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The X-Files Group Build

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GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Saturday, December 30, 2023 7:31 AM

DFW T.28 Floh

The DFW T28 Floh (Flea) was an early biplane fighter designed for use by the German Empire. To get an edge over then current monoplane fighters, the T28 was designed with aerodynamics and speed in mind. The result was an aircraft that looked straight out of a cartoon. Despite its appearance, the aircraft performed well during testing, maxing out at 112mph (180 km/h). Although its speed was good, its large body and the placement of the wings reduced visibility for the pilot, making landings with the craft difficult. This was enough for officials to decline production of the type despite its respectable top speed.

In mid 1915, a new head engineer, Dipl-Ing (Engineer) Hermann Dorner was appointed at DFW.   Dorner had speed in mind with his fighter design.  Work began on a prototype of Dorner’s fighter in late 1915 at DFW’s facility in Lubeck-Travemunde.  The construction of the aircraft, now known as the DFW T28 Floh, was supervised by Theo Rockenfeller at the plant. The final T28 looked like it flew straight out of a cartoon, possessing a very tall fuselage with small wings. This proportional difference made the aircraft appear more like a caricature than a combat aircraft of the time period.

Despite its design, the aircraft was still designed for speed, and would have a 100hp (74.5kW) Mercedes D I engine, which was completely enclosed in the fuselage. Armament would be a single machine gun mounted in front of the pilot. The T28 would take flight shortly after its construction, but the exact date is unknown. The design choices of the aircraft to make it fly faster worked well, as it was able to achieve a top speed of 112 mph (180 km/h), which was extremely impressive for the time period. However, its design wasn’t perfect and the choices made to improve speed negatively affected other aspects of the aircraft, in particular, its landing characteristics. The tall profile of the craft, the location of the upper wing, and the placement of the pilot’s position, gave him a superb view above the plane but was severely restricted frontally and below. The prototype Floh would be damaged due to this reason upon landing on its first flight, due to the pilot misjudging his height, as well as having a fast landing speed. This issue also affected takeoff, as the high placement of the pilot required him to stand up during taxiing to see. The design was reworked a few times after its first flight, mainly with improving the tail surfaces.

Despite achieving the speed Dorner wanted, the military officials showed little interest in the design, with some sources citing that it was just too fast for the military. Further work on the aircraft was stopped after this. Exactly what happened to the aircraft after being declined for production is unknown, whether it was simply scrapped or if it was continually used at DFW’s facilities for training and testing are possible theories. Many prototype German aircraft of the First World War would go on to serve as trainers for their various companies once production declined.

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Saturday, December 30, 2023 7:34 AM

Work has kinda slowed down due to the holidays and cold weather making it difficult to finish painting.  Weather affecting aircraft!  Who would have thunk? Wink

Gary

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Thursday, January 4, 2024 1:34 AM

Managed to get a primer coat of Mr. Surfacer 1000 on the D-558-2. After a bit of filling and sanding, she's ready for a first coat.  Then the interior and canopy.

The Bf-109 is a Tamiya F4/7 Tropical I'm finishing up (which has nothing to do with this GB).

Thanks for looking!

Gary

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Thursday, January 4, 2024 5:02 PM

Looks good Gary! Always good to see something ready for paint. 

 

If they're flying in formation not sure the Bf-109 is going to be able to keep up... 

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

 

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Tuesday, January 9, 2024 11:53 AM

I've managed to get the first coat on the D-558-2, though it will need a second coat.  Work on the pit is progressing, and I'll gussy it up a bit before gluing the canopy on.  I'm attempting to make a pilot for the aircraft, though it's very crude (but you'll probably not be able to see much after the hatch is closed.

Weather has been kinda miserable for the first part of January, which has slowed progress.  Maybe it will improve later this week.

Gary

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Thursday, January 11, 2024 12:28 PM

That looks perfect to me. I hate painting white since of course it won't cover anything. Looks dang good to me Gary. Yes

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

 

  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: Northern California
Posted by jeaton01 on Thursday, January 11, 2024 1:00 PM

I used to hate painting white, I remember building the two Revell D 558 kits many years ago and also a 1/72 Yak UT-1 and putting on about six layers of MM Gloss White and (not) waiting long enough for each coat to dry.  What I do now is use flat white, regardless of the ultimate gloss/matt final finish, and either let a clear gloss overcoat bring up the shine, or just put a final thin layer of gloss white on over the top of the flat white if no clear coat is to be used, sometimes a good thing if there is a concern of the gloss yellowing over time.

