Category Archives: Plastic Models

Tamiya Porsche 911 GT1 kit: imperfections and repairs -Still Under Development!


Lets review: Tamiya’s 1996 Porsche 911 GT1 kit is mostly accurate, and concisely engineered. The 2 sides of the transmission each represent 6 or 7 pieces from the actual car, and the top and final drive piece also includes the rear suspension bulkhead, six space-frame tubes, rear suspension rocker bases and two adjustment knobs for the external shock absorber reservoirs.

But a few of the things provided aren’t quite what you see in pictures of the real thing. And a number of things in the pictures aren’t in the kit. In describing the kit I touched on The cooling air ducts for the rear brakes, and the breather catch tank.

Rear Brakes Cooling Air Scoops and Ducts:

The back of the scoop and ducts need to be made or bought. They should look like

naked .jpg URL: Displays image in moderate size, click takes one through to it. Maybe add height and width, or just one as part of this?

Link to a jpg URL: Displays the URL, not the thing the URL points to. Not worth it.
https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/images/car/3174/Porsche-911-GT1-48904.jpg

Image of a jpg URL: Displays a really large image, click does NOT link through. Big, but not worth it.
48904.jpg

naked .HTML URL: Doesn’t display image. Can be clicked through.
https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-48904.html

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-124487.html

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-124486.html124486

Catch Tank:

The catch tank can be re-worked to fix the shape problem. So lets start with what can be fixed or re-worked. Then the missing bits that need to made or found.

The catch tank should look like this: Rectangular. Top 2 pictures.

detail 2

Porsche Rohr 1996 911 GT1 
DSC_0133//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

If you haven’t seen Renaissance Model’s reference pages you’re in for a treat:

RM galerie de details:
https://www.renaissance-models.com/galerie_de_details.htm

RM Front Page:
https://www.renaissance-models.com/francais.htm

The front page is French/English, deeper in, French only.

Brake Disks
The carbon brake disks (380 mm diameter 37mm thick) are ventilated, by
round holes on straight radial lines. Rotating cutter? Formed by tooling? They follow a two-holes, space, one hole, space, two-holes pattern. My guess, 10 sets of 3.

In a picture showing < 180 degrees I count 14 holes. 2 X 14 = 28, but 28/3 is 9 1/3, not an even pattern. Symmetry around the disk seems likely to be important. The smallest number greater than 28 that is evenly divisible by 3 is 30.

007_00_GT1_left_rear_corner_D13a_john_sinkgraven_crop_holeCount//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Think of the 1 hole-space-2 holes-space pattern as 5 points, 3 of which are holes, 2 of which are not. 0-00- so the disc goes: 0-00-0-00-0-00-…If 10 sets of 3 holes, is right, 360 degrees/50 points = 7.2 degrees/point. 5 points = 36 degrees, 360/10.

Brembo’s web site:

https://www.brembo.com/en/company/news/formula-1-vs-lemans-2018

https://www.brembo.com/en/company/news/formula-1-vs-lemans-2018

lists 36 as the minimum number of cooling holes for GT1 brakes, in 2018.

Robert Muschitz’s marvelous photo:

Robert M again:

Porsche GT1//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Brake disk calipers.
Brake disk calipers should have open backs, through which the pads should be seen. The kit parts have closed backs, but can be filed down to shape to expose the disk, and the pads, same radius. Mind you file for a curve.

A cardboard template from the rest of the disc would help. A brass-colored brace connects the two halves, at the back. Something to make, but not much. Stretched parts-tree polystyrene, metal wire, or mechanical pencil “lead” will suffice. Two “U” shaped wire bails cross the gap behind the pads and across the disk. Small steel wire, mini staples?

The wheels cover this area, but if you want to back off a wheel (or more) for an informal pose, some time on the backs of the calipers will be rewarded.

This should be a link:
<a href="http://Frame Grab from Callas RennSport Rohr Yellow Car front brake_caliper//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js” target=”_blank”>Frame Grab from Callas RennSport Rohr yellow car front brake caliper” https://www.flickr.com/photos/wbaiv/50231600796/

This should be an image but not a link

This should also be an image but not a link
The real thing:
fd7cc8...

Cold air to turbo inlet pipes.
Tamiya provide part A32, connected to the roof air scoop, with left and right takeoffs going to the turbo-compressors and the center going down through the air to air inter-cooler. Unfortunately, the two turbo-bound pipes on Tamiya’s part have a flat bottom, simplifying the mold, but changing the cross section of the pipe. Straight lines that should be curves are eye-catching.

Tamiya Porsche 911 GT1 filing & cleanup. Front of engine, serpentine belt, turbos, waste gates and air ducts,//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

These photos show how it should look.

