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Tamiya F-4E Phantom II: Sharks Mouth 388th TFW, Korat, Vietnam 1968-69: Name and Face!


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Ok, I think (well, I KNOW) I'm biting off more than I can chew here, but here goes.  I've had the Tamiya 1/32 F-4EJ kit for YEARS.  Bought it at the Omaha Nats and also picked up the GT Resin intakes, all for $95!  At Telford, picked up the Aerobonus (with pilots) and Quickboost ejection seats w/o pilot figures so I have a choice there.  Had to add the Zotz Sharksmouth decal set as I've always wanted to build a Vietnam camo F-4.  Plus a few other bits and bobs along the way.  Looking for the Quinta cockpit set but it seems out of stock in the US.  Probably going direct for that one.  A BIG help will be the Top Notch camo masks.

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I have not quite yet decided on which aircraft to model. Any suggestions?

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Some of the sharks mouths decals may be damaged slightly, but I think they will be ok once applied.

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Still have to get the gallons of paint it will take to cover this bird.

No clue when I will actually get started. But now I have motivation to get started!!  Comments/suggestions are welcomed.

 

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Nice! 

I had a bunch of the Tamiya EJ kits in the stash at one point. 

The original plan was to do them as:

1)- Chico the Gunfighter

2)- early hard wing E

3)- Hill Grey scheme 

4)- Euro One G conversion. 

I sold the Chico decals, got the Hill Grey one done, and have more G conversions than kits and...stalled out. 

Hopefully I'll get back to at least building a G. 

Carl

 

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Carl,

Any advice on the build?  This is my first F-4 and only 3rd 1/32 jet (Me-262 and an F-104).  I have the ZM 1/48 F-4C in the stash, but that looked even more complicated than the 1/32 EJ.

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8 hours ago, CANicoll said:

Ok, I think (well, I KNOW) I'm biting off more than I can chew here, but here goes.  I've had the Tamiya 1/32 F-4EJ kit for YEARS.  Bought it at the Omaha Nats and also picked up the GT Resin intakes, all for $95!  At Telford, picked up the Aerobonus (with pilots) and Quickboost ejection seats w/o pilot figures so I have a choice there.  Had to add the Zotz Sharksmouth decal set as I've always wanted to build a Vietnam camo F-4.  Plus a few other bits and bobs along the way.  Looking for the Quinta cockpit set but it seems out of stock in the US.  Probably going direct for that one.  A BIG help will be the Top Notch camo masks.

PXL_20240207_024803779.thumb.jpg.fa7b73b445591e9953c19561c9ad486b.jpg

PXL_20240207_025215235.thumb.jpg.1f73282b066d301df3c2ca43a5f02821.jpg

PXL_20240207_024910046.thumb.jpg.97ab4215726d6b90489688f8c81fb6a8.jpg

PXL_20240207_025329412.thumb.jpg.e90f5ca8a7314e901839774b660f89f3.jpg

I have not quite yet decided on which aircraft to model. Any suggestions?

PXL_20240207_025224647.thumb.jpg.c6cca9e1d6f38b1a972644c2b2554155.jpg

Some of the sharks mouths decals may be damaged slightly, but I think they will be ok once applied.

PXL_20240207_025443255.thumb.jpg.be3c2fed7eea1a5c452df34f839c4d7c.jpg

Still have to get the gallons of paint it will take to cover this bird.

No clue when I will actually get started. But now I have motivation to get started!!  Comments/suggestions are welcomed.

 

Chris

Awesome choice - going to be a great build for sure. 

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12 hours ago, CANicoll said:

Carl,

Any advice on the build?  This is my first F-4 and only 3rd 1/32 jet (Me-262 and an F-104).  I have the ZM 1/48 F-4C in the stash, but that looked even more complicated than the 1/32 EJ.

Overall, the kit goes together well. There are a couple simple things to do to make it look nicer. 

