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Hobby Boss 1/48 P-38L Bare Metal Foil WIP

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  • Member since
    March 2015
Hobby Boss 1/48 P-38L Bare Metal Foil WIP
Posted by JohnnyK on Saturday, February 16, 2019 10:39 AM

It seems that models of the P-38 have been difficult to buld for a variety of reasons. I have done some reaserch and it seems that the Hobby Boss P-38L is the least challenging to build. I guess that time will tell.

Note the statement on the box, "Easy Assembly". There are decals for two models, a painted version and a natural metal version. I have no choice in which one I will build. It will be a natural metal finish using Bare Metal Foil. However, I intend to build a weathered, dirty, war weary version.

I will be using aftermarket resin wheels/tires, painting masks for the canopy and real fabric  seatbelts.

All the parts come nicely packaged in plastic bags. The two halves of the fuselage are protected by foam padding. Likewise, the clear parts are protected by foam padding . Nice touch.

They way Hobby Boss made the fuselage is why this is supposed to be an easy to assemble kit. The fuselage is split horizontally into two parts. Each half includes the fuselage, main wing, booms and tail wing. This should eliminate the problems in other kits with wing root joints, missaligned booms, and gaps in joints.

The cockpit has two options. One is a closed cockpit and the other is an open cockpit. On the real airplane, the cockpit did not slide back for pilot access.  Instead, there were two panels located in the center of the cockpit that folded open like a door. I cut a portion of the spur just to see how brittle the clear plastic was. It is not overly brittle.

  • Member since
    March 2003
  • From: Western North Carolina
Posted by Tojo72 on Saturday, February 16, 2019 12:08 PM
I will have to keep an eye on this one,I would like a P-38 and might have to try this one. Is it theirs or a rebox ?

  • Member since
    March 2015
Posted by JohnnyK on Saturday, February 16, 2019 1:40 PM

I do not think that it is a rebox since the two part fuselage, boom and wing assemble is unique to HB. It has a few issues: the wing landing lights are molded as solid plastic and some cooling scoops may be missing. That stuff does not bother me.

  • Member since
    July 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Saturday, February 16, 2019 2:20 PM

Tojo72
I will have to keep an eye on this one,I would like a P-38 and might have to try this one. Is it theirs or a rebox ?
 

This is their own molding, according to reviews. No one else has engineered their P-38 kits like this in 1/48 before. The design eliminates all the alignment issues that folks usually complain about.

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    March 2015
Posted by JohnnyK on Sunday, February 17, 2019 11:31 AM

I thought that I would try something different for the seatbelt. Instead of PE belts, I purchased a set of belts that are real cloth from hgwmodels. PE buckles are included. They didn't have belts for a P-38, so I bought belts for a Spitfire. 

As soon as I opened the package I knew that this was not going to work. The PE parts are really tiny. I mean really, really tiny. The cloth belts are equally small. I tried and tried, but I just could not make this work. So I gave up and placed an order for some Eduards PE belts.

Before I go on, I need to mention that this document is the real bible for anyone building a model of a P-38. It describes the differences between the different versiions of the plane, the correct colors of the cockpit and wheel wells. It talks about the cooling systems, the guns, just about everything. You can find it on-line here: https://www.scribd.com/document/220399447/Walk-Around-P-38-Lightning-No-30

 

While I was waiting for the seatbelts to arrive, I decided to work on the landing gear. The tires that are included with the kit are not very good, so I purchased some resin diamond pattern tires. First I painted them flat black. The tire cleats were then highlighted with a tan colored wash to represent mud.

I also added brake lines by using some thin wire. I removed the insulatin to indicate solid pipe. I didn't remove the insulation in areas that represent flexable hose. Pipe clamps from one of my car kits was used to clamp the wire to the landing gear. This is not 100% correct, but I think it looks pretty good.

 

 

 

  • Member since
    July 2018
  • From: The Deep Woods
Posted by Tickmagnet on Sunday, February 17, 2019 2:27 PM

I'll be following this. The P-38 was my favorite as a kid so looking forward to your review of the build. I did the Monogram one right after getting back into this hobby and it almost burst my bubble man it was a grueling build to me and the only pleasure was getting it done so I could move on. If this goes well for you I will definately put one in the hanger.