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-48904.html

48904

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-48905.html

48905

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-48906.html

48906

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-604.html

48904

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-124486.html

48904

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-14936.html

12436

flickr pix

https://i0.wp.com/farm6.staticflickr.com/5178/5418668794_fd7cc82416_b.jpg

Emphasize Division Between The Left and Right Inter-cooler Outputs.
Tamiya supply a single piece for both intercoolers, the ducts that take their outputs to the sides and the plenum “log”s that feed the throttle and injector for each cylinder. The division between the ducts on the two sides aren’t as clear as photos suggest:

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-603.html

603

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-14936.html

603

Remove One or Both Pairs Of Shock Reservoirs.
Tamiya provides a pair of shock reservoirs attached to the sides of the final drive. And a second pair attached atop the rear anti-roll bar housing. One place or the other was common for different cars at different times. Some shock reservoirs are seen attached to the diagonal tubes from the top of the transmission to the rear suspension bulkhead.

Other cars, other times, reservoirs are on top of the final drive housing, or on either side of the back end of the transmission. Or asymmetrically disposed somewhere across two of the places listed. There is clearly the potential for a table showing where the reservoirs were and whether gray metallic painted reservoirs and shock bodies, or red metallic paint painted sets were used. And what color for the springs. Indexed by chassis number and markings. More opportunities to excel!

GT1 109, gray metallic, reservoirs on diagonal tubes. Metallic / stainless braid hoses and banjo fittings. Glossy black springs. Glossy black three-bolt top of the spring. Black-red-black lower end stop.

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-14936.html

14936

GT1 104 Gray metallic, reservoirs on either side of the final drive. Aluminum colored cloth heat reflective wrap on hoses. Glossy, slightly darker red springs. Blue anodize banjo fittings. Black + silver / gold metallic three-bolt top of the spring. Red, Red, Black lower end stop.

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-124483.html

14936

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-124484.html

14936

GT1 101 Red metallic, reservoirs on carrier at back edge of final drive. Metallic braided hose or braid-like cloth.Semi-gloss black spring. White (silver) metallic banjo fittings. Dark Gray / Gray Blue on cone-shaped top of spring .

https://www.ultimatecarpage.com/img/Porsche-911-GT1-48904.html<img

14936

GT1 117 Red metallic, reservoirs at back edge transmission. Black rubber/vinyl hoses. Glossy dark red spring. White (silver) metallic banjo fittings. Dark Gray / Gray Blue anodize on cone-shaped top of spring. Black-black-black lower end stop.

2349/1997-Porsche-911-GT1-2.jpg

web post: Tamiya’s 1/24 Porsche 911 GT1 (993, 1996) kit described. #24186


This is the same text as a page I just constructed, but will be more easily found this way. Still figuring out how to format long form information.

Tamiya’s Porsche 911 GT1 represents the first year, 1996, factory racing cars that finished 1st and 2nd in the GT1 class, at Le Mans. This excellent debut was slightly bittersweet, the overall winner was a Porsche, but the previous generation, the 1995 World Sportscar Championship Prototype that Porsche had developed with Tom Walkinshaw Racing. but hadn’t raced. Long term Porsche customer Joest Racing borrowed the Prototype from the Porsche Museum, used the 962 engines they were familiar with, and beat the factory team! They would repeat this performance in 1997 as well.

Still, the 1996 GT1s did finish better than the McLaren F1s and every other manufacturer, as they were designed to do. Toyota, Nissan, Lister and Chrysler/Dodge GT1 efforts all came to naught, Mercedes Benz followed Porsche’s lead and produced purpose-built racing cars justified by a single streetable example. Porsche responded in kind, the factory team winning Le Mans overall in 1998 with their GT1 motor in a carbon-fiber Mk II chassis, while Mercedes Benz won most of the races other than Le Mans. The GT1 class was discontinued.

23 street versions of the 911 GT1 were built and sold to civilians, and apparently two of the customer racing cars were made street legal during recent restorations. So the idea of a road car that could compete at Le Mans wasn’t completely wrong.

Tamiya’s kit is molded in white, black and “chromed”, with an extensive decal sheet for the exuberant Mobil 1 sponsorship markings. Besides the 1996 factory Le Mans cars 002 and 003, and the bare carbon-fiber test mule 001, it can be marked as all but one of the customer racing cars, which were delivered with the first year bodywork. Only the last customer car was built with the 1997 “Evo” body, though most (but not all) were later converted for better aerodynamics.  “Evo”s can be recognized by their 911 (996) / Boxter common form headlight and turn signal assemblies. The Rohr team were notably successful with their round-headlight GT1 in yellow, as were the G-Force / Blue Coral team with their dark blue with black and yellow trim on chassis 101. Chassis 101 was originally in dayglo red and white, for cigarette sponsorship. Chassis 104 enjoys Larbre Compétition‘s busy FATurbo markings with round headlamps.

The kit has 21 construction steps, the first 9 for the engine, transmission and rear suspension, with 45 parts and 2 decals. 5 more steps (11-14 and 16), cover all 22 parts of the interior / driver’s compartment, except the 6 of the roof duct, body shell and clear parts.  Step 10 creates the front suspension, mounted on the front carbon fiber undertray. Along with the interior, step 11 crosses the length of the underside of the car, includes fixing the undertray and front suspension to the lower front chassis, adding radiator, nose air intake, and adding pivots for the engine cover.  Step 12 adds powertrain and rear suspension to the chassis, behind the firewall.  Step 15 is a pure play in paint and decals for the wheels, and slipping the tires on them. The last 5 steps, 17-21, build the body shell. A separate sheet shows how the Mobil 1 decals cover the body, most to be applied between steps 19 and 20. Other decals are applied in 9 other steps.