John

To see build logs for my models:  http://goldeneramodel.com/mymodels/mymodels.html

 

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Thursday, January 11, 2024 3:09 PM

It helped that the model was in white plastic to start.  Spraying it with Mr. Surfacer 1000 helped even it out (though it was grey).  A few more details and I intend to give it a second coat of flat white paint.  Gloss White I find tends to be more of a mess than I like to deal with.

Gary

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Thursday, January 11, 2024 3:19 PM

Very true! I generally use a couple coats of white primer and then flat white. I ended up stumbling on this though a lot of expermentation. I wish you guys had been around to tell me all this back then! Wink

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

 

  • Member since
    April 2003
  • From: USA
Posted by keavdog on Friday, January 12, 2024 8:23 PM

4,520 miles per hour - still holds the record.  The build is under way

Thanks,

John

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Friday, January 12, 2024 10:26 PM

Nice work, she's coming along great! 

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

 

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Friday, January 12, 2024 11:48 PM

That's neat, John!  Are you going to paint it as the later version with the white coating?

Gary

  • Member since
    April 2003
  • From: USA
Posted by keavdog on Saturday, January 13, 2024 9:32 AM

Thanks.  I'm doing her black - wicked looking.  With the silver tanks like this pic but in flight

Thanks,

John

  • Member since
    November 2003
  • From: Nashville, TN area
Posted by bobbaily on Saturday, January 13, 2024 5:35 PM

Gary-the white looks good-funny how white is so hard to get 'right'.

 John-love the X-15...it looks fast sitting still.

The Olds Aerotech is still sitting in the box waiting for me to paint the small parts and do some assembly....hoping to get motived next week since the weather looks like 'stay at home' weather....

Bob

 

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Wednesday, January 17, 2024 10:43 AM

Bob,

Thanks!  Things are going slowly.  I managed to put the hatch on today, which means more puttying and sanding.  Then we can worry about the second coat.

You're right about the "stay at home" weather!  Dipped into the single digits last night!

Gary

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Wednesday, January 17, 2024 10:53 AM

Nakajima G10N Fugaku (Mount Fuji)

The Nakajima G10N was a planned Japanese ultra-long-range heavy bomber designed during World War II. It was conceived as a method for mounting aerial attacks from Japan against industrial targets along the west coast (e.g., San Francisco) and in the Midwest (e.g., Detroit, Milwaukee, Chicago, and Wichita) and the northeast (e.g., New York City and Norfolk) of the United States. Japan's worsening war situation resulted in the project's cancellation in 1944 and no prototype was ever built.

The Fugaku had its origins in "Project Z (bomber project)", a 1942 Imperial Japanese Army specification for an intercontinental bomber which could take off from the Kuril Islands, bomb the continental United States, then continue onward to land in German-occupied France. Once there, it would be refueled and rearmed and make another return sortie.

Project Z called for three variations on the airframe: heavy bomber, transport (capable of carrying 300 troops), and a gunship armed with forty downward-firing machine guns in the fuselage for intense ground attacks at the rate of 640 rounds per second (i.e. 38,400 rounds per minute).

The project was conceived by Nakajima Aircraft Company head Chikuhei Nakajima. The design had straight wings and contra-rotating four-blade propellers. To save weight, some of the landing gear was to be jettisoned after takeoff (being unnecessary on landing with emptied bomb load), as had been planned on some of the more developed German Amerika Bomber competing designs. It used six engines, as with the later Amerikabomber design competitors, to compensate for nearly all German aircraft engines being limited to 1,500 kW (2,000 hp) maximum output levels apiece.

Development was initiated in January 1943 and a design and manufacturing facility built in Mitaka, Tokyo. Nakajima's 4-row 36-cylinder 5,000 hp Ha-54 (Ha-505) engine was abandoned as too complex.

Project Z was cancelled in July 1944, and the Fugaku was never built.

