Archive for August, 2014


Working schedule and weekend away from home prevented much work to be done on the Sukhoi, but the progress is steady as I see it!

Next thing I tackled were wheel wells. They are usually devoid of much details which can be seen on real aircraft. Armed with some reference photos I’ve decided to improve the looks, armed with 0.3 and 0.5mm soldering wire, bits and pieces of plasticard and good old classic stretched sprue.

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Front wheel well on the real deal isn’t really busy wiring-wise, but there are some small wires, cylinders and black boxes present.

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While Hasegawa represented some of the wiring of the main wheel bay with faint raised lines, the real deal is much more busy. Thin stretched sprue wire bundles were made, as well as some soldering wire attached to spice the rather accurate shape-wise wells.

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One should not forget the area behind the main landing gear struts, which is also wired and features some cylinders – probably an emergency hydraulic for lowering the gear in cause of main hydraulic system failure.

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Sprue K indicates that we can expect a future release of a prototype Su-35S version – the area behind the cockpit is different, while the smooth insert at the top, was a strengthening plate on the prototype.

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Insert in place – some Mr. Surfacer will be needed to smooth out the little gaps.

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As with their Su-33, Hasegawa again moulded radome in two halves. It is a bit awkward solution and since there are small static dischargers (?) on it, extra care must be taken not to sand them away when fixing the seam. There are, however, two SD’s that run through the entire length of the radome, one on top and the other on the bottom. They were recreated with a thin stretched sprue – actually a leftover from a KC-135E project.

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I hate these parts with Su-33 and I hate them again. Intakes are, as you can see, full of pin marks, some quite visible if you don’t fill and sand them. Construction of them can also be a core.

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My method is to glue the intake halves together, and while the glue hasn’t set yet (the join is still soft), you dryfit the intake to the lower fuselage part and adjust the sides to a perfect fit. After that is done, insert auxiliary intakes at the bottom (closed if doing a bird on the ground, open (ribbed in this case) if doing her in flight), and paint the intakes with some neutral Grey colour.

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Masking Flanker intakes can be problematic as well as they feature a thin edge of the outside colour on the inner sides of the intake lips. It will be easier if you mask most of them before installing the top and just mask the corners, after the top was attached.

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Intakes were painted with Alclad White Aluminium (notice the turbine blades reflection in the cone) and washed with The Detailers Black wash.

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A view of the assembled intake just before installing it on the lower fuselage.

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As you can see, the fit of the intakes is pretty good and just some small touch ups will be needed.

 

If you are one of those, that follow my blog and my projects, it should come as no surprise, that I have a soft spot for Flankers. Sukhoi’s big twin jet fighter first flew the same year that I was born and in its distinguished career proved its worth, forming the backbone of Soviet and later Russian Air Force, while the basic variant developed from a fighter/interceptor to power multirole versions (Su-30 series), fighter bomber (Su-34), naval fighter (Su-33) and its final guise, a modern 4++ generation, super maneuverable fighter, the Su-35S ‘Flanker-E’.

In my airshow ‘career’, I have witnessed displays of many fighters, all of the American ‘teen-series’, European 4th gen fighters, MiGs and even the famed F-22 Raptor. Yet when I’ve seen Su-35S for the first time, display what it’s capable of, it was like a cherry on top of the Flanker cake. Here’s a photo of the first Su-35S prototype I made at MAKS 2011.

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So you can imagine my excitement, when I first heard that Hasegawa announced the release of this version in gentleman’s scale. A few months later, HLJ enabled the preorders, and the kit arrived early August. As you can expect from Hasegawa, the plastic is crisply moulded and full of detail.

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As you can see the raised detail is very crisp. I was comparing the side consoles layout with the photos of the real thing and Hasegawa nailed it almost to a button! Hats off. However not everything’s perfect. Two big Multi Function Displays on the instrument panel should be rectangular, not square and there are side(wall) consoles missing. The latter is not such a big deal as with cockpit installed, you won’t see much inside anyway.

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K-36 seat is nice. Not surprisingly harnesses are missing but as I will use a pilot, that doesn’t bother me at all. And if you wanna improve this section, there’s tons of aftermarket K36s out there.

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Ejection seat finished. Nice touch are head rest placards decals. Ejection seat handle was made from 0.19mm copper wire as the supplied one is of wrong shape (inverted bell) and too thick. Also notice that painting diagram is wrong – instructions want you to paint whole seat black, while newer version of the seat use olive-green fabric instead of black leather.

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There is an option to use decals for side consoles and instrument panels, but unfortunately they are mostly wrong, as all panels are painted black with white buttons, like on american fighters, while Flanker’s cockpit is a bit more colourful. I have used a few decals though, for the radio station and for all the MFD’s. One little detail I’ve added were new better shaped rudder pedals and the bare metal area before them. Won’t be visible in the end, but it’s there 😉

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The ejection seat and instrument panel fit without problems.

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Meat Boris! You actually get two pilot figures in the kit and they’re very nicely moulded as you can see. With positionable head and arms, there’s no problem positioning him to have his hands on HOTAS.

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Mandatory coin comparison check!

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And as I said before, while you install the pit, there’s not much left to be seen of those beautiful details.

 

Till the next time!

Finally finished. I am not completely satisfied with the end result. Too much time has passed, since I’ve began this project, Revell moulds have deteriorated quite a lot, Model Alliance decals failed on me, so I had to resort to ALPS printed HaHen ones, which aren’t bad, but not great. In the end, even the base was making me problems – I wanted to recreate water surface with clear silicone but unfortunately I realized, that it dried in the tube so I was left without. I improvised a bit and tried making water with PVA (wood) glue – again the result is not the best, but it will do.

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Thanks for watching!