The decal sheet has 60 numbered images, and the kit has 132 parts, including a stretched part-tree radio antenna, 4 soft tires (with maker’s markings) and 4 soft-plastic “Poly caps” that pins molded inside the wheels plug into. Masks are provided to simplify painting the edges of the windshield and door windows semi-gloss black.

A clear body version was released later, but only front and rear body shells are clear, the aft edges of the front fenders, lower aft of the rear fenders, and rear fender air scoops are all white plastic. The roof scoop underside and single horizontal splitter are black plastic.

The crankcase, cylinders, and lower head, (intake and exhaust ports) are 2 pieces, split top and bottom, with reasonable molded-on top-of-engine coolant plumbing.  The transmission case is split left and right, with a third piece for the top of the case,  and final drive. Each bank of 3 cylinders has a separate cam box, intake and exhaust manifolds, exhaust and compressor turbines with restrictor air box, waste gate and bypass, exhaust tailpipe and tip, and compressed air pipe to the intercoolers. The two intercoolers and intake “logs” are a single piece shared by both sides, as is the air intake for the inter-coolers and turbo-compressors, and the engine front serpentine belt pulleys with oil and water header tank. The alternator, 3 piece oil tank and a mysterious small radiator behind the driver’s seat, complete the purely “engine” parts.

The talented part A34, the transmission top plate, concisely incorporates four space-frame “tubes” along a horizontal line, that link to horizontal “tubes” in the frame molded in relief on the back of the firewall.  They are really solid rods, but representing tubes on the real car. Indulge me. Another 2 tubes molded in the same part, carry the space frame back to the top of the transmission, and support the rear suspension spring and shock rockers. The broad, vertical, “bulkhead” that carries suspension loads directly to the space frame, first seen in the 956, are also included in part A34. Two additional “V” shaped tube pairs, A25 and A26, join vertical tubes in the frame on the back of the fireall, complete the 3d linkage of firewall tube frame and the rear suspension bulkhead.

Its probably a kindness that all this complexity is molded into one plastic part. Consider a loose bulkhead linked to the firewall by 4 loose V shapes. Not unlike building biplanes with wings and struts, and no 3D structures. Possible, but difficult. Nicer if the struts are long enough and strong enough to hold the wings in a fixed relationship. And absolutely depending on the geometry of the holes in the wing. Count on using the chassis bottom as tooling to hold the firewall and transmission in perfect alignment while the space frame to firewall joints are drying. Put plastic wrap or wax paper on the tray under the engine, and where the firewall would glue to the driver’s floor re-enforcement.

The rest of the rear suspension is equally concise, one piece for lower “A” arms. one piece for the upper parallel links, with a diagonal brace. The rear suspension push rod, rocker and spring/shock absorber are one piece for each side. Two sets of external shock absorber reservoirs are provided, one pair molded on the anti-roll bar cover and a second pair molded at the top front of the final drive, with ajustment knobs as part of A34.  The drive shafts are integral with half the rear hub. A separate “other half” makes a full hub, which locks between the lower and upper suspension arms and plus into the transmission final drive.

Structure is similarly concise: The tube frame that braces the exhaust pipes, contains the breather catch tank, holds both the air-jack connection point, supports the access for the externally adjustable anti-roll bar and serves as the lifting eye for the back of the car is 2 pieces, and a little bas-relief on the catch-tank, which is integral with the 2 sides of the transmission.

The radiator is supplied, the guide vanes for hot air that exits through the trunk lid, and the air intake in the nose, with lifting eye. But nothing else from inside the front body shell is provided. No radiator exhaust duct, front brake cooling ducts, stock 993 front chassis sheet metal, fuel cell and filler/vent hardware, or any of the fiddly suspension or fuel system bits.

The “chromed” parts should mostly be painted bare metal- aluminum for the air intakes, stainless steel for the exhaust. No clues are provided for the extensive hoses and cables that should dress the engine and transmission, the instruments, console controls and passenger seat area. A few details are wrong or misunderstood, but most detail is correct. There’s just a lot isn’t present.

The ugliest problem built into the kit as the inside of the rear brake cooling air scoops. It should be a large, rectangular cross section air duct on each side.  Instead, there’s a bizarre and inaccurate insert that makes a 90 degree turn in the airflow, then very odd “duct work” that assembles to join the 90 degree bend with a hard, white, plastic piece representing the “soft duct” that connects to the cooling air director on the rear hub. The soft pieces can be used The ducts and scoop fittings should not be used.

The next inaccurate detail is the catch tank. Its provided as a parallelogram, fore and aft edges parallel, top and bottom faces parallel, corners between them more or less than 90 degrees. The actual part is a rectangle, I’ve photographed it, its a translucent blow-molding, with a 930- (911 Turbo) part number and can be seen easily in engine compartments from 917s to 962s.

