Been chipping away on this over the past week. I've just finished adding the vent which is poorly represented in the kit. I cut a piece of steel tube on an angle with the motor tool. Just need to tidy up the putty around it now.
I just need to paint the IP and then once that's in, I can close up the forward section. Will modify the tail fin once I have assembled the aft section.
Wings coming together. I'm building her in a clean configuration with the leading edges retracted and flaps up. To get a nice fit of the slats I carved all of the inside detail away from the undersides. Also glued in the rails so their aren't voids on the undersides. I still need to saw the anti-collision light off the underside port side and move to the starboard side which will be easy.
Trying to plan the best way to create the squared top on the tail at the moment.
Leading edge slats aren't hydraulic. They are gravity operated and are not powered at all. They just fall forward. The only way they were retracted on the ground was by a special strap that was occasionally used to keep them out the way for access. Or a large flat blade armourers screw driver wedged under the leading edge of the wing racks. But only when there were no aircraft trade looking.
Last time I was at MOTAT the slats were in their normal deployed position.
The Blue Angels secured their slats in the up position to prevent asymmetrical slat deployment at certain speeds/AoA, which apparently made close formation flying a bit too exciting.
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Phil wrote: Leading edge slats aren't hydraulic. They are gravity operated and are not powered at all. They just fall forward.
Yeah, that's right.
Phil wrote: The only way they were retracted on the ground was by a special strap that was occasionally used to keep them out the way for access. Or a large flat blade armourers screw driver wedged under the leading edge of the wing racks. But only when there were no aircraft trade looking.
Sounds like that clipboard that got sucked through an A320's engine last week.
Phil wrote: Last time I was at MOTAT the slats were in their normal deployed position.
Ditched these engine supports. They're not really needed and just get in the way.
Front section partially closed up. Still need to close the area forward of the cockpit. Fit along the spine needs careful alignment as there aren't any location pins there. I'll just need to give the seam line a scrape and polish to tidy it up.
Rear section joined together. I glued in a fillet of thin plasticard and cut to shape to help shape the tip of the tail. Then I applied Tamiya putty, once dry, sanded to shape. I also rounded the forward tip of the rudder.
Minor surgery – moving the nav light from the port side to starboard.
As the A-4K's didn't have the rear most chaff/flare dispenser represented in the Trumpeter kit, I've decided to fill it with putty. I've also added a bead of stretched sprue around the panel to allow for easier rescribing. Still more putty added before I can shape it.
I also glued the intakes on. Fit was very good resulting in just a tiny step that required blending.
Still plodding along with and enjoying this build – After a lot of sanding and filling, I've just about got the profile right for the area aft of the chaff/flare dispensers. Have also done some minor filling on other areas. Horizontal stabilisers, elevators, flaps and ailerons have been assembled. Canopies and clear parts dipped in Alclad Aqua Gloss. Really impressed with the clear parts in this kit.
Shouldn't be too long till the wings are mated to the fuselage and the cockpit and gear bays are masked in prep for primer.
From a quick search online the pre Kahu ones were quite far back (maybe not quite as far as your kit but not far off), whereas the post Kahu looked to be much more aft, I suspect due to the cokpit having MFD's with buttons but the early cockpits were mostly gauges.
Pre Kahu K and G Skyhawk cockpit
Post Kahu upgrade
I think for want of having to trim bits here and there it's probably not a major, as even in 1/32 skyhawk cockpits aren't the easiest to see into anyway. Completely up to you of course.
Hopefully a spreader bar while the canopy glues and sets will work as it looks like no one does an aftermarket canopy for it.
Need to get the IP coaming installed so I can add the windscreen. The kit's HUD framing etch snapped when I bent it, even after annealing it, so I used the other HUD framing on the fret. I've now primed it and it's ready for paint now.
I also added the leading edge and wingtip lights to the wings.