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B-17 G 1:48 scale, 351st Bomb Group, 510th Squadron, AC# 43-37862, Fearless Fosdick

133 replies
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  • Member since
    January 2015
Posted by TheMongoose on Monday, May 9, 2022 6:16 AM

Glad to see your progress. Oh you're getting so close! Will be exciting to see the wings go on.

In the pattern: Scale Shipyard's 1/48 Balao Class Sub! leaning out the list, we're down to that Tamiya P-38F/G to use the other nose art Exito Decal (in-flight for this one), & in keeping with MC's hydra theory I bought another F-5E to do in FROG camo! And I just got a Trumpeter 1/32 F/A-18F!

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Monday, May 9, 2022 6:06 AM

Hello guys, miss me? I've had a lot going on and sometimes I just get tired. I have basically finished the center waist gunner position. Had to do some touchups here and there as this has been going on three years. I have started working on the forward section. Once that area is done I can finally, at long last, close the plane up for outside detail and finish build. You know I have worked on nothing else for this time and I miss doing simpler stuff. I may need to do something simple to get me going on again. Thanks guys for your support through this. It helps me keep going to the end.

20220508_160347.jpg20220508_160355.jpgThanks for following

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Wednesday, March 16, 2022 6:07 AM

It's been very busy lately. My wife being Russian doesn't help with what is going on. She still has family and friends there. Anyway, here is what I've been able to accomplish since last I posted. I did a lot of work on the different machineguns. Just a couple of touchups with paint here and there but basically they are finished. I also chose the tail gunner's windows and finished the tail gunner's position for the most part. Almost finished the waist gunner area as well. Now for the pictures...

20220212_172024 (2).jpg20220226_153313 (2).jpgI still have the photo etched barrels and gunner sites to add.

20220212_172101 (2).jpg20220212_172127 (2).jpg20220306_182130 (2).jpg20220306_182235 (2).jpg20220306_182253 (2).jpg20220306_183249 (2).jpgThanks for following.





  • Member since
    August 2021
Posted by lurch on Saturday, January 22, 2022 3:26 AM

Looking fantastic . Cant wait to see it finished.

  • Member since
    January 2015
Posted by TheMongoose on Saturday, January 22, 2022 2:38 AM

Lots of great work here! Love all the little stuff it really adds to your build. your thoughts on the metal toilet seat are hilarious Big Smile  I'm hoping the varnish issue gets sorted cause the wings sure were looking good. Congrats on the promo btw!

In the pattern: Scale Shipyard's 1/48 Balao Class Sub! leaning out the list, we're down to that Tamiya P-38F/G to use the other nose art Exito Decal (in-flight for this one), & in keeping with MC's hydra theory I bought another F-5E to do in FROG camo! And I just got a Trumpeter 1/32 F/A-18F!

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Friday, January 21, 2022 8:57 PM

I also wanted to tell you that I did a fit check with the wings on the fuselage and tires on the legs.  I was afraid the ball might be hanging too low but after attaching everything I could see that everything was as it should be height wise.


  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Friday, January 21, 2022 8:54 PM

I've tried to keep busy with this model but I got clobbered with a honey do list and the passing of my brother-in-law. I also had a varnish failure when I tried to protect one of the wings. Not happy with that but hopefully I can keep moving now. So what have I done. First I wanted to get the wings done. Mostly just so that I can say I did something different.

20220120_193835.jpgThe devices behind the engines look like turbochargers to me but I'm not sure. Anyway I got these painted along with the deicing boots on the main wings and horizontal stabilizers. The biggest problem I had was with the aluminum/chrome paint for the skin. I would get a decent paint job on it then something would screw it up in a couple places. I would get it repaired and something else would go wrong... aggravation in the extreme. Finally I got it set and thought I would spray a simple clear varnish to set it and the stuff I was using was too cold and you can imagine the rest. I sanded out the worst of it and am going to attempt it again once the weather warms up a bit.

