Monday, 5 October 2015

Progress #3 of my 1/48 Tamiya - Heinkel He 162 A-2

Hello comrades........... Well, she is complete and my Luftwaffe Group Build has also finished as of 30th Sept, 2015.  Within this blog entry I'll get you up to speed with the methods behind the chaos that was this build, and I'm not joking, at times it was chaotic with lots of swearing/cursing! ;)

Okay, first things first - my primed model was pre-shaded with black (no photos of this step, but you know how it works, and if in doubt spray the complete model black as a base coat, which maybe what I'll do from now on).

Photo above:  When last we 'chatted' I was dreading creating a realistic natural metal finish, and for good reason...........the paint job caused me a headache and a half, and then some. The paint I used is very delicate once laid down so masking tape easily removed it, even when coated in Klear and giving it plenty of time to dry. This meant parts of the fuselage had to be masked and re-masked multiple times, and in certain areas sanded down to the bare plastic to avoid getting a 'step' in the paint job.

What I set out to achieve was various shades of the base metal, as though different sheet metal was used for construction, and that these metal panels had weathered to varying degrees - all this was intended to create an interesting model to view in my display case.

I was not using Tamiya paints as seen propping up my 162 in the photo, but was actually using Vallejo Model Metallic Air 'Aluminum' (71062), a very nice if somewhat delicate paint. 

After several attempts at painting bare metal and several frustrating 'rubbing away these attempts' with wet & dry sand paper, I finally managed to create a reasonable finish that depicted various coloured 'aluminum' panels - by the way, this was achieved by simply adding black/grey and white to my aluminum to knock the shades up and down.  

With my natural metal finish completed, I mixed several shades of green to create some colour modulation to the wings, tail and upper fuselage surfaces while simply using some black and white paint to vary the shade of these colours; it's important to test paint your mixes before applying to your actual model. I don't believe there is any hard and fast rule to selecting your colours as long as they resemble the shades used in real life - if we take into account weather conditions, batches of paint from different manufacturers, and general wear and tear, most machines would have varied in appearance to some extent, especially during the late-war period.

I used colours I already had at hand for the wings, tail and upper fuselage surfaces:  

Model Air RLM 2 Light Grey Green 71.044
Model Color  Ger. Cam Bright Green 70.833
Model Air RLM 73 US Dark Green 71016
Model Air RLM 82  Cam Green 71022

In the photo above it is a little clearer to see some pre-shading  and the colour modulation on the upper fuselage and parts of the wings. Also important to remember, especially if chipping paintwork, was which parts were wood - the wings, nose section,  upper fuselage panel/s behind the cockpit, gear doors, parts of the tail section, were all made from wood. 

The underside was mixed with Model Air RLM 76 Pale Grey Blue 71046. You can see my pre-shading a littler clearer on these lighter surfaces.

Photo above: I thought creating the putty effects was going to be a nightmare but it was actually a piece of cake compared to the earlier painting. I used Vallejo Panzer Aces Light Rubber 305 and a small, good quality brush with a sharp tip for this task. When completed the job looked rather neat compared to reference photos (see below)..... I simply rubbed my applied 'putty' with a stiff, short brush and got a rougher finish. 

Next I wired up the BMW engine using fuse and jewelry wire along with reference photos of a real engine.  I didn't attempt to represent every wire on the real engine but instead just enough to make it look a little more authentic. The colours were chose purely to make them stand-out and create some contrast. The engine was then painted black grey and aluminum, after which it was sealed and given a good oil weathering. The final touches were some Europe dust and Vallejo Model Metallic Air 'Aluminum' (71062) dry brushing.

With the engine in place, the aircraft frame itself was sealed with satin varnish and oil weathered in several stages over several days, each time sealing the day's work with varnish to protect the underlying effects. The goal was to produced a well-weathered aircraft that had been sitting abandoned for many months, so would thus be covered in dust, grime, oil and fuel stains pulled back by the air-stream of the jet, but also vertical staining occurring from the machine remaining static for so long (for this I used reference photos of abandoned Russian jets, particularly those in a bare metal finish).

After oil weathering I did some sponge and small brush chipping (again it was important to know which parts would have been metal underneath the paint, and those made from wood on the real aircraft).

Photo above: a brief description of  how and why I weathered the fuselage.

The final reveal HERE 
See part 2 HERE
See part 1 HERE

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