 

 

  • Member since
    March 2015
Posted by JohnnyK on Sunday, February 17, 2019 3:06 PM

I built one of those a few years ago. Man, that was nasty. Plus, it had raised panel lines and millions of raised rivets. The actual plane had flush rivets.

  • Member since
    March 2005
  • From: Lancaster, South Carolina
Posted by Devil Dawg on Sunday, February 17, 2019 3:23 PM

The real P-38 has many, many raised rivets, especially where the vertical stabilizers meet the tail booms - really big rivets right there.

Devil Dawg

On The Bench: Tamiya 1/32nd Mitsubishi A6M5 Model 52 Zeke For Japanese Group Build

Build one at a time? Hah! That'll be the day!!

  • Member since
    March 2005
  • From: Lancaster, South Carolina
Posted by Devil Dawg on Sunday, February 17, 2019 3:37 PM

I stand corrected - only the ones at the tail boom seem to be raised rivets, and easily seen in pictures. The rest seem to be flush-riveted.

Devil Dawg

On The Bench: Tamiya 1/32nd Mitsubishi A6M5 Model 52 Zeke For Japanese Group Build

Build one at a time? Hah! That'll be the day!!

  • Member since
    February 2005
  • From: Cleveland, OH
Posted by RadMax8 on Sunday, February 17, 2019 10:00 PM

I’ll be keeping an eye on this build, very interested to see how these kits build out. I’ve got three Hasegawa Lightnings, and I’ve built one. I managed to survive the alignment and satisfy my eye, but it certainly did take some work!

I’ll be interested to see your BMF job, as well. 

  • Member since
    March 2015
Posted by JohnnyK on Monday, February 18, 2019 9:31 AM

The radiator pods on the 1:1 aircraft have movable flaps that allow the pilot to adjust the engine temperature. These flaps were usualy closed during flight and when the plane was on the ground.. What I find interesting about this picture is how crudely built the airplane is. Big dimples in the skin at the rivets, and wrinkled skin in general.

The radiator pods that came with the kit lack the flaps, so I made flaps from a thin sheet of plastic.

It took a little bit of sanding, but I finally got the flaps to fit properly.

On the 1:1 plane, a grill was fastened in front of the radiator to prevent damage to the radiator from flying objects. 

 

The kit's radiator pod does not include a grill. I thought that it would look good if I added a grill, but where would I find a mesh that would approximate the appearance of a grill. I went to Hobby Lobby and found a wire mesh ribbon. It will be interesting to see how this works.

 

 

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Monday, February 18, 2019 11:14 AM

Thanks Johnny! I've built a few of the Monogram and Hasegawa P-38s and found them good if not outstanding. I've heard the Academy kit has it's own issues. This one looks really good so far even with the radiator problems. Looking forward to more! 

"I dream in fire but work in clay." -Arthur Machen

 

  • Member since
    August 2012
  • From: Parker City, IN.
Posted by Rambo on Monday, February 18, 2019 12:32 PM
That's looking great so far. Take a look at the skin on a B-52 now that is something that looks crude.

Clint

  • Member since
    September 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Monday, February 18, 2019 1:16 PM

I'm eager to follow your build, too.  I'm curious to see how this HB kit goes together.

That's a great idea, about the mesh ribbon!  I've got builds where I can use something like that.  I have to see if the other craft stores carry something like it, too.

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

 

  • Member since
    December 2002
Posted by 7474 on Monday, February 18, 2019 9:44 PM

I have this kit in my stash and am looking forward to seeing the rest of the build. I like your idea for the grill, but I use the mesh screen from automotive paint filters. 

  • Member since
    February 2012
  • From: Olmsted Township, Ohio
Posted by lawdog114 on Tuesday, February 19, 2019 2:39 AM
Very nice! The next time I build a P-38 I’m going to use this kit. I hope hobby boss comes out with the earlier versions too. Those fabric seatbelts are nice in the 1/32 scale, but 1/48 would be kind of tough to work with. Its my understanding the nose guns are molded into the nose piece. I’m not sure what they were thinking. I look forward to your progress.