-Sand off the raised BDR patches on the fuselage. There's a pair of them on the aft end of the fuselage, two on the intakes (some seamless intakes have removed them already)

- The outer wing pylons are too far inboard. They need to be moved out. I can't remember how much but I'll see if I can find it. 

- The canopy is probably the biggest challenge. Tamiya joined the canopy parts to the sprue along the side of the glass.  Trim them very carefully of they will splinter and leave a nasty scar on the plastic. You can hide it by painting the sealant edge around the canopy and then attach them to the frames. Another option is Aerocraft makes a replacement set where the glass and frame are one piece. 

- The outer wing dihedral is off. The outer wings point too far up stock. Add a shim along the upper edge to flatten them out. Nautilus make/made an alignment jig to correct the dihedral. 

- The other thing is the burner cans are under sized. Most AM ones are too. GT Resin makes correctly sized ones. Sierra Hotel does too. I can't recall who else does.

@ScottsGT should have anything I missed as he's built a bunch of them. 

Edited by BlrwestSiR
Fix typo
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I tell you what, if you go down the correction path like Thierry Laurent has posted over on LSP, you will be at it for a while.  That guy has an eye for detail and I just did a pick and choose of the most obvious boo-boos.  The battle damage patches are the biggest.  
Aftermarket intakes are a must.  EDIT: I see you have them already.  
Laminar Flow Design just released what looks like a great set.  
I have one EJ kit, and it’s getting the yellow and blue panther squadron treatment.  Almost pulled it off the shelf for the twin build.  But just finishing up the J, I needed a change of pace.  
Verify the EJ externals like slatted wings and stabilizers match your subject.  EJ was different than a regular E.  I think it’s more like a late model E??  
I’ve found it easier to assemble the back end of the fuselage after painting.  Stabs, lower half behind engines and the vertical stab.  Once that’s done I add exhaust.  
I only have one of each, E & EJ, in Tamiya.  But I stocked up on Revell kits like I was trying to corner the market.  

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The EJ kit builds an early hard wing E. Basically it's an E in the box with added bits for the EJ plus a grey nose section as well as the clear one that the E only comes with. 

EJ kept their hard wing and never got slats but did get new wingtip antennas and a radome with the EJ Kai. 

And Scott is correct, fit the burner cans. after the rear is assembled. Much easier for painting and any seam work. 

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Carl and Scott, Thanks so much for the suggestions and tips!  I do seem to remember Thierry's correction list and I think that is what put me off of doing the kit in the first place.  If I remember correctly, the list was long and daunting.  I'll most likely tackle the main points you have both pointed out - and esp the canopy.  I do like Ali's Aerocraft work and will pick up the GT Resin cans as well.  So much to do, so little time to do it in!

 

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On 2/7/2024 at 8:48 AM, BlrwestSiR said:

Nice! 

I had a bunch of the Tamiya EJ kits in the stash at one point. 

The original plan was to do them as:

1)- Chico the Gunfighter

2)- early hard wing E

3)- Hill Grey scheme 

4)- Euro One G conversion. 

I sold the Chico decals, got the Hill Grey one done, and have more G conversions than kits and...stalled out. 

Hopefully I'll get back to at least building a G. 

Carl

 

Chico the Gunfighter is what I’ve been planning for my E kit.  I bought all the gun pods from Harold before he retired. 

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22 minutes ago, ScottsGT said:

Chico the Gunfighter is what I’ve been planning for my E kit.  I bought all the gun pods from Harold before he retired. 

When I sold the decals I ended up doing my Hill Grey one as an homage to Chico. I did the same basic  loadout except with an extra SUU-23 under the belly.

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Apparently this was flight tested once...

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I'm thinking of going with the 'Lil Chris' markings.  I mean, why not?  :lol:  I need to order the new cans, and I have to see about the landing gear struts.  I have a feeling I'm going to need to go AM for those.  And Ali's canopy...

Thoughts?