I also made the wing landing lights.

20220120_194053.jpgThese I made by punching out discs from the foil of wine bottles. My wife helped by emptying the bottles after I opened them. The discs I formed into shallow cones over the round end of a paint brush. To set Then, I drilled a small hole where I wanted to disc to sit, kind of like a center mark / place holder. A drop of CA glue in the hole and drop the disc in. Came out nice as you can see. I attached the outer covers and found that there was a large gap over the right light. I filled in the gaps by soaking a .020" x .020" bit of styrene rod in liquid cement which softened it enough to mold into the imperfect gaps and dry solidly. This came out well after a touch of the sanding sponge. As you can see, it came out ok. Not shown are all the vents around the engine for cooling air intakes. I drilled them all out and cleaned them up with a knife.

My next focus was on the ammo boxes, small air tanks, and fiddly stuff.


20211209_202919.jpgI also added wood to the navigators table top at the front of the aircraft.

20211126_181341.jpg20211126_183701.jpgThe ammo belt runs were made easier by cutting a .010" sleeve to wrap the sides around and still leave room for the ammo. It also made it easier to straighten the legs out and paint.

20220109_172631.jpgFinally here are many of the fiddly bits I worked on. Some brass catchers, bottle holders, oxygen regulation systems, and various boxes of control items.

20220120_194654.jpgThat can in the upper left is suppose to be a sky toilet, Bog can, or whatever funny name you might like to call it. I added wood to these as well, not just to flesh it out but seriously who would want to sit on a metal toilet cover at -30 degrees? I would think you backside would be frozen to it. Can you imagine, "Hi mom, I got a purple heart because my backside got stuck on the can during a mission and they had to pry me off." I also made and beefed up the tail gunner's seat, upper center above the ammo boxes.

Thanks for following.










  • Member since
    December 2021
  • From: Northern Michigan
Posted by Monogram Madness on Wednesday, January 19, 2022 11:31 PM

Really looking great!  Any updates?

Perfection is having fun and relaxing...not building the perfect model.  


On the bench:  Revell 1:48 Spitfire MKII and Monogram 1:48 P-40B

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Sunday, November 21, 2021 8:49 PM

I really wanted to finish this by Veteran's day but as usual I got hit with a honey do list... Oh and I got promoted in my job which called for more of my time to learn my new position. Fortunately I did get more done so my time wasn't totally shot. I am pushing to finish this, just won't be when I wanted.

So to start. Once I had finished printing the inside of the ball turret, I assembled what I had and found that the mechanism between the guns was too low. I needed to move it upward. I attached some styrene blocks on top of the guns before I cut off the mechanism between them. The blocks marked my attachment points for the remodeled mechanism.

Then I used styrene to build up the mechanism to look more like what I could recognize in photos.


I also added the brass shoots that guide the empty shells after firing. This you can see just below the gun and ammo drum. Actually fit really nice after it was made.



I didn't go overboard on the interior, just on only what was clearly visible. I left out the wiring. Painted the ball turret inside and out then fit it all together along with the ring I printed for it. So far so good.


Next... the ball turret mount. I wanted to get this finished at the very least. Here I ran into an interesting problem. How to get the turret mechanism to look right and work around what the kit designers did. I didn't want to reinvent the wheel so I compromised. I changed the supports to allow what I had printed, then use the old support with some slight modifications.


I made some cross support that I could attach the old top part too. I wanted to make sure the cross parts were even so I inverted to the ball to check that it looked level; then cut up the attaching snap-in part so it could still spin. I painted the side of the clear fuselage to cover some of this part. I kept checking measurements to make sure it sat right when it was mounted in. This took some time to get right.


When I was sure of the fit, I painted it up. Now the cross piece was a glaring problem so after checking the pictures I made the round piece square with some styrene to resemble the box that sits just above the ball turret. This was painted black and you can see it below. I filed part of the cross piece thinner and painted it a bit to disguise the error.

