - they do look mighty good. So far, it's an excellent kit, just a bit over engineered.

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1 hour ago, Peterpools said:

Thanks John, greatly appreciated. Hope the rest of the kit goes as smoothly as the beginning did but somehow that never seems to work out. 🤞 

🤞:)

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Nice start, Peter, and a kit I am not at all familiar with.  The level of detail is impressive for molded on detail esp in 1/48 scale.  Your painting and washes really do pull out the detail.  I was surprised the seatbelts were molded into the seat.  Beautiful painting and detailing!

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Thanks Chris, very much appreciated.

MiniArt has been producing model kits for many years and is located in Poland. From what I understand they have an excellent reputation for detailed kits with loads of parts and their own style of engineering. The P-47 is their first aircraft kit and the first MiniArt I've purchased as an aircraft modeler. I'm finding out understanding their assembly process takes some getting used to but works in the end. Terrific detailing and loads of parts, of which I would prefer a lot of the smaller parts to have been molded on - just too east to feed the carpet monster with them. Agreed, their seat with molded on belts is superb and looks almost as if it were a resin part, which it's not. Took some very careful painting and washes to capture all the molded in detail. 

Trying to finish up the front office today as the IP install is a bit tricky and I've never seen it done this way before.:construction:

 

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Great start Peter, I will follow with interest, this kit seems to become the pinnacle of the P-47kit  in any scale. Also I believe that MiniArt is located In Kiev and I can only thank them in amazement and admiration for their fight agains invaders and the ability to function under such a dire circumstances .

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Martin

Yes, you are correct. The address on the box was for their distributor; Hobby and Craft Industrial Co ... I should have read the name and address more carefully on the box. 

Now that I'm getting into the kit, some parts need help in fitting and the instructions while they look excellent have some orientation and location issues. Overall, absolutely raises the bar in detail and I've been comparing it to the Tamiya kit which I've already built. Thoughts later on in the build.

Completely agree how they and all the companies in the Ukraine are able to turn out such incredible kits given the horrible circumstances of their country being invaded.

   

  

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Thanks Kev, greatly appreciated.  Agreed, the front office does look more detailed but the Tamiya kit, part fit and flow is a lot smoother. Just glued up the two fuselage halves and I'll see tomorrow how it looks. Time to glue up the wings as well.

 

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On 1/7/2024 at 11:28 AM, Martinnfb said:

Great start Peter, I will follow with interest, this kit seems to become the pinnacle of the P-47kit  in any scale. Also I believe that MiniArt is located In Kiev and I can only thank them in amazement and admiration for their fight agains invaders and the ability to function under such a dire circumstances .

OOPS

 

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Peter, that's a fabulous start you've made on the kit. The cockpit looks exemplary between Miniart's moulding and your paint and assembly skills. 

To me, Miniart has been known for small, potentially fiddly parts but great detail and overall fit. Their armour kits are fantastic and what they're probably best known for. 

 

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Thanks Carl, so very much appreciated and completely agree about MiniArt. I've had more then a few issues now (fuselage and wings are built and close to priming) trying to figure out how parts are installed, and the culprit is instructions, that let the builder down. They are neat, clean and complete until you are using them. Loads of arrows showing where a part should go but in more then a few times, the construction drawings are vague in actual part orientation or the wrong view. 

Great detail, fiddly and they seem to over engineer the number of parts. Next update, I'll be diving into this part of the build.

   :construction:

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CLOSING UP THE FUSELAGE

AND PROGRESS

ajVwzn.jpg

Incredible, while cleaning up the bench, I found the ‘lost joy stick’ and I must have searched and looked in that exact spot two or three times. With Lady Luck riding as my copilot, I finished up the front office assembly. The ‘tub’s’ four sides and the floor fit together using a slot and tab method, none of which fit, requiring careful filing and tweaking to get the components to mesh together. The IP is attached to the top of the rudder casting, a bit fiddly and a very weak joint. Glued up and ready to go, the front office does look good, requiring a bit too much work in getting the parts to fit.

Some fuselage assembly issues:

The Supercharger Exhaust part orientation in the instructions seemed vague and I just couldn’t figure out how the part should be installed. After the fuselage was glued up, I knew I had it wrong. I found the proper orientation shown all the way in the step 29 & 30 drawings and with the aid of a few excellent online photographs, I finally understood how the exhaust gate should look and be installed. The fuselage was already completely glued up … what to do? Carefully, with a razor saw, I cut the bottom rear of the fuselage apart, cut out the supercharger exhaust part, glued the fuselage back together, reinforced the seam with Flexy 5K CA Black and when dry glued worked the part in place: starting on the inside and the end of the exhaust gate terminated on the outside and all looked good now. I wish the instructions would have been a lot clearer when you actually install the supercharger waste gate.

The tailwheel assembly was built up in Step 5 right after the cockpit assembly. Turns out there are actually two tailwheels provided (excellent) booted and non-booted. But the tailwheel isn’t installed until step 17 (looking ahead), why do the assembly at step 5, which seems way out of sequence?   

The booted tailwheel assembly so far is another case of frustration, just way too many “this is where it goes arrows”, all of little help. Winging it and looking at photos, I finally understood how the assembly is to be installed.

Last bit of negativity: The intercooler exhaust doors. Geez, when installed in the open position, there is nothing to block off looking straight into the inside of the fuselage. I luckily noticed this before gluing the fuselage halves together and added Evergreen sheet to close off the opening.

On the plus side: detailing is exquisite, super fine panel lines and rivets almost to scale. Of course, I have my work cut out for me replacing the ones I lost in sanding and fitting. Glass also is awesome – just wish the kit included a mask set.

Of course, no matter how careful I tried to be, I managed to break off the fuselage antenna and three of the eight MG’s. I ordered new MG’s and drilled out the MG ports as best I could. Should never have followed the instructions and left them off until the end – live and learn.

As soon as my Eduard mask set arrives, the Jug will be off to the paint shop and priming.

Major assemblies are done and ready to be glued together

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More assemblies done and the R2400 is underway - incredible detail and fidelity

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Four piece cowl is underway along with the gear doors

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Everything is ready for priming once the Eduard mask set arrives

 

 

 

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  • Peterpools changed the title to MiniArt P-47D Thunderbolt: Update 1/12/24

Thanks John

Starting to move along at a good clip, now that the major portion of building all the sub-assemblies are done and I'm getting use to how MiniArt does things. I'm sure I'll reach a point in a few days of being ready for the mask set and won't be able to prime until it arrives. Might have to start my next build in the meantime. :construction:

   

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