After that, the sins are mostly omission. Few of the cables and pipes/hoses in the engine compartment are provided or suggested, except for a bas relief drain tube on the catch tank. and an oil-return among the top-of-engine coolant plumbing. None of the cables in the passenger side of the cockpit.are provided or suggested. No engine management box, no Bowden cable from accelerator to throttle butterfly valves. No computer or power connector.  One fuel filter is on one intake manifold, but not the other, and the suggested injector rail and hoses are very poor and small.

Humbrol paint references for Airfix 1/72 McDonnell-Douglas / BAe Harrier GR7A-GR9A, kit A04050


Humbrol paint references for Airfix 1/72 McDonnell-Douglas / BAe Harrier GR7A-GR9A, kit  A04050
Humbrol paint numbers; paint names; steps,

11; Metallic Silver; 31, 37, 38,
53; Metallic Gunmetal; 6, 9, 11, 13, 14,
56; Metallic Aluminum; 10, 12,

14; Gloss French Blue; 3

24; Matt Trainer Yellow; 1
30; Matt Dark Green;  2
33; Matt Black; 2, 3, 6, 31, 35, 37
61; Matt Flesh; 2
155; Matt Olive Drab; 1
156; Matt Dark Camouflage Gray; 45
159; Matt Khaki Drab; 2

85; Satin Coal Black; 1
130; Satin White; 4, 7, 8, 23, 24, 25, 31, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38,
165; Satin Medium Sea Gray; 2, 3, 4

– – – – – – – – – -========== * # * ===========- – – – – – – – – –

The Airfix instructions provide only Humbrol paint numbers for suggested colors. So I looked up the names and made a table of paints called out in the instructions, indexed by instruction page, construction step and color number. Its below, along with part numbers of what’s painted.

I’ve added some areas *to* color (ejection seat head box, breaking the seat cushion down into three different areas of color, for example) that seem non-controversial. They’re marked by a “- wba”. Airfix is not responsible for my contributions but I felt it was unfriendly to say nothing.

I don’t typically use Humbrol colors, so my next step will be cross-reference to the Polly Scale & Testors Model Master Acryl (II) acrylic colors. And Tamiya and Gunze Sangyo acrylics when they’re the better match.
Then I’ll add my own interpretation what additional areas should get attention. For example, ’24; Trainer Yellow;’ is called out for the parachute webbing/harness on the ejection seat head box. The actual color is a warm golden brown with a slightly metallic sheen- “Bronze” is one description. “Golden brown Martin Baker parachute webbing” would be my choice to name it.

Matt Black and Satin White are far to stark, in my opinion, so something lighter, and distinct, for black plastic, black painted metal, and tires, will be required, as will something duller for landing gear parts and bays, and the engine intake ducting. Stay tuned!

– – – – – – – – – -========== * # * ===========- – – – – – – – – –

Airfix 1/72 McDonnell-Douglas / BAe Harrier GR7A-GR9A
Page;  Step;  Paint;  Name;  Part no.;  Part name

3; 1; 85; Satin Coal Black; 20B 21B; ejection seat sides
3; 1; 85?; Satin Coal Black ;9B; ejection seat head box – wba
3; 1; ?; ;9B; ejection seat head box cushion – wba
3; 1; 24; Matt Trainer Yellow; 9B; ejection seat head box webbing
3; 1; 155; Matt Olive Drab; 9B; ejection seat back cushion
3; 1; 155?; Matt Olive Drab; 9B; ejection seat bottom cushion
3; 1; 155?; Matt Olive Drab; 9B; ejection seat calf cushion

3; 2; 30; Matt Dark Green; 14B; Pilot Helmet, lower garment
3; 2; 159; Matt Khaki Drab ; 14B; Pilot upper garment
3; 2; 33; Matt Black; 14B, 10C; Cockpit side consoles, Pilot Boot
3; 2; 61; Matt Flesh; 14B; Pilot face
3; 2; 165; Satin Medium Sea Gray; 10C; Cockpit bucket walls, floor

3; 3; 33; Matt Black; 3A, 27C; joystick grip, upper and lower instrument areas, left and right.
3; 3; 165; Satin Medium Sea Gray; 3A, 27C; joystick shaft, instrument panel blank faces
3; 3; 14; Gloss French Blue; 27C; CRT faces, left and right.

3; 4; 130; Satin White; 23A, 24; stbd & port forward fuselage nose gear well, Forward fuselage inner intake bulkhead
3; 4; 165; Satin Medium Sea Gray; 23A, 24; stbd & port forward fuselage cockpit sidewall

3; 6; 33; Matt Black; 28B; Engine intake behind fan…
3; 6; ?; ?; 28B; Inside of fan shroud – wba
3; 6; 53; Metallic Gunmetal; 29B; Engine fan – wba – titanium

3; 7; 130; Satin White; 51A, 52A; intake outer liners

3; 8; 130; Satin White; 15B, 3B; Main Gear well

4; 9; 53; Metallic Gunmetal; 23C,  25C; Port, Aft, hot, exhaust ducts

4; 10; 56; Metallic Aluminum; 19C, 21C; Port, Forward, cold, exhaust ducts

4; 11 53; Metallic Gunmetal; 24C, 26C; Starboard, Aft, hot, exhaust ducts

4; 12; 56; Metallic Aluminum; 20C, 22C; Starboard, Forward, cold, exhaust ducts

4; 13; 53; Metallic Gunmetal; 6A; Port, Hot exhaust shield

4; 14; 53; Metallic Gunmetal; 7A; Starboard, Hot exhaust shield

5; 23; 130; Satin White; (Step 5 output); Inner intake duct wall, starter/generator fairing