20211121_141934.jpgpart 2.jpg20211121_171844.jpg

Finally I added the exterior ammo cans and oxygen tank. All together it came out ok. I still have some hoses and wiring to attach but it is enough for now.


I also spray painted the wings. Well I hope to get more done in the next coming weeks. Now I'm trying for the end of the year.

As always, thanks for following.

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Saturday, September 11, 2021 9:39 PM

At this point, I have printed all that I can for the ball turret. What I will do now is walk you through the process I go through when I am developing and printing a part. In this case the seat.

The first thing I do is research as much as possible the subject I want to make. I try to determine, to the best of my ability, the size of the part I need. This is not the actual size on the real thing but the size of what I will need that will work. In the case of the seat, I looked at several photos and tried to determine how wide and how high it is. I did this by measuring the door width on the model and what would be visible through the window. Then I started creating it in FreeCAD on the XY plain.

seat1.pngWhen all dimensional variables are solved, the drawing turns green as you can see above. From here I extrude the drawing giving it a third dimension.

seat2.pngI chose a surface on the now 3d seat to now create the back of the seat. The curve was made to match the circumference of the inside of the ball. The process for making a curved back part was to start with a curve then extrude alone a curved path instead of a straight one.

seat3.pngThe drawing for this path is perpendicular to the surface I'm drawing away from and is curved the match, again, the inner circumference of the ball... on the YZ plain.

seat4.pngThe result of the two drawings looks like this. Now with the drawing fully defined and extruded, its time to turn this file into an STL file.


For this part you can't just save the file as is. You have to export it into an STL file so that the slicing software can interpret it.

seat6.pngThe object must be fully highlighted as seen about before it can be saved as an STL file. Now I open a slicer program and figure out how best to situate the object in order for it to print properly.

seat7.pngSince there is nothing really fancy about this drawing I decide to print it as you see above and proceed to slice the object into something the printer can recognize.

seat8.pngThe printer has its own slicing software so I had to convert what I had to what my particular printer would recognize. I also wanted to add the trunnions at the same time. The total time to print is just over an hour.

seat9.pngThis is what it looks like after its been sliced. The file is then plugged into the printer and printing starts. Below is how it came out after it was cleaned up and set in the sun for a few hours to finish curing.

20210911_181516.jpgA test fit of the trunnions found that they fit well enough. Snug but not too tight. I'm still able to rotate the ball on the trunnions without too much interference.

20210911_122100.jpgI found that the seat was a little large. Still I can just sand it down to what I need.


I printed extra items just incase I break one or two. The parts are a little flimsy, and dare I say fiddly.

20210911_181428.jpgA couple of quick notes. I mentioned earlier about adding a special oil (PTFE) onto the film in the vat before adding the resin. I found that this same oil added to the surface of the print face helps to remove parts once printing is completed. Only like a drop spread over the entire plate surface... just a hint of oil. The light exposed resin still sticks but it seems easier for me to remove the part.

The other note is to remember that making a part to scale isn't always a good idea. Very thin resin parts are brittle.

I will be scratch building other fiddly bits inside the ball but for all intents and purposes the ball interior and immediate exterior is completed. I will need to scratch build the rest of the support system.

My goal is to try to finish this plane by 11 November. Not sure if I'll make it but I will try.

Thanks for following.

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Sunday, September 5, 2021 11:17 PM

Just drew up the trunnions.


Thanks for following.

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Tuesday, August 31, 2021 8:47 PM

Not enough time for details but a picture is worth a thousand words...


  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Sunday, August 29, 2021 1:25 PM

Finished the manual hand crank. I know its not perfect but it seems to look ok. Now for the trunnions.

turret progress 6.png

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Friday, August 27, 2021 5:43 AM

As I continue to work with this FreeCad, I'm slowly improving and figuring out shortcuts. Last night I spent the evening working on the traverse mechanism. It's crude but with some refinements it might come out ok. What do you guys think?

turret progress 5.jpg

I found that as long as an assembly is active, you can draw and buildup any flat surface in any plain.

