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World War II: USA
Aircraft of the United States in WWII.
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Trumpeter F4F-4 Wildcat Build
greif8
#277
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Bayern, Germany
Member Since: January 17, 2006
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Posted: Monday, January 08, 2018 - 06:48 PM GMT+7
The next build is in progress, Trumpeter's F4F-4 Wildcat in 1/32 scale. I am still deciding which aircraft this build will attempt to replicate. It will be one of the aircraft that flew off the USS Enterprise, USS Hornet, USS Wasp or USS Saratoga during the Guadalcanal campaign. Maybe someone has a suggestion!

I will be using the Grand Phoenix cockpit set, that I scored for a cheap price before Christmas, an HGW seatbelt and I will be building a nice resin figure as the pilot. At this point I am probably going to limit any super detailing to just a few minor details.

The kit looks to be one of Trumpeter's better ones, and I am hoping it goes together as nicely as the Dauntless I built for the PTO Campaign. This build is the one I am doing for the Trumpeter 4 campaign, so I decided to cross post the overview of the build as I progress with it here.

The first photo is the kit ready to hit the desk. The second shows the very nice Grand Phoenix cockpit complete. I replaced several of the tiny resin buttons that were broken off with fine copper wire - I will shoot a couple of close up photos and post them later.

Enjoy!

DSC03708 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

DSC03800
thegirl
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Alberta, Canada
Member Since: January 19, 2008
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Posted: Tuesday, January 09, 2018 - 12:39 PM GMT+7
Looking forward to your progress



Terri
greif8
#277
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Bayern, Germany
Member Since: January 17, 2006
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Posted: Tuesday, January 09, 2018 - 06:45 PM GMT+7
Hopefully, I can move forward as well on this build as I have been able to on the previous two Terri. We shall see now that the holidays are over and it is back to the old grindstone.

Ernest
Joel_W
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New York, United States
Member Since: December 04, 2010
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Posted: Friday, January 12, 2018 - 10:07 AM GMT+7
Ernest,
I'm signing on for the build as of right now.

Two years ago I built the Trumpy F4F-3 which was released by Trumpeter after the -4 version to correct some fuselage inaccuracies. One major issue with all the Trumpeter F4F kits is the wheel wells. There is no recessed lip as the wheel retracts into the concave opening. It's fixable, but takes a major effort to get right. I got close, but my efforts weren't by any means perfect

Joel
greif8
#277
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Bayern, Germany
Member Since: January 17, 2006
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Posted: Friday, January 12, 2018 - 09:02 PM GMT+7
Hi Joel, glad to have you along for the build. Thank you for the tip concerning the wheel wells; I will take a look at the issue and see if I have the skills, and the will, to correct it. I just finished the Grand Phoenix cockpit AM set, I'll post photos in a later post, my computer is running an update right now. Again, thank you for the heads up on the wheel wells.

Ernest


Quoted Text

Ernest,
I'm signing on for the build as of right now.

Two years ago I built the Trumpy F4F-3 which was released by Trumpeter after the -4 version to correct some fuselage inaccuracies. One major issue with all the Trumpeter F4F kits is the wheel wells. There is no recessed lip as the wheel retracts into the concave opening. It's fixable, but takes a major effort to get right. I got close, but my efforts weren't by any means perfect

Joel

greif8
#277
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Bayern, Germany
Member Since: January 17, 2006
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Posted: Friday, January 12, 2018 - 10:46 PM GMT+7
The Grand Phoenix cockpit is complete. Like a lot of AM pit sets it was a bit fiddly to get together correctly, but looks very good. I am still working through how to get it positioned correctly and firmly in the fuselage once the time comes. I'll probably make a simple support frame to make sure it is rock solid when I install it.

I opted to paint the cockpit Bronze Green, though that color was fairly uncommon and there is some debate just how many of the F4F-4's had that color. But I like it and think it might allow the pit to stand out better once the fuselage swallows it. The other AM piece I brought for the build was one of HGW's excellent seatbelts. I would not call assembling one a relaxing experience, though it is not unpleasant, but they look MUCH better than PE belts in 1/32 scale.

Base painting complete.
DSC03801 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

Overall shot of the parts after detail painting and weathering
IMG_0665 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

Close up of the side consoles
IMG_0667 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

And the seat with the HGW seatbelt in place
IMG_0668 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

Finally, a couple of shots of the assembled pit
IMG_0670 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

IMG_0672 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr
MichaelSatin
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AEROSCALE
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Colorado, United States
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Posted: Saturday, January 13, 2018 - 03:31 AM GMT+7
Very nice so far!

Watch out for the wings, if you aren't careful they will attach to the fuselage with no dihedral and look plain wrong. Just a heads up!

Michael
greif8
#277
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Bayern, Germany
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Posted: Saturday, January 13, 2018 - 05:17 AM GMT+7
Thanks for the advice Michael, I will make sure to pay extra attention when the time comes to fit the wings.

Ernest


Quoted Text

Very nice so far!

Watch out for the wings, if you aren't careful they will attach to the fuselage with no dihedral and look plain wrong. Just a heads up!

Michael

Joel_W
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New York, United States
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Posted: Saturday, January 13, 2018 - 06:24 AM GMT+7
Ernest,
Excellent work on the cockpit. I really wish I used a AM set rather then spend months on the interior with bits and pieces.

