Another “quick build” – OOB, with only the most needed corrections made to the kit, no preview and WIP images, and no work on other models “in between”.
I only replaced the styrene pitot tube with a home-fabricated detail, made from a 0,6mm syringe needle and 0,4 copper wire inserted into it.
The model is not bad per se, it’s just engineered in a way that makes it preferrable to build it “all opened up”. Wing should be in takeoff/landing position – otherwise gaps ensue, and the bump in front of the wing is smaller than it should be, and I found mine to be asymmetrical as well. Airbrake is intended to be posed open – you will need to remove some material from its edges to display it closed. Same applies to the canopy, which is wider the cockpit opening. I am also not a big fan of the way Academy suggests that you glue the Sidewinders to their rails, same applies to the wing pylons. There’s probably more.
I have to commend Academyon the way they produced the panel lines on the transparencies. The recessed lines allowed me to placed the masking material directly on the part and cut the maske by simply following the recessed lines. Covering both sides of the windshield and canopy took a few minutes – excellent!
Paint: white areas – Revell gloss white 04, grey – Revell 04 gloss white + Humbol Gull Grey 140 (3 to 1 ratio), black – Revell matt 06, cockpit grey – Revell 57. Bombs are random mixes of Revell 46 (NATO Olive) and 48 (Lake green), with the yellow straight Revell 12. The “hot areas” are Revell 90, oversprayed with thinned Agama silver (08 Me) which gives the darker spots. I used Alclad II “Engine Manifold” inside the exhaust.
Decals in most of Academy kits are notoriously hard to deal with. Modellers around the Net suggest using hot water, etc. Fortunately (for me that is) I used Mr. Hobby’s Mr. Mark Softer on most of them. When applying the decals over the Softer position them as quickly as possible, or you will witness the otherwise hard decals tear into pieces if you decide to move them after more than 20 second exposure to the solution. Avoid pooling the liquid, stay cool when the decal wrinkles, and allow ample drying time (12 hours should do) before applying any sealants.
Agama black patinator simulates the stains in front of the gun openings and behind the gun gas vent doors. I used very thin Revell 57 on the panel lines and to simulate dirt (including the wheel wells). Some water-soluble Burnt Sienna completed the wear, which might be a little bit overboard for Marine materiel.
The model is sealed with a 2:1 mix of Revell gloss and matt varnishes. Nav lights are Revell gloss, tinted with red 34 or blue 52 for the respective positions.