Thanks for following.

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Monday, August 23, 2021 8:01 PM

The weekend brought challenges with this program. I tried to add a ridge along the inner edge as I had seen in photos of the ring. For some reason I haven't figured out, the drawing and the part would rotate 90 degrees from each other and I would have to either start over again or draw from a different angle. In the end I just drew from a different angle, extruded it then cut it to size. It came out ok. Of course someone well practiced with this program would have done much better but I like how it has come out so far.

turret progress 3.jpg

turret progress 4.jpg

Thanks for following.

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Monday, August 16, 2021 6:42 PM

Thanks for the tip although easier said than done since I don't have windows office on this laptop.

Spent the weekend trying to figure out how to add the supports. The program wouldn't let me do it in one shot so I had to create a new plane for each support before It came up with what I wanted. Now to cut off the lower part under the dome.

turret progress 1.jpgturret progress 2.jpgThanks for following.

  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: NYC, USA
Posted by waikong on Monday, August 9, 2021 11:14 AM
Thanks for the updates, I really like the work you are doing here. BTW, you can just hit the PrintScreen button in windows, that will do a whole desktop capture to your clipboard, and then you can just save it to share. Maybe easier than using your phone.

My website:


  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Monday, August 9, 2021 5:48 AM

Sorry for the delay. This part took awhile to figure out.

20210808_205118(1).jpgThe next part is adding the supports and gear mechanisms.

Thanks for following...


  • Member since
    July 2021
Posted by Flight Line Media on Sunday, July 18, 2021 1:23 PM
Truly amazing work! Having ridden on 909 before she went down, I appreciate seeing this level of detail replicated.


Follow us on Instagram: from.the.ariel.view

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Sunday, July 18, 2021 12:19 PM

I did some work during the week on the turret ring. After a lot of measuring and using a contour gauge, I came up with some measurements for the ring. Then I studied some videos to figure out how to make it. Here is what I've been able to achieve thus far.



First I determined the bottom shape then extruded it for the first part of the ring.


Then created the center portion.


Finally added the top ring. Now currently working on the dome and gear part. Thanks for following.


  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Wednesday, June 30, 2021 5:41 AM

Time to add some updates...

Assembled the landing gear, minus the brake lines and hydraulic lines, then assembled the wing halves together and sanded the rough spots. I still need to fill some voids. Once all the voids are filled and all blemishes fixed, I'll go ahead and do initial spray painting.



20210602_190743(1).jpgI decided not to go into too much detail in the landing gear bays because they will not be seen. This will be sitting on its wheels and not picked up and played with.

This will save me from some unnecessary work.




And now for something completely different...

I have finally gone through the process of creating and printing a part for the turret. My first problem was to figure out what to make and what to leave alone. Since only half the ball turret will be visible and only that part that sticks out from the bottom of the aircraft, I decided to leave the mechanism between the gun alone since it was already present and I didn't want to reinvent the wheel so to speak. So what I will make is the internal ammo drum, the ejection chutes from the guns to the bottom of the turret, the gunner's seat, and the support system holding the ball since what the model company made looks awful.

So I started with the ammo drum. FreeCad allows you to put the image of what you are drawing onto the work space so you can trace it if you want to. I tried this first but the drawing was not head on, it was at an angle. Still I had the basic shape.

Then I took lots of measurements to determine what would both fit on top of the guns and fit inside the space I was given inside the ball turret. Once I had this figured out I then added constrictions to each line and curve. Until the 2d drawing is 100% constricted, It will move and can not be made into a 3d model.

From there I gave the part a measured depth and added some depression features. It ended up looking like this... Granted it's not perfect but it was a major step forward.