5; 24; 130; Satin White; 26A; inside of starboard outer intake duct;

5; 25; 130; Satin White; 25A; inside of port outer intake duct;

7; 31; 130; Satin White; 6B, 5B, 25B; Nose gear leg l&r, Nose wheel
7; 31; 33; Flat Black; 25B;  Nose tire
7; 31; 11; Metallic Silver; 6B, 5B; Nose gear leg l&r;

7; 33; 130; Satin White; 10B; Main gear forward door;

7; 34; 130; Satin White; 9C; Main gear leg;

7; 35; 130; Satin White; 26B, 27B; Main gear port & starboard wheel
7; 35; 33; Flat Black; 26B, 27B; Main gear port & starboard tire

7; 36; 130; Satin White; 43A, 44A, 41A, 42A; Nose gear bay port & starboard doors, Main gear port & starboard bay doors;

7; 37; 11; Metallic Silver; 31B, 30B; Outrigger gear oleo struts, port & starboard;
7; 37; 33; Flat Black; 31B, 30B; Outrigger gear tires;
7; 37; 130; Satin White; 31B, 30B; Outrigger gear legs, port & starboard;

8; 38; 11; Metallic Silver; 37A or 38A; Air Brake Hydraulic Cylinder
8; 38; 130; Satin White; 5A inside, 37A or 38A;  ; Airbrake, Air Brake Hydraulic Cylinder;

8; 45; 156; Matt Dark Camouflage Gray ; 23B, 24B; front of fired CRV-7 Rocket Pod.

– – – – – – – – – -========== * # * ===========- – – – – – – – – –

Humbrol paint numbers; steps:

24; Matt Trainer Yellow; 1
85; Satin Coal Black; 1
155; Matt Olive Drab; 1

30; Matt Dark Green;  2
33; Matt Black; 2
61; Matt Flesh; 2
159; Matt Khaki Drab; 2
165; Satin Medium Sea Gray; 2

14; Gloss French Blue; 3
33; Matt Black; 3
165; Satin Medium Sea Gray; 3

130; Satin White; 4
165; Satin Medium Sea Gray; 4

33; Matt Black; 6
53; Metallic Gunmetal; 6

130; Satin White; 7

130; Satin White; 8

53; Metallic Gunmetal; 9
56; Metallic Aluminum; 10
53; Metallic Gunmetal; 11
56; Metallic Aluminum; 12
53; Metallic Gunmetal; 13
53; Metallic Gunmetal; 14

130; Satin White; 23
130; Satin White; 24
130; Satin White; 25

130; Satin White; 31
33; Matt Black; 31
11; Metallic Silver; 31
130; Satin White; 33
130; Satin White; 34
130; Satin White; 35
33; Matt Black; 35
130; Satin White; 36
11; Matt Black; 37
33; Metallic Silver; 37
130; Satin White; 37

11; Metallic Silver; 38
130; Satin White; 38
156; Matt Dark Camouflage Gray; 45

– 30 –

Colors & materials for Apollo 11 CM, SM & LM. What the hardware looked like. For the Dragon kit.


Thanks to my beloved wife Jean, I got a Dragon Apollo 11 on the Moon kit, for Christmas! 1/72 scale, new tooling (same as their die-cast metal collectable?)

The short form on real, as-flown-in-1969, surfaces and finishes:

Command Module.

The actual Apollo Command module was covered with strips of mirror finish aluminized plastic micrometeoroid shield and thermal insulation, on the visible surfaces. The ablative heat shield, not visible until the CM and SM are separated, is said to have been painted a light gray color. During re-entry to Earth’s atmosphere, the mylar was mostly burned off and a light-gray painted structure under it became visible. Below that paint appears to have been a composite honeycomb material. I think it is unlikely that the actual pressure vessel that the crew lived in touched the outside surface except at the hatch edges.

In pictures of the remaining, unused, Apollo CSM (the emergency rescue vehicle for Skylab), you can see the stripe pattern of the plastic tape on the CM exterior, but in contemporary photographs, it looks like one piece of mirror polished aluminum. Like an American Airline’s jet airliner.

The fold-flat handles on the outside of the CSM, for astronaut Extra-Vehicular Activities (EVAs) were painted a glossy yellow, like the similar hand-rails on the the Hubble Space Telescope.

The docking capture and latch mechanism mounted on the outside of the tunnel, above the front hatch of the CM, is primarily titanium-looking metal, with a chromed, presumably retractable or spring loaded or damped, shaft.  There are darkened metal handles in the mechanism, probably painted or anodized a dark blue dark gray or black.

