Monday, 9 September 2013

USS Missouri - I made a boo-boo

As I mentoined earlier, the USS Missouri has terrible fit-issues. The deck and the hull are supposed to sit flush, but the deck protrudes up to 1-2 mm over just about the entire length of the ship.

First, I started sanding. I prefer sanding sticks over sanding paper, because they're easier to use, but they are more expensive. After running through several sticks and not even being halfway, I decided to go about it slightly more aggressive. I was visiting the hobby shop anyway and asked if they had metal files.
Did I want flat, round, triangular, square, ...? Uhm, show me a few? They turned out €2.99 a piece, or €6.99 for a set of 10. That's a no-brainer :-)


Needless to say, the metal files ate the plastic Missouri for breakfast. I had to be careful not to grind too much away.

At some point, though, I had to stop. The deck does contain some detail that's sitting pretty close to the edge of the ship. If I kept filing, I would be grinding away at the detail. How to fix the remaining gap? I decided to add a generous amount of putty (Vallejo) to effectively change the curvature of the hull more outward (I hope you understand what I mean), so it would fill the gap under the edge of the deck. After it was dry, I could sand it all flat.


Unfortunately, the Vallejo putty doesn't dry very hard, apparently. It stays pretty malleable. As a next resort, I switched to Tamiya putty. This stuff stinks a lot more and it affects the plastic (too much and it melts). I applied it generously again, then scraped it flat with a spatula.
The shape of the hull is slightly altered (bending a little more outwards where it reaches the deck) but I doubt anyone will ever notice. Compared to just leaving the gap as is, which is noticable from 5 feet away.

A lot more sanding - more careful now - yielded the result below. When it comes to priming, we'll see if I've done enough or if more repairs will be needed.


Now, I hear you ask, which part of this is the so-called boo-boo?
In my desire to make the hull fit (I spent several hours at it), I completely forgot to check the building instructions. The larger cannons are supposed to rotate. This is achieved by inserting them in their designated holes and inserting a pin to fix their position FROM THE INSIDE! Aaargh!

Oh well, any modeller will probably have experienced this. No matter how careful you are with moving parts, some step in construction, painting or weathering will ruin their mobility. It's not as if I'd every allow someone to actually touch the model and rotate the turrets :-)

1 comment:

  1. Happens all the time! I tend to not worry about since, like you said, they aren't going to be touched so no big deal. I've even messed up the swing mechanism on a Tornado, so its wings are fixed in position and don't swing back. Oh well. Live and learn.

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