I've been wanting to get my hands on one of these kits for years and am happy I have one now. The detail looks very nice - Trumpeter's usual rivet team must have been on holiday when they designed this one as the rivet details and panel lines are very fine.
I intend to finish this as an RNZAF A-4K (late) in the dark green overall scheme. I won't be getting hung up on accuracy, but intend to add the antennas and reshape the tail fin.
Aftermarket kits to be included are Wolfpack's A-4F cockpit and Eduard's exterior A-4F etch set.
I am also working up my own set of decals which I will laser print. All of the markings on this one are black, so there should be no issues with opacity.
The cockpit set is currently having a warm soapy bath
Wanting to really crack into this build, but the Eduard etch set I ordered from BNA on 25 January still hasn't arrived. I've got that sinking feeling that it has been 'misplaced' in the postage system... along with the Montex mask set for my Spitfire and airbrush cleaning kit that I ordered at the same time. To top it off, a couple of CDs I sent to Hamilton over 2 weeks ago haven't made it to their destination either.
KitModellerNZ wrote: Cut the casting blocks off the resin parts. Took a bit of time, especially the block on the cockpit tub.
Rough dry fit. Looks suitably busy.
The detail on the seat is very nice.
That's a nice looking seat, but note it is missing the Mk82 man seat separator rocket on the LH shoulder of the seat. If you look at the cockpit images in my link you'll see it as the grey tube with an angled top sticking up from the LH side of the seat. Easy to scratch build, if you are inclined.
Thanks Phil. I know exactly which part you're talking about, but didn't know what it was. I was looking at a photo of a seat the other day and working out if I could make a decal that small to represent the writing on it. Here's my representation using a piece of stretched sprue.
Getting through the etch work nicely now. I think I just need to apply etch to the undercarriage and the main gear doors now. I will leave the small parts such as the vortex generators on the nose and aerials till later in the build. Finished adding the etch to the airbrakes, so they have been primed and ready for paint along with all of the cockpit parts. Haven't decided on my plan of attack for reshaping the tail yet.
Still working my way through the etch assemblies – working on the main gear doors at the moment and then need to do the gear legs and that'll be most of the etch taken care of. I also tested some colours and I'm reasonably happy going with Tamiya XF-81 RAF Green (2) for a close match. I've finished building and painting the airbrakes which I will display partially opened. RNZAF A-4s were very well maintained and didn't show much wear, so adding interest to the single colour scheme is going to be an exercise in restraint.
Glad to get the etch work on the gear bays out of the way. A fair bit of swearing involved to get the smaller pieces in place. Also added some wiring, painted and realised I had left a kit part off the interior of the door. Not a lot of weathering required on these parts as they were kept pretty clean.
Cockpit painting underway. I used tape to mask the cockpit and sprayed the consoles with Nato black rather than hand painting.