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24" Sky 1

badsimmonds

Alphans
Earlier this year I bought this kit from Studio 2 which does some excellent models, it sat in the garage for months as I was busy on other projects but now its time has come.
The first thing was to sand down the main body and fill where needed with p38. With all mouldings there will be some imperfections so it was sanding and filling until happy, I don't know about anyone else but just when I think its done you see something else that needs seeing to.
Thinking ahead I wasn't sure how I would display this model as its BIG so I placed a chunk of wood inside the body so I could drill a support hole for it if needed. I also fitted some wood just under the top of the body so the rear fin, which will be removable, had something to fit into using steel pins.
The wood was fitted using fibreglass resin which is easy to use though a bit messy.
 

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Sea Devil

Alphans
I have almost finished my 24" Sky 1, it builds into a great display piece. Did Mamas make you aware that the nose & fluted section need to be sanded down to the correct size before fitting, then sand the body to fit. If you didn't already know this then you need to contact Mamas for the correct measurements. ( sorry I can't help further I'm at work and don't have the measurements with me) I hope you have as much fun with your build as I did.
 

badsimmonds

Alphans
Hi SD
Actually Mamas didn't tell me about the sanding but I have been fine tuning all the parts as I go along. There always seems to be an unending amount of sanding on all models and are forever revisiting parts. Currently I've been working on the removable tail fin although fairly easy still involves a lot of sanding and filling to get it just right.
I love building models as you start with a pile of bits and pieces (especially when scratch building) and out of it comes an amazing object for all to see.
 

Sea Devil

Alphans
You will actually have to sand the fluted section by about 10mm then re do the grooves. As it stands the parts will fit together as they are but will look wrong once assembled so I urge you to make sure they are the correct size. I also opted for the Aluminium engine parts, they cost £65.00 but they look really nice. If you post your email address ill gladly send you a few photos if you want.
 
you have to put navigation lights on a model this big it will look more authentic also a lite cockpit .I plan on lighting all my models from now on after seeing my viper lite
 

badsimmonds

Alphans
Thanks for the advice, I'm still not sure which direction I'll go with this project. I'm curious SD to see your photos so would love to see your work. (tforty@btinternet.com) As to lights well I'm a lazy modeller and won't do anything if I don't have to. I did think of having lights and a working scanner on my shado mobile but decided as its going to sit on a shelf all its life and no one is going to see it I won't. Saying that models that light up etc look the bees knees and I always think maybe I should.....
 
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Thinking ahead......

Badsimmonds, enjoying your thread - it's always interesting to hear about people who think ahead (the block of wood to strengthen a potential drill point - clever stuff). I think that one of the most challenging parts of a large scale project is having to plan out two, three or more steps down the line ("if I glue this part in place now, how will I reach that part when I have to slot these bits together?") and so on.

Anyway, cannot wait to see what a 2 foot long SKY 1 looks like - whether lit or not, I am sure all of that seemingly endless filling and sanding will show....or rather, it won't, it'll be completely seamless. Good luck, keep posting and thanks for sharing.

Kindest regards

Patrick
 

badsimmonds

Alphans
Thanks for all your comments, your very kind.
Apart from continuing the sanding/filling I decided to add some filler to a section of the underside of the body where the 'intake grill' is to assist in the final curve of this section. Once it was dried and sanded I used my dremel to cut out the basic shape and then filed and sanded it to its proper shape.
I also used the dremel to cut out the section from the very front nose section. To give this part more glueing area I cut and fitted a circle of perspex to the inside of its base, this will give me more area to fix onto the fluted section.
Some photos of this nose show it has a grill over it but looking at the tv prog there doesn't appear to be a grill so instead of having a blank hole I bought a garden hose connector, threw away the screw top, cut a bit of the base and will fit this inside at a later date. The hose connector has a great look and should be ok.
As I said earlier the tail fin will be removal so I glued a piece of wood into the hollow base of the fin and once that had dried I mixed up some fibreglass resin and poured that in as well to get a good solid base for the steel pins.
I also decided to strengthen the leading edges of the wings so I drilled a couple of holes underneath each wing and poured the resin in and angled the wings so the resin would flow in the areas I wanted. Once that had dried it was a simple matter of filling the holes with p38 (I wish I had shares in that company)
 