 

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Wednesday, January 17, 2024 8:49 PM

keavdog

Thanks.  I'm doing her black - wicked looking.  With the silver tanks like this pic but in flight

 

Very cool. I love that look for the X-15... 

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

 

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Wednesday, January 17, 2024 8:56 PM

Gary: Thanks! Still haven't started the kit though... Embarrassed

 

However I did pretty much finish up painting the FV2005 and a bit out of order put the wheels on over the weekend. I looked around the internet and couldn't find any British Centurion tank from the same time period with much of any markings. So it looks like I'm going with simple bronze green here. Painting the tools now, hopefully I'll have them on this weekend and ready to put down another gloss coat for the washes.

Only real problem is the spade on the back of the thing is crooked. I've tried bending and flexing it but it won't stay straight. Instead of ripping it off and trying to re-cement it a little straighter I'm thinking of just mounting the thing to the base with the spade already dug into the earth.

  

 

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

 

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Thursday, January 18, 2024 7:00 AM

The FV2005 is looking good!  Sorry about the spade.  I think whatever you come up with will be okay.  Smile

As to camo, since it was a prototype, I doubt anyone worried about that.  What were British tanks painted in that period?  If you want a "What If" scheme, I'd go with that.

Gary

PS> Being curious, I looked up British camo schemes from the Korean War (being the most likely conflict it would have engaged in).  Not much variation there.  Seems olive drab was the most common.  Maybe you'll have better luck finding something.

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Thursday, January 18, 2024 8:02 AM

X-62 / NF-16D

The General Dynamics X-62 VISTA ("Variable Stability In-flight Simulator Test Aircraft") is an experimental aircraft, derived from the F-16D Fighting Falcon, which was modified as a joint venture between General Dynamics and Calspan for use by the United States Air Force (USAF). Originally designated NF-16D, the aircraft was redesignated X-62A on 14 June 2021 as part of an upgrade to a Skyborg, with System for Autonomous Control of Simulation (SACS).

The NF-16D VISTA testbed aircraft incorporated a multi-axis thrust vectoring (MATV) engine nozzle that provides for more active control of the aircraft in a post-stall situation. As a result, the aircraft is super maneuverable, retaining pitch and yaw control at angles of attack beyond which the traditional control surfaces cannot change attitude.

The NF-16D VISTA is a Block 30 F-16D based on the airframe design of the Israeli Air Force version, which incorporates a dorsal fairing running the length of the fuselage aft of the canopy and a heavyweight landing gear derived from the Block 40 F-16C/D. The fairing houses most of the variable-stability equipment and test instrumentation. The heavyweight gear permits simulation of aircraft with higher landing sink rates than a standard F-16.

The program was notable for the development of Direct Voice Input and the "Virtual HUD", which were both eventually to be incorporated into the cockpit design for the F-35 Lightning II.

The VISTA aircraft is now operated by the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School and maintained by Calspan at Edwards Air Force Base. It is regularly used in student curriculum sorties, special academic projects, and flight research. As of 14 June 2021 VISTA is in the midst of upgrading. In addition to replacing the VISTA Simulation System (VSS) with a newer, upgraded version of the same system, a System for Autonomous Control of Simulation (SACS) will be added in order to operate X-62A as a Skyborg. One application is as autonomously piloted aircraft, perhaps as robotic wingman to a manned aircraft.

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Thursday, January 18, 2024 6:30 PM

Gary: Looks like she's gonna be just plain jane Bronze Green. Yeah, I looked though some Korean War British armour too and it all seems mostly just green. No big deal, I've painted enough US and Soviet/Russian tanks just plain boring green too. 

Cool NF-16D! I kinda wish the USAF had built the F-16XL with the cranked delta wing. The F-16 with the delta wing looks just plain badass. But it seems that despite increasing the range about 50% without any drop tanks it ruined the plane's handling...

 

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

 

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Thursday, January 18, 2024 7:43 PM

I like the F-16XL.  Too bad no one choose it as a model to build.  Sad

As for the X-62A, Hasegawa is releasing a model this month, so I was prompted to include a write up on it.  Some interesting systems being tried out.

