Monday, 4 August 2014

Viper - Part 1 (cockpit)

Construction of any jet- or space-fighter-style vehicle usually starts with the cockpit. Both kits starts with other parts, but I skipped those and will do them later. First thing is always the cockpit, since it needs to be painted before you can enclose it in the fuselage. You can do all other construction work, while the paint on the cockpit is drying.

The sprues for the pilot figure are identical in both kits, further proof that Revell and Moebius are distributing the same kit. The sprue for the Mark VII however does not include part 148 (right arm with joystick).

Mark II
  • Step 5 and 8a deal with the cockpit, but none of it can really be glued together as it all requires paint and decals, and that will be hard to do once the tub is assembled. So these parts are all going on the "to paint" pile.
  • Step 6 and 7 have you assemble the pilot. All the parts are mislabeled 43, 44, ... 47. They should be 143, 144, .., 147. (small detail, I know). Furthermore, if you want the pilot to hold the joystick, you should assemble right arm 148, not 147 as indicated.
  • Step 9 has you cut the joystick from it's footplate, but you should leave a stump of about 2 mm.

Mark VII
  • The cockpit on the mark VII is a bit of a let-down in regards to decals. The Moebius kit provides ONE decal, for the DRADIS screen (main screen in front of pilot, if you're less geeky/tech-savvy). The Revell decals (the only difference between Moebius and Revell is the decals and the instruction sheet) provides 14 decals, making the cockpit a lot more busy-looking and impressive.
    For me personally, this shortcoming is not enough to go looking for aftermarket decals, but it's a bit of a bummer.
  • Pilot assembly is identical to the mark II, except now you do have to use right arm 47.
    WARNING: after assembling the arms, make sure to test-fit the pilot in the cockpit-tub. If you just slapped on the arms, chances are the figure won't fit inside. It's best to squeeze him in before the glue sets, when you can still twiddle a bit with the arm's positions.
  • The Moebius instruction sheet in general could do with some more detail. I found the Revell instructions online (since the parts are the same anyway) and am using that as a guide, as they are much more specific and have better schematics. For modellers with only a few models under their belt, I'd highly recommend finding those Revell instructions. (shoot me a message if you can't find it)

I treated both canopies with a layer of Future (or what's closest to it available here : Pledge Sols Plus) to make it more scratch-resistant, but something went wrong in the leveling of the fluid and now they don't look as pristine anymore. If I can't fix it, they'll have to go on as is.

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