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badsimmonds

Alphans
Before I can fit the tail fin I had to glue the raised section onto the top of the body which had the primer sanded off to give better adhesion, then used p38 to finish it off. With the wood and resin in the tail fin it was time to fit the two steel pins, they were in fact cut from a 6" nail I had lying around, you can use anything as no one will see them. Next was to transfer the positions of the pins onto the body and drill them out, this is why I had fitted a piece of wood just under this area for a better anchor point. If you drill the holes too big then just stick some filler down the holes and wrap the pins in parcel tape then push them into the holes, once dried just pull them out and everything should fit better. I put parcel tape onto the raised section and some filler on the bottom of the tail fin and fitted it in place and pushed it down, again once dry it was just a matter of giving the fin a light knock and it should come free as p38 does not stick to parcel tape. Just a quick sand to smooth off the excess and the fin should fit the body perfectly, I used this method because my fin will be removable.
The next thing to do was to fit the separate back section onto the rear of the body, this is the area sky 1 and skydiver meet (not that I have skydiver)
To minimize the gap between these parts I sanded each surface as flat as I could then it was just a matter of gluing. After that it was down to using p38 to hide the join, this took sometime to blend the two surfaces together, once primed you would never know there was a join.
 

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badsimmonds

Alphans
I've been putting off working on the pilot's canopy as it entails some fine cutting however it had to be done. I first trimmed off the excess using scissors round the base so it would fit the main body, I then ended up just rubbing the entire cockpit base on flat sandpaper until the base was nice and straight. I looked at many photos of the windows and finally pencilled in the shape and position of the cut-outs.
I started off using the dremel to cut out most of the plastic then fine tuned them using my Stanley knife and a set of very small files with different profiles and finally sandpaper. It took ages as the rear semi-circle windows are small and I was worried about making a mistake. Thankfully it was done and had its first coat of primer.
The kit comes with some internal detail where the pilot sits but I made up a bulkhead behind the pilot from some scrap acrylic shaped to the canopy and covered in bits & pieces from a Revell Gemini spacecraft. I cut out a hole in the main body where the pilot will be and made a platform inside as you only need half a pilot, the platform was created using a chunk of balsa wood fitted into the nose and then a 'box' made from acrylic was fitted on top for the pilot to sit on, I used balsa wood because I had some plus its light and I don't wish to add any more weight than necessary. Again using the Gemini kit I added some more details to the cockpit controls area to make it more interesting.
 

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badsimmonds

Alphans
I next decided to work on the engine pods, they come in only three parts if you don't include the support strut. The kits comes with the tube, nose and nozzle, I decided to buy the resin versions of the nose & nozzle for two reasons, the first was money and the second was the nose gets painted white so you don't get to see the aluminium and the nozzle will probably be dirtied up. It would have been nice to have the metal ones but I couldn't afford the extra.
The nose has a little ridge round its base which fits in well to the tube, the nozzle is actually slightly smaller than the internal dimension of the tube so I had to fit a collar at the end of the tube made from some scrap plasticard.
However before I did that and after looking at photos I decided to reduce the length of the tube. At this stage I haven't yet stuck the nozzle in place as it will make it easier to work on.
The next thing is the joining strip that fits the tube onto the wing but as both surfaces have completely different profiles I used the parcel tape & filler method to overcome this.
I used a piece of ramin wood strip shaped like a hockey stick and cut and shaped as much as possible, after putting parcel tape on the tube I applied loads of filler to the wood strip and pressed firmly onto the tube and left it to set. Once dry I sanded down and refilled any bits that needed it, it was then the same method for the other side of the wood this time the tape is on the underside of the wing. With a bit of sanding once dried you end up with a strange shaped bit of wood which should fit perfectly onto the engine and wing.
I screwed the wood strip onto the engine as I'm not going to glue this as it will make it easier in future if something needs done. As you all know the engine tube is screwed onto the wing which meant drilling two holes thru the wing, to prevent the wing from warping as you screw in I filled the two holes with loads of filler, once dry it strengthens the holes and wings and no warping. The screw heads will be hidden by a strip later on.
 

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badsimmonds

Alphans
I have a tendency to jump from one piece to another and back again if I get tired of spending so much time with a particular bit and the nose of this model is no exception.
I sanded, filled, sprayed etc till I thought I was happy with the two sections of nose and put them aside, but I kept going back to them during the build as I thought they weren't right. Eventually I decided to fit the fluted section onto the main body but as there was not much gluing surface I decided to fit a chunk of balsa in the fluted section and then glued a piece of acrylic onto the balsa making sure it was flush with the edges of the section, this gave me loads of surface to glue onto. Again it was down to sanding the nose and body till I thought they were right. I then filled the gaps between the two parts, sanded and sprayed until the join disappeared. The cut out in the front nose section was done by dremel and sanded and filled where needed. Some people put mesh to cover the opening but there is no mesh on the real model so instead of just having an opening I decided to make it more interesting by fitting some details inside. I just used a section of pipe about 2inches diameter and half inch tall, in the centre I put a cut down hose joiner as it had some interesting shapes. Eventually I glued this part onto the body and finally the model was looking more like a real interceptor!
 

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Oh, but that's clever....