Gary

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Thursday, January 25, 2024 10:57 AM

Works been kinda slow on the D-558-2.  I've closed her up and started detailing (what there is).  Weather is holding me up.  Meanwhile, I've been keeping busy on other things (such as an old ESCI / Italeri F-86 E/F) that's also ready for paint. 

I'm ready for winter to be over!

Gary

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Thursday, January 25, 2024 11:01 AM

1956 General Motors Firebird II

The Firebird II was one of a quartet of prototype cars that General Motors (GM) engineered for the 1953, 1956, and 1959 Motorama auto shows. The cars' designers, headed by Harley Earl, took Earl's inspiration from the innovations in fighter aircraft design at the time. General Motors never intended the cars for production, but rather to showcase the extremes in technology and design that the company was able to achieve.

General Motors researched the feasibility of gas turbine engines in cars as early as the 1940s. It was not until the early 1950s that the company began building an actual engine, under the direction of Charles L. McCuen, general manager of General Motors Research Laboratories, with Emmett Conklin leading the project.

As these concept cars were not specifically tied to any one division of GM, the Firebird I, II, and III were adorned with the logo of the General Motors Air Transport Section (GMATS).

The second of the concept cars, the Firebird II of 1956, was designed as a four-seat, family car. It had a low and wide design with two large air intakes at the front, a high bubble canopy top, and a vertical tail fin. Its exterior bodywork is made entirely of titanium. The engine output is 200 hp (150 kW). To solve the exhaust heat problem, the car feeds the exhaust through a regenerative system, allowing the engine to operate nearly 1,000 °F (538 °C) cooler, and also powers the accessories. Capable of using different types of fuel, the most common is Kerosene.

The concept car was also the first use by General Motors of disc brakes on all four wheels, along with a fully independent suspension. It also featured a non-operational guidance system intended for use with "the highway of the future," where an electrical wire embedded in the roadway would send signals that would help guide cars and avoid accidents.

GM preserved the prototype cars at the GM Heritage Center in Sterling Heights, Michigan. Models of the cars are in the permanent collection of the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, and the cars still make regular appearances at car shows.

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Friday, January 26, 2024 11:18 PM

Gary: She looks good! 

And I agree, I like winter up to Christmas and then I'm ready for spring... 

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

 

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Sunday, January 28, 2024 10:06 PM

Thanks, Gamera!  Not the most accurate model, however.

Well, the painting is done.  I've applied a coating of Future over her to prepare for decals.  Unfortunately, due to the age of the decals, I wanted to test whether they would stay together while applying.  The first shattered into a thousand pieces while sitting in the water bowl!  I guess that answers my question.

Now, I don't think spraying them with decal bonder would work.  They are just too old.  I've made a copy of them on the scanner, but lately my printer has been producing fuzzy images and I don't know what the problem is, so printing a new set might be out of the question.  I'll try, but don't hold out much hope.

My best bet is to try to source some new decals, lettering and stars and bars.  I've seen some that should work and I may end up ordering some.  Until then, I'll hold off on further work on the D-558-2, at least for a couple of weeks.  We'll see about starting something new.

Gary

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Monday, January 29, 2024 9:55 AM

The decal printing went better than I had hoped!

I guess I'll let them dry and then give them a coating of decal bonder to help stabilize the ink.  Maybe I'll get the D-558-2 finished sooner than I thought!  Feeling happy now.

Gary

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Monday, January 29, 2024 10:15 AM

MBT-70 / Kampfpanzer 70

By the early 1960s, with the Cold War now well into its second decade, Western intelligence learned the Soviets were preparing a vastly improved version of their T-62 main battle tank with upgraded armor, three-man crew and an autoloading main gun. The American and West German armies faced exactly the same threat in exactly the same theater of operation. As a result, the American and West German armies both needed a heavy tank that could move fast, fire a very large round and withstand as much as it could dish out.

But at the time, the U.S. defense planners concluded what was needed was a tank so advanced that it would keep us ahead of the Russians for a full generation, not just a couple years. American Defense Secretary Robert McNamara decided to do something no one had ever tried before or since; he got the West Germans to agree to jointly develop this “super-tank” with the United States. The program was to be called the Main Battle Tank 70 or MBT-70.

Today, many weapon systems are developed as part of a cooperative effort by two or more allied countries. But for some reason, nobody ever tries to jointly develop tanks. Nobody really knows why, although the MBT-70 experience might provide a clue.

