I found this kit (Kit #109) to be
an interesting subject, with it's forward mounted engines, and
tail mounted radar. The parts features recessed panel lines, but
would these really be visible in this scale? Landing gear is
included, although there is no nose gear well.
I started assembly by first
adding some lead fishing weights to the interior of the aircraft
to allow it to correctly sit on the landing gear. Once this was
done, the inside of the fuselage halves and engine nacelles,
along with the rear of the compressor blades was painted black.
The fuselage halves went together fine; just some sanding needed
on the joint. I attached the wings next. I filled the stand hole
in the bottom with a piece of sprue, and sanded it flush. I next
cut out the nose gear well. The kit plastic is thick enough so I
could cut one a reasonable depth, without going through the
Aligning the wings level resulted
in a gap underneath on one side, which was filled with white
glue. Once the seam on top of the wing/fuselage was sanded, it
required no filler. The engine halves were glued together, and
the seam sanded. The right engine protruded farther ahead of the
wing, so I filed back the opening until the engines were even.
These were next attached to the wing. The engine/wing seam was
the worst one on the kit. These were filled in with super glue.
The locating peg for the tail
radar was removed, as it was too big to allow the dome to align
with the top edge of the tail. The locating pegs for the
horizontal tails were removed also, as they didn't even come
close to fitting in the holes.
Once the landing gear was glued
on, I started paint the model. This was painted a little
differently than the "normal" sequence. I first
sprayed it overall flat white (Model Master paints were used
throughout). When this was dry, I coat of clear gloss was
applied. The decal lines on the fuselage and engine sides were
now, added. Once these were dry, I carefully brush-painted the
gray, using the blue lines as a guide, leaving about 1/32"
of white showing.
When all of this was dry, I next
painted the remaining detail colors - Dark gray nose, red wing
tips, black exhaust areas, and silver wing/tail leading edges.
The remaining decals were
applied, and another coat of clear gloss was used to seal the
decals. When this was dry, the remaining parts were attached
(wheels, wheel doors (which were cut from .010 plastic sheet),
and windshield). The Canopy frames were painted white.
There is also a base included in
the kit, although I haven't felt like painting it up yet. It
represents an airfield tarmac.
Overall this was not a bad little
kit, which went together quite well for one of this small size -
the length is only 3 ¼ inches!