Interesting-looking parts......don't you just love them?

Even if it's not studio model accurate, I always think that there's a real sense of satisfaction in displaying (or, in some cases, hiding away) wee bits and pieces on a model. Nobody else would ever know the difference, but you do -it's the time you spend doing so that's the real reward.

I'll reiterate an earlier statement - I always thought that SkyDiver was one of the best looking and best-filmed Anderson vehicles - every step you post on the forum reinforces just what a fine craft she was. Keep us updated please!

Kindest regards

Patrick
 

badsimmonds

Alphans
Hi Patrick

Thanks for your kind comments.
I have to admit most of the time I'm not a purist when it comes to some models, partly because there are much more experienced modellers on this forum and at times I have to take shortcuts. However I also like to add bits that might not be there on the original simply to enhance areas that are perhaps not too visible or no one really knows what might be there, I'll also be adding some details in the rear jet nozzles as there was definitely nothing there as the space was needed for their Shermuly Rockets (spelling??) Its hard to explain and some people might have fits over my methods.
 

badsimmonds

Alphans
The eagle-eyed among you may have noticed in the last batch of photos I posted the main body had lines on it, well as I have a back to front approach with this diary its time I mentioned it.
When it was suggested I 'scribe' the lines on this model I just wanted to run away as that was asking for trouble for me as I intended to use either pen or pencil to create the panels as I've used in the past. However after thinking about it and seeing RCnut's Sky 1 at Hanslope I decided to give it a try. I bought a simple scribing tool on ebay and marked the positions of all the lines I could see on the original using pencil. I thought something will go wrong so I started on the underside of one wing, low and behold it turned out easier than I thought and did look very effective. However as I found you have to be very careful as its easy for the scribe to go off on a tangent of it's own if your not careful. I did make some mistakes which were rectified using p38 but over all it turned out not too bad. I used plasti-card to get round some of the curves and this is where you have to be so careful, if I made a mistake in pencil it could be rubbed out easy enough but not a cut groove.
It turned out much better than I hoped so I'll probably use this method on future models.
 

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Odahs

Alphans
That scribing is looking very good indeed. I can totally relate to your experiences having tried myself to master the art of scribing in the past. It does get easier in time but I have to be in the mood for it.

I'm sure your careful work will pay off when you come to painting and finishing.
 

badsimmonds

Alphans
I thought I better bite the bullet and actually start painting the final colour but I must add something first which I forgot.
In between the fluted nose section and the front of the cockpit canopy there is a little 'ramp', its difficult to see it on photos as its black against a black background. I made this purely from p38 using the parcel tape method, its not very big and has to conform to the shape of the cockpit edge but it just needed sanding and refilling to get the shape required.
With that out of the way I sprayed and sanded the main body 3 or 4 times with filler primer.
I also cut a hole in the rear of the body where it joins with the diver section so I could mount the body on a pole for ease of painting. (the hole will be covered up with the docking plate)
As you know the colour of sky 1 is Ford Oyster Gold, I had to travel a few miles to find some cans as my local Halfords were out of stock.
Before the final spray I wiped the whole model over with a tack rag to remove all dust etc. With it mounted on a pole it was fairly easy to spray all round, I also painted the tail fin. With that done I left it till the next day where thankfully it turned out ok and did not require a re-spray.
It is a bit light in colour but that will change after weathering.
 

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badsimmonds

Alphans
With the body, tail fin and cockpit canopy painted the final colour its time to start the detailing.
There's not so much parts to stick on but mostly panelling involving different shades of the same colour etc.
I marked out the various areas that needed panels and masked them off using my 3mm wide vinyl tape and low-tack conventional masking tape to fix the bin liner so the rest of the model was covered. I used some car spray paint I had lying around (ford Arizona gold to be exact) for some of the panels and others I used ford oyster gold for others. If you vary the amount you spray you can achieve different panels, some more subtle than others.
This takes lots of masking tape and bin liners as I always use a new one every time, just when you think your getting there you discover more details to be added.
I had pre-painted and 'panelled' the bumps on either side of the body which were then fixed in place.
I used the basic colour Ford Oyster Gold on a number of areas to create panels by simply having a thicker cover thus creating slightly different shades of the same colour.
Some areas I used a different method by masking off just the exact area and using my finger to rub in black powder paint, by using different pressure you can achieve light or dark areas. I then just blow the excess off, remove the tape and wipe down with a small rag, for the final effect I sometimes outline the area using a pencil to highlight it.
I also used a pencil to highlight all the lines I scribed earlier to make them stand out more.
Its amazing just how much work has to be done to achieve all this as I spent a whole week on just the body.
I also started to stick on the vinyl coloured tape on various areas, some people paint these lines on but I prefer to use tape, much safer!
 

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