Chris

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Well, I've nearly doubled what I paid for the kit, in AM and paint.  New exhaust burner cans (GT Resin), Quinta cockpit, MRP paint and Aerocraft canopy. Debated about the Quinta set but I think I'm going to go for an open cockpit.  Now the question is whether to use the seats with pilots or without...  I'd like to use with the pilots, but from building the Tamiya Mustang, the pilot almost completely obscures the very nice interior.  I think the F-4 is different however, with those side consoles...

Interesting that Tamiya and ZM call out different F-4E cockpit colors with ZM saying it is Dark Gull Gray while Tamiya says Sky Gray.  Sources at ARC say it is Dark Gull Gray FS36231.

Let's see, $95 for the kit with the resin intakes (but no clear nose).  Spent $140 at SB and another $55 at Aerocraft (F4 and P-51D canopies).  This doesn't count the rest of the AM I already bought....  This may be the most expensive build I've ever attempted...

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Chris,

Just seems that's always the way these days; the kit comes pretty close to being the least expensive part of a detailed build. 

Open canopy and the Quinta set .. no pilots

Closed canopy, use the pilots but no sense in using the Quinta set. 

Cockpit color is: FS36231 - I always use MRP for the color.

 

.. 

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On 2/18/2024 at 1:27 PM, Peterpools said:

Chris,

Just seems that's always the way these days; the kit comes pretty close to being the least expensive part of a detailed build. 

Open canopy and the Quinta set .. no pilots

Closed canopy, use the pilots but no sense in using the Quinta set. 

Cockpit color is: FS36231 - I always use MRP for the color.

 

.. 

Thanks Peter!  I'm definitely leaning towards the no-pilots setup.  Esp with the Quinta set.  Agreed on the closed canopy - which was a thought.  Good to think this through ahead of time!  THX for the cockpit color.  Order is in...

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10 hours ago, CANicoll said:

Even without the clear nose, I thought so too since it included your Resin intakes!

LOL!  I’m not GT Resin.  But I do know Gary Hatherly and he now lives in the town I grew up in. 
I picked up the “ScottsGT” handle back in the day when I needed a name on The Vintage Mustang forum when I started restoring my 1966 Mustang GT.  That was back around 1999.  Funny thing is, I still have the ‘66, but I’m on my 3rd Mustang GT currently.  

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Doh!! My bad, sorry!

Nice on the Mustangs.  I was always a Mopar guy, but my dad had a 67 fastback, dark green.  I'd live to find a TA Challenger.  Or a nice 69 KR500....  Of course, I'd have to live in it since I'd have to sell my place to afford one!

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Ok, gonna have to smack you down for that one.  KR was ‘68.  But since you mentioned ‘69 GT500….

I thought I broke the speedometer in this one back when I was young and foolish. Back around 1982.   It was my brothers car (him in the photo)  I had just gotten new tires installed and I was driving home and I suddenly noticed the road in front of me was all mine.   I pegged the 140 speedometer and held my foot on the go pedal.  When I let off, it stayed on 140.  All I could think was “Oh crap!  I broke the speedO and now my brother will know I maxed it out.”  After 10-15 seconds (yea, ok. Maybe not that long, but it sure felt like it) of my foot off the pedal the needle finally started dropping. 
I’d love to know just how fast I was going that day. But I will say, the lane lines become a solid line at that speed. 
 

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I missed out on Mopars growing up.  Like Ernie, I was a Ford guy (almost) all my life.  I did shortly own a hot Rodded ‘73 Z-28.  When I was kid back in 1970 there was two cars that sparked my love affair with cars.  One was a brand new dealers demo car from a Ford dealership nearby.  It was a ‘70 Boss 302. Gold with black stripes, window slats and that beautiful shaker hood scoop.

The other was a guy in the Navy down the street that bought a brand new Vitamin C Orange 1970 Roadrunner with the air grabber hood.  He installed Craiger SS wheels. 
If I win the lottery, I will own those two cars. 

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