There was one very good reason to think that the MBT-70 project might work. Initially, both parties saw eye to eye on the new tank’s basic design parameters; a primary one being that it should have a much lower silhouette than the current M60, which was several feet higher than the tallest Russian tank. Instead of having the crew stations inside the hull, as was usually the case, they were being put inside the MBT-70’s oversized turret, which would be protected against nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) threats. This also made it easier to work out the tank’s armor layout, which they agreed should consist of two spaced layers; an outer layer made of thick, hard, cold-rolled steel and an inner layer made of “soft’ steel that would also protect against “spalling,” or interior fragmentation of the armor.

They also agreed to employ an advanced and complex hydro-pneumatic suspension system enabling it to travel cross-country at high speeds, despite its projected fifty-ton weight. The suspension would also be capable of being raised or lowered by the driver so that the tank could “crouch down” to only four inches off the ground when stationary or be raised up to a full twenty-eight inches when running cross-country.

But after that, there were disagreements. They differed on major elements like the main gun and engine, and even whether the design should use metric or SAE measurements. On this latter issue, they ultimately agreed to use both, which did nothing to contain the rising costs of the tank.

Instead of settling on one gun, they decided to both go with what they wanted, again causing the costs to skyrocket. The Germans chose a relatively simple, auto-loading, 120 mm Rheinmetall gun, while the Americans insisted on using the much more complex XM150 auto-loading, stabilized, laser rangefinder-equipped 152mm gun/launcher system, which, besides using an extensive variety of conventional tank rounds, could also fire the Shillelagh anti-tank missile.

The problem was, the American gun/launcher system never really worked. Variants of the system equipped the M551 Sheridan light reconnaissance vehicle and M60A1E2 tanks, but there were problems with the caseless 152 mm gun rounds, the overly complex Shillelagh missile, and the fire control and stabilization system. The extent of the problems with the M60A1E2 was such that most of the turrets were scrapped and the hulls re-equipped with turrets mounting conventional 105 mm cannon.

When the prototypes were built and testing started in 1968, both German and American contingents were pleased with the tank’s mobility. The German 120 mm gun also proved excellent, but the American XM150 continued to be problematic. As testing continued, they realized they had another big problem. Because the driver would be located inside a turret that would be rotating in battle, the tank’s designers had come up with the solution of mounting the driver inside his own contra-rotating cupola within the turret. Regardless of the direction the turret was facing, the cupola would automatically face forward. The drivers, however, accustomed to being located in a stationary position at the front of a tank’s hull, were becoming disoriented and suffering from motion sickness.

In the end, that was just one problem of several. So many leading-edge technologies incorporated into the tank’s design, from the hydro-pneumatic suspension, laser rangefinder, ballistic computer and night vision system to the remotely-operated 20 mm anti-aircraft cannon and the 152 mm gun/launcher, meant there were problems making these new and complex systems work, and costs rose.

They rose to roughly a million dollars a tank, five times the original estimated cost. By 1969, the Germans had pulled out of the program in favor of developing their own Leopard 2. Congress was also fed up.  The Army tried placating them with a lower-cost system based on the same design, the XM803, but what they ended up with was an expensive version of the original M60. Congress cancelled the program at the end of 1971, and the Army plunged the remaining funds into development of what became the M1 Abrams the very next month.

The MBT-70 project was a massive failure, but many of the technologies that emerged from it were later perfected and employed in the M1 Abrams and West Germany’s subsequent Leopard II tank. A variant of the Germans’ 120 mm main gun, for example, equips the M1A1 and M1A2 Abrams today.

  • Member since
    November 2003
  • From: Nashville, TN area
Posted by bobbaily on Monday, January 29, 2024 4:46 PM

Gary-nice save on the decals-I need to research and try coping & making decals-I've had one too many explode in the water.

And the Sky Rocket is coming along nicely.

Hope to get back to the Aerotech this weekend.

Bob

 

GAF
  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Monday, January 29, 2024 10:20 PM

Thanks, Bob!  Decal printing is not so hard once you get it down.  A good decal paper, and an okay printer makes a world of difference!

Looking forward to seeing the Aerotech!

Gary

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