The inside of the tunnel itself, behind the docking capture mechanism, is light gray with 12 blue-anodized cylinder-topped arms at the top, some black and some other colors of boxes, and wires,

Service module:

The Service module exterior was  painted with an aluminum paint, except for radiator areas fore and aft which were white, two “ram’s horn” antennas that were white or light gray, and 24 narrow stripes (about 25%) on panels under the RCS thrusters. The area under “United States” may or may not have been light gray, and many labels on the exterior appear to be black text on light gray background.

The main engine exhaust bell is complex, but a bluish gray for the biggest, lower, part, outside, and reddish gray for the upper part, outside, is a good start. The top of the bell joins the reddish part at a flange, with bright bare metal fasteners by the dozen. The top of the bell, the last part visible beyond (below) the Inconel heat shield, is wrapped in the mylar and-or “H-film” ( aka “Kapton”) insulation and micrometeoroid shield. The back of the CM is mostly covered by 4 stamped quadrants what looks like thin Inconel nickel-copper high temp metal. The furthest outer edge of the end of the Service Module is painted with aluminum paint just like the sides.

Lunar Module:

The Lunar Module has two very different areas of finish: The descent (lower) stage is primarily wrapped in thermal insulation / micromedeoroid protection, a multilayer collection of  Kapton (“H film”) and Mylar, and other, exotic, things, with metal evaporated/ plated on them for protection. A lot of what looks ‘black’ is actually a black-finished foil or mylar.

The descent engine has a medium gray exterior and nestles in an Inconel-lined cavity in the descent stage.

The ascent (upper) stage of the Lunar Module is about half black-finished and half anodized Aluminum. Yes, the Aluminum looks like its dark, like Titanium, or has a distinct gray-beige-green tone. All true, many have remarked on the hard-to-describe colors. Grumman’s construction documents for the whole thing, facet by facet, are on line, and they specify Phosphoric acid and Sulfuric Acid anodizing of the various aluminum alloy pieces.  Some Mylar or “H film” wrapping is on the the outside of the ascent module. The ascent engine has a semi-gloss white exterior, with a textile-like “wrapped” texture. This may be thermal insulation, similar to the thick batts of insulation wrapped around the F1 engines of the Saturn V first stage.

There are two dish antennae on the ascent stage, Both have white-painted dishes and are generally black otherwise. The antenna directly above the lunar egress hatch and the front windows has black foil everywhere except the inside of the dish. The signal radiator in the center of the dish is white.

The antenna off on the starboard side of the ascent stage has a semi-gloss black mechanism and flat black on the back on the dish. Black, also, on the 4 legs and the forward reflector in front of the dish.

In more detail:

Command Module.

The Reaction Control System (RCS) engine nozzles on the CM have an oxidized copper color in their throats, and a slightly corrugated texture. Photos of post-re-entry CMs show a ring of the same oxidized copper color outside the nozzles, but the aluminized mylar covers these rings up to the edges of the RCS engine bells.

The forward and side windows for the two outside crew stations have black anti-glare finish around the windows, and red-orange silicone seals at every layer of the windows.

Below or behind the port side windows and the crossed RCS nozzles are a pair of drain valves, white 5/8 spheres with gold-toned dots at the outside. A very similar purge valve is installed on the starboard side of the side hatch.

On both sides, below windows, RCS nozzles, etc and the edge of the ablative re-entry shield, there are translucent white dots. Under the Mylar there are black partial circles around these two translucent circles,. On the Service Module, there are matching white partial circles painted on the fairing at the top edge of the SM

A minor (very minor) mystery is what kind of plastic the reflective stuff on the CM is. The expected temperature range in the space environment was wider than NASA was comfortable using Mylar, generally, uncovered, in the thermal insulation blankets covering the LM Descent Stage. Therefore, the outer layer of those blankets is always Kapton (“H film”), which is usable over the expected temperature range.  Of course, a blanket of up to 25 layers of plastic, using microthicknesses of vacuum deposited metal for insulation, is fundamentally different from a pressurized honeycomb structure wrapped with a layer of glued-on plastic tape. Maybe the thermal mass and inertia of the CM (and the slow-rolling passive thermal control regime) kept conditions on the outside of the CM suitable for Mylar, Maybe the CM plastic has the metal side “out”, unlike the majority of LM applications which are generally plastic side out (hence the gold-amber color: its not gold foil, its aluminized Kapton with the metal in and the plastic out.

Service module:

Inside the main engine exhaust bell is complex. At the bottom, inside the bluish gray outside, are 16 dark metal petals with strong textures. Inside the reddish-gray part of the bell are a set of 6 petals and then a solid ring- all a glossy dark color.  Above the dark, solid, ring, is a white metal ring, something like aluminum colored. Above that is an orangey brown and then at the peak of the engine is a light, metallic-finished plate with 5 stamped spokes and a central cap.

Lunar Module:

How I plan to reproduce these colors:

Command Module:

The glued-flat aluminized mylar on the real thing doesn’t look like any paint, even mirror polished aluminum. It looks like mylar, darker than polished aluminum. I have seen photos on-line of Apollo CMs finished in Bare Metal Foil, in the correct striped pattern. But I don’t see the stripes unless I look very closely in the 1960s photos- they’re easy to see in flash photos taken today, on the leftover CSM lifeboat for Skylab that never flew. But not in pictures of Apollo 11, or 15, or any of the other hardware that was flown.