 "Can you fly this plane and land it?...Surely you can't be serious....I am serious, and don't call me Shirley"

 

 

 

 

  • Member since
    March 2015
Posted by JohnnyK on Tuesday, February 19, 2019 11:31 AM

Okay, one of the radiator pods is finished. I like the look of the radiator grill. It was easy to do and adds a nice amount of detail.

  • Member since
    March 2015
Posted by JohnnyK on Tuesday, February 19, 2019 12:45 PM

The guns are molded into the nose. Maybe I should see if there are aftermarket guns available.

The top photo is the exhaust/supercharge system on a 1:1 P-38. I used that as a guide for painting the kit's exhaust system.

YES, the PE seatbelts arrived today!!

  • Member since
    May 2009
  • From: Poland
Posted by Pawel on Tuesday, February 19, 2019 4:30 PM

Cool work on the superchargers - great use of the photo-references! Good luck with your build and have a nice day

Paweł

All comments and critique welcomed. Thanks for your honest opinions!

www.vietnam.net.pl

  • Member since
    March 2015
Posted by JohnnyK on Tuesday, February 19, 2019 5:28 PM

Thanks. I think that I need to tone down the black a little bit.

  • Member since
    August 2012
  • From: Parker City, IN.
Posted by Rambo on Tuesday, February 19, 2019 6:45 PM
Great job on the superchargers they look like the reference photo.

Clint

  • Member since
    March 2015
Posted by JohnnyK on Tuesday, February 19, 2019 6:53 PM

I know that this sounds nuts, but I like to do a lot of reference work before starting on my models. Just one of my oddities Confused

  • Member since
    August 2013
Posted by Jay Jay on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 7:49 AM

It's not nuts at all. I think we all benefit from the posting of your research and I for one apreciate it greatly.  Those turbos for instance can be used on my B-17 project etc.

 

 

 

 

 

 I'm finally retired. Now time I got, money I don't.

  • Member since
    December 2018
Posted by Tosh on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 8:08 AM

Great job!  It’s not nuts to do the research.  You always need a reference.

Your FrieNd Toshi. 

Reside in Streetsboro, Ohio

 

  • Member since
    March 2015
Posted by JohnnyK on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 10:13 AM

Jay Jay

It's not nuts at all. I think we all benefit from the posting of your research and I for one apreciate it greatly.  Those turbos for instance can be used on my B-17 project etc.

 

Here is a nice pic of a B-17 exhaust.

  • Member since
    June 2013
Posted by bvallot on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 10:39 AM

Very cool! I really like the trick with the ribbon. I've struggled to find a scale replication of textures that tiny for screens and the like. Keep cranking it out. =]

On the bench:  

Tamiya P-51D  William Shomo

Tamiya F4U-1  Kenneth Walsh

 

  • Member since
    March 2015
Posted by JohnnyK on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 10:39 AM

Here are the four radiator pods with the ribbon grills. 

 

Does anyone know what goes on with these three areas of the engine cowlings? Are they just opened up 100% for airflow?

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 11:36 AM

She's looking terrific so far. Love the rust on the superchargers. 

 

I'd guess those areas on the cowling are intakes though not 100% sure. I think I'd just open them and place some screens in there as well. 

"I dream in fire but work in clay." -Arthur Machen

 

  • Member since
    June 2013
Posted by bvallot on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 11:39 AM

They're intakes for the intercooler...(center is radiator and the left and right are for the oil coolers) I've got some pictures of how I treated this area. Sorry these pictures are terrible. And terribly old now.

 image by Britt Vallot, on Flickr

 image by Britt Vallot, on Flickr

 image by Britt Vallot, on Flickr

You should open those up and replace them with screening. If you're up to the task, and you seem like you are =], you ought to make quick work of something simple like this.

On the bench:  

Tamiya P-51D  William Shomo

Tamiya F4U-1  Kenneth Walsh

 

  • Member since
    March 2015
Posted by JohnnyK on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 12:00 PM

BVallot,

You are 100% correct! There are round ducts in the snoot of the engine cowlings.

It is really difficult to find closeup pictures of the engine cowlings.

Time to start on the cockpit. 

There are a number of parts that make up the cockpit. It should look pretty good. I might used the pins for levers, such as flap controls and throttle. 

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