Once the part was completely defined, I had to save it as an STL file. This is done by highlighting every surface and I mean every visible surface and saving it while all surfaces are highlighted. As an STL file, I then transferred it to Chitubox slicer program and sliced it.


Finally I brought it into the printer program and loaded it for printing. It came out real nice.


What was even better was the fit was perfect!





P1080893.JPGI've already started on the ring portion. More to update as I figure this stuff out but hopefully it won't take too long.

Thanks for following and if anyone wants a copy of the STL files I've created let me know.


  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Monday, May 31, 2021 10:57 AM

Got a bit more done this weekend. First I finished the channels for the oil coolers. Then I added some screening for something to see further toward the back.


20210528_143434(1).jpgThen added a cover to the channels.



20210530_140557(1).jpgI then went to work on the engines, finishing up the ignition wires and fuel lines. I didn't want to get too complicated with them.





Thanks for following.

  • Member since
    March 2012
  • From: Corpus Christi, Tx
Posted by mustang1989 on Wednesday, May 5, 2021 9:53 PM

There's alot of great detail in this build of yours. Lookin' good.



  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Monday, May 3, 2021 5:29 PM

Thank you everyone for your kind words.

I was able to accomplish a bit over the weekend. Just worked on the ignition harness or collar and the accompanying sparkplug wires.

First I trimmed the collar since it is not a single piece and attached to either side of the crank case.


Once I had both sides on, I took some very thin wire and bent them in half to a sharp angle.



To attach them, I swabbed the collar with insta-set for CA glue then dipped the folded end of my wires in glue and attached to the collar.


Thanks for following and for your well wishes. We are doing much better now... for the time being.


  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: NYC, USA
Posted by waikong on Wednesday, April 28, 2021 10:37 PM
Been following your amazing build since the beginning, including the 3d printing detour! So glad to hear both yor wife and daughter are well. Ans I know too well about time wasted on world of tanks. :)

My website:


  • Member since
    November 2020
  • From: Brunswick, Ohio
Posted by Buckeye2 on Tuesday, April 27, 2021 10:16 AM

Your attention to details and your modeling skills are top notch!Yes


  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Monday, April 26, 2021 8:25 PM

So while I was out and recovering I did a little work on the plane.  First I cut out the rear door for the tail gunner.  Then I worked on intake vents for oil coolers in the wings.



Finally I started on the engines and props.  Here is a picture of what I'll try to accomplish.

DSC_5453 B-17G N390TH Liberty Belle right front R-1820 engine l(1).jpg

I painted the engines and started working on the ingnition collar.  I needed to get the general circumference but I will cut them down to fit properly.  I know the collar is a little on the thick side.  I may try to find something smaller but if not I'll use what is at hand.


finished up this session by painting the props.  Hope you like.  Since this plane will be sitting on a shelf for show I don't see the need to deck out the land gear bay.  I'll leave it as originally designed since it will not be seen.


Thanks for following.

  • Member since
    August 2019
Posted by Night Fighter on Tuesday, April 20, 2021 5:49 AM

Hello all, just a quick update.  Wife is doing well now and daughter has been given a clean bill of health.  My turn, I had nose surgery and am recovering.  Funny how on the day I was to have my splints removed, the doctor was involved in an auto accident.  Like go figure.


Anyway, I did start up on modeling again only this time on a separate area to give the interior a break.  I'll post some pictures a little later this week.  Thanks for all the kind words and your prayers.  It is much appreciated.


PS...  yea sorry about that fire extinguisher, you know how hard it is to fill those things?  :)

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: New Braunfels, Texas
Posted by Tanker-Builder on Sunday, February 28, 2021 7:28 AM

Here's an LOL on you!

 Look at the picture of your very finely done Fire extinguisher! Where it's lying is a stain on the paper. With the item in that proximity it looks like it is spewing some contents! If you have no objections I send my prayers in the right direction for the Wife and Daughter! 

 This is indeed when life is hard! But, I see it hasn't totally ruined your creativity. Love the Horse too!


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