Sooooo: Bare Metal Foil remains possible, or very thin aluminum foil, polished and clear-coated. “Chrome” spray paint would not be a bad choice. Having the kit part polished and then vacuum coated with aluminum would be very close to the real thing. Brush-painting Testor’s Chrome Silver oil-based paint or another similar non-water-based product is also a thought – the occasional brushmark could be said to represent the stripes of the Mylar…

“Chrome” spray paint or Metalizer Buffable Aluminum rattle can are the top two contenders at the moment. I’m going to do a study with each and see which I like more  watch this space.

Service Module:

Polly-scale Reefer White (that’s as in Refrigerator White, the rail-road color) is my call for the white paint on the lower and upper ring radiators, the two ‘tabs’ containing the ram’s horn antennas, and the white areas near the RCS boxes. My own mix for Boeing Aircraft Company #707 Gray is my first choice for the Light Gray RCS boxes, unless they’re white too, have to check again before I commit myself. The Inconel heat shield could be Polly Scale Stainless Steel, maybe with a bit of yellow added to bring out the nickel ‘color’… Inconel is a copper-nickel alloy and its attraction is that it holds its strength at high temperatures, not that its intrinsically tough stuff like titanium. It actually cuts and polishes pretty readily, but the important thing is that its clearly NOT aluminum. Completely different color. Not unlike stainless steel, which is, itself, not like steel OR aluminum.

Lunar Module:

Glad you asked: 1/32 model airplanes with working retractable landing gear. Working landing gear in general


Among the not so surprising list of searches that brought people to my blog, yesterdays list (below) included one dear indeed to my heart: “1/32 model airplanes with working retractable landing gear”

Ah yes, the great divide. Are we building scale models or toys? I come down firmly on the “toys” side, although many fine people I know personally are probably closer to scale modelers. I have to admit that almost any working feature of a model, particularly from a plastic kit, is going to compromise accuracy to some extent. Turning and propellers, wheels, maybe not so much. Opening doors, hatches? Mmmm, tricky. Retractable landing gear? Almost never truely ‘in scale’, but it HAS been done.

Personal experiences with working, retractable, landing gear:

1/32 Revell Supermarine Spitfire Mk I. Moving control surfaces and sliding canopy too.

1/32 Monogram North American P-51D Mustang. In “Phantom Mustang” or P-51 or F-51 form, this kit has retractable main gear and a tail wheel that are all actuated by turning a wheel on the belly. For the Phantom kit, an electric motor and gear train does the work. For the non-Phantom releases, the gear fixed to the plane becomes a knob to turn. Also comes with sliding canopy and bomb releases (again, under the belly for the controls in the pylon that the Phantom kit mounts on.)

1/32 Tamiya Mitsubishi A6M Riesen “type Zero” fighter. Tiny super-strong magnets are said to hold the moving pieces in place, and there’s a hidden socket for a crank to operate the gear… or so I have read.

1/32 Revell Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat. Not only retractable, the complex multi-link F3F and F4F setup that brought the wheels up to sit flush with the lower sides of the fuselage. I keep meaning to buy one of these and see how well it works…

1/32 planes that do NOT have working retractable landing gear:

1/32 Revell Hawker Hurricane I or “II” (its not a II and would take much effort- buy a 2 hand copy of the original Mk I kit if you want one of these…)

1/32 Revell Hawker/BAe Harrier / AV-8A. If I’d been in charge… but I wasn’t. Not retractible. The Airfix 1/24 kits has retractible gear, but other issues.

1/32 Revell Bristol Beaufighter. Alas, this would be a good place for a home-made setup, dead easy, but not the way they made the kit. Very much tooled to a price, with just about nothing in the fuselage (and no way to see it…) Still how cool is it to have this?!

Yesterday’s search terms.

x-4 bantam cockpit 2
light gull grey acrilico 2
islader 1/72 2
polly scale paints 2
tamiya u.s. interior green mix 2
thinning vallejo 26.526 1
mosquito de interior 1
how to dull the finish of a plastic model? 1
trislander 1
paint striper for plastic models 1
eclipse tptp vs netbeans profiler 1
water based model paint 1
bac 707 gray 1
hawk 75 cutaway 1
how long does it take to build plastic models 1
diluting water based paint for glaze 1
how to mix model paints 1
hobby shops in san francisco 1
“…the place god calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.” -frederick buechner 1
xf-56 1
tamiya spray paint solvents 1
future floor wax remover 1
building plastic model links 1
r/c car store in bay area 1
mosquito fuselage 1
elo easy lift off 1
sbd-5 camouflage 1
mosquito instrument panel 1
polly scale model railroads paints 1
airplanes painted black 1
who bought out hobby enterprises model airplane kits 1
deionized water acrylic paints 1
rc cars in bayarea 1
1/32 model airplanes with working retractable landing gear 1

One of my info posts was read in translation!