The cockpit color for Grumman Bethage aircraft varied from that of other manufactures making F4Fs as paint was in sort supply and the USA is a very big country. It's my understanding that most of the F4F-3s and some of the 1st run of the -4s used a color close to what we call Bronze Green. it was made right here on LI so who knows what it really looked like. Everyone I know that worked for Grummans during the war has passed away at this point. The main run of -4s coming out of Bethpage should have had been painted Interior Green. But again, that color was mixed locally.

All Grumman aircraft including the inside of the cowl, the entire fuselage with the exception of the cockpit were painted in what is referred to as Grumman Gray. It's always fun trying to figure out exactly what that color was. Any shade of a light Gray more towards neutral Gray wqill work. Seems that Grumman's asked the Navy Dept, for a dispensation as Interior Green was in very short supply, and there was a ton of this light Gray available. The Navy said OK.

Jumping back to the kit, have you found AM decals, as the kit decals for the National Insignia is completely wrong, and just won't change it.

Here' a picture of my intrepidation of Bronze Green in my F4F



And here's the wheel well changes:





I hope that those pictures help as the Wheel wells are just plain wrong. To remove that lip all I did was find a wooden dowel that fit into the well and wrapped various grades of emery cloth around it, then sanded away. While my wells are far from perfect, they look way better then the kit ones.

Joel

greif8
#277
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Bayern, Germany
Member Since: January 17, 2006
entire network: 584 Posts
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Posted: Saturday, January 13, 2018 - 08:12 PM GMT+7
Hi Joel, thank you for the kind words and the tips. My research lines up nearly exactly with what you say in your post below concerning Bronze Green. It is plausible that some of the Wildcats that flew during the time period of the Guadalcanal campaign would have had Bronze Green cockpits. So I don't think I am too far out with my cockpit color choice.

Thank you also for your photos showing your work on the wheel wells. Correcting the issue looks like something I can handle. To revisit the accuracy department, I am well advanced with building the engine, which is quite nice for a kit engine by the way, and while I was painting the copper wire I plan to use for the ignition harness black, my 3 year old foster daughter, who was watching me work very definitely stated she wanted me to leave the color as it was because it was prettier! So my P&W will have a copper colored ignition harness, which does look very eye catching I have to admit! I'll probably post some photos later today of the engine.

Ernest


Quoted Text

Ernest,
Excellent work on the cockpit. I really wish I used a AM set rather then spend months on the interior with bits and pieces.

The cockpit color for Grumman Bethage aircraft varied from that of other manufactures making F4Fs as paint was in sort supply and the USA is a very big country. It's my understanding that most of the F4F-3s and some of the 1st run of the -4s used a color close to what we call Bronze Green. it was made right here on LI so who knows what it really looked like. Everyone I know that worked for Grummans during the war has passed away at this point. The main run of -4s coming out of Bethpage should have had been painted Interior Green. But again, that color was mixed locally.

All Grumman aircraft including the inside of the cowl, the entire fuselage with the exception of the cockpit were painted in what is referred to as Grumman Gray. It's always fun trying to figure out exactly what that color was. Any shade of a light Gray more towards neutral Gray wqill work. Seems that Grumman's asked the Navy Dept, for a dispensation as Interior Green was in very short supply, and there was a ton of this light Gray available. The Navy said OK.

Jumping back to the kit, have you found AM decals, as the kit decals for the National Insignia is completely wrong, and just won't change it.

Here' a picture of my intrepidation of Bronze Green in my F4F



And here's the wheel well changes:





I hope that those pictures help as the Wheel wells are just plain wrong. To remove that lip all I did was find a wooden dowel that fit into the well and wrapped various grades of emery cloth around it, then sanded away. While my wells are far from perfect, they look way better then the kit ones.

Joel


greif8
#277
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Bayern, Germany
Member Since: January 17, 2006
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Posted: Sunday, January 14, 2018 - 02:57 AM GMT+7
Following are a few photos of the engine assembly process. For a kit engine it is pretty nice. I drilled out the front and back of each cylinder head and the ignition ring to prep them for wiring. The front of the cylinder heads were drilled large enough for me to install a piece of wire sheath to simulate the spark plug; I did not do this for the rear of the cylinders as they will not be seen. The parts were cleaned up and primed, then airbrushed with Alclad II metallic, grey or black. After everything had cured the engine was assembled and the cylinder heads given a wash to better define them. The spark plugs were painted brass and I was ready to install the wiring. My 3 year old foster daughter wanted me to leave the wiring copper colored because it looked pretty! I still need to weather the front, but the engine turned out pretty nice.

Parts cleaned up and ready for priming
IMG_0673 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

Cylinder heads ready to be cleaned up and spark plugs installed
IMG_0674 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

Ignition harness drilled out
IMG_0675 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

Rear Cylinder Bank
IMG_0679 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

Ready for wiring
IMG_0683 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

All wired up!
IMG_0684 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

Another View
IMG_0686 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr

And from the side
IMG_0687 by Ernest Roth, on Flickr
Joel_W
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New York, United States
Member Since: December 04, 2010
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Posted: Sunday, January 14, 2018 - 03:41 AM GMT+7
Ernest,
An absolutely perfect wiring job. Well done. I really like the spark plugs that you added to both the top and front of each cylinder.

Joel