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1/48 Tamiya F-4B, USMC VMFA-323 2258 WIP (MER mounting issues resolved)

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  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Monday, September 12, 2022 7:31 PM

Finally got the landing gear assemblies and doors all attached.

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    April 2003
  • From: USA
Posted by keavdog on Monday, September 12, 2022 9:22 PM

Looking good.  Death Rattlers are/were stationed at MCAS Miramar (where I used to live).  I've been thinking about doing an F-18 in their markings.

Looks like you're on the home stretch.

Thanks,

John

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Tuesday, September 13, 2022 5:59 AM

Thanks for looking in, John!

Yup...getting closer.  Next up is putting on all of the "things under wings".  Giving this one an air-to-ground loadout.  Also have an Eduard vertical stab without ECM gear on the cap, since its a pre-1968 Phantom.

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    January 2020
  • From: Maryland
Posted by wpwar11 on Tuesday, September 13, 2022 7:27 AM

I have this and the and one of the Zoukei-Mura Phantoms.  I'm sure the Tamiya is better for fit and engineering.   Have you built one of the ZM Phantoms?  It's looking really nice.  

  • Member since
    May 2013
  • From: Indiana, USA
Posted by Greg on Tuesday, September 13, 2022 7:41 AM

Good-looking Phantom. Yes

-Greg

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Tuesday, September 13, 2022 8:17 AM

wpwar11

I have this and the and one of the Zoukei-Mura Phantoms.  I'm sure the Tamiya is better for fit and engineering.   Have you built one of the ZM Phantoms?  It's looking really nice.  

 
Thanks Paul!  Haven't built one of the Zoukei-Mura Phantoms yet, but its hard to imagine anything better than this Tamiya Phantom.  I think the landing gear is one of this one's stand-out features.  The gear and all of the doors are designed to quickly and easily snap right into place AFTER the majority of the model is assembled and painted.  No messing around with masking around everything, and no brain damage coming up with ways to reliably attach the doors and actuators.
 
Thanks for looking in, Greg!

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Sunday, September 18, 2022 4:59 PM

Got the centerline tank built and installed.  I cut off the molded-in mounting pins, drilled the area underneath them with a 1mm drill, and glued in some 1mm brass rod.  The whole thing slipped snugly into the 1mm brass bearings I glued inside the fuselage.  Nice clean, tight fit, with no further gluing needed.  The tank can be removed and reinstalled at will.  I love it when a plan comes together.  Pirate

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Sunday, November 6, 2022 3:41 PM

Finally figured out all of the components I had to graft together to mount a TER and 2 LAU-3/As on the inner pylons.  The pylon itself is from the kit, but the kit LAU-7 missile rails were of course meant to have AIM-9s loaded on them, which I wasn't going to be doing.  So, I found some great resin LAU-7 rails from Phase Hangar, and grafted those to the adapter brackets from the kit that I had carefully removed the kit rails from.  So now I have fully-detailed missile rails that look like empty missile rails.

The TERs are Eduard Brassin which went together pretty easily.  The trick was figuring out how to mount them on the kit pylon, which I did by drilling holes in the pylon that were the diameter of the diagonal dimension of the Brassin suspension lugs.  Then it was just press fit with a little Gorilla super glue.

The LAU-3/As?  Those were a real head-scratcher.  Simple enough assembly, but the front and rear are separate pieces.  The front piece was easy, since it sits in a recessed cup at the front of the tube.  The back piece was major brain damage, because I was going to be mating two flat surfaces, that had to first have casting blocks cut away.  Burned the first 2 sets, because those mating surfaces were anything but flat and square after cutting and sanding them.  So, I got 2 more sets, and fabricated a couple different sanding jigs made of 2024T3 aluminum, and let my little Micromark powered sanding tool do the precision work.  My jewelers saw played the role of the stone axe to do the brute force work beforehand to remove the casting blocks.  SUCCESS!  Completely square, flat, and flush joints!  Then they were mounted by cutting off the molded-on suspension lugs, drilling those stumps with 0.4mm holes (made corresponding holes in the mounting points on the TER) and then glued some 0.3mm copper beams into the LAU-3s.  Press fit and glued those onto the TERs and that was done.

Decaling all of the individual components took a long time to get right, but overall, that went well.  I think there were over 30 decals involved.  Did the corrogard leading edges on the front of the pylon too.

A couple of pics:

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Sunday, December 18, 2022 4:05 PM

This is where I ran into my latest issue with trying to hang air-to-ground ordnance on this thing.  Used 0.5 mm brass rod bent at the correct 13.5 degrees to simulate the angled MER installation that Navy and Marine Corps Phantoms had.  Everything went well, except for the forward rod on this one.  The glue had already cured on it before this photo showed that the bend is standing off the bottom of the pylon by a tiny bit.  Tried to correct it by using super glue debonder...but ended up melting parts of the plastic instead.  Got another sprue coming so I can re-do it.

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Saturday, January 14, 2023 1:39 PM

Got my replacement sprue for the outboard wing pylons, along with a new set of MERs.  Everything is all painted, decaled, and temporarily put together.  The MERs angle outward, per the Navy/Marine Corps solution.  I have 0.3mm holes drilled in the MERs on the stations I'll be hanging the Mk 77s on.  Just have to build the Mk. 77s next.  I'm making a square tube sanding jig for those out of 0.025" aluminum, so the leftover resin casting blocks can be removed the rest of the way by sanding, and the ends will stay flat and true instead of rounded and uneven like they tend to get with hand sanding.

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

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