Someone looked at my “how to build a plastic model” info, translated into Slovenian. A little international flare there. Pretty cool!
Here’s what they clicked, you can see for yourself:
translate.google.sk/translate_p?langpair=en%7Csk&u=http%3A%2F%2Fbillabbott.wordpress.com%2F2009%2F12%2F24%2Fbuilding-plastic-models-how-to-tools-to-use%2F&usg=ALkJrhiJwzdWCKxaP7295DPBIebhlYgcxA 1

Well, I DO think its pretty cool and yes, I ought to be working on more career-work-related stuff. Next.

Bill

What the People want:


So, for example, here’s what brought people to my blog yesterday:
More editing tomorrow.

— Information pointed to from here:
mosquito bomb aimers position 23
boeing 707 gray 2
hobby store bay area 2
dh mosquito

— Information here for airplanes and other subjects for modelling:
mosquito bomb aimers position 23

— Information here for paint and finishing:
boeing 707 gray 2
how to sand down excess plastic modeling 2
how to thin model master acryl paint 2
remove decals to model aircraft 1
tamiya paint sets 1spraying with water based paint 1
water based paint diluters

— Information here about Bay Area hobby shops
hobby store bay area 2
san francisco rc plane shop 1

“wwii” and “model kit” and “kids” 2
“air international” magazine index 1

dh mosquito cockpit door 1
grumman f7f tigercat/cabin view 1
1
radio shack electric motor rf-500tb-182 1
thinning water based paint for spraying 1
tamiya acrylic remover 1
dh mosquito 1
model paint stripping 1
and dilute acrylic paints for models 1-20 y 1
boac mosquito 1
removing future floor wax 1

I— nformation *not yet*here
italeri c 27 1/72 2
spray paint for pots and pans 1
système de trim wheel en cockpit 1
misquito twin engine bomber three view 1
revell constellation lufthansa blue tamiya colours 1
cockpit/grumman tigercat/images 2

Project status Italeri 1/72 F-104G/S Starfighter


Italeri F104 G ‘S’Here’s the latest- I took this and the Revell TF 104G on vacation with me. I’d made a drawing that cartooned the instrument panel, based on the Verlinden Lock On book primarily. With that sketch in hand, I painted both kit’s cockpits and fiddly bits, and started gluing, I’ve got this 104’s major fuselage assembled, with cockpit and intakes. Needs wings, aft fuselage attached, so forth. Paint too. Here’s the latest photo of it: Italeri F-104G/S its not actually an S, just a G, no Sparrow or Aspide missile, though there is a pylon for it at least. Interior parts cruder than Revell/Monogram/Revell Germany kit, I’ve painted in parallel. Going to build it as an S and to heck with getting the aft fuselage and intake trunk bulky-ness correct. With an AIM-7-ish missile on the pylon and pretty Italian markings it will look great. Big issue is getting something like but not TOO like British Ocean Gray/Mixed Gray and Dark Green for topside- each nation in NATO has its own paint scheme and the fact that they often resemble the Dark Green, Ocean Gray/Medium Sea Gray Day Fighter scheme from WWII European theater doesn’t mean that exact color matches are in stock.

Project status, Airfix 1/72 Britten-Norman BN-2A/B Islander


Airfix 1/72 Britten-Norman BN-2A/B Islander
I started this at home, worked on it on vacation, again at home, and then took it with me for Airliners International, 2010

Updated 21 October, 2010: The main gear repair worked, both axles on the port side had been sheared off the landing gear leg, so I drilled the remains out of the wheels with a hobby knife and glued a robust piece of round plastic rod between them. Of couse I cut it slightly oversize, and sanded it down to get the same wheel spacing as the intact, original, one. Then I had to remove what was left of the bottom of the leg so that the new axle could fit straight across. VERY gentle sanding stick work, holding the gear leg to keep from knocking it off. I scraped some of the axle flatter than it started, and filed a modest curve into the mounting point.

After a couple days drying, it stands nice and looks good.

I took the opportunity to use strip styrene to fill the seam above the cockpit and out between the port starboard wing and its wingtip.

Airfix Islander with styrene filler added

Now I’m feeding 20 AWG wire into the hole for the nose-wheel to serve as wieght… there’s not much space for weight. I’m crimping it but not cutting through with a pair of diagonal cutters. After a push a segment in, I bend the wire at the edge of the model skin to break off little pieces what will pack well.

Original posting from late July.

Airfix 1/72 "Britten-Norman" BN-2A Islander, Aurigny Airlines. Painting in progress.

Islander pieces the day before

Up in the hotel room the night before

Probably the best angle for the passenger seat...

I got almost all the pieces attached and had it neatly painted in time for the Saturday contest judging time.

Airfix 1/72 Britten-Norman BN-2A Islander

One main gear leg and its two wheels & tires got knocked off on the trip home, so (I’m taking advantage and fixing some filling issues before putting the leg back on, Then the nose weight get added, final painting and decals…

Project status Minicraft 1/144 American Airlines MD-82 (?)


Wow, thanks for the vote based on not much!
here’s the state of play- needs antennae, bits and pieces markings:

Minicraft 1/144 MD-80, F-104J/G, Spitfire

Minicraft American Airlines MD-82
Minicraft 1/144 American Airlines McDonnell-Douglas MD-80
I’ve got a pile of home-made detail decals to put on the AA MD-82, and it needs antennae and lights